In this episode, Jordan is absolutely livid. Which Mike thinks is hilarious, so he really fans the flames. We talk about why Jordan is pissed (take your best guess, lol), as well as online coaching platforms, hiring for your business, our ideal home gym set-up, and more.
We hope you enjoy this episode and if you’d like to join us in The Online Fitness Business Mentorship you can grab your seat at https://www.fitnessbusinessmentorship.com
-J & M
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Or you can expand to find the full episode transcription below:
0:00:12.3 Mike Vacanti: Hello, Jordan.
0:00:12.8 Jordan Syatt: What’s up Michael?
0:00:14.7 Mike Vacanti: What is your anger level on a scale of one to 10 right now?
0:00:18.9 Jordan Syatt: It’s a high anger level, Michael. It’s high.
0:00:23.6 Mike Vacanti: Does that…
0:00:24.4 Jordan Syatt: It’s not the highest it’s ever been, but it’s high.
0:00:28.1 Mike Vacanti: It’s an eight?
0:00:28.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yeah. I’d say like an eight four.
0:00:29.6 Mike Vacanti: Okay. 8.4.
0:00:32.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yeah, yeah.
0:00:34.9 Mike Vacanti: So based on that new research that was dropped and that we discussed last week, your productivity could be high.
0:00:39.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. It’s productive towards my fitness, not productive towards business. The anger is being fueled to just like, work out like a fiend. And also like pay a lot of attention to my family. So it’s great to drive towards that productivity. It’s not helping with my social media content, that’s for sure. ‘Cause the anger is like… I think the anger and the anger when I was younger was like, all right, I gotta show them, I gotta show them that I can do this. And so that would drive my productivity towards business. But now, the anger is like I’m not angry about business anymore. I’m not like, I gotta show them anymore. Now it’s like, I’m gonna…
0:01:28.2 Mike Vacanti: You already showed them.
0:01:29.8 Jordan Syatt: I’m gonna get this anger out on fitness, then I’m gonna spend time with my family. But yeah, it’s anger’s high right now.
0:01:37.6 Mike Vacanti: That’s a good outlet.
0:01:39.1 Jordan Syatt: People are so dumb. It’s just wild.
0:01:43.3 Mike Vacanti: Say more.
0:01:43.8 Jordan Syatt: You want me to go into it? I’ll go into it.
0:01:46.7 Mike Vacanti: If you want. Yeah.
0:01:47.8 Jordan Syatt: I’ll go into it. Dude, I’ll go into it. Fuck it. Why not? Let’s discuss it. Let’s do it. I’ve done two podcasts on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. One, I did solo with my podcast guy, Tony, where I just explained the history of the conflict. And I was pretty freaking objective in explaining both sides have done bad. Both sides have done terrible things. And explained the common enemy is Hamas, explained that I don’t want innocent Palestinians to die. I don’t want innocent Israelis to die. That Hamas is the common enemy of not even just Israelis and Palestinians, but global democracy. So I explained to the history in that one. In the next one I brought on an Israeli defense force soldier who, if people listen to that podcast, they’ll hear that he called innocent Palestinians, his family.
0:02:40.2 Jordan Syatt: He specifically called them his cousins. He doesn’t want them to die. There’s no reason for innocent Palestinians to die. He wasn’t like calling for innocent Palestinians to die. He wasn’t justifying innocent Palestinians dying. Which was very deliberate. I didn’t wanna bring a fanatic on. And there are a very small percentage of fanatics who are like, they like Jewish Israeli fanatics, just like there are fanatics in every aspect of the world who just like want the death of innocent Palestinians. And I wasn’t gonna bring one of those on. ‘Cause I don’t want to give those people a platform. So I brought in an amazing, amazing guy named Rudy who’s an IDF soldier and very fair and wants peace between both peoples. So now I put on my story, I was like, alright, now I wanna bring on a Palestinian and I want a Palestinian to come on. So I can hear that perspective.
0:03:26.1 Jordan Syatt: And like I said to you earlier today, I didn’t want it to be a debate. I just wanna listen, just like I didn’t debate Rudy, I just wanna listen, I didn’t get their perspective. The one caveat was that they need to not agree with what happened on October 7th. They need to not support Hamas’ decision to slaughter 1400 innocent people and then take over 200, over 240 captives, 200 innocent hostages. And the number of people who are like, how dare you? You’re pompous, you’re arrogant. You’re controlling what they say. Like, would you do that? I’m like, I literally did that with the Israeli soldier. I was like, I didn’t have to say it because I knew his stance, because I knew he would… And he outright in the podcast said, he doesn’t want innocent Palestinians dying.
0:04:12.8 Jordan Syatt: He wants Palestinians to have independence and a state, and he wants them to be free. So people are like… People just lost their shit, being like, you’re controlling their speech. No, I’m not controlling their speech. I just don’t want fucking a terrorist to come on my podcast. I’ve actually spoken with Palestinians who agree or who agree that Hamas is the common enemy and who don’t agree with what Hamas did. But these Palestinians aren’t willing to come on my podcast because they’re scared that Hamas supporters will attack them and their family. They’re not scared of Jews. They’re not scared of the IDF. They’re not scared of Israel. These Palestinians who disagree with Hamas are scared to publicly voice their opinions because they’re worried that Hamas supporters will kill them and their family. It’s like, that’s a fucking problem that someone who’s a Palestinian is not willing to come on and talk about it because they’re worried that their own people will kill them for saying that.
0:05:09.1 Mike Vacanti: When you say that people are losing it, you got a lot of angry DMs?
0:05:13.8 Jordan Syatt: Oh, yeah, yeah. A lot of angry DMs.
0:05:16.5 Mike Vacanti: How many?
0:05:18.3 Jordan Syatt: I don’t even know. Probably, I mean…
0:05:20.0 Mike Vacanti: Dozens?
0:05:22.5 Jordan Syatt: Oh, at least 50. Yeah. That’s just the ones that I actually replied to.
0:05:27.4 Mike Vacanti: You replied to 50?
0:05:29.4 Jordan Syatt: No, not all 50, but I replied to a lot of them.
0:05:34.5 Mike Vacanti: Okay. I thought you were just battling with one. There were a few battles going on?
0:05:35.8 Jordan Syatt: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I told you about one this morning. But there have been a number.
0:05:40.1 Mike Vacanti: And you’ve been…
0:05:40.4 Jordan Syatt: And it’s so funny, as soon as I tell them that the Palestinians I’ve spoken to who aren’t… ’cause here’s the thing, when I speak to someone, I can’t let them be anonymous. I need to know, they need to be able to stand by what they’re saying and say their name. Because lately there have been a lot of videos online of Palestinians coming out against Hamas. But they’re always anonymous. And as a result, people say, well, how do we know that’s really a Palestinian? How do we know that that’s actually, that that’s someone in Gaza or someone? How do we know? How do we know that’s just not someone who’s Jewish or someone who speaks Arabic saying that stuff? So I need this person to be okay saying, this is my name. This is where I’m from. Because otherwise people will find a way to say, well, it’s not really a Palestinian. But the Palestinians I’ve spoken to are afraid to do that because they don’t want other, they don’t want Hamas supporters to be like, okay, well, you said this, we’re gonna come and kill you. And so as soon as I say that, they stop replying.
0:06:40.4 Jordan Syatt: As soon as I say that, like the conversation’s over, they won’t discuss it. I’m like, you realize you’re blaming this one side, but you refuse to see that the one common enemy, the one common problem is Hamas. And then even their own people are scared of them. It’s just wild.
0:06:53.5 Mike Vacanti: What? I’m more interested right now and for the podcast and personally at this moment, and not like the geopolitical side of it, but the Jordan side of it. I know for the last few years you haven’t really battled in the DMs over nutrition or over workout strategy, program design. In 2015, 2016, 2017, you did.
0:07:20.1 Jordan Syatt: Oh yeah. Oh yeah.
0:07:21.6 Mike Vacanti: And maybe even beyond, what were you battling in the DMs about like two years ago, for example, if that came up?
0:07:28.7 Jordan Syatt: I don’t, I think that was a good period of no battles. That was like a cease fire.
0:07:34.1 Mike Vacanti: Low frequency battling?
0:07:34.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. That was like a cease fire.
0:07:39.8 Jordan Syatt: That was a really good time. And that was a time of peace.
0:07:44.8 Mike Vacanti: Cool. And now obviously, this is a hot button issue and very close to home for you personally, and like you’re battling. Do you think that… Do you wanna be battling? Do you wanna be like…
0:08:00.0 Jordan Syatt: No, it ruins my fucking day. My blood pressure spikes. Like I hate it, but I also, there’s part of me that feels a huge amount of guilt that I’m not in Israel, that I have friends who are serving right now, whether they’re in Gaza or they’re on the border of Lebanon. A number of friends who are like… Who’ve been severely injured and hurt my family’s serving. There’s the side of me that has that guilt of not being there. And I’m trying to talk to them as often as I can. And the conversations that we have are, listen, there are multiple fronts of this war. There’s like the front of like actual fighting, and then there’s like the intelligence front, and then there’s also like the spreading information front. And there are even other fronts than that like holding down the house, not like that’s a front of the war as well.
0:08:47.3 Jordan Syatt: Keeping the kids going. And I very much view my, one of the things we talk about is like, one of the areas that I can actually have an impact is through education and trying to bring about peace. And I very much believe the only way that peace can happen even like be part of the discussion is through discussion and through education. And even though I would say the majority… Not even, I would say, definitively, the majority of the DMs that I have don’t end in agreement. A small percentage of them actually do end up in people being like, wow, I didn’t realize that. Or what would you mind recommending some books I can read? Because another common one, and I’ll always be like, how many books have you read on the conflict? And the answer is always none.
0:09:30.7 Jordan Syatt: So then a couple people are like, could you recommend some? Like, it just happened. I recommended a great book and a great podcast series for this young woman. But the being able to do the podcast about it, have conversations like this, the ones I’ve already put on my podcast. I’m actually going on a podcast with these of women in London on over the weekend. That’s part of what I view as my opportunity to try and bring education and bring awareness to the complexity and the truth around this. Because anyone who just says, this is right, this is wrong, this is good, this is bad. They just pick a side without any nuance. It’s doing more harm than good. And if we wanna have some type of peace in the long term, there has to be conversations and voices heard from both sides. So that’s where I’m trying to do my best with that. And it’s why, it’s one of the reasons why I really get in the DMs and why I post about it, even though I know it’s gonna ruin my fucking day ’cause I feel like I have to.
0:10:27.8 Mike Vacanti: And those are different to me, by the way. Posting about it is educating. I didn’t know how often you’re convert, like similarly to if someone rages about how calories don’t matter, I don’t know how often you’re gonna convert that person in a Instagram DM conversation.
0:10:43.0 Jordan Syatt: Correct.
0:10:47.2 Mike Vacanti: But maybe here, it’s a slightly higher percentage.
0:10:50.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:10:54.2 Mike Vacanti: 8.4, 8.4 is high, but not the highest.
0:10:57.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Even just talking about it though, it’s cathartic. So I’ll put it at like an 8.1 now. It’s dropping.
0:11:02.2 Mike Vacanti: I thought you were in the sevens. Okay. All right, 8.1.
0:11:05.3 Jordan Syatt: We’ll say 7.9. It is pretty like crazy. Like as soon as just you talk about it, you get it. If I didn’t just have that mini outburst for the last 10 minutes, I definitely would’ve… It would’ve been worse throughout the conversation. But I’m a little bit cooled off now.
0:11:20.7 Mike Vacanti: I’m happy to hear that. We have something that… I’m gonna read this. So we got this message from, I suppose she listens to the podcast at least sometimes but it’s an inquiry about the mentorship.
0:11:40.2 Mike Vacanti: “Hi. I’ve been listening to your podcast for ages and haven’t been convinced about joining your online fitness business mentorship. You talk a lot about using your own spreadsheets to create programs for clients, but it seems the world is gravitating towards online fitness apps like TrainHeroic and Trainerize to help plan their programs. I understand that having a good understanding of how to create your own programs on spreadsheets is beneficial, but I’m looking for ways to create an online PT business using TrainHeroic or Trainerize. Do you provide anything along those lines? I feel like they’re necessary to keep up with the demands of new technology. I got pregnant and super sick, then had a baby who is now a toddler and fell for behind with social media. Reels. Reels became a thing and TikTok got massive. Now it looks like all PTs are offering their programs through the aforementioned apps, especially for mass group programming to earn more income. If you don’t provide this, what are your thoughts? Is your program still for me? I don’t have a website, only Instagram. And I get a lot of people asking if I have an app/platform where I can provide them a program from abroad. Thank you, Liz.”
0:12:50.0 Jordan Syatt: You wanna start?
0:12:51.6 Mike Vacanti: Well, you’re still at a 7.9 and I think I’m just gonna let you.
0:12:56.8 Jordan Syatt: You want me to go in?
0:13:00.3 Mike Vacanti: I don’t see how we can reply any other way to this other than going in.
0:13:01.6 Jordan Syatt: Oh man. Did you deliberately feed this to me knowing that I’m angry and like, alright, I’m just gonna let off some steam right now?
0:13:10.0 Mike Vacanti: No. I thought that this question would piss us both off.
0:13:15.9 Jordan Syatt: So that was right.
0:13:18.0 Mike Vacanti: So thought it would be fun to talk about, but I didn’t know you’d be coming in with preexisting anger to this level that… So I feel like it’s just gas on the fire.
0:13:26.0 Jordan Syatt: Now I’m back up to an 8.5 now. I’m like an 8.5 right now.
0:13:31.0 Jordan Syatt: There’s like… And I’m really tryna whoosah myself right now ’cause I know it was asked with good intent. Whoosah.
0:13:42.9 Mike Vacanti: Deep breath. You’re still in STP at heart. Deep.
0:13:51.6 Jordan Syatt: It’s… Listen, there’s nothing wrong with these programs. And if you wanna use them, go for it. That’s fantastic. One of the great parts about these programs is, they’re self-explanatory and they’re programs that you’re gonna pay for. So if you sign up to use them, then hopefully, you’re being taught how to use them from the company because you’re paying for that service. We don’t recommend using programs like that because for many reasons, but not least of which is you’re building your business on the backend of someone else’s business. You’re literally building… The foundation of your business is built on someone else’s business. The success of your business is determined by the success of their business in part where if, let’s say their business fails and all of a sudden anything happens and by fails, maybe it doesn’t even, their business might not go under.
0:14:52.2 Jordan Syatt: Maybe their server fails and you can’t reach your clients, which has happened before on these programs. Maybe they decide to, because they have access to all your client emails. Maybe they decide they wanna email your clients and sell something. They can do that ’cause they have access. Maybe they decide they wanna increase the price randomly, which can happen and they’ve done it and they can start charging you more. Now, again, these programs are great and they work well, and we actually have people in the mentorship who use these programs and it’s fine. That’s whatever. But we don’t recommend it. The other thing we’ll say is, I believe you said something to the effect of this is what I think one of the things that really lit me up was to the effect of like, these things are like necessary.
0:15:33.1 Jordan Syatt: No, they’re not. Your clients don’t give a shit what fucking package your programs come in, whether it’s in a PDF, a spreadsheet, a straight up email, like just literally a text in an email or in one of these apps. They don’t care. What your clients care about is, do you care about them? Are you communicating? Are you answering questions? And are you giving them a good program? That is it, period. Like it’s just, they don’t care about it. And I would say now, more than ever, more than ever before in modern history, giving your clients just a program in an email, but with legitimate communication with you, you asking how they are, how’s their family, what’s going on in their life, them not feeling just like another number, them not feeling just like another program that you programmed into an app. Them feeling like a real human would probably be more beneficial now than ever before.
0:16:32.0 Jordan Syatt: And again, these apps are great. They can work really well and we have people in the mentorship who use them but do not get it twisted. Do not think that they’re necessary or essential. And yep, that’s actually, and I know a lot of coaches have had issues with them because this is another issue is they have… The way that they format is the way that they format. So if you’re creating your own programs, whether it’s in Excel or on Word or in an email, you can format it however you want. You’re subject to how they format it in their programming and on their app, which can be freaking annoying sometimes. So it’s up to you.
0:17:11.8 Mike Vacanti: Completely agree. We’re on the same page on this. I’m actually very surprised to hear, and I wonder if there might’ve been some misinterpretation about what people are asking for when they ask, do you have an app or do you have a platform? I can count on less than one hand, less than five times over the last decade has someone reached out for online coaching and wanted it to be on an app or it to be on a platform or cared about the mechanism of delivery of the coaching. Potential clients aren’t thinking about that. They want whatever progress they want and they want it from you, which is why they’re reaching out to you. And they want it from you because they like you, because they trust you, because they think that you have their best interest at heart, because they believe that you’re smart enough and competent enough to help them reach their goals, that you care enough about them to help them reach their goals. They’re not doing it because you have this fancy, shiny app. So, that’s point number one. Point number two is something in here to the effect of like, now it looks like all PTs are offering their programs through the aforementioned apps, especially for mass group programming to earn more income. Almost zero PTs are offering mass group programming through apps.
0:18:42.0 Mike Vacanti: It’s just… That might be what you see that might be the illusion people are putting out. Meaning like they use this app and it seems like they’re doing mass group programming for a lot of people. Of all personal trainers, the number who are working with mass amounts of people on an app rounds to zero, like is 0%. If we’re rounding, it’s less than 1%. It’s less than 0.5%. It is close to zero. That might be who you’re following. That might be these people with very large audiences. Sure, there are some of those, but of all coaches most are not doing that. So that like… You know how sometimes someone will ask, I feel like I’m not keeping up with my peers because, I always see them pitching and I always see them coming out with new programs and I always see them like… I’m taking on two new clients every other week.
0:19:39.5 Mike Vacanti: It seems like they’re taking on two new clients and they have all these strategies. They must just be killing it. No, the people who are always pitching, who are always coming out with something new, who are always dropping this new exciting thing are not doing well. And that’s why they always have this new thing. The people who are just cruising along, getting referrals, getting new coaching submissions, have people stumbling across their content via SEO have… Don’t necessarily need more clients. Those are the people and those are the coaches who you would actually want to mimic.
0:20:08.2 Jordan Syatt: It’s like imagine you follow the majority of people that you follow are fitness models and Victoria’s Secret models and bodybuilders and physique competitors and people like Greg Plitt, rest in peace, just people who are just shredded and look just ridiculous. And they’re only posting pictures of themselves when they’re at their leanest, when they’re at their most shredded. And then you say, ah, I just feel like everyone in the fitness industry is just shredded all the time. And it’s like no, you’re only seeing what they’re showing you. And you’re only looking at the smallest teeniest tiniest percentage of the elite, of the elite of the elite of the elite when the vast majority of the fitness industry isn’t even close to shredded. And even the ones that you’re looking at are not shredded all the time. They’re just showing you the pictures of when they look their absolute leanest after they’ve peaked for a photo shoot and dah, dah, dah, dah, dah.
0:21:05.6 Jordan Syatt: That’s what you’re doing with this and you’re saying, yeah, all of these people are doing mass programming. I would love for you to go to all these people, especially if they’re friends of yours who are doing all this “mass programming” and ask them to show you… Show them like how much they’re bringing in every month from this mass programming. Hey, would you mind showing me like what the last three months looked like? Like showing me the backend? Don’t just tell me, show me what the backend looked like. And let’s see, and see if you could find more than five people who are doing mass programming at a very high successful level, I would be shocked.
0:21:44.0 Mike Vacanti: Yep. The other thing is the system and method of delivery is not the hard part about building a business.
0:21:52.1 Jordan Syatt: Correct.
0:22:00.3 Mike Vacanti: There are two aspects of building a business that are much more difficult, becoming a great coach. And finding clients who want to work with you. Those are the two things that basically everyone needs to work on. You’re putting the cart before the horse when you’re thinking about… It’s almost like our fascination with business cards in 2012 or like company name, majoring in the minors early on, thinking that that matters when that doesn’t matter. It’s being an unbelievable coach and building an audience so that there are people who know what you offer and as a result, people who want to work with you as clients, those are the two things that really take time and effort. If you wanna use one of these platforms, great. Do it. Or don’t do it, but it’s not worth spending much time thinking about.
0:22:54.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yep. Agreed. My good friend, Inner Circle member Natalia, she asked, how are you enjoying the house and being away from the city? It’s the fucking best. It is the best dude. Being outside of the city, this is the play. Let me tell you. Let me tell you. You glad you’re outside of the city.
0:23:10.5 Mike Vacanti: Space… Of course. Absolutely.
0:23:11.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, But you would do something funny ever… This is like… I know this is how you’re gonna act every time you end up going to New York. This is like the best chain of events. You spend time in Minnesota. You’re home, you’re in the suburbs, you’re chilling. A couple of months go by, you’re gonna do a surprise visit to go coach Gary. You land in the city and as soon as you get there you’re like this is it. The energy is real. This city is the best. It’s back. I love the city. And then within 24 hours you’re like, bro, we’re not designed to be in these cities, man, I gotta get out here. The buildings are caving in on me. It’s like there’s no nature, you can’t see the stars. It’s too busy. We’re not supposed to be in cities like this. And then you’re ready to get back home.
0:24:11.1 Mike Vacanti: That’s exactly right. That’s a 100% correct. Although that isn’t city versus like suburb or country. That’s just New York City because New York City is electric and New York City’s the greatest city on earth bar none like…
0:24:34.4 Jordan Syatt: Facts.
0:24:34.4 Mike Vacanti: Unquestionable. There’s intangible…
0:24:34.5 Jordan Syatt: Correct.
0:24:35.8 Mike Vacanti: Like magic in that city that no other big city has. And that’s what I feel when I land there. But then within 24 to 72 hours, I’ve had enough, I’ve had my fill and it’s time to get back to the piece of not being on top of people.
0:24:58.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Would you ever build out your own, like garage/home gym? Or do you like going to other gyms?
0:25:05.9 Mike Vacanti: Listening to you talk about building makes me never want to build.
0:25:09.7 Jordan Syatt: Well, I don’t mean a house. ‘Cause you’ve got your house right now and let’s assume that you’re gonna stay there forever which may be or may not.
0:25:19.7 Mike Vacanti: Oh I see. I see.
0:25:20.6 Jordan Syatt: I mean, just the gym.
0:25:22.1 Mike Vacanti: Oh, like a home gym?
0:25:24.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.
0:25:25.4 Mike Vacanti: Got it. I thought you meant like build a structure. Yeah, I’d be open to it.
0:25:26.6 Jordan Syatt: All right. What would your, if you were gonna build a home gym… And let’s say like you were gonna build with a pretty big budget, we’ll call it like a $100,000. ‘Cause like you’re super wealthy and…
0:25:47.2 Mike Vacanti: Jordan is rich. Jordan is… Let me tell you.
0:25:52.8 Jordan Syatt: All right. So let’s just say you happen to have a $100,000 budget for your home gym.
0:25:56.6 Mike Vacanti: Okay.
0:26:00.8 Jordan Syatt: What would you get? And you don’t have to know the cost of any of the equipment, but my point being you just have a lot of money to spend in your home gym. What would you get?
0:26:05.2 Mike Vacanti: This is a fun game. I don’t have a $100,000 budget for my home gym but this is a fun game. So we’ll go pretty much in order. An adjustable bench, like a solid, I actually really, really like Planet Fitness benches. I don’t know what brand they are. They’re a little high up for barbell benching for me personally.
0:26:32.3 Jordan Syatt: Aren’t they Life Fitness benches? Planet Fitness?
0:26:36.3 Mike Vacanti: Maybe.
0:26:36.3 Jordan Syatt: That they just branded, I think. Oh, yeah anyway, keep going.
0:26:37.1 Mike Vacanti: And they’re very sturdy. They’re wide, which I really like. And they actually get wider as you go further up the bench. They’re great for like dumbbell pressing and chest-supported row. They’re just very good benches. I would get a… I wouldn’t get adjustable dumbbells with that budget. I would get a rack of dumbbells up to a 100s, maybe 120s. Just because I like regular dumbbells so much more than adjustable dumbbells for a lot of exercises where the adjustables are a little clunky.
0:27:17.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. I would get a…
0:27:17.9 Mike Vacanti: I would get the… Oh man. So I was thinking I would get your normal, like two stack cable pulley with multiple pull up bars above and then two cable stacks. You could do a cable crossover fly and you can do tricep press ons over here. You can do whatever you want over on this other pulley. But with… And maybe I’m not explaining this but the ones that are like four… The cable stacks are like four to six feet apart.
0:27:51.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Like really far, really far apart?
0:27:54.7 Mike Vacanti: No, no, no, no. Not really far apart.
0:27:57.3 Jordan Syatt: Oh, not really far apart.
0:27:58.0 Mike Vacanti: The closer one.
0:28:00.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Oh, you like those better?
0:28:03.6 Mike Vacanti: It goes in like the corner. No, I don’t like them better, but that’s what I would get realistically.
0:28:07.4 Jordan Syatt: Got it yeah yeah.
0:28:09.1 Mike Vacanti: But with a 100K budget, I’d probably get the real deal where you have a six-seated-cable row, you got a lap pull down, you got two pulleys over here, and then you got two pulleys on this side with some other stuff on this side. And then you really have a lot of space between the cable crossover. That’s what I would get with unlimited space and massive budget. So some kind of pulley system. I’d have a barbell and a squat rack just because… And I would probably use it for… I like barbell overhead press. I’m retired from the barbell back squat, so I don’t know that I would ever, what’s the… Who’s it, Mike Robertson? No one over the age of something ever needs to be squatting.
0:28:51.6 Jordan Syatt: Mike Boyle. Mike Boyle, I think he was like “anyone over 40, no one should be back squatting or deadlifting.”
0:28:58.8 Mike Vacanti: Why did I just butcher? Why did I just mix up? Robertson and Boyle…
0:29:02.7 Jordan Syatt: Mike Robertson’s another strength coach. He’s an amazing strength coach.
0:29:05.0 Mike Vacanti: I know. Yeah. But how did I mix those two up in my mind?
0:29:09.6 Jordan Syatt: Two both Mike’s and they’re both like in that Eric Cressey world.
0:29:14.3 Mike Vacanti: That’s true.
0:29:15.4 Jordan Syatt: Mike Robertson, Eric Cressey, co-authored the Neanderthal No More series on T-Nation. They’ve done a lot of stuff together over the years. It makes sense. That’s an easy mix up. They don’t look anything alike. They’re different age brackets, but their teachings are both phenomenal.
0:29:28.9 Mike Vacanti: My brain really, let me down on that one.
0:29:33.3 Jordan Syatt: I could see you like in a belt squat. Would you get a belt squat?
0:29:37.3 Mike Vacanti: It depends on how much space I have. It’s a very cool piece of equipment. I’m a huge fan, but yeah, if space was unlimited, I’d have all kinds of cool machines. I love a lion ham… Like the thing about machines in a home gym is you can only do one exercise on that machine. And the space to versatility ratio is super low. But yeah, I love a leg extension. I love a lion hamstringing curl. There’s certain machine shoulder presses that I like but yeah, that’s the base of it. A rack of dumbbells, adjustable bench. Get mirrors, get your pulleys, have a barbell locked and loaded. How about you?
0:30:28.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. I’m building one out right now. I wanted one of those cable machines that…
0:30:31.8 Mike Vacanti: $500,000, budget though, right?
0:30:35.6 Jordan Syatt: No, no, no. I’ve got like a $500 budget.
0:30:40.4 Mike Vacanti: Oh, 500?
0:30:40.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. 500. No. That would actually be a good episode. What would you do with a $500 budget, go on Facebook marketplace and stuff? No, but I wanted to get one of those like double stack cable machines that are really far apart that also have the seated cable row and the lat pull down. And, but the space… I just didn’t have the space for it. So I did get one of the cable machines that you said like the ones that are closer together, like double stack, but they’re closer together. So I got one of those and I also got a lat pull down seated cable row. They haven’t been delivered yet. But yeah I’m very excited to have those. I have my S-2 squat stand from Rogue, which I like a lot because you can do everything on it.
0:31:25.2 Jordan Syatt: It’s just not like a power rack. I feel like the power racks are a little bit overrated. They cost way, way, way more. And you don’t need that whole box. Like they’re obviously more stable, but just a regular squat stand with a chin up bar, you can literally do all of the same things and you can get the benefits of having the safety pins. You can put the safety pins in there, you can get the dip bar on there, way more cost effective and takes up way less space. So I like having a squat stand, dumbbell. I’m getting dumbbells up to 75. If I was in my power lifting days, I would’ve gotten up to 100s. But eventually, I’m sure I’ll get up to 100s, but I don’t need from 75… I don’t need like 80 to a 100 Just right now, I’m getting the dumbbells up to… Because I do like the rack of dumbbells as I have the adjustables, but the rack of dumbbells is just way more convenient and I like that better.
0:32:23.6 Mike Vacanti: I’m with you. Unfortunately, Gary’s getting so strong and I simply can’t allow him to surpass me on any lifts that I need to continue, like on a single arm row, a chest supported row on these moves where he’s like… Because at his gym they only have up to 90s only, and he’s like what are we gonna do? He’s like single arm rowing 80 for 8 to 10 reps super clean.
0:32:51.4 Jordan Syatt: That’s crazy.
0:32:51.9 Mike Vacanti: He’s like what are we gonna do? It’s coming soon. But that is, it’s like okay that’s a gap that I’m not gonna allow to close.
0:33:00.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. That’s smart. Is he doing any tricep work lately?
0:33:03.6 Mike Vacanti: I am getting him to do some tricep work. Probably one out of every four times we hit a tricep isolation exercise. He goes, “Mike I don’t need to be training these.” You wanna tell that story.
0:33:16.3 Jordan Syatt: This is one of my favorite stories of all time. Yeah. It’s for everyone who doesn’t know. And I’m sure some people have heard this story a couple of times, but when I first started coaching Gary I gave him… We were doing a regular program and I gave him a tricep exercise and he looked at me and he said, “what muscle does this work?” And I showed him, I was like “it works your tricep.” And he goes, “no, no, no. I don’t need to do [laughter] I don’t need to work that muscle. This muscle is like super developed on me.” He is like “I don’t need to work on that.” He just wanted to work on his chest. So like anytime that we were gonna work on his tricep, he said, “no, no, I don’t need to do that.” So then I would like tell him we were gonna do an exercise that worked a different muscle, but then it also worked his triceps. So I would never tell him when it worked his triceps because he would always be “no, no, no, I don’t need to work that muscle.”
0:34:06.3 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. Hilarious. “These have always been very developed. I don’t need anything here.”
0:34:13.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah. But I would get a belt squat. I think a belt squat is probably… I think that’s probably one of the most underrated pieces of equipment in all of gym equipment is the belt squat. It feels amazing on the back. You get the traction on the spine. You don’t get the spinal decompression that you do with a barbell on your back. You get all of the benefits with none of the risk that you have from a barbell on your back. None of the torque on the shoulder, none of the actual spinal issues, all of the benefits. And then the benefits of the traction on the spine. I think the belt squat is probably top five most underrated pieces of equipment to exist in the strength and conditioning world.
0:34:49.5 Mike Vacanti: It just depends how much space you have.
0:34:53.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s a huge piece of equipment. It’s a large, large piece of equipment, but when I go to an… Because I’m not gonna have one here when we move into our house, it is something I would like to buy. I don’t have nearly enough space in the gym that we have right here, but I would like to eventually buy that. My wife that’s her… My wife’s favorite piece of equipment. ‘Cause she’s been going to a gym near where we live now. And I told her before we moved here, I was like I wanna buy one. And she had never used it. And she like was yeah, yeah, yeah. She came back, she was like oh my God, they had this amazing piece of equipment. It’s like a west side barbell type gym. There’s this amazing piece of equipment. And she was explaining it and I showed her what a belt squat looked like. She was like that was it. I was like I told you you’d like this piece of equipment. And she loved it. It’s amazing. I think that is, yeah. It’s an amazing piece of equipment.
0:35:38.6 Mike Vacanti: And to be honest, like one of the things I like about a rack is all the pull-up variations. I find hanging knee raises, hanging leg raises with a little rotation on ’em or straight to be one of the best abdominal exercises. And so if you have the cable crossover, if you have the pulleys and you have something that you can do all of… You have like a stable bar to hang from and do overhead pulling on, that just reduces the versatility of the squat rack, making it essentially just squat overhead press. And so I definitely agree with you that as long as it’s stable enough, not having the box, but just having the whatever two pillar rack makes more sense.
0:36:31.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. You know what else I think? I think the SS Bar is severely underrated. If I was…
0:36:36.6 Mike Vacanti: You just bought one.
0:36:40.1 Jordan Syatt: If I was coaching people and… I just bought one Yeah. I got one when I was in college, I ordered one ’cause me and my two buddies, Nick Busan, who actually just recently passed, and my buddy Joe Rattenni we ordered an SS Bar.
0:36:50.6 Mike Vacanti: Your buddy from college passed away?
0:36:53.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yeah. He just passed in the last couple of weeks. It was really sad. It was out of nowhere.
0:36:58.3 Mike Vacanti: Geez.
0:37:01.5 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. That was not good. But we…
0:37:01.6 Mike Vacanti: Man, I’m sorry.
0:37:01.6 Jordan Syatt: We all started the, the UD Powerlifting Team and we ordered, we like got like I don’t know… I think like $500 or a $1000 a semester in funding. And so we ordered the SS Bar and we got that for UD. And if I was coaching people in person or if I had a client who had access to an SS Bar, but if I was coaching people in person…
0:37:21.2 Mike Vacanti: Explain what that bar is.
0:37:24.7 Jordan Syatt: So SS Bar, it stands for… If you’re a World War II person, you’re like SS, that sounds terrible. It’s the Safety Squat bar. Which basically it’s instead of… It basically it wraps around your neck and goes in front of your shoulders. So if you Google search SS Bar, you’ll see that instead of having to severely externally rotate your shoulders to then get behind the bar with the bar on your back, now you can just literally hold onto it in front of your chest. If you’re watching on YouTube, you can see what I’m doing. I love it because it puts no stress on the shoulders and also it really forces you into thoracic extension.
0:38:01.0 Jordan Syatt: I think it’s way better for posture and for developing the muscles of your upper back. Also puts less stress on your spine and has less spinal compression and way more comfortable. So if I was coaching people in person, I don’t think I would ever have anyone squat with a straight bar. They would only squat with SS Bar. I just don’t see, if you have access to it, I don’t see a reason why, unless they’re a power lifter or an Olympic lifter, the only… If it’s a gen pop person or even an athlete, SS Bar would be the only squat bar that I have them use.
0:38:33.3 Mike Vacanti: I understand everything you just said except less spinal compression. There’s less spinal compression on a back squat using an SS Bar relative to a…
0:38:43.7 Jordan Syatt: I would imagine only because, and I might be wrong on this, but I would imagine because when you have the regular bar it’s more localized like it’s a thin bar it’s more localized on the spine whereas the SS Bar it’s a big pad and it’s more spread out through your entire back so I would imagine because the force is more spread out through your entire back you have more going into different muscles, you have more going… And I have zero research to support this but I would imagine that because the straight bar smaller more localized directly on the spine, you’d probably get more spinal compression.
0:39:17.6 Mike Vacanti: And if that isn’t true in research, blah, blah, blah, you feel like there’s less spinal compression.
0:39:27.3 Jordan Syatt: 100%.
0:39:27.4 Mike Vacanti: Cool. Cool.
0:39:27.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. I feel way better using the SS Bar on my back than I do with the straight bar.
0:39:32.5 Mike Vacanti: Nice.
0:39:32.7 Jordan Syatt: Have you used the SS Bar?
0:39:35.8 Mike Vacanti: Yeah.
0:39:36.0 Jordan Syatt: Do you like it?
0:39:36.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. I like it on the shoulders. I mean, I don’t like squatting, but I like it on the shoulders.
0:39:42.7 Jordan Syatt: Or even if you’re doing lunges or good mornings or whatever, it’s an amazing bar to use.
0:39:49.9 Mike Vacanti: I’ve never back-loaded, and I haven’t back-loaded an exercise in eight years other than a barbell back squat. I just way prefer holding dumbbells for like walking lunge, Bulgarian split squat for myself. Everything feels better holding dumbbells.
0:40:09.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that makes sense.
0:40:10.1 Mike Vacanti: Where are you at, 6.8?
0:40:13.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, it’s going down. Yeah, I’m in the high sixes, low sevens right now. Feeling good.
0:40:18.0 Mike Vacanti: Okay, all right.
0:40:19.7 Jordan Syatt: I don’t want to get too low.
0:40:26.0 Mike Vacanti: No productivity. What are you sipping on?
0:40:28.6 Jordan Syatt: A little Monster. Dude, it was funny. I will never say no to an opportunity to meet and talk to someone new. Even though I don’t do sponsorships, if a company reaches out to me, I’ll always get on the phone and talk with them. So Monster, not Monster, Red Bull reached out to me, like, I don’t know two weeks ago, and they were like hey we’d love to talk with you about a potential partnership, and I was like yeah sure we can talk and [chuckle] I didn’t realize it. But I might… So my wife has been buying these Monsters because she loves Monster and I like log on to the video call and if you’re watching YouTube like you can see I log on to the video call To get on a call with Red Bull, and I’ve got my Monster sitting right here in front and they’re like, oh, yeah, sorry. And I doubt anything is gonna happen with them. I told him I was like, I’ve never done sponsorships. I’m not looking to do sponsorships, but I always think it’s a good idea to speak with people and establish a relationship. ‘Cause you just never know what could happen in the future with that person or anything. And it’s always good. I think it’s better to put a face to the name and actually meet them than just to say, I’m not doing that and not meet them. But that was a funny, funny interaction.
0:41:40.4 Mike Vacanti: Do you think that’s driven in part by your desire for human interaction?
0:41:45.7 Jordan Syatt: No, no. ‘Cause I would rather, in that moment, I would rather be with my daughter and wife than being on a conference call. Especially, ’cause I know I’m not gonna sign on with Red Bull to do paid sponsorships with Red Bull, but I very much… I don’t think I’ve ever turned down when a company says, hey, we’d like to talk. I’ve never turned that meeting down, ’cause I would always like to talk to someone, just, ’cause you just never know. You never know what could happen.
0:42:20.0 Mike Vacanti: What could happen?
0:42:21.1 Jordan Syatt: Who knows? You don’t know if they’re gonna say something that surprises you, you don’t know if in seven years they’ll have left that company and then they’re doing their own thing and then you meet. You just… One thing I’ve learned through my life is yeah, from a networking perspective, getting to know people’s perspective, I think it’s a very smart idea to give people a chance, talk with them, and not say no just because of what you think they might be after or what you think. And the two people at Red Bull were great, they were super nice. They knew my brand really, really well. They were very supportive of what I said, and there’s nothing that I disliked about what they were doing. It seemed very genuine, authentic people. So I think it never hurts to establish a good relationship with people.
0:43:07.1 Mike Vacanti: I’m gonna start forwarding you the inquiries we get for the mentorship, because I have never taken one of those calls or meetings. And if anything, when they send like five emails in a row, I just rage respond to them. Obviously I’m not interested. Don’t send me five follow up emails about some stupid collab. I’m gonna start forwarding you these because there might be opportunities there that I’m missing.
0:43:32.3 Jordan Syatt: Well like, from who? Give me, is there anyone specific or any company?
0:43:36.9 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, some dude reached out who, I don’t know, run some sports thing and they have like a decent hundreds of thousands of followers. I checked one of their socials.
0:43:48.6 Jordan Syatt: Good. Send them over. I didn’t know this was going on in the business.
0:43:51.3 Mike Vacanti: I’ll send them over.
0:43:52.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, forward them to me and I’ll hop on a call with them.
0:43:55.2 Mike Vacanti: Beautiful. Perfect.
0:43:57.2 Jordan Syatt: I’m a P, ESTP, let’s do it.
0:44:00.9 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. Yeah, you like business too.
0:44:03.1 Jordan Syatt: “Yeah, my employee Jordan Syatt will hop on the call.”
0:44:09.1 Mike Vacanti: I think you addressed it to both of us… I think he thinks it’s a bigger operation than it is because he’s like, anyone, “if I could speak to someone within your organization,” I’m like, “okay, well…”
0:44:18.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, people say that in my DMs a lot, like, “hey, Jordan’s team.” I’m like, “I don’t know who the fuck you think you’re talking to.”
0:44:28.9 Mike Vacanti: Well, no, actually, let’s wrap up by talking about this. There are a lot of not a lot, but there are many people who set up their business in a way that we could have, or maybe that you considered where there are dozens of employees and run things in a very different way, which is an option that was never interesting to me and I know isn’t interesting to you.
0:45:01.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, especially from the perspective of, and I would say there are a lot of people who outsource their social media way before that should even be a consideration in their mind, like where they start hiring people to… Hiring companies to post for them and to answer the DMs and I’m like that is a terrible, terrible, terrible idea. And this is one of the areas where I think I was super blessed to be able to see how Gary works because Gary’s got over 10 million followers and I don’t know hundreds of businesses at this point and like social media is his side hustle, and he’s still the only one posting and answering DMs and on his account. He’s the one who goes in and does it all.
0:45:47.2 Jordan Syatt: And so I think seeing that, for me, was very helpful being like, okay, well, that’s what Gary’s doing, and there’s no reason for me to be doing that. Not to mention it didn’t feel right, but it was very… A good reinforcement being like, okay, you shouldn’t be doing this. You shouldn’t have other people doing this, especially if you’re trying to build your brand on social media. If you’re a celebrity and like, I don’t know, you’re an actor and you don’t really care about building your brand, fine, have someone else, have an agent run your social media, whatever. But if you’re a personal trainer and you’re trying to build your personal training brand on social media and you hire a company to run your social media and they’re not coaches and it’s not you, it’s a terrible, terrible decision.
0:46:26.4 Mike Vacanti: That’s a great point. Even hiring employees that you then have to manage. So if you look at your day to day schedule and the autonomy and flexibility that you have relative to, okay, I gotta be in the office by 8:00 because I have meetings with employees from 8:00 to 11:00 and then I have like a little gap where I can do this and then I have to have these team meetings from 2:00 to 4:00. Setting up your business in a way that gives you more personal flexibility in your day-to-day versus makes you accountable in your schedule to those employees is a different path yeah.
0:47:05.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, and there’s nothing wrong with hiring employees I mean it can be great depending on what your goal is and it’s a wonderful thing to do for them and for the economy as a whole, it’s amazing. I would just keep in mind, as a coach, I know a very common practice lately is to hire more and more coaches onto your team so that you can build a bigger business. Just remember that the more coaches you hire to work underneath you, the more you become a manager and less of a coach you become, which is fine. That’s totally fine if that’s what you want to do. But if you wanna be a coach and not a manager, do not hire a lot of coaches to work underneath you because then you’re not only now responsible for the clients who are working with you, but for what your coaches are doing. You have to educate those coaches. You have to make sure they’re doing the right things. You have to keep track of them. Hiring a lot of coaches is a very different business model.
0:48:03.3 Mike Vacanti: Well, and you’re not only hiring coaches, but hiring developers. And look, working with one developer who’s like a contractor is different than having an in-house dev team of many people. Honestly, I’m not gonna name names, but there are multiple people.
0:48:23.4 Jordan Syatt: Name names, call them out.
0:48:25.2 Mike Vacanti: I’m not calling them out ’cause these are people who you met with.
0:48:27.7 Jordan Syatt: I’m joking, I’m joking.
0:48:28.8 Mike Vacanti: No, let’s say them and bleep them out. Or do you know who I’m thinking of right now?
0:48:32.4 Jordan Syatt: I have no clue, I have no clue.
0:48:34.1 Mike Vacanti: Like [REDACTED], or like [REDACTED]…
0:48:35.8 Jordan Syatt: Oh, oh. Yeah, yeah, yeah, well let’s bleep those out. But yeah.
0:48:39.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, bleep them out, bleep my mouth out. But after meeting with them and seeing what their day to day looks like, and then you calling me and being like, dude, we really set up our business in the right way. Like seeing the day-to-day life, not to mention the margin you give away. And I understand that some people are actually, like love business, Gary for example. So it isn’t about… The business isn’t to support their life and they’re not thinking in terms of like, okay, if I’m a solopreneur or like have an independent contractor, whatever, maybe have an assistant working part-time, whatever it is, but like, it’s a lifestyle business in that almost all of your revenue is net income. We’re not selling a physical product. We don’t have very high costs, probably like 10% website, email, server, whatever. These are small costs relative to revenue. Whereas when you’re hiring a bunch of people or even partnering with a bunch of people, your percent of revenue that is actually take-home is so much less that you need to build a bigger business in order to make enough to support work. So like even if you’re blowing up revenue, net income is only increasing a fraction of that. It’s just, it’s different and not something that I obviously aspire towards or that you at this stage.
0:50:02.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, it’s not how much you make, it’s how much you keep.
0:50:05.2 Mike Vacanti: And it’s what you’re doing in your day-to-day life and whether or not you wanna be doing those things. If you’re invigorated by going to an office and having meetings with your employees all day, like, that’s amazing.
0:50:18.9 Jordan Syatt: That’s not what Mike wants, that’s for sure.
0:50:22.1 Mike Vacanti: That’s not what Jordan, dude, you’re running through your neighborhood with your weighted vest on.
0:50:25.6 Jordan Syatt: It’s true, I don’t wanna have an office and I don’t wanna have office… No one likes office meetings. Those suck. No one likes… Right now we’re seeing like all these employees who are resigning because their bosses are saying you gotta come back to the office. Like fuck that, I don’t wanna go to the office. It’s a… No one wants to do that.
0:50:46.7 Mike Vacanti: Yep. Pretty much.
0:50:50.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Dave, bleep those names out and cover Mike’s mouth for…
0:50:54.5 Mike Vacanti: David doesn’t miss.
0:50:56.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I just want to make sure, ’cause David’s crushing it, but I just wanna make sure.
0:51:04.6 Mike Vacanti: Good episode we don’t miss weeks Tuesday uploads. Please, please leave us a five-star review Spotify, Apple wherever you’re getting your podcast. It helps us a lot. It takes like 90 seconds. We greatly appreciate it. And we’ll jump in there and read some of those. So thank you. Thanks for listening. We’ll be back next week.
0:51:24.7 Jordan Syatt: See you.
0:51:25.5 Mike Vacanti: See you soon.