strength essentials

What's this Blog All About?

There are a million different blogs out there on the internet. You can learn about everything and anything, including fitness, nutrition and health topics.

So what is this blog about? What's the point?

I had a blog before this one for 4 years. I wrote about strength training, specifically with tips on lifting form, exercise selection dietary strategies etc.. very much a how-to get started and how to make progress in the world of fitness and lifting weights.

How many people did I really inspire or help?

It's hard to know for sure but when I decided to start a new blog I thought that kind of website was already done and gone for me.

We are constantly changing, evolving and I felt it was time to move on.

This blog is then what feels natural to me.

Running a personal training business is my number 1 focus. This blog serves as an extension of that. I can flesh out ideas and share some concepts that I find to be effective. Hopefully they help you.

I also write because I feel compelled to. I am a writer at heart.  So part of this blog's purpose isto tell stories and to entertain.

I realized that a lot of people read articles online just to read and not for advice perse.

From almost 20 years in the gym to the screen here. Hopefully something strikes you and even if it doesn't I must do it. You ever feel compelled to do something and you don't know exactly why?

Another idea that keeps creeping back into my mind is to write a book. Multiple books really but one about my fitness journey, in particular.

So this is another way to flesh out ideas to see where they lead.

I'm open for suggestions on article ideas also, as I truly enjoy helping people with specific questions. Send me an email with your question (try to keep it short- 1 paragraph) and I will give you an answer.  My opinions may not be mainstream as I don't fall into any category of fitness (powerlifting, crossfit, bodyweight only, functional, paleo etc..)

Thanks for reading.


Your Biggest Fitness Struggle

My mind was set. All I wanted was to get my deadlift up to 4 plates. 

405 lbs..

This was my priority number 1.

I pushed my other lifts also but all my focus was on this goal.

Having just one goal will give you tremendous focus.


And this is a big struggle for most guys I talk to.

No excitement about training. Not looking forward to the gym.

No destination. No plan.

This is for you guys.

For the guys who have a plan and need a break from goals, this is not for you.

So having no passion for training. You don't have thoughts in your head while sitting at work about getting into the gym and crushing pullups.

Or how you can't wait to feel the sweat from your sled pulling after your lifting.

The problem of having no real zest for the physical. For hard training. The work. The grunting. Sweating. Swearing. Moaning and groaning that comes from real tough physical exertion.

What should you do to get it going?

Find something, anything really, that you can get excited about. Maybe it's one exercise you really enjoy because it's easy. Or one muscle group that seems to grow easy for you. Or a good challenge that gets you amped, maybe it's a crazy workout of the day that scares you a little bit.

Anything will work.

The feel of the barbell. The sound of the weights clanging.

The high after your session when you sip on your protein shake as you drive home. A feeling of accomplishment in your veins.

Just get that one tiny flame. Find it. And ride it. Let it take you to the gym. Or your garage or the park. Wherever.

Passion for physical fitness.

It doesn't have to be a gym.

In fact, there are NO limits here.

Anything goes.

But don't let another day, week,  or year go by without making some kind of physical progress.


Quickie for Fat Loss and Mental Toughness

Back when I was working 2 jobs and 'finding time' was very difficult this is one quick workout I would do.

When? On my lunch break.

How long did it take? 15-30 minutes.

What equipment is needed? None.

Who is this for? Anyone who works in an office type job where you get an hour, or even half hour lunch break. And you have access to some stairs. So technically no equipment but having stairs will help. 

Yes, you can find a way if you don't have stairs, so don't ask.

First I would climb the stairs. Our building had 5 floors. I went from the bottom to the top. Then down to the bottom. That was 1.

I did anywhere from 5-10 of these. When I first started this I did maybe 3-4. Just walking stairs can be challenging when you aren't accustomed to it.

After that I was good and warmed up and I did some bodyweight work.

Usually I did pushups, squats and some form of plank or bird dog. Anywhere from 3-10 rounds performed. 

Change up the reps, the speed, pause and contract. Mix it up.

The no time excuse is just that, an excuse. You have a break at work. You have 15-30 minutes to do something physical.

Just get it done.

If you want more ideas feel free to email me and I'll help you out.

One more thing before I go.

This little workout may not seem like much. It may seem insignificant. Like what's the point?

If you can't get into a fancy gym, how effective can the workout be?

It's effective, trust me.

And even more than that, it's the little things you do consistently that will add up over time.

Every 15 minutes you do a workout is going to add up over the week and the month. Every one counts.

Don't overlook the simple, minimalist workouts. They can be very important, especially when you're a busy dude and you can't get to a gym or find hours to work out.


Just Stop Complaining

A little tough love today because that's necessary sometimes. 

As a trainer/coach I walk the line between being compassionate and being hard on my people.

I want to help you. I want to help everyone. Get better. Achieve the results you seek.

Sometimes you don't want to hear me say that you need to do your cardio and eat your greens.

There are days that you just need to vent and you don't want to feel like you are getting yelled or or preached to.

I get it.

But then there are those times that you need to hear it.

Stop what you are doing.

It's not working.

You are sabotaging your efforts.

Get it together!

Stop eating like a child!

Put in the work.

Don't look for an easier way.

A faster way.

So today some tough love.

No complaints today. Don't think about tomorrow. Or the whole week. In relation to your fitness goals.

Just today.

If you have an injury, think of what you CAN do.

If you're tired, go for a shorter session at the gym.

Missed some meals or had too much junk on the weekend?

Forget it, it's over. Today you start fresh.

No complaining about your wife who doesn't cook healthy meals.

Or your 6 full time jobs you are juggling and can't FIND TIME to get in 30 minutes of weight training.

Nope. Not today.

Today you train.

I don't care what you train. What program. What set and rep sequence.

Just get it done