TJ's Gym Weekly News 06/21/2019


Good luck to Zach and Gabe!

Gabe is moving to the South Bay, and Zach has taken on a full-time job. We will miss them both and have loved having them as part of our community and our staff. Zach and Gabe: we wish you all the best and know you will thrive!


Message from TJ:


The Belger family has three rules for success:

1. No trampolines.

2. No sleepovers.

3. No Mexico.

Obviously, these are tongue-in-cheek and meant for a comedic effect when I talk about them at the gyms (except the trampolines). The point is: why take on the risk of data-proven problems when you don't have to?

Trampolines are dangerous. Period. Broken bones are no fun and keep you out of activities you'd really like to be doing.

Sleepovers cause a major kid hangover the next day, at the very least, and at the worst? Well, sleepovers can really go sideways, as some of you may have experienced.

Mexico? I have never heard anyone say that their vacation in Mexico wasn't anything but spectacular. Except for their wallet getting stolen. Or the three days they spent puking their guts out. Or that they were detained by the Federales for a couple of hours on the side of a dirt road on their way back to the hotel. But besides that, it's awesome!

Once again, the declaration of these rules is for entertainment purposes, only. Except the trampolines.

Malcolm Gladwell had a podcast where he lamented the fact that he did not have the "12 Rules for Life" that so many internet celebrities were touting a couple of years ago. He realized he didn't even have one. Until he heard the concept of Pulling the Goalie from financiers Cliff Asnes and Aaron Brown found here.

In hockey, Pulling the Goalie refers to the practice of adding a sixth scorer by taking your goalie out late in the game, in order to tie up a possible losing effort. What they discovered was that, in some cases, pulling the goalie far earlier than the last minute would be even more beneficial.

The problem is that this would be seen as "disagreeable."

Can you imagine pulling the goalie while you're tied? What about if there were 3, 4, or even 5 minutes left to go in the game? But what if the data said that if you did you were almost, ALMOST, guaranteed to win?

Well, if you did win, you would most likely be found to be.....disagreeable.

You would be mocked, ridiculed, and accused of being the luckiest most irresponsible idiot this side of the Mississippi. Even if you were right, not lucky.

Psychologist Lawrence Kohlberg developed a theory of moral development. There are three basic phases:

1. Pre-Conventional: concept of obedience to avoid punishment.

2. Conventional Morality: concept of doing good to be seen as good by others.

3. Post-Conventional Morality: The individual makes personal moral decisions regardless of whether it fits external markers.

The trajectory goes something like this: Kids make decisions to avoid punishment. Adolescents and young adults make decisions based of off what others think. Adults carrying responsibilities make decisions based off of what they feel they need to do to achieve a positive outcome.

The current college bribery scandal would be a good example of arguing where some people stall in Kohlberg's stage.

What does this have to do with a knucklehead gym owner and his weekly babblings?

CrossFit hurts people.

We can all agree that when people enter a gym, it is almost always for one of three reasons: Health. Performance, Aesthetic. There's community, too, but that's not a direct physical driver.

We also have to agree that the shortest line between where we are now and where we want to go is paved with the uncomfortable.

I starting thinking about the people who actually get hurt in the gym. A pop in their shoulder during a pull-up or an immediate shock to the low back during a deadlift.

I realize I'm treading on thin ice right now. Am I saying that this actually does hurt people?

Yes. Yes I am.

But, according to my surgeon buddies, being hurt in the gym happens FAR less often and with FAR lower severity of injury than mountain biking, running, and even swimming. Look, slipping on your porch could injure you. Are you going to stop leaving your house?

The point I'm trying to make is that I have recently been running through the list of people I personally know who, over the last 15 years, have suffered injuries at the gym AND continued to keep coming to the gym. Years and years later they are now some of the fittest and healthiest people in their age group, office and demographic.

They defied the suggestions to quit and try something else, so graciously offered by their friends and acquaintances. This made them disagreeable.

They made their own decision to continue working out at the gym, with the guidance of their coaches as their own Post-Conventional Morality--not giving in to what the naysayers think.

They endured the noise and are now succeeding. They won't suffer the ills of choosing an easier, less comfortable path. They absolutely will benefit in their annual checkups and avoidance of chronic disease.

The other options are easier. They have more bells and whistles. They are sometimes

But the data don't lie, Baby.


YOU CAN STILL JUMP IN! THIS challenge is about consistency, not about winning, and CONSISTENCY OVER INTENSITY.

Keep up, and even improve on, your fitness while having a blast this Summer, even if when you can’t make it to the gym! All participants will be invited to a special BBQ at the end of the Summer.


1. Do all 50 items and get a TJ’s shirt.

2. You must get a coach to sign off on things that you do in the gym.

3. You must document dates and details of other items. We recommend a Google Doc, which you will be asked to share with us at the end of Summer.

4. Please post at least 5 of your accomplishments on the TJ’s Gym Facebook Members Page (not a member? JOIN NOW!)

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July 4th Schedule

Please note that there will be one class per location!

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TEEN SUMMER FITNESS! Check out our specialized programs for sports teams.

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Registration IS ongoing FOR youth fitness!

See our full youth schedule below. Additional times available upon request.

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Corte Madera Teens (ages 12-16): Mondays / Wednesdays / Fridays 4-5pm*

*M/W/F are our more advanced teens

Corte Madera Teens Tuesdays/Thursdays 3:30-4:30 ages 13-15

Corte Madera Tweens Tuesdays/Thursdays 4:30-5:30 ages 9-12

Corte Madera Teens (ages 12-16): Saturdays 11am

San Rafael Teens (ages 12-16): Tuesdays/Thursdays* 4-5pm

Mill Valley Teens (ages 12-16): Tuesdays and Thursdays 4:00-5:00pm

Mill Valley Teens (ages 12 - 16) Wednesdays 4 pm

Corte Madera Kids (ages 4 - 6) Sundays 10:30 - 11:00 am

Corte Madera Kids (7 - 9) Sundays 11:05 - 11:50 am

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Running Strong: strength for endurance athletes

Join any time with our new flexible membership options!

Email with any questions.

Program Foundations:

•Injury prevention/Consistency

•Efficiency/Muscular Power



Coach Nick describes the changes coming to our Running Strong Program!


our legends CONTINUE TO INSPIRE US! Spread the word to your friends and family ages 60+.


We’d like to get as many 60+ year-olds in Marin moving as possible! Athletes can join at any time; we pro-rate based on start days.

We’d like to get as many 60+ year-olds in Marin moving as possible! Athletes can join at any time; we pro-rate based on start days.

You can always find updated announcements AND WEEKLY WORKOUTS on our HOME PAGE.