We recap all the cool things that Tonal added in 2020.
You can skip songs using your Apple Watch.
Tonal has tips on the best workouts to get you through the winter.
The Four Seasons is trying out Tonal capsules.
There’s a new group Tonal group to check out.
Sneak peek at the next Tonal Talk.
Coach Nicolette has a new Tonal program for Peloton owners.
Updates on all the new programs and content heading our way.
This month’s book club title is revealed.
All this plus our interview with Dave Stember
Watch the episode here:
Listen to the podcast here:
Tonal’s 2020 Year In Review plus our interview with Dave Stember
I feel like it’s been forever with the holidays and stuff.
It did mess it up. This is actually three weeks since the last one, so that’s probably why.
We’re back in rotation now. We appreciate your patience. We have all sorts of cool things lined up though in 2021.
It’s true, we’ve got a white board filled with things. It’s craziness.
People will enjoy it. I was thinking, normally we do shameless plugs here but I thought we should probably also plug Tonal.
This is a show about Tonal, that seems like a good place to do it.
They had a post in the Tonal Community not too long ago about if you’re using the app, you should swing by the App Store and give them a review. If you’re enjoying the app, you should go over there and then leave them a little review.
They’ve done so much with Tonal in the last year, so they’re looking for people to put in writing what you’re enjoying. Like we say here on the show, if you’re going to leave us a review, you don’t have to leave a super long one. I’m sure Tonal feels the same way. You can say it in a few words, and you can put the stars.
They want people that are on the fence when they look there to see like, “This is worth doing.” People dig it. If you’re reading to this, we’re assuming you dig it because why would you sit through this if you didn’t? While we’re on the topic of shameless plugs, don’t forget you can find us wherever you get your podcasts, Google, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, wherever you find them, you can find us. While you’re, be sure and subscribe. Not unlike what you’re going to do for Tonal, you should leave a review for us as well.
We love reviews.
That’s greatly appreciated. We love about 98% of them and we will read them. You can find us on Facebook at Facebook.com/supersetpodcast. While you’re there, like the page, join the group. There’s all that, let’s dig in, shall we?
I believe this is the first time they’ve done a review like that. I don’t remember there being one last year. That’s exciting.
What interesting things have we gleaned from that?
This is crazy. Get this, the entire Tonal community collectively lifted billions of pounds and increased their Strength Score by 1.75 million points. Isn’t that crazy?
That’s a lot.
The total pounds was 3.25 billion pounds. In case you’re wondering, that’s the equivalent of twenty Washington Monuments. If you were wondering, that’s 2 million hours that people worked out and that’s a total of 214 years. I can’t get over the Strength Score though, 1.75 million points. I know I added at least three. The most popular upper body move was the Bench Press. The most popular lower body move was the Goblet Squat. I call BS on that. Here’s my theory. They programmed them into every program, therefore we do it. It does not mean it’s popular.
It might be the most frequently done exercise. I’m going to go on a limb and say probably none of these are technically popular.
I actually do like the Bench Press, and after about five, I’m done. I’ll do them, but I enjoy them because I feel strong.
A lot of people know this but in the mental health community, they will ask people if they like the Goblet Squat, if they say yes, they know they’re a sociopath.
I don’t think that’s true.
I’m 100% sure that’s true.
In case you’re wondering, the most popular core move was the Half-Kneeling Lift. Again, I say that is the most used. I do not say that it is the most popular. These moves are hard.
Many people have done the Half-Kneeling Lift, but it doesn’t seem like anybody has graduated to the full Kneeling Lift. Isn’t that how that works?
No. You could do a Split Squat while you do it though. Most popular program was Go Big or Go Home. Most popular yoga workout was Open Hips, Open Mind. The most popular high intensity workout was Upper Body Pump with Coach Jared, which I personally did several times. That was really all I wanted to go over. I thought it was cool. I love seeing all the different feedback that you get whenever you put everybody’s stats together like that. I always think that’s cool. I truly don’t remember what my Strength Score went up. It actually went up quite a bit, then I lifted a whole bunch. I think I lifted like a Statue of Liberty or something like that.
When you put all these things together, this is amazing. Take note of all the added here, Smart Flex, and then they added Form Feedback. They added More Workout Content, so you have the Family Fitness, Pre and Postnatal Meditation, Pilates, Bootcamp, Kickboxing, Barre and Dance Cardio. They’re all added in 2020. They added achievements, badges and a leaderboard. They also added virtual group workouts. They added Tony Horton and they added more music, that you could integrate with your Apple Music as well. Heart Rate Tracking, Movement Replacements, if you hate the Goblet Squat and another one is available, you can switch that out. Then the Tonal Gear Shop, all of that added in 2020. What was your favorite?
Where’s the little guy front and back?
I believe they call them muscle maps.
Nobody calls it that. Everyone calls it that little guy front and back.
I do love the little guy. I thought that was pretty cool to see them all listed out there together. What a bunch of amazing things to add to an already amazing machine. It’s like getting a whole different machine.
They have made many changes and tweaks for the positive, and adding features and other ways to keep track of what you’re doing and make sure you’re doing it properly, not just for your own fitness, but also for your own safety.
The Form Feedback is great for that specific reason.
While we’re talking about changes, they’re not stopping. They’ve made a new one to try and suppress the rise of the Goblet Squat.
They have come up with yet another tweak, another improvement. On the mobile app, you can now find Moves To Try in the Movement tab.
You can seek out non-Goblet Squat based moves?
You can, or perhaps you’re a person that wants to make sure that you have tried all 170 moves. They added a new ability to go into the mobile app and check out the moves, so you can find a move you haven’t done. Then you can click on it and find out what the description is, what the benefits are and the best part, what programs and workouts have that move. That’s nice to be able to go and find that specific thing. You don’t have to keep scrolling.
You can now skip a song via your Apple Watch.
If you go to the fourth screen, you just skip it.
That comes in handy.
Maybe it’s always been there, I don’t know. Ann Kingman posted about it. I’ve never used it, so it’s new to me.
If you like the playlist, you don’t necessarily like every song. If you’re looking for ways if you don’t like the winter, and a lot of people don’t. Winter is great until about noon on Christmas Day and then make it spring.
Even people who enjoy winter, winter doesn’t always agree with their system. The winter blues are a thing is all I’m saying.
Which I think is a great thing to post because there are all different kinds of ways to get out of a funk. Yoga and Meditation is one of the things they mentioned. That’s great when you need to move but you don’t necessarily want to move quickly, because you’re frozen because it’s wintertime. Or maybe you don’t feel great in the mind. Barre is the same way. It’s that slow, understated, but you’re still getting a great workout. On the other hand, maybe you need to do some High Intensity, which is awesome to get the blood flowing, which I usually get a big endorphin rush. This is usually my favorite. In fact, right now with MetPro, I am told to do less cardio. I’m not supposed to do very much Strength and I’m supposed to keep my Heart Rate Zone low, so I’m not eating up the muscle while I’m eating less food. It’s really messing with my head. I love the Cardio that’s fast and I like to lift, so this has been difficult. I think this blog post is good for people that need to switch it up if they’re in a funk.
Especially because if you do need to switch it up, a lot of times you don’t even know what to switch it up to, so here are some suggestions.
Winter blues are usually known as a type of depression. If you are feeling depressed, you often can’t even summon the energy to make a decision, like everything seems too hard. I love that they have suggestions right there.
There was an interesting article from RusTourism. They have an article about the Four Seasons Hotels, which are nice, moderately-priced chain for people.
This is in Silicon Valley.
They’re debuting Tonal Capsules.
What exactly is a capsule?
Basically, they’re taking their gym, and obviously you don’t want people all huffing and puffing in the gym anymore. They’ve created little pods that you can walk into and surprise, there’s a Tonal waiting for you. You know who’s waiting for you in that Tonal? The little guy front and back, and he’s there to help you work out in a pod that’s contained, so you don’t have to worry about the guy next to you. When they’re done, they can go in and they can clean that little pod.
That’s awesome. Maybe it has the UV light, it zaps it.
I don’t know if it’s that fancy, but it is Silicon Valley. I thought that was interesting. Also interesting to see if this rolls out and what a great way for gyms to adapt like many people when they’re on the road and want to work out, gyms get a lot of usage.
I think that would be good for gyms in general. It might be a way for them to come back into a higher level of relevance. Gyms are never going to go out all the way, nor do we want them to. I think that could bring them back in a different way. That’s really great.
It’s a great way for people to sample the Tonal. I’m thinking that if you’re staying at a Four Seasons, you probably would invest in a Tonal like this. Also, there is a new Tonal group for people out there.
I know that Tonal gave their okay for this, like the name of the group and everything to use the word Tonal. It’s called Gays Who Tonal. It’s a safe place for gay, bi, queer, pansexual, trans, non-binary identifying men with Tonal. You can have some connections, foster those connections over working out and using your Tonal. I thought that was cool. I love seeing the community grow and wanting to make sure we mentioned that.
There was a recent Tonal Talk. We always like to recap what those were about so people can go check them out.
This Tonal Talk was really cool. It was called Adaptive Athletics on Tonal. Tonal talked to two different athletes: Travis Gaertner and Ryan Herrick. They’re obviously part of the Tonal Community. They are adaptive athletes.
What does that mean?
It means that one of them is in a wheelchair for example, so he can’t use the Tonal in a traditional sense. How can they therefore adapt for their particular needs? This Tonal Talk was all about that.
That’s fascinating. One, I’m glad I asked what it meant. Two, I’m glad I didn’t say something rude.
If you had seen a picture of it, you immediately would have known not to say something like that. It makes perfect sense when you understand. I thought that was really cool.
That does sound really interesting. On The Clip Out, we had talked to someone who used their Peloton, who was a Paralympian. She had to make some modifications so she could still train on the Bike, even though she was a paraplegic.
This particular episode is airing the same day that our episode drops. It’s going to be Wednesday the 27th, 7:00 PM Central, 8:00 PM Eastern. On the West Coast, that would be 5:00 PM Pacific time.
You don’t have to watch them live, when it’s over, it will live on the internet and you’ll find it. If you read this after that date, you didn’t miss it. It’s still out there, go find it.
I’m super excited about this.
Coach Nicolette has a new thing going on for people.
There’s another new group called Complete Training Crew. There is a challenge that starts in February. Nicolette designed a challenge specifically for people to use their Peloton and their Tonal. She put an entire challenge just for them together.
There are lots of people who have both.
There are tons of new content coming to the machine.
I have to start with the most anticipated that’s coming out. Everyone is excited about this. February 2nd, Go Big or Go Home 2 is coming. It will be on your trainer. Tonal is now having these instructor-led challenges every month. On January, Nicolette kicked it off. They have Raising The Barbell 2. She just did that one. Now, it’s coach Jackson’s turn and it’s going to be a whole challenge the month of February, mixed in with Go Big or Go Home 2. People are ecstatic.
That’s a very popular one. I hear that one mentioned a lot. Is this like Raising The Barbell 2 in that you didn’t have to do the first one? They’re not designed to be progressive. If you haven’t done Go Big or Go Home, you can jump right in on part two. It’s like Gremlins 2. You don’t need to have seen the first one to understand what’s going on. Don’t feel like you have to do the other one first if you want to try this new thing.
That is super exciting. There’s also more content because Tonal never stops. Another highly-anticipated program is More Gains with Chains 2 with Coach Paul.
I’m so glad with it’s more gains, they didn’t rhyme it with pain because that would be more pain. There’s an appropriate amount of pain with your exercising, but you don’t want more. I’m glad that they went with the chains.
It was good. Also, it’s the chains feature on Tonal. This one is another highly sought-after. It’s super exciting that this is happening. Then we get into a bunch of different one-off classes. There’s High Intensity Super Abs with Coach Gabby. There’s a new yoga, Sunrise Yoga with Coach Frances. People have been raving about that. For the moms out there, a new Postnatal Modifications with Coach Amy and Postnatal Cardio with Coach Amy. There’s a new live beta class Best Foot Forward with Coach Allison. It’s all about lower-body foundation. It’s going to help you work both bilaterally and unilaterally, so either side. There’s even more, I’m not done. There’s a whole bunch of new yoga and mobility content that has been added with more guest coaches: Venus, Jake and Nikki. They were available for a Tonal Talk on January 19th. If you missed out on that, go back and check it out. Some of the new classes are new mobility. There’s a Beginner and Intermediate, then there’s a Mobility Bootcamp with Coach Venus. There’s also Stretching Flow with Jake, Calming Yoga with Jake and Grounded Power Flow with Jake. Then several from Coach Nikki. There’s the Pick Me Up Flow and Warrior Strength Flow and Core of Fire with Coach Nikki. There’s so much new stuff.
Finally, Tonal is great at exercise in your body, but you can also exercise your mind by checking out the Tonal Book Club. Their February pick is called Can’t Hurt Me from David Goggins.
I hear many awesome things about David Goggins. This is very exciting. Get the book if you haven’t already. They’re going to be reading it all month long together. There are going to be several different check-ins throughout the week, then at the end of the month, there’s a whole Zoom discussion and you can dive in and discuss the book with other Tonalites.
To get started, I always ask people on both shows, how did you originally found Tonal and when in your journey?
It’s an interesting story. I had purchased a Peloton and enjoyed that for about a year. I’d never been much of an athlete, but I always enjoyed spin class. My wife had said, “You should look at this thing.” We did. I immediately bought it after the test trial. Sadly after that, I lost both my mother, my father, and my brother, my nuclear family. Long story short, they were all not in the best of health for a variety of systemic health issues. Health had become more of an important thing to me. Sadly, I also lost my uncle who had always been somebody I looked up to and have an adult friendship with.
He passes and I start driving to meet my wife midway because we were going to drive down to New York City. I put on The Clip Out and it happened to be the episode where you guys were talking about the Tonal for the first time. I’m listening to it. I’m like, “This thing sounds cool, but it’s in California. It’s a lot of money.” I looked it up quickly. How do you buy something that you don’t try out? I pick up my wife midway and we’re driving down. I said, “You’ve got to listen to this podcast and this Tonal.” Eventually, I convinced her to listen. She’s like, “That sounds cool, but it’s a lot of money. How do we try it out?” I said, “It’s only in San Francisco,” but we are going to Manhattan in New York City. It was never going to be introduced to the East Coast. You’ve got to figure where it’s for sale. We looked it up as we were driving down to New York City, and they had opened up a pop-up store in the Bandier building.
We look at the address and I swear to God, this is true. Out of all the streets that the Tonal pop-up could have been on, it was on the street my uncle used to live. It was weird. We said, “In the midst of all this heaviness, let’s find a couple of hours to go down there.” We did and I liked it from the beginning. My wife was like, “It’s more my thing.” My wife is more the athlete and she’s always gone to the gym. She’s always done weightlifting at the gym. I’ve always hated weightlifting. It’s not something I did a whole lot of. Ultimately, I instant messaged you, Crystal, knowing you tend to be the one that works out. You were kind enough to answer a couple of questions and we bought it. I ordered it and it was installed on December 24th, 2020. It came on Christmas eve.
I didn’t even know they work on Christmas eve.
I was around and I said, “Are you sure this is going to work for you?” They’re like, “Yes. That’s when we’re coming.” Something like 2:00 or 3:00 in the afternoon Christmas eve, they installed the Tonal.
I’m assuming you like it because you’re on this show, and you still talk to Crystal. You’re not like, “You made me fritter away all this money.”
I love it. My wife said, “I like going to the gym and I have this program at the gym. I’ll use it a little here or there. It’s for you.” I got involved with it. The first thing I did was bike and tread with Coach Nicolette. Eventually, what happened was COVID had shut down the gyms. We’ve been married for many years, and for the first time in my marriage, my wife in mixed company no less said, “I never realized my husband was a genius.” I thank you both. I’ve heard that story repeated multiple times out of my wife’s mouth, which I very much appreciate.
You said that you didn’t like lifting weights. Was it always part of your routine? What was your fitness journey like?
It never was. I was never much of an athlete. I did play high school football. I was the biggest guy on my team at 187 pounds, which didn’t say a whole lot about my team. We had an undefeated coin toss. I was more of a musical theater kid, and a good voice was my thing. I had this fantasy that I’d run out on the field, take off the helmet, sing the National Anthem, and then return to the bench. The high point was my senior year explaining to my varsity football coach that I needed to miss a week of practice because I made All-State. He said, “All-State?” I said, “All state mixed chorus.” I was a bit of a weekend warrior, but when I moved to Boston, I met a number of very athletic accomplished women that were road bikers. I did buy a road bike and that’s something I enjoy, but it was more about the company, the meal, and maybe an adult beverage after a ride. Fitness was not a consistent part of my life. Now, I love the Tonal. I use it four days a week. I still don’t like lifting weights. Not the Tonal, but going to the gym. I don’t see myself doing it. The level of motivation is huge. It’s just so much fun.
Is that because you have to leave to go lift the weights that you wouldn’t do that, or it’s a different experience with the Tonal?
It’s a different experience with the Tonal. I don’t know what you guys think, but in my way of thinking about it, it’s like the spring nobody talks about. It’s how much fun it is. The design of it, the technology, the coaching, and the community online makes it a ton of fun. It’s become one of my favorite things to do. At the same point, if I went to the gym to sit there and grab weights off a rack, I don’t think I would enjoy that experience. It’s an odd thing to say because I’ve used the thing a lot. The Tonal is just unique.
I get that for different reasons. I don’t like going into the gym because I always felt intimidated in the weight section. I didn’t know what I was doing.
Especially the weight section. That seems like that’s the part of the gym that even if you like going to the gym, you get intimidated going into the weight portion.
It always felt like full of these big guys who are judging everyone who walked in there. They probably could care less, but that’s what I perceived.
I always thought of it as not even that they were judging, but that you were in their way and you were visibly not as advanced as they were.
You don’t know what weight you need to pick up. Do you need to pick up 10 pounds or 15 pounds and then try it out? You need to stay in there and figure that out. I always felt dumb doing that. I felt dumb through the whole process. That’s why Tonal has been such a game changer for me because I don’t have to go somewhere and have somebody staring at me or sitting there like, “What is she doing?” I don’t have that fear of judgment. It doesn’t make me feel like that out there. I can do it in the privacy of my own home. If I make a mistake, then it’s only between me and my Tonal.
It’s the ignorance. I empathize with some of what you say, Crystal. It doesn’t get better if you’re a guy in that weight section in terms of programmatically what to do, which dumbbell, what’s the right weight, and are you going to see results? Tonal is amazing. It’s set it and forget it. The interface itself is to not have to rotate weights. The box magically knows how much weight to put on there. You’ve got Coach Paul calling me an athlete for the first time in my life. I want to make that my ring tone, so every time I have a call, Coach Paul is calling me an athlete.
I like how he says that. Sometimes people will say things like you are best friends with them, and it feels a little insincere. I like that he says athlete because that feels sincere and natural for him. I like that he uses that term. Not only to yourself, but it makes a lot of people feel good because they’re working out. It’s like, “It’s the first time I’ve ever lifted this many weights and he’s calling me an athlete. I must be an athlete.” That’s a great takeaway from that. You’ve had a lot of success. I’ve seen you post, your selfies. What has 2020 been for you? How has it changed your fitness?
It’s hard to imagine, but I pulled up the strain score. It’s hard for me to believe, but my upper body is up 397%. Overall, I went from 352% to 1,181% on the overall strain score. It’s hard for me to believe because I’m a guy sitting in my home gym, setting and forgetting it. Somewhere in there, you listen to Coach Jackson. It was the third program I joined, Go Big, Go Home. I’m like, “What the hell is this? This guy is destroying my chest sixteen ways until Sunday.” The next exercise is pushups. Who does that? Somewhere in there, with all the coaching and what they’re saying, it changes the way you think. In a funny way, I’m a clinical psychologist and my expertise is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. I do a lot of exposure therapy for folks with anxiety disorders. It’s incredible to me that you could be sitting there doing this hard seemingly impossible thing and say, “There was no way I could do this,” and then you do it. There was an Arnold Schwarzenegger quote laced in there for good measure. That gets in your head. It’s like all day long I keep thinking to myself, “You can have results or excuses, but you can’t have both.” I’ve started to realize that I’ve made a lot of progress on this machine and it feels great.
You accidentally CBT-ed yourself.
That’s correct. That’s the difference between going to a gym and throwing around a bunch of lead versus what the Tonal offers with the personalities, the coaching, and knowing that the machine has your back. You don’t have to walk up and say, “Will you spot me?” The machine spots you. It knows how to push you. Over the year, I’ve always made a game of capping the weight a little or trying to eke out an extra rep or two. That helps with the strain score metric.
Are you using the new feature with the little squiggly line at the bottom that shows you your power and range of motion for each rep?
I am. It’s cool.
I was wondering if that’s changed anything for you. For me, it changed how fast I was doing the movement when you’re pulling up the weight or if you’re doing a row, how fast you’re pulling it back.
It was my understanding that there would be no math involved.
You see the graph and it’s like, “I’m not doing that enough. I have to go fast on that part.” I didn’t know if that changed anything for you.
Maybe I became aware of it from the Facebook group, but when I figured that out, it’s amazing to have that biofeedback. You’re seeing the bars go up. You’re seeing the little sine curve do its magic. You’re getting upset if you’re below the little bar. That is a significant game changer.
I started the new, Raise the Barbell Challenge 2. I am finding that it’s not as easy to do that 80% on that because there are many back-to-back moves. By the end of the 3rd and 4th set, I’m not able to get the power there.
I have the same problem. At some point, the shoulder day was brutal. If I fail and it moves on. I get upset. I hit the back arrow and I wait maybe 40 seconds and let myself recover, and then I’ll move the weight down. I know you made a comment about moving the weight down. I won’t accept the weight. It upsets me that they lower the weight. I’ll jump the weight up to what it had been. I’m like, “I’m going to do these last three reps if I can.”
I get mad. I had a short amount of time that day so I couldn’t keep going. That was the first time that I’ve been like, “Damn you, Nicolette.”
She looks nice.
She’s smiling all sweet, and then she’s ripping your arms apart.
I had this problem. I didn’t do Go Big, Go Home twice. Day-three is leg day. I just heard, for three days. I don’t know why I do leg day or why any of us do leg day, but I do it. I signed up and I took it a second time some months forward. I had this problem where if I do a program like that again, I’m worried about the coming week because now I know how hard it is. I wander around my house. I bug my wife who’s working from home. Maybe I’ll get a little more water.
You delay. You’re stalling.
I know I’m doing it. I know Coach Jackson would not approve of me doing this. Leg day should not take 1 hour and 48 minutes, but the second time through that program, it was a little under two hours. I did finish it.
You finished it, that’s the important thing. I have found that week two usually is easier than week one. The soreness doesn’t last as long the second week. I have a little sad thing for Tonal now because I’m doing this MedPro program. They’re helping me lose weight. I told them my workout thing and they told me that for two weeks, I can’t lift weights. It’s all steady state cardio, six days a week for two weeks.
That was the same awkward pause she said when they told her. It’s the same like, “What?”
She was like, “You can do a day here and there, but I’m trying to give you the fastest results.” I’m like, “Fine.” I’m still going to do yoga or something because I’ve got to keep my streak.
Unfortunately, it kills me. I’ve been on the thing four times a week since I got it. We finally located somewhere for a couple of weeks away from the Tonal. I lost my streak a couple of weeks short of the year, the week before they launched the app where you can keep the streak going. It’s very upsetting.
How are you balancing Tonal and your other workouts? I know you said you have Peloton. How is that working for you?
I am partially cheating on the Peloton. The Peloton is a whole other story, but I took to that. I had no idea what Tabata was when I tried the Peloton in the store in the fancy mall in Boston. I asked, “Could I do a 45-minute ride?” They said, “Who’s your favorite instructor?” I said, “Probably Robin Arzon.” I picked the highest rated ride and it’s Tabata which is somewhat insane.
You did that in a store?
I did it in the store and midway through, I’m choking out tears of joy. It was an endorphin batch from wherever. My wife came in the store and started screaming at me because I was dripping from head to toe. She wasn’t aware of the business model that you can do work out there. I got hooked on Peloton. When we got the Tonal, you never could have convinced me that I would be using the Tonal more than the Peloton. Now I’m usually on the Tonal four days a week, and I try as best I can to get on the Peloton 3 to 4 days a week. Timewise, I enjoy and love them both, but I spend more time on the Tonal.
Especially as a woman, as I get older, it’s more important to me to keep everything moving and be strong. Strength is the way to do that. I tend to go that direction as well by using the Tonal more than Peloton, which is hard because I have the tread and the bike. That’s four days on the Tonal, two days on the tread, and one day on the bike.
You’ve got a trifecta, plus you’ve got a bag in that basement.
I do, which has been ignored for a long time because I’ve been into running.
I’m still upset I didn’t win that.
A lot of people are.
I did enter multiple times. It amazes me that I find myself entertained with the Tonal. You never could have told me that resistance training or weight training was for me or that it would be enjoyable. It seemed like it was going to be a chore. With such a bad family health history, it seemed one of those things that I need to do and was motivated to do. As it turns out, I find it enjoyable.
What do you think your favorite feature of the Tonal is?
I like the whole chains, eccentric mode, and the new graphs are amazing. I love it all. Probably what motivated me, a few months ago I called service, because I got up to the limit on the deadlift, and all of a sudden, I don’t know if you’ve had that fan go off on the Tonal?
If you lift enough, it must be something in the electromagnetic magic stock that on the heavier way, it got heated up. This loud fan comes on to cool the machine down. That’s my new favorite feature.
I bought the machine to work me out, and I made the machine working out.
The specialty modes and the design of the machine itself is nice to look at. The arms move seamlessly.
It’s beautiful. Has your wife been using the Tonal or she still goes to the gym?
I know she has gone through Coach Nicolette’s Making Muscle, the three-part trajectory. She’s completed eight programs. She did one of Coach Natalie’s programs and enjoyed it. It’s all been a positive experience. She was a college athlete. She’s always been in the weight room. She’s fearless in terms of doing her programming with dumbbells. Initially, she thought it was going to be a supplement, but she’s on it consistently three days a week.
How has the community been? You’ve mentioned that you’ve been enjoying that.
At the moment, this thing with the Raising the Barbell 2 has been a blast. I see them doing more and more of that. There’s this group of folks who were all passing through. It’s interesting to see the same names come up in a smaller and intimate way. Anytime I’ve posted or whatever, 2020 has been quite a journey, the community has been supportive. The coaches too, blow me away. I asked a question online to Coach Nicolette. All of a sudden, instead of on the post, I get an instant message from her, “What do you need? Do you have this, that or the other?” I’m going back and forth on instant message. I’m using the wrong word like torsion or some muscular thing that I had no idea about. I’m trying to sound smart because it’s Coach Nicolette. She wasn’t quite understanding me.
I’m looking on Facebook and there’s that little phone insignia. I tapped it and she picked up. She’s like, “This is Nicolette.” I’m like, “Coach Nicolette? The Coach Nicolette?” She goes, “I didn’t even realize that work through Facebook. You could call me.” We had this lovely conversation. She was super helpful. Coach Jackson read some of my posts. I posted something and I’m looking at it. It was one of those little video messages and I don’t have the sound on. I’m like, “This is not a ten-second message.” I called my wife and getting back to that thing. I thanked Coach Jackson for making me look good in front of my wife.
He wasn’t like, “I know how long you’re delaying your leg days.”
That’s going to be your next message from Coach Jackson.
Between the various coaches and the people online, I’m impressed by the female names that come up. I’m not going to give you my actual weight, but I’m well over 200 pounds and 6 feet tall. I look at the volume that any number of women are doing. I’m like, “I still should stay out of the way.” It’s unbelievable.
I saw people posting they had their highest volume ever, 30,000 in one session. I did that same workout for a baseline comparison and I had 9,400.
It’s like apples to oranges, and then there’s apples to grapes.
It was sad.
It’s scary like I find it. It’s inspiring in my mind. It’s been neat to see other people’s stories and see people respond when I post things. That reverberation or that motivation through the coaching, through the AI, through the biofeedback, with the bar graphs or the sine curves. They’re always adding a million different things. It gets reinforced online and you’d never think that would have that much of an impact because you’re interacting in a sense with strangers, but they’re all strangers that you share something in common with, which is the love for this product and what it’s doing for you.
Do you have any advice for people that are just getting their Tonal?
If you put me in a weight room, I would swear to you, I would hate weightlifting. It’s not my thing. Start slow, do challenge yourself, and learn the machine. There’s a bit of a learning curve like there is with anything because it’s got a variety of features. Trust in the process. A level of entertainment and motivation brings you to a level where you engage a lot more than you would on your own. By that motivation and larger amount of engagement, you wind up seeing results way quicker. I have nothing to compare it to other than I’m motivated to use that machine. I’ve seen lots of results and I know without the coaching, the motivation, and that full package, I don’t think I’d be here. Trust the process, engage and find the instructors that speak to you and that motivate you, and just set it and forget it.
It is like having a personal trainer. They do all the thinking for you. You just go in and do the stuff.
Which is good because I wouldn’t do it if they weren’t doing it.
There’s no way. I keep coming back to that point, but I would not have seen myself getting into resistance training without that level of motivation and entertainment.
It’s good advice because it tells people who think they would hate weight training. Don’t discard the idea of Tonal just because you’ve never enjoyed weightlifting. It’s a different experience at home. It’s a different experience on this machine. It’s different from anything else out there. Saying that is good for people to know because there are some people that are like, “I didn’t like it in the gym. I’m not going to like it at home.”
Thank you for taking the time to join us. Before we go, where can people find you on social media if you would like to be found?
I’m somewhat of a Luddite. I have an Instagram, but I don’t know how to access it. I am on Facebook under my name, David Stember. Professionally, I do a variety of things as a psychologist. That is just my office phone number and going old-school, (978)745-6555. It’s probably the most direct way to reach me, but Facebook and instant messaging over Facebook is the easy way. I am on the Tonal website in the community.
Thank you for taking time out of your day to join us. We appreciate it.
I’m much obliged. Thank you.
That brings this one to a close. Until next time, where can people find you?
You can find me on Twitter, @RogerQBert or on Facebook at Facebook.com/TomOKeefe. You can find the show online at Facebook.com/supersetpodcast. Remember, wherever you’re getting your podcast from, be sure and subscribe so you never miss an episode. That’s it for this one. Thanks for tuning in. Until next time, keep lifting.
Think I have a relatively compelling story in regards to how I heard about the device, your reassurance it was worth it and the point at which it came into my life (after/during the passing of most of my family due to obesity/lifestyle challenges). Not an athlete, or weight lifter, but seem to have made a lot of progress on the device. To my surprise, feel more addicted to the Tonal than the Peloton.
I’m a McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School-affiliated clinical psychologist (Ph.D.) who specializes in cognitive behavioral therapy. In many ways the instructor dialogue engages a lot of these therapeutic strategies through sweat. With Tonal, and Peloton, I have personally experienced the benefit of these devices in my own inner dialogue. It has truly surprised me.
I have a sense of humor and am known for my charismatic approach to engaging problematic teens in my clinical practice (i.e., I know too much about gangsta wrap and the dating life of the average 15 year old). Also, do a fair amount of public speaking.
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