Dr. Layne Norton’s Hard Truths Of Training | The Bodybuilding.com Podcast | Ep 5

Dr. Layne Norton’s Hard Truths Of Training | The Bodybuilding.com Podcast | Ep 5

(upbeat music) – All right, good morning, everybody. We all frozed up in this
piece in Boise, Idaho. You are listening to the
Bodybuilding.com Podcast, and for the first time you’re
actually watching it as well, if that’s you’re thing.
– Ooh, yeah. – You’re into peeping podcasts. (laughing) – Yes. – I’m thoroughly striped, Nick Collias, I’m an editor at Bodybuilding.com. I’m also thoroughly surrounded. We have Krissy Kendall, science
editor at Bodybuilding.com. And wait, who’s that? It’s Layne Norton over there.
– Whoa. – Who let that guy in? (laughing) I think we’re gonna have a
science fight right here. – Yeah. – She’s the big beta-alanine lobby. I don’t know.
– No. – She sold out to big beta-alanine a long time ago.
– No, I’m more creatine. – Big BA, huh? Big BA. – Creatine has my heart. – Layne needs no introduction
to most of you or many of you. He’s a Cubs fan, first and foremost. That’s what he’s known most for. – Go Cubs. – Record-setting power
lifter, natural bodybuilder, physique coach, PhD, chief dude at Carbon by Layne Norton
and Avatar Nutrition, had a new study accepted yesterday? – Yeah, congratulations on that.
– Yeah, a couple, thank you, yeah, only took six years. (laughing)
– Yeah, oh I know, I know that feeling. I just had my dissertation
published earlier this year, so I know that all too well.
– Someone said, “Why’d it take so long?” I’m like, well, you know,
like you get working on making money once you graduate, and, sorry, just being real. And then it just kind
of takes a back seat. So it was like, and then
Laymond is a professor emeritus, so he’s semi-retired. And so, it would be
like we’d do a revision and then six months would go by, and we’d do another revision, and six months would go by. And so, we started about
three years ago really working on putting the manuscript together. And uh, but just goes to show
how far ahead the research was at the time, because it’s still novel, so. We’re happy about that.
– Yeah, that was my question. It’s like, okay, yeah, no, I
don’t believe this anymore. (laughing)
– Yeah, yeah. No, it was a good study,
but it was very involved. We weren’t really worried about
many people replicating it, because it had been very
difficult to do, so. – Okay, well, we’ll dig
into that a little bit, but he’s in town hanging
out with Bodybuilding.com. Do you shoot a video? – Yeah, we did a, we did a, I don’t know if I can say, but we did a resolutions video, so. – [Nick] Oh, nice. – You guys could block that out if I wasn’t supposed to say it. – No, no, no, we’re gonna rush the thing out today.
– I don’t know what’s top secret, you know, so. – Yes.
– You’re good. – We’re an open book around here. – Okay, cool, yeah. – You also put up a really
solid YouTube video yesterday I saw about volume, which
I thought was interesting. I wanted to dig into that a little bit and how some people kind of
missed the point about volume. And, I don’t know, there
was a larger discussion in there just about making good decisions and applying a good level
of scrutiny to what you do. – I think the main thing
that I see in anything, politics, finances, fitness, is context is completely lost on people. So, it’s not good enough
to ask a question. You have to put it in context. That was the training volume video, I was trying to elaborate on that. Basically I’ve had people recently, I’m dealing with a few
injuries and people have said, oh, well see, your training
volume was a bad idea. It wasn’t a bad idea. I won Nationals twice, got
a silver medal at Worlds, and set a world squat record at the time. So, for me it was worth it. Maybe for you it’s not worth it. Maybe you just care about being healthy and being able to play with your kids, and there’s nothing wrong
with that if that’s your goal, but if your goal is to be
the best you can possibly be at whatever sport it is, injuries
are associated with that, but it also, you have
to train a certain way. So I knew that going in, and
I made a conscious decision. So, I think, and I talk about
that with a lot of my clients. Whether it regards whatever
the goals are, fat loss, muscle gain, all those sorts of things, that there has to be a
very defined discussion about what your expectations
and your goals are, and then that shapes how
everything else works. – Sure, well yeah, I mean
especially at this time of year people gravitate toward a
little bit of magical thinking about these sort of things, right? – Oh, oh yeah.
– You think, like, oh this is the year I’m going to do this magical program.
– Well, even if… – I’m gonna do this magical
diet, magical technique even. – Even more, people ask
me, well, should I track my macros during the
holidays, like at meals? And I’m like, well, depends. Like, you know, if you don’t want to, if you really just wanna
enjoy the time with your, there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s nothing wrong with that. But if you YOLO, and
you just eat whatever, don’t be surprised when
you’ve put on 10 pounds. You know, don’t act like, like what you don’t wanna
do is be completely mindless about it and say, well, I’d
really like to stay lean, but I wanna eat whatever I want. Like, you don’t get somethin’ for nothin’. You know what I mean? So, having an idea say, but if you say, well, I’d like to maintain
most of my leanness, but I’d also like to back off a little bit on being so strict, and you kind of have, like some cognitive restraint
in there, that’s fine. But again, it’s a discussion. And if you say, you know what? What I value is being lean as hell and I don’t really care
about having dinner. I’ll go and be around my family, but I don’t wanna eat that
food, then that’s fine too. Your values don’t have to extend to other people and vice versa. So, I think just as long as you have that, yes.
– Just be prepared to explain it to grandma. – Yeah, as long as you
have that conversation, and, this is what I
value, and that’s okay. – Yeah, and how do you, I mean ’cause you work with both spectrums. You work with currently, and in the past, with the extreme of competing, prepping on the top,
elite, professional stage, versus just someone who,
either getting ready for their first show, maybe
not even a bodybuilder, but also power lifter,
completely different diets. How do you wrap your head
around all of that in, ’cause it’s personalized? You don’t do that cookie
cutter, here is your program, and I’m gonna give everyone the exact same sort of thing.
– Six ounces chicken, five almonds, and three
spears of asparagus. – Right.
– You can smell the cookie, but you can’t eat it. – Shout to all those
online coaches out there. (laughing) – You can chew the cookie,
you just can’t swallow it. – Yeah, exactly. Yeah, that’s, I mean I think
that’s a really big part of talking with your
clients and making sure that your expectations and
their goals are the same. I mean, I’ve had people who are, you know, they want to lose 30 pounds in 12 weeks, and they’re maintaining their body weight on very low calories, and
I have to explain to them, well this is not a reasonable expectation for what you want, right? Here’s what I think is reasonable. Then I have to make sure that, okay, they’re either gonna
meet, they’re gonna lower their expectations to match mine, or we’re not gonna work together. Right?
– Right. – Because, the one thing you don’t want is their expectation to
be here, yours to be here, and you hit yours, but not theirs. And even though you did
the best job you could, they’re unhappy still, right? So, that’s a big part of it. And also, like I said, context. I mean, I’m a fan of
moderation for the most part on most of these situations, ’cause I think moderation makes
you, I’ll give an example. When I was younger, in my 20s, and bodybuilding was my
entire life and consumed me, I would be trying to be really
strict during the holidays. And what would end up,
would happen is I would, when I was not able to be strict,
I would just YOLO and say, screw it, you know what I mean, and go into hell with it mode
and eat whatever I wanted. – [Nick] For days on
end or for just a meal? – For a meal, or, you
know, that sort of thing. But, I mean, anybody out there who says you can’t gain body fat in one meal is, they do not know what
they’re talkin’ about. I always do seminars, I’m like, how many people have heard that, people say oh you can’t
gain body fat in one meal? I don’t know where this came from. But, I mean, people raised their hands. I said, how many of y’all
know that’s bullshit? Everybody raises their
hand, because they all know that you can go out and
have a real big meal, be two or three pounds up the next day, and people say, oh,
it’s just water weight. Well, water doesn’t stick
around for a few months. You know what I mean? If it’s water, in a couple
days, it’s gone, so. – [Nick] It’s poop weight. (laughing) – Water or poop weight, yeah, exactly. See, just the solution’s coffee. – Like exactly.
– Just drink some black coffee and it’ll run it right through you. So, or as also affectionately
known as poop juice. (laughing) So, it’s one of those things that I found that if I allowed myself
to relax a little bit, I actually became more adherent
rather than less adherent, because I took those firm restraints off and it made it a little bit easier. You know, I’m a fan of flexible dieting. A lot of people know about that. It’s not because I want to
eat candy and stuff all day. That’s not why I’m a fan of flexible diet. I’m a fan of flexibility, because it improves sustainability, and improves consistency. That’s why I’m a fan of
flexibility for most people. If I thought that eating, quote unquote, clean foods was the best
way to get to my goals, and only do that, I would do that, because I’m all about my
goals, but I also know that adherence is probably
the number one thing for success with regards to nutrition. And a lot of people just
aren’t honest with themselves about what they’ll be able to adhere to. I mean, I see this all the
time with people who are like, this is my last cheat meal ever, as they’re plowing stuff down their face. I’ll never cheat again. It’s like, you cheated three
days ago, like stop it. You know, you need to set yourself, like, stop setting yourself up for failure, and start setting yourself up for success. And, I think we need to stop looking at, you know, especially with the
obesity rates in this country, people go, oh, it’s just will power. People just don’t have enough will power. I think that’s probably not true. I used to be one of those people. It was like, people are just fat and lazy, and they need to put the fork down. You know, there’s definitely
an element of that. You know, but I think that
that’s a pretty simplistic way to look at a pretty complex problem. And I think we need to
lower the barrier of entry to dieting for people,
because a lot of people, they’ll look at like their fitspo on Instagram posting pictures
of chicken and broccoli every day and they’ll go,
well, I could never do that, so what’s the point, right? Well, no, you don’t have to do that. Like, if you could just, you know, cut down a few hundred calories a day, or maybe you can’t get in
the gym two hours a day, but can you get in 45 minutes? It’s better than zero, right? I think Les Brown said,
start where you are, with what you have,
where you are right now. Something to that effect,
or, do what you can, with what you have, with
where you are right now. And, I think that’s a
huge thing to understand. And, for some people, you
know, I’m fortunate enough, I work from home, if I
want to go train three, four hours a day, I can go do that. All right, some people
don’t have that benefit. But, you know, I value being
a high achiever in my sport, and some people say, well,
you don’t make any money from power lifting, why, why is that? Because I want to, because
that’s, I don’t, you know, money, I can always make money, but how many people get to say they went to a world championship
and got a silver medal? You know, that sort of thing. So, yeah, having those
conversations about, okay, what’s important to you? I mean I’ve even told
people, I’m like, listen. I’m a libertarian, if
somebody wants to be fat, if they’re happy being
fat, who am I to tell them, hey, you should lose weight? We all know people in the fitness industry who are the most miserable
people you’ve ever met, who have unbelievable physiques, right? You look at when people go, oh my god, if I could just be you for a day. They’re miserable. Like, they’re miserable
human being to be around. Not all of ’em, not all of ’em. Most of them fine. I have most of my friends
in the fitness industry, but we all do know people
who have great physiques, or a lot of money, or pick whatever your, some job that seems really
attractive and people go, oh, I just wish I had their life. Well, I think at the end of the day I like what John Lennon said
when his teacher asked him, when he was in fourth grade, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” And he said, “I want to be happy.” And she replied, “You didn’t
understand the question.” And he said, “You don’t understand life.” (Nick laughing) Right, so, like, that should
be the goal, to be happy. So, like I said, that’s
my long, convoluted answer to your question, but.
– Yeah, yeah. It’s a good, there was like a
finish to the question though. – Like I said, if
somebody’s happy being fat, who are you to tell them that they need to lose weight, right? Or who are you to tell somebody
what their goals should be? And I think getting away from that and lowering the barrier to entry, and stop being so fit shaming,
fat shaming, like who cares? If somebody else wants to do something, if they’re not hurting you, why do you care what their goal is? – Right, and I think the barrier of entry is an interesting way to put that when we’re talking about macros too, because that is sort of,
that’s the dividing line between somebody who’s maybe a long time Bodybuilding.com reader,
and somebody who’s like, what the fuck is macros mean?
(laughing) – What is, um? – It’s funny, ’cause even
back, you know, like, that was something, okay,
I’ll take credit for it. I was a big pusher on the
forums of flexible dieting. We didn’t call it that back then. It was like me, Alan Argon,
and a few other people, and people would ask us,
well, is this food okay? And we’d basically say, well, can you hit your macro-nutrient goals for the day? Then yeah, it’s fine, you know? And so it became, like,
if it fits your macros, ’cause that’s literally what
we kept saying over and over. I think Eric Coodrite labeled that term, and then that became
later flexible dieting, which was a little bit, you know. They’re the same things. People think they’re
different for some reason. They’re the same things. But, yeah, lowering the barrier to entry and just sustainability. And I really get tired of
the, I did a PhD in nutrition. I went to school wanting
to find magic foods. I wanted to find, ’cause if
I did, I’d be peacing out, ’cause I’d be a multi-billionaire by now if I found magic foods, right? But there aren’t, there’s really not. There’s no good or bad foods,
it’s all just about context. You can eat too much of a,
quote unquote, good food. There’s certain amounts of
bad foods that you can have and they aren’t going to hurt you. – But there aren’t necessarily
magic macros either. Right?
– No, no, for sure. – It could be easy to say,
oh yeah, now these numbers, when I eat this, it’s 100% accurate. I know exactly the macros
of what I’m eating, but that’s not really
the case either, is it? – No, I mean, everything
works on a bell curve. You know what I mean? So you can come up with, this
actually an interesting segue into here’s Pipology 101. My program, Avatar Nutrition,
that I helped design, which is basically an artificial
intelligence algorithm that we use to determine macros for people based on their goals, and
body type, and what not. But, when I was putting it together, I remember the guy who started it with me, it was originally just
gonna be like a calculator. And I thought, you know what? I don’t like calculators,
because I can come up with something that’s gonna
work for about 60% of people, but based on what I know
about Gaussian distributions and bell curves, there’s
gonna be 30 to 40% it’s not going to work for. – Right.
– Right? So, what do we do for those people? So that’s why we made
it something to where, depending on how, they would
have to check in with weights, and body fats, and what
not, and how they responded, the program then adjusted to them. Because I always tell people,
this is like training volume. Same thing. So, high carb, low carb, or
high calorie, low calorie, it’s all individual. High calorie for me may be
low calorie for somebody else. Alberto Nunez, I don’t know if you guys are familiar with him.
– Yeah, yeah. – So, Berto diets are
like 4,000 calories a day, and he’s like 170 pounds. I’m 205 pounds. If I eat, and I’m more
muscle mass than Berto. Sorry, Berto. If I eat 4,000 calories a
day, I’m gonna gain body fat. He can lose weight on it. So, so again, it’s not
high calorie, low calorie, and you can just throw a
blanket statement out there. It depends on the individual. Same thing with training volume. I had to get my squat, get my squat volume up to about 40 to 50
thousand pounds a week for me to squat 668 pounds at Worlds, whereas my friend, Ryan
Doris, he got close to that, and his volume was like 2/3 of mine. You know? So, this is one of the
things I tell people. It’s like, genetics
matter, they do matter. And as much will as you
have, they do matter, but doesn’t mean you can’t get better. It just means that you
might have to work harder than the other person. And I hear people lament
that all the time, and what I’ll tell them is
like, well, it’s fricking life. Billy around the street was born and his family had $3 million saved, and you were born into a broke family. It don’t mean you can’t
become wealthy at some point. It just means you’re gonna be
starting at the 20 yard line, he’s starting at the 50. You can still get to the goal. It’s just a little more work. – Yeah, and I guess for
me the frustrating part, and you explained it well, is
that you can look at someone and think, you know, the
example you gave with you and Alberto, and you
see someone extremely, two extremely fit people and you think, okay, they must be dieting
the same, training the same, completely different. When you go on forums and everyone’s like, okay, you gotta eat one gram of protein per pound of body weight. Doesn’t matter what your training is, doesn’t matter what your body size is, and we just give these
absolutes all the time, and it just drives me insane. And no matter how many times
you try to tell people, look at this literature,
look at this research, and it’s different, and, you know, we come from very similar
academic backgrounds. And it’s like we try to tell people, like, look at this and read this. And sometimes it goes through
one ear and out the other. And trying to educate
people and open them up to experience different sides of things, it just doesn’t seem to connect, or click, or they only want to listen to one person or believe one thing, or even going back to if it fits your macros,
somehow that got spun to, I can eat Pop Tarts, and
that became a big thing of, oh, if it fits your macros it
means I’m gonna eat Pop Tarts. That’s not what it was originally about. Things get spun so– – That was kind of a proof of concept. – Right, right, and I get that, but it’s like we take these one thing. And I get where this one
gram of protein per pound of, I get where it came from, but
it was like one small thing and then it became this end all, be all. Like everyone has to do this, and if you’re gonna follow that one thing, you’ve got to do that right. Or the same thing could be
said about carbs, or fat, or depending on what diet you’re gonna do or what training program you’re gonna do, or if you want us to have
this sort of success, you got to do this sort of
program, this sort of thing. How do you, when you work with people and you have a new client,
how do you get them to not necessarily change
what they’re gonna do, I mean, maybe, depending on
where they’re starting from, where they wanna go, but to
shift kind of their focus or the way that they think,
or can you even do that? I mean, can you get them to maybe re-think some of their old training
habits, nutrition habits, and that the way that they process? – Yeah, that’s a good question. One thing I think that’s apparent
when you were talking is, when you do a higher education,
like graduate school or PhD, one thing is it humbles
you at a certain point. Like you realize, wow, I’m an idiot. – Yeah, for sure. – I don’t know hardly anything. – I know, I know.
– Isn’t that what people get that education for? – I know a little bit about
my corner of the universe. What do they call it? The Dunning–Kruger effect or whatever? Where it’s like, basically the effect is, if you have no knowledge, you know that you have no knowledge. And the most dangerous
person is the person who has a little bit of knowledge, because your confidence
level is very high. And then as you learn more your
confidence level goes down. And then you get to a point
where it starts to go back up. So, that’s that PhD area, right? But, you know, we’ve been either, like I remember the first time I went to present an experiment in
biology, this was in 2008. And I got reamed by a professor,
I mean just absolutely. I knew what I was talking about, but I hadn’t had that
experience of verbal jousting with somebody who was very intelligent. And it was like jab, jab, left
hook, upper cut, you’re out. I remember thinking, I never
want that experience again, so it made me get better. And it also, going through
those, being challenged, you know, my adviser, Dr.
Laymond, was really good about that, about challenging
everything I believed. It humbled me in terms of realizing that context is so important. Basically what I was trying to say is, you understand the importance of that because of doing a higher
education like that. And I think one of the things, in terms of working with clients, like how do I get them
going on the right path? First off, it depends on
the client and their goals. If it’s somebody who’s
like your average Joe, for lack of a better term, and they just wanna lose some body fat, they just wanna look better,
they just wanna be healthy, I’m gonna try and mess with their stuff as little as possible. Because if I blow up their lifestyle, if they’re used to going to
McDonald’s two times a day, and then cooking dinner
at home or whatever, or they’re used to just
living this complete, what we would would think
is an unhealthy lifestyle, and I’m just gonna throw
at them, alright, well, I need you to cook four egg whites and two whole eggs in the morning. I need you to have a salad for lunch, and they might follow it for a few days or maybe even a week, but
eventually they’re gonna go. You know, my friend, Dr. Kori Propst, I recommend you guys check
out her YouTube videos. She’s great, she’s the director
of wellness at The Diet Doc, which is owned by my
friend, Dr. Joe Klemczewski. And Kori has a PhD in psychology, and I think she puts it really well. She goes, you know, it’s not like, your will power all comes
from the same place. It’s not like you have
will power for your kids, and will power for your spouse,
and will power for your job, and will power for diet, and
will power for your training, they’re all separate bubbles. It’s all from the same pot, right? So when do we find ourselves, like really having trouble
adhering to a plan? It’s when we’re stressed out
and the holidays are here. Hey, what do you know? We had a death in the family,
and work is piling up, and all this kind of stuff. So, do we want a plan that
requires the maximum amount of will power, or do we want something that requires the minimum
amount of will power? So I’ve always said, I want something that requires the minimum
amount of will power. Somebody can stick to it. Now, if they can go and
cook every single meal, and pack their meals, and take ’em, and all that kind of stuff, sure, great, but we need to be able to have something that they can stick to even
when everything goes to shit. So that’s where I start for that person. Now if I’m dealing with an elite athlete, that’s a little bit different right now, because that last 1% or 2%
starts to make a difference. That’s why when people
ask me about supplements, I get a lot of people say,
there’s a really big backlash to supplements right now. Supplements don’t help at all. You just, you don’t need
supplements at all, which is true. You don’t need, because by
definition need is a requirement. You don’t require, you
don’t need supplements, but to sit there and say
there’s absolutely no benefit to any supplements out
there, that’s just wrong. That’s just completely wrong. And maybe for the person
who’s just looking to get their life together,
lose 30, 40 pounds, maintain that, and be healthy,
and they don’t have a lot of extra cash to spend,
maybe it doesn’t make sense for them to buy supplements. I’m never gonna sit
here and tell somebody, don’t pay your health insurance or rent, because I need you to
go out and buy creatine. You know what I mean? Like, no.
– I would. (laughing) – Have you seen her apartment? Crates and crates. – But, if you’ve got the extra cash, and it’s something
that’s important to you, and you’re a competitor, those
sorts of things, then yeah. Then you make that call
of what’s important to me, and what am I willing to give up or sacrifice to get to that? – Sure, and that can definitely apply to training too. right? – Absolutely.
– In fact, talking about volume, you can kind
of have two approaches. I heard you outline
recently in your video, basically the max recoverable volume or the minimum effective dose. And I’m trying to think of like, you know, PH3, that’s a high volume program. Maybe a beginner might
approach that and think like, well, I can do it, just because I want it so damn bad.
– It’s funny, it’s funny, actually, I had somebody reach out to me and they’re like, oh, well, I tried PH3, and I made good progress on
it, but then I backed off to a lower volume program
and I made better progress, so obviously the low
volume works better for me. No. You weren’t ready for PH3. That was the difference. PH3 is not for the person
who just started lifting. It’s not even for the
person who’s intermediate. In fact, as Krissy knows, I wanted the Wilks entry
score to be 350, not 300. – [Nick] Oh, I recall that, yeah. – And the guys, the big
wigs at Bodybuilding.com came back and said, there’s
nobody at the office that really fits these requirements. – That’s true.
– So, we feel like we need to relax ’em a little bit. So, okay, so, no problem, we relaxed them. And obviously people have
had great success with it. The average increase, we
did a statistical analysis of a survey of 100 people,
and the average increase on the three-lift total over
13 weeks was over 100 pounds. And that includes women put on an average of almost 80 pounds on their total. That’s pretty awesome. Men, it was like 114, something like that. Women actually responded
better to it than men did, pretty interestingly. But, my fear was I knew
I was gonna have people who were just beginners
who were gonna start this. Or, you know, the hard part
about the program too is, we tried to make it flexible with AMRAP and that changing how that affected your next week’s set up of weights, but at the end of the day,
it is a little cookie cutter. You know, you can’t be
completely flexible with it. And, you know, people say,
oh, Layne, do you do PH3? Well, the concepts that are
in PH3 I absolutely use, but do I use that specific program? No. When I was getting ready for Worlds, that program would actually
be too low volume for me. Now, that doesn’t mean it’s
low volume for everybody. For most people out there that’s gonna be a really challenging, high volume program. So, we did have people say,
oh, well, I got, you know, I had tendonitis come
up when I was on PH3, or, I had this come up. Yeah, I mean it’s, you know, when you train hard, those things happen. And this is some criticism
I’ve got, is people will say, well, I’ve dealt with
lower back issue right now. I have a bulged disc as
well as a herniated disc. Last year I had a hip injury
as well as two herniated discs in my neck and people say,
well, you see what happened. I said, well, yeah, but you
forgot about the world record I set, as well as the silver
medal at Worlds, you know? So, if I just wanted to look
good and be pretty strong, then I would train a
completely different way. I wouldn’t train like that. – I think that’s a huge
problem we have is, we don’t think about goals,
and we just see something. We don’t assess our
initial starting point. So it’s like, am I beginner,
intermediate, or advanced? I don’t really care. I want to do this program,
and I’m gonna do it. – Those are fairly
arbitrary categories too. You don’t know who’s– – Well, right.
– That’s true. How do I assess that? And then to even…
– Well, you’ve got advanced, you’ve got advanced people
who will make progress on low volume, because
they’re genetically less and vice versa.
– Yeah, but even like diet or whatever, as we discussed
before, what is my goal? If it’s just to lose a few pounds, I don’t think I should be doing a diet that a IFBB pro is doing two weeks out from stepping on stage. Like if that, if I’m gonna
see, they’re gonna post what their macros are two weeks before, and I see that on an
Instagram, and I’m gonna say, that’s my starting diet? That is setting me up for
failure, just like I would if I was to say, this
is my first day ever, and this is an extreme case,
but, first day ever in a gym, I’m gonna do PH3, like,
a very extreme, but– – Or, but I mean, you do see
people in the gym everyday who are probably saying, you know what? I feel good, I’m gonna
push it so hard today. Tomorrow, I don’t feel good, I’m gonna dial it back this much. – That’s when you do this. – Yeah.
– Right. – It’s just that idea of…
Exactly, how do you get that person on a…
– Kind of, yeah, just like, kind of seeing all these,
like, fancy shiny things, and being like, I want that, and I want that.
– Squirrel! – Yeah, and then not knowing
like, bring it back in, and how do I know what works for me? And like, you call it the sniff test.
– And picking, the sniff test, right, like.
– And I love that, is like, is this for real? Will this work?
– Well that’s why I like the concept of,
– For a program. – of minimum effective dose. That’s why I like that. – For gen pop you like the
minimum effective dose? – Even for advanced
athletes, ’cause I think max recoverable volume,
and minimum effective dose, are actually really close together. I think they’re really
close together, okay. But I know how the personalities
are in the fitness industry and in bodybuilding and power lifting, and if I say max recoverable volume, people are gonna go ape shit, right? Whereas if I say minimum effective dose, they’ll pull themselves
back a little more. Now, that doesn’t have
to be static either. When I was four weeks out from
Worlds and trying to peak, we were going for max recoverable volume. In fact, I was definitely
over trained heading into the last week, but
that’s what elite athletes do, is they over train purposefully, and then they do a taper, and they have, like a rubber band snap-back effect, and you actualize gains as I call it. But yeah, that’s why I don’t
post like my macros that often, or my diet, or my training. I’ll post my training every once in while and people will go, oh, well, what about this, this, and this? And it’s like, no, no,
you don’t understand. This is mine, you don’t have to copy it. In fact, it probably
shouldn’t look like yours. That’s the biggest thing is the
individualization of things. Is you really, you know, like I said, that was really my major struggle with PH3 and why I’m so proud of Avatar, is Avatar is basically
nutrition that’s personalized, but automated, you know? And I felt so comfortable
with that, especially now. We’ve had over 7,000 members, and it’s worked really well
for about 99% of people. But with designing programming it’s tough. There’s a lot of inputs that
you have to go into that. And without knowing what somebody’s, this is the same thing,
like I tell people, I need to know what
you’re eating right now. If I don’t know what
you’re eating right now, I can’t make recommendations
for going on in the future. Same thing with training. If I don’t know what
you’re doing right now, how am I gonna make
recommendations for moving forward? If I don’t know what your
current training status or volume is, because,
I can look at somebody who’s really advanced and say, well, they must be on high volume. They might not be. They may be very genetically blessed and able to make progress
with very minimal dose. And so this is also the same thing with looking at pro athletes
or professionals and saying, well, I want to do that. Well, there’s two situations. A lot of these guys are
so genetically blessed, they don’t have to train that, that’s a. Most of them do train very hard, but some don’t have to
train that frequently or that high volume to make progress. And with regards to IFBB, drugs
also come into play as well. You don’t have to up the
volume, you up the dose. You know what I mean? No offense to anyone out there. I’m not saying they don’t work hard. I have friends who are
IFBB pros who are some of the hardest working guys
I’ve ever been around, and gals. So I am not trying to dismiss
hard work by any stretch of the imagination, but it
is a confounding variable. It doesn’t mean that what
they’re doing applies to you. In fact, people will
say, well, most IFBB pros train each body part once a week, and you’re training
everything like two, three, four times a week. I say, well, yeah, I’m natural, okay? So they’re gonna have
artificially elevated levels of muscle protein synthesis all the time. The effect that training
is gonna have is gonna be a drop in the bucket sometimes
compared to that, right? Whereas this is what
is gonna be the impetus to change my body composition is training. And people wanna say, well, steroids don’t work without training. I’m sorry, that’s not true. There are studies out there showing, they did a study where they took people, put them on steroids, training alone, or training plus steroids. The group doing steroids
alone gained more muscle than the group training. Now, the group that did
training plus steroids obviously did even better, right? But that’s, you know, this is
one of the, I hear this a lot. It’s kind of a side tangent,
but it drives me insane. People go, well, you have
to actually train harder when you’re on steroids. – [Krissy] No. – Really? So steroids are somehow catabolic? Oh, well that’s interesting. So you guys are just so
good you’re just trying to make it even tougher on yourselves. That’s what you’re saying, right? It’s like the people who argue that sumo dead lifting
is somehow cheating. It’s like, no, if sumo dead
lifting were inherently easier, every single power lifter,
without exception, would do it. They’re not purposely trying to make it harder on themselves, right? It’s just that the people who
are genetically predisposed to being very good dead lifters, tend to be conventional pullers, actually, if you look at the data. Most world-record holders
are doing that conventional. So, yeah, but that’s another great example of what works for one person might not work for another person. And you can’t, it’d be the same thing of me trying to squat like Tom Platz. My squat form is very well
known as me having a lot of forward lean because of how
my levers are put together. I have femur lengths of somebody
who’s about six foot two, and I’m five ten. So, I am not how you would
draw up a great squatter. I make it work, ’cause
I’m really hard headed, and I got really, I have
very strong lumbar as well. I have very strong posterior chain. But if you look at me in
the bottom of the squat, I mean my back angle is about where you’d start at a
conventional dead lift. So, telling me to try
to squat like Tom Platz, where he’s completely upright, is like telling Krissy
to grow five inches. It’s just not gonna happen.
– We tried. – Yeah, yeah, exactly.
– Yeah, it’s doubtful, yeah. – No, I heard something
else in there though too, that implied in there
about full body training versus this strict bro split. – Bro split, I love the synthesis.
– We had a piece from Charles Stayley
recently where he said, you should be training basically full body until you hit the 300, 400,
500 on bench, squat, dead lift, I think it was. And that he said that’s
the benchmark he uses. What sort of benchmark would
you say to someone, like, you know what? Stay full body until, this? – I think I would disagree with Charles. I think that you don’t
have to be full body. In fact, I think for
beginners I think that, again, you’re gonna need minimal training. I think training everything
a couple times a week as a beginner is just helpful in that you are learning the movements. ‘Cause people don’t think about
weight lifting is a skill, but it’s a skill. And so, I would say you have
one day that’s a harderish day. ‘Cause if you’re a beginner, you don’t even need to train failure. Like, you’re gonna get so
many gains just from actually picking things up.
– Lifting a weight. – Yeah, lifting things
up and putting them down. Krissy knows, we call these newbie gains. – It’s movement practice too. – It’s also why a lot of the studies use untrained people, because they can. – Positive findings. – Yes, they’re easier to publish. (laughing) That doesn’t negate those findings, but it just means in that
population that’s what they found. It doesn’t necessarily
mean the same thing. But, um, yes, I think that,
now, I think whole body training may have a benefit for people who are really crunched for time. Maybe you do a squat
movement, a press movement, and a pull movement, and that’s your day, ’cause you’re hitting all
your major muscles groups, even your biceps, triceps
are all getting worked. And you could do that in an hour. You do that three times a week, and that’s maybe better than going in and doing one day where you’re doing legs, and one day where you’re
doing chest and shoulders, and one day where you’re
doing back and arms. That might be better. There’s evidence that you
can take the same volume and spread it out over multiple sessions and there seems to possibly
be a benefit to that. It looks like, ’cause we know
with regards to protein intake that there is an upper threshold where just pumping in more protein does not further increase anabolism. We think training is
probably the same way, but we don’t know where that threshold is. And to be honest, it’s probably different from person to person. So, that will be something
interesting in the future to see what the research shows on that. I know my friend, Bill Campbell, he has a graduate student named Andreas. And Andreas did a recent DUP study. That’s daily undulating periodization, for people who aren’t familiar, which is what PH3’s based on. And they did it where they
trained three days a week, squat, bench, dead lift,
or six days a week, and they cut the volume in half. And it was either four sets
on each, or two sets on each. And they found no
differences in the outcome. There was no differences. But the question becomes,
okay if you pump that up to eight sets versus four sets,
would you find a difference? Well maybe then you do, because
maybe then you’re going over that cap with the eight sets, right? Whereas four is under that
and you’re still getting some benefits from spreading it out. So, we don’t know the
answers to those questions. As Krissy knows, when you do research, usually you’ll answer
one question and then you get 10 others with it.
– You have eight more, yeah. – One thing I wanted
to ask you about also, is aside from thinking
about just big programming, nutrition, there are also new techniques that come up all the time,
and blood flow tricks and training is one of them
that you’ve done a video about with us, we talked about.
– What’s up, J? – But I wanted to ask you about that, just because, you know,
it’s relatively new. When you encountered it, you probably were fairly
experienced lifter, academic even at that point. How did you go about finding out number one.
– You gonna love this story. – Is it safe? Number two, is it legit? Is it appropriate for you? And then how do you use it, you know? Like, if something new comes along, what’s the story of how it? – So, my little shout out there was to my friend, Dr. Jeremy Linnekin. – Hi, Jeremy. – Who did his PhD same time as you in Oklahoma?
– Yes, we were at Oklahoma together, local Sooner. – Yeah, Jeremy is, what day is it? Saturday he will be laying on his floor, because he believes
that laying on his floor actually gives the Oklahoma football team a greater chance of winning.
– Yes, we usually start our texts back and forth about like, five, ten minutes into the game, and then it just continues on from there.
– I mean, it won the World Series for the Cubs for me. I was laying on the floor.
– We do our normal, like, are you wearing
what you wore last week? What did you do differently? – Jeremy will be texting me like, I hate this, I can’t stand this. Why do I feel this way? And like, why do I let something like this affect me so much? – Quite possibly one of the most intense human beings on the earth.
– Jeremy is the most intense human being I’ve ever seen. I could do a whole podcast
just on Jeremy’s stories. This is a professor at
Ole Miss, by the way. So, Jeremy is the most intense
and probably funny individual I’ve ever been around, because
he dead pans everything. But, when I was a
graduate student in 2007, Jeremy was an intern. Is it intern the right? He was doing a, I think
it was an internship in Dr. Kim Huey’s lab at
Illinois right across the street, and he trained at the same gym as me. And he knew me from the forums, and we hung out a little bit,
and we really got along well, because I’m intense, and
he’s like me times 10. And I had just got done
reading a 40 page meta-analysis of hypertrophy training. And as I was reading through it there was this section on KAATSU training. And I kept reading this KAATSU training. They are showing like
measurable hypertrophy benefits in six weeks of this KAATSU
training in trained individuals, which that’s, that is very hard to show. That’s very hard to show. And I’m thinking, damn, I want to try it. Well what is this actually? Well, it ends up it’s where they restrict, not blood flow to the limb, but the venous return
of blood to the heart, using these cuffs, these specialized cuffs called KAATSU devices. And this’s been around
for awhile actually. I think it’s been around since the 70s. Most of the research
originally was done in Japan. And I’m like, okay, how do I
get my hands on these things? Well it turns out these cuffs
are like $10,000, right? So I’m like, all right, well
how can I replicate this? So the first thing I tried
was like red exercise bands, and it didn’t seem to do anything. And then the next thing I tried
was Velcro Harbinger belts. I tried that, like reducing blood flow, or blood flow restricting with those. They actually call it at
the time occlusion training. Jeremy’s really the one
who was stickler about, no, it’s blood flow
restriction, not occlusion. That seemed to do a little bit better. And then I remembered one
day I was getting ready for a power lifting
meet, and I was training, and I was putting knee wraps on, and I remember how pumped
my calves would get. I thought about that fluid shift. And I thought, well that’s
actually pretty significant. I wonder if that would work. So I did that for quads. I started doing that,
and it definitely seemed to cause a fluid shift,
and something was going on. Well, I was doing that one day in the gym, I think I actually one of the first days I ever tried knee wraps for legs. And Jeremy came in. He’s like, “What are you doing?” And I was telling him about the training. He’s like, “That sounds stupid.” And I’m like, I know, but
like, look at this research. – [Nick] And look at this pump. – Yeah, exactly. – And more importantly.
– And he tried it, he tried it and he was very intrigued. Well, he went and did a PhD
on that, now is a professor, and has published hundreds of papers.
– So many. – Just he’s a beast when
it comes to publications. And so I completely take all credit for blood flow restriction research in the United States.
– I don’t recall that being the question. (laughing) – Well, you know, I have to make it about me first.
– No, no I understand. – But, you know, it was very interesting in that the first thing
I thought about was, well, is this safe? You know, ’cause you’re talking about blood flow restriction. And so the way it works,
we’re not exactly sure of the mechanism, but it looks
like there’s something to do with metabolic byproduct accumulation as well as fluid shift, the actual swelling of the muscle cell. It seems to be some kind
of hypertrophy benefit. And essentially what you’re doing is you’re not restricting arterial
blood flow to the muscle, but you’re restricting the venous return. And one of the cool things
actually was Jeremy was able to show to validate that
knee wraps were actually a really good tool for
blood flow restriction. This meant the people at
KAATSU didn’t really care for him very much, ’cause
now it’s very difficult to sell a $10,000 device for BFR, when knee wraps will do the same thing. I actually got in a
debate with the head coach of the Texan’s strength and
conditioning on Twitter, because he was criticizing
me for using knee wraps. I said, well here’s this
study validating ’em. And I looked on their page. Well they bought the KAATSU cuffs. And I’m like, I understand
you have to validate the $10,000 you spent in your budget, but I’m sorry, bro, you
could have used knee wraps. So that was pretty cool. And what it shows is that you get metabolic byproduct accumulation,
you get a fluid shift, and we think that has something to do with how this is able
to cause hypertrophy, because you’re using very light weights. You’re using like 20,
30% of a one-rep maximum. And, there’s, I love Dr. Stu Phillips, but one thing I’ll disagree
with him on is he said, “Well, you get the same benefits “just from taking the same
light weight to failure.” That is true, you can, but if I take somebody who’s well trained and put them on 20% of their one-rep max, they will not be able to get failure. I mean they will, but
it will be a long time before they hit failure. Whereas blood flow restriction will get you there much faster, and it’s just much more convenient and more fun.
– Well and I was telling Nick about I was
talking to one of my colleagues and they were doing some stuff
on low weight to failure, and they had to send one of
their subjects to the hospital, because of rhabdo.
– Yeah, rhabdo, yeah. – So I was like, that doesn’t seem safe, this whole low weight that.
– And BFR actually causes very little muscle damage. – Well exactly, well when
you’re also not having to do, I think she had done 60 or
70 bicep, or elbow flexion, because that’s how long
it took to go to failure. And I was like, that sounds miserable. – Yeah, whereas you could have
done 20 or 30 reps in BFR, 20 to 30, then 10 to 15 for three successive sets
after that, you’d be good. – For that moderately
trained, not super advanced, lifter out there who’s
just like, who thinks that, hears that and thinks, ah, you know, this is the magic arm technique, is that free volume for them? – Yeah, so it’s not any
better than lifting heavy. The research shows very clearly
that it’s the same benefits as lifting heavy for hypertrophy. – I hope everyone heard that. – But, and actually lifting
heavy you’ll get stronger than you will with BFR,
because it’s more specific. However, if you’re somebody who’s injured, like I am right now, or I think where it really
shines is with injury, like we were saying. There was actually a case
study, a guy who emailed Jeremy, who had, he thought he had
torn a ligament in his knee, and he was gonna go get surgery on it. And he had been doing BFR, and he asked Jeremy if it was safe. And he’s like, well, talk to your doctor, but with the light weights
you’re using it’s probably fine. Well when they went in
it wasn’t a torn ligament in his knee, he had broken his femur. And the doctor, when
he went to, he’s goes, I’m not gonna do surgery on you, because this is already healed. Three, and it was three,
he’s like, what did you do? The guy was like, well, I
did BFR for three weeks. And the doctor was like, well I don’t know what the hell that is, but keep doing it. You know, so that’s just one case study. We don’t know, but there seemed to be maybe some benefits for
bone health as well. I mean people will say the
safety thing, it sounds bad. You’re restricting blood flow. In fact, Jeremy, he gives a
speech at our camp every year, and the last year was fabulous, because it was just him putting up quotes from people online and
then destroying them. And the first quote was,
the title of his talk was blood flow is good, you’re an idiot. Jeremy’s like, you know
I wake up in the morning and I feel pretty good about
myself, and then I read this. I know blood flow is good, I know that. Don’t you think we probably
thought about that? The second part we can debate, but I know blood flow is good. But think about what exercise does, right? So if we think that we’re
restricting blood flow, yes, the venous return,
okay, but short term. We’re doing it for a few minutes. To actually cause tissue
necrosis, or thrombosis, or something like that, that is a sustained thing that happens. It’s not a short term thing. And to cause tissue necrosis,
you would be in such pain there is no way you
would keep the wraps on for that long period of time. Maybe there’s some Navy Seal
out there who could do it, but everybody, they would take ’em off. There’s just no way. Well, but it’s a good question to ask. And think about what exercise
does in the short term, raises your hear rate,
raises your blood pressure, increases inflammation, increases
reactive oxygen species, all these things that if
you just told somebody that, are negative, right? If somebody was completely
ignorant about exercise, didn’t know anything, but
they knew about health, and we told them all the
things that exercise did, they’d say, oh, my god,
that’s terrible, don’t do it. Exercise is like a vaccine. It gives you a controlled
dose of a stressor that allows your body to
better handle that stressor. So what kind of inflammation’s
actually bad, for example? Long term, low level,
sustained inflammation, not short term, truncated. It’s the same thing when people say, well I don’t want to take leucine, because is activates mTOR, and mTOR has been associated with cancer. – Right, right.
– There is a difference between eating a protein
meal that has a short term, acute, truncated response of mTOR, versus a disrupted cell that is constantly sending a signal to the DNA to replicate. That’s completely different. That’s one thing even scientists, two things scientists aren’t good at, correlation versus causation. I hate that, ’cause they should know that. And also short term versus long term. We make a big deal out of short term stuff that may not even matter. So I think, my hypothesis would be that by restricting blood flow short term, you’re actually improving blood flow. And there’s some evidence
to suggest that as well. In fact, they took astronauts
have a lot of problems with blood flow in space. And they did studies looking at, not even resistance training, but just restricting blood flow for like 30 minutes a day.
– In a weightless setting? – It was either that or unloaded. So, and showed like
better blood flow, okay? In fact, this is one thing
where, I again I’ll disagree with Stu Phillips, because
there is something different going on with BFR, because they showed, one of the original studies on BFR where they got interested
in muscle growth, was they just had people walk. Untrained people just walked
under blood flow restriction and their legs grew. They got bigger. I’ll say that again. Just from walking their legs grew. Now, if I put BFR wraps on and try to walk and are my legs gonna grow? No, I’m way too advanced for that. But let’s say you can’t do any
training, like you’re hurt, that sort of thing, that would
attenuate muscle loss, okay? Or for somebody who’s untrained, it would help you grow
muscle, if they can’t train. And even people who are bedridden, they did intermittent BFR and showed that they retained more
muscle than people who didn’t. So, there is something going on that’s not just, okay, train to failure. Because if that was the
case, we wouldn’t see it, because you can’t walk to failure. You know what I mean? Well, I guess you could, but
it would be very difficult. (laughing) – That’s my workout after this actually. – Yeah, exactly. So, it seems, and we’ve
talked about, you know, I kind of brushed around the safety issue, but it seems to be very safe. I mean, there has been tens
of thousands of subjects through these studies
now, and the only study, it was a case study, there’s
only one ever showing any kind of negative benefit to BFR. And it was a case study, so
you can’t even say it was BFR. But there was a hockey
player who reported to a ER, and he had rhabdomyolysis. And he said that he had played hockey and done blood flow restriction training. – At the same time? (laughing) – No, I don’t think at the same time. That would be tricky. – So, the problem I
had with that study was at the end of it, when the
doctors released him they said, you’re fine to continue
what you were doing. If you think something
actually caused rhabdomyolysis, if you’re a doctor,
why would you tell them they could keep doing it? So that makes me think that they. Rhabdo is actually one of those things that’s over diagnosed in
the medical community. I had a client who his
mother called me one day. He was in the hospital, and the doctors had
said he rhabdomyolysis. And I’m just like, this
guy is somebody who trained for like six years and
didn’t take a long break or anything like that. So for those who aren’t familiar,
rhabdomyolysis is usually in untrained people
who try to go too hard, you can break down so much muscle tissue that your kidneys cannot
keep up with the excretion of the byproducts, and it can actually shut your
kidneys down and kill you. There’s actually a few people
every year who die from it. Usually they’re either
people who are untrained or usually it’s people who
had trained previously, who have a lot of willpower and stamina, and are able to push themselves past where they probably should. And so actually, I
think a couple years ago there was a guy who had been in the Navy, and he hadn’t trained in a long time, and went in and did a really
hard Cross Fit workout, and ended up dying from rhabdo. So, but, this guy, his mother called me and said, you know,
Connor’s been diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis.
– You gave my son rhabdo. – No, no, she was very nice about it. But yeah, the first thing
that went through my mind was like, well, here I
go, I’m about to get sued. But, I actually wasn’t doing his training. He was doing his own training. I was doing his nutrition. And I put him on the phone and I said, well, did you have like a
really, really hard training, like way out of the ordinary? He’s like, not really. I’m like, well, are you really sore? He’s like, no. I’m like, do you have like a fever? Are you like peeing a lot? And he’s like, no. And I was like, well
what was your symptom? He’s like, well, my stomach hurts. I’m like, okay– – Classic rhabdo. – Or taking creatine,
because creatine also causes rhabdo.
– It gives you rhabdo. – Sorry, carry on. – Well I said, okay, well
what was your blood work like? And it turns out that his
creatine kinase levels, which is what they use to diagnose this, were modestly elevated. And I’m like, listen, I’m not a physician, but I don’t think your son has rhabdo. I was like, did you change
anything in your diet, anything like that? He’s like, well, I started
taking a prebiotic. I’m like, oh, you changed your
gut flora, you just have gas. He called me three hours later. He farted three times and left
the hospital and felt better. But it was like how was I
able to diagnose this guy from 1,000 miles away and
the doctors missed this? It’s unfortunate that, like I said, rhabdo gets over diagnosed. ‘Cause if you look at
somebody who weights trains, they’re gonna have elevated
levels of creatine kinase, ’cause they’re breaking down muscle. It doesn’t mean because it’s
outside the normal range that they have rhabdo. And so, yeah, I question that. And even if that’s the case, if let’s say that guy really
did have rhabdo from BFR, people get rhabdo from
regular weight lifting. Why does that make BFR? If anything, BFR has been
shown to be just as safe or more safe than regular weight lifting. So, the one caveat to that
is I’ll say is you need to watch my video on BFR training on bodybuilding.com.
– And do it right. – Don’t keep the wraps
on for 40 minutes on end. After you do a cluster
of four take them off, and then, you know, do them back up after you’ve had some chance to rest. – There’s finding that
sweet spot of tightness. I feel like you see a lot of wondering about that.
– Yeah, if you’re talking about knee wraps, you’re usually looking about a seven out of ten tightness level. But the easy way to know is if you put on what you think is 20% of your one-rep max on whatever exercise you’re doing, and you can’t get close
to hitting the reps, either the weights are too heavy
or the wraps are too tight. Or if you’re in pain
before the exercise starts, the wraps are too tight. You’ll be in pain while
the exercise is going on. And anybody who’s done BFR knows it’s very painful.
– It’s, it is. – Yeah, it’s very painful. – I did several studies at OU, and yeah, it is not comfortable. – No, it’s not, it’s not, but– – It’s bearable. That’s the difference.
– Yes, it’s bearable. – It’s uncomfortable, but it’s bearable.
– Think about the best pump you’ve ever had, multiply it by 20, and then realize it’s
gonna be the worst pump you’ve ever had. (laughing) – So that’s just saying
they has the worst pump you’ve ever had. – Yeah, ’cause I mean
literally when, you know, you’ll see like the magazines be like, skin splitting pumps. No, no, this. You don’t know about that
skin splitting pump life until you’ve done BFR, trust me. So, it’s, you know I look at things as I don’t think BFR is a magic tool. I think everything’s
tools in the tool box. I use my screw driver a lot
more than I use my jack hammer, but I still got my jack
hammer in my tool belt if I ever need it. I do a lot of BFR, because,
especially when I’m getting ready for power lifting meets, ’cause I still want to
maintain like my arms and some of my aesthetics, what little I have, for
you internet trolls. (laughing) So, I still want to maintain
some of my aesthetics, bruh, so I will do a lot of BFR,
because at the end of the day I am just so beat up
from squatting, benching, and dead lifting heavy all the time, I don’t feel like doing
heavy barbell curls, or triceps press downs, or whatever it is. I want to do something light that I can get through really
quick, pump a lot of volume in a short period of time, and get out. – Okay, so maybe that’s
the value of it then for that person out there. – I think also for people who are injured, like we talked about. ‘Cause, you know, a lot of
times if you’re injured, you can’t do your normal training, but you can usually do
20% of a one-rep max. I mean, usually you can do
that, or if you’re traveling, like in a hotel gym, and they’ve only got 50 pound dumbbells, it goes up to 50 pound dumbbells. – Yeah, good point.
– Well now, for people who are really strong like me, 50 pound dumbbells, that’s, god, that sounded bad, didn’t it? – [Krissy] Yeah. – Yes, when you get to be like me.
– I mean, a little bit. – I would never reach
failure with 50 pounds. – I could never reach failure
with 50 pound dumbbells. You’re weak, and you should feel bad. But if you’re in that situation
where you’re traveling, you don’t have those options, well now you can actually
get a really good workout in. And I’ve done this like
on cruise ships, you know, where I took, um. I don’t use wraps for arms,
because it’s too hard. Like, you have to kind of
pin your arm and, you know. And the cuff is actually too wide as well. There’s evidence that the width of the cuff makes a difference. So I use what’s called
quick-release medical tourniquets. And you have to really crank ’em down, ’cause the fabric is different, but you crank ’em down to
about a 9 1/2 out of 10, and they’re really convenient. You can find them online for
like 12 bucks for a set of two. But yeah, I mean, that’s
kind of what I use it for, is when I’m traveling and
those sorts of things, or when I’m injured, or I just don’t feel like lifting heavy. – Okay, I don’t know how
much time we have left, but I wanted to ask you a little bit more. – Probably not much, because I talk a lot. – Well, we hinted at the paper
that you’ve been working on for all these years, but I
wanted to get the takeaway from that as well, because it’s about protein.
– How much time we got? – Protein cadence.
– We got like an hour and a half, right? (laughing) – But it’s, you know, yeah.
– Dan’s like, no, please no. – Thinking from the perspective
of somebody who thinks, like god, you know, all those
macros, there’s three of ’em, I don’t want to have
to dial in all of ’em. This one just focuses in on protein basically, protein pacing.
– There’s three Nick, You can dial in on three. You don’t care about fat.
– What I wanted to know is if somebody, they just
focus on protein, basically, according to those sorts of parameters, which you can discuss, and let
the chips fall where they may on the other two, is that enough? – Well there’s evidence that
if you’re gonna focus on one, you probably should focus on protein, because if you’re eating enough protein, you’re more satiated. You’re probably not
gonna go over eat as much on carbs and fats. But basically the
results of our study was, when I got to Illinois, there
was a lot of data out there on leucine in terms of purified solutions. So they would give leucine,
and under certain conditions they’d show an increased
muscle protein synthesis. What we didn’t know was did
that actually make a difference in the whole meals, right? ‘Cause that’s a different question. And also, does it actually
make a damn bit of difference on long-term body
composition or muscle mass? ‘Cause you can, Krissy knows this, you can show a lot of short term stuff with markers and what not, and a lot of times in terms
of what it does for long term, it means absolutely nothing. So, we had that question, like
does this actually matter? So, we designed a study where, this is after a few studies before this that kind of built up
to it, but to look at, okay, we’re gonna feed
different sources of protein, same total protein content
and even isocaloric. In fact, and this why
nobody was gonna replicate the study anytime soon. We had 110 animals in the study. And again, yes, they were rats. Before you guys go out, I had somebody, I posted this on my Facebook fan page. People, oh, I stopped reading at rats. Don’t accept any medical help then, because all those studies
started in rats too, okay? By the way, most of this
stuff’s been validated in humans since then. So, rats are actually a really good model for protein metabolism. And I can, guess what? Humans suck as test subjects. – They really do. – They don’t do what you want.
– They really do. – They don’t do what you want. Rats will do what I want. – They’re not compliant. – Here this is what you’re gonna eat. – They drop out.
– Exactly. – They don’t show up. – Oh, well, sorry, I forgot about the six, I know you were up at 4:40 in the morning, but I forgot that I had
the appointment to come in and get my body comp done. How many times do you
hear something like that? – The answer is install a
feeding tube in your room. – Yeah, exactly. – If it fits your tube, that’s the– – No, what it should be is
you just you hook up a tube and every time they eat off
the plan it gives them a shock, you know, like, just an
electrical shock, you know? I’m sure IRBs would be fine with this.
– Oh, yeah, easily. – So, we had 110 animals, and we fed them three meals a day. We taught them to meal feed. So we did, ’cause a lot of problems with the studies out there
is they just throw it in their chow, and they
just ad libitum feeds, they just kind of graze
throughout the day. Well that’s not the same
thing as meal feeding. And it affects protein
metabolism differently as well. So we had them eat three meals,
like a smallish breakfast, a small to moderate breakfast and lunch, and then a good sized dinner, kind of like how Americans
eat, and that was the idea. And we weighed out every single meal, for every single animal, for
every single day for 11 weeks. That, you’re talking about 330 meals a day that you’re weighing out. This was hours of our
time every single day. And so that’s why we weren’t worried about getting replicated any time soon. So what we did was we took
different protein sources, like wheat, soy, egg, and whey. So, completely, so these diets
are completely isocaloric, completely isonitrogenous. There’s no difference. The only difference is
the protein sources. And we were able to show that
the animals fed egg and whey actually had higher rates
of muscle protein synthesis, and actually had better body composition than the animals fed wheat. Now, soy had the same body
composition as egg and whey, in terms of body fat percentage, but they had way lower muscle mass. Soy is weird. Soy has some weird, funky stuff going on. Like, I think soy is fine in moderation, but I think getting all your protein from soy is a really bad idea. The isoflavones in there,
there’s some benefits to ’em, but there’s also some downsides, and definitely with
regards to muscle mass. I mean across the board,
the heaviest animal in the soy group was not
bigger than the smallest animal in every other group. I mean, they were significantly smaller. So, now they also had, there’s some benefits to
blood glucose profiles, all that kind of stuff with soy, ’cause the isoflavones, but
in terms of muscle mass, there was definitely a blunting effect of muscle mass on soy. And I think some of the
isoflavones have been shown to activate AMP kinase,
and that can impede muscle protein synthesis,
that sort of thing. Wheat had about the same
level of muscle mass of egg and whey, but had way more body
fat, way more body fat. And I think the reason the
muscle mass was the same, was ’cause all those animals were heavier and they were just having to
carry that around every day. If you look at obese people, they have– – [Krissy] A lot of muscle mass. – They have more than average
muscle mass in obese people, and that’s ’cause they’re
just carrying around more body weight.
– It’s body weight training. – Right, exactly. So, but in terms of
composition and muscle mass, egg and whey were the best, okay? And that’s with, and it
seemed to be reflected by the differences in leucine intakes. Now, we also, we wanted to look at protein distribution. ‘Cause, it’s funny, as I was getting ready to write this last experiment,
Dr. Laymond was like, you know, you talk a lot
about protein distribution in your thesis here, and you’ve
never actually tested it, so you probably should test
that or take out that wording. Ah, crap. So we took the highest
quality protein, whey, which whey was consistently the best in every single one of our studies. Even if it wasn’t
statistically significant, the absolute number was the best. And what we did was we either
had groups basically eat whey evenly distributed across three meals, so they were getting about
the same amount of protein across each meal, or at least a level that would trigger
muscle protein synthesis, versus low protein at
breakfast, and lunch, and then really high protein at dinner. So they were getting about
70% of protein at dinner, and about 15% at breakfast and lunch. And actually, there’s data
from a guy named de Castro that shows that most
Americans eat about 65% of their protein at dinner. So it wasn’t too far outside that range. And so now you’re talking about
exact same calorie intake, exact same nitrogen intake, only difference is how we distribute it, and we were able to show
differences in muscle mass. Now, it wasn’t a huge difference. It was only about 8% to 10%, but for somebody who’s an elite athlete that’s a big difference. And so when people ask me, for example, about something like
intermittent fasting, I will say, hey I think it’s fine for fat loss. Like the data shows that meal frequency doesn’t make a difference in fat loss, but if you’re talking about muscle mass, I think it’s probably not optimal. And so that’s what we were able to show with these experiments, that
not only did the quality of protein make a difference,
but the quantity of protein, the quality of protein,
and how you distribute that protein makes a difference. – So the winner was spread
evenly across the three meals? – Yes, yes, exactly. – Whey spread evenly. – Now, that being said, this
is where context is important. I’ve had people who tell me, listen, I am able to be way more
adherent to intermittent fasting than any other diet I’ve ever done. For whatever reason it just works for me. Then fine, do that.
– Then do it, do it. – Set your goals accordingly.
– But what I’ll say is maybe, what if we intermittently
restrict carbs and fats, ’cause protein doesn’t
have the same effect. High protein diets, the
effects they have on genes is very similar to actually just fasting, to be honest with you. So I say, well, why
not have a couple doses of just like protein only,
have a shake or something? You know, if your goal is to
have more muscle mass, do that. And then you can put your
carbs and fats altogether in an intermittent fasting way. There’s no reason that
shouldn’t work well either. But yeah, it’s funny how
things don’t always… Some of the most interesting
stuff in your research is stuff that didn’t actually work out. The other thing that we really did to try and kind of bring home, this
was in a previous study, the story of leucine was we took wheat, which is a low-leucine protein. It’s only about 6.8 to 7% leucine, whereas whey is like 11 to 12%. Carbon build is 13%. – Hey oh. – The highest leucine content out there, Pipology 101.
– Let me use your shirt here. – All right, just saying. 3.1 grams of leucine per serving. Like I said, there may be
a another protein out there that has a higher leucine intake. I’m not aware of it. But we took wheat and we
supplemented with free leucine to match the leucine content of whey. And we were able to show it was almost exactly the same response. So, but what was interesting was not only is protein
important for muscle mass, but also fat loss, because we found that even though wheat had
the same muscle mass as egg and whey groups, they had more body fat. And we believe that’s
because they weren’t getting that stimulus of muscle protein synthesis, which is ATP dependent,
energetically dependent. And we think that is
actually a large portion of the thermogenic effect of protein. We know that there’s a thermogenic
effect of protein, a TEF, that’s way more than carbs or fats, but people had always kind
of thought it was maybe from digestion or the
urea cycle, but it’s not, because you get all those
ATPs back from the urea cycle. The body’s very efficient with that. What it is is that it
activates that futile cycle of increasing muscle protein synthesis and increasing protein degradation. And that use of ATPs is thermogenic. And so, it’s really
interesting how that works out. We were actually able to show that muscle protein synthesis is so powerful that it actually causes a drop
in intramuscular ATP levels once you trigger it. So, and that in turn
actually triggers AMP kinase, which truncates the signal of
it, muscle protein synthesis. How cool is that? I’m getting super nerdy out there. Krissy’s over there like, yes, tell me more.
– I know. Nick’s like, and on that
note, let’s wrap it up. (laughing) – But that actually causes
a thermogenic effect, because now AMP kinase
activates all these systems that deal with fat loss. So, not only is the quality
and amount of protein important for muscle mass, but it’s
also important for fat loss and just overall body composition. – So where you get your
protein does matter. – It does matter. Now, I will tell you that
before everybody goes out and says they’re just gonna
eat whey for all their meals, you can take a low quality protein source and get the same response
if you eat enough of it, if you get to that like
three gram leucine threshold. The problem becomes your anabolic bang for your caloric buck. So whey is giving you such
a powerful anabolic bang for your caloric buck, whereas
if you’re gonna eat something like wheat, I mean you’re
gonna have to get like 50 grams of protein just to hit
that three-gram threshold. – 50 grams of protein from
wheat’s gonna be some food. – Is gonna be, is gonna be, yeah, think about like cereal.
– You might think you have rhabdo at the end, your
farts are gonna be… – Yeah, exactly. So, again, that’s where
it’s about context, right? So, but you know, like a egg, or chicken, or something like that, like
some animal source of protein. You can still get as good as whey, but you’re gonna require
just a little bit more. Again, that’s fine, but it’s
important to think about. – All right, well thanks
for coming down here and talking with us about all of this. – Thanks for letting me
geek out, I appreciate it. – Absolutely. You can be found many
different places online. Give us a couple of them. – Yeah, so my website’s
the best things to find all things Biolayne, biolayne.com. Obviously my section on bodybuilding.com’s gonna have all my articles. Check out my supplement
line, Carbon by Layne Norton, as well as for people looking
for nutritional information out there who aren’t maybe
ready to pay for a coach, my website, avatarnutrition.com, we’re doing some big things to it. By the beginning of the
year we’re gonna have, I can’t really say much yet, but we’re gonna have, I
believe it’s gonna have a million members within a few years. It’s just gonna be that
revolutionary for people. – [Nick] And that accessible. – And that accessible, for $10 a month you’re getting customized
nutrition recommendations. And we’re actually
taking that way further. So if you haven’t checked
that out yet, go check it out. Play around with it. We’re gonna have some free
stuff coming out in the future. And yeah, I think that that’s
actually one of the things I’m most excited about in
terms of my legacy is a way for people who can’t afford
a coach, a personal coach, there will always be a place for that, but who can’t afford $10 a month to get customized science
based nutritional training or nutrition advice? (upbeat music) – Great, see you all next time. – All right, thanks, Layne. – Thank you guys.

21 thoughts on “Dr. Layne Norton’s Hard Truths Of Training | The Bodybuilding.com Podcast | Ep 5

  1. It's like a PHD jerk off. How blessed us mortals are to be enlightened and acknowledged by the PHD gods of our foolish and whimsical ways.

  2. I think Layne is probably the smartest guy in the YouTube fitness industry but his voice sucks! Love you Layne haha

  3. Yeah I had to do physical when I used to work in emerg as well as later on when I was going into policing, and plenty of things were elevated in my medical results and it was just from training and muscle break down rather than actual disease. Definitely true about the CK levels.

  4. Thanks for the great information.  Ignore the ones who can't or won't understand. Love the podcasts and hope you continue with them.  As I stated below, I listen while putting on make-up (boring chore!!!) and cleaning the house.  🙂

  5. Just finishing PH3. I have loved it and made some great progress on it. Its exhausting and def requires discipline and willpower in Phase 3.

  6. Be sure to read bodybuilding review on my blog before you buy. Go to carlreviews. com/bodybuilding-com-review/ Thanks. Lyndon.

  7. i wish his study used other plant-based protein sources, not soy. i would love to have known the impact of pea/rice protein (or combo of both)

  8. When the sound of a man's voice doesn't correlate to his size. Ladies and Gents i present to you Doctor Layne Norton (sarcasm);)   But seriously Layne, you are my go to guy when I want sound nutritonal advice, no bullshit agenda, just straight, objective, science. Appreciate your knowledge Doc.  Keep educating the ignorant and reaffriming those that know. DEUCES!

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