hack the unessential - bruce leeI get questions every day from my clients asking about some product, information bit, or training program they read about or saw an ad for online, in the paper, heard on the radio, or whatever.  Information and advertising is pretty much unavoidable in today’s world.  You’re taking in some info right now by reading this, for example.

I’m not trying to cast judgment on it or say that it’s all good or bad.  As I talked about last week, most everything falls on a spectrum somewhere.  What I am trying to say is that there’s a lot of it.

There’s so much info, in fact, that the tendency is to take all that information and do little to nothing with it (paralysis by analysis) OR to excitedly jump into the next best thing until a few minutes, days, or weeks later when the NEXT best thing comes along (Shiny Object Syndrome).  Either way you end up spinning your wheels and not making any real progress from where you are now towards what you’ve set for your goals.

This shit happens all the time in the fitness or nutrition world, but also in business/work life and relationships, as well.

I’m preface my next piece of advice by saying that, believe it or not, I’m human and I am not perfect at it, but here’s what’s been helping me:
Read more on Applying Addition By Subtraction to Clarify and Achieve More…


The One Rule of FitnessSo, I’ve pretty much taken a couple of years off from Internet writing.  A lot has happened in that time, and I have to say that it was mostly good.  Primarily, I’ve used the time to build my brick and mortar training business (Relentless Strength Training).  Sprinkle in a little relationship upheaval (resulting in some true learning) and combine it with some great and not so great times with my family and friends and a couple of years goes by way too fast.  You know, it’s been a real life.

Mostly, there’s been a couple of years of introspection, success, mistakes, mistakes repeated until learning improved, clients trained, some excellent steaks and beers consumed, cities traveled to, heartbreak, weights lifted, body parts injured, life-altering conversations had, people helped, miles rucked, smack talked, slices of humble pie delivered and consumed, and time spent with the greatest human beings I know.

While there’s lots of great lessons I’m dying to teach you that I’ve picked up along the way, ranging from how to get more “pop” in your Olympic lifts to The Secret of Life (ok, still working on that one), there is one that has become the basis of my training and nutrition principles, business paths, and really my life in general:
Read more on The One Big Rule for Strength and Health…


Long Tree LookI’ve had a couple of frustrating conversations with prospects lately who didn’t turn out to be good fits for Relentless, which is why we interview.  The direction of the conversation that turned me off is, unfortunately one that is way too common in today’s culture, and especially fitness culture.

There’s this sense of everything being a “quick fix”, or 30-60-90 Day Challenge.  I don’t think those things are totally worthless as they get people started or break some staleness, which is why we have successfully run several at Relentless.  However, I do feel that for many this has become the expectation for fitness results.
Read more on Taking the Long View…


I recently received a great question from one of my most involved and inspirational clients. What started out as a relatively simple question on programming got me thinking a bit and really provided me with a light smack in the face regarding why we do things at Relentless, or why I do anything, for that matter.

With her encouragement I’ll post the exchange here:
Read more on Make It Happen Monday – Remember Your Reasons…


This is probably the best thing I’ve read in a very long time.

So, today’s Make It Happen Monday is pretty simple: I don’t care whether we’re talking fitness, nutrition, politics, money, life, family, science, or what you want for lunch… If you don’t already, start collecting some questions. While you’re at it, see if your answers are still valid for your questions. The “answer” might surprise you.


I admit that I’m a bit biased, but it seems that almost every event, goal, and challenge I come across in life has a direct correlation in the weight room, training, and quest for favorable body composition.

As I’ve recently been dealt some raw hands coming back from surgery, and realized that they’re mostly of my own doing, I’ve been slapped with a reminder of this observation… right between my Icarian wings.

When it comes to nutrition/dieting and conditioning there are two great “truths”.

(Yes, there are always some exceptions, but don’t be the douchebag tries to pick fly shit out of pepper. Just don’t.)
Read more on Make It Happen Monday – Respect The Process…


Just a quick thought for today… Why do you think that?

What’s “that”?

Well, most anything.

Everyone has a system of beliefs that govern how and why they do things the way they do and think the way they think.

You think a certain way about yourself and the world around you.
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I love learning.

I love new facts, insights, and revelations.

I love learning so much that more than anything else I love learning about learning. Yes, I am such a nerd that I study studying.
Read more on The Conjugate System of Learning…


As I’ve said before and all of my clients are very aware of: I’m a big fan of kettlebells. Not in the crazy, religious way that some kettlebell fanatics seem to be (there’s not a kettlebell exercise I can think of off the top of my head that you can’t do with a dumbbell), but in general I think they’re a useful, fun tool.

There are a couple of basic kettlebell exercises that, if you can get them down, will basically set the foundation for all of the other kettlebell movements: The Clean and the Snatch.

Kettlebell training is all about efficiency of motion. When I see people mess up the main kettlebell lifts it usually boils down to either inefficient technique or not controlling the ‘bell and results in bruised wrists and bitching.
Read more on Kettlebells Made Simple…


All of my clients know that one of my favorite training tools is the simple sandbag. It’s dynamic load is murder on the stabilizers, grip, and upper back while building athleticism, conditioning, and comfort in uncomfortable positions. It’s a fantastic way to teach the body to take the pure strength built with the barbells and transfer it to more “real world” athletics.

We use the CRAP out of them at Relentless.

And since they’re easy and cheap to make I think that everyone should have a couple in their home gym.

To get you started, here’s a couple of vids I shot a while back that detail two basic sandbag exercises: The Clean and basic Shouldering.
Read more on Sandbag 101: The Two Best Sandbag Exercises…