What The Heck Are We Doing?

If you’ve read The Catalyst Philosophy, you may think it’s the same jargon as other fitness facilities, or you may think we’re hardcore/old-school/masochistic/egotistical/insane. We are, and we aren’t.
Our goal is this: take simple movements that utilize your body’s natural ranges of motion, coach the techniques that will make those movements faster, stronger, or more stable, and execute them at high intensity.
These ‘simple movements’ aren’t easy, but they are common to various disciplines, like martial arts, gymnastics, powerlifting, olympic lifting, running, and dance. Yes, dance.
They’re also the movements that you’re most likely to use on a day-to-day basis, but finely-tuned to make you more proficient during exercise, and thus more proficient outside of exercise.
As an example: most people would think a ‘clean and jerk’ exercise is ‘extreme.’ In fact, most commercial gyms have banned the exercise (though not for the reasons they want you to believe.) But break a ‘clean and jerk’ down into its component parts: squat down, pick something up quickly, lift it to your shoulders, and then use the momentum to carry it over your head. Sounds a lot like putting cans of soup on the top shelf to me. There’s a direct application; there’s a clear benefit to training that lift. No lift can replace it. Compare that to a pec deck machine: is there a direct application to improving elbow adduction? Is there a clear benefit that no other lift can replace?
Likewise, we train ‘components’ of fitness together. We don’t have a ‘cardio day’ and an ‘abs day’ and a ‘legs day.’ YOU are a functional unit. Loss of function means loss of game, loss of posture, and potentially loss of life. Train like one unit, not a hundred little machines. Your elbow joint doesn’t know what a ‘curl’ is: it knows to pull something up toward the shoulder. This movement is never done in isolation, except in a gym. How can it help you outside, even as a bodybuilder? We already know that ‘isolation’ exercises don’t actually isolate anything, or improve the appearance of isolation. Why not get more bang for your buck?
Because we use these compound exercises (for instance, chinups and hand-over-hand rope pulls) instead of 5 times as many isolationist movements to achieve the same results (you’d need biceps curls, static curls, lat pulldowns, lat rows, static rows, scap retractions, back extensions. Russian twists, rear delt flyes, and trap shrugs) we can often finish a workout in under 20 minutes. Bonus: we get a metabolic benefit that bodybuilders don’t.
The result is that Catalyst clients train like athletes, and start to become – well, athletic. They LOOK like athletes. They BEHAVE like athletes. They FEEL like athletes. While new clients may start with the goal of ‘losing weight’ or ‘toning up,’ they quickly realize that weight and endurance and bodyfat percentage are merely CORRELATES of fitness; they’re not the whole bag, baby. Yes, a fitter person may be lighter. Yes, a fitter person may be able to run 5km more efficiently. But is a lighter person necessarily more fit? No. Does an elite 5km runner necessarily fit our ideal of ‘fitness?’ Not until we see their deadlift total, or their pushup form, or their anaerobic threshold.
The trickle-down effect of real fitness onto your life is exceptional: you start to eat better, because you know that you’ve got to be well-primed for tomorrow’s workout. You gain more confidence. You know you hold a card that others at the table don’t. And yes, you start to look the part. Think of all the reasons you put your kids in sports at a young age: camaraderie, exercise, self-esteem, confidence, teamwork…..and now apply them to your life. What if you were better at all those things?
Our facility doesn’t have mirrors. It doesn’t have gleaming chrome or monogrammed towels. It does have everything you need to succeed: elite coaches. Record boards. Chalk. Space. Bumper plates. Ropes. Sleds. Stuff to lift, stuff to carry, stuff to throw, and stuff to swing.
It could be that you’ve never trained this way before. It could also be that you’ve never achieved your full potential before. It could be that you’ve never done ANY exercise before.
Either way, our goal is to start you at an appropriate level, and take you beyond your previous personal best. We love it; we’d do it for free if we could. We think you’ll love it too (or at least, like it a lot.) It’s worth noting that over 90% of people who start training with us never go back to training the way they did before. Most of our clients thought they’d NEVER need a personal trainer, or a coach, or that they’d never like the panic of discovering that day’s workout every morning. Now that they’re far more proficient, most of our clients could teach most personal trainers a thing or two about exercise, but they still stick around. Why? What’s their Catalyst? Find out.
What’s YOUR Catalyst?

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