Bobby Orr Burgers, Vodka Shots and One Angry Bird From Hell

I was in a great mood after a heavy session at the gym and decided to stop for a quick bite at a nearby O'Leary's.

On my way over, one of my athletes who was in town for a few days dropped me a line asking if I had time to have lunch, so I told him to meet me there for a burger and some catching up.

I always stop at this particular joint because it's close and convenient.

I also happen to know the waitress.

Well, I shouldn't say I know her actually.

I know who she is.

And who she is, is a grumpy young woman.

She came over to our table with the same disdain-filled look as usual. I said "hi" and asked her how she was doing. I even flashed her the most captivating smile I could muster. The one that makes the female heart swoon.

Nothing.

I ordered their famous #4 Bobby Orr burger with sides like I always do. While taking my order, she mumbled something to herself. As usual, I wasn't sure whether she was gonna tell the cook to take his sweet time with this one or if she’d spit a loogie between the bun and steak before serving the burger.

Finally after some waiting, the waitress emerged from the kitchen, visibly boiling inside for having to schlepp food to these chumps for ten measly bucks an hour.

My sincere "thank you" was met with an eerie silence on her behalf. She gave me a look that would have turned a lesser man into stone.

"What's wrong with her?" my buddy wondered out loud as soon as she was out of ear shot.

"Your guess is as good as mine", I replied while digging into the Bobby Orr.

"That's one angry bird from hell right there", he concluded before our discussion moved to more important topics. Like how J. Lo's famous butt still looks fantastic after all these years.

After what turned out to be a tasty meal (loogie notwithstanding), I thanked the waitress as politely as I could and told her to have a great day when she stopped by at our table to pick up the plates and cutlery. I'm pretty sure she told me to go fuck myself as I walked out of the door.

Now, you may be thinking:

"But Yunus, doesn't eating fast food give a bad example to your athletes?!"

When you first get bit by the iron bug and learn about performance nutrition/diet/body fuel (did I forget anything?), the common reaction often is to take it to the extreme.

Goodbye, tasty burgers and delish dessert.

Welcome gluten-free this, low-carb that, superfoods, supplement stack, zero alcohol, imported water, the whole shebang...

Even worse, guys turn into Tupperware-toting douchebags lugging their pre-cooked chicken breasts and broccoli everywhere they go with their alarms set to ring every three hours for fear of going catabolic.

(I was one of those OCD doods in college, so I can make fun of their behavior now)

I refuse to let "healthy eating" consume my every waking hour.

So yes, I will indulge myself in pizza or maple syrup pancakes from time to time.

And when I'm out having dinner dressed up to the nines with my chica at a fancy restaurant, damn right we're getting tipsy on that bottle of wine and sharing some sweet chocolate cake for dessert.

This doesn't mean throwing caution to the wind and trying to induce a heart attack by eating junk food and ice cream all day.

Or getting shitfaced every weekend.

What I'm saying is...

Have fun.

Live a little.

Enjoying a burger or a vodka shot - or heaven forbid, a slice of tiramisu - now and then in good company won't inhibit your progress in the gym or on the ice one bit.

If you somehow doubt that statement, go back and re-watch that scene in Pumping Iron where Arnold and co. wolf down three burgers, two omelets and a big steak in one shot after their workout.

And I'll never forget that one time a Conn Smythe Trophy winner recounted what he had ingested at a pool party the previous weekend. Salmon filets, brown rice and spring water, I can assure you, it was not.

Hell, if you want an extreme case, Theo Fleury amassed nearly 900 points during his NHL career while running on coke and liquor induced fumes.

Goes to show you don't need to be 100% compliant with your diet 24/7/365.

For those prone to reading too much into this, I'm obviously not encouraging drug use or hooking up an IV bag with a 50/50 mix of vodka and Red Bull to your arm for a steady stream of booze bliss on Saturday night.

Rather, life's too short to deprive yourself of all "vices" if that means leading a boring, miserable existence due to your OCD behavior regarding food.

Just something to think about.

Moving on to the important stuff:

For a training program proven to turn guys into freaks - despite the occasional fast food binge and jägerbomb jazz - take a look at:

http:///www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

Yunus Barisik

You Can’t Fake Strength

Most hockey players are too weak.

Yes, that goes for players at all levels, including the pros.

And thus, most hockey players need to get stronger.

I'm not underestimating the importance of mobility work, agility drills, direct core training, or whatever.

Rather, no other physical quality offers as many benefits as getting stronger all around does. Research is clear on this...

Improve your strength and you will:

* Improve your linear and lateral speed

* Change directions faster

* Be able to deliver heavier hits

* Shoot the puck harder

* Suffer less injuries

That's why, in most cases, athletes should view getting stronger as the #1 priority.

Unfortunately, most hockey players don't know how to build ​impressive levels of strength in a short time.

Fortunately, I've come up with a plan which does just that.

To access the #1 hockey strength training program available on the Internet, click here now:

http://www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

Yunus Barisik

World Famous Football Strength Coach Roasts Shady Fitness Trainers

I stumbled upon a great article by world famous (American) football strength coach Joe DeFranco I want to share with you today.

Joe runs a very successful training facility in New Jersey where he trains college and NFL players. I've been following his stuff since 2010 (I think??) and he is without a doubt one of the TOP5 or TOP6 strength coaches I've learned the most about training athletes.

Be forewarned this is a loooong rant.

But.

It's about time someone steps up to call out all the bullshit going on in the fitness industry.

Alright, Joe. Take it away, man.

===

"For the past 5 years, I’ve been in my own little world – I’ve been totally engrossed in training my athletes and growing my business. I haven’t spent too much time worrying about what goes on in the "fitness industry".

But, for some reason, I spent a little extra time "surfing the web" this past week and I must say that certain things disgusted me!

Because of this, I need to get some stuff off my chest! Here we go…

The term "functional training"

I’ve talked about this one before, but it just won’t go away! For some reason, trainers that favor exercises that are performed on stability balls or wobble boards call themselves "functional" trainers.

"Functional" trainers also favor light band resistance and med balls instead of heavy barbells and dumbbells.

Somehow they have come up with the notion that kneeling on a stability ball while having a pass with a light medicine ball is more “functional” than squatting, dragging a sled, bench-pressing, rowing, strongman training, etc. You don’t need to be a ​"fitness professional​" to realize how illogical this type of thinking is.

​"Functional​" trainers are the types of trainers that will say a bench press isn’t functional for athletes because athletes never lie on their backs on the athletic field and push a barbell off their chest.

But, can someone please explain to me what sport requires an athlete to kneel or stand on a giant beach ball or wobble board? Aren’t most sports played on the fuc#ing ground!?

In all of sports, it is the athlete that moves while the playing surface remains still. True "functional​" training should consist of applying resistance to an athlete while his/her feet are in contact with the ground.

The athlete must then adapt to these forces. This is how true strength is built.

If you’re always performing exercises on ​"unstable​" devices, you will be limited in the amount of weight you can use. This, in turn, will prevent you from overloading the prime movers of the exercise, which will limit how strong you can get.

Bottom line – stability balls and wobble boards are training tools that can be used occasionally in the training of athletes. If they are the centerpiece of your program, my athletes will continue to kick your athlete’s asses!

Internet ​"trolls​"

Internet ​"trolls​" are people who hide behind their computer, make up fake names for themselves and criticize others.

Oh yeah, these same people usually have horrible physiques and below average strength – and they’ve never trained an athlete in their life! Yet, they seem to know it all when they’re in the comfort of their home…or should I say the comfort of their parent’s basement!

You know the types – these are the people who comment on squat videos because an athlete may have squatted slightly above parallel; or they critique an athlete for performing trap bar deadlifts because “real men do straight bar deads”…blah, blah, blah.

The irony of the internet ​"troll​" is that they sit behind their computer and critique people who are actually in the gym training!! Get off the friggin’ computer and go to the gym! You know who you are.

The supplement industry

The supplement industry sucks.

There, I said it.

The reason I say this is because the best supplements I’ve ever used, you’ve probably never heard of! Wanna know why?

Because good supplement companies spend most of their money on RESEARCH - not marketing!

The best supplements usually aren’t found on the pages of bodybuilding magazines or on the shelves of popular health food stores. Unfortunately, shelf space is reserved for the companies that are spending big bucks on misleading marketing campaigns. These ​"mainstream​" supplement companies target their advertising towards naïve high school kids.

Here’s a good rule of thumb when shopping for supplements – if a product sounds too good to be true… it IS too good to be true. Generally speaking, the more a product is marketed, the more it sucks.

If I sound bitter towards the supplement industry; it’s because I AM bitter!

Authors posing as strength coaches

If someone writes a dozen articles a month on training, they’re not a strength coach – they’re an author.

There’s a big difference.

If I’m an athlete, I want to be trained by a strength coach that spends most of his day in the gym -- not an author that spends most of his day behind the computer.

After you’ve trained athletes for at least 12-15 years, you can start writing more than training.

Until that time, get your ass in the gym and train so you will have something real to write about!

Coaches that down-play strength

It seems as if many coaches have recently started down-playing the role of strength training for athletes.

These coaches will say that ​"athletes only need a certain level of strength -- once optimal strength is achieved, future strength gains may be counter-productive to their sport.​"

Guess what? I agree with that statement!

BUT, how many athletes have walked into your weight room possessing optimal strength?

I can tell you in my 10 years of experience, two athletes have joined my program that were ​"strong enough.​"

The moral of the story is the majority of athletes that you’re going to train are weak! Get them stronger and everything else they do will become easier.

Training debates

When I was in school, nerds were on the debate team.

Apparently, those nerds are now in the strength & conditioning field.

I’m going to let you in on a little secret -- Debating never changes anyone’s mind, regardless of the topic!

If you put a hardcore Republican and a hardcore Democrat in a room for a debate, do you really think that one of them would be able to convert the other? Of course not!!

The same holds true in the strength & conditioning field. For example, if you put an Olympic weightlifting coach in the same room with a powerlifter, neither one of them are going to change each other’s mind! Do you think if Louie Simmons had to attend a H.I.T seminar, he would leave with a new outlook on strength training?!

Hopefully you get my point? Save yourself valuable time and energy by surrounding yourself with ​"like-minded​" people and learn/exchange ideas with them.

Ahhhh, I feel better after that little rant. Now that I got that off of my chest, let’s focus on something that doesn’t piss me off…hard-working athletes that bust their ass in order to achieve their goals!

No gimmicks, no internet trash-talking – just setting a goal and then doing whatever it takes to accomplish it!"

===

Lots of truth in Joe's rant.

Hope you got a kick out of it like I did.

Train hard.

Yunus Barisik

P.S. To learn no BS training methods I have successfully used with hundreds of hockey players, have a look at:

http://www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

The Stoopid Was Strong With This One

A true gentleman, scholar and visionary releases some pent up brain farts at yours truly:

​===

"How about you stop advertising something as free then continue to email me when I find out in fact that it is not free. I'm a little surprised you keep being a dip shit."

​===

Golly. Someone's really hot under the collar today!

Two things:

1. When you sign up for this daily newsletter, you receive a downloadable off-ice related resource (infographic or short e-book) which will be delivered to your email address.

Yes, AFTER you grab said free resource, off-ice training tips in the form of daily emails start landing in your inbox. That's where I, sometimes shamelessly, plug my paid premium training products.

But never has anyone been charged for that "first bite". It's free and always has been.

So I can't fathom how this admirable gentleman could have ever "found out it is not free".

A fact he would have realized on the spot if he wasn't too busy getting red in the face over nothing.

But that's the problem with peeps these days.

They don't take a minute to think.

They don't stop to double- (or triple)-check.

They think everything's personal.

And they love to construct these silly scenarios in their little minds where someone is being mean/oppressive/"a dip shit" to them, then get offended by said things.

It's a trend these days. One look at the nonsense you're subjected to on Fakebook confirms that.

People vent and vent and vent about social injustice, wage gaps, Trump, white privilege, the horrible customer service experience they had at McDonald's, how dare an overseas flight be delayed three hours, that *?!#@ sports store refusing to give them a refund on that pair of sneakers they'd been using for a month, yada yada yada...

However, I must admit, reading such stoopid rants makes things amusing for the rest of us.

Moving on:

2. Here's the thing...

When someone signs up (voluntarily, might I add... after all, nobody holds a gun to their head when visiting my website) for daily off-ice training tips, then logic would tell us they want improved athleticism and performance.

Furthermore, if I have a training product which does exactly that by laying out all you need to know about how to get stronger, faster and in shape for hockey, why would I not inform you such a resource exists?

In fact, I'd be doing you a huge disservice keeping that under wraps.

Say, a friend of yours was a financial planner who knew a simple way to make an extra $1000 per month over your current asset allocation without any additional risk. But he wouldn't share that knowledge even if you offered to pay him for it. What would you think of him?

Selfish?

Greedy?

Unhelpful?

Certainly not how a true friend would act.

So I let you know about my Next Level Hockey Training product in these emails.

Maybe you buy it.

Maybe you don't.

I'll leave that decision up to you.

But I'll keep offering it because I know it's the most effective off-ice training system you can find without training with a qualified strength coach in person.

(Which costs a ton of munney)

To learn​ world-class performance-boosting methods without breaking the bank, go ye here:

http://www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

Yunus Barisik

P.S. Have zero interest in reading, hearing and learning about off-ice training for hockey?

If that's the case, receiving these daily emails is just a waste of time and bandwidth for both of us.

Remove yourself from this newsletter right now through the unsubscribe link below.

In-Season Training for Hockey Players

The following is a small excerpt from Next Level Hockey Training 2.0 about in-season training for hockey players:

===

"You get bigger and stronger in the off-season. The best you can do is to maintain those gains in-season."

That line has been parroted ad nauseam to the point where guys blindly accept it as the holy truth. And they coast through hockey season while not even trying to improve their strength and power.

Yes, the above statement holds true if you're an NHL'er or elite hockey player competing in 80+ games per year.

Workouts - which don't take place too often, given that traveling takes up a huge chunk out of the players' season - are geared toward recovery and boosting on-ice performance in the short-term, not pushing up your maxes in the gym.

If you're reading this manual, you're not playing in the NHL.

So let's get this nonsense that you can't improve your physical qualities during hockey season right out of your head.

No matter if you followed the Junior (3x/week) or Pro (4x/week) lifting plan in the off-season, once hockey season begins, we'll drop lifting frequency down to 2x/week.

Reason?

Any less than twice per week, and you can forget about getting stronger.

On the other hand, lifting more than twice per week on top of all the on-ice practices can put you deeper into a recovery hole, which will negatively impact hockey performance.

So twice weekly hits the sweet spot.

As for programming, we'll continue with the tried and true method of switching between accumulation and intensification phases.

However, there are a few key changes compared to the off-season program:

* As mentioned, training frequency will drop from 3-4 weekly lifting sessions down to twice weekly.

* Overall training volume per session decreases as well.

We're looking at 16-20 working sets per workout on average. Some weeks, we'll go even lower than that.

* Directly related to the previous point, workouts should be kept short.

While lifting sessions in the off-season can continue up to 60-75 minutes (counting from your first work set of the day), we want to be in and out of the gym in 45 minutes or so during hockey season. 60 minutes, tops.

Not only does keeping your workouts short and concise require you to maintain a solid pace throughout each session, thus boosting your general fitness levels, it's also mentally much easier knowing that you have less than an hour to make things count.

* We'll forego slow eccentrics (anything longer than 3 seconds) since they cause too much muscle soreness.

Guys hate going into games with "heavy" legs, so no slow negatives in-season.

You will be sore at times during the season. That can't be completely prevented when training with the purpose of improving off the ice. But crippling soreness should never be an issue.

Fore more info, click here:

http://www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

===

"Our team followed Yunus' Next Level Hockey Training System over the summer.

Guys got a lot stronger in the gym and I couldn't help but notice how the entire team looked faster when we got back on the ice for the pre-season.

But now we also have objective proof. We tested our players on 30 meter on-ice sprints before the off-season in May and again after 16 weeks in August.

The results:

Every single player improved their sprint time! Biggest improvement was 0.277 seconds.

Even a 36-year-old veteran entering his 18th pro season got faster, which is practically unheard of. Most guys at that stage in their career lose a step or two every year.

This also makes my job a lot easier going forward because the guys no longer question what we do off the ice. They've experienced the gains a smart off-ice program can produce and now trust my ability to help them achieve higher performance.

So thank you again!"

- Mikko Tolvanen
Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Sport Vaasa, Finnish Elite League

===

"I followed a 3-day per week, full-body training program Yunus designed for me this off-season.

I really enjoyed all the variation in exercise selection and execution included in the program. It helps keep your training fresh and interesting over time.

With other workout plans, you might end up doing the same three or four movements for months on end. That becomes boring real fast.

Another thing I noticed was how quickly my strength increased. Within just a few short weeks, I was lifting notably bigger weights compared to the beginning of the summer.

And at the end of the off-season I set multiple lifetime personal records, including new bests in 3RM front squats and power cleans.

Based on pre-season games and practices so far, I'm also feeling faster on the ice.

So you could say I'm very happy with my results since gaining strength and speed is exactly what I wanted to achieve with my off-season training this summer."

- Teemu Väyrynen
Forward, TPS Turku, Finnish Elite League

===

​For a training program pro hockey players and strength coaches rely on to get stronger and faster, visit:

http://www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

How to Combine On-Ice Practice With Lifting for Best Results

Reader Jeff Harris messages me with a question:

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"Hi,

We have a small gym with some weights at the rink where we skate where I do squats, chin-ups, lunges and other exercises.

I can only lift there either immediately before or after practice because of the long drive and work and family commitments.

Do you think this will hurt my progress in the gym?

Thanks"

===

In a perfect world, you'd do your workout in the morning, then lace up for team practice in the evening. That would give you several hours of recovery time between training sessions.

But we don't live in a perfect world.

So you gotta make do with whatever your situation calls for, and make it work.

With my athletes, we're forced to schedule our lifting sessions around hockey practice during hockey season. Having divided the athletes into smaller groups, some of our guys lift before on-ice training, others after it.

Both have their pros and cons.

You're at your freshest when you lift prior to skating.

So expect solid performance on heavy lower body lifts that tax the nervous system to a high degree - such as power cleans, front squats or deads.

But your performance on the ice takes a hit because your legs will feel heavy.

The exact opposite happens when you skate before ​weights.

Fresh on the ice. Tired at the gym.

A third alternative would be to perform the most neurally demanding exercises first, hop on the ice, then come back to finish the workout with assistance movements that don't require your nervous system to be at 100%.

So which option should you go with?

My advice?

Just get it done.

Seriously.

Shut up and get to work.

Mulling ​such an insignificant detail over will hurt your progress way more than simply loading up a barbell and getting after it whenever you've got time ever could.

I've seen it a million times.

A guy tells me how tired his legs feel coming off the ice. And how he'll need to take it a bit easier today because he thinks he won't be able to go very heavy.

Sure, he may feel somewhat tired. But instead of accepting mediocre effort and performance at face value, I can judge whether his fatigue is ​more mental than physical based on bar speed, his form and overall demeanor.

More often than not, he loosens up a bit and gets his mind right after a few warm-up sets.

Then he ends up hitting a PR.

Which he thought would not be in the cards when first stepping foot inside the weight room today.

So remember this...

Paralysis by analysis is a sneaky little bastard.

And a big reason why certain people never get anywhere with their workouts.

Don't be one of them.

Train hard.

Yunus Barisik

P.S. For a lifting program that perfectly complements your on-ice training, lace up and skate over to:

http://www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

2-Second Trick to Improve Squat Depth, TOP3 Supplements for Athletes & 4 Exercises for a Bigger Back

Quoting the famous opening lines uttered by Fred Durst in Limp Bizkit's hit song "Rollin'":

“Alright partner,

Keep on rollin’ baby

You know what time it is”

​Yes, Fred, we do.

It's rapid-fire Q&A time.

DJ Lethal... Bring it on!

QUESTION: I have horrible ankle mobility (practically 0 dorsiflexion in my right ankle) and my physio says this limits my ability to squat down to full depth.

He has given me exercises to mobilize my ankles but it will take some time to see results.

In the meantime, is there any way for me to keep full squats in my program?

ANSWER: Place a thin wedge or weight plate under your heels.

This ​will slightly elevate your heels, ​allowing you to squat deeper​.

QUESTION: Coach, I know you're not a big fan of supplements.

Do you think there are any that can help me get better results in the gym?

If so, what would be your top 3 supplements for athletes?

ANSWER: Yes, 99% of supplements on the market won't do jack shit for your strength or performance.

That said, I do believe the following items can be beneficial if everything else (nutrition, sleep, recovery) is already on point:

* Creatine

* Fish oil

* Multivitamin

QUESTION: I've been doing barbell rows, dumbbell rows and seated cable rows for some time now and feel like I have hit a plateau.

Can you give me some new back exercises?

ANSWER: I have got a few...

* Standing V-handle low cable row

Attach a V-handle to a low cable stack. Row the handle to your belly button while squeezing your shoulder blades together as you would in a seated cable row. Perform 12-15 reps per set.

* Double handle landmine row

Using a landmine setup, wrap two single handles around that end of the bar that holds weight plates.

From here on, same instructions as above apply.

* 45 degree batwing

Lying face down on a bench angled at 45 degrees with dumbbells in both hands, drive your elbows back until shoulder blades are retracted. Pause at the top for one full second.

Don't go super heavy here since you want to feel these in your mid-upper back, not move the biggest dumbbells you can find. Perform 1​2-20 reps per set.

* 1/2 kneeling 1 arm cable row

Setting up in a half-kneeling position on the floor and with the cable stack at chest height, again drive your elbows back so that your thumb touches chest.

(Notice a pattern on all these rowing movements? Squeeze shoulder blades at the top. Damn important for feeling the exercise in your upper back muscles.)

Make sure to keep your shoulders in place throughout the movement.

(That means no shrugging or tilting shoulders forward as many do)

Finish the eccentric part (where you straighten your arm) with your shoulder blade on the working side protracted. This will cause a nice pre-stretch in the lats, thus leading to better lat pumps.

Learn more awesome muscle exercises for building a bigger back by clicking the link below right now:

http://www.NextLevelHockeyTraining.com

Yunus Barisik

[FINISHED] 2-second trick to improve squat depth, TOP3 supplements for athletes and 4 exercises for a bigger back