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Greg Everett Quote Collection
Greg Everett
December 30 2013

I was asked to post a bunch of the various things I've posted on FB and elsewhere over time in one convenient location, so here are some of the ones I could find easily. If you have others you like, post them in the comments!

"As we reach the start of a new year, remember that success doesn't come from a single day of resolutions, but from living every day with resolve."

"As you grow up, you have to become useful in life, not just good looking."

"Don't forget that working smarter doesn't mean you can't also be working harder."

"I'd rather be the guy doing and failing than the guy doing nothing more than telling others they've failed."

"The Internet: Where the mediocre go to become great. And where curmudgeons like me go to complain about it."

"If you stopped taking so many pictures of yourself, you might have enough time to do something worth taking a picture of."

"Aside from its helping ensure adults are doomed to write like semi-literate second graders for the rest of their lives, the biggest problem with social media is that it's teaching kids that every single thought, no matter how insignificant, private, incomplete or stupid needs to be immediately shared with the world. One of the most important things you can learn growing up is how and when to shut up."

"I'm not looking for perfect consistency with the textbook; I'm looking for what works best for each individual athlete. That doesn't make the textbook useless; it makes it a starting point and a frame of reference."

"White foam roller? How about I just roll on a down pillow instead."

"Any weight you make is better than any weight you miss."

"Hard work can't always overcome a lack of natural ability, but at least it will make you respectable."

"It's fine if you want to say you actually get stronger when you're recovering, not training; but you have to do something to recover from first. You can't rest your way to success."

"Don't be afraid to try new things in training. Unless they're stupid."

"The snatch, clean and jerk should be active movements from start to finish. There should never be a moment when things are simply happening; you have to make them happen at all times."

"Hey look, people on the Internet sharing opinions about things they don't understand and complaining about shit they don't pay for. Shocking."

"Don't worry about all those stars you're seeing; they're just angels coming to help you with the jerk."

"Your misses count as practice just as much as your makes do. Not only is it practice in the physical, technical sense, i.e. you're practicing the movement that produces a miss, but, more importantly, you're practicing mentally to miss. If missing is a regular occurrence in your training, it's a serious problem you need to address both through adjustments in your programming and in your approach to your training."

"The atmosphere of the gym is more important than the facility and the equipment. Good athletes with good character will make each other better, but one bad character will fuck it up for everyone. Keep your house clean, trim the dead wood, however you want to put it; it will pay off."

"No matter what you're doing, you need to find ways of doing it effectively and safely, to minimize pain and injury without sacrificing effectiveness. If you play and train for a sport at a reasonably high level, you have to accept the presence of pain and the occasional occurrence of injury. If you use the presence of any pain at all as an indication that you're doing something wrong, you'll never train hard enough to succeed; if you expect a total absence of pain from training, you don't have the constitution to be an athlete."

"If your positions and timing in the snatch, clean or jerk are not correct, you will be unable to generate maximal force even with perceived maximal effort."

"Bangs: the mustache of foreheads."

"Decaf: the stripper of the coffee world."

"General coaching rule: If I don't say anything, the lift was fine. Or it was so shitty I can't stand talking to you at that moment."

"The first time I squatted 180, mike Burgener said, 'Good job. Can you believe Casey snatches that?' Be proud of your hard work and accomplishments, but never be completely satisfied and never forget you're not the only one out there working hard. You can always do more, do better, and help others do the same."

"I'd rather be the one creating things for others to criticize than the one criticizing what others have created."

"I’m not impressed by the individual who is willing to exercise to the point of vomiting or a loss of bladder control—this is not that unusual. What I’m impressed by is the individual who shows up every day at the gym, does what is necessary, doesn’t complain, doesn’t look for recognition, does what’s necessary outside of the gym to support their training and goals, and continues this process consistently for years."

"What makes a good coach is certainly not a simple answer. Regarding weightlifting specifically, a coach needs to understand technique and be able to teach and refine it; needs to have a good grasp of program design and also how to individualize for his lifters; needs to be able to communicate well with his lifters in all respects, from issues of technique learning to training response to personal issues that affect training; needs to be competent with competition coaching; and needs to be reliable, respectable and trustworthy. Some coaches are very good at one or more of these things but not others; the best coaches in the world are good at all of them and continually getting better."

"Being prepared for any random task is not the same thing as preparing randomly for any task."

"Always bring the bar to you; never chase it. You are the master of your destiny."

"Every single time you do something in the gym, you’re a model for other members. Set a good example and help others follow it. Be a contributor, not a drain; be safe and respectful and courteous. Take a moment and think about what your actions tell everyone around you, and if you like your gym and respect its owners, staff and members, prove it with the way you treat the facility. "

"No self-respecting man drinks his coffee any way but black."

"However, in my opinion, how one performs a push-up is indicative of that individual’s athletic foundation, and possibly more importantly, how committed one is to excellence in movement and performance. Sloppy push-ups suggest to me a superficial interest in athleticism and a degree of laziness."

"When you lose your head, the first place to look is up your ass."

"If you're asking if your squat was low enough, the answer is no."

"You can't go through life expecting pats on the back for shit you're supposed to do."

"The internet proves daily that intelligence is not directly proportional to access to information, and that the possession of knowledge is not necessarily paired with the ability to put it to use."

"What makes a weightlifting program successful? Your hard work and dedication."

"Use the right tools for the job, not the ones you like using most."

"It's unfortunate that in order to feel stupid, you have to be reasonably intelligent, and to be embarrassed, to have some degree of dignity. A lot of people are spared the usual consequences of their behavior by virtue of failing to qualify."

"I guess the accusations that I'm "old school" are probably accurate: I shut my mouth, work hard, don't feel entitled to anything, respect the ones who paved the road I'm on, and don't act like a whiny child every chance I get."

"Variations in technique or style are not correct or incorrect. The only way you can do something incorrectly in terms of weightlifting technique is by intending to perform a lift in the specific style preferred by a given coach or lifter and failing to meet whatever criteria define that style. You can, however, do anything poorly by violating universal criteria (e.g. moving slowly, not maintaining spinal extension, etc.)."

"If an individual is untrained enough, I can improve his deadlift with nothing more than vigorous nose-picking."

"Any program will produce gains in a beginning weightlifter--these easily-obtained improvements shouldn't be the primary goal, however. The more important goal for beginning and intermediate training programs is to establish a proper foundation that will allow maximal long term improvements."

"I'd rather be a hard worker who never wins than a winner who never works hard."

"A lot of information isn't a substitute for good information. Check your sources for quality instead of frequency. One will help you learn, and the other will help you waste your time."

"Get to know a coach who's been around a while. They may not have Instagram accounts, but they may know a thing or two you don't."

"Bad information when it comes to weightlifting isn't just not helpful, it's harmful."

"If making money is part of your motivation, you don't want to be a weightlifter. If you think the sport needs to be changed somehow to be more entertaining, you're not a weightlifting fan."

"I like sharp packaging as much as the next guy, but there better be something more than a pile of shit in the box."

"Don't over-complicate what should be simplified, and never lose sight of the fundamentals when you're overwhelmed by complexity and detail."

"My research has shown a strong correlation between number of followers and frequency of butt shots."

"Feelings: They're like thoughts without the usefulness."

"The hardest part about conveying information in an article is getting people to actually read an article."

"Sometimes a cost means value. Sometimes it just means you're a sucker."

"Your inspirational quotes would be a lot more inspiring if you took the initiative to check the spelling and grammar before launching them into the universe."

"I'm at the track watching a guy jog suicides. I guess they're just cries for help."

"Coaching: Helping athletes develop toward their maximum potential. Recruiting: Convincing talented athletes to represent you. Marketing: Telling the world what you want them to believe you are. Don't confuse one for another."

"Peer review is great unless your peers are as stupid as you are."

"The value of people's opinions is usually inversely proportional to their desire for you to know them."

"Being pissed off that you're not doing as well as you want to be is not the same thing as having the motivation and will to do what it takes to improve."

"Great craftsmen learn from those who have come before them—the best learn from experience working directly under the masters. It’s in this way that knowledge is passed among the coaching generations. A new coach can learn from books, video, magazines and articles, but this kind of learning is incomplete and lacking the intangible quality that is truly the key to solving the puzzle."

"The real secret to winning arguments is keeping your mouth shut unless you know what you're talking about."

"Maximal success is achieved through strengthening the weaknesses and exploiting the strengths."

"The art of coaching lies in finding ways to improve ANY athlete’s performance. Anyone can stand by and watch a great natural athlete improve. The true test of a coach is squeezing progress out of those who are not naturally gifted. This doesn't mean these latter athletes will ever be great - but it does mean they and their coaches will derive a great deal of satisfaction from the process and earn respect for their hard work."

"Doing without planning will always produce better results than planning without doing."

"Don't act like people know who you are, or should know who you are."

"Great athletes recognize the difference between can't and unwilling to."

"Having "haters" doesn't necessarily mean you're doing something great of which people are jealous; sometimes it just means you're an asshole who deserves it."

"Always trust hard work, heart and humility."

"What you believe won't change what is; but it will change what can be."

"Remember - you can squeeze shit food into your macro prescriptions and make lame IG posts as if you're the first person to discover donuts taste good, or you can actually be a disciplined, motivated athlete and fill your macro prescriptions with quality food and have the performance and health to prove it."

"If you ever wonder why your coach gives you more shit than any other athlete, it's because you do the most shit wrong."

"A great gym is less about athletes with great talent than people with great character."

"If your sentence begins with, 'I'm not complaining...', you're complaining."

"Remember - you don't have to do every repetition as well as possible; just the ones you want to actually help make you better."

"Always rely on heart, hard work and humility."

"Good athletes can tell you what works for them; good coaches can tell you what works for you."

"Ask questions for education, not validation."

"One of the distinguising characteristics of toughness is the lack of compulsion to receive recognition for it."

"There is nothing wrong with loving weightlifting. You can be as shitty as you want to be and you're allowed to love it. You should embrace that, because most people go through their entire lives without loving anything as much as you love weightlifting, and they're fucking miserable people who ruin the world for the rest of us."

"If you're writing about it on Instagram, it's very unlikely that the struggle is actually real."

"The melodramatic inspirational quote under the photo of your ass doesn't disguise your intention."

"You're free to be, say, think, do and believe whatever you want; and we're free to not like you because of it."

"I miss the days when someone else had to care enough about you to take your picture."

"80% of all babies born now grow up to be babies."

"Garage mind is the attitude and mindset of the old school, garage-training weightlifter who loves the sport even when it’s trying to kill you, who will do what it takes to make it work even when it seems impossible, who believes that hard work and character are more important than recognition, and that there is truly something pure and magical about the sport of weightlifting that can only be experienced when the excesses and distractions are stripped away."
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December 30 2013
I read an article you had wrote and one thing that stuck out was "being prepared for any random task is not the same as preparing randomly for any task."
Greg Everett
December 30 2013
Jess - Perfect. Added.
December 31 2013
I'm glad you put this together! It makes me happy.

I had actually passed on the following two quotes to my lifting partner; the first because the gym I drug him out of to join mine only had a Smith machine:

"...for this reason, I prefer setting a bar on a power rack (or even a Smith machine if for some completely indefensible reason you're around one)."

And this one because we decided we would start doing Turkish get-ups (which...I found this quote only AFTER we'd been busy making fools of ourselves in the gym, so that made it even better):

"The Turkish Get-up is one of a great number of effective movements that have been filed away by too many under Inconvenient. The movement is difficult, uncomfortable, and its failed completion in public makes one look (to the untrained eye, of course) only slightly sillier than its successful completion" --Greg Everett
January 1 2014
These are great! Ever consider making a quote of the day calendar? :)
January 20 2014
It was a few years ago that I heard it, but something like "Ok next time just like that, but completely different."
July 15 2015
My coach says this to me all the time: "If you're asking if your squat was low enough, the answer is no."
I don't ask anymore... I just do it over!
July 15 2015
Greg Everett, Weighlifting Coach, Philosopher.

These are great.

Where can I get a copy of that nose picking program?
Daniel V
July 16 2015
That's some Oscar Wilde level stuff right there.

I try to live by this:

"Hard work can't always overcome a lack of natural ability, but at least it will make you respectable."
Stephanie Atkinson
March 19 2017
September 21 2017
Thanks for finally writing about >Greg Everett Quote Collection by Greg Everett - Editorial - Catalyst Athletics
- Olympic Weightlifting