Breaking the Rules With Charles Staley, Ep 7 (Podcast)

Breaking Muscle HQ

Real Athletes. Real Coaches. Real Knowledge.

In this podcast episode, Breaking Muscle Radio speaks with iconic strength coach Charles Staley. Charles is known as a visionary and a rule-breaker. His clients call him “The Secret Weapon,” as he possesses a keen ability to recognize strengths and shortcomings.


Charles's humble, yet insightful commentary is evident in his athlete journals for Breaking Muscle. These writings are packed full of Charles's experiences as a world-class masters powerlifter, and they formed the basis of this discussion with Managing Editor Becca Borawski Jenkins and Coach Chet Morjaria.



Press play to listen and learn from Charles.



From beginning as a self-confessed non-athlete, Charles Staley has amassed over thirty years of experience both under a barbell and as a top coach. Along the way he witnessesed many trends of the industry come and go, while he often took exactly the opposite path to the majority. As a result, Charles's outlook on the industry is intuitive and intelligent.


  • 00:53 - How Charles got started in fitness and exercise
  • 05:29 - The good and bad points about being a personal trainer today
  • 07:30 - Frustrations about the strength training industry
  • 10:00 - The issues with trends and setting client expectations
  • 12:40 - What people should be doing in the gym
  • 15:03 - The role of steady state cardio in a training plan
  • 17:32 - Focusing on process and behaviors to achieve desired outcomes
  • 20:23 - Helping clients to focus on the attainable
  • 21:30 - How being non-athletic and a slow learner helps you become a better coach
  • 24:00 - Thoughts on nutrition, caloric deficits, restrictive diets, and paleo
  • 28:00 - The real reasons a low-carb approach works
  • 29:43 - Where Charles's reputation as a rule breaker and pioneer comes from
  • 34:00 - Training hard and heavy as a mature athlete
  • 37:34 - Staying the right side of the intensity versus consistency line
  • 41:15 - How to get the younger generation to understand the concept of longevity
  • 43.25 - Having an understanding of your capabilities
  • 44:43 - Update from his performance at the AAU World Powerlifting Championships
  • 46:42 - Charles's details and upcoming projects


Prominent both in the United States and across the globe, Charles is recognized as a authoritative coach and innovator in the field of human performance. His knowledge, skills, and reputation have lead to appearances on NBC’s The TODAY Show and The CBS Early Show, along with numerous radio appearances. He has penned more than a thousand articles for major publications and websites in the industry. 


Click here to Read Charles's Athlete Journals

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