0:00:11.8 Mike Vacanti: Hello, Jordan.


0:00:12.0 Jordan Syatt: What’s going on, Michael? Welcome back to the podcast after our nice month-long break.


0:00:18.5 Mike Vacanti: Disappear December.




0:00:21.2 Jordan Syatt: Not deliberately…


0:00:21.3 Mike Vacanti: I feel fresh and relaxed. I would say the first two weeks were unintentional, and after that, it was adopted as a concept.


0:00:32.7 Jordan Syatt: It was understood that we were just gonna wait until the new year.


0:00:35.8 Mike Vacanti: Yeah.


0:00:36.4 Jordan Syatt: Well, huge thank you to all the people who are messaging us on Instagram saying, “where are the episodes?” Got a lot of love being like, “Alright, we want the episodes again.” So we’re excited to be back, super excited about 2021. A lot of big things coming up. Actually, before we get into this episode, we have an interesting episode. So this is one we were planning on doing about a month ago, but then obviously, we didn’t. So what we decided to do for this episode was, I was gonna ask Mike questions and basically sort of surprise him with questions to ask him, a whole array of different questions. I think it’ll be really fun. Different types of questions, sort of like lifestyle, finance, coaching, fitness, nutrition, all of that. Before we get into that though, quick announcement.


0:01:23.8 Jordan Syatt: Number one is, we have a free guide, okay? A free guide, if you just want… It’s not very extensive. It’s not like a 5000-page manual that is like you’re gonna go in and learn all of the secrets of building an online business, but it’s a quick manual that’s gonna give you… How many tips are in there, Mike?


0:01:48.0 Mike Vacanti: Thirty. And you can probably read it under an hour, I would imagine, but they are probably the top 30 things that you could or should be doing to build your online fitness business.


0:02:03.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah. So the link to that is in the show notes. Obviously, it’s gonna ask you to put in your name and email in order to get it. If you decide you wanna get taken off of our email list as soon as you download it, just hit unsubscribe and you won’t hear from us. Candidly, we almost never email anyway. But if you want that guide, we think it’ll be very helpful, especially going into the new year. If you want to grow your audience, get more online coaching clients, have a better understanding of ways to improve your online coaching business, we think this is gonna help a lot. So the link to that is in the show notes. And also, just preemptively, we will be running a sale on the mentorship, the online fitness business mentorship, near the end of January, beginning of February. It’ll be a $200 sale.


0:02:54.5 Jordan Syatt: So $200 off of what it is normally priced at, which last year we did that one time. We did that one time in the whole year. About a year ago now, we did that and we didn’t do it the entire rest of the year. So if you are thinking about getting in the mentorship, wanting some extra accountability, having access to all of our courses, the group community, and really the most in-depth courses and guides and manuals that we have on how to be a better online coach, how to build a better business, how to do your social media, how to do better coaching, get your systems all set up, if you want literally everything that you need to know about that, then this is it. And there will be a $200 sale on that near the end of this month, so pay very close attention.


0:03:35.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, and like Jordan said, end of the month will be the sale and, obviously, we’ll provide more details here in future podcast episodes, but if you want to make sure you stay up-to-date, just grabbing that manual that we just shouted out, The 30 Ways to Build your Online Fitness Business, we’ll add you to the email list and then we’ll email that list, letting people know the details of the sale later in the month. So grab that if you even think that joining the mentorship at that discounted rate is something that you might want to do.


0:04:07.9 Jordan Syatt: Alright, so you ready… Do you wanna jump right into questions or you wanna jam a little bit on other stuff, Mike?


0:04:13.5 Mike Vacanti: No, let’s jam a little bit. Jordan, what happened to… You got a little scar on your head there, which I think is quite possibly one of the cooler things, and I’m very jealous, to be honest.


0:04:24.5 Jordan Syatt: Of this little scrape on my forehead?


0:04:27.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah.


0:04:28.1 Jordan Syatt: Man. [chuckle]


0:04:30.3 Mike Vacanti: It looks deeper on camera.


0:04:32.7 Jordan Syatt: No, it’s pretty deep. It’s pretty deep. I don’t really know what happened. I don’t know like the exact moment that it happened. I was doing Jiu-jitsu with my main partner, Peter. It was funny. When you asked me about it the other day, you’re like, “Dude, what happened?” My initial gut response was to make sure that you knew that I still won. You’re like what happened to your forehead? I was like, “I still beat the guy.”




0:04:54.7 Mike Vacanti: It was so honest and so authentic. And the best part of that is, in my mind, it’s 0% correlated with whether or not you won or lost. It was like, oh, probably like a little accidental head butt or something along those lines, but…


0:05:08.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I think it was an elbow. I think it was an elbow, but it’s funny ’cause everyone… If you follow me on social media, I talk about going to therapy, it’s been a big part of my 2020. It was a huge… Actually, we didn’t talk about my therapy appointment today. Mike and I talk… I have therapy every Monday at 10 am, and then after that, I call Mike, and we talk about what I spoke about on my therapy appointment. And…


0:05:33.3 Mike Vacanti: It’s essentially two for one therapy because Jordan gives me the highlights and all the best takeaways. And I’m basically getting like a condensed free handful of tips every single week. It’s great.


0:05:47.4 Jordan Syatt: It’s funny because within the last couple of months, my therapist, his name is Jesse, we were having a discussion, and he said, very straightforward. He was just like, “You really care about how you’re seen, don’t you?” And I was like… Oof. It was sort of like a punch to the gut, I was like, “Yeah, I really… I do care about how I’m seen. It matters to me a lot.” And so then it made me think about that when my first gut response was to let you know that I still won. I was like, “Why does it even matter? I could have got my ass beat, it doesn’t matter.” But it’s like my initial gut response is to be like, “No, I still beat the guy. Just so you know.”




0:06:27.0 Mike Vacanti: That is funny. It’s…


0:06:27.1 Jordan Syatt: Today was a good therapy appointment, though.


0:06:30.9 Mike Vacanti: Anything you’re cool sharing on here or want to share?


0:06:33.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah. Today, the biggest discussion was, it was… Most of it’s around my anxiety, but today it was like we had a big talk around sort of throughout the discussion, I was like, “Man, all of my anxiety, literally all of it, 100% of it comes from social media.”


0:06:51.6 Mike Vacanti: Interesting.


0:06:52.7 Jordan Syatt: And I think it sort of weaves into how I’m seen. I think that’s a huge part of it. But also, candidly, I think one of the biggest aspects of it is… And I guess this is a big discussion. I deliberately do not share certain things on social media out of fear. It’s purely out of fear. It’s out of fear of losing business, it’s out of fear of losing followers, out of fear of having people not like me. And it’s not because I don’t want to discuss those things. It’s not like those things aren’t important to me. It’s just because out of fear. And I was talking to Jessie, I was like, “Does this make me a coward that I don’t want to post these things, whether it’s just my personal beliefs about something, whether it’s about politics, whether it’s about religion, whatever it is. Does it make me a coward that I have these beliefs that I deliberately do not share because I’m fearful of a response?”


0:08:04.8 Jordan Syatt: And we had a whole conversation about that. And I think that’s where a lot of my anxiety stems from, is like, how I’m being seen, do people like it, or am I gonna ruin my business as a result of this? And hopefully for anyone listening, this is helpful to you. If not least of which just so you know, like if you’re struggling with that stuff, so am I. This is constantly a battle in my head. I think a lot of people look at me on social media and think, “Oh, he doesn’t struggle with any of this, it’s always great.” And it’s not. I have my own battles, too.


0:08:33.2 Mike Vacanti: I think it’s an unbelievably interesting conversation and it’s relevant to almost everyone listening, especially all coaches who have plans to build online business. Because when you’re creating, it’s something you’re going to run into and something that only gets magnified and amplified with bigger and bigger audience. If you look back 50 years, how many people would you be sharing private thoughts and beliefs and basically, the way you view the world? If you think about vlogging or even Instagram stories, to an extent, you’re essentially taking someone along with you in a day in your life, which really shows a lot about who you are, especially if you’re doing it authentically and not completely crafted to a persona. But what? Maybe like 15 people, like your close family and some friends, let’s even call it 40 people who like really knew things about you. And you can manage that group, you can have in-depth conversations with that group.


0:09:40.7 Mike Vacanti: Hundreds of thousands… I mean thousands is a lot of people, but tens or hundreds of thousands or even millions of people who all have an opinion and then… I know you’re in the DMs giving value and helping people with things, but I would imagine a significant percentage of that is just people who are talking about non-fitness related things as well. So you end up in conversations with hundreds, if not thousands of people about these very deep and complex positions that you might hold and it seems unmanageable to me.


0:10:16.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah.


0:10:18.3 Mike Vacanti: I can fully relate to why you would feel the way you feel and… Yeah, it makes a lot of sense.


0:10:26.1 Jordan Syatt: It’s interesting you bring that up because I spoke about that. I said, I was like, “I think most people, just everyday people, they interact with the same people on a day-to-day basis, whether it’s their family, their friends and their colleagues. They don’t have too much variance in who they’re speaking with and who’s hearing their thoughts and opinions.” But when you’re trying to grow on social media, and as you do grow, you have so many interactions, oftentimes with people that you’ll never meet, you’ll never speak to again, you wouldn’t recognize each other on the street. And sometimes they’ll just throw their opinion in the comment section, in your DMs, just as like a passing thought, but they really affect you. And so it’s interesting. I think with your family and friends and all that, it’s easier to share things that are, I guess, more controversial, more divisive opinions. My question to Jessie, I was like, “Does this make me a coward?” And he was almost taken aback by the strength of that word. He goes like, “That’s got a pretty intense flavor to it, that word ‘coward’.”


0:11:29.3 Jordan Syatt: And he’s like, “Number one, I think we have to distinguish between fear and being a coward. They’re two different things. So fear is normal,” he’s like, “and everyone experiences fear. Universally, fear is a normal human emotion that we all have. Being a coward, there are many ways to interpret that. And it really does depend on the person and the situation.” And it was interesting, ’cause at first I took almost a dogmatic stance. I was like, “No, it’s… You either are or you aren’t.” Whereas in fitness and nutrition and strength training, I’m the first person to say, if you really understand it, then you understand there’s no objective right or wrong. There’s so many individual variances that go along with it. And he’s like, “Listen, for one person, they might be able to share stuff, their thoughts about politics, their thoughts about religion and all this stuff publicly and have the incoming onslaught of comments and all that, it might not really affect them very much. So for them, it doesn’t mean that they’re not a coward. It just means that they’re not dealing with that anxiety and those emotions that you might be dealing with. So it’s like them sharing it doesn’t make them not a coward, and you not sharing it doesn’t make you a coward. You have to be self-aware enough to know how you will respond to those different messages and thoughts and opinions and then make the right decision for you.”


0:12:45.8 Mike Vacanti: Interesting.


0:12:46.0 Jordan Syatt: Sort of like… You and I talk about this a lot. JP, Jordan Peterson talking about, you can’t be strong, you can’t be… What’s the word?


0:12:56.5 Mike Vacanti: Good.


0:12:57.0 Jordan Syatt: You can’t be good if you’re weak. If you have an inability to do something, then it doesn’t make you good just because you didn’t do that bad thing. What makes you good is if you have the ability to do that bad thing, but you actively decide not to.


0:13:14.2 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yep. I remember the example he would give was, just because a rabbit can’t inflict pain on someone doesn’t mean that rabbit’s good or doesn’t mean that rabbit’s moral. It just doesn’t have the ability.


0:13:30.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah. Whereas, using that same animal kingdom, like a lion not inflicting pain on something, even though it could, that would be… Obviously, the animal kingdom is different, but same line of reasoning. So, yeah. That was interesting to me. I’m still not sure what I believe or what I think yet. ‘Cause I think, ideally, I’d like to be able to share whatever I believe, firmly stand in my opinion, stand in my beliefs and share it openly without letting other people’s thoughts and opinions negatively affect me. But in the same way someone… You have peanut butter in your house and peanut butter’s are trigger food. Well, ideally, you’d like to have peanut butter in the house and not just go ham and eat the whole container. But if you know yourself and you know you’re gonna eat the whole container, then probably best not to have the container in the house. For me, it’s like, ideally, I’d like to be able to say that stuff, but realistically, would those opinions and thoughts and the onslaught of messages, would that just take such a negative toll on me that it wouldn’t have been worth it?


0:14:34.6 Mike Vacanti: It also depends what an individual’s purpose is for using social media. And the two main ones are, one, build a business, like free content as a marketing tool for a business. And, two, is to help people for free with mostly fitness stuff, but really anything. And for the purposes of building a business, is it necessary to share what you believe to be true across subjects? No, it’s not. To help people? I think… I mean no. You can only post about fitness content and help a ton of people, but the more you are able to share of yourself, and I kind of learned this over the years on YouTube, the more you’re willing to share, the more honest you’re willing to be, the deeper your connection with your audience is going to be, by a lot, which is going to build trust, which is gonna allow you to help them more. So it depends what one is trying to accomplish with posting.


0:15:44.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah. So that’s what today’s therapy was about. [laughter]


0:15:51.7 Mike Vacanti: Was it good? Did you feel good after?


0:15:53.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, still it’s unresolved, which is okay. It’s not like I’ve come to a conclusion yet, but it’s a good discussion to have. And it was also… I think probably the best part about it was, I know for a fact the one area that gives me the most anxiety, which is like social media. Now, interestingly, I also know where in social media. Instagram and YouTube are probably two biggest ones. Podcast, zero anxiety on podcasts. And I think it’s ’cause the direct feedback is so minimal on a podcast. You can see in your ratings and reviews someone might… Whatever. Also, by the way, if you haven’t left a review yet, please do on iTunes. They’ve been incredible so far. But on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, you get immediate feedback and also it’s like a cesspool of negativity oftentimes.


0:16:44.5 Jordan Syatt: Whereas podcasts, it’s like we have a great discussion. I think people can hear the nuance and people can understand where you’re coming from more. They’ll listen for 45 minutes, an hour, hour and a half, and really have a deeper relationship with you and have a much more valid opinion based on what you’re saying and how you’re saying it versus a sound bite on Twitter, YouTube, Instagram. It’s harder to really understand where you’re coming from. So it’s worthwhile for me also just to know where specifically I get the most anxiety and to… Even though you carry anxiety with you everywhere you go, it’s important to know where it stems from. I think if you don’t know where it’s coming from, it makes it worse. So for me to know if I just get off Instagram, it almost immediately subsides. Not goes away, but you can feel it diminish. Close the app, diminished. It’s so important to know that. So I think that that is helpful in and of itself, just to know the source of it.


0:17:46.0 Mike Vacanti: Absolutely. And that also… It impacts where you spend time, it impacts maybe where you create more or create less. I’m interested… So it almost isn’t related to the type of content that you’re putting out because I was… Like YouTube comments can be notoriously like, they’re mostly anonymous, they can get ugly. But part of the reason that I see that or think that I see that is because of the type of content various people are putting on YouTube, whereas… I don’t know if I’ve missed something, but I feel like your YouTube is almost exclusively fitness-focused.


0:18:29.4 Jordan Syatt: Yes, yep.


0:18:30.7 Mike Vacanti: Like you’re not dropping a five-minute rant upload about some random topic.


0:18:35.2 Jordan Syatt: No.


0:18:37.0 Mike Vacanti: Are the comments with… Maybe the characters, like a Kenzie Morgan or those might get some kind of weird extremist position that you’re doing something bad with the… But what type of… Or is it even… Is it just more general, there aren’t specific types of comments?


0:18:56.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, it’s more just general. It’s not even specific. It’s far more general for sure.


0:19:01.7 Mike Vacanti: Got it.


0:19:03.0 Jordan Syatt: And I think it’s the ease and ability for random people to post their haphazard thought and opinion that for whatever reason they felt the need to say at that specific time. It’s like, “What are you doing?”


0:19:16.7 Mike Vacanti: That is based on a straw man of your position…


0:19:19.5 Jordan Syatt: Correct. Yes.


0:19:19.6 Mike Vacanti: To begin with. Yeah.


0:19:22.2 Jordan Syatt: It’s like, “How did you get that?” [chuckle]


0:19:22.7 Mike Vacanti: You’re the enemy… Yeah, right. You’re the enemy they want you to be, even if you’re not.


0:19:27.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Exactly.


0:19:30.4 Mike Vacanti: It is interesting, and all… My mind goes to like, “Okay, so this is a cost, this is a mental, emotional cost of this line of work, would I trade this to go sit in an office under fluorescent lights and take orders from people I don’t respect for 60 hours a week for less pay doing work that’s less meaningful like… With a tucked in shirt and having to hold in my farts all day?” Is that a trade I would make? Nope, not in an infinite amount of lifetimes.


0:20:03.0 Jordan Syatt: Correct. Especially ’cause… Especially knowing, for example, if I never wanted to post on Instagram again, that’d be fine. I could do podcasts, I could do website articles, there’s so many options where it’s like if you’re stuck in an office, it’s like you don’t have a choice who your boss is? You don’t have a choice where the office is, you don’t have a choice who you’re working with on work projects or who you’re… And you’ve no choice there. So here, the cool part is, with any job, with any situation, there’s always gonna be things that you can and can’t control, at least with this, we have far more control than we would in other situations.


0:20:41.2 Mike Vacanti: So much more control and control just doing the type of work we’re doing and also control… And even more control because we put in those initial few years of like ruthless grind to get to a point where now we have the luxury to pick one or two platforms if we wanted to. Like if I only wanted to do email and well… First of all, my coaching business is on referral right now, like I’m not doing anything, and it’s steady. So there’s one that speaks to a lot of the value of SEO and website and providing a good service, but yeah, like you said, if you wanted to just leave a certain platform alone and not touch it and focus only in one place or two places, you can do that and continue to make great progress.


0:21:31.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, that’s exactly right. SEO baby, search engine optimization.


0:21:37.1 Mike Vacanti: SEO, if that’s… If you’re wondering as a coach what to be doing in 2021 or where the hot spot is, or where to place your focus here in the first week of the new year: Website, podcast, YouTube. Pick one of those for sure, because that… We’ve talked about it extensively, we don’t need to get into it, but I still have coaching requests based on articles that I wrote six years ago.


0:22:05.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, and I think the important part about what you just said is pick one. Just pick one. You don’t need to do all three, especially beginning of the year, making goals, people get overzealous, “I wanna do this, I’m gonna do this, I’m gonna do this,” whether it’s fitness clients, “I’m gonna work out seven times a week,” or business coaching people who are like, “I’m gonna make this many pieces of content… ” It’s like, just pick one, one website article a week for three years straight, you’ll be good forever. Just one a week, and not like a crappy article that’s like 400 words and you hit publish so you got it done, like a legit article that you spent 12 to 20 hours on every week, or one ridiculously good podcast or one ridiculously good YouTube video. One of those every week would… If you do that for three years, you’ll be crushing it.


0:22:58.9 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. It’s true. It’s absolutely true. Should we get into some questions?


0:23:05.0 Jordan Syatt: You’re ready?


0:23:06.4 Mike Vacanti: I’m ready.


0:23:07.8 Jordan Syatt: Alright, I’m trying to think if that’s…


0:23:08.9 Mike Vacanti: And these are… You thought of the questions, but this is no different than any other episode, we’ll both talk about these. This isn’t like you’re interviewing me.


0:23:18.8 Jordan Syatt: I’m sort of interviewing you. [chuckle]


0:23:21.2 Mike Vacanti: Well, then I sort of interviewed you every week of 2020.


0:23:28.0 Jordan Syatt: Okay. Michael J. Vacanti, “Why don’t you actively sell very much?”


0:23:41.2 Mike Vacanti: Was that on the list or was that a new one?


0:23:43.3 Jordan Syatt: It’s right there. It’s number two.


0:23:44.7 Mike Vacanti: Oh okay, I like it, I like it.




0:23:49.0 Mike Vacanti: Oh. Oh, I misinterpreted this, in my business.


0:23:54.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.


0:23:55.8 Mike Vacanti: Or investments?


0:23:56.9 Jordan Syatt: No, that’s for your business.


0:24:00.6 Mike Vacanti: I see.


0:24:00.7 Jordan Syatt: I don’t know your investment strategy yet, I’m still trying to work my way into the…


0:24:04.9 Mike Vacanti: I don’t sell very much there either. [chuckle] Why do I not sell very much? So I would argue that I do, I just… Well, let’s talk about the first five years of my business where I grew it without hard-selling, without running a launch. I would argue that I was selling, because I was continuously soft selling in all of my free stuff, I was continuously using client success stories as examples in articles to teach. So while teaching for free, there’s also the subliminal messaging of, “By the way, this person worked with me and made extraordinary progress, and there’s a link in here over to my coaching or my before and afters tab on my website.” I’m more comfortable with that type of selling just because you’re not giving away equity, is how it feels to me. You’re not in a jab, jab, jab, right hook sense, you’re just continually throwing jabs, you’re continually building goodwill with your audience with free helpful stuff without ever asking for a take, which I think one, makes the time when you do want to ask for a take more impactful, and two, I was just… I would say fortunate that I never had to.


0:25:38.3 Mike Vacanti: I never had to go for a sale, and keep in mind, my first nine months of… Since my website went up, I had zero online coaching clients, like I could have sold during that time, but I was in a position where I just wanted to build goodwill with an audience, build an audience, and I was working… I had an internship, I had a job as a personal trainer on the gym floor at the time, so I didn’t need my online business to pay my bills, that was… I had that covered through other means, so because I didn’t have to and I was successful enough soft selling that from 2013 to 2016, I never ran a sale of any kind, and then when I did make my first e-book Workout Program in the fall of 2016, it sold really well, it’s sold much better than I expected it to based on my audience, etcetera.


0:26:37.4 Jordan Syatt: I think you bring up a really good point, which is… You said it very nonchalantly, I didn’t have to, and I think… Someone just messaged me this morning and I didn’t reply yet, they messaged me saying that the effect of… They feel so bad that they can’t go all in on their online coaching because they’re doing a job that they don’t wanna do in order to pay the bills, and that’s literally exactly what you were doing. You were working… You were doing a job you didn’t wanna, but what you did is you saved up enough money to get to the point where you could then leave that job and then go fully online. And I think having the mindset of, “Do I need to” versus “Do I want to” as you’re selling… I think a lot of people, they see other fitness influencers, whatever you wanna call them, they do these like affiliate code sales, they do these program sales, these e-book sales, these big launches, and I think a lot of people look at that being like, “Oh, so if I wanna be an online coach, I have to do that. I’ve gotta do that to show people that I’m successful,” and they think that that’s what they need to do.


0:27:48.5 Jordan Syatt: When the reality is, it’s not. It doesn’t matter what anyone else is doing, what matters is what you’re doing for your business and your clients. Just because you can do an affiliate code sale, it doesn’t mean you have made it, at all. Just because you can do a swipe up, “Swipe up and use my code,” it doesn’t mean you have made it. Just because you can do a big launch for your online coaching program, it doesn’t mean you’ve made it. When you’ve made it, it means that you’re working with people and helping them achieve their goals, and it’s also helping you and your family because you’ve built a very sustainable lucrative business thats built off the foundation of helping others, so you have to look at it… You spent nine months, not really making any money from all of your work, and rather than spend that time frame selling, selling, selling, selling, just to try and get a nibble, you spent the time helping, creating great content, and then that’s what fuel the rest of the success. I think this is an important distinction to make about selling is you don’t have to sell, especially if you’ve taken time to save up money, put it in the bank, give yourself some wiggle room, you don’t have to sell, that’s not a must. And the more good will you build up through helping people, the less you’ll have to.


0:29:01.1 Mike Vacanti: That’s absolutely right. And you talked about that nine-month period, I saved up what I thought was two years worth of living expenses. And it’s funny, I was going through old journals the other day, and there was one from before I quit my job when… I basically had said that I wanted to give myself two years of runway, and if I failed, I failed and I would go back with my tail between my legs, but I would deeply regret never taking the shot. However, if I only saved up six months of expenses, it would have been a different story. And during that two year… Even before the two years, during the year and a half leading up to it, I was so aggressive on spending as little as possible because my number one priority was saving enough to quit, so just ruthlessly cutting out whatever expenses are possible during that time, that little bit of savings gives you freedom to behave in a way you want to from a business perspective, and also increases your chances of making it work.


0:30:10.1 Jordan Syatt: Got it. Okay, so we’re gonna segue nicely into this next question, Michael J. Vacanti, I’m gonna preface every question with your name. Michael J. Vacanti, “Do you think it’s worthwhile to invest? If Yes, why? And if you could give one single piece of advice for someone who knows nothing about investing, AKA me, what would it be?”


0:30:38.0 Mike Vacanti: Let’s take them one at a time. Is it worthwhile to invest?


0:30:41.8 Jordan Syatt: Do you think it’s worthwhile to invest? Yes.


0:30:44.0 Mike Vacanti: I think that everybody is investing in something, whether they know it or not. And so if you have $10,000 sitting in a checking account, you are… I mean your asset portfolio has you in US currency, which is a currency that doesn’t generate a return, like you don’t get extra money just for being in the US dollar, the dollar gets weaker over time, especially with everything going on… All of these… I’m actually not gonna go that route with answering the question. [chuckle]


0:31:29.1 Jordan Syatt: Okay [chuckle]


0:31:30.7 Mike Vacanti: Here’s what I would say. If you have $10,000 in cash that you… Or any amount of money, if you have $200 that you think that you could go the next 30 years without needing that 200, you have enough other money, you have a job and you’re in an okay position financially, I would invest that $200 because on average, over the last I don’t know, 75 years, give or take 10, the stock market has returned an average of 7% or 8% per year, and to put that into context, if you were to invest 10,000 today… I actually did this somewhat recently, if you were to invest 10,000 today, and let’s assume an average rate of return of 8% over the next 30 years, that 10,000 would be 100,000 in 30 years.


0:32:26.1 Jordan Syatt: That’s crazy. It literally just turns into $100,000 if you invest it.


0:32:31.4 Mike Vacanti: Yes, if you invest it and you don’t touch it. And again, we’re dealing with assumptions. This is what’s happened on average over the last many, many, many decades, who knows if aliens show up tomorrow if… No one really knows, but you’re most likely going to see a return similar to that. However, don’t invest that money if you’re trying to quickly double it so that three months from now, you can then use that money because… And that’s where I… It’s like gambling versus investing. For those of us who don’t have time to research individual companies, we don’t have real information that we can make decisions off of, we don’t know what’s going to happen, what companies are going to pop, which stocks to buy, we’re really just guessing based on preferences and what we like, it makes more sense to invest in some kind of fund. And I think I mentioned on here before, I really like the Vanguard ETFs, which are a low fee diversified basket, if you think of it like… Rather than owning one company and that company could do really well or really poorly, you own a little bit of a whole bunch of companies, and so on average, even if a few of them do poorly and a few of them do well, on average, you’re going to make money.


0:34:03.5 Jordan Syatt: Got it. Got it. Okay, so as opposed to like… And obviously, probably Amazon or Tesla are good single companies to get, but that’s one example of a single company versus this other option, which is a whole basket of companies that you put your money into.


0:34:19.6 Mike Vacanti: They may or they may not be good companies to get based on today’s valuation, and by the way, I… Of my investments, I’m 90% invested in ETFs and 10% probably in individual companies that I like, Amazon and Tesla being two of them. And I think Facebook is the only other company that I actually own shares of that company, but… Yeah, and that’s more for fun. I don’t understand the electric car market well enough to know why Tesla has been exploding over the last couple of years, I just… It’s only 10% of everything I have invested. I have a couple of real smart friends who thought that they had good reasons for investing in Tesla, and I put a little bit in there. Facebook… Gary told me to buy Facebook one day in 2014 or 2015, he was like, “Buy Facebook right now, it’s gonna kill over the next few years,” I was like, “Okay,” so I did. And Amazon, it just felt right and it’s so big and I bought, I don’t know, a handful of shares.


0:35:25.7 Jordan Syatt: Got it. Okay.


0:35:27.3 Mike Vacanti: But the majority of where I’m investing… And by the way, this changes as you get older, as you get closer to retirement age and wanting to actually use that money, the general advice is that you move away from equities and into something safer and more secure that has a lower average rate of return.


0:35:52.1 Jordan Syatt: Got it.


0:35:53.0 Mike Vacanti: But for most of the people listening, if you have cash laying around that you’re not gonna need, It makes sense to invest that and whether that’s in a Vanguard ETF like I recommended or if… A lot of companies have 401K match programs, and so if you happen to be in a situation like that where if you invest a certain amount in your 401K, the company will match that amount, that’s free money right there. I would absolutely take advantage of something like that. Generally speaking, it makes more sense to pay down debt before investing in the stock market. Now, it depends on who you ask and… We’ve talked about Dave Ramsey a little bit. I think…


0:36:41.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah. I like him a lot.


0:36:44.4 Mike Vacanti: He makes the best content on this that I’ve… And I haven’t really gone into it just because it feels pretty intuitive to me, but I like everything I’ve heard from him, but yeah, paying down debt seems to make more sense than investing in the market, unless your interest rate on that debt is extremely low for whatever reason, whether it was some kind of government subsidized loan or… But yeah, that’s my general thoughts on it.


0:37:15.2 Jordan Syatt: Dave Ramsey is great. I follow him on Instagram for anyone who knows very little to nothing about this like myself, he has great content, very well spoken, very articulate, making it very easy to understand, so strongly recommend his stuff. I will say one thing that I learned from you, just ’cause this has been very helpful to me, and I’ve learned a lot from you on this was, a more recent change that I made was, I used to look at investing as like, “Okay, so I have this amount of… ” Sort of like you just said, if you have money laying around, invest it. And I used to look at it as a one-time thing, but more recently, it was like, if I know monthly, I’ll have this much money lying around that I don’t need right now, then on the first of every month, I’ll invest that much money each month.


0:38:03.8 Jordan Syatt: So it just makes it a habit, it’s done each month, over and over again without having to think about it, ’cause before it was always on my mind, but I didn’t have a schedule and what a crazy thought process, like you get on a schedule and things improve. But that’s literally, it was more of like a sporadic thing, sort of like, oh, you go to the gym, like you know you should go to the gym, but you don’t have a workout plan, so you just go every now and then, you do whatever you feel like, versus now with the first of every month, I have a plan of how much money I think I’ll… Of what I plan to invest every month, and that’s what I do the first of every month, and now it’s recurring, it happens without me thinking about it, just taken out of my bank account. That has been very helpful for me, and it was even cool… What’s the website that you can calculate what it will turn into in 30 years or something? Do you know what the name of that is?


0:38:50.0 Mike Vacanti: If you type into Google like “investment calculator,” the top few hits will be exactly what you need.


0:39:00.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I remember, so Dave Ramsey, I was listening to one of his pieces of content, this actually, I think this piece of content was the one that inspired me to make this monthly was he was laughing at people who were buying super expensive cars and going into debt over it. And he was like, he’s like, “You idiots.” He’s like, “If you’re paying X amount a month on this car and like da, da, da… ” I don’t know how he worded it, but he was basically like, “If you took that $340 and invested that $340 every month,” then in 30 years it’d be like a million dollars or something like that, and I was like, “Oh my god, really?” And so then I did that investment calculator thing, I went, I Googled that and put it in, I was like, that would literally be like a million dollars in 30 years if you did that once a month, every month. And I was like, “What am I doing?” And so then I was like, “This is how much money every month I’m gonna invest,” and that was… I’m 29 years old and I don’t know what’s gonna happen, but hopefully that at the very least, it got me on a good plan and a good routine to follow.


0:39:58.8 Mike Vacanti: That’s great, I absolutely love that. One of the other reasons I love that rather than haphazardly investing is because, and what you’re doing is a method called dollar cost averaging. And if you think about a weight loss graph, like someone plots all of their data points, logs their weight every single day and over the course of many months, it trends down, but there are spikes and it goes up and down; you can think of the stock market like that. Over time, it has always gone up, but there are down weeks, there are down months, there have been down years.


0:40:39.8 Mike Vacanti: If you think about the day-to-day spikes, like the peaks and valleys, if you’re investing, for example, $500 on the first of every month, rather than the same amount over the course of the year rather than a one-time investment of $6000, what you’re doing is you’re reducing your variance, you’re reducing risk, because let’s say you only invest once a year when you really felt like it, at the end of the year, you invested a whole $6000, and it just so happened that the market was near an all-time high on that day that you invested it, whereas if you were to put in 500 on the first of every month, you’re going to get entry points into the market that are more average, some might be on peaks, some are going to be on valley, some are going to be in the middle. So on average, you’re entering at a more “in the middle price” because none of us can time the market, none of us know for certain when it’s gonna go up or when it’s gonna go down, which is one of the main reasons why the strategy you just laid out is such a good one.


0:41:48.7 Jordan Syatt: That makes total sense. That makes total… I love hearing you talk about this stuff ’cause I know literally nothing about it, and there’s something comforting about listening to you talk about it, ’cause it makes it more understandable. ‘Cause I know so little about this that just hearing people talk about Vanguard ETFs, and I’m like, “I don’t know any of what that means,” but when you break it down, it makes it much more manageable, and even when I didn’t have the income that I have now, I still would have been able to figure out… Even if it’s $50 a month, I could do that. $50 a month, I could put that into this, and when you… It was that calculator.


0:42:24.9 Jordan Syatt: It was that investment calculator that really did it for me, I was like, “Oh my god, $100 a month can turn into that,” which for me… And you know me very well, but a huge part of my anxieties and fears is losing everything. Right? And that goes back to my past issues, my father, all that stuff, so to know that there’s some level of comfort knowing that as long as I’m diligent with this investment on a monthly basis, I’m not guaranteeing safety, but I’m giving myself a much greater chance of safety and comfort down the road.


0:43:01.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, absolutely, and that $50 a month example is such a good one because… And I like the car example that Dave Ramsey uses, a good, kind of extreme one, but even on a more micro level, if you’re not investing anything but you… If you combed over a month of spending on your credit card statement, I’m sure you could come up with $50 worth of things that are like, “Okay, this is kind of silly. Do I really need this? Is this adding value to my life as much as $50 a month for 12 months times 25, 30, 35, 40 years,” based on how old you are and when you think you might want to actually start using that money, which is when you have less of an income or maybe no income in your later ages.


0:43:51.6 Mike Vacanti: It makes it very clear that like, “Okay, what do I like more? This $50 worth of crap or this security in my future?” Which is really just… It’s the principle of sacrifice, it’s an example of it right there, ’cause you’re sacrificing pleasure, enjoyment, and maybe even not that much pleasure in the near term based on what the thing is for security in the future, for a better, more prosperous future.


0:44:19.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, makes total sense. Alright, sharp change of direction. Next question, Michael J. Vacanti, “What does an ideal day of eating look like for you?”


0:44:33.6 Mike Vacanti: Man, it’s funny how much that has changed over the last 10 years, so right now…


0:44:42.6 Jordan Syatt: Well, let’s talk about the growth and the evolution of Mike Vacanti’s day of eating.


0:44:48.2 Mike Vacanti: I’m gonna have to go deep and really think to try and give good answers.


0:44:55.5 Jordan Syatt: Let’s go… Do you wanna go to 2014, Mike? Is that like…


0:45:00.1 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, I like that, 2013/2014.


0:45:02.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.


0:45:03.5 Mike Vacanti: An ideal day of eating was wake up… So this is right before I started coaching Gary.


0:45:12.8 Jordan Syatt: What was your goal? What was your goal in those years, what were you trying to achieve?


0:45:17.0 Mike Vacanti: Just to look like I was on all of the steroids on Earth without actually being on them.


0:45:24.1 Jordan Syatt: Got it. So maximum muscular potential, minimum body fat like…


0:45:29.3 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. Just not have any fat really and just as much lean mass as possible always. I would wake up early, have coffee, do some emails, and then take a double dose of Purple Wraath with a couple of scoops of pre-workout, I don’t even really wanna know how much caffeine I was consuming at this time, and then go train fasted at New York Sports Club on the upper, upper, upper east side. So I go from my Harlem apartment to the gym on, I think it’s on 86th Street, and just rage, just very angry workout, whatever I was hanging onto was coming out in those three to five day a week sessions.


0:46:24.0 Mike Vacanti: Post-workout, I would have 40 grams of protein with 40 grams of some kind of super fast digesting, either like Sour Patch Kids, or sometimes I would just bring a jar of honey to the gym with a tablespoon and I’d squeeze the honey into it and then lick it all out, and I would do that, I think three times was my routine. So maybe 50 grams of carbs.


0:46:48.8 Jordan Syatt: Wait. So you were fasted training with BCAAs.


0:46:51.4 Mike Vacanti: Yes.


0:46:52.1 Jordan Syatt: Got it. Then you go into 40 grams of protein, which is rapidly digesting carbohydrates.


0:46:57.4 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, just delicious and just feeling the glycogen fill up post-workout, and then really it was just whether I was lean bulking or cutting, it was hit my macros for the day. And sometimes I was intermittent fasting, sometimes I wasn’t. Sometimes that workout will be later in the day, or sometimes I would actually do that on a training day, but then wait until noon to break my fast on rest days, was something that I was doing a lot of back then. But there were often two good size meals, chicken and sweet potatoes was one, beef and sweet potatoes was one; steak and eggs was in that rotation, egg whites and oatmeal was in that rotation.


0:47:46.8 Mike Vacanti: And when I say steak, I mean like whatever the cheapest rump I don’t even know, I don’t know what it was, but the cheapest meat I could find, and just try and get close on my macros for the day. Drink a lot of water. Work all day and… Yeah, and I think during that time is when I started going to… Once a week maybe I was going to Chipotle, but I was comfortable enough financially that I had started to work that into the system, it wasn’t just pure Costco meals.


0:48:21.3 Jordan Syatt: Do you remember on a training day what your macros would have been around?


0:48:26.3 Mike Vacanti: I remember Dick Talens had me in an aggressive, when he was my roommate, I let him do my nutrition and this was in the spring of 2014. I remember being on like… Yeah, I do remember. 175… So rest day was 175 protein, 135 carb, 60 fat; and training day was 175 protein, in the twos, 240 carb, 42 fat. And I was just hungry all of the time.


0:49:05.5 Jordan Syatt: I was gonna say, that’s a pretty significant deficit for you, yeah?


0:49:09.9 Mike Vacanti: Training in person 30 hours a week, training myself in New York City, so walking all the time, I was… I was absolutely shredded, I probably lost a little bit more lean mass than ideal, but to his credit, I think he actually did a good job and I was happy with how I looked then, but funny enough, when I was leafing through journals New Year, that vibe… I came across something from 2012 that said, on day three of… On day three of a cut, eating in a deficit is something like I was comparing it to clinical depression as if I knew what that actually felt like, but I was… I was like, “They are completely indistinguishable, like this is terrible.”




0:50:00.2 Jordan Syatt: And what’s an ideal day of eating look like for you nowadays?


0:50:03.5 Mike Vacanti: Get enough protein and feel good.


0:50:06.5 Jordan Syatt: Okay, so food-wise, macro-wise, what’s that look like?


0:50:13.8 Mike Vacanti: Wake up when I wake up, I’m coaching Gary on FaceTime in the evenings now, which works a lot better for sleep and everything than a 6:00 AM or… At his apartment.


0:50:25.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, you had to wake up at like 5:00 just to get there in time. Yeah.


0:50:28.8 Mike Vacanti: Yep. He just texted me 7:15 workout.


0:50:32.1 Jordan Syatt: There you go.


0:50:35.0 Mike Vacanti: So wake up when I wake up, usually 7:30, between 6:00 and 9:00 AM depending. Have coffee, like 120-150 milligrams of caffeine worth of coffee, so not a lot, maybe like two-thirds of a homemade cup here, and then…


0:50:57.3 Jordan Syatt: Do you drink it black?


0:50:58.9 Mike Vacanti: A little bit of sweetener.


0:51:00.9 Jordan Syatt: Got it.


0:51:01.0 Mike Vacanti: Yep. And then sometimes I’ll have BCAAs after that and then go train. More recently, I’ve been having like 25-30 grams of casein with sometimes some fruit, sometimes like a piece of toast with a banana cut up on it and a little bit of honey, and then what are some other main meals throughout the day? There’s a hot bar at Whole Foods that I’ll go oftentimes for lunch, so on a rest day, I’ll do that, maybe that my next meal will be at 1:00 or 2:00 PM, and I’ll go have that with a protein, and then either like sweet potatoes or plantains and then a bunch of vegetables in there. Sometimes if I train, I’ll have either Chipotle after or a shake, some protein in a CLIFF Bar or some protein and some kind of carb with it after training. Afternoon, usually a couple of Greek yogurts to hold me over to the night, and this is like a good day of eating by the way, not every day is like this, obviously.


0:52:13.0 Jordan Syatt: This is ideal.


0:52:14.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. Yeah, and then in the evening, my girlfriend cooks and we’ll have… Like last night, we had chicken and salad and fruit, like a marinated grilled chicken with a salad that had some seeds in it and some dressing, and then raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, like mixed fruit thing with a little something sweet before bed.


0:52:43.0 Jordan Syatt: What was your eating like over the holidays?


0:52:47.4 Mike Vacanti: Complete and utter trash. Wake up, her family, she’s Italian, her family, her dad likes to cook, he makes big breakfast every single day, so no matter what you had going to 8:00, 9:00 PM the night before, at 9:00 AM the next morning, eggs, Eggs Benedict, toast, just lots of butter, lots of salt, lots of… So I was eating that for breakfast, and then during the day, in the middle of the day, I would try and keep it reasonable, just because I knew that dinner was like… I wasn’t even gonna be hungry for dinner, so I would do an hour walk during the day and try and get moving and get my appetite up.


0:53:38.4 Mike Vacanti: I’d have a couple, maybe like two or three ready to drink protein shakes between the hours of 11:00 and 5:00, and then at dinner, it was more just debauchery. It’s the holiday, you know, desserts cookies, great pasta, chicken steak, shrimp.


0:54:02.8 Jordan Syatt: You prefer a higher carb, lower fat diet. You feel better on that?


0:54:08.4 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, 200 grams of fat in a day, and I don’t… I just feel like death. I also think I add body fat a lot quicker when that happens. I snapped a couple of pictures where, on like December 28th when I felt like I was peak, disgusting relatively. And just in case I decide to do anything crazy with my fitness this year, I’ll have a nice little six-month snapshot.


0:54:35.7 Jordan Syatt: Peak disgusting. [laughter]


0:54:39.4 Mike Vacanti: And when I say that, I actually mean like I felt… I just felt awful.


0:54:44.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, you felt like you’ve put on more body fat than you should have. Yeah, makes sense.


0:54:49.1 Mike Vacanti: Not only that, but almost nauseous, like just so full.


0:54:54.9 Jordan Syatt: Just ate so much. Ate when I wasn’t hungry. Yeah, yeah, yeah. That’s never a good feeling is when you’re like, you’re eating when you’re… You’re beginning a meal and you’re not even hungry. [laughter]


0:55:08.8 Mike Vacanti: Dude, I hate it. I feel like that’s a little bit of a difference between you and I that you can… I don’t know, I feel like many times in the last several years, you’ve complemented my hunger cues, which I just take for granted.


0:55:25.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Well, you always find it interesting ’cause you’ll be like, “Hey, are you hungry?” And I’ll just be like, “I can eat.”


0:55:32.8 Mike Vacanti: “I could eat, yeah, yes. I could eat.” I’m like, “No, no, no, are you hungry?” I don’t want to impose this meal on you…


0:55:37.1 Jordan Syatt: You’re like, “I don’t want to force you to eat. [laughter]


0:55:39.3 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. If you just ate an hour ago, you don’t have to… And you’re like, “I could eat.”


0:55:45.4 Jordan Syatt: But it really speaks to our personality types too, where it’s like, I’m very go with the flow, if you’re like, “Hey, I’m gonna go eat,” I’m like, “Cool, let’s do it,” and it doesn’t really matter, but for you, if I’m like, “Hey, I’m gonna go eat,” and if you’re not hungry, you’d be like, “Okay, cool, I’ll see you later.” It’s just like… ‘Cause you have your plan, what you need to do, and I’m much more just like, “Yeah, we’ll figure it out.” [laughter]


0:56:05.9 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah, it’s true.


0:56:10.1 Jordan Syatt: That’s super interesting. Alright, so we got about 10 more minutes looking through these questions. We have a bunch of questions. I might do another one of these episodes, I’m enjoying this.


0:56:21.0 Mike Vacanti: I’m having a great time. If you’re enjoying this, let us know. DM Jordan, he’ll see it. Or email me.


0:56:28.7 Jordan Syatt: Okay, here’s a good one. Micael J. Vacanti, are there any foods that you tell your clients to avoid?


0:56:44.0 Mike Vacanti: On the… Across the board globally? No, there’s no… No, this food is off limits for my clients. On an individual basis, usually no, almost always no. The only situations I’m thinking of are when people have foods that they just… You can call them a trigger food, but really just something that they cannot and never have been able to and don’t even intend to eat in moderate reasonable portions. But what I usually do for those types of foods isn’t disallow them, but rather just go with the, “Okay, if you want to eat this food, then you can go buy this food and buy it in the quantity that you plan on eating it, and eat it and enjoy it, but don’t keep it lying around, don’t have it tempting you unnecessarily.” Yeah, that’s basically how I approach that.


0:57:54.9 Jordan Syatt: It’s an interesting topic, and it’s… There’s two major ways that I’ve seen people go, and the research sort of lines up with this, in terms of addiction, it goes this way as well, where, for example… Let’s say we’re looking at alcohol or cigarettes, which are very legitimate addictive substances. Some people do way better with complete elimination, like cold turkey, done, off. And it’s difficult, but cold turkey done away, like not worrying about it again. Other people do better with a more gradual approach. So if you’re having 17 drinks a week, you bring that down to 12 drinks a week, something like that. Or if you’re having four packs a day, you bring that down to two packs a day, and then progressively go down. Different approaches work for different people. And the only way you know is through trial and error, and I think in my experience with my clients, I’ll sort of ask, “Which type of person are you? Are you more of a cold turkey all or nothing person, or do you think you’re more of a gradual… Like would like to include it and see how that goes?” Interestingly, they almost always guess the wrong one.


0:59:14.8 Mike Vacanti: They usually guess wrong as to what they are?


0:59:17.0 Jordan Syatt: Correct. If I say, What are you? And they say they’re an all or nothing person, usually that’s not the case, they’d like to be an all or nothing person, but they’re actually not. And then the people who are like, “I like to do a little bit more slow and gradually,” it’s like, “No, you probably need a little bit more of a… ” And this isn’t a steadfast rule, but I’ve noticed that generally speaking, they want to be the one that they’re not. Which is like, guys, they look at… They don’t have a lot of muscles and they wanna be the like guy who’s very muscular and the guy who’s very muscular are like, ” Oh, I feel like I’m a little bit too big, I wanna look like that guy,” women with straight hair, wanna have curly hair, women with curly hair wanna have straight hair. We often wanna be what we’re not. I’m very much the same way, nothing is inherently off limits. For the people that I’ve found that are struggling with… We’ll call it a trigger food, there are some cases in which I’ll say like for the next three months, none of this one food. And I’ll ask, What do you think? Do you think you can do that? Do you think this is a good idea? And we’ll have a discussion around it.


1:00:15.1 Jordan Syatt: Once those three months are up and they’ve been good with that and they’ve stuck to it, we’ll have a discussion around, Do you think you’d like to try incorporating this back into your diet or not? And have a discussion around that. Then oftentimes, some people will… Peanut butter is a huge one, this is one of the most common ones where people are often like, if they’re gonna have peanut butter, they’re gonna eat the whole thing. And they’ll be like, “Well, what if I just buy those mini packs, like 100 calorie packs?” I’m like, “That’s great, but are you gonna eat all of the 100 calorie packs in one sitting?” And that’s oftentimes what will happen, so after three months, they don’t have any of it, we’ll try and bring it back. Sometimes from there, they can be much more controlled with it, other times, nope, “I binged on it, not right,” and then we’ll wait again and we go back. But that’s for the people where sometimes the best move is to take it out completely, sometimes they’ll never bring it back ’cause they just know themselves, they just won’t, and that’s okay. It’s like… In the same way, it’s okay for someone with alcohol addiction… Some people who recover from alcohol addiction, they can then drink moderately and it’s okay, other people they never drink again, it’s totally fine, whereas other people, if they can bring it back into their diet, then great.


1:01:26.2 Jordan Syatt: Sometimes it takes a while. It takes a while to do that. I think that’s sort of the progression with nutrition is so often overlooked where some people just think,” Okay, well, I told you to do this with your nutrition, so why aren’t you doing it?” Whereas with exercise progression we know it takes so much… It takes time, you have to get enough mobility, you have to get enough stability, you have to understand the technique, you have to understand all of this stuff. With nutrition, I think those cues aren’t as visible to the naked eye, we can’t see… Okay, we can’t just say, “You need this much more mobility,” it’s like, “your range of motion needs to improve here,” we can’t see that with nutrition. So we often just say, “Well, just do this,” and it’s not that simple. You need to understand progression with nutrition takes just as much, if not more time than as progression with exercise.


1:02:09.9 Mike Vacanti: Those are great points.


1:02:11.5 Jordan Syatt: Alright, so a couple of more minutes left, let’s see… Alright, here’s a good one, Michael J. Vacanti… And I think this is the last one of the day, “Do you program isolation exercises for your clients? If yes, how?”


1:02:27.8 Mike Vacanti: Yes, I do. I think we’ve talked about this in programming specific related episodes, but generally speaking, isolation exercises, and it varies based… The exercise selection varies mostly based on someone’s goals, but they’re… Later in the workout, they’re less of the focus of a training session, like warming up for and completing the first and second exercises is the most important part of almost any workout, which are almost always compound movements. Later in the workout, going a little bit higher rep, a little bit less rest time, getting more volume in on whether it’s biceps, triceps, glutes, calves, which is more rare, but yeah. [laughter] Neck, upper traps, rear delts, it really depends on the person. But yes, I definitely program them, and I would actually even go back on what I just said with regard to importance because different examples are popping into my head. There are certain… If your goal for a client is just to get them to do the work out, to show up, put in a little bit of intensity, try to maybe build in strength or make some kind of progress from their last session, highlighting the importance of the first couple exercises, “Just give it your best.


1:04:12.6 Mike Vacanti: If you don’t complete the entire workout, not the end of the world,” whereas if you are trying to maximize progress, if that’s a client’s personality type and level of training, if they’re past that beginner stage where the gains come pretty easily, maybe they’re eating in a surplus, maybe they’ve been eating in a surplus for several months, half a year, and they’ve built a substantial amount of muscle, but want to continue building muscle, every additional pound is gonna be harder and harder. And so with volume increasing on average over time, really bringing a lot of intensity to the isolation work later in the workout can be the difference in how much progress they make. So from an aesthetics/body building purpose, yeah, I absolutely like to target certain body parts based on moulding one’s physique and helping them achieve whatever aesthetic-based goals they came to me with.


1:05:22.7 Jordan Syatt: I love it. It was funny, I was doing an inner circle live last week or two weeks ago, and you were in the background and someone was like, “Why don’t you program so many bicep curls in the program,” and it’s funny ’cause you are much more aesthetics-focused and I’m much more athletic, like how you feel getting stronger, being more consistent. So it was funny with you in the background, I was like, “You go to… Mike’s programs will give you plenty of curls.” [chuckle]


1:05:48.4 Mike Vacanti: I chuckled at that when I heard that question, but I also understand the logic behind hitting an assisted chin up, hitting a dumbbell roll. You’re getting plenty of bicep activation, and especially if you have a limited number of hours in a week to be working out, like what percentage of that total time are we going to have that person curling compared to all of the other things that they could be doing.


1:06:17.8 Jordan Syatt: Correct.


1:06:17.9 Mike Vacanti: But if they’re working out 75 plus minutes five days a week and they want bigger arms, it’s like, “Okay, well, then you’re definitely gonna be doing a bunch of sets of curls over the course of that week.”


1:06:30.8 Jordan Syatt: Correct, it all comes down to shocker, the individual. If you have a client who’s… They hate the gym, they hate working out, they don’t wanna be there, and you only… You know they’ve only got 30 minutes in them three times a week, then you’re probably gonna limit how many isolation exercises you put in there, but you get someone who loves working out, they’re super passionate about it, they’re like, they really want to emphasize certain parts of their body, they’re in there four or five, six times a week, yeah, of course, you’re gonna put that stuff in there, calves, traps, arms, all that stuff, just because it makes sense based on who the individual is and what they want. And then we could even do a whole episode on ab isolation, which I think we could talk about that maybe next episode or coming episode. I think that’s… You and I have done that, we had our own program where we did specific ab isolation exercises that… I think it’s pretty important, especially depending on the individual and what their goal is.


1:07:24.4 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, I would love that. I think that’s a great idea. This was very fun by the way. Good questions.


1:07:29.2 Jordan Syatt: I’ve gotta pee super bad guy, and got an Inner Circle Live in 14 minutes, so we’re gonna hop off. A couple of things, just a reminder, number one, thank you for listening. We appreciate it. If you want the free manual, 30 Ways to Improve your Online Coaching Business, link is in the show notes, you can go download that, and then when you download that, you’ll be put on the email list for when we announce the launch of the Mentorship in which you’ll get a $200 off. It’s a $200 off sale, if you’d like to join the Online Fitness Business Mentorship to really focus on growing your coaching business in 2021.


1:08:04.3 Mike Vacanti: Awesome, thank you everyone for listening. It’s 2021, Disappear December is over. We’ll be back next week. So have a great week and we will see you next week.

1:08:14.9 Jordan Syatt: Have a good one.

Learn How To Become A Personal Trainer

Join our mailing list to receive the latest episodes and tools to become a personal trainer.

You have Successfully Subscribed!