The Lessons of a Busy Year; How to Have a Stronger, Better 2015


I will start by saying that I am a big goal-setter. However, most resolutions fail because they rarely have a plan of action behind them. I still like this time of year, as it has a way of making most people reflect on their life, goals, and how they plan to move forward to have a better year than the last. I guess I can say it does the same for me.

2015 strong photo

2014 was a year of change in my life. I did some things I always wanted to do, and made some major “life” moves. In staying so busy, it really opened my eyes to how you can get derailed from things that typically seem so routine.

Here are some things that happened last year (good and bad):


Of course this was a big thing for me. It is something I have thought about doing for years. It was at the top of my goal list for 2014, and I am glad to say it was taken care of early. However, late in the year (as many of the items below happened) I got derailed from writing and the site was a bit stagnant. One of my major goals for this year is to write daily, and publish quality content on a more regular basis.

Got Married

Me and my wife were married in November. So, of course there was a great deal of time put into the planning, etc. for such an event. It was one-week after my Strongman competition, so we were both a little stressed and in need of the honeymoon! It was the best day of my life. She is very supportive of my goals and I couldn’t ask for a better friend.

Hosted a Strongman Competition

This event took a lot more work than I would have anticipated. On top of it being a week prior to my wedding, it also took a great deal of time and effort to put together. I had been wanting to do this for quite some time, and am very proud of how it turned out. The charity it supported was very pleased, and we were able to send a Veteran to the monuments and memorials in Washington DC based on the support gained at the event! I want it to be even better moving forward, as we are looking to make it an annual event.

Bought a Gym

The thing that really has been the most time consuming in late 2014, and early 2015 is the recent purchase of a gym. A friend of mine owned a local gym, and due to career growth for his spouse, he was in a position to have to relocate. In the young position of the business, me and a business partner decided to purchase it. I have been making changes to try to streamline processes and improve marketing. Needless to say, it is a time-consuming job! We have been able to do some gratifying things that really make it fun (food drive, gifts for children in need, donations to local charities, etc.).

Bought First Home

After years of renting, I was shocked to see how much goes into buying a home. It is an extremely arduous process, full of red tape and stacks of paperwork. I am glad to finally be able to have a place to call “my own” though!

Lost Training Consistency

With all that happened in 2014, my own training went downhill. It is odd how working in a gym can zap the energy needed for your own training. I have seen it for many trainers and gym owners. The best thing I have found to improve my training is to schedule it into my day. This may seem simple, but by doing this it allows me to mentally prepare for that time and keeps me sharp going into the training session (instead of just jumping into it when you have time). The same issues can be said for my nutrition. Planning makes all the difference, because if I do not plan, I do not eat nearly enough.

How can these points help you with your upcoming year? It just goes to show that even the most solid plans can be pushed around by random things that occur throughout the year. Be prepared to reassess your goals throughout the year.

When reassessing, you have to look honestly, but be tough on yourself. Do not just reduce your goals because you got off-track. Be prepared to make new plans to get it done. DEADLINES DON’T MOVE, YOU DO!

If you want more information on how I set my goals, check out this post

Standing on the Backs of Giants; Recycled Ideas and Concepts


How often do you hear about the “latest, innovative training methods”? I am sure it is pretty often. There are hype marketers all throughout the industry, pushing replayed and recycled ideas as their own “new” methods.

new ideas photo

At the end of the day, there are almost no new ideas. If people are claiming to have some new program or method, proceed with caution.


New ideas are essentially building on old ideas and making them better. It is like standing on the backs of those who came before you…..and that is not always a bad thing. Without previous information and knowledge, you would have to start from scratch. This would slow the development of advances in knowledge and technology tremendously.


What we should do instead is show humility and acknowledgement of our predecessors. Some of the best in our industry do a great job of this. This is how you earn respect (not by pretending you are the all-knowing expert).


Many ideas can be new to you (they could be entirely new; I am not trying to say that there are absolutely no new concepts). This does not mean they have no value or basis. You should definitely pursue ideas that are new to you. This can lead to new developments and advances that might not have otherwise been possible.


Also, do not completely discredit people who have a different way of thinking than you. This is a common error I see in the divided landscape of fitness, training, etc. There is a hatred for people who do not train in the same way. There is always something that can be learned from other methods.


You do not have to agree with everything people say. But you can take parts of their message and find ways that you can use that information to make you better. Everyone has an angle and a bias, so you have to sift through that to find the useful information.

strength coach photo

With that, remember to always keep learning and keep testing.


It is fair to say that many in our industry believe everything the “so-called” experts have to say. While there are others who are complete skeptics and believe very little that anyone says. I think we have to be able to find the middle ground here.


In short, just remember that just because something sounds good, it doesn’t mean it always is. Just because something sounds like it will work, doesn’t mean it always will. It is up to you to learn the difference. Do your homework.


Join us!


Photo by dok1

Photo by dok1

Photo by James D Rucker

What’s Worth Reading – Best Strength and Fitness Articles, Videos, etc. : Week 4

Strength Fitness What's Worth Reading

Welcome to Week 4 of What’s Worth Reading! Here is what I have written lately: Overcome Adversity and Be Great   Here are the articles I have checked out this week. By Mark Watts This is a solid overview of what the displaced Strength Coach has in store after his/her career as a Collegiate Coach […]

Continue reading...

Overcome Adversity and Be Great

Why are there so many moderately good lifters, but few great? Even though many of the moderate level lifters may be more genetically gifted.   There are many factors at work, of course. But, a major variable is how they handle and overcome adversity. Everyone who trains to be the best will run into hard […]

Continue reading...

What’s Worth Reading – Best Strength and Fitness Articles, Videos, etc. : Week 3

Strength and Fitness - Worth Reading

Welcome to the 3rd Week of What’s Worth Reading. Check out what I’ve been up to below. Here are some articles I have written or been included in this week:   Here are the strength and fitness articles I have been reading this week:   Listen, if you have never read […]

Continue reading...

What’s Worth Reading – Best Strength and Fitness Articles, Videos, etc. : Week 2

What's Worth Reading Best Fitness and Strength articles and videos

Here is the week 2 edition of What’s Worth Reading. I have added a new article this week. Find it here:   Also, there have been a lot of good articles and videos I have seen lately, check them out below.   Articles by Eric Cressey   This is a very interesting article giving […]

Continue reading...

Why Your Training Plan is Worthless

atlas stones slone strength

How many times have you seen a program or training plan that was just perfectly written, but the person at the wheel just never kept the programs on course? It happens all the time in both training and nutrition. The training plan you write is practically worthless on its own. The same can be said […]

Continue reading...

What’s Worth Reading – Best Strength and Fitness Articles, Videos, etc. : Week 1

training toolbox slone strength systems

In an effort to save you the effort, I am adding this resource of some good information I have ran across recently. Check it out, as I will try to add new info weekly.   Also, I have posted a few articles recently. If you want to check them out, you can do that below.   […]

Continue reading...

Challenge Yourself : How To Make the Exercises You Already Do Harder


We are creatures of habit.   When most people go to the gym, it is either the same monotonous routine, or a completely random assortment of exercises (a habit in itself). I am not saying that there should be constant change, but there is incredible value in spicing things up occasionally to increase the energy […]

Continue reading...

Don’t Be Weak-Simple Fixes to Make Progress and Take Your Training to the Next Level

Simple Strength Fix

Do you want to be weak? Small? All while training regularly?   Yeah. Me either. So why do so many people do it?   There are so many lies out there about training. Hype marketing everywhere you turn. Even with the good training information, you might be lumping it all together or just doing too […]

Continue reading...