Category Archives: Lessons

From Hungary With Love Pt 1.

As many of you will know I recently accepted a contract at the Canadian Sports Centre in Calgary.  As part of that contact I became the strength coach/ physiologist for Water Polo Canada.  There is limited availability to play games in Canada.  Tough to play the US as they are a rival and training with them helps them to get better and vice versa.  The college system with their rules limits the games they can play outside NCAA and from what I have been told, we would dismantle them.  So with no games since the Olympic Qualifiers in July 2012 the team organized a training camp in Hungary.  And, well… that meant I am talking a trip to Hungary with the team.

I write this as I watch ZF Eger play on the TV.  ZF Eger is the local professional team where one of our national members plays full time.  The city has billboards of the players, the matches etc.  There is no doubt that Water Polo is the national sport of this beautiful country.  The country emerges itself in pool culture.   Where in Canada we build ice rinks the Hungarians build Pools.   However the pools are works of art.  The pool in Eger for example is one of the most impressive structures I have seen as the roof is meant to represent the body of an overturned wooden war ship and the entire building is adorned in wood.

The pool is perpetually busy with the likes of young and old frequenting the pool for daily laps.  We see this in Canada but the feel around the pool is less of that of training for competition, it is about the culture.  It is something that if I did not experience it, I would not believe it.  I guess the easiest way to explain it is the culture around Water Polo is that to Hungarians as Hockey is to Canada.

My role on the trip is to monitor training, recovery and to research/experience Water Polo.  It was evident on my first day why this country is so dominant in the sport.  One, the system of talent identification is present, as the shear number of kids playing Water Polo is mirror to that of kids playing hockey back home.  Secondly, the Eastern European culture produces massively imposing men.  Hanging around the pool for 6 hours a day I have come to realize that Hungarian men are what I would call “Thick”.  Big barrel chested men.  The average height of the local pro team is 6’4”, weight 235 lbs and age 28 yrs.

And after 5 days of eating here I can see why everyone can be built like brick shit houses.  For the past 5 days we have not had anything less than a three-course meal… at any meal.  The food I have been told is 80 – 90% locally grown with 80 – 90% of that being organically grown.  I think one would be hard pressed to find a vegetarian here, as meat appears to be the staple at any meal.  And the flavors are just amazing.  And Erős Pista (“EH-ROOSH PISH-TA”), which means “Strong Stevie,” is a popular brand of csípős (spicy) paprika paste produced by the Univer company. It is salty, and somewhere in the middle on the global “spiciness” scale, and often found on restaurant tables in Hungary.  That little lady from Franks has nothing on this stuff.  They really do put that s**t on everything.  I am off to the market this afternoon to pick up 5 jars.

To be continued…


What to do when Goals are Met?

It has been a very long time since my last post here.  !00% of that can be attributed to a hectic work schedule.  For the entire summer I was bouncing around from four or five different locations, coaching, consulting and just trying to keep my head above the water.  This summer was a make or break summer for me.  I have been coaching now for nearly 10 years.   At some point you look at your life “style” and contemplate the chosen path.  The role of strength coach/ personal trainer or what ever you would like to deem it is one of sacrifice.  Not just personal on the role of the coach but of the family as well.  We work when people do not.  There are no “glory” jobs.  And those that are labeled a glory job, come with it there own issues… late nights, travel etc.

About a year ago I left a full time position to branch out and do build a reputation for my self.  Soon though the time was piling up and so was the fatigue.   I did reach a breaking point.  I was never home, I missed a lot of my daughters life that I will never get back.  I was for the most part one of the unhappiest people around.  And since the last time I was posting and I was in a terrible place, and got called out for it, I did not post for this time.  I know I have joked about leaving the profession a while back, but this time was the very end.  I had set a time line on it.  June 2013.  If things were not turned around by then, I would walk away with no regrets.  Maybe a few but it were time to put the dreams to an end and get on with life. I really did not know what I would do, as all I am trained to do is coach.  If I were not coaching I would be the guy outside the 7-11 bumming quarters.  I really do not have a host of skills outside of coaching and physiology.

This summer was very busy.  Well, actually the entire last year was very busy, but the summer was very busy.   As many of you know, I was offered summer contract role at the Canadian Sports Centre.  It was a great opportunity, so I could not say no.  My foot was in the door.  For me the Canadian Sports Centre has been that one position I have been waiting for since I moved to Calgary.  It was the reason I did my Masters.   To work at the Sports Centre would be the realization of a goal that includes an 11-year university career and moving out west.

On Friday, November 9th, the goal came to realization.   I signed an official contract to work at the Canadian Sports Centre as a strength coach and physiologist.   My contract includes the following. ..

Strength Consultant / Physiology Consultant for Water Polo Canada Men’s Team

Strength Consultant to Cross Country Canada.

Strength Consultant / Physiology Consultant to Women’s National Hockey Team.

Youth Programming Consultant to Winsport  – Helping to develop the next group of winter sport talent in Canada is the easiest description I can come up with.

A friend asked me a week ago at a conference, “How do you get yourself into all these cool positions and situations?”  My response?  “Patience, persistence and making yourself available.”  Yes, obviously there is a lot of hard work involved.  But those three things; patience, persistence and availability paid off.  It took a long time to get where I am today.  I am not bragging, but reflecting.  Not one hands anyone a glory job.  The give us the opportunity and it is ours to develop.  I was told that I was not handed this job, but worked for it. I have to thank those around me that gave me the opportunity and support, Jason, Rosie, Doc, Matt and James.  I have to thank my family who did the same.  Most of all I have to thank my wife, for putting up with all the stupid shit I have put her through in the last 8 years.  The ups, the downs, the frustrations and the tears.  So now with the biggest goal of my life met, I guess it is time to start making a new one.

Yours in Health and Performance

Jeff Osadec Mkin, CEP, CSCS



Good to be humbled every now and then.

Every once in a while something comes a long a rocks your reality. No so long ago was my day for a rocking. Not so much a rocking but a little humbling reminder.  I had interviewed for a position as head strength and conditioning coach/lecturer at a local university.  It had come down to two individuals; myself and a colleague that is equally qualified. We were asked to submit a proposal, which included a written philosophy, a series of sample per iodized workouts and a written portion on how I integrate an sports performance team (athletic therapy, sport psych, etc.).


The interview I feel was not one of my best.  I felt unfocused right from the start.  A lot of the questions revolved around how I as one coach would organize training for 5 full college teams.  When the questions started coming about organization I think that’s what threw me off first.  I mean I didn’t even know what each of the individual coaching staffs wanted for times space availability and number contact per week.  Once I started to flounder I felt the downward spiral.  The last portion of the interview was a practical coaching experience and that’s where I was going to shine.  To be honest I owned that coaching situation.


When all was said and done and the dust settled I got a call three days later.  They commented and how they were very impressed with both the candidates experience however I did hear this little buzz of the word but… “the committee decided to go with the other candidate.”


I sat there for couple moments and realized I actually didn’t get the job.  Don’t get me wrong I’m not upset that I didn’t get the job-based on the candidate that I was up against.  The person who got the job I highly respected think they’ll do a great job at what they are looking to do.  I just am a competitive guy and didn’t want to lose this job to anyone regardless of who it is.  That’s what we’re all here for, to compete for position.  My wife made a point that I might’ve not been 100% into that interview because of the position I have a Canadian Sports Centre Calgary and I’m completely 100% happy being there.   She could very well be right, my mind was somewhere else in that interview.


But this gives me a chance to sit down and reflect.  It wasn’t so much being beat of a position but more so how did I prepare for the situation.  One of my references suggested doing the interview because at some point in time you will be up for a position that you want so badly and you have been in that position already, you will be more prepared.  I think Dr. Tubman was right because I know I’ll sit down and have a good look at how I prepared for the interview and what I need to do differently next time.  This was also a good reminded to get off our own podiums, when something like this happens.  I will be the first to say that all things happen for a reason.  And trust me when I say that you are only as good as those you place around you.  When I am winding my career down the legacy I wish to leave is one where I am described as humble, and a teacher of others.   I never want to be known as the person who was unwilling to share and guide others; to help those that are seeking answers to questions that I may have the answer to.  Be humble because as good as one thinks he or she is, there are those that are as good or better than you.  And when you find them, learn from them.  And when the situations arise, learn from them as well.


Yours in Health and Performance,

Jeff Osadec, Mkin, CEP, CSCS


There Is No Magic Pill!

“This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill — the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill — you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.”

Guess what, there is no magic pill that will transform you.  There is also no magic workout, routine, class… whatever it is you are looking for that will tone your butt, lose weight off your thighs, increase your vertical jump or insert whatever else you are thinking of here.  It is called a life style.  Period. Nothing more, nothing less.  Really if everyone got this, I would be right out of a job.  Here is where this post stems from.  I met a kid today, that told me his trainer wanted him to gain ten pounds for some type of high school talent show case, I think soccer.  So what does this trainer tell a 17-year-old high school kid to do… take Creatine.  No guidance, just take it.  Unbelievable.  There is a protocol for taking Creatine.  But besides that, taking Creatine DOES NOT result in muscle hypertrophy.  It is for the re-synthesis of ATP.  You will gain water weight and the muscles will look fuller, but that is it.  If someone was to bottle fitness, or talent good on them but here is the pill.  The magic pill that everyone is after… the fountain of youth is…


Holy shit, I just gave away the secret that all the trainers’ at “Globo Gym” don’t want their clients to figure out because that would decrease sales of the minimum 60 sessions per client quota they are required to sell.

Hard work is easy. Ready.

Day 1 –Move your body fast (get your heart rate up)

Day 2 – Lift heavy things

Day 3 – Lift heavy things fast

Day 4 – Play or move slowly

Day 5 – Lift Heavy things

Day 6 – Play or move slowly

Day 7 – Play or move slowly

Note: I do recommend reading Primal Fitness Blue Print, where the above schedule was adapted from.  It is a good start to doing things a little differently.

I have had a great laugh over the last day.  The concept of a gym to “workout” is actually becoming humorous to me.  Why you ask?  Take a look around.  There are people running on a treadmill watching TV.  Guys crushing out bicep curls like the Apocalypse is upon us.  Just watch people in a gym and ask your self if this is natural, any of it.  The treadmills.  Okay, I will correct myself.  It is the routines that people endure that are not natural.  Go to a place, and run on a treadmill, go nowhere and watch TV!  My grandfather came to Canada on a boat, and I would love to have seen the look on his face or heard his reaction to the concept of a gym.  Think about that and you will see my point.  And to top it off today, I stop at Super Store and there is a gym right in the store.  A Goodlife Fitness.  Really, we need life to be that routine, and convenient.

And go ahead and say it, “but you go o a gym.”  Yes, I do.  But I go there to lift weights, move my body fast, and do restorative work on my tissues; to fix the inside and get a better looking outside in the process.  Not look great but be totally broken on the inside.  I even do yoga.  It is not a typical gym “routine”.   The healthy lifestyle is a little more of a vague response.  Look, I will be honest, as I write this after finishing off a cheat meal (Five Guys Burger and Fries this time) which I allow my self maybe once a week; the cheat meal that is, not FGBF.  Look, cheat meals are fine, just don’t do it every day.  It is about eating real food.  Not something that comes in a package or a box.  It is not about taking supplements.  REAL FOOD.  The longer it takes to go bad, the worse it is for you. If you are eating real food, supplements are a waste of money.  Start with real food.  When you are doing that right, and then look to supplements.  And yes I take supplements.  And here they are… fish oil, vitamin D and a multi (only when I know I am going to have a day of poor eating).  That is it.  Not rocket science.  I am an no cover model with six-pack abs and duck face.  But I am going to say, I do not look or feel the age that I am (33 yrs.).  I am fitter and stronger than I was when I was in undergrad and should have been at the prime of my life.  But I try to maintain an simple lifestyle.  I do not kill myself in the gym; I do not run because I “have to”.  I do things because they are fun; challenging and I genuinely enjoy them.  That is as simple as it gets.

So here is my conclusion.  Go to the gym, not because you have to but want to.  If you don’t feel like it get outside.  Move your body.  Enjoy what you do.  Get out of routine.  Eat real food and enjoy it, don’t obsess over it.  If it is real food there is no bad foods.  Cheat… on your diet once in a while and do not beat your self up over it.  That is just silly.   Love what you do and do it with purpose.  Life is not a chore and it is not forever.  Enjoy every moment.

Yours in Health and Performance.

Jeff Osadec, MKin, CEP, CSCS






A Powerful Presentation

When things come across that inspire you, it is a responsibility to share.  And that is what I am going to do today.  Dr. Stephan Norris is a brilliant man, an inspirational speaker and just an interesting man to talk with when you can pin him down.  The following is a talk he presented for the Alberta Sport Development on Long Term Athlete Development and I wanted to pass it along for others to be inspired. I hope you all enjoy.



Yours in Health and Performance,

Jeff Osadec, MKin, CEP, CSCS

An Interesting Story

I may have mentioned his name once or twice before but anyone in strength and conditioning should read “Dinosaur Training by Brooks Kubik”. It is a great read and the material is very thought provoking in regards to strength training. I receive his email news letter on a weekly basis and this gem of a letter was sent past week. The message is strong. Hope you enjoy and thanks to Brooks for the dedication he exudes for old school lifting.

“I was at the shooting range not very long ago.
Inside range. Seven lanes.

So I’m in lane no. 3, and there’s an old guy
(oops — I mean, a guy not much older than me)
on the left, and a group of four young guys in
two of the lanes to my right. I listen to them
and watch their shooting for awhile.

The old guy is quiet. Silver hair. Seems to be
in good shape. Stands tall, back straight,
shoulders back. I peg him for ex-military.
Maybe ex-law enforcement.

The young guys are — well — young guys —
and they’re acting like young guys. Loud, brash,
and noisy. Constantly talking. Cheering for one
another even though there’s no reason to cheer.

Hollering “Got him!” and “Look at that!”

They’re using semi-auto’s, of course, and they
empty the entire mag every time they fire. All
by laughter and more of that “Got him!” talk.

They’re throwing brass everywhere — and lead,
as well.

They have their targets set at 7 yards — and
they’re big silhouette targets — and I think
they actually missed the target sometimes.
When they hit it, they hit it anywhere. Their
shots are all over the place. No control. No
precision. I don’t even think they were aiming.
Too busy talking and laughing and acting macho.

The old guy is doing something totally different.

There’s total quiet. (He’s concentrating.)

There’s a long pause. (He’s aiming.)


There’s a single shot.

And there’s a hole right through the center of the

Then there’s another pause — and he repeats the
entire process.

He works slowly, methodically and precisely —
and he makes every shot count.

When he finishes, there’s no more bulls-eye. He’s
blown it away.

You may be wondering what this has to do with
strength training.

There’s a parallel.

That very same night, in gyms across the world,
there are groups of young guys (and some not so
young), who train together. They’re loud, brash
and noisy. Constantly talking. Cheering for one
another even though there’s no particular reason
to cheer.

They take turns doing their sets, and when they
begin, they grab the bar and rep out like they
were shooting a semi-automatic.

ZERO control and the worst form you ever imagined.

And then they drop the bar and flex their guns
and tell the world how great they are.

Except they’re not really that great, and their
guns look more like water pistols than cannons,
and the only thing that’s growing is your
headache if you have to listen to them.

Meanwhile, there’s an old guy training alone in
his garage.

He doesn’t yell, and he doesn’t scream.

He doesn’t say, “Watch this!”

No one tells him, “It’s all you, bro!”

Instead, it’s one perfect rep after another.

Slow — precise — methodical — and perfect.

Every rep is a bulls-eye.

And that, my friend, is how you train for REAL

If you want the secret to BIG GAINS — you just
read it.

It’s about concentration — focus — precision —
and control.

That’s what works at the shooting range — and
that’s what works in the gym (or the garage).

And I cannot emphasize ENOUGH just how important
it is.


It’s the difference between success and failure.

The difference between missing the target — or
blowing a hole right through the center of the

The difference between getting ZERO RESULTS —
or getting GREAT RESULTS from your training.

In other words — all the difference in the world.

All the difference — in the world.”

It’s All About One Lynchpin!

With a relatively quite week, I was able to catch up on some much-needed reading, and pod cast reviews. I was immersed in watching a series of videos from John Berardi PhD of Precision Nutrition fame. I think the recipes that John and his team create are amazing and he poses a great deal of knowledge through his videos and emails. His last series of videos come from his presentation at the Perform Better Summit and he brings about the idea of COMPLIANCE TO SUPPORT CHANGE.

Now let me start off and say that I am in a lucky position that I work mostly with athletes; athletes who are motivated to be at the centre, training and competing. Where they need the biggest changes in their view of workouts. I would at this time like to refer you to a video by Vern Gambetta. In this video, Vern Gambetta talks about the perception an athlete must take in regards to their view of training in order to go from good to great.



With athletes, although there are numerous factors that affect every day of their training, this concept by Vern Gambetta could play a huge role in an athlete’s development and change compliance.

Now when it comes to the general client, the ones who would like to lose a little weight, gain that six pack for the New Year, I will be the first to admit… I have difficulties. I will say that I have gone through all the stages that John Berardi described in his pod casts. I truly believed that, “I am awesome therefore my client will be awesome.” But when changed did not happen as quickly I thought, “ Well, I am awesome but my clients are not doing what I asked them to do… therefore it is not me, it is them.” But I now ask, for my general clients, “If they are not making the drastic changes that are possible, why? What am I doing that is hindering their progress?” You know what it is? I ask too much.

I throw too many factors that they need to change, and talk about the things that they are doing incorrectly. I have to say that I am a little embarrassed that I have done that because I should and do know better. I hate to be told that I am wrong, so why would my clients respond when they are told what they are doing is wrong. I get caught up in what will work, what the science dictates and the end result and forget the process. And once again, it is an education piece; teaching the client that change is a process. It does not happen over night. And it is about change in small doses. It is finding that Lynchpin. I teach Olympic lifting in chunks, I do not ask an athlete to complete a Clean and Jerk upon the first time touching a bar. Why then would I ever think that I am going to change everything at once? It is about changing small habits that make the biggest differences. These differences are listed below are what John Berardi recommends with his clients. This is one smart man who had produced some great results and transformations. He must be doing something right. It starts by choosing one or two of these habits and being consistent with this change for 1 month… next month we change another habit.

Take Fish Oil and a Multi-vitamin

Slow Down Your Eating

Stop Eating at 80% Full

Eat at Least 5 Servings of Vegetables

Eat Protein With Each Meal

Eat Few Process Carbohydrates

Eat Around 4 Times a Day

Record What You Eat Today

Sleep At Least 7 Hours Today

Drink 2 Litres of Water Today

Drink a BCAA Recovery Drink

Eat Mostly Whole Foods

Remember that it is not about changing all these at one time… it is about changing all of these slowly over time. Collectively, these small changes over time will account for great change.

Looking ahead, I have been chatting with friends and I have been introduced to a fascinating concept that sparked many thoughts. In my next post I will take a brief look at what this changes and how physical well-being could positively affect our longevity and mental capabilities as we age. Dr. Tim Noakes may not be all that far off.

Once again, yours in health and performance,

Jeff Osadec, Mkin, CEP, CSCS


Because I hope to still do Olympic lifting into my old age.

There is a point at which a person begins to question their own mortality and the legacy that they will leave behind.  However after hearing from my doctor that I am once again in fantastic shape, I am going to borrow a scene from the 1995 movie, “Grumpy Old Men.”  I have no doubt in my mind that I will live to turned 95 years old, exercise most days in my life.  Every morning, I will wake up, and eat five strips of bacon.  And for lunch, I will eat a bacon sandwich. And for a midday snack?

Yep… Bacon.  Bacon! A whole damn plate! And I will usually drink my dinner. And according to all of them nutrition experts, I would take a dirt nap like thirty years prior. But each year will come and go, and I will still be there.  Ha! And they will keep dyin’. And I will wonder if God forgot about me.

I do not think about my personal mortality, but I think of the mortality of my career.  Look, I love what I do and the people I work with.  Every day bring with it a new challenge.  I cannot ever say that my job is boring, but I question how long can one keep, “counting reps.” Years ago before I was married I told my wife Pam, “you have to put in your time… and things will get better.”   Then I applied for my Master, and once again I told Pam, “you have to put in your time… and things will get better.”  At some point after putting in all the time, I have to prove that things will get better, because she will finally figure out that I truly am full of shit.

I do not want this to ever sound like I am complaining about my job, but I am here to state a fact.  THIS IS A HARD PROFESSION; YOU HAVE TO PAY YOUR DUES.  I am going to be the first to say that I feel my due are almost all paid up.  I do have some yet to pay but I have moved up the ladder.  I have been rewarded some fantastic opportunities.  I have a Masters, I work with some amazing athletes at Talisman Centre, I have a great situation working for the Canadian Sports Centre and with Cross Country Canada.  Every day I see the up dates on Twitter my heart explodes with pride.   Teaching at the University of Calgary is one highlight of my week.  My professional relationships with the group over at Natural Way Chiropractic and Dave at Tower Physio make my job easier every day. I AM TRULY BLESSED TO LIVE THE LIFE I DO.

But at some time you ask what does a 30-year strength coach’s career look like?  It’s like asking what do a 20-year Cross Fitter look like?  We don’t really know.  And not only that, we ask, did we set ourselves up to be that expert in our respective field so that groups find us to use as a consultant?  Have we developed a legacy or begun to develop that legacy so that we are in that position 20, 30 years down the road.

I think the mistake I have made, and this is on more than one occasion, was to take the small successes and over-inflate my sense of self worth.  It happens to the best of us, and we then think the grass is greener on the other side.  We think we can take on more that we can handle and then thrash in the water with our heads just above the water.  When I fist went to Peak Power, would I have been able to take on a team with the dynamics and needs of Alberta Alpine?  Hell no.  I would have crashed and burned.   Could I do it now?  I like to think I could.   I like to think myself and the training team is going to see success with Cascade Swim, Water Polo and Gymnastics.   But as a young coach we tend to be false prophets, and spout intellectual incest (sharing information we have collected from others as if it is our own).  We fake it until we make it.  We aspire to be leader and think that we are.   But our view of what a leader is is completely skewed.

For the young coaches out there, who wish to have longevity in this profession have to become leaders, and to be a leader, it is not having a title or being the loudest/ smartest/ charismatic etc. person out there.  It comes down to a few simple things…

  1. Prepare relentlessly
  2. You are always accountable
  3. Surround yourself with good people
  4. Under promise and over deliver
  5. Be your own man… or woman
  6. Stand up for yourself and do not give yourself away
  7. Continue to study, read and lead.

I am going to he honest… what to know more about the above list read “Leadership by Rudolph Giuliani.  I think it is essential reading for those how what to be better personally and professionally.  There are ways to make this great profession something that we do for our lives, not just a period within it.  I really believe that and Pam, “all those good times are near, I can feel it.”

Yours in Health and Performance,

Jeff Osadec, Mkin, CEP, CSCS



Ghosts Don’t Have Egos.

As a leader, if you are waiting to appease others before acting in many cases you are doing our role as a leader injustice. However, in the profession of training an conditioning, many have taken that idea of “I am going to do something and ask for forgiveness later to a whole new level by adding an ingredient that ruins many a good coach… EGO.  I will be the first to say that if I have to step on others to get a head in this career, I will walk away, and never do this again.  I know I get on my little soapbox here and spout off what I think is right and wrong, however, I am doing this as an aim to educate and generate conversation.  Sometimes playing the devils advocate is an interesting role to take as it makes one think as much as the person defending their stance.  But one thing I will never try to impose is an Ego into this career.   Yes, I have completed a few post secondary degrees and what that has taught me more so than anything else is that I know very little and the more I learn the more questions I have.

But in the “industry” of strength and conditioning, many begin to impose their sense of ego.  The gather a following, or have others state that they do great work, and the ego is fed.   The more the ego is fed, the greater the ego is present.  This occurs to the point where they are putting others down, stating their work is shoddy, or incorrect.  My personal thought is that they put others down as they are envious of that persons role or are threatened by their knowledge or skill, but that is a whole different post on insecurities.  Does that need to be part of the business of strength and conditioning?  To be a good coach in the public sector do you need to stand up on stage at a trade show and state, “ that everything you read in a text book is wrong” or “ the “this show is the second best thing to happen to the Calgary fitness industry since the opening of my facility.”  Why do people buy into the hype?

Why must some think that to be a god coach you need to be an… asshole?  What makes me think that someone is great at his or her job and the characteristics that I admire most in people are the following…

1. Be humble to the fact that yes, you are good at what you do, but you do not boast.  You must be humble to the fact that there is others out there who are great at what they do and in some cases they have forgotten more than many of us even know.

2. Good coaches are honest individuals who are there to help.  And will tell you if they cannot help. They do not deceive and all that they do for their clients is with the best intentions.  They do so with the intent to never deceive or ever do harm.

3. The good coaches stand by their principles and never waiver.   Now this may be skewed as even the terrible coaches who have sold their soul to the “business devil” and have become the ego driven person I never wish to become believe they are still standing by their principles.  I am talking about the coaches who have stood by their principles and maintained point 1 and 2 above.

4.  Good coaches are teachers; they are there to teach others (and not just those paying), however they are life long students as well.  They understand that they do not have all the answers, and they are first to acknowledge that fact.  They understand that research has been conducted since they have left University and they continue to upgrade and advance themselves.  They are the first to recognize terrible information, and although the information to them may be considered “useless” they learn that that information is valuable.  They know never to do that with their clients.  They do not lambaste the material or the “author” of the material.

It is a short list and I am sure that there are other characteristics that different readers admire, but there are books written on this topic.  I only have a short amount of time.   But it is a simple concept to leave the ego out of training.  There are those few who are “Ghosts” in this profession.  They are amazing at their job and no one would know the difference.  I have a list of guys in this profession I admire but no need to name names; I have mentioned in previous blogs before.  And this is the goal I have for myself, to be a Ghost, a trainer without ego.  Hopefully someday some day others are writing posts with min in mind as inspiration and a Ghost to emulate.  That would provide a little ego boost.

Yours in Health and Fitness,

Jeff Osadec, MKin  CEP CSCS

P.S.  M. A. , thanks for the brief conversation that spurred this post.  Like you said, seeing those without ego is a great relief.







Sometimes We Do Not Learn from Our Mistakes…

I had mentioned that I was going to write this post on common mistakes I witness around the gym, but there were others topics that came along and pushed this to the back of the list.  However the extra time just lead to me discovering that there was much more to cover than I first thought.   I have been working in gyms in capacity since 1998.  In the 11 years I have seen so many funny stories, touching (not criminal touching) moments, and numerous acts of stupidity, but have never documented them.  In those 11 years there have been many frustrations and little annoyances and I wanted to share a few.


  1. You see no results from your training and in most cases I can boil this down to a few common reasons.
    1. You are a program jumper.  You spend each week doing a different style of work out, from total body one week to high intensity the next week, with no consistency in any one program you take on.  Consistency is a key component of a program that is commonly taken for granted.
    2. OR… You have been on the same program for a number of years.  The human body is an amazingly adaptable organism and is it commonly understood among the professionals that a program should be changed or tweaked every 4 to 6 weeks.
    3. You have no clear plan when you come to the gym.  Many, and I am going to categorize here, guys’ come to the gym and lift.   They know they are working (insert muscle groups here) but there is no plan of attack.
    4. Pair with the above comment, there is a lack of documentation of the progression.  Buy a $2.00 notebook and watch the progress.  By that I mean very few individuals will track the weight they have lifted from session to session.  I will say from anecdotal evidence, that I have used the most random of programs, but consistently tracked the weight I used from session to session, insuring that I was lifting more weight each time I performed the program, and you know what?  I made gains.  This is not a difficult concept.
    5. Yes, I know you see a trainer three times a week, an hour at a time.  This does not ensure success.  Now take it that the trainer should be giving you the tools to succeed when they are not there, but many do not take the responsibility on away from the gym.  You see a trainer for 3 hours a week, what are you doing for the other 165 hours away from the gym?
    6. Training is not an activity in itself.  There are those who you ask, what do you do for activity (i.e. Road cycling, snowboarding, climbing… whatever) and they answer, “I go to the gym.”  I have a different view of this.  I go to the gym because I do other things (i.e. Road cycling, snowboarding, climbing… whatever).  The gym and your training are to supplement the “other things you do.  They are to make those other things more enjoyable because you are not sore, fatigued, whatever it may be, after you have completed those activities.
    7. Nutrition will factor in something like 70% of how you look or progress though a program, yet many will never see a nutritionist or even adapt their diet to their training.   But I am going to go one step further.  It is lifestyle that will factor something like 70 – 80 % of how you look and progress through a program.  Yes, there is eating, but what about your sleep pattern, your stress level.  The guy in the gym is built like a brick house, or the girl on the treadmill has a likeness to a Greek Goddess, yet they are sleep deprived, binge drink on weekends, or are going through a terrible break up for example; are they healthy?  They are akin to my idea of steroids; steroids may make someone look good on the outside, but slowly they are breaking down from the inside out (if you have questions about this comment, please ask and I can elaborate more). These people are not well on the inside and are more fragile than you think.


I could be here for quite some time but I want to keep the post brief and not to inundate everyone with a great amount of material.  Little changes at a time, right.

Next post is drafted, and being edited as I tackle the egos in the profession.


But until next time,

Yours in Health and Performance


Jeff Osadec, MKin, CEP, CSCS