Workout of the Day

Shiny Sells, Simple Solves


It’s common, particularly in the health and fitness world, to see overly-complex solutions directed towards rather simple problems. In some sense, this is everyone’s fault. The general population is drawn to more complex or elaborate solutions, like a fish is drawn to a squirming piece of bait on a hook, and we continue to bite. This makes some sense, because our own problems feel complex to us. After all, that’s why they are and remain our problems. “I just can’t seem to get rid of this belly fat.” “I can’t figure out how to increase my squat.” Etc.

Our problems feel incredibly unique and intricate, and we imagine they can only be solved by something equally as complex and remarkable in its approach. This is the sexy solution, and it sells like hotcakes.

So, perhaps your adrenal problem can be solved if you take this 3 month course of naturopathic pills, use this particular spice in your cooking, rub this oil on your neck, soak your feet in a tub of ice every morning, and practice this particular brand of yoga at least three times per week. Or maybe you just need to get 7 hours of sleep every night rather than the 5 you’ve been getting. The latter will solve the problem; but it’s simple, not sexy. The former will sell, and the results will be inconsistent at best. There are countless similar examples in performance, injury, recovery, health, function, etc. The internet is absolutely full of them.

The most remarkable thing is how well the simple solutions tend to work. We observe unparalleled results from basic adherence to lasting principles. Unfortunately, these solutions just don’t sell as well. Writing a diet and exercise book in which I advise readers simply to “sleep at least 8 hours, eat more vegetables and fewer processed foods, move daily, and enjoy the process” isn’t likely to make the New York Times best seller list. And yet, if everyone truly followed that advice, I think we’d see a 180 degree turn in our nation’s obesity and preventable-disease epidemic.

The complex solutions are undeniably fun -- I love talking about them, because they explore the fringes of what we understand and get into the nitty gritty details -- but don’t let yourself fall for the shiny object syndrome.

If we sound like a broken record sometimes, it’s because the basic things we talk about work. Listen in, it may just be the answer to your problems.

- PS


  • 3 rounds for quality:

    • Max time L-support hold

    • 10 hollow rocks


  • 10 min AMRAP

    • 15 power snatch (115/80)

    • 30s handstand hold