How to eat well and supplement when necessary to ensure proper fuel for the fire.

Sure, we all want to lose 10 pounds yesterday… but how we are pushed towards the ability to do that isn’t realistic, is it?

“Lose 12 pounds in 12 days!”

“Drop a dress size over the weekend!”

“New radical diet that burns 3lbs of fat in a week!”

None of these are sustainable, even if they do work.

Sustainable coaching comes with trades. As a coach that prides himself in helping my athletes through “the grind”, the tough plateaus, the unmotivated morning of training after a wild weekend of partying and misbehaviour… I prefer to coach on the foundation of sustainability.

I like changing a person’s entire lifestyle: the way they move, the way their relationships improve, the way they feel when they get up each day, stay happy and engaged at work and then return in the evening with energy to play with their kids. I like that. I get more satisfaction from hearing: “my husband and I now enjoy taking the grandkids out to the playground or out hiking with the dogs on the weekend. We never thought that would happen at this age… thank you.”

Over:

“my six pack was looking better than last summer at the cabin…”

I mean, there’s nothing wrong with aesthetic goals or short term programming, but I’m in the business of changing lives. And that is just a tough gig when you throw crash diets, quick exercise programs and the next fab “service” out there. Of course the people will get results. They’re highly motivated for 4 weeks. But what happens after that? When the eat kale, drink more smoothies and less beer realities kick in?

Think about it this way:

You’re super Mario. Bopping around, jumping over turtles and trying to save the princess. What I do as your coach isn’t just give you the flowers, the stars or any of the other power ups – no, no. They’ll always be there. I teach you how to harness those super powers so you fly through life feeling invincible.

That’s sustainability.

I coach you to be sustainable.

Xo

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It’s hard to afford to take care of ourselves.  There are a lot of obstacles. I get it. It’s more expensive to eat organic food, it’s expensive to hire a personal trainer, hell – we can’t even get a gym membership without spending money. I hear to tell you that there is another way.

Here are my best three recommendations to inspire a little more activity in your life, on a budget of course:

  1. Get outside and walk around in nature. It’s therapeutic, it’s free and you might even learn something or meet another human that’s outside in the big wonderful world too. Crazy, thought. But seriously, get up right now and go for a walk around the block.
  2. YouTube Yoga videos. Sure, a classroom costs $20 to drop in and that’s rich for 45-90 minutes of movement, and as great as it is for you… it’s not sustainable for most of us. You know what is? YouTube – check out some videos. Here’s a favourite to get you started —> https://youtu.be/u-gzRwDbDSg
  3. Wake up and commit to performing 100 squats that day. Start with ten right then… Then just keep track of the rest through out the day. Easy peasy.

But really, motivation is the hardest part for most of us. Sometimes if we don’t have a date with the barbell or the treadmill, we just don’t get there. If that sounds like your excuse, no matter what your definition of fitness is, I can help you get moving. And I can get you moving for less money than a cup of coffee. Now, imagine that…

I’ve listed some of the ways I’ve made my services more accessible for everyone to afford to get fit. Whether it’s in your own home, the park, the gym, learning a new sport like weightlifting speed skating or hockey, I’ve got you covered. Awesome.

And you can still afford a home. Double awesome.

Become a Patron: Perks!

  • Workout Inspired Mixtape Playlist – I’ve got an inside lane on some great new music being in the role I am in the industry, so I build playlists showcasing these talents.
  • Exercise Program – tailored to your ability, health goals and schedule. Online support and tracking and progress  Monthly reassessment via Skype.
  • Nutrition Program – eat right for your body, no diets, no hocus pocus, daily lessons and habits to slowly change your behaviours. Change the way you feel, the way you look and the way you perform with my professional nutrition coaching and learn what foods your body really wants.
  • Lifestyle Package – Without the proper fuel, the fire won’t burn. So ensure you’re getting the right food and movement for what your life calls for. I’ll build you a customized and easy to use exercise program complete with videos and everything.

 

I have a Patreon Page I’ve set up with some neat options like these ones so you can easily and affordably get fit while supporting this movement. Every patron helps to educate one more musician on mental and physical wellbeing and if we keep it up, we’ll extend the careers of millions. Let’s keep building this thing! Check it out!

Please support my cause here patreon.com/musicfit

 

Thanks for sharing!

Stay fit, whatever that means to you.

xo

I am trying to hear you, but your actions are deafening

 

 

 

I get this one a lot.

Alike many nutrition questions, not to sound cliche… but it really depends.

First off, we gotta get some more context. What are your goals? Are you trying to lose weight, add muscle or increase your sport performance?

Here are a few quick tips for each of these cases:

Losing Weight

Well, timing is important otherwise you start to devour everything in sight when you finally do eat. You may have been there before. Smaller more frequent meals are commonly taught, but I generally coach the “eat when you’re hungry” approach. The biggest keys are to eat slowly (20-30 minutes) and away from distractions (no TV, texting, Facebook etc…) and only until you’re 80% full. That way your body hits satiety (AKA the feeling of fullness). If you eat too fast, your body doesn’t have time to trigger the “stop eating” button and you’ll tend to overeat.

Gaining Muscle

Eat. Eat often, and when you’re not hungry eat a sandwich. Seriously, timing of large meals is critical when you want to add muscle to your frame. Eating large amounts of food quickly is the takeaway here. Quality protein is most important. Whether you’re vegan, vegetarian or eating animal protein (which are scientifically proven to be more complete) you must ensure all essential amino acids are being taken into account to maximize the growth of muscle fibres.

Sport Performance

When you’re a performance athlete and need to consider nutrients and calories and performing well, you need to ensure you’re getting the appropriate number of nutrients in your body before every lift. Many meals throughout out the day is the gold standard, while pre and post training nutrition plays a huge role in your success too. Eat good whole food and sleep well to ensure you’re body is ready for the next competition.

Hope this helps get the ball rolling for you. Be sure to reach out if you need some answers! Ciao!

M

xo

I’ve been asked countless times, “Mike, I’m eating well, I just can’t seem to lose the weight… what am I doing wrong?”

I’m usually quick to ask “What’s eating well look like to you?” As part of my coaching, I like to believe the best in everyone, but honestly, seeing is believing so I generally follow that question up with “Can you show me what each meal has been exactly in the past three days?”

Most often, that person cannot.

More often they say something to the effect of

“Well, it’s just really tough when the boys want to go out for wings and beer after the game… when my wife wants to do pizza and wine night on Friday and the kids are always on the go for band recital, soccer practice and other extra curricular events… I just don’t wanna be that guy, you know?”

I do. However, own it. You get to make that choice to get wings and beer, enjoy the pizza or choose to eat fast food from the drive thru en route to the kids practice… only you get that choice. And to piggyback on this, it’s not only to do with nutrition. If you find yourself in any less than ideal situation, maybe you just lost your job, maybe you’re considering starting your own business, maybe you want to pursue a passion – whatever it is, if you don’t have the social support, the likelihood of you achieving that dream significantly decreases.

It’s amazing how much we are influenced by the social circles that we are in. I found a very interesting article that explain the power of social support very clearly, from my friends and fellow coaches at Precision Nutrition. Take a read if you think you might know someone that’s got the right intentions but the wrong friends. Might be time to cut the line…. [Read the full article here]

Ciao, babes!

Xo

M

 

Featured Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash

Whether it’s coming in and bossing out on the olympic platform, running a sprint for 3 minutes, or maxing out her previous record dead lift, my athlete of the month goes to Karen.

 

It’s crazy to think that this rock star has dropped about 40lbs in a year, started Olympic Lifting and setting Powerlift records nearly every time she touches the bar and – what I think is the most important change – has truly integrated a healthy lifestyle into the daily routine. Day in, day out.

I’m here to write about my experience of working with Karen. I can’t begin to tell you how much I feel as though she has helped me grow as a coach. Not just because I can basically toss any exercise at her and she’ll fine a way to get it done, but because how ridiculously determined she is. This is what it takes to make positive change in your life.

Let’s start with her dedication to getting comfortable in being uncomfortable.

Comfortable

She had never tried Olympic Lifting, let alone even really know what exactly it was one year ago.

I showed her how to throw a barbell over her head… the rest is history.

Just to put it in perspective she clean and jerked 105lbs (that’s shown in the video up there…)

She deadlifts, she runs, she squats, she makes everyone around her happier and she absolutely kills it at work. Sure she might dislike doing the exercise at times, but she puts her head down and goes.

Things sound pretty good, eh? It wasn’t an easy road. Combine daily (sometimes painstaking) lessons and habits to help refocus her relationship with food and her nutrition, overcoming scheduling bumps, vacations, sickness – all the typical excuses… with life’s general random “curveballs” and you’ve still got an individual that never missed a session. A date with herself. A date with change. A date with progress, over perfection.

I’m honoured to get to work with Karen towards her craziest goals. Together with her attitude and what skills I can pass along I really see the sky as the limit. it’s amazing what the power of the mind can do.

Thank you, Karen. Stoked to see what’s next and keep this going.

Stay sweet.

M

 

Holy cow. This dairy debate is still going on. Amazingly. I’ve conducted the research and found supporting evidence for both sides. That’s right. Scholarly research has proven both sides right… and wrong. So with that, my article here could be the shortest summary ever with some sort of headline like this: “EVERYONE WINS, THERE ARE NO LOSERS. RAINBOWS. UNICORNS. DAFFODILS! YAY.”

It’s totally not like that though, so check it out. Here are a few facts that should help you make the call. And disclaimer, I’m all for babies drinking mama’s milk. That makes sense. That’s how we’ve done it since the dawn of time. But after that… well… let’s take a peek:

Top 3 Arguments For Milk As A Part of a Well-Balanced Human Diet

  • Milk contains important fatty acids important

Sort of true. Dairy does. Including some milk products. But it really depends on the process. Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which arises as a metabolic by-product of rumen hydrogenation and which is found in foods of animal origin, has been proposed to possess potent health promoting properties, but much of this research has been conducted in experimental animals, not humans. [Read the full article here]

  • Milk is the best source of calcium

This is why mom made us drink calcium, right? Well, again, it’s sort of true. Stats show that calcium absorption from milk isn’t superior or inferior to any other source of calcium. [Get the full scoop and the abstract here]

  • Chocolate Milk is a great post-workout drink

Again, depends on who you talk to. Studies do show us that chocolate milk has resulted in higher mixed muscle postexercise muscle protein fractional synthetic rate with lower whole-body proteolysis and synthesis. In other words, yes, the human body can technically recover faster when  chocolate milk is used as a post-workout beverage as opposed to other drinks. [Get the insider on the chocolate milk study here]

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Top 3 Arguments Against Milk As A Part of a Well-Balanced Human Diet

  • Milk will make you fat

True. Mostly, anyway. There’s a much higher ratio of protein enzymes in cows milk and studies show in early childhood a link between feeding cow milk formula and childhood obesity. Makes sense though, a baby cow grows 4x it’s birth size in the first year. [Read the article here]

  • Milk will make you sick

Again, mostly true. Known as one of Paul Chek’s 4 “White Devils” (Sugar, flour and table salt are the other three for those keeping score at home…) cows milk has an enzyme that isn’t broken down well by a lot of human’s digestive system. It has a lot to do with where you grow up though. If you’re exposed to dairy at a young age, your body will tend to build up an enzyme that can process the lactose. That’s why North Americans have a bit more tolerance to dairy than other populations that aren’t exposed to it right away. Here’s a good explanation of this theory – Check it!

There was an interesting study of oriental subjects and milk digestion in the 60s where the results may or may not shock you… [Check the study out here]

  • Milk will kill you. Or at least cause cancer, heart disease and diabetes and is responsible for a host of other terrible things like cheering for the Oilers or the Leafs. Okay, I’m joking about that last one…well, kinda. 

Well. Sadly, this is a legit concern. Milk has been linked to some of the Here are some of the studies:

Milk & bladder cancer, ovarian cancer and prostate cancer

Milk and diabetes

Milk and heart disease

To sum it up, there’s some evidence that some forms of cancer, diabetes and heart disease are linked to milk consumption. There’s no conclusive evidence it’ll make you loco enough to start cheering for the leafs or the Oilers though…

In conclusion…

Both sides make fairly mild statements about whether or not you should keep dairy in th ediet or not. So, I’m going to take a stance. I like to think of it from a very practical standpoint.

We already discussed how milk is important to growth and development. We touched on the lifecycle of a cow. We haven’t mentioned the fact that humans are the only species in the animal kingdom that drink the growth nectar (milk) of another species well into adulthood, but that says it all right there.

The enzymes in cows milk are suitable for a cow, not a human. Babies should drink their mother’s milk, but after the initial year or so I truly don’t believe that it’s a necessary part of that child’s development. Humans should drink more water. The sugar that is packed in milk is dangerous. Lifestyle concerns have to be addressed when obesity is at such a peak…

So in case you haven’t guessed my stance yet.. no, I don’t believe humans should drink milk. There are plenty of alternatives that won’t promote sickness or worse out there and it’s of my opinion that we happened to let an industry bully us into thinking that we needed something for good strong bones. How about broccoli? Calcium all over. Vitamin D? Well, eat a nice balanced diet of fresh fruits, protein, vegetables and a host of whole foods and we’ve got it made. Milk is unnecessary.

Mooooo-ve on over dairy, we don’t need you any longer.

Thanks for takin’ a rip through this with me.

Ciao,

M

Xo

Ahhh. I know it’s out of schedule for me, but I JUST HAD TO TELL YOU!

My first episode is up. And damn, that was a thrill. I got over my fear of talking to myself in a room and just let things subconsciously flow. Check it out below.

Episode 1 “Thoughts + Action = Reality”

Here’s what we have on the PPLSKLZ Radio feature I’ve dubbed “The Symposium”:

Expect a new topic that’ll keep you a “dope soul” every Monday night.

Then, you can also expect every second Thursday starting up in February a new guest in studio. Not just anyone. These are individuals that are pure magic. I will be hosting athletes, musicians, entrepreneurs, artists and anyone else that is next level shit. These people light me up and inspire the room they’re in to a totally different world. These are true rock stars and my aim is to bring to the forefront these inspiring stories of adversity, challenge and success so we can have a collective of badassery and solid PPLSKLZ.

Again, here’s the pilot…

Episode 1 “Thoughts + Action = Reality”

Check it out! Let me know if you have any particular topics you’d like to discuss or if you have any impactful people in your life that I can get on the show to help others become better humans.

Use the form below or just tag me on social media @coach_schwartzy