The Psychology of Strength Review (Mike Gillette)

I’ve had the opportunity to look over a new program called The Psychology of Strength.

Mike Gillette

ThePsychologyofStrengthReviewLet me start by telling you a little about he author.  Gillette is a former Army paratrooper, SWAT commander, Homeland Security consultant, and armed forces tactical trainer.  He is currently an executive bodyguard, performing strongman and martial arts expert (the bar you see in the picture was bent with his bare hands).  He holds the world’s record for the most steel-tipped arrows broken simultaneously with his neck.  He’s also the creator of the Savage Strength Training System, a popular program on this blog.  Needless to say, he knows a thing or two about developing both physical and mental strength.

Program Components

Now let’s talk about what you get when you order the this program:

StrengthPsychologyReview Strength Psychology Instruction Manual:   This document begins with a summary of Gillette’s fascinating life story.  He was raised in a very dysfunctional environment that left him afraid and suicidal (literally) by the time he was 18.  But he made the decision to turn his life around and discover his purpose.  The author goes on to explain the mindset of mental Toughness he was able to develop and gives specific steps on how you can do the same.

The Videos:  This program also includes videos where you can hear Mike Explain the concepts in more detail.  The videos are the most important component of The Psychology of Strength program.

Video 1: Introduction–Mike begins this video by describing people who are not mentally tough–people who “just get by.”  These kinds of people, he argues, have a tendency to settle for less in life.   This can be changed if you develop mental toughness and take control of your mind, which will enable you to pursue the life you want.  He explains how this happened in his life and how he wants to help it happen for you.  This program, he explains, combines things he has learned from the various phases in his life (military, law enforcement, etc.).

Video 2: Personal Story of Strength–As I’ve mentioned, Gillette had a rough upbringing.  Hearing him share it personally is very powerful: “My story is one of weakness transformed into strength and second chances.”

Video 3: Mental Toughness (Part 1)–The primary concept in this video is the mindset of mental toughness.    Mike talks a great deal about the connection between the body and the mind.  Physical talent, for example, is not maximized until one develops the mental focus need to perform optimally.  He also discusses how negative emotions can affect everything we do.   This video includes some specific strategies to change negative emotions.

Video 4: Mental Toughness (Part 2)-This video focuses on fear–learning what it is so you can begin to overcome it.  Mike starts off by sharing a personal testimony of how fear used to control his life.  Fear management training is a concept you’ll be introduced to–not banishing fear (which is impossible and even inadvisable), but learning to face it. “What I want you to be able to do is recognize fear and do what you want to anyway,” he says.

Video 5: Mental Toughness (Part 3)–Mike talks about overcoming fear in this video.  Once again he shares a personal story (this one from his days as a police officer) illustrating our tendency to “freeze” when we are afraid.   He takes his life-or-death experience and explains how the same principles apply to almost any fear-based experience.   Mike then gives some practical steps that will help you confront and manage your fear.

Video 6: Life by Design (Part 1)–This video teaches you how to make effective plans for your life.  People often fail, Mike argues, because they don’t plan well.  Example: someone may say he wants to lose weight.  This is an admirable goal, but it just isn’t specific enough to really mean anything.  One component of proper planning is a specific, measurable goal.   This video really focuses on how to make challenging yet attainable goals and reach them.

Video 7: Life by Design (Part 2)–Mike shows you how to set long-term goals for five different areas of your life (physical, financial, etc.).

Video 8: Mind Strengthening Skills–This final video offers several mental exercises you can practice.  Mike encourages you to try all these skills/techniques so you can gain better control of your thoughts and improved awareness of your body (breathing, etc.).  Practicing these techniques can help you become physically stronger as you improve over time.

Review:

Sometimes we think mentally strong people were just born that way or grew up with every possible advantage.  This may be true in some cases, but it definitely wasn’t in Mike’s.  Mental strength is something anyone can develop if he/she will simply commit to new ways of thinking.

Most of the programs I review are about diet and training–physical aspects of self-improvement.  The Psychology of Strength is unique in that it deals almost exclusively with the mental aspect of improving your life.   I think it is worth your time/money.

I think this program would be good for the following:

*Athletes/trainees that want to overcome psychological barriers and further develop the mental aspect of their skill/game.

*People who want to overcome fear or lack of confidence.

*People who want to live more intentionally.

*Coaches and/or motivational speakers who want to add to their personal development library.

I think The Psychology of Strength would be a worthwhile investment if this describes you (or if what I’ve shared in this review/summary appeals to you).  The digital version is $49 and the “hard copy” version is $99.  This is relatively inexpensive when compared to what it would cost to go to a seminar of this length and quality.

JUST CLICK HERE IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO ORDER THIS PROGRAM OR LEARN MORE.

Note: You may see a video called The End of the American Male at the bottom of the program page.  I personally do not endorse (or use) any “testosterone booster” supplements.  My review only covers the program I have described, not any other products.

Alternative Products:  As I’ve mentioned, Mike Gillette has a program called the Savage Strength Training System.  Feel free to check it out if you want to learn more about his physical approach to strength training.

Holiday Weight Gain

holiday-weight-gain-in-the-us

It’s the time of year when people start regretting all the ham, cakes, cookies, and other holiday treats they’ve been eating.  You may have heard that the average person gains about five pounds during the holidays.   I decided to do a little research to see if this is true.

One study followed almost two hundred adults for a year to see how holiday eating (Thanksgiving through New Year) affected their weight.  They were weighed preholiday, holiday, postholiday, and a year later.   The study showed that most adults did put on extra weight during November-January, but it only averaged about a pound (.37 kg to be precise–as shown above).  Obese individuals tended to gain more, and 14% of the subjects did indeed put on five pounds. Here’s something else the researchers discovered: most of the subjects in this study never lost the weight they gained during the holiday.  The damage done was never reversed.1,2

This research backs up what we already know from personal experience and/or observation: weight gain is accelerated in the holiday season.   Most people don’t gain five pounds, but whatever they do gain stays with them (presumably for life).  It’s one contributing factor to the problem of obesity in the US.

One solution is to use the momentum of New Year’s resolutions to undo the “damage” caused by holiday eating–make a plan to drop a few pounds (more if needed).  There are plenty of good programs available to help you get started.

References:

1. N Engl J Med. 2000 Mar 23;342(12):861-7. A prospective study of holiday weight gain.

2. Nutr Rev. 2000 Dec;58(12):378-9. Holiday weight gain: fact or fiction?

Body Transformation: Sara Gentry

I came across another remarkable transformation a few days ago.  The before/after picture below belongs to Sara Gentry, a personal trainer from Arizona.  She has graciously agreed to share her story with us, so here goes:

Sara Gentry (Before/After)
Sara Gentry (Before/After)

MuscleReview: Sara thanks you for taking the time to do this interview. Why don’t you tell my readers a little bit about yourself (education, work, etc.).

Sara: I currently work for Anytime Fitness as one of their Certified Personal Trainers, something I had wanted to become since about 6 months into my journey.

MuscleReview: Let’s talk about the “before” version of you. Did you always have weight issues (since childhood) or did you gain weight after you became an adult?

Sara: I had always been a bigger girl–I gained and lost here and there throughout my adult life.  It wasn’t until my last child that I became heavier than ever.   It lasted about two years before I finally said, “enough is enough.”

MuscleReview: What was the breaking point for you? What made you decide it was time to change your lifestyle and body?

Sara: The breaking point for me was the day I got married.  That day that was supposed to be the happiest day of my life, but instead I was miserable. I hated myself; I hated how I looked and couldn’t believe that I had let myself go so far. I didn’t like my wedding photos and told my husband, “just wait, one day we are going to have good pictures.” It’s been nearly three years since we were married and I’m hoping we can take some new pictures on our three-year anniversary.

MuscleReview: How much weight have you lost overall (you can also include measurements such as body composition if you want)?

Sara: I have lost a total of 103 lbs. I went from a size 28 jeans to a size 4/5. I never really went by other measurements during this journey, but plan to start using them for other purposes such as upcoming physique competitions.

MuscleReview: I noticed the before/after picture shows about a three-year span. How long did your transformation take? Where you tempted to give up?

Sara: It took 16 months for me to lose 103 lbs.  I maintained that loss for a year, then decided to study to be a Certified Personal Trainer. I received my certification this year in January.  Back in August (2013) I also decided that I wanted to try competing in a physique competition.   I started preparing and took the stage in March 15, 2014, where I won 4th place. What an awesome experience that was for me!

MuscleReview: Was there a particular dietary method you found to be most helpful (or the easiest to follow)?

Sara: I never followed a “diet”, I counted calories in the beginning for an entire year, then kind of knew how much I could eat and went off on my own. Once I started training for the competition, I had to start counting macro-nutrients.  This was much harder to learn than just regular calories. There is so much more to learn, every day learning something new about nutrition.

MuscleReview: What advice would you give to someone who wants to make a transformation like yours?

Sara: I would tell them to not give up!  I have found that the key to staying motivated is just doing it, over and over. Make yourself do it until it becomes habit. People around you can inspire you, but motivation has to come from within–you have to want this. You have to want it bad!  It’s going to suck at times and you will hate it, but do not let that stop you.

MuscleReview I see you are a personal trainer. Would you ever have imagined this before your transformation years ago?

Sara: The thought never crossed my mind. I actually wanted to be a chiropractor for a very long time. I absolutely LOVE helping people achieve their fitness goals and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else in this life.

MuscleReview: Do you plan to continue competing (fitness competitions)?

Sara: Yes, I did the NPC Natural Outlaw in Arizona on March 15, 2014. It was the most amazing experience to date and I plan on doing another in about a year.

MuscleReview: Please tell my readers about your diet and exercise regimen (in very general terms).

Sara: Currently I eat around 1800 calories a day, still counting macros:  protein, carbs and fats are the main things I count.   I also eat a ton of veggies and fruit. I weight train 6 days a week and do some type of cardio 6 days a week as well (kickboxing, HIITS, biking, hiking, walking, running, or the elliptical).

MuscleReview: What’s next for you?

Sara: My next goal is to do another competition in a year. I want to learn more about nutrition in the next year and step it up at the next competition. I would also like to get certified in cardio kickboxing and take a few nutrition classes.  Other than that, I will keep training at Anytime Fitness and keep moving forward.

MuscleReview: Is there anything else you’d like to say/share?

Sara: There are going to be many people who will belittle you and tell you that you can’t do this, that this is impossible. Do not listen to them. It is possible. It is very possible. There will be plenty of haters along the way, let them hate while you rise above!

MuscleReview: Thanks again for your time!

SaraGentryBodyTransformationNote: You can visit Sara’s Facebook Page: Gentry Reality Fitness if you’d like to follow her or inquire about personal training.