Muscle for life

MFL Podcast #2: Spotting fake natties, training weak points, diet cravings, and more…

MFL Podcast #2: Spotting fake natties, training weak points, diet cravings, and more…

In this podcast I talk about…

  • How to spot a fake natural
  • Why sodium and water manipulation aren’t that important
  • How to target weak points in your training
  • How to deal with cravings while dieting
  • My upcoming line of supplements
  • And more…

Articles I reference in the video:





Oh and if you like this episode want to be be notified when new episodes go live, then head on over to iTunes, Stitcher, YouTubeSoundcloud, or Google Play and subscribe.

Lastly, if you want to support the show, please drop a quick review of it over on iTunes. It really helps!

What did you think of this episode? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!

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I'm Mike and I'm the creator of Muscle for Life and Legion Athletics, and I believe that EVERYONE can achieve the body of their dreams.

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  • Brian Doe

    Just subscribed on iTunes! Thanks, Mike!

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks Brian!

  • tdame191991

    I quit even caring about the size of my upper body… every day is leg day.

    • Michael Matthews


  • Joey

    You gotta get these things up faster if you recorded this on the fourth!!

    • Michael Matthews

      Haha complain to my Web guy not me! 😉

  • Ryan

    Superb mate, loving these podcasts! Don’t even mind that they’re 40 odd minutes, should make it an hour.

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks Ryan! Glad you like it!

  • Gabe

    Hey Mike, such a great video. Your weak point training discussion was so timely because I’m actually doing the exact same thing for my spindly calves (4x/week in between sets).
    Regarding that though what kind of rep range do you think is most effective? Do you think there’s some merit to altering rep range depending on muscle fiber make up?

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks Gabe! Haha nice on the calves. Together we will grow them. 🙂

      I’m working in the 4-6 and 6-8 rep range. Nothing special. Just gotta hit them over and over.

      • Gabe

        Thanks man, appreciate the reply.
        While certainly not the most apt comparison for us mere mortals I remember reading that Arnold had relatively modest calves for awhile and only after annihilating them for a year+ was he able to create a new standard at around 20 inches.
        Forearms and calves—probably the most stubborn, genetically determined body parts there are.

        • Michael Matthews

          YW! Yup, forearms and calves are both a pain and from everything I’ve heard and read that looks credible, constant pounding is the best way to go if you’re lagging. You can’t do this with other muscles of course but for whatever reason, apparently calves and forearms can take it…

  • Crisciele Ferreira

    Hi Mike! Thanks for all your job. It´s really nice!! I was thinking if you can do a post about ketosis´s diet… what do you think about it?! I´m really confused about all this crazy types of diet, and really afraid of get bulk (with big carb ingestion), and can´t really have a good job in the “simple” cut (with low carb ingestion).. so I thought if ketosis´s diet is more efficient? You know women always get afraid to look bloated or big fat belly… thanks for all! (Ps.: sorry about english, I´m from Brazil)

    • Michael Matthews


      Yeah I will post about the ketosis diet. I don’t like it. At all. It’s completely unnecessary and you feel like complete shit on it.

      If you want to know more about carbohydrates and weight loss, check out this article:

      https://www.muscleforlife.com /carbohydrates-and-weight-loss-should-you-go-low-carb/

      • Crisciele Ferreira

        Thanks!! I will read it.

        • Michael Matthews


  • Crisciele Ferreira

    I was wondering how to know when women use drugs? because some chicks have those perfect legs and abs, but not so big traps and chest, sometimes a great shoulder.. and I think “oh God so perfect, so nice”, and then I become sad because I don´t know that´s real and whether i can achieve that kind of body (I don´t want to use hormones for that…) 🙂

    • Michael Matthews

      Many female fitness models are on drugs and all professional female bodybuilders are.

      You can have a great body without drugs though–you can be lean and have noticeable muscles everywhere.

      • Crisciele Ferreira

        Thank you!! You are very nice Michael 😀

        • Michael Matthews

          YW and haha when I try I can be. 😉

  • Danno

    Weighted cable crunches at least four times a week. I will have to give that a try Mike. I’ve been doing your routine in the book, and I can’t believe how hard the bicycles are every time I do them. They never get easier:)

    • Michael Matthews

      Yeah it’s an interesting way to handle under-developed abs. The circuit in my book is tried and true and you can’t go wrong with it. I just wanted BULKIER abs ASAP…

      Haha yeah the bikes are tough. Great exercise though.

  • Kevin

    Love the podcasts! I look forward to them every time now. Can’t wait for Legion!

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks Kevin! Really appreciate it!!

  • Zachary Brewer

    Hey Mike
    I know you recommend relatively static eating during a cut. I also realize you have a family with a little one. How do your wife and you work out the whole family dinner issue if you ate always eating the same meal at night? Just curious on an approach for that.

    • Michael Matthews

      Good question! I just cook my own simple meal and she cooks for herself and Lenox. We eat together. 🙂

      • Pedro

        Is it really neccesary to eat that what during a cut? Isn’t it better to change our protein, carbohydrate and fat sources if they are good foods (brown rice, oatmeal, fruits, veggies, lean meat, greek yogurts, chicken, fish, nuts, peanuts, almonds etc)?

        • Michael Matthews

          Nah, no need to change sources of food so long as you’re getting proper amounts of micronutrients. But if you want variety go for it.

  • Pedro Rugeles

    I love your podcasts. Yo should do them more frequently.

    Yo said that dietary fat is easily converted into body fat. So, what’s the trick to prevent that? Which is the best time to eat fat? Even monounsaturaded fat?

    PD. What do yo think about low fat cheese? I love it and I think i couldn’t believe with it.

    Thanks for your answer.

  • Pedro

    Hey Mike. Love your podcasts, they are so great.

    Yo said that dietary fat is easily converted into body fat. So, what’s the trick to prevent that? When is the best momento to eat fat? Even monounsaturated fat will convert into body fat if managed wrong?

    PD. What do you think about low fat chesse? I love it with al my heart, haha.

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks Pedro! You don’t need to prevent it. You just need to regulate your intake. Your body needs fats for health reasons. I get about 20% of my daily calories from fat. You can eat the cheese! 🙂

  • Steve

    Hi Mike, loving these video podcasts. You mention 3+ grams of potassium per day and supplements. All the supplements I see only only have 99mg per pill. I can’t imagine you take 30 a day so can you let us know what supplements and foods get you to the 3g mark. Thanks.

  • Eric Godfrey

    Love the podcasts and all the info. No need to shorten them, my .02.

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks Eric! 🙂

  • António Alves

    Hey Mike, 2 questions about Legion:

    Will you guys ship internationally and will Paypal be a method of payment available?


    • Michael Matthews

      Yes and yes. 🙂

  • Guest

    Hey Mike,

    will Legion ship internationally and will Paypal be available?

    Thanks! Great Podcast and information as usual!

    • António Alves

      My bad! Thought it didn’t post the first time!

  • Theresa

    What steroid carbs for those of us who are sensitive to wheat? Especially since they seem to be critical for women.

    • theress

      That wasn’t right. What are good carbs.

      • Michael Matthews

        Lol was wondering. If you’re only sensitive to wheat, you have a ton of options like other grains (oatmeal, brown rice, and quinoa are my favorites), legumes, and fruits and veggies (sweet potatoes and squash are particularly good).

  • Chris Carela

    Great Podcast episodes so far Mike, thanks for finally getting them out there!

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks! More to come!

      • Chris Carela

        Also, don’t worry about the time so much. Most podcast average more than 30-45m.

        • Michael Matthews

          Yeah true. I’m going to just shoot some shorter vids as well.

  • Pablo

    Hi Mike – love the new podcast! One quick question: for cutting, you say you recommend 1.2g of protein/pound of BW and 0.2g of fat/pound of BW but in my kindle copy of Bigger Leaner Stronger it says 1.5g protein and 1g of carbs per 7 lbs of body weight. Do have an older version of the book maybe? I’m not trying to split hairs here but that 12 extra grams of fat and 60 fewer grams of protein would go a long way in making this type of cutting seem a lot more appealing! Thanks and keep the podcasts coming!

    • Michael Matthews


      I think you have a really old version of the book. I’ve tweaked the macros some since the first edition. Shoot me an email and I’ll send you the latest version, which has some other changes as well.

      • Pedro

        Mike, I also want the newest version of tha cutting macros. In my Bigger Leaner Stronger they are 1.2 gr of protein per lb, 1 of carb and .2 of fat. Are they right?

        • Michael Matthews

          Yup that’s it. 🙂

      • DevilDevine

        Hey Michael,

        Mine as well, are the other changes important? Bought the book from Amazon. Thanks.

        • Michael Matthews

          Minor things. Wait for the second edition, which will be released later this year. I will be adding quite a bit of extra info based on all the feedback I’ve gotten and such.

          Thanks for your support brother!

          • DevilDevine

            Yw! Thanks for being reachable and for all the info. Tc:)

          • Michael Matthews

            My pleasure brother.

  • Audrey

    Another great podcast! Thank you!

    • Michael Matthews


  • Patrick M. Fraher

    Those 45 minutes went by fast! Thanks Mike!

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks Patrick! Glad you liked it.

  • Scott | MassNERDerer

    Great episode. I’m glad you set the record straight on sodium retention there, lots of studies to support it but people still seem to get it wrong.

    Good luck with the product line, excited to see it. Tough part will be, even if so much better, you probably will have to have higher prices due to start up costs, etc. $ commonly comes down to the bottom line, but you get what you pay for type of thing, I guess. Or with some supps, you pay for fluff? Lol

    • Michael Matthews

      Thanks! Glad you liked it.

      And thanks on the supps! Actually the prices are right in line with everyone else’s. You can check them out here:


      Our manufacturing costs are quite high (real products are expensive) so we’re just willing to make less per sale than the bigger companies.

  • Thanks for stopping by and checking out my article! I hope you enjoyed it.

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  • Shanna

    Hi Mike – is there a way to download this podcast as an mp3? It seems the later ones can be downloaded but not the older ones.

    Thanks for sharing all your great knowledge! It’s beyond valuable for us noobs who are overwhelmed with all the nonsense on the internet 🙂

    • Yeah any of them on Soundcloud can be downloaded…

      Thanks for the support!

      • Shanna

        Thanks Mike! One more quick question – how can I best increase my potassium intake? My cutting diet is only about 1200 calories and I have it quite well planned out so I don’t have much room for extra food. My average potassium intake is around 700 – 1000mg a day.
        Thanks again 🙂

  • I loved this podcast for several reasons. I’m slowly making my way through your youtubes/articles/podcasts (I listen to your podcasts each day to/from work) and this one was yesterday’s ‘cast of choice (going in order). I LOVED how you talked about fruit and that it’s not terrible, as so many people claim. I also found your info on cutting sodium/water fascinating. I hear about it all the time and love your perspective on it. Great tips for diet cravings, too! Thanks again, Mike!

    • Happy to hear it! Hope you’re enjoying everything else too. 🙂

      My pleasure and thanks for all the kind words and support!

      Definitely keep me posted on your progress and write anytime if you have any questions or run into any difficulties. I’m always happy to help.

  • Jessica Richman

    Hi Mike,

    In this podcast you mentioned training females in the 8-10 rep range because that is where they are most comfortable usually and sometimes I the 4-6 rep range just on the 4 main compound lifts. When I learned how to lift weights I was taught to lift heavy/in the 4-6 rep range and focus on progressive overload. Am I doing myself a disservice my sticking with this style? Are there some lifts that it would be better for me to do in the 8-10 rep range even though I am comfortable in the 4-6 rep zone? When doing your year one program (3 day split) is it important that I only do the big 4 (lifts) in the 4-6 range and the everything else in the 8-10 range? Even though I like the 4-6 range I want to be doing what will get me the best/fastest results aesthetically speaking. Can you tell me which ones are ok to do in the 4-6 range and which would be more beneficial in the 8-10 range? Thanks so much for all your help!

    – Jess 😀

    • Hey Jess, You’re doing great! You can stick with 4-6 with no problem. You’re not missing out on anything by not training with 8-10. Keep up the great work!

  • Sheri

    Your most recent Q&A podcast and one of the questions was how to beat sugar cravings and being diabetic an overweight it’s been a major concern of mine. Biggest thing I found out was cutting out absolutely ALL artificial sweetener’s even stevia I limit. It is really hard but adding natural sweets like berries to every salad and cereals. Berries are very sweet but low in sugars and calories.

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