Meeting Lord James Steele II and UK Adventures

‎”Don’t work for my happiness, my brothers–show me yours–show me that it is possible–show me your achievement–and the knowledge will give me courage for mine.”

Disclaimer: James isn’t actually a lord, but I enjoy British culture and use it every chance I get, even if the words I am using are fully and completely out of place.

I also love the accents. Really, it’s like music to my ears, especially from women. English, Welsh, Irish, variations there of, etc.


Who is James Steele II?

He’s a young man living in Southampton England — almost the exact same age as me — a graduate student, an eternal friend of life, liberty, and reason, and the man who will finish what Arthur Jones started.

What Drew Baye is to high intensity training, Doug McGuff is to exercise science, Mark Sisson is to proper nutrition, and Bill DeSimone is to congruent bio-mechanics, James Steele II is to the lower back, and what the $%^ to do about it.

Considering his age, 22, it was truly remarkable to meet James and hear him discuss the lower back so vigorously and passionately. It was a sight I had only seen prior in the men listed above (and few others).

James ended up putting me through a workout on the medical version of the MedX lower back machine. We filmed it, but due to some policies we are unable to circumvent, the video cannot be released =/.

Admittedly, while the video itself is good, I feel that I completely faltered on the exercise. So while it looks cool, I don’t believe a lot came from it, entirely from my own doing. The great irony is that James is one of the greatest trainers in the world to have put you through a workout on, what is, the greatest machine ever invented to exercise this part of the human body.

So I completely flopped on an ideal machine with an ideal trainer. #ultimatefacepalm

How so? I’m not exactly sure how to explain it. It’s as if, despite having the best machine, the best trainer, and putting forth my best effort possible on that particular day, my body refused to use the intended musculature. When I was done with the exercise, I felt as if every muscle in my body had been used, except those in and around my lower back. I was in disbelief.

Why this is so, I am not sure. I have never had this problem on a standard MedX lower back machine, nor on the CZT lower back machine. It seems as if the more specific and isolated the exercise became, the more effort my body gave to use everything but my lower back.

While a bit frustrating, and depressing at the time, it leaves me more curious than anything now, and ready for round 2 should I ever have access to the medical version again.


After the lower back exercise we had a little time left before the university closed for the day. I was interested in using the Bod Pod James had access to to measure my body fat %, but James said it would be extremely inaccurate due to my gorilla like body hair.

Instead I went for a workout in the university gym and got a few things done. It was my first workout since training with Drew in Orlando (video).

This workout was also strange, in that I felt mentally “off”, and not able to push myself to anything approaching “true failure”. The exercises included…

  • Reverse Lunges
  • Wall sit
  • Smith machine bench press
  • Chin ups

Even stranger, the following 2 days I felt extremely sore considering the lower than average number of movements performed, and the lack luster intensity. My chest above all felt something like “destroyed”.


James and I then met up with Lord James Fisher — who actually is a lord. We first grabbed coffee where James gave me some local raw, jersey milk.

Admittedly, I had always been skeptical of the taste difference and health benefits of raw milk.

Yeah, fuck that. You can call me a “true believer” now, this stuff is amazing. Really, it’s like liquid gold coming out of a milk carton. The texture is 100x better, and the taste 1000x better.

I had no digestive issues with the milk, and shockingly, it didn’t kill me.  (#Winning!)

After coffee we went to a chinese restaurant to get some duck. I first had duck in Austin Texas with Adam Lyons. I’ve been hooked ever since, but have not been able to find any.

While this duck was not the highest quality, it was pretty good, and I’m damn glad I had it. James Fisher was also there, who ended up reminding me of a British version of Drew Baye.


I returned to London from Southampton for a short while before venturing to Swansea Wales, where I am currently. Short story, I stick out like a sore thumb here, and I like it that way. The people are very friendly, even more so than in London, although there have been a number of instances where the accent is so heavy, I literally can’t understand what the person in front of me is saying, in English. Usually older people, but a few young as well.

There is also a completely distinct Welsh language that is spoken and written in conjunction with English here, which is pretty cool. I don’t understand a lick of it, but it’s fascinating to hear none the less.

The little bit of culture I have seen here is also great to observe. Of particular interest to me is that middle aged and older people actually go out to pubs and bars and … well, just hang out.

I’ve never before seen old people do this in any of the American States. While I’m sure it happens, it’s pretty rare. And while these people weren’t getting “buck wild”, they were enjoying themselves, and it was good to see this — something young people rarely even do without getting absolutely smashed.

I will also add, there are a shit ton of red heads by my count in Swansea, and probably in Wales in general, which I love. Makes me wonder how many are in Ireland.


Here are some pics of Swansea, starting with the view I wake up to every day for a whopping 18 pounds a night.

The two night pictures are from the tallest point in Swansea, at a restaurant a girl I met up with in Swansea brought me to. The last picture is from a park in front of the University of Swansea (I think). While it may seem normal for Europeans, I had never seen such a pristine park in my life. It was right out of a book or movie. I kept an eye out for King Arthur but he didn’t show up (bastard).

Here are some pictures from London

I like the first picture a lot because, as far as I know, those are English Flags, that show a division of government, much like the long forgotten State flags in the American States do. Which bears mentioning that “State” at the forming of the American Union, was synonymous with what we call “countries” today.

When the American Revolution from the British Empire ended, treaties were signed with all independent States — not a general government between such States, what we call the “federal” government today.

In this sense, and contrary to popular opinion, the fifty States that make up the federal Union of American States, are still independent countries, that are free to leave such union whenever they please — unlike the current supreme court ruling which states that the States may leave by force of revolution, or by consent of the other States — as if each State were a slave to the 49 others.

Which is very strange, because this essentially means that the federal government has stated, and currently stands on this ruling, that it has no role in the secession of a State, other than in suppressing a State from peacefully, and if necessarily, violently leaving the American Union and forming it’s own independent republic — unless some undecided % of the 49 other States vote that the 50th, or some group of States, can be allowed to leave.

Last I checked this was the freest country on earth. Are States the make up the Union free or enslaved?

Viva la revolution fuckers.

— Anthony Dream Johnson


All of these pictures were taken with my US phone that I got for $89, a DroidX.

Drew Baye has gone to intellectual war with P90X, P90Insanity, P90Stupidity, and Tony Horton. Check it out and show your support by spreading the word.

Oh, and I sent a letter to Harry Potter. While this probably sounds pretty stupid to most Brits, I found it hysterical at the time, and only more knowing that someone at the Royal Mail office has actually read it since.

About Anthony Dream Johnson

CEO, founder, and architect of The 21 Convention, Anthony Dream Johnson is the leading force behind the world's first and only "panorama event for life on earth". He has been featured on WGN Chicago, and in the NY Times #1 best seller The Four Hour Work Week.    His stated purpose for the work he does is "the actualization of the ideal man", a purpose that has led him to found and host The 21 Convention across 3 continents and for 6 years in a row. Anthony blogs vigorously at and

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20 Responses to Meeting Lord James Steele II and UK Adventures

  1. Mannik May 18, 2011 at 7:25 am #

    Cool to see you are enjoying the UK, although i don’t appreciate you clogging up the mail system with letters to Harry Potter….
    It sucks that my exams so run from 30 May – 13 June or I would have finally been able to visit T21C!

    • Anthony Dream Johnson May 18, 2011 at 8:58 am #

      I’m gonna try to bring it back to London in 2012 but I’m worried about the Olympics clogging everything up. If London is too busy next summer, look forward to a trip to Amsterdam!

  2. James Steele II May 18, 2011 at 7:53 am #

    I wouldn’t be too concerned with the ‘feeling’ after the workout. Normally anyone using the machine would be tested twice and the first used as a familiarisation like I explained. The more you use that particular piece of equipment the more you will learn the appropriate motor pattern to perform the movement. Despite you not really ‘feeling’ anything it is undeniable that due to the mechanics of the machine your lumbar extensors where performing the movement and thus bearing the load, just perhaps not to their fullest recruitment capacity.

    I look forward to getting you in again some time and putting you through another.

    Roll on The 21 Convention 2011 London!!

    • Anthony Dream Johnson May 18, 2011 at 8:33 am #

      Speaking of another workout, is it possible we get access to the MedX machine in London on Monday the 6th after the convention? I think I remember you mentioning there is another medical version in London.

      • James Steele II May 18, 2011 at 8:48 am #

        Probably unlikey unfortunately. Keiser (where it is located along with a full range of MedX medical and exercise equipment) is members only as far as I am aware. I can send you the email of the manager there (I assume he still is) that I met with last year and you may be able to arrange something with him.

  3. Ben May 18, 2011 at 9:30 am #

    “This workout was also strange, in that I felt mentally “off”, and not able to push myself to anything approaching “true failure”.”

    Jet lag perhaps?

    • Anthony Dream Johnson May 18, 2011 at 9:34 am #

      No, when I met James I had already spent over a week in London. I think it was more due to being pissed at myself for performing so poorly on the MedX machine, and being thoroughly distracted as a result.

  4. Hammer May 18, 2011 at 11:19 am #

    How much was the raw milk? I get mine from a local farm in NY that delivers to Manhattan on Saturdays, but it’s quite expensive, $10 a gallon. It’s worth it to me to vote with my dollars, but I imagine it’d be cheaper when produced on a larger scale and sold in supermarkets.

    • James Steele II May 18, 2011 at 4:42 pm #

      I buy it from a local farmers market at £1.10 for 2 pints which is a bargain really considering it’s quality. The farm it is from is only a short drive away from where I live really anyway so I can go pick up more when I need to. It’s not available in supermarkets in the UK though.

      • Hammer May 19, 2011 at 12:41 pm #

        That’s quite a bit cheaper than what I’m paying, but after you factor in the NYC markup it’s not too terrible considering that the US government subsidizes grain agriculture making it very difficult for grass fed to compete.

        • Anthony Dream Johnson May 19, 2011 at 12:48 pm #

          No wealth taken with the threat of a gun, no subsidies of any kind are possible.

  5. ad ligtvoet May 18, 2011 at 5:05 pm #

    Hi Anthony,
    I worked for kieser training in germany and have still a very good relationship with the manager and the doctor there . I can use the medical and do so every 3 weeks .If you where locked in correct, which I asume, you can only use your lumbal muscles just as james stated. It is possible that your body wanted to bring in other muscles but these couln’t produce any movement but you do feel the effect of them contracting anyway. It takes a few times to learn to concentrate on the lumbal muscles and relax as much as possible the other muscles.When the resistance starts to feel heavy there is also the tendecy to complete the rep with pushing your head against the neck rest especially when you approach failure near the extension. I’m always locked up very tightly and this brings in the fatigue very fast. I tried a few times to keep the lock somewhat looser and could do 2 reps more which made it able to have the feeling of a better set because of a longer t.u.l. and of activation of other muscles at a later point in the set. A looser lock up doesn’t mean however so loose that the gluteus and hamstring can move the pelvis . This all just to explain that in my opinion there are a few factors that can influence the feeling you experienced. I uploaded a video of me doing this exercise some 10 days ago at the kieser training facility. The name of my youtube channel is myogeen.
    I live inthe netherlands close to the german border.Whenever you are around you can contact me and I will see if it is possible for you to do the exercise or maybe do the analyse test. You can do also a work out at my facility. Always exciting to meet h.i.t enthousiasts.
    Best wishes and succes,

    • James Steele II May 19, 2011 at 6:38 am #

      Interesting. I’d tend to agree on the tightness of the restraints. Anecdotally I have found that the tighter in I am and the smaller the posterior angle at the knee, the less I feel fatigue due to isometric contraction ni the hamstrings. Ad is right though, it takes a few goes to get used to it and relax other muscles.

  6. MkeG May 18, 2011 at 5:20 pm #

    thats twice in a row that I have noticed Yost post some batshit crazy non-sence, and then “john” agree with it later that day, in the very next post…

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