Eat Train Prosper

10 Exercises for the Rest of Your Life | ETP#143

February 06, 2024 Aaron Straker | Bryan Boorstein
Eat Train Prosper
10 Exercises for the Rest of Your Life | ETP#143
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

If you could only do 10 exercises for the rest of your life, which would you choose? That is the question we have been tasked with answering today. What’s cool is we landed on many of the same exercises OR very slight variations based on our individual preferences. 10 exercises to stay as jacked as possible for as long as possible. Here we go!

0:00 - Life/episode updates 
23:39 - If you could only do 10 exercises for the rest of your life, what would you choose?
25:21 - The first exercise that Bryan and Aaron both agreed on
26:35 - Now, on to squats
29:50 - Hitting those hamstrings
34:45 - Movements for your chest
39:29 - Back training
44:57 - Another exercise to add
49:28 - The second exercise that Bryan and Aaron both agreed on 
51:34 - No argument on this one exercise
52:39 - Next, on to cable curls
56:56 - The final movement

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What's up guys, happy Tuesday. Welcome back to Eat, Train, Prosper. Today is episode 143, 10 exercises for the rest of your life. So this was a question posed in last week's January Q&A episode. And what's funny is actually I dug up some old page in my Notion. I had put this together literally in like, maybe July of last year, because I wanted to make like a. an Instagram post about it that I never did, but fortunately I had those notes and revisited them and then they became, I guess, the draft for what I was going to use, which ended up being pretty similar to what Brian has in here. So I guess you could say great minds think alike per se, but before we get into the nuts and bolts of today's episode, as always, Brian, can you give us some updates, please? Yeah, of course, before I do though, how close is your current version of your 10 to the draft that you created last year? extremely like 9, 7 out of 10. Okay, solid. Cool, well I'm excited to get into that. For updates real quick, I have a few. So first is day 30 of my abstinence update, and I feel good. I can't say with any conviction that I feel way better than I did when I was consuming weed, and I think that that's been a bit of a surprise to me. I think that from everything that I read in the Dopamine Nation book and from talking to others, who've gone through similar experiences. I expected there to be something between day 20 and 30 where something kinda clicked and I was like, oh man, life is way better, not high. I was just expecting it and it just never came. Part of me wonders if maybe I need to wait longer, like maybe I need to go 90 days to have that. Or is that just gonna be a facade of the mind where I just become further and further away from consuming and suddenly I don't really remember what it was even like to consume anymore? So anyway, the whole thing is a bit of a mindfuck, but that's kind of been my big surprise, is just that I expected to reach a point where I didn't want to go back to consuming and I thought life was drastically improved. And the opposite is sort of true, where I feel like there's still certain circumstantial circumstances. in which I would love to consume. And I wonder in some ways if that means that I was using it as I thought I was, more as a life enhancement and less as a crutch. So anyway, a number of thoughts floating through my mind. I've been journaling this whole experience daily. So I'm gonna be able to reflect on that and hopefully have some more concise thoughts on it down the road. But my plan as of day 31 or after day 31, uh, is to probably go back to consuming two to three times a week, which I mentioned on last episode as well. So, um, I'm thinking like a Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday type thing, like a mid week, Hey, it's hump day. You know, maybe I'll have an edible at night and then, uh, you know, weekends, if I want to do something, you know, or do go into a movie, listening to music, seeing a sporting event, whatever it is. Um, so anyway, I think I'll have a much more kind of mild approach to it, but, um, that's more or less the day 30 update there. Anything to say there before I move on? I mean, yes, but nothing of like, I would say extreme value. I was curious to see if this is going to be like, Brian's done, you know, with marijuana for... two years, five years, 20 years, something like that. The 30 day thing, it's interesting. Maybe it isn't long enough or maybe you are right. Maybe you've always, maybe not always, but you have a very, let's call it, healthy relationship with it. It's just the thing. Like, hey, it's Wednesday night, the kids are in bed, like I have all my shit done. I'm a responsible adult that pays his bills and is successful, has a great family. I'm gonna get a little bit high now. I think that is a very appropriate use of it. So I think that is interesting. I think it's an interesting conclusion. And yeah, I don't know if it would just like, wife would just automatically get better at like day 60 or something like that. I would say, I would doubt it if you really pushed me to make a decision. Yeah, that's kind of how I feel too. Cool. Second update. So this is a cardio update. You guys have heard me talk about how I've been coached over the fall with Dr. Mike T. Nelson. He has been awesome. He really transformed my understanding or my ability to execute VO2 max style intervals. And that would be that range of like, call it four to eight minutes of all out effort. Um, and as I explained on prior episodes, I, uh, improved my 2k row time, which is a pretty good exemplification of VO two max power from basically what started at seven 25 ish before he and I were working together and then, um, down to seven 14 and then down eventually to seven Oh three. And so that all happened within basically a two, two and a half month period, huge improvement. 703 is a 296 watt average for seven minutes, which is 3.5 watts per kilo. I just did the math, it's like exactly 3.5 watts per kilo, which is pretty wild. Never expected that to happen. But with all of that, I think one of the reflections I had through these 30 days of marijuana abstinence is first off that I didn't feel like doing cardio during that period of time. So I feel like a lot of... the adaptations that Mike and I were working on had begun to slip a little bit. And I just don't have the desire to do more VO2 max training. And that is why Mike and I were working together. He offered to coach me for free. And so I also had this sense of feeling like I was going to be letting him down. And initially last week I wrote him an email and was like, hey, I think I really want to work on my longer endurance. again, because, you know, bike racing in the three to four hour time domain is kind of what I'm targeting. And then I reflected on that further, and I just felt really bad having him coach me for free when I'm working on something that wasn't really in our initial terms of agreement. You know, he wanted to work on my VO2 max, and he's not there to coach me on three to four hour time domain bike racing. And so a few days ago, after really having a lot of internal turmoil about this. I wrote him an email and basically thanked him for everything, expressed my extreme gratitude and appreciation for everything that he did. Let him know that I think next fall, I wanna come back and actually pay him and do this the right way so that I don't feel like I'm freeloading. But for the time being, I kinda wanna take back over my cardio programming and start working on some more of this longer endurance stuff. Maybe not. in the immediate because we're still in the winter and who knows how the weather is going to be. But I do want to focus on that. I want to do zone two sessions that are 60 to 90 plus minutes. I want to do some VO two max intervals that have me climbing hills on a bike and not sitting inside on a rower. And so all of that said, I ended the current iteration of my work with Mike. And hopefully next fall, I'll come back to him with a little bit of renewed vigor to do some more of this kind of rowing V02 max type stuff. But for now, this is the route I'm going. And this is gonna have some downstream ramifications on my training overall, because as I get into more of this longer endurance work, I'm going to be cutting back on my lifting. I just started this, you know, intelligent bro split where I'm training six days a week. So I do not intend on actually implementing these long endurance workouts until I finish this 12 to 15 week cycle of my current programming. So we're looking at, you know, mid to late March. Like I have a trip to Costa Rica in the end of March. So my guess is that this is probably gonna start in early April and I'll be dialing back my weightlifting and stuff like that. So I'll keep everybody updated on kind of the way that goes, but for the next, you know, two months or so. still going to be chugging along on the Intelligent Bro split and really enjoying my training thus far. With that said, I do have my Old Man Winter bike race coming up this Sunday. So I guess by the time this episode airs, I will have already done it. This was kind of just a thing I'm doing with friends. It's not really a competitive race that I've been training for or anything like that. It's a 30 mile winter race. And as you'd expect in the winter in Colorado, it is supposed to be 38 degrees and snowing on Sunday. So I don't expect to be sending any PRs or anything. It'll just kind of be like, hey, let's get through these 30 miles and survive. So yeah, that's my cardio update. I do have one more, but let me stop talking for a second and kick it over to Aaron for a little bit. I did have a kind of a joke. How bad do you think you're gonna get Fran Lung doing this old man bike race on Sunday? Yeah, I mean, I don't have because I'm not trained for it. And it I think I'm going to mostly be doing it in zone two, zone three, I don't think I'm going to be doing a ton of zone four, zone five in it because 30 miles is 15 miles longer than I've gone in the last three months. Like literally, since my bike race in October, I haven't done a bike ride over 15 or 16 miles. And now I'm supposed to do 30. And on top of that, in these awful conditions. I've ridden in conditions like this occasionally just to kind of test it out. And I'm riding at 10, 11 miles per hour. So like we're if it's really bad conditions, it could take me almost three hours to do that this 30 mile race in the snow. So it's much more of like a zone to effort than it is a Fran long like kill yourself kind of effort. I run cold. I am always cold. So I My biggest concern is how I'm gonna dress for this because I know I'm gonna heat up. So like, do I wanna be in like a bundled up winter jacket with like a winter cap when I start? Or do I want to like be cold for the first 30 minutes and then expect that I'm gonna warm up? And then what if I don't warm up? I mean, the whole thing is a bit of a mindfuck, but I am looking forward to the challenge and stepping outside of my comfort zone. Yeah, that is cool. Well, I'm excited to hear more about that next week. The first update, which I alluded to a little bit last week, we had the launch of the undefeated nutrition, cream of rice. Things are moving significantly faster than I expected and demand is quite good and quite high. So that's just a very cool, fun project. We've had requests from... at least three different countries, two of which we had to turn down just because it doesn't really make logistical sense, but more is coming on the development of that, and I think it's very cool. And the note that I have here, it's a fun new challenge, right? I'm in the driver's seat of it, just figuring shit out, and I love that. Like we had a proof of concept. What do people think? People love it, okay, cool, now we take this next step. Who are suppliers for that? Where can we reach out to for that? And it's just like facilitating those sorts of things, which I feel very equipped to handle now from like my, I'm years deep into entrepreneurship and so much of shit figuring out from like the coaching space and stuff. So it feels good to be like confident. in the unknown, as opposed to where, you know, for like the years with coaching, I was extremely unconfident in the unknown and kind of just get my ass kicked doing things where this time it feels like there will be less ass kicking. Let's put it that way. very cool, man. Very, very happy to hear that the product has had such a positive launch. Yeah, and then the next one is my blood work is back. I will cover in more depth on a following episode, but things were interesting to say the least. And I will share with everyone that I am so, so glad I took the last year to really challenge some existing beliefs in those sorts of things, because I have come out of this, I wouldn't say with a new outlook, but I have. there's things that I thought to be truths, right? Like unequivocal truths, and I have experienced different. So what I will cover is a little bit, I expected on my labs, right? I expected... testosterone to be like in the dumps. I expected cortisol to be high. What else was I looking for? I expected there was like two other things that I wanted to look for that I probably can't remember off the top of my head, and that's not the case. I had the highest free and total testosterone I've ever had come back on this test, and that is after six months of dieting, six straight months of every single set taken to failure and past failure. in sub 8% body fat. And I was, I don't have an answer for it, so please don't ask, because I don't have one. But from everything that I had seen and had been shown, those things should not be the case. And you were having subjective signs of potentially low testosterone too, weren't you? The biggest one, energy levels, yes. Sex drive, completely gone. Those were the biggest ones, but like training performance and all that stuff was still adequate all things considered, yeah. Yeah, I mean, I feel like you get a lot of people with low-ish testosterone, and training performance is totally fine. So that doesn't super surprise me. The libido and energy ones, I do find interesting, because those are usually the ones that will correlate with testosterone, especially free testosterone. So that's really interesting. I was actually listening to Makoni and Steve Hall and Nunez. They just did a podcast together, a round table. And... I don't, this is now from Dave who was, isn't sure even about the stat, but he was saying on that episode that he read somewhere that the average testosterone level of NFL players was somewhere between 300 and 400. And so all of that just kind of falls in line with the fact that testosterone doesn't really seem to correlate with performance all that much. And those guys are like big muscular humans. And so it, yeah, it just. I don't know, the testosterone thing is just weird. Like I think the libido and the energy are much more significant subjective variables associated with testosterone than performance in the gym or performance in sport or something along those lines. So that is really interesting. I am super excited to dig in to your blood work. And I do think that hopefully we can do this next episode because I know there's a number of people in the internet lands that are also excited to kind of get this update as well. Yep, and then do you wanna give your last update or do you want me to go first? Um, so the last update shouldn't be too long here. I, uh, I mentioned a number of months ago, something called a bolt test. It's a body oxygen level test B O L T. And, um, I was reintroduced to this. I'd kind of forgotten about it after I mentioned it a few months ago, but I was reintroduced to it on a podcast. I was listening to last week with a Patrick McKee, McKee and me. M-C-K-E-O-W-N. He is the founder of the Oxygen Advantage, which is like a breathing and oxygen system for endurance athletes. And essentially what the Bolt Test is, is it's a way to assess your body's breathing mechanics, how good your body is at dealing with CO2. And so like when you breathe in, you're breathing in oxygen, and then when you exhale, you're exhaling CO2. And people that are really good endurance athletes have a higher CO2 tolerance. So they're able to deal with let—they're basically able to breathe slower during cardiovascular exercise, which allows them to be more efficient. So the Bolt Test, essentially what it is, is it has you take in a breath through your nose and then a breath out through your nose. out through your nose, you pinch your nose, and you hold your breath. So basically, it's a breath hold after an exhale. Apparently, according to Patrick McKeon, the elite athletes are able to do that for 40 seconds, and the minimum score to not have dysfunctional breathing is 25 seconds. And it's not supposed to even be as long as you can do it until you feel like you can't do it anymore. You're supposed to stop the breath hold when you feel. respiratory adjustments occurring. And if you ever do it, you'll feel this. Like you'll feel your diaphragm start to kind of like oscillate or you'll feel the need to swallow or you'll feel something that feels abnormal. And that's when you're supposed to stop the test. So I tried this and the first time I did it, I literally was feeling diaphragmatic adjustments at the 13, 14, 15 second mark. And... I was pretty depressed because he says 25 seconds is the minimum for, you know, not having dysfunctional breathing. But then he also discussed how the body is really adaptable to CO2 tolerance. And he has some breathing exercises that you can do. But he basically was like, just do the bolt test a lot. And if you do it a lot, you'll increase your adaptation to CO2 tolerance. So of course, me, obsessive Brian that I am, I've been doing the bolt tests like 20 to 30 times a day now. uh, since I, since I heard about it, uh, like a week ago. And, uh, I've been able to increase my Bolt score from sub 15 seconds all the way up to 25, 26, 27 seconds in the last two mornings. So you are supposed to do it in the morning. And I do find that the morning it's significantly higher than it is later in the day, like by five seconds or so. So I'm now getting about 22 seconds in the afternoon or 27 seconds in the morning. But I just, it's something that's very interesting to me. I love these types of things that assess things like different abilities to be a good breather, especially because I've gone through periods of my life in the earlier stages where I was a mouth breather and I've talked about how I mouth tape at night and I've been doing that for two years and I've really been working on nasal breathing. So this has been just another one of those challenges. And... Yeah, anyone that wants to try it, you know, either look it up online, but remember it's a breath in through the nose, breath out through the nose, pinch the nose. When you feel diaphragmatic adjustments or the desire to swallow, that's the end of your test. See where you land. And yeah, that's all I really got. Cool, so my final update is Erin has officially started TRT. So my Natty card is gone now. It's officially been punched, gone. I am very, very happy with how the last year kind of ended. I have a Instagram post that I'll put together that's gonna have my lab work. The... It wasn't the night before the labs. It was two nights before the labs. Jenny took photos of me like at the end of the day, full of food and those are gonna be like my, this is the Natty physique, you know, sort of thing. I'm very, very proud of them. And I don't think I could be happier with the time I put into it, the year I spent developing that final kind of natty form of Aaron. I'm quite pleased with it. I'm quite pleased with where I'm at then. Now starting TRT and officially just like on the episode, I guess two episodes ago, wanted to be very, very transparent about it and officially have started. Wow, so when was the first injection? I'm a week in, eight days in, something like that. So not very, very recent. There has been, today was very like, I felt a kind of like an acute uptake and like drive and motivation of like. wanting to just get shit done, like wanting to get up, get to the computer as early as possible, like start getting through my check-ins, getting things going. So it's like potentially slightly, the only thing I will say is there was a training day. The training day actually is where I noticed it first, where I just added like four reps to a top set. I'm like, what the fuck? And the... I will say I was a bit disappointed. I mean, apparently from everything I've read, like I should not really be feeling anything. It might be placebo, you know, that sort of things, but I'd always kind of had this idea in my head, like how it's gonna feel, you know? And it didn't feel any different except like I had to double check my notes and be like, there's no way I did that weight last week. And then I'm like looking at my notes and I'm like, I did. I was like, holy shit. I went from like seven to 11 reps. So I was like, oh wow, okay, yeah. And it's like, didn't feel any different except like the weight just kept moving when normally it wouldn't. So I would say I was a bit disappointed as I thought they're kind of like you said with, with the marijuana, you thought there would be this like feeling, right? There wasn't, it's just the weight just kept moving. Yeah. twice a week injections? Uh, three times a week right now. And that was for a couple reasons, just to get my workflow down of the process of it, getting comfortable with administering and those sorts of things. And I didn't want to have to like inject a full like, uh, half a CC and things like that. So I wanted to just get experience with that. And that's another thing where I thought it would be different. I mean, it's quite small. It's like literally the tip of my pinky. Like that, it's very, very small. So yeah, three times per week right now. That's cool. Yeah, I've heard that the more frequent you do it, the better, because if you do it once a week, you have this weird drop off at the end of the week or whatever. you get more stable levels through more frequent administration. and then we'll move on. Any improvement in sleep yet? No, no difference there. It's gotten back to a, it was a little bit rocky when we talked about it, and now I'd say it's pretty. Oh, and it got a little bit rocky, like at the, you know, as I was climbing out of the diet and now things are pretty decent. Like I would say an eight out of 10, which for me historically in my life is very good. And like I've talked about controlling the environment is huge, sound is, it's quiet, it's very, very cold, it's dark and that's, those are the big three for me. Yep. That all sounds great. Excited to hear more updates as, as the process goes. Yeah. Okay. So let's dive in 10 exercises for the rest of your life. And from the, I guess we never talked about the angle, like we would say, um, physique improvement, physique management, trying to make, maintain the gains that we've currently built that sort of thing. We're probably not going to get into like for strength or sport performance or anything like that. It's just, Hey, Aaron and Brian, you guys like to train in these ways for general physique and enjoyment. You have 10 exercises that you can do for the rest of your life. What are they? And this is the list that we have. So do you wanna kind of kick us off and explain how we're gonna run through this one, Brian? Yeah. So one of the things Aaron and I were discussing on Instagram before this episode was do we want to state like specific brands of machines? And ultimately we decided not to because we think that A, I, we don't know every brand that's out there. We haven't tried every brand. We couldn't possibly be able to say this is the best, but the main reason is, is because it makes this list much more accessible to you guys and applicable. And you can. to think about it, how you would implement it for your own training. If we just talk about movements and don't specifically say it has to be this like prime loaded specific, you know, super inclined press machine with different resistance profiles and all that stuff. So we're just gonna keep it a little bit more basic. And yeah, that's really the decision-making process here. When we went through the list, we started with legs. So I think we'll just go exercise by exercise and kind of talk about why we chose the one that we chose and we'll move on to the next one. So one that we both agreed on, number one to start was leg extension. And I don't think this is any surprise because you have to be able to train the Rec Fem. There was a small piece of me that debated doing a sissy squat instead of a leg extension because it's lengthened overloaded. However, my thought process here was, this is for the rest of my life. And I could see a situation in 20 years or 10 or 30 in which my knees are like, nope, you're not gonna be sissy squatting anymore. And so ultimately I decided to go with the more stable one that trains the RecFEM, and then also realizing that there's subsequent movements in the program that will train a more lengthened range for the quads overall. So. Uh, yeah, leg extension machine is kind of a no brainer. Uh, what are your thoughts there? Yeah, I mean that was the first on my list as well. It's a movement pattern where there's not many exercises that you can really choose and it's a staple, I would say. So it's pretty straightforward in that manner for me. Yeah. So second exercise, I oscillated back and forth and I deleted and re-put in and deleted and re-put in trying to decide between hack squat and pendulum squat. And I still don't know if I love my decision. I chose pendulum and Aaron chose hack squat and I still feel like there's a part of me that maybe would choose hack squat. And so I think if I explain my rationale for why I chose pendulum, It's because I feel at least on the number of pendulum squats that I've tried in my life, which are maybe five or six different brands, every single one has allowed me to get full range of motion. And I feel like with hack squat, it is much more variable than that. I actually think that the majority of hack squats that I've been on, I am cut in my range of motion. My depth is not as deep as I would like to go. And so for that reason specifically, I pushed myself to the Pendulum and I'm still not entirely sure. Because I do think if I were to know that I was gonna have a really great hack squat machine, I just think it provides you more options of foot placement and movement and kind of different body parts stimulus. Whereas the Pendulum is just kind of a one trick pony. But... At the end of the day, the range of motion was my decision-making criteria. So yeah, what are your thoughts? That's a very, very good point to bring up. I was thinking, I approach this from like a perfect world, like the best movement patterns I've ever felt, you know, and that's why I went with the hack squat. I just feel a lot more powerful. I feel like I'm able to generate force better on a hack squat as opposed to the pendulum, which is the reason that I went with that, but I will 100% agree with you. I would say if you were to pick like the average hack squat versus the average pendulum, the... average for the range of motion and in the The the range really built into the machine on the pendulum on average is better than the hack squad. I would say 60% of hack squats have been on have been kind of shit and I'm rigging it up in one way or another Whereas I don't really find I think that happened to me once actually I'm not gonna lie The only pendulum I've ever been on that it's been like you this fucking sucks is the Watson one All other ones have been pretty decent. Yeah Yeah, I've never tried Watson, but everyone I've been on has been fine. Um, and so then the other reason I was kind of considering hack squat is because the pendulum, the way that it works on the arc and the way that it has knee extension and hip extension in there, it is a bit more of rec femme. And given that we have the leg extension, I feel like you don't really need the rec fem from the pendulum. So that was also part of my thought process and like, ah, do I wanna go with the hack squat? But yeah, I mean, at the end of the day, the range of motion piece and just the general the general range of effectiveness of the machine across the board. Like we said, I just felt like pendulum was the right call, but you really can't go wrong with either one. Um, okay. So moving on here, hamstrings. I actually struggled with this and not in the same way that Erin did. So I chose an RDL and Erin chose a SLDL, meaning basically an RDL from the floor. I'll explain my, my rationale in a second. I actually had a few moments of thinking about putting in a seated leg curl and you did. Yeah. Um, original list, the seated ham curl. Yep. Nope, the seated ham curl instead. So why, I have my reason, why did you, why would you think of seated leg curl instead of a hip hinge or vice versa? Why I ultimately, I would say part of it was like, if you have 10 exercises for life, I think like there's, I initially brought in this like an enjoyment factor, right? Like, let's say, for example, a good morning is like objectively the best hip hinge for hamstrings and stuff. I fucking hate doing good mornings, right? So I would never put that in my list, even if it was the best, because I'd be miserable doing them all the time. So there was that, I... enjoy a seated leg curl significantly more than the, than RDL or an SLDL. The reason I ultimately decided on the SLDL is, I feel like it's the only really heavy kind of compound that has a much broader use case than just the hamstrings, right? We're getting the spinal erector development. You're even gonna get some mid back development just because isometrically holding onto that much weight. You're gonna get some traps. forearms, the core bracing. There is a more carryover for other muscle groups from using an SLDL that you wouldn't get from the seated leg curl. So that was my ultimate decision maker. That was actually my decision maker too. And I think all those things you mentioned, you also get from the RDL. And so the reason that I went with RDL instead of SLDL, and I also was torn on that too. But the main reason I did that is because of all the low back tweaks that I've had in my life, they've all been from using too much range of motion in a hip hinge. And I feel like going to the ground for me with my anthropometrics or whatever is just two inches too deep. Like, like I can do it at moderate weight or lightweight, but when I start putting, really pushing loading on a hip hinge, it's always when I tweak my back is because I'm going to the ground or I'm going too low. And so I think the RDL just gives me more freedom to go to the range of motion that feels appropriate for me and keeps me safe long-term. Yeah, go ahead. I love that and here's why. And I think we alluded to this in the beginning. There's gonna be these exercises where we have these slightly different variations in opinion and that's typically from our individual preferences in history, I have really long arms. So going to the floor for me, I'm not in a compromised position. I actually feel quite powerful in that starting position on the floor, which is probably the exact reason why we have that kind of difference in opinion. Yeah, 100%. I was gonna say that you had long arms, so that's a really good point to bring up. And then as far as the seated leg curl, a lot of the same reasons as you. So the seated leg curl gives you that stretch under load, like what you get from the RDL or the stiff legged deadlift. It also gives you knee flexion, which we won't have. If we don't include a seated leg curl, then now we're basically omitting knee flexion as... an important piece of our program. And so that was really tough for me too. And then also the piece that you mentioned about, you know, the stability of being able to, the enjoyment of course, but the stability of being able to take the seated leg curl close to failure with really minimal or no risk of injury. That's huge. And so, man, it was a really, really tough decision for me and I actually wouldn't blame anyone if they did. choose a seated leg curl. I do think that without this was really probably my final decision making piece was that without the hip hinge, there is nothing in the program for the spinal erectors because we're doing a pendulum or a hack squat where the back is supported. We're not doing a free weight back squat. And if we had a seated leg curl in there, there just isn't anything else in there at all that trains the spinal erectors in any capacity. And I think that that's just such an important muscle group to be able to stay strong and stable with as you get older in life. That was ultimately, I think, the final piece for me. Yeah, very good point. All right, so this next one we disagree on, but I also almost chose a similar one to what you're choosing. So this is our chest movement. And I went with a low incline dumbbell bench press, and you went with an upright cable chest press, slight incline. So we both went kind of low incline, but yours is a cable chest press machine. Mine's a dumbbell bench. I assume you would want yours to be converging. because that was... Uh, so actually what I, the way that I had it thought in again, maybe I chose a poor naming convention, like in a functional trainer with like an adjustable bench. Oh, I was thinking you were thinking like a hammer strength chest press machine where you're, um, where you're pressing like against more stability. So you're saying with cables Yeah, interesting I obviously use cable chest pressing a lot because I have my functional trainer and that I don't have a chest press machine So that's the only way that I can chest press And I love it. I do I really do. I think there's a stability concern slightly with the cables, something you can get better at. And I've gotten better over the years, but I do find a little wobbly at times, especially as I'm getting close to failure. Um, and, uh, so that was, that was part of the decision-making process. And then I think I just romanticize the shit out of inclined dumbbell bench press because it was a staple of my programming for so many years. In fact, I think I used the incline dumbbell bench press in every single training cycle I used from the age of 18 to 37. Like it's really only in the last three or four years that I've started using cables or prioritizing more machines. And I still do incline dumbbell bench in my program right now. It's just different than the way I was doing it before, but there've been now periods of time where I haven't done it. but it just, it was so productive for me for so many years that I just, I really struggled to move away from it. So what's your kind of rationale for going with that cable chest press and a functional trainer? That's just the best chest stimulus I've ever gotten. And I've reproduced that like numerous, numerous times. And I've thought like, okay, I gotta figure out how do I like recreate this stimulus on a different machine and stuff. And I think it's a little bit of like the freedom of the path because you are on the cables, like nothing's locking you in a fixed path. There is a slight balance component to it because the cables like you mentioned can get a little bit wobbly, but not like a. Not like a chest, a what the fuck you call it. Inclined dumbbell press. So there's that. I don't know, it's just the best stimulus I've ever gotten. And actually a very short aside, for the first time in my life, I... Uh. I was doing a, it was low inclined dumbbell, inclined press and the dumbbell started like caving in on me. I was going to failure and I dropped it and hit myself in the face with the dumbbell for the first time in my life. Yeah, I for, I don't know, like eight days ago or something like that. Fortunately, I was able to like get my, you know, chin up a little bit. So it just like clipped me on the side of the chin, but like I literally just dropped the dumbbell on my face. Yeah. Yeah, so I've had similar situations occur and instead of it drifting in, it actually would drift out. And so I'd be like, well, there it goes. And I would just kind of like drop it and then it would fall to the ground. So I mean, that is a really good point. I think if I'm being honest, part of my decision-making process also had to do with the dumbbell press being kind of like a lengthened partial in its own right. In that, you know, if the chest. gets short when we ad duct and the arm comes across the body. There isn't actually even a short position to an inclined dumbbell press. It is length and partial, even if you do a full range of motion rep. And so I like the more tension under stretch. The cable is great, too, because you kind of get both. You get the tension under stretch and then you also get the contraction piece and you can ad duct the arm across the body. So, man, maybe you've kind of convinced me here. I. I, another one of these where I feel like you can't go wrong in either one. But yeah, I feel like I may swap over to the cables because I also think sustainably long-term, you're looking at better biomechanics and shoulder health and stuff like that potentially with the cables too. So yeah, I'll probably change my answer there. Okay. The next one, we have two back movements. And I think that it's awesome that we both chose two back movements. It doesn't surprise me because we're both back guys. We love back. And I do think it's important to have two back movements. So I feel like we can kind of talk about them together instead of separately. But what I kind of, okay, first thing I want to say about back training or lat training, however you want to look at that, is that people often will call it a row or a pull down and they use a row to discuss. horizontal pull line and they use a pull down to discuss a vertical pull line. But it's important to understand that it's just a spectrum. Like, what do you call it if it's in the middle and your arm's at like a 45 degree angle up, right? Is that a pull down or is that a row? Is that a high row? Is that a low pull down? So I don't... a row down. Yeah, yeah, hell yeah. So... I don't love the terminology of pull down and row because it is just a spectrum of what angle you're pulling on and then what part of the back you wanna target as a result of the angle that you're pulling on. And so that's the first kind of caveat that I wanna get out of the way here. But my first movement is what N1 would originally have called a lumbar lat pull, which would be arms slightly above parallel. They've recently kind of adjusted their approach to this where now lumbar is a bit higher up. Like it would be the, the iliac, which is the low lat, they now have you almost directly overhead. Uh, whereas for lumbar, they have you kind of where iliac used to be, which is arm at 45 to 60 degrees. Um, so I'm calling it lumbar. It's probably more of like a 45 degree arm position. So that might be like a hybrid thoracic. Lumbar mix, but I really love this movement that I do at home. I gets the best stimulus I've ever gotten it's one arm at a time Which gives you the freedom to ad duct across the body and get the full stretch of the lat which you can't do if you're Doing a bilateral movement. So what I do is I set up in my functional trainer I can set the height at whatever height I want it to be I Kneel on the bench with one leg. So say I'm using my right arm. I'll use my left knee on the bench I'll brace against the bench with my left hand, and then I'll pull with my right arm while my right leg is planted. And the stability is insane. The stimulus is also insane. And it's literally my favorite back movement that I've ever done. And the setup is easy too. So like one of the things that I don't love about my Iliac pull down at home is that I have to strap in with a seatbelt. and I have to weigh the bench down because everything's pulling me from above. But when I do this lumbar movement, I barely even need to weigh the bench down at all because it's much more of a horizontal or slightly elevated above horizontal line of pull. And I don't have to wear a seatbelt because I'm doing it one arm and I have the other arm bracing for stability. Um, and so that is my first back movement. What do you have for yours? So with this, I have the chest supported bilateral pulldown, which is, you know, like Brian said, it's not a straight vertical pulldown, maybe a little bit slightly more elevated than the 45, but chest is against an adjustable bench or the short bench using like a neutral grip, you know, chest supported and kind of like a high row, maybe a high row from with a cable standpoint. Now here's the thing, I went back and forth on this one hard. because the movement that you just described, I love. We actually did that yesterday, we trained back, and I love that movement. It is one of the best lat stimuluses I feel like you can provide. The reason I kind of didn't go with it is, more so I guess from a fear standpoint, that maybe it's a little bit too localized of a movement, whereas the high row is a little bit going to be a little bit more of a... shotgun approach and because we're limited in exercises. So full transparency, that was a little bit of a fear decision. But I would say from an enjoyment standpoint, I love that movement much more so than the bilateral chest supported pull down. But my, I guess I could say, conservative-esque nature went with something that would might have a grander applicability. Yeah, that's fair. I wonder how much freedom we have in variation on our movement. So what I mean by that is, like, when I do this movement, I stop at my elbow at midline, because it's a lumbar, lat movement or whatever. But what if I just let my elbow come all the way back and I went into scap rotation? It's the same fucking movement setup and everything. Like, am I allowed to do that, or am I now doing a different movement, and therefore it's not part of my 10, you know? So this is where I think it gets a little bit blurred, because if you then were to take your arm and go into scap retraction, now you've got more of the shotgun approach with that movement where it can be more lat specific or it can be more like upper back and rotational specific. So yeah, I don't know the answer to that. I don't think we need to clarify, but if there's more freedom there, then yeah, that movement becomes a little bit more widely applicable. All right, moving on to the second movement. I put a wide-ish pull-down with D handles. And so this would be like, think about maybe just outside shoulder width. So not quite as wide as you would be if you were in like a standard old school lap pull-down where your hands are super wide on a straight bar. maybe like slightly inside of that, like right before the bar starts to break or turn. You know how in the straight bar, it has that part of it where it begins to turn down? I would probably put the D handles on that bar right at the point where it begins to turn down. So it's slightly outside shoulder width. And then I like the D handles because my plan is to do this more for like upper back and rear delts. So I want to keep kind of a 45 degree angle. on my hands and on my elbow position as I pull down. And then I would be doing this in the lap pull down setup with the thigh pads. And that's something I don't have access to in my home gym. So I'm now in wishful thinking land or Brian joins a commercial gym land or upgrades his home gym. But either way, that would be my other movement because the first movement I have is more of a horizontal line of pull. and it's single arm, which allows me that ability to ad duct. Like I mentioned, the second movement is a bit wider, meaning it's kind of like a wide to narrow line of pull. So you're not going to be able to get that same stretch across the body that you can get in the first movement. But because of the rotation of the hands and the elbow position, you're going to get a little bit more upper back and rear delt than you're going to in the more neutral grip lumbar pull from my first back exercise. So what do you got? Love it. So before I jump into mine, I have a little hack that we literally did these exercises, this exercise yesterday too. So like the two exercises you picked, we both did yesterday in training. One of the downsides of using the D handles and you're just looping around the straight bar is they can kind of slide around a little bit. If you just twist the D handles, it will like, they're not locking in there, but it will provide a little bit extra like friction. Mm-hmm. to the barbell or to the bar so they're not as prone to like sliding around. You literally just twist them and then put the pressure on them. So that I learned yesterday and I was like, this is so simple. I feel so dumb for never doing this. in reality, I think in a perfect world, what I would do is I would have a prime spreader bar and then I would use the prime rotate handles. So then they're locked in place. You don't have to worry about it. You can use them as D handles and turn your hand wherever you want. You don't have to worry about straps or VersaGrips or anything like that. So the D handle over the straight bar is a hack, so to speak. The perfect world is the spreader bar with the prime rotate handles and... It's the same movement, it's just much more comfortable. Yep. And what I love here is the movement. I chose, uh, a chest supported upper back row. In my mind, the Perfect World, it is the Prime, you know, chest supported seated row. I've used many different versions like Gym 80 makes a really, really good one that they both have rotational handles. I've used one that was an old pre-core or a Karyon setup as well where you can, you know, round the shoulders over the chest pad a little bit. There's degrees of freedom at the wrist. So you can use like a semi. semi pronated position and then we have a chest supported row. Now what I love here is Brian and I effectively chose two kind of identical movements. the one that I chose being chest supported, but the movement path is practically the same. With the way that you set it up, Brian, is you're leaned back a little bit, right, in that kind of scapular pulling motion, whereas mine is I'm a little bit more leaned forward with a chest supported, but still rowing pretty much in that same identical line of row, per se. Yeah, yeah, no, totally. And we both had one movement that was vertical-ish and one movement that was horizontal-ish. So yeah, we pretty much... I mean, you can't go wrong if you find a vertical-ish movement and a horizontal-ish movement that you connect with and works well for you, and one of them has a more neutral grip and one of them has a more semi-pronated grip. You basically cover the entire back that way. All right. We got... four to go here. Yeah, we both chose the same one for number seven, which is our one kind of lateral delt slash shoulder movement. It's a behind the back dual cable lateral raise. Now this could be, it doesn't have to be dual. I was torn between dual or single arm. I think if I'm pushed, I'm actually gonna choose single arm because it allows you to get a little bit more of a stretch behind your body and allows you to line things up just a little bit better. You wrote a cuffed version of the above and yeah, mine's cuffed as well. I just don't wear the cuffs around my wrists. I grip the cuffs in my hand because I like a longer moment arm. And honestly, the moment arm increases three inches. It's not the end of the world, but I do enjoy holding the cuffs in my hand. So it is cuffed, but it's kind of gripped as well. I've heard Cass talk enough about how important it is to have that tactile reminder in your hand of gripping something. So to me, that makes sense over putting it on the wrist. Although I've done both and the stimulus that I feel like I'm getting from both is basically the same. So I can't say that personally, it would make that much of a difference to me. What do you think? Would you grip it? Would it be on your wrist? And are you doing single arm or dual? So I have you know the note that I put cuffed unilateral version. So yeah, I'm doing unilateral version What I actually do is I like to put the cuff kind of down around like the base of my wrist So like at my hand a little bit, you know, like over the palm. So I wear it like a little bit wider I don't make the cuff tight. But then what I also do is I will use a What the fuck are these things called a D handle in my hand? with it not attached to anything. So I like that. I don't like it in my hand, like free floating. I still want to grip on something, but all the weight is attached to pretty much like the base of my palm or wrist. And I don't wear it tight. I wear it loosely so I can get it a little bit wider around like my hand position. Yep. Totally. I like the D handle gripping without it actually being connected to the cable piece as well. That's also super solid. So no argument there. Um, moving on to our next movement, we both agreed on number eight, which is dips. My rationale for choosing dips here is that we have a slightly incline chest pressing movement. Um, in number four, where we both chose like an inclined cable chest press. So dips allow you to train more of the costal pack, which is going to be the lower pack region. And then also the dual benefit is that I'm not going to waste an entire movement in my 10 for the rest of my life on an isolation tricep exercise. And so dips give you incredible tricep stimulus. And based on the way you orient your body, you can lean forward and get a little more chest or you can stay a little more upright and get a little more tricep, but we're really talking about small margins here. Either way, you're going to get a ton of lower chest. You're going to get a ton of tricep and you're gonna get a bunch of front delt. So I feel very, very confident in dips. I think if I, like when I was going through this list, the one I had the most conviction about of all of them was dips and it was like no argument. I mean, everything you just said is verbatim, exactly how I felt. Yep. Number nine. So we both chose a bicep movement and I was actually unsure if I was gonna choose a bicep movement. I still to this moment am not entirely sure that choosing a bicep movement is absolutely necessary and part of me feels like, you know, I went the majority of my training career up until, well, all right, here, let's backtrack. I didn't train arms at all in the first three or four years. I only did compound movements. Then I got into max OT and bro split training in 2000. And I trained arms up until 2009. And then I didn't train arms at all between 2010 and 2016. Like literally no direct arm work. And then I started training them again after that. And I literally don't think I could say with any conviction that my arms were any better or any worse or had any noticeable change. from training them or not training them. And so I still feel conflicted about including a bicep movement in here, but I did and I'm gonna own it. So my bicep movement is a face-away cable curl and I am doing that with dual arm, single arm. I think if I was pushed, I would probably say single arm because it's gonna be a little bit easier on the shoulder joint and allow you to line things up. a little bit better. I like that the face away gives you the stretch. And so I noticed that yours is a unilateral cable bicep curl, but you put in parentheses facing the cables. So you're looking at more of a short overload bicep movement. So explain. I just find I can get a better stimulus out of it. And I guess I should say the way that I do it, I stand on a step so that at the lengthened, I'm not bottoming it out. So there is still some tension there. It's not going to be nearly as much as if you were facing away. I just find it's the best connection that I get to the bicep. I love the face-away cable curls, but it... I just can't say that I got like a very, very good stimulus on them. Um, and the, I just, it just works for me really, really well. I line it up. Well, I'm very strong in it. And that's another one, uh, that, that I think is it's just, it just makes sense. And it's kind of like a, Hey, do this for you. It's not broken. Like don't try and fix it sort of thing. So that's why I chose that exercise. Have you tried the face away cable curl with your tricep resting on like a preacher bench type setup? I have tried it with dumbbell, but never with, or no, that it's essentially a preacher curl. It's a unilateral preacher curl, pretty much, or no. Oh, facing away. think about how, you know, Cass has those, those little wings that go on the incline bench that kind of stick out. Have you seen those? So you can do a face away curl, but you can also have your tricep supported as you would in a preacher curl. So that's kind of what I'm envisioning. I've never, I don't, I've tried them. I don't have them. I don't own them. But, but that for sure, having that humorous supported there. and then doing the face away curl, you get the benefit of the stretch that you get from the preacher curl and you're so supported that you can really go to high, high elements of failure without feeling like your elbow is coming forward, which I think happens a lot as you approach failure in a face away curl. And one thing I'm so glad you put that up. One of the cues I give myself of why I like that, the cable, the unilateral one that I chose so much, I flare my lat and shove my elbow, my tricep into the lat. So I can use my lat as a little bit of a support there and like a haptic cueing of like keep this connection here and that helps prevent me from like, bringing the elbow forward there. Yep. do a similar thing by doing my face away curls on an incline bench and I pin my arm against the back of the incline bench. And so it would be way better if I had the little wings that pop out for sure. But without the wings, I think the, uh, the pinning of the arm against the bench provides that, like you said, kind of haptic sensation. So, um, cool final movement. And this is one where you actually went with Refused to train abs. No, that's wrong. I don't refuse to train abs. I just do them very rarely So I can't say that I think they're an important thing for me to train for the rest of my life because I literally haven't Made them a consistent part of my training for at least five years at this point so I Was conflicted here as well but with the whole body of work of the first nine movements I Thought it was important to have something explosive And this could be controversial. I could see people being like, well, if it's hypertrophy training, like what's the point, blah, blah. I actually think there is a little bit of hypertrophy benefit to doing something like I put, which would be a hang power snatch or a hang high pull. And that would be more in the region of upper trap and upper back. And you know, you and I did CrossFit for a number of years. And if there's one part of my body that I think is not. at the level that it was when we were cross fitting, it's probably my upper and mid traps from doing all the Olympic lifting. So I do think it has some applicability to hypertrophy, and I think it has applicability to longevity because being able to jump under load is going to increase just your body's resiliency over time. And so I actually feel pretty good about hang power snatch slash hang high pole. where you're starting with the bar at mid thigh or just above the knee, you're ramping up through hip extension, meaning you're also getting a little bit of that hamstring and glute activation in there as you get going. And then as you pull, you're getting the upper back and the traps in there. So I feel pretty good about that one. And you went with the ab wheel. Yeah. I kind of just had a placeholder, right? We covered pretty much the nine where we really agreed on things. I, and I was just like, yeah, okay, I'll put an AB. It was kind of like, do I do, do I do calves? No. Do I do abs? And I thought, what is the best bang for your buck that the AB wheel is going to be lengthened, you know, lengthened bias. You get the stretch, you get the contraction. That's, that's why I went with that one. I will take one little aside that if I, I wanted to say this and then we kind of moved on, if I didn't go with the bicep exercise, I would have went with weighted chin ups. Yeah, so that was my also my other consideration is we mean we already had two back movements But if you were to go with a weighted chin up, which was the one I was gonna choose as well instead of the bicep exercise You do get a ton of bicep stimulus, but it also gives you the dual benefit of getting More upper back and dealt and stuff like that So I fully am on board with you and I still feel like I said conflicted about the bicep movement and I definitely would Have gone with weighted chins as the replacement there as well Yeah, so I mean this was a very fun episode and I'm glad I finally got to use that document that I put together. I'm like I'm gonna use this at some point and then it just like fucked off into the depths of my notion. But this was very, very fun. I even had this idea around putting together a program together with this. Dude, when we went through this list, there's like a small part of me that almost wants to do this program, like these 10 exercises. And so I think what I'm gonna do is when I start ramping up cardio in the spring or whatever it is, I might just design a program around this. And it's probably gonna be a two times a week full body program, and it's probably gonna be. these 10 exercises with five on one day and five on another day. And honestly, I'm kind of excited by the prospect of putting into implementation this thing that we created here today. So yeah, it's cool, because when I get into the cardio, I always have this sense of, oh, I'm leaving gains on the table or training's gonna be so boring now because it's not my priority. And I feel like by doing this, it adds like this experimental approach to it. So I think I'm gonna like do a Instagram post about it. I'm gonna be like, these are the movements that we talked about on this episode and I'm gonna be implementing it in practice for the next four to six months, whatever it is. And, you know, see what happens. Yep, yeah, I think that could be really cool. Hopefully that comes to fruition. I would love to have some more conversations around that, but yeah, I think this was a really, really cool episode. I'm very glad we did it. So big ups to the question asker from last week who asked us this question because it's turned into a very, very cool episode. Anything else on the back end of this one you wanna add, Brian? Nah, dude. Yeah, next week we'll cover your blood work, I guess, and see what else comes up. Perfect. Sounds good. As always guys, thank you for listening. Brian and I will talk to you next week.

Life/episode updates
If you could only do 10 exercises for the rest of your life, what would you choose?
The first exercise that Bryan and Aaron both agreed on
Now, on to squats
Hitting those hamstrings
Movements for your chest
Back training
Another exercise to add
The second exercise that Bryan and Aaron both agreed on
No argument on this one exercise
Next, on to cable curls
The final movement