As Seen On

Pay It Forward


I was thinking the other night about how really lucky I am.

I know, I know, I’m getting soft in my old age.  Well, I’ve got a little secret for you.  I’ve always been just a big softy.  Despite how dynamic, agile and cool I might seem (that is sarcasm 🙂 ).

Something you might not know about me is that I grew up on a farm and never really had anything.  I worked hard everyday and got up early to feed horses, cows, chickens and a host of other animals before school.  During the summer I had three jobs and always wanted what the other kids had.

But I always seemed not to be able to get it.  It wasn’t really the material things, it was really the feeling of fitting in.

As I look back at that skinny kid always working real hard at school and trying to fit in, I just smile.  Because I know why, even today, I work my ass off for everything I have.

In fact, you guys might not know this but it is pretty common for me to be up to midnight or even 1am working on video editing, blog posts, articles and everything else.

At this point in my life I wanted to reflect on how really, truly lucky I am.  I have an amazing wife, beautiful kids and awesome friends.

“Good things come to those who wait!” – NO!  Good things come to those who work their ass off everyday and relentlessly drive toward their goals with a purpose and desire that no one can deter.  That is how I feel.  I would not have gotten to where I am without this work ethic.

I hope that if there is something you want or a goal you have, you are working hard to achieve it because I know it is possible.  I am living proof of it because I literally started with nothing.

What brought about this reflection?  Well this month (I didn’t realize it until yesterday) I am in 3 major fitness publications.


  1. Men’s Fitness
  2. Muscle and Fitness
  3. Inside Fitness Magazine

Has this ever happened before?  A fitness author being published in 3 separate publications in the same month?  The perfect storm!


I am so excited about the features and am humbled beyond words.

So, now you benefit!  But there is a price to pay!

I am giving away 10 copies of my new DVD, not even on the market yet!


Why? Because I want to give back to you for all of your great support over the years.

But what is the price to pay, what do you have to do?

You Have To Pay It Forward.

I want you to go to your email right now and send 10 of your friends, family or anyone else you haven’t spoken to in a while or someone who has influenced your life, a note.

I want you to tell them:

  • How much they mean to you
  • How much they’ve helped you
  • Or tell them about that one time they influenced you to be better
  • Tell them why they are important to you.

At the bottom of this email, ask them to tell 10 of their friends, family or influences.

The first 10 people who do this and post a comment to this blog post will get a copy of my new DVD.

This is the honor system, so no cheating.  If you post 5 minutes after the post is created I know you cheated.  This will take some time and be honest.  Don’t lie to get a free DVD.  Be a man, do it for real and do it the right way.

Also, if you DON’T make the TOP 10, please send the 10 emails anyway.  You know how good it feels when you get an email from someone thanking you, selflessly, for something you did for them.  Give someone else that feeling!

Thank you all for all of your years of support.


PS.  If you want to know what I wrote about in the magazines, it was all built on the principles of AMD, the only complete muscle building system.

PPS.  Here’s another cool training DVD I’ve sold to hundreds of coaches, athletes and strength enthusiasts all over the world – Combat Core DVD

Articles You Might Also Like:

Tags: , , , , , , ,


26 Responses to “Pay It Forward”

  1. Mike Snader Says:

    Great post. Thanks for doing this. Sometimes when life gets hectic we forget what it’s all about. Thanks.

  2. Greg Nielsen Says:


    I love the idea of paying it forward and expressing gratitude. Some time ago, I had my oldest son call his grandparents thanking them for their example. I also had him write a nice note to his school teachers. I followed your request and sent out 10 emails. I have followed your methods for some time now. Thanks for what you do.

    Greg Nielsen

  3. Ryan Magin Says:

    Keep KIckin ass smitty congrats bro this is a huge accomplishment

  4. Nate Says:

    Great post and great idea! Thanks for this.

    It was good to take time out of my day to thank people who have helped me get where I am now. However, I need to send more than 10 emails, as there are so many people that have been a positive influence in my life.

    Something so simple can mean so much to your friends, family and others, and I encourage everyone to do this.

  5. Isaac Ho Says:

    Nice, wow, that took a bit longer than I thought, it did feel quite good though, I suppose i should get back to studying anatomy and physiology, i haven’t been paying attention to my teacher at all……

    Congrats on the accomplishment and nice job on the magazines, i subscribe to those. Nice to recognize all the authors!

  6. Paul Wright Says:


    You hit it on the head once again. Life IS about cultivating relationships and that was a great exercise to grow from…I look forward to the responses from the message that I sent.

    Congrats as well on reaping the rewards of hard work and dedication. Keep it up!

  7. jaime Says:

    thats awesome man congrat and thank you for your hard work cuz i know ihave benefited from it big time cant wait for x-mas because that when i get your AMD system lol its on my wish list

  8. Robbcore Says:

    Wow, got some mixed replies sent back to me
    I guess some people just don’t get it! Love the idea
    of paying it forward as zach even-esh has spoke about
    and am in the process of setting up my gym in the uk
    . Paying it forward is gonna be a big part of my life, and I’m
    not stopping at just ten emails today!!!

    Cheers great post!!!!!

  9. Kerry Says:


    Thank you for letting me realize how very much I have to be thankful for. Times are hard, and I was recently laid off, but I have an amazing 16 month old daughter and an amazing wife. Not to mention my extended family and my awesome friends (to steal your line). I sent ten emails, but I don’t think I will stop there. I appreciate the early “Thanksgiving” reflection.

    By the way, congratulations on the articles! I hope things really take off for you! You deserve it. You, along with Ross Enamait are among the most honest people in this industry.


  10. Santiago Gonzalez Says:


    I didnt realize I had not emailed some of my cousins and old friends from college

    got into memory lane really bad

    anyway also just to let you know all your info is to notch…I really enjoyed your last post on the san diego aztecs

    Ive been doing some variations of your ankle rehab video..hope to share a video of my own soon


  11. Jonas Says:

    Hi, I’m from Germany, so excuse the bad english.Everything started with playing American Football in Germany. There is only one good league left in Germany since the NFLE is gone. Everybody told me, that it would be impossible to reach this level of athletic performance. BUT some guys supported me and kept(?) motivating me every day the last year. And I started playing in a really bad league. BUT now I get my chance to play in a really good team. And just because of hard work and good friends! So I think it was time to tell them, what these relationships mean to me! And I should do that earlier!
    I would be glade to get one of your DVD’s, but if there is any problem with shipping to Germany give it anybody else. You and the whole Diesel Crew made me a “real” Football Player 😉

    Thank you, Jonas

  12. John Says:

    don’t tell me that I’m late I told 10 great people I even got emotional that does not happen to often please oh please send me a copy

  13. Chad Says:

    I know I might be late but thanks for all the inspiration and it was so rewarding to ” Pay it Forward” I teach special education at a middle school and I had my students also write letters in class this afternoon to thanks anyone they felt the need to. You rock brother and i love your approach to lifting and life ………….keep it coming! Would love the dvd if you have any left.
    Pineview Middle School
    St. George, Utah

  14. Jim Smith Says:

    Thank you so much everyone, we’ve got our 10. I will be sending the winners an email for their mailing address.

    EVERYONE keep posting your pay it forward stories.

  15. Adam L Says:

    Wow Smitty, you are a great guy and I have never even meet you. You are always hooking us up with great content, personal favors, material, ideas, motivation and now you bring it to the home front. That is the true meaning of good quality of life. I sent some emails out, could not get to the 10 number but got to 8 and might try some at work tomorrow on that email account.

    Thank you for being who you are and what you do.

  16. Adam Hamilton Says:

    Hey cool I just did it as soon as I got the email it feels good to finally let long lost friends know that I still think of them. Thank again Smitty! Some day I want to be where your at.

  17. TJ Says:


    Your background certainly explains why you are enjoying the success you are having right now. And thank you not only for routinely sharing your extensive knowledge but for being a perpetual source of inspiration and reminders about appreciating who and what we have and doing things the “right way.”

  18. Shane Says:


    I would not have thought that about you.
    Yous alls grows up!

    That’s the reason I love doing the grip strength interviews. I get to learn stuff about people I follow that I would not have known otherwise. It’s all in the stories.

    Thanks for what you and Jedd do for our sport.


  19. Jim Smith Says:

    I’m all grows up haha, nice.

    Thanks Shane.

  20. Jim Smith Says:

    TJ, thanks for the kind words, please keep coming back. I appreciate the support.

  21. Jim Smith Says:

    Adam, you can do it man. Seriously, I truly believe it.

    1. Study
    2. Believe in Yourself
    3. Email everyone to ask questions and collaborate
    4. Write articles for your site and for others
    5. Always be humble, no matter how big you think you are

  22. Matt B Says:

    It get so chaotic in life that it always feels so good to just step back and realize all those who have helped you in your life and to show your appreciation. I know, especially when you have a million other things in life (work, family, friends, personal life, etc) it is hard to remember to be so grateful and show that gratitude to those around you.

    The best feeling in the world is when you are down on your luck and have those close friends, and especially those you didn’t realize you were so close with, come to your side to help you out and lend support.

  23. Nestor Ahumada Says:

    Hey coach Smitty!

    The other day i read what you wrote about how a lot of people on the industry copy what you do and then call it theirs, about how you choose let it go and concentrate on just giving and helping others grow. I know we´ve never met but you´re my coach,and i thank you for the tremendous influenced you´ve had in my life, if i try to emulate you it is only because i admire what you´ve done and how far you´ve come. God bless you always!

    Now Here´s my top 10 list of people i´m grateful too:

    -Mom: She´s my angel and guiding light.
    -Pablo : for believing in me, often times more than i believe in myself.
    -Cesar: My spiritual Guru.
    -Luis:My warrior brother.
    -Mandy: my guardian angel
    -Nancy: The love of my life, letting you go was the hardest thing i´ve ever had to do but i had to…in order to change and grow.
    -Dr. España: You brought me back from the dead.
    -Coach Smitty: You are the iron master, we´ve never met but you are my mentor i hope that one day i´ll be able to teach and reach as many as you.
    -Elliott Hulse: Much respect and honor.
    -Dad: when you left mom, you broke our hearts. Yet we are stronger. Through your actions i´ve learned how not be,and because of your actions i grew up and became a man.

    I wish i could e-mail God but i don´t have his address…no bother i talk to him everyday and he´s got my back, i know he´s got yours too coach.

    Nestor Ahumada
    Diesel Trained athlete from Guatemala

  24. brad Says:

    hey man,
    thanks a bunch for giving me this idea about sending emails to the people that i appreciate…
    i know that i am not apart of the top 10 but i figured that i’d share my story anyway…
    i sent the 10 emails out to 10 of my friends and told them to do the same…after a couple of days a friend of mine(whom i sent the email to) said thanks for sending him the email…i asked why and he said that he sent an email telling his brother (who’s in germany for college) thank you for all he’s done…and since that email they have reconnected and become closer than ever…

    this is a truly revoluntionary thing you are doing here…
    keep up the good work

    aloha from hawaii
    brad h

  25. smokinjoe Says:

    Mentors form our lives in ways we will never know. I lead a mentoring program for fatherless young men. I make sure they realize what they have and expose them to men who have more so they can see what having passion will get them. Mentor a young man and feel the difference in your life.

  26. Matt "Wiggy" Wiggins Says:

    “Good things come to those who work their ass off everyday and relentlessly drive toward their goals with a purpose and desire that no one can deter. That is how I feel. I would not have gotten to where I am without this work ethic.”

    Great words, brother – great words.


Leave a Reply