I’ve recorded hundreds of episodes of Muscle for Life on a huge variety of things related to health, fitness, and lifestyle, ranging from the basics of diet and exercise like energy and macronutrient balance and progressive overload and training frequency and volume to fads like the ketogenic and carnivore diet and collagen protein to more unfamiliar territories like body weight set point and fasted cardio.
Some episodes resonate with my crowd more than others, but all of them contain at least a few key takeaways that just about anyone can benefit from (that’s what I tell myself at least).
And as cool as that is, it poses a problem for you, my dear listener:
Ain’t nobody got time for that.
Well okay, some people do make the time to listen to most or even all of my podcasts, but my wizbang analytics tell me that while many listeners tune in on a regular basis, they don’t catch every installment of Muscle for Life and thus miss out on insights that could help them get a little better inside and outside the gym.
People have also been saying they’d like me to do more shorter, multi-topic episodes, like my Q&As.
And so I got an idea: how about a “best of” series of podcasts that contains a few of the most practical and compelling ideas, tips, and moments from my most popular episodes?
This way, people who are new to the show can quickly determine if it’s for them or not, and those who enjoy what I’m doing but don’t have the time or inclination to listen to all of my stuff can still benefit from the discussions and find new episodes to listen to.
So, in this episode of The Best of Muscle for Life, you’ll be hearing hand-picked morsels from three episodes:
And we’ll be starting with number one, Greg Nuckols on the Best Way to Get Jacked.
5:32 – Greg Nuckols on the Best Way to Get Jacked
15:55 – Everything You Need to Know About the Ketogenic Diet
29:07 – Motivation Monday: 3 Powerful Ways Working Out Makes You Better at Life
Mentioned on the show:
What did you think of this episode? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!
Hello and welcome to the latest and greatest episode of Muscle for Life. I’m Mike Matthews and thank you for joining me today. Now, I have recorded hundreds of episodes of Muscle for Life, and I’ve talked about a huge variety of things related to health, fitness, lifestyle. Mindset ranging from the basics of diet and exercise, like energy and macronutrient, balance and progressive overload, and training frequency and volume to fads like the ketogenic and carnivore diet and collagen protein to more unfamiliar territories like body weight, set point and fasted cardio, and some episodes resonate with my crowd more than others.
All of them contain at least a few key takeaways that just about anyone can benefit from. At least that’s what I tell myself. That’s what helps me sit down in the chair every day and do this, and as cool as that is, it poses a problem for you, my dear listener, especially if you are new here, and that is, Nobody got time for that.
We’re talking about probably a thousand plus hours of content at this point. And while some people actually do make the time to listen to most, or even all of my podcasts, my Wang Analytics tell me that while many listeners tune in on a regular basis, they don’t catch every installment. Of Muscle for Life, and thus they miss out on insights that could help them get even just a little bit better inside and outside the gym.
Because if you just get a little bit better consistently enough, that can add up to big results in the long run. And people have also been telling me that they would like me to do more shorter multi topic episodes like my q and A’s and says You episodes. And so I got an idea how. A best of series of podcasts that contains a few of the most practical and compelling ideas, tips, and moments from my most popular episodes going all the way back to the beginning.
This way, people who are new in particular can quickly determine if this is the droid they’re looking for, if this podcast is for them or not, and then those who are regulars and enjoy what I’m doing, but just don’t have the time or inclination to listen. All of my stuff, and I do understand that I don’t take it personally.
you can also then benefit from the discussions and the episodes that you are not listening to in full. And you can also find new episodes to listen to without having to give an hour of your time to determine whether it was worth it or not. So here we are with the best of Muscle for Life, and in this episode you will be hearing handpicked Mors from three episodes.
Greg Knuckles on the best way to get Jacked. This was an interview that I did with Greg on How to get bigger and Stronger. That’s the first episode that will be featured in this Best of, and then the next one is a monologue that I recorded a couple of years ago. About the ketogenic diet, and it is titled everything you Need to Know about the Ketogenic Diet.
And lastly, we have a Motivation Monday episode that I published a couple of years ago called Three Powerful Ways Working Out Makes You Better At Life. Also, if you like what I am doing here on the podcast and elsewhere, definitely check out my sports nutrition company Legion, which thanks to the support of many people like you, is the leading brand of all natural sports supplements in the world, and we’re on top because every ingredient and dose in every product is backed by peer reviewed scientific research.
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Many servings of artificial sweeteners in particular every day for long periods of time may not be the best for your health. So while you don’t need pills, powders, and potions to get into great shape, and frankly, most of them are virtually useless, there are natural ingredients. That can help you lose fat, build muscle, and get healthy faster, and you will find the best of them in legion’s products to check out everything we have to offer, including protein powders and protein bars, pre-workout, postworkout supplements, fat burners, multivitamins, joint support, and more.
Head over to www.by leg. Dot com, B Y legion.com. And just to show how much I appreciate my podcast peeps, use the coupon code M ffl at checkout and you will save 20% on your entire first order. So again, if you appreciate my work and if you wanna see more of it, and if you also want all natural. Evidence based supplements that work, please do consider supporting Legion so I can keep doing what I love, like producing more podcasts like this.
All right, so let’s start with the highlights from the first, which is an interview I did with Greg Knuckles. This was published back in May of 2017, and it is called Greg Knuckles on the best way to get. All right, so specifically I wanted to get you on to talk about something you wrote about recently, and that’s the correlation of size and strength.
This is something that I get asked about fairly frequently, actually. I’m a guy or a girl. I want to get bigger. Should I just get stronger? Should I just be my thing? Should I, just follow a strength training program. Just get on a barbell and get my big lifts up. And is that it? Is that all it’s gonna take to, to get really big?
That’s that’s. From the people that are newer. And then I get questions from people that are a bit more experienced and a bit more, more like intermediate advanced lifters who now, they’ve, their newbie games are long, long gone. And now it’s actually quite hard for them to continue to gain strength.
They have to work. You get to that point where adding 20 pounds to any lift, you have to work very hard for it. So then that question turns into, so what does that mean for them? Are they just are they just gonna plateau basically in terms of size because there’s not that much more strength they can gain?
Or do they need to dramatically change their training so as to gain more strength or what to do? You know what I mean? I. . Yeah, so in a general sense, there is in most populations a pretty big dis, or not like a huge disconnect, but a reasonably large disconnect between muscle mass and strength.
So in studies just looking at simple correlations between either fat free mass in various measures of strength or muscle cross sectional area and various measures of strength you tend to see that muscle. Explains roughly half of the variation in the data. So if you take a simple correlation, you’d get a correlation coefficient of 0.7 to 0.75.
And so to get an idea of how much of the variation that explains you, just square that number. Nice easy round number. That muscle size explains roughly half the variation and strength. Okay. So in general, if you’re getting stronger, you’re probably getting bigger. And if you’re getting bigger, you’re probably getting stronger.
But it’s definitely not a one to one relationship. , However that does change a bit in people who are more well trained. So in studies that look at the relationship between changes in muscle mass and changes in strength with completely untrained people strangely. There’s basically no relationship whatsoever.
Yeah. The proportion of the variance and strength gains that gains in muscle size can explain are like three, 4%, like ba basically no relationship. Like some people get way stronger, but don’t gain all that much muscle and vice versa. However, in pretty much every study that I’ve seen thus far, that’s been.
Been conducted in people who had at least six months of training experience. Gains in size and gains and strength were pretty closely related. With anywhere between 40 up to 80% of the variance in strength gains explained by in size. So would you say then that it’s best for people that are new to focus?
Gaining whole body strength because they’re gonna they’re gonna gain size regardless, and then it’s, that’s gonna become very important once their newbie gains are all washed up. Yeah. So with new lifters, I think there, there are three basic things you need to focus on and to varying degrees based on what your athletic background is.
So I think the first is just developing full body. By learning like the core compound movement. So squat, bench, deadlift, rose, pullups, overhead press, dips, pushups, fun. All the fun stuff. Yeah, just fundamental compound lifts. I think that should be one of your top priorities early on. Another thing especially like if you’re focused on building muscle and hypertrophy I really think you should get into isolation lifts relatively early on, just so you get an understanding of what it feels like to use the muscles you’re trying to build.
Yeah. Like so many new lifters just don’t know how to feel their lats when they’re doing like pullups or something like that. I had that problem. Yeah. So something like pullovers or straight arm pull downs, which are going to be all lats or like essentially all la. They can be good just to get a feeling of what it feels like to use her lap, which you can then carry over into the compound lifts.
Yep. I had that with shoulders as well side raises, rear raises to actually get form and feel it where you’re supposed to feel it. Yeah, for sure. So that’s number two and number three. And I have no scientific evidence for this whatsoever, but just my own. , My own observations on this is people tend to make better progress long term if they’re just generally athletic and have a decent proprioceptive sense and understand how their body moves and where it is in space.
So I think a lot of new lifters should also be doing some sort of like calisthenics or like I or you, I’ll offer up yoga. I felt like I got benefits from. . And I think stabilization work is also important. Things like unilateral carries like a suitcase carry where just like a farmer’s walk, which are only holding a weight in one hand, just you feel what it feels like to or, so you learn how to like, stabilize your body laterally.
I think just calisthenics are like weird off centered or unilateral movements like that are good. Just developing an understanding of where your body is in space and how it moves. And I think that’s important for building a good foundation for further development.
Anything else that you would add for this intermediate or advanced person that has now gonna go, Okay, I need to continue working on gaining strength. Oh. Okay. So I also, I have just like a little flow. That will help people navigate pretty much any training decision they ever need to make.
Nice, And it’s the simplest thing ever, but it works. First question you ask yourself, Am I making progress? The answer is yes. What you do is nothing. Don’t change anything. Even if it’s slow progress over months or years adds up to a crap ton of progress. Like slow gains are still gains, right?
If you’re improving, don’t change. if you’re not improving. The next question is how do I feel? Most of the time if you’re not improving and you constantly feel pretty fresh, the issues probably just that you’re not training hard enough. So whatever that means for you, make your training harder.
So it could be increasing intensity, like increasing the amount of which you’re lifting. It could be increasing volume, doing more reps, more sets, more exercise. It could be increasing frequency, so training more times per week or hitting each muscle group more times per week. Just if you’re not making progress, but you generally feel good and fresh all the time, you have to do more.
Yeah, you just need to train harder. That’s what’s gonna do it for you. If you’re not making progress and you generally feel worn down. Then the next question is basically, am I taking care of stuff outside the gym as well as I can? So you. If you’re like a new father or a new mother, like you’re not gonna sleep for two years.
And that’s just how it is. So that’s something that’s impacting your gains that you can’t really do anything about. But if you’re not sleeping enough, but you could sleep more if your diet isn’t great and it could be better then if you’re not making progress, you feel worn down all the time and there’s stuff like that outside the gym that you can address, that’s where you wanna put your focus.
But maybe you’re taking care of business outside the gym or at least doing so as well as you can. When you’re not making progress and you’re feeling worn down all the time, then basically what you need to do is make your training a little bit easier in some way. So we’re not talking cut volume by 80% over, but you.
Drop a set here or there. Maybe don’t put quite as close to failure if there are a couple accessory exercises that don’t really give you that much bang for the buck bang for your buck in the first place. Drop them out of your training program. So just like small tweaks to make your training a little bit less stressful so it matches your recovery ability.
All right. That’s it for the featured takeaways from my interview with Greg Knuckles on how to get. Bigger and stronger, and why getting stronger in particular is the primary way to get bigger, especially as you become an experienced weightlifter. And if you liked what you heard from Greg, then definitely check out the full interview.
I really enjoyed it and it definitely informed the. Direction that beyond Bigger, leaner, Stronger 2.0 went in. And you can find that interview back in May of 2017. So if you just go back to the feed, if you go back to that time period, or if you can search, just search for Get Jacked, or if you’re on YouTube, you can search for Get Jacked.
All right, so now let’s move on to the second episode featured here, which is everything you need to know about the ketogenic diet. And this was originally published in. Of 2017. So if you like what I have to say here, and if you wanna learn more, definitely go check out the full. How did a diet meant for treating epileptic seizures turn into a popular weight loss fad?
That’s the story of the ketogenic diet, which was introduced in 1921 by an endocrinologist named Dr. Henry Guyon. Guyland was presenting at the annual meeting of the American Medical Association, and he explained that the ancient Greeks had discovered that fasting was an effective method of managing epileptic seizures.
Hypocrites had written about it and Guyland found that. Seizures would return once eating resumed. Why? What was it about fasting that suppressed the seizures? Epileptic seizures are triggered by electrical abnormalities in the brain, and the causes can vary from genetics to brain injury, but more common is chronic inflammation throughout the body.
Now, what Gelan found is that when people fast, two major changes occur in the blood glucose levels fall and key tone levels rise. Now you’ve probably heard of glucose, which is also known as blood sugar, but not keytones, which are carbon oxygen molecules produced by the liver that cells can use for energy instead of glucose.
Now, this finding fascinated guideline and he set out to determine if similar effects could be achieved. Without the starvation, a decade or so of work proved that they could, and the ketogenic diet, as it would later be called, was born. Now, the purpose of the ketogenic diet is to maintain a state of ketosis where in the body’s primary energy source is keytones, not glucose.
Now early studies showed that the ketogenic diet was an extremely effective treatment for seizures, but in 1938, it was eclipsed by the Anticonvulsant drug, Phena Toin. This medication became the standard treatment for epilepsy, and that effectively retired the ketogenic diet from the clinical scene. As time went on, the diet was all but forgotten and faded into obscurity until recently exploding back into the mainstream in a way that guyland probably never would’ve imagined.
And this time, the ketogenic diet is being promoted as much more than a mere therapeutic agent. If we are to believe the hype, it’s a panacea of sorts helping us lose fat faster. Maintain a leaner physique easier, think clear, feel better, live longer. And so on and so forth. The big question, of course is can it deliver on these promises?
That’s what we are going to be getting to the bottom of in this podcast. And let’s start at the top. How does the ketogenic diet work? Now? As the point of the ketogenic or keto diet is to keep the body in a state of ketosis. And the traditional keto diet called for four grams of fat for each gram of protein and carbohydrate, which is also why it has been known as the four to one diet.
Now, the problem with this diet for anything other than medical use is obvious. Protein intake is very low, which isn’t optimal for a variety of reasons that we won’t go into here. But if you are curious go to Muscle for Life and search for high protein and check out the article that I wrote on the benefits of high protein dieting.
My point here though, is the type of keto diets that are popular today and especially in the fitness space, are generally high protein variations of the original keto diet. Now, protein recommendations vary, usually ranging between 20 to 30% of daily calories. But in true keto diets, carbon take is set to 50 grams or less per day.
The rest of your calories come from dietary fat. And let’s now tackle the most controversial aspect of the keto diet. And that is, does it actually help you lose weight faster than a traditional higher carb diet? And the answer is absolutely. Now does it help you lose fat faster, though? And the answer to that is absolutely not.
And how the hell does that work? You’re wondering? The first thing you do know is how carbon take relates to glycogen storage and water retention. Glycogen is a form of glucose that’s stored in the liver and muscle tissues, and the primary dietary source of glucose is carbohydrate. This is why research shows that increasing carbohydrate intake increases glycogen storage and reducing intake reduces glycogen levels.
Now, here’s the kicker. Glycogen is stored with three to four parts water. So that means that every gram of glycogen stored in your liver and in your muscles comes with three to four grams of water. Now, when you consider that the average man can store up to about 15 grams of glycogen per kilogram of body weight, and that exercise increases the glycogen storage capacity of muscle, you see just how much weight can change due to fluctuations in glycogen levels.
for example, I weigh about 87 kilos or 193 pounds, and I have quite a bit more muscle than the average person, and I exercise regularly and I eat a relatively high carbohydrate diet, somewhere around two grams of carbs per pound of body weight per day. With some occasional refeeds here and there, and with those numbers, it’s hard to predict exactly how much glycogen I’m holding, but a safe assumption is probably 700 to 800 grams, and that means that I’m also holding somewhere around, let’s say 2100 to 2,400 grams of water.
And when you add all that up, you get about six or seven pounds of glycogen and water. Now, what do you think would happen if I switched to a keto diet, which would entail dramatically reducing my carbon intake? That’s right. I’d also see a dramatic reduction in whole body glycogen levels, which would also flush out a large amount of water.
As well, and as if all that weren’t enough. Research also shows that carbon intake also influences fluid retention in other ways. So the simple fact is the more carbs you eat, the more water your body naturally holds, which is one of the reasons why bodybuilders restrict carbon take leading up to a show.
And just in case you’re wondering on that, when you’re very lean, even slight reductions in subcutaneous water can make a big difference visually. So what I’m getting at here is the net result of my switching to a keto diet is I would see a rapid drop in body weight several pounds just in my first week or two.
But I would be wrong to think that was a rapid reduction in body fat because it wouldn’t be. Now, that’s just the first week or two though. How does it play out from there? Am I going to lose fat faster with the keto diet versus a higher carb diet? The answer is probably not. Now, I know that there are a handful of studies that low carb evangelists love to bandi about as irrefutable proof that they have a better mouse trap and that low carb dieting is better for fat loss, and it probably all sounds very scientific and convincing, and understandably wins new converts every day.
There is, however, a big gaping hole in the research and it relates to protein. Namely, every single low carb weight loss trial that I’ve seen being used to sell that ideology has a major flaw. The low carb diets contain more protein than the low fat ones. Yes, One for one without fail. Now this presents us with a serious problem because it means that we’re not looking at a true apples to apples comparison of diets.
Instead, we’re looking at how a high protein and low carb diet fares against a low protein and high fat diet. And yes, the former wins every time, but is it because of the low carb or high protein element? Now anti Carbos will tell you that it is the low carb magic that’s doing it, but are they right?
To know that we would need to look at weight loss trials that kept protein intake high in both the low and high carb groups. And low and behold, I know of four studies that meet those criteria, and their findings are summarized by this from one conducted by researchers from Harvard University, and I quote, reduced calorie diets result in clinically meaningful weight loss, regardless of which macronutrients they emphasize.
In other words, So long as you maintain a caloric deficit raising or lowering carbohydrate intake doesn’t significantly impact weight loss. So now that we’ve tackled the main reasons that people turn to keto dieting, losing fat, and or building muscle, let’s return to its roots. That’s health. Now, as you already know, ketosis is an effective therapy for seizures, but research shows that has other health benefits as well.
For example, type two diabetes is a metabolic disorder characterized by high blood sugar and insulin resistance. Now, given the nature of the disease, it stands to reason that people afflicted with it would benefit from a. Carb diet, and that’s exactly what research shows. Now, specifically, studies show that when people with type two diabetes restrict their carbohydrate intake, several biomarkers and symptoms improve markedly.
In fact, the keto diet can be so effective in managing the disease that exogenous insulin injected, introduced from the outside may be able to be withdrawn within just weeks of start. So the bottom line is people with diseases related to carbohydrate metabolism, like type two diabetes and metabolic syndrome, and people that are just having problems with insulin resistance in general are very likely to benefit from low carb dieting.
Scientists also believe that a low carb diet may be an effective adjunct to traditional cancer therapies, and there’s mount evidence that. Research shows that insulin can contribute to the growth and proliferation of cancer cells by stimulating multiple mechanisms in the body. Studies also show that tumor cells, quote unquote, feed on glucose, metabolizing it at much higher rates than normal tissues.
Thus reducing your carbon take reduces your blood sugar levels, which in turn can reduce the proliferation of cancer cells in the. Now next on the list here is acne because a number of studies have been published in recent years linking certain food types with the development of acne. And top on the list are high glycemic carbohydrates and dairy.
Now, this is also born out by observational research showing that the prevalence of acne is substantially lower among peoples following non-Western traditional diets that are lower in carbohydrate. The underlying mechanisms here relate to the production of several hormones, including insulin and insulin-like growth factor one or IGF one.
These hormones are significant because they can influence several factors underlying the development of acne and a ketogenic diet has been shown to be effective in improving acne symptoms. Lastly, we have neurological diseases because studies show that low carb dieting may have therapeutic use in treating neurological disorders other than epilepsy.
Examples of this include neuro trauma, headaches, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease. Sleep disorders, brain cancer, autism, and multiple sclerosis. Now, scientists don’t fully understand the mechanisms behind this, but research suggests that it has to do with the diet’s neuroprotective effects.
And that’s it for the featured parts of the episode. Everything you need to know about the Ketogenic diet, and again, that was published back in July of 2017 when keto was on the rise, and as it is now, fully ascendant as it is the Diet Dejo. I would recommend that you give the episode a listen. If you have any interest in the ketogenic diet, if you are considering following the ketogenic diet, then you should go listen to the full episode and allow me to explain why.
Maybe you should not and what else you could do. Chances are you want to lose weight. That’s why you are considering the ketogenic diet, and there are just better ways of going about it. So again, July, 2017 is where you can find the full. Also, if you like what I am doing here on the podcast and elsewhere, definitely check out my Sports Nutrition company Legion, which thanks to the support of many people like you, is the leading brand of all natural sports supplements in the world.
All right, let’s move on to the final part of this Best of Multiple life, and that is a Motivation Monday episode that was published back in June of 2018 called Three Powerful Ways Working Out Makes You Better At Life. Today I wanna talk about how working out just makes you better at life. Now, nobody argues the many health benefits of working out regularly.
At least nobody who’s even remotely informed does. We all know that it helps ward off all kinds of disease and. Research has shown it’s also a great way to fight depression, improve intelligence, protect against the cognitive and physical decline that is associated with aging and so forth. But what many people don’t realize is that the benefits of regular exercise and working out go far beyond those physiological and psychological things that achieving your fitness goals can fundamentally change you as a person.
That working out regularly and transforming your body can help you overcome your fears and your weaknesses and teach you a lot about how to succeed in all areas of your life. I myself do truly believe that if you can create the body of your dreams, then you probably have what it takes to create the life of your dreams.
As well. Now, I know that sounds like a stretch, but hear me out. So the first big lesson, life lesson that working out teaches you is that there is no way around hard work. Sometimes when I’m in a pessimistic , maybe cynical mood I wonder how much of our current population would survive a thousand years ago.
I wonder if I could survive a thousand years ago, when you had to chase, fight and kill. To survive when grueling physical hardship was a price we had to pay to remain at the top of the food chain. There’s no doubting that the social veneer of modern living and all of its technology and all of its luxuries has made us.
Soft, the basic necessities of survival are just a few mouse clicks away. And the problems that most of us struggle most with in these modern times are really laughable in the scheme of things. And again I’m speaking for myself here as well, where are we gonna go on vacation this year?
What color couch should we buy? Why is Facebook. Going slow today. Why is Facebook down? Why did they cancel Firefly? But there is one aspect of existence that hasn’t changed with time and never will, and that is the sheer amount of effort that it takes to create something worth having to create financial success, to create recognition, to create the satisfaction of self-actualization.
Crucibles of our for bears revolved around how to stay alive. Ours revolve more around how to feel alive. They’re more fuzzy in nature, more existential in nature. A thousand years ago, someone who was too lazy or too broken to go to work to go do something productive, just starved to death. Today he gets on welfare.
And gets everything he needs to survive. And yes, it’s subsistence, but food, shelter, security, that’s what you need to survive. But is that person really alive? I don’t think so, because that really being alive, it takes effort. It takes focused, persistent, dedicated work toward goals to be alive, to really create anything of any value, to create a good family, to create a good career, to create a good social life.
And I think this is the first life lesson that working out regularly teaches us. It teaches us that the person who can confront and exert effort, large amounts of effort, sustained amounts of effort, reaps the rewards, reaps the lions share of the rewards. And the greater the effort, the greater the rewards.
So the second life lesson that working out teaches you is to learn to love the process. And we were kids. We all remember it being in the car. Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Sick of staring at the same rolling pastures, dreaming about arriving to Disney World and the average person hasn’t changed very much.
Since childhood in that regard. And in many regards, unfortunately, especially with my pathetic generation, I am unfortunately a millennial. And growing up with millennials, I see that it really is a thing to just not grow up. Peter Pan’s syndrome is real. I know quite a few people who fundamentally have not changed since they were maybe 17 or 18.
It’s bizarre. The they fantasize about where they might want to be and then. Very quickly grow, bored with the the drudgery of actually getting there. Of course, this lesson is similar to the last one, but not exactly the same because this one relates to breaking the obsession with instant gratification, which is.
A hallmark of the, I think, decline in degeneration of our current culture because whether it’s weight loss or work success always comes slower than we want. It always is harder. It always takes more effort, more time. More money. And even when it’s fast, objectively speaking, when it’s fast, it’s still too damn slow.
And I feel that way for all the success that I’ve had and all the success that my team has had. We all feel like it was too slow. It should have been faster. We could have done it better, and our businesses really should be twice as big as they currently are and would be if we only knew when we started what we know now.
And if you let these types of feelings, Get under your skin the feelings of restlessness, frustration, and patience. They will derail you in every endeavor. We have to know how to focus on and enjoy the process of arriving at the goal, the system that we’re going to use to get to the goal. So much so that the goal is the initial spark.
It’s the initial motivation, but then it really just needs to take the back seat. You really need to stop focusing on the goal and really just focus on how you’re going to get there and simply make incremental progress. If you can’t really come to enjoy that, or at least show up every day and do it even if you don’t enjoy it, then you show up and you do it.
Then goals are pretty much useless. We have to be able to disabuse ourselves of the idea that satisfaction only comes from having or having done not doing. And this is a lesson that we can learn by working out regularly. We can learn to appreciate that process of making slow but steady improvements that in time add up to major changes.
Major wins, and there’s something special about that state. It’s. Zen like when we can stop counting on miracles or quick fixes, when we can stop weighing and measuring ourselves every day and wondering if we’re there yet, and just embrace the process of change Instead, embrace the system and know that if we work the system long enough, we will get to where we want to be.
We can fall into a calm, confident rhythm. We can learn to. Time comfortably and learn how to think with further time horizons in mind. Be able to go into something knowing that it’s gonna take a year and a half, two years, three years, even five years of consistent work and not be intimidated by that.
If we can do this. Minor setbacks also lose their power over our emotions because we can learn to care a lot less about day to day and a lot more about the overall trends. There are gonna be good days, there are gonna be bad days, and that just is what it is. So long as we can keep the days trending in the right direction, though we can keep our work trending in the right direction, all is good.
When you can really place your trust in the process, then progress no longer becomes a matter of hope. You don’t have. Live on faith in that sense. That’s how it is in the gym and that’s how it is in life. Life Lesson that working out teaches you is that you can do more than you think. Now we all have forces within us.
We all have parts of us that want us to fail, that tell us we’re too dumb, we’re too lazy, we’re too clum. Parts of us that genuinely resent anything creative and constructive that we want to do, or that we try to do. And these forces can be incredibly persuasive and they can work tirelessly to try to squash us.
Some people call these forces. Resistance, right? War of art. Others simply refer to them as demons. And regardless of what you call these ethereal enemies, if you wanna see how effective they are, just take a good, honest look at the people around you. And if not in your immediate circle, just in the world in general, how many people are truly confident in their abilities?
How many people can calmly deal? Criticism or even banter, how many people refrain from talking themselves up and others down, no matter the circumstances. Now, I think it’s very clear that many of us are suffering from varying degrees of crises of confidence. Insecurity is. Ramp it. And these crises hold us back in every area of our lives.
They convince us that it’s safer to stay small and to not even try. And if we let them, these things make cowards of us all. We tell ourselves otherwise. Of course, we need to believe most of us, at least, that we’re in control and that we choose to be the way that we are, and that in the end we are right.
But in many cases, it’s really just. Fear. Being afraid of failing. Being afraid of what other people will think. Being afraid of what we will think of ourselves. And when you work out regularly, you can learn to tune out those voices. Maybe they’ll never go away, but you can turn the volume down and you can turn the volume up on more positive self talk.
You can learn to believe in yourself and in your ability to simply make shit happen to decide. Something and then manifest it through work, not through the law of attraction, not the, If I just dream about it enough, the universal will give it to me. No, no work for it. And this boost of self confidence goes beyond the visual.
It goes beyond just gaining muscle or losing fat. It goes beyond looking better. That’s not the whole picture. When you start lifting weights, for example, you’re a weak. You feel like Gumby and the voices in your head might jump all over this mock you, ridicule you. But if you just keep going, you get better.
You learn to stop making excuses. You learn that you can be in control simply by stepping foot in the gym despite any head trash that might try to stop you and doing the work. And when you do that, you sap the forces of resistance. In you of their power. This is an ability that you gain. It’s something you can practice, you can train, and it’s good for a lot more than just getting some pretty muscles.
Getting a pretty body. Half of any battle that you face in life is just showing up every day despite how you feel. If you can do that, you are halfway there to literally anything you want to do. That concludes the highlight reel from the Motivation Monday episode. Three Ways Working Out makes you better at life.
Again, if you want to listen to the full episode, which is not very long. The motivation episodes are generally not longer than 10 minutes or so, although some have gone on for 30 to 40 minutes. But I would say those are actually probably. Educational than just motivational per se. So if you wanna get a little jolt of motivation in what’s probably, I don’t know, 5, 6, 7, 8 minutes, then go back to June of 2018 and you will find the episode that the snippets you just heard was.
Pulled from, and again, it’s called Motivation Monday. Three powerful ways working out makes you better at life. And that’s it, my friends. That’s all I have for you in this episode of Best of Muscle for Life. Next week though, I have some very cool content coming, something I’m very excited about, which is the official release of my new second edition of my book for experienced weightlifters beyond bigger Lean or Stronger.
And so what is happening is I. I wanna say it’s 10 episodes or so coming over the next two weeks that are taken from the book. So chapters from the book, bonus chapters from the book, and they’re not just gonna be pitches for the book, like this is gonna be really good actionable information that, of course, will also promote the book.
I want people to go buy the book if they like, what they. And so for example, I have an episode coming on The Six Best Ways to Break Through Weightlifting Plateaus. That’s a deep dive. That covers really everything you need to know about getting stuck and getting unstuck. I have an episode coming on Super Foods and why I don’t really like that term.
I prefer functional foods. But there are foods that are superior to others that are not just nutritious. They are nutritious, but they also contain special molecules, unique stuff that is hard to get otherwise, and that can give you more benefits than just your standard run of the mill nutritious foods.
I also have an episode coming on Puritization. I think you’re really gonna like that. It’s a long. I’m guessing that’s probably 45 to 60 minutes, but it really is a deep dive into the art and science of periodizing, your training and how to do it most effectively. And it also will give you an idea of what the BLS 2.0 training is like, because the program itself is periodized according to what you’ll learn in that episode.
So definitely. Keep an eye on your feed and check out the episodes that I have coming, and if you like them, pick up a copy of the book. It’s gonna be available as an ebook, an audio book, a paperback, and it’ll be available anywhere online where you buy books. All right that’s it for now. Thanks for joining me, and I hope you enjoy what I have coming for you.
The next couple of.