Category Archives: Announcements

2016-01-18 01.19.58

Glute Lab Seminar #2

The next Glute Lab seminar will be held on Saturday, February 27th in Phoenix, AZ.

The seminar will start at 10:00 am and end at 6:00 pm. We will spend several hours reviewing the science of glute training, then have lunch, and then move on to all of the various glute exercises. The lecture covers all of the most up to date research including data from my PhD thesis. Lunch will probably be Chipotle, on me of course. The practical will cover variations of squats, deadlifts, hip thrusts, split squats, back extensions, lateral band walks, floor glute exercises, and more.

Although the first seminar was a big success, I received some excellent feedback from the attendees, so this one will be even better. The attendees from the first seminar came from all over the United States, which was very cool.

Just a heads-up. The last seminar sold out in one day. We kept a waiting list and have already sold 5 seats for this seminar, so there are only 15 seats remaining since I’m limiting the seminar to 20 total attendees. Cost is $399 and you’ll pay through PayPal.

If you’re interested in attending, please email Maleah at

Below are pictures from the first seminar.

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Random Thoughts and Important Announcements

Hi Fitness Friends! I have some exciting things to share with you.

I Finally Hired My First Assistant!

Last week I hired an assistant. Her name is Maleah and she’s already doing a kickass job. I will be able to do more things now that I’ve acquired her help. I only wish that I hired one 2-3 years ago (I’ve had interns but no assistants)!

My Badass Assistant!

My Badass Assistant!

Arizona Strength & Conditioning Research Club

If someone were to have told me ten years ago that in ten years I’d be spearheading a journal club, I’d probably have jumped in front of a semitruck. However, people change, and my life now revolves around teaching people sports science and helping lifters, trainers, and coaches realize their full potential. Basically, I want to do my part in equipping Arizona with intelligent lifters and practitioners. I visit commercial gyms and it pains me to witness the quality of personal training and training going on in my state of Arizona.

I just purchased a projector, a screen, and 16 chairs (my gym can hold many more people than 16 but some folks will have to stand), and I’ve decided to start up a journal club to convene once per month. We will meet here in the Glute Lab for 75 minutes, and during this time I will review 2-3 brand new studies (30 minutes), provide some practical resistance training tips (15 minutes), and answer questions and have discussions (30 minutes).


There will be no charge for your attendance, and you can be an athlete, a gym rat, a personal trainer, a strength coach, or a physical therapist and you’ll be welcome, as long as you possess a desire to learn. Male or female, old or young, strong or weak, I want you here if you’re passionate about strength & conditioning. I want to grow the club and eventually plan social get-togethers, have guest speakers (live and on Skype), have debates, and more. If we continue to accumulate, we can find a gym or some other venue to meet at.

Criteria: You need to live in Arizona and you need to plan on attending most months (we will meet on Saturdays at 10 am). It’d be nice if you subscribed to Strength & Conditioning Research Review as well, but I won’t check up on that.

If this is something you’re interested in, please email my assistant Maleah at maleah@ to be notified about the first get-together in December.

Glute Lab Seminar: January 16

* The Glute Lab Seminar is open for anyone willing to travel here (journal club just local people though). So if you live in another state or country and want to visit, be my guest! 

Glute Lab Seminar

When I spoke at Planeta Barcelona in Spain in September with my buddy Brad Schoenfeld, I experienced two important epiphanies. The first epiphany is that I learned that I love Spanish sangria! Aye caramba! The second is that I need to be conducting practical seminars on a regular basis.

Bret, Brad, and plenty of Sangria

Viva Sangria! With Brad Schoenfeld in Spain

While watching Brad’s first presentation, I realized that my slides were going to be way too complex (biomechanically) for most of the attendees. I decided to throw an audible and spontaneously switch to a practical presentation. To make a long story short, I ended up spending 5 hours teaching the Spanish personal trainers the biomechanics of squat variations, deadlift variations, hip thrust variations, single leg variations, push up variations, bench press variations, and core stability variations.

I realized at that time that this is my calling; it’s what I was born to do. It felt like all of my years of lifting, personal training, and biomechanics studies converged into the ultimate demonstration and explanation of exercise technique. I truly believe that this is a much needed seminar as it allowed me to discuss how anatomy and anthropometry impact mechanics, common faults, and effective cues. I also pulled something similar off when I went on a weekend vacation to San Diego to visit my family and ended up training 4 fit ladies for several hours going through the same exercises – it was a great success! It took me decades to attain the understanding of exercise technique that I currently possess, but I think I can fast-forward the average personal trainer’s understanding of exercise technique by 5-10 years in one day with these seminars.

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San Diego Glute Squad

This is a rather exclusive event and I’m only taking on 16 attendees so that I can devote ample individual attention to everyone. Location is here at the Glute Lab (Phoenix, AZ), date is January 16, 2016, time is from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, and cost is $399. Please email my assistant Maleah at maleah@ if you’re interested in attending.

Glute Squad: 2-4 Spots Open

Most of my readers follow me on Instagram and are aware of my Glute Squad. I currently have 8 members and I’d like 2-4 more female members. We train here in Phoenix, Arizona out of my garage (Glute Lab) at noon on Mondays and Fridays. I’m looking for positive, fun-loving ladies who are also very serious, highly committed lifters. Preferably the potential members would be interested in competing in bikini, powerlifting, or both down the road, but that’s not mandatory. Cost is $200/month (less than $25/session). If you’re interested in becoming a Glute Squad member, please email Maleah at Please include pics and a paragraph discussing why you want to train with us.

Glute Squad

6 of 8 Current Glute Squad Members: Karen, Michelle, Kim, Sadie, Sam, Mary

Funding for Squat vs. Deadlift vs. Hip Thrust Research

One of my primary goals over the next decade involves significantly expanding the body of evidence pertaining to the hip thrust exercise. I would like to compare the effects of 6-8 weeks of squatting, deadlifting, and hip thrusting on performance. However, I don’t have any research assistants and would have serious problems training the subjects and measuring pre and post variables of interest. Therefore, I’m looking for researchers who are interested in carrying out this study, and I’m willing to fund it. Ideally, we’d have 15 subjects in each group (45 total) and have access to a force plate. I’d like to examine vertical jump, horizontal jump, 40 yard dash, 5-10-5 agility, medball rotational scoop toss, isometric mid-thigh pull, isometric horizontal pushing force, 3RM squat, 3RM deadlift, and 3RM hip thrust (10 performance variables!). Clearly this would be a comprehensive study requiring considerable time and effort.

squat dead hip thrust

I’d be willing to pony up $7K of my own money just to see this research conducted (I’m so damn curious I can hardly handle it). Obviously I would never censor the research and would want it published no matter what the outcome. If you are a research professor, a grad student, or a research assistant who is capable of pulling off this study and are interested in collaborating, please email Maleah at maleah@

Free Hip Thrust eBook

Did all of you see this? I promoted it on my social media (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) but wanted to make sure I posted it here on the blog in case any of you missed it.


It’s a free 22-page eBook on the science and practice of Hip Thrusts! Click HERE to access it.

Sprinting Review

Did y’all see this as well? It’s a summary of sprinting research, courtesy of Chris Beardsley. I was very happy to find that it was well-received in the track & field community. Click HERE to read it.

You should read this sprint review ASAP!

You should read this sprint review ASAP!

Recent DEXA Scan

Two July’s ago, I received a DEXA scan. Since then, I’ve lost almost 20 lbs. This week, I decided to have another scan conducted to see how much fat versus muscle I lost in the past year and a half. Check it out:


In 16 months, I went from 245.9 lbs to 226.7 lbs. I lost 19.2 lbs, 15.3 lbs of fat, and 4.2 lbs of muscle while gaining .3 lbs of bone. I did this just by eating less calories, with no additional cardio and no significant changes to my strength training. It has not been easy due to my legendary appetite, but the results are well worth it (see my 5 Tips for Leaning Out article).

After 24 years of lifting weights, I didn’t expect to hold onto all of my muscle while I dieted down 20 lbs, so I’ll take the roughly 80/20 split of fat loss to muscle loss. Below is what the difference looks like visually. In the pic on the left it looks like I’m sticking my stomach out but I don’t think that’s the case (I never do that for pictures) – my eating was simply out of control as I was focusing purely on getting stronger at the time with no concern for my physique. In the pic on the right I’m flexing my muscles, so it’s not a fair comparison, but you can easily note the drastic changes to my physique. Pretty cool seeing the results of will-power and consistency!


Left: July 2014 Right: November 2015

Padding for Those Prone to Hip Pain from BB Hip Thrusts

A follower of mine named Kristen (she wrote a blogpost for me last year HERE) sent me this picture.


Many women have bony hips and therefore experience excruciating pain from barbell hip thrusts. Kristen was one of these ladies, so she decided to wrap a Hampton thick bar pad (my old recommendation) around a Squat Sponge (my current recommendation) during heavy hip thrusts. Voila! No more pain on the hips.

Links to Good Reads

Here are some good reads from the past couple of weeks:

Can You Gain Weight In A Calorie Deficit? Lawrence Judd and Eric Helms

What does stretching do to a joint? We really have no idea. Part I. Greg Lehman

To do, or not to do Pain Science, that is the Question with Dr. Jason Silvernail Lars Avemarie

Three Reasons It Matters Why A Treatment Works Todd Hargrove (article of the month IMO!)

Can you gain muscle and lose fat at the same time? Menno Henselmans

Energy balance myths: Why you can gain fat in a deficit Menno Henselmans

How Important is Muscular Symmetry for Strength Sports? Greg Nuckols

Okay fitness peeps, I hope you enjoyed the content. Have a great weekend!


Hallelujah! Thank you Menno Henselmans and Eric Helms

Former bodybuilder and Mr. Olympia champ Ronnie Coleman once said, “Erbody wanna be a bodybuilder, but nobody wanna lift no heavy ass weight.” I’m going to alter his comment to apply to my field: Everybody wants to be an S&C expert, but nobody wants to read and/or conduct research.


If you’ve been a regular follower of mine for some time now, then you’ve probably witnessed me express my disdain for modern experts in strength & conditioning and sports nutrition. I’m not talking about the younger up-and-comers – they get a pass since they’re green. I’m talking about the established folks who have been writing, speaking, and consulting for many years and whose sole livelihoods comes from the fitness industry. You’d think that at some point these folks would gravitate toward science to answer burning questions that naturally arise within them over the course of their careers.

We have an entire field of experts who speculate and offer advice, and yet they don’t possess the necessary skills to be effective or correct. Many times there’s research to support or refute what the experts are saying but the experts are unaware of it. Usually the answer to a particular hot topic/controversy in S&C could be easily determined by conducting a simple RCT, but the experts don’t know how to conduct a study, write up a study, or submit a study for peer-review. I’m definitely not saying that an expert can’t offer valuable insight without having a PhD. What I am saying is that experts would be far more effective if they better understood the scientific method, basic statistics, and evidence-based decision making. This applies mostly to the outspoken experts who veer outside their scope of expertise and seem to have an opinion on everything rather than the humble experts who stick to what they know and defer to other experts in matters not pertaining to their knowledge-base.

Lately I’ve been disenchanted with the field. I’ve personally challenged numerous experts to debates, several of which happened privately behind the scenes and therefore my readers are unaware of, and to date none of these individuals have accepted my challenges. Experts these days seem more interested in appearing right than actually being right. They’ll resort to all sorts of logical fallacies just to try to win an argument rather than considering the possibility that they’re wrong.

Alas, now there is hope, as evidenced by the fascinating, professional, highly-intellectual, and well-informed banter between my colleagues Menno Henselmans and Eric Helms.


Cliff notes: Menno believes that the research clearly shows no value in going over 1.8 grams of protein per kg of bodyweight per day, whereas Eric believes that research supports that there is indeed value in going higher depending on the circumstance and tends to recommend 1.8-2.8 grams of protein per kg of bodyweight per day. I’ve always recommended 1 gram per pound of bodyweight per day and I tend to go higher for myself, but I would love it if Menno’s advice accurately pertained to me since I find carbs and fat to be much tastier than protein in general. I appreciate how Eric pointed out individual differences in his retort, and I’m overwhelmingly impressed with Menno’s command of the research and statistical skills.

From left to right: Bret Contreras, Menno Henselmans, Alan Aragon, Eric Helms

From left to right: Bret Contreras, Menno Henselmans, Alan Aragon, Eric Helms

However, this article represents much more than optimal protein intakes. This article is what true S&C and sports nutrition is all about. It single-handedly restored some of my faith in our field, and I hope it sets a trend for how professionals go about improving understanding and conducting themselves in the future. Menno and Eric are the good guys, and I want my people to follow them. Bravo to you Menno and Eric, bravo!

To Follow Menno, click on these links:

Menno Website

Menno Facebook

Menno Personal Facebook

Menno Twitter

To follow Eric (and his 3DMJ team), click on these links:

Eric Website

Eric Facebook

Eric Personal Facebook

Eric Twitter

Hip Thruster 2.0: Band-Resisted Deadlifts and Better Band-Resisted Hip Thrusts

Hi fitness friends. I’m pleased to announce the new Hip Thruster 2.0 design. Basically, we did the following:

  1. Switched the default color from red to metallic (this was my call; the new color exudes manliness IMO). Custom colors are still available.
  2. Used Sorinex’s laser-cutter to have thinner metal (I love this sleek new look).
  3. Augmented the design (Sorinex took it upon themselves to carry this out) to assemble and ship easier
  4. Provided band pegs on the foot plate to allow for band-resisted deadlifts and other band-resisted exercises
  5. Switched the primary band peg design to resemble a “T,” which allows for more versatility
  6. Wrapped the padding on the back support to increase comfort

HERE is a link to the Hip Thruster website.

In the video below I review the key changes.

Below are some pictures that showcase the new model.

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