The Life and Times of Silent Mike

Silent Mike broke new ground in the world of fitness content. From the early days putting his life and training online with Mark Bell and Super Training Gym to a successful podcasting career, Mike — real name Mike Farr — wrote the playbook we see so many fitness influencers emulate today. Silent Mike joins us to talk about his personal evolution, what social media did to strength, and some shoutouts he almost never discusses online. 

In this episode of The BarBend Podcast, guest Mike Farr (Silent Mike) and host David Thomas Tao discuss:

  • The origins of Silent Mike’s nickname (2:54)
  • Mike’s origins at Super Training Gym and meeting Mark Bell (4:55)
  • Competitive personalities and proving himself among powerlifters (7:34)
  • Regrets and learning from mistakes (9:45)
  • Comments, trolls, and haters (11:11)
  • Putting your life on the internet and the scrutiny that comes from that + leaving Super Training Gym (13:12)
  • Early days of social media marketing in fitness (16:47)
  • Mike’s current training goals and regimen now (19:24)
  • Dream training partners (22:11)
  • Famous training locations Mike HASN’T been to (25:28)
  • Mike gives perspective and thoughts he rarely opens up about (26:18)
  • The podcasting game and 50% Facts (26:58)
  • Which content is wasting your time (30:07)

Relevant links and further reading:

Transcription

Mike FarrMike Farr

It’s a normal thing to see a code and a girl promoting a product that looks hot on Instagram. I feel like in 2012 it wasn’t a thing. I just thought logically I’m no genius, probably a very average IQ. I thought, “Hey, these people have a following. If I get them these products, and they wear these products and like these products, their followers will see these products.”

David TaoDavid Tao

Welcome to the “BarBend” podcast where we talk to top athletes, coaches, influencers, and minds from around the world of strength sports. Presented by barbend.com.

Today I’m talking to powerlifter, podcaster, producer, coach, and YouTuber Mike Farr, probably best known in the fitness industry as Silent Mike. That’s a lot of roles, and Mike’s self-written Instagram bio simply reads “Male Internet Entertainer.”

Originally a passionate basketball player, Mike first built his reputation in strength as part of the team at Super Training Gym where he co-hosted podcasts and made countless videos with power lifting icon Mark Bell.

Mike was also a huge part of the marketing for Sling Shot’s line of products in the strength community. Mike was one of the first in fitness to see the full potential of social media as powerful platforms for athletes and coaches alike. After leaving Super Training, he’s continued to build on his work in this space.

Along with Omar Esuf and Bart Kwan, Mike is one of the masterminds behind Kaizen Training. Mike also co-hosts the “50% Facts” podcast with longtime friend and collaborator, Jim McDonald.

Silent Mike is one of the most straightforward tells-it-like-he-sees-it people in strength sports. That genuine attitude has been a huge reason for his success and popularity. It filled our conversation with some really interesting takeaways, including a few things Mike says he’s never talked about or expressed on air. He’s a cerebral, honest, entertaining, inquisitive, all at the same time.

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All right. On the BarBend podcast today we have Mike Farr, probably better known online as Silent Mike. Mike, thanks so much for joining us today.

Mike FarrMike Farr

Thanks for having me man. Excited to be here.

David TaoDavid Tao

My first question, and I’m going to leap frog myself, I talked about some questions offline with you before this but the first one, how’d you get the nickname?

Mike FarrMike Farr

I think it started at Super Training Gym, whatever that is eight, nine years ago. Although I’m pretty loud once you get to know me, and obviously now I create content for a living, I kind of have like…I don’t want to say I’m split personality because that’s a real thing and I’m not diagnosed by anything, but I kind of like two sides to me.

I’m pretty introverted and so when I’m outside of my comfort zone, which I think a lot of people, I tend to be really, really shy.

Speaking to a camera by myself is pretty easy because there is no one around me. I’m normally in my home or my gym and I’m comfortable, but I went into Super Training Gym in — I don’t know — 2011, it was literally the strongest gym in the West at the time.

Everyone’s three to five guys squatting over 1,000 pounds, three to five guys probably benching over 600 pounds. Everybody is I think is at least in their 30s or 40s. I was 22 years old. I lifted raw. Everybody is in gear. A lot of PED use, a lot of man talk and I’m just like a kid going to junior college, trying to figure out my life.

I basically showed up, I was super, super quiet. They did a little bit of YouTube at the time, and I think in a video Mark just said “Silent Mike” because I literally never spoke a word to anybody, and then it stuck.

David TaoDavid Tao

I was wondering if maybe you’re really into the “View Askewniverse,” like Kevin Smith movies or something like that but…

Mike FarrMike Farr

Never even seen them.

That’s the reference everybody makes like, “Oh yeah, we thought you were like a Silent Bob fan.” I was like, “I’ve never even seen that movie.”

David TaoDavid Tao

If you haven’t seen the movie Silent Bob and all these movies, he is silent for like 99 percent of the movie. Then at the end of the movie, critical moment, he is the one who says something like super impactful, and it’s always what changes the course of the movie.

It’s always what convinces a character to go a different direction. It’s always something really like it’s a revelation or something like that, so I was like…

Mike FarrMike Farr

I’m probably opposite.

I probably talk 90 percent of the time that is useless.

David TaoDavid Tao

You walked into super training around 2011, strongest gym in the West, tons of story powerlifters and great feats of strength coming out of there. You connect with Mark Bell. Is it the first time you’d met Mark?

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah. I visited the gym maybe 2010 or something. At the time I was going to junior college. I had my own training facility. I was training people out of a personal training studio. I was working at a commercial gym and then I was coaching high school basketball.

I was like, all right, if I’m going to find a career that’s not through college because I absolutely hated school, I was like I’d better just get smarter. I got to get around stronger people. I got to take this lifting thing a little more serious.

I visited the gym, no one was even there, I think Mark and like two other guys. I was even more intimated because it was the first time. It took about six months for me to go back and have a real team training session, then I stuck around after that. That was the first time I ever met any real powerlifter to be honest.

David TaoDavid Tao

You became a face of that facility pretty shortly thereafter, and for a number of years it was the Silent Mike and Mark Bell show. At least, that’s how people interpreted it from the media stand point. You all were creating a lot of content together, and really growing a brand and were dual faces of that brand.

How did that relationship really grow and come about? Was there a moment when, in talking to Mark, you knew you were going to be a face of the super-training facility, and all that that stood for?

Mike FarrMike Farr

A lot of that it was pretty organic. Within the first couple of months, Jim McD did all of the YouTube footage at the time, he pulled me outside and they interviewed me for a YouTube video.

at, probably within six months, Jim came to me and said, “Hey man, I have an idea for a podcast with Mark. Do you want to be a co-host?” I was like “Man, I have no idea what a podcast is but it sounds fun. I’m down.”

I went to an art school my whole life. I’ve been in theater, choir, I played tons of musical instruments. It kind of, if you want to call this performing arts, felt natural enough. I was, “Yeah, let’s do it.” That’s probably what gave the lift to a lot of things.

From there I started…I didn’t want to coach High School basketball. I did want to coach High School basketball, but I wasn’t making any money. Sling Shot had been around for nine months or maybe a year. I simply texted Mark, “Yo man, I know you got this company, do you need a job, or do you have a job? I need to work.”

I started working there. As the podcast started going I convinced him to get an Instagram. We started putting more content on his YouTube channel, and Jim’s YouTube channel plus the podcast. From there it was kind of a snowball effect.

I don’t want to miss-quote Mark, but I think Mark has a story of some training session where we’re going at it. Obviously he’s using 600 pounds more than I’m using, or more, but I just wouldn’t stop.

If he says what [indecipherable 7:47] method we’re doing, eight triples on a box squat. I’m not going to stop until everybody else stops. I’m a competitive person. I don’t care that you’re lifting more weight than me. I don’t care that you’re whatever.

I’m going to at least work just as hard if not harder than anybody there. That’s the story he told to say then Mike’s in, at least he’s on the team. He saw that. I did an insane amount of work and research on my own, trying to learn about strength conditioning.

A lot of the other guys went into super training or powerlifting as athletes. They tried to just get stronger themselves. Where I took it from, this is what I love, and anything that I love, I’m going all-in on. I’m going to try to do as optimal as I can, and be as smart as I can, and hit it from all angles.

Rather than meathead, “I lift weight. I get jacked.” I wanted to learn everything so I’m researching 24/7 on my own. Maybe that had another portion of I could coach a little bit already, where some of the other guys weren’t.

Obviously, when you create content, if you’re not doing a full day of eating like everybody else on YouTube, you have to have some knowledge behind you — no shots at all my full day of eating friends, love you guys.

David TaoDavid Tao

Early on in going back and watching a lot of these videos and following along at the time when you all were first taking off on Instagram, YouTube, the podcast was growing. What I personally loved and what a lot of the people I’ve talked to in the strength community love was the authentic take.

There were not a lot of pulled punches. There were not a lot of things censored out. It was a pretty honest look. Obviously Mark is someone who has been literally in movies, very honest about everything in his strength career and gets very personal with it.

You’re someone who’s maybe a little bit more reserved but still very open about your journey in strength. Is there any approach, or is there anything back then that you maybe regret doing or wish you had tweaked your approach to when it came to capturing that content and presenting yourself to the world?

Mike FarrMike Farr

It’s a good question, never thought about it, to be honest. Obviously, there’s probably things like training strategy-wise or exercise science-wise that I’d probably go back and say, “I was probably just wrong,” or, “That’s probably not optimal.”

I’m sure there’s something I said because I’ve made so many freaking hours of YouTube and podcast content that I’m sure I’ve either misspoke or I just learned from my mistakes. I was 22 and I had worked really hard to be a good coach, but now I’m 31, so obviously, either I wasted my time or I learned something through that.

Hopefully, I would probably step back on that, but in terms of just being myself, I was always myself. Everything we do there and everything I’ve ever done on my own is always one take. Sometimes, if I’m trying to get in depth on something, I’ll have notes on my phone.

Otherwise, it’s things that I truly know, things that I truly believe in, things that I truly feel if we get more of lifestyle stuff we’re talking about. I’d probably say no, no honest regrets on anything I’ve ever said on the Internet.

Obviously, like you said…I don’t know if I call myself reserved per se. I tell everything as it comes up, but I’m not one to throw daggers. I’ve never been one for drama. That’s just like I have a lot of anxiety in my life. It’s all driven by conflict.

I don’t want conflict in my real life. I definitely don’t want conflict on the Internet. You and I were talking about prerecording, about reading comments, and trolls, and haters. I’m sure I have some. I’m not that popular, so I don’t have a ton. I don’t read that stuff, not because it hurt my feelings but because it would feel like conflict and draw my anxiety.

I’ve always been myself. I’m pretty happy. I’ve never sold out. I never took a supplement deal for money that I didn’t believe in, never took any of that. I’m probably the only person with any following on Instagram, besides my buddy Omar Isuf, who’s been on the Internet for 10 years and not taking cash for something I didn’t believe in.

 

David TaoDavid Tao

That’s great to hear. I think that that authenticity is something that people value in your approach and also in Omar’s approach. We’ll get to the work that you’re doing with Omar and Bart a little later on. I definitely want to touch upon that.

You’re at Super Training Gym for a number of years. You’re working with Mark on Sling Shot and growing that business on content creation, and then you decide to leave. I remember when that happened. My background’s more in weightlifting and CrossFit, but I was still following long in the powerlifting community at the time.

I saw blog posts and social media posts, “Why is Silent Mike leaving? Big falling out at the Super Training Gym.” There was all these very cliquey things. No one knew besides yourself what was going on.

If you wouldn’t mind, share a little bit of the background on why you decided to leave, strike out, do things differently, and basically how that all came about.

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah. It’s funny. I’ve never had a real job. I’ve owned a bunch of businesses. I started my own company, not technically, but me and my friends started companies when we were in eighth grade. We started DJ-ing. I DJ-ed for six years at same franchise.

It was with my boy, Chris. We started a car washing company in high school. We were always just doing our own thing. I’ve never had a “corporate job” besides a commercial gym I worked at.

When you put your life on the Internet — I definitely chose this life — but in a way, I didn’t know what was about to happen. I just started posting fitness content on the Internet, and people started to follow. Any decision you make or anything you do, whether it be personal relationships, family — obviously, in my case business — is under a microscope.

I would love to survey all these listeners, the BarBend family, and see how many people have even been at one job for five years. It’s natural progression of humans. They want to move on. They want to do their own thing.

You either want promotions, or you want a different category, or you want a different topic, or you maybe want to move cities, or whatever it might be. Point being, I gave Super Training everything I had for five years. Again, no regrets on anything I did. I worked my tail off.

I’ve worked every single position in that company, from printing T-shirts in 100-degree garage to product design, to marketing, to social media, to the content creators and the stuff you guys saw, to customer service.

I was on the phone at six o’clock in the morning, because East Coast is nine o’clock, answering guys’ sizing questions out of my living room. I literally did everything. It was just time to move on, time to do my own thing. We’re heading separate ways anyways in terms of what we see, or what we do, or how we think.

I headed out. I started when I was 22. I left when I was 27 or something of that nature, learned a lot, had some good times, had some bad times, and then just been on my own, just trying to figure it out.

David TaoDavid Tao

What is your relationship these days with the Super Training folks and some of those original folks you connected with in your early days of powerlifting?

Mike FarrMike Farr

 The super early guys — to be honest, I don’t really talk to some of them — had left Super Training even before I did. Some of them are still around here and there. A lot of the guys, as geared powerlifting became a little less popular, as people just progressed.

Geared powerlifting in particular takes a lot of time, energy, and even more money than raw lifting. You obviously have to buy the suits. You got a warm-up raw, then you’re putting a suit on, all this junk. A lot of those guys are just gone.

Some of those guys left before me, lost contact, but really cool guys. Jim McD, one of the most OG, been around before Super Training was a gym. Him and I talk daily, some of the middle level…This looks like chapters. Everything we do, there’s chapters of the Super Training.

It’s cool because you can see it in YouTube, the different guys I [indecipherable 15:47] through. My boy, Dan and Marcus, Filipino Thunder, I talk to them and see them regularly, train with them sometimes, play video games with them sometimes. Otherwise, that’s about it.

Those two guys were really good training partners of mine. Dan and Marcus, really good friends of mine, see them, Jim McD. Then I don’t even know. I don’t even know who’s around because the chapter has been two to three years ago.

David TaoDavid Tao

That long history, all those people?

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah.

David TaoDavid Tao

Well, since you left Super Training, you’re still very active in the content creation space. We’ll get to that in a second. Kaizen training is definitely something that you’ve put, I know, your full force behind with Omar Isuf.

If I’m correct, Bart came along and got involved in that a little bit later. How did those collaborations first start? What was the theory and impetus behind Kaizen training?

Mike FarrMike Farr

A lot of my network grew because I started the social media marketing. I don’t want to take credit, but I’d love to take credit if it is true. Social media marketing wasn’t a thing.

I’m sure it was a thing in MySpace days, maybe Twitter days a little bit, but it is an absolute monster now with Instagram and how many people have hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram.

It’s a normal thing to see a code and a girl promoting a product that looks hot on Instagram. I feel like in 2012 it wasn’t a thing. I just thought logically. I’m no genius, probably very average IQ. I thought, “Hey, these people are the following. If I get them these products, and they wear these products and like these products, their followers will see these products, bada boom, bada bing.”

As soon as I got a little bit more power, more confidence in me from the Sling Shot owners and I was allowed to do a little bit of marketing, got a little budget for some product, I started reaching out to people. Omar and Bart were probably the first two that I reached out to.

As that start to go full circle, we all collaborated on YouTube, or lifting weights, or podcasts, or whatever. They just happen to be two of the most…I reached out too. At one point, I felt like I knew every single person that ever touched a barbell on the planet just because of how many people I was interviewing and talking to, and emailing, and meeting at the Olympian, whatever.

Those two in particular, and then a little later along, Alan Thrall. I think we’re just the most like-minded people that I’ve ever been around in the industry. I think I’m pretty different. Sometimes I talk about being a Martian or an alien. Just how my mind works, how I move, my vibrations are a little bit different, I think, than a lot of people.

I like to be alone. I don’t really like a lot of people. For me, I was with Omar 24/7 for three weeks. Obviously it pissed me off here and there, but it was more like a brother pissing you off kind of thing. Then Bart opened his house to me within a couple months of meeting him.

Every time I go to LA, I basically stay at his house. They’ve just become family to me. That’s how that friendship started.

Then we saw a gap; saw a gap in the industry in terms of Kaizen. A lot of people were throwing out programs again because social media marketing and people understood the power, but none of them were coaches. Like, “All right, yeah, you look really good or man. You deadlift a lot of weight but you’re not a coach. Your stuff doesn’t make sense.”

I wanted people to have a simple plan to follow, depending on their goals, that allows them to reach their goals a little bit more efficiently at an affordable price. So we put our minds together and tried to figure that out, and so far, so good, just trying to help people reach their goals.

David TaoDavid Tao

What are some of your strength goals right now? Obviously, power lifting is something that you were around some of the best, some of the best to ever do it, learned tons from them. Got pretty strong yourself. I don’t care what trolls are attacking you online, you’re very much stronger than the average man walking around on the street in America.

These days, I see you on social media, doing a little bit more in the realm of the Olympic lifts. What are your current strength goals? What’s your training regimen like these days? Are there any athletic goals that you definitely want to tackle down the road?

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah, I think kind of as I mentioned, even when I was running Super Training, I came into strength conditioning from basketball. Basketball was something I fell madly in love with, probably the only love in my entire life besides like my dogs and my family.

I was 100 percent a basketball player. That’s what I identified as. As soon as I path took an end as I didn’t want to go to college anymore, and that overpowered how much I love basketball.

I always came into strength, conditioning, power lifting, weight lifting all these things is kind of an interest. Something I think is really cool tool. Something is I think it’s kind of a meditation and something more to adapt as something I can help others with.

Basketball is very selfish. I wanted to win. I wanted my team to win. I was going to do anything I could to win. I learned…Similarly, in basketball, I study a lot of film, a lot of coaches, read a lot of books to become the best basketball player I could and to allow my team to win.

In a way I am selfish, I guess, but I never did it in terms of I was going to be an NBA coach, or I was going to write a book on it, or something of that nature. My own mentality towards strength training has always been very different.

I’ve never loved competing. I competed because like you kind of had to when you’re on Super Training. I competed then later because of the pressures of social media. I’m not going to fake like I didn’t.

Sure I want to test myself a little bit, but I hate competing. There’s no fulfillment whatsoever competing in lifting. I want to look better, I want to feel good, I want to move good and I needed to be healthy mentally and physically.

Dinged my back up pretty bad probably four or five years ago. I’ve had back issues my whole life, but it got really bad. Then I took some time off, just body-build, aesthetic stuff. Then, as soon as my back started feeling a little bit better, my guy, Ben Claridad who owns a weightlifting gym here, he helped me a couple years ago with weightlifting, so I just decided to mess around.

We’ve been weightlifting a little bit for, I don’t know, six months or so, just having fun. My training right now is some kind of squats, some kind of deadlifts, some kind of weightlifting movement, although it bangs me up pretty bad, we’ll see how long my body can hang. Then finish with some hypertrophy stuff kind of like just a simple push-pull, accessories on top of that.

David TaoDavid Tao

Is there anyone in the strength community who maybe you haven’t had a chance to work with that closely, or maybe you have, but someone you particularly admire for their approach to training and their mindset when it comes to getting stronger? Could be in any strength sport, could be powerlifting, CrossFit, weightlifting, strongman, you name it?

Mike FarrMike Farr

I’ll probably say that the only one that I feel like I haven’t actually…maybe I shook their hand but I’ve never like interviewed, hung out with or trained with, because [indecipherable 22:28] cool when you podcast or travel, you get to talk, hang out, you only grab food, then you lift together. Then maybe create content, so you really get like a feel for them as a human.

I’ve done that with I don’t know thousands of people, but one who’s like a pretty super relevant name to me and who I think is one of the smartest and best approach is Mike Tuchscherer.

Mike T is probably the only one I can think of that I haven’t…and I’m sure someone’s going to be offended. Well, like Mike, you haven’t trained with me and I’m a really good coach. “All right, I’m sure you great coach, Timmy. I don’t really care.”

Mike T is a legend. I think he’s insanely intelligent. I really like his approach to a lot of things. I’ve obviously read tons of his articles and followed him for a very long time. As a lifter he was a stud, as a coach he’s a stud and really revolutionized raw powerlifting. That’s someone I’ve haven’t really got to hang out with.

We’ve an insane amount of mutual friends but that probably be top of the list. Shout out to everybody I did learn from. I was insanely lucky to hang out with Brian Shaw, Chad Welsey Smith, Ed Coan. All these people that are insanely smart and insanely cool, really strong.

I got to literally take their brains for work and add it to my arsenal, but I think Mike T is probably top of the list that I didn’t get to hang out with.

David TaoDavid Tao

Mike Tee, if you’re listening to this podcast it will be a few weeks after we recorded it, hopefully you and Mike Farr can be the “Two Mikes” podcast or something like that. Some way to collaborate. That’d be cool.

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah. I got to get him on my podcast. Maybe we will talk the invention of the RPE, because I’m pretty sure he brought RPE into lifting.

David TaoDavid Tao

Certainly popular, I’d say. More mainstream.

Mike FarrMike Farr

 Mike T, let’s do it buddy.

David TaoDavid Tao

Where would you most like to visit? It could be a spring facility, it could be a place, important in strength training, something iconic where your travels haven’t taken you so far.

Mike FarrMike Farr

I’ve never been to Westside Barbell. I’ve met tons of lifters, a lot of protégés, and obviously Mark came from those roots. I’ve never been in the door. I feel like that’s pretty cool, or met Louie. I’ve never met Louie, technically.

I don’t know. Again, I think my relationship with strength training is a little different, a little weird. One, because I was never a fan of it. It’s just something I did for sport and then something I got into to help other people. Then as soon as I got into it, I was thrown deep in the mix.

I read some articles on “T Nation” and heard of Jim Wendler and these people, and then it is a little weird to be having dinner with them. It’s different for me watching Michael Jordan play my whole life, being a fan, wearing the sneakers, and then now I’m having dinner with him.

I feel that’s cool. Strength sports are like that now. We have these celebrities, the Stefi Cohens, and Omar Isufs, and all these people. It’s so cool that other people see them that way.

I just never did because when I was 22 and strength training wasn’t cool on the Internet that I was hanging out with these people, to begin with. I don’t know if there’s anywhere like…I like visiting tons of gyms. I feel like when I was starting, there was no powerlifting gyms in America besides Westside Super Training, and then now there’s powerlifting gyms in every single city.

To see any facility is super cool to me. I like gym owners. I think it’s cool that they try to chase their passion and how they set it up, how they brand it, things of that nature.

I haven’t been to Hybrid, so shout out to Stefi and Aiden. That’d be cool. It seems like they’re building…I mean they have built an insane community online and offline, and then it seems like their gym is really dope in Miami, and I love Miami. Westside and Hybrid, we’ll put that down and stamp it.

I never give answers like this by the way. You’re getting the first…I never…I’m really indecisive. Normally I just say like, “Yeah man, gym’s cool,” but I’m giving you names. Mike T just popped in my head. I saw your questions and I didn’t read them because I like to really just think out of the top of my head.

I never give names, I never give…If you say, “Hey, let’s grab food after this podcast.” I’d be like, “Yes, man. Where are we going to go?” I can’t decide anything. I’ve given you three names, that’s big time.

David TaoDavid Tao

I caught you on a weird day. This is great. Something about the universe is just a little off-kilter today. I got lucky here.

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah, they’re popping in my head, and they’re all people I know and they’re good people. Shout-out to all of them. Game on.

David TaoDavid Tao

[laughs] Let’s talk about the podcast game. It’s something that you’ve done for a number of years now. I mean, podcasting now is I don’t want to say saturated. We have a relatively new podcast. BarBend podcast is pretty new. People like podcasts.

When you got into it in 2012, 2013, it wasn’t nearly the thing it is today. The podcast I think currently takes up the majority of your time in that space is probably the 50% Facts podcast, right?

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah. That’s a priority, that’s the main gig with Jim McD. Yeah, that’s it.

David TaoDavid Tao

How did that come about? I mean, Jim’s someone you said you’re talking to Jim pretty much every day, even after he left Super Training, you left Super Training. Is he still there? Is he still at Super Training?

Mike FarrMike Farr

 No, no, no. He’s not.

David TaoDavid Tao

Even though neither of you are there anymore, you’re still conversing a lot. What was the impetus behind that podcast? How did it come about and what have your goals been with that cast with Jim?

Mike FarrMike Farr

Jim McD and I connected pretty good as soon as I went to Super Training and first met him. Reminded me of one of my high school teachers who I got along with really, really well.

I’m sure it’s some smart psychology thing where you make connections to your past and then you make yourself more comfortable, and being kind of quiet, I felt very comfortable with him right away. Then we obviously we had hours and years of talking and traveling together, so we got really close.

On top of that, my circle is insanely small and my personal life insanely small. Even in my business life, at this point I’ve shed a lot of the expo life or whatever it might be that I used to do. But I’m really, really loyal, and Jim is one of the first guys to really give me a huge chance, and, in a way, he built my career.

He gave me a voice on the podcast and there would have been no Silent Mike. I couldn’t afford this stupid overpriced chair and this fancy microphone I’m talking to you with if it wasn’t for Jim McD. Incredibly thankful for him that we crossed paths. He just came to me and he said, “Hey, man. I want to do a show.”

Like you said, podcast has kind of evolved. Joe Rogan’s one of the best to just have awesome guests because he’s famous, and he shoots the shit and they crush it. Awesome, but not everyone can do that.

The other thing too is that I fell like there’s so many podcasts out there that are trying to maybe emulate Rogan or even emulate what we did on the powercast back in the day, and I was done asking someone, “What was your first squat?”

I was kind of over that and Jim was too. He was like, “Let’s create a real show. We’ll be ourselves and it’ll be casual. We don’t have a script but we’re going to have a show.” That was the premise. The premise was we’re going to have a topic question, very specific and in the first part of the podcast you and I are just going to explore it with zero research.

We’re going to show up, say what we know about it, probably be wrong, ask some questions about it. Then we’re going to try to call in one of our friends or someone we know that’s the best in the world on this topic and give the real answer.

In the premise of half an hour or hour show, you’re going to get a little bit of kind of guy talk, regular podcast casual. You’re going to get us being very, very wrong. Then you’re going to hopefully leave with some knowledge and something you can really take away from the show.

Which is, I think, number one with all content. You got to be entertained or you got to learn something, otherwise I think everyone’s wasting their time. Even when it comes to Netflix, or podcasts are obviously insanely popular.

I’m not a huge fan of Instagram because I think neither of those are the strong points; pretty shallow platform. YouTube, you got to be highly entertained, you got to learn a ton, or somewhere in between. I think it’s valuable, good content. That’s what we try to do weekly on that show.

David TaoDavid Tao

What’s the question that you got most wrong relative to when you brought the expert on and really dove into the facts?

Mike FarrMike Farr

 I think because we’re still so early, we’ve only started seven months ago or something, we’re really sitting in our pocket a little bit. Not that I’m like some world expert, but a lot of these thing I just kind of know. They’re kind of strength conditioning and nutrition based.

I’m sure, again, I’ve misspoken since I’m totally stupid, but there’s nothing I was super wrong yet. What I’m excited about is we’re going to start to dive into like psychology, or relationships, or business.

I really want to dive into cannabis. That’s the most common question I ever get. Obviously CBD is really popular right now. Cannabis, in general, is legal everywhere and people want to know if it’s healthy, or if it helps, or it doesn’t help, and all that. The issue is there’s not a lot of experts on that topic.

All of those things I’m going to be way wrong. I have no business degree. I have no marketing degree. I took some psychology classes in college before I dropped out, but I don’t really know anything about that either. Not that great at talking to girls or anything, like relationship stuff.

Any expert we have on that I’m going to be way wrong, which is kind of fun. I am the reason why the name of the podcast came about. It was an old podcast and I used to get too caffeinated and just start to talk. I claimed, which I still think I’m correct and Mark and Jim will probably say I’m correct that Nazis invented Nutella.

Nazis didn’t really invent Nutella, but if you look at the story of Nutella, I believe that they shutdown chocolate trade to Italy at the time of World War II. There was a farmer out there who wanted to ration his chocolate better, so he started mixing it with hazelnut and invented Nutella. Not that I was wrong, I was just incomplete.

That’s where it is. I’m not going to say I’m never wrong. I’m often wrong. I’m often very incomplete with my knowledge.

David TaoDavid Tao

You know better than just about anyone I’ve talked to in a long time, the Internet loves taking things out of context.

Mike FarrMike Farr

Yeah. That’s the other idea, Jim’s idea about the podcast. You think you know everything because you read it in one article, or you read it on an Instagram post, but what validates that person?

A lot of the people, especially in strength conditioning, nutrition, or psychology, some of these topics we go into, we literally get PhDs to answer the question. These people study this for eight years or longer. They know what they’re talking about.

We did an episode on olive oil. My mom is a professional olive oil taster on an international level. There’s all these misinformation going around about olive oil, so she came and answered that. The same thing. My mom’s done that for 10 years. She’s taken an insane amount of classes. Then flown around the world to taste and judge olive oil.

That’s not just your random chef at In-N-Out trying to tell you what olive oil’s good. This is someone who does it at the highest level.

We all think we know everything, but we don’t. What do they call it? The “clickbait era” or the “headline generation.”

 

David TaoDavid Tao

Well Mike, it’s been an absolute pleasure chatting with you. Where can folks follow along? We’ve talked about a few things including the podcast, but where can folks follow along with what you’re doing and the content you’re pushing out? Maybe here’s some of the answers to these questions that you guys are going to be tackling in the near future.

Mike FarrMike Farr

Probably most active on YouTube and Instagram. If you google that, something will pop up. 50% Facts, the podcast we do. I used to say I’m coming to a city near you because I used to travel more than I was at home.

We shut that guy down. I’m home a lot so you probably won’t see me. Maybe one day. One day I might get the itch to travel again and start doing seminars everywhere. Mostly right now you can find me on your Internet screens.

David TaoDavid Tao

Awesome. Mike, thanks so much for joining us.

Mike FarrMike Farr

I appreciate it, man.

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