Posts Tagged ‘Cardio’

Another year older, another year wiser.


Honolulu, Hawaii

In this post I want to shed some light on a few observations I’ve made that I hope you can find value in ‚ÄĒ spark change and reinforce positivity.

1. Can’t help everyone


In the past, I worked with anybody who came knocking on my door. Now that I’m much more educated with a ton of experience under my belt, I’m more selective with who I choose to work with… for good reason.

There’s a world of difference between someone who says they need help, and someone who actually wants help. ¬†Perhaps it was my optimistic nature, but that premise never really stuck with me up until last year.

Wanting to help everyone that crosses your path is well-intended… but, it’s wishful thinking. ¬†With personal training, or any type of professional instruction for that matter, it’s a two-way street.

The person in front of you or on the other side of the phone has got to meet you half way. ¬†No amount of pizza and ice cream¬†facts spitting or knowledge bombs are going to help someone who doesn’t really want to be helped.


2. Best job in the world, but it’s not all sunshine and rainbows


Making a living empowering people, and educating them to be more self-sufficient with their training is a reward in and of itself. Saying I love what I do would be a huge understatement. But I’ll tell you what, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows.

You know how many trainers I’ve seen come n’ go since I started back in 2013?

Too many to frickin’ count.

It’s a harsh reality for folks who want to be revered in this industry, which they¬†haven’t got a clue about.

Granted, any gym rat can become a trainer with a weekend course/certification, but to immerse yourself into the grind you need to put in ‚ÄĒ¬†most aren’t willing to do that, and I’ve seen it up-close.

As a frame of reference, when I was still getting my feet wet, I woke up at 4:30am almost every day for my morning clients. When I had a break in between, I would read books on business or strength training. Did I mention I taught after school P.E.? Yup, that was every afternoon.

If there was enough time, I’d try to squeeze in a 30min nap before I headed back to the gym for my next wave of clients. Towards the evening I would continue to read or watch informative and applicable information on YouTube until I fell asleep.

What I’m trying to convey is that if this whole thingamajig is a hobby, you’re not going to get very far. You got to love what you do for what it’s about, not what it could potentially provide.

3. Training borderline crazy all the time doesn’t end well


It’s no surprise that the¬†vast majority of lifters and athletes glorify ball-busting hardcore training. ¬†Even a lot of the everyday folks I work and correspond with love it. Don’t get it twisted.¬†I’m a big believer in going ham or batshit crazy from time to time.

In fact, I think a lot of people out there need to suck it up and train their ass off. It builds mental toughness and resiliency.

Unfortunately, though, we have no disregard for our tolerance limit.

Even under the right circumstances where every nuance is proper¬†‚ÄĒ sleep, recovery, nutrition, supplementation¬†‚ÄĒ you can’t go all-out all the time.¬†Knowing when to back off or dumbing it down is a tactic not many individuals take a liking to.

Trust me, I can totally relate. ¬†I want to hulk smash every chance I get. But, being able to know when to put your chips in rather than going all in every turn is a skill you should consider ‚ÄĒ¬†especially if you intend on playing long.

Not every training session has to be a Battle Royale. Train smarter, not harder.

4. We’re always looking for shortcuts


As much as I want to be able to deadlift 450+lbs while still being jacked, I have to be realistic in terms of the rate of progress.

It’s not how much you can do in a single workout, it’s about how much you can do for a long period of time.

Yes ‚ÄĒ¬†there are individuals who have a predisposition to gaining muscle much faster than others (lucky Sumbitch),¬†but remember, they’re the exception, not the norm.

Those of us mere mortals have to take a more calculated approach¬†‚ÄĒ and refrain from getting caught up with how slow progress is.

Besides, adversity is an overlooked advantage. It allows us to continually work no matter what.

Join my newsletter for fresh content and to gain access to new workouts every month.

Become An Insider

Eugenia Reverse Sled Drag


1. Cardio Is Still Important


I’ve said many times in the past it’s possible to reduce your body fat and improve your body composition with¬†little cardio. I’m not anti-cardio, so don’t take things out of context. There is a caveat.

If you’re a part of population that works the typical 9-5 shift sitting at a desk, your energy expenditure is going to be relatively low compared to the person who works in…let’s say, construction or delivery. Guess who needs cardio? In order to facilitate lipolysis (breakdown of fat) you have to increase your energy expenditure. So yes, that means you’re going to need to add in some form of cardiovascular/aerobic work in conjunction with strength training. Whether it’s high-intensity interval training or steady-state cardio, that’s¬†entirely up to you. There’s no right or wrong. They both work.

2. Your Diet Is Whack


It’s no question folks looking to lose weight are more prone to fads and gimmicks ‚ÄĒ and because of that they engage in many dietary practices. Just because something makes you lose weight doesn’t necessarily mean it’s healthy for you (i.e. juice cleanses, detox). What you ideally want in a diet is sustainability, nourishment, enjoyment, and… does it actually promote a healthy lifestyle? Put another way, if your diet sucks no amount of exercise is going to overcome that.

Don’t mistake simple for ineffective. Rather than resort to extreme methods, you’ll find that all the magic can be found in getting quality sleep, adequate hydration, eating your fruits and vegetables, and minimizing junk food.

3. Fat Loss Is Not Linear


My primary goal has never been fat loss. It’s always been about getting strong and building lean muscle. That having been said, ¬†what we need to¬†appreciate more is that¬†progress is never linear. ¬†From a coaching standpoint, it’s really hard to pick¬†the best course of action for individuals who keep second guessing if what they’re doing is right. If you expect to see results after having only done two weeks worth of training, you’re delusional.

It’s not a sexy answer, but you have to be patient. Just because the scale didn’t drop in one week doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not heading in a positive direction.

Take home message: the body transforms in a wave-like approach.

4. You Go “Screw It Mode”


I applaud discipline and consistency, but to deprive yourself of a certain food group¬†results in unwarranted mood swings and self-sabotage.¬†If you continuously tell yourself you can’t have something, all you’re going to do is fixate on that. On some level avoiding it entirely does help, but believe me when I say: the longer you restrict yourself, the bigger the binge.¬†¬†One bite or serving of indulgence then all hell breaks loose and you have now entered,¬†“screw it mode.”¬†This phenomenon repeatedly happens¬†‚ÄĒ and unfortunately, it makes it more and more difficult for you to lose fat.


More¬†pressingly, food avoidance¬†in an effort to lose fat¬†only works in the short-term. In fact, I’ve found that not everyone can adhere to a protocol like that. True, it will create a calorie deficit which is essential for fat loss, but you’re missing the big picture. Rather than avoiding completely, practice portion control and mindful eating. You can still eat the foods you want and still make reasonable progress, but you can’t eat¬†as much of it as you want. We want to develop good habits, and a rigid diet¬†tends to lead us in the opposite direction.

Did what you just read make you better? Join my newsletter by clicking here because… you absolutely should.

Become An Insider

I’m an educator at heart. I find enjoyment in teaching people how to become monsters in the gym, and to ultimately live better lives. I spend time, effort, and money to continually improve my service. ¬†It’s for that very reason I don’t just work with anybody who walks in through the door inquiring about training.


I always come across people who know what they want with regards to getting in shape and becoming stronger, but when I look at what they do there’s no congruency.¬†For instance, if you’re asking me for advice on how to lose X amount of weight, and then the next day I see you eating junk and drinking alcohol ‚ÄĒ¬†it’s clear to me you really don’t care about your health.¬†You¬†have to understand that there’s a give and take if you want to improve the way you look.

I’m all for giving tips and advice, but it’s pointless if you’re not willing to make a change.


On many occasions, I’ve interacted with a lot people wanting to shed some weight hoping to gain an advantage in life and to ultimately look better. Not surprisingly though, is that they all make the same mistakes over and over again. ¬†They place far too much emphasis on different protocols and methods of training when all they should be adhering to are the basics. And you know what, chances are that you’re making the same mistakes as well.


1. Jumping From One Boat To The Next


Most¬†people have no concept of how long it takes to see progress. You can have the best training program in the world, but it won’t amount to anything if you can’t execute it to a T. You’re never going to get any good or create any consistency if you keep switching gears. Focus on one ideal and give your body some time to adapt

If¬†you’re not giving yourself at least a minimum of 8-12 weeks, forget about it.

2. Creating TOO Big Of A Caloric Deficit


Most people go to the extremes when it comes to fat loss by restricting their caloric intake. It’s as if starting a training and nutrition program is akin to starving and killing yourself in the gym. In other words, their mindset is fixed on working harder and eating less. If you’re into digging deep holes that’s hard to climb out of, by all means.

The pertinent issue here is that your basically starving yourself, and while it may work short-term you will inevitably gain back what you have worked so hard to lose. We have to appreciate the role our metabolism plays.  True, you need to create a caloric deficit to drive fat loss (if that is your goal). But, going too far down the rabbit hole will wreak havoc on your metabolism.

Remember, food is fuel. You still need calories in order to burn them.

3. Prioritizing Cardio Over Strength Training


There’s a time and place for aerobic and circuit style workouts ‚ÄĒ there’s no denying that. But in order to build muscle and get “toned”, you need to lift weights.

Don’t get me wrong or misconstrue what I’m trying to convey,¬†cardiovascular work is a vital component for¬†fat loss ‚ÄĒ especially performed in conjunction with strength training.¬†But, you don’t need to beat yourself up by doing it everyday.¬†

4. No Love For Actual Strength Work



To piggyback on the point above, a big mistake a lot of people make is not placing a premium on strength work. Muscle is metabolically expensive in the body. Meaning, the more muscle you have, the more calories you are able to burn. That is why I’m still dumbfounded by the fact that there are still men and women out there who think that lifting weights is going to make you “bulky and muscular.”

I’m not saying you have to lift the entire weight stack, but you have to lift appreciable loads to provide enough stimulus to adapt and grow. ¬†Who doesn’t want to get stronger? Being able to do a chin-up(s), deadlift 1-2x your bodyweight, or move without pain ‚ÄĒ the confidence that comes with that¬†is advantageous to your overall health.

5. You’re Not Invincible


Look, I get it¬†‚ÄĒ you want to get to your goal as fast as humanly possible. As much as I admire and appreciate people who work hard and bust their balls to achieve the physique they want, you’re not invincible. ¬†The fact of the matter is, is that a¬†lot of people¬†are under the impression that training to the point of exhaustion is indicative of a stellar workout. Far from it, my friend.

Kick your feet up and relax. It won’t hurt your gains, I promise.


Did what you just read make you better? Join my newsletter by clicking here because… you absolutely should.
Become An Insider