JB?s Ottawa seminar overview
So, we had a great weekend, tons of info and this is just to recap it a bit to those who couldn?t be there?or rub the fact in their face, which ever you like best.
First, meeting JB was awesome. Of course, recognizing him wasn?t easy. I thought he was a 6? tall athlete with a small beard and bear-shoulder. That?s why I wondered who was the midget toying with the powerpoint presentation at the front. Ok, so he?s not as tall as the pictures of him let us suspect, but when he started speaking, I realized this guy was a giant among men.
Aside from the cutting-edge info, the first thing that hit all of us present there was how good a speaker and presenter he is. His style is pretty laid-back but with a great focus on making people understand his message, no matter their background, from college-taught to weekend muscle-head. The keyword here was simplicity. Although we had access to information that could boggle the mind, he explained it in terms everyone could easily understand, giving relevant example we could all relate too.
He could really put to shame most people who do this for a living, because seeing how comfortable he was answering questions and interacting with the crowd was worthwhile in itself. He always kept the ball rolling, asking us questions himself to keep us alert and interested, piqued our curiosity about the topic at hand or to introduce the next point.
He was slick, oh yes he was slick.
But slick can?t cut it when you?re considered one of the world foremost nutrition expert, and again no one was disappointed. The best way to explain what G-flux is is using JB?s own words: a system to rule them all. Guess Lonnie isn?t the only warrior nerd who used to dungeoneered, ?cause the last thing I expected was a Lord of the Rings reference. But it was pretty much on target; we where given a quick tour of the most popular diet and asked what they all had in common. Answers varied a lot, but nobody came up with that simple wisdom: control of energy balance. If I had to remember only one thing after this seminar, it?s this. And G-flux isn?t a diet in itself as much as way to integrate good and proactive habits in your own diet while attaining that balance of energy-in/energy-out. Although he touched on subjects that makes most people nuggin? hurt, like endocrinology and physiology, he always gave details that would help us understand without getting out of hand. Pretty good for someone who?s teaching at university, and not so common in my experience, let me tell you.
We were treated to a personal trainer?s dream of having JB showing us how to implement this nutritional information with our client, and designing training programs to go with it. When I say show I mean it in a larger sense, since he was clever enough to have other people doing the job. Good thing since the girl was much prettier than him, although at this point I feel we were swerving a little bit on a related topic a bit too much in detail to suit me. Not that it wasn?t relevant, just that since I had John Berardi in the flesh, I would?ve prefer to talk about the topic only he can tell us about. Still, it was good and I think many came to see that he wasn?t one trick poney, capable in more than one field, and to a high degree. Maybe a bit of it came from the fact that I was familiar with the concepts he presented, most notably MR and EC?s bit on dynamic warm-up and mobility, since Inside-out and M2 are a staple in my own training paradigm. Got to give him credit to help spread the words to others and on his willingness to share the glory as he gave full credit to T-Nation?s dynamic duo for introducing him to this knowledge. Team spirit at it?s best, all to our profit.
It?s worth mentioning that even though he presented us to EC and MR?s stuff, he didn?t insist and turn it into a sales pitch. Heck, he didn?t even do it for his own Precision Nutrition package just walking distance from where we were. The only two times he picked it up, it was to show us how he built his tables to incorporate it them in people?s daily habits and make them easy to understand and manage. That?s one aspect of the presentation I personally appreciate a lot from him: not pimping his own stuff. There is a point where no matter how good you are, it?s just obvious you?re here to sell out. This a too often prevalent state of affair in the fitness industry, but we got none of that. Sure all his books were on retail, but they never got forced on us, quoted from or over-emphased. Makes me even more curious about them actually, so I wonder if this was some machiavellian diabolically clever reverse-psychology, or true humility. Hummmm??
This is where I have to stop and give you an epiphany I had during that weekend. No matter how cutting-edge the info is during a given seminar, or relevant to my case or my current level of knowledge, it?s always great to hear someone of experience talk about a given topic, especially if he developed the concepts fondamental to that topic… Beyond simple data, there is one thing no books can give you: perspective. I?m not talking just about having a peak in someone?s brain, I?m talking at seeing how he deals with it, and how he implement it when the situation doesn?t fit the perfect world seen in books. Through our questions and JB?s examples we were able to see from his own perspective, and that really is priceless.
All in all, I had a super weekend. I learned tons of infos, new ways to experiment with my diet and training. No more excuses not to get rid of the love handles now. Most of all, I had a great time and got to pick the brains of a very bright guy, whom I?m really looking forward to hear from again. Next time in Montreal, JB?