0:00:09.7 Mike Vacanti: Hello, Jordan.


0:00:13.0 Jordan Syatt: What’s going on, Michael?


0:00:14.3 Mike Vacanti: Not much my man. You were just telling me about the meal you were enjoying and then I was like, We should pick this up on the podcast.


0:00:20.0 Jordan Syatt: Dude, can I just say we’re on a roll with these podcasts.


0:00:23.6 Mike Vacanti: I’ve been saying it, bro.


0:00:25.3 Jordan Syatt: Yes, someone DMed me recently being like, “please don’t stop the weekly uploads,” and I was like, “don’t you worry.”


0:00:31.6 Mike Vacanti: I love that, I love that. David even said he’s like, he’s like, this week… This consistency is helping with downloads, and I think his exact words were, “you guys are climbing the charts,” and I don’t know what charts he has back there, but apparently…


0:00:46.2 Jordan Syatt: Tell him to give me a copy of those charts…




0:00:50.4 Mike Vacanti: Make consistent content and good things happen over time. Who knew?


0:00:54.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, but yeah man. So it was interesting. I finally got my venison processed, so I got all the meat back, got a ton, like over 50 pounds of meat. I got some, I got a lot of ground… ‘Cause ground meat is easy to cook, ground meat is just… It’s harder to screw up ground meat, you can screw up steaks and you can screw up other stuff, but ground meat is so easy and you can package it, put it in tupperware, put in the fridge, put it on top of rice or pasta, whatever it is, so I got a lot of ground meat, I got some steaks as well, I got some sausages, but when I first started talking about hunting and when I would post pictures of myself on my story, out with a gun in nature, whatever it is, I didn’t even post a picture of myself with the animal, I just posted a picture of myself out in nature on the hunt, and people got super mad and got a lot of unfollows and all that. But once I posted the picture of the food that I was eating from the hunt or just like ground meat with pasta, hey, this is what I’m having, no one unfollowed me for that, everyone was this, oh, this is super interesting.


0:01:58.4 Jordan Syatt: And I was blown away by… It’s definitely just about the reliability of it, a lot of people can’t relate to being out hunting for your meal, in their mind, they’re like, you’re hunting for a defenseless animal, and meanwhile they’re saying that while they’re eating a cheese burger or a turkey sandwich or whatever it is not realizing that someone was never mind out hunting for the animal, but they probably took the animal and they put it into this horrible life and all this stuff, so I think the reliability of just seeing a plate of food made it less jarring for people.


0:02:33.2 Mike Vacanti: That makes sense. And those… A lot of those people, I would imagine, have never taken the time to think about the life cycle of that animal or where that… They think of that meal as a meal for themself. They don’t think of it as the end of a long series of events that happen to an animal to end up on that person’s plate, there’s a disconnect in modern society, you think you get your food from the grocery store, but that’s very late in the chain of events that happen.


0:03:02.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. That’s exactly right.


0:03:03.6 Mike Vacanti: And a lot of those people, like you said, are buying and no hate, but I do think this is something that personally I’d like to work on is being more conscious of the sourcing of… Especially the meat that I buy, and a lot of that meat is coming from an industry, a factory farming industry, where a lot of these animals lived absolutely horrendous lives and it’s very… It’s different, and we don’t have to get into the deep ethics of this, but it’s very different than being out in nature and hunting and using every piece of that animal, every part of that animal compared to an animal that came through the factory farming industry.


0:03:49.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that’s exactly right. And it’s been cool from the mindful eating perspective, which is I think a lot of people struggle with mindful eating, I think a lot of times when fitness professionals discuss mindful eating, they’re more thinking about strategies you can use from the perspective of developing a healthier relationship with food, but they often neglect thinking about where that food came from and thinking about literally thinking about the life cycle of that food as a means of developing a healthier relationship with food and being more mindful of what you’re eating, it’s been interesting even just to notice it myself, as I’m sitting down for a meal with this food, I’m much more mindful of how much I’m eating and how much I’m cooking, and how much and what I’m eating, every bite is more meaningful and more mindful just because I saw so much of that process. So it is an interesting aspect of it, but one thing I’ve been wondering, and I don’t know if you know the answer, it’s a ton of meat for one animal, it’s an outrageous amount of meat, something that I never would have imagined until I had done this, and it makes me think, just historically, I wanna look into this. Before they were refrigerators or freezers and people living in warm environments, how in the hell did they store this meat? Do you have any idea?


0:05:08.6 Mike Vacanti: I don’t, but I’m just gonna guess and speculate because it’s our podcast and we get to do that, [chuckle] I would imagine that the size of the tribe of the village, of the extended family, of the group that was living together, I would imagine when there was a kill that everyone ate from that kill. I would also imagine based on the frequency, I’m envisioning someone eating a pound and a half of meat in one sitting, so let’s say it’s a crew of 30 to 50 people, and they kill an animal that has… We’ll just use random numbers, about 50 pounds of meat to eat that everyone is eating all of that animal almost instantly, and then there might not be another opportunity like that for, I don’t know, a number of days, maybe a number of weeks, and in between their eating berries, and now I’m really just going out on a limb, but I would guess…




0:06:14.4 Mike Vacanti: I would guess that has something to do with it that, because how else… And what you say in warm climates, because my mind went to the movie, I think it’s called Into the Wild.


0:06:24.1 Jordan Syatt: Oh, Yeah. Such a good movie. Yeah.


0:06:26.1 Mike Vacanti: And he is, he’s up in Alaska hiking by himself, and I’m not gonna spoil the movie, but kills, I think it was an elk, I don’t remember the animal, but then tries to get it on ice on snow, to preserve it as quickly as possible, and actually fails and a lot of… It gets infected with flies or some kind of bugs, insects get to it before he can do that, but yeah, in environments where you have snow and where it’s cold enough, but in a warm environment, I don’t know how they preserved the meat.


0:07:01.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I’m thinking you were just like single family homes, where someone goes out to hunt for the family, and maybe they live in a cabin and they don’t have a huge family…


0:07:12.8 Mike Vacanti: Pre-electricity.


0:07:15.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, exactly. Just blows my mind.


0:07:19.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, man, I don’t know.


0:07:21.1 Jordan Syatt: Especially because I remember before I went hunting, I sort of just assumed, yeah, we go out, you’ll find an animal and then you kill it and then you bring it back and it’s like you sit out… Some people go out for a week at a time and don’t find an animal, for a whole week they’re out there and they don’t find… It’s not as simple as just, Yeah, we’ll go out and find one, it’s like it’s really difficult. [laughter] So I mean, it’s crazy. And even just going through that process makes you more grateful of having a refrigerator to put your food in and that you can go in and get food any time you want, even when you’re not eating the food that you harvested yourself. You’re grateful that you have that there. It’s a really crazy mindset shift.


0:08:02.3 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. And just that when you were talking about the mindfulness of eating the meal and thinking about where the animal came from, not wanting to waste any of it, just being very hyper-conscious and aware of the sacrifice that that living being made, not voluntarily, obviously, but for your life and benefit, and yeah, it’s very meaningful in a good mindset shift.


0:08:30.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yes, sir. How you doing?


0:08:35.0 Mike Vacanti: Good man, down in Florida for two weeks. I got the family down here, so having some quality time, everyone’s pretty much working, but it’s just nicer to be in a warmer environment, be able to get out to the beach in the afternoon, probably play a little golf. I hit an upper body workout this morning, and this is actually really funny, so I had a close-grip lat pull-down first, followed by an incline bench, and so when I’m done with my lat pull-downs, I walk over to the bench area and there are four total incline benches. The first one, there’s a girl, has it lied flat and is doing hip thrusts with a fixed-weight barbell on, which whatever. The second one, there’s two teenagers standing on either side of it, they both have their phone sitting on it, they both have their headphone cases sitting on it, one is ripping some lateral raises and one’s just blasting these momentum curls with… Shoulders are moving all over the place. A couple of goof balls, but they were going hard and I’m like, okay, I’ll just leave that bench alone. The third bench, a guy has a wet paper towel sitting on it and he’s standing…


0:09:52.2 Jordan Syatt: Oh, my God.


0:09:52.2 Mike Vacanti: He’s standing right next to it. Probably, like… Probably like a 70 year-old man, he’s standing, so literally, his leg is touching the bench and he has a 10 or a 15-pound dumbbell in his hand and he’s doing side bends right next to it [chuckle]


0:10:06.4 Jordan Syatt: Jeez.


0:10:06.5 Mike Vacanti: And in the last bench, this dude’s got a 65-pound dumbbell sitting on the bench and his phone and he… Or no, not his phone, I’m sorry, because he was holding his phone in his left hand talking on the phone, like literally phone to ear, and in his right hand, he’s got a 45-pound plate and he’s doing side bends. And I think I’ve mentioned it on this podcast, probably my least favorite, most meaningless exercise that I never program is the standing oblique isolation moves, but basically all four of these incline benches are taken for one, two, three, four minutes passed, and I finally go ask the older gentleman, I was like, “hey, would you mind if I use this? Could you say your towel this flat bench?” and he said he was about to use the incline bench. I said, “respect, no worries.” And so I went to the guy talking on his phone, and I was like, I don’t wanna bother to this guy, but I gotta get going, I was like, “hey man, can you put your stuff on the flat bench over there?” He’s like, “Yeah.” So he does, and I do my first warm-up set and realize they’re very narrow benches. So, this is a gym that I’ve hurt my neck and shoulder on before because I can’t even get my shoulder blades both on the bench, but I just ask these people to move their shit. So I basically was like, Okay, sucked it up and got through it.




0:11:25.1 Jordan Syatt: Did you keep the keep weight lighter?


0:11:29.2 Mike Vacanti: I did, I did. I kept my top sets five pounds lighter and wrote a note, ’cause I definitely didn’t want to, but I could literally read you the note that something along the lines of, “very smart, didn’t want to get hurt, go up next week, like, Good job.”




0:11:45.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I like that you still like write notes to yourself in your workouts, talking about your workouts.


0:11:50.9 Mike Vacanti: Oh yeah, absolutely. Especially because just when I’m copy-pasting that to the next week, then I know, what did that feel like? Was there anything interesting? Is there anything to focus on, was there like anything going on with the equipment that I should know about because I used to think I could remember those variables, but you never do.


0:12:09.5 Jordan Syatt: No. How often do you… You’re writing your own program, right?


0:12:13.1 Mike Vacanti: Mm-hmm.


0:12:13.7 Jordan Syatt: Do you do a new one every four weeks, what does that look like?


0:12:17.2 Mike Vacanti: I’ve really gotten more serious with it in 2022, and so… Yeah, I did actually, because I was on an every other day program that ended up being three and a half days a week, and I think it was late January, or early February, I switched to three day a week, higher volume and dropped a leg day, so I’m training lower body once a week, and upper body twice a week, and I am targeting March, so four to six weeks based on how I feel and how things are going, but they’re not massive changes in the program. Maybe I’m tweaking rep ranges on A1 B1, I’m keeping a lot of the same exercises. I like my primary moves right now, I like this close parallel grip pull down, I like an incline dumbbell bench, and so a lot of the exercises are staying the same, some of the accessory work’s changing, but March 1st, if I’m feeling up to it, I’ll probably move to four days a week and add a second lower body day just because it feels right.


0:13:23.3 Jordan Syatt: Dude I love those close-grip lat pull downs. Close-grip chin-up grip with your palms facing your face, or close-grip pull-up grip?


0:13:31.5 Mike Vacanti: They’re between… So it’s parallel grip but it’s actually not parallel grip because it’s like the seated cable row bar, so it’s between underhand and parallel, which is actually…


0:13:45.6 Jordan Syatt: Okay, so slightly angled, I like that.


0:13:48.4 Mike Vacanti: Which feels so—like I get such good scapular movement and a nice mix of recruitment between my biceps and my lats, because if I go straight underhand, it doesn’t feel as good on my shoulders, and I end up using a little bit more biceps than I want to, but that grip, like I really like it. It feels really good.


0:14:10.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I really like the close-grip chin-ups, close-grip lat pull down, you get a big stretch, like a really, really, really big stretch, a huge range of motion. There’s something about it, you’re almost forced to control it the whole way, whereas with a wider grip, it’s easier just to let the momentum go. I’ve really enjoyed using the close-grip lat pull-downs as well, it’s one of my favorite pulling movements, vertical pulling movements.


0:14:36.9 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. That massive range of motion does feel really good. And especially once someone can really nail the mind-muscle on that movement and get the movement pattern down because it’s a tough one. The lat pull down, no matter what the grip, is something that a lot of people new to the gym struggle with. You see a lot of internal rotation of the shoulders, you see a lot of just kind of pulling the bar down in front of you, a lot of upper trap activation.


0:15:07.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Their shoulders rolling forward. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I also feel like a lot of people don’t change their lat pull-down grip very much, they use the same one forever, and I remember, I think I was 20 or 21 when I first started doing a lot of close-grip work, and that completely changed my pulling game. It made a regular chin-ups feel so much easier when you go… I used to go where if I was doing a chin-up grip with a lat pull down, I would go literally my palms, not my palms, the insides and my hands touching each other, and that was a little bit… That was a little bit too close, it was a little bit too much stress on my shoulders, I didn’t get the pull that I wanted, so I just went about 3 to 4 inches apart, and man, that close-grip, such a huge stretch for the lats, it’s no joke, it’s one of my favorite exercises.


0:15:57.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. Awesome. Should we dive into questions?


0:16:01.7 Jordan Syatt: Cool story, bro. Let’s go into the fucking questions.




0:16:04.3 Mike Vacanti: No, dude, I could… I’m literally, I was trying to be like you because you’re so good at thinking about what the audience is thinking, and I can’t gauge if you and I have a disproportionate increased interest in lat pull-downs or if everyone else is just like, “all right, get to the questions. Let’s go.” Or if everyone’s like, “I love lat pull downs and wanna hear more about them,” ’cause we could just do this for the next 45 minutes.


0:16:28.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I’m actually interested to hear what people think, ’cause in my mind, I’m thinking, “they’re coaches maybe they wanna hear about some new exercises to give a shot, or maybe with themselves with their clients,” but on the other hand, maybe they’re like, “all right, cool, whatever. Get to the questions.” I don’t know.


0:16:44.7 Mike Vacanti: “How do I build my business?” [chuckle] Yeah. It depends.


0:16:47.3 Jordan Syatt: Well, let us know. DM us. Or should they DM you or not, are you gonna…


0:16:48.9 Mike Vacanti: No.


0:16:49.6 Jordan Syatt: DM me. Email, email.


0:16:51.8 Mike Vacanti: Email me at info@fitnessbusinessmentorship.com. And by the way, if you’re not on the email list, there’s a link in the bio, “30 ways to grow your online fitness business,” it’s an amazing free resource that Jordan and I wrote together, download that you’ll get added to the email list, and then you can…


0:17:07.9 Jordan Syatt: Link in the show notes. Not in the bio, show notes.


0:17:10.0 Mike Vacanti: Thank you. Definitely in the show notes, thank you.




0:17:14.5 Mike Vacanti: It’s been a while. And you can hit reply to those emails and we monitor that inbox closely, but don’t use the inbox to spam us please with the…


0:17:27.1 Jordan Syatt: Mike monitors that inbox. Mike is like the email King with this. I don’t do any of the email, just so you know. Just being honest.


0:17:32.8 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, that’s true. We have been getting a decent amount of spam to that inbox, just like the copy paste like, hey, we can be your copywriter and we can… So please send us that, but with your questions or your interest in anything or anything related to the podcast, we actually have one of the questions today comes from a guy named Steve who wrote an email asking if we could talk about something on the podcast, it’s a good question, so we’re gonna hit that today.


0:18:02.1 Jordan Syatt: Let’s do it.


0:18:04.4 Mike Vacanti: If there was ever a good transition let’s do that one right now. So Steve said, “Hi guys, on a past episode, you said coaches can have between 2000 and 5000 Instagram followers and can be making between $15,000 to $25,000 per month. Can you please elaborate and give us a little breakdown/examples on how this might be possible, I’m trying to wrap my head around the numbers and get a sense of how your business minds operate. Thanks for all you do, Steve.”


0:18:35.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that’s a great question. Do you wanna start with that one? You’re the numbers guy.


0:18:40.4 Mike Vacanti: So I’m actually gonna start not with numbers, and that is with the common assumption in this day and age in 2022 vet, Instagram, TikTok, basically, that short form content and the number of followers and amount of attention you get on your short form content is the number one driver and most highly correlated aspect with your revenue, and that’s just fundamentally not true for a lot of online coaches, and that’s because the emphasis on SEO-able, long-form content, written website article content that Jordan and I hammer all the time, and as well as YouTube, which is a place where you can also have long tail organic New Reach years and years after making a video, so you write an article or you make a video, it’s long. It’s very educational. It’s very good. And then for the next three, five, seven years, new people who have that question about the topic you wrote about or made a video about, are going to stumble across that video and find you even though you didn’t do any work on it for the last seven years, you’re gonna get a continuous stream of new audience.


0:20:03.6 Mike Vacanti: That is where so many new coaching clients come from is from the high quality long-form content that you make, so you can have a relatively small audience on short-form social media, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, but have put in a substantial amount of effort in building your website, and I’m just gonna say website, but websites/YouTube, so that you do have a consistent flow of new online coaching applications, you’ve built a substantial client roster and you’ve done it not through these short form social media, but through the longer form, and just to… You said $15,000 to $25,000 a month. Let’s say you’ve been a coach, let’s say you’ve been working on your online coaching business hard for five years, consistently for five years, and you have 50 one on one coaching clients. And you’ve gotten to a place where you’ve raised your prices up to $400 a month, so you didn’t start there, you weren’t there years one, two or three, but that’s where you’re at now, the majority of your clients are paying $400 per month, you have 50 clients that’s $20,000 a month, right in the middle of that $15,000 to $25,000 range, so you can have a small audience on Instagram, have put in a lot of work on your website and have 50 clients paying you $400 a month for $20,000 a month. If that’s your goal.


0:21:38.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, and let’s say you have… Let’s say you don’t even wanna make $20,000, you wanna make $10,000 a month, which like $10,000 a month is incredible. I don’t know that that’s just the question he asked, but let’s say you don’t wanna charge $400, let’s say you wanna charge $200. Well, cool, if you have 45 clients at $200, that’s $9000 a month, that’s $108,000 a year. And some people are probably like, Wow, I didn’t think Jordan was good at math. Well, while Mike was talking, I was doing all the calculations on that. And I have my phone up right in front of me, so I did not do that in my head, but you have 45 clients at $200 a month, that’s $9000 a month, $108,000 a year, that’s incredible.


0:22:15.0 Mike Vacanti: That’s incredible…


0:22:15.6 Jordan Syatt: And that is honestly… I’m not gonna say it’s very easy, but it’s pretty easy, it’s pretty easy if you’re willing to work really hard for two to three years, 45 online clients, if you’re willing to make content every day for two to three years, which if you’re not willing to make content every day. And you also say that you want this to be your full-time job, then there’s incongruency here, that makes no sense if you’re not going to make content every day, but you also want this to be your full-time job. There’s a problem. So if you want this to be like a side gig where you make a couple hundred, a couple extra hundred, a couple extra thousand dollars, you don’t have to make content every day, that’s totally fine. You can still make extra money that will support you and your family, and still help people, but if you want this to be your main job and to get to a point where you can make $100,000 a year, within two to three years, getting 45 clients at $200 a month is very doable, just like you would probably say to all of your clients, it’s very doable for you to lose 20 pounds if they’ve got an extra 50 on them, like, Yeah, it’s gonna put in work, but it’s very doable.


0:23:28.0 Mike Vacanti: It’s not necessarily easy every single day to make content for multiple years, but it’s simple, it’s very like If you do this, here is what follows. And to use another analogy, that’s a great one, the fat loss analogy is a great one, to use a finance example, it’s very simple to understand how you accumulate wealth, how you accumulate savings, right? You save more money than you spend. You look at how much money you earn and how much you spend, and your earning is more than you’re spending over time, you accumulate dollars, same thing here that if you consistently make content over time, you will see an increase in online coaching clients.


0:24:21.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah, that’s it. And in terms of content, we’ve spoken about this a lot, but I know a lot of people, especially newer coaches, they’re like, But aren’t you worried about How saturated the industry is, and Mike and I, we always talk… No, not at all, because there are a lot of coaches, but the vast majority of them suck, and they really suck at coaching and they’re really suck it, making content. They’re not consistent with it. There is a very, very, very unbelievably small community of coaches who are good at what they do, who make consistent content and continually get better with their content, so as long as you’re in that group, you’re gonna win.


0:25:01.9 Jordan Syatt: Yep, absolutely. The market is massive. And I think about, okay, so let’s say that plays out, let’s say it does become over-saturated, let’s say a lot of coaches start doing better, let’s say that… Demands start shrinking. What am I gonna do? I’m just gonna turn it back up, I know How to. I’ve worked my face off for a number of years, I know how to do that. If I was in a position where I had to do that again, I could absolutely do that. It’s a choice where your business ends up is a choice, and that’s why it’s so fun with so many people in the mentorship who have, over a number of years, have grown their business to a place where they have full online coaching rosters and they’re in a place where they can… They get to choose. It’s like, what should my next step be? It’s like, Well, you’re in a place of abundance, right? You have coaching applications, rolling in and you have a full client roster, your choice, it’s your choice where your business goes from here and… Yeah.


0:26:01.8 Jordan Syatt: That’s it. Make the choice.


0:26:06.9 Mike Vacanti: Make the choice, but it really is, it’s like decide what you want to happen, and then go make it happen, because if you listen to every single free episode, we’ve put out the blueprint to all of this is there. You know how to make it happen. It’s just to make the choice, if that’s what you want to do and then do it. And I love that you… ’cause I answered the question straight up, like for Steve, who is interested in the 15 to 25k range, is a lot of money. That doesn’t have to be your goal. I love that you gave the example of 40 to 45 online coaching clients at $200 a month like that provides an unbelievable living. That’s a six-figure income. Not sales. Not sales minus expenses. But six-figure income, yeah, take home money for you and your family before the government takes a share, but… Such as life. Alright, this is actually a question from me basically that I think will be interesting for us to talk about because you and I have spoken about it before, but I wanna go in-depth and so can you talk about the pros and cons of requesting progress pictures from online coaching clients, and how often do you request them, what do you use them for? And then positives and or negatives to having clients send you consistent progress pictures?


0:27:30.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, you asked this question?


0:27:31.9 Mike Vacanti: I ask this question, I basically have a few thoughts about it, and so I made up a question that’s gonna let us hit this full circle because I think we’ve talked decently extensively about the benefits and we can re-highlight those, but I have a few other ideas.


0:27:47.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, you wanna start by answering the question.


0:27:50.1 Mike Vacanti: You can lead. Tell me, so pretend that’s coming from not me, tell me about… You’re an online coach, and how do you request progress pictures from clients, how often and why would you request them?


0:28:03.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, I did when I was doing a lot of one-on-one coaching, it was required. I would say the main reason that it was required is because… And I’m sure if anyone’s ever coached anybody, you’ve noticed this, that sometimes your clients are making amazing progress and they don’t see it, and no matter what happens, they’re like, Well, it’s just not working, it’s just not working. And then I’ll take a side by side picture of them and I’ll show up be like, Look, this was you three months ago, and this is you today, and they’re like, Oh my God, I didn’t even notice that. But then sometimes you’ll even have a side by side picture and I’d be like, Look, and they be like, But I still don’t see a difference and you’re like, oh, for fucks sake, and then I literally would draw a line be like, “Look, your stomach was hanging out this far and now it’s only here,” and they’re like, “Oh my God, I didn’t even see that,” so it’s really… So not only is it important to get progress pictures, it’s important to get different angles of progress pictures like front-facing, profile facing, backwards facing, ideally in like a bathing suit or whatever, something that shows as much skin as possible without them being totally naked because some will people lose fat in different areas before other areas.


0:29:14.3 Jordan Syatt: So I remember sometimes you’ll look at someone face on and it looks like nothing changed, it looks like nothing really happened, but then you get the back picture and you can see that they’re like Back love handles are completely gone. And you never would have known that unless you got those pictures, so I think the most important reason that you should require them is simply because when they think it’s not working, you can look at the pictures and say, Well, actually it is working, and I’m gonna show you show you here, here and here, even if the scale isn’t going as quickly as you want, all of that, it’s a great opportunity for you to give them proof in their face side by side, this is working and you just need to keep going. Yeah.


0:29:54.7 Mike Vacanti: If you think about one of the primary responsibilities of a coach is not to let your client quit and not quit coaching, but quit fitness, because the only way you fail is if you quit, if you completely give up on nutrition, if you stop exercising for the rest of your life, that’s the only way you fail is if you quit, and so having those photos when a client feels like they’re not making progress and feels like they are getting closer to quitting and giving them that encouragement that positive reinforcement that really just dose reality that they are making progress that they didn’t realize they were making is a great way to keep that person going and keep them moving forward, and I completely agree.


0:30:36.5 Mike Vacanti: That’s a very good reason to request, and probably the main reason to request progress pictures, they’re also not only to encourage the client, but also for your knowledge about their progress, in some instances where scale, strength metrics, technique videos and even waist measurement sometimes. Sometimes someone will be making a ton of progress on their waist measurements and then pictures are like, okay, maybe it wasn’t quite as much as I thought, and often times it’s vice versa, it’s like, okay, their measurements haven’t changed a massive amount, but then when you see the progress pictures like, Oh, they actually have recount really nicely and do look a lot better, a lot leaner, a lot more muscular, so I think those are the main reasons to request progress pictures.


0:31:28.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, and the other one is, there’s something that happens… And I noticed this, especially with people who are very uncomfortable taking a progress picture because they don’t want to see what they look like, it’s like the first time someone steps on the scale in a long time they’ve been avoiding it, they’ve avoiding it, they’ve been avoiding it, they’ve been avoiding it. A lot of people, they deliberately avoid taking pictures because they don’t wanna see how they look, they’re embarrassed about it, and I’m not even just talking about progress pictures, they will avoid being on camera in life because they’re embarrassed, and the idea of not only just taking this picture, but taking this picture in minimal clothing and then sending it to someone over the internet is fucking petrifying and you really have to put yourself in their shoes to understand why it would be petrifying anytime someone would put up a little bit of resistance, I had a canned response that I made over the years that would go over all of their fears and their worries, but there’s something that happens when they finally get over that hump, they take the picture and they send it. They’re like, Alright, it’s time.


0:32:35.0 Jordan Syatt: It’s like a demarcation period in their own internal calendar and their own timelines, it’s like, it’s time, When that picture is taken, that’s saying, I’m ready to make this change. Whereas a lot of times, sometimes the coach within us, the M-path within the coach is like, I don’t wanna make you feel uncomfortable, I don’t wanna do anything you’re not comfortable with. No, no, no. You have to do things you’re not comfortable with, it’s gonna be scary to go to the gym, it’s gonna be scary to do exercises you’ve never done before, it’s gonna be scary to put yourself in these types of positions, but there’s a mental… There’s a big moment mentally and emotionally that happens when you take that picture and you send it, because it marks the day and the time at which you decided enough is enough, so it’s a big moment, and I think it’s very important for that as well. Yeah.


0:33:22.9 Mike Vacanti: It’s feeling the fear and doing it anyway. Avoidance is not a good strategy for fear or anxiety, or just closing your eyes to the issue is not nearly… It isn’t effective, whereas conquering that fear is, and that is, especially that initial progress picture, because sometimes you’ll get pushed back on, it’s usually not continued downstream progress pictures month over month in the coaching process, it’s that first one, and yeah, it can signal the start of a new you, a new identity and new shift in that client.


0:34:05.6 Jordan Syatt: Dude, I’m watching Yellowstone right now. And on season 4, Episode 2, or episode 3, one of them, I think it’s Episode 2. Tate is hiding under the bed because his mom and him had been attacked in the house by the guys who are trying to kill them, and his mom is just letting him hide under the bed for weeks at a time because he’s scared to go out and finally Kayce goes in and he… And Kayce pulls him out from another bed and he says, “You’ve already beat your greatest fear, the greatest your came and you already beat it, you cannot hide under the bed anymore, it’s only gonna make it worse,” and then Tate just got up and walked over and had dinner at the table like after weeks of hiding, but it’s like he had to realize he’d already beaten his greatest fear, and I think that’s so much of the coach’s job is to be like, You already beat one of your greatest fears by reaching out to me by saying, I wanna do coaching, you’ve already done that hiding and not taking this picture isn’t gonna help take the picture, and for whatever, it’s worth, one of the things that I would use in my canned response, I would say, Listen, I understand how you’re feeling.


0:35:06.2 Jordan Syatt: I understand. It can be scary. Number one is, no one is seeing these pictures, except for you and me, nobody else is seeing these pictures, I’m not showing it to anybody, I’m not posting on social media. It’s just between you and me. Number two is, I’ve worked with a lot of clients, and most of them have been uncomfortable with this picture, but not a single one of them has ever regretted sending it once we started making progress, they’ve always said, Thank God you made me take this picture because now I can compare it and show where I started, no one’s ever regretted sending it and make sure they know that because it’s gonna make them feel more comfortable.


0:35:41.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. By the way, canned response is now called template in Gmail, and it’s gonna be very effective, especially once you have more and more clients because there will be questions that you get repeated from client to client and having a very good thorough explanation, even if you’re not just copy-pasting it, but you have it saved and then you can have that as a template and change whatever necessary for that specific individual, but yeah, they used to be called canned responses, templates in gmail are extremely beneficial and are part of increased efficiency in online coaching. So here’s… I historically have had every single client send progress pictures to send… We’ll call it before shots, when coaching starts. For all the reasons we’ve mentioned and more, I don’t require clients to send ongoing pictures at any regular interval, rather I request the pictures, not willy-nilly, but more based on feel. More based on my curiosity about the amount of progress they’re making, some clients just kinda default into enjoying taking pictures every four weeks or six weeks or eight weeks, and… I’m all on board for that.


0:37:07.8 Mike Vacanti: I’ve also had clients go the other way with it who are hyper-focused on their progress pictures, and will take… You know, will over-analyze their progress pictures will want to send them weekly, will want to send me daily progress pictures and get feedback about them, and when I re-read Iron and the Soul in the $200K is Always $200K episode from Henry Rollins and Mr. Pepperman talks about, you’re not allowed to look at yourself in the mirror, like our focus is no longer on your appearance, your focus is on the weights, your focus is on the iron, your focus is on strength in that process, it’s not on the result, it’s not on what changes about you aesthetically, it’s about you and the iron, and I have had clients who I felt like needed that energy, that message, because there’s… Often times you’re not going to see a ton of progress from picture to picture, sometimes you do, but often times you’re not going to. Depends on the frequency. This is especially true, kind of a separate case, but in clients who are bulking, clients who are trying to build muscle, the shirtless visual progress in a muscle gain phase. It’s not great. [chuckle]


0:38:33.5 Mike Vacanti: You add a little body fat, you don’t notice, first of all, unless you’re a complete beginner and even complete beginners, the visual changes aren’t incredible, but especially if you’re not a complete beginner, the rate at which you build muscle is quite slow and it’s distributed throughout the whole body, so you’re not gonna see those changes month to month, even like a 90-day muscle gain progress picture, if their equal lighting equal pump, equal everything is gonna be pretty underwhelming compared to what a fat loss picture could look like. So for people who are building muscle, I’m not requesting progress pictures high frequency, but it’s especially for that subset of people who are hyper-fixated on their own appearance, and judging themself and basically don’t have other good metrics of progress, no matter how hard you nudge them towards strength, no matter how hard you nudge them toward process-oriented goals rather than results-oriented goals, and for those individuals, I discourage progress pictures or I discourage progress pictures at a higher frequency and try and put the focus on to other metrics.


0:39:49.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that makes total sense. It’s funny, as you were talking about that, I was thinking whatever the person is… The person is more inclined to do, is I tend to go to the opposite. Right? So if they’re more inclined to take very frequent progress pictures every week, and I’m like, “We’re gonna take them once every couple of months.” But if the person is like, “Hey,” if they’re not sending me any progress pictures and it’s been like four months, I’m like, “Hey, send them every four weeks on the first of the month, no questions asked.” Because whatever it is they’re avoiding or whatever it is they’re going too hard on, I wanna bring them back the other way, so it does depend on the client. For me, I’ve always just in the initial packet, I say “I’d like a new measurements every two weeks and new pictures every four weeks, and it’s up to you to send them.” But there’s a massive percentage of clients who just won’t do that. And I’ll have to remind them, I’m more regimented with the measurement that I am the pictures, I’m like “Hey, I really want these logs of measurements.”


0:40:47.7 Jordan Syatt: For the… I’d say the majority of clients who are not regimented with the pictures, if they’re sending… I’ve had a handful of clients send weekly pictures and they get… You’re right, they’re so obsessive with it, they’re just analyzing every… Literally, week-to-week, they’re like, “Oh my God, my legs look puffier here, da, da, da here.” And then you have the other clients who haven’t sent you a picture in a year, [laughter] and you’re like, Alright… And it’s funny, it does even this depends, because if they haven’t sent me a picture in a year, but they’re super happy. I’m not gonna be like, “Hey, send me pictures.” I’m not gonna be like, “Hey, I need to see these pictures.” If they’re happy and everything is going great, cool, let’s keep going…


0:41:18.2 Mike Vacanti: They’re healthy, they’re in pretty good shape, they’re consistent with workouts, like yeah, yeah.


0:41:25.9 Jordan Syatt: If it’s been a year and they’re constantly complaining about… Then I’ll be like, “You’re required to send me pictures.” But if they’re happy and they’re feeling great, I’m not gonna be like, “Hey,” ’cause that could almost push them away, ’cause I think as coaches, it’s very easy to, in your mind think, I need to get this client a six pack I need to get… They could do so much more, they could do so much more, but if they’re healthy, they’re consistent, they’re training, don’t be up there ass about a progress picture every four weeks, if they’re doing great anyway, if they want to, awesome, but I would use it more for the people who are honestly giving you trouble and just making your life a little bit more obnoxious than it needs to be. [laughter]


0:42:07.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. Good, that was great. I’m really happy.


0:42:09.6 Jordan Syatt: That’s a great question, Mike.


0:42:14.0 Mike Vacanti: Thank you, thanks Jordan. [chuckle] And this is part of our plan for this podcast, ’cause we’re ripping weeklies for multiple decades here, this is just the start of a real big positive momentum swing, and I like dipped… There are only so many subjects in the world, and so deep diving on more specific ideas and questions around business around coaching, I think will be really useful and beneficial.


0:42:43.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Agreed.


0:42:43.7 Mike Vacanti: Alright what do we got next here?


0:42:44.2 Jordan Syatt: Decades baby.


0:42:45.5 Mike Vacanti: Decades.


0:42:47.4 Jordan Syatt: Until 20… [chuckle] 2080.


0:42:49.3 Mike Vacanti: Let’s go. We’re gonna be old. Okay, “is it important to eat protein on rest days?” And kinda lumped in with that, so kind of a nutrition question, “if you don’t work out, when is the best time to have protein supplements?”


0:43:12.2 Jordan Syatt: Is it important to have protein on rest days? Yes, yes it is. It’s important to have protein every day. It’s funny, I think a lot of people, for whatever reason, believe that protein is only important on days you lift, and or they often think that protein is even more important when you’re bulking or trying to build muscle. I actually think it’s less important when you’re trying to build… I think protein is most important when you’re losing fat, it gets… The most important time for protein is when you’re trying to lose fat because you’re gonna be in an energy deficit, you’re eating fewer calories and the goal is to maintain as much muscle as you can, so you’re gonna wanna keep your protein high to maintain that muscle, you’re also gonna be a little bit hungrier, protein is the most filling, so it’s gonna keep you more full, has that metabolic advantage because of a higher thermic effect of food. With muscle building phases you can actually reduce your protein slightly and increase your carbs and… ‘Cause you’re gonna get better energy with your workouts, you’re gonna feel great, oftentimes, it can be difficult to get enough food in, and if you’re eating more protein, it’s gonna be even harder to do that, so…


0:44:18.0 Jordan Syatt: Yes, it’s important to get it in any day regardless. I do think the fitness industry has over-emphasized protein and we’re starting to see it come down, we’ve seen it come down over the last three to five years, it went from over one gram per pound of body weight. And then they were like, You know what, we’re gonna do one gram per pound of lean body mass, and then more recently, a lot of the 0.7 grams for a pound of lean body mass, and I think they’re realizing that a lot of the recommendations have been a little bit high, so I tend to find myself somewhere between that 0.7 to one gram per pound of lean body mass, and I know a lot of the people who really get into fitness often go way above that, and I would almost challenge you being like, “If you’re going way above that what are you missing out on?


0:45:00.1 Jordan Syatt: What are you missing out on in terms of food, in terms of your relationship with food.” And this goes for any coaches, but also your clients, if you’re prescribing clients more than that amount of protein, or if you have a client who’s eating just so much more protein than they’re required to have. Maybe they have a fear of carbs, they’re not telling you about, maybe they have something and they’re just, “Well, I can eat more protein than you gave me, right?” Maybe you told them to have 130 grams, but they’re having 180 grams of protein, it’s like that’s something for you to address, and not just say, “Well, they’re allowed to do it.” It’s like, yeah, they’re allowed to, but why aren’t they and is there a deeper rooted problem here?”


0:45:29.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, great answer. You hit the nail on the head with that. I mean, if you don’t train when it’s the best time for protein supplements?


0:45:38.2 Jordan Syatt: Why aren’t you training?




0:45:52.8 Mike Vacanti: That’s so right. That’s so right. I interpreted it as a rest day…


0:45:54.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, I’m just joking.


0:45:58.9 Mike Vacanti: No, but I love it. Yes, that’s the answer. There are… I thought of a couple of situations… Well, okay, so first, I do like Look, if some form of fasting works for you, and that’s kinda how your… Works for your schedule, works for your hunger cues, if you enjoy some, whether it’s a 16:8 or any type of fasting, and you’ve integrated it into your nutrition practices and you enjoy it, great. But if we’re talking about from a muscle… I almost don’t even wanna go into this because it’s so 1% in terms of how much it matters and in terms of how many people in the population really care about it, but a higher frequency of protein intake is probably beneficial, and that means get protein, get 30 grams of protein every four to five-ish hours, is gonna be a good practice, so when you talk about if you’re not training, what is the best time, so whether it’s a training day or a rest day, getting 30 plus grams of protein in, call it three times a day or more is gonna be beneficial.


0:47:20.7 Mike Vacanti: A couple of random places where I like using protein supplements because that’s what the question was specifically about, are one… So I’ll use an example from the other night, my grandfather, who passed away a number of years ago, he was a youth hockey coach and very deeply involved in the community, in the program for decades, and did a lot of really good things in helping build up that program, and he was being honored at a high school game between period, so my dad, my uncle went down on the ice and got this cool plaque and in his memory, but they were giving him some love, but going to the rink… Hockey rink… High school hockey rink food is very… You got your hotdogs, your nachos, your pretzel and cheese, your gummy worms, like your orange soda you have is just crap, and I’m on my way there for… I’m gonna be there from 7:00 to 9:30. And I enjoy some of that food, but let’s put together a meal there, it’s like, What do you have a hot dog and a pretzel and cheese, it’s 10 grams of protein, 100 carb and 45, 50 fat like that’s not a meal that’s [chuckle]


0:48:38.6 Mike Vacanti: So what I actually did was I had two scoops of protein powder, shook it up, and I literally drank it in the car on the way to the rink, and then was going to have a hot dog at the rink, so the “meal” is like 50 grams of protein plus a brat with sauerkraut and the ketchup and bun whatever, and that forms into a nice, like a solidly balanced meal from a macro nutrient perspective, that’s one way I like them, another way that we both had Gary using protein shakes pretty regularly was to blunt hunger before a tempting event, a tempting meal, a tempting… He was at the time eating out at restaurants, five plus nights per week at steak houses and restaurants that had multiple course meals and going in there hungry, and there’s just like the garlic bread with butter, there’s the appetizers, the cheeses, there’s all these good things. Having 50 grams of protein with very few tag-along carbs and fats right before you’re headed to that event is gonna be super beneficial in making the temptations easier to navigate, it’s gonna blunt hunger, it’s gonna help you make better smarter choices and because protein is objectively the most difficult macro nutrient to hit or to get, and probably the least enjoyable for most people, anyone who’s sane, right? Carbs and fats are more enjoyable to eat, you’re getting plus 50 in your day right there, which makes the whole day easier. So those are two places where it often makes sense to use protein supplements.


0:50:13.4 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. And the thing with Gary and those dinners that I was surprised at when I first started coaching him was it wasn’t just a dinner, he would have three to five meetings in a row and he would sit at the same table for hours and hours, he would get there at like 7:00 PM, and he’d have meetings until midnight, and every hour, every hour and a half, a new meeting would come in and they’d sit down and they’d order dinner and he would just sit there, so having those protein shakes was super helpful because he’s sitting through three or four or five dinners, and he’s like, it’s very difficult when you’re doing that, so he could get that those 50 grams of protein in and maybe have one legit dinner rather than having four dinners, and I know a lot of people still ask, even though it’s crazy to me. People still ask all the time, “Well, do you still utilize the protein if you’re getting 50 grams in one sitting, or is a lot of it wasted?” It’s like “You still utilize all of it, it just takes longer to digest.” A lot of people still for whatever reason, believe that your body can only handle 20 or 25 grams of protein, and no that’s not how… We wouldn’t have survived as a species, if that’s how it worked, most people… For the vast majority of human history, we did not have access to 25 grams of protein every few hours, [chuckle] it’s like you’d have… You have one big meal usually, and that was it, so you utilize all of it… Just takes longer to digest.


0:51:30.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. Did that in part come from research that showed that 20 or 25 or 30, whatever the number was, of high quality protein was enough to sufficiently spike muscle protein synthesis?


0:51:45.0 Jordan Syatt: That’s what I would have imagined. I think where is that, I think it was between that and also, I think supplement companies used it, they took that research and then they’re like, “Well, this is how much you need to spike Lucene, and so from there, you know you shouldn’t take more, but then if you take this three to five times a day…


0:52:04.8 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. [chuckle]


0:52:05.5 Jordan Syatt: It’s way better. It’s like cool. So now instead of only having one scoop or two scoops a day, now you’re having four to six scoops in a day, every few hours, you’re having a scoop, you buy more of their supplements.


0:52:16.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah, great business strategy. Directions have one scoop every two to three hours in cold water and repeat until Jacked, [laughter]


0:52:31.6 Jordan Syatt: Wake up in the middle of the night every night to make sure you’re getting your protein, and I know there used to be people who would do that.


0:52:35.0 Mike Vacanti: Crazy.


0:52:35.3 Jordan Syatt: I’m sure there still are… Let’s interrupt your REM cycle to get your protein.




0:52:43.9 Mike Vacanti: Alright, I feel like that’s a good place to wrap it. I think this was a great episode.


0:52:50.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, crushed it. That was good.


0:52:52.8 Mike Vacanti: If you feel… We’re going weekly forever, and so if you would like to help us reach more people leaving a five-star review or any—zero, if you hate us. But five stars is ideal would be amazing. Apple, Spotify…


0:53:02.2 Jordan Syatt: Sharing on your Instagram story, that’d be great.


0:53:10.3 Mike Vacanti: Yeah.


0:53:10.6 Jordan Syatt: Tag us. Tag us. If you share it. We’d love that.


0:53:16.5 Mike Vacanti: We would love that. I will actually check in over the next week to see if anyone tagged us.


0:53:20.1 Jordan Syatt: Wow.


0:53:20.2 Mike Vacanti: Jordan, please help me remember this.


0:53:24.0 Jordan Syatt: Someone tagged us recently and I shared on my story, they tagged you and I in it, but I don’t think you saw it, so thank you to the woman who did that.


0:53:30.9 Mike Vacanti: Thank you very much.


0:53:33.4 Jordan Syatt: I replied on Instagram and said thank you, but… Yeah.


0:53:33.5 Mike Vacanti: Nice. I appreciate you looking out for my… I would actually love to see my total time spent on that app over the last 90 to 180 days.


0:53:45.2 Jordan Syatt: I would love to see that as well, what would your estimate be.


0:53:49.4 Mike Vacanti: Under one hour, total. Under one hour in the last three months? Yeah.


0:53:54.8 Jordan Syatt: Really?


0:53:55.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah.


0:53:55.8 Jordan Syatt: Man how times have changed.


0:53:58.9 Mike Vacanti: But I feel this weird content like… Its brewing. It’s brewing. We’ll see.


0:54:04.8 Jordan Syatt: You’ve been very much enjoying TikTok, though. Right? You’ve been just hanging out on TikTok a little bit.


0:54:12.1 Mike Vacanti: I mean, I go on TikTok and I go on the for you page and just laugh for 20 or 30 minutes before falling asleep.


0:54:14.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah.


0:54:16.8 Mike Vacanti: Alright. We’re getting a little long-winded. We’ll see you next week. We appreciate you. Have a great day, night, weekend, and see you soon.

0:54:17.0 Jordan Syatt: Bye-bye.

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