I’m sometimes I’m asked by aspiring fitness professionals the best way to learn. Short of seeking out a relevant university degree, I’d start by reading, watching, and subscribing to everything on this page.
I’d also take a course on note-taking as the first step. — It’s easy to read without learning, and things not learned are easily forgotten. A good note-taking system helps immensely and I wish I had started earlier. There are many systems for this, but I’m a fan of Tiago Forte’s Building a Second Brain methodology.
Learning How to Lift
- The Big 3 Basics — Teach yourself to master the Squat, Bench Press, and Deadlift. (🎥 Product)
- The Lifting Library — Teach yourself the other lifts. (🎥 Product)
- How To Low Bar Squat (📝+🎥)
- How To Bench Press (📝+🎥)
- How To Deadlift Properly (📝+🎥)
- The Diet Adjustments Manual, by myself.📙
- The Muscle and Strength Pyramids: Nutrition and Training, by Eric Helms, Andrea Valdez, and myself. 📕📘
- The Art & Science of Lifting, by Greg Nuckols 📓.
- The Science and Development of Hypertrophy by Brad Schoenfeld 📓.
- To learn about bodybuilding: 3DMuscleJourney.com
- To learn about the science of lifting: Strongerbyscience.com
- To find reliable supplement information: Examine.com
- For translations of my work, see here.
I have known all of these people for years and would trust them with my house keys:
- Patrick Umphrey of EatTrainProgress.com for recreational trainees.
- Sohee Lee for recreational female trainees.
- TheStrengthAthlete.com for powerlifting and remote injury rehab, run by Bryce Lewis.
- StrongerbyScience.com for bodybuilding and powerlifting, run by Greg Nuckols and Eric Trexler.
- 3DMuscleJourney for physique and bodybuilding, run by Eric Helms.
- ReactiveTrainingSystems.com for elite-level powerlifting, run by Mike Tuchscherer. (RTS is a gold medal factory.)
If you’re interested, here’s how we all connect:
- I’ve known Patrick Umphrey since 2012 years, meeting him every year (barring the COVID years) at conferences. He’s an absolute gentleman both on and offline.
- Sohee Lee is studying for her Ph.D. under Eric Helms (3DMuscleJourney). We first met at the same conference I met Patrick at.
- Eric Helms is my co-author on The Muscle and Strength Pyramid books. He coaches Bryce Lewis.
- Bryce Lewis was the 2018 IPF 105kg (230lb) World Champion and has held world records in drug-free powerlifting. He impresses me with how deeply he studies the psychological aspects of coaching, which are so important at the elite ends of the sport.
- Greg Nuckols may be the smartest person I have met in our industry and one of the funniest. But he cheats because he has an almost perfect memory.
- Mike Tuchscherer (try pronouncing that) is a soft-talking world champion maker and one of the deepest thinkers in the sport. I don’t recall how we met, but I stayed at his house in Colorado Springs for a week once.
- Eric, Bryce, Mike, Greg, and I jump on a monthly Skype call to talk business. I am happily the dumbest person in that virtual room.
You’re in good hands with these people and those who work for them. These are not ill-thought-out recommendations.
- Ben Carpenter — Consistently the best nutrition videos I have seen. Ben has set the bar for what’s possible on Instagram.
Research Review Recommendations
Making sense of the latest research is exceptionally hard, I trust these guys to do it. These monthly publications slightly geekier than my average reader will be looking for, but this is where I mainly learn from and what my team and I are subscribed to:
- Monthly Applications in Strength Sport (MASS), by Eric Helms, Mark Zourdos, Greg Nuckols, and Eric Trexler.
- The Weightology Research Review, by James Krieger
- The Examine Research Digest
- Alan Aragon’s Research Review (AARR).