Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Next Level Guy

May 27, 2022

Today’s guest is Mat Fraser 

Mat Fraser is an American Professional CrossFit Athlete with the mantra “Hard Work Pays Off” (HWPO). He is the most decorated and dominant athlete in the history of CrossFit. He is the only CrossFit Athlete in history to win 5 consecutive CrossFit Games Titles as the Fittest Man on Earth (2016 - 2020), as well as finish on the podium 7 consecutive times (2014-2020). Prior to finding CrossFit, Fraser was the 2009 Junior National Weightlifting Champion and Resident Athlete at the Olympic Training Center.

In this interview, we discuss:  

  •  How Mat used his engineering qualifications to build systems for his training and competing. 
  • The importance of Mat's mantra HWPO and how it has helped him achieve his life goals.
  • How Mat saw the bright side in breaking his back and his mindset shift can help you to see the silver lining in problems too. 
  • And so much more! 

Here are some key points that I would advise you to concentrate on

  • Cross-Fit challenges athletes on many different modalities and areas of fitness. To be truly fit, you need to build a body and a mind that deal with different styles of demands and taxes from 1 rep max attempts, to marathon distance rowing and anything in between! 
  • Mat is driven by his mantra of HWPO, he lets his mantra of 'Hard Work Pays Off' motivate him, drive him and what he wants to achieve in life. You need to pick a mantra like this that will drive you on and motivate you to get out of bed each morning, and chase your dreams. 
  • Motivate yourself and your children to pursue an activity, sporting or otherwise, outside of work. It will build your understanding of team-work, your work ethic and build experiences in life you will be proud of.
  • Try new things when you get the opportunity, like Mat did when he found a Cross-Fit gym during his weight-lifting injury surgery. You never know where trying something new may take you, you may not be a world champion, but it will certainly help you change and develop as a person. The uncertainity and fear of starting something new will always be there, embrace it as a motivational fire to ignite you onto success. 
  • Accept uncertainty in your life, you will not always know what is happening, if you are on the right path, what to do next etc, take the top perfromers method of controlling what you can control, and ignore the rest. Top performers only focus on what they can affect and let the other things happen and look at ways to deal with the changes as they arise. 
  • Look at tough events in your life as a learning experience and as a motivational tool like Mat does. He looks at breaking his back as a way of being motivated and driven to overcome new problems and obstacles, as he knows he has been through a lot worse, and he looks for the silver lining in the problem - now if you did the same how would it change your life? 
  • Problems are relative as Mat says. Don't judge what is happening on what others are doing and what is going on. Look at what is going right and how you can change things and not give up as you spend more time judging and comparing! 
  • Treat your body as a engineering system like Mat did - improve the quality of the fuel (food) you put into it, improve the mind muscle connection ability to lift more efficently, work on your cardio in different modalities such as sprinting as well as long distance running so you are able to have prime anaerobic and aerobic endurance and so on. Don't think of yourself as a man, look at yourself as a set of systems and look at how you can make your systems and functions as efficient as possible and work to the best of their abilities. 
  • Your body is a set of levers ... look at your body as a machine." Mat looks at how to use his levers and tools to move the bar and equipment as efficiently as possible. Record your lifts, have a coach analyse your techniques etc, look at where you are expelling energy unnecessarily, how you are causing yourself problems etc and it can be rectified with a change in technique etc, to make your system run smoother and the levers work more efficiently. How can you run at 100% efficiency? 
  • Adopt an analytical mindset during your training and your competition mindset, analyse where you can improve the system on each and ramp things up.
  • Accept your faults, Mat uses his addictive personality to better his training, his focus and his effort to training and so on.
  • Mat learnt from his mistakes that cost him the win, he learned from what caused his second place and fixed the issues to create a better system for the next competition and won it! 
  • Mat wants to kill all 'What If's' in his life. He fixes all the potential issues so that he knows he is at his best, and little changes add up to his total success. Stop looking for the golden ticket, and fix or improve the system and let the small changes compound together to create further success. 
  • Mat utilises spaced repetition of his notes/guides to improve his technique, and looks to comment/analyse how he can improve on these so he has goals to focus on at the next session or competition. 
  • Mat knows the goals and targets he wants to get to and when for, and then reverse engineers a training and life plan that will help him work towards his goals, and give him a daily dose of gratification and success when he could tick off his small, manageable daily goal. 
  • Mat knows he doesn't know it all, and finds the right coaches to help him improve his various areas of fitness, his training etc. 
  • If Mat performance in a particular area is winning well, he will then scale back training in that area to focus on areas he needs to work on. You should approach your training etc the same, keep your strengths routinely oiled and moving, and focus instead on your weaknesses and the fixes you need to make in your system to make it more efficient. 
  • Do not tie your identity in with winning, instead tie it into your own journey of becoming a better person, a better man, a better father, brother etc and you will never be truly unhappy. 
  • A key skill to learn is how to truly learn. Find people that are specialist, find the tweaks and the information you need to keep leveling up your life, business, relationships etc. Don't let your ego or need to do it all stop you from asking for help, delegating and connecting with others, and instead of your ego holding you back let the specialists etc fill the gaps to help you level up. 
  • Mat uses the Serenity Prayer to keep calm, focus on what he can control and fix and what he can do to fix the situation and not blame others. 
  • If you struggled in one area, don't let it get you down, look to build on the next events and on your own effort etc, you can't control what others do but you can control what you do and the level of the effort you put into it. 
  • Mat worked a ten month training block. You should block out your training times, what you will focus on, what you need to improve and find the experts to help you improve on the areas you are doing poorly in and set expectations on your training and what you will do and how you will get there. 
  • You do not have unlimited time. Mat looks at what effect working on his weaknesses will affect his other training areas - if working on one area affects other areas badly, it won't be worth it, so he needs to analyse how he allocates his willpower, time and ability each day to get the best return for his effort each day. 
  • Set up your lifestyle, with little changes to improve your health, your training, your mindset etc. Build small and make small changes to fix your weaknesses and bad habits, to improve your system so it can work better each day. 
  • Find your own motivation on why you are training etc. Mat found that when he focused on his singular goal, he could ignore the other problem and issues, and they didn't matter, he knew what he wanted, what was on the line, and what he needed to do to get there, and not waste time and energy on things that didn't matter. 
  • HWPO is a juggernaut training platform, you need to check it out!