What Does Your Certification Mean?

Let me get real with you.  I want to talk about the value of certifications to me as a coach.  They are just pieces of paper for the most part.  A wall full of them means that I spent a lot of time listening to someone talk about training.  It means that I spent some money and someone gave me an attendance award.  Maybe I passed an exam; that means I understood some concepts or memorized some information.

But for the most part, a certification does not equal a quality coach!

As a coach, I display a certificate because I am proud of attending, but know that deep down each certification that I have is a starting point for growth.  If I stop there and do not put anything into practice, then it is worthless.

So how do you decide what certification to get?  There are two things to take into consideration.  First, think about is it required for you to do what you want to do.  That is the primary reason that I have several of my CrossFit certifications.  The L1 is required to be on the floor of the gym I train at.  The additional ones that I have were solid starting points for development and growth.  These are what I classify as foundational certifications.  They are there because you have to have them.  That is their primary purposeIMG_1966USC-Cert-Logo2

The second type of certification is what I would refer to a value certification.  For me these are the one’s that you hang on the wall and are proud to do so.  These certifications talk to your character as a person and as a coach.  I recently completed Zach Even-Esh’s Underground Strength certification.  This is one that I would call a value certification and that is because much of what it talked about, is about who you need to be as a coach.  What we coach and what we teach people is secondary to being better people daily.

This second type of certification is one that hangs on the wall and you say I represent this brand or I represent ZEE and his brand.  I better keep up the standards that he has set and attack life the way that he does.  And in reverse to some degree, by putting this out ZEE represents me.  That means that we are accountable to each other.  His motto of “Live the Code” is a call to lead your life in a way that makes people take notice.  Those are value certifications.

So what do I recommend when you are trying to decide which certifications to get.  First and foremost get the ones that you must have to run your business, but then start looking for the one’s that best represent who you are and who you want to be.  Get the one’s that when someone sees it on your wall, they get a sense of exactly who you are.

But above all else, remember that the certifications do not make you a great coach…you do that!

Don’t Be An Anorexic Hermit Crab!

I have been listening to another great book on mindset and learning.  It is written by the chess prodigy Josh Waitzkin, yes the one that “Searching for Bobby Fisher” was based on.  I am only about 4 chapters in and it is great to listen to how he breaks down learning.  There have been several “aha!” moments in the book and many, “glad my parents raised me that way” moments.

art of learning

As I was driving today though, he made a statement that just sticks!  We all deal with it.  We are all afraid of growing and getting out of our comfort zones.  He simply stated that those people are:

anorexic hermit crabs!

I actually tuned out for a minute as I let that phrase sink in and what it really entails.  There are several problems with being an anorexic hermit crab.  The first and that we have a fear of growing and taking on new challenges.  We desire to stay comfortable.  We are not willing to seek out a new environment that we will in fact thrive in…so what do we do?

We HARM ourselves!  No one else gets hurt by us not pushing to a new home or by trying to find a new comfort zone.  Sure, it might take a little time to find the next perfect shell, but recognize that we are growing and need the space.  Recognize that the small shell that we used to call our comfort zone cannot hold what we are becoming.

We needed the added space and we are at a point where we can carry the new load on our shoulders.  This is true in life, in business and in lifting.  As a coach, mentor, husband, and father, I want to see you get better and grow.  I want you to have a passion to always be on the lookout for a bigger home because the current one is just getting too small.

Every challenge you accept is a new shell, a new home and a new opportunity for growth!  The current one you have might be comfortable for now, but what are you depriving yourself of to stay there?  What challenges are you shying away from just so that you can remain right where you are?  Why are you keeping yourself from achieving your true potential in EVERYTHING YOU DO?

Take a moment, look at yourself and the mirror and vow to never be an anorexic hermit crab!

Grain Brain By Dr. Perlmutter – Book Review

grain brain


It has been a while since I have put up a book review on the blog, so today is as good as any.  I am still on pace to hit reading a book a week, but I will admit that I have slacked a little on reporting on them.  If you are someone that is wanting to know more about why the current standards set out by the US government are off, than this book is a pretty decent starting point.  If you don’t mind a little science, then this is well worth your time and energy.  If you are not a huge reader, but still want the information, then get it on itunes or audible.  Pretty simple solutions.

The biggest thing that I can encourage people to take away from reading anything that has to do with nutrition or leading a healthy life is for you to be open to new ideas.  I appreciate this book because it emphasizes that point that fats are healthy.  That fats do not make you fat!  It talks about the importance of cholesterol in your diet as well as how the body reacts to sugar and gluten.

There has been more and more growing research to support the idea that gluten sensitivity is a very real problem and is a root cause to more than know.  I also appreciate that the author has a desire to find root causes for treatment and not focus on the symptoms.  Whether you choose to try a gluten free diet or not, one thing to remember is that we all must have an open mind to new research that is coming out.  We need to find a way to eat that helps us feel and perform our best.

For me personally, I will be working hard to get off of gluten and see how it affects some of the things that ail me, such as allergies as well as putting into effect some of his recommendations on supplements (Vitamin D, tumeric, and Omega 3) into my daily habits and see how it affects my focus among other things.

I enjoyed this book as it made me think a little more about what is going on with my body based on what I eat.  When you look at things from the perspective of this affecting my ability to think clearly and perform my job to the best of my abilities, things can become a little more real.  Many of us, can eat poorly and handle not feeling well or having an upset stomach.  When we start to think about it really affecting our performance…it can instigate change!

Until we meet again…tell me what you are currently reading and learning!

Treat the Problem Not the Symptoms

I am getting over being sick, so this one hits home for me.  I have a cough, I buy cough syrup.  My throat hurts, I get something for that.  My head hurts, I take tylenol or ibuprofen.  The list goes on and on and on.  So does that size of my bill to keep the old medicine cabinet stocked up.  And all the while, I am really doing nothing to remain healthy and stay there…why?

I am treating symptoms, and ignoring the root cause

As new symptoms pop up, I am taking care of those but really am not doing anything to treat the root problem.  Is it seasonal allergies or is it something I am eating?  Am I taking care of myself to the point that I should not be getting sick or am I letting life get the better of me?

There are three primary keys to remaining healthy that will help you with not having to treat the symptoms:

  1. Nutrition – Sorry but this is a biggie and probably the most overlooked when we get sick.  Are you eating the right foods and enough of them?  What about water?  Are you doing your best to minimize sugar intake?  Are you drinking more than a glass of wine a night?
  2. Exercise – Are you getting any?  Are you getting any activity in during your day?  Exercise combined with the proper nutrition is the key to staying healthy.  There are chemicals released during exercise that help aid in attention and retention of information so it is extremely beneficial for you to get your daily dose.
  3. Sleep and Recovery – If you are taking care of items 1 and 2, then you better be getting enough quality sleep and on a solid recovery protocol.  This is generally where I fail. I am pretty good about eating right and making sure I lift heavy things and lift light things fast.  But I am busy and I make a million excuses to stay up late and neglect a solid sleep and recovery routine.  And so here I am, today getting over something.
  4. BONUS – And here is a bonus item…STRESS!  What is your stress level like?  What weight (and I do not mean the good kind) are you carrying on your shoulders that you need to deal with.  Either you need to drop them and leave them where they are or deal with them.  Stress is a huge burden on getting quality sleep and weakens the immune system.

None of these are new things and most of us know this.  The reason that I am putting this out there is simply because we run from these simple truths.  We hide from the reality that just because we can take a pill to treat the symptoms we don’t need to worry about what it really underneath it all.

BUT today you are just battling a cough or a cold.  What are you going to do tomorrow when it is something that is much worse?  What happens when you are diagnosed with something, look back, and realize that making a few simply changes today could have prevented this?

Start small today and make simple gradual changes.  You will feel better and appreciate all the benefits as you move forward!

Need help get in touch with me and I will help you wherever you are at!

Stop Looking For Gimmicks and Quick Fixes

Put the pills down, step away from the phone as you consider buying that latest fitness gadget from the late night infomercial.  Please just walk away from the latest get rich quick scheme or trying to figure out a way to get around hard work!

There are very few universal truths that transcend all areas of life, but hard work is one of those truths.  Hard work gets you places.  Pure and simple.  Hard work is a cure for many root problems and does not simple treat the symptoms.

Need to lean up, it’s hard to get away from sugar and the like, but it has to be done.  Put in the work.  Want to get stronger, hard work helps here too.  That includes how hard it can be to take a day off.  Want to get a new business up and running, or keep one going…you guessed it…hard work!

Most people know this already.  Most people know that the only way to get somewhere and feel good about things is to put in the work.  Even if you fail, you look back and can say that you did everything you could.  When you take shortcuts, you usually end up right where you started, staring face to face with square one again and having to once again decided if you are going to try a different shortcut or actually put in the hard work and be in it for the long haul.

On the business side of things that I work with, I see far too many people wanting to figure out all the things everyone else is doing and are not willing to put in the work themselves.  They ask for samples of classes run, advertising used, or tricks used to get people to find them that they never gain an understanding of what does or does not work.  They don’t put in the work and then are confounded when they might have to close their doors.

I am not saying do not seek out guidance.  But it is just that, get a mentor to help motivate you to do the work yourself.  Put your voice out there.  Let people know you and hear you in everything that you do!  Don’t be afraid to let your guard down and try something that no one else is doing.

And outside of all the gimmicks that are out there…the thing about hard work is it makes each and every one of us better.  That is the key to your success.  Be better!  Do Better.  Focus on the customers, clients, business contacts that you already have and blow them away.  Give them your best each and every day.  And then get better.  Give more.

I recently recorded a podcast on this very topic.  If you are so inclined…give it a listen!

Hard work is about making yourself better, not staying busy!