Episode 32: Trained By A Trainer - 15 Minutes to Freedom Podcast | Transcription
Transcription for the video titled "Episode 32: Trained By A Trainer - 15 Minutes to Freedom Podcast".
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This is 15 Minutes to Freedom. I'm your host, Ryan Neidell, and today's episode is Trained by a Trainer. So I moved to Columbus, gosh, at this point, I'm a bad judge, let's say 10 years ago, maybe a little bit longer. I've shared with you in other episodes, I, at that point in life, wanted to be a professional bodybuilder. That was the story I was telling myself, is that I needed to be the professional bodybuilder. All the way back from a freshman in college, grabbing my first muscular development magazine with a busty blonde woman on the front that started my fascination with bodybuilding. Obviously, Muscular Development's a bodybuilding magazine that used to be in massive production circulation that would have all the biggest and best bodybuilders in the world. And so that got me enamored with it.
Fitness And Career Insights
Metro Fitness (00:50)
And obviously, the women weren't a bad bonus to that. But as life progresses and time progresses, and I find anabolic steroids and all the things that go into this, I've now pseudo-convinced myself that I can be a professional bodybuilder. And so the best trainer in Mansfield, where I grew up at, was a guy named Greg Trail. And Greg Trail was a Mr. Ohio winner at some point. Mr. Ohio was, at that point in my mind, I thought the biggest competition in Ohio. It meant you were at the top of the class in all of Ohio. And so I had trained with Greg Trail. And that was before anabolics. That was when I was still in high school and things like that. And he helped me train, and we never discussed steroids. It was never an important thing. We never really discussed diet either. It was nothing more than he had told me about MCT oil way back when, medium-chain triglyceride oil, as a source of energy that I could put on top of my carbs. And in his mind, he said, if I put it on top of rice, it will help me process rice more efficiently. Now, I can go into a whole tangent about why that's actually not true today, but at the time, I accepted that as a gospel. And so wrap up in Mansfield. Don't want to be in the carpets anymore there. Move to Columbus, as I've shared with you. So I joined Lifetime Fitness down here. And as I joined Lifetime Fitness, it's the most incredible gym I've ever been a part of. I mean, it's like a palace. If you haven't been to a Lifetime Fitness before, it's like a country club for what I call poor people. You know, the memberships are expensive, but it's not a country club membership, but it feels like it. Granite and marble and towels and showers and every amenity you ever wanted. And so I join, and the first person I meet there, my membership advisor, the person that signs me up is a girl named Julie. And Julie and I end up, of course, at some point, I shouldn't say of course, but we end up dating. You know, she's the first girl I meet in Columbus. And I've latched onto her as though, you know, she's going to be the person that's going to save me from the relationship that I'm in with a girl named Brandy. And Brandy's still in Mansfield. And again, go back to old podcasts if you want to know that story. But I wasn't faithful. But I wasn't faithful. And so in getting to know Julie, somebody that's, she is a, eventually leaves the gym and starts working at a rental community. So she's a member, or she's a, you know, an apartment leasee, leaser. Whatever the right terminology would be. She leases people apartments. Super kind girl. Everything's great, and she knows I have this aspiration to be a bodybuilder. At that point, I'm probably 245 pounds, maybe 250. Soggy, soft, definitely don't look like I do now, but didn't know what to do. Didn't know where to go. So Julie, being this phenomenally caring person and great individual, knows I want to get into bodybuilding. Like, again, this 245-pound guy, a little sloppy, didn't understand diet, didn't understand nutrition, certainly didn't understand anabolic's way that I do now. And so I'm just working out hard, lifting heavy in bad form and all that stuff. But as she transitions into her leasing office, she ends up meeting a woman that was the ex-wife of a local trainer. And this trainer is not only local. I mean, he's globally known. His name is Mike Davies. Mike Davies runs a gym in Columbus. And come to find out, this is one of the best gyms that I've ever been to. It's actually here in Columbus. It's called Metro Fitness. It used to be World's Gym here and just has this phenomenal atmosphere. And so Julie's talking to her and then tells her about me and she's told they share Mike's information to have me go over and meet with Mike. And so I travel from the little town I'm in to the little town this gym's in, probably a 30-minute drive, and go over and have a meeting with Mike. And I'm nervous but excited. So I'm like, look, I know I can be a pro bodybuilder. This guy's going to get me there.
Trained By a Trainer (04:24)
He's got it. And so I remember walking to his office. So I'm like, look, I know I can be a pro bodybuilder. This guy's going to get me there. He's got it. And so I remember walking to his office. It's a little tiny closed, probably six by six office. He closes the door and says, all right, take off your clothes. I'm looking, I'm like, you're fucking kidding me? Like I've never taken my clothes off just at will in front of somebody. It didn't really dawn on me I was going to have to do that at some point if I want to be a pro bodybuilder. So I stripped down and take off my clothes. He looks at me from, nah, I still have my underwear on. I'm not completely naked. I mean, we're not, you know, going down that far, but I have my clothes off and he's looking at me. He says, pose and do this, that, the other. He said, all right, put your clothes on, put my clothes back on. He looks me down the eye and says, you shouldn't even compete in an amateur show for three years.
Shitty bodybuilding advice (04:55)
You have no chance. You have no idea what you're doing. Well, I look at him at this point, it's the gospel. Like what Mike says, he's a world-renowned trainer. He knows better. And so I said, okay, that's fine. He goes, you know, join the gym, train with me a couple days a week. Here's my fee structure. Don't remember what it is. It doesn't really matter. But join here and train, and we'll turn you into something that's going to take two or three years. Done deal. Sign up that day for a membership. Head down that path.
Mike Francos (05:21)
Come in the next day to start training. He's tied up with some clients. And I'm talking to the guy behind the counter, young man. He said, hey, you know, you're going to train with Mike Davies. I said, yeah, absolutely. He goes, man, I don't want to cause any problems, but you see that guy over there in the corner? And he points to this guy. He's probably 5'9", 5'10", wearing an oversized shirt and some shorts, slender-looking guy, maybe 185, 190 pounds. I said, yeah, I see him. Why? He says, says well that's mike francois i said okay you might as well have said his name is john smith to me i didn't know who mike francois was at that point i said all right why does that matter so well mike francois was a 1995 arnold classic champion like he's the guy that you want to have train you like he understands bodybuilding mike davies does a great job but it's only fitness women for the most part. I'm like, oh man, this is crazy. So I turn to Mike Davies once or twice, and then I go introduce myself to Mike Francois. And Mike looked at me too. I want a secondary opinion because in my mind, I should be a pro bodybuilder. I have it in me. So in speaking to Mike Francois, he looks at me and goes, man, if you want to compete this year, I'll get you ready. Completely polar opposite personalities. Mike is kind and Mike Francois is kind and loving and caring and passionate. And Mike Davies is tell you how it is if you don't like it, leave. Two polar opposites. And I'm sitting there thinking in my head, gosh, I'm a guy. And I want to train with a guy that knows how to train guys and has also been a pro bodybuilder. So I need to go with Mike Francois. Well, I didn't realize behind the scenes that this causes a massive rift at the gym because it's like I'm sacred property. And not because I have some genetic propensity to put on muscle, but because I'm a new person that's going to pay money. And now the two Mikes are mad at each other because they're fighting over me as a new paying client. So I started training with Mike Francois. Not only did I start, I continued to train with him for two or three years. And in training with Mike, I learned a tremendous amount about diet and training and supplementation and anabolics. And some of his closest friends are top nutritionists in the space because, again, he's lived this life. Mike, his entire career got cut short. In 96, he came down with ulcerative colitis and it almost killed him. Walks around a very low body fat percentage because he can't digest fats at all, eats a very clean diet, and just looks like a normal, although very shredded and hugely calfed individual. You wouldn't know he was anything special other than if you knew who he was. So I'm learning all these things consistently, and I'm training like Mike trained. And Mike trained, again, for those of you who don't know, Mike trained complete balls to the wall, early 90s, lift as much weight as you can, as many times as you can, as hard as you can, as frequently as you can. That was just it. That was how he trained. And so that's how he had us train. Us being, you know, when I started training with him, there's a group of eight of us that would train every morning at eight o'clock in the morning. And there's just such camaraderie around the eight of us pushing each other. So I decided, of course, with these eight guys, we're all going to do this show together. And the show happened to be the Mike Francois Classic. Go figure. His show here in Columbus every year. And so I'm getting ready, and I'm freaking pumped. You know, I start training in July or August. The show's in May. So it gives me also a full year to add on size and then cut down. And that's how bodybuilding works And so Go through everything he tells me to do Almost In all actuality If I need to be 100% honest I probably did 80% of what he said to do Maybe even 70% of what he said to do But I did most of it And so in doing most of it It comes to be show day And I've never been on a stage before I don't know anything about it So I don't know that I'm doing most of it. It comes to be show day and I've never been on a stage before.
I don't know anything about us. So I don't know that I'm supposed to have somebody else paint me like there's services that will spray on spray tan on you. So I buy this horrible spray tan. I'm putting it on myself and I'm having, you know, girlfriends do it. I'm having people at a tanning salon do it. And this is, it's this laughable equation. Like it's, it's, it's horrible, but I look good enough in my mind. So I step out on stage, and I'm thinking I'm going to walk out here and people are going to just gasp because I feel like I'm the man. I'm big. Now, granted, I think I competed at 235 pounds, maybe 240. Last time I competed, and probably the last time I will ever compete, I competed at 260 or 265, so obviously there's a lot of room to grow. But in the show, I think I ended up placing third in my weight class. Not third overall, not third in a specific category, like third in my weight class of 10 or 12 people, which didn't even qualify me for an overall shot at the championship. So I'm sitting here, and I'm pissed. I don't get it. I thought I did all the work. At least that's the story I told myself is I had the best trainer in the area I had this guy that had had success in his life in bodybuilding, massive success global success Mike traveled all over the globe competing in bodybuilding contests if you don't have any idea who he is I encourage you to google him for 3 seconds and type in Mike Francois F-R-A-N-C-I-O-U-S. It's incredible the size he was able to put on.
The Way to Be A Gold Medal Winner (10:02)
But now that I'm able to look at it in retrospect, I had to stop fucking lying to myself. I didn't do 100% of what he said I should do. You know, to be a professional bodybuilder, to be professional in anything, you have to go all in 100% of the time.
100% of go all in 100% of the time. 100% of the time means 100% of the time. Like Mike Francois now, still today, does not eat a cheat meal. A cheat meal being a piece of pizza. Just one piece of pizza. Now granted, he does that because he can't. His colitis won't allow that. It'll do dramatic things to his body. But it's that freakish dedication that's required to actually get anywhere and any sort of results. And I created this whole fucking bullshit story that I didn't have the right drugs or I didn't have the right food or I could have done this differently. No, what I could have done and what I should have done is just trust the process. I should have paid attention to the details, trust the process. And in war, we call it DTFW. Do the fucking work. That's what it takes. That's what it takes to be a professional or a champion in anything. Sure, 100%. There's those freakish people that have crazy genetics that have this ability to do things that the rest of us, quote unquote, normal people don't have. But that is such a few and far between rare situation that if you want to be elite at anything or even above average, you have to go all the way fucking in, all the way in full speed. And most people lack that capacity, including myself when it came to bodybuilding. Now that I'm, I'll say retired. And that's a, that's a laughable statement is retiring would mean I would have had to actually become a professional or do something more than step on stage a handful of times, but I'm a retired 34-year-old bodybuilder now. I look back and say, if I had an eighth of the commitment that I have to warrior or bettering my family or bettering my business, I probably could have went somewhere in it, minus the fact of killing myself with steroids. I could have done something with it. But I can see that now from my current frame that I carry around, from the way I view the world. If I look back, sure, when I would get ready for a contest, I wouldn't have cheap meals because I didn't really care. Food's not ever my driving factor. But I would miss meals because I didn't feel like eating. I would not do enough cardio because I thought if I took more drugs, that would offset the cardio. I wouldn't make sure I got the eight hours of sleep I needed a night because I was convinced that I could run on less sleep than that. These are all fucking just bullshit stories. But these are bullshit stories that became my reality. These became my truth and the truth I lived with. And so I see so many people in the gym now, today, you know, still train at Lifetime, still same gym. Lindsay and I train together almost every morning with another group of people and walk around and we see the same people here day over day, week over week, month over month. And they'll talk to us about being frustrated that their bodies aren't changing. Like they see Lindsay and I's bodies change and they don't. Their bodies don't change. And ours do and they don't understand why. Well, why is because now I understand that the rest I get matters. And the fuel that I put in my body and the way that I put in my body matters And the recovery work that I do matters more than I do more than what I do in the gym But i'm willing to invest. I mean i've had since mike francois. I've had not short of eight different nutritional or training coaches And not because they knew more than mike or were better than mike They certainly didn't have any more recognition than Mike had on a global basis, but because they were able to teach me another mindset.
Good investment (13:17)
They were able to teach me something new that I can apply and create my own training methodology that works for me, not for anybody else. I'm not trying to train somebody on how to eat better or look better without their clothes on. I'm not qualified for that other than what I've been through in my own life. I understand that with my O positive blood type, that's a caveman blood type. I don't need carbohydrates. My body actually gets inflamed when I have carbohydrates. Not this bullshit gluten stuff, not this other fad diet. It's fact in my personal body that if I have too many carbs, my face swells up, my hands retain water, my knees hurt. My body doesn't like carbohydrates, but that's trial and error over 14 years. Also, my body doesn't need steroids anymore. I just don't need them. I got to convince myself of this story that if I stop taking steroids, I'm going to shrink down to an average-sized guy. So I stopped steroids in October or so, November. Now I say that with a slight asterisk. Because I'd taken steroids for so long that my natural testosterone production is zero, just about. So I take micro doses of testosterone subcutaneously, so I pinch the fat on my stomach, use an insulin needle, and I take about 300 mg of testosterone a week. So I know in the sheer fact of life that is still an anabolic steroid, but there's certainly no abuse going on.
Alexs Thoughts On Retiring (14:38)
It's all these things. I look at how many places in life are you bullshitting yourself with a story that you can do part of the work and find the success that you want? I know with me, I go all in all day. From 4.30 or 5 when I wake up in the morning until 9.30 or 10 at night, my day is packed. There is no half-ass. The whole thing I keep saying about go all in or quit, that's fucking real. I don't want to record these podcasts every day, but I've got a commitment to. So we record them. And if I miss a day because scheduling or life or the office is too noisy or things go on, we record two. Or like today, we've recorded three because it matters, because the process matters, because the details matter, because the commitment matters. So in your life, when you're looking at it, if you're unhappy with your body and you're mad because you're training with somebody but you're not seeing the results when you leave the gym Are you eating the right way and not some of the time not when you feel like it all the fucking time Are you drinking at night? Are you having a glass of wine to take the edge off or going out for a beer with your friends on the weekend? Like that's all bullshit. You don't need any of that stuff You can go out and have a good time and not drink that beer. You'll understand eventually at some point when you have that alcohol, it actually upsets your estrogen and testosterone balance, slows down your metabolism, messes up a whole lot more than just the taste of the alcohol or the buzz you could get.
Not able to Find Quality People (15:45)
It's actually an initial 48 hours from your last drink before your body recalibrates. So why poison yourself with that? You don't need it. But same thing when it comes to business. You want the promotion inside your company. You want your business, if you own it, to go to the next level, but you're not willing to go all the way in every day. Like you're tiptoeing. You're doing just enough work to get by.
Hitting Rock Bottom (16:14)
How in the fuck do you ever expect to be successful doing just enough to get by? Or your relationship. You're talking to your husband or wife and you know that there's a higher level. You guys used to be on fire together. You used to love being around each other. And all of a sudden it's become sedated. It's become boring. It's become complacent. Well, this complacency comes from the fact that you're not going all the way in for that person. Are you calling your wife or husband in the middle of the day? Catching up, telling them you love them? And not because you're hoping to have sex at night. Not because you feel obligated. But because you know if you do that, it's building to something. It's reinvigorating the trust and the fire in the relationship. You show up with flowers or a card or for me, protein powder. It doesn't matter what it is. Are you taking time out of your day to let the other person know they're special and they matter? And not one day, not a handful of days, every day. Because every day means every day. It doesn't mean when the fuck you feel like it. And that's been the issue for most people, including myself throughout my life. We all do things when it's convenient. We do things when it's simple. We do things when it's, when it makes sense for us. The minute things get hard or become inconvenient for us, we pull away. Well, that pulling away is why there's so few elite people in different parts of life. So if your goal is to be elite, above proficient at something, I encourage you every day to put one foot in front of the other, chasing towards that goal. And in doing that, the only way to make that happen is if you get shit done every day. Hey guys, Ryan here. Thanks for joining me today. If you've enjoyed this podcast, Get done every day. rating, then share this podcast with someone who needs to hear it. For additional content, head over to RyanNidell.com. That's R-Y-A-N-N-I-D-D-E-L.com.