Archive for December, 2009

This Week on

Posted in Uncategorized on December 14, 2009 by mboyle1959

First up this week is an article from Joe Kenn called It is Not a Race for Last. This is a great article about the mental side of training. I saw it in the SB Coaches College newsletter and Joe was kind enough to let me reprint it. For those of you not familiar with Joe, he has spent the last 19 years as a strength coach on the collegiate level working at Boise State, Utah, Arizona State, and Louisville.  Joe also owns and operates Big House Power Competitive Athletic Training LLC [], an educational member website for parents, coaches, and athletes

Next up is The Get Strong Program Part 2 from Todd Hamer of Robert Morris. This one comes with an apology. I actually lost this article and recently found it again. This is a great follow up to Todd’s excellent Part 1.

Last up is What it Takes – A Fitness Business Journey by Justin Levine. This is another an excellent series of real world facility articles that I asked some guys to write about their experiences opening facilities.

Video of the Week

Video for the week is another in a series of what really are Athletes’ Performance lateral movement drills. This is a crossover drill referred to as Cross to Base in AP terms. At MBSC we simply call it Crossover and Stick. The key to viewing this is focus on the action of the leg pushing under, not the leg crossing over.

Don’t forget to check out the StrengthCoach Podcast  at Last but not least, make sure you keep up with

Site Notes

The articles and videos go up over the course of the week. Generally one each day.  Only one article mentioned on this email will go up on the day you receive this email.

Also, your credit card statement will show a change from, not Hope you enjoy the week.

Christmas Spirit

Posted in Uncategorized on December 13, 2009 by mboyle1959

There are two weeks left until Christmas. Do yourself a favor and go out and shop for those who really need. The Boston Herald has a list of 10 agencies actively seeking toys. My wife is wonderful enough to have us participate in an Adopt a Family program in our hometown of Reading, Ma. We actually adopt one family and have our daughters hockey team adopt another so we get to shop for two families. What literally brings me to tears are the lists. We live in an upper middle class community but,  what the kids ask for makes me realize  how lucky we are and how little appreciation we have.

Here are some list items. Warm blankets, gloves, socks, t-shirts, underwear. I think you get it. These kids don’t ask for presents, they ask for life’s necessities. They ask for things my kids take for granted. Whether or not you have kids, take the time to buy at least one present. I tell people that I do this for me. It is my best feeling of the holiday knowing that a family somewhere will open presents due to our generousity. So please, do something totally selfish. Make yourself feel good. Adopt a Family , buy a Toy for a Tot. Just do something for someone else.

Only One Body

Posted in Uncategorized on December 11, 2009 by mboyle1959

( the following is reprinted. I’m not sure where I printed it or, if I ever did)

Imagine you are sixteen years old and your parents give you your first car. They also give you simple instructions. There is one small hitch, you only get one car, you can never get another. Never. No trade-ins, no trade-ups. Nothing

Ask your self how would you maintain that car? My guess is you would be meticulous. Frequent oil changes, proper fuel, etc. Now imagine if your parents also told you that none of the replacement parts for this car would ever work as well as the original parts. Not only that, the replacement parts would be expensive to install and cause you to have decreased use of your car for the rest of the cars useful life? In other words, the car would continue to run but, not at the same speed and with the efficiency you were used to.

Wow, now would we ever put a lot of time and effort into maintenance if that were the case.

After reading the above example ask yourself another question. Why is the human body different? Why do we act as if we don’t care about the one body we were given. Same deal. You only get one body. No returns or trade-ins. Sure, we can replace parts but boy it’s a lot of work and it hurts. Besides, the stuff they put in never works as well as the original “factory” parts. The replacement knee or hip doesn’t give you the same feel and performance as the original part.

Think about it. One body. You determine the mileage? You set the maintenance plan?

No refunds, no warranties, no do-overs?

How about this perspective? One of my clients is a very successful businessman. He often is asked to speak to various groups. One thing he tells every group is that you are going to spend time and money on your health. The truth is the process can be a proactive one or a reactive one. Money spent on your health can take the form of a personal trainer, massage therapist and a gym membership or, it can be money spent on cardiologists, anesthesiologists, and plastic surgeons. Either way, you will spend money.

Same goes for time. You can go to the gym or, to the doctors office. It’s up to you. Either way, you will spend time. Some people say things like “I hate to work out”. Try sitting in the emergency room for a few hours and then get back to me. Working out may not seem so bad. Much like a car, a little preventative maintenance can go a long way. However, in so many ways the body is better than a car. With some good hard work you can turn back the odometer on the body. I wrote an article a while back ( Strength Training- The Fountain of Youth) that discussed a study done by McMaster University which showed that muscle tissue of older subjects actually changed at the cellular level and looked more like the younger control subjects after strength training.

Do me a favor, spend some time on preventative maintenance, it beats the heck out of the alternative. Just remember, you will spend both time and money.

Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning Video Tour

Posted in Uncategorized on December 10, 2009 by mboyle1959

My friends at Stack Magazine take you on a video tour of Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning. Take a few minutes and check it out to see how we organize our facility and our workouts.

MBSC Video Tour

A Realists Guide to Holiday Eating

Posted in Fat Loss, Nutrition, Random Thoughts on December 9, 2009 by mboyle1959

My good friend and client Hank Morse of WROR and WKLB  asked me for my top 5 holiday eating tips so I thought I would share them with you.

#1- EAT LESS. This is the top tip. Eat less at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Remember, we don’t need 4-5 meals a day, we need 4-5 feedings a day.

#2 Plan to Fail- as above, don’t eat normally if you know you are going to attend a party. Eat sparingly during the day leading up to a party.

#3- Plan to Fail Part 2- get extra workouts in. Expend more calories in anticipation of taking in more calories.

#4- Forget all the stuff about sparkling water and celery. Just decrease your intake on “party” days and up your activity.

#5- Eat protein. Protein is filling and satiating. Better to eat chicken wings than chips in the mad, mad world of holiday parties.


Posted in Uncategorized on December 7, 2009 by mboyle1959

First up this week is a The Perform Better One Day Experience from Bruce Kelly. I have to tell you that I really enjoyed all three talk this year. As always, a great lineup. If we come to your area, don’t miss out. The next one is in San Francisco on Jan 9th, followed by Los Angeles on Jan 23rd. I won’t be in San Fran but, the lineup is great. You can register by clicking this link

Next up are the notes from Functional Strength Coach Volume 2. The great job that Pat Beith did on the marketing for has created some renewed interest in Functional Strength Coach Volume 2. There have been forum requests for the notes and programs so I went back and located them.

Last up is an article I read in on SB Coaches College, 5-3-1 for Athletes by Georgia Tech Asst Strength Coach Tim Caron. Tim and Brijesh were kind enough to let me reprint it for you.

Video of the Week

This week’s clip is a simple Hand to Knee Drill use to teach crossover. As we said last week some of our readers and purchasers of have asked about some of the drills in the sample programs. This drill is another great one of the for teaching lateral movement concepts. In this case the drill teaches the athlete theknee drive necessary to utilize hip ower in the crossover. The key is that we don’t step over, we punch with the knee. My good friend Anthony Slater does another great job demoing this drill.

Don’t forget to check out the StrengthCoach Podcast  at  Anthony just put up an episode with Jeremy Boone. Last but not least, make sure you keep up with

Site Notes

The articles and videos go up over the course of the week. Generally one each day.  Only one article mentioned on this email will go up on the day you receive this email.

Also, your credit card statement will show a change from, not Hope you enjoy the week.

Advances in Functional Training

Posted in Core training, Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Media, Random Thoughts, Training on December 4, 2009 by mboyle1959

Just wanted to let you guys know my new book is out. It’s called Advances in Functional Training and it covers the last four years of my writings.

In the seven years since the publication of my first book, Functional Training for Sports, a new understanding of functional anatomy created yet another shift in strength coaching. With this new material we can continue to look at the evolution of functional training.

There are ten basic sections to present everything a strength coach or personal trainer needs to understand modern training theory, beginning with the joint-by-joint approach to training, and progressing through the use of  the Functional Movement Screen.

The next sections discuss injury avoidance, treatment, rehab and training after injury. We update the reader on our current thinking in core training, back pain, how the hip musculature works, and how it fails. We also cover cardiovascular training, and see what has worked for the athletes training in our facilities.

The second half of the book shifts to training strategies, including which exercises we use today and which ones we’ve discarded, what equipment and tools we currently use, how we develop speed, and, of course, a large section on the now-famous single-leg training.

Finally, we get to program design and put the entire package together to mesh theory with daily reality. You’ll see the basic objectives of a sound program, and then over the course of 32 pages, we’ll show you exactly which programs we use in a variety of client and athletic circumstances.

The category sections include:

  • Mobility and Flexibility
  • Injuries
  • The Core
  • The Hips
  • Cardiovascular Training
  • Developing Athleticism
  • Equipment Choices
  • Exercise Choices — The Basics and Single-Leg Training
  • Program Design
  • Sample Programs

You can grab a pdf of the full Table of Contents here.

This book will be in stock and available for shipping November 30th. Preorders will be shipped immediately upon delivery from the printer.

Here is a review that bodybuilding legend Dave Draper wrote ( I have to confess his wife is the editor)

The project of the day is to make room in our work area for the incoming load of books — three pallets — from our printer in Illinois. The book, of course, is Laree’s most recent publication titled “Advances in Functional Training,” written by 25-year strength and conditioning coach extraordinaire, Mike Boyle. It’s a gorgeous book, large, heavy and rich with information to effectively enhance one’s training performance as an evolving athlete, coach and trainer.

Where was Mike 50-some years ago when I was a dumb and defenseless bone-rack?

I’m an authentic basement-corner musclehead, a pump-and-burn bodybuilder, an iron-picking musclebuilder, a loose-dumbbell, splintery-wooden-bench gym rat. I pick up the metal and I put it down repeatedly — any way I wanted to when I was younger, and any way I can today.

Mike Boyle stood back and noticed what he and athletes and other superior trainers around him were doing right and doing wrong. He studied himself and he studied them and he studied in universities and he experimented and he applied and he elaborated on the good and he amended the bad and he put his discoveries in motion and in words.

I’m amazed and impressed with the intelligence present, required and evolving in advanced athletic performance. I’m also a day late, an hour short and slightly demented. Go, Mike.

What moves me in all of this is Laree understands the knowledgeable and talented coach par excellence. She digs this stuff. Furthermore, Mike sought her out and she compiled his accumulated knowledge and understanding into a clear and comprehensive book worthy of carrying everywhere you go — did I mention it’s hunky and gorgeous? — and showing off to your best friends. “Hey! Check out my seriously cool new book. Weighs a ton. I use it for lateral raises and curls when I’m not reading it.”

You should see the cover: dark background with everyone’s favorite national champion Olympic lifter, Ingrid Marcum, blasting a record weight over her head as her blonde hair blazes and her calm countenance exudes. Wow!

Go, Laree!

To order the book you can go to Dave and Laree’s site or

Posted in Uncategorized on December 3, 2009 by mboyle1959

Lots of stuff to talk about:

Perform Better NY/NJ is this weekend, hope to see a lot of you there. The Cosgrove Business Seminar is the next weekend and, myself and a bunch of my staff will be there also.

The MBSC Winter Seminar is Sat Jan 30 th. The seminar is sponsored by Perform Better and .  This has become a hugely popular, must attend seminar, not only for personal trainers and strength coaches in New England but across the country. As an added bonus you can spend the morning watching and potentially participating in our training programs. Participation is based on space availabilitySpeakers include:

Michael Boyle- ACL Injury Prevention is Just Good Training

Eric Cressey- Medicine Ball Training

Brijesh Patel- It’s Not Just Sets and Reps

John Pallof- Training the Shoulder – Mobility to Stability

Observation/ Learn by Doing session from 8-12

Also, our first Winter Mentorship of 2010 is scheduled for Feb 1-4. These fill up fast so be sure to register soon.