10 Things I Learned from Charles Poliquin – Ben Brown

by | Jan 15, 2019

10 Things I Learned from Charles Poliquin aka The Strength Sensei [Solo Podcast Episode]


Having had the pleasure to learn from and get to know Charles Poliquin over the last 12 years has been instrumental in helping define who I am today. Its taken me a while to process his recent passing and the idea for this post has been ruminating in my head for weeks.


If you ever had the privilege of attending one of Strength Sensei’s courses, you’d know that he firmly believed that the best way to learn, in any course, was to teach for 45 min, then do a “10 things I learned” review to reinforce many of the concepts discussed previously…


Well, it seems only fitting that as an homage to one of my greatest mentors, I’d like to share with you 10 things that I learned from Charles that are far more significant than strength or nutrition protocols. Rather, life principles that I’ll work to uphold and pass on.

10 things I learned from Charles Poliquin, aka, The Strength Sensei


1 – The powder community: The majority of the people I know and respect in the industry is because of taking Charles courses. It’s where I got to validate my ideas, learn what other coaches were doing, and connect with other like minded peeps. We need community to thrive.


2 – You gotta pay to play: I hired CP for a 1-1 consult in 2009. It was $1000 for the hr and, to this day, one of the best decisions I’ve made for my career. It helped us build rapport. Eventually this led to client referrals, networking opportunities, a contract with a major NBA organization, and ultimately helped me launch and grow the #CompleteEssentials.


3 – Teach through storytelling: Charles was a great story teller. Many times he had me dying laughing with some of the stories he’d tell, the attention to detail, and what a great memory he had. It wasn’t the information that resonated, but the way he relayed it that made it stick.


4 – Be polarizing: People loved him or hated him, and he owned it and never flinched. He taught me to be ok with putting out content that people may not agree with as well as telling clients what they need, not what they want to hear.


5 – The path to success is never linear: CP had a tumultuous ride and while I won’t pretend to know too in depth, I do know that his highs were certainly accompanied by plenty of lows. I’m especially saddened because despite his success, I’m confident his best had yet to come…


6 – Question everything: Being brought up in an academic household, I learned early on to be analytical (and skeptical). It was the fascinating nature of the Biosignature courses (and my skepticism that ensued) that forced me dig in and find out more about nutrition and supplementation, and ultimately go back to school and to get another degree. 


7 – Prioritize what really matters: I always had a tremendous amount of respect for Charles and his relationship with his daughter. The way his eyes lit up when he spoke of her. You knew instantly that the hard shell of his physique was nothing but playdough to her every need and to those people in his life he truly cared for.


8 – How to ask good questions: When I first started taking courses with Charles in 2007, you learned very quickly not to ask dumb questions. He would look at you as if he was trying to melt you with his eyes and the verbal assault was equally penetrating. 😂


9 – Give credit where credit is due: CP had a remarkable ability to tell you exactly when and from whom he learned a certain topic, tool or tip. He was especially great about recognizing and respecting those that blazed the trail before him. 


10 – What you appreciate, appreciates: Charles taught me the power of gratitude to help me attract what I want in my life. A way to focus on opportunity, new possibilities and positivity rather than problems and negativity. “No pissing, no moaning.”


Thank you Charles. You made an indefinable impact in my life and I only wish I could have shared this with you sooner.



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***And if you’re ready to take your training and nutrition to the next level so that you can optimize your energy and body composition, then schedule your free strategy call with Ben: www.bslnutrition.com/levelup/

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