It was 2008 and I was training to be a Master of Sport in the Kettlebell Long-cycle...
I was in the gym training and this kid, that didn't look a day past 17, approached me about training. I'm thinking in that condescending line of thought, "Here's another Kettlebell enthusiast, who says he trains, and really just wants to hang out..."
So I start training with this guy and I asked him about his strength numbers. He responded with a 235# Deadlift and several other so-so numbers. I'm thinking well that's not a lot. Though the more and more I worked out with this guy, I realized he was holding out on me (later I'd find out his Deadlift was more like 550#'s).
It may sound like I'm paying tribute but the lessons I learned (and continue to learn) as he gave me detailed training advice. At the time I didn't fully understand it.
He would say things like, "When you get to be a Master of Sport International Class, you'll ask yourself, "Why did I do it like this before?" I can't tell you enough how this realization is coming true the way it is.
He once said, "Marty, you are getting to the point where you're good enough to get seriously injured."
Sure enough around 2010, when I walked into a gym in West Virgina to meet him, I had a nagging hip socket problem. It was serious, and literally felt like it was going to pop out. I said, "Marcus, I'm finished." Then described my injury. He said, "Oh, just hop on the hip abductor machine and use the whole rack of weights." Skeptically, I did, and miraculously afterwards I was right as rain. How the Fuck did he know this? I asked him and he replied, "Been there, done that. Worked didn't it?"
On a different occasion, when I dislocated my shoulder (by my own fault) he forced me to step back and critically think about what I was doing. I spent a lot of time looking through every aspect of my training. There was a lot to fix, and under new training methodologies I went on to shatter the records I had set before the injury.
Over time, I learned that Marcus had a history. At the time, he was one of Louie Simmons' (of West-Side Barbell fame) greatest young students, and had already had an impact-full career in multiple sports. As a teenager he had competed in the Arnold Classic for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Juniors. In Powerlifting, he was a Junior Olympic Champion and had set State and American records while totaling Elite in 3 weight classes. He also had made a short run at Weightlifting, qualifying for Weightlifting Nationals (clean and jerking double his body weight) before a broken forearm took him out of the sport. In short, he was wise beyond his years.
He was (and is) a very straight talking guy. He rubbed some people the wrong way, but eventually you learn that you have to be straight as a Coach, it keeps people realistic The "old-school" guys love him, and seasoned athletes get him. I'm glad to have met him.
We still have conversations about training and how comical (and wrong) we were in the past about training knowledge. He was always studying, and expanding his expertise. For a time he even considered becoming a Doctor. This is funny to me now, as calling him "Dr. Mucheck" would seem appropriate given how much he knows about the human form, movement and just the culture of increasing human performance.
He isn't afraid to try anything and he is about results, and Champions.
In 2011 Marcus partnered up and started a new gym in downtown Dayton, OH -- The Dirty Gym. When I heard, I jumped to become one of their first official Club Members.
It's still a young club, but a young club full of Marcus'. At this place they've gathered some skilled athletes, and are building new ones from the ground up. They focus on teaching you how to train smarter, find and smash your weaknesses and pulling out all your stops.
They're already building a roster of Champions.