• Sports,  Writing

    Ep. 2 – Shea Serrano on How He Hustled His Way From Middle School Teacher to Journalist and NYT Bestselling Author

    Shea Serrano (@sheaserrano) is a New York Times bestselling author, journalist, and former teacher. He is best known for his work with the sports and pop culture websites, The Ringer and Grantland, as well as his books, including The Rap Year Book and Basketball (and Other Things), both The New York Times bestsellers. Serrano’s activity and humor on Twitter have earned him referrals from GQ and other publications, making him an internet celebrity. The Verge called the community he created “a utopia on Twitter,” thanks in large part to Serrano and his Twitter followers, termed the FOH ARMY, spawning considerable charitable giving; once joining up to give a parking lot attendant who’d helped Serrano find his car at an airport a $3,000 tip.

    In this episode, we discuss how Shea started his writing career and then hustled his way up from middle school teacher to writing for a neighborhood newsletter to becoming a staff writer for The Ringer and NYT bestselling author. Shea dives into his writing process and how he tries to be different than every other writer, and the tips and advice he’s learned along the way, plus much more.



    Listen to Stitcher




    Show Notes:

    4:10 – Shea on getting rejected from Wal-Mart and Target

    4:52 – How Shea’s writing career got started

    6:45 – On being a full-time middle school teacher while trying to get his writing career off the ground

    8:51 – Shea reaching out to other authors to learn how to become an established writer and the advice they gave him

    10:45 – His first paid writing gig at the Near Northwest Banner

    11:15 – How he hustled his way up to the Houston Press

    12:52 – His writing style when he first started

    14:03 – The story on how Shea got noticed by Bill Simmons and Grantland

    15:50 – On what it was like starting out writing at Grantland

    18:00 – How he overcomes feeling like he’s a terrible writer

    18:30 – Shea’s writing process and how he attempts to be different from other writers

    24:10 – On dealing with failures and criticism

    25:32 – The struggles that Shea still has to overcome in his career

    27:56 – What he’s learned from being around other talented writers

    29:13 – The worst advice he hears given

    30:40 – On what he would put on a cheat sheet to his younger self

    31:50 – Shea’s tactics for dealing with times he feels stressed and overwhelmed

    32:58 – What he thinks most people don’t understand about being successful

    37:20 – The best thing that a fan has mailed him

    38:58 – Shea’s message to people


    Show Links:

    Houston Press


    The Ringer

    Bun B’s Rap Coloring and Activity Book

    The Rap Year Book: The Most Important Rap Song From Every Year Since 1979, Discussed, Debated, and Deconstructed

    Basketball (and Other Things): A Collection of Questions Asked, Answered, Illustrated

    Conference Room, Five Minutes: Ten Illustrated Essays About The Office


    Theme music: DREAMt (ft. Jeris Haskel) by SackJo22 (ccMixter)

  • Business,  Sports

    Ep. 1 – NBA Trainer and Triathlete Joe Abunassar on Training Elite Athletes and Committing to the Grind

    Joe Abunassar (@Joe_Abunassar) is the founder of Impact Basketball and has been a trainer and mentor for over 20 years to some of the best basketball players in the world including the likes of Kevin Garnett, Chauncey Billups, DeMarcus Cousins, Kyle Lowry, and Kristaps Porzingis, among countless others. Joe is also an accomplished triathlete, having completed 17 IronMan triathlons and qualifying for the IronMan World Championships.

    In this episode, we discuss Joe’s start in triathlon racing, his IronMan training regimen, his time at Indiana working under Bob Knight, how he got his starting in personal skill development, the early days of training Kevin Garnett and Chauncey Billups, his advice and thoughts on the current state of training elite athletes, and much more.



    Listen to Stitcher



    Show Notes:

    5:00 – How Joe’s triathlon career got started.

    8:40 – The mentality of training and running an IronMan race.

    10:05 – Joe hiring his own IronMan coach.

    12:25 – Joe’s typical weekly training schedule for an IronMan.

    14:55 – Growing up playing lacrosse versus basketball.

    15:28 – How reading A Season on the Brink changed his life’s path.

    16:38 – What it was like being a manager under Bob Knight at Indiana.

    21:23 – Story of Joe’s experience of making a mistake working for Bob Knight.

    25:56 – Bob Knight’s philosophy of no excuses.

    28:45 – His dislike of recruiting as assistant coach at the University of Wyoming.

    32:23 – Joe’s entry into his professional player development career.

    34:32 – Joe on running Kevin Garnett’s fan club and summer camp.

    38:07 – How he turned his training into a business.

    41:00 – How Joe gained NBA players’ trust when he was starting out.

    44:10 – Why he thinks NBA players continue to train with him.

    44:43 – His favorite Kevin Garnett story.

    46:42 – The importance of getting Kevin Garnett to change his diet.

    47:27 – Kevin Garnett using shoes as defenders in workouts.

    47:52 – Chauncey Billups story on getting to the gym early.

    49:06 – Joe’s philosophy on the focus on attention to detail.

    50:02 – The growing pains and mistakes Joe made in his early days of training players.

    53:50 – The importance of rest, recovery, and giving his athletes time off.

    56:10 – On what Joe thinks a recovery day should look like.

    57:12 – How Joe structures and customizes his NBA client workouts.

    58:22 – Myles Turner typical weekly off-season training schedule.

    1:00:12 – NBA players who are successful despite being poorly built for it.

    1:01:58 – Athletes Joe refuses to work with.

    1:02:56 – Biggest wastes of time that he sees in training.

    1:05:00 – Joe’s best bang-for-your buck exercises and drills.

    1:06:38 – The philosophy that has been the most important in Joe’s career.

    1:07:42 – Joe’s mentors and the best advice they’ve given him.

    1:10:15 – The worst advice he hears given.

    1:11:08 – On why he doesn’t use social media to promote his clients.

    1:13:48 – Joe’s message that he wants to broadcast.


    Show Links:

    Impact Basketball Online Coaching Certification Program

    IronMan Triathlons

    A Season on the Brink: A Year with Bob Knight and The Indiana Hoosiers by John Feinstein

    Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy at IMG Academy

    Equinox Sports Club in Southern California


    Theme music: DREAMt (ft. Jeris Haskel) by SackJo22 (ccMixter)