Have you ever wondered which training methodology is the best? Do you struggle with consistently seeing results after a few months of a program? Your plateaus MUST be because you aren’t on the right program, right? Or could they be coming from you not putting the time into ONE program long term? 🙂

I’ve struggled for years finding the “perfect” training program. And I fully admit that I’ve failed many times due to jumping from shiny new toy to shiny new toy. It wouldn’t be until much later that I would learn that staying consistent is the only way to see true progress long term. Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t tweak minor things to bring in variability. But, MINOR is the key term here. Learn from my mistakes and don’t waste years of your life program jumping!

On this episode, I was fortunate enough to be able to pick Dr. Jon Mike’s brain regarding training, sticking to a program, and being able to change it up without falling off the bandwagon.

Learn everything you wanted to know about strength, power, and sticking to a system long term, on Episode 005.

"The best training programs are not always the most complex. It's what people can adhere to and keep consistent with that matters most."

Dr. Jon Mike is the definition of consistency and determination. He has competed in Strongman events, has written for every fitness magazine imaginable, and is one strong dude.

If you have not heard of Dr. Jon Mike, has been a professor for the last four years. He got his master’s at Western Kentucky University in exercise science. He was a strength coach at U of L, has written for every major fitness and body building consumer magazine out there, speaks at the NSCA, and is an author and speaker in everything regarding exercise science, strength and conditioning.

I felt so fortunate to sit down with him today on the show and chat about why it’s important to be open to all different training modalities and why it’s stupid to put down other training methods from the get-go. We also chatted about diet, training for the long term, and how to keep it simple without over complicating the foods you put on your plate.

Discover all of that and much more, on Episode 005.

A Few Questions I Ask:

  • What are your favorite novel pieces of equipment? (22:10)
  • What are common myths you see when it comes to training? (24:56)
  • How can you trust in yourself? (34:37)
  • And much more..

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • What it takes to be a multi-sport athlete (11:35)
  • How to lose weight practically (14:35)
  • What it feels like competing in Strongman (21:36)
  • And much more..
Click here to read full transcript of episode

Jon: How did you … What’s your background? How did you get started with this company, and all that stuff?

Sean: Yeah, so I was … I played sports growing up. A lot of land sports was terrible at all of them. Found … Figured out that I wasn’t very agile on my feet, but found water like really early. And then after that, found water polo really early, like 5th grade. Met Dr. Bagley, just Jimmy at the time, in 8th grade. I think it was the first week I knew him, and he was like, “I’m gonna be called doctor one day.” That sounds awesome man. He knew that young. So we both went down to Cuesta College to play water polo. Did that for a few years. Both found Anatomy and Physiology and then both got into Capolli him earlier than I did for kinse.

Jon: Cool.

Sean: Yeah, so it was good. I did a few internships at a couple PT places, realized that I liked exercise Phys a little bit more than PT. so, just kind of been personal training since that time. And then for the company, for LifeReady, I’ve always had gut issues and stuff like that, but supplements are nice, they are convenient, there no magic pill but it’s just nice to be able to have something for convenience. I couldn’t find anything at GNC. I couldn’t find anything that just didn’t have garbage in it.

Jon: Yeah supplements are garbage. I mean your product is actually really good and doesn’t have a lot of just stupid crap in it.

Sean: Thanks man.

Jon: It tastes a little bit weird at first cause I wasn’t used to the coco taste. You know?

Sean: Yeah. Yeah.

Jon: But yeah I mean yours is good. Some of the Dymatize products are pretty good. I know the CEO of 1st Phorm Supplement Company in St. Louis. So they got really great products. So yeah, I mean. I don’t shop at GNC and I’m pretty picky about types of protein that I take in supplement wise. Yeah, yours is definitely a good product. I will definitely say that.

Sean: Thank you man. Yeah, it was trying to find something that didn’t have dairy. Dairy kind of messed with our stomachs. Then finding manufacturers that didn’t want to add tons of cutting ingredients, and chemical emulsifiers, and binding agents and all this kind of stuff, took a long time.

Jon: Oh yeah. Several years.

Sean: Yeah. Most of them wanted … Hey id love to get about two pounds of protein powder. Great we will put a pound of that in there and then we will put a pound of other stuff to add to make the difference. Like no, no, no. Just the powder you know?

Jon: I know. I know. I mean its just good. I like it. Its one of the very few ones I’ve had or come across that doesn’t have a lot of ingredients in it but actually still tastes really good.

Sean: Thanks man. Yeah. Stevia was the easiest thing to get a hold of to give it a little bit of sweetness. I tend to find that many people … Especially if they used to Stevia or Stevia leaf it’s a little challenging for them that bitter aftertaste. So, I’m looking into a few other plants that … a plant sweetener that might not have that kind of bitter after note at the end like Stevia seems to do.

Jon: Yeah. Its good man. How long have you had this company and been doing this product?

Sean: Company has been working on for the past like two years or so. The first flagship product thrive protein maybe here in just the last six months. And then doing training nutrition and consulting and stuff like that online for people for a while now too.

Jon: Nice. What’s your wife do?

Sean: She works for a tech company in Palo Alto.

Jon: Complete opposite.

Sean: Oh yeah. It’s like super expensive to live there though. I’ve been there though I’ve been to Google.

Sean: Oh nice. Are you speaking … You go and speak at corporate gigs or?

Jon: Well, the last two times I was there in the Google area. I was in Mountain View I was at a private gym. It was probably literally about 10 minutes from Google but I’ve driven around on the campus. I haven’t been inside the facilities, because I just didn’t have time, at the time I didn’t have time to do a tour. But it was really cool. There is so much big money up there with the tech companies but it’s just like $3,500 a month for 400 square feet. It’s crazy. [crosstalk 00:06:56]. So now I’ve been a professor for the last four years. I went to undergrad and masters at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky, in exercise science and I was a string literation coach there for two years. My senior and graduate year I was a string coach for U of L for about a year with a lot of women’s sports there. And then I got a full scholarship to the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque to start working on my Ph.D. I actually started on my Ph.D. when I was 25.

Sean: Okay.

Jon: And then when I was off scholarship I actually came back to … I’m originally from Louisville, Kentucky and I went back because I was off scholarship. I didn’t have anymore tuition money coming in. So, I wanted to kind of do data collection elsewhere. Write up an IRB. Do it out of state sort of speak. Several months later I wasn’t really working I wasn’t really getting anywhere. I was actually substitute teaching for about a year just to get some extra cash. Then I decided to go back and finish and that took about another two and half years.

Jon: So, I’ve been done … Its been three years this past, about two weeks ago, May 6th. So, I’ve been through riggers. I was an assistant professor at Lindenwood University up in St. Louis. I taught undergraduate and graduate level courses and did some studies and worked with a lot of graduate students and staff. I’ve been here in Southern Miss and then I’ve written a lot of book chapters I’ve written for I’ve contributed to in every major fitness and bodybuilding consumer magazine out there. There is a few out there that I haven’t done. Then I’ve done six book chapters. I’ve got a seventh one coming out this summer early fall. I’ve spoken at over three dozen events. NSCA and some other organizations over the last several years.

Jon: This year my main goals is to try to do more online things and get into more of the entrepreneur end. I don’t own a company. I’ll have to end up getting the LCC, or LLC rather. I want to start doing more private seminars where you know you charge a fair amount and get people. There’s nothing really different than what all my other colleagues have been doing for a long time. It just takes a long time to build and I’ve always been doing the social media thing. In different platforms as you know they’re different. You’re not going to post everything on Instagram that you do on Facebook and or on Twitter. You know, different audiences, different platforms, different information, different content and context. So, you know, my bread and butter is blending the science with the product application.

Sean: Okay.

Jon: Being a coach and having the science background. Obviously, for my teaching I use PowerPoint but I don’t really necessarily rely on it. So, I’m very hands-on and very engaging with students. I’m a practitioner and there are really only a handful of individuals that are doctorate level and trained, but there’re actually practitioners at heart and have foundational practical application experience. So, guys like myself, especially Jimmy, especially my buddy Andy Galpin and a handful of others we are kind of like hybrids in a sense so we know the science we like to do research and collaborate but we also have comparative athletic backgrounds.

Jon: I was a multi-sport athlete with baseball, and I swam, I played tennis, I did some martial arts when I was young and then I played about a year of ball in college. I didn’t get to play much. Then I had to focus more on academic stuff. And then about several years later, I got into Strongman so I’ve actually competed in a sports Strongman eight times. I haven’t competed in five or six years but I still do the events from time to time. But when I feel like it. I’d like to compete again but you know because of time and I’d have to be about 30 pounds heavier than what I am now-

Sean: Dang dude.

Jon: I don’t feel like being very heavy right now I like staying light. But I thought about my next move I want to try either some Kung fu stuff or some Jujitsu.

Sean: Yeah. I just recently got into some Jujitsu because that seemed like what everybody is talking about right now.

Jon: Yeah.

Sean: It is a humbling experience.

Jon: Oh I know.

Sean: I had 30, 40 pounds on a lot of these guys and gals and they wait for you to get tired. They know that you are strong. They know your hands are strong. They know your grip strength is strong. They also know that’s good for about 90 seconds.

Jon: Yeah, I think I would be pretty decent at it from strength and power perspective but not the technical perspective at first. I hear a lot of people say, whether its Kung Fu or Jujitsu or whatever. Your ability to have to stay kind of relaxed during the fights and the technical aspect. Some of that is kind of hard to do because you don’t naturally gravitate towards that just because of natural biology. You know what I mean? You don’t just lifting the tray. You’re not in a relaxed type of state. I want to throw people around. I want to hip toss. I want that stuff. If I’m not doing Strongman right now and I don’t want to be 30 pounds heavier than I should at least try to do something else.

Sean: It’s interesting competing in Olympic weightlifting. Done a few bodybuilding shows and stuff like that. In weightlifting, you know there is a barbell there and you know you have to calm your breath down when you’re on that stage in front of a ton of people. You know the barbell is not, I mean it could put you on your ass, but it’s not going to fight back. It’s not going to change its shape or direction and then BJJ the exact opposite of that. Its really hard to bring adrenaline, heart rate, breath down especially when there is a guy sitting behind me about to put me in a choke hold and he’s just like smiling. Talking. You know? He is just like relaxed, completely relaxed and I’m trying not to go redline panic mode and bring everything down. It’s an incredible feeling. Completely different.

Jon: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I kind of want to try some of it. I’ve always kind of liked all the martial arts stuff. I’m not looking to like really compete but I just want to learn from a technical and defense perspective. I like to be dangerous. But yeah, it’s cool stuff. I like a lot of different things. I like trying different stuff. I cook, I train, I’m very self-sufficient. Its good to meet and kind of be around like-minded people. I definitely like to travel too. I’ve traveled probably once or twice a month every year for almost the last year and a half

Sean: Nice.

Jon: So some of them are speaking at conferences. Some are going. Some are just to gallivant type of thing.

Sean: Yeah.

Jon: Its been good. I’m definitely ready to go to the next step here.

Sean: Cool. Well what classes have you competed in, in Strongman over the last few years? Do you try to pick a weight class or?

Jon: So first four or five or so I did middleweight and then the last ones were heavyweight. But at the time I competed in the heavyweight but I was on the lower end. I was in the 265-270 class. I’ve competed with guys that were 300 or a little over 300. I beat them but the weights are just so much heavier now especially really high-end competitions. There is like different levels and stuff. I’d like to compete again but I have to be heavier just for the weight, just for the leverage purposes so it means more food and more money on food, more time for conditioning. I tend to put on weight really quick. It seems to take a little bit longer to get leaner. I was thinking about posting a before and after picture of a two and a half, three-year difference on my Instagram sometime in the near future. I never post those types of pictures.

Sean: Yeah.

Jon: But about two and a half, let’s see 2018, in 2016 and early 2017, 2016 I was 300, 305. I’ve leaned down. I’ve eaten more salads and veggies. It’s funny because people talk about all these different types of nutritional intervention and diets and methodologies and I mean they all work because they all have one thing in common and that is a caloric deficit.

Sean: Yep.

Jon: So, I really didn’t do anything like earth-shattering stuff. I never ate a lot of fast food and fried food and stuff. I was never a big person on eating a bunch of sweets. I just lowered the carb intake gradually over time kept the protein high,and upped the fat. I’ve changed my training a little bit. I’ve done a little bit more different types of conditioning. Different stuff with the prowlers. I did some boxing the other day, that kicked my ass.

Sean: Yep.

Jon: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Plus its just lifestyle, stress and stuff. It’s a combination of all things. I feel good. I’m not the strongest that I’ve been but I did lift at 560 about three weeks ago. Double overhand grip.

Sean: Oh. Dang. Okay.

Jon: My best is 660 that I lift.

Sean: Okay.

Jon: I was definitely a lot heavier then. I’m still training good. Right now there is so many other things going on. In certain parts of your life, in certain points in your life and certain points of training you know things are going to have to give a little bit of give and take. You sometimes know its just about trying to stay in shape for a certain period of time. I was just like you’re just trying to get a little bit stronger. You’re trying to get a little bit faster or whatever it is. I usually do my own training programs. Sometimes I’ve had other people do it for me. So kind of time of the year and stuff like that.

Jon: I’ve gotta go to the gym later today because I haven’t been since Wednesday and I’ve been doing all kinds of other stuff and just been kind of tired. I do high intensity cardio as well. But lately during my resistance training its like 3/4s of the way through I just feel like gassed. So that’s why I had do that boxing conditioning stuff, God that kicked my ass. It’s kind of a novelty type of training for most people. So, its good. I think as I’ve gotten older and I’m sure you’ll agree. You should be open to try different types of training. Different types of methodology or different types of conditioning and stuff. So, I’ve always been open-minded to a lot of different types of training modalities. So, yeah, it’s good.

Sean: Speaking on that I’ve always found barbells and Crossfit and even Strongman type stuff. I’ve always, oh this is the only way to do it. And even just recently the other day my wife finally talked me into doing like an Orange theory fitness class. I’ll give them that man. They made me run and it kicked my ass. You know what I mean? Its stuff that I’ve always kind of made fun of but looking back and just trying to be open to new experiences and I definitely see the draw. They tell you what to do for 45 minutes and you come out of there and you’re worked. It may not be as much strength stuff as I’d probably like to bias for a lot of people. But it was an interesting experience and it crushed me. You know?

Jon: Yeah. No, I know. They have a decent business model but its basically kind of like a Crossfit although its just a little bit more structured and organized.

Sean: Yep. A little bit less barbell work.

Jon: Yeah. That’s funny I went on a gym tour yesterday at this other gym here in town. I always just go, I try to just roll with things. Well the guys asked me if I’ve ever heard to Crossfit and if I’ve ever heard of a BOD POD and I just try to roll with it. What can you do? It’s funny.

Sean: Hey if people are trying to help. I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt as long as it’s not you know … But I would implore you to maybe look at … I remember you posted something on Instagram a little while back it was like people don’t buy product and services. They buy stories, magic, relations, something like that.

Jon: Yeah.

Sean: Yeah, I would implore you to … I’ve posted a before and after type picture whether its gaining weight or coming down and those are some of the craziest amount of comments, and likes, and how do you do, and all this kind of stuff because its kind of like a story in a picture.

Jon: Correct.

Sean: With a little bit of magic cause its unknown. There is a middle part that’s missing. I mean I would implore you to maybe check that out cause it’s gotten me probably the most people asking about hey how do you do this and all this kind of stuff.

Jon: Yeah. I’ve thought about it and I think I will its just kind of the timing of things. But I was telling a couple of the other … Some of the other coaches came over I was talking to the other day. I was at a … I’ve gone to so many different types of different seminars and it’s funny how for the most part we have really strong world records individuals whether the power lifters or the Strongman people or whatever it is. Maybe not necessarily those but just strength sports as a whole or even just various types of diets could be for movie roles or whatever it is. But just on the context of training programs. Most people think that when you come across like world class strength athletes their training programs are from outer space.

Jon: You know these new complex things that nobody has ever heard of and it’s like linear periodization, or under linear, or nonlinear stock or maybe some mixing light conjugate. It’s just like that is what they are really doing but to the normal individual they may have never heard of any of that stuff or don’t know a whole lot about it. Amazing to them and the best thing since wheat bread and stuff like that. It’s really a lot simpler than when people make it out to be. You don’t always need … you know the best training programs are not always the most complex. It’s what people can adhere to and keep compliance with and keep consistent with.

Jo: It’s the same thing for nutritional programs and methodologies. It’s intermittent fasting or keto or paleo it’s the one that you can stick to. I can never be on a keto diet. For the stuff that I do. I just can’t. I’ve lowered my carb intake but I still have carbs in the morning to kind of upper trained and then sometimes depending on if I had some pre-training I may have some after. But I’m not gorging like I used to be. I’ve upped the protein and upped the fats and add more salads and veggies but I did like over like a year and a half two years worth of time. Most of the leanness has actually come over the last year or so. So it’s not this groundbreaking stuff that people like to talk about. Oh, by the way, buy my e-book for $9.99 type of thing.

Sean: I see that all the time. It’s usually $1.47 or 97 there’s always like those specific things. Yeah, it’s whatever somebody can stick to. One of my main questions is when I have a nutrition intake form. How do you currently like to eat? Do you feel better on higher carbohydrates? Do you feel better with a little bit more fat? What are you currently doing that feel good? Great, why don’t you guys stick to that and tweak it a little bit? I don’t have some magic solution if you’re trying to lose weight, we are going to put you in a slight caloric deficit over a period of time making sure your hormones and stuff are okay, to begin with. If you want to gain weight well probably put you in a slight caloric deficit, or slight caloric increase over time. The more complicated you get past that … And then train hard. When you’re going to train and make sure you’re recovering. A big thing-

Jon: A lot of people end up going leaning towards too much of one side or the other. Like they’ll do all the nutrition stuff but yes that’s great you need to be in a caloric deficit. But you need to actually like train hard. Go in there for 45 minutes, do some leg extensions, doing some lat pull downs, a little bit of low intensity cardio, its just not going to cut it. I’m not saying you have to be in there for four or five hours, like of course not. You’re not a competitor but hard hour to hour and a half of like constant work, coupled with nutrition stuff it just goes back to putting in the work.

Jon: I’m a big fan of Gary Vaynerchuk. He’s always just putting in the work. No matter what you’re really doing. It really comes down to that. A lot of it is planning and stuff too but all the little nuances that’s up to the own individual. How specific do they really want to be is really up to them. Most of the general population for clients and stuff and athletes is similar but it isn’t always the same, but the most general population people they’re using fitness and nutrition and all that and work out to increase happiness but to extend happiness in other areas of their life. They’re not going to love it how you love it and carry like a big massive lifestyle like you have. And that’s always a challenge for individuals. So its about customization and individualization, programming, design, whatever it is. Not just doing things based off memorization.

Sean: Yeah and that going to be specific to the individual too. There’s some people that I can give a 531 program and they’ll stick to that and love it they don’t need novel. And they’re like this is, yep, I’m good for 10 years. And then there’s others … I get bored easily. Actually, I love watching your Instagram videos you seem like you do a lot of novel stuff. So I’m like aw man I’m going to do that this week. You know what I mean? So what’s some of your favorite novel exercises right now?

Jon: So I’ve always been into like what I call non-traditional strength training techniques and applications. There’s another college that I follow, I won’t mention his name but a lot of it is very far out in left field. Non traditional things some of it I think has some good application towards. But when you’re doing nontraditional things, if the set up alone takes you 25-30 minutes or even longer the odds are that the transferability to the real-life types of training or the real-life types of exercise or whatever typically goes down. That’s just my opinion. There is no real science to back that up. Obviously, you could talk about specificity and stuff like that. But I’ve always been into nontraditional things because part of me as a personality is I’m just a nontraditional performer and professor.

Jon: I don’t like doing things that everybody else has done and if 1,000 people are doing the same thing why do you want to be 1,001. So, a lot of it is just based off my experience with competing and lifting and being a practitioner, in my own right? I’ve picked up my own ideas from other people and ill kind of tweak them but everybody does. I don’t try to go gung-ho with posting some like crazy fad video or something just to try to get people to like my stuff. But I also had to do has a purpose based in scientific principles.

Jon: I’ve had these conversations with good buddies and Nick Tomeaino and methods are many but principles are few. You can base your training and even nutrition stuff on principles as opposed to methodologies then when people ask you questions about it then you’re likely able to give a solid foundational science answer. As opposed to just making up some antidotes or just opinion based types of things. Yeah. Thanks for the comment. I like posting cool things on Instagram and I like being diverse. Some peoples stuff is just all about the training but I like doing a little bit of everything.

Sean: Nice man. What are some of the common myths to have people ask you or kind of get with training or what they think. I’m guessing they might think that you change stuff up like everyday or something like that?

Jon: No. Lately, like within the last month its just kind of been you know just kind of straight bodybuilding types of things with some splashes of eccentric stuff or some isometric work different conditioning types of things tsunami barbells and tsunami squats like I posted last week. Just those types of things I do it because I like trying different things and I’m also out to inform, educate other individuals whether all mine or trainers or coaches. Always trying to back it with science or logic that comes with it and not just spew a bunch of silly BS. I like the tsunami barbells. I like those a lot. They’re really diverse. They are good for different things. Ban bell or bamboo bar as some people call it, the earthquake bar. You can’t actually load plates on it like you use it for change or band work, oscillating types of things to enhance small muscle groups. Stabilization.

Jon: So those, I’m a big fan of specialty bars. Sit and squat bar, Swiss bar, neutral grip bar, tsunami bar, earthquake bar, band bar, bamboo bar however you want to call it. I’ve also really been liking a lot of landmine things over the last year or so. Something that’s really, really diverse and very, very versatile. You can do things with lower body, with upper body. Double arms, single arm types of things. One of the things about landmines that you don’t really get from other types of exercises is very easily to work in different planes of motion. [inaudible 00:30:32]. Transverse plane movements.

Jon: I’m really big in the landmines. Even take like a single arm dumbbell press, instead of standing or seated which most people do. Do a half kneeling version single arm. To me that is just way better and way harder. You can get some different core activation, you also have stabilization, you know, frontal plane, its [inaudible 00:30:55] plane more but its also stabilization of the frontal plane too. So those type of things. You know prowler exercises.

Jon: Big fan of doing … Cause my dissertation and my research background is eccentric training. So, doing a lot of eccentric work especially with arms is really awesome. You want like really good arm pumps and carry out strength and hypertrophy. Do some eccentric stuff with arm work. And even with calf work. If you could throw it in with rear foot elevated split squats for example the last four or five reps do three, four second eccentric component then hold it at the bottom for two or three seconds it’s a lot more challenging than what people think. Don’t always need like tons and tons of weight to really do it as well. So, I do a lot of variations like overhead pressing.

Jon: So I’ve spoken at a lot of events and seminars about overhead pressing and box squatting, dead lifting. So, the next one I’m going to do … I’ve done nontraditional stuff … I did a private seminar at Calsa Fortino back in March and I did a couple other ones back at Arizona State University in Phoenix. I’ve trained the conjugate system pretty hot and heavy the last several years. I’m not as consistent with it right now as I had been before. Just because you work all day and just gotta get to the gym and your energy state in a sense is just not really feeling it at that particular time. I had chains. And the gym that I go to has chains to but I have to carry around chains in my bag anywhere from 40-80 pounds you gotta carry in your bag. I mean I wouldn’t carry it everywhere I go. Id leave it in one spot but its just sometimes kind of an inconvenience. They’ve got bands set up …

Jon: I’m a big fan of belt squats as well. So belt squats … Most gyms don’t have a belt squat sometimes they have to pick sharp. But my buddy Matt Winning he makes a custom made belt squat that actually is very, very almost identical and very comparable to exact loading on a regular barbell. So if you load up 200 pounds 300 pounds on a belt squat. That is equivalent to squatting 2 or 300 with a regular barbell so the transferability of it is very, very close. Its very, very accurate. So I’m a big fan of the belt squat because you can load more frequently without the additional axle compressive loads on the spine. So you can get a little bit more frequency get a little bit more volume without the actual compressive force loads.

Sean: Is that like a machine that you’re standing on? Two platforms, you have a belt behind your back then the weight through your center?

Jon: Yep that’s exactly how it is.

Sean: Interesting. Okay.

Jon: Yeah, Pick Sharp makes one, Power Lift company makes one. My buddy Matt Winney, Whinny strength makes one and there some other ones that are kind of custom made in some gyms. But they all basically do the same thing the only difference is how its actually loaded. The leverage points and how it actually loads biomechanically and then the transferability of it to the actual free bar squatting. So, those are just some of the things you have to take into consideration whatever you use one of those types of apparatuses but overall tremendous benefits.

Jon: You can do different loading patterns and schemes. I’ve gone all the way up to eight or nine plates. Then do drop sets of seven plates and then take one off and then six. It’s a really good way to get some added volume and hypertrophy as well. I do a lot of glute work actually. My buddy Brett [inaudible 00:34:50] is obviously known for that. But I think a lot of guys, males particularly don’t do nearly enough pure glute work. Aside from squatting and delt lifting. I do a lot of hip thrusts with either the bands or on the Smith machine or with the regular barbell if I can find like a Hip Thruster 2.0. but I do different variations of glute stuff with bands and single leg stuff. Two three times a week. I think its important for guys to train a lot of legs and different manners.

Sean: But Dr. Mike. I hit my chest and shoulders a few times this week man why do I need to train glutes? Yeah it’s insulary. I don’t want to get on that silly adductor machine … You know what I mean?

Jon: I’ve done those. There is nothing wrong with those.

Sean: They’re great.

Jon: But they’re not the most effective.

Sean: Sure.

Jon: If you want to add in some extra volume or just get some reps why not. I like doing reverse lunges with a safety squat bar. Kind of like assisting you can load it up to moderate to heavy loading and just do some is situ stuff. So yeah, I rotate out different exercises but I don’t do something different like every single day. I’ll stick with two or three variations for three or four week period and then change up some variations after that.

Jon: So, I’ve always been a fan of max effort and dynamic effort work. Kind of really working the overall full spectrum of the force philosophy curve. I’m kind of foreshadowing I’ve got a post coming up in the next week or two about the four most undereater lies and underbody training methods and they are not in any particular order but aerobic development, isometrics, deceleration, and eccentrics. Those are what I call the four most undervalued underutilized training methods. I might do a series on each one of those to just kind of provide a little bit of video stuff or demonstration purposes or things of that nature. Kind of example of what all of those entail. It’s good. I can talk about this stuff forever.

Sean: Yeah. It’s the best man. Yeah I mean especially in the Strongman community, I see it a lot in weight lifters that are a part of the foo barbell diaphysis club team out of San Francisco Crossfit we’re kind of shoved in the corner there but its still our fun crew is kind of aerobic capacity increasing that aspect of training isn’t always … Not a lot of weight lifters put tons of emphasis on that but if you’re doing a weight lifting workout for an hour, 90 minutes or so and you start gassing out at 40 that’s a problem

Jon: It is a problem. You’re actually right. In a lot of traditional … In a lot of strength athletes or pall lifters and even some bodybuilders they just don’t do enough conditioning. And their rationale is well why do I need to? I’m just doing some max effort work. Well I mean … its hard to provide justification to people who are not … its hard to sell what is not sellable to them. I’ve just come to be open mined and knowing about how bioenergetics works I have a freakin PhD I know how these things operate.

Jon: But you’re right if you’re whole training session … If you’re in there for two hours your pretty much doing a total of about 45 minutes worth of actual work. The rest of the time comes from recovery. What energy system are you using during the recovery rounds. You’re using mitochondrial respiration. What energy system are you using during the actual training, lifting itself. You’re using phosphagenic glycolysis. Well you know when you spend too much time on phosphagenic glycolysis mitochondrial respiration suffers because of it. So, you are unable to recover between the sets or even between the training sessions.

Jon: If you’re doing moderate to high reps and you get gassed halfway in between you’re not even halfway through your work out well you need to do additional conditioning aspect that actually focuses a little bit different on phosphagen and glycolysis so you kind of think of them as a currency in a sense. Mitochondrial respiration is like your savings account type of thing. Phosphagen and glycolysis are like your fast cash, like putting things on credit cards. Some of that is quick, easy, dispensable but if you spend too much then you’re going to run out. And you don’t want to dip into saving all the time because you’re just going to be broke as fuck.

Sean: Yeah that’s a good analogy.

Jon: But you have to kind of balance each. But for me personally, if I don’t do any say high-intensity cardio every two to three weeks I can tell because I can’t just cover enough from training session to training session. If I’m getting gassed 3/4 into the training session and I feel kind of gassed that tells me that I gotta focus on different aspects of conditioning whether it’s boxing or ropes or different prowlers, different speeds, different intensities. So you have to play with all of them. And I think people get too caught up in I just want to do the stuff that’s just specific to what I do but the fact is boxing even though it is not directly related to acting like lifting the bioenergetics properties are directly related. So, you have to kind of constantly peel back the layers of the onion to get a little bit more insight.

Sean: Gotcha, yeah its good to change that up a little bit. I remember one of the training cycles do the foo barbells it was like a week of 20 rep max stuff, a week of 10 rep max stuff, and then a week of 5 rep max stuff. We were all hating life. We didn’t realize why we were doing it. We de loaded and then the week after the de load 80% of our lifters hit Pr’s. Cause it was novel, weird, it made us breath. And we all got stronger from it. I know. The slight difference … its still a barbell, still a back squat. Its not like we reinvented the wheel or did something crazy. The set up was the same get under the bar we just changed that stimulus and then de loaded. It was increadable. Just different.

Jon: Yeah even if you do like a barbell complexes with a forward squat with a press, with a reverse lunge or whatever it is you’re not doing the 225. Most time you’re doing it with an empty barbell maybe with 95 pounds. But the carry over to the actual training sessions … Then when you do your next training session you feel like you just constantly go for three, four hours straight. You always have to be cognoscente of training methodologies even if you don’t see, like a direct correlation but there always is a direct correlation it’s just more of being open-minded and trying different things. There’s far too many people who don’t spend enough time on the conditioning aspect. I mean I did three rounds of boxing with a heavy bag and then the soft bag. I did the heavy bag first, one minute or until total fatigue and then I went to the soft bag, one minute straight or until fatigue. Three sets each. I was breathing like I was totally out of shape. But when I go to the gym here shortly I want to be awesome.

Sean: Oh yeah. My buddy Patrick Osterling just got me into a boxing gym and I mean I had trouble just making it past the jump rope warm-up that they did. Just cause it was like … They would go until the bell rang and I would stop and they were like that doesn’t mean stop. Just like keep going. By the time you got to the bag … you can do as much different cardio stuff as you want, but if you just try something different that I didn’t think about. I got crushed. It was great. I felt good the next day because a lot of it was concentric. So I wasn’t crushed for four days after doing like 10-second deficit temple squats or something like that.

Jon: Right.

Sean: Cool man. How often should athletes train glutes? Especially males if they’re [crosstalk 00:43:32].

Jon: Shit, he could do it every day.

Sean: Yeah.

Jon: I mean he could yeah. I mean I like three days a week. Depending on how much time I wanna spend doing it. It doesn’t have to be three days a week you know lower body stuff but three days just solely dedicated to glutes but even sometimes on my upper body days, I’ll finish with the band and hip thrusts or something like that. But I typically hit more volume on the lower body days for sure. So, it’s always a good idea. A lot of women these days love glutes. They love awesome glutes on guys. They really do. They may not say it but they really do. Its just kind of a fond appreciation for training lower body in a different manner than what you see most people do.

Sean: Gotcha. And you guys just published and article about single leg glute bridges. What are some of the differences [crosstalk 00:44:28].

Jon: So I work with three grad students at my previous university and we had three articles published in the [inaudible 00:44:34] journal. One was published last October. That was Snatch Balance. The one in December was Overhead Pressing. The one last month in April was Single Leg Glute Bridge. And we just showed some different variations of single leg glute bridge and hip thrust and talked about the science behind it and the application and benefits and muscle groups that you used. It was a big hit. It was pretty popular and I got some other plans and some other articles. One of them is actually the … I cannot remember the title of it is now but … Oh yeah, it was how to incorporate Strongman like into your training sessions- 

Sean: Oh cool.

Jon: Training programs, so it’s not about just the Strongman events themselves. It’s about, okay, providing an actual traditional Strongman event but then providing an alternative exercise for trainers and coaches to do when they don’t really have the access to that type of equipment. So, about some of the physiology stuff. Its already written actually. It got submitted and I’ve got the revisions back a long while back. I’m probably gonna have to resubmit it. So, plus, I review for other journals as well but I’m working on … I’ve actually already started but I haven’t continued it, a review article for the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research … I wanna do a review article on the clinical aspects and benefits of eccentric training actually because it has never been done. It’s never been talked about. So that’s something I really want to kind of move hot and heavy with over the next six months or so. So yeah, a lot of cool things going on both from online things and my website should be up and launched by the mid to late June.

Sean: Okay.

Jon: It always takes longer than what you think. For just tweaks and revisions and stuff. So a lot of things really going on with the science and the practical aspect with online things. With the articles and collaborating with different projects. I actually got an IRB approved here when I was at Southern Miss. I only have five subjects just because I didn’t have any power output in that software. Wherever I go next I can certainly continue that aspect. I like going back and forth. I think it’s really important to do a little bit of everything but also know who you are as a person. Have self-awareness and know like what you’re really good at. Just really kind of focus and work your strengths. 

Sean: That’s awesome man and a lot of new stuff. A lot of novel things. How do you, I guess like, working on many businesses and posting Instagram and all that kind of stuff, how do you trust yourself and trust your decisions? Not that you’re making the right ones. I don’t know if there’s any right or wrong decisions, but you wake up in the morning have some coffee. How do you trust yourself every day?

Jon: Self awareness. Just knowing who I am as a person and always wanting to do good … Do really good work. I’m not out to just gain a bunch of likes and just all this other stuff. I’m always about providing just quality content and educating content, and informing individuals about the all the stuff that is really out there that you can really do. I was fortunate enough to have a lot of really good quality mentors and I still do. So, I feel like nowadays a lot of coaches and trainers and even students really deserve to know about a lot of this information. That’s what they want to come to you for. They’re not coming to you just to sit with you and have a drink. They want to pick your brain. They want to know about more knowledge and how that will actually really help them.

Jon: So, it’s about helping other individuals even though you have your own personal and professional goals. It’s a lot of work I have help. I don’t do everything by myself. And you’re not supposed to. People at higher levels whether their websites or … It doesn’t really matter what it is they can just be business people … They have help, you can’t do everything by yourself. So to be able to really ask for help and work with a group of individuals means a lot. So, I do have help. I have help with my social media stuff. I do a lot of the pictures and videos, and a lot of the text.

Jon: Somebody asked me recently, “well do you just sit behind your computer and sit with your phone 10 to 12 hours a day?” Like yeah, I have a full time fucking job. I have schedule things like two to three weeks in advance. Its just about efficiency right? And when people use these platforms to create better brand awareness of who they are or their company or even if you have a department at a university that is your product, that is your brand. If you’re not telling people what you’re actually really doing on a scalability then nobody knows what you’re really doing. This is like the single most important thing in the world. I mean it really is. This is like the remote control of our lives.

Jon: People want to gain information, they’ll go on the Youtube, they go onto Facebook, they go onto Instagram. Most people aren’t going to PubMed to find some research articles because I read research articles and I post something to Twitter or whatever it is. I can stay current on what’s really going on and I can implement those into my classes and course work. But you know, most general people, they don’t know what PubMed is so their going to other social platforms … and really social media is really just a slang term for like the current state of the internet.

Jon: But yeah, its challenging. I’m not going to sit here and lie and say that its super easy. It’s a lot of work. It takes a lot of planning. I mean, I go back and forth with different projects and network with people. Emails and writing and do articles. Its just a lot you know? And there’s just some days I just can’t do anything. I want to go walk around or try to sit by the pool or take a drive. That’s why I like traveling because even though it maybe work-related or not, it gets me out of the environment. You know? I like to be diverse. I like to be multidimensional.

Sean: Yeah. That’s a big one. I think there’s lots this year I’ve started crashing in everything. I don’t know exactly what was going on. I went and talked to a therapist lady and she was like when was the last time you didn’t do something. What do you mean? When’s the last time you took a day and just did nothing? I was like 32 years ago when I was born. I was like what are you talking about were supposed to do that? She’s like yeah. I think as, like entrepreneurs and people that may not have somebody above us, telling us what to do, we tend to just do everything. You know? And that can be a little bit challenging and burnout is huge. You know?

Jon: Yeah. I mean it is. There’s like Ill work all day, I’ll go train, and sometimes I’ll come back and do a little bit of stuff online. Come 9:30 or 10:00 I just can’t do anything the rest of the night.

Sean: Yeah.

Jon: Then some nights ill just like work until 11:30 or midnight and I can stay up until 1 or 2 am and get some work done but ill sleep till like 10:00 and then it’s like all of a sudden it’s 5:00 and then I haven’t done shit all day. Some people can just do that. They can work …Stay up till 1, 2 am and you know just live off of four or five hours of sleep and I can’t. I need a good seven hours.

Jon: Yeah. They may not be training too. I think that’s another thing. When you see you a lot of guys … You see a lot of the Gary Vees … Like I sleep four hours a night. I’m like that’s awesome man but are you training? Are you training hard? I think prioritizing sleep, especially if you enjoy training is more important than training. If you’re not recovering what are you doing?

Jon: Yeah and I’ve always told people in seminars and all my classes like it doesn’t really matter what you can do it matters what you can recover from.

Sean: Yeah.

Jon: Like if you can slam six or seven days a week and you’re only in there for 35-40 minutes. Well, of course, you can train six or seven days a week. But it really just matters really what you can recover from. And that’s a whole other conversation too. I was on a … I did and Instagram live a week or so ago with another buddy of mine. I’m on his dissertation committee and we are talking about recovery and training and different recovery modalities, what the science has to say and what some of the newer stuff that is important to keep in mind because most people think that recovery is eating, staying hydrated, sleeping, or foam rolling or something like that. That’s fine. That’s like to rudimentary parts but there is so much more that goes along with recovery and those are just kind of like the four basic components so. We can certainly talk about that on another elective date.

Sean: Yeah. Absolutely man and I know your times definitely important. I think were probably getting to the end here. But any questions that I haven’t asked you that are things you’re currently working on right now or?

Jon: No, I got my website Dr. J Mike is going to be launched sometime mid-June to late June. So that’s something I’ve been working on the last six to seven months. Most of the work has been done over the last three or four months. So, that aspect is still fairly new to me because I just didn’t come up the ranks in academia thinking like that. So now I’ve really kind of thought above and beyond just teaching or just academia and you start to think more like a business person. It’s still relatively new but you just get better with it over time. Just like anything else. There’s a lot going on and ready for the next chapter.

Sean: Awesome man. Wait, before I let you go where can people find you online? What’s some [crosstalk 00:55:17] seminars, lectures do you have coming up? How does that all look?

Jon: Yeah so ill actually be attending the NSCA, the National Strength and Conditioning Association national conference it’s going to be in Annapolis July 11th through the 14th. I’m looking to do some other private seminars late this summer early in the fall. Those will be on the website as well and I’ll be posting those to Instagram and Twitter. You can find me on Facebook you can just say my full name. My Twitter is JMike125 and then my Instagram is Dr. J. Mike. So I go back and forth to all the different platforms and post different types of content but its good. I enjoy the social media game quite a bit.

Sean: I do as well. Well thank you so much Dr. Mike for coming on. I appreciate all the novel ness that you have on Instagram going on right now and I’ll definitely keep following along to those exercises.

Jon: Appreciate it. You too.

Sean: Cool thank you, sir.

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