Muscle for Life with Mike Matthews

Mike Matthews

OVER 25,000,000 DOWNLOADS AND COUNTING! If you want to know how to build muscle, lose fat, and be healthier, happier, and wiser...faster than you ever thought possible...then this podcast is for you. Hosted by the bestselling author and entrepreneur, Mike Matthews, each episode gives you simple, science-based know-how and inspiration that will help you build your best body and life ever. Find out more at www.legionathletics.com

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The Best of Muscle For Life: Natural Bodybuilding, Training After a Break, & Productivity Tips
2d ago
The Best of Muscle For Life: Natural Bodybuilding, Training After a Break, & Productivity Tips
In this installment of the Best of Muscle For Life, you’ll hear hand-picked clips from three popular MFL episodes: an interview with Eric Helms on natural bodybuilding, a monologue on getting back in the gym after a long break from training, and a motivational episode with my top tips on increasing productivity. Some people—my favorite people—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 do at least a little better inside and outside the gym. That’s why I do “best of” episodes that contain a few of the most practical and compelling ideas, tips, and moments from the more popular episodes I’ve published over the years. This way, you can learn interesting insights that you might have otherwise missed and find new episodes of the show to listen to. So, in this installment of The Best of Muscle for Life, you’ll be hearing hand-picked morsels from three episodes: Eric Helms on the Art and Science of Succeeding in Natural Bodybuilding (Originally published 7/8/2020) How to Get Back Into Weightlifting After a Break from the Gym (With a Training Program!) (Originally published 6/15/2020) Motivation Monday: My 5 Best Tips for Increasing Productivity (Originally published 8/21/2017) And we’ll be starting with number one, Eric Helms on the Art and Science of Succeeding in Natural Bodybuilding. --- Timestamps: 0:00 - My free meal planning tool: buylegion.com/mealplan 5:07 - Eric Helms on the Art and Science of Succeeding in Natural Bodybuilding 18:52 - How to Get Back Into Weightlifting After a Break from the Gym (With a Training Program!) 29:22 - Motivation Monday: My 5 Best Tips for Increasing Productivity --- 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!
The Best of Muscle For Life: Natural Bodybuilding, Training After a Break, & Productivity Tips
2d ago
The Best of Muscle For Life: Natural Bodybuilding, Training After a Break, & Productivity Tips
In this installment of the Best of Muscle For Life, you’ll hear hand-picked clips from three popular MFL episodes: an interview with Eric Helms on natural bodybuilding, a monologue on getting back in the gym after a long break from training, and a motivational episode with my top tips on increasing productivity. Some people—my favorite people—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 do at least a little better inside and outside the gym. That’s why I do “best of” episodes that contain a few of the most practical and compelling ideas, tips, and moments from the more popular episodes I’ve published over the years. This way, you can learn interesting insights that you might have otherwise missed and find new episodes of the show to listen to. So, in this installment of The Best of Muscle for Life, you’ll be hearing hand-picked morsels from three episodes: Eric Helms on the Art and Science of Succeeding in Natural Bodybuilding (Originally published 7/8/2020) How to Get Back Into Weightlifting After a Break from the Gym (With a Training Program!) (Originally published 6/15/2020) Motivation Monday: My 5 Best Tips for Increasing Productivity (Originally published 8/21/2017) And we’ll be starting with number one, Eric Helms on the Art and Science of Succeeding in Natural Bodybuilding. --- Timestamps: 0:00 - My free meal planning tool: buylegion.com/mealplan 5:07 - Eric Helms on the Art and Science of Succeeding in Natural Bodybuilding 18:52 - How to Get Back Into Weightlifting After a Break from the Gym (With a Training Program!) 29:22 - Motivation Monday: My 5 Best Tips for Increasing Productivity --- 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!
Paul Hough on High-Intensity Interval Training (Everything You Need to Know)
4d ago
Paul Hough on High-Intensity Interval Training (Everything You Need to Know)
Paul Hough joins me to talk about high-intensity interval training (HIIT). I’ve written about HIIT plenty before, but I wanted to get Paul on the podcast to do a deeper dive on the subject. And HIIT is the subject of one of the chapters in his new textbook, Advanced Personal Training, which aims to turn science into applicable practice for personal trainers. So in this episode we’re chatting all about what HIIT is, how to do it correctly, and even whether you should do it at all. In case you’re not familiar with Paul, I recently shared a webinar I recorded with him for students at Oxford Brookes University in the UK, where Paul is a Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Science. Not only is he a fellow author, but he’s worked with elite-level athletes in tennis and Formula One, and published several studies in academic journals. In our discussion, we chat about . . . What HIIT is (and how to test if you're actually doing a high intensity)Different types of HIIT (and what systems they stress) and their benefitsThe importance of exercise selection for HIITHeart rate and when it's appropriate to use and when to use RPEWhy you need to regulate intensity (and not just go all-out during every interval)The Afterburn effect and why HIIT isn't "special" for fat lossHow HIIT can affect appetiteExercise "snacks" (what they are and the benefits - it’s not food)And more . . . So, if you’re curious about HIIT and want to know more about it, you’re going to enjoy this podcast! --- Timestamps: 0:00 - Legion VIP One-on-One Coaching: - What is high intensity interval training, is it the best way to lose fat? 10:58 - Do you correlate exercise intensity to how heavy your breathing is? 14:42 - Is HIIT better for burning calories? 17:40 - How much HIIT do I need to do to be equal to a 30 or 60 minute jog? 19:34 - Does HIIT have more recovery demands on my body? 23:46 - Can you clarify between type 4 and type 6? 28:12 - How does heart rate relate to how hard you’re training? 46:10 - What are your thoughts on everyone including HIIT into their workout routines? 1:04:33 - What is the exercise snacking concept? 1:16:43 - Where can we find you and your work? --- Mentioned on the show: Legion VIP One-on-One Coaching: Hough’s website: www.exerciseandsportscience.com Paul’s textbook Advanced Personal Training: Instagram: Twitter:
Q&A: Cutting Without Counting Macros, “Incomplete” Proteins, Intermittent Fasting, Rep Ranges, and More
Sep 23 2022
Q&A: Cutting Without Counting Macros, “Incomplete” Proteins, Intermittent Fasting, Rep Ranges, and More
Can you successfully cut without counting calories or macros? What are my thoughts on intermittent fasting? Is MSG bad for you? How do you gain strength without size? What’s a reasonable amount of “incompete” protein in your diet? Should you eat fewer calories on rest days? All that and more in this Q&A podcast. 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 (mike@muscleforlife.com) 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. --- Timestamps: 0:00 - Find the Perfect Strength Training Program for You: www.muscleforlife.show/trainingquiz 2:13 - Is it possible to go from 16% to 10% body fat without counting macros ? 3:26 - Should we weigh food raw? Does that apply to every food? 3:57 - Favorite overhead tricep movement? 4:04 - Should I separate my cardio sessions from weights? Can I just do cardio after lifting? 4:46 - What are your plans for the recession now that we are through COVID? 5:53 - My form is better with 6-8 reps. Is that still a good rep range for compound lifts? 6:59 - What are your thoughts on intermittent fasting? 7:36 - What is your favorite Whey+ and Pulse flavor? 8:01 - Of total daily protein intake, what do you consider an acceptable amount from incomplete protein sources? 8:53 - Is walking an effective way to lose weight? 9:17 - Do I have to eat less calories on rest days, as my total daily expenditure would be lower? 11:21 - You usually preach 4-6 reps for gaining strength, are you just adding size now? 14:29 - How can I gain strength without size? 15:13 - Best non fitness book you’ve read recently? 16:18 - How bad is MSG for you actually? 17:13 - Would you rather be stuck in an elevator with a tarot reader or a flat earther? 17:45 - I’m a forty year old woman who has never strength trained. Is it too late to gain muscle and strength? --- Mentioned on the Show: Find the Perfect Strength Training Program for You in Just 60 Seconds:
Sal Di Stefano on Fear and Propaganda in the Fitness Industry
Sep 21 2022
Sal Di Stefano on Fear and Propaganda in the Fitness Industry
I’ve had various non-fitness related discussions with my pal Sal Di Stefano (of Mind Pump Media fame) here on the Muscle For Life podcast, but this time we’re combining topics. In this interview, Sal and I chat about the intersection of culture, politics, and health and fitness, and how fear is used to manipulate people. Sound interesting? I don’t want to spoil the discussion, but we cover all sorts of subjects like propaganda in the fitness industry and controlling people with misinformation, toxic masculinity, claims about protein and the environment, veganism, the "body acceptance" movement, government and “conspiracy theories,” and we even speculate on what the future of fitness culture and manipulation in fitness industry might look like. In case you’re not familiar with Sal, he’s a co-host of Mind Pump Media, one of the top fitness podcasts out there. He’s also an author, coach, and repeat guest on my podcast for good reason. While we love to chat about fitness, we also enjoy our conversational jaunts into history, politics, culture, and economics. So, if any of this sounds interesting to you, listen to this podcast and let me know what you think! Oh and beware some of the topics are a bit controversial. So before getting up in arms, remember the discussion is just for fun. :) --- Timestamps: 0:00 - Save 20% on my Phoenix fat-burner! Go to and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% or get double reward points. 9:44 - How do you feel about the progress of misinformation in the fitness industry? 29:03 - Do you think there are good intentions behind misinformation? 42:23 - What are your thoughts about the “noble lies” of the media? 50:15  - What are your thoughts on people who think our conversion is all a conspiracy theory? 1:07:07 - What are your predictions for the next 10 years? 1:09:41 - Do you think we’re going to see a continued trend in America of “living in two different countries?” 1:15:54 - Where can we find you and your work? --- Mentioned on the show: Save 20% on my Phoenix fat-burner! Go to and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% or get double reward points. Dr. Greg Brown on the Science of Transgender Women in Sports: Twitter: Pump Podcast:
Research Roundup: Effects of Mental Fatigue, Caffeine vs. Appetite, Lifting Burns Visceral Fat Loss, and More
Sep 19 2022
Research Roundup: Effects of Mental Fatigue, Caffeine vs. Appetite, Lifting Burns Visceral Fat Loss, and More
I’m discussing the latest scientific studies on the ways mental fatigue impacts athletic performance, whether caffeine suppresses your appetite, if knee sleeves benefit your performance, and how weightlifting affects visceral fat loss. Listen now to dive into the science! This podcast is another installment in my Research Roundup series of episodes, where I give you concise and practical takeaways from studies that I think are interesting and that can help us gain muscle and strength faster, lose fat faster, perform better athletically, feel better, live longer, or get and stay healthier. There is a ton of scientific research that gets published every year, and even if you narrow your focus to fitness research, it would still take several lifetimes to unravel the hairball of studies on nutrition, training, supplementation, and related fields. That's why my team and I put a lot of time into reviewing, dissecting, and describing scientific studies in articles, podcasts, and books. Oh and if you like this type of episode, let me know. Send me an email (mike@muscleforlife.com) or direct message me on Instagram (@muscleforlifefitness). And if you don’t like it, let me know that too or how you think it could be better. Timestamps: 0:00 - Save 20% on my Triton fish oil! Go to and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% or get double reward points. 3:28 - Does mental fatigue impact athletic performance? 18:27 - What are the effects of knee sleeves? 21:42 - How do you reduce visceral fat? 25:11 - Does caffeine have an impact on appetite? Mentioned on the Show: Save 20% on my Triton fish oil! Go to and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% or get double reward points. My favorite weightlifting cues:
Says You! Paleo, Primal, and “Caveman” Diets Are Better than Flexible Dieting
Sep 16 2022
Says You! Paleo, Primal, and “Caveman” Diets Are Better than Flexible Dieting
Did early humans have a better, more nutritious diet than we do? That’s the idea behind popular “ancestral eating” diets like paleo and primal. The pitch appeals to people who believe “caveman” hunter-gatherers were stronger, faster, more robust, and just plain healthier than our modern-day selves. Is that true, though? Should we be eating like our ancient ancestors, avoiding more modern foods like grains, dairy, and other processed foods? Will it help us live longer or shed fat effortlessly? In this podcast, I’ll answer these questions and address the topic of “evolutionarily-consistent” eating and dieting. I’ve written and recorded a lot of evidence-based content over the years on just about everything you can imagine related to building muscle, losing fat, and getting healthy. I’ve also worked with thousands of men and women of all ages and circumstances and helped them get into the best shape of their lives. That doesn’t mean you should blindly swallow everything I say, though, because let’s face it—nobody is always right about everything. And especially in fields like diet and exercise, which are constantly evolving thanks to the efforts of honest and hardworking researchers and thought leaders. This is why I’m always happy to hear from people who disagree with me, especially when they have good arguments and evidence to back up their assertions. Sometimes I can’t get on board with their positions, but sometimes I end up learning something, and either way, I always appreciate the discussion. That gave me the idea for this series of podcast episodes: publicly addressing things people disagree with me on and sharing my perspective. Think of it like a spicier version of a Q&A. So, here’s what I’m doing: Every couple of weeks, I’m asking my Instagram followers what they disagree with me on, and then picking the more common or interesting contentions to address here on the podcast. And in this episode, I’ll be tackling the following . . . What are your thoughts on evolutionarily consistent dieting, including those who claim you can get every nutrient necessary for optimal human health from animals, organ meats, fruit, and honey? --- Timestamps: 0:00 - My free quiz to answer all your diet questions: www.muscleforlife.show/dietquiz 4:11 What is evolutionary consistent dieting? 6:15 - Were cavemen healthier? 16:41 - What are the benefits of evolutionary dieting? --- Mentioned on the Show: Take this free quiz to get science-based answers to all of your diet questions: www.muscleforlife.show/dietquiz
Greg Doucette on the Truth About Steroids
Sep 14 2022
Greg Doucette on the Truth About Steroids
There’s no doubt steroids can help you get bigger, leaner, and stronger, but they’re not exactly safe. They're also stigmatized, which is why many people who use them do so in secret. So why do people use steroids? How effective are steroids and how safe are they? What are the risks of steroids? Can you just do one cycle to get the benefits without the side effects? What’s the best way to come off of steroids and what’s it like to stop taking them? Are they addictive? These are just some of the questions I ask Greg Doucette in this interview. In case you’re not familiar with him, Greg is an IFBB Pro Bodybuilder, world record-holding powerlifter, coach, author, and Youtuber with over 1.5 million subscribers who’s been open about his steroid use over the years. Because I’ve never used these performance enhancing and muscle building drugs, I thought it would be interesting to chat with someone who has. In this podcast, we discuss . . . Perspectives on who should use steroids and who has "the right" toThe risks and effectiveness of steroidsWhy genetics matter even when it comes to steroidsThe psychology of coming off steroids and how to do it rightWhy you can't take just one cycle of steroids as a “cheat code”Why some people downplay the risks of steroidsAnd more . . . So if you’re interested in learning about the pros and cons of steroids and what it’s like to come off of these drugs, listen to this interview! --- Timestamps: 0:00 - Legion VIP One-on-One Coaching: - What are your thoughts on the transparency of using steroids? 15:08 - What are the risks and benefits of taking steroids? 18:55 - Can you train less intensely and get a nice physique when taking steroids? 24:41 - Is it important for our body chemistry to be compatible with the steroids we take? 28:04 - What has your steroid journey looked like? Why HRT? 32:41 - Do you think people can take steroids for just one cycle? 35:11 - What are your thoughts on people who disagree with the risks of taking steroids? 39:26 - How do you handle the negative comments online? 45:53 - What is the proper way to come off of steroids? 48:54 - Where can you find you and your work? --- Mentioned on the show: Legion VIP One-on-One Coaching: Website: www.gregdoucette.com Greg’s YouTube: Instagram:
Q&A: “Boring” Training, Cutting and Newbie Gains, Adrenal Fatigue, and More
Sep 9 2022
Q&A: “Boring” Training, Cutting and Newbie Gains, Adrenal Fatigue, and More
Will cutting “waste” your newbie gains? Is adrenal fatigue real? Are knee sleeves necessary? Do I ever get bored of my workout routine? Should you take every set to failure? Can foam rolling help muscle growth? Should you increase energy flux? All that and more in this Q&A podcast. 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 (mike@muscleforlife.com) 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. --- Timestamps: 0:00 - My free meal planning tool: buylegion.com/mealplan 3:11 - Does cutting make our body less responsive to training? 5:21 - What is best, 4x10 reps or 3x4-6 reps? 12:19 - Do you get bored of your workout routine? 12:58 - Do you have any advice for sleep apnea? 13:43 - What were your calories on your last cut? 15:15 - Do you consider knee sleeves necessary for squatting? 15:46  - Is it possible to plateau in a weight loss journey if you don't eat enough protein? 16:12 - Should I be bracing my muscles when I’m lifting or should I be loose and tensionless? 17:41 - Is it good or bad to take every set to failure? 19:31 - Why can’t we all stop hating each other and just get along? 20:18 - Is adrenal fatigue a real thing? 21:25 - What are your thoughts on occasionally training for a pump because I enjoy it? 22:09 - Can cold showers after a workout blunt inflammation response? 23:06 - What are your thoughts on energy flux? 27:36 - Does foam rolling after a workout help with muscle growth? --- 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!
Steve Magness on Doing Hard Things
Sep 7 2022
Steve Magness on Doing Hard Things
Steve MagnessHave we been thinking about real toughness the wrong way? How can we reliably and practically build our resilience beyond “just pushing through” to overcome challenges? These are the questions Steve Hall explores in his latest book, Do Hard Things, and it’s what we talk about in this interview. This book is Steve’s attempt to help athletes, parents, business leaders, and everyone in between navigate life’s difficult moments. Gritting your teeth and pushing through the pain aren't always the best approaches, and Steve has explored the science and psychology behind real resilience and shares it in this book. He provides a roadmap for dealing with life’s challenges and achieving high performance that makes us happier, more successful, and better people. In case you’re not familiar with Steve, he’s a performance scientist and expert who coaches both Olympic athletes and executives. He’s also the author of many books, including Peak Performance (with Brad Stulberg), The Passion Paradox, and The Science of Running. All this is why he’s been on my podcast before, and why I was excited to have him back on. In our discussion, we chat about . . . Being creative, writing books, and boredomMisattribution of physiological signalsHow to change negative self talk and “create space”Why you should do hard things to cultivate inner strengthBalancing doing hard things with recoveryAnd more . . . So if you’re interested in flipping the script on what it means to be resilient, you don’t want to miss this interview! Timestamps: 0:00 - The Little Black Book of Workout Motivation: - Do you like to work on one project at a time or several projects? 6:56 - What are your thoughts on doing creative work when you’re bored? 11:10 - What are some tips for getting into the creative mindset? 16:47 - Why did you want to write a book on this topic? 20:30 - What are some of the tools to handle life’s challenges? 31:56 - Can you give us examples of how you can change negative self talk to positive? 40:42 - What are your thoughts on doing hard things and experiencing discomfort? 45:14 - What are your thoughts on balancing relaxation and doing hard things? 59:20 - Where can we find you and your work? Mentioned on the show: The Little Black Book of Workout Motivation is a bestselling fitness book that helps you overcome the mental blocks that are keeping you unmotivated, unhappy, and unhealthy: Hard Things: Website: www.stevemagness.com Steve’s Twitter: Instagram: www.instagram.com/stevemagness
Research Roundup: Ginseng For Testosterone, Best Lifting Cues, Boost Your Steps, and More
Sep 5 2022
Research Roundup: Ginseng For Testosterone, Best Lifting Cues, Boost Your Steps, and More
Can adding a minimal amount of walking enhance your results by 50%? Does ginseng boost testosterone? Do artificial sweeteners enhance or inhibit weight loss? What type of lifting cues work best? I’m covering the latest research on these topics in this podcast. This podcast is another installment in my Research Roundup series of episodes, where I give you concise and practical takeaways from studies that I think are interesting and that can help us gain muscle and strength faster, lose fat faster, perform better athletically, feel better, live longer, or get and stay healthier. There is a ton of scientific research that gets published every year, and even if you narrow your focus to fitness research, it would still take several lifetimes to unravel the hairball of studies on nutrition, training, supplementation, and related fields. That's why my team and I put a lot of time into reviewing, dissecting, and describing scientific studies in articles, podcasts, and books. Oh and if you like this type of episode, let me know. Send me an email (mike@muscleforlife.com) or direct message me on Instagram (@muscleforlifefitness). And if you don’t like it, let me know that too or how you think it could be better. Timestamps 0:00 - Save up to 30% during our big Labor Day Sale! - Can boosting your step count make your cardio workouts more effective? 9:03 - How can weight lifting cues help during training? 13:20 - What are the effects of artificial sweeteners? 19:13 - Does ginseng boost testosterone? Mentioned on the Show: Save up to 30% during our big Labor Day Sale! Go to buylegion.com and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% on any non-sale items or get double reward points! My favorite weightlifting cues:
The Best of Muscle For Life: Powerbuilding, Beating Cravings, & Peak Performance
Sep 2 2022
The Best of Muscle For Life: Powerbuilding, Beating Cravings, & Peak Performance
In this installment of the Best of Muscle For Life, you’ll hear hand-picked clips from three popular MFL episodes: an interview with Kyle Hunt on “powerbuilding” for getting bigger and stronger, a monologue on beating food cravings, and a book club episode with my top takeaways from Peak Performance. Some people—my favorite people—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 do at least a little better inside and outside the gym. That’s why I do “best of” episodes that contain a few of the most practical and compelling ideas, tips, and moments from the more popular episodes I’ve published over the years. This way, you can learn interesting insights that you might have otherwise missed and find new episodes of the show to listen to. So, in this installment of The Best of Muscle for Life, you’ll be hearing hand-picked morsels from three episodes: Kyle Hunt on Using “Powerbuilding” to Get Bigger and Stronger (Originally published 6/29/2020) How to Beat Food Cravings and Stick to Your Diet (Originally published 7/1/2020) Book Club: Peak Performance by Brad Stulberg and Steve Magness (Originally published 9/29/2017) And we’ll be starting with number one, Kyle Hunt on Using “Powerbuilding” to Get Bigger and Stronger. Timestamps: 0:00 - Find the Perfect Strength Training Program for You: www.muscleforlife.show/trainingquiz 1:36 - Kyle Hunt on Using “Powerbuilding” to Get Bigger and Stronger 10:55 - How to Beat Food Cravings and Stick to Your Diet 19:06 - Book Club: Peak Performance by Brad Stulberg and Steve Magness Mentioned on the Show: Find the Perfect Strength Training Program for You in Just 60 Seconds:
Mike Matthews on Becoming a Successful Fitness Entrepreneur
Aug 31 2022
Mike Matthews on Becoming a Successful Fitness Entrepreneur
This podcast is a bit different because rather than interviewing a guest, I’m sharing an interview of me. Specifically, I recorded a webinar for students at Oxford Brookes University in the UK, in which I shared business advice for students who wish to start a health or fitness business or for fitness professionals who wish to grow their existing business. I was interviewed by professor Paul Hough, a Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Science at the university. Not only is he a fellow author, but he’s worked with elite-level athletes in tennis and Formula One, and published several studies in academic journals. In our discussion, we chat about . . . Writing books (and why you need to enjoy it if you're going to do it)How to use content marketing to help peopleThe time management structure I use for projects and my daily scheduleMy system for taking notes on what I readHow I deal with procrastinationMy favorite part of being an entrepreneurMarketing, "micro yeses,” and how to price your goods and servicesAnd more . . . So, if you have your own health and fitness business or are interested in starting one, or you’re just curious to hear a bit of my story and about the business side of my work, you’re going to enjoy this podcast! Timestamps: 0:00 - Save up to 30% during our big Labor Day Sale! - What do you attribute the success of your first book to? 14:35 - Do you think there is pressure for new trainers to write books? 24:00 - What time management strategies do you use to manage all the projects you’re involved with? 37:24 - Do you ever procrastinate? 40:10 - Do you use a calendar or a to-do list? 44:31 - What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur? 51:12 - When you say that your supplements aren’t necessary, is it to be different or is it a philosophy you’re passionate about? 57:50 - How do you place monetary value on your servicing when establishing a business? How do you place yourself competitively without undervaluing yourself? Mentioned on the show: Save up to 30% during our big Labor Day Sale! Go to buylegion.com and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% on any non-sale items or get double reward points!
Q&A: Daily Supplement Routine, Maintaining Motivation, Chiropractors, and More
Aug 26 2022
Q&A: Daily Supplement Routine, Maintaining Motivation, Chiropractors, and More
What’s my daily supplement regimen? How long does it take to go from skinny to jacked? How can you stay motivated during a long period of weight loss? What’s better, LISS or HIIT? Is it worth going to a chiropractor? Is 10,000 steps per day a good walking goal? All that and more in this Q&A podcast. 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 (mike@muscleforlife.com) 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. --- Timestamps: 0:00 - My free quiz to answer all your diet questions: www.muscleforlife.show/dietquiz 1:48 - What was wrong with your shoulders and how did you fix it? 6:33 - How many of your supplements do you take daily? 10:01 - How many years will it take me to get from skinny to jacked? 10:21 - What are your thoughts on Elon Musk buying Twitter? 10:52 - What is your favorite razor for shaving? 11:22 - What is the best way to keep motivation when on a weight loss journey? 13:20 - Is LISS cardio better than HIIT for losing weight? 14:23 - What are your thoughts on Carnivore MD? 15:44 - Is it normal to feel more sore after workouts during a cutting phase? 16:51 - What are your thoughts on 10k steps a day? 17:14 - Are you still trying to learn German? 18:41 - Are chiropractors worth it for gym goers? 19:18 - Does intermittent fasting reduce testosterone for young young men? --- Mentioned on the Show: Take this free quiz to get science-based answers to all of your diet questions: www.muscleforlife.show/dietquiz
How Josh Lost 50 Pounds and Maintains Being in the Best Shape of His Life
Aug 24 2022
How Josh Lost 50 Pounds and Maintains Being in the Best Shape of His Life
In this podcast, I interview Josh, who I coached through his weight loss journey to lose 50 pounds, get in the best shape of his life, and learn the skills and habits to stay that way for life. Josh has always struggled with his weight. He was one of the biggest kids in his class ever since grade school and stayed that way until he was a teenager. Eventually he lost some weight, but because he didn’t know the fundamentals of energy balance, macronutrients, and strength training, he kept rebounding when his home life got busier, his job got more stressful, or when he just became complacent and reverted to old habits. Well, one day at the gym (where Josh and I met and became friends), he asked me to just tell him what to eat to lose weight. Without explaining any of the science, I gave him a dead simple plan of a calorie range and a protein target. He was shocked at the simplicity. But he followed the plan and immediately started seeing results. Since then, he’s worked with my team to go from 250 pounds down to 200 pounds, and his relationship with food has completely changed. He no longer views delicious, calorie-dense junk foods as rewards for cardio, gets “hangry,” or binges. And best of all, he’s been able to maintain his new physique and feel great in his clothes. So in this interview, Josh and I chat about his story of how he finally got in shape, and learned how to prevent rebound weight gain, maintain habits while busy with family life and work, and change the way he views food and nutrition. If you’re looking for a jolt of inspiration and like motivational stories, definitely listen to this episode! Timestamps: 0:00 - Legion VIP One-on-One Coaching: - What has your fitness journey been like since we met? 25:23 - How has your relationship with food changed? 33:39 - Have you noticed benefits in other areas in your life? 45:53 - What is next in your fitness journey? 47:51 - How have you dealt with cravings? Mentioned on the show: Legion VIP One-on-One Coaching: Whey+ Protein Powder: Try Whey+ risk-free today! Go to buylegion.com/whey and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% or get double reward points!
Research Roundup: Shortest Effective Workouts, Activity Trackers Inaccurate, Foam Rolling for Recovery, and More
Aug 22 2022
Research Roundup: Shortest Effective Workouts, Activity Trackers Inaccurate, Foam Rolling for Recovery, and More
What's the best training program if you have minimal time? Does foam rolling enhance recovery? Are activity trackers accurate enough to help you estimate calories burned? Do rack pulls (partial deadlifts) help you get stronger? I’m covering the latest research on these topics is in this podcast. This podcast is another installment in my Research Roundup series of episodes, where I give you concise and practical takeaways from studies that I think are interesting and that can help us gain muscle and strength faster, lose fat faster, perform better athletically, feel better, live longer, or get and stay healthier. There is a ton of scientific research that gets published every year, and even if you narrow your focus to fitness research, it would still take several lifetimes to unravel the hairball of studies on nutrition, training, supplementation, and related fields. That's why my team and I put a lot of time into reviewing, dissecting, and describing scientific studies in articles, podcasts, and books. Oh and if you like this type of episode, let me know. Send me an email (mike@muscleforlife.com) or direct message me on Instagram (@muscleforlifefitness). And if you don’t like it, let me know that too or how you think it could be better. --- Timestamps 0:00 - The Little Black Book of Workout Motivation: - How do you make the most of training if you have little time? 15:42 - How can partial range of motion deadlift training help you get stronger? 23:50 - Does foam rolling help your muscles recover after training? 27:57 - Are activity trackers an accurate way to estimate calorie expenditure? --- Mentioned on the Show: The Little Black Book of Workout Motivation is a bestselling fitness book that helps you overcome the mental blocks that are keeping you unmotivated, unhappy, and unhealthy:
Says You! The Risks of Bench Pressing Outweigh the Benefits
Aug 19 2022
Says You! The Risks of Bench Pressing Outweigh the Benefits
The bench press is a staple of strength training and hypertrophy programs. However, some people claim that it’s dangerous and that its benefits aren’t worth the risks, especially for the shoulders. Is that true though? Is the bench press an injury waiting to happen? In this podcast, I’ll answer that and provide my tips for bench pressing as safely and effectively as possible. I’ve written and recorded a lot of evidence-based content over the years on just about everything you can imagine related to building muscle, losing fat, and getting healthy. I’ve also worked with thousands of men and women of all ages and circumstances and helped them get into the best shape of their lives. That doesn’t mean you should blindly swallow everything I say, though, because let’s face it—nobody is always right about everything. And especially in fields like diet and exercise, which are constantly evolving thanks to the efforts of honest and hardworking researchers and thought leaders. This is why I’m always happy to hear from people who disagree with me, especially when they have good arguments and evidence to back up their assertions. Sometimes I can’t get on board with their positions, but sometimes I end up learning something, and either way, I always appreciate the discussion. That gave me the idea for this series of podcast episodes: publicly addressing things people disagree with me on and sharing my perspective. Think of it like a spicier version of a Q&A. So, here’s what I’m doing: Every couple of weeks, I’m asking my Instagram followers what they disagree with me on, and then picking the more common or interesting contentions to address here on the podcast. And in this episode, I’ll be tackling the following . . . The risks posed to the shoulders outweigh the benefits of the bench press. --- Timestamps: 0:00 - My free meal planning tool: buylegion.com/mealplan 2:46 - What is the barbell bench press? 4:21 - What are the downsides and risks of bench pressing? 6:31 - How do you bench press correctly? 12:33 - How should I program bench pressing into my training? 21:35 - What are some tips to bench press without creating shoulder pain? --- 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!
James Nestor on the Art and Science of Breathing
Aug 17 2022
James Nestor on the Art and Science of Breathing
Breathing might sound like a boring topic. It’s our most basic biological function, and something we do unconsciously every day. So, it may seem shocking that a book with the title Breath could become a New York Times bestseller. The reality is breathing is a lot more fascinating than many people realize, and how you do it can have drastic effects on your health. That’s something James Nestor (the author of Breath) discovered while researching his book, which explores how humans have lost the ability to breathe properly and how it affects our health in various ways, including snoring, sleep apnea, asthma, autoimmune disease, and allergies. And all that is why I invited James onto the podcast to discuss this often-ignored aspect of everyday life and how we can change our breathing habits to improve our lives. In this interview, James and I discuss . . . Why you’re probably a mouth breather (even if you think you’re not)How breathing affects sleep and what you can do to fix snoringResonant, coherent breathing and how it affects mental and physical healthTips on how to breathe and what to do in between sets in the gymAnd more . . . In case you’re not familiar with James, he’s an author and journalist who has written for Scientific American, Outside Magazine, BBC, The New York Times, The Atlantic, National Public Radio, and more. So, if you're at all curious how your breathing technique is affecting your health, and what you can do to improve your breathing patterns, sleep, and more, don’t miss this podcast! --- Timestamps: 0:00 - Try Recharge today! Go to and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% or get double reward points! 4:06 - What inspired you to write the book Breath? 5:17 - Why are we the worst breathers? 10:22 - What are some of the negative effects of bad breathing habits? 12:03 - Can you explain “mouth taping”? 14:32 - How does mouth tapping while sleeping affect sleep cycles and stress levels? 16:16 - Can we train ourselves to breathe better? 19:04 - Do you recommend any breathing routines? 20:41: - What do you mean by breathing at a slower rhythm 25:01 - Can you explain some mouth taping techniques? 28:57 - Are there some symptoms of mouth breathing during your sleep? 31:39 - How to deal with tape adhesive? 41:52 - Is there anything you would like to add? 47:26 - Do breathing techniques benefit recovery during workouts? 50:57 - Where can we find you and your work? --- Mentioned on the show: Try Recharge today! Go to and use coupon code MUSCLE to save 20% or get double reward points! Breath: Nestor’s Website: www.mrjamesnestor.com