Tony Gentilcore on the Importance of Training With Purpose

In this episode, I interview Tony Gentilcore, one of the three original founders of the exceptionally successful, Cressey Sports Performance, and now founder-owner of the new CORE training center in Boston.

The interview starts off talking about the subjectiveness of strength (6:20), moves to training with purpose and intrinsic motivation (8:40), progressing the chin-up for women (10:40), the hollow hold positions (19:15), progressing the deadlift for men (26:20) and finishes up with the “trainable menu” (42:30).

Tony is one of the great personalities of the fitness industry. It was a hell of a lot of fun doing this interview and I hope you enjoy it.

Selected links

Show notes

  • Writing [2:00]
  • How do you describe it is what you do, Tony? Making people deadlift terminators.  I want people to be strong and move well. [3:25]
  • Strength is subjective. Of course, I want people to get strong in the big three lifts. Who am I to tell someone who someone who can do a human flag is not strong? [6:00]


  •  Training with purpose. Why are we coming here? What are we working toward? [8:20]
  • Intrinsic motivation to get your ass to the gym. Getting jazzed up and excited is key to being self-motivated. [9:00]


  • Woman are can be impeded by the media on what they can achieve. The ‘chin-up’ resonates with a lot of woman as a goal to work toward. [10:20]
  • Progression pattern to get that first chin-up. Training once or twice a week is not enough, but doing chin ups every day is not the best avenue. [13:50]
  • Tony’s impressive YouTube on form and technique. [17:15]
  •  Hollow hold position as a first step. [19:00]


  • Intro [26:00]
  • Deadlift stance. Conventional deadlift is actually the most difficult. [27:30]
  • How to get started with a conventional deadlift. [35:00]
  • Using video to fix deadlift technique. [39:00]


  • Working with your anatomy, “trainable menu”. [41:00]
  • Resources. [45:00]
  • More about Tony. [51:00]
  • Best deadlift article from Tony. [51:40]
  • Grant one wish for the industry. Not being dogmatic. [53:00]

Thank you for listening! – Andy and Tony

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Andy Morgan

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