elitefts™ Sunday edition

You Have Choices in Life


We all have choices in life don't we? You can chose to just workout or train. You can chose to have a business or build a business. You can choose to make a difference or just stand by. You can choose to think you are more than you are or strive to get better. You can choose to ask us questions on the Q&Aor just figure it out on your own.  Here are a few questions I have recently answered you may be interested in and a back training session from my training log. You can use this information anyway you choose.

Mastermind Groups

Hey Dave,

I am thinking about joining a mastermind group of online business coaches. The cost will be about $3,500 plus travel expenses in order to attend 3 events. That is a lot of money for me right now, and I am afraid I will not make that money back.

If I knew it would cost $3,500 but makes me $35,000...then I would certainly do it.

What are your thoughts on hiring coaches to help your business? Is it always a smart investment, or no? Thank you!

I have hired several people, but I wouldn't call them coaches. They were people who are professional at what they do. I personally think most mastermind groups are a joke, but that's for another day. There are some good ones, but the best ones I saw are not paid for and don't sell attendance. They are a group of professionals that get together to complement each other's skill set. These are usually set up by one business leader who personally invites others that he feels can help complement the group. I have been to several of these and learned a ton. I feel, in return, I also provided them with the same. 

If you're looking at hiring any consultant, I would look for the exact same attributes I would look for in a trainer or coach.

  1. Who did they learn from, train under, or work for.
  2. Who have they trained with or what team have they been a part of.
  3. What have the done themselves. Never assume - investigate and ask questions.
  4. Who have they trained and what have they done?

These four questions will tell you more than anything else.

Here is another thing to keep in mind, $1,200 for one session or day with a professional is a deal! If you wanted to hire a lawyer, accountant, PR manager, HR manager, professional sales trainer, or a successful entrepreneur or CEO for the day it, would cost you much more than that. 

I do feel education is extremely important and you should get a return on every dollar you invest in yourself. Just make sure it's truly an investment for you and not just income for them.

One other thing that makes me wary about these or any other group is to really help someone in business, you will need to obtain information that is privileged and confidential to the person you are working with. I do not feel this should be shared in a group setting, so when I'm asked who to look for when seeking consultants, look for people who know their stuff and will work with you one-on-one. 

Also don't downplay what you can learn from business textbooks. Most people who are thinking of starting a business know nothing and will fall for everything. Get some entry-level business course texts and start reading. This way you will learn some of the basic fundamentals and won't fall for much of the crap that's being peddled as real business advice.

One last note on education. If it seems fast and easy, you know it's bullshit. If it was that simple, everyone would be doing it. The failure rate for business is HUGE and isn't getting better, but worse. It's not easy – far from it. 

You need three things to increase your chance of success (note I said chance).

First, you need Balls to do it. Many make it who have no idea what they are doing and learn along the way. What they had was an iron will, balls and a no-quit attitude.

Second, just having balls won't get the job done, you also need to have a never-ending pursuit of education. People. Books. You can't read too much, nor speak to too many people. You will learn more and gain better ideas and perspectives from those who come from completely different backgrounds and businesses. If you are always talking to those in the same industry you will become just like them, thus not stand out or be innovative.

Third, you need a strong work ethic and the willingness to endure. Having a business can be awesome, but it comes at a price and you have to be willing to pay that price in how hard and smart you work. This also means dropping your ego and listening to and hiring people who are better than you in what they were hired to do. Once again, look for people who have different backgrounds and mindsets. This will create more drama, but this will make the company and the team strong(er) and better. 

Sorry for the rambling. I just got on a roll and kept going.

Busted Biceps


I have a problem on the bench. I'm a fairly strong raw, natural lifter, but I've been battling extreme distal biceps pain during bench. It doesn't allow me to drive into the weight and the only way I can bench is with literally a 5 second negative, or else it feels like the bi will tear. So, you have an idea, I've done 495 x 6, 515 x 3 and a very easy 545 single, when healthy. I've seen two doctors, a physical therapist, had an MRI and have been battling this for 1.5 years. Thank you so much.

I have had this issue before. Here are some of the things I did that helped.

  1. I started wearing elbow sleeves when I squatted and benched. Not the wrap type - use the ones like TK Bands (Tommy Kono)
  2. Only bench once per week. My second day was any accessory work that doesn't cause pain in the area.
  3. I moved my squat grip out. I've seen this to be one of the biggest causes and was the cause for me.
  4. Freeze a foam coffee cup full of water (keep a bunch of them in the freezer) and as soon as you get home from training use this as a deep message device. As the water melts peal back the cup. I would dig in very deep when doing this.
  5. I moved my bench day around. The first way I changed it was to stick it right after my squat - on the same day. This was all the damage done on one day and the rest of the week I could rest or work around it. 

Later, I changed it to bench the day before I squatted. If squatting was the issue then this gave me the most rest.
  6. I stopped using any bar that whipped when I benched or squatted. I think this was the other major factor. Crappy bars will tear you up.
  7. If it was really flared up, I used low pin presses for all of my bench work. This way I could let the bar drop and not have to worry so much about the eccentric. Pressing off chains or spud suspension straps would better a better option because the joint impact will be less.
  8. I stretched it all the time from every angle I could think of. I'm not sure how much this really helped, but I doubt it hurt.
  9. If it got to the point where you say yours is now, I would skip one bench session and see how it feels the next time around. There were times where I could only bench every other week. For me to keep making gains, I had to push up my accessory work.
  10. Finally, I added in 15 minutes at the end of all upperbody sessions where I did light bodybuilding-type movements such as push down, curls, hammer curls, rear delt raises, etc. My thought process was that I need to have more muscle around by those joints to help support the weight and take some of the stress off the tendons. 

I would also ask this to some of our rehab guys on the site who see this issue frequently. I'm only writing about what worked for me and am not a doctor or therapist.

Here Today Gone Tomorrow

How to Develop 5 Critical Thinking Types - Forbes

I just read the article above and it reminded me of a quote I keep as a reminder of my main job responsibilities.

"This is the first time in the history of business that you can be great at what you're doing today and be out of business tomorrow."
- Ken Blanchard & Terry Waghorn
Mission Possible

The world, business and our lives are in constant change. If you look back at what was popular in training a few years ago, you will see very little of this is still popular now. You can go back just a few months and see trends that emerged that are now gone.

When you combine this with an uncertain economic environment, you find that in order to survive you need to live in the now. Businesses need orders today - not tomorrow or next week. Just to sustain takes attention to all the daily details and making sure they are all as efficient as they can be.

At the same time, there needs to be a keen eye on the future. What will the trends be? Can you set some of the trends? Where are the opportunities and threats? What are your strengths and weaknesses? How can you use all of these to advance the company into the future.

When will you have the time to forecast and analyze all this?

Who will do it?

If you're so wrapped up in the day-to-day operations, urgent issues and responsibilities you will not see these future opportunities or threats that await down the road. You will end up road kill!

Most of us already know if you have staff, you are asking to do both (present day and future work) it won't work. Either the day-to-day will suffer and create issues or they will never get around to the strategic planning for the future.

This brings up the next question.

What makes you think you can do both?

If you want to take your company into the future, a very significant part of your time needs to be devoted to thinking, studying and analyzing how this will be done.

If this is overlooked, pushed on the back burner, delegated, or forgotten – you simply will not make it.

If you do make time to do these things and implement and execute, the odds of outlasting your competition increases significantly.

Mountain Dog Back Training

Here's a back training session from my training log. If you do nothing else, watch the end of the last video. There's nothing better than straining your ass off, being about ready to pass out, seeing stars, being barely able to breath, lighting your back on fire and then hear your son (whom you are trying to teach work ethic) say you just cracked him up. After watching the video, I can certainly see why.

The first movement of the day was The Meadows Row. This is kind of like a one-arm barbell row, but your body placement is different. This allows for a better stretch in the lats and, for me, less bicep strain. The 25-pound plates are used to allow for a greater range of motion. After 4-5 warm-up sets, I did three sets with six quarters per side. Here was the last set.

For this movement I used:

  • Core Blaster: E-Series Core Blaster
  • Core Blaster: Row Handle Attachment
  • EFS Orange Stripe 2" Wrist Straps

Next up was the Tsunami Bar Row. This bar will be available soon. For now, I'm testing it out with a few different movements. I used it last week for rows and it trashed my lats. This week, I decided to use it again and up the weight. What I'm trying to do here is pull the weight as fast as I can and crush the bar into my abs. This flings the weight up over my torso and then back down extremely hard and fast, providing an eccentric overload. I did three warm-up sets with one plate per side and then added a quarter and did 4 sets of 6-8 reps. This was the last set.

This trashed my lats again, but I can tell using more weight would have made it less effective because I would not have been able to generate enough speed at the start.

The next movement was pull downs using MAG Close Grip Pronate. This grip allows me to get a fuller range of motion that I can get with any other grip. For these sets, weight weren't an issue - it was more about stretching, flexing and range of motion. I performed 4 sets 8-12 reps

Stretchers were next on the agenda. This one has nothing to do with weight, just stretching. 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Next up were EFS Rickshaw Shrugs. I like using this because it takes zero set up time. I did three sets with one plate per side for 15 reps, then added one more plate and did two sets of 12 reps. I finished with three plates per side for 4 sets of 12.

The next movement is Meadows programing at it's best. Take the movement that is the hardest of the day and the one I hate the most and stick it at the end of the session and pound it to death. This movement was Chain Deadlifts. Warm-ups went as...

  • 135 x 4
  • 135 x 4
  • 135 x 4
  • 225 x 4
  • 225 x 4
  • 315 x 4
  • 315 x 4

Then, the addition of elitefts™ chains came into the picture. Two chains per side were added with each set of three reps until the set got hard. This happens with six chains per side. After doing this set, the last set called for doing as many reps as you could...balls out...100 percent effort.

This was the last set. The funniest part aside from the swamp ass, is my son's comment at the end of the video.

The last movement of the day was 45 degree back raises for 2 sets of 30.