Prelude (Part 0/8)
Welcome to an Eight Part Series (0/8). Over the course of this series you’ll be introduced to an open look as to what goes on behind the scenes at Athletes Warehouse (AW). This will cover everything from overall training methodology, how we’ve developed a state of the art sport performance facility, our perspective on rehabilitation and injury prevention, how we carve resilient and sharpened minds of young athletes, and basically anything an athlete or coach would need to facilitate training for themselves or others. The goal of this series is to be completely transparent with our readers, hide nothing, and share what we do. In the end, we do not fear someone “stealing our secrets”. Much of our methods are original and created in-house, yet we’re humbled to admit that we’ve had the pleasure of being influenced by so many amazing professionals who consider themselves a part of the sports performance industry. This humble and open attitude will be highlighted in our vast and broad use of so many different training methodologies. In all honesty, we do not fear you stealing our secrets, because there are just some things that we do that simply cannot be recreated. Our team, our personalities, and the way we communicate is something that cannot be learned through reading this series, but can only be experienced by spending time in our facility.
WHO am I? And WHY am I writing this?
My name is Jack Gladstone, and I am a Strength and Conditioning Coach at Athletes Warehouse as well as a Licensed Massage Therapist. While I am the writer of this series, I am simply a scribe. You’ll recognize my constant use of the word “We”. This is because everything written in this manual is a by-product of every single coach that has walked through the doors of Athletes Warehouse. The reason I have elected myself with writing this is I’ve had a unique perspective over the last six years to experience the progression of training at Athletes Warehouse.
Let’s take it back to the BEGINNING.
Let’s go back to when I was 19 years old and the place where the foundation of Athletes Warehouse methodology was created; “The Shop”. “The Shop” to some is a legend, only to have heard about it through the tales of athletes who hit some of the most epic training sessions there. I feel as though all great training facilities have some of the barest beginnings. This was AW’s bare beginning. The Shop was a barn that was half a training facility, half an equipment and repair shop for Michael Serio’s (Coach Nick Serio’s Father) Arborist company. In the shop were 2 squat racks, a pull up rig, a bike, and a set of olympic jerk blocks. Along with some kettlebells, that’s about it. No AC, no tech savvy equipment that Athletes Warehouse utilizes today. That summer I was home from my sophomore year of college lacrosse, and heading into my junior season, Coach Nick had the plans of putting me through the most rigorous training schedule of my life.
Here was a typical day…
6AM: 45-60 minutes of mobility, followed by 20-30 minutes interval conditioning session or sprint work.
8AM: Meal #1
11AM: Meal #2
12PM: 20 minute warmup, followed by 60-90min of strength work (Squat/Press/Deadlift), followed by another conditioning session in the form of an EMOM (Every Minute on the Minute).
2PM: Meal #3
4PM: Quick warmup, followed by 60-90 minutes of Olympic Weightlifting, followed by accessory lifts to fill in the gaps of what had not been accomplished from the beginning of the day.
7PM: Meal #4
9PM: Attempt to recover.
This was my introduction to the field of strength and conditioning and knew at that point that spending my day in a training facility was not work, but true passion. To this day Coach Nick and I look back on this time (note: he did every single rep alongside me), and laugh at how over-trained we were, but how a passion for training and desire to find the boundaries drove us to massive performance gains. Fearful of nothing, we executed training as a test of self limits, rather than the meticulous prescription of volume and intensity that we utilize with our athletes today. Our methodology has come a long way. And as a direct result of surrounding ourselves with the smartest coaches, our methods transformed into what our athletes experience on a daily basis. The Athletes Warehouse methodology is a culmination of everyone who has ever entered our facility. No matter if you are an athlete, a coach, an intern, you have helped shape the methodology of Athletes Warehouse. The next coming chapter will go into more detail regarding methodology.