• Misbah Haque

StrongFit | Training Yourself To Feel Less Pain And Handle Extreme Discomfort w/ Julien Pineau

Julien is a movement specialist who will teach you a thing or two about extreme discomfort, pain, and intensity. We move past technique and programming today to focus on the end game -- creating and applying torque. I also had a blast nerding out with him on the concept of pushing your brain as hard as you push your body.

In this episode, some things we talk about:

  • Why torque changes everything, even if it visually LOOKS like you’re performing a movement correctly

  • Difference between mobility and flexibility: Why passive stretching hasn’t fixed your hips yet

  • Building a mental palace to push, organize, and strengthen your mind

Show Notes:

  • “I found myself when I started MMA, that’s when things really clicked for me.” (2:20)

  • “I could more or less wonder my intellect in easy life. It’s that moment when you have to look in the mirror. And I realized and decided that I needed to build something.” (3:21)

  • “At the end, them saying no was the best thing that could have happened to me. I struggled really hard for a few years. Sold my car, lost 20lb because I had to ride up and down to my gym on a bicycle.”

  • “Steroids and CrossFit, honestly is the wrong conversation. What we want to look at is pain killers and anti- inflammatories. That’s the dirty secret of CrossFit.” (4:45)

  • “The body moves well. We just messed it up along the way. We learn wrong patterns along the way that creates imbalances and deficiencies that ends up causing trauma. The key is if I can just remove what you’re doing wrong, chances are the body will do right on its own.” (9:40)

  • “Skill, Eccentric, Weight-bearing. The lower the SEW, the higher I’m going to push the intensity. The skill is very limited on a sled push. I know that there’s not much that’s going to stop you from taking two more steps. You won’t pay the price for it in the sense of, your knees won’t ache the next day. Your back won’t be destroyed.” (11:30)

  • “What is the difference between mobility and flexibility really? Mobility is the range of motion that you have while maintaining torque. If it is without tension or torque, then it is flexibility. Passive stretching will increase flexibility, but will not increase mobility. With flexibility, the second I put weight or load, I have to increase torque. If you’re increasing the range of motion with just flexibility by itself, I don’t want to say that it’s useless, but it’s not interesting.” (14:00)

  • “Creating torque is everything. That’s how you create strong joints, strong mobility, and strong movement.” (16:10)

  • “If you don’t understand how to create torque, you can LOOK like you're doing the movement correctly, and yet you’re doing it completely incorrectly. If you create the wrong torque overhead, you will get hurt and mess yourself up. You are looking the part but not being the part.”

  • “For people’s hips to be healthy, first they need to understand what a hinge is.” (25:45)

  • How do you really know if you know how to hinge?

  • “How come you can feel the pain is getting worse over weeks and weeks and months and months? It’s never trauma that happens just one time. It’s things that are happening over weeks, you just don’t know how to stop it. Eh whatever I’m gonna wait until it breaks. Problems relating to imbalances comes from you applying torque incorrectly. If we fix that, we fix them.” (36:00)

  • “Pain is an interpretation of the brain. Nothing else. If you associate intensity with pain you are training yourself to feel more pain. After that, the better you get at it. The lower the level of intensity is where the pain is going to start. They have that moment where they are in pain all the time. Because the brain signals pain at intensity at any level. That can work the other way as well.” (41:12)

  • Memory Palace: “It’s something used for memory. It allows you to develop a certain mental strength. It allows me to stick with problems longer. I’m not smarter than anybody. I can stick with problems longer that way. That’s the thing with the mental palace. That you are in control of. I don’t need the phone to do that. I’ve built that room in my head.”  (47:15)

  • “It’s the greatest thing you can do for someone. Is give the ability to someone to create that room.” (55:33)

  • “This has been mankind’s greatest invention. Books. There is no question. The amount of things that are in those few cubic inches. The stronger you can make your mind the better you will be as a human being.” (56:33)

  • “Those guys went so far in their own field, that they’re bound to come up with stuff that you can use in yours. They have opened their mind to concepts that are very hard to conceptualize. That are very difficult and probably painful to conceptualize. Out of that pain out of that struggle that they had to go through to become better, they can teach you so much.”  (1:04:00)

  • “I had to sell my car just to pay the rent. You know when you pay the rent on the 10th of every month? That was my life for 3 years. At the same time it was  the greatest thing. It taught me how to take the hits. At no point in those 5 years where I struggled so much did I ever think about quitting. It never even entered my mind. I was like I don’t care if i  have to work security at night. But I will not close the gym. I will do whatever I have to do to build something. (1:11:15)

  • “I don't want to live in a world where I see so many athletes one step away from breaking. And their only options are stop doing what you’re doing or wait until it breaks. I want to train coaches so they can train coaches. So we can fix a million people instead of 200.”

Resources we may have talked about:

How you can connect with Julien:

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