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This podcast is a Q&A, but it’s a bit different from the kind you’ll typically find here on Muscle For Life.

In my usual Q&A episodes, I take a question from email or Instagram and then fully answer it in an episode of the podcast every week.

However, 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.


3:38 – Is decline bench press needed to build chest muscles?                                    

4:46 – SARMS or steroids? Which is best?                              

4:58 – What’re your tips for feeling the mind-muscle connection?                                    

5:55 – Are good mornings worth programming in for legs?                                    

6:36 – Is Mark Rippetoe a nice guy?                                    

6:54 – If you’re 50+ pounds overweight, how much protein should you eat?                                 

7:34 – Should you weigh food raw or cooked for macro tracking?                                  

7:46 – What is the release date for Smaller, Weaker, Sicker for Australians still under lockdown?                                    

8:29 – How long do I need to wait after taking creatine to have caffeine or coffee?                                   

8:51 – In Beyond Bigger Leaner Stronger should you change rep range and set count while cutting?

9:17 – Prowler versus HIIT?                             

9:29 – Advice for people losing their jobs due to mandates?                                  

10:11 – Advice for teens interested in business?                                    

11:51 – Is Ashwagandha effective for relieving stress?                                 

12:11 – How many years will it take a thin guy a body like yours?                                   

12:44 – Do women really have to learn how to deadlift and bench press to see results from weight lifting?          

Mentioned on the Show:

Legion VIP One-on-One Coaching

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


Hello? Hello, hello, I’m Mike Matthews. This is Muscle for Life. Thanks for joining me once again. And quickly. If you haven’t already, please do subscribe to the show because then you won’t miss any new episodes, and you’ll help me by boosting the rankings of the show in the various charts. And so today’s episode is going to be, uh, a q and a, another installment of.

Instagram derived Q and As where I post to Instagram stories and ask people to ask me questions, and then I pick, I don’t, I guess I haven’t really counted maybe, maybe 15 to 20 or so spend, you know, a half hour or so just picking questions that I think are interesting or allowing me to try to make jokes or to be helpful and educational.

And then I jump over here to the computer and share the questions. Answers. And so if you want to ask me questions on Instagram’s, just follow me At most Life Fitness and once a week, usually on Mondays or Tuesdays, I put up the story asking for questions, and then on Tuesday or Wednesday, or sometimes Thursday or Friday, I then start answering them.

And if I like your question, if it tickles me in some way, then I will answer it on Instagram and I will feature it here on the podcast. Also, if you like what I’m doing here on the podcast and elsewhere, definitely check out my v i p one-on-one coaching service because my team and I have helped people of all ages and all circumstances lose fat, build muscle, and get into the best shape of their life faster.

Than they ever thought possible, and we can do the same for you. We make getting fitter, leaner, and stronger, paint by numbers simple by carefully managing every aspect of your training and your diet for you. Basically, we take out all of the guesswork, so all you have to do is follow the plan and watch your body changed day after day, week after week, and.

After month. What’s more, we’ve found that people are often missing just one or two crucial pieces of the puzzle, and I bet a shiny shackle, it’s the same with you. You’re probably doing a lot of things right, but dollars to donuts, there’s something you’re not doing correctly or at all. That’s giving you the most grief.

Maybe it’s your calories or your macros. Maybe it’s your exercise selection. Maybe it’s your food choices. Maybe you’re not progressively overloading your muscles or maybe it’s something else, and whatever it is, here’s what’s important. Once you identify those one or two things you’re missing, once you figure it.

That’s when everything finally clicks, that’s when you start making serious progress. And that’s exactly what we do for our clients. To learn more, head over to That’s bu uy and schedule your free consultation call. Which by the way, is not a high pressure sales call.

It’s really just a discovery call where we get to know you better and see if you’re a good fit for the service. And if you’re not for any reason, we will be able to share resources that’ll point you in the right direction. So again, if you appreciate my work and if you want to see more of it, If you also want to finally stop spinning your wheels and make more progress in the next few months than you did in the last few years, check out my v i p coaching [email protected]

All righty. Let’s tumble shall we? First question, decline bench press is it really needed to build chest muscles? No, it’s definitely not needed to build chest muscles. I actually haven’t done a decline bench press in a long time. because while it does allow you to lift more weight, it dramatically reduces the range of motion, and that is just going to make the exercise less effective.

And also, basically, nobody needs to emphasize the lower portion of the pecks. Those will get plenty of training through just flat pressing alone. But many people need to work on the upper portion. Their pex and decline pressing, of course, is not good for that, but incline pressing is and reverse grip pressing is as well.

And so minimally, I would recommend doing a fair amount of flat and incline pressing, and if you want to alternate in some reverse grip pressing for the incline, you can do that as well. I find it pretty awkward myself and I just stick with incline pressing. But the reverse grip bench press is a safe and effective variation of the bench press that has been shown in research to emphasize the upper portion of the pex.

Alright, next question is PSMs or steroids, which is best overall, um, patients and, and healthy. And normal expectations. I think those are even better. Next question, tips to get better at feeling the mind muscle connection, especially with chest exercises. So a couple of things. One, you can slow down your warmup reps and really pay attention to your warmup reps.

Pay attention to your form. Pay attention to the muscle groups that release the primary muscle groups involved in the exercise. Focus on that. Focus on contracting those muscle groups forcefully in each rep again, even though it’s just a, a warmup set. And then try to maintain that same locus, uh, location of focus and that same intensity of focus in your working sets.

Make sure that you are focusing on those contractions. Contract your muscles as hard as you can in each. Of your working sets as well. And if you just make a habit of those things, you will start to notice better mind muscle connection. Next question is good morning’s worth programming in legs? Yes. Uh, the good morning is a good exercise, but don’t get too zealous with the load because you can hurt yourself.

You can hurt your back, you can hurt your hips. And I also don’t like doing good mornings after squats or deadlifts because. It’s just a bit much on my lower back and my hips. I have done that before and after six or seven weeks of it, I started to notice that my hips were just getting annoyed and my lower back was also just getting annoyed from the deadlifting and then the squatting and then the good mornings.

So I’d recommend programming the good mornings on a day that you are not deadlifting horse squat. Next question is Mark Rippetoe a nice guy. Mark is very much a nice guy. You might be surprised to hear that because he’s always grumbling and growling about something. But if Mark were a fruit, he would be a prickly pear.

He would be vicious on the outside and delicious on the inside. If you’re 50 plus pounds overweight and you are cutting suggested grams of daily protein per pound of body weight is what is what is implied there. And that’s a good question because if you followed the standard cutting advice of somewhere, let’s say around one gram of protein per pound of body weight per day, that could be a lot of protein.

That might be 250 grams per day for a guy and. That’s okay. It’s, it’s not harmful, but it’s not very enjoyable and it’s not necessary. So, uh, a simpler system to use if you have a lot of weight to, to lose, and this is for both men and women, is to have one gram of protein per centimeter in height per day.

That’ll work fine. Next is, should I weigh my food raw or cooked for macro tracking? So weigh it raw and then portion it out cooked because the weight can change with a lot of foods when you cook them. What is the release date for? Smaller, weaker, sicker for Australians still locked down. Um, maybe. 2030.

You know, it might even be more relevant by then. And as a little aside here, the Aussie plight is poetically ironic when you consider how smugly many of them used to talk about and probably still do, talk about , their willful disarmament because of how spiritually elevated they are. They are not like us barbaric Americans obsessed with our guns and bullets.

Um, me thinks these people should have listened to Mao when he said political power grows out of the barrel of a. How long should I wait after taking Creatine to have caffeine to have some coffee? No need to wait. It is very unlikely that caffeine interferes with creatine. This was once a concern based on one or two studies that suggested there might be some interference there that caffeine may cancel out some of the benefits of creatine, but that does not appear to be the case.

I’m doing Your Beyond bigger, linear, stronger. Should I change my set count and rep range when cutting? Uh, not necessarily if you feel like it’s too much volume and you might, depending on many things, your age, your sleep hygiene, uh, what you’re doing with your diet, like how aggressively are you cutting and so forth.

What you can do is you can drop two, three sets per exercise in your workouts rather than four, and that should take care of it. Prowler versus hit. Um, I would say for building work capacity. Prowler, and that’s often what people do the prowler for or why the Prowler gets prescribed advice for those of us losing our jobs due to mandates.

Well, personally, I would just look for better companies to work for if that is an option. There still are a lot of work from home opportunities out there, for example. And at the time of this q and a, Brandon’s corporate mandate was nothing more than a press conference. So many businesses were just ignoring it.

But of course, circumstances have changed now, but that of course means that the lawsuits will start flying and we’ll see where it goes. You probably heard, for example, that just a few days ago or so, a federal judge in Louisiana blocked the vaccine mandate. So we will see how it plays out. Moving on.

Moving on. Advice for teens interested in business like your supplement company? Well, one, I would not recommend getting into sports nutrition or supplementation of any kind unless you really know what you’re doing. I would not recommend that as a first business. Unless you have a big following of people who will buy your supplements simply because they believe in you or trust you or like you, it requires a lot of capital and it requires a lot of marketing chops to make a supplement company go.

And even if you do have a big following, it still requires a fair amount of capital and it still requires a lot of marketing skills to make it more than just a side hustle that kind of rides. Coattails. So in my case, to make Legion a real brand unto itself that doesn’t rely solely on me and my activities to grow, it requires a lot of capital, a lot of reinvestment into the business to make it a robust organization unto itself.

And it requires a lot of marketing skills to sell the brand on its own merits without it riding mostly on. That said, to give some good advice for teens interested in business, and this would apply to a supplement business, but really any business, there are a few key meta skills for succeeding as an entrepreneur.

A few key higher order skills that allow you to do many other things well that are conducive to success, and those are learning, communicating, decision making, and perseve. Is Ashwaganda effective for stress relief? Would you recommend it? Uh, yeah. Studies show that it can help with stress, it can reduce stress levels, and of course, this is how you perceive stress, and that is one of the reasons why it’s in my multivitamin, which is called Triumph.

And you can go learn about that [email protected]. How many years will it take for a thin guy to get a body like yours? I would say about five to seven years. Steady and scientifically sound not perfect, but just good enough eating and training. And if you put that differently, it takes probably 1500 to maybe 2001 hour strength training, uh, resistance training, power building, body building, whatever term you want to use.

Workouts paired with consistent and conscientious controlling of calories and macro. I’m a woman. Do I really have to learn how to deadlift and bench press to see results from weightlifting? No, you definitely do not. There are plenty of alternative exercises that you can use to get into great shape. The nice thing about the deadlift, for example, is it trains so many muscles.

It’s just very ef. Efficient. It involves a ton of muscle mass. I mean, basically every muscle on the backside of your body. It also involves your quads. It involves your lats to some degree. I know it’s isometric, but it still does train your lats to some degree. Your biceps, your traps, the bench press isn’t as effective in that regard.

It doesn’t involve as much total muscle mass as the deadlift, but it does involve quite a bit of your upper. Muscle mass, which again, just makes it a very efficient exercise. And both of those exercises lend themselves really well to progressive overload because you can safely load them with very heavy weights as you get stronger and stronger.

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 have, uh, ideas or suggestions, 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 soon.

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