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And you can read more about the research on walking and all-cause mortality discussed here: https://www.strongerbyscience.com/research-spotlight-walking/
0:00:11.5 Mike Vacanti: Hello, Jordan.
0:00:12.8 Jordan Syatt: What’s going on, Michael?
0:00:14.9 Mike Vacanti: Would you have predicted the unbelievable streak that we are on this podcast in 2022?
0:00:20.7 Jordan Syatt: Honestly, no, and I don’t think anyone listening would have predicted it either.
0:00:25.0 Mike Vacanti: Like December 18th, let’s just say you’re sitting there in your apartment about to put up a Q&A on your story, and would you have predicted what is happening right now on this podcast?
0:00:36.0 Jordan Syatt: No, I wouldn’t… I wouldn’t have. If I was gonna go to Vegas and put bets on whether or not we’d be this consistent, I would have lost money.
0:00:45.8 Mike Vacanti: It’s really a thing of beauty.
0:00:49.0 Jordan Syatt: Would you have predicted this?
0:00:51.2 Mike Vacanti: No. Nope.
0:01:00.5 Jordan Syatt: What’s driving it?
0:01:02.0 Mike Vacanti: It was just time for a change. It was time for a real-life change. We’re gonna get super raw on the dynamics of the podcast. Jordan is always down to podcast. You’re a P on Myers-Briggs, you’re basically like, I could text you at a random time of day and be like, “Want to podcast?” And you’ll be like, “Let me check my calendar. Let me make sure.” Whereas for me, if I’m not pushing the podcast and scheduling, I’m probably not just gonna randomly do it. So we’re in a real flow here with the calendar. We’ve got a nice upload schedule and yeah, man, I just weekly pods for eternity.
0:01:34.5 Jordan Syatt: Weekly pods, let’s go. I love it. How you feeling? You just had a good upper body workout, you got all the way down to the H’s, he told me.
0:01:41.5 Mike Vacanti: To the H’s. Yeah, a lot of volume. Training three days a week, the volume per session is a lot higher, but it feels good. I’m a little annoyed at myself because I was telling you my jaw was hurting, which I figured out, I’ve been leaning on my chin all the time. So whether I’m reading something or I’m working or I’m laying down, I’ll like drive my chin into either a pillow or like my fist or my hand. And yeah, I’ve just had some jaw soreness and so I took Advil this morning, not really thinking that I was gonna work out because I really don’t like taking NSAIDs before workout because I don’t wanna blunt any pain. I wanna be very aware of what’s going on. Just knowing myself and knowing in the past, I’ve used ibuprofen, Advil before workouts to blunt pain to push harder, which isn’t good. You just end up getting hurt. And so I realized kind of mid-session that I had taken that this morning, but whatever.
0:02:43.4 Jordan Syatt: You’ve been using the Iron Neck? Mike got me an Iron Neck as a gift. Have you been using it, ’cause you got one for yourself too.
0:02:52.0 Mike Vacanti: I have not. Mine just… I think mine came two days ago. I haven’t even opened it up yet, I’m probably going to today.
0:02:58.4 Jordan Syatt: That’s so funny. My wife always makes fun of me ’cause I hate mail, like I hate mail and letters, but if there’s a package, I always get super excited. I have to open it immediately, but you just have yours sitting there and you haven’t even opened the box yet?
0:03:12.1 Mike Vacanti: Correct.
0:03:16.0 Jordan Syatt: That’s crazy to me. If there’s a package, I’m opening it.
0:03:16.8 Mike Vacanti: I mean, yesterday was a highly unproductive day for me for most of the afternoon, which actually is something we can talk about, the flow of natural energy versus relaxation, basically. The pendulum of stress relaxation. But yeah, I knew that I wasn’t going to use it yesterday, so it’s sitting down here in my basement in the box and I’ll open it when I’m ready to use it.
0:03:43.1 Jordan Syatt: [laughter] Alright, fair.
0:03:44.3 Mike Vacanti: What about you? What’s going on with you? What’s up with you, dad?
0:03:47.5 Jordan Syatt: Not much, man. There’s a light dusting of snow here in Texas, so everything is shut down. Jujutsu’s been canceled yesterday and today, everything is closed. [laughter] It’s just… The entire place is shut down. And people got mad at me on Instagram because I said, I’m from Boston, the snow… We get crazy amounts of snow in Boston, nothing shuts down, but here there’s a light dusting, everything shuts down, and I just said, “That’s really funny.” And all these people from Texas are like… It’s the classic cliche Instagram thing where I’m like, “Yeah, I don’t like apples,” then people are like, “Oh, oh, so you’re saying apples are gonna kill someone?” So I just think it’s funny that people freak out when it snows and people are like, “So you think it’s funny that people died last year in the snowpocalypse in February in Texas.” And I was like, “I didn’t say that at all. I just said, ‘It’s funny that people in the south freak out over, way over teeny dustings of snow, whereas in a place I grew up where it’s not a big deal.'” They’re like, “Yeah, but you realize how awful it was?” I was like, “I know it was terrible last year, I understand that. But I’m not saying that I’m happy people were suffering, I’m saying in general, in the south, people freak out when there’s a light dusting of snow.” So everything is closed, but everything is good.
0:05:09.6 Mike Vacanti: It’s just like that sliver of humans who want something to be angry about, have other stuff going on in their lives that’s tilting them, possibly don’t even think of you as a real person. Like they might say that and then you reply and they’re like, “Oh my gosh, he replied. I didn’t even think you’d see this.”
0:05:26.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, but no. Everything is good, man. Got baby on the way, got a… Wife is about 12 weeks pregnant right now. She has… People are like, “Does she have any food cravings?” ‘Cause we always hear about women having food cravings when they are pregnant. She doesn’t have any cravings. She just has very strong food aversions. Anytime there’s a left over, she doesn’t want anything to do with it. She can’t even open the fridge without just getting nauseous immediately. She can smell what the neighbors are cooking through the walls. Like she’ll be like, “Oh, they’re cooking… ” And she’ll know what they’re cooking, which is ridiculous to me. I’ve never experienced that, but she knows what they’re cooking, she can smell it through the walls. Or we’ll wake up in the morning and she’s like, “Ugh, do you smell that?” Like, I don’t smell anything.
0:06:16.3 Mike Vacanti: I wonder if that changes over the course of pregnancy.
0:06:20.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. I’ve been getting tons of messages from women saying, some women have it for the first trimester or some women have it for the entirety of pregnancy, I had some women telling me that they had it… It started with the pregnancy and they’ve had it ever since pregnancy, it’s just stayed with them for their whole life after that, so it’s… Apparently, it changes per person. And it’s the cliche saying like, every pregnancy is different and it’s unique to your individual journey, and from what I’ve seen from all the women messaging me, that’s very accurate, every pregnancy is different.
0:06:48.8 Mike Vacanti: But she’s doing well overall and…
0:06:50.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, she’s good, she’s good. She’s nauseous all the time, which sucks, but you know her, she doesn’t ever complain, she’s pretty chill. She’s definitely not comfortable, but right now she’s on the couch having some mac and cheese, so she’s in her zone. [laughter]
0:07:04.4 Mike Vacanti: Nice, nice, man. I’m very happy for you guys.
0:07:08.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, man. That’s pretty much it. You got a wedding coming up in a few months, you ready for that?
0:07:14.7 Mike Vacanti: David, let’s cut this out.
0:07:15.7 Jordan Syatt: Oh, come on.
0:07:19.1 Mike Vacanti: You know what?
0:07:19.2 Jordan Syatt: Let’s keep it.
0:07:19.9 Mike Vacanti: Yes, I am very excited. That actually segues into something really interesting that I wanted to bring up on this podcast.
0:07:29.2 Jordan Syatt: Okay. But you’re not even gonna talk about the wedding there, you’re just segue into the other thing?
0:07:32.8 Mike Vacanti: We’re gonna segue into the other thing that’s highly related, which is, have you ever heard clips of Bill Burr get asked personal questions and then just divert hard?
0:07:44.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, he’s so funny.
0:07:47.3 Mike Vacanti: He was on… It wasn’t a panel. Maybe it was on some mainstream type show years back, and the host or this woman was asking him, “Where are you from?” He’s like, “Outside of Boston.” She’s like, “Oh, what part?” And he kinda gave another vague answer, and she’s like, “No, no, but where exactly did you grow up?”
0:08:04.1 Mike Vacanti: And he was like, “Listen, lady, get a hint, I’m not… “
0:08:08.1 Mike Vacanti: “Can’t you tell? There’s weirdos out there, I don’t wanna divulge my personal information to all the strangers watching this.”
0:08:15.2 Mike Vacanti: And then I just saw another one of him, like a YouTube… What do they call them? Shorts?
0:08:20.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
0:08:21.1 Mike Vacanti: Like a YouTube… It’s like the vertical YouTube. And he was on the H3H3 podcast, and the guy asked him about, like, “How many siblings do you have?” or some kind of, somewhat personal information about his family, and Bill diverted and was like, “Yeah, there’s a lot of weirdos out there, I’m not trying to talk about super personal stuff about myself.” And then the host just leans in harder, he’s like, “Wait a second, how many siblings do you have though? You’re really not gonna answer that question?” And Bill is like, “Geez, keep talking about it more, why don’t you?”
0:09:00.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, man, I’m getting married in May, I’m very excited and… Yeah…
0:09:05.6 Jordan Syatt: What is the exact date and venue of the wedding?
0:09:08.6 Mike Vacanti: Geez.
0:09:14.4 Mike Vacanti: If and when the long overdue return to somewhat regular content does occur, I’m definitely not gonna be like, “Yay… ” There’s gonna be a degree of separation. Even with my immediate nuclear family that I grew up with, my dad likes being in content so I might sprinkle him in still here and there, he really enjoys that, and he…
0:09:39.3 Jordan Syatt: He’s good at it too, he crushes content.
0:09:42.1 Mike Vacanti: He made a crazy fitness transformation too, so it’s on brand, it’s all good stuff, it’s helpful, it’s useful, it’s inspiring for a lot of people. But outside of that, I really… I have no interest in this. I don’t… It’s like a one-way relationship, is what I would call it, where… And obviously, it’s a micro-level, I don’t even wanna use the term “fame” to describe myself specifically, but where tens of thousands of people know intimate details about your life, and you don’t even know who they are, and then it’s just… It really does weird me out.
0:10:20.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, it’s not natural. It’s not natural at all. It’s not how we’re designed to be, in the least.
0:10:27.2 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. But you’re good at it.
0:10:29.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, just ’cause I’m good at it doesn’t mean that it’s natural, or that it doesn’t weird you out. I’ve been debating whether or not I want to… We’re definitely not gonna share the name of the baby at all, we’re not gonna say what the baby’s name… Just like I don’t say what my wife’s name is, we’re not gonna share the name of it. There’s some fucking weirdos who might look in school directories and stuff and try and… You never know.
0:10:50.7 Mike Vacanti: You never know. And there’s also… And I wasn’t even thinking the conversation would veer here, but I am curious because I’ve seen people who don’t post their kid… You share a lot about you and just, in a very authentic comedic kind of way. You have a way of making things funny and you’re just sharing what’s going on in your immediate atmosphere. I’ve seen people, over the last 10 to 15 years, certain people really exploit their kid for views, for kid and thumbnail like family vlog stuff with these little kids, and I always think it’s a weird time because it’s never… I guess maybe it’s existed with child actors who their parents push them into it, so it’s existed in a subset of people, but when that kid becomes a certain age, a lot of their life was vlogged and is public on the internet, and it wasn’t their choice at all. And I don’t think… I don’t know that there’s a right or wrong, but I just think about that.
0:11:54.9 Jordan Syatt: Part of me sees your side of it, and the other part of me thinks, “Dude, it would be so cool if that was available to me to see what my life was like when I was… ” If my parents had the ability to vlog, that’s what my debate right now is, how much… Would a child like to have it? ‘Cause I know for me personally, I love seeing home videos, but they’re so scant, they’re so… Very rarely do I ever come across a home video, I know they’re all on VHS or something, I haven’t seen them in years, but I would love to have more of that.
0:12:25.7 Mike Vacanti: And that’s… They are two different things, one is publicly available on the…
0:12:32.5 Jordan Syatt: Right, right, right.
0:12:32.6 Mike Vacanti: Internet forever and one is we literally a week and a half ago, two weeks ago, we were celebrating my dad’s birthday and all my siblings like brother-in-law, like there were… All of us were there, and my dad busted out the… He had converted the VHS to DVD many years ago.
0:12:48.5 Jordan Syatt: Oh, that’s awesome.
0:12:49.5 Mike Vacanti: And he busted out the DVD player, and we were watching home videos when I was seven, my sisters were just being born slash two, three, four, five years old.
0:12:57.7 Jordan Syatt: That’s fun.
0:12:58.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, so that can… You can capture those moments and still protect the kids privacy to an extent. I don’t know where that line is. I know parents that didn’t show their kids face, I know parents who did and did it in like a tasteful, reasonable way without… And then there’s like the far end of that, which is the cute little kid is in the thumbnail of every YouTube video that they’re monetizing.
0:13:21.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:13:25.0 Mike Vacanti: But it’s… Yeah, it’s interesting.
0:13:27.8 Jordan Syatt: You know who does a good job with that though, who I actually really like is MattDoesFitness. He has got his super cute son and he vlogs with them. I love that. I think he does a really good job with it without going overboard.
0:13:39.4 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, I don’t know. I haven’t seen him.
0:13:41.8 Jordan Syatt: I think you’ve seen his stuff. Yeah, you have. You have. I think he’s in the UK. You and I have spoken about him before. He’s super good. He’s wicked strong. You’ve seen it. He’s jacked out of his mind. He’s got a super cute little kid.
0:13:54.3 Mike Vacanti: Okay, I think I know who you’re talking about. Like funny and you see eating challenge stuff, like he eats all pancakes and stuff.
0:14:01.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think so, yeah.
0:14:03.7 Mike Vacanti: Okay. I didn’t know he had a kid. So maybe it’s been a while since I saw his stuff.
0:14:10.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, maybe. Anyway…
0:14:13.0 Mike Vacanti: Anyway.
0:14:17.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah man. Should we… You wanna dive into questions? We got anything else?
0:14:21.3 Jordan Syatt: Let’s do it, let’s do it. I have nothing on the top of my head right now. Okay, so AngieMako says, “If I’m overweight, should I cut and then bulk or bulk and then cut?”
0:14:35.3 Mike Vacanti: Almost always, I would say either cut and then bulk or recomp, but bulk and then cut doesn’t make sense if you’re already overweight, and it depends how overweight, but if you’re already… If you’re technically overweight or obese, I can’t think of any scenarios where the benefit of building muscle is greater than the added health benefit of getting into a healthy body fat range, so cutting first makes sense. There’s also the very likely scenario that this individual might be a beginner, might be someone who has been away from training for a while and is restarting or may have some exercise experience, but not like good strength training, proper technique, proper exercise selection, not good strength training experience, and in all of those cases, cut and then bulk is going to lead to either maintaining all of your lean tissue during that cut or possibly even adding some lean tissue during that cut, so you have the beginner’s benefit. So yeah, either recomp or cut, and then re-evaluate and then potentially a muscle gain specific goal would make sense.
0:15:54.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I think this question is really important, especially for coaches because you’re gonna get it all the time. You’ll get this question, either with your current clients, with someone who wants to potentially be a client on your social media, you’ll get it. And it’s really important to have a good answer laid out as to your approach to this, and if you don’t have one, it’s worthwhile, you should probably make some content around this because it’s gonna help a lot of people, but I agree with Mike completely. One thing here is, when someone says they’re overweight, I’m not saying five or extra 10 pounds of fat, I’m thinking they’ve got an extra 20, 30, 40, 50 plus pounds to lose. And if that’s the case, we have to define cut, which is a calorie deficit and bulk is a calorie surplus. And usually people will go into a bulk in order to… In a calorie surplus in order to build more muscle. But if you’re going into a calorie surplus, you are going to add more body fat, even if you’re doing it in a very judicious way, in a very lean way, you’re still gonna add body fat over time. So if you’re already overweight by a significant margin, it doesn’t make any sense to be in a calorie surplus on a consistent basis, that is a bad idea.
0:17:04.4 Jordan Syatt: Your body isn’t as good at partitioning the nutrients, you’re gonna have negative health outcomes as a result of it. You’ll actually be better off starting off with a calorie deficit, losing body fat, your body improves its ability to partition the nutrients, put them towards muscle growth, and also you’ll see better health outcomes, better blood markers and everything. Not to mention, if someone’s 20, 30, 40, 50 pounds plus overweight, odds are they will absolutely be able to build muscle in a calorie deficit. Assuming you’re not talking about someone who was a professional body builder for a significant portion of their life, and they’re probably not in my Q&As asking these questions, right? Like you’re probably not getting that type of a client, the vast majority of people are still gonna be able to build muscle while they’re losing weight. Not to mention if you’re working with a beginner, you can’t over emphasize the importance of motor patterning and learning the exercise technique as well, so they’re just gonna get stronger and build muscle just from doing that part of it, never mind adding a ton of extra weight, a ton of progressive overload, adding weight onto the bar.
0:18:11.3 Jordan Syatt: So if you have 20, 30, 40, 50 plus pounds to lose, I probably wouldn’t… Not never, but very rarely even go into a recomp, I would almost always start with the calorie deficit, mainly because this type of person is almost always, almost always a beginner, and beginners tend to do better with faster results at the beginning. Now, there’s sort of a line here as well, faster isn’t always better in terms of 10 pounds a week, week over week is a really bad idea. But if you go into more of a recomp, where you’re losing somewhere between half a pound to a pound a week or so, sometimes it’s not very much for them, especially if they have a lot of fat to lose. But if they’re losing 2 to 3 pounds a week when they have a lot of weight to lose, now they’re getting excited, they’re like, “Okay, this is working,” and then they’re bought into it and they’re more likely to stay consistent. So the calorie deficit from the very beginning, I think is the best move for this type of a person, and again, for the coaches, come up with content, come up with a really good reasoning why you do this so that they can understand what’s going on and the reason behind it so they can understand what your coaching is like and why.
0:19:17.0 Mike Vacanti: The two caveats that come to mind for me, and it’s not even intentional recomp, it’s the specific subset of clients who may be in a place where they’re interested in strength training and motivated to start trying strength training. But they’re not in a place to start at all, they’re not in a place where they’re gonna start tracking and, for whatever reason, they just wanna dip a toe in the pool. And so the recomp wouldn’t be like tracking specific and a slight surplus on training days and a slight deficit on rest days. It isn’t like a Martin Berkhan Leangains, it’s more, let them eat around maintenance, but go from sedentary to training and let them recomp a little bit, that was what I had in mind for the recomp. And then obviously, and you make a great point, which is, these high-level individuals aren’t asking these questions on your story, but the things that came… The people that came to mind who being overweight could go into a bulk, are professional offensive lineman, sumo wrestler, strong man, if you have something specific you’re training for that… You’re actually… It’s beneficial to have added body fat and muscle obviously then it could make sense, but for 99.9% of people it doesn’t.
0:20:43.3 Jordan Syatt: If anyone listening is coaching a sumo wrestler, I wanna hear from you.
0:20:47.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah.
0:20:49.1 Jordan Syatt: I wanna know how you got into this population.
0:20:51.4 Mike Vacanti: Hit us at firstname.lastname@example.org [laughter] send us an email. [chuckle]
0:20:54.5 Jordan Syatt: I just wanna have a conversation like how you got into that world because that would be… That would be an amazing world to coach, right? It’s like, “Just get bigger. Just eat more.”
0:21:06.2 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. Yeah.
0:21:06.5 Jordan Syatt: Oh, You know what, I wanted to bring up today? I was talking with Kim Schlag last night, and we were having a long conversation about sort of the implications of this new meta-analysis on steps. Right, and so maybe we could provide a link to that in the show notes, maybe we could… ‘Cause I actually have it open on my computer, I can send it to you and David can put it into the show notes or something.
0:21:31.7 Mike Vacanti: Great.
0:21:32.4 Jordan Syatt: A recent meta-analysis came out, I think… Did we speak about this in the podcast yet?
0:21:35.7 Mike Vacanti: We did.
0:21:37.3 Jordan Syatt: About the…
0:21:37.4 Mike Vacanti: Last week.
0:21:38.6 Jordan Syatt: Okay, wow. Alright, so maybe you don’t have to go into too much detail, but basically long story short, new meta-analysis came out showing the outrageous, outrageously positive positive implications of increasing your step count. And it showed all the way up to 16,000 steps, just outrageous, outrageous benefits, in terms of all-cause mortality and the length of your life. And I was talking with Kim and she was saying, you know, she’s been sort of struggling with figuring out how does this change her recommendations to her clients, because this study shows that up 16,000 steps is where you get the most benefits. So does this mean that you should change everything you’re giving your client, should everyone be getting 16,000 steps a day? And I was talking to Kim and I was thinking, listen you have to remember, this wasn’t like a randomized control trial, right? This wasn’t like a… ‘Cause number one, that wouldn’t be ethical, they couldn’t say, “Alright, some of you just stay here and get 2,500 [chuckle] steps a day, and the other get 16,000.” ‘Cause obviously we know there’s gonna be negative health implications to the people who only walk 2,500.
0:22:39.7 Jordan Syatt: But when you’re looking at this study and this is really important as a critical thinker, and when you’re analyzing studies and analyzing content in general in overall populations, you have to look at… It’s not, maybe it’s not just the steps that’s going on here, right? Look at the person who walked 16,000 steps a day. Maybe it’s not just about what they’re doing, which is getting steps, but maybe it’s about what they’re not doing. Maybe it’s that they’re not stressing so much about work because they’re out, they have the ability to go take 16,000 steps a day. That person probably doesn’t have outrageously high cortisol from stress from work and trying to figure things out, who knows. Maybe because they’re outside, they’re getting more vitamin D on a regular basis. They’re connected with nature more, they’re getting more grounding, they have less going on in their head, they have the ability to be more relaxed and calm.
0:23:31.5 Jordan Syatt: There are so many factors related to this outside of simply the steps, and we have to look at the lifestyle factors associated with someone who’s sitting most of the day versus someone who’s walking most of the day. Someone who’s sitting most of the day… Maybe their stress is massively increased, cortisol is super high, maybe they’re, when they’re sitting down, they have an easier access to foods that are more highly processed, super high salt, they’re not getting as many vegetables. There are so many things that could be going on in these people’s lives, the people who are walking 2,500 versus 16,000 steps a day. So my point being, and when I was talking to Kim and I wanna hear what you think Mike, I don’t think the best way to go about this new study is to all of a sudden say 16,000 steps or nothing. I still think the concept of progressive overload and meeting people where they’re at is super important, and understanding that if someone’s getting only 2,500 steps a day, you getting them to 5,000 steps a day is gonna have a massive improvement in their health outcome as opposed to saying, “Okay, well, 2,500 but now you’ve gotta get 16,000.” That’s just not good coaching.
0:24:37.1 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, exactly. You hit the nail on the head when you said, meet the person where they’re at. Because what is arguably most important is programming something that is gonna lead to consistent adherence. And going from 2,500 to 16,000 a day is going to require too great a physical demand as well as too great a lifestyle change in terms of the daily schedule, etcetera that only a very small percentage of people are gonna be able to make that jump and stick with it, right? So yeah, I completely agree. I even had this… Yeah, it’s contextual, it depends on the person and it’s… The goal isn’t to get to 16,000, the goal is to get more steps than you’re currently getting. And something that people need to keep in mind is, a lot of people track steps on their phone, and a lot of your daily steps happen without your phone in your pocket. And so I would also say that just be mindful of that. If you’re using your Apple step counter in your phone or in my health insurance app, used to have it in my phone, and you realize that you’re only getting 3,000 steps a day, start paying attention to how many steps you’re getting when you don’t have your phone and don’t be discouraged or just realize that that number might not be 100% accurate.
0:26:07.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah.
0:26:07.8 Mike Vacanti: But it is, it’s a crazy study and something that’s interesting, and I’m hesitant to bring this up because I know you’re slightly competitive on this, and I don’t like to… I don’t like to just bow to… But resting heart rate. Since I started doing… I think I described last week my like, or maybe I said this to you on the phone, I actually think I did my walk…
0:26:29.9 Jordan Syatt: About your level of fitness, your… Or no.
0:26:32.3 Mike Vacanti: No, but indoor walking, this routine that I’m walking, all over my house, I don’t even do it all over my house now, I literally just do it in the basement, I’m like, I was telling you, I’m doing these corner back drills, like little 10-yard sprint, back pedal, 7-yard sprint through the… These types of things, but basically just moving my body for 30 to 45 minutes in the afternoon, basically every day, my resting heart rate is down, ’cause I’m tracking it on this beautiful Garmin watch that you gave me as a Christmas gift, from 58, 59 beats per minute to 53 beats per minute, in a matter of 10 to 14 days.
0:27:12.4 Jordan Syatt: Wow. That’s crazy.
0:27:16.0 Mike Vacanti: Which is… It’s very interesting. Yeah, and there really haven’t been any other factors that change, like caffeine intakes has been consistent. Sleep has been consistent. Nutrition has been pretty consistent. So yeah, it’s very interesting, and I’m excited to continue pounding the steps, but yes, for your clients, it’s, frame it in a way that it’s not a pass-fail. It’s not binary. It’s not 1-0. It’s get better. It’s move along the continuum. Did you do better than yesterday, compare yourself to your previous self. Don’t compare yourself to other people. Don’t compare yourself to someone. You know, if you have a nine to five job, you’re working 10-12 hours a day at the computer, don’t compare yourself to your significant other who runs his or her own business and is on the gym floor training clients for four to six hours a day, they’re gonna get more steps than you, but compare yourself to how many average steps per day did you get last week. Okay, now how many did you do this week? Oh, you went from 2,000 to 3,000? That’s a 50% increase. That’s incredible. I don’t care that you’re not at 16,000 yet. It’s getting better over time.
0:28:22.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that’s exactly right. Alright, I gotta funny, it’s not a question, it’s a comment, it’s actually from one of the guys in the mentorship, @maxlarocquefitness on Instagram. Am I pronouncing his last name properly? He has the cutest dog.
0:28:35.1 Mike Vacanti: It sounds right to me.
0:28:36.7 Jordan Syatt: Lucy’s his dog’s name, right? She’s always on the mentorship calls, so Max left a comment in the Q&A, he goes, “Not a question, more a statement, I’m gonna win this month’s challenge.” I love that.
0:28:50.7 Mike Vacanti: Good luck Max, let’s go. February baby, little short form content. Speaking of, maybe if you’re listening to this, right when the podcast gets released, the sale is still going on, but it’s more likely than not that by the time you’re listening to this, the sale is over. Unfortunately, end of day, Monday, February 7th, I believe is the official end of the sale and…
0:29:18.4 Jordan Syatt: 30% off. Use the code 30off, link in the show notes.
0:29:21.2 Mike Vacanti: And I’m assuming that a lot of people listening to this, the sale has passed, maybe you missed it, maybe you hadn’t caught previous podcast episodes. That’s okay. I do want to make the note that our prices are 99.9% going to be increasing this year, so…
0:29:37.7 Jordan Syatt: 100%, they’re increasing, there’s no… They’re going up, we’re not hesitating on that. Yeah, we’re increasing the price to the Mentorship without question, at some point this year.
0:29:46.0 Mike Vacanti: It’s 99.9%, because you never know what’s going to happen, but that’s basically 100% for everyone who has that solid fourth-grade mathematical competency, and so just because you missed the sale doesn’t mean that it doesn’t make sense to sign up, that’s what I’ll say.
0:30:07.1 Jordan Syatt: Fair. Okay. LisaNYC529 asked, “What is the proper form for side lunges?” And I wanted to bring this up ’cause it’s hard to do on a podcast, to show proper form, you can’t obviously, unless we were doing a video podcast, which might be coming later this year, by the way. We might be putting these on YouTube at some point, but I wanted to talk about this. I see a lot of people… Actually I see a lot of coaches doing side lunges with shitty technique, and I think a lot of it, there are many reasons, but I think a lot of them don’t know how to progress a side lunge.
0:30:44.0 Jordan Syatt: And the issue is there… A couple of things, number one is if you wanna get better at a side or lateral lunge, you should start with a lateral lunge to a box. So a lot of people, they just start going right into a lateral lunge with like a free lunge, where they’re not squatting, and they’re not lunging to anything, they just try and do it in the air, and the issue with that is you have no idea where your depth is. So what you should do is you should put a box beneath where your butt is going to be, and sit to the box, that should be your first progression for a lateral lunge, and ideally with the weight in a goblet position in front of your chest, it’s gonna help offset the load a little bit nice, it’s gonna help you keep your torso upright and help you sit your butt back. So if you’re doing lateral lunges and you’ve never done it to a box before, try that. I would imagine it’s gonna help you get your depth right. The other thing I’d say is when you do a lateral lunge, a lot of times I think people struggle with the depth, not because they lack mobility, but because their toe on the leg that’s moving, not on the stance. When the leg that’s moving that they’re landing on, is, they’re pointing their toe inwards, almost like their toe is pointing straight in front of them, you want the toe angled outwards.
0:31:57.5 Jordan Syatt: You want the toe like… Your knee and your toe should be in line with each other, and sometimes people will put their toe pointing straight forward and then your hip gets jammed up, so as you step out to the side, you actually want to externally rotate your foot so that your toe is pointing almost away from you slightly, and it’s gonna help open up your hip and get into a deeper lunge.
0:32:17.4 Mike Vacanti: Great. I love the question because I love this exercise, super underrated. I find it to be the movement that once a client can go from not being able to do it, to doing it, they see drastic reduction in pain and drastic low back muscle activation, doing things like getting in and out of a car. Basically, just moving laterally and… Yeah, I think you hit the nail on the head. I do see situations where the lack of depth or lack of proficiency in the movement is driven, in part, by tightness in the adductors. So adductor dips and soft tissue work on the adductors are something that, for me personally, helped a lot many years back. And also I’ve seen many, many clients that get a medicine ball, get a foam roller underneath the adductors, get them moving, and I watch their lateral lunge technique improve over time and their depth improve.
0:33:28.1 Mike Vacanti: What else on technique? Keep the knee that you’re step… On the foot you’re stepping off of locked. It’s one of the few times when you are gonna have a locked, fully-extended knee, in the middle of a movement. Yeah, and pointing the toe… I usually say just a 15-degree external rotation with the toe on the foot you’re stepping on. It’s not gonna be like 45. It’s definitely not gonna be 90 degrees, we’re not fully opening the hip up but just getting enough room for a little more depth. And I love your idea of doing it to a box to give a target for depth.
0:34:08.5 Jordan Syatt: I also think you brought up a good point with tightness in the adductors. I think so many people have tight adductors and they don’t even know it because they don’t train in the frontal plane. They’re always training that sagittal plane where they’re just going straight up and down, whether it’s squats, deadlifts, whatever. But that’s one of the reasons I love training the frontal plane where you move side to side. It looks like a more athletic movement and it is more athletic but tightness in the adductors can really screw you over. It can be… It can cause real pain in your lower back, it can really limit your mobility, overall.
0:34:40.6 Jordan Syatt: It can be one of the reasons why if, let’s say right now, it’s super cold outside, people slip and hurt themselves on ice. Their adductors really tighten up and you can almost notice it. I’ve seen people pull their adductor when they’re slipping on ice before, when they’re trying to stabilize themselves, and all of a sudden the adductor just goes overboard into protection mode and it will just… It’ll have a real bad strain. So one of the things with this is it helps improve your adductor mobility but also, like you said, doing adductor dips, self-myofascial release on your adductors, split stance adductor mobilizations. If you’re a coach and you don’t know what these exercises are, use the Google machine and videos will come up. But, yeah, these exercises are all super important to help you improve your mobility in the frontal plane.
0:35:24.8 Jordan Syatt: And if you don’t know what frontal plane is or sagittal plane or transverse plane, these are all very basic planes of movement that you should know as a coach. We can discuss them here but you should also do some research on the different movement planes, as well, so you can see which movement patterns you should be working with your clients and because these are all… They’re very, very basic and I see the barrier to entry for coaches is so low now to get to call yourself a personal trainer, you put in your fucking bio, “I’m a personal trainer.” Now you’re a personal trainer, but you have to be taking your client through these different movement patterns in order to make sure that they’re staying healthy and getting all the right movements so that they’re able to function in everyday life.
0:36:07.9 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, well said. The one other movement I really like that really helps with, like you said, pain reduction, but also just moving laterally is lateral step-up. And really, when you do it proper. I love when a gym has boxes so you don’t have to be stepping on the cushion of a bench and so you have more of variety and choice in height of the box. What are you laughing at?
0:36:38.7 Jordan Syatt: I’m thinking of, when you said, “I love when a gym has boxes.” I was thinking when you outfitted Gary’s home gym with…
0:36:47.1 Mike Vacanti: Oh, yeah. With a 100-pound plates.
0:36:52.1 Jordan Syatt: With 100-pound plates.
0:36:52.2 Mike Vacanti: And we had to move them down. Oh, my gosh. That was iconic, that was next-level. Yeah, but I’m a huge fan just because the force transfer, especially on a super padded bench and especially when… If you have a client who’s rushing the tempo, it’s just gross. And so a lateral step-up with a controlled eccentric, so throw like a four, five, six-second eccentric on there and keep a real tight core and it’s… Yeah, that’s another movement that I absolutely love, moving laterally.
0:37:35.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Daniel_Tomayo11 asked, “What is the best rep range when cutting weight?”
0:37:45.9 Mike Vacanti: I… It generally works best to train all rep ranges, whether that’s within a given workout or within a week. I like training most, if not all, rep ranges within a given workout regardless of the goal. And so there are exceptions, if you have a complete beginner you’re not gonna program that person in the 1-5 rep range, regardless of what their goal is. But for the most part, I’m going to program in the 3-5, 4-6, we’ll call it, in the 6-12 rep range, and in the 12-15/… Really 12-20 rep range, whether that person’s in a surplus, whether they’re recomping, or whether they’re in a deficit.
0:38:35.5 Jordan Syatt: That’s literally exactly what I would say. I will say… It’s so funny, when I was younger, I really programmed heavy singles, doubles and triples for a lot of people that I probably shouldn’t have just because I was a power lifter. And now it’s like I rarely go below five at this point. Just for general population people. I just, I don’t see a need for the vast majority of people to be pulling heavy triples, squatting heavy triples. I could be more okay with it for bench depending on what we’re going for, but even then, they’ve got to make sure they have a spotter. But realistically, it doesn’t matter if you’re cutting weight, maintaining your weight or trying to build muscle, you should use all rep ranges ’cause they all have benefit. And when you’re cutting, the goal isn’t to build muscle, the goal is to maintain your muscle. So with that in mind, it’s just you want some strength exercises somewhere between that 4-6 rep range, we’ll call it and then you want some more moderate rep work between that 8-12 rep range, and then a little bit of higher more endurance work in that 12-20 rep range.
0:39:49.1 Jordan Syatt: But the order of it, I think, is probably equally, if not more important, than exactly which rep range you choose. So if you’re… Make sure that you’re doing the heaviest stuff first. So the 4-6 should be the first thing in your workout, the 8-12 should be second in your work out, and that 12-20 should be the last part of your workout. So, I think, that honestly might even matter more than which… I don’t care if you do… I didn’t even mention the sevens, but if you do a set of seven, it doesn’t matter if it’s six, seven or eight. It doesn’t fucking matter. Make sure it’s difficult, and just make sure that the order in which you structure the exercises is in that order.
0:40:25.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. And, I guess, just to make a couple more points that popped into my mind, regardless of what rep range you’re in getting proper intensity is extremely important and something that should be highlighted. Meaning, whether you’re targeting five reps or you’re targeting 20 reps being relatively close to failure, we’ll call it, within 1-4 reps of failure is going to… It is where the majority of progress will be made. If you’re doing 3 by 5 on a barbell back squat, but with a gun to your head, you could have done 27 reps at that weight. Unless you’re a complete beginner you’re not getting much out of it. So making sure you’re getting close to failure.
0:41:09.4 Mike Vacanti: And just one point on the order of operations, one of the many reasons why it makes sense to start with your heaviest work and finish lighter is because if you are completely fatigued, if you start with 3 by 20 on X movement, and then you go down and then you go down from there and you’re ending with your heaviest work, you’re going to be at a higher risk of injury. If you’re trying to do 3 by 3 with 3-5 minutes rest on a barbell bench press and you’ve already done 11 sets of chest over the course of the day, you’re way more likely to hurt yourself than if you are starting with that movement after a proper warm-up.
0:41:53.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, well said. ColinCoxFitness asked, “Why is exercise so important for long-term weight loss maintenance?” And I think he’s more trying to ask why are steps so important for long-term weight loss maintenance. And it’s actually a really important question and an important discussion, because in terms of weight loss, we all know calorie deficit but in terms of weight loss maintenance, we’ve seen in research that the greatest predictor of people being able to maintain their weight loss is consistency of getting their steps in.
0:42:26.5 Jordan Syatt: And I think this is so, so, so important because when you look at… And I had to change the question from exercise to steps, because that is the difference. So if we’re looking at your total metabolic rate, so, if you Google search a Google image of your metabolism of the metabolic rate, you’re gonna find the BMR. You’re gonna find the whole little graph, with your BMR, your NEAT, your EAT and the TEF. And so, in terms of… That is what comprises your metabolism. Your BMR is your basal metabolic rate, you’re NEAT, your non-exercise activity thermogenesis, your TEF, the thermic effect of food, and then your EAT is your exercise activity thermogenesis.
0:43:12.1 Jordan Syatt: And if you look at that, your exercise activity thermogenesis, your exercise is the smallest component of your metabolism. The biggest component of your metabolism is your BMR. But the second biggest, and I believe it takes up about 10% of your metabolism is your NEAT, your non-exercise activity thermogenesis. So about 10% of your metabolism comes from just getting your steps in. Just what you’re doing throughout the day. These are things that you have much more control over.
0:43:42.3 Mike Vacanti: Might even be higher than 10%. 60%-70% BMR, thermic effect of food, depending on your macro nutrient intake is gonna average around 10%, and so we’re at 70-80…
0:43:54.3 Jordan Syatt: Well, maybe it’s even 15 or 20%.
0:43:56.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah I think it’s 15… Obviously, it varies, ’cause if you take 2000 steps a day versus 15000 steps, it’s gonna…
0:44:02.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
0:44:03.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah 15 plus, I would imagine.
0:44:08.5 Jordan Syatt: This is why your steps are so important for, yeah, for weight loss, but more importantly, weight loss maintenance. And this is what most people struggle with. And ideally what any good coach wants is not just to help people lose weight, to keep it off forever. Which is why this has to be a habit that you ingrain in your client’s programming from the beginning. Because if you don’t do that and they just… They all of a sudden stop walking or stop getting their steps in as soon as the fat loss phase is over, the weight’s gonna come on very, very quickly. People really underestimate how many calories they’re burning and how much they’re doing when they’re getting steps in.
0:44:46.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, which is funny because they often overestimate how many calories they’re burning when they’re doing a 20-minute HIIT routine.
0:44:50.6 Jordan Syatt: Yes, exactly. They way overestimate that.
0:44:54.2 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, it’s interesting. Look and if we wanna speculate on the why, it’s… You have your total daily energy expenditure. If you eat more than that over time you’re gonna gain weight, if you eat less than that over time you’re gonna lose weight. And by consistently getting more steps in, you’re going to have more calories to play with, which is going to allow you to maintain that weight. I actually do like the word exercise in there to include both steps and movement, but also include consistent strength training, just because…
0:45:31.2 Mike Vacanti: One of the benefits of consistent strength training, is that in those periods… Not the calorie expenditure of the actual strength training sessions themselves, but what happens when you eat in a surplus, like even when you’re maintaining, a lot of your days are going to be in a slight surplus, and that can be holidays, that can be birthdays, that can be weekends, that can be just random days where you’re more hungry, but your intake isn’t gonna be perfect and consistent and right at your maintenance level every single day. And so if you’re consistently strength training, you’re going to have some of those calories get partitioned toward muscle gain, when you end up eating in a surplus, versus if you’re not strength training and you’re eating in a surplus, the majority of that excess is gonna end up stored as body fat. So yeah, the steps are hugely important, as is maintaining some volume of strength training consistently for the rest of your life.
0:46:24.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. IAmMattBailey asked, are you a fan of Blink-182?
0:46:33.1 Mike Vacanti: For someone born in 1987, I am probably less of a fan on average compared to my peers, but yeah, I’m a slight fan.
0:46:46.0 Jordan Syatt: Who are you a fan of?
0:46:48.4 Mike Vacanti: Like nostalgic music?
0:46:50.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah. Like your childhood music.
0:46:53.6 Mike Vacanti: Man, I like so many types of music. We’re gonna stay on that same genre?
0:46:56.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, sure. Yellowcard?
0:47:00.9 Mike Vacanti: Love Yellow… That’s actually probably the number one… Like from high school, some angry emo “Life of a Salesman”, “Believe” like those are songs that would go on. They have a 911 tribute song. I remember sophomore junior year, Mr. Guest let me stay in the gym after class was over and everyone went to lunch, and the lights automatically went off in the gym because I wanted to finish workouts with angry music blaring. Yeah. All Time Low. Yeah, those are the ones that come to mind immediately. Adventures & Airwaves a little bit after the fact.
0:47:37.0 Jordan Syatt: Oh, Angels & Airwaves, they were great, I like Angels & Airwaves.
0:47:39.5 Mike Vacanti: Angels & Airwaves, “The Adventure”, yeah, huge fan, don’t even know the band name. [chuckle] Idiot.
0:47:47.5 Mike Vacanti: Angels & Airwaves, “The Adventure”, was the name of that song.
0:47:50.3 Jordan Syatt: Idiot!
0:47:54.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I liked all of those, I liked Blink-182, I liked Yellowcard, yeah, I liked Green Day, I liked all of them. Yeah, they were all good. HannahRhode asked, “How much weight gain after a weekend leniency is real weight gain?”
0:48:09.9 Mike Vacanti: That’s a fantastic question, and something that a lot of your clients for you coaches will likely worry about, a very small percentage. If we think about it technically, let’s assume a TDEE of 2,000, and we’re talking a lenient weekend, we’re not talking a degenerate weekend, we’re talking like a, didn’t really track, was loosey-goosey, we’ll call it like 3000-3500 calories Friday, Saturday and Sunday, like a full lenient weekend, that’s 1250 times three, 3650 calories over, that’s one pound of fat gain. About. About one pound of fat gain, and let’s say the scale goes from a Friday morning depleted weigh in of 162 pounds and Monday morning is 166.5 pounds, and you’re like, “Oh man, did I gain four and a half pounds of body fat?” No, it’s roughly one pound of body fat, probably on the high end for a lenient weekend, and 3 1/2 pounds of muscle glycogen, food in your GI tract, water, salt, etcetera.
0:49:32.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, and it’s probably… It’s probably not that much fat, it’s probably on the…
0:49:38.0 Mike Vacanti: Probably less than one pound…
0:49:38.7 Jordan Syatt: Probably less than one pound, yeah.
0:49:40.3 Mike Vacanti: Yes, yup, yup.
0:49:40.5 Jordan Syatt: For a number of reasons, because there are so many other places that that energy will go to, people don’t even realize that even just your brain requires energy to function, and oftentimes when you’re eating more, you’re expending more energy, your body is producing more heat, you’re getting up and moving a little bit. Maybe you’re like out of nowhere you have more energy, you’re talking more, you’re more excited, you’re fidgeting more. Who knows whatever it is. So there are a lot of other places this energy is going to. In order for all of those extra calories to go purely to fat storage, you’d probably just have to lie in bed the entire time and do nothing and just be a complete lazy slob. So yeah, and if you’re…
0:50:22.8 Mike Vacanti: Which the… And those weekends exist, that’s not a lenient weekend, which was described, but yeah, you make a great point, the natural, genetically driven, I believe in most people, NEAT response to excess calories.
0:50:37.6 Jordan Syatt: Yup, exactly. And also the composition of the food, whether it’s like if you’re just eating zero protein, zero carb, all fat, then that’s gonna be way more easily stored as fat, versus where it’s like higher protein, higher carb, moderate fat, then you’re gonna have less total fat storage as well.
0:50:55.5 Mike Vacanti: How sick would that be if a client’s lenient weekend was like 220 protein, 485 carb, like 50 fat, you’re just like wow.
0:51:06.4 Jordan Syatt: Your dials.
0:51:07.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. [laughter]
0:51:09.2 Jordan Syatt: That’s your lenient weekend, meanwhile, I had double that fat yesterday. Just kidding, not really. But…
0:51:14.9 Mike Vacanti: Oh, I think I did.
0:51:17.1 Jordan Syatt: No.
0:51:17.7 Mike Vacanti: I think I’ve been average double, double 50… Like 100 grams…
0:51:21.1 Jordan Syatt: You had 100 grams of fat yesterday?
0:51:23.0 Mike Vacanti: Dude, I’m walking 12,000 steps a day, I did it, and I’m doing two hour training sessions, I got artichoke dip in my fridge. My girl, by the way, I really like my girl. I got that from Andrew Schulz, it’s like a very vag, very New York like kinda to the ’90s, but keeps such a stocked fridge and pantry and freezer that I’ve had to… After 15 years living by myself and only buying desserts when I want to eat them, and now I have this stocked pantry, I’ve really had to learn some self-control, which is coming well in recent times, but this artichoke dip is insane. And it’s got 8 grams of fat per two table spoons, which is unfair…
0:52:01.1 Jordan Syatt: Oh man, it’s nothing. Yeah.
0:52:05.3 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, it’s like 35 servings per container. It’s like, “How am I supposed to deal with this.” But yeah, my target right now is 70 fat, and I’m almost always under 100, but usually in the 70-100 range.
0:52:19.2 Jordan Syatt: Bro, that Olive Garden artichoke dip for the appetizer, super good, super good.
0:52:26.0 Mike Vacanti: Olive Garden is the most underrated chain restaurant in the Western hemisphere, that’s a fact.
0:52:31.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
0:52:32.0 Mike Vacanti: A fact. What an episode. We’re just rolling. Thank you very much for listening. This was highly enjoyable. Hope you enjoyed it. Yeah, we’ll be back here same time, same place, next week.
0:52:46.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, thank you. Have a wonderful day. We’ll talk to you soon.
0:52:48.3 Mike Vacanti: Bye everyone.