Friday, November 30, 2012

Zig Believes in You

Heading off to Michigan today to supervise and participate in the final round of the TT Home Workout Revolution filming. There aren't a lot of workouts to do, so I'll be heading to the gym in a bit for my regular bench press workout.

Meathead Friday will be: Bench, pullups, db press, and db rows.
Yesterday's workout in the basement of the old farmhouse was: KB Swings, Snatches, Windmills, Lunge, and Power Wheel Rollouts.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
It was a bit of a sad week. Zig Ziglar, a man who paved the way for many, passed away yesterday. He helped millions of people, and is the author of these powerful quotes: 

"You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want." - Zig Ziglar

 “You were born to win, but to be a winner, you must plan to win, prepare to win, and expect to win.” - Zig Ziglar

“Sometimes adversity is what you need to face in order to become successful...If you learn from defeat, you haven’t really lost.” - Zig Ziglar

...Stay strong, and never ever give up on something that is important to you. Never forget Zig believes in you.

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

 “The best way to get started is to get started. Life rewards action…not reaction. Wait for nothing. Attack life. Don’t plan to death or ask for permission…but act now…and apologize later.” – Kekich Credo #81

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Excessive Cardio vs Renegade Cardio

10 years ago people called me crazy for warning against the dangers
of excessive cardio. It doesn't work, I said, and you'll get overuse 
injuries that can ruin your life.
Well, today, not only am I no longer a lone voice in the wilderness, but
major newspapers - like Tuesday's Wall Street Journal - are reporting on studies 
that show excessive cardio harms the heart.
According to the WSJ, research to be published next month in the
British journal, "Heart", says:
Running 20-25 miles or more per week eliminates the benefit of exercise
as you grow older and causes excessive wear-and-tear on the heart.
Of course, exercise ADDICTS will ignore dispute this information, and 
runners will continue to post "I hate Craig Ballantyne" articles, but the 
#truth about long slow cardio and running is this...
1) You can get better fat burning results in less time
2) Less exercise = less wear-and-tear on the body, including your heart,
skeletal muscles, and your joints
3) You'll have more time to do other important things if you aren't out
running for 200-250 minutes per week (assuming a 10-minute mile)
Even Dr. Kenneth Cooper, the father of 'aerobics' has said, "If you are
running more than 15 miles a week, you are doing it for some reason
other than health.
So listen, if you want to exercise for fitness, fat loss, and live a long life
full of vitality, there's no better way to train than with short, burst workouts.
In this program, you'll get dozens of workouts that last 10 minutes or less
and give you faster fat burning than any type of cardio EVER will.
Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Training and Filming

Early workout and then off to the dentist. Finally some traveling back to the farm today. Heading to Michigan on Friday for more workout filming for new TT Home Revolution follow along program. Going to be rough. Gotta get prepared for it. 20 workouts in 20 hours.

Today's training:
Squats, Jumps, Lunges, Leg Curls, Stability Ball Rollout.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Failure isn't bad. Failure isn't final. If there is one thing I know after having observed this crazy world for 37 years, it's that you can SURVIVE almost anything and come back better and stronger than ever before. Don’t let the fear of failure stop you from achieving the success you deserve.

People respect people that are sure of themselves. Don’t be wishy-washy. Be polite, confident, and clear. Treat others with respect, but don’t be afraid to stand for what you believe in…

...“There is something deep within us that responds to those who level with us, who don’t suggest or compromise for us.” – Susan Scott, Fierce Leadership

“There are real limits and self-imposed limits that masquerade as real limits. You have to be able to tell the difference and refuse to be governed by false limits. Further, others will attempt to impose limits by their opinions. Screw ’em. Your opinion of you is far more vital than anyone else’s or even everyone else’s.” – Dan Kennedy explaining his biggest lesson from Dr. Maxwell Maltz and Psycho-Cybernetics

Stay strong,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Taking Kenny Rogers Training Advice Today

I was tempted to hit an extra, but unnecessary workout today. With all the cool programs we've been designing for our new follow-along videos, you just want to go and try them out.

BUT, that's where the Kenny Rogers workout philosophy comes into play.

You see, I've been working out for over 20 years, and amazingly, it had to take almost 20 years of training to figure out how NOT to hurt myself.

But I have Kenny Rogers, the country singer, to thank for my new no-injury ways.

You see, this year I've been following his advice (sing it with me):

"You got to know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away, know when to run."

Following that advice, I now quit while I'm ahead.

I don't go in for that extra workout.

I don't do that extra set.

I don't push to failure.

I train smart.

I stop after a great set.

I take that day off.

You must too.

That said, if it's Training Day, then you must train hard but safe but hard.

"To get something you've never had, you have to do something you've never done." #TakeActionToday

Here's some great feedback on my classic program:

"I started with intermediate tt and have worked to last week of tt2k4 now looking forward to tt2k5 next week. Been gaining around 3 pounds of muscle a month and losing 3 to 5 pounds of fat since beginning. I love it." - Matt Cox, over on

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
If you are waiting for a sign, this is it. I give you permission to take action today. Just start. 5 minutes today. Whatever it is you are trying to improve, give it 5 minutes each day this week. Next week,10 minutes. You can do it. What are you afraid of?

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart,…you’ll know when you find it.” — Steve Jobs

Identify the distractions, eliminate them, schedule your day to avoid them, and have 2 solutions for every obstacle. Then identify your magic time and ruthlessly protect it. More info here

And get more done in less time

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - Spend more time with people that destroy your comfort zone. Seek out these people. Get them to challenge you. And you will grow.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Renegade Cardio

Of all the fitness experts in the industry, this is the guy that I've spent
the most time in the gym with...
...and the most time at the Jersey Shore, and hanging out in NYC, texting
Seinfeld jokes with, and going to Chicago Cubs and Lollapalooza concerts.
That expert (and one of my best friends) is Jason Ferruggia.
Training with Jay at his gym in Jersey is Meathead heaven, even when 
we're doing Renegade Cardio with the Prowler or Battling Ropes, or 
some crazy muscle-building finishers like curls with chains.
The most ripped physiques in the world, like those of NFL wide receivers
or UFC fighters, are built with high intensity conditioning; not traditional
cardio. Those guys can't afford to lose muscle or power. 
  • Bodyweight Circuits- A collection of finishers based on nothing but
    bodyweight exercises that can be done anywhere, anytime. On the road,
    in a hotel room, on the beach, you name it.
  • "One in the Chamber"- A collection of finishers based on only one
    exercise or training implement.
  • Kettelbell Killers- Various kettllebell circuits to jack up your conditioning
    and incinerate bodyfat.
  • Bike Circuits- If you have to use a bike for conditioning this is the way
    to use it. Discover how to mix bike intervals with various other exercises
    for maximal results.
  • Battling Ropes & Jump Ropes- Low impact circuits for awesome results.
  • Barbell Complexes- The most effective barbell complexes that only require
    an empty bar and some space.
  • Pyramids- One of my favorite conditioning methods and definitely not for
    the weak of heart.
  • Deck of Cards- One of the most popular yet feared workouts at
    Renegade Gym.
  • "On the Mix Now"- A collection of various circuits incorporating
    bodyweight, kettlebells, ropes, sleds, sledgehammers, sandbags, medicine
    balls and more.
  • Plus 10 bonus hill sprint and strongman workouts
If you're a trainer or bootcamp instructor this is a must-have resource.
Become a Renegade with this NEW fat burning Un-Cardio Training

Even I could do 10 minutes of THIS cardio,
Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Two Workouts and Kickbutt Mindset Tips

Actions speak louder than words. It's time to hold yourself accountable. You can't rely on anyone else to change your life for you. Do you want this or not? Are you going to do this or what?

Here are two workouts to get you started:

FREE 30-minute fat burning workout

More women need resistance's a booty workout for the ladies

Just remember..."Whatever your dreams are, start taking them very, very seriously." - Barbara Sher ... We all have less time than we think. Take action today.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
All bad times come to an end. Until then, we are left with a powerful choice. To quit or to carry on. If we quit, we only make the ending worse. If we carry on, we will feel the situation getting harder at first. However, everyday that you make progress, things will get better and the future will become brighter.

Don't let the negative media, or negative people keep you down. There are good, positive people out there who want to support you. Take action, live by example, attend events, and attract them into your life. Help others, and you will be helped yourself.

Just Act. Just Ask. Just Solve Problems for Others. Just Ask for Help for Yourself. Just Admit When You Are Wrong. Just Connect. Just Grow. Just Help. Just Push. Just do it and stop finding reasons to postpone it.

There's one "destructive" person you need in your life

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Deadlift Workout and Carbohydrate Checklist

Good training today. Lots of heavy lifting, but the right attitude went with me.

“I will do this” is the only attitude that works. “I’ll try” or “I think” doesn’t work.” – Kekich Credo #57

Today's workout: Hang Clean, Deadlift, Military Press, and Good Mornings.

And don't miss today's Carb Checklist:


Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
"The courage and confidence I have today was not achieved by mantras or mediation or self-imaging. It was all achieved by the persistent application of hard work and imitation. If you work hard and smart at anything long enough, you will know success. And with each small success, your mind and heart will grow incrementally braver and more confident." - Mark Ford

"Never leave the site of setting a goal without first taking some form of positive action toward its attainment." - Anthony Robbins...

....So take a look at what you want to accomplish and take at least a baby step towards it today. Keep on pushing. Never stop going after something that is important to you.

"Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they've got a second. Give your dreams all you've got and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you." - William James

Never quit. If you stumble, get back up. And get social support to help you make it through the dip. Stay strong. There are many good people out there that want to help. Keep pushing, and never, ever, ever give up on something that is important to you.

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Persevere through the dips with this mindset

Interesting day. A lot of writing and program design on a new project coming out before January. It's literally the biggest TT Project ever. Tons of follow-along workouts you can do at home with NO equipment. One more weekend of filming (next Saturday) and then it's time to edit everything. Good times.

Until then, here's a FREE 30-minute fat burning workout that BURNS OFF Thanksgiving Dinner

Or if you want to try the Thanksgiving Monster...It's another great day to try the TT Post-Thanksgiving 1K Calorie Burner (60-minute monster). Would love to know what you think

My work day was full of mental ups and downs. It's been a demanding project, and there are moments when I have self-doubt, but then I'm reminded of this classic Gary Halbert quote, "Motion beats meditation." So when you're struggling or feeling sorry for yourself, just DO SOMETHING. Take action. Move towards your goal, even if it is one baby step at a time.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
“Persistence is a sure path to success with quality activities. Never, ever, ever, give up.” – Kekich Credo #75

"Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they've got a second. Give your dreams all you've got and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you." - William James

After all...

"Men succeed when they realize their failures are prep for their victories". - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - "Be thankful for where you’re going, but don’t forget to be thankful for where you’ve been and how far you’ve come." - Mike Whitfield, CTT

Friday, November 23, 2012

Meathead Bench Friday Fun

Great lifting session today.

My #meathead workout today:
Pullups, Bench Press, DB Row, DB Press, BB Row, Overhead Squat.

You know, there is still a lot of confusion about slow cardio and fat loss. Here's the truth. Check this out

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Repeat after me "I can do this. I will do this. I'm going to start doing this right now." Then take your own advice and get going after the things that matter to you in life.

“Those who don’t personal responsibility and don’t take action will be in the same place 12 months from now. I know you’re different and I know you’re an action taker. You want a better life, and you deserve it, now go out and get it.” – Bedros Keuilian

“He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” – Epictetus

There is more opportunity out there than you and I could ever get through in our lifetime. You just have to open your eyes and realize that it is ALL around you.

Have gratitude and stay strong,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Training

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Overcoming Holiday Fat Loss Obstacles

Listen, here's the cold, harsh, Black Friday truth about holiday fat loss...
A lot of folks will want to lead you into temptation over the next few weeks. 
Fortunately, you and I are in this together, offering up support to get
through the hard times and the dips.

But Stay STRONG. Stay TRUE to yourself.
And I'll be on the TT Facebook page every day motivating you.

Plan ahead to enjoy things, but don't be pressured into living
in a way that you do not want. Take strength from these quotes:

"It takes a great deal of courage to stand up to your enemies,
but even more to stand up to your friends.
" - J. K. Rowling


"Far better to live your own path imperfectly than to live
another's perfectly
." - Bhagavad Gita

...Be thankful, but be STRONG.
And never, ever, EVER give up on the goals that are important to YOU.

That's the motivation you need, now here are the fat loss workouts:
Get 13 proven TT Fat Loss workouts for less than the
price of a 47-inch TV at Wal-Mart (<= yes, that's a joke):
The TT Black Friday Sale here

You'll be shocked to see what we're practically giving away, including:
- Metabolic Resistance Training Challenges
- Bodyweight Workouts
- Beginner Workouts
Here comes the holiday BOOM,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - Black Friday ends TODAY.

Get thirteen workouts - including the workout of the year,
TT Thermogenic 30 - while saving 93% off the regular price.

That's the best deal you'll get in any sale this weekend.
Lots of thanksgiving today. There are TT Thanksgiving workouts on the blog here:
And some great quotes to remind you to stay strong.
“Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation.” – Brian Tracy
“Be thankful for where you’re going, but don’t forget to be thankful for where you’ve been and how far you’ve come.” – Mike Whitfield, CTT
Be thankful for what you’ve accomplished – and the opportunity you have to keep getting better. Always measure your progress against yourself and the past, not against perfection or other people.
Finally, a great article on Gratitude:
Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving Day Workout

Created an Epic and advanced Thanksgiving weekend workout for you here.

Check it out and the TT Black Friday Sale, too:

Includes this:

MCT: Metabolic Conditioning Training
- 40 seconds per exercise (per side, if applicable)
- Rest 20 seconds between exercises
- Repeat for 6 minutes straight

3A) Kettlebell Swings
3B) DB Lunge or Prisoner Lunge
3C) Elevated Pushups (switch sides after 20 seconds) or TRX Rows

Take a 3 minute break and then move on to MDT.

Oh, and check out the Abs Bonus in that program. Whew.

My abs are still sore from 60 reps of Power Wheel rollouts from Monday. What about you? Any soreness? (Calves are also still sore from Saturday's "Burpee + Jump Rope" conditioning workout filming. That was tough.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
For my American friends - and for everyone, any day for that matter...a lot of folks will want to lead you into temptation over the next few days. Stay STRONG. Stay TRUE to yourself. Plan ahead to enjoy things, but don't be guilted into living a way that you do not want.

Take strength from these:

“It takes a great deal of courage to stand up to your enemies, but even more to stand up to your friends.” - J. K. Rowling…


…“Far better to live your own path imperfectly than to live another’s perfectly.” -Bhagavad Gita...Be thankful, but be STRONG.

And some cool news (for me and my fellow ETR folks): Early risers have a genetic advantage?

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - Join me in Denver?

ETR and Toys for Tots are throwing a party in Denver on Dec 8 - help us bring Xmas Joy to kids - find out more here:

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Power Mindset for Success

I stumbled across this quote yesterday. It's great and will give you a Power Mindset for Success.

“Screw self-doubt. I despise it. I hold it in contempt, along with the hell-spawned ooze-pit of Resistance from which it crawled. I will NEVER back off. I will NEVER give the work anything less than 100%. If I go down in flames, so be it. I’ll be back.” - Steven Pressfield

 This all starts with Habit:

“Take me, train me, be firm with me, and I will place the world at your feet. Be easy with me and I will destroy you Who am I? I am Habit!” – Author Unknown

And helping others:

You teach and you grow. The more you teach, the more you grow. The more you help others, the more you improve and become a better person. So if you want to improve, help others improve. This is a virtuous cycle. Teach-Grow-Improve-Teach-Grow-Improve.

Now here's some training help for you. New 4x4 Metabolic Finisher from Mikey "Pancakes" Whitfield (GT's)

And a nutrition suggestion. I had a Wild Idea grass-fed buffalo rib-eye the other week at my friend's place in Nashville. 10/10. Spot on, as my British friends might say.

Stay strong and powerful,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - Another classic...

“Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.” - Mark Twain

Monday, November 19, 2012

Beat the Week with these Workouts

As we start another week, don't forget to stay strong and positive.

Whatever is in your way, you’re stronger than it, you’re tougher than it, and you’re better than it. You’re going to beat it.

Here are a couple of tough minimal equipment circuit workouts to help you burn calories even when you're pressed for time. You MUST do your regular warm-up before this workout. Try my old man warm-up if you need ideas. Here it is:


Workout #1
A) Kettlebell Swings, 8x25 with 20 seconds rest between each
B) Punisher 20-10 Squats
C) Ab Wheel or Stability Ball Rollout or Pushups 3x20

Workout #2
Filmed this crushing workout on Saturday, 6 rounds of 1-minute of burpees followed by a brief 10 second rest and then 1 minute of jump rope with 10 seconds of rest. If you make those burpees count (full pushup and high jump), you're in for GT's. (GT's = Good Times)

And some fat loss QnA from

Q: Best program for six weeks through holidays: TT Hardcore Fat Loss ... TT Thermogenic 30 ... TT 2K12 Workout? ... Want to focus HARD through end of year. Thx. - Lee


TT Hardcore first, if it fits your schedule, and then TT Thermo 30 as the holiday season starts to get really busy. Or if you are already really busy, go right to Thermo 30. Thanks so much, and keep me up to date on your progress.

Q: What is the optimum work-to-rest times, for resistance tabata program? and for how much time total? - George


Tabata training is sprinting done at 170% VO2 max for 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of recovery. What other people call "Tabata" is not accurate. They don't know what they are talking about. So to answer your question, the training depends on your goals, exercises, and time commitment. So far, it does not appear that there is one "best" of anything.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
“Find a time and place of solitude. Look into the distance, and into the future. Visualize the tomorrow you are going to build — and begin to build that tomorrow, today.” – Jonathan Lockwood Huie

But remember to also...

TAKE ACTION. You only get paid for done. All the planning in the world is no good if you don’t follow through. Be a robotic action-taker.

Here's how to get more done. It starts with identifying your magic time and scheduling your day.

Please read this:

And this:

Two more resources for you:

- is a great site for learning more about taking care of your money. And we have lots of great free small business information on my site at:


Happy Monday,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Chocolate Funky Bally Monkey

Despite all of the weekend filming, I still had a great strength session today. Tomorrow is another on-the-road day so I had to fit this lift in ahead of schedule. Good warm-up and technique kept me feeling good.

Today's workout: Hang Clean, Deadlift, Military Press, Good Mornings, and curlingz of the bizeps.

Post-workout blender drink was the "Chocolate Funky Bally Monkey": 8 ounces unsweetend Almond Breeze, 2 scoops BioTrust Milk Chocolate Protein, 1 frozen banana (or 1 regular banana and some ice cubes), and 1.5 tablespoons natural peanut butter.


Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
“The person who gets the farthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare. The sure-thing boat never gets far from shore.” – Dale Carnegie

The problem with Problems is they get bigger and worse than right now, leading to bigger headaches than if you'd tackled it now. Attack that problem head on. Solve that problem today.

“Identify exactly what is you want. This takes a lot of thought. Then don’t let anything stand in your way of getting it.” – Kekich Credo #56

Take action today,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Saturday, November 17, 2012

New Follow Along Workouts

It started off as a follow up to the 31 Intervals Manual, but it's morphed into 101 (or more) home interval/conditioning workouts (about 75 of them will be filmed follow along style).

That led to Mikey Whitfield and I traveling to Lapeer, Michigan to film at the gym of Certified TT Trainer Brian Kalakay.

What a weekend. What a bunch of workouts.

I probably did 500 reps of burpees, pullups, squats, and even 8 rounds of the Punisher and Punisher X in just a few hours. I was whooped by 11am this morning.

Brian and Mikey are still filming, poor guys.

The end result is going to be an amazing complete home workout system to come your way in January, 2013.

It's my biggest TT project yet.

Make sure to check out the TT Facebook page for some photos and muscle soreness updates.

One photo on shows a finished Mr. Finishers, Mikey Whitfield, after one of the workouts I put him through yesterday. Certified Turbulence Trainer Brian Kalakay is writing down the next one for me to go through. This morning I did "The Punisher X" workout. Quad domination. Whew.

Yesterday TT reader Dave Dowell from Southern California asked me: “What are the three exercises to use in a row for fat loss?” My answer here

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Do NOT stay in your comfort zone. It’s more dangerous to do that than it is to seek out new solutions to your problem. Get out there and take action and kick butt today.

I was waaaaay out of my CoZo today.

If you fear something, start taking baby steps to overcome it...a baby step that moves you positive results in the right direction. The more positive results you get, the more confidence you build, and the less fear gets in your way. Take action today.

And never forget what I said earlier this week...

Having a hangdog, woe-is-me look and whining whimper only works for puppy dogs – not for humans. No one wants to be around that type of person. So change your attitude, get your swagger back, take action, add value, live by example, and attract other good people into your life.

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Lose fat over the holidays with these free meal plans from Isabel De Los Rios:

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Tomorrow I’m off to Michigan to film workouts at Certified Turbulence Trainer Brian Kalakay’s gym. Mike Whitfield will be joining me. It’s going to be tough, but fun. Over 51 interval workouts to film in three days.

Good times.

Until then, let’s talk strength.

Here’s a good 1RM estimation equation from Jim Wendler and his 5-3-1 program:

1RM = weight x reps x .0333 + weight

So 200×5 reps = 233 pound 1RM.

In my experience, the accuracy is best for bench & DL, and decent for squat.

Today’s Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Having a hangdog, woe-is-me look and whining whimper only works for puppy dogs – not for humans. In fact, humans with this attitude repel other humans. No one wants to be around that type of person. So unless you are one of my four-legged friends, change your attitude, get your swagger back, take action, add value, live by example, and attract other good people into your life.

“Positive thinking will let you do everything better than negative thinking will.” – Zig Ziglar

If you fear something, start taking baby steps to overcome it…a baby step that moves you positive results in the right direction.

And improve your workday with these 5 secrets:

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Essential Meathead Workout

Great workout today, but I need to take Leo's advice (see below) and cut back a bit.    The workout was a #MegaMeathead Classic.    Bench, Pullups, DB Press, DB Row, BB Row. GT's.    Doing 5 sets of 1 rep at 90% 1RM for the main exercise. This should be a safe and effective program for getting stronger without a lot of muscle soreness.    But, here's Leo's advice:    “Identify the essential. Eliminate the rest.” – Leo Babauta    And the DB Rows need to get cut back as they leave me with rear delt issues that sometimes need ART. The Barbell Row, done deadstop style, is much better.    So those will get cut next time.    In the meantime, check this's the physical test given at NASA to prospective astronauts.  T
oday's Kickbutt Mindset Tips: "The best person you can compare yourself to is yourself. Who cares what a celebrity or even a friend is doing. Are you better than last week? That’s really all that counts. At the end of the day, what truly counts is that you simply keep going no matter what." - Mike Whitfield, Certified Turbulence Trainer,
"Focus on the work. Build things. Create solutions to problems. Grow people through support and direction. INSPIRE them by EXPECTING a lot and demonstrating that you care about their success as much as your own.” – Matt Smith Get working, Craig Ballantyne, CTT Certified Turbulence Trainer

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Fitness Book and Workout QnA

Today I tried out some new kettlebell and 20-10 bodyweight exercises down in the evil fat loss lab here out on the farm. I tortured myself for your benefit. Some cool workouts coming your way soon.    Today's QnA:    Q: I'm literally just starting out training, never donemuch except be a mum. Is TT right for beginners?    Answer:  Yes, there are 6 weeks of beginner workouts and 4 weeks of intermediate workouts that you'll use in Turbulence Training as you get started. Or try this:   -   Thanks, and welcome to the TT world. Looking forward to your results.    Q: What projects and experiments are you working on now?    Answer:  Secret stuff down in the lab...filming some secret videos this weekend too...down at Certified Turbulence Trainer Brian Kalakay's gym in Michigan. Good times.    Q: With your expierence in the fitness game, what would you say the best route to take is for someone looking to start a career in the fitness field?    Answer:  Find the best trainer you can and have them mentor you. Work for free if you must. It's the best education.    Q: craig there has to be an alternative to decline spiderman push ups???! i mean they are IMPOSSIBLE    Answer:  Soon you will say, "I'm possible at decline spiderman pushups." - Sorry, that makes no sense, haha, just trying to encourage you. Replacements - Spiderman (normal) or decline (normal). Keep pushing on and you will get them one day.    Q: Hey Craig. What's your thoughts on Intermittent Fasting?    Answer:  Excellent. Used by over a dozen winners of   -
Q: How many books do you read a month? And in what genres? Do you balance marketing and business with fitness/strength/health? Answer: For fitness info, I stick to websites rather than books. I start about 4 books a month but I don't finish all of them. They are mostly history and then some business and marketing books. Most biz and marketing books should be 6 page articles, not entire books. And here's a crazy cardio fact: Sudden cardiac arrest occurs ~ 1 in 57,000 marathon runners (usually older males & in the last 4 miles) -
Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips: Take action now. When you fail to act on your most important priority first thing in your day then you end up paying the price. Other things get in the way. Your mental energy wanes. You set it aside and procrastinate. And you fail to make progress. That’s why you feel like you are struggling. So that's why you must take action now. "Make a list of the 10 people you spend the most time with and your top 5 goals and top 5 values. Compare the lists. Are the people you spend the most time with congruent with your values and goals? If not, you might be held back by this association.” - Dr. Nido Qubein To your success, Craig Ballantyne, CTT Certified Turbulence Trainer

Monday, November 12, 2012

New Squat Workout and Plan for Life

This week starts a new 4-week program, and in reality, a new 12-week approach to my basic lifts.

I'm switching away from the 5-3-1 program for a while to a different piece of advice from Jim Wendler. A few years ago he mentioned aiming for 5 reps above 90% 1 RM. I'm going to see if this helps my strength to keep going up - as it has with 5-3-1. The biggest difference is lower volume, and therefore less soreness.

I'll keep you up to date.

Trainers - Win a scholarship to the 2013 Fitness Business Summit here (from the most generous man in the trainer education industry, Bedros Keuilian) - and yes, I'll be speaking at this event

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Identify exactly what it is you want in life. Then go after it. Start today. And then never, ever, EVER give up.

There are a lot of people that will improve their lives when you improve yours. By becoming a better person yourself, you'll make the lives of a lot of others better at the same time. It's not selfish to focus on self-improvement. It's one of the greatest gifts you can give the world.

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Nashville Atlanta Toronto Farm Michigan

On the way to the Nashville airport for the trip home. It's a two-banger
today, hopping over to Atlanta and then a 2nd shot up to Canadia.

Then one night in Toronto, a squat workout, a visit to the chiropractor -
Dr. Michael Sommers of Evolve Chiropractic - and then finally, the last
leg of my journey, a 90 minute drive back to the farm.

Then a dog walkingz!!11!

Yesterday we had a wicked lunch (great ribs) at South Street restaurant in
Nashville. Then a friend grilled Buffalo Ribeye steaks for dinner.

Later this week I will be off to Michigan to film some TT workout videos
with high energy Certified TT Trainers Brian Kalakay and Mike Whitfield.
That will be great times.

So a busy week with lots of moving around, people to talk to, places to go.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
TODAY is the first day of the rest of your life. So don't dwell on past
mistakes because that will get you nowhere. Focus on what you can and WILL
do today, tomorrow, and the rest of your life, and all of the great things
that will happen because of your actions.

There will be days where it gets really hard and you'll wonder, 'Is this
even worth it?'. That's the crossroad people face every day and
unfortunately, most people give up right at this moment. But if you keep
making little changes and fight through the tough days, I promise you,
speaking from experience, you'll come out victorious.

Have a great one,

Craig Ballantyne

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Country & Western Metabolic Workouts

It's been a busy weekend here in Tennesse. Last night we hit Merchant's restaurant for brisket and pork chops. Great food, better atmosphere.

Today's training in the better-than-your-average-hotel-gym at Opryland: DB Swings, bodyweight circuits, and incline treadmill sprints.

Friday's workout: An upper body warmup with WYLIT and elevated pushups, 1-arm cable chest presses, cable chops, cable woodchops, bodyweight squats, and db presses.

Thursday was a big meathead back workout with Bedros Keuilian. Good times.

Check out the Crazy 8 circuit on our MRT FB page

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
To underestimate yourself is probably the biggest mistake you could make in life.


"Sometimes, we just underestimate ourselves until we just start taking action. Action simply makes the magic start. Once you see just a little of that magic and what is possible, you take more action. Then you can't control it and this big success snowball starts rolling. Well, let it roll and learn as you go. Embrace the chaos." – Mike Whitfield


"If you don't like something, change it. It you can't change it, change your attitude." – Maya Angelou


"Fill your life with positive expectations. Demand the best. Attitude and desire contribute to 90% of your achievement." – Kekich Credo #86


What to do with your life (I'm happy to tell you)

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - I inhaled 8 of these caveman cookies in the 16 hours.

PPS - Almost at 14,000 TT Fans. Thank YOU so much. You ROCK. So many big things coming your way in 2013 and beyond. Join us at:

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Cookies and Changes in Nashville

Arrived at the Nashville Opryland Hotel last night to hang out with my buddy Bedros Keuilian at a seminar. We're going to get in some workouts and check out the scene today and this weekend. Should be a few good misadventures.

So more workout details coming later on. After all, Bedros' wife Di made a bunch of almond-flour, gluten-free chocolate chip cookies for me and I need to make sure those foodz go into the right muscles. Let's just say they're all gone, and there were quite a few that need to be put into the musclez.

Haha, like everyone else, I'm a "if it's in the hotel room, I'm going to eat it" kind of guy. I'll try and get the recipe for you.

Until I have a workout report for you, I'm going to leave you with this tough question.

"Is the life you're living worth what you're giving up to have it?"

An uncomfortable question, huh? But one with important ramifications for the choices you're making...Choose wisely, my friends.

And if you want to change, here's the secret.

"Change isn't about what you know. It's about what you do." - Catherine Gordon, Certified Turbulence Trainer

Catherine is an incredible woman, the winner of the 2nd Turbulence Training Transformation Contest, and a trainer that I intend to make famous because of the important message she has to share with the world.

By the way, for trainers, here's a great resource. It's a done-for-you set of Bootcamp workouts to make your life easier while getting your clients awesome results. Bring the energy and the results!


Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
"You are responsible for exactly who, what, and where you are in life. That will be just as true this time next year. Situations aren't important. How you react to them is. You have to play it where it lies." - Kekich Credo #58

But don't let that sound too negative, instead, take positive action based on this:

"We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face… we must do that which we think we cannot." – Eleanor Roosevelt

Craig "Cookie Eating" Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Wednesday, November 07, 2012


Last night I was reading through a magazine from Vince Del Monte and Ben Pakulski called, "Hypertrophy Max". Now listen, I'm not easily impressed, but what these guys are doing is fantastic.

You get a workout and DVD each month, plus, perhaps more important, you get insight into their success secrets. (And since both Vince and Ben are students of mine, you can imagine they are pretty successful.)

One thing that caught my eye was a quote from Ben where he mentioned that this was his screensaver:

"You have to fight through some bad days to earn the best days of your life."


Listen, no matter what you're fighting through, you can beat it. You CAN.

If you are persistent in pursuing positive people, that's where you'll find the social support you need, and success will open its door for you and your life can truly change. It's all about the people you associate with.

One of my favorite quotes...trainers, NEVER forget this - "People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel." - Maya Angelou

And if you're a bootcamp trainer, you need to check this out:

New bootcamp boosters

And if you're not a trainer, here's a fantastic article on prioritizing your priorities (!) and goals so you can finally make progress

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Be positive. Focus on what you have, not on what you lack.

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - "You cannot fail. You can only get results." - Ted Nicholas

And remember:

"The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing." - Leo Buscaglia

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Toys for Tots Drive

Hey, we have something really special coming up in December. It's the Toys for Tots drive and will be held in Denver on December, 8th.

Here's the Facebook event invite for you:

Last year my business partner Matt Smith raised 1,000 toys all by himself, and this year we want to donate over 10,000 toys to the drive.

So please join Matt myself, the entire Early to Rise team, and dozens of their friends and readers in a trip to area Wal-Mart stores where we're aiming to deliver over 10,000 gifts to the Toys for Tots 2012 campaign.

Let's help a kid (or 10,000) have the Christmas they deserve. Please join us, Saturday, Dec. 8th in Denver as we make their dreams a reality.

Research show that for 75% of people their biggest regrets in life are the things they didn't do in life...not the things they did.

So..."Go to the effort. Invest the time. Write the letter. Make the apology. Take the trip. Purchase the gift. Do it. The seized opportunity renders joy. The neglected brings regret." - Max Lucado

BTW, if you can't join us, we encourage people that can't make it to simply join in by doing the same thing in their hometown that same day, and taking photos and posting them on that FB page.

Today's training summary:
Today will be a Kettlebell conditioning workout in the basement of the old farmhouse. Mostly swings and squats. Perhaps some sprints outside. It will be short and sweet, and there will be a big old-man warm-up before it. And I'll imagine this guy is right beside me saying this in his Scottish accent:

"You can make progress, or you can make excuses - but you can't do both!" - Alwyn Cosgrove

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Success is like happiness. Self-defined, but something that most people will never feel they have attained. Do NOT worry about labeling yourself. Instead, focus everyday on adding value, doing the best you can with what you have been given, working hard, and helping others. Besides, the idea of success changes over time...what you see as "successful" now will likely look foolish in 15 years.

"We all make mistakes. We all waste valuable time. But we are all capable of changing our lives for the better. And that change can happen much more quickly with a mentor." – Michael Masterson

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Monday, November 05, 2012

Meathead Monday Deload Week

Today's workout will be a deload week Meathead upper body session of dumbbell presses and rows, along with some pullups and overhead squats. Maybe some arms. Good times. No bench pressing, and a lighter workout than usual. I'll do the same for the rest of this week.

Whatever you are doing, just remember:

"To get something you've never had, you have to do something you've never done.".......You can't quit just because one thing didn't work. You have to keep trying, experimenting, and learning until you find the solution. Keep going and going and going. Never give up.

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Ultimate Guide to Finding Good People in Your Life: Step 1) Identify what you value in people. Step 2) Identify where this type of person spends time. Step 3) Go there and be a good person, adding value, and attracting good people into your life.

"You're imperfect, and you're wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging." — BrenĂ© Brown ---

And while this is a business related quote that I found in Inc. magazine yesterday, I really believe it relates to what we are doing with our health:

"Audacity underlies every start-up; the belief that from nothing, you will bring forth something that makes someone's life better. So take that audacity and kick it up a notch or a hundred notches. If you fail, it won't be for lack of courage or imagination. And if you succeed, those successes will be felt around the world." – Leigh Buchanan

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Inspiring quote from one of my favorite movies

It's funny but amazing at the same time.

"Life WILL knock you to the curb, but you can't let it rob you of your NESS! Now, what's ness? It's your name plus ness." - Dupree

New readers: Free workout and dark side of cardio report (feel free to share with your friends, too)


Today's additional kickbutt mindset tips:
"Enjoy life. Treat it as an adventure. Care passionately about the outcome, but keep it in perspective. Things are seldom as bleak as they seem when they are going wrong – or as good as they seem when they are going well. Lighten up. You'll live longer." – Kekich Credo #55

Surround yourself with good, positive people…and some that are more successful than you, as you define it. These people will bring out the best in you…helping you "play up a level". And always help others, the more they benefit, the more you will benefit in return. The world needs all the love and help it can get right now.

Dog walk time,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Squat Saturday

Just finished a Saturday morning squat workout.

My training: Box Jumps, Squats, Lunges, Stepups.

And a video for you.

How to build strength with "just" a kettlebell

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
Whatever is in your way, you're stronger than it, you're tougher than it, and you're better than it. You're going to beat it.

Be present today, whereever you are, and give those that you are spending time with the attention they deserve.

"Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation." – Brian Tracy

The world does not reward average people well so I will be extraordinary." – Ted Nicholas

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

Friday, November 02, 2012

Fixing a Bad Habit

2 weeks ago I set out on a 6-week plan to cure my swearing habit. Today's marks a record 5 day run without a single cuss. New go-to phrases include, "Jiminy Jillickers" and "Sugar Shack".

I think you can cure a minor bad habit in 10 days. Details here:

Some and QnA:

Q: Can I still drink wine on a fat loss program?

Wine is just 100-150 calories per glass. It's not something that stops fat loss. It's just calories like anything else.

Q: Advice for someone, me :), who doesn't need to lose weight but gain muscle and lose fat?

Perfect question. That's what I designed my workout system, Turbulence Training, to achieve. Start with the "TT 2K3" program in the main manual from

Q: What's your best muscle building program?

For muscle, we have the Meatheads system here:

Today's Kickbutt Mindset Tips:
"The only thing that really matters in life is your relationships to other people." – Dr. George Vaillant

"Make a difference. Live a life that matters." – Frank McKinney

"In the confrontation between the stream and the rock, the stream always wins; not through strength, but through persistence." – Buddha

Never give up,

Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

PS - Struggling to figure out what project to pick or opportunity to pursue in life?

Put your energy where it wants to go. Choose the one you wake up thinking about, and think about all the time.