• Learning Resources

    Learning Resources

    It’s amazing how much fitness and training content is online out there. Unfortunately there is some really helpful stuff, and a lot that is completely awful. It can often be pretty hard to tell the difference without a solid background in training and coaching.

    I like people learning something about the principles of training, because it means that you start taking ownership of your health and fitness. I dislike fitness zombies, who just want to show up, be told what to do, and never question anything. The reason I don’t like this sort of approach is that they don’t make as much progress. If you’re only doing something because some trainer is standing next to you making you do it, then what reason do you have to put down that second cupcake when you’re at home and there’s nobody to tell you not to? However if you know where you’re heading, and understand how eating cupcakes every night is going to effect that, then you have a good reason to put it down.

    This goes for a lot more than nutrition, but it’s a nice example. Today I’m going to go through some of my favorite websites.

    www.MobilityWOD.com

    The reason this one is first is because it’s the most common website I recommend. Everybody I met seems to have some sort of mobility problem or old injury. If your knees hurt when you run, your shoulder hasn’t felt quite right since you played footy, or your back aches at the end of a long day, MobilityWOD should be your starting point. Kelly Starrett is a Doctor of Physiotherapy, as well as owning his own gym. He’s worked with everyone from Olympic athletes to office workers, and is a gold mine of useful information. There’s some paid content on his website, but there’s a ton of free videos on there, and even more on Youtube; just search for MobilityWOD or Kelly Starrett. If something hurts, this should be your first port of call.

    Having said that, I do disagree with some of the things he says about lifting technique.

    www.70sbig.com

    A great site for lifters, as well as Strength and Conditioning in general. Justin Lascek mixes sound and logical advice on training with a lot of humour. In addition to having coached a lot of lifters and strength athletes in the US, he also puts up some extremely respectable numbers himself; both in Powerlifting and Weightlifting. His website can be a little bit hard to navigate sometimes, but the search function works really well.

    Justin has written several excellent books on training, as well as co-authoring FIT. His book Paleo for Lifters is still my go-to source for tinkering with my nutrition.

    I was lucky enough to met Justin at his seminar tour in Australia a few years ago, and we’ve been friends since. The 70’s Big community is very welcoming and everybody (including Justin) are more than willing to answer questions and help troubleshoot problems.

    Zach Even-Esh

    www.undergroundstrengthcoach.com

    Zach has been around for a very long time. I remember for seeing his videos back in 2005. Zach’s original focus was Strength and Conditioning for wrestlers. He still trains a lot of high school and college wrestlers, but his lessons are applicable to anybody’s training. A big believer in the basics, old-school methods and lots and lots of hard work, Zach builds strong, tough, well-conditioned athletes. His videos are usually a mix of heavy barbell work, bodyweight exercises, kettlebell work as well as sled drags and loaded carries.

    A super-intense guy, Zach can sound a little crazy when you first watch his stuff but there is definitely method to his madness. His podcast has some of the biggest names in strength and training on it, and is well worth checking out; either on his site or on iTunes.

    Zach is just about to post an article I wrote for his site about S&C for Army Special Operations.

    www.Powerathletehq.com

    John Welbourn spent ten years playing in the NFL, and now runs Power Athlete and CrossFit Football. For information about getting ready for power sports like football, there are few better options than his site. John is huge (6’5” and walks around above 140kg), strong (squats over 360kg) and blindingly fast. He’s also extremely well educated about training and coaching. He learnt from one of the best in the business, Raphael Ruiz, and is a world-class coach in his own right now. I did John’s certification a few years ago, and it was an eye-opening experience. A lot of my opinions about preparing team sport athletes began from that cert. Here’s a photo of me with big John

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    www.JTSstrength.com

    Juggernaut Training Systems is a collection of writers involved in various sports. Though there is a strength sports bias to the site, there is a wealth of good information for any athlete. It is an especially good site for power-lifters, as Brandon Lily and several other very famous guys write for JTS.

    www.robbwolf.com

    Without going too far down the rabbit hole when it comes to nutrition, Robb Wolf is a very smart guy, and always my first port of call when it comes to diet and lifestyle factors. I’ve listened to about 200 hours worth of his podcasts, own his book, and pay a lot of attention to what he says. I also like that he’s realistic and open-minded about nutrition – which can be rare.

    So they’re my favorite resources. There are a lot of other great sites out there which I didn’t get a chance to mention, but there is also a heap of BS. So I would say take anything you read on the internet with a grain of salt.