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His palms are sweaty,
knees weak, arms are heavy,
He’s nervous for this deadlift,
but on the surface, he looks calm and ready.
Happy Friday, Coach J here from Anyman Fitness – and welcome to the latest edition of The N.W.A. Newsletter.
Each Friday’s N.W.A. Newsletter will have 3 parts:
- A Nutritional Tip to help make your diet healthier and easier to stick to.
- A Workout Tip to help make your training sessions more effective and fun.
- An Attitude/Mindset tip to help you strengthen your greatest asset – your mental toughness.
I will also give you my single favorite piece of social media content from AF over the past week and link to it on either Instagram or Twitter.
Without any further ado… let’s get started, shall we?
N.W.A. Nutrition Tip Of The Week:
I recently took a summer trip with my extended family to Lake Michigan.
We do this every summer and it’s the highlight of our year.
Since it was a vacation, I didn’t stick to my normal and regular eating regimen.
I still did my best to get enough protein into my body and not go too wild, but hey, it was a vacation, you know?
I ate ‘unrestricted’, let’s just say. I didn’t binge but I definitely ate whatever I wanted for the week without any thought whatsoever. That includes cakes, donuts, ice cream, and daily cocktails.
I’m sure I gained a bit of weight on the trip, but I don’t really care about that.
It will all be gone in a week or two, guaranteed.
I didn’t always think this way.
Years prior, the first time we went on this trip, I packed my protein shakes, my creatine, my extra chicken breast, etc.
I also scouted out a gym and lifted each day because I didn’t want to lose any progress.
I stressed about losing my strength or gaining fat, and because of that, I didn’t truly get to do what I should have done on vacation:
Chill out and not worry about it!
I’ve definitely come a long way in that regard.
I can assure you, it was much more satisfying to sip a cold IPA on the beach each afternoon while watching my daughters swim than it would have been to spend the afternoon in a stuffy gym while I’m on vacation…
The reason I don’t stress my fitness on vacation is simple:
I use a fitness system for my training and nutrition.
It’s the exact same system Anyman Fitness clients use – we track our macronutrients daily and strength train consistently.
Using a system to accomplish a goal takes all of the thought process out of the equation.
You don’t need to wonder if you’re doing it right or stress if you’ll actually get proper results.
Since you have a proven path in front of you, you can’t lose if you’ve built the proper habits around your system.
This is the power of systems which are created out of your good habits.
You can have your cake and eat it, too.
I often get asked, “Aren’t you scared you’ll gain your weight back, J? You’ve lost 90 pounds, but do you really think you can keep it off forever?”
The answer to that question is most definitely ‘yes’.
After you’ve done something for 10, straight years, it becomes a part of you.
It’s not going anywhere by this point – my habits of eating well and training hard are a part of my identity.
And because of that, I have full confidence that I’m just simply ‘good’ with my fitness.
That’s a wild thought to have, considering it was just a decade ago I was tipping the scales at 300 pounds…
Nutrition is a tough nut to crack.
I firmly believe every human being who has an issue with their weight should spend 90 days meticulously tracking their macronutrients, or at the very least, their calories.
You will learn so much about nutrition and how it relates to your body, it’s not even funny.
Ironically, I avoided counting macros for 2 years before I finally took the plunge.
I was being lazy and I flat out didn’t want to do it.
Once I sucked it up and started tracking my nutrition, my results exploded, and I was hooked.
After a bit of practice, it only took me 1-2 minutes per day, tops.
It also guaranteed the results I was after.
I often get prospective clients who balk at tracking their macronutrients.
I get it – after all, I did the same thing for 2 years.
But I can promise you it’s worth it.
I tracked my macros consistently for about 3 years – from 2013 to 2016.
At that point, I started taking my ‘training wheels’ off and practicing intuitive eating.
It took some time, but eventually, I didn’t need to track anything any longer.
I instinctively know how to eat in order to lose fat, gain muscle, or maintain my weight.
And THAT, my friend, is why you track.
You don’t track your nutrition so you can count out tablespoons of peanut butter for the rest of your life.
You track your nutrition so you can get lean, and stay lean – permanently – WITHOUT stressing about it!
But the only way to truly get there – to the point where you don’t even give your diet any mental headspace, and you remain lean and fit for life… you can’t avoid the hard work!
You’ve gotta meet it head on and start tracking that nutrition properly. 🙂
N.W.A. Training Tip Of The Week:
Recently, a Twitter follower tagged me and asked my thoughts on his training program.
I took a look and it was a classic ‘bro-split’.
Meaning, each day was dedicated to one muscle group entirely.
Similar to this:
Incline DB Bench Press
Cable Chest Flyes
There was a chest day, a shoulder day, a leg day, and a back day – 4 training sessions per week.
I politely told him he would have much better results with full body workouts and mixing up his sessions.
Hopefully he takes my advice – the ‘bro split’ style training programs have been causing natural lifters to spin their wheels and miss out on gains for forever, it seems like…
The idea of a ‘bro split’ makes sense on paper.
Completely annihilate one muscle group, make it extremely sore, and give it a week to recover before you go again.
While that sounds great in theory, in practice, it’s not an effective way to train for the vast majority of the population.
There are many variables in a proper training program.
But one of the biggest – and most influential variables to your progress – is the number of times you expose a muscle group to a certain stimulus.
With a classic ‘bro split’, you’re only exposing each muscle group to a stimulus once per week. You crush your chest on Monday, your shoulders on Tuesday, your legs on Wednesday, etc.
There is a clear dose-dependent relationship between how many times you work a muscle group and your progress.
It works like this:
Hitting each muscle group…
… once per week will allow you to make progress, but it will be far from optimal
… twice per week is far superior than once per week, but you still may be leaving some gains on the table
… three times per week is the sweet spot, in my opinion – this is what you should aim for each week
… four or five times per week could benefit you, or it could be overkill – at this point, you should see your progress and test things out to see what works best for you
A simple way to make this happen?
Create a list of 4-5 exercises that hit each large muscle group (chest, shoulders, back, squats/quads, and glutes/hips/hamstrings).
Instead of doing all 4-5 chest movements on one day, spread them out over 3-6 days.
Then, do the same for the other muscle groups.
Put the big, barbell lifts first in your workouts so you’re fresh for them.
And each session, strive to get stronger.
Full body training programs are absolutely the way to go for the vast majority of people out there, and it’s a big reason why Anyman Fitness clients achieve such remarkable results.
Stay away from the ‘bro splits’, even if that’s what the steroid-freak pro bodybuilders are telling you.
Their training and diet (and PED usage) is *just a bit different* than yours, most likely…
N.W.A. Attitude/Mindset Tip Of The Week:
Nearly every mistake you can make with fitness stems from one thing you need to avoid:
Trying to rush your progress.
I’ve seen it time and time again with my clients, and I’ve also made this mistake (many times) myself.
A modest calorie deficit (500 or so calories per day) isn’t abnormally difficult to be consistent with.
And if you’re refraining from snacking, getting plenty of protein, and eating healthy whole foods, it’s doable for all of us.
You shouldn’t even feel much hunger (some, sure, but it won’t be unbearable).
The issue always comes when you try to ‘speed things up’ by altering things, making the deficit more extreme, or finding a new, ‘shiny object’ to chase.
Your goal should be to eat as MUCH as possible, while still losing weight.
Of course, you’ll still need to maintain your deficit, but a smaller deficit is often much smarter to aim for than a big one, for a simple reason:
You’ll get to eat more food, you’ll have more energy for your workouts, you’ll be more satisfied/less hungry, and you’ll be way more likely to stick to it over time.
I’d much rather you lose 50 pounds in a year than lose 50 pounds in 2 months.
Losing 50 pounds in a year means you were consistent, dedicated, methodical, and diligent.
Losing 50 pounds in 2 months means you had the willpower to stick to a crazy (and possibly dangerous) diet for 2 months.
Which one of those 2 options seems to be the most likely option to keep the weight off permanently?
The AF clients who lose weight slowly, methodically, and step-by-stp always maintain their results over time more effectively than those who don’t.
One Favorite Social Media Post Of The Week:
Suffer or Suffer?
It’s your choice…
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I hope you enjoyed this edition of the Anyman Fitness N.W.A. Newsletter.
I’ll be back next week.
Hope you have a wonderful weekend.
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If you’re an entrepreneur and you don’t get chills during Jay-Z’s verse on this track, you should probably retire.
(forward to 2:00 to hear Kanye begin the verse, and Jay bring the house down… NSFW – language)