Knowledge, discipline, power... the antidote 

I was freaked out about my weight until I was twenty seven, and never again since. There's no question that knowledge is power, but it's not absolute power. I never had a weight problem when I was an athlete, as sports because of the discipline kept me in shape. Once I stopped playing at the age of twenty two my stress levels about weight gain began escalating, and it didn't take long before I started falling apart. 

All of a sudden I didn't have accountability, in addition coaches pushing me to accel to my full athletic potential. By the age of twenty seven my whole life as I knew it changed, having a completely new set of priorities, as a new father and someone responsible for his family. Playing sports at this stage was definitely not an option, including weekend warrior sports. 

I soon realized I new nothing about what it took to control my weight, and just because I'd been an athlete didn't make it any better, in fact made it worse. Being in great shape unknowingly created a standard by which I felt I had to maintain, but now with no tools or skills other than playing sports most of my life, ironically now put me at a severe disadvantage. 

This had a cause and effect response which led me to extreme behavioral tendencies and a ton of angst, putting me on quite a rollercoaster ride for years until the day I read my first bodybuilding magazine. Years later after becoming a high level competitive bodybuilder did I realize the negative effects of emotional weight gain which is exactly what happened to me. 

It was all about feeling powerless, even helpless, which also had physiological side effects, fortunately  temporary, but it could have produced long termed consequences. As a personal trainer whose now been in the indusrty, I've seen what happens to individuals who never get a handle on angst or extreme behavior, including and not limited to osteoporosis and adrenal burn out, which can have dire consequences. 

TT

Create your own persona... it changes, and takes dedicated energy

The thing that's really cool and unique about your body is you can change it at will. You can also change the look of it, which impacts how you act, it's that powerful. There are different reasons for creating a makeover of this magnitude, but let me be clear, this undertaking is not an easy one, but the trade-off is nothing short of awesome.

To make this happen doesn't take anything fancy, however it does require your heart and soul, but believe me, even if you don't think so, you're worth every penny of it, and on top of all this, it will be rewarding for the people around you. I know this from first hand experience. 

Throughout various periods of my life, I've needed a makeover because shit sometimes just gets outta hand, and all of a sudden you end up in dark places. It always seemed my best option for finding daylight was to self medicate, which only resulted in more self destruction, obviously a temporary bandaid to mask the pain. This strategy always helped, but never for any length of time, so it was a lose, lose proposition. 

Unfortunately, before any meaningful change can happen sometimes you have to crash and burn, then all of a sudden you gain clarity, interesting how that bit of irony works. But then it happens, you make a heart to heart commitment to no one other than yourself. Some people turn to a higher power, some to tea leaves. I turned to the gym. 

The gym has saved me more than once, because it forced me to be faithful if I wanted a reward. Unlike some of the other things in my life, the addiction I got from the gym was an interesting dynamic. I would experience a certain amount of pain from my training, but the after effects gave me a massive rush. Turns out this high I was experiencing was a drug my body naturally produced. 

I didn't have to pay money for this, just time in the gym. The rest is now my history, with gym having top priority, as I pay daily homage making it my first order of business. I get my daily, healthy drug fix, which makes me happy, in shape and in charge of my life. What could be better? More gym please! 

TT



And then what... When your goals are met

If you end up being in that small minority group who initially set out to meet your health and fitness goals, and you reach them, then what. Percentage wise, it's really quite an accomplishment considering most people fail repeatedly. Short term goals should always be the main focus, as that improves the probability of success, in addition mitigating the chances of being overwhelmed, both physically, and emotionally. Following through with your purposed intentions is paramount, but you gotta have a strategy in place, otherwise results will be very short lived. 

It's important to plan for success and failure ahead of time, because when that time comes, you'll be able to stay in objective action mode making coherent decisions based on thoughtful pre planning. Most people won't do this because it takes energy which requires discipline. Most don't really want to be accountable, especially to themselves, because it potentially exposes one to their own weaknesses and downfall.  Who wants that? 

Only the group of people who are really committed, that's who, because that's life's built in trade-off. Otherwise, the rest like the idea of attaining a goal, more than actually following through, which is hard to admit. So where do we go from here? Short and long term phases...As mentioned, plan your outcome with short and long term goals. Short term goals should be no longer than four weeks. 

The goals set in short term phase should be very conservative and progressive with each week. Short term goals should be realistic, even if you have to over compensate making the weekly marker relatively easy to accomplish. Reaching weekly markers is the beginning of creating long term success. The psychological factor, and benefit of getting in the habit of reaching weekly markers develops an important foundation for long term goal reaching. 

Like short term goals, each week should be  progressive, and more challenging. Long term goal phase should begin once eight weeks of short term goal phase have successfully been completed, and should last four before ongoing adjustments are made. The reason for goals in long term phase to be more unrealistic is because as one gets closer to reaching any kind of pinnacle it requires a different kind of effort. 

TT



Why Almost Every Trainer Is A Danger

There are many reasons. I know, I know, I know is a common answer trainers give to something they repeatedly make a mistake on and one of my pet peeves. So fucking irritating. My common answer to the I know remark is, then if you know, why the hell do you keep making the same mistake REPEATEDLY schmuck? 

I think the most legit excuse for a trainer being a danger, is due to their age, but this hall pass has a very short expiration date, because I see too many who are older that make young and dumb mistakes. Age is certainly not the only factor for the creation of  (danger trainers).

Too many of these danger trainers are not in it whole heartedly. In Hollywood la la land many act as personal trainers in between auditions for a movie part. Based on their personal training skills, I'd say they're shitty actors. 

Then you have those trainers who are part time trainers, or doing it as a second job. This is all fine and dandy, but the real difference here is personal training is not like flipping burgers. You can actually fuck people up if you don't know what you're doing. I know you gotta start somewhere, but do it on yourself or one of your family members for fuck sakes. 

Finally, there are those who don't take it seriously, as in realize that this is a real job. It  just happens to be a great one, where you actually make differences in people's lives, as in life altering changes. The beautiful thing here is this job gives the gift that never stops giving. It's a lifestyle friendly job. Imagine having the kind of flexibility where you positively impact lives, with the ability to live your life on your terms. 

TT



Failing Is A Winning Proposition

Repetition is the mother of skill seven if it means failing, over, and over again. Winning is part of losing and vice versa, but this is a rather tedious concept to wrap one's head around with the ability to have the proper mindset  for the sake of productivity. 

Having perfect willingness to tolerate failure is a commitment to excellence, but you gotta get comfortable with it without caving into it. Talk about confusing messages. Athlete's learn this from a young age, and yet this dynamic ends many a careers before they ever start. If you tell an athlete that perfect practice makes perfect, it eventually makes perfect sense. 

But of you tell them that failing repeatedly, even failing hard, especially early on makes a champion can have a negative connotation. This is why athletes have to drink the cool aid at a young age, because this is a cult like tactic and an environment that's imbalanced by design. Herein lies the reason seldom are there overnight successes, because this win, lose proposition applies to all those who dream of being a peak performer but it comes with a major trade-off. 

Learning how to perform at peak levels separates the pack leaders from the pack. This is the natural pecking order of life that transcends all walks of it, because life is a calculated formula. Of course this is through the eyes of my experience, opinion, and point of view. 

There isn't one formula that fits all because all things are fluid, forever in flux  but through repetitions, success, and failure, values are defined to a degree that makes it a science of sorts, or at least a learning curve model for others to preview and test. 

When you learn how fail, it must be done in small segments as not to destroy the human spirit. Usually the natural calculated order of life creates temporary balance to this process, because even when you lose, that is also temporary, which means you'll occasionally win which will temporarily spur you on.

TT



It starts in the weight room baby

My friend Vince Gironda, known as the iron guru I'm sure right now is rolling over in his grave flipping off the health and fitness industry, mostly because there are so many useless gadgets on the market that over promise results, however under perform. Like Vince, I'm more of a purest to the sport of bodybuilding, mainly because that's the sport in which I competed and fell in love.

The knowledge garnered from the sport led me into other types and styles of training such as specific training for athletes, which was quite useful once I became a personal trainer.Training athletes was a much different challenge because not only did training with weights have to be specific to the particular sport, but more importantly to the position. It was all about improving athletic performance. 

This is when I began to understand the possibilities and broad spectrum of weight training as a powerful training tool, but there was more to it than that. Understanding how to fully leverage the athlete's body through space for producing extraordinary results was crucial. 

Achieving full training potential be it athletic performance or achieving maximum fitness, one must first clearly identify the objective, followed by prioritizing a specific training protocol of exercises performed in a certain order. Note to self, if a trainer is not well versed with first hand knowledge and experience they can do more harm than good, in fact they can diminish performance and increase injuries.

The health and fitness industry is constantly being littered with new, fancy gimmicks for developing and improving strength, power, endurance, and losing fat, but you don't need them. All you need are barbells, dumbbells, and a trainer who knows to the inth degree how to manipulate and implement the components properly.

 The three training components, and the secret sauce

No matter what the goal, it always comes down to the three training components.There is so much information on the market backed up with this or that study, which is great. For the most part, the info is pretty right on, but what's consistently missing is the formula. 

The key to long term success with just about everything is in the formula, as with this you have the keys to the kingdom. It's like having grandma's secret recipe that's been in the family, and in her head, but never written down where anyone else could reproduce with any kind of consistency.  

The three training components are like grandma's secret recipe.These are the crucial and key ingredients that need to be added to any kind of well thought out training program, however just like grannys secret recipe, these ingredients are not always added in the same ways. 

That's exactly why it was hard to reproduce her recipe, because it wasn't an exact science, there were other variables in play. For example, perhaps the rising of the yeast was impacted by the amount of sugar added, but yet somehow granny on the fly slightly modified her recipe, and magically her results were nothing short of miracurious. The same but different!

Grandma initially implemented her tried and tested baking formula but she had to improvise to get the outcome she wanted, here in lies the correlation between a seasoned trainer and grannie. The variables for any trainer is the client. Not all have the same goals, motivation, or level of experience, but that doesn't necessarily mean they can't each be successful. 

Like grannie, the trainer is the secret sauce.The three training components are always in play, and to a degree they're equal in terms of producing results, but because people are individually unique it makes them an inexact science, just like the the training components. Is your trainer the secret sauce?

Tell them the why

It's difficult getting through to personal trainers if they want to send a message of being legit, tell the client why they're doing exercises, or eating a certain way. If trainers don't understand the three critical components to begin with, they already can't. Believe it or not this is the lifeline for building a long lasting clientele. 

Even when trainers know the why, sometimes they fail to inform their clients, which is never acceptable, and an early sign of a fake trainer. This is about lack of discipline which is as bad as not knowing the why to begin with, but more importantly clearly shows lack of giving a damn, plus being lazy. A personal trainer should always be mindful of developing certain habits that are performed each and every time when instructing clientele. 

Through repetition these necessary steps will become something automatic, but not automatic in a way that comes off canned, or insincere as clients pick up on that. Here's the bottom line, you have to practice your craft in exactly the way you train and inform your client including tone and enthusiasm.

Fake trainer's are not disciplined enough to train consistently instead are hot and cold, much like amateur athletes, compared to pros who play at the top of their game with only an occasional off day. Although pros make it look seamless, it never is, and it comes with a big price tag called perfect willingness of effort. 

Like the average person, most trainers let good get in the way of great, which is unfortunate especially if you're the unlucky client who wants and pays for great results. For clients who hire a trainer, if at any time you don't hear the why that's a big tell, and they should be called out. It may create an uncomfortable situation, but it's going to happen eventually when you end up totally frustrated with subpar results. 

Bodybuilding is an illusion 

Not everything you see is what you see. When I watched my first pro bodybuilding show I was in awe. So many different body types, and they all looked perfect, like a beautiful bronzed trophy. The fact I was looking at a bunch of men, oohing, and aweing quite frankly made me feel somewhat uncomfortable. 

Normally I get like that when I see a hot babe in scantly clad clothing, but shit, these Greek gods looked like Greek gods. As time went on, the longer I was training, and seeing more bodybuilding shows I started seeing cracks in the armor. I started seeing flaws in the Greek gods. I guess it's kind of like a relationship, after a while when you start noticing the imperfections. 

Even the best bodybuilders in the world had imperfections on their physique, they just knew how to hide their weaknesses, while highlighting their strengths once they got on the competitive stage. To the novice it's difficult to tell, however little did I know these guys we're deception artists. 

Bodybuilding is definitely artistic, and one thing is certain, these guys at this level are artists.Their body's are a block of clay which they mold with hours upon hours of training and diet. In the off season they painfully push their body past ungodly limits, working on their weak points, only to discover at the next competition there's yet another weak point that reveals itself. It's a fucking mind fuck sufferfest of epic proportions, like no other. 

Once you drink the cool aid like high level bodybuilders, it becomes personal, and the very challenge that attracts them to this sport. Your mindset becomes one of perfection no matter the consequence, but getting to this point, is where you need to be even though it's a potiental recipe for disaster. The sport of bodybuilding is like a religious cult in that way. 

Now you're too close to the cliff where logical thinking takes a backseat, as the continual objective to create a physique and a picture of perfection is ongoing. Realistically it's unattainable, however you strive to inch closer. This might be the real illusion? 

Does changing the grip make your lats wider?

There's a ton of misconceptions in the bodybuilding world. I suppose it's because we're always tinkering with new ways on how to train and eat, and the truth is, it takes a lot of tinkering before you can come to an accurate conclusion. It never ends, because as a bodybuilder who wants to keep improving, stagnation means you're finished. 

When I first began my career I was told by a pro bodybuilder it would take around 12 years to have a physique qualified enough to compete at the world level. I mean these guys were monstrous, but I still couldn't understand why it would take that long, but first hand knowledge normally wins out. 

There is so much freaking time that goes into bodybuilding, and it goes way beyond that. Not only are you putting in thousands of hours pounding your mind and body into submission, but this shit hurts bad. On top of that, you're body is most efficient when focusing on one thing, like a body part, certain training style, or a different type of diet. That's why it really does take around 12 years to get on the world stage. I also learned that from first hand experience,  so the tortuous trek goes on. 

The serious bodybuilders are always looking for that special exercise or amino acid concoction that is a break through discovery which no other human has come upon.This type of bodybuilder is all in, definitely playing for the love of the game, as there's not much money in the sport itself. If you did a return on investment only based on money you'd be upside down, but it doesn't matter. 

The few who commit their life to the bodybuilding lifestyle get way more in return, for instance having complete control of their body, because that pays lifelong dividends. Arnold Schwarzenegger once said it best. When you're in shape you're always walking around with your own trophy 24 hours a day. 

That in itself is a gift that keeps on giving, not to mention knowing  exactly what exercises are best for changing the body in the way you want, which brings me to the title of this blog as one example. Doing a wide grip lat pull down wI'll not make your back any wider than a narrower grip, period. 

Heart and sole ... how did I do that?

I often think back about thing's I've done that become even more extraordinary with time. Long distance bicycle riding for competition comes to mind, in addition bodybuilding, and overcoming three strokes. Being in those moments required deep focus, discipline, and bulldog determination. Having this mindset was necessary for success and achieving my objectives, as well the demands these three unique phases of my life demanded.

When I reflect on the common elements, or various states I was in, no doubt curiosity was a driving factor which quickly turned into passion, which is a crazy energy, something that lights your whole being on fire to the point of exhaustion but not the kind of exhaustion that stops you. 

In fact in this example, exhaustion seems to be more like overdrive energy. It doesn't seem possible that on one hand you're wiped out, although you can't sleep. This kind of passion becomes an obsession that's in charge, you're just hanging in for the ride and interestingly loving it. 

You are your own enabler, as your thirst to quench your new passion keeps leading you to endless amounts of exciting information. Now you want to know everything to the minute degree, but it takes a shitload of effort because there are so many opinions that conflict, but this is a minor inconvience. If you want extraordinary results, you have to change the height of the bar. 

Your goals in some ways seem unachievable, and they are to those who only dream, but the truth is it takes more than that... way more. You have to be proactive in a way that's not normal. Your heart and sole is the overriding factor, which is exactly what you have, in fact you're all in with your body's every fiber, and your hair on fire. The thought of failing never enters your mind, which when looking back you realize there's no way in hell those mountainous obstacles could have been conquered.

Just exactly what the hell is functional training?

Do you want to be functional? I don't. Functional training has more than one meaning, at least for me. In the health and fitness industry one could surmise that training for functionality relates to your body being able to perform it's daily activities with more efficiency. 

I assume, because I think it's a vague message being delivered by the indusrty, meaning fake trainers, gurus, etc. that functional training also applies to athletes, but because of my background in sports specific training I've yet to see a coherent account of that. 

On a personal level, as a result of being paralyzed seven years ago, now fully recovered, having a physical therapist tell me their goal was to get me to be functional, made my blood run ice cold. Functional my ass was my only thought, along with my decision seven years ago to never go back again to that physical therapist. 

Functionality in this example obviously had a very different meaning for me verses the physical therapist. My opinion, and approach to being functional is to be specific in the way you achieve functionality. If you're a legit trainer you'll take it a step further with whom ever you train.

Identify the functionality of what your client would like to achieve, and make them understand to be functional is fine, but it's mostly aspiring to be average. Then you recommend and construct a step by step process with a specific training program addressing the body parts in the order in which they should be trained.

You backup your training strategy by telling them the how and why of your proposed training methodology. In essence, your goal for them is to reach their highest level of functionality which can only be accomplished with a direct approach. At least, that's what I'd do. 

Why the hell are you doing planks?... Are you, a mime or a statue?

When you come from old school like me it's hard to swallow some of the new crap/ information that keeps showing up on the market. Over the years it's made me question my own philosophy and for what I stand. I realize there is a mentality that if you want to stay relevant you have to adapt or die. This is not an absolute, however you won't know that until you become a seasoned veteran. 

My philosophy and strategy related to exercise and nutrition is based on a pragmatic approach, which to a degree mirrors the great late coach of the Green Bay Packers named Vince Lombardi. Because of his success, he became a national symbol of single minded determination to win, which made him legendary. Like most things, there's usually a winning formula that produces results.

He believed in perfect execution every single time. His philosophy and strategy was to do less, get a bigger, better, and more efficient result, hence his single minded determination. His team's execution was so on point, no opponents defense could successfully stop them with any degree of consistency. This is a perfect example of a methodology that is specific and highly functional to an objective.   

Although his coaching tactic to the naked eye appeared effortless to execute, it required thousands of hours and repetitions to achieve mastery, but ultimately produced massive results. Under his leadership the Green Bay Packers won five championships. Winning in this fashion is a reflection of a great system.

So how is this content relevant to the headline of this blog? The health an fitness industry has a bad case of SOS ( shiny object syndrome ). More and more crap keeps hitting the market mainly to keep people from being bored, but at the expense of producing less than desired results. 

I know exactly why people are doing planks, but this doesn't change my question. Ask yourself or your trainer if you are doing planks as a part of functional training? If the answer is yes, what the hell is the function, to be a mime or a statue? WTF.

You can't handle the truth

The statement above pertains to clients and trainer's. As a trainer you're walking a tight rope at times, whether to be diplomatic or tell it like it is. Most of us can't handle the bare naked truth, and quite frankly it's hard to dish out, unless by nature you're an ass hole. 

I've known a few people who actually get off on being A-holes. Admittedly I've envied them because it seems so freeing. But when you're a trainer dealing with clients sometimes who come to you with more baggage than a 747 jumbo jet you gotta use some tact, otherwise you'll be training yourself, or other ass holes. 

Overall in my three plus decades in the biz, I've had a great clientele, but then there's been that small but challenging group of clients who have tested my resolve. Part of me took it as a personal challenge to see if I could turn them around, making them productive. The reality here is that some people you just can't reach, but that doesn't mean a trainer shouldn't keep trying, because that's exactly what they should do. 

No matter what, your job as a trainer is to provide a client with all of the necessary information for them to succeed, but they have to be willing to participate, otherwise you've done your part. In some cases throughout my personal training career I've had to sit down my client, and let them know they are better off somewhere else, because they're wasting  their time, money, and energy.

That talk most of the time is a defining moment for trainer and client. Trainer either looses a client or gets a client who pulls their head out of their ass and become one of their best clients ever. Know this trainer, your career is based on your ability to produce and reproduce results for a wide range of people. Remember, you're only as good as the last time you've produced results, and if you can't handle that truth, you're wasting your time, money, and energy. 

Trainer, are you their buddy? 

What a fucking disaster this is on so many levels. Although this is an imaginary line, if or when it's crossed, it could become a major problem. The zoo animals at this point are now running your show. 

It's true that personal training is in part about developing relationships, but you have to be careful how the relationship develops. The main objective is always about the goals of the client, and what you will do to help them achieve them, not the other way around. 

As a trainer, it's imperative to set the tone from the git go, otherwise you've already exposed yourself as a weak leader.This is about boundaries and certain lines that shouldn't be crossed, and if so, it MUST be consequential on all sides. 

It doesn't mean you can't have fun, because part of a personal training experience should be a vibrant atmosphere that creates a unique vibe. A legit trainer is always mindful of this, along with providing the client with cutting edge information especially regarding the three crucial training components.

Just as important to this dynamic is the environment that will be anything but boring, in fact  purposely designed to make each training session interesting, thought provoking, even a bit inappropriate, or at least awkward for the sake of a great training session.This is part of your gig as a trainer who brings something special to the table providing your clients with something they can't get anywhere else.This is job security baby!

Keep in mind, this imaginary line can be a tricky one if and when crossed, but a legit trainer will at times push the envelope, knowing in order for a client to stay motivated, and dedicated to keep showing up, it has to be much more than an average training program. Trainers to a degree can become a buddy to their client but never at the expense of losing control of the relationship.  

The mindset or routine, which came first?

It's like asking about the chicken and the egg. If we try and analyze, looking for a conclusive, or logical answer, it maybe an ongoing debate. I often struggle with this because I'm the type who likes things logically explained in black, and white terms, yet it's never that simple.

So that said, maybe there are multiple answers, or at least two, or perhaps none. If you can harness the potential of your mind's power which most of us can't, then mindset rather than routine came first. Logically I think mindset, which is all encompassing must be the most logical conclusion. But maybe not, but why not?

Probably because not everything is tied up neatly in a pretty red bow, which would be logical, much like it shouldn't be logical that bumble bees fly. Based on physics they shouldn't, yet although their body is way too big for their wingspan they blow that reasoning out of the water. 

Here's a thought, what if not knowing whether it was mindset or routine was part of the plan.  Maybe the discovery of this was dependent upon trial and error, in addition based on human nature. Some things are better understood and appreciated if more effort is put forth. Hmm.?

Understanding why anything happens takes will, determination, and belief. With time a revelation will occur producing some kind of outcome, in addition creating awareness and clarity, but beyond that, it develops intuition, strength of character, and the will to persevere. This is a good thing. 

I guess the answer to which came first, mindset, or routine is inconsequential because they both are one in the same, much like identical twins, in many ways needing each other to endure.The moral of this story is that trainers have to wear many hats other than just trainer. Legit trainers will always go the extra mile finding out the why about everything to the inth degree.  Does yours?

Muscle really does have memory

I learned this valuable lesson conclusively after once being paralyzed. Up to that point, especially as a bodybuilder with undying blind faith I just believed it, along with the importance of the mind and muscle connection. These two training principles went hand and hand with one another, and as I learned with time, leaving one of them out of the mix was a definite compromise. 

To develop a memory within a muscle is a result of repetition, as it's the mother of skill. Repetitions from resistance training produce a permanent imprint on all of your DNA, like a permanent stamp, hence the term muscle memory. 

In addition, think of your DNA like a cloud file where you won't lose information even if your computer crashes, in this case we're obviously referring to your body, which is amazing that way. Unless you have a strong belief system or first hand knowledge, you'd  probably never believe this phenomena.

This is important to know, and a useful benefit for those who are starting an exercise program. First of all, it's not uncommon for individuals to begin a program, then suddenly quit. In fact, big chain health clubs know this factual statistic, which is the reason they're constantly over selling  their capacity which I find highly irritating, devious, yet truthful. 

Here's an interesting fact. When an individual quits an exercise program, it's not all waisted effort, here's why. The length of time the average person, especially a newbie sticks with an exercise program is twenty seven days, but by then your DNA has been forever stamped, as a matter of speaking. 

Bottom line, many who quit exercise will once again return giving it another go with new found motivation, guilt or urgent necessity. The good news is once the DNA has initially been stamped, it's never like starting over from scratch, so in essence when a person restarts a previously failed exercise program, they're automatically ahead of the game.

Reason this is worth knowing, is because many mistaking think if they quit, what's the point of restarting if it's like starting over, which can be an unnecessary obstacle, but more often a lame excuse.

As a trainer, this is valuable knowledge as you can provide an immediate solution to a  client, which gives you instant street credibility and the perception you're an expert in your field. It's a win, win. Trainer's should keep in mind it only takes one person you make successful that end up becoming your most loyal client. I've personally witnessed it. 

Make a promise.... follow through

It's all about accountability, and exactly what's missing everywhere these days. It's a sign of the times, and from my perspective not a good one. I've been in the personal training business long enough to have seen my fill.

Through the years I've witnessed a generation that has gotten soft, with the next getting progressively worse. There's lack of fortitude and increasing cases, lack of respect for oneself and others. Our youth have gotten pathetically passive, not 100% being their fault. I come from a time when I was young, where I had to do chores before and after school, with consequences if I slacked off.

Now I'm sounding like my dad, little did I know how right he was. He was teaching me lifelong lessons in which I was completely oblivious. How could I know, I was freaking ten. Growing up on a family farm was one of the best things that happened to me. Thanks dad. 

That was my launching pad for life that helped me get through school, sports, kids, divorce, and life in general. Along with learning that accountability was important, knowing there were consequences for my actions or lack thereof has turned out to be the big daddy of all life lessons.

When I see what's happening in today's society I'm sure some good ole fashion manual labor is the answer. I know for a fact this is key, using my own kids as the example. Although they were not raised on a dairy farm with chores, that didn't get them off the hook. 

In their case I used sports to teach and develope their life long lessons.Through sport they learned the value of accountability, adversity, perseverance, and consequences. They're now at an age where they understand that. Listen, it's not if life is going to kick you in the ass, it's when. You have to be grounded at your foundation to be able to tolerate what comes your way. 

So here's today's training tip and life lesson. Make a promise, first to yourself, and to others when it applies, then follow through, with consequences if you don't. 

Cholesterol is healthy

This maybe a news flash for most people, but if it's your trainer, you might wonder why. I learned the real scoop about cholesterol after writing a book with a brilliant doctor, and my friend whose name is Dr. Mauro Di Pasquale. Some of you may have heard of the book, it's called The Anabolic Diet. 

In a nutshell Mauro was the genius behind this diet, and I was the guinea pig who followed it to the letter. This was a high fat diet, not entirely unique, yet it was specifically. Year's before, there was a popular diet on the market called The Atkins diet. He positioned this style of eating to the market as a low carbohydrate diet primarily for marketing purposes to give it a more commercial appeal. 

Back then there was even a dimmer view on eating fat. The Anabolic Diet proved with legit, unbiased research, that eating fat was not the culprit, it was actually carbohydrates. I'm sure for some of you, reading this fact will make you sit up an adjust your shorts, but it's the damn truth. 

I'll be forthright when I tell you I tried the Atkins diet, and it flat out worked, but the biggest issue for me, as it was for others was the lack of variety of food, which led to the consumer getting bored. This is where The Anabolic Diet was specifically unique.To be crystal clear, in terms of mechanics, both diets operate the same way, simply because they both access the free fatty acid metabolism, as opposed to the glucose metabolism. Most consumers are unaware that our bodies have two distinct metabolisms (glucose/ free fatty acid), that are differentiated by carbohydrate intake. 

As to how cholesterol is healthy. First, every cell of our body is made up of cholesterol. It's a steroid, and a lipid that synthesizes protein, carbs, and fats. It maintains balance, and regulates hormones, in addition helps with proper organ function. Here's the bottom line, like everything else in life, too much of anything consumed can be harmful. Did you know that you can drown if you drink too much water? It's called water intoxication. 

It only takes three hours

Are you sure you want to get in shape, get healthy, or feel better, because you don't act like it. Actions speak louder than words. You like many, enjoy hearing yourself talk. It all sounds good like when singing in the shower, but the truth is you sound like dog crap. 

The idea of something appealing really gets you riled up, because to dream of that is where it's at. The only problem with that snow job is when you wake up, because the reality and the dream usually don't match up. Dreaming takes way less energy. Damn you think!!

It's amazing how many of you think you're an expert on things, yet you're not, but it doesn't matter because you'll always find someone out there who will believe you.There are definitely others like you, as people are often attracted to those who are most like themselves. 

That can be an unfortunate fact in so many cases especially if it perpetuates all of the weak points you're aiming to strengthen.That's a nightmare in itself, but not as bad as your worst nightmare when you have that moment in a room all alone with a mirror. The moment of truth, when you really do come to grips that you're living the lie, not the dream. 

You get the he'll outta that room ASAP, and go back out into your fake world where you find your like minded people, and the lies continue. All better now, even though you know it's not real, but so what it feels good for now. Thank goodness for denial, and deception. 

However, there's hope and good news on the horizon. Somehow you just magically stumbled upon on something by accident at your local coffee shop while sucking down a foo foo coffee that has at least 750 calories. 

You can't believe what you're hearing from the next table over, listening to what appears to be a legit personal trainer having a heart to heart conversation with a future client. Yes the personal trainer states, "it only takes three hours per week to get in the best shape of your life". Is this really a dream you wonder?