About Me

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Huntersville, NC, United States
I have been a fitness enthusiast and athletic competitor my entire life. Studying and practicing ways to improve athletic performance has been a life-long passion for me. I have trained with kettlebells for over 3 years and have completed multiple CrossFit kettlebell certifications. In addition to kettlebells, I use olympic weights, sleds, sandbags, TRX suspension, medicine balls, plyo boxes, pull up bars, rings, dip stations and various other tools to optimize training effectiveness. I am well qualified to share my knowledge and experience to help other people achieve their fitness and athletic performance goals.

December 29, 2010

Random Training Thoughts...

I feel sorry for the people running down the sidewalk of my neighborhood looking miserable.  A well structured resistance training program would help them lose more weight, improve their functional strength, reduce their time investment and in most cases be a whole lot more fun.  Oh…and make them much less likely to get injured.
I want to puke when I see personal trainers having overweight and out-of-shape people doing tricep press downs, dumbbell curls, leg extensions and other stupid isolated movements.  This incompetency should be grounds for Federal incarceration.
Your primary movements should be some form of overhead / horizontal press, lunge, squat, deadlift, step-up and pull-up.  Doesn’t matter what tool you use…bodyweight, Olympic bar, kettlebell, sandbag, dumbbell, TRX Suspension System or cinder block.  After you do these movements justice and want to add some other cute movements, go for it. 
Let’s face it, you have to work hard to get results.  Intensity separates progress from stagnation.  It’s better to push hard through a marginal program v. loaf through a well designed program.
If fitness or athletic performance is truly a priority, don’t let minor obstacles (traveling, poor sleep, work / school stress, runny nose, sore throat, etc.) get in the way of you sticking to your plan.

If you are an athlete or someone wanting to improve your athletic performance focus on the "non-mirror" muscles.  These are the muscles visible when running away from someone. 
If you really want to make dramatic strides in your bodyweight management plan you have to control your eating.  Plan your meals and rarely deviate.  Eat 5 – 6 small meals each day, write down what you eat and invest in Tupperware.  Eating clean requires planning.  You can’t wing this. 
Being competitive is a good thing.  Being stupid is a bad thing.  Stupid lifters are usually trying to lift more than they are capable of using with correct form and a full range of movement.  Examples are the ¼ squat dudes claiming they squat 450, but can’t do 275 parallel; or the 315 bouncing, hip thrusting bencher who can’t do 225 strict.  Do yourself a favor.  Lift the weight under control using the full range of motion and tell your stupid lifting mates to do the same.  
Do not jump on the latest fitness trend or gadget.  Pick a program you like and stick to it for at least 90 days.  Reading Men’s Health or Muscle & Fitness can be a real detriment to sustained progress.

If you are serious about getting stronger and considering joing a gym, ask if they allow chalk.  If the answer in NO, search for another gym.  This gym will be full of people sitting on machines watching ESPN between sets, doing endless variations of bicep curls and standing on Bosu balls. 

September 19, 2010

Sled Training - Safe, Effective & Humbling

Want to punish someone just for fun?  Know someone who is really cocky and thinks they forgot more about training intensely than you will ever know?  Better yet, if they have heard about sled training and think it a joke.  Please send them to me, they will be calling for their mommy to save them in less than 15 minutes.

As a personal trainer and strength coach, I'm always looking for effective ways to train individuals and groups safely.  If everyone who trains with me had great flexibility, joint mobility, no muscle imbalances, symmetrical hips, equal leg lengths, no previous injuries, and the ability to grasp technical movements quickly, I could spend more time on Olympic and Power lifts.

When I train people 1:1 for an extended period of time, I can assess their individual needs and work through a systematic progression until they master even the most difficult movements.  Fact is, I am frequently presented with training groups of people.  These groups typically have a huge range of experience and athleticism.  So, how can I structure the workouts so they are safe, yet very EFFECTIVE?

I use sandbags, kettlebells, battling ropes, hex bars, etc., but one of my favorite new tools is sleds.  Sled training will work the heck out of your hips and legs.  It will also provide incredible metabolic conditioning.  Sleds are appropriate for everyone.  If you train with me be prepared to push, pull and drag sleds in the cul-de-sac across from my gym (aka garage). 

Check out my Sled Fleet below...

May 4, 2010

Strength Training For Athletes

If you train with me you can expect to become proficient at the following movements.

March 15, 2010

ACE Study - Benefits of Kettlebell Training

Recent study conducted by the American Council on Exercise (ACE) regarding the benefits of Kettlebell training.

Below are some comments from the article. I have also included a link to the entire article. This was a very scientific study and a huge testimony regarding the incredible benefits of Kettlebell training.

To analyze the energy cost and exercise intensity of kettlebell workouts, ACE enlisted the help of the research experts at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse Exercise and Health Program. The team, led by John Porcari, Ph.D., and Chad Schnettler, M.S., recruited 10 volunteers, male and female, ages 29 to 46 years, all of whom were experienced in kettlebell training. “They [kettlebell enthusiasts] make these all-encompassing claims about increasing your muscular strength, endurance and aerobic capacity with kettlebells, like, if you do this, that’s all you need to do,” says Porcari. “So we wanted to look and see how much of an aerobic workout you really do get and how many calories you really burn.”

During the 20-minute workout, the average calorie burn was 272 calories, not counting additional calorie burn due to the substantial anaerobic effort. “We estimated oxygen consumption and how many calories they were burning aerobically, and it was 13.6 calories per minute. But we also measured the blood lactate, so anaerobically they were burning another 6.6 calories per minute,” explains Porcari. “So they were burning at least 20.2 calories per minute, which is off the charts. That’s equivalent to running a 6-minute mile pace. The only other thing I could find that burns that many calories is crosscountry skiing up hill at a fast pace.”

As our ACE-sponsored research demonstrates, kettlebells can offer a highly effective workout. In addition to boosting your strength and cardiovascular fitness, it is likely you’ll also increase your balance and flexibility, too. And since kettlebell training is so efficient, you may be able to get better results while spending less time in the gym.

The Bottom Line

Kettlebells can provide one heck of a workout. Based on comparisons with data from previous research on standard weight training, the HR and V•O2 responses during the kettlebell snatch routine suggest it provides a much higher-intensity workout than standard weight-training routines. Furthermore, the kettlebell snatch workout easily meets industry recommendations for improving aerobic capacity. “This is good news for people who are looking for a very good resistance-training workout that will also help them lose weight,” says Schnettler. “For people who might not have a lot of time, and need to get in a good workout as quickly as possible, kettlebells definitely provide that.”

Link to the entire ACE http://www.acefitness.org/getfit/research.aspx


Check Out This Video From Dragon Door


Improves Physical Performance

Whether you are a middle age weekend warrior, play football, basketball, soccer or practice mixed martial arts, adding kettlebell movements will improve your performance.

Promotes Total Body Flexibility

When performing the ballistic movements, you will improve range of motion, movement patterns and flexibility of the hips, back and shoulders.

Improves Functional Strength

All of the core kettlebell movements; swing, clean, snatch, press, deadlift, squat, renegade row and Turkish get-up are compound movements that require the body to work as a unit. The key to functional exercise is integration. It's about teaching all the muscles to work together rather than isolating them to work independently.

Improves Endurance

Kettlebells are frequently used in circuit training, high intensity interval training and for single sets that may exceed 10 minutes in duration.

Reduces Body Fat

It’s a proven fact that resistance training using explosive full body movements and high intensity is the most efficient fat burning protocol. In a recent issue of Health Magazine Jillian Michaels called kettlebells the "Ultimate Fat-Burner" She went on to say..."This workout is metabolic, so it burns a ton of calories." "It incorporates explosive movements. It's core based, so it will make you stronger. And it forces your body to use multiple muscle groups simultaneously, which burns more calories."

Rehabilitates and / or Prevents Injury

The acceleration/deceleration of kettlebell movements strengthens connective tissue (tendons, ligaments, cartilage) and increases shoulder mobility strength and flexibility. Many people have made huge improvements in their back strength and resiliency as a result of using kettlebells.

Convenient & Portable

All you need is a very small space about 4’ x 6’ and about 8’ high ceilings. I typically train in my garage, but when the weather is too hot or cold I can get a great workout in my bedroom. I take my kettlebells with me while on business trips and family vacations. I have trained in hotel rooms, local parks, on the beach and pretty much anywhere I can find a small patch of grass. I even keep a Kettlebell in my car so whenever I have the urge I can catch a spontaneous workout.

Time Efficient

You can get an amazing strength and cardio workout in 30 minutes. If you don’t believe me, let’s schedule 30 minutes together sometime soon.

Anyone Can Use Them

Most people think kettlebells are only for elite military forces, college and professional athletic teams and mixed martial arts fighters. Sure these people use kettlebells because their livelihood demands them to be in peak physical condition. I have taken Kettlebell classes in many major US cities and find that most of the class attendees are women. I will anticipate the next question from the ladies… no kettlebells won’t make you bulky. They will give you a very lean, tone and athletic look.

Check out this YouTube Video... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k-97pH9eBfw


If you are interested in purchasing kettlebells, I recommend checking out Muscle Driver. Their Grey Version 2 kettlebells are high quality and the lowest price I have found anywhere. I have a link to their web site on the top of my blog.


Most people find Kettlebell training fun. You can use them for strength and power training. You can use them for long endurance or fast paced interval training. You can use one or two bells at a time. Some people throw them. Some people like to practice juggling them. Of course there are about 12 core exercises, but there are many more if you let your imagination take over.