Body: The Physical Potential

 “No citizen has a right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training…what a disgrace it is for a man to grow old without ever seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.”


The following links are here to help you fall in love with your physique.

Eventually, I want to extend this list to around 25 links, but for now, I’ll keep it at 10 and see how people respond.

If you enjoy any of these links, let me know and I might be able to recommend more information that you might find interesting or educating. The point here is to get pumped up about exercising, start getting fit, and begin eating consciously.

In this first series of BODY: The Physical Potential, I’ve tried to include enough materials for men and women by including a diversity of learning materials for bodybuilders, various books on bodyweight workouts that you can carry with you while you travel around the world, and I’ve also discovered the most difficult Pilates instructor you’ll ever meet online.

The best part? More than half of these links lead to free materials, free workouts, and free nutrition advice helping you improve your physique and make more informed decisions. Remember: this is only Part 1 of The Physical Potential. If you like enjoy this outline at all, please let me know, and I’ll include more sites that I love, recommend, and use.

The goal here is to expand the mind a little bit and try something new (thanks Tony!). Be on the lookout for MIND: The Mental Potential coming in the second half of 2014!!!

I’m hoping that collectively we can begin thinking about training the body in different ways or fashions than by simply going to the gym everyday, following some boring routine, or just settling to run on the treadmill for twenty minutes a day. Most importantly, let’s remember, any exercise is about seeing one picture: getting off the couch, having fun, and creating a body you love and empowers you to do what you want to do.

(Note: I am not an affiliate for any of the following links. I haven’t received a single cent or reward from any of the following companies nor have they given me any incentives to be mentioned below. Each link comes as my own opinion, from my own enjoyment, or positive experience. Again, all of the following links are for educational means only. Consult a doctor before jumping head first into any of the following programs. Or, just do it! but promise me you’ll be careful:)

Section One: Strength & Conditioning

Starting Strength

1. Starting Strength by Mark Rippletoe: This book packs a serious punch for the up and coming bodybuilder or anyone interested in getting big gains while focusing on proper form. Referred to as the Barbell Bible, Rippletoe’s book focuses on bringing five lifts to complete mastery.

Anyone interested in building strength, focusing on form, and conditioning needs to start by reading this book and considering Mark’s program. You don’t necessarily have to follow his program, but I definitely recommend committing yourself to read this book and learning how to do a proper squat, dead lift, and chest press without giving yourself a hernia.

Also, check out Mark’s website, Starting, for additional resources, forum, and events calendar.

If you fall in love with his program, there is the Starting Strength Wiki where you can contribute to the already popular community of Rippletoe’s followers. And if you have anymore questions before buying his book,’s forum posted an easy to read FAQ on Starting Strength.

Section Two: Bodyweight Workouts (or Why You Don’t Need a Gym Membership To Travel The World)

You Are Your Own Gym

2. You Are Your Own Gym by Mark Lauren: Hailed as The Bible of Bodyweight exercises by its writer: former Special Ops physical trainer Mark Lauren. I bought this book a while back for just under $10. Of course, at $12 this e-book is still a complete steal. I bought this book when I was living in a rural town in southern Thailand. I worked out five days a week in a space about the size of a prison cell using the exercises in this book. For all the peregrines out there traveling in different parts of the world where gyms don’t actually exist, check this book out!

If you enjoy the book, or if you can’t afford buying the book, and still want something affordable with mobility, there is also an app (iTunes version/ Android version) to accompany and aid all the bodyweight pushing and pressing you’ll be doing from the book. I haven’t actually bought the app yet, but…. I’m about to.

Mark Lauren offers it all: book, app, & DVD for those looking for an all-around bodyweight workout. Here is an awesome 13 min. clip of what you can expect from Mark’s videos.


3. Freeletics: Imagine if Crossfit didn’t use weights, ropes, or rowing machines, and it was free!

Freeletics is a grassroots Munich startup that focuses on free, high intensity bodyweight workouts that you can do at the park with friends or in the comfort of your home.

Think lots of repetitions, plenty of back sweat, and a bustling heart. If you’re not comfortable signing up for their newsletter, follow them on Twitter or Facebook for a safer first date.

Be on the look out for their mobile app, so you can take your workouts with you wherever you go. Basic is free and Pro is well, pro.


4. This website is perfect for those who want to give bodyweight exercises a try without breaking the wallet or spending too much time reading a book or waiting on delivery.

Design your own program right now using Greatist’s collection of bodyweight exercises. Start with 50 Bodyweight Exercises You Can Do Anywhere and design a routine you can take anywhere in the world.

After checking out some basic moves, move on to their more advanced compilation and increase the difficulty of your workout with 17 Powerful Bodyweight Exercises For Strength and Speed.

And if you are feeling lazy, but motivated enough to get your sweat on, Greatist was kind enough to save you time, money, and energy by designing a 30-minute, no-gym workout for you that you can start immediately. Here ya go, thanks Greatist!


5. Strength Stack 52 and The Periodic Table of BodyWeight Exercises: Strength Stack 52 is a unique card game that incorporates competitive fun, mobility, and exercise into a regular stack of cards that you can take anywhere with you.

Each card in the deck contains a bodyweight exercise, description, and bar code that can be scanned using your mobile device to bring up a video showing you how to perform the exercise properly.

Check out an example of what the cards will look like here.

The story behind Strength Stack 52’s creation is inspiring and whether you buy a deck for yourself or give the gift of Strength Stack 52 to a friend, you have to admit this idea is quite clever.

And if you are not interested in purchasing any cards today, Strength Stack 52 was awesome enough to create this free Periodic Table of BodyWeight Exercises below.

For those interested in ordering, check out USA and International pricing and delivery. Both are available.

6. Blogilates: Girls, this one’s not just for you. Guys, be warned! Casey Ho’s POP Pilates is a serious contender among all these programs. With a wide range of videos and almost a million subscribers, Casey Ho exercises to various pop songs while kicking your *ss. Jokes aside, you’ll be in tears wishing for your workout to be over while this bubbly teenie-bopper effortlessly smiles and talks to you about her day, getting her nails done, and eating healthy.
Guys, if you can get past the cutesy, poppy playlists and Casey’s stories about getting pampered, then you are in for a great and challenging workout.
Casey designs beautiful monthly workout calendars you can grab for free on her website by subscribing.
Each workout of the day is planned and customized by Casey to ensure you get around an hours worth of exercise. Oh, and these workouts aren’t just pilates, you’ll be doing yoga, HIIT training, and other bodyweight exercises that will make you question why you ever went to the gym.
I highly recommend you give POP Pilates a week of your time. I guarantee you won’t think she’s a joke after this workout
Section Three: Superior Fitness Programs (Or Pay a Little Extra to Let An Expert Design Your Entire Program)
Team BeachBody
7. Team Beachbody: If you haven’t heard of Team Beachbody by now then watching TV is clearly not a part of your day. If you want a serious fitness routine designed by a pro, Team Beachbody has everything you need. Renowned workout guru Tony Horton (I absolutely love this guy!) gives you everything you ever wanted in P90X. Personally, after completing P90X I was in the best shape of my life.
Shaun T brings the heat in Insanity. Insanity is a perfect way to workout at home without any equipment other than your shoes and a towel.
Find a friend that is no longer using their discs and dedicate yourself to a real fitness program.
If you don’t have any friends, all you need is a credit card to get started. Team Beachbody isn’t the cheapest way to workout, but its will get you the results you are looking for. Once you finish P90X, look into buying P90X Plus, and then P90X2, and now, you can buy P90X3 and limit working out to only 30 minutes a day!
With all the time and effort Team Beachbody has been putting into assembling these workouts, all you have to do is buy it and do it.
8. Thank goodness an amazing friend of mine told me about years ago. In short, this website is made for and by bodybuilders. With over 100 million posts, if there is a question you need answered it’s probably already been answered in the forum over at If there is a supplement, protein powder, or vitamin you want to order, it’s probably cheapest to order it from Check out the Top 50 in Store. And if you want to read in-depth articles about the lost art and science of weightlifting, or what you should eat for breakfast before working out, and if milk is good for you or not, has your answer.
If you live in the USA and care about reaching optimum performance, bookmark this site.
Section Four: Gymnastics (AKA Serious Strength and Conditioning Training)
9. Gymnastic Bodies: If you want to learn how to do a handstand or learn what real strength and fitness is, this is the site for you.
Gymnastic Bodies is not you average run the mill website selling you garbage workout material at a premium.
Olympic gymnastic coach Christopher Sommer gives you quality material that you need to build a perfect body focused on flexibility, mobility, core strength, endurance, and strength.
If you are seriously committed to finding your peak physical potential, this is a one-stop shop. Be prepared, gymnastics are what real fitness ethusiasts practice.
Go ahead and grab Handstand One to learn how to do a handstand or start your gymnastics training at home with Foundation One.
I highly recommend Christopher Sommer’s book Building The Gymnastic Body. Be on the lookout for his next book, Liquid Steel.
Personally, I cannot wait to read this as it will focus on strength and mobility which are extremely important for world travelors!
Section Five: Intermittent Fasting (IF)
10. Leangains: This website is all about nutrition and the theory of intermittent fasting. Created by IF advocate and nutrition consultant Martin Berkhan, intermittent fasting has gained a huge audience over past years.
IF’s following, however, does not mean that you should try it.
Leangains founder Martin Berkhan has written an in-depth letter to those interested in IF as well as addressing his concerns over those imitating IF. The letter is lengthy, but worth the read if you are interested in IF, fasting in general, or nutritional science. His part on integrity is especially nice.
Again: IF is not a shortcut to getting ripped. You cannot just stop eating and cram whatever food you want into your mouth during a six hour window.
If you are interested in IF or nutritional science, look at the research, results, and tread cautiously. Here is a good place to start.
Leave comments/critiques at the top.
Hope you enjoy this new addition to the website.
I would love to hear your thoughts about physical potential.
Let me know if you would like me to expand on these educational resources.
Hopefully, you get out today and start moving,