A Surprising Diet Twist

Personalized diet plans are supposed to be the future of health. But a new study might make you question whether expensive, genetic-based...

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Today’s Health Upgrade

  • Monday motivation

  • Join the Ohana

  • A surprising diet twist

  • Workout of the week

Arnold’s Podcast

Motivation every day. Want Arnold to help you start your day? Each morning, we post a new podcast with tips you’ll find in the daily email and bonus stories, wisdom, and motivation from Arnold. Listen to Arnold's Pump Club podcast. It's like the daily newsletter but with additional narration and thoughts from Arnold. You can subscribe on Apple, Spotify, Google, or wherever you listen to podcasts.

Arnold’s Corner: Monday Motivation

It’s always funny when you’re on a book tour and do many interviews and see which comments go viral.

When I told Howard Stern that people are too afraid of discomfort and need to toughen up, everybody seemed to take it and run with it. Older people said it was about the kids, conservatives said it was about liberals, and everybody missed the point just to make themselves feel good.

I wasn’t talking about one group of people. I was talking about everyone. As I said during my interview on Howard Stern:

“Anybody that tries to baby themselves, and pamper themselves and protect themselves — ‘Oh, I don’t want to feel bad, I don’t really want to go through any discomfort’ — It’s over! You’re never going to get there. It’s just the way it is. You have to be able to struggle.”

Somehow, we have gotten to a point where everybody is afraid of any discomfort. They look for shortcuts, hacks, and tricks — anything that might get them out of hard work. They insulate themselves from ideas that might give them hurt feelings in their social media bubbles. They say they don’t have time for anything that might help them grow, whether reading or training, while they spend hours every day looking at funny dog videos on their machines.

I know that every generation says the generations after it are getting soft and wimpy. That’s not what is happening. Yes, I’m worried about the kids. But I’m also worried about my generation. Boomers whine on social media as much as Gen Z.

I’m worried about humanity. When I try to analyze anything, I always ask what changed.

Across the world, we live in the least violent, the most prosperous and educated time that humanity has ever known. There are still problems, but people are less likely to be hungry or die from disease or war than they have been at any time in history. We all walk around with devices that can give us more information in a few days than anyone before us could have found in a lifetime of searching.

I think all that comfort has caused people to fear discomfort more than ever. People of all ages and political stripes have withdrawn to their air conditioning and bubbles to protect themselves from struggling.

It’s time to stop the Bubble Boy schtick. Just like the muscle grows when we push past the pain barrier, our minds grow when we struggle.

It’s time for us to get comfortable with discomfort.

I want you to think back to one of your achievements that makes you truly proud. It can be anything — winning a competition, learning a language, hitting a PR in the gym, losing weight, being a fantastic parent.

Now that you have that proud moment in mind, I want you to think about what came before. The struggle, the pain, the work. You went through a lot to earn your pride.

So why would we ever shy away from that discomfort? This week, I want you to start looking at ways you might be babying yourself.

I call it vegetablizing yourself. And when you find those moments, I want you to make a plan to stop, to de-vegetablize.

It can be things as simple as taking the dishes to the sink and washing them instead of leaving them there for your significant other, your parent, or your roommate. It can be forcing yourself out of bed 30 minutes earlier for a workout. It can be listening to ideas you disagree with and trying to understand instead of just walking away. It can be walking a mile instead of getting in the car.

I just want you to avoid seeking the comfortable option a little bit at a time. Comfort has become our default, and I would never go back to an earlier era. You think I want to live in a house with no plumbing again? Come on!

But all of us can benefit from de-vegetablizing a little. Let’s struggle together.

Join The Ohana

We have told this village many times that we would only advertise with partners we believe in and buy from ourselves. When we heard about today’s partner, it was a perfect fit in so many ways that we couldn’t decide whether they should partner with the newsletter or our environmental work.

Maui Nui Venison is solving multiple problems at once. Most importantly for our village, they’re offering EXTREMELY nutritious and lean meat. Besides being nutrient-dense from the volcanic soil in Maui, this venison packs 53% more protein per calorie than grass-fed beef and is low in saturated fat.

But this is also meat you can feel good about eating for environmental reasons. These invasive deer are causing environmental havoc on Maui, even harming the coral reefs by causing runoff from eating all of the damn grass. Maui Nui has developed the only stress-free and 100% Wild harvest systems. They work with local authorities on herd management, which is why they only offer limited subscriptions, and two USDA veterinarians oversee every harvest. Their process is so respected that Maui Nui was selected for Fast Company’s “Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Agriculture of 2023.”

We’ve all joined the Ohana (that’s family in Hawaiian). We love the jerky sticks as snacks, we’ve replaced some of our grass-fed steaks with leg medallions, and we make chili with ground venison. (Note from Daniel: my family is going through so much of it that I haven’t had a subscription box that I didn’t rush so far.)

Because they love the Pump Club, Maui Nui is offering all of you 20% off your first order. Use the code “pumpclub” to access your discount. Join us and get some delicious, environmentally-friendly meat. DO IT NOW.

A Surprising Diet Twist

Imagine if a scientist examined your genetics, discovered whether you respond better to fat or carbs, and then put you on a 12-week plan designed to work for your body. Do you think you’d see better results than following a non-personalized plan?

That’s exactly what was recently tested, and despite the scientists expecting what appears to be an obvious outcome, a diet plan based on genetics did not lead to more weight loss.

The scientists created 12-week diet plans based on ten genetic variants, determining whether a participant was a fat-responder (genes that respond better to higher fat diets) or a carb-responder (genes that react better to higher carbs).

The participants were randomly assigned to one of four genotype groups: fat-responders followed a high-fat or a high-carb diet, and carb-responders followed a high-carb or high-fat diet.

When the dust cleared, both groups lost weight (about 11 pounds), but the difference between the two groups was approximately 1 pound total after 12 weeks. In other words, having a plan designed for your genetics didn’t offer any significant weight loss boost. 

Personalized nutrition is a growing business in wellness, and there is no shortage of plans and services claiming to analyze your DNA, microbiome, or genetics to determine the perfect diet for your genes. It’s great in theory — and might still be helpful in the future — but this study suggests we have yet to figure out which variables influence weight loss.

You can experiment with different plans, but the key to weight loss is finding a way to eat less without losing your mind and going off plan. That means eating protein and fiber to keep you full, staying hydrated, prioritizing sleep, and including enough foods you enjoy to stay consistent.

Workout of the Week

Did you know that Arnold built his foundation by doing full-body workouts? It’s why everyone in the Pump app starts with a full-body program and then progresses to different variations.

To give you a taste of how a full-body workout can pump up your upper and lower body and target your abs, we created a lightning-fast program that you can do in less than 20 minutes.

The workout is a 5-exercise circuit. You’ll do all five exercises in a row, resting 30 to 60 seconds between each exercise. So you’ll do the first exercise, rest 30 seconds, then the second exercise, rest 30 seconds, and so forth. Once you complete the fifth exercise, rest, and then return to the first exercise. You’ll do a total of 2 rounds and be done in less than 20 minutes. If you want to push yourself, you can do up to 4 total rounds.

The Workout (If you want to see what it’s like to be trained by Arnold, don’t miss the bodyweight squat video.)

  1. Reverse lunge (bodyweight or with dumbbells): 2 sets x 10 reps/leg

  2. Row (inverted/bodyweight row or dumbbell row): 2 sets x 10 reps

  3. Side plank: 2 sets x 30 seconds per side

  4. Squat (bodyweight or dumbbell/goblet squat): 2 sets x 12 reps

  5. Press (pushups or dumbbell chest press): 2 sets x 15 reps

Give it a try, and let us know what you think.

Publisher: Arnold Schwarzenegger

Editors-in-chief: Adam Bornstein and Daniel Ketchell