10 Things I Learned in 2010

I had a hard time titling this article. After all, I’m learning and growing as a fitness professional, business man and person every single day. How could I possible boil it down to just 10 things that I learned in 2010?

For the sake of the article, I’m going to keep this to fitness and dieting. If you’re interested in my business knowledge, let me know and I’ll be happy to share.

(Edit: Ok so I want just a little over my “10” limit. I also included things that I learned about business and life.)

In no particular order…

1) Counting calories is a lesson in failure. Knowing your macronutrients goal for each day and each meal is more powerful and more effective. That’s why I wrote Macronutrient Math Made Easy.

2) All that really matters is your personal goals. If you just want big arms and nice shoulders, then that’s all that matters because YOU want it. Don’t be swayed by the person, regardless of reputation or credentials, that tells you that you have to do 2 sets of legs for every set of shoulders. Chase YOUR personal goals. I’m just here to help.

3) Leg training doesn’t contribute to much upper body growth. Disagree? Here’s my article on it.

4) Everyone should be taking a Greens and a Reds powder. The more micronutrients that you can get in, the better.

5) Deadlifting is still my favorite movement for adding more muscle mass. I’ve been known to leave the gym after just a few sets of deadlifting after I progressed from week to week.

6) Progressing in the gym is the most IMPORTANT training method. You can super set, drop set and do any crazy technique that you want but by progressing each workout you force your body to get more results. Add either a rep every workout or a pound to every lift. From workout to workout, it helps.

7) If you’re feeling bloated or run down, remove all gluten from your diet for a few days. It does wonders. If you’re still feeling the same way, get rid of all grains for a few days.

8) Pre workout nutrition is vastly over rated.

9) Post workout high sugar nutrition recommendations are unhealthy and don’t lead to anymore muscle growth then healthier carb sources.

10) High dose fish oil can fix a variety of issues within your body. High dose fish oil can be great for reducing inflammation and joint pain and high blood sugar and cholesterol. Every day new research comes out to support my dosages of it. Just make sure that you use a high quality fish oil.

11) Get out of your comfort zone. I’ve learned some important training and diet tricks and tips from learning from other areas of fitness and nutrition that I never used to agree with.

12) 1 arm EZ bar preacher curls are the most underrated bicep exercise ever.

13) Looking at a body that you desire to have can be a very powerful motivating factor that helps you stick to your diet and excel in your workouts. More so then any pre workout powder.

14) Everyone’s body is different and responds to different training and diet protocols but that’s not an excuse being stuck in your ways. Thinking something works is different then it actually working or being a sound principal.

15) Everyone should take R-ALA. It’s a potent antioxidant, it makes vitamin C and E work better and it keeps you lean as you eat to gain size.

16) Have fun with your workouts. Everyone seems to make training too technical these days. Remember your early years in the gym and how excited you were to get to the gym every day. I used to workout 7 days per week and sometime train twice a day. I was addicted to it. Find that joy again. Don’t let life take the fun out of it. The gym is YOUR time.

About Life

15) You are who you are. I’ve tweeted about Glee, comic books, pro wrestling and video games. Does that not make me “hardcore”? Am I only suppose to like heavy metal that indicates my parents hated me my whole life? Am I not suppose to still think The Avengers are cool? Listen, I am who I am and if you think that I’m anything less because of what I like then good bye.

16) Who you are is more important than who “bigarms491x” says about you on a message board. Your character is all that matters because your character is who you go to sleep with and wake up with every day. It’s who you are around your family and friends

17) You have to be hungry and driven for more. Our capitalist society requires it. No one is paying your bills but you. You define your life. Have the hunger for more.

18) Other people don’t have the answer. One thing that works for them may not work for you. You never know the whole story to it. Learn and copy but go your own way.

19) People are looking for reasons to not like you. You have to give them reasons to get over that initial distaste.

20) High school never ends but just like high school you should want to be in the “out crowd”. People are overrated. Attack your personal journey.

21) EVERY SECOND COUNTS

About Business

22) Be grateful for RIGHT NOW. You have been given more then you could ever ask for RIGHT NOW, regardless of what is going wrong in your life. Embrace it, give thanks for today and open yourself up for abundance tomorrow.

23)Open yourself up for abundance tomorrow, I’ll repeat it because you need to hear it again. Don’t hold yourself back.

24) No one knows magic. Makes things simple in your business life and you’ll make more money.

25) Working longer and harder is needed but not as much as people make it out to be. Working longer doesn’t equal working better.

26) Try to help people with their problems. If you can do it, things will end up nicely for you.

27)Strive for progression every day. Doing one little thing every day adds up. Just like in fitness.

28) Say “Thank You” to the Universe at random moments during the day when things go your way.

29)You attract everything that you want to your life, even if you don’t realize it.

30) I don’t feel guilty or bad about my schedule anymore.I used to feel like I needed to leave my house every day at 8:30 and  work from 9-5. That isn’t me and I’m not going to feel bad about having a more “flexible” schedule. I work my butt off.

31) Chase experiences. I never used to travel to events that I wanted to. Maybe it’s because I didn’t have someone to travel with before.

This year  I’ve attended the Arnold Classic which is the biggest bodybuilding and fitness expo and show in the world. I loved it. I loved seeing the people that I routinely see in the magazines. When you get face to face with them, their real people. There’s things I liked and didn’t like about some of your favorite bodybuilding pros. I was backstage before everyone went on for the Arnold finals and the intensity in guys like Kai, Phil, Branch and Dexter was very apparent.

This year I went to Comic Con NYC. It was a great experience seeing all video games and comic book vendors and fans in one arena. The costumes were fantastic, the video game comic book adaptations were amazing and the excitement was very apparent in the crowd. Captain America is my favorite comic book hero of all time and there I was previewing the Cap video game that is coming out in May talking to the current writer of Captain America like we were friends from the block.

This year I went to 3 WWE shows. One Raw, one Smackdown and one fan apperication night(really was a Linda McMahon rally). Seeing how Vince takes the fans down a slippery slope the entire night was amazing.

This year I sat 15 rows back from home plate at Yankee Stadium 3 times and 2 rows from the floor for the Knicks at MSG.

Random Thoughts

-I love talking and I’d love to restart my podcast but the time demands are too great for what I’m doing now.

– Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood and Call of Duty Black Ops are the games of the year. I haven’t played either yet (Christmas presents) but the reviews are amazing.

-NBA 2K11=wow. So real.

– My favorite movie of the summer was The Expendables. It felt good to see a kick ass, muscle laden flick again.

-Iron Man 2 was great from a comic book fans perspective. From a movie fans point of view, it wasn’t that good.

-The Avengers:Earth’s Mightiest Heros cartoon show is one of the, if not THE, best super hero cartoon series of all time.

-The Star Trek Reboot was amazing. I still haven’t seen Avatar and X-Men Origins Wolverine was a solid look at Weapon X.

-Fall Out New Vegas was long but fun. Wished there wasn’t so many routes to take.

-Red Dead Redemption was AMAZING!

-Carmelo Anthony needs to be a Knick badly. The Knicks are back.

– I think the Yankees are in for a world of frustration these next few years by missing out on Cliff Lee and because of what Boston did this off season.

-MMA is a great sport. When you appreciate the science of Jui-jitsu, wrestling and boxing you’ll LOVE the sport.

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Leave A Reply (5 comments so far)


  1. Sallie
    6 years ago

    Good article ~ I like numbers 15, 21 & 28 especially. Every single second on this planet counts, it is important to realize that we can never take anything for granted. Be happy about yourself..you are the only person you have to please in this lifetime..and only after you please yourself can you pay it forward!


  2. Mike T Nelson
    6 years ago

    Thanks for the year end wrap up Jimmy! I am a sucker for reading these kinds of lists.

    I do have to disagree with #8 though, as I feel pre workout nutrition will be shown to be even more important than post workout (unless you are doing multiple back to back training sessions in a day).

    We have some studies (not a ton of them though) showing

    1) increased insulin response = shift towards carb metabolism to support high intensity training. More insulin = more vasodilation (aka the pump) much more than any crazy NO stimulator

    2) increase in muscle protein synthesis, more protein going to muscle

    3) potential decrease in muscle breakdown.

    Thoughts?
    rock on
    Mike T Nelson PhD(c)


  3. JimmySmith
    6 years ago

    Mike
    GREAT to see you back commenting on the site. Always enjoy my interaction with you.

    Allow me to expound on my pre workout comment.

    1) Pre workout nutrition has become more about the latest sugar and sweetener laden NO product then good ole protein and carb recommendations. Not to mention that they’ll include trace amounts of amino acids or their own advanced AA’s. Do we really think leucine ethly ester works?
    2) I think people use it as another meal to shove calories down their throats. Food breakdown is a 24-7 process and provide that you have adequate nutrients to support your goals over the course of the current day and the previous day, do you really need extra carbohydrates added pre workout?

    Sure we know about AA oxidation during workout stress and preferential energy usage as we train but do we really need those extra carbs? Are they optimal? Can we get those training effects as you mentioned that we found in research without those carbs?

    That’s what interests me.


  4. JimmySmith
    6 years ago

    So true Sallie! Every second counts.


  5. Janalyne
    6 years ago

    Great post. I loved the business lessons too about being grateful for everything you have…makes a huge difference. Also the part about whatever your goals are and the things you want to do is what matters…so true, people always get so caught up in what they “should” look like or should train like, but the ones who do what they want stick with it and get the best results.

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