Barbell Shrugged - Talking Training w/ CrossFit Games Athletes, Strength Coaches & More

Our guest this week is as humble as he is accomplished. You can tell as soon as you walk into his facility, which just so happens to be one of the oldest weightlifting gyms in the country, that you are stepping into a historic place.

We are taking about Sean Waxman. Sean has been a coach and athlete in the sport of weightlifting before it was even popular in the US. He has been a player in growing the sport to where it is today and has trained with and coached some of the best athletes in the sport.

In this week’s episode, we dive into what Sean is doing to create elite-level weightlifters, his coaching and leadership style, and the history of the sport of weightlifting.

Enjoy the show,


Direct download: BBS_SeanWaxman_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:18am PST

If I were to tell you that using a BOSU® ball would help you squat more, would you believe us? Yes, we are talking about that half dome stability ball thing that sits in the corner at the globo gyms of the world. 

Before you write off the BOSU® ball to the same category as the Shake Weight, you need to watch this episode. In this edition of Shrugged, we interview the inventor of the BOSU, David Weck, and it turns out there is more to this tool than meets the eye. David has dedicated his career to understanding biomechanics and how to help athletes move better. While his tools and methods are certainly unique, they are also every effective.

In this episode we dive into all the experiments and practices David has explored and how he is helping professional athletes with his method. You'll probably learn some things you have never heard before and you get to see Doug bitch slap him in the face. Multiple times. 

Enjoy the show,


Direct download: BBS_WeckMethod_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30pm PST

With all the sleep apps, heart rate monitors, supplements, air conditioners, coffee (and more coffee) we use, it's evident we live in an optimized world, and it is making us weak.

In episode 259, we are bringing Brian Mckenzie and Andy Galpin back to talk about the research they are doing around performance, and what it means to be a resilient human in a comfortable world. 

Never before have we had it so easy, and although we are training and optimizing our diet, our comfy lifestyle is holding us back from being as strong as we could be. It is one thing to have a training routine, but as soon as we go back to our air conditioned rooms and perfectly organized lifestyle, we lose the ability to adapt to the stress that our body has evolved to feel.

Brian and Andy have co authored a book called Unplugged, and in it they have put in the work and laid out the practices we can adopt (and the one’s we need to abandon) if we want to create a resilient body and mind. 

Every athlete should listen to this episode. If you want to learn how to build mental toughness, and a stress adapted body, you can head over to amazon and pre-order the book.

Enjoy the show,


Direct download: BBS_unlugged_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:23am PST

When was the last time you did a conditioning piece that you actually enjoyed? Chances are (unless you did track in high school) you don’t find long spouts on the air dyne or rower all too fun.

Neither do we, so when we met Aaron Guyett and got to talking about battle ropes, and all the practical applications they have when it comes to conditioning, we decided he needed to be on the show.

Aaron is the master instructor for Onnit Academy’s battle rope program, and runs a facility in CA called Innovative results. We met up with him at his facility to talk about how you can use battle ropes in your conditioning workouts.

When it comes to using battle ropes, most of us just know one or two exercises that we saw on Instagram. In this episode, Aaron dives into all the different movement patterns and practical applications that battle ropes have including grip strength, power, and the ability to train all 3 metabolic pathways.

Tune in for this one and make sure to catch the break where Aaron does a hands on demo with the battle ropes.

Enjoy the show,


Direct download: BBS_AaronGuyett_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30pm PST

One thing that separates CrossFit from most other training systems is the fact that you are required to develop proficiency in a wide range of fitness modalities- weightlifting, gymnastics, powerlifting, etc

The MMA game is very similar and unlike boxing, wrestling, or any specific martial arts, fighters are required to be generalists in all the systems. There are a lot of variables, and when it comes to coaching, that makes things a lot more challenging. 

In this week’s show, we linked up with wrestling coach, Darryl Christian at RVCA headquarters to chat about how he is working with some of the top MMA fighters in the game like Dominick Cruz. We talk program design and get into the details of what he looks into when working with some of the top fighters. 

If you are a fighter, a CrossFitter, or anyone who is looking to get more strategic in your training, there is a lot to take away from this episode. We dive into topics such as

  • How to measure training volume
  • When and why to focus on recovery vs high volume training weeks
  • How to strategically train for strengths and weaknesses in multi fascinated sports (like CrossFit and MMA)
  • How to work with and communicate with multiple coaches at the same time

Enjoy the show,



Direct download: BBS_Darryl_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30pm PST

It wasn’t that long ago that we didn’t have iPhones in our pockets, let alone access to the world’s information at the click of a button. Back in the day, coaches and athletes had to figure shit out on their own. 

Nowadays, the fitness industry is growing faster than ever, and with that comes new innovations and knowledge around training. That is mainly due to the fact that coaches and athletes are communicating and sharing their experience more and more. 

We wanted to hear from one of the top coaches in the game on this topic, so we headed over to Bonsall, CA to visit Mike Burgener. Coach B has watched this evolution occur and has been apart of some of the biggest evolutions in the sport of weightlifting and strength training. 

In this episode, Coach B shares his insights into the fitness industry as it is today, and tells stories of what it was like in the beginning. We talk about why most athletes who want to go from pretty good to competitive need to start focusing on training their weaknesses. Mike shares tactics and his philosophy around getting strong, the coaches that he works with, and how he gets his athletes to the next level.

If you want to learn how to break through your plateau’s and start understanding how to train your weaknesses, you need to drop in for this one.

Enjoy the show,



Direct download: CoachB2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:57am PST

We all see the cool shit on Instagram- the handstands, the backflips, the one handed balance thing on the fire hydrant, but want is not often highlighted on the social media is the process it takes to get to that skill level.

In this week’s show, we brought back Max Shank to talk about how you can incorporate more movement development into your training. Max has been on the show before and we recently recorded an episode with him talking about healthy shoulders. You can find that episode here.

This time around, we visited Max at his backyard gym to talk about what is often referred to as flow and how incorporating a movement practice into your daily routine can help you prep your body for hard training session later on. 

Whether you are interested in pursuing higher skill level movements like acrobatics and hand balancing, or just looking to start your day with a routine that will prime your body to get shit done in the gym, this episode will get you on the right path to start pursuing more higher level movement awareness. The cool thing is, all you need is 5 minutes a day to get started, but first get your listen on with this episode.

We also highly recommend you check out Max's 5 Minute Flow guide and instructional videos to help you decrease pain, stiffness and physical and mental stress. Go to to learn more. Use the code "barbell" (all lower case) to save 20% on 5 Minute Flow.

Enjoy the show,


Direct download: BBS_5MinuteFlow_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30pm PST

"alignment is about balancing the motion with the chemistry. you can't fix your mechanics if your chemistry is off"

In Fitness, we talk about mobility, a lot. We talk about performance a lot, and we talk about exercise technique, a lot. But what is often left out is what is going on the rest of the day.
It turns out, how we move when we are not in the gym (which is most of the time) effects how we move (and secondarily, how we perform) in the gym.
No matter how active you are or how much you pay attention to your technique, you are going to have incompetencies and inbalances. One of the goals of an effective and intelligent training program is to uncover and seek out those imbalances and fix them. 
In this week's episode, we visit the Human Garage in Venice Ca. Just like it sounds, the human garage is an (underground) body work clinic. The thing is, this place is not like any massage studio or chiropractic office you have been too. It is much more. 
We talked to the owner/founder Gary about what is going on at the Human Garage and what they are doing to help their cliental, which include, professional athletes, Superhero movie stunt men, and the adrenaline junkies of the world, move better.
We discuss, what you can be doing to figure out imbalances in your movement patters, how to develop your posture, and how you can work towards having more awareness in your body for better performance, and health.
If you are ready to upgrade your movement practice, this episode is for you. 
Enjoy the show,
Direct download: HumanGarage_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30pm PST

It seems like every other health article and Instagram post is trying to promote the next best supplement these days. It is very hard to get unbiased information on supplements. It is straight up confusing to feed through the hype and distinguish between clever marketing and what actual works. 

Most sources? They have an agenda. Supplement companies misrepresenting science. Media sensationalizing headlines. Companies and individuals pushing unneeded supplements and other products onto you. We aren’t saying that all supplement companies are out to cheat you. There are some great brands and products out there for sure. However, it is not so simple to feed through all the noise.

That’s why we brought Kamal Patel on the show. Kamal runs Examine is an unbiased database of supplement and nutrition information. What is unique about Examine, is that they have no monetary agenda around selling you products. They are pulling together all the science, reading the research, and putting it online. 

In this episode, we catch up with Dr Andy Galpin and Kamal at Andy’s lab and talk about what supplements you should be taking and which ones are overhyped. If you want to settle the confusion around supplements and start directing your energy towards what works, this episode is for you.

Also, if this show sparks your interest to tap into to more info, you can get access to premium Examine resources like their supplement stack guides and research digests to optimize your supplementation and stay on top of the latest supplement research. Save as much as 20% when you visit

enjoy the show


Direct download: BBS_Examine_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30pm PST

You ever think about how much you use your hands when you train? Think about it. When you are using a barbell, a kettlebell, the pull up rig, or a pair of rings, your grip strength is playing a huge role in your strength, how long you can perform the movement, and the level of movement capacity you have. More importantly, it is typically the first thing to give out.
In this week's show, we caught up with Andy Galpin and Kenny Kane at CrossFit LA to talk about how you can step up your game when it comes to grip strength. We dive into wrist mobility, gymnastics drills, and why you need to be training your grip in different positions.
Example: the 2015 CrossFit Games Pegboard challenge. Some of the strongest athletes in the world are throwing massive weight overhead, doing gnarly metcons, and performing kipping pullups for days ...but as soon as they are required to turn their hand position 90 degrees, their grip strength goes to shit. You can bet that the games athletes who fell apart in that event are going to be spending some time training their grip strength. You should too, and a great place to start is with this episode. 
Enjoy the show,
Direct download: BBS_GripStremngth_Audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30pm PST