The Cruel Tutelage of Leo Totten

I host a podcast, so I occasionally listen to a few as well.  I once heard Charles Poliquin say something on the Tim Ferris Podcast along the lines of the best way to boost testosterone and raise performance is to change sexual partners. You could imagine my wife’s reaction when I presented her with this idea.  Imagine you might, but you’ll never guess what she said.  She responded without so much as glance from her book, “if raising your total or winning a meet added a zero to our bank account that might be an option.”

She certainly is her husbands wife!

Facts, are that training alone this last year has been as much fun as having sex alone.  Sure, neither has been terrible, but the alternatives are both a lot more fun.

The relationship may end a little prematurely with this posting but I have decide to take on a coach.  I have researched and thought long and hard about this and believe I have made a good choice in asking Leo Totten to take me on as an athlete.


Facts are that I have learned the hard way this last year that everyone, even self proclaimed coaches, need coaching.

All joking and poking aside I did not want to make the investment in myself or waste another coaches time knowing I couldn’t and wouldn’t commit to the relationship.  The family has just been undergoing a lot of change and my kiddos and wife needed me focused on them. Simply put, my priorities to the family really didn’t allow for many new people to enter the fold.

However, where we sit currently things are beginning to loosen up.  Luci is potty trained (no more diapers for this guy) and acting kinda human.  Mason and Charli are both in school and really becoming smart independent critters.  Eliza’s fellowship at West Point is even getting her home for supper and baths this final semester.  Lastly, my head is right and ready to get back to the platform.

Facts are I am as human as the next guy and with Masters Nationals looming and watching my own athlete perform well at the American Open I also want to put on a solid showing in a big meet.  The urgency of the situation really hit home when I realized the completion is less than 8 weeks away and I haven’t sniffed in training the total I posted last year (118/241/265).

I don’t know if taking on a coach is the change to spark a comeback, produce a record breaking performance or facilitate a return to a national platform but I do know performance aside there are a few other reasons that the situation makes sense.  Considering I am a lot like you I figured I would share those ideas in the hopes that you get off the fence and don’t have a flat year of training because of a lack luster self coaching.

1 – I need someone else’s option and eyes.

Without a coach pushing me I just haven’t attacked my weaknesses or evaluated myself properly.  The human super power is cheating, I really believe that.  Whether it is out of survival or laziness I have often taken the path of least resistance.

With that in mind I have also achieved and accomplished great things with good pushes from the right coaches.  The right formula of motivation, persistence and knowledge from the right outside influence has always taken me beyond my perceived limits. It makes sense to go back to that well.

2 – I need to be accountable to something.

Without anyone to check into, provide results to, or follow up with I have cut corners this last year in training.  I have written myself some wonderful workouts over the last year.  Some of which I have passed along to my athletes and they have done really well.  To bad for me I am a crap student!

Without someone holding me accountable its been very easy for me to say, “ill make it up later.”  I can say for certain that knowing Coach Totten has put time into my plan, and expects me to perform I’ll do the work.

Also, don’t discount the motivation that money is being exchanged.  Good coaches don’t work for free.  With a few bucks behind the arrangement I want to prove the relationship and investment a success.  Sticking to the plan and performing when it counts are the best ways to do that.

3 – I want, need, to be mentored.

The facts are that I have always looked up to coaches.  Hell I want to be a great coach.  The fast track, if there is one, to getting there is listening and allowing yourself to be taught by great coaches.  Hell, you can even get under the wrong, or a bad coach, and learn what not to do.

The simple fact is that if you want to be a better coach you need to surround yourself with better coaches. Not only has coach Totten produced great athletes but he is considered a leader in Weightlifting and there is a thing to be learned by folks who are regarded highly by their peers.

Considering these facts and a few more I have decided to place my total in the hands of Coach Totten.  In fact, interestingly enough coach Totten grew up in the small town I spent my college years in, Westminster MD.  Considering I make a trip to Westminster at least once a year there is a strong chance ill be visiting coach here and there for brush ups.

The Personal connection aside, Coach Totten has also established a wonderful network with East Coach Gold, produced great lifters, and is also up for coaching coaches.  I can’t say for sure how my total will fair at Masters Nationals in March, but I can say that I will learn a thing or two from a coach who has accomplished a thing or two.

All new adventures start with the first step.  Let the Cruel Tutelage of Leo Totten begin.  If Beatrix Kiddo can come out of training under Pai Man the deadliest women in the world maybe working with Coach Totten can help me best my standing as the 2nd Best 85kg Weightlifter in the Country between the age of 35 years and 39 years and 364 days.

I can say for certain a push is coming but that is exactly what I need.  It will be interesting to see what this relationship will fruit in the near and distance future.  For now, the thought is simply getting a little better everyday.  Lucky for me technology makes tracking progress pretty easy and good coaching just a click away.

Here are some clips from my first session so we can access my progress in real time together!  I’m also up for your opinions about my movement as well.

The Cruel Tutelage of Leo Totten

Talk training with me by commenting below.  Also, I play social media games too! Find me on twitter and Instagram @joesbarbell. I have a Facebook page, and also post training progress and instructional videos to my youtube channel!

Cheers, best lifts, and remember #alltotalmatter!

Doc and Jock Podcast E149 – Everyone Needs a Coach!


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1 Comment. Leave new

Coach Totten is a great coach!