Wits & Weights | Smart Science to Build Muscle and Lose Fat

Ep 85: Mental Health, Physical Fitness, and the Power of Advocacy with Marc Paisant

July 07, 2023 Marc Paisant Episode 85
Ep 85: Mental Health, Physical Fitness, and the Power of Advocacy with Marc Paisant
Wits & Weights | Smart Science to Build Muscle and Lose Fat
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Wits & Weights | Smart Science to Build Muscle and Lose Fat
Ep 85: Mental Health, Physical Fitness, and the Power of Advocacy with Marc Paisant
Jul 07, 2023 Episode 85
Marc Paisant

Today I am chatting with certified personal trainer and mental health advocate Marc Paisant. You’ll learn how Marc turned adversity into a mission to raise mental health awareness, including the essential role of physical fitness in maintaining mental health and the importance of seeking support and maintaining balance. We’ll explore misconceptions about and how we end the stigma surrounding mental health.

Marc Paisant is a Certified Personal Trainer and the creator and host of the 6AMRun.com and Relatively Normal podcasts. In his shows, he shares his experiences with ADHD, anxiety, and depression to show that no one is alone and there is always someone willing to listen and help. He advocates for therapy and counseling and talks about the years of therapy that he has used to manage his mental health.

As a former collegiate athlete, Marc uses physical fitness to help with his mental health and encourages others to end the stigma surrounding mental health and spread awareness.

__________
Book a FREE 30-minute call with Philip here.
__________

Today you’ll learn all about:

[2:20] Marc's personal journey with ADHD, anxiety, and depression
[7:28] The importance of seeking help and support
[13:27] The potential misuse of exercise as an escape from problems
[17:52] The evolution of his relationship with fitness
[22:16] Philosophy on fitness and getting started with training
[29:41] Allan is grateful to Philip for his refreshing approach to nutrition coaching and how it has impacted his fitness
[30:15] Lessons from youth sports and collegiate athleticism
[35:39] Daily routine for maintaining physical and mental health
[40:12] The connection between lifting and running
[45:51] View on psychotherapy and counseling
[50:37] Debunking misconceptions and myths about mental health
[57:36] The question Marc wished Philip had asked
[59:17] Where to learn more about Marc
[1:00:00] Outro

Episode resources:

📲 Send me a text message!

Support the Show.


🎓 Join Wits & Weights Physique University

👩‍💻 Schedule a FREE nutrition/training audit with Philip

👥 Join our Facebook community for live Q&As & support

✉️ Join the FREE email list with insider strategies and bonus content!

📱 Try MacroFactor for free with code WITSANDWEIGHTS. The only food logging app that adjusts to your metabolism!

🩷 Enjoyed this episode? Share it on social and follow/tag @witsandweights

🤩 Love the podcast? Leave a 5-star review

📞 Send a Q&A voicemail

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Show Notes Transcript

Today I am chatting with certified personal trainer and mental health advocate Marc Paisant. You’ll learn how Marc turned adversity into a mission to raise mental health awareness, including the essential role of physical fitness in maintaining mental health and the importance of seeking support and maintaining balance. We’ll explore misconceptions about and how we end the stigma surrounding mental health.

Marc Paisant is a Certified Personal Trainer and the creator and host of the 6AMRun.com and Relatively Normal podcasts. In his shows, he shares his experiences with ADHD, anxiety, and depression to show that no one is alone and there is always someone willing to listen and help. He advocates for therapy and counseling and talks about the years of therapy that he has used to manage his mental health.

As a former collegiate athlete, Marc uses physical fitness to help with his mental health and encourages others to end the stigma surrounding mental health and spread awareness.

__________
Book a FREE 30-minute call with Philip here.
__________

Today you’ll learn all about:

[2:20] Marc's personal journey with ADHD, anxiety, and depression
[7:28] The importance of seeking help and support
[13:27] The potential misuse of exercise as an escape from problems
[17:52] The evolution of his relationship with fitness
[22:16] Philosophy on fitness and getting started with training
[29:41] Allan is grateful to Philip for his refreshing approach to nutrition coaching and how it has impacted his fitness
[30:15] Lessons from youth sports and collegiate athleticism
[35:39] Daily routine for maintaining physical and mental health
[40:12] The connection between lifting and running
[45:51] View on psychotherapy and counseling
[50:37] Debunking misconceptions and myths about mental health
[57:36] The question Marc wished Philip had asked
[59:17] Where to learn more about Marc
[1:00:00] Outro

Episode resources:

📲 Send me a text message!

Support the Show.


🎓 Join Wits & Weights Physique University

👩‍💻 Schedule a FREE nutrition/training audit with Philip

👥 Join our Facebook community for live Q&As & support

✉️ Join the FREE email list with insider strategies and bonus content!

📱 Try MacroFactor for free with code WITSANDWEIGHTS. The only food logging app that adjusts to your metabolism!

🩷 Enjoyed this episode? Share it on social and follow/tag @witsandweights

🤩 Love the podcast? Leave a 5-star review

📞 Send a Q&A voicemail

Marc Paisant:

The last time I checked everyone living and breathing and talking right now has a brain. Last time I checked, feelings come from your brain emotions come through your brain. So guess what? Mental health is, is always on the horizon with me.

Philip Pape:

Welcome to the Wits& Weights podcast. I'm your host Philip pape, and this twice a week podcast is dedicated to helping you achieve physical self mastery by getting stronger. Optimizing your nutrition and upgrading your body composition will uncover science backed strategies for movement, metabolism, muscle and mindset with a skeptical eye on the fitness industry, so you can look and feel your absolute best. Let's dive right in. Wits& Weights community Welcome to another episode of the Wits & Weights Podcast. Today I'm chatting with certified personal trainer and mental health advocate Mark Pesach, you'll learn how Mark turned adversity into a mission to raise mental health awareness, including the essential role of physical fitness in maintaining mental health, and the importance of seeking support and maintaining balance. We'll explore misconceptions about and how we end the stigma surrounding mental health. Mark paisa is a certified personal trainer and the creator and host of the 6am run.com podcast, which I had the honor of being on recently, it's how we met and the relatively normal podcast. In his show, he shares his experiences with ADHD, anxiety and depression. He shows that no one is alone. And there's always someone willing to listen and assist when it comes to coping and managing all kinds of stress. He's an advocate for therapy and counseling and talks about his years of therapy that he's used to manage his mental health. As a former collegiate athlete, Mark uses physical fitness to assist with his mental health. He has learned that both can be combined and used to help work through any life issue. And his goal is to inspire others to ask for help. And to end the stigma when it comes to mental health and awareness. Mark. Thank you, man for doing this. And welcome to the show.

Marc Paisant:

Philip, I appreciate it. This is my honor. I'm looking forward to the conversation.

Philip Pape:

Cool, man. So I really do want to learn about your story. You know, you've turned this personal journey of yours managing HD, ADHD, anxiety, depression into a platform for raising mental health awareness. Can you walk us through the the key moments of that journey and how they've shaped your current mission?

Marc Paisant:

Oh, wow, chemo? Well, you know, it's, it's, I mean, there are key moments. You're absolutely right. And it's the at the time, I didn't know there were key moments.

Philip Pape:

I live in hindsight, right. Yeah, hindsight,

Marc Paisant:

you know, growing up, and I won't spend too much time I'm a grown up, I was a very sensitive kid. I mean, I was an athlete, I was, you know, one, one half of a set of twins. And, you know, Michael, and I play basketball and soccer grown out went to the same schools, you know, for the most part had the same friends and, and we were just known as the twins, and we couldn't have been, you know, more different, because, you know, he had that quote, unquote, that alpha male personality that that macho guy, he, you know, he didn't really show a lot and he was really the, the, for, you know, for sake of not finding a better word, the masculine one and the traditional masculine one where I was the one that was, you know, what would have would be sensitive would would cry would, you know, I was the one that always wanted to, you know, show emotion. And, you know, growing up, I thought something was wrong with me, I thought that was the wrong thing. I thought I always tried to be like him, even into my early 20s and late 20s, probably honest with you, and there's a lot of comparison, internally, externally. He was he got better grades. He excelled in sports faster than I did. And then he got a lot more attention from the girls who were younger. So at that time, like self esteem is just, I mean, on the outside looking in, you would think everything's great with this guy, like he plays, you know, goalkeeper, he's plays basketball. He's got a lot of friends. He's very personable, he has, you know, he makes people laugh. But, yeah, the masking started early age. And then as I get into college, you know, a key point in college was me being thrown into a just those shark infested waters of everyone was the was the man at their school, you know, oh, my God, I you know, I was Allstate goalkeeper. I was, you know, all county and soccer. I was recruited and you go to a place like Clemson where everyone was that and more. And I really couldn't handle it to be honest with you. So that was my first take at therapy because I didn't know what else to do. I had no one to talk to. I didn't think anybody wanted to listen. And and I finally started just Just that journey to for self exploration and understanding that I could write my own story like I could, I could make my own happiness, I didn't have to look for external motivations. And now fast forward into my adulthood. You get out of college and you're, you probably do the same thing. You're looking for a job trying to put your stake in the ground, trying to figure out who you are. And I ate too much, because it made me happy. I thought, excuse me, I thought it made me happy. You know, without too much spend money, I didn't have drank too much. And ended up gaining over 100 pounds after college and absolutely just hating myself. And I don't use that term lightly. Just hating myself and was in a toxic like, everything toxic work environment, I wasn't happy with my body. I wasn't moving, I wasn't staying fit. I wasn't hanging around with the right people. And then, through a stroke of luck, I got involved with the right therapist. And on and off, I was with him for you know, almost 10 years, maybe 10 or 11 years, where he got to really know me and finally use those words. You know, anxiety and depression. Like I didn't want to use them.

Philip Pape:

Yeah. That was gonna come up, right. Some people are either in denial or not even aware, they have something like, I wasn't

Marc Paisant:

aware of the anxiety, like the depression is one of those words, or it's like, people throw it around. Like, it's, it's, you know, but, you know, I was given him just a, just a high level view of my life. And he says, oh, yeah, you're, that's high functioning anxiety. And I was like, what? And he explained it to me as like, I've had that since I can remember memory like I've had. And I'm like, No, not everyone thinks like this, or has these ongoing emotions and feelings. He's like, No, this is not everyone, but it's you. So let's work on it. So since then, I've I've, as you said, I've been an advocate for therapy. I've been advocate for people finding the right therapist, because a lot of people go in the first time and they just don't feel a vibe. They don't they don't feel comfortable with that therapist. And that's fine. I mean, there's no such thing as a bad therapist. There's just a bad therapist for you. And so that's kind of what got me here.

Philip Pape:

Cool. Yeah, there's a few things there in that last comment you made about the right therapist getting involved with the right thing. I was going to ask about that. Because I didn't know if that was a deliberate choice of words. And it sounds like that's pretty critical to your past, and also how you help other people. So just dig into that a little bit more.

Marc Paisant:

Yeah, well, you know, I had a, I had a night when I was working, I was in my mid to late 20s. And it's one of those nights, it was a bad night and, and I really thought about just swinging my truck in oncoming traffic, like I really thought like, I was like, someone has to listen to me and I, I didn't do it, I ended up calling my EAP of the company I worked for and talk to a wonderful woman on the phone. And she set me up with a therapist. And it was the quintessential therapist that you see where there's the couch and the corduroys and the loafers and the notepad and all that stuff. And you know, I'm talking to him. And I don't really feel like he's, he's hearing what I'm saying. Like, he's, he's, he's, he's doing his job, but I don't really feel like I have a connection to him. So the third session comes up, and he kind of ends it with with like, law. Okay, that's, uh, that's all the time we have. And that's all you know, you EAP affords. Exactly. And I listen, and people have to understand, like, when you're on when you're a therapist on these programs, you don't get paid as much per hour, like I understand that part. But you have the ability to be to say that and say, hey, I can refer you or you can go through your insurance company, I don't accept your insurer. Like, there's so many things you can do. So I had a really bad taste in my mouth for therapists at that time. And I thought that I was just I was just broken. And, you know, I got fired from from that job. And I totally deserved it. I totally deserved it. And then went to a job that had a manager who can't who cared about me and wanted me to succeed. But I still had these feelings that I was going through, and I go through EAP again. And that's when I find Dr. Nadler. And I remember going into like sixth or seventh session with him thinking, okay, when when is this going to end? Like, when is this going to end? And I said, you know, one time I was like, okay, so I guess we only got a couple more of these and he looks, he stops and he's like, What are you talking about? I was like, Well, you know, I mean, it's EAP and he's like, no one your insurance covers this and too, we have a lot of work to do. And I'm going to, I'm going to be with you until we, we take care of your triggers and get some coping mechanisms. But don't don't worry about that at all. And it totally like changed my perspective on therapy. And he's a great guy. And we've had a bunch of sessions. And it's one of those things where I'm glad I gave it another chance.

Philip Pape:

One of the things I wanted to ask you about today was asking for help. And this, this, this ties into that because your story reminds me of so many I've heard where there's various forms of either incompetence, or gaslighting, or just not a good fit, you know, I mean, that can happen, right? It's just not a good fit. Even with therapy, I've heard stories where that just the approach that the therapist takes, even if they do listen, can make can be a game changer for one person to the other. So, I mean, who Who do you rely on most? Now? I guess that's one question I have. And then how can others reach out for help?

Marc Paisant:

You know, that's, you know, I haven't been when I moved back down to Georgia, I, I, my therapist got his temporary license, so we could have virtual sessions for a time as I found another therapist, and I got hooked up with a great therapist down here. And I stayed with her for about a year, but then, you know, I noticed that our session sessions were going smoother and smoother. And I felt really good. I was in a good spot. And we, you know, we decided that okay, you know, it's been good. I'm available if you need me, but, you know, it's kind of like what I tell the, you know, the girls that I coach at a young age, I'm like, my job is not to coach you forever. Like, my job is to prepare you for the future. And I know that hurts. And I know some people like oh, we want you to like and I would love listen, I would love to coach them forever. But like that, that doesn't do anybody any good.

Philip Pape:

That's a form of codependence Right. Exactly,

Marc Paisant:

exactly. And I, I depend on myself, making sure that I'm one that I'm honest with myself, and that I look for the triggers. And I don't just look for time to heal all wounds, basically, like I used to where I would get depressed. And I would just say, okay, in a couple of days and a couple of weeks, I'll be fine. And just write it out, and just literally write it out. And it was a terrible couple of days, couple of weeks. But now you know, there is the positive self talk, I'm not so negative to myself anymore. When I when I speak and there's let's be honest, there's a gym, you know, there's running, there's forms of exercise, there's getting up and dancing at my desk, there's writing, there's, you know, talking to friends that I never used to do before, like, I used to get in a depressed state and go lay down and just lay in the dark for hours at a time. And just wait for it to go away. And I that's not hyperbole when I there was one time I sat on a couch for two days straight and only got up to like, check my work computer, and to go to the bathroom and eat two days straight. And I was just, I was beating myself up internally. I was like something as you need to do better. Like I wasn't treating myself like a friend. And now I've turned that around. And for lack of better term. I'm cool with myself now. We're good.

Philip Pape:

Yeah, that's awesome. No, that's great. So the gym thing, here's what's interesting is that you were an athlete, young and you went to like you said, Clemson the shark infested waters and all that. And so it sounds like the gym or lifting exercise running whatever was not a coping mechanism, and it became one. So how did how did that happen?

Marc Paisant:

That's correct. Well, you have to understand that in a lot of people do. Like from the time I was sick to the time I was 21, someone was telling me to stay in shape. And someone was telling me to go for a run. And someone was telling me that I had a game and I had to practice and, and I absolutely despise the gym. When I went to school when I was in college and high school, I despised it, I I didn't really care for it. It was something we were forced to do, I didn't see any benefit to it. And I kind of just went through the motions when I was there. Looking back, I probably lost a great opportunity to get myself in shape and use that as a coping mechanism. But you know, once I, when I was gaining the weight, I knew in the back of my head that something had to change. I didn't know what was going to change it. But something had to change. And I thought it was gonna be my wedding. And I had nine months 10 months to prepare for my wedding didn't lose a pound. And then, you know, my wife and I started talking about what our future is gonna look like and how many kids we're going to have. And I'm like, Okay, why I want to be around for them. And I want to be able to play with them and practice sports and just go outside and be a dad with them. And that's when it clicked. And I, I just started running like I literally is like the Forrest Gump thing I just started running like it was hard as hell. But I did it. And the only looking back, there was two things that I did, I'm not going to say I did wrong, because that'd be critical. I'm just going to say I didn't know any better. One was the shoes I was running in, I was 653 20. Running in some shoes with no support. Nothing has Nike, I wear Nikes now, and sock and ease, but I was running in the wrong ones. And I was running away from my day when I went on my runs. So basically, if I'd be stressed at work, if I'd be stressed at home, I just, I'm gonna go for a run and forget about it. And I know some people are listening to like, oh, that's what I do. That's a good thing to do. The only thing about that, for me at least is that I still had to come back to that. I still I so it ruined my burn at the end. Like I feel good that I sit back down like crap I still have this call to get on are still have to deal with this. So

Philip Pape:

where's the fine line there? Right between this unhealthy escape? And how escape? Where is that? Correct?

Marc Paisant:

And, you know, the unhealthy escape is basically getting something that stresses you out and saying, You know what, put my shoes on? I'm going because you're taking that into taking that negative energy. And what I've done, I've kind of flipped it is I've I've seen the stressor come the trigger come and I've taken a moment to put perspective around it. How big is this? Is this going to ruin my day? Is this going to burn the house down? Is this, you know, whatever? Oh, it's not okay, I need to reframe, I need to refresh. Let me go for the Romney hit the gym, and I'm going to lean into it. And what happens nine times out of 10, especially on my runs, is if I have something that is complex, that I need to really think about all my runs, I get this, this sense of urgency and this reframing of the issue and I come back and I'm like, Oh, I got it now. Or at least I'm calmer now. I don't, I don't try to not think about it during my run. I actually lean into it now. And use

Philip Pape:

the run to reframe it. Oh, I love that. That is really I could see, I could definitely see that from from my personal experience when I'm like doing heavy squats or going for a walk, or where you're just processing and you're processing. It's a form of meditation in a way, you know, even though you're exactly

Marc Paisant:

exactly what it is exactly what it is.

Philip Pape:

Yeah. So going back a little bit, you talked about a few different phases first, being forced to do stuff, which I get that especially as we're kids, I mean, just just a trivial example, I grew up in South Florida, and they made us take Spanish when I was a kid. And I just rebelled. I did not want to learn it. And so now in hindsight, I'm like, I should have learned it, I would have been, but you know, you're a kid, there's so many things that are different at that age. Then later on, you said that you had an incentive of your wedding, but it wasn't enough, which is what we might call that an extrinsic motivator and it just wasn't sufficient to overcome the friction against it. And then being a parent to help it click right. And I mean, to me that that's there's a depth of meaning there that didn't exist. Otherwise. I mean, how just exploring that a little more. What what do you think was the difference? Because for some people, a wedding is enough, perhaps, at least in the short term.

Marc Paisant:

Yeah. I, I, you know, my, my wife had before we got married, we were together for 10 years, and it's not as easy as just being together. Like, she graduated the year before me. We live separately. We live in different states. It's like when you when you add it all up, we were together, probably less than five are less than four together. But we were pretty, you know, we knew each other we were comfortable with each other like there's there was nothing we didn't talk about. She saw me at the skinniest and she saw me gain this weight. She was not staying in shape either. But she liked salads. And I liked hamburgers. So I mean you can you can understand if no one person is like I really feel like a good salad. I'm like, Okay, you get that I'm gonna get the hamburger and fries. Which one which one is going to gain the weight so it's not like either of us were in great shape. So, you know, although in our wedding photos like she looks amazing and I look like I'm 320 pounds but it is what it is so but you know it got to a point you know, we're living together. We're married. You know we we have an apartment and we're saving up for our first house. And like life is starting to click because it's like wait a second like you're you. You got married like you're about to own a home. Your kids is net like it all started like something hit me where it was like, I want to coach like I want to be a cool I want To be a good dad, I want to be the dad that goes out and I want to I want to go to the beach with them. There's so many things that I want to do with these kids that these people I don't know yet. But I don't have the energy to even walk for five minutes now. Like, I don't have I'm not comfortable taking off my shirt at a beach right now. Like, it's, and I'm not saying yeah, if you're a big guy, don't do that, like live your life, like love yourself. Like, um, you know, whatever. Wait, I was right now, I'll tell you right now be cool with that. But I was like, I started to think about my time as a kid, and what my parents did for me, and my mother was overweight. And then she lost a bunch of weight. And she started hanging out with us. And my dad was always in shape. And he was with us. And I think it just started to click like, I, I want to be the father like my dad was. And I can't do that. If walking five minutes, makes my ankles hurt. Or waking up in the morning, I can't I have to stretch my back. Because it's so tight. It's just all these things kind of just threw themselves at me at once. And I said, Okay, I got to, I got to do better, I got to do better. And the biggest part of that actually wasn't even the running. It was really the nutrition. Yeah. And that was a huge part of it. And my wife helped me out a lot with that we downloaded the app, we started counting calories, we started counting, you know, carbs, and sugars and sodium, things like that. And, you know, once I made that switch, like I dropped 75 pounds in nine months.

Philip Pape:

Yeah, way to do it. Yep. However you did it, you found a way. But roughly how well how old? Were you that if I could ask.

Marc Paisant:

So I got married when I was 31. And this all started to happen around 3031 or 32. So right as delivery right after my wedding. So we It all happened very quickly,

Philip Pape:

it seems the same seems things seem to accumulate, you know, in through your teens and 20s, where you make all the choices that don't necessarily have consequences, and then they start catching up, and you're always in your 30s, around 40. It seems I hear I hear these stories. So let's talk a little bit about your routine. Because I do want to get into the physical fitness side. You've you've alluded to things here. And there. You've alluded to running and and your nutrition. What is what is your philosophy? What is your recommendation on working out for people who are listening in general? How does someone get started? Do they go to the gym? What did they do to get get going?

Marc Paisant:

Well, I say well, I you know, I went through a couple of different things. And of course, you know, I did the whole the I don't know if I can name drop with a gym that ends in olds and starts with a G. But I did the whole Hey, come in and try us for you know, a week for free and you get in there like how did I end up with a three year contract? Like what happened? And so I started there, and it just didn't work out because I went to I'm a first time gym goer, this is back in my 20s. And I'm going in at six o'clock at night after work. And it's like everyone goes this clock after work. So couldn't find the machine I wanted didn't know what I want to do I want to run on the treadmill do I want to do Stairmaster? Did I want to do weights, I didn't know what to do with the weight other than benchpress. I didn't know anything. So that stopped Of course. And then so so basically,

Philip Pape:

you fit into the exact target market of big costumes cover and then stop coming, please.

Marc Paisant:

That was that was me. That was me. And so I just stopped going. And then I started up again. This time I had a friend going with me every day, but or every other day, excuse me. But you know, neither one of us knew we were doing and I was I was getting in better shape, but I wasn't eating well. And so that's you fast forward to me starting to run. And I will say this about anybody who who wants to run or get into a fitness program. Don't join the gym upfront, because it involves discipline, it involves commitment. Test yourself, if for 30 days, you can go for a walk for 30 minutes, five times a week. If you can do that, if you can have that discipline, then maybe try the gym. But I would not say go to a gym upfront and start going unless your plan is to get a personal trainer. Because at least that way you will learn what you're doing. But of course now we're talking about spending more money. And people might not want to do that.

Philip Pape:

But hold on. So I think you're hitting on something very important for people, right? Because I didn't have anything stick until I did CrossFit like 10 years ago and that was because there's a coach telling you kind of telling you what to do. Of course I wanted them to tell what to do. Yeah, and a structure. There's some structure because we do like to go out for the get the shiny thing, even if it's food tracking. If we don't know what we're doing, we just get an app and we just go it may not be the smartest approach until We take that one first step, okay, I'm gonna try protein, or I'm gonna do this one thing, you know, habit stacking the traditional, like, take baby steps and then eventually build. So I think that's really important. So don't necessarily just go to the gym, figure out what you want to do and take one step first and eventually get there. Yeah,

Marc Paisant:

yep. And a lot of us have friends that have gym memberships that they tell us all the time, they're going to the gym, like, if that is the case, go as a guest a couple times, you know, go don't just go and jump in, you know, you know, headfirst, because that's where most of the failure comes from. And it's kind of like I equate it to a New Year's resolution where, you know, every year someone has decided that they're going to get in shape, they're going to eat, right, they're going to save money, they're going to get the new job they're going to marry there are all these like, it's all these things on like, what do you think changes you from December 31 to January 1, like you're the same person. So it has to be baby steps. And the reason I say this is, one, I've been through it, and two, this is how you set yourself up for success. This is how you do it. Now there is someone who I know people personally who have gotten a gym membership January 1, and then you see them in June, you're like, oh my god, you did it. But of the people who do that, seven, seven out of 10 of them revert back because it's not sustainable. What they're doing, what we're trying to do is build sustainability. And that's what a lot of coaches will talk to you about, once you've reached your target weight, target goals, target fitness level, whatever it is, like the good coach will have already talked to you about sustainability before then. And that's what you know, I'm, I'm, you know, training my sister right now. And, you know, she's made very good progress. In the few months, we've been together. But at the beginning, she had this unhealthy approach to it, where she just wanted to, like, lose this part of her body and lose his weight and fit into this and blah, blah, blah. And I told her, I was like I can, I can get you down in weight, if that's what you want. But one, I guarantee you're not going to like me, and two, it's not going to be sustainable. Like if you want to do hard cardio every day, and then, you know, limit your limit your calories to 1000. Like, we can do that. But you're gonna be hungry all the time, you're going to be grumpy, your mind fog, it's going to be hard to work. It's gonna be, you know, I went through, I went through nine months of that,

Philip Pape:

tell me and tell me about it. Yeah, and you know, because you said getting a trainer can be not a shortcut. But getting a trainer can at least help you go to the gym or do a program or something like that, as a coach, I would never have somebody dieting, until at least six to eight weeks in. And that's a coach. And that's somebody who I'm gonna get you the result as fast as possible, versus doing it yourself. And yet, still, you're not going to be dieting for at least six to eight weeks, if at all. Because you may, you may realize building muscle is more fun. But

Marc Paisant:

you know, the only the only thing which I asked my sister to change is is when she ate and to understand where the sugars are coming from. Because a lot of people will, they'll eat a great protein filled breakfast, they'll, you know, they may do a small lunch and then do a healthy dinner and then have two glasses of wine every night. To say Can she ate when she ate when she ate and the sugar where the sugar is coming from?

Philip Pape:

Was the wind to get her to get her to just be aware that she's eating when she didn't realize she was like unconsciously

Marc Paisant:

Correct. Correct. Yeah. So she, you know, she, she has the tendency to be a night owl sometimes. And of course, when you're a night owl, you snack and you have another glass of wine. And it's like, you don't see anything of it. But it's like there's you're kind of taking away your gains if you if you do that. And you know the thing about the coaching and the thing about the personal training is not telling somebody that they can't do it. Like I'm not going to tell you you can't do it. But the fact of the matter is that you might not know how to right now, like I didn't know how to cope with my triggers until I went to a therapist. I didn't even realize I had high functioning anxiety and no, that was the thing. You know, it took another therapist to kind of say, hey, talk to your, your, your doctor about ADHD because from what you're telling me? Yeah, so again, we're not experts in everything in our life. Like it hurts to say it to a lot of us. But you know that stuff

Philip Pape:

the more that you acknowledge that that you're not experts in almost everything, the more you can grow, right because then you're gonna seek out those experts to help you out. Yeah.

Unknown:

Hi, this is Al and I just want to give a shout out to Philip Pape Wits & Weights for his nutritional coaching. His coaching is based upon science research, intellect and wisdom. His coaching is safe, supportive, connecting, and it actually has helped raise I set my compass in terms of how I direct my health, the action steps I do, and really, really has helped me regain trust and belief in what my body can do and how my body can change.

Marc Paisant:

The team that I coached the soccer team I didn't replace was there, the team name is Sky Blue after the wsa team, but our jerseys are purple. So the girls name themselves the grapes, the savage grape, so I think it was great. So we thought of it, we thought of an acronym for grapes, and the A in the grapes stands for except that you don't know everything. That is what it stands for. Because once you accept that, then you're open to learning. You're literally opening to open to learning. And, you know, I started running heavy to begin with, and I didn't want to go, I fell in love with it. I really did. But I also fell in love with limiting my calories and looking at that scale every morning. And if it did not go down by at least half a pound every day. I thought I failed.

Philip Pape:

Okay, so we're saying you care. This was later or this is you cared some of your mental health?

Marc Paisant:

Yes, this is getting? Yeah, this is at the beginning of my fitness journey. So when I started to run in, I'm thinking I'm doing the right thing at the end. The thing about it, Philip, is that people are seeing, you know, saying Oh, Mark, good job, you're looking good. You're looking great sharp, keep it up, keep it up. So I'm here in that and I'm getting validation. And I'm like running more. I do a 5k I do a 10k I do a half marathon like I'm killing it. And then one day I, I hear a snap in my foot when I'm running. And I'm like nuts. It's not that bad. It's not that bad. I'll walk home and I'll just ice it. I'll be good. A week goes by I can't I can't walk on it. Go to podiatrist. He's like, Oh, I think he just did this. That's wrap it wraps it. And you know, I go on vacation, I come back, still swollen. I go to finally go to ortho check. Yeah, you broke it. You broke him. And you're gonna need surgery, I need two pens in your foot. And I was like, So when can I run like that? He's like, Well, after the surgery, you gonna be in a soft cast for two weeks, then you're going to be in a hard cast for six weeks, and you're going to be in a walking boot for six weeks in the UPnP T for three or four months. So he's like, minimum, six to nine months. And I was like, him I was so my life was running at that time I had but like you talk about CrossFit. And the people who are just like, that's a religion running was my religion, I could do like, I didn't want to go to the gym, people like you should try swimming, I don't want to swim, I want to run

Philip Pape:

bike. And now it's just ripped away from you

Marc Paisant:

ripped away from me. So I go through that process, I gained about 40 pounds back. And I go to the physical therapy and it's just it's not feeling right. My foot and ankle are just not I'm still in pain. And I'm pushing and pushing myself through runs every run hurts. So finally go back to my doctor. I'm just like, I don't I don't know what else is going on. And he tells me like I need to go back in like, I don't know what happened, I need to go back in and show me where the pain is real quick. And I showed him on the side of my foot. So we go on ankle and he goes in. And he gives me a micro fracture and cleans up a bunch of cartilage damage. And it was like, it was just thank God, like he said, Ask that one extra question. And this was, this is you know, scoping. So it was you know, in and out. And within two weeks I was walking. It was like, all the pain is gone. All the pain is gone. started running again. And this is where like things get bad. Because I start starving myself. And I start running about 120 to 150 miles a week. I'm 6565 and I get down to 206. And I still want it and my wife looks at me and people look at me like okay, like you're good. And I looked at myself in the mirror. I'm like I still don't like this. Like I didn't like 320 I don't like 206 Something's not clicking. And finally one day I said and I had been to the gym again. Same thing I told you before is I just didn't. I didn't know what to do. I was like, I'm just gonna do it. I'm just gonna do the physical. I took the two Time to work on my mental health with a therapist who was a mental coach, I need to do the same thing for my physical health. And I have never, ever looked back, it was the best decision I have made in the past couple of years in my life, because one I love to learn, I'm always in a growth mindset and to just, you know, being physically strong and mentally strong at the same time, like I can't, I can't really explain that feeling like it is it is euphoric. Because I was doing one, but not the other. End. Now I'm doing both. So

Philip Pape:

I'm missing a little bit of a piece of the puzzle here because I want to connect the physical mental health, which comes first. And maybe that that is too simplistic, but from the point you got your foot repaired, but then you started doing all this running and losing all this weight. And then you said, you got a coach, and then never looked back on that. So the feeling the specifics on that piece for us.

Marc Paisant:

So, you know, we, you know, I was in the DC metro area. And we, you know, a few years ago, I lost my mom and she and she lived down here and my my wife had made a decision that we wanted to move down here to be closer to my family and her family. And you know, so the stress of the move, the stress of getting kids into new schools is like everything, I wasn't able to work out that much. And, you know, started to gain a little weight, and then I lost it by running. And then, you know, it was doing a lot of work at that specific time, mentally. Like I was in therapy. I was working on my mental health, I was making sure I was taking care of that every day in the mirror, whether I was a 206 to 15 to 25 to 35 back to 220 back and you see where this is going because that's one of the most unhealthiest things to do is Yo yo, I just never was something was in my head. I knew something was missing. I knew something was missing. And you know, COVID hits and no one's going to the gym. You know, I'm just running and still, I wish I could I wish I could verbalize like the feeling in my head because don't get me wrong. I looked in shape. I looked in shape. I looked happy. You would think he's going to therapy. He's good. But my body I didn't like my body. I didn't like it. And yeah, I just one day thing about the thing about runners and if you're a runner, I apologize. But you know this already, if you just run you know, you're pretty weak. Like that's it is what it is like you're pretty weak. You have your graded endurance, like you're really using a lot of the long muscles and you've got to steal, but oh my goodness, like, I went to benchpress and the you know, I put just one plate on and I was like, oh my god, this is heavy. This is that. Why is this so heavy?

Philip Pape:

Okay, so that's what we're talking about a strength training, because that's what I didn't. I didn't connect the dots. Okay.

Marc Paisant:

Yeah, it was strength training. And so yeah, exactly. So and, you know, I didn't and I made the decision. I was like, I'm gonna, you know, and what happened? And I'll tell you, right, what would happen is I went into my first training session. And it was only 30 minutes. And I felt like I had been there for hours because this guy was just killing me. I thought he was killing me. But I just I was just weak at the moment. But, you know, he automatically challenged me, just like therapists challenge their, their, their clients, to look for triggers to you know, be nice to themselves to open up be vulnerable, things like that. That was the first time that someone was challenging me that I didn't really have. I wasn't responsible for going like he wasn't a coach and the fact that my how my high school and my soccer my college coach was that I was I had to go to practice. But he was kind of challenging me to be a better version of myself. And I started to look at that I'm like, There's something here. There's something here that I can connect to what I'm doing in the rest of my life. And I think a lot of people miss that point filled by and a lot of people miss the fact that they see the gym as this place where people go to get big and vanity and they they, they see that but it's like, you know what this is? This is a place where people go to be at peace. You know, this is a part of my day. This is a part of, of, you know, my morning routine. This is a part of my relationship with my sister. You know, this is a part of, you know, me being a better version of myself. And I think people don't realize that until they're involved with it.

Philip Pape:

Yeah, man. I totally agree. I totally agree that and those of us who will I was never an athlete and then it wasn't a vanity thing, because I just never aspire, thought I could aspire to that. And then when I got into lifting, you know, definitely the side benefits are a physical manifestation of your health. But, you know, we're, I don't know, if we were talking here, yeah, early in the show about meditation about lifting being a form of meditation. And actually, my friend Carl and I, we both know, we're talking about that on his show, or my show one of our shows about how you just get in the moment. And it's not just the act, right, it's that you are changing something about you permanently, permanently, and growing. And I guess I don't know much about running other than I've done it over the years and never liked it. To an extent I like sprinting, I'll be honest, but you can only I guess you can only progress so much in that way. Doing running is that is that the contrast for me because I wanted people to make a very concrete contrast with like maybe the physiological connection between lifting something heavy, being that human experience being in the moment, and what you get out of it and compare it to other forms of movement.

Marc Paisant:

I want people to, to understand this wholeheartedly. Lifting, helps your runs, literally helps them it's not hyper. It's not me just saying it. But anyone who's listening, who's a runner understands that feeling of like, you know, we have when you start running, you're like, Oh, this is so hard. How do I do this, and you have this thought in your head, like, okay, it's gonna get easier and easier and easier. The runs, if you don't do weight training, the runs never get easier, you literally are just pushing yourself through all the time. Like, I literally thought to myself, like, okay, it's gonna eat it. And mentally, I was just exhausted, because I'm telling myself to keep going and keep going and keep going. Because you don't understand like how much of your core, how much of your hips, how much of your upper body that you actually use when you're running. And I started to build that little bit of core strength. In the first couple months of working out in the gym. Every one of my runs was easier. Every one of my runs was easy. And I was going the same speed going the same distances. And it was all because I built up the other muscles in my legs, my core strength. And I tell you right now, running doesn't really help you. With the weights. Actually, it does the opposite. It kind of kills your gains, I'm sorry, it's true. It does, I've lived it. But lifting helps your runs. It's amazing. And what people don't understand is there's a big thing, especially with women that say I don't want to get bulky, I don't want to get bought, I don't think people really understand what it takes to bulk. Like none of us are going out eating 1000s of calories that we need to burn off every day. Like you don't just bulk by going to the gym every day, like bulk about your nutrition. Exactly. But I tell you what, if you are eating correctly, and you know, running burns all your carbs and all your sugar and you put it right back in your body. But if you do the right thing and keep your heart rate at the right levels, and you will build that muscle that you've that you've absolutely killed running. And because think about it, it's physiological. And you know this already, like when you run you have little micro tears in your muscles, just like the same when you're lifting weights. But when you run like when you're burning those calories, those your sugars and carbs your body wants those immediately. So you put those right back in it does not help your muscles rebuild your literally your muscles. Yeah, but when you do the weight portion of it, and your body and you fill that with proteins, amino acids, the fats, things like that, and you actually start building that muscle. It it's an it's an amazing feeling. And I think people really should at least try that. You don't have to go heavy like no one's saying you go heavy. I'm not telling you to

Philip Pape:

go really heavy. Relative you know,

Marc Paisant:

I mean, if you don't start with three plates on your squat, yeah. Are we even talking? No, but it's like and the cool thing about people think I gotta get a trainer every day that you can get a trainer for once a week for 30 minutes. Literally once a week for 30 minutes and that will be enough for a lot of people that will be enough. And trainers are great too. They're like if you ever need any help, like text me or call me like trainers are all my trainers we're friends now his daughter plays on a basketball program that I daughter play we see each other like we're friends now we're he's cool as hell. So Oh,

Philip Pape:

just having somebody there, you could ask a question to add sort of the when it comes down to because I know, even to this day, I'm in a barbell club that has a really good trainer, and I've squatted 1000s of times. And yet Sal said in the video, and there's some little thing he'll see, so it's worth it. For sure. Yep. Yep. Yeah, man. Yeah, no, I could talk about lifting all day. With the running. One other thing came to mind is how muscles are also a glycogen sink. You know? So when we're talking about blood sugar control and all that it's really, really helpful. But running I mean, it's, it's you're doing, you're doing a million partial squats, right? As as you run. So even if you don't run all the sudden you get stronger, everything in your life, including running just feels lighter and easier. Yes. Not only all of that, like we want to be capable. So and then it ties into the mental health. So let's segue back to back to that we talked about mental health. We talked about psychotherapy and counseling, kind of the more serious aspect of when people have a real issue that they have to deal with. How can someone be aware of that and know that they need counseling? And then what are your thoughts on the psychotherapy? We talked about it a little bit, but just want to touch on that?

Marc Paisant:

Well, here, I'll start by saying this, everyone, everyone could benefit from counseling or therapy, everyone could do it. Like it's not. When when you mentioned that I'm trying to get rid of the stigma on mental health, like, part of that is understanding that when we bring up mental health, it doesn't have to be this depressing. Sad. Oh, my gosh, yeah. And the thing, it's not, it's not you, it's like we see it everywhere, where it's everything that happens negative in the world, or in our lives. Like, that's when we start talking about mental health. That's when we start talking about oh, have you do you see a counselor that's, but that's like that, shouldn't I don't just go to the gym when I'm weak. You know, I'm gonna I went today, and I think I'm pretty strong like, but because it's that maintain that maintenance of your life. So what I want people to understand is that you don't have to be going through life altering changes, you don't have to have, you know, witnessed the death of a family member or just gotten laid off or, or broken up with your significant other or, you know, whatever. To really talk about your mental health, mental health is when someone's interviewing for a job and they feel those butterflies in their stomach. You know, it's when you wake up in the morning, you think, Okay, I gotta, today is going to be the day that I you know, it's mental health is all the time. And that's why I think it's so important to at least continue this discussion. And I know people think that I probably talk about it too much. And honestly, I don't care because I want to talk about it more and I want people to be okay, talking about and being vulnerable. And it's, you know, it's nothing that has to be prefaced with like something okay, hey, guess what I'm gonna I really want to talk to you about mental like, no, it's, it's, it's you coming in and being honest with your loved ones and telling them that you're stressed, telling them that you don't feel up to it today? Being honest, and how many times that we forced ourselves to do things that we did not want to do? And the only stories we hear about in regard to that or is, is I didn't want to do that, but I did it. I'm glad I did. We never hear the stories of that. I didn't want to do that. I did it. And I feel worse for doing it. We don't hear those because no one talks about that one. That's the one I want to hear about. Because someone didn't listen, you didn't listen to yourself you got like it's one of those things where yes, you know, behavioral based cognitive based therapy, psychotherapy, all that stuff is great, you know, Medic, getting the right medication, making sure people that are bipolar, get the right medication, or major depressive episodes and all this stuff. Like I want that to of course be a focal point I want people those people to be taken care of. At the same time. I want people to understand that. The last time I checked everyone living and breathing and talking right now has a brain. Last time I checked, feelings come from your brain emotions come through your brain. So guess what? Mental health is? is always on the horizon with me.

Philip Pape:

So many thoughts, you sparked all these synapses in my brain? Because Oh, man, okay, so there's a bunch of things. I'm gonna break this down. The first thing the idea that mental health is actually the root of everything is that's kind of where I'm glad you kind of ended there. Because we are talking about physical health, but none of that means anything unless you have this brain that lets you think and control your muscles and control your hormones. And I mean, it does everything right, you think my hormones are controls that controls everything, let alone the amazing creative thinking and ability to empathize and the ability to like know what other people are thinking, which is unique probably to humans, we think maybe dolphins can do it or something. And in fact, there's some aspect of human evolution, if you look at how only tribes survived, there's a genetic component to being social creatures using our mind and understanding others minds anyway, I'm going off on philosophy or put a few other things. I used to be the type of guy that was very cynical about formal men's formal psychotherapy. And, you know, I use the word shrink, disparagingly in the past, and so on. I don't do that anymore. But I've also never sought formal therapy. However, in the last year and a half, two years since I've been in this nutrition, coaching space, doing podcasting, and talking to a lot of people, especially people who caused me to be more introspective like you, Carl, and many other people that I've met, who also inspired me to look into positive psychology, which is the idea of not always focusing on all the ills of mankind. But even when there aren't ills that we still need to elevate ourselves, I realized that therapy is all around us, if we look for it, it's our spouses, it's our friends. When you help somebody else, the evidence shows you get the biggest boost of happiness just from helping somebody. And then again, podcasting. So I just this is my take away, it's like a rune big revelation. And I want people to hear that, like everybody can be your therapy therapist, so to speak, without seeking formal therapy. But the social connection and relatedness is probably the key that the glue, the glue that holds it all together. What do you think about my read?

Marc Paisant:

Definitely is it definitely isn't, I want people to understand, like the first episode of relatively normal was titled, be a friend. And what I meant what I meant by that is, think and it takes intent by people need to be intentional with this. But yeah, take just the three words. How are you? How many times that's that said in a day? How many times you hear that in a week? How many times? How's it going? What's up? You know, whatever it is? And how many times we actually answer that question. We rarely do we rarely come off cliche, or in passing whatever. And, you know, my how're yous are authentic, like, I want to know, and I think more people should want to know, because I forgot who said it to me Lastly, but you know, it, you know, we, I say it all the time, as you never know, what someone is going through. Like, think about, think about, maybe this conversation is the one that saved somebody, you know, maybe this time I spend is what gets somebody, you know, over the hump. And I'm not I don't mean to put pressure on people. Like that's not the point of all this. What I mean to do is, is have people really be intentional with not just the words they say, but the conversations they have, because this is a thing that happens all the time, and especially around men, like women do it all the time, but especially with men in corporate environments. So she went around, is that think about I want everybody listening to like the next meeting, you're at the next conversation you have with multiple people. I want you to take just count of how many times someone speaks right after someone stopped speaking, like literally right after. And then think to yourself, there's no way they could have paid attention or been listening to what they were saying. They were just waiting for their turn to talk. That's all they were doing. And, you know, men kind of do it as banter because it's fun. We go back and forth. We're learning. We're saying movie lines, and we're being stupid and silly. But I can't tell you how many times early in my career, early in my life where I would be in the circles and people will be talking it'd be a serious conversation. And right when someone would talk about something that affected them, the next person would talk about something that affected them to Oh, yeah, I know exactly. Talking about this happened to me and blah, blah, blah. It's like, wait a second, wait a second, wait a second. Slow down. We need to go over with this person just was vulnerable enough to tell us about. Let's not just jump into comparisons. And to be honest with you, I really don't care what you have to say right now because my friend is hurting. I don't want to jump in and say I'm guilty of this. I used to do it. But it's one of those things where you have have to be intentional with as this person is speaking, you're taking in what they're saying you're being an active listener, and then you're pausing for a moment after they're done talking, because you want to take it in. And these are the things that you kind of learn, once you do it long enough, and once you start, like, that's what a friend does, a friend doesn't just jump in to say, hey, the same thing happened to me. This is what I did. You should do it, too. It worked like a charm. And it's like, Oh, thank God. I mean, and it's, you know, man, we're built to be like, we're built to be problem solvers. I understand that we shouldn't stop doing that. But at the same time, it's like, listen, not, not every you know, screw needs your screwdriver. Like sometimes you need to sit back and watch somebody else fix their own problems, because that's what they want to do.

Philip Pape:

You got me very hyper conscious right now about my listening skills with everything you just said. Because that is so intense, man. Like, it's true that we interrupt and we jump to conclusions and caught husbands and wives. It's just a classic stereotype of, I immediately want to fix my wife's problem as soon as she and look now I'm talking about myself, but I think I am really

Marc Paisant:

my wife called me out. My wife called me out on that she literally did, because we were talking about love languages and what she needs and the quality time she needs. And she told me, she's like, You don't, you don't really listen to what I'm saying. You cut me off a lot. And then it goes off the rails. And I'm like, oh, yeah, yeah, I do that. I do that. So now I'm very conscious about getting into a mood where it's like, she is talking. She is explaining her day, she's nice enough to include me in her decompression of her day. Like that's, that's that that's only I get that like, only I get that in this world. I'm the only one that gets that. And I'm taking this for granted. So, yeah, it really is. It really is.

Philip Pape:

Wow, that's a lot for people to think about and all this stuff. I would have said a few years ago, that doesn't matter for your physical health. And I completely the opposite now, right? Like just and you put it in perspective throughout this, this conversation. So I've had about five or 10. Other questions I could have asked. But since we're short on time, I'm going to leave you with my favorite penultimate question mark. And that is, is there something you wish I had asked you in? What is your answer? Um,

Marc Paisant:

something I wish you had, you know, I wish you had asked me. How are you? Now I'm kidding, I'm joking.

Philip Pape:

But, you know, what, we could have just said a guy, like we always do.

Marc Paisant:

I'm joking. You know, you know, I wish you would ask me like how this whole change in my perspective and becoming that whole mind body connection has affected my relationships with with people in my life. Because, you know, it's, I'll be honest with you, my, my circle has gotten smaller and smaller, as I've learned more about myself. But as you start to figure out, where's the where's the positive energy coming from? Because I'm a big, I become an energy person, not the guy who's gonna go buy crystals and lay them out. And I'm not vegan. I'm not gonna, I'm just kidding. I'm joking. I don't want everybody giddy at me. But

Philip Pape:

I think you'd lost zero subscribers of this podcast, so

Marc Paisant:

good. So but you know, I'm all about the energy I put out, and the energy I get in, and I think about what is this person adding to my life? Because I know I'm confident enough to know that I add to other people's lives. And that's not me being cocky. That's just me knowing what I'm worth. So I think, what is this person and my my circle is actually quite small now. So that's the only thing I wish you would ask, but I think I answered it. Now you

Philip Pape:

answered it. And that's a reminder that it's not about how many friends we have on social media, or how many friends we think we have in real life if they're not real true friends that add value to us and vice versa. So great message. All right, man. Well, where can listeners learn more about you?

Marc Paisant:

Well, I'm usually on either Instagram or LinkedIn. I do a lot of work on LinkedIn because I like that platform and but IG you can find me at pays not underscore fitness for the physical fitness part. And you just go to a relatively normal podcast on IG to find more about that. And of course, you can head up to 6am run on Instagram, as I am the ambassador and host of that show too. So we're doing a lot with 6am run right now. So I really liked that company. And I think it's not just about running a lot to do with running has run in the title but you know, really good people really good community and a lot of good motivation there. I

Philip Pape:

agree. Yeah. encourage everybody who's listening to follow those podcasts. Very easy to do right now. I was on 6am which is which I was surprised because I don't run. And you're like, This is not just a running POC and it worked out really well because I got to meet you very special guy with a wonderful story. And I think people get a lot from this episode. So thank you so much for coming on.

Marc Paisant:

I appreciate it. Phil, let me take care of yourself.

Philip Pape:

Thank you for tuning in to another episode of Wits & Weights. If you found value in today's episode, and know someone else who's looking to level up their Wits & Weights. Please take a moment to share this episode with them. And make sure to hit the Follow button in your podcast platform right now to catch the next episode. Until then, stay strong.

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