Dan John: Wandering Weights, Issue # 117

Wandering Weights
Our Epic Journey Through All Things Heavy, Issue # 117


Publisher’s Note:  Over the past 16 years, OTP has grown from a single author to 127 authors, video presenters and lecturers who specialize in your interests. As you know, we’ve recently upgraded the OTPbooks.com website, but until last week we’d never had a comprehensive author directory. New on OTP this week, please check out our BEEFY NEW author pages.
As I am typing this, the sport talk radio people are marveling at the comeback by the Patriots over the Falcons in the Super Bowl. Last night, I predicted, while behind 28-3, that the Patriots would come back and win.

As I am typing this, the sport talk radio people are marveling at the comeback by the Patriots over the Falcons in the Super Bowl. Last night, I predicted, while behind 28-3, that the Patriots would come back and win.

Hate him or love him, Tom Brady has a philosophy about focusing on the “next play, next day.” It’s worth thinking about in every phase of life. So much of my work with performance is convincing the athlete (or whomever) to not judge things until the game, season or event is over.

I have a history of winning on my last throw or lift and I teach my athletes to not judge a day by the first minutes of competition. In my upcoming book, Now What?, I will discuss the tools I use, but most of us would have life stories that teach “it ain’t over until it’s over.”

It’s true about most things in life and it is always worth discussing.

As I zipped around the internet this week, this first article made me think. I don’t agree with all of it. I made breakfast and dinner for my girls every single day as I placed nutrition as a game changer for their lifelong health. But, it is always worthwhile to read something like this…it made me think! And, thinking has great value.

“1. Waking them up in the morning

“If you are still waking little Johnny up in the mornings, it’s time to let an alarm clock do its job. My foursome have been expected to get themselves up on early school mornings since they started middle school. There are days one will come racing out with only a few minutes to spare before they have to be out the door. The snooze button no longer feels luxurious when it’s caused you to miss breakfast.

“I heard a mom actually voice out loud that her teen sons were just so cute still, that she loved going in and waking them up every morning. Please stop. I find my sons just as adorable as you do, but our goal is to raise well functioning adults here.”

This article by Glenn Pendlay is interesting. It reminds us how athletes will soon learn to bargain themselves into different training programs. Often, these become better than what is on some piece of paper.

“Everything must be done perfectly to prolong the gains from a linear program beyond that time frame.

“Perfect is a word that rarely applies to humans or their activities.

“In the past, too many athletes have switched to a fully periodized training program far too soon. In weightlifting, most periodized programs build up attempts at demonstrating new and higher performance levels every eight to 12 weeks.  An intermediate program like the Texas Method bridges the gap between a purely linear program that only works for a short time, and full blown periodization. A fully periodized program is not needed for most lifters, and in fact can severely limit progress. If a lifter is adapting to his or her training fast enough to make noticeable improvements each week, yet their program is built around increasing their squat max every 12 weeks, that is a big gap and leaves a lot of potential gains on the table.”

I met Marcus in England and I am a big fan of his work. This first blog piece made me smile. He also allowed WW readers to see his monthly journal, too.

Now I don’t know about you, but I’m all about stacking the odds of a long, healthy and happy life in my favour. Which means I like to remove unnecessary risks off the table when I can.

So on Sunday I didn’t bother wobbling around on one foot getting dried.

I simply followed Dan’s advice:

I put one hand against the wall for support
Checked the spot I was going to put my foot on was dry

And then stepped out of the bath.

From an accident prevention point of view the difference was night and day.

And if you don’t get out the shower this way, you should try it.

As Dan later said when I told him I’d followed his advice: “Practicing balance is great, but it’s probably best to do it in an environment that ain’t gonna kill ya.”

End Quote.

Marcus (you can find out more about him here) allowed me to share this month’s Journal. It is as good a review of my work as I have ever seen. Enjoy. And subscribe!

I gave a workshop at Equinox this year and several of their trainers pinged me this article. My wife and I discuss something called “Title IX” all the time…this might be lost on our non-USA readers, but the point is valid…it is a VERY good law, but the method of administering it is often fraught with issues.

“Visit the Equinox homepage right now and you’ll find bare-chested artist and cancer survivor Samantha Paige, proudly displaying her double-mastectomy scars as part of the luxury gym chain’s New Year marketing campaign, ‘Commit to Something.’ Last year an ad featured Lydia Hearst, also topless, breastfeeding twins in a bougie restaurant. The reminder: Equinox is more than racks of barbells and eucalyptus-scented towels. They care about the important stuff. They’re committed to a whole, healthy, empowered life.

“Except — maybe not if you work there. On January 1, the company’s health-insurance offerings changed, leaving the majority of its personal trainers without comprehensive medical coverage. Back in 2016, a personal trainer had to work 22 hours a week to gain access to a solid health-care plan that covered doctor and specialist visits, prescription drugs, hospital stays, substance-abuse treatment — the good stuff. Starting in 2017, trainers have to work at least 30 hours a week to take advantage of a similar full-coverage plan. Everyone else (considered part-time) is left with a limited, basic plan that doesn’t include much more than a few doctor’s visits each year. It covers preventive care (your flu shot, a pap) and hospitalization for non-elective care (meaning a trip to the ER if you need some immediate assistance to stay alive). It’s not a plan your parents would approve.”

Jim Wendler does a great job here with a great point. Be sure to read the WHOLE thing before you nod your head “yes” or “no.”

“It’s not a popular sentiment to say this, but you can out train your diet.  People have done it for thousands of years and people do it today. I have done it and I have seen hundreds of other people do it.  It’s just not popular to say that if you are selling a nutrition program, idea or fitness lifestyle.”

I’m going to be busy in 2017. This event is going to be big and I am looking forward to it.

I’m traveling a lot again, but I will keep my eyes open for more things to share with you. This weekend will be interesting; I will share details as I can, appropriately, next week.

Until then, keep lifting and learning.


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New on OTPbooks.com this week: Mark Reifkind talks about the misunderstood and underutilized lats muscle group. 

“The origins of the latissimus are on the spine. Every time you’re using your arm, you’re connecting to the spine via the lats.” Read more from Rif.