Friday was one big celebration at Mash Elite Performance! As usual we celebrated Max Out Friday by Slamming Bars and Killing PRs. Then we (actually the Smashed Crossfit girls) decorated the facility in honor of my beloved wife Emily Drew’s Birthday and we capped the day off with a Chang Thai Friday Night. Every time that we host a Chang Thai Friday Night I sit in my chair in amazement at what God has done with Mash Elite. We roll 30+ deep every time that we do this, and each time I feel like a proud father knowing that this is all a gift from God. Probably the most unusual part of Mash Elite is how so many diverse groups form a family. We have Elite Athletes, National Level Weightlifters, Elite Level Powerlifters, Rocking Crossfitters, and adults just wanting to be in the best shape of their lives. The one common bond is that we all want to take the gifts that God has given us, and take them as far as possible. This common desire for greatness is what bonds us! We get just as crazy when one of our 40 year old house wives get their first pull-up as when one of my athlete receive a D1 offer. I get just as psyched watching my Smashed Crossfitters giving their last drop of sweat as I do watching Rebecca Gerdon slam bars all the way to the Professional Muscle Driver USA Team.
The best piece of advice that I can give an aspiring Box/Gym/Strength facility owner is to form a Family and not a gym. A Family stays together, and a gym is just another business that opens and closes. At Mash we have a Smoothie Bar, and we have a “hang out area” right up front. We want our members to hang out because they are our family and friends. Every day that Drew and I go to work we simply go hang out with the people that we love. I don’t know the formula to forming such a place, but I will say that your true desire when going into the strength and conditioning business has to be to help people to love people. All that I’ve ever wanted to do is to take my life’s work, and teach it to everyone. I want to give my athletes an edge! I want to give my adults a plan to get in the best shape of their lives! I want to help my strength athletes get stronger than everyone else in the world without hurting themselves or sacrificing their loved ones. Basically I want to teach them all the things that I know work, and to avoid the pitfalls that I know brings pain.
This is why I am so excited about my “Learn 2 Lift” seminars, and my online training and programming (www.MashElitePerformance.com) because now I have the ability to help the “Nation”. I want to affect as many lives as possible before I die. I want to see the smiles on people’s faces when they reach their goals, and I want to be there to pick people up when they come up a little short. I smile when I look back over my life because I see the hand of God pulling the strings in my life to lead me to this moment in time. I had no idea when I was training at the Olympic Training Center that I would one day be teaching hundreds of people how to Slam Bars. I had no idea when I was striving to be the best Powerlifter in the world that I would be teaching thousands of people how to squat and deadlift. I use all the skills that I learned playing football at Appalachian State University and trying out for the US Bobsled Team to teach young athletes to be the best in what they do. My time hanging out with Charles Poliquin, Dave Tate of Elite Fitness, Mark Watts, Joe Kenn of the Carolina Panthers, Louie Simmons of Westside Barbell, Ed Coan, Steve Goggins, Dr. Larry Gray, Ox Mason, Tim Patterson of T Nation, Jon North of The Attitude Nation and my co-host on Weightlifting Talk, Donnie Shankle, Glenn Pendlay of Muscle Driver USA, Chad Wesley Smith of Juggernaut, Greg Everett of Catalyst, Zach Even-Esh, Ethan Reeves of Wake Forest, Joey Smith, Marc Lobliner, Wes Barnett, Shane Hammons, Dragomir Cioroslan, Donnie Thompson, Jason Coker, Ryan Grady, Mike Kent my Strength Coach at Appalachian State, and all the many that I am forgetting has all molded me to be the Strength Coach that I am today. I treasure the relationships that I make in the strength world because we are all so open to teaching what we know. The key is being open to continued learning. Knowledge is out there guys just be willing to grasp it, and then be willing to teach it. Athletes should embrace the journey because you have no idea how the lessons that you will learn might come to affect others. Coaches never forget all that you have learned, but never stop your quest for knowledge.
Video from Max Out Friday! Notice the different populations!
Video From Chang Thai Friday Night!
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