A Bedtime “Must Read”

I’ve been studying the subconscious mind lately. It’s fascinating stuff. Apparently, it’s what controls you – your thoughts, your actions, your life – it’s all a result of “programming” your subconscious.

Apparently, there are two times of the day when your subconscious is most susceptible to programming – first thing in the morning, and last thing at night, right before bed.

This explains the books on my nightstand.

They are the most important to me because they have the ability to change the way I believe, think, and live.

So, obviously, it’s only books that are really interesting and important to me. Among those books are books on history, philosophy, religion, and exercise.

Among those books is arguably, one of the most important books, I believe, ever written about exercise, training, and physical activity. And interestingly enough, it’s by a guy you might have heard of, a religious studies and physical education teacher, a Highland Games and Weightlifting Champion, and all-around smart guy, Dan John. The book – Never Let Go.

Never Let Go is arguably one of the top three books in my mind ever written on strength training. It’s written as a “living document.” Dan, has been lifting weights and competing in various athletic events since 1967. That’s a lifetime of knowledge that we can draw from. And it’s from that perspective that Dan is writing. Experience, it is said, is a dear teacher. Dear, in this instance, doesn’t necessarily mean “fond” but rather “costly.” Dan, has made many mistakes and has learned much from them. Want to know what they are and how they apply to you?

Read the book.


You’ll finally understand the infamous “5×5 Method” and how to use it. You’ll learn about the value of Nautilus Machine training and Dan’s experiences with “HIT” and what they mean to you. Concerned about how to lose fat? Yup – Dan’s got that covered and his take is much different from most “gurus.” And unlike most coaches, Dan actually tells you all his coaching secrets in this book.

How successful of a coach is he? He recently got his football team in such good shape they won the State Championships. Doing exactly the opposite of what all the other schools were doing for strength and conditioning. Seriously. (Oh yeah, and he’s still training for the Highland Games…)

I could go on and on and on and tell you how much I like this book and how much it challenges my thinking about my own programming and my clients’ programming. But I won’t.

What I will tell you, and this will sound harsh, but I make no apologies, you would be a fool not to have this book on your nightstand. Remember, your subconscious guides your conscious. And that dictates your actions and your actions your results. Wouldn’t you want to program yourself for success in the weight room and the athletic field? Do so by reading Never Let Go each night before bed. It’ll probably be the best training decision you’ve ever made.

10 comments… add one
  • Jon Apr 26, 2010 @ 16:41

    Excellent post today Geoff. I purchased a copy of “Never Let Go” last summer following a 2 day KB workshop Dan John conducted in Utah. I completed it within a few days of the workshop and it now resides on my nightstand where I regularly refer to it. Dan is a great author: humorous, insightful, and a natural teacher. I agree with you completely, the book is a must read.

  • Mike McNiff Apr 26, 2010 @ 21:03

    Excellent suggestion Geoff. This is a must have, right up there with both Under the Bar and Raising the Bar by Dave Tate.

  • Chris Leeman Apr 26, 2010 @ 21:05

    Tremendous book. On second read along with many thumb throughs. I recommend it to trainers and all my clients. Nice post.

  • Chuck Apr 26, 2010 @ 21:10

    Okay. On your exhortations, I’ve ordered John’s book.
    Further comment reserved until and when I’ve read and analyzed the material.

    Chuck Klein
    Somerset, NJ

  • Jeremy LaHaie Apr 26, 2010 @ 22:03

    You mentioned you’ve been reading a lot about the subconscious mind.. Any good books about that you can recommend? Or is this in the book?

  • Russ Moon Apr 29, 2010 @ 2:35

    Roll to press, Press to Elbow 32 kg 5 reps 1 set
    Snatch 32 kg 20,10,10,10 – 100 rep total
    24 kg 40 reps 1 set 10L+10R x 2

  • Russ Moon Apr 29, 2010 @ 19:05

    1 arm clean – Bulldog 2 sets of 20
    Dual kb press Bulldog – 1 ladder to 5
    Deadlift Bulldog – 4 sets of 20
    1 arm swing Bulldog 2 sets of 10

  • Russ Moon May 1, 2010 @ 11:30

    5 sets 100 24kg 1 arm swing

  • Russ Moon May 6, 2010 @ 21:00

    5 x 25 dual 40kg deadlifts working on mimicking the lower body motion used in the swing,clean and snatch. Want to build and groove my lower body motion since it is identical in all three exercises to make them all simultaneously more efficient….or at least that is the goal we will see.

    Don’t really see how I can go wrong with some deadlifting as means of improving my swing given that is how many teach it. Mixing up the basics but still focused on the same goals. Getting leaner and stronger.

  • jerry Jun 9, 2010 @ 14:47

    Great book. Learned a lot and laughed a lot. Reading it for the second time soaking it in.

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