In this episode, we have a random conversation with very little business talk. We dive into rest days, overtraining, black out curtains, self-defense, and more.
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-J & M
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Or you can expand to find the full episode transcription below:
0:00:11.9 Mike Vacati: Hello, Jordan.
0:00:13.3 Jordan Syatt: Michael, how was jiu-jitsu?
0:00:19.0 Mike Vacati: Got it in, got it in.
0:00:21.3 Jordan Syatt: That’s what she said.
0:00:24.6 Mike Vacati: She did?
0:00:29.4 Mike Vacati: It was good, man.
0:00:29.5 Jordan Syatt: Two times this week.
0:00:31.0 Mike Vacati: Session number two, yeah.
0:00:32.8 Jordan Syatt: How did it go today?
0:00:34.1 Mike Vacati: It was good.
0:00:35.2 Jordan Syatt: What did you guys work on?
0:00:37.3 Mike Vacati: I worked on not contorting my face and making extreme effort on very simple moves.
0:00:43.4 Jordan Syatt: Seriously, that’s what the lesson was?
0:00:46.0 Mike Vacati: No, that wasn’t the lesson. That’s just what I was told. [chuckle] I’m not doing a one rep max on a barbell back squat, and I don’t need to…
0:00:55.7 Jordan Syatt: Did your professor say like, “Hey, hey, take it easy?” [laughter]
0:00:58.9 Mike Vacati: Yeah, we’re just chilling here. We’re just taking it… Relax your face.
0:01:05.9 Jordan Syatt: That’s funny.
0:01:07.1 Mike Vacati: Yeah, no, it was really good, man. I told you after my first session, it’s like drinking through a fire hose, I’m not gonna try and recount what all went down in that whirlwind of a class here. It would be incredibly boring to 99% of those listening. But it was fun; I enjoyed it.
0:01:26.6 Jordan Syatt: Was it tiring or more…
0:01:28.2 Mike Vacati: No, not super tiring, sweating by the end of it, but it was good. I got a lift in this morning and then… Yeah, right now, planning on two to three days a week of this, so that six years from now, if someone tries to kill my family in an alley, I can snap his neck and just continue with my life rather than suffer the fate that Batman’s parents did.
0:01:52.6 Jordan Syatt: Love that.
0:01:53.6 Mike Vacati: Or Bruce Wayne’s. He wasn’t Batman at the time. Anyway, how are you?
0:01:57.8 Jordan Syatt: Dude, I’m good. I’ve got jiu-jitsu in about an hour and 17 minutes, so I’m ready for that. But…
0:02:04.5 Mike Vacati: You undersell your math, but look at that. You just like, like that.
0:02:09.4 Jordan Syatt: Listen, listen, Michael. We both know my math is…
0:02:12.4 Mike Vacati: Strong.
0:02:14.0 Jordan Syatt: Far, far… Don’t lie. You’re an ISTJ, you can’t lie. It is not strong. What, strong for a third grader? Yeah it’s… [laughter]
0:02:23.5 Mike Vacati: It’s acceptable.
0:02:26.8 Jordan Syatt: For a third grader? Yeah, it’s definitely acceptable for like an eight-year-old.
0:02:30.6 Mike Vacati: Alright, alright. [laughter]
0:02:35.7 Jordan Syatt: It’s alright. You don’t have to be good at everything. You know what I mean?
0:02:38.9 Mike Vacati: That’s true. I don’t understand why humans do what they do. And you do.
0:02:43.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, you do. Decently. [laughter]
0:02:44.9 Mike Vacati: No, no. Okay, there it is, there it is. That’s true. I wrote some notes down on things we can BS around on the first half.
0:02:58.2 Jordan Syatt: Wait, let’s just go over one move you learned at jiu-jitsu today. Okay. We don’t have to spend 30 minutes, but just I wanna hear what’s one thing you went over today.
0:03:08.2 Mike Vacati: Well, we started with doing like three or four reps of the four things that I learned in the last class.
0:03:16.2 Jordan Syatt: Oh, love that.
0:03:17.5 Mike Vacati: Yeah, and I remembered them. I remembered all four of them, so I was pretty happy with that.
0:03:24.0 Jordan Syatt: That’s amazing.
0:03:25.0 Mike Vacati: And then, what was one new one that we did today? The thing is, I don’t understand it. I know a little bit of term… I know more terminology than I’m leading on in class, [chuckle] because I don’t wanna come across as some know-it-all, but I don’t know it from doing it, I just know it from talking to you about it.
0:03:44.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
0:03:46.8 Mike Vacati: But what’s one thing that we did today? I was… Okay, so if someone has you… If they’re on mount and then they have you in a forearm choke, they have their forearm across your neck, basically how to… I don’t know what you would call it, you flip them off of you, so you’re securing their wrist and getting their elbow, getting a grip on their tricep, and then you gotta get your… What would be my left foot out from… What do you call that? They have a hook on with their foot over your… I wanna get my foot on the outside and then kind of move my head out of the way, and then roll him off me, so I end up being on top. I end up being in the other person’s guard.
0:04:39.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, dude, that’s perfect. It’s one of the best mount escapes. Super helpful for overall defense, like for people listening, if someone has… If someone’s mounted on top of you, imagine you’re lying on your back and someone is just literally sitting on you, maybe like an older brother would do to a younger sibling if they’re just tickling you or whatever, but if someone’s in a legit fight, they’re like just sitting on your chest and raining down punches, that’s what mount is. So you just described how to get out from that position, which is… You described it perfectly too. The technique was spot on.
0:05:13.9 Mike Vacati: Thanks, Dale, you’re the best.
0:05:15.7 Jordan Syatt: No, it’s ISTJ. That was just the truth. It’s a great technique.
0:05:23.1 Mike Vacati: He actually said something really interesting in my first class that I hadn’t thought of, which was what this skill does, is it lets you control… He called it a dimmer in a fight. He wasn’t… Not self-defense on the street or a home invasion, but just if… He actually said something super interesting, which is a majority or a large percentage of physical interactions are actually between people who know each other. And so in those instances, if you happen to be in that situation, you don’t want to just go zero to 100, you don’t want it to be a light switch on and off, you want to be able to control the intensity. You wanna be able to control them without actually hurting them.
0:06:11.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, exactly, exactly.
0:06:13.9 Mike Vacati: And I thought that was… It was an aha moment for me because I don’t remember the last fight I was in, but fights I’ve been in historically when I was younger, were with friends or people who I knew, who I wouldn’t want to really hurt.
0:06:28.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, you wouldn’t wanna kick them in the face with your shin and cause real damage. You’d just wanna control the situation to the point where, “Alright, now the aggression’s out and no one’s hurt.”
0:06:38.0 Mike Vacati: Exactly.
0:06:39.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I love that. And I think that’s where people hear mixed martial arts or combat or whatever, jiu-jitsu, and they all of a sudden think you’re learning just like, “Alright, we’re learning how to kill people.” It’s like, no, learning how to keep yourself safe and other people safe, and sometimes even the person safe who’s attacking you, because whether they know you or not… Maybe it’s like a homeless person on the street or someone who has severe mental issues. It’s like, you don’t wanna hurt that person and they don’t wanna hurt you. They’re not even consciously aware of what they’re doing sometimes, but like, you kick them in the face, you’re doing real damage, and there’s probably gonna be a lawsuit involved. But with jiu-jitsu where it’s just being able to control the person, you can really, really control the situation without anyone getting hurt.
0:07:21.1 Mike Vacati: That’s very well explained. It’s a great point. It’s actually a good transition because people do say like, “Why would you want to be able to hurt someone? Why do you need to learn these skills? Why don’t you just be peaceful? Why don’t… ” It’s like, you can’t. Being incapable doesn’t make you peaceful.
0:07:38.8 Jordan Syatt: Correct.
0:07:39.1 Mike Vacati: What makes you peaceful is the… The warrior in the garden slogan. What maintains peace are very dangerous, very capable individuals who have integrated that, and you protect… I’m talking kind of metaphorically now, but you protect borders and safeguard a garden with strength. That’s what keeps “invaders” out. And I think a lot of people miss that. I think a lot of people take peacetime for granted and don’t realize that it is strong individuals who are upholding that.
0:08:20.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that’s exactly right. It’s also, I think everyone logically knows there’s a chance someone could break into your house or someone could attack you on the street. Everyone logically knows that, but they always think like, “Well, it would never happen to me.” But I think for example, and we’re not gonna dive into real politics, but I think what’s interesting right now is people are seeing what’s happening in Ukraine, for example, where just regular, everyday civilians are just… Like 14-year-old boys and up are being handed military grade weapons, and it’s like, “Oh shit.” It’s not like Ukraine is a third world country that you can’t imagine like… No, this is real life in our world, and this is… If you think that any type of combat is very far away from your doorstep, I think you’re probably…
0:09:12.9 Mike Vacati: Naive.
0:09:13.9 Jordan Syatt: You’re very naive. Yeah, that’s exactly right.
0:09:16.1 Mike Vacati: Yeah, there’s a name for this. It’s the situation where the chicken is born and the chicken gets fed, and the chicken grows and the chicken has sunny days and gets… Every day, the farmer feeds the chicken and they have this great relationship, and the chicken is just living life and day after day after day after day getting fed, rain, shine, like growing strong, growing bigger. And then one day, the chicken is dinner, like, boom. [chuckle] It’s just this drastic shift, this cataclysmic shift, right? That’s the right word, I think. We might have to vocab check me on that, but in life, where it’s like, “Oh, this is not what I thought it was,” says the chicken as he or she is on the chopping block.
0:10:09.3 Mike Vacati: And there can be massive shifts in an instant, and it is good to be prepared. And there is a certain set of skills that are important to have.
0:10:21.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah.
0:10:22.8 Mike Vacati: Actually, you know where we should take this conversation right now is back to over-training, even though, and I think we’ve hit on this at least once in the last month or two, but this uptick in average training hours a week, I went from three days a week lifting to four days a week lifting, now adding two to three days a week of rolling on top of the lifting, playing all that football back… Was that last week? It feels really, really good to be doing more physical activity. And I was telling you yesterday, I think it was, just… I don’t know how we all got so brainwashed into thinking that fitness should be something that you put in a box into three 45-minute workouts per week. [chuckle] I’m like, that’s all for your physical activity, that’s all you need to do, and then just live the rest of your life however you want. It’s like, no, actually moving and lifting and running and doing all these different activities up to multiple hours a day really feels good.
0:11:22.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, and obviously, being progressive with it, not going from morbidly obese and completely sedentary for 30 years to doing as much as we’re doing, but also not just looking at the 150 minutes a week of low intensity exercise and then sitting on your ass the rest of the time. You can do more. And I think, especially in the science-based fitness world, that term “over-training” is thrown around so haphazardly, and even, for example, this is something that I’ve been learning working with Alex Viada, the idea of if you’re sore, then you can’t do anything. Like yesterday, I did… Alex programmed six sets of Steinborn Squats into 25 feet of walking lunges with 135 pounds, which is insane, and that was just one part of the workout, that was just like one-sixth of the workout. And today, he has me doing sprints at 10 miles per hour on the treadmill, doing…
0:12:25.6 Jordan Syatt: 400 meter… No, 400 meter, what is it? Yeah, 400 meter repeats at a speed of 10. I have eight or nine or 10 total sets of that. My legs are pretty damn sore today, but we’ve been doing this for the last month or so. And I think before I worked with Alex, I would have been like, “You know what? My legs are sore, I’m not gonna run or I’m not gonna do any of that.” But it’s… You can actually still move if you’re sore, you can still do training. Obviously, it’s gonna require a longer warm-up today, I’m gonna wanna take some time to build up to it, but it’s been very interesting to see your body is capable of handling so much more than so many people realize. It really… It’s built to be resilient, that’s what it’s made to be. And yeah, so obviously again, taking it progressively, not doing that with your everyday average Joes and Janes, but especially with yourself, you can push yourself and don’t feel limited to, okay, well, I can only train four days a week, and then the rest of the time I should just sit on my butt ’cause it has to be a rest day. You can move.
0:13:30.7 Mike Vacati: I think people also get in the mindset that I’m too busy to do more than… Three 30-minute sessions per week is literally all I have time for. And there are gonna be rare instances where that’s true, and I think they’re few and far between. But really, if you take a good solid look at your day-to-day and weekly schedule, you can find time that can be converted from some leisure activity into some physical activity, which I think will actually lead to you feeling better.
0:14:02.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, agreed.
0:14:03.6 Mike Vacati: Do you have any finger on the pulse of, not how your body feels in terms of soreness, but in terms of let’s call it tweaking something, injury potential, wear and tear stuff, not feeling good when you are, let’s say, in the year 2018 compared to the year now. Because I think intuitively, most people would say, “Oh, you’re doing way more now, your body probably feels worse, your body is probably more beat up. You’re probably like… “Or do you feel better now than you did when you were doing way less?
0:14:36.3 Jordan Syatt: I feel infinitely better now, and it’s funny ’cause back 2018, training Gary, traveling the world, spending all my time on business, very little time on my health and fitness, I was tired, chronically, just chronically exhausted. My back was tight all the time from sitting down and traveling and just working at my desk and computer and phone all the time. Now, with between two to three hours a day of some form of exercise, I feel amazing. Now, granted that’s also taken a toll on my productivity and my business and all of that, but it was a trade-off I was willing to do at this point in my life. But yeah, feel so much better. And it’s so funny, like my sleep quality is so much better now too, which I think goes really overlooked. A lot of people are like, “Oh, my sleep sucks, my sleep sucks.” That’s actually one of the reasons I’ve been hitting so hard on cardio and movement, ’cause sometimes people get restless legs or they’re not tired enough when they go to bed ’cause they haven’t exhausted their body. You need to exert yourself to get some really deep sleep.
0:15:45.0 Mike Vacati: Yeah, if someone who is working a desk job working the 9-5, not taking a lot of steps during the day isn’t sleeping well, even not working out, not doing anything call it, it’s like, okay, go do what you did when you were eight years old on Saturday. Go play outside for five hours. [chuckle] Do physical activity. Go to the beach and rack up 15,000 steps and do a couple of sprints, swimming in the ocean, and see how you sleep at night. That’s absolutely right. You said you’re less productive now because you’re doing more exercise than in 2018 when you were more productive.
0:16:27.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:16:28.0 Mike Vacati: But you’re making more money now, your business is doing better now.
0:16:33.2 Jordan Syatt: Yes, correct.
0:16:34.6 Mike Vacati: When you say productivity, you mean hours exerted working, creating content, like working?
0:16:42.5 Jordan Syatt: Correct, yeah. The amount of time I spend actually creating new content is a fraction of what it used to be.
0:16:52.1 Mike Vacati: Then I think you’re actually more productive, not less productive.
0:16:56.7 Jordan Syatt: Interesting. Yeah, I guess… You mean ’cause I can still help people with the content that I’ve already made and still get that same level of reach while also still improving my own health without having to necessarily make more content, ’cause I’ve already made the content.
0:17:08.0 Mike Vacati: Yes. You’re reaching more people. There’s a correlation between bottom line and impact you’re having, and you are putting in less hours to do that. So you’re actually… Your productivity is higher, your hours spent working might be lower, but your productivity is higher and you’re doing more on the personal side, health side, etcetera. I just see opportunities for more activity, the walking treadmill during a meeting or a Zoom call, ’cause so many people are doing Zoom calls these days for work, and even like go for a walk outside with someone as an in-person meeting rather than sit down for lunch. Or even doing calls, moving around doing calls, there are so many ways to get more activity in while still continuing to live your life, rather than just sitting with bad posture, hunched over a computer all day every day.
0:18:16.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I will say, I think that’s probably a good point to bring up, how I hired a new video editor-ish because that’s helped with my productivity in terms of… I have hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of YouTube videos that have been sitting there for years, and there’s this guy who’s been DM-ing me every single week, sometimes multiple times a week for months and months and months, just being like, “Hey, I wanna try… I wanna help you make videos, I wanna help… Here are some samples of ones I’ve done,” and I’ve ignored it, ignored it, ignored it, ignore it, ignored it. And finally, I was like, “You know what? I’ll give him a shot.”
0:18:55.4 Mike Vacati: Weren’t you on the verge of blocking him? You were like…
0:18:57.2 Jordan Syatt: I was so close to, ’cause every single week, on the same time, the same day, every week, “Hey, it’s a new week, wanted to reach out, see if I can make videos for you, dah, dah, dah, dah, dah.” And I was like, finally I was like, “You know what? Alright, cool.” I messaged him and I was like “Here, here’s the deal, go to my YouTube channel, pick a clip from one of my videos, make it into a video, and if I like it, then we’ll talk about working together.” He was like, “Cool, done.” He did it, made an amazing video, but without me telling him what clip I wanted, what video to use, just literally within 24 hours came back with an amazing clip, and I was like, “Alright, cool, let’s do it.” And that’s actually been amazing for me now, and also speaks to what happens when you make just a lot… You spend a few years making a ton of content, you have content for the rest of your life, that you can always go back and refurbish into whatever you want it to do.
0:19:53.7 Mike Vacati: That was a great… ‘Cause we talked about this on the GaryVee Pyramid, how to be super high ROI with content, having base content and then letting… Finding clips from that. And that’s amazing that he does such a good job with those, because part of what we talked about in that episode was that it’s really hard for someone else to stitch together a good 30-60 second Reel, TikTok, from a bigger piece of content. And you shared a few of them with me, they look amazing, so that’s awesome.
0:20:29.3 Jordan Syatt: And I’ll say, I hired him so far to make 20 clips. He got me 20 clips in 48 hours, which is insane.
0:20:36.9 Mike Vacati: That’s unheard of.
0:20:37.2 Jordan Syatt: And, yeah, insane. 20 clips in 48 hours. And I would say 12-13 of them are great. Six to seven of them are okay, decent. But totally worth it for those 12-13 amazing clips.
0:20:55.0 Mike Vacati: Well, when we talked about… I think that’s a function of getting you 20 clips in 48 hours is, he’s young and hungry.
0:21:01.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. He’s a young kid, yeah.
0:21:04.9 Mike Vacati: And yeah, the fact that so many of them are usable, I mentioned during that episode, I was gonna ask Gary, how many of the clips that get sent to his TeamGary WhatsApp group text threads of the content his team makes does he actually post? And he said about 50%, which I thought was pretty high. But if we did the math on this kid, if you even posted one out of four that he sent you, it’d be a really good deal, so the fact that over half of them are really good and post-able, that’s huge.
0:21:37.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that’s exactly right.
0:21:39.8 Mike Vacati: Wanna talk about blackout curtains?
0:21:43.4 Jordan Syatt: Oh yeah, I know that you wanna talk about blackout curtains. Let’s do it.
0:21:50.3 Mike Vacati: Well, you just got blackout curtains for the first time, right?
0:21:53.8 Jordan Syatt: Well, yeah, I told my wife years ago, long before we were married, long before we were engaged, I was like, “I want blackout curtains, ’cause I see how they work at your apartment.” For years I’ve been like, “Man, these things block out every drop of sunlight.” And she was always like, “No, no, no, ’cause they’re gonna look bad.” ‘Cause she assumed all blackout curtains just were super black, dark and they didn’t look good in an apartment, and it wasn’t until we found out that she was pregnant that she was like, “Oh, we’re probably gonna need something like that so the baby can sleep in the room in the middle of the day or something, take naps without the sun waking the baby up.” And she started looking into it and she found out there are very… I don’t know the right word, very fashionable… Is that the right word? Is it like they look nice?
0:22:40.4 Mike Vacati: Sounds nice, home decor, yeah.
0:22:43.6 Jordan Syatt: Chic, is that the… Very chic, I don’t know these words, but, yeah, they look good in the house. So she found one and she had a person come to the apartment and they matched it up with the wallpaper or whatever, and finally we just got those installed and for the last three nights, I’ve gotten unbelievable sleep and I’ve just… I don’t set an alarm. I’ve been waking up and I’ve been waking up late. [laughter] I’ve been waking up and I’m like, “Dear Lord. How is it already 9 o’clock?” Just like, yes, ’cause usually I wake up to the sunrise, just like… We have these super light curtains with actual mini-holes in them, so you can see the sun very clearly, so I always just wake up when the sun comes up, but lately I’ve been waking up at 8:39 no problem, and I could probably go back to bed if I wanted to. And the sleep quality has been great.
0:23:35.1 Mike Vacati: Incredible. There was a study, I’m gonna butcher the details, but two groups, control group was completely blacked out, the other group had a dime size of blue light shined on the back of their knee, so they were in the same setting, blacked out room, but they had a dime-size of blue light shined on the back of one of their knees and there was some drastic difference in sleep quality between the two groups. 27% that…
0:24:04.4 Jordan Syatt: That’s so crazy.
0:24:06.3 Mike Vacati: And I, on this, on my Garmin watch, I was looking… ‘Cause you can scroll through, you have all of the data on the app. And by the way, that’s not a sponsor, we don’t have any sponsorships here, we’re not sponsored guys, at the How To Become A Personal Trainer podcast, but on this watch, when I was in Miami, and it was a pretty dark room, but there was light coming in from the top of the blind, like a street lamp, I assume, that was outside of my hotel room, I got between 30 and 35 minutes of deep sleep on average for the six nights that I was there, and I come back here, and I’m in my perfectly blacked out room, hour and a half of deep sleep per night.
0:24:55.3 Jordan Syatt: Geez, that’s so crazy.
0:24:55.4 Mike Vacati: Insane. And I felt my training quality, while I was there, and it could be a number of factors, like wearing a backpack, walking around all day, playing football, doing things, but my training quality, I just felt weaker during my workouts, I felt like I was dragging during all of them.
0:25:15.7 Jordan Syatt: You could feel that lack of deep sleep? It’s also crazy ’cause you know like the thermometer on the walls that you can program how… The temperature of the room? The first night that we got the blackout curtains, there was a teeny tiny green light on the thermometer.
0:25:33.4 Mike Vacati: Oh, get some black hockey tape over that bad boy.
0:25:36.4 Jordan Syatt: That’s exactly what I put on top of it. I had this black hockey tape, put it right on top of it, and then the next two nights, it was amazing, but it’s so crazy how that one small teeny light felt like it was lighting up the whole room, I was like, “What the hell is going on?”
0:25:50.0 Mike Vacati: Dude, I travel with black hockey tape, all like… There’s the red light on the TV, even when the TV’s off in hotel rooms, I’ll take like a backpack and stack stuff up so it blocks that, like blacked out room, and it really matters. It’s quite insane.
0:26:09.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:26:10.2 Mike Vacati: What else do I have here on my list? Oh, is it a new trend to take a single dumbbell and hold it with your palms up and curl the dumbbell?
0:26:23.4 Jordan Syatt: I haven’t seen that, is that… You’ve been seeing that on TikTok?
0:26:26.3 Mike Vacati: No, no. No, I’ve been seeing it in the gym. Or to take a single plate with both hands like you’re driving a car and curl the plate.
0:26:40.0 Jordan Syatt: Wait, you mean for the single dumbbell, you’re not talking about with your hand open, are you?
0:26:43.1 Mike Vacati: Let me show you. Underhand grip, grabbing it by the rubber. Like this.
0:26:49.6 Jordan Syatt: What the hell?
0:26:49.7 Mike Vacati: So the dumbbell is vertical, up and down.
0:26:52.5 Jordan Syatt: Okay, yeah, yeah.
0:26:53.1 Mike Vacati: The bar is up and down. And your…
0:26:55.0 Jordan Syatt: Oh, and you grab the top one. You grab the top portion… Oh, got it, got it, got it. Yeah, I’ve seen some people do that. And with the plate, are you talking about the flat side of the plate or the handles of the plate? Got it.
0:27:09.1 Mike Vacati: Handles.
0:27:09.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Mike’s doing, showing all of these, but you can’t see ’cause we’re not having clips yet.
0:27:16.8 Mike Vacati: Just wait until the video podcast starts ripping. Any week now. Oh, by the way, the fitness business mentorship price is going up in, by Friday, April 1st. So this is your final warning, if you’re interested, if you wanna join, if you’ve been on the fence, get in there, price is going up by 25%. We’ve given several warnings over the last few episodes, so we’d love to have you, but I just thought of that.
0:27:42.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I’ve seen some people doing those curls. I like the front raises with the plate, I like doing front raise with the plate, holding it like that, like a steering wheel, going up all the way overhead, actually, I like that exercise a lot, but I haven’t really seen… I don’t really understand why people do curls with the plate like that, I feel like the range of motion stops too soon ’cause the plate is gonna hit you in the face, so you have to stop before it goes too far.
0:28:08.4 Mike Vacati: Or the nuts. You can’t get full extension either.
0:28:11.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I don’t know why someone would do that with a dumbbell for the curl, I feel like that would just put more stress on your wrist than actually, much on your bicep.
0:28:21.2 Mike Vacati: Yeah, okay, I’m just making sure that… I’m just making sure I’m not falling behind the times.
0:28:26.4 Jordan Syatt: No, you’re ahead of the times.
0:28:33.9 Mike Vacati: Alright, let’s fire up some questions, I have some here too that were left over that we didn’t get to.
0:28:40.8 Jordan Syatt: Okay, you wanna do those?
0:28:43.7 Mike Vacati: Because we started talking about it, this is… I don’t think you’re gonna love this one, rest days, this came from one of your Q&As. By the way, we’re gonna be fielding questions for the podcast from our email list, so if you’re not on there already, link is in the description, you can jump on the email list for free, get a free 30-day… Or a 30 ways to build your online fitness business guide. And then you’ll see that email come through that allows you to submit questions for the podcast. But rest days, what activities do you do to stay active on them? Kind of a whatever you want, is that what you’re feeling?
0:29:25.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. This is just one of those things that I really feel people over-complicate for no reason.
0:29:29.3 Mike Vacati: Yeah.
0:29:30.5 Jordan Syatt: I just feel like… People, I get so many people asking about rest days, whether it’s like, “Can I do walking?” Yeah, of course you can fucking walk, you don’t need a rest day from walking. You can do… The only thing that I wouldn’t do on a rest day is severe plyometric exercise, I wouldn’t be doing a lot of jumping, or bounding, or sprinting, or juking, or twisting, or agility stuff. That’s actually, never mind the stress it can put on your joints and your tendons and your ligaments and all of that, but it can actually… It requires a lot of input from your nervous system, and for those types of exercise, for the speed-based drills, for the jumping, for the sprinting, for the juking, all that stuff, it requires a lot of input from your nervous system, and if you are fatigued, you’re not gonna have as good of an output, which is actually going to affect your performance, so I wouldn’t do that on the rest days, but otherwise, you could do anything.
0:30:37.0 Jordan Syatt: Obviously, if you will lift upper body yesterday, don’t lift upper body today. That’s obvious. But you could do lower body or you could do anything. I feel like we’re so much more resilient than we think we are, and so many people on Instagram and YouTube and TikTok are being like… I don’t know, they’re scaring people into doing nothing, they make it seem like if you just don’t sit on your ass your entire rest day, then all your gains are gonna go out the window, it’s like, “No, it’s alright.” I don’t know, maybe if you’re trying to step on stage as a Mr. Olympia or something, then you gotta be a little bit more careful with your rest days, but if you’re just trying to be healthy, go move. And that’s actually a good point, ’cause a lot of the Mr. Olympia is like, they’re not healthy, and… At all, and I think if your goal is just overall health, movement is better than not moving. So just get out there and move.
0:31:36.1 Mike Vacati: Yeah, I love it. And you made a good point. The one thing that will deter progress is the explosive stuff, playing two hours of very intense sports, which is okay, just know that if your number one goal is making strength gains and you have a program designed for that end, and then you had two groups and one group walked 8000 steps on their rest days, and the other group played 2 1/2 hours of tackle football like their life depended on it on the rest days, the group that did the walking is gonna see superior strength gains. But outside of that very intense, very explosive activity, do whatever you enjoy, I would say, do what you like doing to move around so that you’ll do more of it.
0:32:26.8 Jordan Syatt: And maybe the football group had more fun and they enjoyed it, so it’s like…
0:32:32.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:32:35.0 Mike Vacati: Is your goal… Is your trying to bench press 225 that important to you that you just don’t wanna do anything else other than walk and then lift, or would you rather be with friends and hang out and laugh and have fun and get out in the sun and dah, dah, dah, dah, dah, that, I don’t know, you have to figure it out for you. At one point in my life, I would have lived and died by my deadlift numbers, that was all that mattered to me. At this point in my life, I don’t give a shit, and…
0:33:02.5 Mike Vacati: And I think both are cool.
0:33:06.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:33:06.7 Mike Vacati: I have respect for both. I think whatever you actually prefer as an individual is what you should do.
0:33:10.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:33:12.2 Mike Vacati: ‘Cause after… It’s Friday, it’s been eight days since my last beach football game, and my left knee is still a little wonky, my left foot is still a little wonky, I don’t… I might be sitting on the sideline getting a sun tan next year rather than going along…
0:33:27.6 Jordan Syatt: No, I’m going next year too, so… We’ll…
0:33:31.1 Mike Vacati: Then we’ll play, the dynamic duo, back in action.
0:33:36.3 Jordan Syatt: Bro, did you hear that Louie Simmons passed away yesterday?
0:33:38.7 Mike Vacati: Shut up.
0:33:38.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, super sad.
0:33:41.0 Mike Vacati: I’m sorry, man.
0:33:42.6 Jordan Syatt: It’s time… It was his time.
0:33:45.2 Mike Vacati: I did not know that.
0:33:45.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, it sucked.
0:33:46.5 Mike Vacati: Jeez.
0:33:47.3 Jordan Syatt: It sucked, yeah. I was just thinking about the times of my life when deadlifting was everything and dah, dah, dah, and then, it’s yeah, and… He passed away. For everyone who doesn’t know, Louie was just like… He’s the ultimate legend of strength and conditioning in the United States, in the world, so yeah. He was well over 70 years old, and I’d bet hours before he passed away, he could have pulled or deadlifted over 700 pounds. And there’s not a question in my mind that if he needed to do that, so, he was in a lot of pain, so it was definitely his time, but yeah, that sucked.
0:34:21.0 Mike Vacati: That’s really sad.
0:34:22.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:34:23.4 Mike Vacati: Rest in peace. Gosh, I did not know that.
0:34:25.9 Jordan Syatt: Sorry to bring the mood down, brother. [laughter]
0:34:27.9 Mike Vacati: No, it’s okay. Westside vs The World, is that the name of the documentary?
0:34:32.1 Jordan Syatt: Oh, yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah, that’s a good idea for people to watch that on Netflix if you haven’t.
0:34:38.6 Mike Vacati: Yeah, in honor and tribute to…
0:34:41.1 Jordan Syatt: That’ll give you some insight into Louie, yeah.
0:34:46.3 Mike Vacati: Man.
0:34:46.6 Jordan Syatt: Should we move on to questions?
0:34:48.8 Mike Vacati: I had a question for you. Over time with your increase in total training volume and hours per week training, what has your average hours of night per sleep and average, I know you’re not tracking, but like average daily calorie intake look like? How much have those come up, if at all?
0:35:13.6 Jordan Syatt: In terms of sleep, it’s probably been pretty consistent throughout, I don’t think it’s changed dramatically. It’s changed dramatically from 2017, ’18, ’19, for sure, obviously, but since I’ve really started increasing the volume of my training the last year and a half or so, two years, no, and I think my sleep has been pretty consistent. Calories? It’s been off and on in terms of, obviously, when I was cutting weight for competitions I would reduce my calories, and then when I was not cutting weight, I would increase them. Interestingly, since I started doing a lot more with Alex Viada, the first month or so, I lost a significant amount of weight. I lost about four or five pounds just from… I wasn’t tracking my calories, nothing, but just from all of the extra activity, I lost extra weight, and so I’ve deliberately started trying to eat more, and that’s not had me gain any weight, but it’s stabilized at that weight loss. So I’m sitting right around 148-150 right now, and I’m eating like a beast.
0:36:28.0 Mike Vacati: Nice.
0:36:28.3 Jordan Syatt: A beast for me, not a beast for a 300-pound dude, but I’m eating like, I’m eating a lot, but I’m also to… I’m eating… My wife said this last night, she was like, “Your nutrition has been so good.” The quality of the food that I’ve been eating has been impeccable. Oviously, last night, for example, we went out on a date night and I got a steak and fries, and I had all the fries and everything, but, by and large, my nutrition has just been so good, it’s really been the best it’s been I think in years.
0:37:02.8 Mike Vacati: Yeah, having one serving of fries doesn’t invalidate what you just said. When I hear you say nutrition’s been impeccable, I think, you’re eating more calories and 80% of those calories are of really solid quality food choice.
0:37:16.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, and I’ve been focusing a lot on fiber, I’m just crushing fiber. I’m going back to, I feel like a lot of ’90s recommendations, so I’m getting a lot of whole grains, getting a lot, like a lot of… I’m putting chia seeds in my cereal. Actually, I eat mostly cereal for breakfast, cereal and fruit is my breakfast. Cereal, it’s… What’s it called? I forget which cereal it’s called, but it’s super good and I put chia seeds in there, a bunch of like raspberries, blueberries, strawberries in there…
0:37:50.9 Mike Vacati: Are we talking a protein shake milk base, or just regular milk?
0:37:55.7 Jordan Syatt: Dude, regular milk. My protein intake has decreased and I just feel super good.
0:38:02.3 Mike Vacati: Good for you.
0:38:04.2 Jordan Syatt: But a decrease in my protein intake, I’m still getting plenty of protein, like I’m still…
0:38:08.5 Mike Vacati: You’re still getting minimum, like 0.5-0.6 grams per pound of body weight.
0:38:14.0 Jordan Syatt: Easily more than that. I’m getting probably like 0.7 to one gram per pound of lean body mass, for sure, no question about it. But I think before, any time I felt hungry, my brain immediately went to protein, I need to get protein in, and that was just what I had trained myself and what I was taught, go protein, go protein…
0:38:37.9 Mike Vacati: Especially from the times you’ve been trying to lose fat.
0:38:40.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, exactly. But lately, it’s just been like, I’ll get some more fiber and I’ll get some fruit in, and I’m not constantly thinking about more protein, more protein, more protein, so that’s been… And I think that’s been good for my energy, for my performance, for my digestion, all of it.
0:38:56.0 Mike Vacati: 100%, and health.
0:39:00.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:39:00.9 Mike Vacati: And, yeah, especially performance. What have your strength levels been like?
0:39:04.3 Jordan Syatt: Great, man.
0:39:07.4 Mike Vacati: I guess, are you getting stronger?
0:39:09.8 Jordan Syatt: Yes. So it’s interesting, I’m getting stronger in the specific skills that I’m training, right? So for example, I’m not trying to train my deadlift to get stronger, so my deadlift, it’s fine, like if I wanted to pull 405, I could do that, for a one rep max, for sure, but I’ve been doing L-sit pull-ups, and at first when I started doing them, I was doing between sets of six to eight with just my body weight. Now I’m doing L-sit pull-ups with five-pound ankle weights on each foot, and I’m doing sets of 10. So that’s getting stronger, but it’s all very skill dependent, like whatever movements we’ve been training. Steinborn Squats are now super easy with 135. When I first started doing power, or cleans, I was doing cleans with 115, now I’m doing 155. So my strength is going up, but it’s not just because I think of the muscular adaptations as much as I think the neuromuscular adaptations and the skill adaptations of doing these movements more and more and more, so…
0:40:11.7 Mike Vacati: Especially with a lot of new movements that you haven’t done, ’cause Alex’s programming is…
0:40:17.4 Jordan Syatt: Exactly.
0:40:17.4 Mike Vacati: Different than… Yeah.
0:40:18.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, so yeah, definitely getting stronger, but not traditionally stronger in the sense of the big three, squat, bench, deadlift. It’s just getting stronger overall with all the… A lot of odd movements in my programming, like bent presses and all that. Yeah.
0:40:31.4 Mike Vacati: That’s what I meant. Are you progressing in weight on the movements that he has programmed for you? Just because, just thinking about the total amount of activity you’re doing and the fact that body weight is maintaining, the fact that you’re progressing across the board is really cool. On a Stein… Is it a Steinberg Squat?
0:40:50.4 Jordan Syatt: Steinborn.
0:40:51.4 Mike Vacati: Steinborn. Yeah, I had a Stenbeck, that’s who, Scott Stenbeck was a science teacher at my high school, and he was also the JV golf coach, and in 10th grade, this is actually, this is a podcast story right here. In 10th grade, in the spring, hockey was my main sport but I liked golf too. I was on the golf team and I got hurt lifting weights. I hurt my back, like bent-over row or something, and he was upset because I had to pull out of a tournament and I could barely swing a club, and I told him I was lifting and he was like, “Why were you lifting?” I was like, “I’m lifting for hockey. I gotta get stronger.” And he’s like, “This is golf season.” Not to put… Bless his heart, but he’s like, I basically had an ultimatum about if you’re gonna keep lifting weights you can’t be on the golf team, and that was the end of my golf career.
0:41:51.4 Jordan Syatt: I did not know that. I didn’t even know you were on the golf team.
0:41:55.4 Mike Vacati: Yeah, ninth grade, and then half of sophomore season, and then I was like, “I’m not stopping lifting weights.”
0:42:00.4 Jordan Syatt: Wow, that’s crazy.
0:42:02.4 Mike Vacati: Yeah.
0:42:03.4 Jordan Syatt: And he didn’t have you do Steinborn Squats, it wasn’t a thing? [laughter]
0:42:08.9 Mike Vacati: Do you hit those alternating, or do you hit one side first and then the other?
0:42:13.0 Jordan Syatt: It’s funny, he’s only just put in the number of reps he wants me to do, but I alternate, just ’cause I wanna hit both sides. So I’ll do, if he gives me six total sets, ’cause the way he’s been programming them the last few weeks, which has just been awful, you do one Steinborn Squat just to get in the position, and then I do 25 feet of walking lunges, and then I do the Steinborn Squat to get the bar off of me again. So I’ll do three from one side and then three from the other side for the six total sets.
0:42:41.4 Mike Vacati: I understand now. I thought it was just a superset, I didn’t get that you were doing it to get in position to do the movement. Now I get it.
0:42:49.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah. The first week it was just the squat, it was just the Steinborn Squat, and then I did six or 10 sets of that. I think he just wanted me to practice it, and then now it’s the Steinborn Squat into the walking lunges, which is, it’s freaking awful. It reminds me of the time that you and I did that video at Gary’s vacation house, where we got 135 on our back and walked for, what was that? Did we each walk for a mile or half a mile?
0:43:17.7 Mike Vacati: It was about half a mile, yeah. [laughter] But you showed me up because you went second. Basically, I went as far as I could go away from the house, and then you took the weight back to the house.
0:43:28.8 Jordan Syatt: Oh yeah, yeah, yeah.
0:43:29.4 Mike Vacati: But then you did 10 reps of squats at the end of it. [laughter] I was like, “I hate this guy.” Let’s do some curls. Curl to fail here, immediately. [laughter]
0:43:41.9 Jordan Syatt: Oh man. Did you ever… You published that video, right?
0:43:45.2 Mike Vacati: Oh yeah, that’s on YouTube.
0:43:46.4 Jordan Syatt: Oh yeah. Oh yeah.
0:43:47.8 Mike Vacati: Yeah. Sweet. Well, it’s a little shorter episode. You’re gonna go roll, get a good roll in. You have a competition coming up, so are you just gonna be going hard all hours? That what this session’s looking like for you? .
0:44:00.4 Jordan Syatt: I have no idea. Well, it really depends what my coach is gonna want us to do, but yeah, probably. Usually leading up to competition is just, we fight for an hour straight.
0:44:09.4 Mike Vacati: Get it, brother. Final reminder, mentorship price is going up. There will be no exceptions, no sneak in for the previous fee afterwards. So if you’ve been on the fence, if you have been thinking about joining but haven’t yet, this is a good opportunity because cost is going up by 25% on Friday, April first.
0:44:31.4 Jordan Syatt: Perfect. Have a good one.
0:44:33.4 Mike Vacati: Alright, bye, everyone. See you next week, weekly uploads. Bye.