Sunday, August 6, 2017


This is a call to action; get some.  Don’t have some?  Get some.  Need some?  Get some.  Want some?  Get some.  Wish you had some?  Get some. 

Image result for Full Metal Jacket get some
I realize not a whole lot of people have seen the second half of this movie

Jesus, what the hell am I even talking about?  Some.  All of some.  I’m getting so goddamn frustrated with people simply accepting not having “some”, whatever “some” is.  Don’t wallow and wait, don’t theorize, don’t wish and hope, don’t complain, don’t lament, just go get some!

Experience!  Don’t have some?  Get some!  Quit acting like you have some and go out and get some!  Quit theorizing about what might work and go out and find out if it works!  Quit recommending routines you’ve never tried from authors you never read who wrote books you never bought and trained people you never met.  Go get some experience!  If you think Sheiko knows what he is doing, go follow his routine for a year and see if it works.  Think Super Squats looks good?  Go run it and find out.  Building the Monolith?  Game on.  Dogg Crapp?  Hell yeah.  HIT?  We’re doing this.  GVT?  It’s on.  And hey, if you don’t want to get some, that’s cool; just shut the hell up when talking to the people who ARE out there getting some.  You might know all the academic reasons why 5/3/1 is an awful routine and won’t ever work because it’s MRV isn’t properly configured when Mercury is in retrograde, which even the most junior level gym scientist KNOWS is true, but if all you have is theory when trying to refute the actual results of someone who ran the program, step down.  Or go get some.

Image result for Starting Strength Results meme
Hey, I'll give him credit; he at least gave it a try

Coaching!  Don’t have some?  Get some!  Hell, I don’t even have a coach, but it’s because I have no desire to have one.  I enjoy figuring this out on my own and getting all that experience I was ranting about earlier.  But man, if you WANT a coach, go get one.  There are TONS out there these days.  You can get in person instruction, or coached over skype, or send someone a video to critique, or have a pen pal, or etc etc.  There are SO many avenues available that wishing you had a coach just makes no sense.  It’s right there.  And hey, maybe your coach can help handle you at one of those competitions in one of those sports that you want to compete in, because rather than make that a whole separate paragraph, let me just say, want some competition?  Get some! 

Equipment!  Don’t have some?  Get some!  Geez, are you kidding me on this one?  Do you even KNOW how lucky we are to have so many equipment manufacturers out there today?  When I started training, your 3 options were Ironmind, NewYorkBarbells or Elitefts, so you basically had to decide between a $700 barbell, having your credit card information stolen, or supporting Dave Tate’s poptart habit.  If you wanted strongman equipment, you bought it off of myspace from Alan at Pitbull Strongman, and that wasn’t sketchy at all.  “Rogue” was an X-men character, and if you wanted a belt it was a 6 month wait with Inzer while they raised a baby calf to a cow to slaughter for leather.  Now?  Equipment is EVERYWHERE and everyone is having some sort of sale everyday.  And if THAT’S not enough, you can always BUILD your own equipment.  And don’t try to tell me you can’t; you’re talking to the same lunatic that built a circus dumbbell out of 2 home depot buckets and a pipe nipple.  I built a set of pipe farmers handles with hand tools and eyeballing. You don’t need training or good tools to build equipment, in fact, I think the LESS training you have, the better, because you’ll be too stupid to realize how crazy your idea is.  The equipment is out there; don’t wish for it, go get it!

Image result for newyorkbarbells
No, this ISN'T a photo of how the site looked back then; that's TODAY

Quit letting external variables control YOUR destiny.  It’s YOUR time, YOUR money, YOUR future.  Don’t justify your lack of experience by dutifully explaining how you don’t need experience to know if something works; go get some experience so that you CAN in fact be a decent source of authority on a topic.  Don’t talk about how you could be the next champ too if only you could get some coaching; go get a coach!  Don’t talk about how you WISH your gym had a reverse hyper or a safety squat bar or a buffalo bar or whatever the latest and greatest gimmick is; go get one for you!  And if it’s money you need for all this, go get some of that too!  Sell some stuff you don’t need, quit buying some stuff you don’t need, save up and invest in yourself.  And if it’s time you need, go get some of that!  I find most people don’t realize that there is a great little chunk of time between 0500 and 0600 just ripe for the taking EVERY DAY; you just have to lose an hour of sleep to get it. 

Go out there and get some.


  1. One of your best rants yet. The difference in equipment vendors circa 2008 has me in stitches.

    I am privately enjoying the current circlejerk that is MRVs. What an absurd concept for the average lifter, heck, the average competitive lifter dedicated enough to be reading about lifting online, to try to implement in a program. If your life is so structured and consistent, and your training so precise, that you can perfectly track and predict the exact number of sets to ensure biceps growth, THAT'S what's driving your growth, not anything magical about the number of sets you're doing.

    But yes, this post perfectly captures everything that is wrong with everything. Everyone has so much time on their hands and so many venues such that we are able to spend all day talking about everything without ever doing a god damn thing. Tired of talking about lifting on /fitness, go to /weightroom, then hit up t-nation. Go read a dozen different blogs and two dozen different social media coaches updating three times a day, by the time you've done that there'll be something new on Reddit.

    Yes, I realize the irony in this.



    1. That photo is amazing, haha. That guy makes everything better.

      Appreciate the kudos. This was has been brewing for a while. People without experience are very quick to discredit the value of experience. Meanwhile, I saw a Steve Pulcinella post on facebook today that talked about how he learned what a macro was 3 years ago, and somehow he managed to get jacked from lifting hard and eating Wendys.

      I legitimately don't even know WHAT MRV is. From all the people I see talking about it, it's not anything I WANT to know about.

    2. 1/2

      Hmmm I think you'd enjoy it at a philosophically absurd level and I need to take a break from homework anyway so I'll just piss you off with this.

      It takes the idea of dose-dependent hypertrophy and goes to the moon.

      Essentially, you have three magic numbers that you manipulate to produce hypertrophy. Minimum effective dose (MED) is the minimum amount of sets required for hypertrophy and you start your training block here. You progress to MAV, the maximal adaptive volume which represents the sweet spot of hypertrophy, then you finish at your MRV, your maximum recoverable volume, basically the "you're about to overtrain point."

      At the physiological level it’s like, okay, hypothetically yes, all of those numbers have to exist at some conceptual level, but as I’m sure you’re already thinking, there are a few underlying assumptions of the method that make it an exercise in absurdity to try to define those numbers.

      #1. That the human body is capable of programmed, planned, essentially linear growth. Okay, this is an assumption of basically every periodization system except for nonlinear programs, so we can let this one slide.

      #2. That you can precisely track and categorize movements such that you can even establish these numbers in the first place. Isratael defines sets as sets between 60-80%1RM and between 8-20 reps roughly 1-4 reps shy of muscular failure, so it should be clear that this is exclusively for hypertrophy/physique training and not applicable to other pursuits, yet that is constantly overlooked. He also has some entertaining ideas on how to categorize compound lifts:

      "One way to solve this problem is to begin the practice of splitting up each exercise into fractional set counts. So, for example, let’s say that chest and triceps both need about 20 sets per week to hit their MRVs. So if we did 20 sets of bench press for chest, we’d hit our MRV for the week. But we might estimate that bench presses only stimulate the triceps about half as much as a more direct triceps movement, and so we might say that after that 20 sets of bench, we have 10 tricep “sets worth” of volume out of the way, and now we have to make up the remaining 10 sets to hit triceps MRV somewhere else. And those “somewhere else” exercises must not involve the chest at all, because it would cause us to exceed our chest MRV."

      Fractional set counts! Hahahahaha. So now that you’re an expert on muscle action, origin, and insertion so that you can precisely determine the exact fractional contribution of every muscle to a given exercise, and a mathematician to be able to keep all this shit straight...

      #3. You have to hold everything in your life so constant such that you can replicate the results of one training block to progress to the next so that you actually can progress from MEV to MAV to MRV. Did you use different lifts or perform them differently? Variation is going to alter the adaptations. Do you have a job, family, other priorities in life, or read the news? Did you eat and sleep the exact same day-after-day and block-after-block? Even if we don’t fully buy the connection of GAS theory to human athletic performance (sidebar potential here), we at least know that any change in stress levels, nutrition, sleep, etc. will affect your recovery capabilities and thus your MEV/MAV/MRV numbers.

    3. 2/2

      Once again, I’m just amazed at the mental gymnastics performed to think that this is at all a worthwhile method. “A fool and his money” and all that. Props to Mike for taking a page out of the age-old supplement manufacturer’s trick of taking a basic physiological concept that can’t be refuted at face value but also can’t be clearly defined in non-theoreticals, extrapolating it to a sciency-sounding product, applying it to hot body physique competitors, then marketing it to a recreational audience despite a total difference in lifestyle, dedication, and possibly even training goals.

      Mike obviously isn’t a total charlatan, there are enough of his personal clients out there to prove he knows how to program for results. Anyone informed though would realize that the results aren’t coming from the method itself, but from either the personalized coaching from someone highly experience and/or the benefit of being so consistent in lifestyle and training to be able to perform the method. Mike deserves to get paid for his personal coaching the same as anyone else. My argument here lies solely with idiots on forums thinking they can piece together this training methodology like the proverbial 100 monkeys with typewriters and lord their newfound understanding over others.


    4. Holy cow that is just ridiculous. How anyone can look at that and think it's at any way an implementable concept is insane. Hell, at this point I question anyone that realistically believes in tracking "volume". If I don't fully lockout my squat, is that less volume on a full squat, or do I track 100% of the volume but for a different movement? And how much volume did my glutes get compared to my quads and hamstrings?

      Everyone wants a number and facts and figures and science; they want to outthink their bodies.

      Can't blame the player on this one though, you're right. The fitness industry is too easy of one to be a predator.

    5. Yeah man. Glad I could précis the insanity for you. Definitely comes back to your "it's not an RPG" rant too.

  2. This is, like, the best of your rants so far. If I forget more worthy candidates, it's mostly that they have gotten assimilated thoroughly so that thinking of them explicitly has become redundant. I've only been back to the gym after an accident last two weeks. As you might imagine, now I'm absolutely dreadfully deskilled at squatting so I got me some leg pressing into routine to let me push harder. And I noticed that grip has gotten awful with at first forced rest then secondly an all cardio and no gymming routine so I got me some straps and a gripper. Two years ago, I would had worried about my fragile wrist tendons powderizing from overtraining and not foamrolling my tender forearms without the blessings of both St. Rippetoad and some beginner pretending to be an endocrinologist and boy do I not envy past me.

    1. Hey thanks man; I appreciate the feedback. Glad to know your progress moving forward is going to be going in a good way. Heal up and get stronger.

  3. This is a great life lesson that I continually forget. Need to just write "Get Some!" on my desk. Or my wall.

    1. Awesome dude. Hope it helps you drive forward.

  4. I couldn't stand doing MRV. I feel bad enough that I am only making marginal progress on my bodyweight exercises, I would hate to get to the point where I trained enough that I could ONLY do just as much. Not to mention all that time spent doing mathematics could have been spent just training.

    The sequel . . . Err, second half of full metal jacket is a great movie by the way.