Episode # 22

Strong Bodies, Stronger MINDS – Life Lessons from DeFranco’s Gym

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Released on July 30, 2015

In this weeks episode, Joe focuses on the psychology of training athletes and creating a remarkable culture at your gym.

In order to provide as much insight as possible, longtime “DeFranco disciple” Pat Cole joined the show to give an athlete’s perspective as well. Joe couldn’t have picked a better guest as Pat was literally raised at DeFranco’s Gym.

Here are some of the things that Joe & Pat discussed during the show:

  • How Pat went from a shy, unathletic, 13-year-old kid to “World’s Strongest Athlete” winner
  • The story of a 13-year-old Pat Cole trying to speak to All-Pro linebacker Brian Cushing for the first time
  • The rationale behind the “rules to the radio” at DeFranco’s Gym
  • The secret behind the “aura” of DeFranco’s Gym
  • How to create a positive, motivating culture at your workplace – whether it’s a gym or a corporate office
  • The many benefits of training athletes in groups
  • The ONE commonality among all DeFranco clients – regardless of sport, race, gender, or skill level
  • The importance of getting out of the “3 sets of 10” rut and incorporating competitions into your workouts
  • The “Law of Attraction” and how it relates to DeFranco’s
  • Why the “wussification” of America has never (and will never) apply to the young athletes at DeFranco’s
  • How Joe uses “failure” in the gym as a way to teach his young athletes how to SUCCEED in life!
  • The behind-the-scenes, never-before-told story of Pat’s double-overtime victory at the 2010 World’s Strongest Athlete competition
  • Joe’s definition of “mental toughness” and how it applied to Pat’s amazing performance at the World Strongest Athlete competition
  • The REAL reason DeFranco’s Gym is such a successful brand. (Hint: it has nothing to do with bands, chains or bench-pressin’!)
  • How training at DeFranco’s contributed to Pat’s success in college (both on and off the athletic field)
  • The commonalities between Starbucks and DeFranco’s 🙂 
  • How training at DeFranco’s has affected Pat’s first major career decision of his adult life (Hint: it involves following his passion and saying, “Fu*k Plan B”.) 

BONUS CONTENT: Here are a few video clips of Pat Cole, aka the “manchild”, training (and TRANSFORMING) at DeFranco’s…

Pat Cole celebrating his 16th Birthday at DeFranco’s w/ a 405-pound squat!


Highlights from Pat’s epic victory at the 2010 Worlds’ Strongest Athlete Competition…

“Victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, there is no survival.”  -Winston Churchill


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  1. I think the one weakness of the Industrial Strength Show is that the guests in general get too little time to talk and Joe is talking too much. I’d have loved to hear more from Pat’s point of view, but this episode was 95% Joe and 5% Pat adding a sentence here and there.

    I really like the show for the info and attitude, but please give more airtime to the guests. And if Joe wants to expand on something: do a single-topic show with only Joe on the mic.

    Keep up the good work!

  2. Coach.
    love your podcast I just finished binged listing to all your podcast, and wanted to ask you a question about your speed training. I love how you program for the sprinting demands of football, but I play rugby. would you change the distances and tempos for the slightly different demands of rugby and how would you change it. thanks and keep up the outstanding work.

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