Genetic Control



Is there such a thing to have a gene to control SEVERE muscle pain?  And also do we have genes that will enhance your ability to metabolize food faster?  And is there something we can do to enhance that?


chameleon-2Let me preface this by saying that I’m not a geneticist nor am I a neurologist; I’m simply a meathead that loves to learn.  There is a gene that controls and regulates pain.  There are disorders where people do not have the capability to actually feel pain: Congenital Insensitivity to Pain (CIP).  Though you’d think it’d be beneficial, it’s actually pretty dangerous.

Similarly, this goes for stress as well.  There are people that can tolerate stress better than others.  Bulgarians actually selected their lifting candidates based on their ability to handle & adapt to stress.  This is a big reason why they were able to succeed utilizing a highly intensive lifting protocol.  They picked the right group of athletes to train.

Both of these things – much like many other things have the ability to be influenced.  We all have genes to do something, we just need to learn and understand what it takes to “unlock” them or express them.

For instance, I have a friend who is 6’1″.  His mother is 5’4″ and his father is 5’6″.  I asked him how that’s possible?  And he explained to me that his father was brought up as a peasant.  The genes were there, they just couldn’t be expressed due to malnourishment.  His father was a product of his environment & circumstances.

Side note: A cool book to read on the topic of genetics is: The Biology of Belief by Bruce Lipton

Certain reptiles do the same thing.  People have pets that need to maintain a caloric restriction otherwise they grow too big.  The more you feed an animal, the larger it will get.  If you keep its calories down, then the animal will  aim to survive knowing that it can only get “x” calories/day and will figure out a way to adapt to the environment & circumstances.  So rather than growing at a rate where it cannot sustain life/size with that diet, it stays small so it can live efficiently within it’s means.

For any kind of adaptation to occur, there needs to be exposure.  That’s all training is.  We are exposing our bodies to a stimulus in hopes that it will adapt a specific way – Bigger, stronger, faster, thinner, fatter, thicker, etc.  The key is figuring out the right amount of stimulus – and that’s what we do as coaches.  We attempt to identify a persons ability to adapt to certain stimuli to make them more optimal at what they want to do.


Click Here To Get a taste of the evaluation process I put people through:

Sports Performance Seminar



Food For Thought

Saw this post on facebook this morning:–547381307.html



A little food for thought: According to this article, orcas that are born in captivity last 4.5 years until they die. They just found a killer whale that’s about a hundred and three years old. Why? Because it’s able to roam free. It’s not restricted by its environment.  Not a huge shocker.  Think about how depressed people get in the winters.  Why?  We don’t go outside at all.

Couple being trapped in a cage with stress and it’s a recipe for misery.  It’s no surprise to me that people that are inside all day long want to kill themselves. Look at Cornell, school has a few suicides/year.  Maybe it’s a self destruct button. Maybe we should take a lesson from this. Maybe we shouldn’t be keeping ourselves indoors or trapped in captivity and we’ll lead healthier lives.

If you’re at a desk or trapped inside when you read this, stop what you’re doing and take a walk outside for a few minutes.  Do it without your phone while you’re at it.  I’ve personally noticed after a 10-20minute walk with nothing but mother nature stimulating me I come back to my normal tasks with more focus than when I left.  Give it a shot, I promise it’s worth your effort.

What Are You Thankful For?

It’s that time again over in America where we gather together with friends and family and do two very American things…eat a ton of great food, and watch football! All kidding aside, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday to celebrate for a myriad of reasons. Obviously the first one is the food. My mother makes a Thanksgiving meal to die for. I literally start to look forward to it once September hits. The other, more important reason is that it’s a holiday that comes with no strings attached. There is no gift giving, no expectations except for enjoying a great meal with some of the most important people in your lives and reflecting on all you have been blessed with.


It’s that last thought I want to focus on. As we go through our daily lives it can become easy to forget all the good things we have. I try to always stay upbeat, and keep a positive tone, but I’m just as guilty as the next guy when it comes to getting down every now and again; specifically this week leading up to Thanksgiving. Then I had one of my old football players reach out to me and remind me how I used to tell him to stop complaining, that someone always has it worse. This made me happy for a variety of reasons. One it was the kick in the ass I needed. Two, it was something I taught to this kid that he’s held onto throughout his life. Sometimes I forget the impact I get to have as teacher/coach. It’s a tremendous feeling to impact the lives of people in a positive way and to impart lessons that will last them a lifetime. There is no dollar amount I could put on that!


So this year I am thankful that I get to do what I do everyday! Everyday I work with young people to help them become better versions of themselves…and in turn, someday they may turn around and help me become a better version of myself. That’s powerful man. I am thankful that I am surrounded by great people who have helped me grow. I am thankful that I am married to a wonderful woman, who has supported me every step of the way, been my rock, and hits me with the truth when I need it. I am thankful for my two beautiful children, who give me the biggest smiles when I walk through the door after a long day.


Yes…I have a lot to be thankful for this year, and I’m going to try to not forget it. Sit down and make a list of what you have to be thankful for and keep it on you. When you’re feeling stressed, or down pull that list out to remind you of all the good things you have in your life. As my old player reminded me “like you said, we all have a bag of crap we carry around, some bigger than others, but that’s why we squat and deadlift…so it’s easy to carry it around!” MAN I LOVE WHAT I DO!

QnA: #B2L, Protein & Lower Back Health

Hey mike I purchased your B2L program recently and I’m really enjoying it. I’m a tall guy with long legs and I’d like to add some extra size to them. I was wondering if there’s any way of mixing in an extra leg day to the program?



If you want to add another leg day in, take the initial day we have, perform the exact same exercises only half the volume.  If that’s too easy, up the volume, if it’s too hard, lessen.  But that’s a good and simple base to go by.

Hope that helps!!

Hey Mike
First off I just want to say I am a huge fan of you and the work you do. I have been following your website for a while now and love the passion you put into your job. I am currently a college baseball athlete studying Exercise Science, that someday hopes to be where you are at and doing what you are doing with the same passion you are doing it with. I just got done reading your article, Easy Ways to Gain Weight and I was wondering what type of protein and what brand of protein you recommend? Again I am a huge fan of the work you are doing and someday hope to be where you are at, using your training methods and the passion you have you to train athletes. Thank you for your time and keep up the outstanding work man.


Yo bro, posted this a few weeks back regarding what protein I currently take:

Wish you the best of luck with everything and hope you kill it!

I’ve only got 5 workouts left on my first round of Built 2 Last. My question is for the second time around, should I increase the amount of reps for the bodyweight exercises, change them to a harder exercise or just do the exact same thing as the first time?



First off, hope you’re liking it!  For round two, I use an autoregulatory approach for myself when it comes to bodyweight movements.  If I feel good, I up the ante, if not then I leave it be.

But I’ll splash the pot whenever I please!

Keep up the good work dude! Crush Built to Last!!!!


Mike, can you post sets and reps for the exercises you posted in your latest back rehab video?  Thanks


  • 20 Cat Camels
  • 10 L/R T-spine E&R
  • 20 L/R Leg Lengthening
  • 20 L/R Hip Tilts
  • 10 L/R Step Overs (Behind)
  • 10 L/R Step Overs (Forward)
  • 10 L/R Banded Walks (Forward)
  • 10 L/R Banded Walks (Backward)
  • 10 L/R Banded Walks (Sideways)
  • 10 L/R Adduction
  • 2-5Min L/R Glute Stretch
  • 2-5 min L/R Quad/Hip Flexor Stretch


Built To Last QnA

Hi Mike. I purchased Built 2 Last today and am excited to start it. A couple of questions…

1. I know there’s no nutrition component per se, but what are the general nutrition guidelines you’ve been following in order to achieve the increased strength/decreased fat results…has it been eating in a calorie deficit, not counting calories at all, only eating starchy carbs around workouts, etc.?

2. When the e-book ends with saying the program can be performed “over and over,” is it meant to be an ongoing program into perpetuity, and if not, how would you incorporate this program into the grand scheme of a year’s worth of training (for those, like me, or are not experts in program development, and whose goals are the general to stay in good shape/lose fat/build muscle).

Thanks for your help,



Thanks for purchasing Built to Last!! I hope you enjoy it!  Make sure you take a “Before & After Pic” and be sure to post it once you’ve completed that program and Hashtag it #B2L #Built2Last so everyone can see your progress.

As far as diet is concerned, while I was doing B2L my diet went as follows:

4 meals/day + 1 Shake

All meals were 4-6oz Meat (chick, fish or usually red meat)

2-4cups Vegetables and they were usually using this recipe:


Occasionally I’d have 1-2 servings of fruit

And my shake was a combination of:

Veggie Shake1 Packet Advocare Meal Replacement Shake – Vegetarian Formula


& 1 scoop of Vega Sport Performance Protein

Because I performed all these workouts at 5am and go to sleep at 1-2am I’d usually have to resort to using preworkout.  This was what I used:


1 Packet of AdvoCare Spark® On The Go™

Now I normally don’t use or recommend any preworkout, but I’ve been a bit sleep deprived for the past year so I’ll take it haha.  Hypocrite, I know #RealWorldProblems

On the weekends, I usually drank my face off which would usually result in some late night pizza haha.  But I supposed it’s a good thing, because that’s real life stuff.  If you’re clean the entire week, you can drink on Friday and/or Saturday, have a little cheat meal and still get results!

Mike Front Day 1 copy10609021_10101798606525014_724920138_n20140820_062655

And as for performing the program multiple times, we encourage it!! Joe D is on his 4th cycle of it and I’m on my 2nd and we both keep getting stronger and stronger each time.  It’s got enough variation to keep you interest even if you perform it for 40 weeks straight!  It’s safe, easy and effective!

Make sure you pick up your copy of

Built To Last!!