Dr. Tom McCoy | A Doctor that KNOWS

Dr. Tom McCoy (00:00):

I got a lot more equipment than I usually do, so you need to tell me if everything looks and sounds. Okay.

Sevan Matossian (00:05):

You sound and look perfect.

Dr. Tom McCoy (00:09):

Okay. Outstanding.

Sevan Matossian (00:10):

Yeah, your lighting is great. You don’t look like a radish like me. I could set this light temperature to blue and I am still red. I don’t know what’s going on. I’m not this red in real life, what’s going on?

Dr. Tom McCoy (00:24):

It’s been eating

Sevan Matossian (00:25):

Neat for seven or eight days. How could I be anything? But I should be brown.

Dr. Tom McCoy (00:29):

Are you out in Arizona?

Sevan Matossian (00:32):

Yes sir. Yes sir. Dr. Tom.

Dr. Tom McCoy (00:34):

That’s awesome, dude. How’s, how’s the comp going so far?

Sevan Matossian (00:38):

I was only there for a couple hours. I got to meet the two guys who are the directors, and then one of the guys who’s partners with them, Jason, and then basically I was just talking to people there and I don’t make it out much since I started the podcast, but really what’s crazy is I just hung out with mostly just my cohort and a lot of women, just women over 50 who are twice as strong as me. It was cool. Who listened to the podcast, I’m like, what’s wrong with you old ladies? Aren’t you got something better dude, than listening to my vial dirty mouth. But I was just hugging on old ladies the whole time. It was dope.

Dr. Tom McCoy (01:15):

Yeah. Welcome to my world. That’s my strategic training strategy is I’ve found an affiliate that has some of the baddest ass women I’ve ever met in my life and they just crush me on a regular basis. So it’s a good strategy.

Sevan Matossian (01:31):

So I didn’t get to see much of the comp, but I got to hang with the people. You know who I saw cool people there. You know who Max l Hoge is over at Training Think Tank.

Dr. Tom McCoy (01:40):

I don’t haven’t met any of the Think Tank guys before,

Sevan Matossian (01:43):

But you know of them. Right? So there were two guys there that I taunt on my podcast a lot. I watched their podcast and then talked shit about ’em and I saw them and that was awesome seeing them. I loved seeing them. And I saw Dusty Highland and he’s just from Dogtown CrossFit. I only got to see him for a second, but that was cool. I saw Bosman. You know who I saw a FT? Do you remember him? No. Fuck is his real name. He was T’S number one competitor back in the day. Oh,

Dr. Tom McCoy (02:14):

Okay. Yeah, I don’t recall. I don’t recall his name.

Sevan Matossian (02:18):

Someone will say it in the comments. I cannot believe I. And what he happened to be at a SU, it’s at Arizona State University. He happened to be there for his 14-year-old daughter is amazing. Top 20 basketball player, I guess in the country. And he was there for a basketball tournament and masters just happened to be going on. Yeah, so he was tickled

Dr. Tom McCoy (02:40):

Way, dude. That’s so cool. Well, I saw the picky with Greg and Baz and everything yesterday. Yeah, it was Greg there or was that an

Sevan Matossian (02:51):

I’m here because I came to Arizona to hang out with Greg, so my kids and his kids are friends, so we get the families together and just hang out F’s fantastic. Five days of just hanging out with the cousins.

Dr. Tom McCoy (03:02):

It was so good. It was so good seeing him at the games man and hanging out with everybody and Greg and folks in the trailer park. I don’t think I saw you there though. I think you were busting your ass.

Sevan Matossian (03:13):

I was. I Oh, so you took the silver bullet to the games too?

Dr. Tom McCoy (03:19):

No, no, dude, it’s so hard to get a pass into the trailer park, but Greg, or excuse me, Craig and Matt have been buddies forever and it just so happened that one of my patients had the spot next to them, so it was awesome.

Sevan Matossian (03:37):

Oh, that’s cool. Lemme see if I can find a picture here on your Instagram of you have an Airstream. That’s how I remember you the most. You used to come to the ddcs. Oh, here it is. You would come to the Ddcs and I would see that thing parked in the back.

Dr. Tom McCoy (03:53):

Absolutely. Man, that was such a fortunate blessing. I lived in the Bay for, gosh, 25 years. I was there for a long time.

Sevan Matossian (04:04):

Look at that thing.

Dr. Tom McCoy (04:06):

Oh man. Yeah, it was so good when the kids were younger. I mean, they’re a little bit older now, but to have a captive audience like that and get out into the woods and just spend time together, it was a wonderful, wonderful thing.

Sevan Matossian (04:22):

Tom, you’re a physician. Where’d you go to school?

Dr. Tom McCoy (04:30):

In Arizona, actually, Arizona College, osteopathic medicine. I did medical school there undergrad at Ohio University and then finished at Cal State East Bay out in the Bay. And then, yeah, I worked at Contra Costa County for, gosh, I was there for almost 20 years now.

Sevan Matossian (04:53):

Where? In Contra Costa County? For the county.

Dr. Tom McCoy (04:55):

At the county hospital? Yeah. I was the director of the emergency department there for almost a decade.

Sevan Matossian (05:00):

The what department?

Dr. Tom McCoy (05:02):

Emergency Department

Sevan Matossian (05:03):


Dr. Tom McCoy (05:04):

Yeah, man.

Sevan Matossian (05:05):

And where is that located? What city is that in Contra Costa

Dr. Tom McCoy (05:08):

County. In Martinez.

Sevan Matossian (05:10):

Okay. Alright. My mom lives, it’s right

Dr. Tom McCoy (05:12):

Next to Craig.

Sevan Matossian (05:13):

Yeah, my mom was an attorney for Contra Costa County, so she probably worked in the building next to you. I was a little kid then. I was maybe like four or five, but

Dr. Tom McCoy (05:22):

Yeah, so she worked downtown in Martinez then.

Sevan Matossian (05:27):

And then tell me what’s an osteopath?

Dr. Tom McCoy (05:31):

So in the medical profession, you can be a DO or an md. And so dos, in addition to everything that ALLOPATHS do, which is an md, also get about 400 hours of training in body work. But we take all the same certifications, testing, residency. So most of us, once we get out into the real world, unless you can really carve out a practice niche, it’s hard to employ those skills just because you need the time and the space to actually be able to be with patients for that long to do the body work. So most of the time you’ll go to the hospital and you’ll be seeing a DO or an md and you’ll never know the difference.

Sevan Matossian (06:24):

I was talking to Greg yesterday and he can be critical about chiropractors and body workers and stuff, and I said, oh, McCoy’s coming on, he’s an osteopath. And he just looks at me and goes, it’s legit. It’s legit, basically. But what I’m hearing is it’s an interesting thing when you say bodywork. So what I’m hearing is, is that it’s a doctor. When you say, do you mean doctor of osteopath? What’s MD just stands for? Medical doctor.

Dr. Tom McCoy (06:56):

Medical doctor. And DO is doctor of Osteopathy. Yeah,

Sevan Matossian (06:59):


Dr. Tom McCoy (07:00):

Okay. Yeah. And then the founding principle is that the body has an innate desire to be able to heal itself if you put it in the right position to be able to do so in all of the ways that influence it. And so that’s where it’s called OMM, osteopathic manual manipulation. That’s what dos get trained in during medical school during their first four years of medical school to utilize that as a component of the overall treatment strategy.

Sevan Matossian (07:31):

You would think that everyone then should be a do

Dr. Tom McCoy (07:35):

Well. I think that the principle that your body and how you move and how you carry the stress or the total allostatic load and that it can manifest itself in physical ways is a real thing. But to be effective and be able to utilize that strategy, you have to spend a lot of time honing that craft. And so the people who do it and do it really well, I mean it’s just like anything else, right? It’s else, you know what they call the person who finished last and their medical school class, right?

Sevan Matossian (08:15):

No, tell me doctor. A doctor,

Dr. Tom McCoy (08:17):

Right? SO’S just like there’s great mechanics and shitty mechanics, there’s great doctors and shitty doctors. A lot of us can get caught up in credentialism and this, that and the other. But I think once you start to spend more time in the health space, you will meet people who are just amazing practitioners in whatever their domain is. And it matters a lot less what the initials after their name are, but their life experience, how they approach what they do and who they work with. So that comes with time though.

Sevan Matossian (09:01):

So the 400 hours are to get the degree and then you’re saying then you’re still basically fledgling, you have to put in a lot of work to be a good deal?

Dr. Tom McCoy (09:08):

No, I mean, yeah, the 400 hours are just required, right? It’s part of the training program. But I think the people who, I mean it is a very small percentage of people who practice OMM regularly. And usually that’s all they do. That’s the

Sevan Matossian (09:23):

Majority of their practice. So were you able to practice it when you were the emergency director over in Contra Costa County?

Dr. Tom McCoy (09:31):

Oh good god, no. You ever been to a county ER man?

Sevan Matossian (09:34):

Just on tv. Just on tv.

Dr. Tom McCoy (09:36):

Okay. I mean, we had the lockdown psych ward for the county. We take care of all the detention patients, everybody that gets arrested. So in order for body work to be effective, everybody has to be on the same page. And generally when people are coming to the emergency department, a lot of times you’re interacting with ’em on one of the worst days of their lives. So it’s usually not the right time or place to be diving into bodywork.

Sevan Matossian (10:04):

Chaos is happening.

Dr. Tom McCoy (10:06):

Listen man, you got to to triage and deal with the most immediate need. And then you go from there

Sevan Matossian (10:15):

During the, I dunno what you want to call it anymore. I don’t even know what to call it. In all honesty, the thing that the television tells us is the pandemic. Were you working in a hospital during those years?

Dr. Tom McCoy (10:31):

Yeah, I was running the er.

Sevan Matossian (10:33):

Oh, you were there for that?

Dr. Tom McCoy (10:34):

Oh yeah.

Sevan Matossian (10:35):

Wow. Wow. You must’ve seen some shit in there.

Dr. Tom McCoy (10:39):

It was crazy, man. And more so just the buildup. We have colleagues in Italy and around the world who really were experiencing the brunt of it. And because we knew so little in the beginning, there was just a lot of fear and concern because we just didn’t know what to expect. And thankfully it turned out to be very different than what we thought it was going to be. But the general mentality when you’re in that position is you have to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. Right. So a lot of my time over that couple years set up an outside tent hospital, completely changed all the workflows for the emergency department. It was an interesting, interesting time.

Sevan Matossian (11:33):

Why did you retire from there?

Dr. Tom McCoy (11:36):

Did not retire. No. I could have retired if I stayed a county employee and probably another two or three years. But I found my passion in doing what I’m doing now, and I just couldn’t look myself the mirror if I didn’t follow it.

Sevan Matossian (11:56):

I think I found your passion. We’ve had a lot of, lemme see if I can spot it. We’ve had a lot of, we had rich froning on the Barrack hunter and I saw you chopping down trees. This must be very unpopular. There’s the video,

Dr. Tom McCoy (12:15):

Not in Ohio, in Pennsylvania,

Sevan Matossian (12:17):

Man, let me show you. This guy chopping down a tree, fucking abusing. I can’t find it. Right? Where is that? What is your passion? Is your passion chopping down trees now? What are you doing?

Dr. Tom McCoy (12:27):

No, man. I mean,

Sevan Matossian (12:29):

What’s going on?

Dr. Tom McCoy (12:30):

I think that all of us have a calling or a line of work that truly feeds our soul and lights our fire. And I think for everyone, the hope is that you can find that and somehow incorporate your life’s work so that it continues to fuel that fire. Right. And for me, I loved working in the inpatient setting and acuity and doing procedures, but working in the er, it takes a little bit of your soul every day between the shift work and the level of trauma that you see. It’s a lot. And I’ve always loved the health and performance optimization space, and as I became more educated and spent more time there, I knew that that was what I wanted to pursue.

Sevan Matossian (13:35):

You knew what was you wanted to pursue because you said your calling. What was it that you wanted to pursue?

Dr. Tom McCoy (13:41):

So I mean, the vision, right, is to create an actual effective healthcare model and the integration of the best evidence-based practices from the medical side with what we know is foundationally most important, an appropriate nutrition strategy, strength and conditioning program, and understanding the importance of recovery and those being the foundational bedrocks and having the services or the capabilities to offer support when it’s needed in other areas, whether that’s in evaluation or interventions. And the most important component of that is in a community setting. That’s the vision and that’s what we know is most effective. And that’s what we’ve been able to build in Ohio. And that’s literally what I’m staring at right now. Outside of these war room windows here,

Sevan Matossian (14:48):

What are you staring at? Is it

Dr. Tom McCoy (14:51):

Now I am looking at proven HQ being built before my eyes.

Sevan Matossian (14:58):

Oh, awesome.

Dr. Tom McCoy (15:00):


Sevan Matossian (15:01):

Are you working with proven?

Dr. Tom McCoy (15:04):

Yeah. So McCoy Medical is the official health and performance partner for proven athletics.

Sevan Matossian (15:11):

Holy shit, dude. That is awesome. Did they approach you?

Dr. Tom McCoy (15:18):

I’ve known, I mean Jen and I, my co-founder have known Nick and Taylor for many, many years.

Sevan Matossian (15:28):

Nick Johnston and Taylor Williamson.

Dr. Tom McCoy (15:32):


Sevan Matossian (15:33):


Dr. Tom McCoy (15:35):

And have done work with Taylor in the past, and it was really just a natural evolution of that relationship to be able to provide comprehensive support and performance optimization for their elite athletes and tier two and tier three athletes. And so we formalized that partnership, gosh, about a year ago. It was about three or four months before the games last year, we started working with folks.

Sevan Matossian (16:05):

Tom, tell me the name of it. What did you call it? Vital Human. What did you call your practice?

Dr. Tom McCoy (16:11):

McCoy Medical.

Sevan Matossian (16:12):

McCoy Medical.

Dr. Tom McCoy (16:13):


Sevan Matossian (16:18):

You really are living your dream.

Dr. Tom McCoy (16:20):

Yeah. I mean, my clinic is about, I dunno, a hundred yards away from my affiliate that I own co-own in Ohio. And what we’re building here in Nashville is a seamless integration that literally under one roof we have health and performance optimization. What I think is going to be the best CrossFit affiliate on planet Earth in a full recovery protocol program all here for everyone, for the community affiliate side and for professional athletes.

Sevan Matossian (17:05):

What’s the name of your affiliate in Ohio?

Dr. Tom McCoy (17:08):

Chagrin Falls CrossFit.

Sevan Matossian (17:11):

Chagrin Falls. And that’s the one that I think most of my listeners know. John Woolies. Is that your partner Nick Wagan? Yeah. And then there’s the third guy too, right?

Dr. Tom McCoy (17:21):

Woman? Yeah. Jen Pisco. So Jen’s an og. She’s ran the affiliate for almost 10 years. And then John and I came to the party very late. So we’ve been partners for over a year with Jen.

Sevan Matossian (17:35):

Yeah, I remember he was talking about when he bought it, he was pretty darn excited.

Dr. Tom McCoy (17:39):

Yeah, man. No, that’s when you spend time in an affiliate and especially as a healthcare provider, you really start to understand the secret sauce of why CrossFit is so effective. And it’s the same thing in healthcare. And that’s the whole concept of creating a health home and an affiliate is a true health home. And that’s the vision for me is that this is, I am looking at Healthcare 3.0, the integration of medical care that actually emphasizes what’s most important that only gets lip service paid to it. Now in the mainstream medical system, strength and conditioning with the appropriate parameters around building lean body mass and muscle high intensity interval work, a zone two component if it’s necessary, if you have a degree of metabolic resistance, appropriate recovery protocols that really start to discuss the importance of sleep and other modalities to help balance allostatic load, which all of us are for the most part, way off kilter with in society as it exists today. And then just the basics of nutrition and CrossFit is the prescription. Everybody can start with that. And that’s 85 to 90% of the game.

Sevan Matossian (19:09):

You said just now you started that with affiliate is, what did you call it? Affiliate is the home of health.

Dr. Tom McCoy (19:17):

The health home. The health home affiliate

Sevan Matossian (19:20):

Is the health home. And then you reiterated nutrition, movement, recovery.

Dr. Tom McCoy (19:28):

I mean those are the three core pillars. And the challenge with how the system is structured now is that because we have a model that is predicated on doctors seeing as many bodies as humanly possible and as quickly as possible, and compensation being derived from procedures and interventions and filling hospital beds, which requires you to be sick, there is no incentive and no real ability for a physician to be able to actually pay their bills and keep the lights on and actually spend time with their patients and talk about the most important things. And even if they do have the time, we don’t get the training to be able to understand how to talk to people about this. But who does CrossFit coaches? And that’s part of the vision about what we really want to bring to the affiliate and to the medical side is we know that this works, but actually helping people understand why it works on the affiliate and the coaching side and on the physician and the health provider side who haven’t been exposed to CrossFit yet will allow us to be that much more effective both in advocacy as this being, I think when you look at numbers and volume, probably one of the most effective healthcare systems in the world.


When you look at the number of affiliates and the number of lives touched and the distribution around the globe, what other health system is curing or preventing the primary drivers of death and disease as it exists today as CrossFit? I don’t know that there is one.

Sevan Matossian (21:27):

And to add to that, which you did throw at the end and you emphasized that is also then the community piece. So basically like-minded people to basically mirror off of, and I guess for elements of accountability and responsibility,

Dr. Tom McCoy (21:41):

This is what I am most excited about. And I know that you had Karin on recently to talk about the conference coming up in Austin,

Sevan Matossian (21:49):

And you’re going to be speaking there, right on February 2nd, correct. Austin, Texas, Tom McCoy. Okay.

Dr. Tom McCoy (21:54):

But I think this is one of the most underappreciated, but probably the most powerful in differentiating components of what separates CrossFit from every other fitness modality out there. And there’s science that proves that. And whether we’re talking about addiction, and I know Dale King very well in the work that he’s done, or metabolic dysfunction and all the other disease states that plays a significant role in or mental health challenges, whether it be anxiety or depression or PTSD, the community component and what happens neurologically, hormonally, metabolically, just by being surrounded by a like-minded tribe is extremely powerful and has a measurable impact on your physiology. And I think for many of us who work in affiliates, we utilize this as a medical intervention every day. And we all know community is important, but I don’t think there’s a real understanding of the science that already exists that demonstrates how important it is and why it’s more important now than ever before because we are becoming more and more isolated and subjectively lonely. And that isolation objective, isolation and subjective loneliness have significant impacts on health outcomes.

Sevan Matossian (23:38):

Eaton, beaver, good morning. The beard is on point. I think he’s talking about yours, not mine. Jake Chapman coming in hard and nasty like usual. And osteo is what chiropractors think. They’re geez. Louis, be nice chiro to osteo is astrology to astronomy. My God, my God. Easy, easy, easy. Doctors put their fingers in your butt. Chiros don’t do that. Point chiros. Sorry I didn’t talk shit to my guests, but hey, what’s an insane example of that? Tom is what Shinde Decker is doing. Yes. He has the, what’s the guy called who after you go to jail or after you get out of jail? Oh, the probation. He has the probation officers work out with the kids

Dr. Tom McCoy (24:26):


Sevan Matossian (24:26):

Matter. And I guarantee you that’s a huge unfucking and not on the kids’ part, but that unfuck the probation officer because the probation officer’s, the doctor that you described that’s trying to get as many patients as possible through the door, right? The probation officer probably has a caseload that’s way too big, doesn’t have time for this bullshit. You know what I mean? And then they have to go and work out with these kids and all of a sudden there’s probably a connection there between the two. That’s so, I don’t know if this is the right word. Izing brings a humanity to the situation. That’s insane. And Shinde Decker was talking about how the judge is like, Hey, we’ve done tons of exercise programs, like running programs, this for these delinquent kids. We’ve never seen the success, the lack of rec, recidivism.

Dr. Tom McCoy (25:12):


Sevan Matossian (25:13):

Yeah. That reduced recidivism that you’re actually doing here. It’s insane. And I guarantee you it’s that community piece. A hundred percent. It’s not the thrusters, it’s done not the thrusters. It’s not just working out with other bad kids. And I use that. I know someone’s going to get mad at me for that, but bear with me. It’s working out with the probation officer. Fuck. I bet my life on it.

Dr. Tom McCoy (25:34):

So it is the thrusters, but it’s the thrusters with everybody else doing thrusters at the same time. It is a tribe working through shared hardship together for a common goal. We are evolutionarily wired to thrive in that setting. This is what we are built and designed to do. And the world as it exists today, robs us of that innate human experience. The work that Matt and Debbie are doing, and they’re,

Sevan Matossian (26:15):

Oh, they’re in your state too, right? They’re

Dr. Tom McCoy (26:17):

In Ohio too. It’s amazing. Right? And the rates of improvement that they’re getting, I mean, this is the reason why affiliates should be in juvenile detention centers, why they should be in jails and prisons, why they should be in hospitals. And we’re doing the inverse here, right? We’re bringing supportive medical services to the affiliate setting so that the affiliate can truly be the one-stop shop, right? If you cut your arm off, it’s a really good thing that there’s an ER for you to go to, right? Yes, sir. So if you need high acuity medical care for an emergent procedure or you need something else done that we can’t provide, then great. But that is the exception to the rule, my brother. And if we do everything well, like we do in the affiliate, when the coaching is strong and the community is strong and the balance is appropriate, your reliance on the dysfunctional system is decreased exponentially.

Sevan Matossian (27:18):

If you trip while robbing a Nordstrom’s with 10 of your friends out the door and you break your leg, you need the er.

Dr. Tom McCoy (27:25):

Right? I could tell you, do you still live in the bay, man?

Sevan Matossian (27:29):

No, I’m on Instagram. Then Tom, this is a really rude question, so I’m going to help him. Jake’s really just being, he’s on fire today, so I’m going to soften this question. He says, what’s Tom’s bench press one rep Max. Now lemme break that into two pieces. What’s your all time PR versus if we drug you out to the garage right now, it made you,

Dr. Tom McCoy (27:49):

Oh man. Honestly, I don’t, my bench pr.

Sevan Matossian (27:55):

You ever got two 40 fives on there? You ever got two plates on there?

Dr. Tom McCoy (27:59):

Oh yeah. No, it’s probably 2 35, 2 40 I think.

Sevan Matossian (28:05):

And what about today?

Dr. Tom McCoy (28:08):

Oh, not far off.

Sevan Matossian (28:09):

Oh, okay. There you

Dr. Tom McCoy (28:11):

Go, Jerry. I’m as strong now as I’ve ever been. Yeah, it’s definitely, definitely was not better before.

Sevan Matossian (28:17):

Dude. Jake Chapman has it out for you. Jesus crime. Yeah, he does look like he meant just 400. Let’s take that as a compliment. Let’s put all this big picture bullshit. Talk aside and let me ask you a really hard question.

Dr. Tom McCoy (28:30):

Yeah, man.

Sevan Matossian (28:31):

What about Q-tips?

Dr. Tom McCoy (28:32):


Sevan Matossian (28:33):

About ’em? It makes no sense that I should be using them, but I really love them and I love that feeling when I pull them out and I see the just gunks of orange shit on them. There’s this satisfaction. I’m like 50% through my day. I’m like, now all I have to do is be a good dad and I’m fucking done with the day.

Dr. Tom McCoy (28:53):

Are those the only holes that you stick them in though?

Sevan Matossian (28:59):

Is that what they tell you in medical school?

Dr. Tom McCoy (29:01):

I want to make sure we’re talking about the ears.

Sevan Matossian (29:05):

Yes. I just swab my inside of my ears and unfortunately I do ’em both at the same time. I don’t savor it. I do both at the same time. But any logical thought to the process is like, Hey, that’s stupid because you’re just pushing the shit in.

Dr. Tom McCoy (29:22):

That’s correct. I spent a disproportionate amount of time in the ER telling people to stop fucking doing that.

Sevan Matossian (29:29):

Yeah, because what happens? Tell me why it is satisfying though. Have you done it? It’s such a nice feeling having your hole plunged.

Dr. Tom McCoy (29:38):

I have put a Q-tip in my ear before, yes, I have had, but no. The reason is is that you can traumatize the canal or you can actually puncture your tympanic membrane. And for people who are high producers of serin, so the wax in your ear, you can.

The above transcript is generated using AI technology and therefore may contain errors.

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