Lessons to Pass on to my Children

I have one more Learn 2 Lift Seminar this year and two Workshops and Train this year! MashElite.com/seminars/ to find out more! Here is the lineup:

October 16th and 17th Learn 2 Lift and Underground Strength Dual Cert with Zach Even-Esh at the Mash Compound

November 7th 2 Hour Workshop and Train at Undisputed Strength and Conditioning in Eagan, MN

November 14th 2 Hour Workshop and Train at the Mash Compound

MashElite.com/seminars/ for more information!

Lessons to Pass on to my Children


I have been training for 31 years now. Over that time, I have made about every mistake there is to make in sport and life. I have also learned some valuable lessons through those mistakes. These are lessons that I wish someone would have told me when I was a young man. Now I want to pass these lessons on to my children and all of you. Hopefully I can save some of you from making these painful mistakes.

During my career in strength, I was the most driven athlete that I have ever known. A lot of coaches would have loved to coach me. However there was a major problem wrong with me. I sacrificed everyone and everything around me in pursuit of becoming the best powerlifter in the world.

I thought that was what it took to be the best. I missed holidays, weddings, and funerals in my quest. Some of you right now are thinking that is exactly what it takes. You are wrong! What good is becoming the best in the world if you have ruined all the relationships around you? The answer is: not good at all!

I was interviewing Matt Vincent on my podcast, The Barbell Life just last week. Matt is a two-time World Champion Highland Games Competitor. As a matter of fact, he has either won it or come in second place for the last five years. His perspective on competition is one that I wish I had taken when I was competing.

Matt makes time for his wife and friends. He knows that the Highland Games is hobby. It doesn’t define him. Yes he wants to win, but he knows that his relationships are more important. He simply approaches his training like a math problem.

He figures out the amount of training required to outwork everyone else, and then he schedules it. His training is just another appointment that he doesn’t miss. When he is with his wife, his mind is on her. He is balanced, and that has allowed him to make a much bigger impression on the people around him.


You are not going to find eternal glory from becoming the best at any of the strength sports. Three hundred years from now, no one is going to remember the amount of weight that you lifted. However there is a way to leave the world with a lasting impression of your life.

The most important thing that an athlete can do is to love the people around him. First, your children are under your roof. My son is only one-year-old. I want him to grow up seeing me love his mother, and I want Rock to grow up being loved by me. I want to spend quality time teaching him what’s right and wrong. There is no better way to show him God’s love than the way that I love him and his mother.

Now before you think that I am some kind of saint, I want to be honest with you. My daughter is 15-years-old, and for about four years of her life I was pretty much absent because I let my powerlifting career rule my life. These are four years that I will never get back. I regret those four years with all of my heart, and I will spend the rest of my life making up for those four years. I don’t want my children or any of you to have the same regrets.

There are also relationships and friendships that I ruined because I was obsessed with winning. This extreme obsession didn’t help me! That’s right, it didn’t help me! I am sure that I could have stayed on top longer if I had led a more balanced life. This obsessive lifestyle led to sleep issues, overtraining, and an all-around unhealthy lifestyle. This leads me to my biggest lesson!

Life is not about records, wins, and championships. Life is about the good that you can do with whatever you are doing. When you are at the top of your game, you have the ability to influence so many people. You have the ability to help people through major struggles in their lives simply by reaching out.

Even if you are not a champion yet, you have the ability to help those around you. Right now, there is a young man from my church that is missing. This young man is a loner, and he is experiencing major depression. If someone would reach out to him, maybe that all it would take for him to see a light in this world. People like that are all around us. Open your eyes!

I have no doubts that I could have been an even better champion if I had spent more time loving the people around me. My life is spent helping others now. I am a coach to many great athletes. I am the father to two great children, and I am the husband to the best wife in the world.

I want to teach my athletes how to live balanced lives while pushing their bodies to its limit. I want them to love the people around them. I want them to find a greater purpose to their lives other than just sports. I want them to experience God’s love while passing it on at the same time. I love my job!

As a father, I want my children growing up knowing that I love them unconditionally. I want them to learn solid work ethics to pursue all of their goals with the same determination. However, I want their lives balanced with love for others and God. My job as a father is one that I take very seriously. If any of you are fathers or mothers, there isn’t a sport on earth more important than them. I promise that it can all be balanced.


I want all of you to crush your goals. Don’t mistake me here! I just want you live fulfilling lives while crushing your goals. Here are my main points:

• You don’t have to sacrifice all of your relationships to be a champion.
• Look to guys like Matt Vincent who maintain healthy families and lives while winning the Highland Games World Championships twice
• What good is winning and championships if you are not helping people along the way?
• Life is not about how good of an athlete that you become. It is about the amount of good that you do with your abilities.
• Being a balanced athlete will lead to a longer and healthier career.

I want all of you to go out there and crush your goals. I just want you to avoid the lonely pitfall that I experienced because I lost focus on the real goal. I want you to become a World Champion that changes the world by helping the lives of others with your influence. Now go out there and change the world!

me and drew


    • Nanna says

      Well put my dear son-in-law! It makes my heart glad that you love our daughter and your children so much! God blesses our lives richly when our priorities are His priorities!

  1. Todd Weller says

    Love your info,and true life shit,,,,did conjugate for 10 plus years,,,,,,long story,,,,alot of major injuries,,,, ,been. Doodling with 5/3/1 stuff,,,,,party decent stuff,,if you don’t want to be a real competitor lifter,,,,,I thank you for your info,,,,with I had a mono lift,,,bands,,,chains,,,special bars,,,But,,,now that I work out in a public gym,,,,,instead of training at cell- block with my friend Brent Tracy,,,,,thats why I use Jim’s shit,,,,thank you for the info

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