Be Remarkable, the number 400, purple cows and you!
The other day when I was updating posts, I realized that this is post #401. Yep, there are over 400 posts on this blog now. Wow, that blows my own mind. For those following along since the start you know that I was on blogger for about 2 years before moving all the content over to the new home here.
So I want to thank ALL of you for reading along on my journey. I really do appreciate all the comments, emails and feedback (hate mail is probably a bit strong).
I was searching for something to make the 400th post memorable and I was struggling. There was so much I wanted to say, but I had no idea where to start and then it hit me in the form of this video from my buddy Craig at The Movement Dallas
I have always said that the worst place to be is a trainer/coach that gets good results. It is a fast death sentence with a long pit stop at stagnation. I was excited to see that others who I respect (like Seth in the video above) were saying the same thing (although for much longer and much louder).
If you are a trainer getting good to very good results there is not as much drive to do better. Why learn something new that may change my mind when I am getting results already? If you suck, it is pretty obvious (by looking at your athletes results and your bank account) that you need to put up, shut up, or get out FAST.
I hate the word average. Nobody wants to be average. This is Extreme Human Performance not Average Human Performance (yawn….)
My goal is to get the best results from everyone I work this and to strive to continuously improve myself. This will mean screwing up. Actually screwing up a lot. Now I won’t let an athlete leave moving worse because I re-assess everything, but I won’t have them try the correct drill all the time, every time.
My long term goal is to get 99% of the athletes I see moving better without pain (pain on a 1-10 scale to less than a 1) and performing better in ONE session. Yes, you read that right, ONE session. While this business model sucks large moose balls from a revenue standpoint, I believe it is what athletes are paying for when they hire me or anyone else.
I’ve explained this goal to others in the field and most of the time it is met with one of the 3 things
1) Deer in the head lights of a Peterbuilt look
2) “You are nuts!” (probably true)
3) that is not physically possible.
While I am not there yet, I am at about 80-90% and I know others who are in the area. I am not trying to pump sunshine up my butt here, but athletes pay for results not time. Your goal as a trainer/goal is to deliver results. Period.
Fear of Failure
I believe you need to fail as fast as possible in order to achieve greatness. Most are too afraid to try for fear of failure. Wired magazine (my favorite magazine) has a great cover article discussing how to correctly fail.
Purple Cow or Skiing Ostrich
As Seth points out in the video above (you did watch it, right?) that since their are so few purple cows, if you see one, you will stop and go “Holy crap, look at that!” I would argue that their are few skiing Ostriches, so you will stop and watch one ski
That is one bada$$ two-planking bird!
Being remarkable is rare, so that IS your marketing and others will hopefully spread the good word.
What Do YOU Want To See?
My goal as always is to bring you information you will not find in many places about how to get stronger and become a better athlete.
You won’t read the standard stuff here that you can find on 100s of other websites. Stretching this, lift that, repeat. Please. You know that already and my guess is that is why you are reading here.
You want to move beyond that.
HOW can I lift more?
HOW can I move better with less pain?
WHY do I need protein after I lift?
What does the research say so I can stop reading BroScience articles (er I mean forum posts) from Johnny Big Gunz who lives in his mother’s basement swiping an internet connection from the neighbor.
Place some comments on what you want to see here and I promise you that I will work my hardest to deliver it to you.
Now is your time to pick for brain for free and help me deliver what YOU want in 2010.
Happy Holidays and time we do some cooking the lab!
I’ve tried it a few times after and I like it a little better now without the vanilla, but feel free to adjust to your taste. I have not added too many veggies to it yet, but I was thinking a few figs may be interesting.
Let me know what you think and if you have any other great super shake recipes to share in the comments.
Guest post on Training for Females by Brian Copeland
Today I have a special guest post from my buddy Brian Copeland in Colorado. Brian was actually an assistant when I did my RKC back in October 2007 on Brett Jones’s team. Fast forward a few years and Brian was at the RKC assisting again when I was assisting this past June here in Minnesota.
Sit back and let Brain explain why females need to train hard and don’t believe all that crap about only using the pink dumbbells. I routinely have women using the 16 kg kettlbell for swings within a 1-2 sessions to start.
Take it away Brian……
Getting Tone but NOT Big for Female Trainees
By Brian Copeland, RKC, PFS, Z-Health Performance Coach
My female clients always say the same thing to me; “I don’t want to get big and bulky.” Well… you probably couldn’t even if you wanted to! In this article I am going to cover some basic concepts to getting tone and healthy without getting big or bulky
Concept 1 – Hormones:
Women by nature are lower in the hormone testosterone; this is the hormone that is responsible for the image of oversized men with large heads, no necks, hairy backs and bad tempers. It is in fact the hormone that helps people build muscle; that is why many professional athletes take legal or illegal substances to increase their testosterone level beyond natural levels.
Ladies, if professional athletes have to increase their level of testosterone to get “big” then as long as you don’t take steroids you will be fine. You just don’t produce enough of the hormone to get manly looking; in fact if you put any muscle on it will only improve your hourglass figure.
As international strength and conditioning coach Mike Mahler says,
“Getting too big is like having too much money; it isn’t going to happen!”
Concept 2 – Body Fat Level:
High body fat is almost always the culprit in looking bulky or big. In reality a woman who puts on muscle and looses some body fat will look leaner; here is why. Muscle weighs twice as much as fat per volume. That means if your right butt cheek weighed 4 lbs from fat but your left one weighed 4 lbs from muscle, your left one would be half the size!!!
Putting on muscle and dropping the fat is the fast track to looking thin. Now remember, women do not gain a lot of muscle so you will probably replace the 4 lb right butt cheek with a 1 or 2 lb butt cheek. Just make sure to replace both cheeks at the same time ok!
Mike’s note. Don’t believe Brian, check out this video below
Ok, back to Brian…
Now what about too low of body fat? Have you ever seen a female professional bodybuilder who has veins on her stomach? That is because her body fat is super low, as low as 3%. Now I’m a pretty lean guy with a six-pack and I’m over twice that level of body fat to give you an idea. It is completely not natural for a woman or a man to be that lean. To get that lean those professional bodybuilders (there is that word ‘professional’ again) must work SUPER hard and eat SUPER strict and take TONS of supplements. Plus they usually can only make themselves look like that for a couple of days or even just a couple of hours before their body fat increases up to a healthier level.
So to summarize, if you don’t want to look like a man, lower your body fat to a feminine level (when you think you look good), increase muscle as much as you can and don’t worry about dropping to a bodybuilder level of body fat because most people aren’t disciplined enough to even come close to that level
Concept 3 – Strength Training:
There are plenty of good intentioned but uninformed people who are more than willing to offer quick and easy advice about fitness, unfortunately they almost never know what they are talking about. Even worse are the countless articles written in women’s magazines by self proclaimed fitness experts who will tell you what you want to hear in order to sell the magazine. Things like, “Walk Your Way To Skinny” or “The 2-Minute Per Day Fitness Program To Getting A Lean And Sexy Body.” WOW, sign me up! That easy huh? Well, in reality anything in life worth pursuing requires some work. There are no free lunches folks!
Conversely an interesting fact is that getting a lean and sexy body does not have to take a lot of time and it does not have to hurt when you do it. If you are attending spinning classes for 2 hours a day or doing countless fire hydrants to make your buns firm then I’m here to tell you stop wasting your time! There is a better, more effective, faster way!
There are two types of training that should be considered for the non-athlete who wants to improve the way their body looks, cardio training and strength training.
Many women are scared of strength training because they associate it with big bulky muscles. We have already covered why women will not get big and bulky so let’s cover what real strength training is, what it is not and what it will do for you.
What it is:
Training with fairly heavy weight or a fairly challenging exercise
If you can lift it more than 7 times, it is too easy (light)
Exercises that use as many muscles at once as possible
Brief, intense and over with very quickly
What it is not:
Training with light easy weights or exercises that don’t really challenge you
If you can lift it more than 10 times, it is way to easy to do you any good (there are exceptions to this rule but that is for another topic)
Isolation exercises like dumbbell curls or thigh machines
Long, drawn out, exhausting workouts leaving you feeling like crap
What real strength training will do for you:
Create muscle tone
Make you healthier and… stronger of course
Prevent injuries and teach to you lift heavy or awkward object without hurting yourself
Make daily life activities easier to perform. Such as picking up the baby’s car seat, with the baby in it, picking up groceries out of your trunk, etc.
Pavel Tsatsouline, an internationally sought after strength and conditioning coach says, “Strength and tone training are the same thing.” If you want to get strong, use heavy weight but don’t do a lot of set or reps. Sets and reps will tear down the muscle and will cause the body to go into survival repair mode. In order to survive your next brutal workout it will replace your old muscle with more muscle! Lifting heavy weight a few times and then going home will make you stronger and more tone without adding any bulk.
Why am I having trouble getting buns of steel?
The glutes have a lot of strength and leverage. When you see a powerlifter squat or deadlift a bar bending load, it is the incredibly strong glutes that do most of the lifting. When you do butt squeezes, fire hydrants or any other silly moves popular in muscle sculpting classes you are not even coming close to the potential of your glutes’ strength. If you were not challenging the glutes why would they get more tone?
If you are ‘feeling the burn’ and think that you are accomplishing something, all you are experiencing is a build-up of lactic acid in the muscles and does nothing for the tone of your muscles. The way you feel has nothing to do with if you are physiologically improving yourself.
Don’t believe me? In the Guinness Book of World Records look up a picture of ‘Captain American’ who holds the world record for the most consecutive number of sit-ups, about 25,000! This dude sure must have felt the burn more than anyone but he does not even have a six-pack to show for it, even at his low level of body fat!
Concept 4 – Cardio Training:
The final concept I’ll talk about is cardio training. I won’t spend much time here but in summation, 20-30 minutes of cardio max is what the doctor ordered, literally! Dr. Al Sears the Director of The Center for Health and Wellness in south Florida who has helped over 15,000 patients overcome heart disease and loose weight says those long cardio sessions such as marathon running are incredibly bad for your health. The constant pounding on your joints is bad for your feet, ankles, knees, hips and lower back.
It also decreases muscle mass (as is apparent from looking at any big time marathon runner) and guess what… the heart is made of muscle. Long aerobic sessions will decrease the size of the heart itself which in turn makes the heart more susceptible to heart attacks. The heart will beat until the day you die, no pun intended. You do not need to train it to beat longer; you need to train it to handle larger volumes of blood and oxygen through brief and intense cardio exercise. Have you ever seen a movie where bad news is delivered to someone and they grasp their heart, and then keel over from a heart attack. Well, that is what you need to strengthen your heart to do, keep beating when sudden intense spikes in the heart’s output is demanded.
Dr. Sears recommends brief and intense interval style training to strengthen the heart. A way to accomplish this is with High Octane Cardio. 1-minute of moderate cardio exercise followed immediately by 30 seconds of intense cardio, followed by a 1-minute rest. Then repeat the 1-minutes moderate followed by the 30 second intense, rest again and repeat.
As always consult a doctor before beginning any type of training program, especially if you have any pre-existing health conditions which may put you at risk.
About Brian Copeland
Brian Copeland is a certified Z-Health Movement Reeducation and Integration Specialist, RKC certified kettlebell instructor and Progressive Fighting Systems certified Martial Arts instructor. Brian specializes in helping women and men integrate fitness into their lifestyle, eliminating aches and pains and improving their athletic performance.
Ouch, the Muscles Around My Shoulder Hurt: Testimonial for Mike T Nelson
Von Gillette: Trainer and Mixed Martial Artist Athlete
“I had some pain in my right shoulder. After a few mobilizations (joint mobility work) in my first session with Mike, the pain was gone!
Mike has motivated me both as a fitness professional and an athlete to use the best methods for training and Mike definitely has them! Go see Mike if you have any kind of pain now”
–Von Gillette Professional Fitness Coach and Mixed Martial Artist Athlete – www.vongillette.com.
A huge thanks to Von for stopping by for a training session to move better and get out of pain.
I tend to see a lot of shoulder issues from athletes for various reasons and he was having some right shoulder pain.
The big exercises for him were some joint mobility on his feet and ankles (left side) and right side wrist (Z-Health AP wrist drills).
We also had to do some eye movements (oculomotor) to get his left glute to fire up completely. Eye movements can get “wired’ to muscles and standard joint mobility work will NOT have an effect at times. Once we addressed his eye movements and did the joint mobility drill, the left glute fired right up! The nervous system is so cool!
What are you waiting for?
Drop me a line to set up your appointment today by clicking HERE or hit me up via the contact page at the top.
Mike T Nelson
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