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What’s my favorite type of cardio? Should you take cold showers after your workouts? My advice for starting a business. When is Legion’s energy drink coming? How much sodium should you eat? Tips for reading on your phone. Is popcorn a healthy snack? All that and more in this Q&A podcast.

Over on Instagram, I’ve started doing weekly Q&As in the stories, and it occurred to me that many podcast listeners might enjoy hearing these questions and my short answers. So, instead of talking about one thing in an episode, I’m going to cover a variety of questions. And keep in mind some of these questions are just for fun. 🙂

So if you want to ask me questions in my Instagram stories, follow me on Instagram (@muscleforlifefitness), and if I answer your question there, it might just make it onto an episode of the podcast!

If you like this type of episode, let me know. Send me an email ([email protected]) or direct message me on Instagram. And if you don’t like it, let me know that too or how you think it could be better.


0:00 – My free meal planning tool: 

3:46 – What are you thoughts on cold showers after workouts?

5:17 – Where do you see humanity in 100 years in the future?

6:45 – Where do you get your fitness knowledge?

7:30 – How does using beer and wine in cooking affect the calories in cooking if alcohol gets burned off?

8:26 – Is there any chance you could remove sunflower lecithin from Legion supplements?

9:21 – What were your steps to reach financial freedom?

17:58 House of the Dragon or The Rings of Power?

18:57 – How should a man find a decent woman in this messed up world?

20:11 – What is your sodium intake recommendation?

20:48 – When will you release a Legion energy drink?

21:36 – What is your favorite type of car?

23:57 – Is popcorn a horrible snack?

24:10 – What is your favorite type of cardio?

26:24 – What does your hair routine look like?

26:40 – What are some tips for reading your phone without straining your neck or eyes?

27:00 – How do I start a business?

Mentioned on the Show:

Want a free meal planning tool that figures out your calories, macros, and micros, and allows you to create custom meal plans for cutting, lean gaining, and maintaining in under 5 minutes? Go to and download the tool for free!

What did you think of this episode? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!


Hey, hello and welcome to Muscle for Life. I am Mike Matthews. I am slightly congested at the time of recording this, hence un easily voice. But thank you for joining me today for another q and a episode where I answer questions that people ask me over on Instagram. So what I do is every week, usually Tuesday, Wednesday, I put up an Instagram story.

Getting questions, you know, with the little questions sticker, they ask me anything sticker, and then I go through all of the questions 24 hours later, and I choose usually 15 to 20 that are interesting to me or topical, or things that many other people ask me about and that I haven’t already beaten to death, and I answer them brief.

There on Instagram in my stories, and then I bring everything over here to the podcast so I can answer the questions in more depth. And so if you want to ask questions of me, follow me on Instagram at Muscle for Life Fitness and just look for that story every Tuesday or Wednesday. Submit your questions and.

I get way more than I could ever answer, and so please don’t take it personally if I don’t answer yours. And even if you submit questions regularly, I do wish I could justify sitting there for four or five hours answering every single question, but I have gotten myself into too many other things, so I have about an hour to answer questions when I do it on Instagram, and that gives.

Enough time to find an answer about 15 to 20. And again, I’m looking for questions that are going to serve my audience first and foremost. Again, things that are interesting that are topical, things that I haven’t already answered many, many times before. And so yes, let’s move on now to what I’m going to be talking.

In today’s episode, while I’m going to be answering questions on cold showers, on achieving financial freedom on Legion and an energy drink, is that going to happen on sodium intake? What’s my recommendation on my favorite type of cardio and more? Also, how would you like a free meal planning tool that figures out your calories, your macros, even your micros, and then allows you to create 100% custom meal plans for cutting, lean, gaining, or maintaining in under five minutes?

Well, all you gotta do is go to buy plan b u y plan and download the. And if I may say, this tool really is fantastic. My team and I spent over six months on this thing working with an Excel wizard, and inferior versions of this are often sold for 50, 60, even a hundred dollars.

Or you have to download an app and pay every month or sign up for a weight loss service and pay every month, 10, 20, 40, 50, even $60 a month for. What is essentially in this free tool, so if you are struggling to improve your body composition, if you are struggling to lose fat or gain muscle, the right.

Meal plan can change everything. Dieting can go from feeling like running in the sand in a sandstorm to riding a bike on a breezy day down a hill. So again, if you want my free meal planning tool, go to by plan b y plan. Enter your email address and you will get instant.

All right. The first question comes from Adam Newbie 86, and he asks thoughts on cold showers after workouts. The long story short is it’s not gonna help or hurt. It can feel nice. I like it more than taking a hot shower after training personally, because if I take a hot shower, then I keep sweating for like the next 30 minutes.

Cold shower will stop me from sweating, and that feels nice. And if you want to learn more about my position on cold showers and why I’m saying they won’t do much of anything one way or another, head over to legion, search for cold shower, and you’ll find an article that I wrote on cold showers.

There was a time when for I think about two years straight, I took cold showers more or less every day. This is when I was living in Virginia. And I could actually take a cold shower. Now I’m in Florida and the best I can do here is like a lukewarm shower, cuz the water never really gets cold. But in Virginia it gets cold, especially in the winter.

And so I talk about my experience with it in that article, and I talk about some of the research on cold exposure and why cold exposure. Can definitely benefit you in different ways, but cold showers almost certainly cannot. So again, to learn more about that, go over to legion and search for cold shower.

Alright, Andre Eckhard asks, where do you see humanity 100 years in the future. I put up a poll actually because I was curious what my lovely followers thought, and the first option was Idiocracy. That is very possible. If you don’t know what that is, it’s a movie, you should definitely watch it because it’s sums up a lot of where we are at and going at least here in the West.

And 33% of people said Idiocracy. That is. Humanity will be 100 years in the future. And option number two here was nuclear holocaust. Definitely a possibility. Unfortunately, 17% of people chose that. The third option is global techno communism. Shout out to Klaus Schwab and all of his minions, 29% of people chose that.

And finally, we have. Golden age, 21% of people chose that. So more people expect us to be in a golden age than a nuclear holocaust, which I would like to believe is true, but I can’t quite get there. I think it is a toss up, most likely between Idiocracy and global techno Communism. With nuclear holocaust coming in third place and golden age coming in a distant fourth place.

Alright. CJ saw your re asks, where did slash do you get all of your fitness knowledge? I’ve just been very consistent in my self-education for almost 15 years now. It’s a lot like working out, right? You just keep showing up and you keep doing the work and eventually you get jacked learning. Well, anything is more or less the same process.

You just keep showing up and you keep studying and you keep applying, and you keep reflecting on the results of your application and you allow that to inform. The direction of your continued studying and application and eventually one day you are really good at something. Daniel B seven asks, how does using wine slash beer and cooking affect the calories if alcohol gets burned off?

It’s a good question. Well, the caloric content is reduced a little bit, but remember that alcohol is only a fraction of the liquid by volume of whatever you’re using. And so calorically, it’s probably fairly negligible compared to the carbs in the liquid. Of course, it depends on the drink, but that is often the case.

And so personally, I wouldn’t make any adjustment. Because in any case, it’s just too small to matter, and if I am tracking my calories or planting my calories carefully, because let’s say I’m cutting and I’m lean, wanting to get really lean, and now I really have to pay attention, I’d rather just kind of err on the quote unquote.

Safe side and accidentally eat maybe a little bit less than I intended rather than a little bit more. Next question comes from immortal more, and they ask any chance of removing sunflower leftin because it’s a seed oil from your supplements from legion’s supplements. Unfortunately way is really not nice to drink without an emulsifier, and that’s what the sunflower lessen is.

But the good news is basically all of the seed oil hysteria is pseudoscientific nonsense. To learn more, head over to legion, search for seed oil, and check out the article that I wrote on the topic. There’s a lot of research cited. In that article, and my position is that seed oils are not bad for you and you don’t have to worry about your consumption of them.

Now, of course, if you ate too much seed oil, it would be bad for you, but that’s true of literally anything. If you drink too much water, you die. All right. J C D AK 77 asks what are the steps to reach your financial freedom? Well, this has changed for me over the years. When I started in the fitness industry about 10 years ago, I started with publishing a book called Big Leaner Stronger.

I had a job at the time and I was making decent money, but I also had a fair amount of debt from just. Traveling and wasting money in my early twenties. My wife at the time, girlfriend, she was my wife 10 years ago, but when I was doing all of the traveling, she was my girlfriend. She is from Germany, and so I used to go over there every several months or so.

We would just kind of alternate. She would come to the states. We did long distance for two and a half years, so she would come visit me. Here in the States, and then the next trip I would go visit her, and when I would go visit her, we would travel around Europe and waste money, stay in nice hotels, and eat good food and do whatever we wanted.

And so after all of that, I had about $50,000 in credit card debt that I had racked up over several years of doing that I would get some money from my parents. They were willing to subsidize my traveling, I guess. To some degree, but I didn’t ask for all of the money that I would spend after these trips.

So might go on a trip and spend like 10 or 15 K and then be like, I can’t ask my parents for 10 or 15 K for one trip. All right, I’ll get like 5K or something, and then just. Roll the rest, uh, over on the card and then another trip and more money spent than I got for the trip. Rinse and repeat until again, I was about $50,000 in debt.

And so when I started out with Bigger Lean Stronger, and I had this other job, I was just working to get rid of credit card debt because consumer debt. Just bad. There are no circumstances under which consumer debt is good, meaning using credit cards that you have to pay a lot of interest on to buy trinkets, to buy experiences.

Do it if you can pay the cards off in full as a rule. I mean, you might be able to think of some reasonable ex exceptions, but as a rule, if you have the money and you wanna just. Put it on a card to get points. Okay, I understand that. But spending more money than you have on a trip on a trinket and then just carrying that debt is just a bad idea.

And so initially, Financial freedom was no credit card debt and build up a little bit of a, an emergency fund, which I didn’t have at the time, and I didn’t really care what I had to do to accomplish that. Meaning there was a lot of work that I did in the beginning that I didn’t particularly enjoy in and of itself, but I was happy to do it because it was contribut.

To this book, bigger, leaner, stronger. That was starting to pick up, and that then led to the next book, which might have been The Shredded Chef or Thinner, leaner, stronger, I don’t remember. And that led to the next, and eventually that led to the Muscle For Life website, which led to Legion and so on. And so during that period, I had to do a lot of things again.

I didn’t inherently enjoy, but I was willing to do them because I really wanted to get out of debt and I wanted to put my finances in order. I wanted to increase my income. I wanted to be able to get married and support a family. And at that time I got a lot of satisfaction out of how people were receiving my.

That people were reading my books and liking my books and using my books to get in better shape and liking my muscle for Life website and my articles, and using those to get in shape. And at some point, I think around the launch of Muscle for Life, maybe it was around the launch of Legion, I started this podcast and so that was very satisfying.

But the money was also very satisfying because I had money problems and so, That was then. And if I fast forward to today, things are very different financially. I don’t talk about it very much because I don’t care to, but I’ve sold over 2 million books. 90% of those sales are self-published, which means that I’ve received somewhere between, let’s say, three to $5 per book on average.

Legion is going to finish up this year with about 35 million in sales, and next year we are forecasting about 45 million in sales with a, a very healthy amount of profit, not extravagant, because it is very expensive to produce good products in the supplement game. You cannot have great margins and great product.

You can choose one or the other. If you want great margins, you are going to have mediocre or worse products. If you want great products, you are going to have mediocre or worse margins, but I’ve been able to create great products with healthy margins. Better than mediocre, mostly because I don’t have to spend nearly as much on payroll on people and marketing as my competitors.

So those are primarily where I’m able to make up some margin. I pay everyone who works with me very well, but I don’t have as many employees as some of my competitors that are at a similar size, and that’s mostly because the employees that I do have are. Good. I don’t need to have as many employees because I’ve been fairly picky with my hiring.

So all of that is to say that I no longer have any financial problems. I don’t have any consumer debt, of course, and I’m more than able to. Pay my bills and cover my lifestyle, which is not very extravagant. And so now for me, what financial freedom means and what it really represents is earning enough money to spend as much of my time as I can doing stuff.

And really all I do is work, but doing work that I like to do. And that’s mostly creative work. And you know, like writing. Recording podcasts. I also like marketing, partly because it’s a creative activity, and so I like to work on high impact marketing activities as opposed to lower impact. Usually more routine kind of maintenance stuff, you know, where a system is already worked out and now somebody just has to kind of push the buttons and pull the levers in the right order every day.

It’s boring, but I like to create those systems or figure out ways to improve those systems. And I also like to spend as little time as possible doing stuff, doing work that I don’t like to do. And unfortunately that is a lot of the other things that entrepreneurship entails. That is something I have learned about myself.

I don’t love business in the same way that some of my very successful. Love business. They, for example, just get a visceral thrill from growing their business, making more revenue, making more profit, even though they don’t personally need any more money. I mean, in some cases, they’re very rich. They don’t need another dollar, $10 million.

In some cases, even 10 million. Makes no difference to them. They just love to figure out how to make their business. And leaner and stronger. And so I’ve learned that I don’t have that same drive to just grow my business and to get a lot of satisfaction out of simply seeing my business or businesses, I guess.

Cause I have a publishing business and Legion, I don’t derive much satisfaction merely from watching them grow. It’s nice to win, of course. And I would much rather the businesses grow than shrink. Again, I’ve learned that what I find most fulfilling is creative work, and so financial freedom is the freedom to focus on the stuff that I like the most.

That, of course, helps people and helps my businesses and to delegate. Basically everything else. Okay. That was a long answer. Jenkins Williams asks, house of Dragon or Rings of Power, is that House of Dragon or House of Dragon’s plural? I don’t know. Anyway, well, neither. Both were so bad that I actually didn’t even finish the first episodes.

Rings was. Worse though. Plot Mary Sue, protagonist. Goofy casting. Absolutely cringe dialogue almost as if the writers were just trolling the little ship and stone metaphor, you know, stone sink because they look down and ships float because they look up to the stars. Ooh, . Deep, profound, life altering.

That’s something to. Tattooed on your forearm and look at every morning as you start your gratitude journaling. Anyway, I think basically everyone responsible for that show should just be fired, except for maybe the graphic designers, they did a good job those. Vistas they created were pretty stunning.

Alright. Josh Creighton 1 29 asks, how should a man find a decent woman in this messed up world? Well, I can’t say for sure because I have not been single since I was 17 years old. That’s when I started dating. Now, my wife, however, I’m pretty sure that step one has to. Become the type of man decent woman wants.

Now, I’m not saying that this is Josh Creighton, 1 29, but I’ve always been amused by people who are always complaining about their dating ELs without realizing that. They are the only common denominator of all of their dysfunctional relationships. It’s very much like the people who simply refuse to accept that they are overweight only because they just eat too much food, that it’s their lifestyle.

Not their genetics, not their environment, which can incline people toward obesity, toward overeating, under moving. But ultimately it comes down to personal choices, comes down to living a certain way. Mfs Wellness says I train five to six days per week. Avoid most highly processed foods. What is your sodium intake recommendation?

I don’t see anything wrong. The time proven standard recommendation of two to four grams of sodium per day, that should be fine and I also recommend getting enough potassium. Many people don’t know that potassium is very important as well, and that they should be going for five to six grams of potassium per day, and most people don’t get that much.

They get maybe about half that amount. So pay attention to your potassium intake as well as your sodium intake. MICROCUTS zero seven. Says Legion Energy drinks, or we riot , um, excuse me sweetie. I think you mean peacefully protest bigot. But there will be no need for that because Legion is doing an energy drink.

It is on the anvil and the. Sample has been, the production sample has finally been improved. It took quite a bit of back and forth to get it to taste right, because natural sweeteners and natural flavoring is a pain in the ass. Artificial stuff is much easier to work with, but we got there and so next year, let’s say Q1 to q2, probably sometime between April and June, legion’s drink will be available.

All right, Mopar. Asks, favorite car. I’m not much of a car person, like I drive a Tesla Y, which I guess some people think is cool. I did not get it because I thought it was cool. I got it because I like Elon Musk and I don’t drive much. I drive basically to the gym and. Home, and I liked the idea of just not having to go to the gas station and it was relatively inexpensive, and that’s about it.

That’s why I chose that car. Whereas my last car before that was a Mercedes S 63 A mg, and that was a much quote unquote cooler car, and it was very nice to drive. And it was just a very nice car period, but I don’t drive much again. I was driving that basically $200,000 car to the gym and then driving it home every day.

And part of the reason why I got it in the first place is I kind of wanted to look cool. I cared more about that when I was younger. So before the Mercedes, I had. Porsche gts, which is a fun car, but part of the reason, if not at least 50% of the reason why I got the car is I kind of wanted to look cool and be cool.

And now as I’ve gotten older, and ironically as I’ve made more money and gotten wealthier, I guess you could say I really don’t care. Trying to look cool anymore. So I got rid of the Mercedes and I just went with something That to me, is just a car. It gets me around and it’s nice enough and that’s good enough for me.

Now, if I had more money than I even knew what to do with and I wanted to spend some of it on a car, I would go with something older. I genuinely like some of the old and unfortunately outrageously expensive collectible cars. The Aston Martins, Lamborghini, and Ferrari of the 1950s and sixties and seventies, for example.

But even then, I’m not that much of a car person, so I might not get enough joy from driving it, from owning it to warrant the expense. Like it would look cool in my garage and I would look at it and go, Ooh, that’s a really nice looking car. Just as I would say if I were looking at it in a picture. But if I didn’t get at least like a little bit giddy when I was driving it, I don’t think I would spend the.

Nicole Mains asks, is popcorn a horrible snack? Absolutely not. Ironically, popcorn is actually quite filling for the calories if you don’t butter it up, making it a great snack. P W M three asks Favorite type of cardio? Well, sports. Are my favorite, but I don’t play sports these days and therefore, basically all other forms of cardio are equally boring to me.

Actually, that’s not true. I hate running. I’ve never liked running for whatever reason, so that is my least favorite. But everything else is kind of just equally boring. So what I do is something that is kind of just practical. So I have an upright bike I hop on that I grind out 30 minutes. Five to seven days per week.

Although the last few weeks have been less than that just because I’ve been busy with other things. But usually five to seven days per week, I do 30 minutes on this upright bike. And then while I’m on the bike, I do something that I am going to also do anyway. So reading, for example, I read on my phone.

Cool. I can just do that on the bike. Making a personal or a work phone call that I need to make or I’m going to make, okay. I can just do that on the bike and I’m doing moderate intensity cardio, so wouldn’t record a podcast on the bike, but I can have a conversation. I’m just breathing a little bit. You can tell that I’m doing something, but it’s not obnoxious to listen to or I will.

do my little Instagram q and a, for example. I’ll often be doing that on the bike. So that’s just a, a good way to layer some cardio into my normal kind of work slash personal routine. And if I weren’t doing that, I suppose I would get. A rowing machine because rowing is no impact. I like that, just like biking is no impact.

So it doesn’t cut into your recovery, particularly your recovery from your strength training. Also, rowing is a, a whole body cardio workout. It burns a fair amount of calories and it feels nice, and if you have one of those, That has a, it’s like a circular container full of water. It also sounds nice.

There’s something soothing about it. Right. Okay. Next question comes from the perfect man of, and then there’s an ellipsis. So I’m not sure what the rest of the handle is, but they ask, give hair routine. Uh, here it is. I wash my hair with shamp. Or sometimes soap if there is no shampoo handy. And then I just kind of let it grow until I look homeless.

And then I get a haircut and I rinse and repeat. Two bit. Three through three asks, tips for reading on your phone for long periods without straining your eyes or neck. What I do is I just take a break at least every 30 minutes or so, and I get up and I get some water. I go to the bathroom. I just walk around, look around, and that is enough for me.

And I have the last question here from, whoa, it’s Manny. And they ask, I’m 18 and I wanna start a business. How did you start? Well, Best advice, and this is how I started, is learning and practicing sales and marketing, getting good at sales and marketing, and specifically getting good at communicating appealing offers, understanding how to create products and services that people want to buy.

I think that that’s actually the majority. Of effective marketing fundamentally is creating good offers. And so that means creating good products and services, but then also taking those products and services and offering them in a way that makes people want them. And if you wanna learn more about that, check out the book, the Irresistible Offer by Mark.

Joiner. There are probably other great books out there specifically on creating offers, but that one just popped into my mind. I read it many years ago and I remember liking it and using some of the information in it and finding it helpful, and so I recommend it. Well, I hope you liked this episode. I hope you found it helpful, and if you did subscribe to the show because it makes sure that you don’t miss new episodes.

And it also helps me because it increases the rankings of the show a little bit, which of course then makes it a little bit more easily found by other people who may like it just as much as you. And if you didn’t like something about this episode or about the show in general, or if you. Uh, ideas or suggestions or just feedback to share.

Shoot me an email, mike muscle for, muscle f o r and let me know what I could do better or just, uh, what your thoughts are about maybe what you’d like to see me do in the future. I read everything myself. I’m always looking for new ideas and constructive feedback. So thanks again for listening to this episode, and I hope to hear from you.

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