Barbell Shrugged - Talking Training w/ CrossFit Games Athletes, Strength Coaches & More
143- How to Maximize Sport and Life Performance with Freestyle Movement w/ Carl Paoli

This week on Barbell Shrugged we are excited to welcome Carl Paoli back to the show. In case you missed our chat from last year, make sure to go back and check out Episode 84 of the podcast. 


Carl is always a pleasure to be around. He’s also an inspiring and well-grounded coach that is changing the way that we think about movement. He certainly changed the way I view gymnastics, elevating it from a Crossfit programming curiosity to a training element that I now consider essential to balanced, sustainable strength development. 


I’ve spent the majority of the past year doing handstand holds as frequently as possible. I have to thank Carl for that amazing insight. But there’s also one other giant insight that comes to mind when I look back on our conversations - Above everything else, Carl excels at occupying the common ground. That starts with a few realizations. 


First, the most important thing is to realize that no one has all of the answers, and no matter how confident a coach might be in their opinion, no one has a flawless approach. The very best accept that fact and use it as a fuel to drive their daily education and a continual refinement in their methods. To that point, Carl’s view serves as a balancing force. 


Christopher Sommer’s view of the competitive fitness world is that there’s only one way to do Gymnastics properly…His way (check out Episode 114). That’s fine, because strong voices serve to push the discussion forward. But still, we need to be careful with balance here. To Carl’s point, not every elite method is suitable for all athletes, especially those just embarking on this journey.


The second realization has to do with how the coaching itself is dished out. There’s a bias right now in the fitness community towards programming. A ton of value is assigned to the way things are done, and that is very important. However, it’s not the only thing. Far from it. What matters just as much, if not more, is why things are done. Specifically, the very best coaches aren’t necessarily the savviest or most complicated. Rather, they are the ones that can get their clients to understand why it is they’re doing what they’re doing. With that, you can accomplish anything you want in the gym. There’s no need in feeling certain. 


Carl, it’s always a pleasure, friend.



Chris Moore


For more


Direct download: bs143.mp3
Category:CrossFit -- posted at: 6:26am PST

Direct download: Shredded_VSL_mixdown.mp3
Category:CrossFit -- posted at: 12:04pm PST

Direct download: bikiniVSL_mixdown.mp3
Category:CrossFit -- posted at: 12:03pm PST

142- Training to Get Strong & Athletic (and Look Good Naked) w/ Jackie Perez

This week on Barbell Shrugged we welcome Jackie Perez back to the show. I don’t think you need to be reminded about Jackie, she’s hard to ignore for a number of reasons. But just in case, make sure you go back and check out Episode 124 of the podcast. Trust me, it’s a must see.


We learned a lot about Jackie the first time around, but maybe the most surprising thing was that, despite the glossy, well tanned appearance and strong social media presence, this girl works very hard for what she has. Jackie might seek out her fair share of recreation, but most of her time is spent training and coaching clients. 


There are quite a few online critics that seem to believe that what they see on Instagram is no more than a lucky roll of the genetic dice. But that’s not all that accurate. As Jackie will tell you, “Those people don’t notice the amount work I have to put in to look this way. You’re damn right I’m going to wear my bikini when I get the chance!”


Again, it’s hard not to love Jackie for her fun bite and flair, but she has a damn good point here. Genetically she’s doing just fine, believe me, but there’s a plan at work. Her training is well-thought out, progressive and performance based. Her diet is designed to appropriately fuel her training and her body. She doesn’t punish herself with long, grueling “fat burning” sessions on the treadmill. She doesn’t deprive herself of calories and food selection. Maybe most importantly, she understands that a few cocktails here and there go a long way towards relieving stress and improving recovery. 

Hater’s are going to hate, as they say, but that doesn’t change the fact that you still have to have a great plan in place if you want a result in the gym. Sometimes great bodies are born, that’s true, but more often than that they are built and earned. We can’t forget that.  


If you want to get as lean, you can’t turn to tricks, hacks and shortcuts. You plan for it. You take steps towards your goal daily, weekly, and monthly, just like you would if you wanted to increase your squatting strength or drop your Fran time. But that right there is a whole other issue amongst the critics. 


“Should someone that’s interested in improving functional fitness and performance even care about looks? Isn’t that a shallow, cosmetic goal for an athlete?” No, not at all. It’s true that looks where the focus for far too long, at the expense of function. But a big swing in the other direction is just as silly. In reality, these goals are intimately linked. Both are important. If you train hard, with a long-term plan, and you eat to perform, then you will feel damn good about the result. You will also start looking better and better, of course, which will likely make you feel damn good. That will really show in the gym when it comes to performance. 


Jackie, it was a blast hanging out with you again. Keep up that grind, Darling.  



Chris Moore


For more

Direct download: bs142.mp3
Category:CrossFit -- posted at: 12:00am PST

141- How to Become a World Champion Weightlifter w/ Travis Mash

Travis Mash

Direct download: bs141.mp3
Category:CrossFit -- posted at: 5:28am PST

140- From Miss United States to Mixed Martial Arts w/ Whitney Miller

This week on Barbell Shrugged we have the pleasure of chatting with Whitney Miller, “Miss United States” beauty pageant contestant turned MMA Fighter


That’s quite a transition, but then again it’s pretty obvious that Whitney is a highly motivated individual. She decided to give Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and boxing a try simply because it was, “The hardest thing I could do.” That’s an extraordinary, uncommon attitude for sure. 


If nothing else, Whitney understands better than most that progress comes for those who are willing to push past their current limits and perceived boundaries. You have to get well outside of your comfort zone in order to really improve, even if that means training and sparring against men. You can check out this pic of her applying a rear-naked choke to Joe Rogan. She also tossed an arm triangle on Michael Bledsoe during the filming of this episode, which might have been the first time he’s been choked since his BJJ blue belt ceremony back in 2008. No, this is not a lady you want to mess with. She will make you go unconscious! 


Whitney does a lot of training in order to pick up all of these new grappling skills, but she also spends plenty of time in the gym. Barbells have always been in the rotation, even during her pageant days. She preferred feeling powerful and strong. In her words, “I’m never going to be tiny and skinny with big boob’s. So, I’m just going to go out there and be completely who I am.” It’s hard to argue with that strategy for any competition. Whitney also has fun with alternative, functional training methods such asIndian Clubs and steel maces, mostly because these implements are incredibly effective at training the grip. All aspiring fighters should take note. The stronger the grip, the more likely you are to win a fight, any fight. Raise heavy barbells, and swing big clubs. You’ll be very glad you did. 


Whitney is doing exactly what she wants to do, which is awesome. That’s a message that sounds familiar.Travis Mash would be proud. But that said, living a life where you do what you want…what you value…is tough. When Whitney told her friends and family that she’d rather fight than compete in pageants, she received a surprisingly large amount of resistance in return. Her Mom couldn’t stop crying, and she said her Father would hardly speak to her. For them the proper, sensible thing to do would be to get a routine 9 to 5 job, or maybe take advantage of the good looks and land a gig in front of a camera at the local news station. Anything but getting punched in the face, right? 


For most that’s enough, but for Whitney being happy and feeling fulfilled means going out and doing the unexpected, painful, scary, awkward thing, the most difficult thing. As she says, “This is where you feel most alive. Far, far outside of your comfort zone.” I guess we can all do a better job of challenging ourselves, eh? Maybe we could stand to be uncomfortable a little more often.


You can check out more from Whitney on YouTube, including an awesome little feature on her transition from pageants to fighting. Also, make sure to follow her on Instagram and Facebook. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. Whitney, best of luck with your training. We look forward to seeing you make your debut in the ring soon. 


Chris Moore

Direct download: bs140itunes.mp3
Category:CrossFit -- posted at: 11:37pm PST