John Romaniello is an American entrepreneur, angel investor, bestselling author, strength coach, and model. He recently authored Man 2.0 Engineering the Alpha: A Real World Guide to an Unreal Life, which debuted at #4 on the New York Times bestseller list.
• David Simon (David Judah Simon is an American author, journalist, and a writer/producer of television series. ...)
• Nick Antosca (Nick Antosca is an American author of literary fiction and screenwriter. He is the author of five...)
• Timothy Ferriss (Timothy "Tim" Ferriss is an American author, entrepreneur and public speaker. He has written a nu...)» All Author Interviews
Oh, snap. Let's get into some good stuff. This is a 2+ HOUR AmA beginning at 1PM PST on Thursday, May 21.
As for the bio stuff: "John Romaniello is an entrepreneur, angel investor, and New York Times bestselling author. An advisor to dozens of fitness and tech companies, Romaniello has written for a myriad of publications covering topics ranging from insulin sensitivity to investment strategy, and has appeared in magazines, on TV shows, and more than a few leaked photos. He loves the NY Jets, unicorns, sarcasm, and writing about himself in the third person."
Two years back, I wrote a bestseller called Engineering the Alpha.
I know some stuff about some stuff, and I am known for not pulling any punches -- so I request you do the same. If you're curious about anything, i'm happy to answer as best I can.
Again, I am here for a 2 hour, no hold's barred Q&A. Ask me absolutely anything you like about myself, my business, my products, or my dog.
More cogently, you can also ask me about fitness stuff: training, nutrition, supplementation, and anything related.
Or, anything unrelated.
Proof that this stuff is true:
Proof that I am indeed the one and only John Romaniello:
You're a great fitness inspiration, coach, guy, etc etc all that...but what I enjoy most is your writing and your style, it really grabs you and pulls you in. That said, lately it seems like your emails, limited articles, and such are leaning more towards- errrr- spammy. Always trying to sell something of yours or a friend's. Can we ever expect more of your writing and less advertisement? That's the best. And I totally understand the building of the empire and making the bank bro.
This is a great observation, and I appreciate you making it. And, yes, you're totally right. Unfortunately a lot of the stuff that's gone out lately (particularly in newsletters) is...I wouldn't say "spammy" but definitely salesy.
The reason for this is simply that I have been spending my creative energy on my new book, and my screenplays, and haven't had much left over. We have to promote stuff and make sales to keep the lights on, so that takes priority.
Having said that, I had a 2 hour meeting with my staff yesterday about fixing this exact thing. All I can say is, thank you for bearing with me, and please stay tuned. Lots of good stuff coming out.
What do you think of that Ryan Holiday guy? How right was he about The Original Pantry Cafe?
Annoyingly, I have never known that guy to be wrong about anything.
Just bought the OBB. A lot of great information and a great workout guide for the price. Two quick questions:
1) Is the Macro calculator correct? Im 6ft M, 215 lbs, est 30% BF. Its telling me to eat 1600cal on workout days. I want to make sure I'm eating enough.
2) Any possibility of putting the workout sheets into excel format?
1) Yup, that's correct. My formulas are on the aggressive side, but at 30% BF, that's where I would have you. You could increase by about 10%, but this is a fat loss program. And it's only 6 weeks. I'd say try it and see how you feel.
2) Sure, I can have my assistant do that.
What is the one thing you believe everybody should be doing - fitness or general life - that almost nobody is?
Other than that...hmm. I wouldn't say "no one" is doing it, but I truly think that people just need to make it a habit of giving compliments. Just be an awesome person. At least once per day, I reach out to someone and let them know how awesome they are.
Will it help with fitness? No idea. But it'll make you happy.
Does eating a low number of calories actually hurt your metabolism and eat away at muscle?
Absolutely. In the short run, eating too little leads to decreases in leptin levels, which in turn leads to decreases in production of T3 and T4 - a recipe for metabolic slowdown.
In the long run, chronic under eating (and chronic leptin suppression) can lead to any number of metabolic issues.
I will say that the degree to which most fitness professionals seem to suggest undereating will lead to a broken metabolism is a bit overblown -- it takes a while for these things to happen.
As for it eating away at muscle...that's a long term consequence as well.
Long story short: under eating for months or years is a huge problem. A few weeks is not.
To be fair, who wouldn't be a prick if all you saw was red
Well, Matt Murdock can't see AT ALL, and he's not such a sandy vagina.
Which hero in movies/comics/video games does repel you most and why?
Honestly, I have never been a fan of Cyclops. He's simultaneously an arrogant prick, a goodie two shoes, AND and insecure bitch when it comes to his woman. Just stop, Scott.
Who would be your ideal Nightwing if they cast the movie right now?
I think Steven R. McQueen would be great at it. Not only because I think he's quite a fine actor, but also because he has been lobbying so hard for the part for so long. The passion he has for the character would translate well, I think.
What are your thoughts on the evolution of crossfit? It seems (in my experience) that gyms are getting smarter and keeping athletes safer. Have you noticed this trend, or have any other thoughts on the future of crossfit?
I personally love the way CrossFit has evolved over the past few years.
My position on CF was always that it's growth was outpacing it's ability to police quality. When CF first started, everyone who became a crossfit coach was coming from a coaching background. They had tons of experience with oly lifting and strength training in general. As a result, things were great from a quality and safety perspective.
As it began to pick up steam, you had all of these people thinking "crossfit changed my life...i think I'll open a crossfit box". The only requirement for which is a weekend certification and a willingness to pay a monthly fee for use of the name.
The problems started when all these people with no experience became coaches and started teaching things they had never learned. Boxes kept popping up and quality kept going down.
However, like all things, the growth of crossfit eventually slowed. Now, in order to be successful, people actually have to deliver results, and deliver them safely. When the market became saturated, capitalism started to come into play.
Competition is the only force encourages a concurrent increase in quality and decrease in cost. As a result, boxes with good reputations are going to put the ones with bad reps out of business. If you can't keep your people safe, they're going to stop paying you.
We're more or less in the midst of this right now--there are a lot of great boxes with great coaches who actually understand technique, coaching, programming, and all of the other things that were missing from the general pool of CF experience.
I've always been hopeful that crossfit would "get there" and I think that's what's happening. There's still a long way to go before I can endorse out of hand, but I think things are generally getting better.
And will continue to do so.
I have heard that BCAA is best taken for recovery post work out, then I heard that it is best taken before to reduce soreness. How do you reccommend BCAA timing and dosage?
BCAAs are one of those "why not!?" supplements. It's so cheap that you may as well just take it.
If you're looking to prevent soreness, 5g pre and post would be good.
That said I just personally throw it in my post workout shake
Are you still in contact with Joel Marion? Is he still a cockbag?
What's the real story about what happened with Rugged?
Is there any reason your IF plan is so similar to Martin Berkhan's and Brad Pilon's? It seems to be a combination of "Eat, Stop, Eat," "Leangains," and "Warrior Diet." Is there any reason your diet is superior, or rather, that you prefer yours? It seems somewhat like a shotgun blast of several methods meshed into one method in order to have something different.
Joel Marion: Yes, Joel is one of my best friends. We were best men at each other's weddings. We're tight.
As to his cockbaggery, that is entirely a matter of opinion. I can only say that I know Joel to be one of the kindest, warmest, and most generous people I've ever met, and the best friend you can ask for. He's a bit aggressive when it comes to business sometimes (see RUGGED story below), but his heart is always in the right place.
RUGGED: A semi-complicated story. Basically, Joel, myself, and a few other tnation writers were feeling pretty stifled creatively and professionally by the editorial policies at T-Nation. Which was probably more to do with our youth and self-perceived importance than anything else.
Anyway, eventually, Joel got a bit fed up and decided to strike out on his own and start his own site. He asked Eric Cressey, myself and a few other dudes to come along. Joel, being a great guy who is both brilliant and charismatic, and also had some great ideas, didn't have to work too hard to convince us.
So, we decided to start RUGGED. This was all fine and perfectly legal. However, we made a few missteps. The most egregious of these, legally, was when Joel decided to use the Tnation private messaging system to announce our new venture to the people on the other site. That was a violation of terms, and got us sued.
It wasn't the best idea, but it happened, and we dealt with it. I can only say that we were young and foolish and probably bit off a lot more than we could chew. Those qualities are what ultimately led to the demise RUGGED -- more than the legal issues, it was just the fact that we were disorganized and ultimately found running the site to be more trouble than it was worth. (At the time, we had no idea about how to monetize anything online.)
That said, we were also an incredibly dedicated and ambitious--and, if I may say so, reasonably talented--group of people, which is why we've all gone on to achieve pretty impressive things in our own businesses.
RUGGED was a fun venture and we learned a lot from it. It's also worth noting, of course, that all of us eventually went on to mend fences with the TNation/Biotest peeps, and all of us have written for the site several since the end of RUGGED. Which says a lot about everyone involved, I think.
FASTING STUFF Your thinly veiled dickery notwithstanding, the reason my IF plan is so similar to the other methods of fasting is because there are only so many ways one can not eat.
My method is a synthesis of the other methods, and I like it because I think it's got a lot of benefits that are missing for some people.
My personal approach is only "superior" in that it's faster than the other two. because of the inclusion of cheat days, I have people eating much lower calories on a daily basis than LG. As a result, leptin levels drop, only to be bumped up via the weekly cheat.
It's a more aggressive approach that is suitable for use if you want to really drop a lot of fat quickly, rather than "just eat this way forever."
My approach borrows infinitely from the others, and gives credit to them at every turn. It's different because it is different, not in an attempt to stand out.
But, thanks for the condescending post.
Can you give a beginners checklist to butt stuff?
How to bring it up to a non-partner (I.e. Casual sex)
Priming her body etc
I could actually spend two hours just talking about this, but I'll try to give you a primer.
Main thing I like to do is work it into casual conversation as sort of a joke to gauge reaction. If she makes a joke and goes along with it, you're in a good spot. If she ignores, proceed with caution.
If someone is not into ass play, chances are they've never really had a good experience. Depending on your age, you'll probably have to deal with the fact that at some point he or she had a very bad experience, and now you have to overcome that.
In the case of NO EXPERIENCE, I would say to simply make it part of foreplay, and act like it's totally normal. If you're going down on them, just take a detour and start licking ass. Even if someone is a bit shocked that it's happening, usually they're just so surprised at how good it feels.
One thing I can tell you with a fair degree of certainty is that if you blow someone's mind with some high quality ass licking, the likelihood of them saying, "yup, why don't you go ahead and just put it in" are a lot higher.
In most cases, I tend to find that you have about 5 sexual encounters to make assplay happen. If you don't do it within the first 5 encounters, then it becomes "special" instead of "normal." Personally, I tend to spend an ample amount of time on the ass the very first time I go down on a woman. If you wait more than 5 sexual encounters and then wind up in a relationship, it's something that warrants a discussion instead of something that happens in the heat of the moment.
In the event that you're with someone who says they had a bad experience, the only solution is time. You're going to have to show them they can trust you, and that it's important to you. (If it is. If you don't have an actual anal fetish, like me, it's entirely possible that the amount of time you spend trying to make it happen simply isn't worth.)
If someone had a bad experience, the only thing you can do is give them time, try to make all other experiences enjoyable for them, and--eventually--they'll probably be willing to give it a shot. In which case you have a responsibility to take care of them and not hurt them.
As to that...
COMMON ANAL SEX MISTAKES TO AVOID
Alcohol can act as a vasoconstrictor, and the rectum is full of capillaries. Getting your partner drunk is likely to make them tighter, which is not going to help.
Additionally, you DO NOT want your partner to be numb. If he or she is drunk, they may not realize that you're hurting them. This is a terrible idea. Pain is the body's way of saying, hold up, champ, we need to reassess --if they can't feel the pain, you could do some damage that won't become apparent till the next day. If he/she wakes up in pain, your changes of a repeat are going to be considerably lowered.
Rather than get them drunk, just allow them to relax naturally. Stay away from the booze.
If you read magazines like cosmo, you might think that a spoon position is correct. This is also untrue. Physically it is better than doggy, but it still has drawbacks.
If your partner is inexperienced with anal, the ONLY correct position is missionary. Not only will it allow for easier entry, but the important thing is that it allows you to see their face.
This obviously increases the feel of intimacy--and when your partner is trying something new, that's hugely important. MORE importantly is the fact that you can actually see their face and gauge how things are going.
A lot of people on the receiving end just assume anal sex is supposed to hurt, and just 'fight through it' - as the giver, it's your responsibility to make sure this doesn't happen. Sure, there may be some discomfort, but it should never HURT.
When you're having sex with someone from behind or in a spoon position, you can't see their face and have no read on them. If they're in pain, you won't know.
This is why you have have to be face to face: so you can accurately assess the situation, and know when to slow down or stop. Any time they make a face that implies anything than pleasure, STOP MOVING. Just wait. Don't even breath. Allow them to adjust and accommodate, and then proceed when they are ready.
The only way to do this is missionary. When you partner is more experienced, you can move on to other positions.
Soooo I think that is a decent beginners guide. I want to write more, but I have to get to other questions. More soon.
1.Do you prep your meals for the week in advance? If so, how to you keep from getting bored to tears within a few days?
besides buying your products, in what other ways can I support you? Are there any challenges that you're facing?
Oh, wow. No one has ever asked me that before. Thank you.
Just recommend your favorite book, and tell me why you like it. That would be a great help.
I'd like to just say that this is a question that typically wouldn't get answered in an AMA, and I applaud you for being direct and honest in your response. Bravo.
Thanks so much! Truly appreciate that.
What kind of alcohol is the least harmful (or possibly beneficial) when trying to build muscle or increase testosterone?
Hard to say what is "least" harmful. But the MOST harmful is beer -- hops is high in phyotoestrogens, which can have ill effects. Best bet is to stay away from beer.
As for "best" -- there are some good things about wine. But, honestly, I just drink bourbon.
You mentioned before you have pulled a 600 pound deadlift. As someone who is struggling with upping his own what advice could you give me?
I am by no means an expert on helping other people improve their deadlift to that level. I would say definitely read everything by Eric Cressey, Tony Gentilcore, and David Dellanave.
Having said that, the thing that helped me the most switching stances whenever I hit a sticking point. Once I hit a plateau in conventional, I'd switch to sumo for a few months. Made sense to just be strong in every variation.
Do you recommend yohimbine for women? I know you made a blanket recommendation in the Omega Blueprint but most of the products on Amazon seem to think it's just a male sexual enhancement product.
Yohimbine is fine for women. It has a bit of an effect on blood flow, so in terms of sexual enhancement, it just makes it a bit easier to achieve and maintain an erection.
While that's not super applicable to women, neither is it deleterious.
What other supplements should i use besides zinc to increase my test?
What are the most common side effects of AAS mentally?
For test, most of the otc supps are only okay. Tribulus gets mixed results, for example. I would say just focus on improving via diet, training and lifestyle (outlined in my book, Engineering the Alpha*)
In terms of mental side effects of AAS, sometimes coming off can cause depression or anxiety. But in terms of increased emotionality or "roid rage", I've never actually seen anyone exhibit that.
For the most part, people seem to be really happy when on cycle.
In the email about "trouble spots" you recommend intermittent fasting. As a woman (37 yrs old) I researched and found IF works wonderful for men, but not for women. I gave it a try for 1 month anyway and became softer after. I workout in the mornings (sometimes 5:30 am). I found that by the end of the month I was eating very few calories because I was feeling full soon after I started eating. Needless to say, I don't feel comfortable doing IF and am wondering if you HAVE to for OBB. If so, do you have another program? Also, can the program work if all you have are hotel gyms? (I assume some you travel a lot and the first video I saw), but a lot of hotels just have cardio equipment :(
hey, sorry to hear about your bad experience with IF! I have recently read a lot of the articles that recommend against it for women, but most of my female clients have had great results.
If it doesn't work for you, it doesn't work for you. And that's totally fine! You don't have to use IF for Omega or any other program. It's an option, but not necessary.
You can def do the workouts in hotel gyms...assuming those gyms have actual equipment. A set of dumbbells, at least.
You can obviously do bodyweight exercises, but I would say that it might be easier to just start getting guest passes at gym when you're traveling.
Or, we can talk about a bw-only program
Are there any daily practices you can recommend to increase self confidence?
The biggest thing for me was always journaling, and paying special attention to wins.
In addition, I've found that having amazing friends around you who truly appreciate who you are is key.
It also help to sleep with as many attractive people as possible.
I injured my hamstring a while back, and it's seriously brought down my strength on the squat and deadlift. Now that it seems to be healing, what's the fastest way to bring those numbers back up to my old maxes?
The most important thing: DO NOT rush it. If it "seems to be healing," it's not fully healed. The last thing you want to do is reinjure it.
My advice is to keep training and doing rehab stuff, try to get stronger, but stop worrying about it.
Six months from now, jump in.
hi roman, can i ask if the omega blueprint is that much different to fat loss forever? i have been doing mostly that for a while with good results but still have another 25+ lbs to lose, and sincerely thank you for what ive learned from your programs too, much appreciated
It's a much more aggressive and comprehensive program than FLF. But, if FLF has been working for you, and you still have 25 more pounds to go.
Hm. I dunno. I think my advice would be pick up Omega because it's on sale for crazy cheap. Then just use FLF for another few weeks. After that, transition to another program (super hero, maybe) for 12 weeks. Then come back to OBB when you're 5-10 pounds away from your goal.
What has happened with your Podcast? I have subscribed but it has never been populated.
I never had a podcast! People keep asking me to do one, but it sounds like homework to me.
If you signed up for a John Romaniello podcast, wasn't me.
looking for a real answer about alcohols effects (not the effects of being an idiot as a result of alcohol, losing your inhibitions, and overeating crap) on fat burning and achieving ideal physique. but more from the hormonal/ physio sides of things. I have read/heard that alcohol temporarily inhibits or shuts off fat burning because the body must prioritize metabolizing the alcohol- but I wonder, how is this reaction any different than insulin metabolism or gluconeogenesis when it comes to delaying fat burn? I want it to be ok to drink my glass a night but I am still not at my optimal body fat %!!!
Jade Teta wrote a great piece about this on TNation: https://www.t-nation.com/diet-fat-loss/lifters-guide-to-alcohol
Hi Roman! In the past year in different posts you've recommended starting your day with Apple Cider Vinegar and also Lime Juice & Sea Salt. In both cases mixed with warm water. Do you currently endorse doing both every morning, just one or the other, or neither? Can you please provide a reference for further reading as to why you made that choice, would love to learn more on this topic!
Currently I'm doing lime juice and sea salt. The ACV was good for a while, but I noticed that I was getting headaches later in the day on days I used it. Could just be me.
Thanks for the response. Really didn't expect one.
Well, I DID say ask me anything. I expected a few snarky comments. It's all good, though :) I'll tell Joel you said hi.
Hi Roman, massive fan, followed your content for a while now so would just like to say a big thanks for everything you put out there!
My question is related to online coaching. I've just finished up my sports science degree but I'm not actually qualified as a personal trainer and would like to do some online
coaching. I was just wondering if you knew what, if any, the legalities are? Do I need to write a disclaimer or would I need to be fully certified to offer training online?
Hey man, congrats on the new degree, and thank you for the kind words.
In terms of the legalities, you need to get certified as a PT, and then get valid personal trainer insurance. After that, you should definitely write a disclaimer, as well.
I tried your super hero workout once with my trainer years ago but having hypothyroidism as made it hard to keep my weight off. I also hate cardio.
Will hypothyroidism prevent me from ever looking like wonderwoman?
It's not something that is completely impossible to overcome, but it definitely presents challenges. You're going to have be extra careful with calories and macros; more than most people. And although you hate cardio, some extra energy expenditure is going to be important. Sooo looks like cardio is unavoidable, sadly
Hey John, just bought OBB and I got a little bit confused with the Overdrive Training Manual, what is it about?
On a side note, if you could choose a single super power for one day: What you would choose and what would you do?
Overdrive - they are advanced workouts to be followed after you complete the main program. They will last you 6 weeks, so extend the program to 12.
I would choose time travel, and go back to when I was 16, and tell my mopey emo self to cheer the fuck up.
I bench press, push-up and stuff using mostly triceps, NOT my pecs. Any advice on how can I involve pecs some more? After heavy bench pressing 2 things happen: my triceps is sore and my triceps grows. Not chest
Ah! I have a blog on this: http://romanfitnesssystems.com/articles/three-awesome-exercises-for-well-developed-chesticles/
Cake, or death?
No, Wait! CAKE! Cake for me, please.
Any good reading suggestions? Non fitness related.
Ah! Check my goodreads - I've rated over 1500 books: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6466642.John_Romaniello
have you ever played Planescape Torment? Prob one of the best stories in a D&D fantasy setting. Your char, Rohn Jomaniello would get a kick out of that by maxing out WIS.
I have not! I will check it out. We're trying to get an LA D&D playing group together, so this could work out.
For someone really out of shape following a plan 500 cals under maintenance plus a decent workout program, is IIFYM style fine or will the results be better if they eat clean?
Speaking generally, if someone is really out of shape, I would prefer they eat clean. Learn how to diet. Lean into the difficulty. Just because you CAN get lean eating donuts doesn't mean you should.
Why do you think so many diets fail?
I think that people tend to pick the wrong diets for them.
I've written before that people tend to fall into one of two categories: freedom dieters or rules dieters. If you pick the wrong type of diet for YOU, it will almost always fail.
which sports are the least healthy to engage in long-term at the hobbyist level/pro level?
Well, I would say that with all of the information coming out about concussions and brain injuries related to football, that's one of the most dangerous. Anything where you're courting head trauma, more or less.
In regards to IF, if someone were to workout at ~9pm, how would you suggest that they organize their meal times to maximize fat loss and promote muscle growth?
Fast till 2pm. Have protein and fat meals between 2pm and 7pm. Train at 9. Having a meal with all of your carbs and about 30% total calories
What kind of weekly frequency/ daily volume do you recommend with a strength gain/ fatloss plan for an intermediate lifter (5 years lifting, familiar with all big lifts, good form on all)?
I would suggest training 4-5 days per week. two heavy days, two metabolic days, and one conditioning and bodyweight day.
Can the Omega Body Blueprint be effective using only body weight instead of weights, and no supplements?
yup! I'm actually working on a completely BW version (Omega Bodyweight Blueprint -- behold my neverending cleverness). I'm hoping to have it out before the summer.
As long as you're willing to make changes to the exercises yourself for the time being, you can start now.
Engineering the Alpha left me feeling cut, but as a skinny guy I feel like it's time to focus on bulking up. I know in your Schwarzenegger article you recommended split training or HST for beginners looking for size, but are there any specific programs you recommend?
Depends on your overall level of experience. If you're coming from ETA, I would say that HST is not the right movie.
I would focus on something radically different, with no full body workouts. More of a split routine.
"The Growth Surge" by John Berardi on TNation is a good plan. Christian Thibs has also written a ton of stuff
Not gonna lie, I had a dream about you last night (first and only mind you)... Could be because of your email blast I read just before sleeping.
So my question is, why did you try to steal my dream girl? Are you two happy now? ... Because that's fine, I'll just dream up a better woman next time....
But more serious question, after reading EtA I am hesitant to start the program as I am worried about losing muscle during the process. For the first phase I would eating around 1600-1800 cal, which seems really low for me. I'm 175 lb, ~14% BF. From reading the book, I got the impression that the regiment would be better suited for someone who is looking to lose more fat.
What's your opinion on this, do individuals at certain levels of fitness stand to gain more than others? Would you advise me to follow the regiment outlined in EtA (given the limited data I provided)?
I would say at 14% bf, you could definitely do the program as written...but I would probably extend phase 3 for a few extra weeks for some mass.
In general, the closer you are to your "limit" in terms of max fitness, the harder it is going to be to get there. If you're like 95% of the way there, EtA is not the right program.
but if you have a long way to go, you're fine.
How tall are you?
Sorry about your dream girl. She says whatup.
What do you think of that nasty front 4 once Wilk gets back into the fold? Defense is built to kill it!
Sadly, the offseason has given me hope. The defense is fucking sick and the offense is actually trending in the right direction. So now I'm in the unfortunate position of being excited for Jets football...
...which, as you must know, never works out for anyone.
Your approaches how to reach your goal, especially in diet are very special and for some people totally opposite what they believe in.
Do you have some general pattern how to deal with their fate?
How can someone explain people why could be better to not eat their breakfast, or to eat carbs before sleep?
Where to start?
I'm not sure I understand what you're asking?
If you're asking how to explain stuff that is a bit controversial or might seem weird... well, just send them links to my site :)
Also I might as well ask, you have a blog which states certain numbers to multiply by your LBM to find your caloric intake need based off bodyfat. Is that the same for men and women?
Speaking generally, I go a bit higher for women. Usually I increase the multiplier by 1 or 1.5.
So, if you're asked to multiply your LBM by 16 for a man, a woman would use 17-17.5
First of all - thank you very much for putting out your Engineering the Alpha. After reading it and putting it into action I saw some great results. It set in motion some changes that wouldn't have otherwise happened.
I'm not located in the US, do you offer any kind of 1 on 1 personal training? If so, would you be able to PM me the pricing?
Hey Rand, thanks for the kind words.
As it happens, I do offer 1-on-1 online coaching. You can check it out here:
In the future, humanity picks their leaders by having them fight to the death while the rest of the world watches like its American Idol and can vote on what or whom a person faces.
To make this more exciting a young man has invented a time machine to go back in time and pick out 5 of histories greatest heroes and 5 of its greatest villains and brings them back to fight to see who will be the next world leader. This person is you John Romaniello, so who do you choose as the heroes and the villains? (I should save this question should I ever get you on my podcast but goddamn it I want to know the answer)
Oh, wow. This is gonna be hard. Honestly, I'll need to think about this. Tell you what: I will officially be on the podcast just to answer this.
Do you even lift?
No, but I plan to start. Do you have any good resources you could point me to? That would be very helpful. Thanks!
Have you pushed the button? Where does your allegiance lay?
I'm missing a reference, sadly.
Hi John, I'm so happy to have bought OBB, perfect timing for me... What are your suggestions if I work out twice a day, morning and end of day?
Just split the workouts in half - do the first two circuits in the morning, and the second two workouts in the evening
I've been lifting weights for years and I can never seem to increase my bench press. Hurt my shoulder and had to back off. How can I increase the amount I'm lifting without hurting my shoulder again?
Well, a good thing to ask is, why do you care about your bench press? There are better exercises for chest development and overall strength. I would say try to detach from the exercise, and just focus on other goals.
CREATING A DIGITAL FITNESS BUSINESS?
Can you describe a day-in-the-life running your digital business?
This is a great question! It changes a bit day to day, but ideally it looks like this:
i am about 2 weeks away from opening doors at my fitness facility (indoor cycling, kettle bell training, smoothie and juice bar with ONNIT STUFFFF <3) in boston, and I'm a newbie at this! any biz advice specifically pertaining to membership contracts, presales/ opening specials, e-newsletters, getting people in the doors and thriving? i would like to send out a pre-sale newsletter this weekend.
oh and also--- ideal emo workout playlist?
Congrats! I can give some basic advice, but you should really check out EVERYTHING by Bedros Keullian on this. He's written a ton and created a lot of products specifically to help with this.
Assuming it's not top secret, what's your next big project going to be?
Other than getting Apotheo (the coaching software) released, the next BIG project is going to be sitting down and really diving into the Hero's Journey book. I have a good outline, but it's time to start crushing it.
Other than that, finalizing one of the screenplays
I am very quad dominant and was told by my chiropractor that squats are not the best thing to do at the moment. What's the best alternative? I have been doing hip bridges and clams to try to strengthen my glutes but find them boring...
Are you having trouble getting your glutes to fire?
Good afternoon Sir Roman,
Just a few questions:
1) How do you properly re-schedule cheat days without ruining your weekly goals?
2) Are you able to share how to calculate macro numbers for a certain goal? Either to lean out or gain clean muscle mass?
3) What if you have to fast more than 16hrs a day, due to work?
That is all, Thank you
1) I tend to just let it happens as it needs to, and fast the day after. if I'm planning a cheat day on Saturday, but something comes up and I need to go to an even Wednesday, I'll just cheat then, and fast Thursday. it's not worth stressing about.
2) Alas, my formulas are proprietary and I keep them pretty close to the vest.
3) Yeah, that's fine. I often go 20 hours with no ill effect.
Will you smoke weed when you are a guest on the Joe Rogan Experience Podcast?
Probably not. I have never smoked, or done any sort of drug like that.
I'm not against it, it just hasn't happened. I think doing it for the first time in front of an audience that large would be a recipe for disaster.
That said, I don't like the idea of smoking in general. As delivery systems go, I'm more likely to go with edibles.
1) What up Lessibear!?
2) is the Hormonal Response Diet supposed to be a way to maintain post OBB, or was it meant for the 6 week after program?
1) She says, "whattup, YO!?"
2) You could use it for both the OD and long term maintenance
biggest fat loss mistakes for women who are trying to cut the last bit of fat, and your top tips for the last stubborn fat?
Biggest mistake women tend to make is lowering calories too much. I would rather see calories a bit higher, then create a deficit via activity.
For a guy who has recently hurted his back but wants to hit some cardio leg/calves workout (being idle is not working for me), any tips or suggestions? :)
Well, are there specific exercises that your doctor or physical therapist says are contraindicated? I would avoid those. But off the bat, cycling seems like it would be fine
Just throwing another question out there, hope you don't mind! Just about done reading most of Vonneguts work, what's my next stop?
Have you read every word Hemingway has written? If not, that's the way to go.
how did you narrow down your niche when starting your online training and how deep did you narrow it down?
I didn't set out to create a niche, per se. But, one thing I discovered early on is something I've been quoted as saying: People don't buy coaching, they buy coaches.
I've never really sought to carve a niche, but rather to build a brand. I've done this by focusing on the things I like OUTSIDE of fitness: nerdy stuff, D&D, comic books, buttsex, emo music, etc.
This basically allows people to get to know me as a person, and from there decide they want to work with me as a coach.
Does that make sense?
1, Have you considered starting your own podcast? With your health/fitness knowledge and library of geeky references i'm certain it would be a hit.
2, You recently got a tattoo dedicated to the hero's Journey. Why do you hold Joseph Campbell's work so dearly? I was introduced to the Hero's Journey through on your articles and was also fascinated by it.
3, How would you introduce Spidey into the MCU?
Also, do you do fasting/cheat day every week or do you change it up? Like how often do you usually do cheat days? Because I like your feast/fast method but didn't know if it was ok to do for long periods of time.
I go in waves. I'll do a cheat day once per week for maybe 3 months, then I just get bored and stop cheating entirely for 6 months. You can do it for a long period of time, but not absolutely essential.
what is your current view on the significance of EPOC? some say the significance is huge, others the opposite. in a hard and heavy strength workout, i often don't burn a lot of calories during the workout itself but feel pretty fried after so know i was working hard
It's still important. Everything is important. Is EPOC alone enough to get you lean? No. But it's worth factoring into the overall equation.
How does marijuana affect fat loss and/or muscle building and recovery in general? Pumping Iron shows Arnold smoking it but was that post competition.
I would suspect that it would probably not negatively affect recovery. Could actually help. BUT I would imagine it could negatively impact recruitment patterns.
Will have to do some research and get back to you
In your 30 days to Awesome program, why are there so many sets and reps? The program looks pretty intense. Any research on superiority of 8x8s and 10x10s over, let's say, 3x10 or 4x6? Should I hit all sets to failure or xlose to it btw? All reps same weight or let it diminish over sets?
It's just a matter of manipulating volume. I like higher reps for growth. Particularly over the short term.
Failure on the last few sets
What skin care products do you recommend?
(Body wash/shampoo/face wash etc)
Good question! Currently, I use a face wash with an exfoliant (Jack Black), an age correcting toner (by Kiehls), a moisturizing face cream (anthony logistics) and an under eye cream (Kiehls). I use them in that order, after a shower.
If we got the last bonus with you for OBB, when does it start?
Hi Roman! I used your online coaching program for 3 months now to amazing results(through for economic reasons I'm not longer subscribed). This are my questions:
What do you think of Jason Baha Ice cream fitness novice program after completing one of your programs?
is it possible to combine one of your programs has engineering the Alpha with Crossfit?
I been using 30 lbs db for your dynamic training workout, but my left hand grip strength seems to be the limiting factor having to pause the workout to rest that hand. Any suggestions or supplement exercise to work that out?
Tanks a lot in advance
Hey hey! Great to hear from you :)
1) I don't know much about the program. Sorry!
2) You could do EtA and crossfit, but I wouldn't Just pick one and stick with it, you know?
* 3) Meh, I would just use straps when your hands tire out. It's not a huge deal.
I read your Alpha book. I found it super spot on with the information but not very user friendly, especially with the workouts. I found myself trying to take the book with me to the gym. Is there a place to go to get short, easy to use workouts from the book so I don't have to recreate the wheel? Thanks.
Well, as mentioned in the book, it's the concepts that make it effective, not the exactitudes of the workouts. If you need to change exercises to make it less intrusive, I'm totally fine with that.
Can you explain if there is any science behind "shocking the muscle" as Arnold puts it?
This is basically a bro-sciency way of saying that muscle tends to respond more aggressively to new stimulus than stimulus to which it has become adapted.
Is that the group you need approval for?
Everyone who buys it right now gets the last bonus right?
Everyone who joins the coaching group (it's the second "upsell" when buying the program, and costs 97)
what is it like working with Arnold?
He is the nicest, funniest, and most charming guy ever. He puts the spotlight on everyone but himself, and generally makes you feel awesome being around him.
I suspect if we had been doing any significant work together, it would have been intimidating--his work ethic probably dwarfs my own (which is insane), so it's cool that we only had a few projects. He's amazing, though.
Hey John, Thanks for your response.
Height is 5'11 ~ 180 cm
At 5'11" and 175, you're not near your genetic threshold yet. Wouldn't worry too much. You can definitely gain more muscle, and probably won't lose much.
Loved the Alpha. Went through the training program and everyone at the gym looked at me like I had two heads when I was shoulder pressing the bar one handed.
My question, when you look at guys under 6ft over 3 bills with about 34% BF who used to powerlift but just fell off, what do you say to them? Thoughts are that old school power lifting just wont shred the fat like necessary but breaking those routines is fucking hard!
Thanks man! Keep up the salesy emails, I enjoy them none the less haha
Thanks man! So glad you enjoyed the book.
As for what I say to those guys: nothing, unless they approach me first. Speaking generally, I don't think there is any real value in proselytizing. Trying to sway people to your view point without them first giving any indication that they're interested is just begging to waste everyone's time.
Not fitness related but I know that you're a comic book fan as well as a savy business/marketing guy:
How do you feel about Marvel (and to a lesser extent DC) changing a lot of their comic book properties to be more in line with the movies and TV shows they're putting out? Is this a good way to grab new readers outside of their traditionally core audience that will eventually result in richer/better/more diverse stories overall or is it more of a money grab?
You know, I think it's ultimately a good thing. I prefer some overarching continuity.
I don't view it as a money grab, but more of a a declaration that Marvel stands behind their storylines, and is willing to put them out in various types of media. It won't matter if you like comics, or movies -- no matter how you consume the content, you'll get the same thing.
I think that says a lot for their willingness to really throw support behind their writers.
Hey Roman, do you have any book recommendations? What do I have to read before I turn 30? (next year) I once watched a video of yours where you talked about David Deida which I really liked.
I'm a big fan of yours! Bought most of your programs and just recently OBB and got in great shape for my vacation last year using the superhero workout :-)
Hey man, thanks so much for the kind words; means a lot. And thank you for your support.
As for books -- I've reviewed 1500 on my Goodreads account, so check there...
Agreed, hate getting all hot & bothered in May. However, I am seriously pumped just waiting for camp.
Appreciate the reply. Ain't to many of us around.
There are more of us than you'd think. Most of us just hide in shame.
Rohn Jomaniello? Never heard of him
His mystery is exceeded only by his power.
Taco Bell or in-n-out?
I haven't had taco bell in 16 years, so I'm going to have to go with In and Out.
Have you looked into the effect that rock music has on workouts? Is it usually better to lift while listening to music?
Haven't looked into it. But I notice that I have much better conditioning workouts while listening to music...whereas my weight sessions aren't necessarily improved.