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Sumo style Dead-lift

Sumo style Dead-lift

Have you been consistent at sweating out your routines at the gym for some time now?  These three tips may be help you continue progress.

3.  A Grunt Out Loud (GOL) – Why?  It’s a sign to your body that you mean business.

It amazes me that so called gyms today do not allow you to grunt when necessary.  Seriously?  This rule can set limitations on your want for successive progress.  What to do?

Do some grunting in the car, or the house before your next session.  Get your nervous system slightly elevated by taking a few deep breaths, and then a few more breaths with an intentional grunt and a muscle contraction.  Yes, it may seem silly at first, however, will aid in those times of momentary failure under the same loads you used a few weeks ago.

Focus on the muscles or the movement you are wanting to train that day.  If you are training big moves, focus more emphasis into your diaphragm for these core lifts.

Sanity Tip:  Your nervous system is currently wired on exactly what you are already doing.  If you want change, prepare it for hard work with breathing, focus and a few loud GOL’s ;)

2.  Practice movements - Why?  In order to have a lifetime of sustainable activity, your ability to move must always be a priority.  And, from my voice of experience, know that freedom of movement is not free, it costs movement.

If you are sitting for hours a day, STOP!  You need to add in simple activity and stretching into your day.  The calisthenics we used to do when we were little can work wonders for extra activity in your day.

For example: Stand up, touch the sky, touch your knees, touch the sky, and then reach for your toes.  Repeat until you feel limber again.

In the gym, try something that starts as a challenge, and practice it to be easy.

Have more time available?  Take a long walk, practice some Yoga, or a mixture of both.  Practice a few different Yoga poses, and then rotate in a new pose every so often.  When you feel ready, take a class and see what your made of.

Sanity Tip: Make it simple, and keep it significant.  Stick to the basics of healthy living, so that you always have these sane options available to you tomorrow.

1.  A clean slate -  Why?  We are creatures of habit, and although it is important to be consistent with exercise, it is also important to recognize when your wants have been met, and shift priorities to the present moment.

For example, if you are wanting to have more defined abs, bigger biceps, or a stronger squat, then your gym sessions must focus on making this happen.  This also can mean adjusting your lifestyle outside of the gym to influence these new results toward success.

Sanity Tip:  A plateau is not a bad thing, so don’t be afraid of it.   It simply means you have  received  the fruits from your labor.  Now, it’s time to climb a new tree.


I share these tips for my Sanity fans because with all the information available to us about health, wellness, fitness, and such, I think it’s important to fill the gaps rather than overfill the mental plates.


Coach Sanity




A Functioning Metabolism


Write You.

Rewrite You.

Rewrite your metabolism using movement bursts

Movement bursts are short, high intensity circuit training sessions, utilizing multi-joint exercise, to increase your metabolic output.   Simple body weight exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, burpees, and various jumping activities coupled into a circuit can do wonders to rev up your stagnant metabolism.

Keep these high intensity circuits from anywhere between 5 – 15 minutes.  Here’s one to get you started:

  • 30 Jumping Jack
  • 20  Squat or Squat Jumps
  • 20 Lunge
  • Max # Full Body Push-up

Aim for 1 to 4 rounds in the 5 – 15 minute time frame, while also aiming for the same number and speed of push-ups each consecutive round.

Rewire your metabolism with Intermittent Fasting

An 18 hour fast can also do wonders for rewiring the way your metabolism functions.  Intermittent Fasting allows many benefits, specifically retraining our bodies ability to better utilize stored fat as energy.   An example:

  • Sunday Dinner – 6 p.m.
  • Monday’s first meal – 12  p.m.
  • Monday’s second meal – 7 – 9 p.m.

*Repeat the above routine once a week for month and see how you feel.  

**It is also important to not overeat or snack during this time period. 

You may also try a full 24 hour fast once a week, and return to your regular way of eating the rest of the week.

Chew slowly. Move intentionally.

Coach Sanity








Raising the Bar


Extraordinary directions

Extraordinary directions

A few months ago, I was one of the lucky 100 plus participants who attended a 3 day summit that basically celebrated two very specific things.  One was to thank me for doing exactly what I am doing, and the second was giving me a few more pointers on how to continue to do what I am doing.

What am I doing you ask?  I create extraordinary experiences to help you move forward into excellence.  What is excellence?  Excellence is doing all that you commit yourself to, to be done at the highest level of focus and meaningful direction.  Simply said, it is a trained instinct of significant progress.  You interested?

I have learned over the years that nothing can be forced.  In fact, the more you push at it, ironically it pushes you right back to where you started.  Yes, equal and opposite reaction, or in this case, the opposite direction.  In order for us to gain forward motion and progress, focus and a meaningful direction are both required.  Then, a lot of hard work done intelligently, so that any force being transfered is exactly into the direction of what is necessary to further your quest.  This is why it is so important to know what you want.

Why Raising the Bar?  I have helped to lead  so many people toward extraordinary changes in their daily lives and I have done this by learning early on that most were not recognizing their daily actions of insanity.  Yes, they were all working hard, however, they didn’t recognize that their work had become non-progressive.   I would like to introduce a new direction, and this direction leads us away from mediocrity, and toward extraordinary.

I can tell you now that extraordinary does exist, and if you are willing, you will find it.  You can begin now with three very simple steps.

1.  Wipe your slates clean, mediocrity was yesterday.

2.  Write down exactly what you want

3.  Next to it, draw an arrow going up, because this my friend is our direction toward extraordinary.

A voice of direction and creativity,

Coach Sanity

Feeling ‘The Goods’

Make it simple, keep it significant, Sanity Fitness.

Make it simple, keep it significant, Sanity Fitness.

As a fitness leader, I have strived to empower others with education, using simplification as my primary tool.  What I mean is, I choose to not put more information in your head before helping you to decipher the golden nuggets you already possess first.  Also, I intentionally work to not live a day of insanity by playing out the same actions over and over, hoping to expect a different end.  Yes, I do things a little bit differently.

I can confidently say I have read, at minimum, a trainer’s dozen (somewhere around 8 – 20 ;) ) of blog posts, articles, and training logs written by authors who have shared with us an explanation of the differences between training & working out.  I think it’s pretty safe to assume that since there has been a fair amount of words written about this topic, then there must be something pretty important about it for us to better understand.  Now let’s decipher this a bit together.

“Working out” – a general term used to help piece together exercise routines that use an array of fitness modalities (tools) that you may find in your local fitness centers, hotel gyms, and/or tucked in the corners of your family garage.

‘The goods’ – in here would be the chosen activities executed using these fitness tools to get you perspiring, burning calories, muscles pumping, and heart rate jumping.  They obviously work as we have seen substantial changes in human bodies over the T.V. seasonal years from The Biggest Loser to Extreme Makeover.

“Training”  - a word used that specifically prioritizes an exercisers precise needs & wants, and organizes them into a magnificent plan to further allow their extraordinary transformation, over the course of several significant progressive sessions, toward becoming real.

The goods’ in this mix would be the extraordinary transformation.

I have personally witnessed amazing abilities a human body has the capacity of fulfilling on a daily basis.  Ironically, some of the most powerful ones I have seen have not been anywhere near a gym or fitness center.

We each have the capacity of extraordinary.  The rules are simple:

1.  Know exactly what you want today.

2.  Live exactly what you want, today

3.  Embrace all of exactly what you want, everyday

Your plan to train for an extraordinary life is what you should strive to carry with you in your sweat sessions, and in the end, your progress adds up to more than the solid physique you see reflecting back in the mirror.  It will lead you down a path of absolute opportunity, and your tangible ability to create an amazing day written personally by you.

Make it simple, keep it significant,

Coach Sanity


Movement mechanics

With a market of filled with fad fitness, it can be difficult to know what to follow.  I believe your time spent on a plan that increases both strength and resilience is essential for long term health.   These returns are built with proper movement and these three simple rules:

a.  start with easy

b.  listen (feel) for danger

c.  go back to a. when needed

Bring attention on you breath and focus on your chosen exercise.  Use your exercise time on movements that gain strength, and allow the productive results to arrive.


Start & Finish Position- Isolated Hip Squat

Start & Finish Position- Isolated Hip Squat



Standing Parallel Squat – Straight Back. Knees align with toes. Head is in line with spine.


Example Workout Progression: 

  •  Kneeling Squat – 3 sets/15reps
  • Parallel Standing Squat – 4 sets/10reps
  • Jump Squat – 2 sets/2o reps
  • Superset – Squat/Jump Squat – 3 sets/15 reps (each)

Build an active lifestyle with consistent practice.

Simple. Significant. Sanity!

Coach Sanity

A Strong and Healthy BACK

Inspiration from Coach Sanity!

First, a little reminder about the Sanity Fitness System approach to education and practical application, keep it simple and make it significant.  I believe that when you spend time doing the exact right things, you have more time to have fun with everything.   That being said here’s to a strong and healthy back!

The most efficient way for me to break down what I feel is most necessary for a strong and healthy back would look like this:

B – Big Moves - Spend your time in the gym on progressively improving, strengthening, and challenging the proper lifting mechanics of big moves like a squat, deadlift, overhead pressing, power cleans, and snatches.  These whole body activities asks for a whole body to be present.  If your back is currently a weak link, you will quickly learn from your attempts from these big moves, and you can adjust your resistance, range of motion, and modalities (Barbell, Dumbell, Kettlebell, Medicine Ball, etc) to work with what stress you can actually tolerate.

A – Active Range of Motion - If your back can only handle a certain range of motion, then this where you begin, with a goal to increase your neuro-muscular (fancy word for mind & body) active range of motion (AROM) over time.   If you can not feel your back working properly, then chances are it might not be.  Go as far as you can, and then add a bit more range over time.

C – Core Coordination -  There is a certain ‘rhythm’, if you will, that our core region will synchronize with new movements.  LIke a dance, your core activates, contracts, pauses, and transfers through dynamic movement patterns like the big moves I listed above.  With that, you should also spend some time cross training with activities that require your core musculature to experience a different path of neural firing.  For example, outside the gym activities like running, cycling, swimming, hiking, and dancing.  This will not only increasae variety with your exercise time, it will also allow you to further build an intelligent mind and body connection.

K – Keep Moving - I think this statement speaks for itself.  Studies have shown us that you can workout for an hour everyday, however, if you sit for several hours, you are just as unhealthy, and at risk for both an orthopedic issue, a long with the negative physiological issues related to stroke, heart disease, diabetes, etc.

In short, stay active, find sanity!

6 Small Meals?

In the hopes to continue to create a sense of balance, a long with share my thoughts of sanity, I’d like to share some personal applied practices to the theories of 6 small meals vs one large meal.  I also think this is something important to address because each year most of us set a goal to lose weight.  Ironically, for some strange reason, most people can not maintain their lost weight, and find themselves either starting over, or starting from an even higher weight gain.  Hopefully once you have read this post, you will have a more clear idea as to which philosophy to follow.

First, where did the practice of ‘six small meals’ a day come from.  If you are familiar with Bill Philips, and his book, Body For Life, you can recall his prescription for weight loss was to consume six small meals a day.  With the goal to a. speed up metabolism,  b. stabilize insulin levels, and c. provide a steady flow of carbs, proteins, and fats (macronutrients).

This is simplified down for the spaces of this post, moreover, there are other benefits to this way of eating.

Needless to say, this can be, and has been a successful way of eating for a lot of people.  Bodybuilders specifically as they have been successful with it for years.  If you have found success in doing this, by all means, don’t change it if it isn’t broken.

I do feel it is important to also share that there are some not so positive realities that may come with following this way of food consumption.  For one, it can become quite time consuming to prepare forty two meals every 7 days, for each passing week.  You may also begin to feel overwhelmed with your mind set around food, food, food.  In other words, your mental frame of your day is around consuming calories ALL DAY LONG.  Probably not the best approach if you find that you are back to square one, months or a year later.  Of course if you never stop eating this way, and you do gain the self control to stick to small number of calories six times a day, then you will be successful.  Keep in mind I said NEVER.  Which may be a lifetime of worrying about overeating.  One word, stress.

If you are in search for something different, might I suggest my way of daily eating.  Understand that I started years ago as an overweight adolescent.  Later, I glorified the small meal eating as I was also a competitive bodybuilder, and all around gym rat.  When I reached my 30′s, I found that I was not in balance of my mind spending, with preparing for the gym and being at the gym vs. a life existing outside.  How could I have the rewards of both worlds?

I switched my way of eating and found liberation.  I was liberated from thinking about food, to making memories of trying flavors.  No longer was I fearing overeating because I no longer experienced self deprivation.  The rewards were that I was now healthy because of how I used my time in the gym, and now I also have a healthy relationship with all foods.  No fear of overeating, just a healthy habit of chewing slowly, all those zests of macronutrient combinations.

My typical day of eating looks like this:

Wake – 4 a.m.

Sip coffee

Meal One (large) – 3 p.m.

Meal Two – 6 or 7 p.m.

Sleep – 9 or 10 p.m.

Please note, for all sane purposes, I am not thinking about food preparation all day because I only need to think about it twice.  Now more space is available for making smiles, and smelling roses.  The beauty of this way of eating is that, through time, it becomes very flexible to social gatherings, traveling, surprise getaways, etc.  No need to feel obligated to keeping a kitchen within a 5 mile radius.  Just the open road and a blank canvas.

I hope that I could at least open your mind to something different.  A different way of eating, a long with a different way of living.  If you like what you see, and have a question(s) for me, please feel free to ask.  Obviously I can not customize this approach to you specifically within this confined page on the internet.

Fun. Move. Play.

Coach Sanity

Prepare for Fitness


Simple tools.  Significant movement.

Simple tools. Significant movement.

Our excitements run high of adding  new activities through out each year.  Remember, life is a long marathon, not a sprint, and the better we prepare ourselves to enjoy each and every day, the more we can enjoy ALL the rewards.

Before you embark on your next activity (a run. a class. a lifting session. etc.) be sure to take a little time to prepare your body for proper recovery.  Aside from a proper warm-up, healing from the stresses of exercise can begin once you have finished today’s sweat session.  It is also a nice habit to make recognizing that your body can only continue to provide you what you will give it back.  In other words, take care of it, and it will be there for you when you need it.

A few simple actions you can use for recovery are:

  • self myofascial release techniques
  • passive or static stretching
  • short stages of meditation/breathing

I have found that a after my fitness training sessions with a few minutes spent on a tennis ball for my feet, some simple stretches, followed by 10 minutes of meditation can do wonders for longevity.  We all love playing this game of life.  And the better we treat our opportunities to savor our experiences, the more we open ourselves up to take in each colorful rain drop we call today.

To our health, Salud!

Let’s play,

Coach Sanity

2013 Sanity Fitness Predictions

I’d like to throw in my 2013 fitness predictions for my fans to mull over and share forward.  First a quick recap on what happened to the others in 2012:

  • Obese rate still on the rise
  • Fitness Fad Market increases
  • Health Benefits/Insurance cut
  • Still confused on where to begin/what to do

In short, insanity still exists and there is more work for me to do.  To begin, let’s all agree that our next approach will not be the same.  In fact, it won’t even be coming from the same engrained habit you call upon in your brains.  It is now time for something different.  Enter sanity.

2013 Sanity Fitness Predictions

  • An increase of appreciating meaningful and purposeful movement  (FOCUS)
  • We begin to chew more slowly
  • We invest our fitness time into the most valuable exercise prescriptions – no fads, just real fitness.

Stay tuned for an amazing year of Sanity!

Coach Sanity



Strength Training

Strength training articles have been written for years, and so, our practice has traveled from all corners of the fitness continuum supporting sporting activities ranging from weekend warriors, to minutes shaved from of a mile, to strokes removed to find us further under par.

I am writing this post specifically to educate about the training for a life filled with activity.  I have found where most people fall short is not recognizing their opportunity to rehearse, and thrive, within life’s activities.  A large part of this is not personal fault, rather, a commitment of time spent on a mass market of fitness filled with draining activities that sacrifice quality for quantity.  Strength training for life is allowing for a practice of progress found in progressive training.  Like goal strategy, this is intentionally planned and modified.

Where other mistakes are found is not knowing what is wanted in return for the time spent under a barbell.  Without knowing your take away product, the value  of the benefits begin to decline, and when we find ourselves short of long term results.  A few valuable benefits found in strength training are:

  • injury prevention
  • bone density increase/maintenance
  • long term weight management
  • mind focus
  • a sense of resilience

These benefits only continue to improve, as we challenge through periods of progressive strength training protocols.  Furthermore, I have found one of the most valuable benefits my clients take away with them from my strength training prescriptions is an improvement of their ‘in the moment’ thinking.  I value it as an increased ability of (RAISE ) React Accordingly In Stress Environments.

We tend to use a large amount of our human ability to recover from stress when we overreact to the happenings of daily living.  Your staying power can be found within the results of personal progression of the movement patterns our bodies were designed to do since the beginning of existence.  In the gym, they fall under weighted squats, deadlifts, over head pressing/pulling, throwing and hurling, and jumping/landing.  Simple movements done with progressive overloads, to test the human systems of tolerating heightened amounts of stress.

Seek value in the movements that change your life for the better, and spend more 0f your lifetime doing the activities that  make you smile.

Play now, live longer

Coach Sanity

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