Top 40 Things I Learned In 2016

By Vince Del Monte, WBFF Pro Fitness Model, Certified Fitness Trainer and Nutritionist and author of No Nonsense Muscle Building.

You didn’t think I forgot did I? Recalling my top learning from the year has been a highlight of mine and it’s cool having people email me asking, “Yo, when you doing your top 40 things you learned post? I look forward to that!”

So here we go, in yearly tradition, lets dive into the top 40 things I’ve learned in the areas of Muscle, Money, Marriage and Manhood.

Let me know which lesson “popped out” at you in the comments section below.

Cool? Let’s dive in…

Top 10 Things I Learned About Muscle:

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1. Muscle Fiber Type Training continues to be LEGIT!

This past year I’ve “fully transitioned” to muscle fiber type training which means all my workouts are customized all of my sets, reps, rest periods and tempos based on my Slow Twitch muscle fiber type, which I learned through the link below.

I’ve seen more progress in size, strength and balance at the age of 37 than I did at 27, plus my body doesn’t feel banged up.  If you want to build muscle and get shredded faster than anything you’ve tried, it all starts with knowing your muscle fiber type in 2017.

Start here: www.GeneExpressionTraining.com

2. My Body Responded Best to ultra Low Volume and High Frequency Training cycles.

I brought Coach Ryan Faehnle back into the picture this year for 1-on-1 coaching and we decided to experiment with an ultra low volume/high intensity/high frequency program design where I hit each body part 3x per week but with only 1-2 all-out sets per bodypart. So, essentially, 3-6 sets per week per body part. While I’ve always taken a “Less is More” approach to training, this next level of “Less is More” proved to be very effective.

3. I have been (unknowingly) suffering from metabolic damage.

After reading Scott Abel’s book, “Understanding Metabolism“, I discovered that I’m suffering from metabolic damage that likely occurred years ago when I competed and from a reliance on hardcore short term diets for urgent deadlines, instead of just staying year all year round.

Those choices have resulted in negative “metabolic compensation” consequences (aka a very hard tie to lose fat and keep it off) that I’m still paying for. I’ve had to learn how to rebuild a healthy, supportive and robust metabolism and while this subject matter is also robust, look out for a lot of YouTube videos coming soon on this subject matter.

4. You can get ripped and stay ripped with exactly 13 minutes of cardio per week or a 20-minute barbell complex.

Even though I know cardio is the least effective way to lose fat, I still have a bad habit of resorting to “a ton of cardio” when I want to get lean but this year I disciplined myself to fat-burning (versus fat storing) strategies which came in the form of rotating these two methods:

1) high intensity interval training. This was done 3x per week after my weights and it resulted in a world of difference. The 12 minutes comes from 3×2 minutes on Monday, 3×1 minutes on Wednesday and 12×20 seconds on Friday.

2) barbell complexes. This was done 1x per week (usually a Saturday) which you can learn more about at Shredded In 6: Non-Cardio Fat Loss System

NOTE: I did not do both of these methods at the same time. I would rotate them through the course of the year in about 8-week cycles. Once I noticed one method become “dull”, I switched it.

5. M.A.T. (Muscle Activation Techniques) continues to be the most powerful therapy I’ve ever experienced.

It’s been a few years since I started M.A.T. but this year, I’ve been working through the Rx patterns by MAT therapist Eric Seifert from Core Strength in Toronto. We currently have 2 more ranges left in the hands to complete (all 43 ranges!) and than my entire body will be “turned on”.

One of the big reasons I’ve made more gains in the gym, with less work, is because my muscles are actually being activated during my workouts. Not only can I recruit my muscles but I can now fatigue them!

SIDE NOTE: I also got to meet the creator of M.A.T., Greg Roskopf, who treated me for 4 hours and it was one of the highlights of my years. You can see those videos here:

==> How to Build Muscle Mass and Strength (NO LIFTING)

==> How to Gain Muscle Faster with Muscle Activation Techniques

6. You don’t need another “diet” to lose fat, you need a “dietary strategy”.

Diets are short term events. Diets are what created the metabolic, hormonal and biochemical problems in the first place. You can’t fix those problems with the same thing that caused those problems in the first place!

To lose fat permanently, you need a dietary strategy.  One based on a set of fundamental and sustainable nutrition principles. This is all the stuff I’m teaching in my monthly Next Level Body Transformation Coaching Program where we focus on achieving an amazing After After photo!

I don’t care about your “After Photo”, I care about your “After After Photo”!

7. When you focus on forcing fat loss, the body reacts. When you focus on coaxing fat loss, the body responds.

I learned this brilliant principle from Scott Abel and it was a game changer.

I actually discovered that my body can only handle losing 1 pound of fat per MONTH. Anything faster and it’ll be temporary fat loss loss.

This year I just ensured the scale was going down every 2-3 weeks instead of trying to force it and this “coaxing” approach seemed to rebuild my metabolism. How do I know I rebuilt it?

I can now have regular cheat meals without them setting me back. If you don’t believe me, follow me on Snapchat (vincedelmonte) and watch how much pizza, bread, fatty steaks, cheese, and pasta I eat on regular basis.  Oh yeah, you’ll see I throw back a few bottles of wine per month too but I’ve been losing weight consistently through the year. And this is not because of “calorie math” which I’ll also be covering in upcoming YouTube videos.

8. Tolerable hunger is good, intolerable hunger is bad if you want to lose fat without rebounding.

This past year I lowered my body’s set point from 214 pounds to 204 pounds. It took an entire year and one of the big things I did was avoid intolerable hunger which is when you want to trade sexual favors with the same sex for a lick of a cookie. Tolerable hunger is a sign that your body is surrendering fat and I became more comfortable with being hungry.

9. You can make gains with “baby weights” if you prioritize exercise execution first and foremost. 

At the start of the year I hired Coach Joe Bennett (@hypertrophycoach on Instagram) 1-on-1. Joe is one of Ben Pakulski’s top trainers at his MI40 gym.

Even though I learn from the same people and resources as these guys, it’s unbelievable how much you learn when someone else gets their hands on you. You don’t know what you don’t know, right?

If you want to take your execution to the next level then I recommend you order www.MassMechanics.com which will show you how to achieve explosive muscle gains with nothing more than “baby weights”!

If you could only invest $50 into any of my programs for the rest of your life THIS would be The One I recommend before anything else.

10. Going to bed earlier and rising early has turned into a sacred ritual.

This past year I gave up late night TV series and replaced it with being in bed between 9-10pm almost every night. I trained my body to naturally wake up between 445-530am without an alarm clock. And I don’t roll out of bed. I hop out! I had some of the best workouts of my life this past year training from 630-730am each morning.

Top 10 Things I Learned About Money:

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The Del Monte’s New Home

11. Move to Toronto if you want to make a MASSIVE return on your home .

24 hours after we put in an offer for our new home in Toronto another interested couple offered us $200,000 cash to hand it over to them. We declined.

48 hours later another couple offered us $400,000 cash to hand it over. I was shocked. I thought about this for a few seconds and quickly said “No thank you.” The Toronto real estate market is insane!

If you want your money to “work for you”, buy a house (not a condo) in Toronto! I don’t share this to brag but it’s a VALUABLE lesson if you are looking to leverage your money and open to living in a different city.

12. Don’t “Personalize” your home too much.

Flavia and I spent WAY too much money personalizing our home in Ancaster with one of Toronto’s top interior decorators http://www.jenniferbrouwerdesign.com/ a few years ago.

We spent a fortune and while we LOVED what we did, it was a costly mistake. You see, we listed our Ancaster home in October and had over 25 showings without a SINGLE offer in 10 weeks. This was VERY stressful.

The feedback? “The house is beautiful but it’s ‘too personalized’. What the heck does that mean? No one warned me of this objection when I was spending $1,500 per dining room chair! LOL

In short, people couldn’t vision the home for themselves and it resulted in us dropping the list price over $150,000 to finally get in sold just a few days ago. That was a tough lesson.

We still ended up setting a record high price for our area but I think we could have sold it faster and for more money if the house wasn’t as personalized. Lesson learned.

Ignore all of this advice if you’re investing into your “life long dream home” of course.

13. Invest BIG into yourself.

This past year I hired a business coach. His monthly fee? $15,000 US. Yeah, I know! We worked together for 11 months. We are still working together but in a different capacity now.

Looking back, if I could reverse everything he taught me and get all of my money back, I would say NO. What I’ve learned and built with him has been a game changing decision.

This investment was WAY outside of my comfort zone and not an easy conversation to have with my wife but we both knew it was pay now or pay later.

This lesson is missing a ton of context and if you attend one of my 0-6 Figure Formula business events or hire me as a business coach, you’ll get the entire back story.

14. You MUST pay to play.

I say this all the time. One of my Canadian students who attended my 0-6 Figure Formula seminar in January just sent me this…
.

> My launch ended a few days ago. 
> 
> I got 102 new customers for a total revenue of $31,980 (USD)
> 
> I’m very stoked and I know this is just the beginning. Next step is affiliates!
> 
> thanks again for your advice over the past year. I know it has had a big impact on my business. Last year this online business only did about $30k in revenue. Now in the first 4 months of this year it has almost done $60k. 
> 
> let me know if you need a testimonial, i’m happy to give it. 
> 
> Jordan Valeriote
> HardcoreMusicStudio.com
.
(Email me if you want to attend my next 0-6 Figure Formula seminar in  2017 at vincedelmonte@hotmail.com I am thinking about doing a mini-tour through a few countries in 2017).
.

16. YouTube continues to be one of the best places to find new customers.

When I look at my income from different sources such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat, the income from YouTube is 5x larger than everything else combined.

This is good news for me because I’ve always loved doing videos and have some big plans for helping my followers build muscle, shred fat and live an awesome lifestyle at the same time with my 2017 video schedule.

By the way, if you’re Subscribed to my YouTube channel make sure you turn notifications on (hit the little bell beside the Subscribe button) because YouTube changed the way people are notified about new uploads and it’s why everyone’s views on YouTube have dropped dramatically including my own.

17. Actually, CARE!

Someone relayed a conversation that happened behind my back recently,

“Yo, Vince. I heard some guys talking about you the other day and they were saying what your biggest detriment is in business.”

“Really? What the heck did they say?”

“That you care too much.”

“What?”

“Yeah, they said that you care too much about actually helping people because you’re always trying to improve yourself.  If you spent less time working on your fitness knowledge and more time on your marketing knowledge then you would make more money.”

Basically they were saying that my information is “good enough” and that the opportunity for me is to not put out better information but to market more aggressively.

I understand the point but I don’t fully agree.

I’m playing a “Long Game” and my focus is always around providing you the BEST information organized into skillfully-designed step-by-step training programs that make you want more.  A good example of this is No-Nonsense Muscle Building 2.0.

This program took me THREE YEARS to create but has received a roaring response and getting students better results than anything else they have ever tried.

I believe that putting marketing first and expertise second will “sink your business” long term and lead to a very unfulfilling life. Focus on sustainability.

18. Know your HOURLY Value.

How much are you worth per hour when you’re doing your best work? Once you know this number you can start saying “Yes” and “No” to various ideas, projects and partnerships.

19. Don’t write a book if you want to make money.

While Living Large was one of my coolest achievements and is the “BEST BANG FOR YOUR BUCK” (includes a 30 week program meal plans and pictures for only $16 !!!) I haven’t seen a single penny yet based on how the deal was set up.

It’s a long story but the book business is a challenging business model. The reason I wrote my book was primarily a “brand move” and to expand into the mainstream. If you haven’t noticed, “Hardcore Vinny” is fading away and if you follow me on social media you’ve likely sensed that shift.

Now, I do have plans of getting Living Large into thousands of hands in 2017 with an awesome new strategy so stay tuned for that announcement…

20. “Unlocking” the creative side of my brain resulted in 3 of my best-selling programs of 2016

How did I do this? Magic supplements and doses! haha

They are not magic but they sure feel like it. The majority of the big project ideas that I did this past year came to me during my early morning workouts when I was on my homemade pre workout stack of the following ingredients that did something magical to my brain…

-> 450mg of caffeine

-> 800mg of alpha GPC

-> 2800mg of acetyl-l-carnitine

-> 200mg of L-theanine

-> 300mg of L-tyrosine

-> 100mg of L-Phenylalanine

-> 8000mg of citrulline malate

I’m thinking of making my first supplement in 2017 and this may be the formula because not only has it given me some of my best workouts but it inspired three of my top programs in 2016 which were Shredded In 6, Mass Mechanics and Next Level Transformation.

.

Top 10 Things I Learned During Marriage:

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21. I’m a “douche bag.”

Seriously, this past year, I discovered another level of “douche bag inside Vince Del Monte. We live in the world of “filters” via Facebook and Instagram and everyone projects a “I’ve got everything figured out” image and we all know that’s complete bullshit.

The last thing I want is for you to think I have everything figured out. I don’t.

I have a lot to work on. There were times I treated loved ones like trash for selfish and immature reasons that I’m too embarrassed to share so consider it pretty bad considering I’m an “open book” for the most part.

22. Role play is a game changer for the sex life.

My Mom and Dad read this so we’ll just leave it at that. hehe

23. Say these 3 words every day: “Please”, “Thank you” and “Sorry”.

My father taught me this one and it’s amazing how powerful this is to maintain a positive home environment.

24. When your wife asks you to do something, do it IMMEDIATELY.

When my wife used to ask me to do little stuff like, “Can you put the outdoor furniture into the basement today? It’s getting cold out now…” the Old Vince would say, “Yeah, yeah, I’ll do it when I’m finished this…” This always lead to reminders and eventually a stupid fight. Now, the New Vince gets his ass off the chair like a fire cracker and does it right away.

In short, when your wife asks you to do something, stop absolutely EVERYTHING, I don’t care how “important” it is, and just do it.

Remember, NOTHING is more important than YOUR wife. Right ?

You can send me Amazon gift cards when you see how amazing this works 🙂

25. Turn your F-CKING phone off.

I rarely swear unless I need to make a point. When you’re with your wife or kids, turn your phone off and give them your full attention. Being on your phone in front of loved ones basically says, “F-ck you. My stuff is more important than yours. I’m a selfish prick.”

I know you’re not and I know that technology can feel like a skull-crushing vice and a war you cannot win but you must FIGHT, for the sake of your family. Being addicted to your technology will DESTROY all the real relationships in your life. It’s not a matter of if, it’s when.

I probably need this advice more than anyone reading this so let’s work on this together!

26. Praying with your spouse is one of the hardest but best things you can do for spiritual connectedness.

As a Christian, Flavia and try to pray together. It’s HARD. Why? Because your partner knows you better than anyone else so it can feel shameful and embarrassing coming into the presence of the Almighty. It’s something we’re working on.

27. When your woman asks for input, NEVER say, “Whatever you want to do is fine with me.”

This is the statement of a friend, not a lover. Don’t force women to make decisions. One of the greatest gifts a man can give his woman is clarity and decisiveness. By withholding this masculine gift, she will become distrustful of your love.

28. Praise your spouse in front of others.

I don’t know why but I used to take “cheap shots” at my wife, about sensitive issues, in public and it would always lead to a nasty fight where I would try to defend my lameness with, “I was just kidding around. Don’t worry, they know I was joking…” That has not worked even once. LOL

Fellas, learn from Vinny’s stupid mistakes and NEVER “joke around” about your wife’s sensitive areas in public. It’s beyond disrespectful so turn the tables and look for ways to “lift” your lady up and tell the world how absolutely amazing she is.

Remember, you need her way more than she needs you 🙂

29. Hang out with couples who VALUE marriage.

Sadly, many couples think it’s normal to have a “shitty” marriage and if you hang out with these people too long then don’t be surprised when you settle for “shitty” too.

Hang out with friends who treat their spouses with respect and who are actually “working” on their marriage and value the vows they made years ago.

30. Repeat the last 3 words of her sentence as a question.

“Vince, I need you to take the garbage out.”

“Take the garbage out?”

“Yeah, take the garbage out. Actually, on second thought, you can do it tomorrow.”

LOL Does this actually work? Yes and sometimes.

It’s called “mirroring”. By repeating the last 3 words of someones sentence as a question it shows that you are listening and sometimes gets the person to rethink what they just requested.  I’m not doing the technique justice but it’s amazing.

I’m learning this and more from an amazing book called “Never Split The Difference” by Chris Voss and it’s on negotiation and will help you in business and every day conversations.

Top 10 Things I Learned About Manhood:

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31. PURSUE your kids.

Your kids will NOT pursue you. It’s not in their DNA. It’s YOUR job to pursue them even when you think they don’t want anything to do with you.

 

32. My kids act 10x better when I’m HIGHLY ENGAGED.

Everyday I get on my kids level, literally. My Mom told me to do this and it’s such simple and powerful advice.

I get on the floor and we play in Peppa Pig’s house or “make a shake” or do a puzzle and I just interact with my 1 and 3 year olds. It’s UNBELIEVABLE to see how much better they behave when we spend time together.

33. Good MEN are raised, not born.

I’m learning a lot of this from Meg Meekers MUST LISTEN to podcast if you’re a parent.

My parents spent A TON of time with me and my brothers. Today, they still do. My Dad always reminds me, “Do you think you and your brothers just turned out the way you did by accident?”

Heck no, my parents raised us to be good man, it didn’t just happen.

34. It’s almost impossible to be “too real”.

This past year I’ve revealed more about my personal life (mainly on social media) than ever before and I have not sensed any negative back lash. In fact, people are asking for more.

If you don’t follow my Vlog, that’s a good place to start if you want to meet the “real” Vince.

35. Double down on your strengths.

This past year I built a new team around me to help support my creative side so that I could share the “New and Improved Vinny” to the world through my YouTube channel, emails and paid programs.

36. Set boundaries… if you value your future. 

This past year was the first year I ended my day (almost) every day at 430pm and I didn’t work weekends the entire year. I used to take pride in 12+ hour days (and while there is a time and place for that when you’re single), it’s a dangerous thing if you value your marriage and relationship with your kids. Don’t let Gary V tell you otherwise 🙂

37. Your kids are your legacy. 

I hear all these “business gurus” talking about building a “legacy business”. What the heck is a “legacy business”? LOL Your business is NOT your legacy. Your KIDS are. They are the only thing that lives on when you’re gone. You know who promotes this “legacy business” stuff? 45 year old dudes with no wife and no kids. That’s who. Just sayin.

38. Learning how to negotiate and WIN is massively EMPOWERING.

I used to get taken advantage of all the time and I would just shrug it off and say, “I can’t be bothered…” and would rationalize away the situation.

The truth?  I SUCKED at negotiation. THIS is the stuff they should be teaching in school.

Eventually I got sick and tired of being take advantage of (in many situations) and read Chris Voss’s book called “Never Split The Difference” and it’s been a game changer.

If you’re not getting what you want in life, this book will change your life and give you back your power again.

39. Find your own “Master Barber”

I regularly go see Sergio at New York New York in Burlington for a cut and a nice Italian shave and I always leave feeling like a million bucks. It’s amazing how you act and think differently when you physically look your best.

40. SLOW equals fast.

This past year I slowed the pace down in every area of my life. I discovered that slow equals fast because when you focus on the quality of your work, you’re able to avoid missteps and circling back to do it all over again.

I learned that we only have capacity to do so much and that if you focus on doing just a few things (if not just one), very well, that can be the difference between good and GREAT success.

This is a theme that will continue into 2017… Go as SLOW as possible. Slow always wins.

 

So, which ones “popped” out at you?

 

Leave a comment below. I would love to know.

And, if you have a second, I would love to know what you want to see more and less of from Vince Del Monte in 2017.

Your feedback is gold. Thanks!

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Comments

11 thoughts on “Top 40 Things I Learned In 2016

  1. Vince, dude, this is an awesome article. Lots of wisdom here. Thank you for sharing with me and others!. I love that you divided points into different categories–, love, body, biz, etc. I hope you will have the much better 2017

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    • I second that! great write up and impressive….

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  2. Haha a lot of these tips are written in a funny way! I especially like the one about investing in yourself! Also, good book recommendations, I am looking into them on Amazon now.

    Happy New Year!
    Ryan

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  3. Loved this! I’m huge on investing in yourself so that one stuck out. Also putting your phone away around family and friends is so important that I need to get better at; my mom always yells at me for that. And don’t feel uncomfortable to pray with your wife; you should be living in a triangle of love between you, God, and your spouse. Thanks for all the info I will be looking for a MAT specialist in my area and can you give me more info on the 13 mins of cardio? You said you do 3×2 minutes on Monday, 3×1 minutes on Wednesday and 12×20 seconds on Friday. What does that mean exactly? I’ve done sprint intervals for 30 seconds followed by a minute of walking and other things of the like. Thanks.

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  4. wow! Vince, from the 40 I found the following to be powerful and bound with awesomethencity.
    the family structure is the basic unit of our society . I appreciate you giving focus to this most important institution. and most assuredly this will provide you with something wonderful to your mate Mr [DON JUAN] DON THE ONE WITH THE HEAT OF THE SUN. smile here they are in their glory numbers 29-24-30-40-26-27-28-37-23- these I found to be solid as a ROCK.
    Rocky

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  5. I find something tragic about your not being able to “personalize” your own home, to take care that whatever furniture, color schemes, fixtures, etc, have to be limited by what a future buyer will find bland and neutral. Nobody, including you, should have to deprive yourself of freedom to configure your own home as an environment that you will love.
    When I bought my house back in 1977, it was a revolutionary architectural masterpiece designed by the great maestro Matti Suuronen from Finland. Look up Futuro house on the internet and you will see what I am describing. Many people put down deposits to buy Futuro houses only to return later to cancel their orders and forfeit their deposits saying, “I really wanted to have a Futuro house but I have to worry about what other people will think and the impact it will have on my career and my marriage. My wife threatened to divorce me if I embarrass her by associating myself with such weird architecture.” A coward dies a thousand times and it is heartbreaking to witness someone renouncing something so intimate about who and what they are to please others who have not earned the right to dictate how any of us should live.
    You can’t buy these wonderful houses anymore, but treat yourself to a show by looking up Futuro houses on the internet.

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  6. Vince. This was an awesome read. Lots of wisdom here. Thank you for sharing. Love the different categories–body, biz, etc. I hope we get to meet someday!

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  7. I look forward to the YouTube videos on the metabolic damage and hopefully how to repair it? I also can attest to the legitimacy of muscle fiber type training, having completed NNMB 2.0 one month ago. I am now finished with week 3 of Vanity Arms prequel, the pumps in my arms are incredible and my arms continue to get stronger and stronger

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  8. Great in depth article some great points. I will try using some of these points in my own life. If readers want to take one point and one point only. Id say that Intolerable hunger is bad for you would be high up the list. Long term if you eat like this you will fall of the wagon and each something you shouldnt. As you mentioned in the article this will not do any favours to your metabolism. When on a fat loss diet you need to be on sustainable diet

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  9. Vince, you continue to be an inspiration to me! Being an entrepreneur as well as one who values relationships, spiritual growth and personal growth, all of your points really stood out to me!
    That, along with the daily Catholic readings that your dad sent me, was my reading for the day and it was just what I needed! ?
    Have a great day!!

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  10. Well said. My favorites are 38 & 40. I extracted a lot of value from Chris Voss’ book also. I specially appreciated how he elegantly explains how to use empathy and emotional intelligence to uncover the root of an individual’s motivation.

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