01 Adam, You Look Like Crap!

InForm Fitness Podcast


Welcome to the first episode of the InForm Fitness Podcast, 20 minutes with New York Times, bestselling author, Adam Zickerman and Friends. Inform Fitness offers life-changing, personal training with several locations across the U.S.

Reboot your metabolism and experience the revolutionary Power of 10, the high intensity, slow motion, strength training system that’s so effective, you’ll get a week’s worth of exercise in just one 20-minute session, (which by no coincidence is about the length of this podcast).

Your hosts for the show are Adam Zickerman, the founder of Inform Fitness, Mike Rogers, trainer and GM of Inform Fitness in Manhattan, Sheila Melody, co-owner and trainer of Inform Fitness in Los Angeles, and Tim Edwards, founder of the InBound Podcasting Network and client of Inform Fitness in Los Angeles.

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Intro: You’re listening to the InForm Fitness podcast, 20 minutes with New York Times, best-selling author, Adam Zickerman and friends. Brought to you by InForm Fitness, life changing personal training with several locations across the US. Reboot your metabolism and experience the revolutionary Power of 10, the high intensity, slow motion, strength training system that’s so effective, you’d get a week’s worth of exercise in just one 20-minute session, which by no coincidence is about the length of this podcast. So, get ready InForm Nation, your 20 minutes of high intensity strength training information begins in 3, 2, 1.

Tim: And with that we welcome you to the maiden voyage of the InForm Fitness podcast with Adam Zickerman. How about that guys? We’re finally here. [cheering] Yeah. [laughs] You’re hearing several voices in the background and of course we’re going to get to know each and every one of them here in the next few minutes.

After about, what, two months of planning and scheduling and equipment troubleshooting? Now finally recording and excited about passing this valuable information onto those who are looking to build muscle, lose fat, maintain cardiovascular health and maybe even improve your golf game or whatever it is that you love to do. I’m certainly on board.

My name is Tim Edwards and I’m the founder of Inbound Podcasting Network and we are very proud to add the InForm Fitness podcast to our stable of shows. Not only because we’ve assembled a knowledgeable and entertaining team to present this information but I am also a client of InForm Fitness. I’ve been training, using the system for close to about four months I believe and very pleased with the progress I’m making and I certainly have become a believer in the Power of 10 in which we will describe in great detail later in this and in future episodes.

So, let’s get started by going around the room or the various rooms that we’re all recording from via the magic of Skype and formally introduce each member of the podcast team to our listeners. Of course we’ll start with the founder of InForm Fitness Studios and the author of the New York Times, best-seller, Power of 10: The Once-a-Week Slow Motion Fitness Revolution, Adam Zickerman. Adam, it’s a pleasure to finally launch this podcast and get started with you.

Adam: Longtime coming. I’m so happy we’re doing this.

Tim: And I believe joining us from the Manhattan location of InForm Fitness, from across the hall from Adam, is Mike Rogers. Mike’s been training at InForm Fitness for about 13 years and has served as a general manager for the New York City location for the past five. Mike, glad to have you in. ! 1

Mike: Thank you. It’s great to be a part of it.

Tim: And finally, joining us from the Los Angeles area is Sheila Melody. Sheila became a Power of 10 personal trainer in 2010 and in 2012 helped Adam expand to the west coast by opening the first InForm Fitness Studio just outside of Los Angeles in beautiful Toluca Lake and has since instructed hundreds of clients through the years, myself included. Sheila, this was your idea to launch the podcast. We’re finally here doing it. Good to see you.

Sheila: I’m so excited to do this, to bring — to introduce Adam and Mike and the Power of 10 to everybody out there and let’s go.

Tim: Let’s go. Alright. So, there’s the team, Adam, Mike, Sheila and myself, Tim. And we’re all looking forward to diving deep into the content. But Adam, before we do, remind us of that very sophisticated title you came up with, for our very first and ever so important episode of —

Adam: [laughs]

Tim: The InForm Fitness podcast. That title of the show again, Adam, is what?

Adam: You Look Like Crap.

Tim: [laughs] Very interesting title and in addition to the story behind that title, tell us — before we get into that, tell us a little bit about your background. What led you to launching InForm Fitness and writing the book, Power of 10?

Adam: Well, exercise has always an interest of mine, since I was a kid. I was a jock. My father’s a jock. So, I became a jock and, you know, I had trainers and people telling me how to train and I read books on it [inaudible 04:06] magazines and I did it the way everyone was doing it, the way my trainer just wanted me to do, the way my coaches were telling me to do it and it was the conventional biometric type stuff. It was the free weights.

When I was in high school, they didn’t even have Nautilus yet. [Inaudible 04:25] Nautilus had just started. We had a universal machine in our gym. Those are — but it was the first introduction to machines that I had. You know, looking back on it, it was kind of primitive but, the bottom line is, you know, you have — you worked out hard. You worked out often and you got hurt a lot. [laughs]

Tim: Did you get hurt sometime in that progress, in leading towards InForm Fitness, did you suffer an injury?

Adam: I had plenty of tweaks up until the point I had my major injury during a deadlifting program but way before that I was — and what led to the title of this, was way before my major injury, what led to the title of this, was when a boss told me that I looked like crap even though I exercised all the time.
Tim: Well let’s — let me stop you there. So, you said you looked like crap. Did you in your mind?

Adam: Oh, no. No, I thought I was a stud.

Tim: [laughs]

Mike: And nothing’s changed.

Tim: [laughs] And you could see Adam for yourself if you go to informfitness.com and [laughs] see if he really does.

Adam: Confidence is important in life, you know?

Tim: [laughs] Yes, it is.

Adam: And you got to fake it too sometimes.

Tim: So, you were an exercise guy, you were doing it all the time and he knew that you were exercising. What is it that led him to tell you that you looked like crap?

Adam: As you can imagine, I was working in the laboratory at the — that I was working and as you can imagine from Scientific Laboratories, there aren’t too many jocks hanging around Scientific Laboratories. I was — [inaudible 05:49]. What Mike? I see you want to say something.

Mike: A lot of studs are hanging out with [inaudible 05:57].

Adam: Yeah, exactly. There are always too many. You know. So, I kind of — and I was new on the team and I was probably — I would — I’m an over — when it comes to scientific inquiry and research I was over my head. I’m an overachiever with that. It was such a passion of mine that — but I had to work ten times as hard to get where I was in that laboratory, where all my colleagues, you know they read it once and they got it, you know, and I had to spend hours into the middle of the night trying to figure out what we were doing in the lab.

So, the one thing I had on everybody because I didn’t have brains on them and I had brawn them and I had my so called experience in exercise and I tried to [profitize 06:33] how they should be exercising. Again, it was like lots of hardcore stuff, everyday working out. You got to do a cardio, you got to do at least a couple mile runs every day. You got to do three weight training programs.

Tim: Mhm [affirmative].

Adam: I was working out with this guy, Ken [Licener 06:48], maybe he’ll be a guest one day on our podcast. He’s a real pioneer in this and he used to work out — he was a chiropractor that worked out of the basement of his house. And when you puked, you had to puke in this bucket.

Tim: Oh jeez.

Adam: And then, you can’t just leave your puke there and you had to walk out with your bag of puke in your hand and everyone would see you and they’d clap if you had a bag of puke in your hand.

Sheila: Oh my God.

Tim: [laughs]

Adam: And you’d have to throw the puke, the bag of puke, into a garbage pail on the corner of his house.

Mike: Oh my God.

Sheila: Oh.

Adam: And by the end of the night there were like 30 bags in this thing.

Tim: [laughs]

Adam: You know, I can imagine the guys picking up this stuff, you know, in the morning —

Tim: [laughs]

Adam: So, Tim, that was the best. That’s the type of workout that I’m trying to explain to these exercise — these scientists in my lab and so my boss, he was kind of tired of hearing it all and it didn’t make sense to him at all and he’s a smart guy, obviously.

And so he said to me, he says, you know, Adam, someone who knows so much about exercise and works out all the time, I have to say, you look like crap. That’s where it came from.

Tim: Did that piss you off a little bit or did you maybe kind of step back and go, “Hey, well maybe he’s right. Maybe I am taking the wrong approach.”

Adam: At the time, I paused. It was a seed that was planted and it didn’t start germinating for many years later and it was through other experiences, other injuries, and all the comments from friends that said, this can’t be good for you and then there was the epiphany, when I read the Ken Hutchins manual which basically put into words things I was questioning and he kind of answered a lot of those questions for me.

Tim: So, tell us a little bit about Ken Hutchins. Who was he and what’s in his manual?

Adam: Ken Hutchings. [laughs] He’s an eccentric guy. Ken questions all the things that I couldn’t articulate and he made — he point — he made the point about how exercise is your stimulus and then you let it — then you leave it alone. It’s not about more is better.

He also brought home the point that exercise has to be safe and it’s not just the acute injuries that he was talking about. It’s not the torn muscle here and there, or the sprain here and there, it was the insidious effects of over training that are much more serious than a strain or a sprain. The kind of insidious things that lead to osteoarthritis, hip replacements, lowered immune systems and therefor susceptibility to disease and those types of problems associated with chronic over-training.

My father ran marathons his whole life, didn’t eat very well. In his early 70s he had quadruple bypass surgery and this man ran many, many miles and you know so that — all this, all this experience and then reading this manual, you know, that — it blew me away. I mean, honestly it changed everything for me.

Then I started seeking out people that were already kind of gathering around Ken Hutchings that also were touched by what he had to say, that also I guess were feeling the same things I was feeling leading up to that moment. And it kind of reminds me of the movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind, where, you know, like, the aliens kind of shone that light on them and the people that had that light shown on them all of the sudden were compelled to go to Devils Tower. They didn’t understand, you know, but they would just — they just couldn’t help themselves. They were driven.

And I felt, you know, you read this manual and all of the sudden — and somebody else reads this manual and all of us, these people that read this manual like zombies being led to the Devils Tower to you know congregate and talk about this and that’s what the original super slow exercise guild was about. I mean it was a bunch of exercise nerds now, you know, that were touched by these ideas and our mission, the power phrase was to you know change perception of exercise and change the way people look at exercise and why we exercise and how we exercise.

Tim: So, Adam, with this new mission of changing the perception of why and how to exercise, tell us how InForm Fitness came to be.

Adam: So, it was 1997. 1997 where Rob Serraino actually sold me some of his original equipment. He was upgrading his equipment and I bought his, his original [inaudible 11:28] five pieces of equipment [inaudible 11:30] MedX leg press and new MedX [inaudible 11:32]. So, I spent about, I don’t six grand initially to start my business and I opened it up in a client’s basement. A client of mine said I can have his basement, rent free, as I perfect my trade. I was like, thank you very much. I went to his basement and it was like 300 square feet and it was musty and there was another tenant down there that was a chain smoker.

Tim: And you learned why it was rent free. [laughs]

Adam: Now I realized why it was rent free. Exactly. So, that’s where I started. I didn’t have paying clients right away at that moment. That’s where I had this equipment and I trained myself and my clients who owned the building and a handful of friends.

Tim: Well —

Adam: And from there I started trying to get as many people as I can to come to this basement and it’s a testament to the workout that I was able to build a solid client base in a very inconvenient part of Long Island, by the way. Not to mention the fact that it was in a basement that smelled like smoke but it was also not easy to get to this place because all my connections were on the north shore of Long Island and this place that I was talking about was on the south shore of Long Island and I didn’t know anybody on the south shore of Long Island. So, I wasn’t getting clients from my — from the neighborhood. I was getting clients where I’m from, my network.

I mean, listen, I was passionate about it. I was and I had the war wounds and I, you know, I was licking my wounds and I told a story about — and people, you know, as you know people were able to relate to my story because I’m not — I’m not like this gifted athlete or with this, no matter what I do my physique is perfect. You know, I mean, I have to work maintaining my — I’m not a natural like that. So, I am a regular guy. You know, I’m a five foot nine and a half Jew. You know, I mean —

Tim: [laughs]

Adam: [laughs] You know, I had some things to overcome. [laughter]

Mike: Giant among us Jews though. [laughter]

Tim: So, you were mentioning earlier, you know, you wanted to test to see if this had any staying power and here we are about 19, 20 years later almost. So, mission accomplished.

Adam: I couldn’t be prouder to be associated with these two people. Mike Rogers I’ve know him now — how long, Mike? It’s so long, it’s like —

Mike: [Inaudible 14:00] 14 years.

Adam: Like, we grew up together at this point. 14 years.

Mike: I’m always attracted by something that’s a little counterintuitive, that something that seems — I mean, that’s — I’m just — I find interest in that and I like to just sort of look deeper into it. I wasn’t sure what we were doing was right or wrong. It just felt like it made sense and then it was very hard.

And you know, I had a shoulder injury. I still have it. It’s a separated clavicle, separated shoulder from when I was 20 years old, a snowboarding accident and it always kind of nagged me. It was fine. It was okay but like, I couldn’t lift boxes without it bothering me. I couldn’t do a lot of things without it bothering me.

And the big thing that made me really believe that this is like “the thing” is my shoulder stopped bothering me after about seven weeks of doing Power of 10 and I couldn’t believe it. I was just like, “Oh my God, that injury just — it just went completely away.” That nagged me for at the time like nine years, nine or ten years and then I couldn’t — I saw — I felt and saw and felt incredible results with my own body within — with less than two months.

And so, and Adam, you know, I think, you know, we liked each other and I thought we could help each other and I literally — I was working at Citi Bank and I literally one day I just quit my job and I became a trainer and it was that, that was it and 14 years later and it’s by far the best job I’ve ever had in my entire life.

I’ve trained, you know, over 2,000 people. I don’t know how many and I’ve seen magnificent triumphs over the years. I have a lot of experience with questions and stuff and it’s been, just the most unbelievable experience for me to everyday, look forward to helping people and to work with the team that we have here and to the expanding global team as well, so —

Tim: Well, and you mentioned the global team and I think that would include Sheila Melody over here on the Westcoast. Adam, tell me about how you and Sheila met and how that came to be.

Adam: First time I met Sheila was through a course, a little certification, a little class that I had out in LA. It was my first time — it was actually my first time in LA.

Sheila: I had been introduced to the Power of 10 or the super slow technique by an exboyfriend and he brought me to a guy here in Calabasas, California —

Adam: [Oh, that’s nice 16:17].

Sheila: Named Greg Burns and Greg Burns is known to all of us super slow people. He’s real old school and he works out of his garage and he’s got about six pieces of equipment. So, I learned kind of the old school way and I loved it immediately. I was like, “Wow, this is so cool. I get to –” I felt strong and, you know, I had always worked out just typical workout. Go to the gym three times a week and then a few years later as Adam said, this is where Adam comes into the picture, I had been given his book, Power of 10 and saw his picture on the back and, “Oh, look at this cool guy. You know, he looks so cool.” [laughs]

Adam: [Crosstalk 16:59].

Sheila: Yeah a cute guy because it’s hot guy on the back of this book, you know, and Greg Burns actually gave me that book. So, I was training with a girlfriend of mine who had been certified by Adam and she started her own place and then after a few years, I was like, “You know what? Maybe I should get certified and just kind of do this on the side. I really like it.” And so that’s how I got introduced to Adam and first of all just over the phone doing, you know, we had conference calls weekly and just, you know, fell in love with him right away. I mean, I mean that in the most, you know, brotherly sense really [laughs] —

Adam: Every sense of the word.

Sheila: We just definitely hit it off and he — mostly because of Adam’s style. He is very — not only is he knowledgeable about all of this but I just — he’s such a great teacher and he knows what he’s talking about. He has great integrity and he, you know, makes sure that all the people he certifies are — he will not pass you unless he believes that you really get this and you really know what you’re doing and so, he’s got great integrity when he does that.

And I was so proud — when I did that first certification it was one of the best things I’ve ever done, like, what Mike is saying. I’m definitely drinking am drinking the Kool-Aid here. It’s one of the best things I’ve ever done. So, I called him up and said, “Hey, you want to start an InForm Fitness in LA?” And we worked it out and next thing you know, three years later — it’s three-year anniversary today actually.

Tim: Really?

Adam: No, shit.

Sheila: Yes.

Tim: Wow. Very cool.

Sheila: Three years. I was looking at Facebook posts things and it was saying, oh, two years ago today, Adam, you were in town and we were doing our one-year anniversary, so.

Adam: Cool.

Sheila: Three years ago and, as I said, the best thing I’ve ever done and love all these people that are involved with — the clients and trainers and, you know, that’s my story. [laughs]

Tim: So, we’re getting kind of close to the end of the very first episode of the InForm Fitness podcast, 20 minutes with Adam Zickerman and friends. The name of the book is Power of 10: The Once-a-Week Slow Motion Fitness Revolution. It can be picked up at several bookstores across the country and through amazon.com. Adam, before we put the wraps on the show, if you would please, tell us what your vision is for this podcast and what you hope to accomplish in upcoming episodes.

Adam: I want to inform people of current exercise ideas and I want to push things forward and there’s a lot of things that we need to talk about to push things forward. We’re finding out — I want to talk about genetics and its role in how we progress and exercise. I want to talk about the physiology we’re learning about and the kinds of great things that happen from high intensity exercise that no one’s talking about. You’d think by reading what’s out there, that we’d have it down.

That we’ve got it. We got the secret to exercise. That just do this, just do that and you’re fine but we are so far from fine. The injury rate for exercise is huge. Obesity is through the roof. I mean, we’re resting on our laurels and I want people to realize that there’s so much more to this than meets the eye and I want to bring on the experts that are going to bring this new stuff to light. I want to bring out some really good pioneers in this and talk about the science that’s out there, talk about the successes that we’ve had. You know, and educate and inform. I mean that’s the, you know, the mission of my company and the name of my company and I want to continue that.

Tim: And we will. So, there it is. Episode one is in the books and by the way, we have hit the 20-minute mark in the show, which means, if you began your slow motion high intensity training at the start of the show, you’d be finished by now for the entire week. Intrigued or perhaps skeptical? We understand. I was until I tried it for myself. Just a couple months in and I have already shed several pounds and I’m getting stronger every week. If you’d like to try it for yourself, check out informfitness.com for all of the InForm Fitness locations and phone numbers throughout the country and please tell them you heard about it from the podcast.

In future episodes we will introduce the interview segment of the podcast. Our goal is to schedule interviews with experts, authors and other podcasters, as Adam mentioned earlier, who’s specialties land somewhere within the three pillars of high intensity exercise, nutrition and recovery as discussed in Adam’s book, Power of 10: The Once-a-Week Slow Motion Fitness Revolution. As our listenership grows and our community, we call InForm Nation starts to build, we’ll have some swag available in the form of t-shirts and whatnot so stay tuned for that.

And, hey, if you’d like to ask Adam, Mike or Sheila a question or have a comment regarding the Power of 10. It’s very simple. Just shoot us an email or record a voice memo on your phone and send it to podcast@informfitness.com. You can even give us a call at 888-983-5020, Ext. 3. That’s 888-983-5020, Ext. 3 to leave your comment, question or even a suggestion on a topic you’d like covered here. Or perhaps you have a guest in mind you’d like to hear on the show. All feedback is welcome and chances are pretty good your comment or question will end up right here on the show.

And finally, the best way to support this show and to keep it free for you to learn from and enjoy, subscribe to the podcast right here in iTunes, SoundCloud, Stitcher Radio, Acast, YouTube or wherever you might be listening. Of course, again, it is absolutely free and please rate the show and leave us a review. That is vital to the success of this program. I’m Tim Edwards reminding you to join us for our next episode, Can Recreation Really Be Considered Exercise? For Adam Mike and Sheila, thanks for joining us on the InForm Fitness podcast, 20 minutes with Adam Zickerman and friends, right here on the Inbound Podcasting Network