Archive for Dan John

Intervention- Dan John

Posted in MBSC News, Media, Random Thoughts, Updates, Training, Training Females, Uncategorized, Youth Training with tags , , , , on December 5, 2012 by mboyle1959

If you read this blog you know I am a Dan John fan. Well, Dan has just come out with a new book Intervention, based on his Intervention DVD lecture series. As always Dan’s writing is filled with little gems. I particularly  liked  this quote talking about being in a good spot in life balance:

” I have enough in the bank to cover tragedy, and I have enough time to help a buddy move a couch. I have enough energy to train and, enough energy after I train to still enjoy some entertainment with my family.”

The really cool thing about Dan is that he writes about real life in a real sense and, he also knows a ton about training. Pretty good combo. If you are looking for a new book, pick up Intervention.

PS- read the forward by Thomas Plummer. I generally skip forwards but, don’t skip this. You can only hope someone writes about you like this some day.


More Dan John Genius

Posted in Fat Loss, Guest Authors, Random Thoughts, Updates, Training, Training Females, Uncategorized with tags on October 17, 2012 by mboyle1959

I love reading Dan John’s stuff. I rarely look at t-nation anymore but someone on linked to this one.

Do You Know Someone Struggling to Gain Weight? Supplement with Iron!

Posted in Nutrition, Random Thoughts, Updates, Training, Youth Training with tags , on November 25, 2011 by mboyle1959

High school football season just ended so strangely, this might be the biggest time of the year not for weight loss clients but, weight gain clients. I get questions like the one below all the time:

“Mike,  my 16 yr old son is a junior and plays both baseball and football. Football just ended and he is looking for  a weight gain/  strength gain supplement to gain weight and muscle mass.”

Here is my answer:

Is your son in the weight room religiously twice a week? Is he training his lower body hard during both of those days? If the answer is no than the best supplement he needs is iron. I’m being sarcastic but honest. Kids who are trying to gain weight but not lifting are really just trying to get fat.

If he is lifting properly and progressively twice a week than add this simple change from my man Dan John. Eat 5 Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on whole grain bread per day. These must be eaten in addition to his normal meals. He must make them the night before and all five must be eaten before the next night. It works like a charm.

It is amazing how many kids are looking for the magic bullet. Here it is. Iron in the form of good lifting program. A good program consists of more than just a few days of bench press and curls. In fact, I could really care if the program includes bench press or curls. However, if I wrote programs for kids without these two I would go out of business. In my mind the Big2 these days are Trap Bar Deadlifts and Rear Foot Elevated Split Squats . Add in some chin-ups and the five peanut buttter and jellies and you have a real good weight gain program. To top it off, wash each sandwich down with some good old fashioned whole milk and watch the weight pile on.

Check out Dan John’s Mass Made Simple for some great stuff on weight gain.

Thanks to our Seminar Attendees

Posted in Random Thoughts with tags , , on February 6, 2011 by mboyle1959

Just wanted to thank everyone who attended our 5th annual MBSC Winter Seminar. The feedback was that it was the best one ever. Special thanks to Dan John who was witty, humble and just a great guy to be around. Also, thanks to Chris Frankel and TRX for spending the day with us. Lastly  I also want to thank our staff for doing such a great job and giving the attendees a taste of what makes MBSC unique.

See you next year.

Dan John Was Right About Goblet Squats

Posted in Core training, Low Back Pain, Random Thoughts, Training, Training Females, Uncategorized, Youth Training with tags , , on August 27, 2010 by mboyle1959

Goblet squats work. I have seen Dan John mention Goblet Squats in print several times, most recently in his wonderful book Never Let Go. I need to mention to Dan that any time he writes about Goblet Squats he needs to include a picture or a video.    To be honest from reading I never really understood what he meant. Now I know and, we have tried them. They are like a miracle exercise. I can only say TRY THEM! The goblet position is now our preferred method of loading for all beginners at MBSC. If we are going to load someone we are goiong to use the goblet position first. The upper body and the core muscle are forced to work to hold posture in a way that is not experienced in any other exercise.  Think loading will be a problem? Take a look at this Rear Foot Elevated Goblet Squat

Perform Better Long Beach- Guest Review

Posted in Guest Authors, Injuries, Low Back Pain, Random Thoughts, Seminars with tags , , on August 13, 2010 by mboyle1959

Just wanted to share a guest blog from my friend Laree Draper. I should have taken out all the nice stuff about me but I decided to leave it as is. Laree, if you don’t know, edited my new book Advances in Functional Training, Dan John’s Never Let Go and Gray’s new book Movement.

Perform Better, Long Beach, 2010

We’ve all heard what an outstanding job Perform Better does with their conferences—and you can add my voice to the cheers of others. It was wonderful to spend the time tagging along with Dan, seeing old friends, meeting some new, learning and laughing. I even got to introduce him to a couple of people.

“Hi, folks, this is my friend, Dan John, you may have heard of him.”

My first opportunity to pull this off was when we bumped into Chris Poirier, the head of Perform Better, the guy behind all the goodness about to unfold. Attendees and speakers alike tell what an enjoyable guy he is, and what a good job he and his staff do creating these weekends, but what I hadn’t heard was how easy he makes it look. Big events are not easy, and it’s monumental for him to always take time to stop and talk, and be paying attention to the conversation in the midst of what must be chaos in his head. He made us welcome, even that first night when he’d probably been going 12 or 14 hours on no rest and perhaps no food.

A few minutes later, I got to run through the Coach John introduction again when John Brookfield and Ingrid Marcum walked through the glass Hyatt entryway. I hadn’t seen Ingrid since she visited us in 2002 on her way home from two weeks training with Olympic coach Jim Schmitz, and it’s been a few years since we last saw John during which he did one of his many feats of strength before a rocking Arnold Classic crowd. Over dinner, John told us of his plans to stun the Perform Better group by rolling a 20-foot bar into a ball small enough to stow in a box the size of a briefcase, which he did the next night under the WWF-quality announcing of his spur-of-the-moment MC, Martin Rooney.

The following morning, we’d planned a book marketing brain-storming breakfast to start the day, Dan and me, Michael Boyle and Gray Cook. Between the four of us, three had flight delays; our plans waivered from moment to moment through the night. As it turned out, Michael gave his lectures on only a few hours sleep, and Gray arrived an entire day late after driving to a different airport to find another flight. Apparently these guys get routed around a lot on the way to speaking events, but they take it in stride and we never hear about the escapades.

Let’s stall over breakfast for a sec, because I want you to picture this as I saw it, sitting there watching Michael Boyle and Dan John meet. These guys, who’ve appreciated each other’s work perhaps for decades, were instantly friends, joking, with an instant bond of mission clarity. And here I sat, watching it all. I just love this stuff—enjoying the personalities more than the lecture education.

The Perform Better events are a conflict of decisions: By choosing one presenter, you’re deciding to take a pass on three others. There are a total of 13 decisions to be made, and not a single one easy. Session number one, I stood in the middle of the hallway trying to decide between people I knew and people I wanted to know. The truth is, I stood there conflicted until Dan walked up, saw my dilemma and offered an easy choice, “Just come with me.”

So, we started the day in Josh Henkin’s lecture room, where Dan practically pulled me to the front row (heels dragging but no match for the beefy Coach John), a pattern that was to continue throughout the weekend. Amid my own misery of being in the front, there was time to feel a little bad for Josh, Dan sitting there, pen in hand, eager as a puppy. But Josh took it in stride, and the audience was never the wiser that one of his heroes was watching his every move.

Now this front row bit was interesting. Dan was so eager for information that we moved from the second row to the first when the spots opened up. Bit quirky, but endearing. And it definitely says something when a 31-year veteran teacher races to the front row.

Compare that with my norm: When I travel with Dave, we arrive late, slip in the back door and stay there… in the back… near the door. The truth is, that suits me just fine, but since I’m trying to step out just a little more, you’d have to say Dan was a good influence.

The next session was Michael’s lecture, and honestly, when you combine our friendship with his engaging speaking skills, I really didn’t mind sitting in the front.

Now this was interesting: Because I’d worked on Michael’s book, Advances in Functional Training, and since we’d discussed much of the content, his material wasn’t new to me. That left time to observe and enjoy him as a person and as a speaker, and  guess what? He’s terrific at both. I watched him and reflected on how lucky I am to be able to work with him, and then realized all that reflection was while seated next to Dan John, waiting for Gray Cook to show up. Amazing combination of talent!

But Gray was still en route, and Michael decided over breakfast that he’d sell out Gray’s book before he got there, a little challenge between the two friends that only the one knew about. I have a feeling Michael doesn’t lose many self-challenges, and  this one was no different. The debut of Gray’s new book, Movement, was over before noon, five hours before Gray arrived. Sort of sad at the time, this will be a Boyle vs Cook story they’ll poke at for years to come.

Later that evening, the keynote speaker, our old friend Thom Plummer, surprised Dan by including him as a part of his “Lessons of Success” lecture. There we were, sitting, as you know, in the front row, and onto the overhead flashes an image of Dan, hauling a rock off the cover of Never Let Go.

This was just after Thom talked about Dave’s contribution to our field, complete with enough stirring personal thoughts about Thom and Dave’s friendship and Dave’s character to have me fairly choked up. And those were followed by Thom’s discussion of both Michael and Gray, two other pillars of fitness education. I love being a fly on the wall, standing aside, while knowing I helped these guys make a contribution. It’s an extraordinary feeling, and Thom gave it to me in spades that night.

From there, another highlight: Meeting Gray. The Perform Better events include a free-beer social, and because of the flight cancelation this was Gray’s first appearance at the event. Gray and I have logged probably dozens of hours of phone time, but hadn’t met. I knew what he looked like, and that left him at the disadvantage of knowing only my voice. I got a kick out of standing nearby, making a couple of comments while knowing he had no clue who I was.

That reminds me of another intriguing contrast. Working on Dan’s book involved passing notes back and forth in a private section on our IronOnline forum. With Gray’s, we used email when it was necessary to exchange text, but did the bulk of the work by phone. Michael’s book was done entirely by email. Check this: We’d never even spoken before Friday.

The next morning, Gray, his wife Danielle, and his two daughters, Jessica and Kayla, invited me to breakfast. After breakfast, the womenfolk hiked over to the battling ropes workshop, definitely groggy and possibly intimidated knowing Ingrid had a plan for them, while Gray and I made up for the work we missed the day before.

After that, Gray’s lecture on dynamic stability training. Gray has so much insight into human movement that it just slips out between his thoughts, in writing and in conversation. So picture this: Throughout the weekend, Dan was taking notes in everyone’s lectures, big note-taker, that guy. Every few minutes I’d hear a “hmmm” or an “oh, that’s good,” as he wrote out a thought, followed by the sound of paper rustling to make way for another page.

At the opening of Gray’s first talk, Dan made a single note, then no more.

Now you know it wasn’t because there was nothing to write down. No, it was because there was so much to write down, he’d have never caught up. When you’re listening to Gray lecture, you want to stop and think about a concept, sort it out in your head, but there’s no time— you know you’re going to miss five more intense thoughts while you’re off pondering. I’d be willing to bet there were few notes taking anywhere in that standing-room-only crowd.

Gray had four contributors to his new book, Movement, one of whom is Greg Rose, a chiropractic doc who co-founded the Titleist Performance Institute. Home for the first time since mid-May, Greg is a sought-after speaker on golf mechanics, and he was next on my lecture schedule. His topic was based on the golf swing, but more than that it was a discussion of the joint-by-joint approach to movement, specifically as it relates to rotational sports. Because Dan’s a thrower—primarily a rotational athlete—I was disappointed to find Dan’s unattended notepad there next to me in the front row, Dan having been waylaid in the hall on his way back from the water fountain.

The upside there was that I got to sneak over to the sideline to sprawl on the floor, unnoticed.

Getting the spine flat for a bit was a welcome relief, because our next stop was Gray’s hands-on lecture. It’s no stretch to say there wasn’t a person in the room thinking there’s never enough time to listen to Gray and to test his techniques. Subtle tips, a fraction of an angle or a turn of the head, these all make up a fascinating difference you can feel. The trainers, coaches and medical pros all left that room with at least a couple techniques to use this week, and a few others to experiment with as they learn the nuances.

The event vendors lined the edge of the presentation room, and as Gray finished, Dan and I hurried over to visit with Anthony Carey, the creator of that fabulous CoreTex I fell off during last year’s IDEA expo. This year, no fall, nor even a close call; even Anthony, whose swift move last year stopped me from knocking over a nearby apparel display, would have to say I’d made a bit of stability progress. I’m going to have to spring for one of these things—it’s truly a blast, fun and effective at the same time.

By this time, we’re coming to the end of our trip, but not before we get a half-hour of personal attention from Gray. In the dim light of a secluded hallway, Dan and I took turns rolling around the crummy convention hall carpet as Gray pushed and pulled on bodyparts to offer a few corrective suggestions. Beyond doubt, I’d have gone to Long Beach for those few minutes, just that alone.

Sadly, Summit attendees miss as many great speakers as they see, in fact, more than two times as many! I missed a couple of good friends talk, and missed a few stellar educators. Lee Burton, another of Gray’s co-authors, arrived at LAX the same hour as we flew home, and I missed Sue Falsone talk about the thoracic spine, surely the biggest problem area in this 54-year-old body. But, hey, this is why Perform Better schedules three such weekends each year in addition to their one-day events.

Next stop:  the San Jose airport, where in a bit of a tsunami I tried to tell Dave this story over a span of about five minutes.

Amazing from start to finish, the three Es— educating, entertaining, and finally… exhausting.

PS- Dan did sit in the front row of my talk. I must admit it is a bit intimidating. Dan John in the front, Stuart McGill in the back.

A Great Day in Long Beach

Posted in Low Back Pain, Random Thoughts, Seminars, Training with tags , , , , on August 7, 2010 by mboyle1959

All I can say is boy am I lucky. Talk about living the dream. My day started out at breakfast with Dan John and Laree Draper . I had never met Dan in person and have to say he is just as great as his writing. By the way, if you haven’t read Never Let Go, do yourself a favor and buy a copy. The highest compliment I can give someone is to say they “get it”. Dan really gets it.

After breakfast I watched a little bit of Steve Cotter’s Kettlebell Presentation and picked up some great tips. Steve is a humble guy and great presenter. After that I got to give two talks to about 600 really nice folks at the Perform Better Summit.

In between I had lunch with Dan, Chris Frankel from TRX, Jon from EA Sports and Suzy Powell American Record holder in the discus . That was another real treat.

Next up was a lecture by Stuart McGill, the clear star of the show at the Summit. There were easily over 400 people in Stuart’s lecture and as always he didn’t disappoint. The cool thing about Stuart is that he comes to the Summit, listens more than he talks and heads back to the lab to try to figure out how we do what we do. He might be the only guy in the world doing this. I think in many ways Stuart has done more to change the way I do things than anyone but Gray Cook. Speaking of Gray, I managed to sell all his books before he even got there. I scared everyone in my lecture by telling them that there would be no chance to get Gray’s book once he did his lecture. While you are ordering, get that one too.

Next was the social where I got to talk to a bunch of attendees from all over the world , as well as my buddies like Alwyn, Dewey, Daniel and Dos. All this while drinking free beer. We finished with dinner at ten at the Yard House with my Perform Better friends and my good friend David Baxter.

As I write I am using the in-flight Wi-Fi on my way back to see Cindy and the kids. What a great country we live in.