Random Thoughts & Humor
I recently attended the concert of my favorite rapper, Atmosphere. He was playing in Chicago and I was really, really pumped to get tickets.
As I stood through a seemingly endless conga line of guest rappers (it was the record label owner’s birthday, so a lot of the big guns flew in to play this one show), I started to think. What’s the purpose of all of this?
It’s easy to see the purpose in life for those who teach – one person’s pool of knowledge spurs positive development in all of the teacher’s students. One person gives energy and creates betterment in many more than just his one. I was once a performer of my sporting craft; I’m now a teacher, and I feel fulfilled by the fact that I help others reach the goals I once set for myself. My knowledge, exuberance and energy is directly handed off, and it’s easy to see a purpose in that exchange.
But what about these performers, like Slug & Ant, the rapper and DJ who make up the group Atmosphere? They’re clearly great at what they do, masters of their craft. But, it’s safe to assume that most of these musical artists don’t hold clinics and seminars to teach the masses how to be better rappers. I asked myself, if they’re not sharing their knowledge directly, are they living a selfish life? Should they give it up and start teaching? Is there a point to their greatness other than simply displaying it? Will they impact people in ways other than simply stimulating auditory receptors in their ear canal? Read the rest of this entry »
If you’re unaware of what Poster is, let me remind you.
Poster: The Holiday held on the day after Easter. Post-Easter celebrates the massive discounts seen on all Easter Candy, easily the most delicious of all the holiday-specific candy.
Now that you know what Poster is, we can move on to today’s lesson:
The Poster Bunny. Read the rest of this entry »
The walkout song. Every ballplayer searches for the perfect one to encapsulate their most swaggerific qualities in 30 seconds or less. I’ve sat through many, many ballgames and many walkout songs. I also get to listen to about 50 hours of music a week of my own choosing at my gym. So, let’s explore some of what I think are pretty legit walkout choices. Understand, these songs are going to express my tastes in music, so if you like mainstream rap, be prepared to be disappointed.
One thing to note – most of these songs are clean through 60 seconds, but they all can’t be. So, you will probably have to search for clean versions. None of these are dirty songs, really, but swear words are found here and there (yes, I used “swear words” in a sarcastic manner).
The “HARD” Category
Calm Like a Bomb By Rage Against the Machine. If you dislike this song, or it doesn’t pump you up, quit all sports immediately. Also, if you don’t know who Rage is, because they’re somewhat older and you’re a child, GET WITH IT.
I’ve emailed many coaches on the behalf of some pretty good ballplayers – prospects that could play at a high level someday. What was the most common response from coaches, you ask? Was it – how is his breaking ball? How are his mechanics? How is his changeup? Nope. Nope. Nope. The question every college coach asked was….
“How are his grades?”
I’m not writing this to earn brownie points with parents. Rather, I’m writing this as a wakeup call for the baseball players who think they can get mediocre grades and make it as a D-1 baseball player. YOU CAN’T. Read the rest of this entry »
Everything in my industry is about creating the effect of “desired.” Whether you’re an athlete who wants to be desired by a University sports team or a regular person who wants to be desired by others, it’s my job to make you relatively more desirable. And further extending it to envy, the unhealthy desire your health; the un-athletic desire your athleticism; the unattractive desire your attractiveness.
With that said, it often amazes me that we all don’t take stock in ourselves as heavily as we should. I make it a goal of mine to look “expensive” at all times. What does this mean? Well, let’s discuss. Read the rest of this entry »
As a strength coach and ballplayer, I’m constantly around people who challenge me to adapt what I do. With youth athletes, my methods and business model are tested daily. It’s been an interesting year, one full of crushing disappointment, business growth and new training methods.
1. “Paying Dues” Doesn’t Guarantee Anything
I’ve paid my dues, but was still met with the most crushing blow of my sports career this summer. I’ve seen it with others in college and in my gym now. Those who work the hardest find success in life, but maybe not where they really, really want or even deserve to. The world doesn’t care what you deserve. You have to be a big boy or girl and be prepared to move on with head held high even if you didn’t get what was owed.
2. 48 Hours Rest Isn’t The Only Way.
Everyone in the strength industry is brought up to believe that you MUST have a day off in between strength workouts. More and more coaches and athletes are finding that this isn’t true. Olympic lifters train twice a day, every day, as do many powerlifters, gymnasts, etc. I’ve been training 6 days per week since September, and I’m already stronger than I’ve ever been. EVER. In 3 months. It’s crazy. Read the rest of this entry »
This is actually a pretty funny story.
I was in a bar last week with my buddies, and I was talking about training and the new week ahead with Daryn Miller, my training partner. I had been salivating over the new EliteFTS Safety Squat bar for sometime, and it came up in conversation. Suddenly, I had an Ephiphany:
DB: “Dude. You know how the Safety Squat bar has a forward center of gravity?”
DMILL: “Yeah. So?”
DB: “Well you know that it sits on your shoulders with no hands; I think I just invented the world’s most deadly exercise, sure to instantaneously injure any trainee.”
DMILL: “Go on…”
DB: “Safety Squat bar on your back. Deadlift bar in your hands. You deadlift with a squat bar on your back. How awesome would that be? It’d be the grim reaper of training exercises!”
5 Days Later…
DB: “Dude.” Did you watch the video I sent you?”
DMILL: “I did. That’s A Thing Apparently.” Hahaha
DB: It is. It’s A Thing. Unbelieveable.
The ongoing joke of “Thats A Thing?” Is from the FX TV Show, Archer. Archer, the James-Bondlike character, was, one day, accused of drinking too much. He looked confused. “Drink too much? Thats A Thing?” He loves his alcohol.
The World’s Deadliest Exercise is actually A Thing. Who knew.
I just read a great article on the Wall Street Journal talking about first impressions to receptionists. It discussed how prospective employees can take for granted their interactions with the first people they meet when going for an interview. Handshakes were one of the topics, a discussion I have frequently during training sessions.
I talk to my young athletes about their handshakes quite regularly. This is likely something that goes unaddressed at home because no on really shakes hands with their family. I can’t remember ever shaking my own parents’ hand, so it’s safe to assume a parent may be unaware of what his or her child is doling out. Grandfathers are probably the enforcers of this most often, as the “hey pal, put ‘er there” greeting is a bit more common at extended family gatherings. Nonetheless, limp handshakes are a terrible, terrible way to greet another person. Again – I don’t necessarily know specifically where I learned the following traits, but we all know them to be true… Read the rest of this entry »
Poster, for you less-than-hip kids, is my fictional holiday celebrating the day after Easter, a glorious Monday in which all Easter candy goes on sale for at least 50% off. Post-Easter. Poster. When thinking of names 4 years ago my final two were Poster and Pfeaster, and I went with the former. I think the Pfeaster is a bit more clever, but it’s too late – I’m sticking with what I’ve got. Read the full origins of Poster in 2011′s write up.…it’s chock full of movie references plus real and confectionary carnage.
On Poster, if you’re not physically ill from sugar consumption literally the entire day, you didn’t celebrate properly. It’s basically St.Patty’s day for children and sweet-toothed morons like myself.
At 9:30 this morning I started with what I call a “Poster Oreo”: A Reese’s Peanut Butter Egg, Followed by an Almond Joy Egg, washed down with another Reese’s Egg. (Almond Joys are white in the middle, thus the “creme” of the Oreo) I felt terrible immediately thereafter…and so it began.
You need to adopt a wave approach: eat candy until you feel like death. Rest for about 45 minutes, then eat more candy. It will take less and less candy each wave to make you ill and thus craving something healthy…push through that nonsense and keep going; this only comes around once a year.
Not pictured below is a chocolate bunny that I was planning on beheading, stuffing full with peeps, reheading with some sort of chocolate soldering iron, then consuming like a starving wolf. I’ll have to regroup and extend Poster through Tuesday to get this done. Pictures to follow.
This time of year, with more than half of my athletes out playing, my stress level mostly abates. I’m left with more free time to see my summer ahead of me, right as the sun starts poking its head around. I find my thoughts happily wandering so much that I’m often left unable to put word to page. The one thing that really melds the pleasant warmth of sunbeams into a holistically “summer” feeling, is music.
It’s officially spring. It’s time to feel good – here’s a few songs that are flat-out awesome and I believe can be enjoyed by the young, hip kid and older fuddy-duddy type alike. There’s a lot of rap using classical beats and I personally dig the combination. These songs are all, to my knowledge, lyrically pretty “clean” and appropriate. Radio-approved music is getting worse and worse (Rack City is the worst song ever), but this stuff is too cool to hit the radio anyway. I wore #13 last year in Fargo, so I’m gonna give you 13 of my favorite songs that are a bit off the beaten path.
I’m gonna start you off with a song that I guarantee almost no one has heard. If you have heard Nujabes before, please leave a comment and let me know. The dude is apparently dead and you can’t find his album, but I caught some of his stuff a few years ago from a friend. Some of his stuff is elevator music, but the following song is really good… Read the rest of this entry »
Whenever I’m faced with people discounting the role of sports in our lives, I think back to my time in Philosophy classes in college. As a Philosophy major, I spent most of my time trying to decipher the meaning of the world via the meaning of some very cryptically written essays and books. As an athlete, I never forgot the lecture in my Philosophy of Sport class in which my professor gave his argument for the value of athletics. Many academics dismiss them as petty amusements, but they are much more than that.
Desporto: To Carry Away. When the terrorist attacks of 9-11 occurred, why did the Yankees play only days later? To whisk away the troubles of a very shaken, desperate city. Why do we flip on the television to watch the game after a stressful day of work? To get lost in in the amazing physical feats of another, drowning out the tedium and nagging repetition of daily life. Sports have been and will be around forever because they always allow us to escape the reality that life is often harsh, difficult and undeterred.
I just got off the phone with my student Chris, one of the finest young men I know. He had texted me and my good friend Daryn letting us know that he was dropping out of our throwing and hitting academies, respectively. This young man’s girlfriend had just suffered a huge family shakeup and he felt that he had a duty to be a man and take care of her. In her time of extreme need, he explained, he couldn’t justify playing a foolish game. Very few males at his age would show this kind of character – he’s a man at age 16 if there ever was one. Read the rest of this entry »
It’s been crazy busy the last few weeks getting back from California, which was a tremendous experience, organizing my schedule (booked to the teeth) and writing new programming for 50 strength training students and 42 Warbird throwers. Here’s a few things to look forward to on my site in the next week or so:
1. Early results from the first 30 Warbird Throwers. A rough look at my data suggests that my group has gained on average 3 miles per hour and as high as 7. I’m pretty excited, and have new technology (Thanks Mike!) to share throwing data on my site. Check out the Player Velocities Page under the Warbird parent tab. If you’re not local you won’t know the names, but you can check the progress some of my hard workers have made. Nick Hieb, a Junior, just threw in front of a few college coaches and sat 3-4mph higher than he had previously peaked as of last year (his peak is about +5-6). Pretty excited about him – he’s earned it.
2. My Trip to LA for Alan Jaeger’s Pro Camp was awesome. I have lots to share but as of now too little time to share it. Soon – it was well worth the trip.
3. I’m going to share via video some of what I’ve learned about velocity this winter, and I’ve learned a whole, whole lot. The radar gun is the greatest pitchers’ training tool ever created, in my opinion. You’d be amazed how much pitch-by-pitch feedback can do for a thrower and a coach who wants his kids to throw harder. I’m not going to give away my proprietary program, but I will give you insight into what you can do at home today to throw harder immediately.
Thanks! Stay Tuned….