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Do you ever wonder if you have what it takes?
Have you ever seen an athlete and thought to yourself, “how is he/she that strong, that jacked, that powerful and that well-conditioned?”
One of those people who, everything they do, just works?
Deadlift 500 lbs? Check.
Bench press 300 lbs? Check.
Squat 400 lbs? Check.
Jump out of the gym? Check.
Runaway from everyone during flag football? Check.
Go ruck in the mountains for a few hours? Check.
Look like a Greek god? Check.
One of those people?
I do. I know several.
And honestly, they used to bug me.
What was so special about them?
Why is it that every time I looked over, they were busy hitting PR’s and looking like a real-life superhero, but no matter how hard I worked, I couldn’t get the same results.
What’s the secret?
I’ll tell you exactly what the secret is…
By the time I finished playing college baseball, I had fallen in love with the weight room. It had become my sanctuary, and I looked forward to team lifts more than our actual games. So when my playing days ended, I was excited to leave, become a strength athlete, and compete in sports like:
- Olympic Lifting
The only problem was, none of them delivered what I was looking for.
Once I started trying the different sports available to strength athletes, I quickly came to the depressing realization that none of them were for me. There were elements of each that I LOVED, but none of them delivered the total package I was looking for, and each asked me to make tradeoffs I couldn’t stomach.
*It is very important that you know I am not trying to knock on the above sports. I have good friends that compete in each, and I have the utmost respect for these athletes. They are each incredible in their own right, and I don’t want to take anything away from them. If you want to be the best in the world at one of the above sports, go make it happen. I can tell you where to get some of the best coaching in each category and will do so if you email me. I’m merely highlighting my experience and the shortcomings I encountered because I’m guessing others are out there (maybe even you) who feel the same way.
Pretty soon I was fed up with switching programs every 6-8 weeks because I couldn’t find what I was looking for.
I was frustrated watching other people hit PR’s while I failed to make progress.
I was wasting hours every week questioning myself and overthinking my training.
I was tired of flushing money down the toilet on coaches and programs that didn’t deliver.
I missed team sports, competing, and being part of a larger community of like-minded humans.
I hated that good strength and conditioning couldn’t be a sport.
I felt isolated and alone in my desire to be a well rounded, stacked across the board, life-proof athlete that cared about more than 3 lifts.
And I honestly started to hate the weight room because I was working my ass off without seeing REAL progress.
The work ethic was there, but I couldn’t find the right system to funnel my efforts through, and it was driving me insane.
What Not To Do: Avoid These 7 Fatal Mistakes
So, I went out searching for an answer and discovered later on that I made 7 fatal mistakes that you should avoid at all costs.
Mistakes that will cost you thousands of dollars, thousands of hours of your time, and countless headaches.
If I could sit down and have a conversation with my 22-year-old self, these are the 7 things I’d tell myself to avoid.
Mistake #1 – Basing your training off stuff you learn in blog posts, Instagram, podcasts and YouTube
You can pick up helpful tidbits from these resources, but you’ll never find a comprehensive plan that allows you to shut your brain off and just train.
Mistake #2 – You think free programs will get the job done
If you have no skin in the game, you’ll start the program but fall off after a few weeks, or you’ll half-ass your way through the program and see minimal results.
Mistake #3 – You program hop and suffer from shiny object syndrome
If you hop from program to program, you’ll look back after 12 weeks realizing you’ve made ZERO gainz.
Mistake #4 – You don’t think big picture, and you don’t think long term
If you want an outcome, you need a well-crafted plan to execute on day after day, week after week, and month after month. There is no quick fix in this game.
Mistake #5 – You don’t prioritize movement and end up feeling like a dumpster fire
Writing a performance-based program is easy, but writing a performance-based program that doesn’t leave you feeling like an old rusty refrigerator is hard.
Mistake #6 – You only think you can make gains on an individualized program
You’ll spend upwards of $300/month online or $200/hour in person when, in reality, you just need a well thought out plan done in a great environment.
Mistake #7 – Trying to do everything yourself (especially crucial for coaches)
The most common problem is thinking you can do everything by yourself. You need accountability and direction from someone who has been where you are trying to go and has helped hundreds of others do the same.
My Aha Moment
After years of spinning my wheels, I finally asked myself one simple question: how can I take the best of all the above strength sports, and blend them in a way that builds a strong, jacked, powerful, well-conditioned athlete that moves like a jungle cat?
Not a one-trick pony, but a life-proof athlete that’s stacked across the board like a video game character.
And from that, the concept of the Apex Athlete and the 6 Pillars of Performance was born. To be an Apex Athlete, I figured you must display competency in each of the below 6 pillars:
If you think back to the sports I mentioned earlier, they fit nicely into 1 or maybe 2 of these pillars. But none of them build you to be stacked across the board. With this as my new framework, I cooked up my unique Apex Athlete Training Method and tested it on myself and a few friends.
Let The Gainz Begin
I was consistently hitting PR’s in the big lifts (585 deadlift, 485 back squat, 405 front squat, and 335 bench press) while having a 33.5” vertical, being able to outrun and outcut everyone I was playing flag football with (former D1 athletes) and go on a 10-mile ruck through the mountains. Plus, I had bulked up to 210 lbs and felt better than I ever had before.
Even better was the peace of mind, mental clarity, and confidence I felt because I had moved past my previous struggles:
All that was left was to test it on other people, and here’s a taste of what happened:
Case Study 1: Keiran
Keiran is a strength and conditioning coach and former collegiate athlete. He joined the first Silverback Training project (the original testing ground for my new ideas) and experienced the following over the course of 6 months:
Case Study 2: Tyler
Tyler is the head strength coach at a physical therapy/strength and conditioning facility in Baltimore. He joined the second Silverback Training project and experienced the following over the course of 6 months:
Case Study 3: Jonathon
Jon is physical therapist/strength coach/”washed up” former college basketball player. Typical former athlete who fell outta competition and turned to various phases of body building, power lifting, Olympic lifting, etc and gradually lost athleticism and conditioning/aerobic capacity. Here’s what happened after 6 months:
I could keep going with stories like that all day.
- There’s Justin and Mickey who joined the 500 lbs squat club
- AJ who joined the 600 lbs deadlift club
- Ryan and Marcella PR’d their squat, bench and deadlift while also seeing 30% improvements in their conditioning tests
But what was even cooler was watching the community, team and competition come to life:
Imagine having a proven system to funnel your energy and intent through that consistently delivers results like that.
Imagine being back in the locker room getting to train, compete, and throw down with your best friends day after day and week after week.
Or imagine the peace of mind that comes from not having to question what you’re going to do tomorrow in the gym because you have a plan to execute on. All you have to do is show up, open your phone, and mash.
To make that a reality for you, I created…
The Apex Training Team
A proven step-by-step system to get jacked, move well, build strength and become a devastatingly effective athlete in the next 90 days.
That’s why I created The Apex Athlete Training Team to help you become a life-proof athlete without overthinking, overanalyzing, and constantly questioning everything you’re doing.
The Apex Athlete Training Team is more than just a coaching program. It’s a team. It’s a family of individuals all dialed into the common goal of being an Apex Athlete – being able to deadlift 600 lbs, jump out of the gym, sprint like a cheetah, ruck up a mountain, crush a metcon, and move like a jungle cat.
You see, the secret sauce of this program is twofold:
- You already have the effort, energy, and desire to be bigger, faster, stronger, and harder to kill. All I do is give you the right system (training program) to funnel your effort through. Think of it as your road map. You know where you’re trying to go, all I’m doing is giving you the directions.
- You get to be on a team training, competing, laughing, and throwing down with your brothers and sisters. That means you immediately inherit over a hundred training partners that will hold you accountable day in and day out.
So, no more restless nights and long days overthinking your training.
No more looking back after 3 months of hard training to realize you haven’t gotten any better and wasted your time, money, and energy.
No more showing up to the gym like a lone wolf wishing you had a team and competition to push you to get better.
No more wishing you had a coach to hold you accountable, keep you on track and right the ship when obstacles arise.
And no more feeling like a dumpster fire because you do programs that don’t understand movement and biomechanics.
How It Works and What You Get
1. Battle-Tested and Science-Backed Programs
When you join, you get access to four unique program tracks:
2. Done For You Weekly Programming And Structure
I will update the programs every week.
That means I do the work of planning out micro, meso, and macrocycles, so you don’t have to worry about anything except showing up to the gym and mashing.
Seriously, all you do is show up, open your phone, and get to work.
Plus, I program using my unique intensity → sensory spectrum to ensure you never end up feeling like a dumpster fire along the way.
3. Full Access Coaching and Accountability
I know how frustrating it can be when you have questions or doubts about your training because you don’t have time to search google, PubMed, or read textbooks to find answers.
This is why I don’t give you a training plan and then leave you to operate by yourself.
I am there with you every step of the way to answer questions and ensure you have everything you need to focus 100% of your effort on just being an athlete.
This is so important that I guarantee a 12 hour response time on all questions or inquiries.
4. Private Locker Room and Camaraderie
No more operating like a lone wolf and feeling alone in a world that doesn’t understand your desire to be an Apex Athlete.
It’s time to bring back the glory days of shooting the shit, laughing, bonding, and throwing down with your best friends, all of whom are dialed in and working towards a common goal.
This not only gives you a place to turn to get help from people just like you, but it also ensures you work harder than you would by yourself because you have others holding you accountable.
5. Daily Competitions, Peak Weeks and Game Day
One of the hardest parts of being an Apex Athlete is finding a competitive outlet that truly tests strength, power, endurance, movement, and fusion.
But not here.
You will get to compete in something nearly every day and see where you stand on the leaderboard.
And then ~ every 4 weeks, you get to partake in a peak week or what I like to call gameday.
It always helps to have a day marked on the calendar that you know you are building towards. Otherwise, you can get lost in the day to day and lose sight of the big picture.
In sports, this is game day, and it makes all the practices, meetings, and walkthroughs worth it.
The issue with many programs is they ask you to wait 12+ weeks to see how your hard work has paid off, causing a lot of athletes to lose momentum along the way.
We don’t do that here.
Every 4 weeks, you get a chance to throw down and see how far you’ve come. And then every 6 months, we have a challenge weekend, but more on that later.
It’s a fact of life that competition brings out the best in the people and gets you to work harder and push more than you ever thought possible by yourself.
6. Performance Testing, Tracking and Industry Leading Tech
Goodbye Excel spreadsheets and training journals that you don’t write in anyways.
I’ve teamed up with Train Heroic to deliver your workouts with industry-leading technology, so tracking your performance over time is easier and more addicting than ever before.
Plus, you will test in and out of every training cycle.
This is incredibly important because it:
- Gives you objective numbers to beat (meaning you work harder)
- Ensures you always know exactly what the goals of the programming are (meaning you have zero confusion over where we’re heading)
- Allows you to easily assess progress (meaning you don’t have to question if it worked or not)
7. A Coach In Your Pocket with Crystal Clear Instructions and Demonstrations
There’s nothing worse than getting to the gym and seeing an exercise in your program that you have no idea how to perform.
That will never happen here.
Each exercise comes with a clear video demonstration and instructions on how to perform it, so there’s zero confusion about what to do.
And if you ever do have a question, I’m there to get it answered.
8. Challenge Weekends, In-Person Meet Ups and $$ Prizes
In sport, you not only have games, but you also have playoffs and a championship.
They are the ultimate light at the end of the tunnel and make the suffering of a full off-season and season worth it.
We will do the same thing every 6 months by having challenge weekends. This is a chance for you to throw down with everyone in the community, see how far you’ve come as an athlete, and win some cash prizes.
This will be a private in-person and remote event for Apex Team members.
What Are You Willing To Invest In Yourself?
Maybe you believe you have to spend years trying a bunch of different ideas or spend $1000’s of dollars on individualized coaching to find a training program that turns you into an Apex Athlete.
Instead, I’ve discovered that the right amount of effort funneled through a complex system coupled with belonging, friendship, and community does the trick.
If you are a strength athlete who keeps wishing you could be a real-life video game character stacked with 99’s across the board, and you’re ready to stop screwing around, this is for you.
I was just like you.
…and this is the system that finally enabled me to break the cycle, be an Apex Athlete, compete and be on a team again.
You have two options…
Option #1: Keep doing what you’ve been doing (and be frustrated and annoyed with the results)
Option #2: Join the Apex Athlete Training Team and let me help you level up your performance so you can…
- Remove the stress and time required to program for yourself.
- Prove to yourself that you have what it takes
- Become a real-life superhero and life-proof athlete
- Attack the rest of your life with a sense of purpose, confidence, and mental clarity
- Have your friends stop and ask, “how are you that strong that jacked that powerful and so well-conditioned?”
Ready to get started?
Click below to chat with our team 👇
What real humans are saying
“James and Rebel are putting out some of the best programs and info out there. Through their guidance and programming my overall strength, capacity and athleticism is the best it’s been in years. As a busy father of three, strength coach and a business owner I believe in the value of having a coach as it takes out a lot of the tripping points of programming for yourself. Having the accountability of a coach was the difference maker for me and allowed me to build consistency back into my training. Putting my trust in James was the best thing I did and I highly recommend it for anyone else looking to level up their training.”
Mickey BruecknerFounder and CEO, Annex Sports Performance
“Rebel Performance’s training programs transformed my training. I got stronger than ever while, get this, leaning out, increasing my conditioning, and avoiding injury. Rebel Performance led me to a state record deadlift, winning best lifter at a State Championship powerlifting meet, winning multiple strongman competitions, and winning the open division of the Tactical Strength Challenge.
The programs are built on a strong foundation of science, which the geek and professional in me appreciate; but they’re designed for the bro who loves to get after it in the gym–and that’s satisfying to every other part of me. But it’s not for everyone. If you’re willing to work hard, I have no doubt you’ll experience the improvements I have and the dozens of guys I trained alongside.”
Ryan PatrickOwner, Peak Fitness and Sports Training
“Rebel Performance is an elite training system to which I would recommend everyone be apart of. It is intelligently designed with progression and intention at its core. In addition, it challenges all aspects of fitness, strength and mental fortitude. With very few things being certain in this day and age, it is nearly a certainty that you will improve, in some aspect of training, while being a part of this system.”
Casey MetoyerAssistant Athletic Performance Coach, UCLA
“Training with James has been one of the best experiences of my life. Despite being swamped with work and school, this has been the most consistent and happy I’ve ever been with training. Coming from strongman, I was looking for someone who could help me get stronger while developing the athleticism and conditioning necessary for all the crazy events. James has delivered in a big way. The coaching is awesome and every week I am excited to show up and crush it. This is by far the strongest and fastest I have ever been, and I am grateful for James for helping me grow into a more confident and well-rounded athlete.”
Marcella TrevisanCoach at NY Strong
“Rebel Performance is the best coaching service I’ve ever used. Since joining Rebel 6 months ago I’ve experienced more results than I have in the past 3 years. Rebel has helped reignite the athlete in me, taken my strength to new heights whilst also giving me an engine when it’s “Go Time”. Rebel are setting a new industry standard when it comes to Coaching and Programming.”