Tuesday Titulating Thoughts (May or May Not Contain Footage of a Certain Fitcast Host Get Dominated While Benching) Hint: It Totally Does

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1. The seminar this past weekend was a blast. It was great to see friends I haven’t seen in a while, as well as listen to some awesome presentations. On an aside, it was nice to finally attend a seminar without the token “guy with jeans and UnderArmour shirt” on. Likewise, I didn’t see anyone walking around with a fanny pack while carrying a gallon of water. High five to all that attended for not making my eyes bleed!

In all seriousness, I learned a ton this past weekend, and I can’t wait for my clients/athletes to hate me for all the new stuff I’m going to try on them.

2. One of the best quotes from this past weekend came from Mike Boyle, who when discussing the topic of early specialization among adolescents, simply stated: “all your kid needs is a friend and a bike.” Oh snap!

Mike Boyle: 1

Overzealous Parent Who Thinks Their Kid is the Next Wayne Gretzky/Michael Jordan/Mia Hamm/Tiger Woods/Derek Jeter/or Thinks Their Kid is Even Remotely Athletic: 0

Nine to eleven year old kids don’t need to be working with a personal trainer or strength coach on a regular basis. Nor do they need to be specializing in a sport at such a young age. The best thing for them is to play multiple sports and learn that stuff like getting blasted in the head during dodge-ball or hitting their first Little League home-run is what will make them a better athlete.

3. Highlight of the weekend goes to Kevin Larrabee with not one, but TWO epic fails on a 300 bench. Side note: this is what he gets for a) not paying me my $5 for the bet we made and b) continuing to play my now infamous first appearance on The Fitcast (which admittedly is gayer than a park bench near Boy George’s house).

Attempt #1:

Coaching Comments:

1. Whoever that guy is handing off is one sexy mofo.

2. Good choice on picking Cypress Hill to play in the background.

3. Drinking two Spikes before a max effort lift won’t miraculously add 10% to your bench press. Just sayin.

4. Kevin took waaaaaaay too long to bring the bar down. I mean, I could have successfully watched Titanic twice* (Leo!!!!!!!) in the amount of time it took him to get the bar to his chest. By taking so long to lower the bar, he loses out on the Stretch Shortening Cycle (elastic energy of the muscles/tendons) to help him push through the “sticking point.”

5. Elbows flared out and hips came up out as soon as he “pressed” the bar back up, which tells me he just needs to emphasize some technique work with some heavy triples (as well as some lifts above 90%), and maybe incorporate some more speed work to groove that pattern. Or he could just stop missing lifts every other session. That might help……;o)

And Attempt #2:

Coaching Comments: (crickets chirping) PS, I love you Kevin.

4. For those that don’t know, that’s Mike Robertson sitting on the bench in the second video. Mike was gracious enough to come to CP early Sunday morning to do a short in-service training for the staff. Mike talked about how he goes about assessing knee issues with clients and used me as a guinea pig. Mike is the go to guy when it comes to anything related to the knees, and it was great to watch him in action. In short, I suck, and need to practice more of what I preach. Which is to say I really need to be more diligent with my soft-tissue work (ie: foam rolling), as well as incorporate more long duration static stretching throughout the day.

Other things I picked up on:

– I can’t be an a-hole and not do my foam rolling and stretching.

– Half Kneeling Cable Lifts (with a core bar) are now my new favorite “core” exercise

This exercise really emphasizes the obliques, as well as teaches you to stabilize the entire lumbo-pelvic-hip complex, which is something most trainees lack the ability to do efficiently.

– When I do return back to squatting, I need to make sure I emphasize high(er) reps (8-10 range) in order to promote regeneration of connective tissue. Oftentimes, trainees (myself included) tend to be impatient and want to go back to heavy lifting from the start. Big mistake.

– Just about every movement dysfunction can be attributed back to the hips. Coincidentally, I have atrocious internal rotation in my hips, which makes sense since I’ve been a pitcher for most of my life. Mike noted that my issue tends to be more muscular than capsular (which is FAR worse), so there’s hope for me. IE: DO YOUR FREAKIN STRETCHING GENTILCORE!!!!!!

5. Speaking of Mike, he and I were talking Saturday night while eating dead animal flesh, and we both have come to the conclusion that we’re done with one-on-one training. Seriously, unless your name happens to be Marisa Miller and you’re willing to do nothing but pull-throughs and romanian deadlifts for an entire session, topless, chances are I’m not going to train you one-on-one.

As a trainer, you’re behind the curve if you’re not utilizing semi-private training. Thomas Plummer has even gone so far to say that one-on-one training is dead. As someone who paid his dues working in various commercial gyms in the past, I can say I wholeheartedly agree. Semi-private training is more affordable than the classic private (one-on-one) training model that typifies the fitness industry. As such, clients can train with greater frequency at a fraction of the cost – and therefore make faster progress.

Additionally, semi-private training provides a more motivating atmosphere (for the client and trainer), and speaking from personal experience, my only regret is that I didn’t start doing it earlier.

6. I’ve become such a Blu-ray snob. I bought a Blu-ray player just before Christmas and all I have to say is that it’s pretty much the most awesome thing ever (behind Scarlett Johansson’s intelligence cleavage of course).

7. For those who are curious (and I know you all are), Project: Tony Gets Sexified has come to a close. I have to say that it was a blast, and I’m definitely going to give it another go round once the weather gets warmer. In other words, I’m totally training with my shirt off every chance I get. Get swole son!!11! Thanks goes out to Jen for putting together a stellar diet and for being an awesome coach. Also, I’d like to thank……..

– Diet Coke. You were my saving grace on my low calorie days.

– Ezekiel bread. My new favorite breakfast food.

– Airdyne bike intervals. You can go to hell.

– Tom Cruise. For being batshit crazy.

– My abs. Just cause

– Rosemary’s cobb salad.

– The two hot bartenders at The Tavern. One day I’ll actually say hi to one of you when I come and pick up my order on Saturday night. And, if you play your cards right, and may even make eye contact! I know, I know. It’s not easy having this much game.

*okay, three. Who am I kidding. I’ll never let go Jack. I’ll never let go!!!!!

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Plus, get a copy of Tony’s Pick Things Up, a quick-tip guide to everything deadlift-related. See his butt? Yeah. It’s good. You should probably listen to him if you have any hope of getting a butt that good.

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