Death by Food Pyramid

In the late 1970’s, the USDA tasked a group of nutritionists with composing the nation’s newest guide on what to eat. Previously the emphasis had been on getting “enough.” The old guide, The Four Food Groups, was all about balanced nutrition. It basically said, “Make sure you’re getting enough of each of these categories of food.” But by the seventies, we had transitioned from a nutritional state of need to one of over abundance. Food was cheap and plentiful and this was showing up in our waist lines and our health as a nation.The USDA’s new crack team was headed up by… Read More »

Do The Thing…

Do the thing, and you shall have the power. – Ralph Waldo EmersonYou may have seen this quote posted on the white board over my desk. It hovers over me as I do the desk work that comes with running the gym and it reminds me that everything I want is within my grasp.But first, I have to do the thing.What thing?Any thing. Whatever it is I want. But to get it, I must first do it. This may seem daunting at first. Much of what we want we don’t actually believe we can achieve. We just wait, hoping like… Read More »

The Hierarchy of Health, part 4

Welcome to the fourth and final installment of my Hierarchy of Health series. The hierarchy as I’ve laid it out is as follows:1. Sleep2. Hydration3. Nutrition4. ExerciseYour can access any of the previous installments by clicking on the links above. I know many of you who have followed this series must have at one point thought, “Dave, what’s the deal? Why would you put the one element you’re most involved with last?”It’s true, exercise is my bag. I’ve made my career out of promoting its practice and trying to get as many people as I can involved with it. I… Read More »

The Hierarchy of Health, part 3

Today’s post is the third installment in a series I’ve humbly entitled The Hierarchy of Health. This hierarchy is, in my opinion, as follows:1. Sleep2. Hydration3. Nutrition4. ExerciseYou can click on the hyperlinks above to get to posts 1 and 2 in this series. It should be stated, that this hierarchy is based almost exclusively on my own personal experience of having a body these past 44 years, my experience working with this body, both as a fitness professional and as a human being, and a thorough reading of Google searches to back up my opinions and give them at least… Read More »

The Hierarchy of Health, part 2

Last week I introduced my Hierarchy of Health. This lists, in order of importance, what I consider to be the four elements of good physical health. They are:1. Sleep2. Hydration3. Nutrition4. ExerciseAnd yes, I’m well aware that this order is the reverse of what most people consider.​ If you missed last week’s post you can read it HERE. I received a lot of good feedback on that post and some interesting questions, which brought to mind an essential caveat – Your personal mileage may vary. For you see, each one of us is a unique variation on a common theme.… Read More »

The Hierarchy of Health, part 1

So, you didn’t exactly ask, but that’s never stopped me from sharing my opinion before.Here is the hierarchy of good physical health. These four things, in order of importance, will keep you on the road to good living.1. Sleep2. Hydration3. Nutrition4. ExerciseWhat’s that? Not the order you expected? I’m not surprised. We live in a culture that’s all about the doing. Work harder? Work smarter? It doesn’t really matter as long as you’re working. So when we approach our health and fitness we approach it from the reverse order. Over the next few weeks I’ll take some time to address each level… Read More »

The Strangest Secret

The third of Agoge Fitness Systems’ Core Values is “Never stop learning.” I try and embody that principle everyday. Given the nature of my work and the length of my days, I’m not the reader I once was. Samantha can tell you that once my head hits the pillow I’m not long for this world. I’m usually asleep in a matter of minutes. When I do try and read, especially at the end of a day, I rarely get two or more pages in before the print starts to swim and I get drowsy. My solution has been audio books.… Read More »

Eat More Fat

Eat fat to lose weight. For any of us who were of a cognizant age during the 90’s this is a very difficult concept to swallow. We grew up listening to Susan Powter screaming at us to “Stop the Insanity” and Dr. Dean Ornish telling us to “Eat More, Weigh Less.” The key to 90’s dietary logic was that fat made you fat and that to lose weight you could eat all the carbs and protein you wanted – just cut out the fat. Only, we kept getting fatter.Sure, I lost weight during the 90’s on a low fat diet.… Read More »

Failing to Plan

Failing to plan is planning to fail, or so they say.I am as guilty of this as anyone, especially when it comes to my diet and nutrition. These days I’m usually up at 4:30 am and in the gym by 6:00. Given my commute and the sloth-like pace with which I attend my mornings, I rarely have time for more than the obligatory grooming and making coffee before I’m out the door and heading to work. My first cup (travel mug @ 16 ounces) contains a healthy dose of either coconut milk (the canned stuff, unsweetened but with lots of… Read More »


hu·brisˈ(h)yo͞obrəs/nounexcessive pride or self-confidence.synonyms:arrogance, conceit, haughtiness, hauteur, pride, self-importance, egotism, pomposity,superciliousness, superiority; More(in Greek tragedy) excessive pride toward or defiance of the gods, leading to nemesis.Ouch.Thinking you’re more than you are is not so painful. Being shown that you’re less than you think you are, is.But it’s a good hurt, right?Good in the sense of​ it’s being the first step toward facing reality. Good in the sense of course correction and truly becoming the best you can be. It also sucks. It hurts and it’s embarrassing. No one likes to be informed that they’ve been a fool.I have been a… Read More »

Your Weakest Link

We’re only as strong as our weakest linkA few weeks ago, I wrote a post about this concept. I wrote “We’re only as strong as our weakest member,” meaning that we take care of our own. It’s the job of the stronger, more knowledgeable, advanced member to take care of and look after the weaker, less experienced, newbie. We look after our own and strive to bring everyone up regardless of where they started from.Once you’re a part of us, you’re a part of us. Today I want to apply that same concept to you, your body, and your training.… Read More »

How Many Days Per Week Should I Train?

How many days per week should I train?This is one of the more common questions I get asked.It basically means, “How often do I need to come to the gym in order to see results?” As you’ve probably anticipated, my answer is not the simple one you’re looking for. I get it. Life would be so much simpler if I could just answer a question like that with a straight forward “four.” The answer is clear and defined. Easy, right? Now all you have to do is figure out how to get those four sessions in every week. And many… Read More »