Dr. Phil Maffetone is a legend in the world of endurance training, for he has been advocating for a healthy approach to peak athletic performance for decades, and finally getting his due for presenting the most sensible and effective way to train for extreme endurance goals.

Dr. Phil has worked with some of the greatest endurance athletes in history, including triathlon legend Mark Allen, Mike Pigg, and Tim DeBoom. He was the first guy to call out the incessant use of sugary gels and drinks as lame and unhealthy, and advocate for the use of more nutritious fats to support fat burning during workouts. Phil’s other genius breakthrough was to tell athletes to slow down and observe their maximum aerobic heart rate during sustained cardiovascular workouts, for this would help improve fat burning efficiency and reduce the stress of the workout. Today, the “MAF heart rate” is endurance training gospel—  MAF being “maximum aerobic function,” but also an ode to Dr. Phil’s last name.

Dr. Phil is a free-thinking individual who strives to second guess lame conventional wisdom while advocating for personal experimentation and intuition over the prevailing cookie cutter approaches to both fitness goals and traditional medical care. In this show, we get going on an assortment of topics relating to our constant exposure to manipulative marketing forces and sensationalist mainstream media. Consequently, Phil strives to exist in a bubble where you don’t consume mainstream media, barely knows what day it is, and is happier because of it.  You gotta dig this guy’s approach, and I for one try hard to emulate it. In fact, our first Skype podcast appointment came and went, not because I forgot about my long-awaited conversation with Phil, but because I forgot what day it was and played morning Speedgolf, instead of connecting with him early at his new home base of Florida.

Dr. Phil explains that the reason we are exposed to manipulative marketing practices is because advertisers know it works! We make decisions with our reptilian brain based on instant gratification, or we make decisions based on analytical processing — quite often over-analyzing or allowing the primitive brain to hijack the process. We are most receptive to considering new input or transformation when we have experienced pain and suffering. Notice how many people come to primal/paleo/low-carb/keto from disease conditions that couldn’t be righted with a traditional approach. Ideally, Dr. Phil argues, we would honor our instincts and intuition, and inform our decisions with personal experimentation, instead of succumbing to the cookie cutter approach that is the norm in both fitness and traditional medical care.

Dr. Phil is always good for some juicy sound bites, as he acknowledges that it’s essential to fight the daily battle against manipulative marketing and BS artists. A few tidbits: Physicians are no longer experts on diet, but they often believe that they are. Phil talks about the global “overfat” epidemic. Unlike visible obesity, being overfat is represented by an excessive waistline measurement. Strive for a waistline less than half of your height in inches. This will help you avoid the prevailing disease triad of chronic inflammation, carbohydrate intolerance, and insulin resistance. First step to health: Ditch refined carbohydrates (sugars, flour/bread products, sweetened beverages) for two weeks per the Maffetone “2-week test.” Then you can reintroduce natural carbohydrates back in (fruit, sweet potatoes, etc.) and see what you can tolerate without adverse symptoms. For many people with insulin resistance and decades of junk food consumption, keto might be warranted. And what’s with all this disparaging of red meat? FYI, chicken is the worst meat because it’s high in the inflammation-promoting arachidonic acid. And yet, people are still so fixated on the importance of eating “lean meat” like chicken. Thankfully Dr. Phil is here with the hard facts and a desire to expose the truth. Enjoy listening to this radically informative and eye-opening conversation with Dr. Phil, and check out his great articles and products at PhilMaffetone.com.

TIMESTAMPS:

Dr. Maffetone talks about separating fact from opinion when one listens to interviews or reads about fitness.  [08:04]

The experience of working with thousands of patients can bring information that might not be in a book. [12:08]

One way our brains work is people are looking for instant gratification. [13:24]

The analytical way the brain works brings you to a conclusion after much thinking. [17:15]

One of the big problems we have in our society is people being overfed. [20:33]

How do we get people to listen!! [23:17]

There is a lack of consensus on things like diet and exercise and this causes people to be confused and not know who to listen to. [27:13]

It’s all about money. [29:19]

Much confused information about meats. [31:09]

Many of the professionals we go to for advice are no longer experts and are influenced by the same articles and advertisers. [39:01]

Dr. Phil is disengaged from media for a specific purpose: STRESS! [45:07]

The answer to “What should I do?” is very personal. [49:36]

Why are we all waiting around to go to a specialist when we could be more proactive? [50:51]
What does he mean by “overfat”? [53:12]

You can be normal weight and non-obese and still have excess body fat. [56:22]

If we’re concerned and we want to make some quick a redirection, turn things around, what would be the triad of things to do with our diet or our daily activity, physical exercise. How would you attack that? [01:02:35]

When you eliminate the bad foods, our brains work better. [1:10:22]

LINKS:

QUOTES:

  • “We want to personalize our journey in life.” (Dr. Maffetone)
  • “Companies are allowed to convince us to be unhealthy.” (Dr. Maffetone)
  • “If you want to reduce your body fat, you’re never going to do it successfully and permanently unless you get rid of the sugar.” (Dr. Maffetone)
  • “Your waist measurement should be less than half your height.”  (Dr. Maffetone)

LISTEN:

Download Episode MP3

Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:00:00 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author and athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high-stress, modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 00:03:52 Hey listeners, I’m so pleased to introduce you to one of my old friends and heroes and inspirations dating all the way back to my triathlon career. His name is Dr Phil Maffetone, prominent author and forefather of the aerobic training movement. He’s now finally getting his due after saying these important points that were so radical and discounted 30 years ago, and now we’re finally realizing the importance of a healthy, nutritious diet that eliminates those refined carbohydrates that humans endurance athletes lived on back in the day, and also slowing down and monitoring your aerobic training heart rate so that you don’t overstress and fatigue yourself, which also has been athletes banging their heads against the wall for decades.

Brad: 00:06:26 Finally, coming around to what they call the MAF approach. M a F, that is the first three letters of his last name and it also stands for “maximum aerobic function.” You’ll love his many, many books on the subject, so check out Phil maffetone.com he’s got some interesting healthy source supplements as well and we aspire to talk about endurance peak performance as usual. I have many shows with him on the Primal Endurance Podcast Channel, but we got to talking about the grand ills of modern society and the flawed and manipulative mainstream media and conventional wisdom about diet and nutrition that has caused so much damage and destruction and pain and suffering and how to fix that and chart your own course and honor your personal experimentation, especially his wonderful two week test, which is a carbohydrate restriction test where you ditch everything, see how you feel, alleviation of the common symptoms that we experienced from a high carbohydrate, high insulin producing diet. Oh man, you’re going to love this show from a free thinker and a big picture guy who’s one of the true pioneers and forefathers in all things having to do with endurance training, athletic performance, and doing it in a healthy manner. One of his first books was called the “In Ftness and in Health.” And he was kind of the first guy to call distinction to the idea that fitness is not necessarily aligned with health because you can pursue fitness goals in an unhealthy manner. Dr Phil Maffetone, you’re going to love it. Enjoy.

Phil: 00:08:04 It’s a passion. Because long ago I had this crazy idea that I wanted to help people wanting to help people be healthy and fit. And it was the journey I was on and I wanted to be the Johnny Appleseed of health and fitness and, and, and help others that while I was helping myself. And when you’re, when you ha, in order to do that, you have to battle. Uh, you have to battle politicians. You have to battle the media, you have to battle corporations. Um, and, and that’s not easy, um, because they have a lot of money. Um, so, you know, it’s, it’s a, it’s, it’s frustrating. And so I get, I get pretty passionate and sometimes, um, say things that, uh, some times is offensive, but that’s too bad.

Brad: 00:09:06 Well, that’s also what’s beautiful about today is that you don’t have to, you know, use your PR firm to get you three minutes on the today show to spread the word and everything was so filtered and filtered through the giant pillars of media. We were talking just before we recorded about, uh, the, the LA Times and the New York Times. And if you can get your, the, the story about your book in the health section, it’ll, it’ll help your sales so much, and then they’ll, they’ll, they’ll take your interview and sprinkle in quotes from some random doctor discounting everything you said, and that’ll be the piece that goes out in the New York Times. And now we can turn on a recording device on a podcast and, um, get the, get the unfiltered scoop from, from Dr Phil. So start rolling, man. We’re, we’re not gonna, we’re not gonna edit you. We’re not gonna edit you.

Phil: 00:09:56 Good. Good. I’m, you know, I even in this, in this media, we, we have to, uh, for, for, for listeners and for us, you, you and me, um, we need to, we need to differentiate our opinion from, you know, making factual statements. Um, you know, if, if I say sugar’s bad, that’s not my opinion. There’s a consensus about that. There’s a consensus about junk food. There’s a consensus about beating your body up when you’re training for a marathon or, or a triathlon. Um, and there’s, you know, there’s this, there’s this weird thing that, that people don’t accept facts. They think everything’s an opinion. Um, and then, uh, sometimes it drifts over to religion because, you know, science is all one big question mark. And one bit, everything’s a theory. There isn’t that, there are no facts and none, you know, that we’ll get into philosophy and,

Brad: 00:11:12 Well, what’s, it’s, it’s tough because you can, you can draw upon science to make your point, whatever your point is. And that confuses me as a non-scientist. And then I have to always bring in, especially when it comes to the, the fitness realm, you know, I have, I have a long personal experience with, uh, training at an unregulated heart rate and getting injured and then going back and reading the magazine saying that, you know, high intensity workouts ver develop fitness faster than, than the slower one. So you should do only those and all this stuff that’s uh, you know, doesn’t, doesn’t jive well with common sense. So it’s, there’s no, there’s no hard, fast rule to just say, show me the science, which a lot of people say. And I’m like, okay, I’ll show you some stupid science that’s never worked. And zero elite athletes have ever followed this. Then we’re back to kind of a, the, the, he said, she said, type of strategy,

Phil: 00:12:08 Right? It gets, it gets to be emotional. And, um, and, and you, what you mentioned is, is really great because you mentioned experience and experience is a very valuable lesson. Um, and I often use experience, you know, that’s, that’s in particular clinical experience. So here, you know, here’s what I found when I was in, in practice there was seeing hundreds and hundreds of thousands of athletes. And here’s what I found. You know, a high percent of them did this when that happened. And you know, well that’s, that’s a very valuable bit of experience. Uh, we have to, we have to take that and do something with it. Does it correspond to some scientific study or is there a logic behind, can you explain it scientifically? Um, or not? And, and so it, you know, it’s all, it’s all tied together. It all comes down to simply that we’re all individuals. And although we have an awful lot in common, we all have five fingers and five toes and five fingers on the other side and five toes on the other side.

Phil: 00:13:24 But, um, we, we, you know, we want to personalize our journey in life. Otherwise it’s pretty boring. And then it’s hit and miss. We want to personalize our, our journey. And that’s, that’s what I’m all about helping people do that. That’s what MAF is. It’s, it’s not a program. It’s a, a way to personalize your journey of life in a way that you continually build health and fitness. Um, it’s a pretty good deal, but it’s also, it’s also weird. It’s all, it’s all, um, it’s, it’s so different because in our society, everything is cookbook. Everything is, Oh, you want to run a marathon? You gotta run a hundred miles a week. Oh, you want to, you want to get strong, you’ve got to go to the gym and uh, watch yourself in the mirror and it’s gotta hurt. You want to do that? Okay, here, here’s the cookbook. You wanna lose weight. You do that. I wish it was that easy, then I wouldn’t have to do all this crazy stuff.

Brad: 00:14:39 Why do we look for that type of solution? Just so we don’t have to think as much?

Phil: 00:14:46 Yes. That is exactly the reason. And, you know, decades ago, um, and, and this goes back, you know, to her early in, in, in history, it goes back to, um, how dictators were able to do what they did. But you know, in the 50s, the, the marketing boom came about in part because psychologists saw this interesting relationship with how people decide how are they going to choose something, you know, how are they gonna decide about buying a car? How are they going to decide about, um, buying this food product? And what they showed was that there are two ways that our, our brain works. One is it is an instant gratification, a simple, uh, got you kind of thing. Um, Brad, if you want to lose 10 pounds in one week, here’s the answer.

Brad: 00:15:57 I do. What do I do?

Phil: 00:15:58 That’s exactly what everyone, well not everyone, but that’s exactly what a lot of people listening want to know. Oh, now I’ve got their attention. They don’t think about what does it involved? Is it real? Can it, can you really do that? Um, they just, it’s, it’s the sizzle. They will, they buy the sizzle, not the steak to, to quote an old marketing person. Um, and, and that, that instant gratification, that quick fix is a reaction by our brain. It’s more of an amphibian brain response. Um, you know, we see a bug and we grab it. We don’t think about it, you know, hey that bug and it’s kind of green. I wonder if it’s not ready to eat yet. And you know, no, we just grab it and run. And the problem with that is that there are cognitive errors associated with that mentality. But it’s, it’s the way people buy stuff. It’s the way people attach themselves to exercise programs, to, uh, to diet styles, to philosophy.

Phil: 00:17:15 You know, it’s the other way we use our brains is, is, um, is an analytical way where we, we think, okay, I’m going to lose 10 pounds in one week. Let’s see, what am I going to have to do that? Let me see what it says about the foods I’m going to have to eat and the foods I’m not going to have to eat. And how, how am I going to be able to do that? I bring, I have to bring my food to work, you know, and, and you go on and on, you think about this for a while, sometimes days. And, uh, and then you conclude that this, this doesn’t make any sense or you conclude, you know, let’s, let’s give this a try. Um, and people don’t respond that way. And one of the, one of the problems I’ve always had, it began early in my practice when I recognized it, is that people would come in and say, well, uh, uh, you know, I’m getting, uh, too much body fat.

Phil: 00:18:16 I don’t understand. I’m training even more. Um, blah, blah, blah. And, and I talked about burning fat calories and sugar calories and, uh, and how, uh, carbohydrates, uh, increasing, uh, insulin and that imperious fit, you know, and just, and then they’ll say, well, well, my, my, my friend, uh, he just went on a low fat, low calorie diet and lost, lost weight. And it’s, you know, and I, and I’m thinking kinda just, I just poured my intellectual heart out to this patient to help them understand how they could be healthier. And they didn’t hear a word I said, all they know is that their friend went on a low calorie, low fat diet. And, um, you know, so, so that, and I’ve seen it in writing. I’ve seen, you know, I mean, back way, way back, you remember my, my early articles, my first book, you know, a lot of those things were here’s how you do it. And there was not a lot of, not too much explanation, not, not a lot of science behind. And I got into writing sciences as time went on because I thought people wanted that. I enjoyed it. Um, and, and it, it almost made things worse. Um, you know, you read a whole book about, um, you know how to run a 1:59 marathon and, and you say, yeah, but my, my, my, you know, my friend knows a guy who, uh, always runs under three hours in Boston and he eats lot of junk. Where in the world. did that come from,?

Brad: 00:20:14 So it sounds like we’re, we’re bouncing back and forth between this, this reptilian brain that’s not a high, highly functioning. And then we’re going into analytical and then jumping back to these random conclusions that, that kind of negate how you poured your heart out to the patient. Is that what’s going on?

Phil: 00:20:33 It goes, it goes back and forth. And in psychology it’s called system one and system two thinking, um, and it’s been applied to, um, economics and they’d been two Nobel prize prizes, one for both those, those, um, ideas. Um, and I just actually submitted a, an opinion paper to, uh, with my friend Paul Larson, to, um, uh, one of the big public health journals to say, hey, this is one of the big problems we have in our society and we wonder why we can’t keep up with healthcare expenditures. We wonder why 91% of Americans are overfed. We wonder why 80% of Indians are overfed. And, and here is the, the, the one of the big problems is, is how companies are allowed to convince us to be unhealthy. And, um, you know, with the recommendation that, hey, we need to do something about this on a public health level because we’ve done things in the past that have succeeded.

Phil: 00:21:49 You know, most people wear seatbelts today. It’s, it’s an automatic thing. We’ve, we’ve taken that system on mechanism and as reptilian as it is, it, it can be used for, for benefits because now when we get in our car, we put on our seatbelt, even they, even the movie people, um, you know, show you that, um, uh, you know, uh, we, we, we brush our teeth, we, um, we wash our hands, you know, these are, these are examples of public health activities that have been very successful in, in preventing, uh, serious health problems. And, uh, yet we don’t use them for the bigger things, the common sense things like, um, um, here, here’s some junk food. This is so good. You can give it to your baby. You know, so it’s, it’s really unfortunate, and in sports, if, if, uh, if that’s what we’re supposed to be talking about, uh, it’s, it’s used the same way it’s used by magazines. You know, run your best 10 K and in three weeks of training, um, uh, it, it’s entertainment, it’s emotion, it’s the sizzle and you’ve got to get to the steak.

Brad: 00:23:17 Cool. But then when we get to the steak into, took them out of that, uh, that, that sizzle brain that we’ll go down down to the parking lot and talk to someone else and, and change their mind completely and, uh, depart from a whatever best laid plans.

Phil: 00:23:43 Good question. I think you have, grab them with both your hands really hard and shake them and just keep shaking them until, no, I’m only kidding. Partially,

Brad: 00:23:54 Well, as an author, I mean that could be a writing strategy in, in on a serious note where you’re, you come out swinging, uh, you know, with, with the, with the, uh, the gloves off, um, it might be a necessary strategy. Just like we got started talking on the show. Um, you know, nice and polite might not fly when you’re, uh, when your message has been stomped on by the powers that be irresponsibly and unfairly.

Phil: 00:24:22 Exactly. Um, and I, I try typically to approach it from the standpoint of, Hey, if you want to get faster, if you want to burn off excess body fat, if you want to prevent injuries, if you want to perform your best, what a deal and then present the information. And if they don’t want to take it, then fine. My experience is they’ll eventually come back. Um, many of them, eh, because whatever they’re doing isn’t working.

Brad: 00:25:00 Ah Huh. So we talk about not, not addressing someone until they’re ready to receive. So maybe when you get to that point of desperation, uh, you’re, your a reptilian brain will relax a little bit. You’ll listen a little more carefully. Your, those emotions and all those things that kind of sent you down, uh, the crazy path, buying the latest, greatest, a magical product. Now you’re going to be a little more receptive due to due to pain and suffering. I suppose

Phil: 00:25:31 That’s the key word, pain and suffering is, is, is a part of it. And yes, that that gets people’s attention. Not, not that they’re in pain, they almost feel they should be in pain. But when, when I experienced this in practice and it’s really gotten me into literally into all sports cause I’ve, I’ve worked in all sports and this, you know, the same story, uh, is applicable to all the sports. When, when, when I’m in that sport and somebody in the media says, hey, how’d you get into motor sports? And you know, it was the same thing. Um, I had a driver who, who had pain or in the case on motor sports, I had a driver who, uh, had some neurological problems, um, that had to do with his eyes and I was able to correct it, uh, in, in sports. Uh, you know, I saw this young young kid who had a leg pain, chronic leg pain and, and he wanted to race in the upcoming weekend and I was able to fix his leg pain and he was able to race anyone. That guy was, was Mark Allen. And, and only then does someone like that start paying attention. Hey, he, he fixed my leg pain. What else can he do for me? And that, so that gets their attention.

Brad: 00:27:13 And then we have the, the problem of, uh, the lack of consensus on things like the refined vegetable oils where there’s a lot of data that’s saying these are the killing many, many people in the, in the modern world, uh, due to direct association with cancer and dysfunction at the cellular level. But we’re still going into Whole Foods and buying organic canola oil. So why haven’t we achieved consensus on some of these big ticket diet items that seem to the enlightened to be so obvious, but still, I know you mentioned the money behind it and the marketing dollars, but it seems like whew, um, it’s about time to kind of topple over these last remaining pillars of a flawed dietary advice and knowledge that we’ve taken to be true for so long.

Phil: 00:28:04 You’re right. And, and I was one of the points of, of my, uh, opinion piece to the, the journal that I, I submitted this system one /system two thinking article two about health and fitness. Is that it? It’s, it’s time. We, we stopped playing these games. Um, and it is about money. Um, there is a scientific consensus regarding the use of vegetable oils. There has been, um, gosh, I remember lecturing about this in the early eighties, I think. So it’s not new and there is a consensus we could, we could sit in front of a scientific audience and say, here’s why vegetable oils are bad and, or write a, a review article and have it submitted to the New England Journal of Medicine. And it would, it would be accepted because the scientific information, the, the backup for, for what you’re trying to say is all there. And it’s been there for a long, long time.

Phil: 00:29:19 Um, and it is about money. It’s about politics, which is about money. It’s about power, which is about money. It’s about corporate greed, which is about money. Um, and if I’m, if I’m selling you something and suddenly we find out it’s bad, I’m going to keep selling it to you. We look at the tobacco company did, they knew decades ago that they were going to have problems in certain parts of the world, like in the u s um, and so they’d diversified and they bought, you know, junk food companies and, um, you know, then, then they, they weren’t heard as much. But the fact is today, um, there are more cigarettes sold than ever. Tobacco is very popular worldwide. And the fact that, uh, you know, they had this big lawsuit in the u s and so in the u s you can’t advertise tobacco in magazines or on radio and TV. Um, it’s out there. It’s out there, it’s in movies, it’s on the Internet. Um, yeah, we don’t have Joe Camel, uh, but we still have Joe Camel. It’s, it’s all out there and kids are still smoking. So, uh, it, it’s all about money. And, um, uh, do we as a society allow that to happen while we have been allowing it to happen. And now we’re in a big mess. And what are we going to do about it? I don’t, I don’t, I have some answers, but I don’t know, uh, when the problem will be addressed, it’s certainly not being addressed now.

Brad: 00:31:09 Well, let’s say the, the well intentioned, open-minded consumer is trying to do the best they can and is trying to decide between a, a vegetarian eating pattern and this, uh, this, this Primal Paleo, low carb Keto stuff. Uh, and this is trying to be thoughtful and go to the bookstore and look at, uh, the, the, the prominent, uh, uh, authors and people that have, uh, in gendered respect in their careers. But we kind of had to, um, some forks in the road. And I’m still, I’m still wondering, uh, how to resolve that when I’m, you know, I’m sitting down at the family dinner table for Thanksgiving and the conversation goes to this direction or that direction and someone says, well, yeah, there’s this article that I said that, that I just read that says, uh, uh, eggs are bad and that cholesterol will clog your arteries. I mean, it’s still, it’s still floating around there, right in our faces with these documentaries that are coming out where the, I mean the doctor was on camera saying that eggs will kill you. And, and he’s, he’s a prominent physician with a long record and a respected name in the world.

Phil: 00:32:19 Yeah. It’s sad and that’s why I don’t do those Thanksgiving things or any holiday things, but, but for the first time I wrote an article that I think just recently came out on my website maybe last week about eggs and, and for the first, and I’ve been writing on it my entire career. I began doing it when I was a student, um, about the benefits of eggs. And for the first time in my career I was able to skip over the whole argument about why eggs are not bad and why they are healthy. And I just said, you know, now that the egg scare is over here.There are some great reasons to eating eggs and, um, hopefully, you know, hopefully the tide has turned with eggs along the salt. I have an article on salt coming out soon. Um, and, and s, you know, red meat, um, and, and, and this and that.

Phil: 00:33:28 There’s, there’s pretty good consensus for, you know, when, when we look at all the, the things that we’re confronted with when it comes to health and fitness, you know, what foods do we, what do we avoid? What do we do when, you know, before we exercise, what do we do during a, a long trail run? Uh, what about shoes? You know, what, what kind of training should I do? Should I run really hard every day because that’s what my neighbor does. Um, for, for most of those issues, there’s a pretty good consensus on a, on a scientific and a clinical level. Um, the, the confusion is that, you know, we have a lot of things lingering on for various reasons. One is the money issue. Um, the other is, um, it tradition is hard to break to, to s to say red meat. What, what’s so unique about red meat?

Phil: 00:34:42 Chicken is the worst kind of meat to eat. If you want to bash meat. Chicken is the worst kind of meat it has. Uh, the highest level of Arachidonic acid and Arachidonic acid, um, uh, you know, comes down into the inflammatory pathway. We need inflammation, but we don’t need a lot of it. But, uh, Arachidonic acid is the primary driver of inflammation. And when that becomes chronic, that’s the first stage of disease and, and impairment, physical impairment. So what is it about red meat? You know, like, okay, now pork is okay because it’s white. Um, veal, those little baby cows, you know, veal is okay because it’s white. So there, you know, there’s this incredible tradition which is always tied in with emotion. Red meat elicits an incredible emotional response in almost everybody, whether you eat red meat every day or, or not. Um, but there’s a, there’s a pretty good consensus, uh, if, if we had to sit down, uh, we scientists and we clinicians and say, okay, we’re gonna, we’re gonna make, you know, the top 10 recommendations for the world because we’re going down the tubes.

Phil: 00:36:08 We’re, we’re halfway down the tube. You know, when, when, when, uh, you know, most of the world is over fat and, and the condition of excess body fat is the first stage of all the chronic diseases and all your intermediary problems, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, um, you know, blood sugar impairments and so forth. Um, w we need to, we need to do something fast. And so here you, you know, you guys sit in a room and come up with, you know, the top 10 or 20 things that people as a guideline that people can do and still be able to say, okay, everyone has to personalize this. And so if you don’t want to eat, um, certain foods, that’s okay because you can get your nutrients from, from alternatives. Um, but the fact that there is a consensus there is ignored by most people there. They’re willing to latch, you know, that’s that system one an anphibian brain thing. They’re willing to latch onto tradition and emotion and, um, that’s not, that’s not how we want to do it. If, if we’re trying to personalize our life so that we’re the healthiest we can be in the fittest, we can be.

Brad: 00:37:41 So this personalizing and trying things out for yourself. Uh, I think one of the problems when it comes to considering a dietary transition, especially going against the advice of your physician, because generally speaking, the certified nutritionist and the family physicians are the physicians that touch the end user. A lot are still looking at a blood report saying your LDL is too high and they’re sending you home with the order to not consume eggs or red meat. And then, uh, when you, when you try things out for yourself, you can’t tell for 20 years that the oil that you’re pouring over everything is going to kill you. So we don’t have that, that immediate instant gratification to change behaviors such as when we slow down our workouts and then six weeks later we’re uh, setting PRs because we’ve moderated the stress response with our crazy training schedules that will stick and then they will keep coming back to you and asking you for more guidance. But with that diet part, what do we do with the, the idea that A, we’re still receiving, uh, tainted advice from people who shouldn’t be giving advice and then B, that we can’t tell right away. In some cases, I know we can start losing weight if we cut cut our carbohydrate intake. But on those other big picture items, what does the, what does the consumer to do?

Phil: 00:39:02 Um, this is where the system breaks down even more. It’s that when we go to the so called experts who are no longer experts and ask them for advice, which they shouldn’t give because they’re not experts because they’re over fat, they’re smoking, they’re unhealthy and they’re gonna. They’re going to tell the patient, here’s how you become healthy. Well, that doesn’t work. And more important is the fact that a lot of these professionals, a lot of these practitioners are influenced the same way. Consumers are influenced by articles in the newspaper, by advertisers. Advertisers are very smart. They spend a lot of money to convince you, um, about whatever, whatever they want to convince you about to sell their product. And, and, and doctors are not immune to that. You know, the, the word doctor means teacher. And I, I took that very serious and I needed to teach myself.

Phil: 00:40:14 I needed to learn how to be healthy. And then I, my job was really to teach people. And uh, there are not a lot of doctors who teach people today. There were not a lot of practitioners who teach people. Everything is cookbook. And so if, if you’re, uh, if you’re over fat, if your blood pressure is high, if you’re, um, uh, you know, your brain is starting to, to, to fade, you’re not remembering things. Um, you know doctors don’t, first of all, they don’t have any time to explain things to you. Even if they did understand what needed to be, uh, recommended or what needed to be tried. Everything is cookbook. Um, almost almost everything is cookbook in healthcare now. So you, you, you diagnose something and so you come up with a name and then you treat the name. But you know what, there’s a person there, there’s a person behind that name.

Phil: 00:41:23 You’re not treating diabetes, you’re treating Joe and Susie. Um, and, uh, every diabetic is different. They’re all individuals. And so you need to personalize their program and you really can’t physically and mentally do that for a patient. But what you can do is help them do it for themselves. And that whole process has completely fallen apart. Hardly anybody does it anymore. Even the alternative care, uh, folks, you know, I one time, uh, alternative medicine, which is really a terrible name. Uh, it was come up, it, it was developed the name by, you know, by medicine to imply that, you know, we’re, we’re gonna, we’re gonna do you know, these guys have an alternative to good health care, alternative lifestyles.

Brad: 00:42:27 Oh, you’ve chosen an alternative lifestyle. Excuse me.

Phil: 00:42:33 Yeah, I mean, and so, but, you know, alternative medicine has really, as an as a whole, as a group has sold out and we can, we can hit all the, the, the professions, uh, since, um, you know, people want to pick on me. Okay. So chiropractors and acupuncturists and, um, a nutritionist, the nutritionist in the alternative so-called alternative nutritionist, as opposed to the ones who are employed by hospitals, um, who, who also use cookbook remedies. But they’ve also gone the cookbook route because it’s, it’s easier and it’s quicker. And so when a patient comes in to see you, uh, and they have, you know, they have some, some body pain. Well, you offer a particular service and you treat them based on the service you render, not on what their needs are. And of course, there are exceptions. There are some great clinicians out there. Uh, unfortunately there are not too many. And, uh, most most practitioners know what they’re gonna do before they even see the patient. And that’s, and that’s just sad and you add that to the fact that, um, patients are not being educated properly. Um, and it’s a disaster. It’s only gonna get worse,

Brad: 00:44:07 Right. They time doctor, patient time is cutting down. And I guess we’re a, we’re too busy to really dig in and read and educate ourselves today. We’re too busy with instant gratification, social media, things like that. I feel like it’s, um, it’s affected my own personal life where, you know, I used to, I used to read voraciously. I have a stack of books on the shelf. I read them all and now I a stack of books by my bedside, but I don’t seem to be getting through them too quickly because there’s too much other stimulation in my life and then I’m exhausted and can’t pick up a book like I used to.

Phil: 00:44:43 Yeah, it, it’s, it’s, it’s, um, it’s overwhelming. And so, I mean, I’m, I don’t have a TV or radio. I don’t look at the news. I don’t, um, I don’t know what, I don’t know what day it is half the time, unless, you know, I have, I have notices that I have a podcast with [inaudible],

Brad: 00:45:07 Well, I don’t know a day it is either, because obviously we were supposed to record last week and then the morning time zone came and went and I was like, oh my gosh, I, I, it’s not that I forgot about this long, long awaited podcasts with, with Dr Phil Maffetone. I just didn’t know what day it was. That was my, that was where I was at that time. So I guess that’s, that’s not as bad as completely forgetting about our podcast. But I woke up, I thought it was Thursday morning, I think I went out and played my beloved morning speed golf round and then got back and I’m like, oh my God, it’s Friday. Uh, but on that note, uh, the, I, I, you’re doing this for a defined purpose, which is to, I guess, reduce the stress in your life and reduce this stimulation, which is, it has negative health consequences. You’re not just trying to be an off the grid dork who’s making a, making a point in sending, sending photos via Instagram of your, your solar panels. You’re disengaging from modern media for, for a specific purpose.

Phil: 00:46:10 Exactly. I’m, I’m doing it because I want to reduce stress. And that’s one of the things that, um, anyone who understands stress, which we define as, as being physical, biochemical and mental, emotional in nature, um, does. They recommend reducing stress. And there are a lot of stresses that people can, can eliminate or reduce. And then what happens when you do that? The body’s now healthier and more fit and now you’re able to cope. You’re able to adapt to all the other stresses, which we may not be able to change. Um, so yeah, I, I, I do it for selfish reasons. At the same time, I want to be able to explain how somebody can, can do those things. And, um, and it’s, it, it’s really, you know, the stress, the stress thing is really what it’s all about. Uh, if, if we, if we, you know, I’m, I’m into, I’m into the big picture, uh, sometimes we have to whittle down and say, well, here’s, you know, here’s the mechanism that’s going on in the knee joint when you get injured.

Phil: 00:47:26 But there’s a big picture. And that’s a, that’s a really nice place to start because when you see the big picture, you see, what are the things that I want to devote time and energy on to help myself to help become more healthy and become a, you know, a more fit person, improve my natural human performance, whatever that may be. Um, and stress, stress would be in a general, uh, in a general sense, trust would be the only thing we need to worry about by definition because, um, all the physical things that you and I have talked about over the years in terms of training, uh, how do we run a better marathon, et cetera, et cetera. All the things we’ve talked about regarding food and, uh, nutrition and all the bad oils and hydrogenated fat and well now they call them trans fats. Uh, uh, synthetic vitamins, all, you know, all this, we can all throw that into this thing called stress because there are physical stresses that we need to deal with.

Speaker 3: 00:48:40 There are biochemical stresses, which is where nutrition is in food and there are mental, emotional stresses, which is, um, our, our education or our miseducation. Uh, pain is there too. Pain is something that is an emotion. And so when we put all that together, we say, well, now I’m really confused. Now I’m overwhelmed because, um, if I make a list of all my stresses, which, which I recommend people do, um, it’s unlimited. I mean, I’ve got, you know, I’m up to 57 physical stresses. I’m under, I got, you know, 107, uh, biochemical stresses and I’ve got all these mental, emotional stresses, many of which I really can’t even define, but I know that. So what do I do? Um, it’s, it’s, and everybody’s waiting for the answer.

Phil: 00:49:36 I don’t know the answer because it’s individual. It’s very personal. Um, I can give you some ideas, uh, from a, from a physiological standpoint, when we look at things like, well, we, we, we, we brought this up before, you know, what are the causes of chronic illness? You know, we don’t, we don’t, we’re no longer dying of infectious diseases. We’re dying of chronic illness. Most people, um, today die of chronic disease and virtually all those diseases are preventable. Everybody knows that. Scientists know that. Clinicians know that. Um, you look, look up on the CDC website. You know, these are preventable conditions, which means they don’t have to happen. And so, um, w what do they have in common? What are all these chronic diseases? Cancer, you know, all the cardiovascular diseases, heart attack, stroke, et Cetera. Um, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, you know, those are the top, um, the top, uh, causes of death in the Western world.

Phil: 00:50:51 Um, what are the, is there some common denominator there? You know, everyone makes it seem like, well, you know, your, you, you’ve got cardiovascular disease here and then you got cancer over there. And so if you have a, both of these, you go to one doctor for one and the other doctor for another in an end stage situations that, that makes perfect sense. And having a specialist is really wonderful. However, why are we all waiting around to go to a specialist when we could be more proactive? Um, but what is the, you know, what is the common denominator? It has to do with being over fat and that that’s pretty clear from a scientific standpoint. Excess body fat is associated with increased chronic inflammation, which is that first stage of, or the, the, the over fat is that really the first stage of chronic disease, but chronic inflammation and then carbohydrate intolerance, uh, insulin resistance.

Phil: 00:52:02 That’s the triad, that that is the beginning of the process. And then that trickles down to elevated, uh, LDL cholesterol and, uh, elevated blood sugar and, um, creeping up, um, blood pressure and et Cetera, et cetera. And then in the end, that leads to a diagnosis of disease, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and, and so if you want to attack those problems, you know, don’t look for the, the vitamins that help diabetes. Don’t look for the, you know, the, the magic heart diet, because there isn’t one. They’re all, they’re all tied in with the, you know, the, the causation of all those conditions, which is, you know, the, the chronic disease, you know, is this wide spectrum of individual illnesses. And if you trace it back to the top where it all begins, it’s with excess body fat.

Brad: 00:53:12 So the triad is chronic inflammation, carbohydrate intolerance, insulin resistance. And then that’s leading us down the road to your term of “over fat.” If you can describe that a little.

Phil: 00:53:27 The over fat occurs first. Um, and, and, uh, I had an interesting discussion with one of the journalists where I submitted one of my overfed papers and, um, uh, and it, it was about, uh, this issue of does excess body fat contribute or core cause chronic inflammation and carbohydrate intolerance, which is also called insulin resistance. Um, and I think, I think today we could say it does. I think when, when you talk to scientists, they want to go at it as a way to be objective. And so, I used to call it a triad, but the over fat excess body fat does produce inflammatory chemicals. So there is a connection there that, you know, it’s the chicken and the egg thing. It doesn’t really matter because we’re going to do the same thing to treat it and to prevent it, which is avoid refined carbohydrate like sugar and, and all the junk food that is allowed to be promoted to, to everyone on the planet, including babies. And when you start seeing, uh, I did a paper, uh, with a colleague on the over fat pandemic in India. And when we think of India, we think of people that are starving. Well, 80.5% of Indian adults are over fat today.

Phil: 00:55:07 What, what’s going on? I’ll tell you what’s going on. Uh, the Western world sent them junk food for decades and that’s how they all of a sudden become over fat. And of course, when you’re in India, um, you see all the fast food chains, uh, on all the street corners just like you do in the US and um, so, you know, avoiding that food, avoiding the junk food. Primarily the, the oils are bad, the processed meats are bad, the chemicals they put in these things are bad. But the refined flour, which turns to sugar very quickly and the sugar itself, uh, has to be eliminated because that’s what makes people over fat. And if you want to reduce your body fat, you’re never going to do it successfully and permanently unless you get rid of the, the sugar.

Brad: 00:56:11 And when you say over fat to be distinguished between the visible obesity,

Phil: 00:56:22 The Indian study I did, um, we, we found that uh, uh, 40% of the normal weight, non obese people, adults were over fat so you could be normal weight and non obese. And in the West it’s, it’s only about 20%. That was one of the interesting things, um, discovered there. But um, you can be normal weight and non obese and still have excess body fat and there’s, you know, there’s, uh, and, and the best way to determine this is to measure your waist and, and um, your waist should be less than half your height. It’s really, it’s really quite simple. This is a very scientific way to evaluate. You can go out and get your dexa scans, but you’re going to have to get them on a regular basis. That doesn’t make any sense. Um, uh, the calipers are iffy. The water weight is, is a very accurate, but, uh, nobody, nobody does that. Almost no one does those anymore. I used to have somebody come to my office and, and literally put together a water bath where we’d weigh people. Um, and um, the, and I’ve been following the waist measuring, uh, techniques over the years. There’ve been, there’ve been a number of them, um, the waist to hip ratio and all that stuff and really the, the best one today, uh, the most scientific, most accurate assessment in all individuals. Um, because some of the, um, the different ethnicities, uh, affect, um, the determinations of, of body fat. So this eliminates that. And you can also use it for children. It’s basically that your waist should be less than half your height and, um, if it’s not you’re over fat

Brad: 00:58:38 And that’s because male or female, the unwanted storage in the midsection is different than the distribution across the body.?

Phil: 00:58:48 Well, it is different for sure. Um, the, the addition of body fat, um, over the years with people, uh, is more easily measured in the waist because there’s a prevalence for that mechanism to happen. Now what you bring up is, is another very important thing, which is that belly fat is the worst kind, almost the worst kind of body fat to have. Um, because it’s metabolically active, it, it produces more inflammatory chemicals. It has a negative impact on our, uh, physical, biochemical and mental emotional body. Um, the other bad area of body fat is related embryologically and that’s the fat around the heart. And you know, once in a while the discussion about fat around, around the heart is a little bit complicated. And so you don’t read about it very often, but I, I’ve talked about it a lot. And the fact is, if you want to know what you have around the heart in terms of, uh, do I have a lot of fat around my heart, should I be concerned? Just look at your belly because what goes on in the belly goes on around the heart in terms of fat deposition. So you, you can get a pretty good idea about fat around the heart by looking at your belly and measuring, uh, your waist and making sure your waist is less than half your height.

Brad: 01:00:30 Now, Phil, what about this concept that the accumulation of belly fat is a slippery slope being that if you, if you start to add a little, as you get advanced in the years or whatever, toning down your commitment to healthy eating and exercise, uh, a little will manifest into more because of the inflammatory aspects of that type of body fat?

Phil: 01:00:54 That’s that, that triad we talked about earlier, right? It’s a vicious cycle. Uh, whether, whether excess body fat is the first thing that happens is almost irrelevant because excess body fat begins to develop and there’s a vicious cycle between that and chronic inflammation and carbohydrate intolerance or insulin resistance. And that goes round and round and now that speeds up the depositing of body fat. Now you’re, now you’re in that excess body fat state. It becomes more evident in the, in the belly and then, you know, it’s around the heart as well, which adversely affects the heart. Um, so yeah, it’s uh, it, it becomes a spiral and there is a normal, a deposition of, of, of more fat in the central part of the body, around the belly. Um, however, that normality does not include the over fat state. It just means that, you know, we as we age, we have, um, we lose a little bit of muscle. We shouldn’t lose too much if we’re physically active. Um, and as we lose muscle, we have, um, slightly more body fat, but it should never be to the point of being overfat again. It, it, you know, if we monitor our, our waist, it should always be below half our height.

Brad: 01:02:35 And if we’re concerned and we want to make some quick a redirection, turn things around, uh, what would be the triad of things to do with our diet or, or our, our daily activity, physical exercise. How would you attack that? Uh, I know you want to do everything personally, but if we’re listening, if the audience is listening, what are, what are your big ticket items and they’ll give you the most return on investment?

Phil: 01:03:00 Well, again, we can, we can look at, you know, what are the physical things I can do with, with sa exercise and training and heart rate and blah, blah. What dietary things should I do? There’s so many of those, you know, pro, what about protein? What about fats and oils? What about carbohydrates, fruits and vegetables? Um, what about vitamin supplements and then all the mental, emotional things that, um, are floating around out there that come and go, um, which have have a lot of hype attached to them as well. And, and it’s overwhelming. It’s confusing. What, you know, what, what’s a consumer to do? What am I to do? Uh, where do I go? How do I start? It’s really pretty simple. You start at the top and you, you, you get rid of refined carbohydrate and sugar. And what I, what I learned long ago is that I didn’t want people to just believe what I say.

Phil: 01:04:08 Some of them, some of them were fine doing that, but I want them to experience what it’s like to be without sugar. And so I developed this thing called the two week test whereby you test yourself over a two week period where you eliminate all the, the refined carbohydrates. So no, no flour, um, or corn products, no sugar, no added sugars. And then after two weeks, you, you sort of assess and then reassess yourself. So, uh, make a list of, you know, pretend you’re, you’re sitting in front of a doctor who’s actually listening to what you’re saying. You know, what are your, tell me all the problems you’re having. Well, I’m hungry a lot. I’m over fat. I am fatigued, um, I don’t sleep well and, and, and whatever. You have all these things and now after two weeks in this two week test, you, you reassess.

Phil: 01:05:13 Okay, now I’m not so hungry. I, uh, I’m sleeping better. I’m, uh, my energy is really good. Um, or whatever. And then you say, okay, so now I know that eating junk food carbohydrates is bad, which everybody already knows, but now you’ve experienced it. Now you know what it feels like to be without it. Now you say, okay, I have, I damaged my metabolism of eating this junk for years, to the point where now I can’t eat unlimited amounts of natural carbohydrates. So let me experiment, uh, with some natural carbohydrates and let me see what my limit is. You know, can they really eat 10 pieces of fruit a day? Can I really have, um, you know, beans and brown rice, uh, as a, as a meal? And you, you may find that you cannot, you, you’ve got some limits on the natural carbohydrates as well.

Phil: 01:06:20 If you’re young enough, you may not find that that’s the case. So, um, that’s personalized. Personalizing a primary cause of many of these conditions. And when you go through that, you will become a healthier person and a more fit person. And if you happen to also be a runner, you’re gonna run a better 10 k, you’re going to run a better marathon. Your injuries are gonna tend to go away. Your um, you know, Gosh, you get rid of, you get rid of, uh, even a little bit of body fat and running economy can improve significantly. So, um, that’s, that’s where we start,

Brad: 01:07:04 Right. And Oh my gosh, the, the results that I’ve experienced from telling people to do the two week test for, for many, many years now, it’s so simple. People can agree to do it. It’s not a long time period. And people literally will come back and say, I lost 11 pounds. I lost seven pounds. And we know now that some of that weight loss is body fat and some of the excess body fat and some of it is just the reduction in inflammation from taking these toxic foods out of the diet, even for a brief period of time. And just to be clear, when you say, uh, talk about the natural carbohydrates and reintroducing them, what you’re trying to do here is, uh, determine when these unpleasant symptoms come back. At what level of a carbohydrate consumption. So if you hit, you know, 12 servings of fruit today after your two week tests, uh, you might find that you’re tired after the meals. You have gas, bloating, digestive problems, the things that we’re so accustomed to in a high carbohydrate diet. And then you kind of fine tune from there and like, did I captured that? Okay? Okay,

Phil: 01:08:10 Exactly. You, you, you just, you know, you’re determining your level of insulin and, um, that’s, that’s not difficult to do. And, and then learning your tolerance for natural carbohydrates, um, falls into place, uh, fairly easy. And especially if you have symptoms like hunger and fatigue and, um, intestinal bloating, gas and bloating, you know, the, these things happen quick. And when you eliminate the foods that cause them, those symptoms change pretty quick. And so, um, and you can use weight as well if you lose, uh, you know, a few pounds over the two week test period and then you start eating, um, natural carbohydrates, which are supposed to be really healthy. Well, they may not be for you because you’re too.

New Speaker: 01:09:09 insulin resistance. So when you start experimenting with those, all of a sudden you gain a couple of pounds and your fatigue and your hunger comes back and you say, Aha, that’s excessive for me.

Phil: 01:09:22 I’m gonna cut back to having only two fruits a day or a whatever. You know, that it just gets very individual. And you know, it, it, a lot of this has to do with instincts and intuition. Um, you know, for millions of years, humans knew what to eat. Of course we didn’t have the, the confusion we have today, but, uh, today we don’t know what to eat. The average person, uh, is completely confused and their education is, is from the, the newspapers and online ads. And, and so, you know, we’re, we get confused. And so personalizing it is figuring out how to do things. And really what you’re doing is developing instincts and intuition.

Brad: 01:10:22 Well, certainly if you clean up your diet, you start to correct some of those desensitization of your Palette and your addiction to sugar and what what you think tastes good and what you think is, is sweet enough for your Starbucks drink. Do you want seven pumps or six or five or four, three or two or one or zero. It’s time to realize that, you know, the lifelong habits have messed us up so that we’re a sugar fiend. Really.

Phil: 01:10:50 Yeah. And that’s a surprise surprise because when we do this, when we, when we eliminate the, these bad foods, our brains work better. And that’s where the, the instincts, intuition, intuition are, are located. Uh, we, we were able to use logic. We’re able to, um, sense that, um, a big plate of, uh, sweet potatoes, which have been genetically modified to be much sweeter, but now they have marshmallows in them. Um, you just sense that, hey, this, this doesn’t look as good as it used to.

Brad: 01:11:38 Oh, is the marshmallows like a common thanksgiving discs? Someone else said that to me and I’m like, what do you, what are you talking about? What am I, am I out of the loop?

Phil: 01:11:47 I’m, I’m continually reminded that it still does exist. I remember growing up as a kid eating it and I’m reminded that, um, people still do that and I, I, let’s not go there. Right.

Brad: 01:12:01 Wow. What a distraction. Yeah. Oh my gosh. Pick, pick through the, uh, the ice caps, the, the, the icebergs there and get your sweet potatoes.

Phil: 01:12:12 Yeah. And then what the media does is they say, you know, turkey has a lot of trip to fan and that makes you sleepy after you eat it. Oh, you mean it’s not the four pieces of pie and the marshmallows and all the other sweetened foods, the, the stuffing, uh, that’s made from junk food. It’s not all that. So it’s just, you know, it’s just

Brad: 01:12:36 Oh, the soundbites. Yeah. Oh Phil, that’s a lot to think about man. We’re, we’re studying straight all the ills of society in modern media and the hype. So thank you so much for covering all these topics. Now we had the ambition to talk about, uh, fitness training, peak athletic performance. So I’m going to have to get you on for a whole separate show if you’ll agree and we’ll, we’ll, we’ll go into those topics. But what fun to talk about these big picture items cause you’re a big picture guy.

Phil: 01:13:04 Thanks Brad. Yes, I’d be happy to talk more anytime.

Brad: 01:13:09 Okay, go check out Phil maffetone.com I especially love your naturally sourced supplements. I’m going to ask you a little bit more about that in the next show. A great newsletter that you can subscribe to. Thank you listeners for joining. Dr Phil Maffetone at his new home in Florida.

Brad: 01:13:30 Thank you for listening to the show. We would love your feedback@getoveryourselfpodcastatgmail.com and we would also love if you could leave a rating and a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves cause they need to. Thanks for doing it.

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(Breather) For the past 10 years, I have modified my fitness regimen away from narrow endurance focus (including the extremely health-destructive chronic cardio training regimen that I followed as an elite competitor for 15 years) to a more balanced regimen featuring comfortable aerobic workouts (i.e., jogging daily with dogs), regular brief, intense strength training sessions, and occasional all-out sprints.

It takes time, research, and a lot of trial and error to find out what works for you. A decade into this process of modifying my ever-evolving routine and here’s what I’ve come up with: 

  1. Establish a Flexibility/Mobility/Wakeup Call Routine. This is fairly new to me, something I started doing around 2 years ago. Check out my YouTube video here and note that I’ve found moving my practice from the bed to the floor has yielded even better results!  
  2. Increase General Everyday Movement. This one’s easy – just move! The goal is to break up the prolonged periods of stillness that most of us experience during the work day. Just freaking walk! Walk where you can, whenever you can, take the stairs instead of the elevator, and aim for frequent, very comfortable jogging (HR 130 bpm max) for 20 – 30 minute duration – something you can do with your  friends, your partner, your dogs ….and then there’s also one of my favorite ways to move: the Unfrozen Caveman Runner! And don’t forget that foam rolling actually counts as movement too! 
  3. Incorporate Micro-Workouts. These are brief efforts of explosive strength over the course of the day, one of my favorite fitness breakthroughs in recent memory. For example, hauling off a set up chin-ups when you enter that doorway, or doing a set of deep squats in your cubicle during the workday.
  4. Bring Brief Strength Training into the mix. It only needs to last anywhere from 5-20 minutes, 2-3 days a week. Save the extremely high intensity full-body work exercises (Schlepmo type-stuff—go hard or go home!) for the gym or outdoors. 
  5. Full Strength Sessions should consist of 5 sets of 6-8 deadlift/ 5 x 12 pullups. Or Cordz. This should take approximately 30-45 minutes. 
  6. All Out Sprints. Do this weekly. After 12 years of draining workouts (soreness, fatigue, etc.) I transformed my approach with Dr. Craig – HIIT v HIRT. 8 x 60m on field. Luxury rest intervals. 4-10. 10 minutes of quite challenging technique drills.  

TIMESTAMPS: 

Do your fitness goals fit into the reality of your real life? [04:35] 

Brad suggests you custom design a routine for yourself that will fit into your flexibility needs. [07:20] 

Move more every day. Take breaks. Walk. [09:18] 

Adding other micro workouts during the day is easier than you think. [11:31] 

At the gym, even once a week, high intensity explosive workouts works. [15:22] 

Don’t forget to sprint. [16:47] 

So many factors go in to the concept of anti-aging. [19:41] 

Do not reach for your phone first thing in the day. [20:09] 

LINKS: 

LISTEN:

Download Episode MP3

Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:00 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author, an athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit, and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balance that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 03:25 A breather show, continuing with the wonderful momentum that we’ve created, working our way through a comprehensive healthy lifestyle strategy, anti aging peak performance. So we covered the grand overview, a tidbits about diet, exercise, sleep, lifestyle. Then we got into details with diet and now let’s cover the exercise and the movement objectives for living a healthy, happy lifestyle. And when I was writing the note to my friend, I put together a my personal fitness routine that has been time tested and optimized and especially with, uh, a nod or an acknowledgement that, uh, many of us don’t have, uh, hours and hours to work out every day and hang around the gym and do everything we’re supposed to do. And this includes me because remember I spent a decade of my life, uh, competing as a professional triathlete.

Brad: 05:37 So everyday I woke up and I lived and breathed exercise and workouts and fitness and recovery. And that’s a really fun and it was a, a great growth experience to dedicate my life to being an athlete and a lifelong dream since I was a little kid. And then I had to retire and grow up and get a real life and start a family and start a career or start a new career and all those great things that happened that’s happened over the last couple of decades. So I do not wish myself to be that dedicated to fitness goals, uh, right now and probably never again. Right? So I want to fit my fitness and competitive goals into the realities of modern life and the other interests and lifestyle responsibilities that I have. Same with most everyone, right? When you’re in your college years or your high school years and you’re given it everything you got and you’re practicing basketball for three hours a day, like my son’s team in high school.

Brad: 06:32 Oh Man, what a wonderful experience. You know, having that level of focus and dedication and getting the very best out of your body and striving for these great peak performance goals. So for the average listener, we want to talk about something different and that is to do the best we can within the confines and the challenges of hectic, high tech, sedentary focused, modern life. So I’m going to give you the step-by-step here and I’m going to cover a lot of stuff. It’s going to take a whole breather show, but when we break it all down, it is not a time intensive requirement. You can do it. It’s really easy. It just takes establishing these systems and habits. I think you’re going to love it. All right.

Brad: 07:20 So number one, starting off, and this has been a beautiful recent revelation for me. I believe I am two and a half years into this now is my morning flexibility, mobility routine.

Brad: 07:33 You can see pretty much what I do on Youtube. I’ve modified it a tiny bit from that, particularly by getting out of bed and onto the ground. So I was doing all these movements in bed just to make sure it was the first thing I did every day. And I realized that doing core work into a soft squishy bed, uh, was much easier than doing it on the ground. So now I pop out of bed and hit the ground. So it is a custom design routine of various leg exercises, leg swings, all engaging the core as my legs are off the ground and it takes several minutes. And I finished off with uh, the wonderful back bridge from the practice of Yoga. Probably the most difficult yoga position where I’m making an arch, like the gateway to St Louis with my entire body where it my only my toes and my hands are touching the ground.

Brad: 08:22 Really difficult. Worked up to that for a long period of time. Pretty dangerous. So you don’t have the flexibility and uh, working up to something like that. But the point here is that I want you to design your own customized routine of the acceptable duration that you can commit to doing it every single day. Okay. Take a look at my youtube video. Maybe it’s something inspired by that, especially if you’re an athlete. Some good drills to open up the hips and keep the hamstrings flexible. It could be the yoga sun salute sequences where you reach for the sky and then compress down, touching your toes, sweeping back up, whatever it is. Make sure that it is totally automatic and repeatable every single day so you don’t have to think about it, you just get up and do it first thing in the morning. So the morning flexibility, mobility, wake up call routine is the centerpiece of this fitness and movement goal.

Brad: 09:18 The next one on the list is that a objective to move more in daily life. So we want to break up these prolonged periods of stillness that many of us experienced during the workday with some j f w just frickin walk simple as that, walking more in daily life and finding assorted other ways to move your body. A, we have some great material in the upcoming book, Quito, longevity about some balancing drills that you can do on one leg, even in your cubicle. Uh, foam rolling counts as a movement objective, taking the dog out for a walk, morning and evening. And of course added onto this is the objective of completing some, uh, cardiovascular activity at aerobic heart rates. 180 minus your age in heartbeats per minute because we certainly don’t have the opportunity to walk around as frequently as our hunter gatherer ancestors.

Brad: 10:17 So within the confines and structure of modern life, we want to take those opportunities for five minute, 10 minute walking breaks, and then also throw down some official workouts, but making sure that they’re conducted at a comfortable heart rate. So, uh, some of my go tos in this area are to get those dogs out in the morning. Man, how much more motivation do you need than dogs who have built that expectation through habit that they’re getting out in the morning? I can’t look those dogs in the eye and say, sorry, I can’t take you a, the other fun thing that I’ve been doing that you can also see on youtube if you type in unfrozen caveman runner into youtube. So I’ve piggybacked my morning chest freezer, cold plunge practice with getting out and rewarming through jogging down the street until my body gets warm. And it’s a wonderful workout experience because your perceived exertion is reduced to almost nothing when your body temperature is lower. So the first 30 minutes of my run, I don’t even feel like I’m running. I’m just trying to warm up my body. So fun stuff there. But the point is get some cardiovascular activity, uh, every single day with the objective of GFW and then throwing in a frequent workouts.

Brad: 11:31 Uh, then, uh, I want to add this exciting number three onto the list and that is what’s being referred to as micro workouts. Maybe, uh, just I being the one referring to them. We’ll see, uh, type that term into Google. I don’t know. But this is the idea that throughout your day you can perform brief bouts of explosive movements in the course of your busy day and not worry about it. Just put it as a routine part of your day. So integrating the passing under of the pull up bar at my house. When I go through that doorway, I will have a penchant for hauling off, let’s say a single set of chin-ups and then going about my business, I have a hex bar, dead lift in the backyard, love this thing, and I will go out to throw a bag of garbage away and hit the deadlift bar for a single set of dead lifts.

Brad: 12:25 So if you get into the habit of, for example, dropping in your cubicle for a set of 20 deep squats, it’s really, really difficult. Try to go ass to grass style where you’re lowering all the way down, way past parallel, and then standing back up, even just doing 20 of those, it gives an excellent workout stimulation. So aside from your obligation to get into the gym or go to the track and do your formal sprint workouts or explosive strength training sessions, this concept of micro workouts has been a wonderful revelation for me. And I feel like it’s elevated my baseline platform from which I launce the actual, uh, proper, uh, strength training sessions and anyone can do it. You’re not getting sweaty after doing one set of pull ups or one set of deep squats and your cubicle. I also have these wonderful, uh, tools called stretch cord that’s a brand name stretch cord, Cor D,Z , but anything with the surgical tubing with the handles or you can find those at any sporting goods store and you hang those from a door knob or I hang them from my pull up bar and I’ll do perhaps a single set of wood chopper, a movement for the abdominals.

Brad: 13:38 So I’m not fatiguing myself. I’m not worried about, uh, you know, interrupting my day with a long duration workout that maybe I’m not ready for because I’m still recovering from an intense session at the gym. But just throwing down these micro sessions and watching how they accumulate over time. So consider that if I do a couple sets of deadlifts, uh, during a routine day, and maybe I do that four or five days a week, right? So realistically, uh, and again, not counting the formal workout, if I just go and hit that dead lift, maybe one set in the morning, one set at night, right? So I’m only doing what? 12 reps? I only have 200 pounds on there. No big deal. Um, that’s 2,400 pounds of lifting in a day that I don’t even count as a workout and don’t even think about. But if you add that up, uh, five days a week, right?

Brad: 14:31 There’s what, 12, 15,000 pounds in a month, I’m lifting 60,000 extra pounds without even thinking about it. How much better are my formal workouts going to be if I’m starting from a 60,000 pound, uh, monthly lifting platform? Huge difference. Especially cause I struggle to get in there in the gym and perform the workouts without getting sore the next day or without getting sidetracked and skipping workouts because they’re too strenuous or I’m not quite feeling right for an explosive peak performance session that lasts for a longer duration. So these make my formal workouts better, but they also have that fantastic additional benefit of breaking up periods of stillness throughout the day. Enhancing fat burning, enhancing blood circulation and oxygen delivery to the brain. So micro workouts, huge plug for those.

Brad: 15:22 And then of course a, we’re going to the next obligation of doing some brief high intensity explosive workouts, uh, in the course of a week. So let’s say, uh, getting to the strength training obligation with whether you’re doing the primal essential movements in your backyard or the park or going into the gym and going through the, uh, machine circuits. Of course, we want to delay the aging process and get those proper strength training sessions in where they’re lasting perhaps for 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 minutes total. And you know what? If you’re doing really well with the micro workouts, I’m going to say that just getting to the gym even once a week because again, I want to have this whole story here, this whole podcast doable and something that doesn’t feel intimidating to tackle. So if you can get to the gym for an excellent workout once a week and throw in these micro workouts on other days, that’s a pretty decent, impressive package. We’ve talked for a long time primal blueprint about doing two strength training sessions a week lasting between 10 and 30 minutes and sure that would be great to get yourself over to the gym a couple times a week and knowing that these workouts can be short in duration, but I know life gets busy and a lot of times we miss or skip the sessions, so package that together, the micro workouts with a formal strength training session and of course the all out sprint session.

Brad: 16:47 Use it or lose it, man. This is one of the fundamental laws of nature and longevity and performing at maximum intensity. Doing a brief explosive effort, even lasting for as little as 10 seconds, can have a profound effect on your longevity, on your fitness, at all other ambitions and other, uh, lower intensity performances. And of course, uh, breaking through those, uh, fat loss plateaus by sending this strong signal to your genes to uh, build or maintain lean muscle and drop excess body fat. So something magical happens when you sprint, when you take it up to maximum effort. Uh, they have a measurement called metabolic equivalent of task MET and they measure, uh, the difference between a particular activity and your baseline rate of let’s say a at rest your, uh, at one met one metabolic equivalent of task. And then you go up from there.

Brad: 17:49 So if you can look at a chart, probably find something on the Internet where a gardening, you know, on your hands and knees potting some plans has a MET score of five, a brisk walk has a MET score of seven to nine. Uh, same with casual cycling. And then you go up in the scale where you’re doing a, uh, a, a tempo running or bicycling workout, climbing a hill at a, uh, ambitious heart rate and that might be MET of 15. And then of course the brief explosive all out sprint has an incredible MET score of 30. So when you’re sprinting, you’re asking your body to perform at a rate 30 times metabolic rates, 30 times that at rest. And so the lasting effects of that, even if you’re only sprinting for let’s say a ten second sprint, you’re resting for a long period of time so you can perform again, an explosive high quality sprint the next time, the next time.

Brad: 18:44 And let’s say you only do four or six or eight in a session, so you’re really not, uh, explosive for more than a minute or two at a time during a quality sprint workout that will have a lasting effect on your metabolism for hours afterward, 48 to 72 hours afterward, you have sent a message to your genes to build muscle, repair muscle and drop excess body fat. That’s why sprinting is so powerful. It has such a wonderful impact on many other fitness goals and body composition goals, even though the workouts are short in duration. So unfortunately, even some devoted fitness enthusiasts and many devoted fitness enthusiasts never go near a the maximum all out explosive a workout performance. They’re content to get into the gym, get on the stair climber, watch CNN, watch the recap of the presidential debates for 40 minutes, 45 minutes, and go home and never challenge the body to perform at maximum level. So when we talk about the concept of anti-aging or compress morbidity that I mentioned at an earlier show, maintaining muscle mass, strength, balance, coordination, explosiveness for as long as you possibly can to ward off the ravages of aging and the accelerated aging that we’re experiencing modern life because we sit around too much. Wow. Sprinting can be your wonderful go to fitness objective.

Brad: 20:09 Oh my gosh. You know how many that is? That’s six. Okay. Six is a lot. But think about it. Most of these take very little time. Just a little bit of increased awareness and throwing in some, uh, new behaviors and through repetition and endurance, turning them in to habits. A recap. Here we go. First morning, flexibility, mobility wake up routine. Five minutes is all I asked to get started out of the gate. I thought my session lasted around five minutes. That was my guess. And then when we filmed it, and I, it a, it actually takes around 12 minutes. So the first 12 minutes of my day, every single day without fail, I’ve a strong commitment to this. That’s why I like to express it in a public forum so I can keep focused and keep doing it. Uh, my 12 minutes is going to flexibility, mobility, core exercise drills. So get something going every single morning. First thing, do not reach for your phone as your first behavior of the day. Uh, there’s some great research, I referenced this in Keto Longevity were reaching for that phone and putting your brain into reactive mode. First thing in the day is highly destructive because it fosters those types of behaviors in that type of mindset. And you get locked into that reactive mindset rather than the ideal peak performance state of being proactive and being disciplined and going by your to do list, achieving your high priority objectives, letting the other things fall where they may.

Brad: 21:43 And it’s so important these days when we have all this penchant for distractability. So if you reach for your phone first thing in the morning, I don’t have the person’s name, but the quote was, you’ll never recover (a psychologist that studies this stuff,)I a you’ll never recover. How about if you do a morning flexibility, mobility routine every day? Hopefully that will set you up for increased discipline and focus in all other areas of life for the duration of the day. So that’s number one. Number two is to get that frequent movement objective handled through a combination of JFW and structured cardiovascular workouts at 180 minus your age or below. You know what, if you can get a couple, few, five hours a week done, that would be an a plus score here. So in other words, you know, jog in a few days a week for 30, 40 minutes a taken that dog for a walk every night.

Brad: 22:41 All of a sudden you’re adding up to a few hours a week. So the goal here would be a few hours a week, a few hours out of the 168 in a week. And this is the most time intensive of anything on the list, right? The morning routines, 12 minutes a day max, five minutes a day. If you’re just starting out a few hours a week of a comfortably placed jogging, brisk walking, and uh, walking around and then the micro workouts, oh my gosh, what does this add up to in a week’s time? Probably a total of 30 minutes or something like that, right? When I’m walking by the pullup bar and doing one set or throwing the garbage away and hitting one set of deadlifts. Or if you’re in your cubicle and you’re doing a set of 20 deep squats, probably takes one minute. And if you do that two, three, four times a day, you’re going to have a massive fitness benefit for almost inconsequential time commitment.

Brad: 23:33 Okay. That was number three. Morning Flexibility. Number One, uh, movement, uh, low intensity movement. Number two, the micro workouts. Number three, uh, the brief formal strength training sessions lasting 10 to 30 minutes as number four. Once a week is all we ask twice a week would be better, but the formal workouts paired hand in hand with the micro workouts. Uh, and then we have the, uh, all out sprints, man, time to go do it. And again, a very short duration workout once a week is plenty. And the duration of your sprint should last between 10 and 20 seconds. I did a whole breather show on this, uh, about the cellular breakdown that occurs when you try to sprint for too long of a duration. So short explosive sprints of high quality throughout the session. That means extensive recovery time in between the sprints. And you’re good to go.

Brad: 24:29 Four to 10 maximum number of reps is fine. So you’re talking about a very short duration workout. Of course, I’m uh, requiring a tremendous, uh, warmup and preparation drills and dynamic stretching, especially with high impact running sprints because it has a high injury risk. So the workout might take 30 minutes or so, but the actual sprinting efforts, you’re only doing a couple few minutes of high intensity exercise with massive metabolic hormonal and peak performance benefits, anti-aging benefits. So there you go. Those are your exercise objectives. Go to it, throw them into place. Thank you for listening. Let me know how they go. Send an email to get over yourself podcast@gmail.com and we’ll talk about it on the show, especially if you have questions or a clarification that you require. Thanks for listening.

Brad: 25:28 Thank you for listening to the show. We would love your feedback at getoveryourselfpodcast@gmail.com and we would also love if you could leave a rating and a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop, iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews, and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars, and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves because they need to. Thanks for doing it.

This show is about rethinking the basic notions of athletic training, particularly the “no pain, no gain” model that’s been widely criticized but is still embedded into DNA of many competitive athletes.

This show was syndicated on the Primal Endurance podcast, so if you are an endurance athlete, definitely check out that show and learn how to pursue endurance goals in a healthy, balance banner. I was a pro athlete for nine years and been in the fitness business for 30 years, but in the last couple years I’ve met some people that have absolutely blown my mind with evolved insights and athletic training, performance, and recovery. In particular, we are experiencing an awakening in the fitness world as to the importance of recovery in the big picture of peak performance. For decades, we’ve been stuck in a narrow mentality focused on conducting a thoughtful and effective pattern of workouts as the end-all for fitness success. What a joke. It’s time to wake up and learn some insights that will transform your approach to fitness, and help you preserve your health as you pursue ambitious fitness goals.  

I compiled some brief insights from an assortment of fitness leaders, patching them together to an interesting and memorable. I know you may like to listen to podcasts on the go, but this show requires some note taking. Do what these folks say you will become a better athlete and healthier person. Here is the dream team for insights and a sound bite for the insights detailed on the show:  

Dr. Phil Maffetone: The godfather of aerobic training and fat-adapted eating has been preaching the same message for nearly 40 years. Finally, people are paying attention and the MAF training concepts are becoming highly respected and adopted by endurance athletes.  

  • MAF heart rate: The maximum aerobic heart rate is the upper limit for an effective aerobic workout. It’s 180-age in beats per minute. Go faster as a pattern (extremely common for endurance athletes of all levels) and you will dig yourself a grave of overtraining and overstress.  
  • Stressful workouts—return on investment: You need never exceed 90% of maximum heart rate when conducting high intensity intervals, time trials, tempo sessions, or group classes. Topping out at 90 percent of max is vastly less stressful that taking things up to true max. You get only moderately different training stimulation but vastly more stress and recovery time necessary. Oh mercy, I wish I knew and honored this in my triathlon career. Lots of effort and money was left in workouts that should have been saved carefully for race day! 

Brian McKenzie: The Power, Speed, Endurance guru and author of Unbreakable Runner is now obsessed with breathing and recovery as the primary focus for fitness enthusiasts. If you learn to breathe correctly, you minimize the stress impact of the workout and spend more time in healthy balance between sympathetic (fight or flight) and parasympathetic (rest and digest) nervous system function. Brian helped endurance athletes embrace the importance of intensity instead of just road slog; now he is poised to help all athletes embrace the importance of recovery—including cutting edge techniques for breathing and hot and cold therapy. Listen to his show on the Get Over Yourself podcast! 

Joel Jamieson: The guru of Recovery Based Training talks about Rebound workouts, where doing a focused protocol of movements in the gym can actually speed up recovery! I have only recently implemented Joel’s techniques, and with great success. Previously, I thought that sleeping more, napping, and relaxing on the couch were the ultimate recovery tools. Joel’s workout features breathing, stretching, mobility/range of motion exercise, doing positive lifts only (dropping the weight after lifting to avoid eccentric), and doing very short intervals with mindful heart rate lowering during long recovery periods.  

Craig Marker: Craig and Pavel Tsatsouline of StrongFirst are making some awesome breakthroughs in training theory that you absolutely must try. First, dig the concept of HIRT instead of HIIT. The latter, High Intensity Interval Training, is a term that’s been bantered about for years as the foundation of serious athletic training. High Intensity Repeat Training conveys a different concept where you focus on producing repeat efforts of explosive, intense effort without declining performance and getting tired with successive efforts. This is similar to Jacques Devore’s breakthrough method called Maximum Sustained Power (MSP) that is detailed in the book Primal Endurance.  

How to transition to HIRT and MSP? Freakin’ rest more between efforts man! And stop the workout when you notice performance declining! I have recently implemented the HIRT concept with fabulous success. I will be doing a whole show about it in the future, so stay tuned. HIIT workouts lead to exhaustion, extended recovery time and ultimately burnout. Why do almost all group exercise workouts, high school and college team workouts, and personal trainers believe that HIIT is the way? Dated and misinterpreted science, such as the “bastardization of the Tabata concept” as Craig says.  

If you are a serious fitness enthusiast, this show can transform your approach, make recovery better, and change your entire life in the process! 

TIMESTAMPS:
Some exercise programs are disastrously flawed and set you up for an overly stressful life. [03:51] 

Recovery is very important. [04:55]

The most enthusiastic athletes as well as the casual fitness person need to learn how to work-out in a way that doesn’t do damage. [08:24] 

The Maffetone method is: slow down and emphasize aerobic development. For heart rate, the formula is 180 minus your age. [12:11] 

You need not ever exceed 90% of your maximum heart rate, even during the most intense and explosive training sessions. [14:09] 

Brian MacKenzie,’s contribution to this is suggesting to endurance athletes to add Crossfit training into their routines. [18:30]

What’s the big deal about breathing? [21:32] 

Dial things down. [24:24] 

Rebound workouts are sessions you perform when you are trying to recover from high stress training sessions. [26:13] 

HIIT is high intensity interval training. [30:55] 

Sprinting is very important. [32:32] 

When lifting, pick a weight you could do eight times, make sure to do a succession of sets with a declining number of reps in order to make sure you are rested and explosive for each effort. [37:59] 

Brad summarizes the messages in this podcast. [41:59] 

LINKS: 

LISTEN:

Download Episode MP3

Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:00 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author, an athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balance that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 03:51 Hey listeners an introduction to a show by Brad Kearns. Kind of weird, but I wanted to tee this up by inspiring you to listen carefully, even if you’re not a super duper hardcore competitive athlete like the folks that I talk to on the Primal Endurance podcast. I actually simulcasting this addition over to that channel as well. And it’s about rethinking our basic notions of fitness and athletic training. So yeah, if you’re a super competitor, you want to get deep into this, and this show might be a bit of a challenge if we get a little scientific, might have to work hard, slow it down to regular speed instead of listening in at 1.5 to 1.7 speed like I do on most of my podcasts. But it will greatly benefit you even if you have just a casual approach to fitness because the basic approach, the mainstream approach to exercise classes, group exercise, putting the DVDs in your home player and doing p 90 x or joining a well meaning well intentioned, training group that raises money for charity.

Brad: 04:55 Most of these operations are disastrously flawed and setting you up for an overly stressful life where your exercise adds to your stress component rather than balances your life and build your fitness and supports your health. So I’m going to share insights from four of these thought leaders, these progressive minds that have looked at the question of training and fitness and peak performance and balancing stress and rest. And it seems like the focus is ever more being directed toward the big, R recovery, the importance of balancing all forms of stress in everyday life with sufficient rest and recovery in downtime. And Oh my gosh, this guy Craig Marker talks about the very popular concept of high intensity interval training. You might’ve heard people bantered these words about in your local gym. Yeah, I’m doing a hit class. It stands for HIIT and it’s like the end all of the ultimate height intense workout to get you fit really quick and get you lean and toned and all that kind of stuff.

Brad: 06:00 But it’s generally speaking too stressful and contributes to breakdown burnout, illness and injury rather than toning you up and getting you energized and fitter and fitter over time. So he has a different twist on that. Joel Jamieson, the guru of recovery based training. He trains world champion, mixed martial arts fighters, talks about these rebound workouts where you go into the gym and you’re trying to recover from let’s say a hard workout that you’ve done earlier and you can actually do a workout, a rebound workout that will speed up recovery, even know you’re burning energy and burning calories in the gym. If you follow this distinct protocol, it will help you stimulate parasympathetic nervous system activity that is known as the rest and digest functioning. Usually we’re in sympathetic dominance, the fight or flight dominant way of being throughout life. And so going into the gym, doing breathing, stretching and the specific protocols will kind of chill you out and help you recover faster than

Brad: 06:58 We talk about Brian Mackenzie’s insights. I did an entire show with him, so please listen to that. It was early in the lineup and he represents the absolute cutting edge of fitness training, peak performance and he is really obsessed with breathing as the next breakthrough in athletic training. Finally, Dr Phil Maffetone, my old friend who inspired me when I was a professional triathlete, he’s been saying the same stuff for 40 years and finally people are waking up and embracing the importance of aerobics based exercise where you’re exercising. A comfortable heart rate rather than in that in between zone where you’re going kind of hard, you feel like you’re getting a good workout but you are burning too much sugar, producing too many stress hormones and contributing again toward illness, injury breakdown, and burnout rather than feeling refreshed and energized after workouts. So these are insights from four thought leaders in the fitness community at any fitness level, any level of interest. This will be a great show to listen to over and over. As they say, enjoy and it goes a little something like this. Here we go.

Brad: 08:24 Welcome to a Breather show this one. This one is going to be about the very important concept of pursuing achieving peak performance without the necessary suffering that we have come conditioned to believe is part of the fitness process. This program goes out to fitness enthusiasts of all levels. So if you’re a hardcore, extreme competitor, great stuff you think you know everything. Just like many multi sport athletes that I’ve been around and been accused of being myself, uh, all the way down to the casual fitness enthusiasts who is trying to do right head over to the gym, attend a class, be a regular attendee of your spinning class, bootcamp class, personal training session, whatever it is, and we know that we go in there and we’re going to perform some work, pushed ourselves, maybe suffer a little bit, maybe feel at the end like we got a great workout and were accelerated and we’re flooding our system with stress hormones, feeling that endorphin buzz right away, but over time due to the nature of the workout containing too much suffering, too much hard work for too long of a duration, not well formulated.

Brad: 09:49 What happens is we drift into these chronic patterns which are so dangerous and destructive. One simple sign or symptom is that you feel lazy or and more sluggish throughout the day because you did some impressive workout in the morning. Believe it or not, you’re not supposed to feel like a slug the rest of the day because you did something in the gym or out on the roads in the morning. So this show is about rethinking some of the basic notions of athletic training, getting rid of this no pain, no gain mentality for once. And of course I’m not the first person to criticize this and we all not our head and realize that overtraining is bad and injury and illness and burnout, but unfortunately the notion that exercise or that fitness pursuits equal suffering, I believe is still deeply embedded into the DNA of many competitive athletes and also many fitness novices who don’t know any better and think that this is part of the game that they have to get up there and suffer in the name of fitness.

Brad: 10:57 That’s why we have a lot of attrition and inconsistency in the fitness scene. People paying their monthly membership but rarely going to the venue because they associated subconsciously with too much pain and suffering for good reason. They’re avoiding their workouts because they’re not conducted in a responsible manner and they’re not generating a fitness response. They’re only generating more fatigue and more stress in are already stressful everyday life. So let’s write this ship right now and get things straight. So I want to give you four quick insights that have really helped me recently. This is recent information. Even though I’ve been a fitness enthusiast my whole life and knowing the dangers of overtraining, illness and injury, I’ve tightened things up even more after some great interviews and recordings, including on the get over yourself podcast. So, uh, what a wonderful opportunity to engage with these people, especially going back with my, uh, great discussions with Dr Phil Maffetone, one of the legends of the endurance training world for several decades, having coached some of the greatest triathletes of all time, Mike Pigg, Mark Allen, Tim Deboom.

Brad: 12:11 And his influence is now finally getting its due in the mainstream endurance circles. He’s been saying the same stuff for 30, maybe even 40 years, slowdown, emphasize aerobic development cut out of all that sugar and grain consumption, eat more healthy, nutritious fats. And so now the world is waking up, catching up to what Maffetone has been saying forever. So emphasizing that maximum aerobic heart rate of one 80 minus your age in beats per minute, that’s the Maffetone formula to calculate a heart rate, a training heart rate that represents the maximum fat oxidation, that’s your maximum fat burning point and where you have a minimal amount of anaerobic stimulation or glucose burning. So it’s a very comfortable heart rate. If you think about it. Uh, 180 minus age, let’s say I’m 50, I’m not, I’m close enough, but one 80 minus 50 is 130.

Brad: 13:07 So a training heart rate of 130 beats per minute represents a pretty slow jog. For someone like me, maybe an elite athlete is running along at a decent brisk but comfortable pace and a novice fitness enthusiasts. Remember the heart rate is all relative. So whatever this represents to you, when you calculate 180 minus age and put on a heart rate monitor and notice what your heartbeat is, that is your maximum training heart rate to deliver the fat burning aerobic benefits to make the workout refreshing. And energizing rather than fatiguing. This causes many people, both elites and recreational exercisers alike to have to slow down or slow way down from what they’re used to doing because we’re used to getting this stress response activated. We feel like we’re performing work, accomplishing something important, doing a workout, but we’re exercising at far too high of a heart rate to deliver these aerobic benefits and minimize the stress impact.

Brad: 14:09 So that was Maffetone’s first insight that your cardiovascular workouts, the vast majority of them should be performed at maximum aerobic heart rate or below one 80 minus age. The second mind blowing insight that I got from Maffetone during interview, this is back a couple of years ago now, about 25 years too late to help me when I was racing on the professional circuit, was his contention that you need not ever exceed 90% of your maximum heart rate, even during the most intense and explosive, uh, training sessions. Wow. So if you think of, most people can get their heart rate up somewhere around 200, young people, maybe older, we’ll go to a maximum of one 91 80. So you’re talking about 10% off. That is nearly 20 beats. So the difference for me, I can promise you from doing an interval workout where I’m hitting a the half mile repeats like we used to do in the old days on the track and getting that heart rate up to 185, 190, 190 plus.

Brad: 15:14 Imagine taking 10% off that and just doing a much less stressful but still very impressive workout and building off that foundation where I never slammed myself and training, but I just build, build, build my fitness in training without that huge risk and high energy cost of a maximum heart rate workout, the return on investment simply is not there. When you compare a workout at 90% of maximum heart rate, and this is a very explosive high intensity session, getting your heart rate almost up to max, but the difference between a 100% and 90% and the overall stress impact, let’s say from a big picture annually, if you’re backing off 10% on your hardest workouts, you’re going to benefit more than you’re going to lose any fitness adaptation for sure. And guess what? If you’re in a, uh, a big race, your peak performance effort and it comes down to a sprint finish and you’ve got to go 100% to beat the guy out to take 17th place instead of 18th hey, that’s a great time to bring your heart rate up to 100% and if you take care of your body and you eat right and you sleep well and you train sensibly, the big engine is going to be able to rev up and you’re going to have something left in the tank.

Brad: 16:30 So there’s the secret right there, training at aerobic heart rate and never exceeding 90% of maximum heart rate. Interestingly, Dr Maffetone is got a book out called 159 Marathon, talking about the magical barrier, uh, in the, in the event marathon, the 26.2 mile run where the world record is now two hours and two minutes. It’s been steadily lowered over the past 30 years down from 208 to 207 to 205. And now people are getting excited, wondering if the human can run a marathon in under two hours. You know what this represents? It’s like an average mile pace of four minutes and 40 seconds or 42 seconds or something. Absolutely insane. If you don’t have a reference point, go to your local high school running track, 400 meter track and run a single lap and try to do it in about 71 seconds.

Brad: 17:22 That’s a four 44 mile pace and you’ll see that for almost all of us that represents a full sprint. Uh, most of us can’t come anywhere near that time, but even the fittest among us out here in the community running one lap at a pace of world record marathon was enough to put us on the sideline. And so imagining these great runners going 26.2 miles holding that sizzling pace, and we’re right there knocking on the door, but Maffetone his contention interestingly is that the record will be broken by an athlete who is doing less mileage and less intensity than today’s marathon champions. He believes that we’re, uh, generally speaking, the elite athletes of the planet, the Olympic medalist, the people we see on TV are training too hard and have not sufficiently optimized their stress and rest patterns so that further breakthroughs are availed. But it’s not from running longer because these guys are already out there running 130, 140, 150 miles per week training for the Olympics and training for these grand marathons, the big city marathons where you see these guys running at the front of the pack.

Brad: 18:30 Okay. So those were Maffetone insight. Second, the great show that I did with Brian Mackenzie of power speed endurance, one of the early shows on the get over yourself podcast. So what an honor to be able to sit with the guy who represents the absolute cutting edge of fitness philosophy training methods. And Brian’s been around for awhile. Uh, he’s been a controversial figure at times because he was upsetting the status quo, especially in the endurance community where they had a narrow focus on accumulating a lot of volume to predict peak performance. And instead he brought in a more broad based approach, uh, the founder of the crossfit endurance movements where he was convincing these endurance athletes that if they did some stuff in the gym, like climbing a rope or doing a vertical jumps on the box, or putting heavy weight on their back and going down and doing some squats, this would actually translate directly into peak performance and great success with that approach.

Brad: 19:30 Also misunderstood by a lot of people. That’s how he got the controversy, uh, based on, uh, silly headlines like his feature story in Outside Magazine that was titled Brian MacKenzie’s controversial new approach to marathon training. The mastermind behind Crossfit endurance says the best way to train for a marathon is to run less and torture yourself more in the gym. Well, not really as I detail in my intro to that show. Uh, but here’s what Brian’s operation, his website, his consulting business is all about check this out. Breathing, recovery, training, strength and conditioning, endurance, programming, sports specific programming, mechanics, injuries, nutrition and sleep analysis. Does that sound like a guy that wants to torture you in the gym in favor of having you run more miles? No. It’s a very sophisticated and nuanced approach that puts all the pieces together and avoids these disastrous chronic patterns that we’ve been engaging in for so long.

Brad: 20:32 Uh, as you’ll hear in the lengthy show, of course, he supports the importance and the necessity for the endurance athlete of putting a time, in putting time out on the road. And not to forget that it’s pretty easy to get to A plus conditioning level with your endurance. But then the shortfall for many endurance athletes, not enough power and speed in there seemed to do some explosive training. Uh, we need to have some more attention to flexibility, mobility and functionality. Brian’s close associate Kelly Starrett advocates strongly for endurance athletes and athletes in other sports to dedicate 15 minutes of every training hour to flexibility, mobility and functionality. These would be drills, stretches, exercises that support proper technique, preserving proper technique, well fatigued and all that fun stuff. And lately, as you’ll hear in the show with Brian, he’s big on the breathing side. Wow.

Brad: 21:32 What’s the big deal about breathing? My first reaction is like, Huh, I’ve always had plenty of air to breathe when I was performing my endurance sports and when I was sprinting, I think the, the burning in my legs was the limiting factor rather than not getting enough air into my lungs. But this is turning into be a huge deal and a huge breakthrough in the fitness scene. The attention to proper breathing, breathing drills and exercises. Some of them designed to stimulate parasympathetic nervous system activity, which is a huge component of recovery and promoting and stimulating proper recovery from stressful exercise. Because when we’re training, we’re in that fight or flight state, we’re in that sympathetic nervous system dominance and we need to bring that down and learn how to chill out and calm down and facilitate the recovery process, uh, effectively an on demand really.

Brad: 22:25 So when we get good at breathing, we’re able to kind of hijack the autonomic nervous system, which is usually involuntary and take some involuntary, uh, activities, mechanisms into voluntary. We can take control of the recovery process and teach ourselves to calm down through breathing exercises. Wow. That was a ramble, but that came out okay. Actually, that’s exactly what I’m trying to get across. Look no further than the incredible phenomenon, uh, started by this character named the Iceman, Wim Hoff, W I m h o f is an internet sensation. His breathing protocols have a spread like wildfire in the progressive health fitness community. And I was telling some friends about this guy and I said, yeah, this guy using breathing drills, teaches people to overcome, uh, the usual problem, the resistance to exposure to cold and perform amazing feats, like climbing a snowy mountain in the winter, wearing just running shorts.

Brad: 23:27 After one week of training and Wim himself, I said, this guy climbed mount Everest in running shorts. And two of my friends called alarm complete bullshit on me. So I went and searched for the Internet articles and sure enough, he attempted a Mount Everest Summit and made it to 24,500 feet in elevation wearing nothing but running shorts all through his breathing drills. This guy’s the real deal. I did a podcast with a guy named Scott Carney, author of a book called What Doesn’t Kill Us. He’s an investigative journalists who, uh, has made a career of debunking guys who are BSRs and Gurus that are dispensing flawed information. He couldn’t wait to do the same to Wim Hoff, but instead he became a devotee and perform some magnificent feats of his own with very brief exposure to Wim Hoff’s training methods. So there’s a little plug for breathing and Brian Mckinsey and working through the show.

Brad: 24:24 Um, yeah, I actually have notes and trying to keep it on thread here, man. So first we talked about Maffetone, uh, monitoring that maximum aerobic heart rate, knowing that you’d never really have to go over 90% of maximum heart rate when you’re doing workouts. And if you’re listening now going, why do I care? I just a person that goes to spinning class a couple times a week and works as my trainer and wants to keep fit. Guess what? You do some of those gnarly gym workouts, group training sessions. You’re going to bust that heart rate right up and over 90 and close to 100 and you’re going to feel great when you make it to the 22nd countdown. And the loud music is boom and through the gym. Uh, but guess what? We’re talking about return on investment and we’re talking about the stress impact of the workout thrown into your busy, stressful life, not necessary.

Brad: 25:16 So dial things down. Dial that handle down on your spinner bike. That’s what it’s there for. Reduce the resistance. And make the workout and little tiny bit easier and you’ll be better off for it. So that was Maffetone. Then we got Brian MacKenzie advocating for that broad based approach rather than the narrow focus. And this is even if you have distinct goals, like you’re just a trail runner or you’re just a tennis player, you want to have that broad based approach, especially bringing in the important concepts like breathing. Uh, he’s also big on heat therapy, cold therapy. You can find him on the Internet. Uh, look at both of our videos about cold exposure and uh, you’ll be dialed in with the latest, greatest recovering techniques. So that’s Maffetone. Brian Mackenzie. Then I did a fabulous show with Joel Jamieson, the expert in fitness, who’s known in the MMA community for training world champions.

Brad: 26:13 He’s been around forever offering groundbreaking insights every time. And at my podcast interview with him, he blew my mind when we got further into his recovery based training methods, especially the concept of rebound workouts. What are rebound workouts? Those are the sessions you perform when you’re trying to recover from high stress training sessions. So the day before you did a big one, you did your uh, your intensity, uh, you, your long duration workout and then you’re trying to recover. And for my whole entire athletic career, I considered myself a pro at recovery. And guess what I did? I sat on the couch. I had made myself sleep more. I went to the video store and rented VHS tapes. That shows you how dated my career is now going back to the ancient concept of VHS videos. But generally speaking, I tried to sit around as much as possible and reduce my overall activity in the name of recovering from my super important high stress training sessions.

Brad: 27:18 Whether they were intensity stuff, whether it was a race or whether it was a long duration, long ride, long runs, something like that. Then this guy flipped that concept on it’s ear. Joel did. By advocating for a distinct training protocol that can actually help speed up recovery time. So what do you do? You show up at the gym and you do these distinct exercises, protocols to stimulate parasympathetic activity again. Also getting the blood flowing, getting the oxygen going through your system will also contribute to enhance recovery. Obviously we’re not doing anything strenuous or stressful. If we have sore stiff muscles are generally feeling fatigued from hard workouts, but you go in there, you do a series of breathing and stretching exercises, mobility work, a range of motion exercises, and then some interesting techniques such as doing an interval, a sprint interval for a very short duration, let’s say seven to 10 seconds.

Brad: 28:18 And then taking the next minute to recover. And during that recovery time, making a concerted effort through devoted breathing exercises to try to lower that heart rate down into recovery zone. So the act of intently focusing on lowering your heart rate is a way to engage the parasympathetic response. And it’s something that you can do in daily life to reduce the overall stress impact of your work day, your hectic commute, uh, in your hectic pace. Going the store dealing with family, friends, interactions, nonstop stimulation of the digital nature and the human nature. It can get a little stressful, not to say negative, but stressful is all forms of stimulus accumulating and making life a little tough. And when you can get good at lowering your heart rate on demand and practicing this in the gym, for example, sitting on an exercise bike pedaling quickly for seven to 10 seconds, and then cruising for the next 60 seconds and watching that heart rate lower, lower, lower.

Brad: 29:20 It’s a wonderfully meditative and nurturing activity that is going to boost your recovery. No, the seven to ten second sprints, not gonna set you back. It’s not gonna make you tired. You could do six of them, probably especially no impact. I mean, I don’t know about sprinting and doing a seven second sprint the day after a tough workout, but just getting that heart rate up spike really quick and then bringing it back down methodically. Wonderful activity. Another example that Joel brings from his rebound workout concept is, let’s say doing a dead lift, but doing the positive lift only. So that’s the lifting off the ground, getting it up to height and then dropping it on the ground so that you do not have to engage the muscles for the negative contraction because that’s where the muscle soreness is generated. That’s where the uh, the muscle damage occurs when you’re lowering the weight, the ecentric contraction, so you’re doing positives, you’re doing breathing, stretching, mobility, range of motion, some quick sprints, heart rate lowering stuff, and you go out of the gym feeling better than when you came in, rebound workouts. So I am integrating those into my situation lately. It feels great to stay active and move every single day instead of having those days where I called them rest days, recovery days, and I’m not doing much. And accordingly, I’m feeling tired, I’m feeling sluggish, feeling lazy, blaming it on the workout from the previous day. But I would be very well served to go do something like a rebound session.

Brad: 30:55 Finally, an awesome conversation that I had with Craig Marker of Strongfirst.com. He’s an associate of Pavel sit saline, one of the most prominent fitness experts in the country. He’s been credited with popularizing kettle bell training in America and Craig and Pavel, these guys are definitely on the cutting edge. So much so that I want to do an entire program on the concepts of HIIT versus hurt, high intensity interval training versus high intensity repeat training. I have changed this myself in recent months and it’s been an absolutely fantastic improvement in my training methods. So you’re familiar with the term HIIT, they throw it around all the time in the gym. It means high intensity interval training. So any type of workout where you’re having work intervals and rest intervals, you probably also heard of Tabata where the interval is a two to one ratio. So you go hard for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds or go hard for 40 seconds, rest for 20 seconds. Uh, we’ll get into that further in the dedicated show. Uh, but for now I want to describe that the high intensity interval training, a lot of these workouts go for a sustained duration of time. So you’re doing a, a spinning class where you’re doing intervals for 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 40 minutes, uh, your basic bootcamp workout or your step class, or your Zoomba class is looking like a HIIT session where you’re working, working, working, and then you get a little break and then you’re working again.

Brad: 32:32 Um, in contrast, high intensity repeat training, what means is you do a high intensity effort and then you rest for a sufficient duration so that you can repeat in terms of the quality of the effort. So for me, I talk about my sprint workouts all the time on the primal endurance podcast for years and in the books, how important sprinting is for hormonal benefit, anti-aging, a burst of antiaging hormones to complete your fitness protocol and not just be a cardiovascular athlete or a, uh, a muscle person, but getting out there and doing explosive sprints. The ultimate primal genetic ancestor workout that keeps us sharp and delays the aging process. So I’ve been sprinting devotedly for uh, chase now. It’s been 12 years since I switched over to Primal Blueprint lifestyle and a kind of rejected the endurance focused training protocol that I’d followed for many years before that.

Brad: 33:33 But my sprint workouts have always been really tough and grueling because after all, they’re a sprint workout. I’m a guy who’s got that endurance mindset. I know how to suffer, I know how to push through the pain and the fatigue. I also recover really quickly unlike a true sprinter because I have that endurance background. I don’t have a high explosiveness on the spectrum from a Usain Bolt to uh, uh, Galen Rupp, the marathon runner. I’m more toward the endurance seen having been, uh, on the triathlon, uh, background for so long. So my work has have always looked like a sprint, pretty much all out, only doing a hundred meters, maybe working up to 200 meters and then a very short rest period where I just catch my breath and then I hit it again and I feel just fine. And the quality of sprint is pretty close to the previous one.

Brad: 34:22 And I can do four or five or six times, 100 meters, or oftentimes I would do two times 200 meters, followed by four to six times a hundred meters. So not much rest. Get the session done, get out of there. I’m feeling pumped up. I’m ready to suffer and have the, have a knock off a sprint workout. I’m doing a couple of few times a month, only two to three times a month because afterward I feel pretty trashed, man. Not right away. Right away. I feel great. I’m buzzed on endorphins, stress hormones. I’m going through my day. Uh, glad to do that sprint workout. And then the next morning or even the next afternoon, there’s a real low that I’ve experienced 36 hours after a sprint workout. So I sprinted at 8:00 AM Tuesday morning, Wednesday afternoon you’re going to find me under my desk. Crashed out with a big nap and just feeling. Uh, the, the tightness and the soreness and the aching come in. And this has been happening this way for many, many years. Even though I’ve been building and trying to gain my competency and sprinting, the workouts are really tough. I have a long recovery time after where I have to work through the soreness over and over. What the heck was I thinking? Honestly, I was applying the endurance athletes mentality to my sprint workouts rather than a total focus on quality. I was also going for that workout effect, that cardiovascular training effect, which was completely unnecessary. I didn’t need to get good at returning to sprint after a shorter rest period and endure the, uh, the suffering and the long recovery time accordingly. So after having the discussion with Craig Marker and also Joel Jamieson influenced my decision at around the exact same time, just putting all the pieces together.

Brad: 36:10 That’s what I’m doing for you on the podcast, man. The final piece, of course, running everything by the great wizard of Oz. Andrew McNaughton, my long time training partner racing partner on the pro circuit, possibly the most knowledgeable endurance coach on the planet who no one’s heard of because he doesn’t care about promoting himself. He cares about helping people. But I said, check this out, dude. Look what these guys threw at me. They said, just rest for a long time and then do another sprint. And don’t worry about the, you know, the, the pattern and the, uh, the, the quick recovery. He’s like, absolutely. In fact, you should only do three, three sprints of a hundred meters. That’s it representing a super high quality workout. So armed with that support and knowledge from the great leaders of the planet, yes, I am now doing, I’m doing four, sorry, Andrew, four seems good to me.

Brad: 36:59 Uh, but I’m resting as long as I need to in between efforts so that I feel really strong and focused and the quality of each sprint is just as good as the previous one. After four, I can notice a tiny bit of unraveling there in the last third of the fourth, uh, effort. You know what I mean? The last 30 yards or the football field. And that’s when I know I’ve reached my limit and done an excellent session. That by the way, is much, much easier to recover from because I didn’t slam myself with the, uh, grueling aspect of short rest and going back and doing another sprint. So I’m focused on quality. You can do the same thing and apply this same mentality to whatever kind of workout you’re doing in the gym, uh, of whatever sport, whether you’re in a water sport or your cycling, uh, doing your kettlebells, uh, your maximum sustained power training, which we talk about so much in the Primal Endurance book.

Brad: 37:59 This is Jacques Devore’s method of preserving a certain percentage of maximum power throughout the workout. And a really great example of visual that you’ll take with you if you’re getting lost. I hope not. But he talks about, uh, let’s say picking a, uh, a difficult wait for a dead lift or a session of squats. Uh, maybe your, um, eight rep max or something. So you pick a weight that you could do eight times. If you were asked to do it all out, let’s say it’s 200 pounds on the dead lift and in a maximum sustained power session, you’re to do a succession of sets with a declining number of reps in order to make sure that you’re rested and explosive for each effort. So whereby a normal person doing a deadlift workout would go up to that bar and do eight reps the first time because it’s their eight mep Max weight as I described, and then they rest a minute and then they go back and do eight more reps and boy the sixth and the seventh and the eighth rep, uh, on that second set, we’re tough. And so they did eight and eight. This is a very simplified example to make the point. So in contrast, if you’re doing a maximum sustained power set, you might do six nice powerful ones on your first set. Then you might come back with sufficient rest and do four super awesome, powerful ones with peripheral perfect form. Then you might rest, come back, do three, then another set of three, then another set of two, then another set of two. Then another set of two. Then another set of two get what I’m doing here. We’re doing these sets that are super easy because there’s only two or three as you’re getting a little bit tired but you’re accumulating a body of work that is fabulous because every time you lifted that weight you were powerful and you are explosive and yes, after you do several sets of just two reps, they’re all adding up, even know you’re resting a minute or whatever between sets and then you’re done because you start to notice your form waiver and the fatigue accumulate.

Brad: 40:07 But when you add up, let’s say a sequence of reps where you went six, four, three, three, two, two, two, two I think that adds up to 24 where the original example of eight and then another eight, that represents 33% less weight lifted and also more soreness and fatigue because you busted out 8 and 8 and you really got a fatigue there at the end. So you get that contrast between the maximum sustained power session which was clean and explosive and then the fatiguing session where you did maximum effort set, maximum effort set and then you’re kind of blown out. Or the Brad example where I’m doing my sprint. If it’s six times a hundred meters, I blast one. I jog only across the width of the football field. Blast another one jogged the width of the football field, blast another one and pretty soon it’s getting tough.

Brad: 41:07 I can make it through the session. My form’s not cracking. I’m not looking like a jerk on the sixth one, but boy did. I just put out a ton of effort that’s going to have a lot of recovery time where the most prominent goal of the session was to generate maximum explosive force and have a peak performance, high intensity effort, much better achieved by resting more in between the sets and when I do the full length show, a contrasting high intensity repeat training with high intensity interval training, we will get into the science, we’ll wait in there with my help as a guide. The layman trying to translate this stuff and simplify it. I’m particularly qualified to do that. So I think you’re going to enjoy the followups, a show, a peak performance without suffering and contrasting high intensity repeat training with high intensity interval training.

Brad: 41:59 But for this show, I think that will awaken you to new possibilities and optimizations for your workout patterns regardless of your fitness level. So if your eyes are glossing over thinking that you’re just a casual exerciser, I will strongly argue that this stuff is extremely relevant to you and maybe even more relevant than to, uh, the high performing athlete who has a little bit more cushion and a little bit more margin of error to open up the throttle and bounce back quickly as opposed to someone who can go into a tailspin just because of ill informed, uh, approaches that are too strenuous and stressful. So again, Phil Maffetone keeping that aerobic heart rate at 180 minus your age and beats per minute, never exceeding 90% of your maximum heart rate, even on the explosive efforts. And Oh, as a little aside there, when I’m sprinting for 10 seconds or 15 seconds maximum, I’m not really worried about heart rate. That’s not an operating variable there because the effort is so short that heart rate is sort of insignificant. So even if I do hear the beep beep beep meant that my heart rate exceeded uh, 90%, uh, in the aftermath of one of those sprints. What we’re more concerned about are those sustained efforts where you’re doing a a time trial, uh, a series of longer intervals preparing for specific competition. And again, those are a high risk long recovery time and minimal return on investment compared to shortening the duration of your peak performance, high intensity efforts, and just going for the top end.

Brad: 43:40 Next we have Brian MacKenzie advocating for the comprehensive approach where you respect flexibility, mobility, functionality. Spend 15 minutes of every workout hour doing accord drills. You talk about things like breathing, putting recovery at center stage, adding the power and the speed. If you’re an endurance athlete, uh, doing the opposite. If you’re a power and speed athlete, working on a little bit of endurance, investigating how breathing practice can help minimize the stress impact and stimulate recovery.

Brad: 44:12 And then we go to Joel Jameson and his recovery based training protocols, including the fascinating concept of rebound workouts where you get up, you get moving, get the blood flowing, doing some gentle stretches, breathing exercises, mobility work, range of motion, work in the gym, doing those short sprints and focusing on lowering that heart rate, getting good at that, doing the positive, a dead lift or squat exercises where you get a little bit of hard work done. Uh, you send a message to the nervous system to perform and then recover quickly. And that’s what you’ll get good at doing offline when you’re out of the gym going through your busy day.

Brad: 44:51 A, then finally the, uh, concept of high intensity repeat training versus the more strenuous and fatiguing high intensity interval training, based on my conversation with Craig Marker of strong first, you can listen to that show on the primal endurance podcast and my everyday example of going out there and doing my sprints, but taking more rest time in between efforts so they can really be a quality and explosive and not have that prolonged recovery time that comes with a more strenuous workout. Similarly, with the maximum sustained power example where you’re doing high quality, uh, sets that might not be as accumulating as many reps, but you’re feeling strong all the way through and you’re doing a sequence like six, four, three, three, two, two, two, two rather than eight and eight and you’re lifting more total weight anyway. You’re getting more work done anyway with less stress, less recovery time. That’s some good stuff right there. Go out there and try it out.

Brad: 45:56 Oh, and speaking of a natural, authentic plug at this point, go check out DNA fit.com. We’ll run the spot right after this, but right now I’m going to tell you to go take 30% off anything, all their products with the code, the unforgettable code, g o why 30 get over yourself, 30 joy 30 enter that into the field. You’re going to get 30% off all their products. They actually now have an integration service with 23 and me and ancestry.com. If you’ve done those tests, you can combine the results. They are using the same database. Fascinating breakthrough. Uh, but the reason I’m bringing that up now is because of the fascinating insight I obtained from them that I was 56% strength and power and 44% endurance, uh, with my genetic profile of my musculature. And this is an insight that occurred, uh, in recent years. I had no idea back when I was an endurance athlete and I believed it would have been fabulous to understand that I was more weighted towards strength, power, explosiveness than I thought and I could have changed my training accordingly.

Brad: 47:05 In the example I just discussed in the show where I took more rest periods and enabled a more quality sprint effort with less breakdown and recovery time. That suggests that I was honoring my genetics that weren’t pure endurance. Like if I came out 93% endurance and 7% strength and power, I would be considered a mule, a pack animal that can load up the bags and walk up the Grand Canyon and five hours in the hot weather without drinking any water or complaining. But that’s a whole different beast than someone who has those genes signaling for power and explosiveness and accordingly benefits from more recovery time, not just between a hundred meter sprints during a workout, but also more recovery time in general between strenuous efforts. And that’s the part I missed as an athlete. I was trying to get up everyday and go forward again because that’s what all my peers were doing on the triathlon circuit because these were endurance machines and I was trying to be something that maybe wasn’t totally aligned with my genetics. So when you get the DNA fit test, you can make better decisions about the exact nature of your workouts. There’s a lot of supporting material and counseling. Yeah. How about that? All right guys, go to it.

Brad: 48:20 Thanks for listening and I’d love it if you went on iTunes and left a review or wherever you listen to podcasts. I listened on Pod Bean, it’s a really cool app and it has some good functionalities. Uh, like the variable speed that you can set 1.1 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.8. If it’s really boring, you can turn up to 2.0 and it go through really quickly and you can listen to another show. And if it’s really important or something that’s confusing, you can slow it down to 0.8 and take notes. So go leave a review. I know it takes time, it’s a hassle. But again, remember my promise. If I see you in person real life and you say, Hey, are you Brad from the get over yourself podcast? I’ll say, yeah, that’s me. Maybe you can tell by my yellow glasses that I’m wearing in the airport or what have you. I promise if I see you in person, I will give you a dollar for leaving a review and I am ready. I got a stack of 100 $1.00 bills here because I would definitely trade 1000 $1.00 bills for a thousand positive reviews on iTunes because it’s so important to elevate the profile and the interest of the show so more people can find it. Oh yeah, so do it. Thanks a lot. Not The good times. Roll.

 

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(Breather) There’s no doubt that having healthy, productive morning habits is good for you. Having the “perfect” morning routine is often touted as a great solution to so many problems, the clear, unobstructed pathway to a better life: all you have to do is wake up, meditate for 22 minutes, have your wheatgrass shot and make your superfood smoothie (10 minutes), get dressed and ready for your day (15 minutes), then write in your gratitude journal for 7 minutes, then you’re out the door with 5 minutes to spare and ready to conquer the world!

OK, so we can agree that all that is a little stressful, right? Especially with social media these days! It can be overwhelming when you’re scrolling through Instagram and you see someone detailing their very specific, impressive, fancy morning routine, and you’re like wait – what? Should I be adding some of that into my coffee? What else am I missing out on? The answer is nothing…. While some people may thrive off having a perfectly regimented, planned out schedule where every 3 minutes is dotted in, the most important component of a good morning routine is that it includes what works specifically for you. A good morning routine means something different for everyone, but, if you want to get inspiration from a seriously impressive one, then check out my show with Dave KobrineThe Morning Routine King, who starts his day at 4am with a two-hour meditation!  

It’s no secret that I love a cold plunge, and it’s my favorite way to start the day, but if that doesn’t seem like it could be your thing, at least check out this video I made giving you the brief low down on the benefits, which are impressive and may tempt you into taking the plunge: our hormonal/nervous system responds to brief cold-water exposure with a reset effect that energizes your body at the cellular level, boosting your immune function and stimulating a spike in adaptive hormones like testosterone. 

The most important takeaway is that your routine consists of proactive, deliberate behaviors that you repeat day after day until it becomes habit. I have a morning flexibility/mobility ritual for injury prevention that I do every morning immediately after waking up, without fail. It’s become such an ingrained part of my morning that if I skip it for whatever reason, I have to loop back and complete the sequence of exercises or I feel off/out of sorts – the absence of this habit is noticeable, and that’s what it’s all about: you want these proactive, deliberate behaviors to become an ingrained part of your morning, as simple as brushing your teeth – it really is that simple. But it’s the repetition that will get you there – the key words are deliberate and proactive for a reason. And don’t forget to get sufficient sleep – after all, how are you supposed to have a productive morning if you don’t have any energy to run on? A good morning routine is important, so think about works for you, and work at implementing it every day, until it settles into the kind of habitual behavior that you don’t even need to think about anymore! 

TIMESTAMPS:

Start the day with this routine. [01:28]

Many sources have ideas they promote. You need to do your own thing. [04:40]

There are wonderful hormonal benefits from cold therapy. [07:09]

Establish a routine of proactive, deliberate behavior that you repeat day after day. [09:18]

Get sufficient sleep. [10:24]

Movement is #2 on the list of routine suggestions. [14:13]

Exposure to cold is #3. [15:28]

Hydration is extremely important. [17:44]

What will be on your to-do list? [19:29]

Meditation or enjoying the family are important morning rituals. [21:50]

LINKS:

LISTEN:

Download Episode MP3

Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:08 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author and athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 01:28 We want to begin our day in a pro active mindset. Take control folk at the little bit. Spend a few minutes. Really can be one minute or less, but have some quiet time to reflect on your top priorities of the day and thought things out. Movement is number two. If you’re keeping score at home. Number one, it gets the fishing fleet, get your sleep habits dialed, and then number two move. We want to wind things down, especially in the final two hours where you’re using mellow light sources, so your home, is it’s dark, it’s possible? Maybe you’re dawning yellow or orange tinted lenses to block out the harmful spectrum of blue light on the UV spectrum that comes from regular light bulb or eliminated green that is depressing things likeMelatonin and for stress hormones in the evening time.

Brad: 02:28 Brad [4:40] Let’s talk about morning routines, so interesting, so important. So over hyped these days. Do you agree? Are we hearing that? Morning routines, everything. Oh, we have a bestselling book called make your bed that I already made fun of on another show. Not that it doesn’t have great content, but let’s not get overblown here. Even if you have a kick ass morning routine, you still have to go out into your busy day and kick ass. But I thought I would give some practical, doable, reasonable tips to get a morning routine in place that can really help you. And you’re listening to a guy who is not much for routines, not big on them. I kind of go with the flow every single day. I’m doing my own thing in the workplace. So I have a lot of flexibility and freedom that’s made me who I am today for better or for worse, a lot of times for worse. But I feel that some morning routine elements that I’ve put into high gear in the last couple of years have had a wonderful impact on my productivity throughout the day. So I wanted to share those with you. This show is inspired by my friend Eddie Bee, faithful listener, childhood friend, looking for, give me some feedback saying, hey, how about some practical actionable tips not only from my guests, and I’ll try to drill down with these guys, uh, at future shows, but also some things that you can listen to and go try out tomorrow because we’re talking about morning routines. Okay. So yeah, sifting through the hype and all the blather about these perfect routines from these perfect people, especially the thought leaders in the business leaders who throw down their heavy proclamations that if you do this, this is going to be the secret to success in your life. And you too can build a $1 billion company from, nothing just, if you drink this yeast smoothie every morning with whey and wheat grass and then meditate for 27 minutes, no more, no less outdoors by your fountain that you have to rig up with a pump from Home Depot.

Brad: 07:09 Oh my gosh. You know what I’m saying? Okay. So my first and most emphatic suggestion here is to do your own thing and don’t feel intimidated by the proclamations and the people out there with incredible enthusiasm for their way and it’s so fantastic. And that includes me. I’m the biggest chest freezer, cold plunge enthusiast. You can go and look at my youtube video and learn about the benefits of cold therapy and a little demo for me jumping into the freezer tub. But if that’s not your thing, hey, think about it, absorb the information, maybe dabble in it. Start with taking cold showers. It does have some wonderful hormonal benefits. So I’m going to cover that as one of the steps, just some exposure to cold, a hormetic stressor for your body. Since we’re living in this comfortable temperature controlled environment day and night. It’s very good for you, very healthy, but you don’t have to feel intimidated if someone, one ups you with their morning routine.

Brad: 08:09 It’s hard for anyone to top Dave Kobrine’s morning routine and listened to my show. It’s so fabulous what he does every single morning. It is time consuming, but it’s very inspiring to try to take bits and pieces at least and do something for yourself every day. Ah, Jeez. Same with Deepak Chopra where he relates that every morning from 4:00 to 6:00 AM is his meditation time, so that’s inspiring. Kudos to him. I don’t think that’s going to be my thing from four to six. Maybe I’m missing out, but we want something that feels doable and comfortable to you and it’s not going to be perfect. It’s not going to happen every single morning and keep that in mind. When you look at the promoters talking about their awesome morning routine, I wonder sometimes, do you ever have a teenager who texts you with a lost password interrupting your morning routine? How bout a lonely chatty neighbor that wants to talk, talk, talk and keep you behind schedule g, do you ever have some fun and depart from your best laid plans?

Brad: 09:18 Do I hear about Hanky Panky in the morning, throwing you behind schedule and making you forget your dry cleaning and getting you stressed out a little bit, but hey man, plan B is okay sometimes going with the flow sometimes, but what we want to establish here is a baseline, a routine of proactive, deliberate behaviors that you repeat day after day until it becomes a habit until it becomes automatic. My favorite example is my morning flexibility mobility ritual that I have on youtube. You can look at the video. This is just a customized routine that I do to help with injury prevention and flexibility for my crazy stuff that I’m doing like sprinting and high jumping, but it’s something I do immediately upon waking up every single day without fail. Sometimes an abbreviated version from what you see on the video. Nevertheless, it’s become habit to the extent that if I skip it or I’m interrupted for whatever reason, I have to loop back and complete the sequence of exercises.

Brad: 10:24 Otherwise I’ll feel out of sorts, like I’m missing something. I want it to be in the same category as brushing your teeth and all these other habitual behaviors. So let’s go down a short list, one by one and help you develop an awesome and sustainable morning routine. Number one, get sufficient sleep. If you’re having to hit the snooze button over and over, something is wrong. Our bodies are designed to wake up feeling refreshed and energized near the time of the rising of the sun in your area throughout the year. That’s our hormonal processes, our circadian rhythm, the Spike of Serotonin in the suppression of Melatonin in the spike of Cortisol. All these programmed hormonal responses to the sunrise to the light of day getting you up and at’em, and if you feel like crap, let’s go back and look at your evening patterns, particularly the excess artificial light and digital stimulation after dark.

Brad: 11:32 So we want to wind things down, especially in the final two hours where you’re using mellow light sources. So your room, your home is as dark as possible. Maybe you’re donning some yellow or orange tinted lenses to block out the harmful spectrum of blue light on the UV spectrum that comes from regular light bulbs or uh, eliminated screens that’s suppressing Melatonin and spiking stress hormones in the evening time. Then you have a crappy night’s sleep, can’t get out of bed in the morning. So, uh, personally I don’t understand the snooze button. I’m not a big fan. I’d rather sleep in peace until the absolute last second rather than go through this ordeal of having to reach over and turn the thing off over and over. Maybe you’ll disagree and you like a different pattern. Uh, but generally speaking, what should happen in the morning is that we should have a predominance of REMcycles and fewer or fewer duration of the deep sleep cycles in contrast to the beginning of our evening sleep time period where we have longer deep sleep cycles and shorter REM cycles.

Brad: 12:49 That’s why if you go to bed too late, you can’t really make up for it by sleeping in because those deep sleep cycles are critical. Earlier in the evening time at your program, bedtime of 10, 30, 11:00 PM, whatever it is. So in the morning we should be arising out of a REM cycle. That’s rapid eye movement when we’re just lightly asleep and dreaming rather than a big log on the bed that has to be shaken over and over. So it should be easy to wake up and feel pretty decent. I’m not saying you have to be Jack Lalaine and pop out of bed singing a song and launching into some jumping jacks, but you should feel pretty decent. Look at your evening routine. If not, look at the medications and the substances you’re ingesting. If you’re having problems, feeling decent, getting out of bed, uh, particularly the sleep prescriptions or over the counter preparations designed to help you sleep. Uh, oftentimes what they do is knock you out, but they interfere with the efficient cycling through the various stages of sleep throughout the night. Same with dosing on alcohol before you go to bed. And same with assorted prescription medications that can compromise healthy, authentic, natural sleep.

Brad: 14:13 So try to clean up your act, have a nice dark, mellow evening, and then wake up feeling pretty decent and then go right into some form of movement. This will help you wake up and feel alert and energized and happy, even better than a strong cup of coffee. We want to get the blood flowing and the oxygen circulating throughout the body with a gentle sequence of movements, gentle because you’ve been sleeping all day. So jumping jacks, maybe not gonna work for you, but whatever it is, movement is number two. If you’re keeping score at home, number one is get sufficient sleep, get your sleep habits dialed, and then number two move. So it could be the famous sun salute sequence of exercises that are familiar to yoga practitioners. It could be heading out to the driveway to pick up the paper or leashing up the dog to take the dog out for early morning business. Whatever it is, you want to do some form of movement right away. As soon as you wake up, especially if you’re feeling a little drag ass, just getting into some movements will help you feel better, feel more alert, feel energized.

Brad: 15:28 Number three on the list I’m going to put right after movement is exposure to cold. When you get this hormetic stressor, you get a burst of nor epinephrin. That puts you in a good mood. It gets you focused and energized. It has profound effects on brain function, mood, alertness, and as Dr. Patrick describes in her beautiful detailed paper that you can find for free on found my fitness.com.

Brad: 15:56 You can download this 26 page hardcore pdf with all kinds of science touting the benefits of cold exposure. Also watch my short video on youtube where I jump in the tank chest freezer and talk some of the talking points about cold exposure. But this nor epinephrin boost is a wonderful way to wake up in the morning. It’s natural, it’s healthy, and even a short term exposure to cold. Uh, the study referenced by Dr. Patrick was 20 seconds of exposure into 40 degree water boosted nor epinephrin for a couple hours, up to 200 to 300%. So everyone knows that invigorating sensation of jumping in the lake or whatever you’re doing, jumping in the river and feeling refreshed and energized as soon as you pop out. So do something like that first thing in the morning. Of course, I’m big fan of the chest freezer cold therapy, but not to intimidate you or confused you. Just try a cold shower as your morning exposure to cold practice. And what you can strive to do is finish up your shower with one to two minutes of all the way cold exposure, the coldest water you can get. Uh, my Gosh, you’ll get out of there feeling refreshed and energized and I just gave you permission to start with a warm shower as normal. But we want to put our body under some sort of temperature stress to avail these wonderful hormonal benefits, especially since we’re living in this artificial temperature controlled environment all day long. It’s not good for the body. It kind of causes atrophy in various homeostatic mechanisms that are important, uh, for handling all forms of stress and boosting immune function and all that great stuff. So we’re going to get in the shower, have that final one to two minutes of cold exposure.

Brad: 17:44 The next one on the list is hydrate. And I’m throwing this on the list purely out of peer pressure because I’m hearing so many, uh, knowledgeable, enthusiastic people tout this as such a big deal. Ben Greenfield, Kelly Starr at two recent guests on the show. Dave Kobrine in the same right up there, the big three. Oh my goodness. What is this? It’s such a big deal, first thing in the morning to hydrate because your body’s dehydrated overnight. Makes a lot of sense. I would love to see some science proving this is true. Uh, it’s never been a big concern of mine, but now I’m definitely on board with the hydration scene. So as soon as you wake up, uh, get yourself a nice big glass of water and add some of these popular things that people are touting is some lemon juice, I guess for digestion. And the antioxidant benefits so you can put some fresh lemon squeezed in there. A little bit of vinegar are supposed to help with a fat metabolism and especially a great form of salt, like real salt, my favorite. That’s a brand coming from natural mineral salt, Himalayan pink salt, sea salt, a good quality, a salt that will go into the water and then help with the uh, osmolity. The hydration effect of the water will be improved if you add some sodium. If you just slam a big drink of plain water, it’s possible that you will just pee a lot of it out because it doesn’t have the proper, uh, sodium balance. So if you add the sodium, it will be more likely absorbed by the tissues throughout your body that want to be hydrated first thing in the morning. How about that?

Brad: 19:29 Next the to do list. Hmm. Throw in that in there. After we’ve done all our good physical self body care. So echoing many great peak performers on the planet, we want to begin our day in a proactive mindset. Take control, focus a little bit, spend a few minutes. Really can be one minute or less, but have some quiet time to reflect on your top priorities of the day and sort things out in writing or in digital form. I like to use the notes APP, the yellow a notes application where your iPhone and your desktop device or laptop are synced. When you add something to notes, it goes across to the other platforms. Wonderful. Or you can just have a a spiral notepad, handy dandy printed notepad, but make sure that this thing is given a precious sacred status in your life. Okay. And that you’re constantly referring to your to do list, updating it, revising it, and using it as a guide so that you don’t get pulled away from your top priorities of the day by the hyper-connectivity and the hectic pace and the constant over stimulation that we face in daily life, especially give your brain a break and empty it out of all these obligations to remember every little thing. I can’t tell you how many times I have failed to remember the most basic of tasks because I asked my brain to remember it for me without writing it down or memorializing it on a to do list. Oh, who am I taking after Albert Einstein? Man, remember his famous quote? He says, I don’t know my telephone number because I can easily look it up in the phone book. In other words, he didn’t want to burden his wonderful brain with memorizing his telephone number. Oh, I love that. Okay, so take it easy on yourself. Don’t trust yourself to remember all these little tidbits and obvious things that you think you should remember. Just write them down and keep a wonderful, powerful to do list. Then as we get down the list, I told you it was going to be simple, brief, and doable. Uh, fill in the blank to something that’s important to you.

Brad: 21:50 Maybe this is your chance to go and do your meditation exercise for 27 minutes next to your outdoor fountain. Maybe this is the time where you go wake up the kids or have a precious few moments of chatting with a loved one before you go on with your busy day. Maybe it’s time to eat your chosen morning meal. If you’re all about that or prepare something like you’re going to eat it later, but it’s part of your morning ritual. Dave Cobra and mentioned his smoothie that he makes a every morning as part of his sequencing through that cold exposure and the morning stretching and calisthenics and then the sunrise jog. Got The smoothie going in there, putting it in the fridge, using it later if you like to read the morning newspaper or do the crossword puzzle. These are all excellent morning rituals that keep you in a focused, proactive mindset. Even doing your hair and makeup or foam rolling your injury or doing your stretching exercises, whatever it is, a deliberate form of self care will be a great idea to kind of finish off this distinct morning routine. And then of course you can open the floodgates of technology and hyper-connectivity as soon as you pick up that phone, you know where things head from there, who knows what direction. It’s absolute chaos and distraction, at least in my life, I’m noticing it. Uh, I know it exists and I’m feeling the pain. I’m acknowledging the problem, trying to do something about it. And I think the very, very best thing you can do is to start out the start of the day in that proactive mindset away from technology, away from connectivity with the outside world, and then build your momentum, build your skills and let this thing be a centerpiece of your daily life.

Brad: 23:56 Brad 24.90

Brad: 23:56 Thank you for listening to the show. We would love your feedback and get over yourself. podcast@gmail.com and we would also love if you could leave a rating and a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves because they need to. Thanks for doing it.

I welcome my frequent podcast guest from the Primal Endurance show, Debbie Potts of Bellevue, WA. Debbie is a coach, podcast host, and personal trainer who operates an evolved personal training facility in her town.

Debbie is a former elite-level amateur ironman triathlete who destroyed her health from an overly ambitious approach to extreme endurance training. Since abruptly leaving the race course back in 2013, Debbie has been on a passionate quest to regain her health, lead a healthy and balanced lifestyle, and share her carefully considered approach with others. She is a devoted student of evolved athletic training methods, advanced recovery techniques, and the worlds of functional nutrition and holistic healing. Debbie delivers an extremely important message, having been there and done that with burning the candle at both ends in life. The WHOLEistic method helps you expand your horizons from the ill-fated Type-A approach to life to increase attention to sleep, rest, recovery, downtime, stress management, healthy eating, and a sensible approach to exercise.  

In this fast-moving show, we give you a general exposure to some of the particulars in the WHOLEistic method, setting Debbie up for future appearances to help you go deeper into potentially life-changing practices and habit modifications. You’ll learn about the healthy balance between the sympathetic (fight or flight) and parasympathetic (rest and digest) nervous system function. Today we are extremely out of balance with sympathetic stimulation such that we are either wired on adrenaline (racing through a hectic day running on fumes and not sleeping well) or experiencing a burnout situation where you are exhausted, craving sugar, storing fat, and experiencing poor immune function.  

In this show, we focus on three elements of the WHOLEistic method:  

Sleep: power down your cell phone, disable those dings and alerts and get some sleep! Napping and restorative activities activate the parasympathetic system. Important to switch on and off during hectic days! 

Focus: Avoid multitasking, as this increases stress and reduces productivity. Correct your tendencies to respond constantly to emails, navigate between a zillion windows on your screen, or even talk on the phone while making a recipe or rushing out of the house for a busy day.

Eat: We talk plenty about which foods and healthy and which aren’t, but creating calm, relaxing, low-stress mealtimes are critical as well. It’s critical to be in a relaxed, parasympathetic state to allow your stomach acids to work efficiently. If you get gas, bloating, cramping or other issues during meals, make a better effort to enjoy relaxing and leisurely meals.  

TIMESTAMPS:

Debbie has a history that includes Ironman competition and then having to learn a hard lesson about not paying attention to the stress on her body. [03:33]

Everyone in the society is dealing similar problems of trying to improve performance and risking burnout. [11:05]

The world of functional nutrition presents some differences from some information that is out there. [13:45]

From champion world athlete, Debbie crashed!!  What happened? [17:27]

There are a lot of times thinking the athletic experience is a stress relief from the other forms of stress in life.  [20:25]

It’s tough to embrace the idea that doing less work can and will make you faster. [23:11]

Can you still be in the Ironman community if you are not racing yourself? [25:18]

It is truly the most dangerous state to be in because we don’t have any awareness that we’re burning the candle at both ends until the flame burns out. [28:38]

How do we reset and reboot?  [30:17]

What are the symptoms you might see with clients who are stressed? [32:43]

If you are engaging deep diaphragmatic breath, it is physically impossible for you to be stressed. [35:30]

It’s important to learn to manage your competitive personality. [38:54]

Today we have constant distractions, multitasking and addiction to business that we have lost the ability to slow down, be present, focus and enjoy the moment. [42:09]

Sleep is so important.  You must limit your computer and phone use. [44:27]

The use of phones can make or break your life balance. [48:02]

Are you relaxed so you can support  your digestion system? [52:57]

If your HRV score is high, it is not necessarily an indication of health. [01:01:03]

Multitasking causes stress.  Better make to do list and put things out of sight. [1:04:13]

Rather than take medication, look for the root cause of your health problem. [1:11:05]

LINKS:

QUOTES:

  • “The harder you train, the more energy you need to devote to recovery.” (J. Jamison)
  • “If you have a stressful day, you have to cut your intended run mileage from six miles to three miles for example,  in order to stay healthy.”

 

LISTEN:

Download Episode MP3

Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:00:08 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author and athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 00:03:44 Hi, it’s Brad to introduce a great recording I had with Debbie pots, the pride of Bellevue, Washington. She’s doing some amazing things up there with her Fitness Forward Personal Training studio and also her wonderful program called the Holistic Method, which identifies common sources of hidden stress for the whole athlete. She comes from the endurance athletes scene. She was a very accomplished Ironman distance triathlete performing amazing feats out there on the race course, qualifying for the holy grail of triathlon, the Hawaii iron man world championships on Kona numerous times, traveling all over racing like a champ, building this business in the personal training studio and generally caught up in that type A highly motivated goal oriented, super busy, super driven life. And then one day everything just fell apart. And it is a profound story of what can happen when you ignore the importance of balance, when you pursue your goals, especially in the endurance scene with too much competitive intensity and not enough reflection and intuition.

Brad: 00:05:03 And Debbie’s has done a fabulous job picking up the pieces and doing something good for humanity by telling her story and creating a complete program. Of course it’s targeted to athletes, but every one of us is out here in this crazy busy, high tech, overstimulated, modern life, trying to pursue fitness goals, oftentimes doing them the wrong way so that they become more stressful instead of health promoting and life balancing. And so her message is wonderful. We could talk for hours on the various facets of the holistic method. So in this show we got into it pretty nicely with just a few choice, big picture items, especially the importance of sleep and making sure that our beloved digital devices don’t mess with our optimal sleeping habits. We also talked about not the nitty gritty of diet which we talk about so much on so many podcasts and hopefully listeners have a basic notion of what’s healthy and what’s not by now.

Brad: 00:06:05 But we had talked about the importance of creating relaxing mealtime habits so that our bodies can be in the best proper condition to digest and assimilate the wonderful nutrition that we consume with our meals. And if we are eating on the go, grabbing something and carrying on to the next uh, matter in our hectic daily existence, we are going to disturb optimal digestive habits and not get the most from are carefully chosen foods. Finally we talked about focus and the importance of focusing on a single peak performance task at a time. The dangers and destruction caused by the overstimulation, our constant need to navigate different windows on our computer or multitask such as texting and driving or thinking and ruminating, all kinds of crazy thoughts, fears and anxieties while we’re trying to do something like walk the dog around the block or even enjoy some entertainment, a show, what have you.

Brad: 00:07:07 So really we just tip toed in the direction of the holistic method I aspire to have Debbie on as a regular guest because I think you can learn so much from her journey and from her reflections, hopefully saving you from falling into those traps that are so common today of just frying our fight or flight response. Getting into that burnout situation that’s so difficult to recover from and especially not noticing it while it’s happening. And I weighed in there. We both reflected Debbie and I on how when we were high performing athletes, a lot of times you’re riding this wave of the constant overstimulation of stress hormones so you feel fantastic. You’re energized, you’re performing well in races. You’re waking up the next day and you’re not even sore and you can go sit on a bike seat and pedal for many more hours, but what’s happening is the stress response is being activated again and again, so you feel alert and energized and have your blood pumping and your heart beating.

Brad: 00:08:04 However, what you are doing is you’re, as Dr. Tommy Wood says, that’s Debbie’s neighbor up there in the Seattle north Seattle area. He says, you are liquidating your assets to perform in the moment, and that’s when you head down the path to burnout and it’s not so easy to bounce back with a couple of days or a couple of weeks or one season off. You have to pursue this holistic approach, especially as a fitness enthusiast. Oh, I think you’re going to enjoy the recording and looking forward to many more from Debbie Potts. Check her out at debbiepots.net and her books on Amazon Life is Not a Race and the holistic method.

Brad: 00:08:45 Here we go. Debbie Potts, how are you? My good friend and Seattle, Washington area. And I did make it up there for a podcast vacation binge this summer. And unfortunately, oh my gosh, we had a brief meeting at Mike Mutzel’s house and then you had to go off to catch a flight and uh, we just couldn’t click. So since we’re, since we have such a nice longterm connection relationship, we get to do this one on Skype instead of a get on airplanes. But I really like to sit down in person and figure out, you know, some of the great insights that you have. And that’s what we’re going to do with our nice video connection here too.

Debbie: 00:09:34 Yes, it’s, it’s always good in person, but you’re kind of like Brock, he does kind of get along with you. You’re just phonies and going, it’s like lifetime podcasts, friends. We meet online and it’s fun to meet in person too, so it makes it easier to podcasts.

Brad: 00:09:48 So what’s cool about you is you’ve been there and done that. You were deep deep into the highly competitive endurance triathlon scene going out there to the, the, the Mecca for all participants across the world is to qualify for the wonderful Hawaii Ironman world championships, which everyone familiar with, uh, with triathlon knows this is the ultimate championship race. But even people who don’t know about triathlon might know about the Hawaii Ironman. And so you did that many times. It was defining your life for so many years and then you kind of fell apart. And these things happen that we warn these type A enthusiastic athletes about and people don’t heed the warning and then assorted matters of crashing and burning, uh, occur with little fanfare. And so you kind of took this experience and shaped an entire, a lifestyle program to help others. And I think we talked about just before we got on the air, uh, You’re in the endurance athlete makes you train people, you write books and do podcasts for them. But this applies to any hard driving, high stress person who’s trying to burn the candle at both ends. And it’s called the holistic method.

Debbie: 00:11:05 Yeah. I find every day I, I feel the need that this isn’t my new passion and my purpose and to make impact as society is to talk about the whole athlete, to really train and increase, improve your performance in traffic on it really is more than just our training schedule. And I kind of learned the hard way every day. I was reminded that, you know, this is my purpose now to share my information and my knowledge and my experience with other people. And it’s not just triathletes is everyone in our society is dealing with these similar problems. And I have clients that come in my fitness studio that most of them, most all of them are not triathletes or in endurance sports. They just work out to slow the aging process down or improve the aging process. So I really feel this need to share this, my story and what happened to me and then here’s how you can avoid it. So that’s kind of a new mission,

Brad: 00:12:02 Right? So at this fitness forward studio, you are in fact dealing with normal everyday people. Uh, I guess there’s probably a Microsoft presence there because you’re near the corporate headquarters and you know, uh, high tech hard charging workers and people that of course have that desire for fitness too. But in many cases they’re bringing a lot of stuff into the gym that might inform their decisions of how they’re going to work out or whether they’re just going to go sit in your infrared sauna, which is so cool that you offer more than just sweating at the gym. You offer a place to, to get healthy in different ways.

Debbie: 00:12:39 Well, I learned that after I opened my studio almost 10 years and been a trainer for splash turning 47 somehow this year. But it’s been since I was at, you know, 27 years now since I was in college. I’ve been involved in fitness and running fitness studios and it is that there’s so much more to really getting people healthy besides training that because it was a personal trainer, you’re seeing a client wanting to three times a week and sometimes once a month and how do you really make an impact and help them improve their overall health. And it is kind of has led me to furthering my education as well as my own personal interest in nutrition and health since I was in college, but over time done different programs and coaching programs with Ben Greenfield and Paul Chek and additional therapy practitioners and I’m started Ben’s new Keon University, so it’s near primal program. Just so many ways to keep increasing my education, helped myself, but also help share this knowledge with athletes of all levels.

Brad: 00:13:45 So what about this world of functional medicine or functional nutrition? Can you describe what’s going on there? Because we’re usually only familiar with someone who’s a certified nutritionist and they studied the food pyramid and they learn the boiler plate from the USDA and the the, the general conventional wisdom sources which are telling you to eat many meals of greens and measure out your cottage cheese so you don’t get as much fat. And that’s the, you know, the long dated. Uh, yes I am ripping on it cause it’s ridiculous but it still goes very strongly. Right. You study in college and get a degree in nutrition and that’s where you’re looking at, you’re not looking beyond that and now we have all these programs that have launched on the Internet where you can get exposed to numerous different kinds of diets. We have the thing, like you mentioned the primal health coach coach program where we take people that are really interested in primal living and they can make a career of it. It’s so they learn how to become a coach and learn all the aspects of the philosophy and a lot of great opportunities out there. Yeah, I know you’re all over. You’re constantly improving and educating yourself. But tell me about that world where we drift away from the mainstream approach to diet in particular?

Debbie: 00:14:57 Well, I’ve learned from my own experience with my adrenal exhaustion, burnout. HPA disregulation is what it’s technically called, and it’s just such a domino effect on your body systems. So it’s just evolved to working on nutrition because I saw these different natural paths and functional medicine doctors and regular doctors. When I first started seeking help to figure out what the heck is going on with me, I’ve gained 30 pounds. I cannot train. I’m just a slug and I’m heavy and I just can’t sleep and fatigue every day. So my story is I saw so many different people and I’m just getting the same story, you know, the same results. Back lab testing, here’s some supplements and there’s just so much more to it. And if you see a ietitian, it’s here eat this way? You know, nothing really was what I find when I love about nutritional therapy association as a nutritional therapy practitioner.

Debbie: 00:15:52 Now we look at you as an individual and everyone’s different and we ever own any intelligence to find homeostasis. Sometimes you need to stop and reboot your system with the right nutrients, but it’s more, you know, testing it on your body, find out what you need. So nutrition, for me it’s, you know, the functional medicine does your question, but looking at, okay, what works for me isn’t going to be the same as the other person. I think that’s kind of a big thing for me right now because everyone’s into Keto athlete and low carb, high fat, which makes sense. But what we’re going to kind of dive in today is there’s a lot more to it. So what I eat is I really important many nutritional therapy. The main goal is to balance your blood sugar and not have the spikes of insulin. And then it’s also to work on digestion is like are we eating all these real good whole foods, nutrient dense foods, but are you digesting them properly and absorbing those nutrients, which a lot of us are not. And we’ll talk why. And then mineral balance, essential fatty acids, hydration are the other elements. So when you nutrition world and functional medicine, I think a lot of people are doing all the lab works with lab tests that you do not get from your doctor. That very much more detailed. I’ve been using athletes blood tests, I’ve used wellness FX, but there’s one step further you need to go. And that’s what I feel like nutritional therapy helps. So I don’t know if that answers your question around about way. I think you know is looking at nutrition for you as a bio individual.

Brad: 00:17:27 Well take me back to those uh, shocking quick comments you made because here you are a champion world level athlete who’s training for hours per day and going out and riding the bike a hundred miles and doing 20 mile runs and competing in Hawaii, in the, in the hot weather and putting up another great finish and then going back the next year and it, and all of a sudden you’re saying you gained 30 pounds, you feel like a lazy fat slug. You’re not even sleeping, which also is strange because if you’re tired and you’ve exercised too much, you would think you’d be sleeping like a log. So yeah. What was that all about and what did the doctors tell you when you finally went to seek help?

Debbie: 00:18:09 Well that’s what you know, my Life is Not a Race book is about is that I kept trying to get help. So these people aren’t telling me what I feel like I need to know. I keep, I kept searching for to get the right answer. And I think that’s what evolved to the holistic method and finding, figuring it out for myself. But it is, you know, that the training and the racing and the constant stress that we talk about all the time, that chronic stress and burnout is, it’s kind of what led up to this. And you know, it’s funny cause I did so many Ironmans but it, and I missed some years of Ironman Hawaii x, Micah, I don’t feel like it this year. And I did it last year. I don’t want to do it again. And then you know, suddenly 2012 of us in their last Ironman and I haven’t been able to race since 2013 it was when this all started and five years later I still can’t get myself together and my body doesn’t want to go run comfortably at my MAF heart rate under nine minute paced, you know, it’s just been a five years ongoing. So racing was not really the full part of my stress that caused this health breakdown from the inside out. It, it’s really that chronic stress from life and that’s why I feel like this topic can relate to everybody because it’s financial stress. It says, I own my own business, I have say $7,000 a month, I have to pay rent and I want to get paid too and I have to pay my trainers and you know, this constant stress trying to build a business, marketing, I mean all of that, whatever it might be for you. That’s the problem I think we, we have in our society is that we’re trying to do so much. We are trying to be successful. We’re trying to fit more into the day. And then as triathletes, we’re fitting, you know, swim, bike, run workouts plus or strength and our mobility and our yoga. And we’re trying to do that plus have a family and have a life and trying to be social and get your sleep. So it’s really hard to put that all in at the end of a day.

Brad: 00:20:09 Well, uh, I had that podcast with your neighbor, Joel Jamison, where he talks about his recovery based training and offering up these one liners, which has stuck with me when he says, the harder you train, the more energy you need to devote to recovery.

Debbie: 00:20:25 Yes.

Brad: 00:20:25 And usually, especially the athletic type who also has other responsibilities in life, like coaching their kids’ soccer team or carpooling them around or going and working in a demanding career. There are a lot of times thinking of their athletic experience as a stress relief from the other forms of stress in life, instead of being literal definition is that there’s all kinds of ways that you can stress your body and they all count the same, uh, on the scales of justice when you’re weighing, whether you’re needing a balanced life or not. So if you have a busy stressful day and you have an argument with your boss and then you get outside and, and lace up your running shoes and you say, oh, great, fresh air open space, getting a good sweat going and moving my body after sitting there and arguing all day in the office, this is a real way to balance my life. And it’s, it’s fundamentally untrue. And so now we have to have a completely different paradigm and reflection about, gee, you had a busy, busy, stressful day at work. Guess what? You have to cut your intended run mileage from six miles to three miles and that’s a tough one to swallow for people that have that competitive intensity and want to unleash it every single day to say, hey, you got to regulate that in order to be healthy.

Debbie: 00:21:39 Well, that’s what I think. You know, we’re talking about all of them. Red flags that people don’t see along the way, and that’s part of it is as writing the article of how you can improve your performance and triathlons, but it’s knowing when to reschedule a workout that, okay, I had a hard day, is busy, stressful day at work. I had all these meetings but not my workout. If I’m going to have this scheduled workout, that might require a little more intensity if you don’t have it that day. I think a lot of people don’t know when does, you know, reassess going, it’s not going to happen today. Let’s reschedule that workout another day. Today’s just going to be an easy jog or maybe in a walk. You know yesterday I just did that instead of going for one to three mile run after my bike ride to the snap, I just walked around the block. And you have to know when to listen to your body and get that recovery is more important. So it’s Joel is saying, you know, yes I say train hard, cover harder and adding more mobility training, adding more of the infrared treatment I just think is huge benefit for people. You’re cryotherapy, NormaTec boots, you know, all the different things that we can do as athletes, especially as we get older and I see the age, the age excuse, but I think we do need to take more time to take care of ourselves and add more recovery techniques and to our weekly routine to increase that performance as we get older, not use the ages excuse, but we need more recovery.

Brad: 00:23:11 It’s tough to embrace the idea that doing less work can and will make you faster

Debbie: 00:23:19 Less is more.

Brad: 00:23:19 and also more so then we have to get to that point where if the person is struggling to embrace this message, then we have to get to the point where you step in front of the mirror and say, hey dude, hey honey, what are you all about here? Are you just about burning energy for the sake of burning energy, uh, as an outlet for your obsessive compulsive personality tendencies? Or do you want to do something quality with your, including your competitive goals so that you can get the best out of your body? And I think a lot of people out there, not just in the athletic world where it’s extremely common, but in the workplace, let’s say they like to go work more hours than would be optimal productivity because they’re just in there grinding away and somehow they get a measure of satisfaction or they get to avoid a miserable home life or whatever’s going on that will get people into this workaholic type of mode.

Brad: 00:24:15 And a lot of times today in society, we celebrate this type of approach to life where the person says. Yeah. It was how was up til 12 finishing this proposal. And uh, you know, good morning everyone. Uh, uh, it’s, it’s 7:00 AM and we’re all a raring to go. So thanks for, thanks for stepping up. You guys are real warriors and our team is kicking butt because we work so hard! Whew, and that’s why the reflections in life is not a journey and the message and the holistic method is really a wake up call. Cause we, you and I learn this stuff the hard way as athletes where you go, go, go, go, go. And then all of a sudden, one day, just as you described, you’re describing burnout. When you say, my body’s not ready to go five years later. Uh, but also, uh, just as importantly, I think your brain is the one that’s saying, hey Debbie, don’t even think about it. Yeah. Cause, um, that, that’s, that’s our regulator. That’s our guide. And when you don’t have that motivation to go do what you used to do, really important message that you have to listen to them. Okay.

Debbie: 00:25:18 Yeah. I mean you have to listen to, it’s not that there’s nothing in there that’s not happening so you have to respect that. And then there’s a part that you have to be able to deal with it. All right. You know everyone’s doing half ironman Santa Rosa last weekend. Everyone I know is it was in whistler doing iron man or I’m a half Ironman. And then there’s all these different races and events. You feel left out, you can’t do, you’re not in that triathlon community. So psychologically, how do you deal with, okay, I can’t race and my body won’t let me do it, or my brain and how do I just enjoy that? So as interviewing triathletes and still trying to immerse myself in the culture is still feel that I love the industry. You know, I’m going Ironman Hawaii this year to connect with people and go to events and network. But it’s is we know that it’s, you love to do it, but how can you still be involved without actually racing yourself?

Brad: 00:26:14 That’s a good point. Um, when your identity and your social life is wrapped up in it, there’s more layers than just realizing, oh, I’m physically overstressed now so I’m going to pull the plug on my race schedule. Yeah. And it makes it a lot tougher, huh?

Debbie: 00:26:31 Yeah. I think it’s, you know, it’s their identity for so many years now. I’m kind of past that. But the first everyone would had asked me at least every couple days, when’s your next race? Now it’s, when’s your next trip? Because I’m with Neil when he goes for work. Like, all right, I guess I’m not an athlete anymore. People don’t, you know, I did Ironman triathlete. It’s my hobby, but now it’s more, okay, where are you going next? And so that is a positive. You know, we went to Italy and Greece last year. I’m going to Paris and, uh, London this September for a week and now you can do that stuff cause I’m not dropping how much thousand dollars per race now with, you know, your travel and your race. Entry fees are ridiculous. So there’s some positive sides of not racing yourself.

Brad: 00:27:15 Oh my gosh, that’s great. I could see your big smile on the Skype where it’s like Italy, Greece instead of by grease on my chain and another $400 set of pedals and $800 a wet suits and all that crazy stuff. So a nice healthy adjustment and recalibration. And I talk a lot on my show about, you know, finding ways to maintain that competitive intensity and going through life with compelling goals and that passion that maybe, uh, that I referenced that I had when I was a professional and completely consumed. But now years and years later, now I’m trying to go break the speed golf record and it’s still a super fun for me and challenging. It doesn’t take 22 to 30 hours a week of training like I did when I was a professional triathlete cause that’s no longer a unnecessary or healthy component of life. But there’s ways to redirect that competitive intensity into something fun and become Debbie Potts, competitive kayak racer on the stolen course. And your time is two minutes instead of, you know, 13 hours and oh my gosh, you can still, you can still enjoy that buzz. That was what got you into compelling goals like triathlon in the first place. Uh Huh.

Debbie: 00:28:27 And your speed golf …There’s guys speed golf world record breaking video. You must watch it. It’s pretty intense. I was sending it to my golfer clients going, hey, check this out

Brad: 00:28:38 Dude. What do you do in planning for four hours out there? You can get this done in a matter of minutes. Um, one other part of your story that I want to emphasize is that, you know, you got that diagnosis of adrenal burnout, adrenal dysfunction, which we hear so often. And the idea that when you’re immersed in this and you’re, you’re deep into burning the candle at both ends, your body will respond for a given period of time and you will wake up in the morning and feel great and energized and your legs feel light and snappy and you go out and do another bike ride or another crazy workout or another long day in the office followed by a quick Uber down to the airport and a red eye flight to go bang the meetings out on the other coast. And you can go, go, go in this mode for a defined period of time because your body is responding to this chronic, chronically overstressful, nice style pattern by pumping out these fight or flight hormones that allow you to cope and actually feel good. So a lot times we hear people saying like listen to your body if you’re tired, don’t work out. And I do that really well. But guess what? I remember a lot of times throughout my career, I’d get up and I’d feel jacked up. I can let’s go, man, bring it on. And in fact, that guy that I rode with yesterday that dropped me on the last time, I’m going to torch him today, you know, so I’m amped up. I’m in the sympathetic dominant state where it’s fight or flight all the time. I feel fantastic. I can’t wait to get out the door and start hammering again. And that is truly the most dangerous state to be in because we don’t have any awareness that we’re burning the candle at both ends until the flame burns out.

Debbie: 00:30:17 Yeah. Until it’s too late and then you’re really messed up. That’s what I love in the industry now is I’m hearing more and more about the sympathetic nervous system versus parasympathetic nervous system and Rhonda Collier from sweet beat. I learned that from her, I think 2012 when I was, you know, workshop and she was working with Ben Greenfield and we’re doing some HRV testing and I got interested in that. And now finally, five, six years later, it’s coming out more and more. Even last night I had this yoga for Athletes Demo class at my studio and she was talking about the parasympathetic nervous system. This is pretty cool that we’ve evolved that that becoming more common to talk about the differences of the nervous system. Unique. Got those sympathetic nervous system fight or flight. And then we have the parasympathetic nervous system, which is rest, digest, recovery, repair and the challenges that we just get stuck over in sympathetics were supposed to go back and forth, recover, sprint, recover from from that lion, you know, and rest and be ready for the next one.

Debbie: 00:31:24 But we don’t have those rest breaks. So then we get that every day and going nonstops you get stuck in fight or flight all day that you’re not resetting a re booting your system. So then we become sympathetic dominant is more of a common word. It keeps learning about that were stuck over there. So how do we reset and reboot? Like you’re saying, recovery is really important. I think that’s part of it as well as will hopefully get into digestion and all the other processes that this parasympathetic nervous system does. And this is part of the reason why I bought our sunlight and infrared treatment. And you know, you need during your cryotherapy in your freezer that you know, all these different techniques are designed to help us shift back to parasynthetic. Like we do a parasympathetic oil that you can put on behind your ear and the vagal nerve and take a deep breath in, exhale out, and you can just feel that shift back parasympathetics. So there’s different techniques you can do, but I think that is what we need to focus on more doing is okay, how can I reset and reboot myself?

Brad: 00:32:29 Well, the oil sounds cool and I know there’s these touted techniques and strategies to, to kind of unplug the sympathetic and activate the parasympathetic. Ben Greenfield talks about doing the foam rolling and in a matter of minutes, Kelly Starrett sends it to where if you get down on the floor and foam roll out, even to that point where it might be a little painful if you’re tight and you want to work through that pain. So you get kind of this, um, hormonal response to the pain. The endorphins are enter the bloodstream and you can instantly or quickly, uh, get into parasympathetic state if you come home and you’re a little bit amped and wired. And so I guess you could maybe describe some more of those symptoms of when you’re in sympathetic dominance such as having that intense emotional, uh, baseline where you’re, you’re easily triggered or you come home and you blurt out a story of that adverse consequence that happened during rush hour traffic and then your, your leg shaking while you’re telling the story and you’re grabbing some food and shoving it down your throat as you walk from the kitchen to the TV room and you’re not really deep, deep breathing and doing all those things that are indicative of the parasympathetic function.

Brad: 00:33:43 Can you talk about some of those symptoms that you might see with clients when they come in the door and they’re there charged up about uh, their, their commute over there in the left turn that almost cooked their car and all that fun stuff?

Debbie: 00:33:55 Well. That’s why I think it’s so common with everyday people. Doesn’t matter if you’re doing competitive triathlon training schedule and racing, that is everybody that comes in, you know they’re stuck in traffic in Seattle or traffic’s really bad every day and people you can just feel, you can just feel it. It just is like you have this aura coming out of yoga because I’m going to strangle somebody and you just get really worked up and just aggravated and have this death. You just need to stop and even lie down as you’re saying in a foam roll or before you start working out or at the end of your workout. So like going for a bike ride, get off the bike and do some simple stretches that you can do to reset. Or when people come in the studio and I could see that, they’re like, okay, they’re, they’re really worked up and something I can tell totally. I know all my clients, I know when they’re off a little bit. So it’s like, okay, let’s change my plan and let’s work on starting them a little differently and just do some stuff on the mat and work on some foam rollers, some little pilates math kind of yoga stuff, and then go into something harder. Or if I’m not going to do a high intensity interval training, cardio bursts in between their strength sessions if they’re feeling kind of down that day or they’re just feeling kind of blah and stressed and anxious. So I have to change the workout based on that client’s mood that day. And so you can tell when people are adrenalease are sympathetic dominant kind of phase.

Brad: 00:35:30 Yeah. Not to just dramatic example helps with immediate understanding, but there’s also some more subtle signs of sympathetic dominant and overly stressful lifestyle. And that could be you sitting, not you, but anyone sitting at home and it’s 8:30 and they’re really supposed to knock off. But they’re, they’re fidgeting and trying to finish 10 more emails and then they’re getting thoughts in their mind about whether their proposal’s good enough for the presentation tomorrow. All those kinds of things where you look and seem normal and calm and you smile at the person who walks through the room. But you’re stressed inside because of your thoughts and your rumination. So there’s many ways that we can get to uh, this, this unbalanced state. And I love the, the concept that, uh, is dispensed by a yoga experts, breathing experts where if you are engaging deep diaphragmatic breath, it is physically impossible for you to be stressed.

Brad: 00:36:26 In other words, if you are, if you are cycling through those deep breaths, you are in your blood, your blood chemistry is representative of a parasympathetic state. And so when you, let’s say, get in a fender bender and rush out of your car to, you know, start arguing at the person who had just slammed into you, what were you doing? What’s going on? You’re breathing in a shallow, panting manner and you’re activating those fight or flight hormones because of the intense situation that you find yourself in. And if someone comes over and puts their arm around you and says, calm down, take some deep breaths, you go, but, but, but, but this person, it wasn’t even watching. And you are physically incapable of slowing down and taking deep breaths because you are so stressed. And I have this in my mind a lot, when you feel like you’re spinning out of control and someone says, calm down and you say, you calm the fuck down, your car got smashed, right? You cannot, you cannot do it. It’s too difficult. But in those, in between moments of our busy days where we’d get a little triggered by something that happens in the workplace, indeed we can go sit in a chair, a stare at the, uh, the picture of the ocean on the wall and take five to 10 deep diaphragmatic breaths and have a measurable impact on regulating and getting back in that sympathetic to parasympathetic balance. And of course the sympathetic isn’t all bad. That’s what gets us out of bed. We jump into, uh, into, into the bike seat and begin the class and we’re stimulating sympathetics so that we can have the energy to go. So we just want to get back to that, that concept of balance and having hey, seven minutes on the park bench during your work day can have a fabulous effect on keeping the, you know, the runaway train back on the tracks.

Debbie: 00:38:11 Yeah, and I think that’s a good word is triggers is part of when I’m coaching people now and what I’ve done for myself as I’m aware of my triggers. Like when we were meeting at Mike’s House and I got all worked up. When I feel like you’re rushing to appointment to appointment and you’re going to be stuck, there’s traffic and have a plane to catch. I hate being late and I’m always like to be on time or outside. And then I knew I saw all his traffic and like, oh I gotta go, I can’t stay. I got to go is, and then I had plenty of time when I got there. But I know myself now that I can’t, I have to leave gaps in between stuff cause I get worked up if I’m going to be late. So I like start to melt down. You get worked up, but it’s just knowing your own triggers.

Brad: 00:38:54 Yeah. Right. And, and, and not only knowing him, but accepting that, right. Cause if we said, yeah, Debbie, relax, what’s the worst thing that can happen? And you answer well, missing my flight to Minneapolis. Uh, so, uh, you go the next day you pay 400 bucks more. What’s the big deal? Right? So we can’t live like, uh, the, the surfer bomb that doesn’t get stressed about anything. We have to pick and choose our priorities and manage and navigate and not. So I want to keep the listener focus that we’re not talking about just um, you know, letting go of your highly focused competitive personality because that’s probably not going to work. But managing it appropriately it was, is the big one. And then the other thing you said about your clients coming in the gym, you’re either going to see someone who’s wired like crazy and you want to get him into breathing, stretching mat work and kind of settle them. Or you’re going to see someone who arrives in that burnout state where they’ve already burnt the candle at both ends and the flame has been extinguished and they show up and they dragged their tired body into the gym. So we have this burnout situation and we have this hyperstimulation situation that occurs before burnout. And we’re trying to kind of avoid both of those and find this happy medium where you’re balancing your health with your fitness aspirations.

Debbie: 00:40:16 And that’s where, you know, I always have to coach people, not as a personal trainer. That’s why he caught the whole athlete or the holistic method is that you’re as a good coach, you’re aware of your client, what they’re doing for their, when they come in, if they’re stressed out as you’re saying, but it’s also okay, how did you sleep last night? What are some other things? So like the holistic method, I talk about their nutrition and their exercise is what they’re coming to me for it, but I’m talking about their nutrition and their sleep and their stress movement. What are you doing the rest of the day? Are you, how’s your digestion? You look a little bloated today. You know, when did you eat last night or you didn’t sleep well? All right, well what happened yesterday? And kind of have to add that coaching into it because to train an athlete is just, you know what?

Debbie: 00:40:59 I’m trying to coach other athletes. Eventually. It’s like our other coaches to coach. They’re asleep, but you have to look at these other elements. All right. Am I training you 30 minutes today and then you’re getting going to go sit in a chair and be in meetings all day. Okay. What movement can you add during the day? How many steps are you taking a day and getting up and doing some stretching, mobility drills, and then how much water are you drinking a day? And then the big one I find is really important is that happiness, the gratitude. And you know, there’s that all the other parts that when I’m, someone’s walking in the door, yeah, they’re worked up and I figured out workout program for them that day, which is, you know, typically just prefer new 30 minutes with people and then they can warm up, warm down in foam roller and stuff. But it’s just so much of, it’s what they’re doing the rest of the day that is triggering those stresses. Or if you know, they’re like said they went to bed at midnight and they’re coming to see me at 6:30 in the morning and they didn’t get enough sleep. It’s like, all right, I’d rather you cancel and sleeping, you know, take care of you. And that’s why I would say take care of the whole you from the inside out.

Brad: 00:42:04 Yeah. You’re getting these wonderful quotes in when you’re describing your program, where you, you say quote today we have constant distractions, multitasking and addiction to buisiness that we have lost the ability to slow down, be present, focus and enjoy the moment. This is what I’ve learned in life is not a race and also the holistic method manual. So, um, now we’re getting into maybe some of the best practical tips to kind of regulate these dangers of burnout or being in that hyperstimulation state. And maybe I should ask about sleep because you tell your story of being, having poor sleep even though you were exhausted and burnt out from excessive exercise. Does that, is that what you see commonly where people are complaining that they’re not getting a lot of sleep even though they’re tired?

Debbie: 00:42:54 Yeah, they’re, they’re tired. I always ask people in nutritional therapy as well because if you’re hyper or hypo adrenals, you have to also see came to you and blood sugar disregulation. No. Do you wake up Milanai you’re wide awake. Do you wake up, cause you, you know what bring you just eating all these carbs before bed that caused you on that blood sugar roller coaster or are you waking up because your Melatonin cortisol rhythm’s out of whack and you’re wide awake and it’s 2:00 AM so you have to just kind of ask a few questions and interview him. Okay, what’s, what’s exactly going on with your sleep? Then we can kind of dig deeper and finding the root cause of some imbalances or just what’s going on in the rest of the life. But sleep is huge and I’m serious about my sleep after my experience and I know sleep is where you recover, you’re repairing detoxification happens. You know the internal housekeeping service comes along when you’re asleep, but so if you’re not sleeping,

Brad: 00:43:53 the Zoomba vacuum comes through your body when you’re sleeping and love that. The internal house being yes, hello? Oh, it’s the automatic vacuum machine that’s going to clean my whole house. Well, your sleeping imagine. Yeah.

Debbie: 00:44:07 Every night of sleep their service isn’t coming over. So you’re gonna miss the housekeeping service, right.

Brad: 00:44:12 Zoomba. It gets stuck in the corner and get, get stuck in your arm pit instead of, you know, cleaning your entire corpse while you’re lying there. Beautifully. So what are the, what are the big mistakes? Is it that that uh, might after dark, the screen use?

Debbie: 00:44:27 Yeah, the Blue Light. I just did an interview. It’s coming out soon and our podcasts on that Swannies using the blue blocking glasses, it really helps if you’re on your computer or reading on your Ipad, that’s blue light makes a difference I think. And for me it’s working. If I’m working on emails and computer or writing, I’m trying to write more and study and do research that my brain’s wired and I can’t settle down and try to relax and go into sleep. Sleeps. I have to shut off my computer maybe at six o’clock if I’m trying to, I have to go to bed at 7:30 because I have to get up at four 30 in the morning and so my, to get my full sleep, I was thinking this last thing, I have to miss out on a lot of social life and find activities at night because at this time of my life, I have to, my work starts early, but you know I have to make sure computer work. I stopped about six o’clock if I’m working until seven that screws up my sleep. If I can’t, I don’t really watch that much TV during the week, but I’ll read a book and I’m trying to catch up. I have so many books I’ve got ran that I buy all the times I’m reading at least a three pages is my goal. It takes really long time to read a book that way. But I tried to read a chapter at night and and do some just relaxing and I have the fan on. I have yoga music, I play sometimes on the timer on Sonos and which is, you know, the whole thing of emitting in that Wifi EMF is a big thing we need to work on in our house. Make sure you turn off Wifi by, that’s a big area of learned a lot about, there’s a lot of things.

Brad: 00:46:07 You’re kidding me. So we get an unplugged or our wifi every night or keep it away from our bedroom. Ideally.

Debbie: 00:46:12 Yeah. Do you do that?

Brad: 00:46:14 Uh, no. It’s, it’s far away from the sleeping area and the, you know, you go to these shows and listen to the expert presentations and it kind of freaks me out a little bit and I, I want to have a little bit of a critical eye going in so that I’m not living life, eh, you know, in constant fear and panic. But this stuff is quite interesting and I do feel like those of us who are least lucky, most vulnerable and susceptible can develop some serious issues, uh, relating to just existing in modern life and consuming food out of plastic containers and getting exposed to environmental estrogens. And some people going along just fine and uh, have their six pack and their crossfit games participation while they’re microwaving their salmon in the plastic bowl. But boy, if you’re not feeling right and you, you aspire for, uh, more energy, more peak performance, which I of course always am. That’s why I do podcasts and write books is you know, constantly on that quest, man, it starts starting to become an eye opener for some of these things like your wireless signal or the thing that really freaks me out, Debbie, is when you go and you’re logging in somewhere and you see 18 other wireless connections pop up on your laptop as options and it’s like, oh my gosh, we’re getting bombarded with signaling noise now that, keep in mind, uh, 22 years ago there were zero wireless connections, right? And so that’s a huge change that we have no research and no validation that this stuff is harmless because we don’t have enough.

Debbie: 00:47:48 The research isn’t there yet except for it. Yes,

Brad: 00:47:51 People are saying this stuff is dangerous and horrible and we’re either going to take their word for it or try to make some amends or ignore them out of hand. I don’t know what to do.

Debbie: 00:48:02 Well, I tell people at least put your phone, it’s in your room on airplane mode and I get mad at people and if by text and respond to texts in the morning when they’re still sleeping in the answer I’m like, why is your cell phone on? And so I have my little pet peeves of full cell phone use is whole different topic. I just at least you know if you’re having your phone in your room, which way too many people have their phone plugged in by their bed because it’s an alarm clock and it drives me nuts because you’re still being connected and you’re still stimulated by all these beeps and alarms and everything driving me nuts. Some people’s phones and all their, oh someone said your name on Facebook or you Instagram message or you this many links, just turn it all off. Those are distractions that are causing that constant stimulation that are related to our constant stress. So I think easy step to look at your sleep and your stress is looking at our cell phone usage and disabling all this stuff that you can use and sell your data or take off all those notifications. You really don’t need any of them except for maybe your schedule and phone calls and texts. But you know, it’s all this sounds drives me nuts.

Brad: 00:49:11 I mean the notifications and the sounds are causing a dopamine trigger in the brain. We get an immediate castle response or rush when we are exposed to novel stimulation in our environment, which is what every text message Ding is. You know, it’s going to be novel stimulation. You don’t know who sent it or what they’re going to say or you’re waiting for a text and you’re going to get that rush. And so that’s a great starting point. Um, I’m thinking that, what if I want to be, uh, uh, reachable and an emergency, you know, I got kids running around in life. They are 20 and 18. They might be driving their cars. And who knows? My friend’s kid ordered a pizza from Uber delivery at 2:30 in the morning. This is down in LA after a night of playing a night video games with his buddies. And he didn’t of course tell his parents like, hey, expect a pizza guy to come up to the door. And so they thought they had a prowler and they were freaked out, but they never did connect with their son until the morning to realize like, Oh yeah, that was me. I ordered a pizza. So is this huge event that happened where they’re like, you know they can’t even sleep because they think someone’s munching around their house at 2:30 in the morning.

Brad: 00:50:24 So, but if you need your phone on case someone calls in the middle of the night, like my sister’s on call a physician, she’s not going to turn her phone to airplane mode, but can you put it, let’s say further away and turn off every possible potential noise making thing except for an emergency phone call. And the answer is yes. I know on my iPhone you have this do not disturb window. I set it for 10:00 PM to 7:00 AM except for uh, uh, these people in my favorites can call me during those, uh, overnight hours because that’s the most likely person to call for an emergency. I know we’re spending goofy time on this during a health and wellness podcasts, but this is the stuff that can make or break if you think about the last 365 days and how many stupid text message dings and what they’ve done with your life. It’s worth considering. And I think we have to get out of this um, self absorbed point of view that we’re so freaking important that we can’t miss a text message. Uh, and, and, and kind of transition to like, well, you know, I’m not available right now cause I’m taking care of myself and my health comes first. And so let the world be aware, unless you’re my sister waiting for that call that someone’s about to deliver a baby, I’m going to argue that you might be a step or two or 12 down with your constant engagement, like your example of someone answering your texts that you know in the middle of the night instead of in the morning.

Debbie: 00:51:50 Yeah. So as you say, get over yourself. You don’t need to know your Facebook updates or your cheers, Instagram post and everything. I don’t have any of those words. So that kind of connects to stress sources of stress because there are distractions and the full thing I think to help you eliminate stressors are to focus on one thing, not to multitask and to be present with the people you’re with, with the workout you’re doing. When you’re eating, to digest your food properly, you need to get your body and your mind relax and, and parasympathetics so you can digest your food properly and enjoy the moment. So all these people doing 10 things at once, rushing while they’re eating, driving and eating and you know, shoving food in there in between a workout session. I think if you want to improve your performance in life and sports triathlete or non triathlete, you have to work on doing that pause, reset, reboot, recalibrate before you eat, before you sleep and that’s how you’re going to get healthier.

Brad: 00:52:57 That’s interesting to talk about the eating one because if we’re not deep into this, we are looking at food as a source of calories and a source of energy to burn as we go through our busy life. That’s what the multibillion dollar energy bar industry is, is grab this thing and go and you will get more energy. Just like five hour energy. This podcast is brought to you by garbage, crap, five hour energy that you can find at your recent gas station to Jack you artificially and cover up for all your crappy lifestyle practices. Eh, no thanks. Sorry, five hour energy. Dang, I just blew a potential and same with the energy bars. It’s this grab and go mentality that this thing is going to keep me powering because I get so celebrated from my workaholic tendencies or my overtraining tendencies. And so when you connect that parasympathetic state with, I mean the title, the nickname is rest and digest. Yeah. Why is it so important to relax while you’re eating a food meal?

Debbie: 00:53:56 Well it can put the chart. Let’s look at a chart and can Google images for this parasympathetic versus sympathetic nervous system because everything that happens when you are digesting. So stress is on digestion is turned off. So you want to think to have your body in this. Stop and breathe in gratitude. Do prayer, sit down and relax because if stress takes priority over everything else, everything’s shut down cause I was called faced or emergency response teams. So digestion and needs to be a pair of sympathetic because your stomach acid, so digestion starts in nutritional therapy we talked about starts the very north end point. That’s your brain. So when you are starting to think and seafood and think about what you’re going to eat, digestion is already starting. So your stomach acid is a big part. That’s the whole conversation as well. But stomach acid needs to be released to properly digest your food in your stomach. And if you’re in sympathetic nervous system that inhibits systemic acid. So our stomach acid should be 1.5 to 3.0 ph scale. And if you’re not having that acidic environment, well what’s going to happen to the rest of the digestive system? Has your food moves south is going to be all not broken down properly and cause all this other stuff not to happen. So you’re, you know, your gallbladder releases bile and the, all this hormones are released and get the stomach breaking down the food. Well, if it’s not the right acidity level, it’s not gonna be broken down and it goes in the small intestine. And then there’s this whole chain of events. It’s going to be dysfunctional because you didn’t properly digest your food and your stomach’s. So then that’s a problem. And if the gallbladder, the bile is not being released, you’re not going to have fat digestion properly. And so the and the activity of the small intestine, large intestine has this mobile motility moving. So that’s going to not happen if you’re in sympathetic. So all this stuff, digestion is so important to be parasympathetics. So people wonder why they have all this digestion problems. We’ll let’s work on how you’re eating first and then work on improving your digestion with supplement.

Brad: 00:56:06 So I guess the gas, bloating, burping, farting, inflammation type of experience that we’re so familiar with could possibly be traced back to the fact that we ate standing up shoveling the food in really quickly and then got off to our meeting on time.

Debbie: 00:56:26 Yes, exactly.

Brad: 00:56:31 That’s not okay.

Debbie: 00:56:32 Yeah, I know. It’s so easy. You know, people just coaching methods when I’m working with nutritional therapy clients is like, all right, let’s work on your nutrition and digestion and absorption first, stop, stop when you’re eating and relax and eat. So even if you’re doing a low carb, high fat, or at more of a higher fat, Keto type of food plan, you still have to look at how you’re eating and when you’re eating. Yes, we’re fuller, longer is satiated. We feel good. I don’t have to eat three meals a day and two snacks because I’m eating more fat. But are you digesting it? And what I keep talking about with people, are you absorbing those nutrients but are you causing your body to release increase your blood sugar because you are having stress alerts still cause every blench, every stress response is a blood sugar response. So even if you are Keto low carb, high fat, if you are continually stimulating your sympathetic nervous system to run from that lion every 30 minutes, your body’s going to respond with this quick energy. I need to run from that line as fast as I can. So it’s going to increase your glucose levels, your blood sugar, and what’s going to happen if you keep doing that, anything repetitive? Become resistant. So it’s going to cause your insulin to be released to lower that blood sugar. And we’re going to continually have that stimulation because we’re continually being stressed running from that lion nonstop. Well down the road you could become insulin resistant. So, even if I’m a low carb, high fat, Keto type of athlete, but if I’m continually being stressed and in sympathetic dominance, I’m, I’m having this problem here of losing weight and burning fat. Even if I’m eating the way we tell people eat right? Metabolic efficiency.

Brad: 00:58:27 Well that’s a heavy message. It’s often overlooked, not understood. Uh, Mark and I talked in the Quito reset diet about this whole segment of the approach where you have to make sure that you’re exercising in a sensible manner, not a chronic manner, that you’re getting enough sleep and the you’re managing stress well because if you don’t, you will drift in the direction of sugar burner as you just described. I just don’t think that’s, that point is hit hard enough. We’re obsessed on the choices of food and counting our macro nutrients. And should I switch from 1.2 grams of protein to 1.3 and all this nonsense while we’re running around, uh, with, you know, chicken with head cut off in high stress mode and as you described, making sugar to fuel our fight or flight needs. That’s a fundamental component of the fight or flight response. Another great example is when you’re staying up late and you’re suppressing, that’s the sleepy hormone that makes you feel sleepy and want to go to bed. And if you’re blasting your screen with artificial light, what you’re actually doing is making more sugar, increasing your craving for sugar, and then when you do go get a midnight snack, being more likely to store those calories as fat rather than burn them as energy because you have these sugar burning elements to your busy, stressful life. I wonder if that’s part of the, um, the recovery process after burnout where you’re, you’re referencing these recent five years time when you stepped off the, the triathlon mode and don’t have the energy to function normally through the day or to go put in a quick 50 mile bike ride in between clients like you used to do back in the day. Is that dysregulation of even giving you a baseline of blood sugar stabilization?

Debbie: 01:00:12 Yeah, that’s why I haven’t done it all week, but it’s testing your blood sugar levels regularly I think is important as well as people that want to do their ketones. But the main thing in nutritional therapy we’ll teach people is balance your blood sugar. That’s your main goal and then you should be burning fat and ketones. But if you’re testing your blood sugar and it’s still not right, even if you’re eating this lower carb, high fat way, you guys describe it really well in your book, the Keto Reset because you talk about cortisol and the stress and most, I haven’t read any books that really dive into that so that’s a good thing that you guys added that because it’s so crucial. Part of all these people trying to burn fat and beef metabolically efficient athletes that it is looking at the stress factor and testing your blood sugar levels will help as well as doing your heart rate variability testing.

Brad: 01:01:03 Yeah, that’s fun stuff too. I got a new insight from Joel Jamison that I’d never heard in years of uh, exploring this heart rate variability concept. And for listeners unfamiliar, what you do is you have a special application. You can get it on your smart phone where you’re not only checking your heart rate in beats per minute, but it’s also giving you this other value, which is the variation and beat to beat intervals, uh, as your heart’s beating over the course of a minute or five minutes. So the more variation and beat to beat intervals suggests that you are in a nice state of balance between parasympathetic and sympathetic. You can listen to a whole show that I did with uh, Rhonda Collier of Sweet Beat, uh, over on the primal blueprint channel. Uh, but the main insight here is that if you track this on a daily basis, you can understand your baseline pattern that indicates that you’re healthy and well rested. And then if you see a number that’s lower on the HRV scale, it suggests that you’re probably in a state of sympathetic dominance and need to adjust your behavior to, to emphasize rest more. So the, your, your heart rate variability can get back up to normal. But check out this part, Debbie and for you people a really familiar with it. He said that a high heart rate variability score meaning more variation and beat to beat intervals higher than normal. Most athletes will celebrate this. I remember taking a picture and putting it on on Twitter, like, uh, you know, this is my highest HRV score, thinking that that was the ultimate state of uh, improving my fitness and staying rested. But he suggested that if your HRV score is higher than normal, that means your parasympathetic nervous system is over dominant and working so hard to get you recovered from the sympathetic stimulation of whatever you did, crazy workout period. And now you’re in heavy duty recovery mode. It means that you’re out of balance in that manner and that also warrant a reduction in training because you’re not fully recovered, you’re just working super hard to recover, still bouncing back from the previous periods of stress. So that was a mind blower to me that there’s a such thing as being too good with your high number on the HRV.

Debbie: 01:03:17 I always say that too much of anything is toxic, too little or anything’s deficiency. You find that right? Goldilocks effect is how much can you tolerate to not have that tipping point or the optimal level. And it varies per person. But yeah, not more is not better in more ways than one.

Brad: 01:03:36 Uh, we’re, we’re getting some, some big hit items here. We talked about the sleep factor and turning your cell phone off. We talked about just briefly, um, focusing rather than multitasking. And maybe we’ll, we’ll get a little bit more into that and then wait, we can finish up the show with like, you know, a short to do list of items where we can get our, our sleep, our focus, our eating, and uh, maybe a little bit more attention to movement. So when you say, uh, avoiding the dangers of multitasking, how does that figure into the stress response and getting a sympathetic excess stimulation?

Debbie: 01:04:13 Multitasking? Well, that’s why I like bike riding because I’m just bike riding or running by myself because you’re just doing one thing. You can’t multitask. I get in trouble when I’m working and there’s so many distractions, like, okay, I need to pay bills, I need to follow up with those nutritional therapy. Then I got this. They’re just like, ah, squirrel. You know, there’s just so much going on. So I think it’s the challenge always is when, for me, it’s when I’m on my computer and I have 20 things opened, my web browser, and then I have this pile of stacks of stuff to do and reorganize. And so many different areas of your job in life you might have is how to just make a list and do one thing at a time and turn off everything or move it out of sight. So it’s not distracting shutoff through your email or whatever. So whenever you’re trying to do, you can do 100% focused and do it well instead of trying to do five things at once that you’re not doing 100% you’re just kind of half ass doing it. So I think for me, that’s my problem.

Brad: 01:05:16 Yeah, mine too. You’re talking to a receptive listener. This stuff hits me really hard. I mean, I’ve had a, an adult career of writing many books, right? And so somehow I look on the shelf and gee and go, Dang, how did that happen? How did that level of focus happened? Because my daily life is drifting further and further in a different direction where I have many windows open and I’m remembering, oh, I have to order more Ziploc sandwich bags on Amazon, right in the middle of writing an email to you and going over our, our outline for the show. And then, oh, then here comes, here comes the reminder that I’m 15 minutes late to starting the show with Debbie this morning. Sorry about that Debbie. And then I want to go do my fitness activities and stick with my morning routine, but we get pulled and pushed and forced away. So I think back to the suggestion about the iPhone at your bedside, turned some stuff off and force yourself to focus. And I’m relating this, a wonderful practice that I have that helps increase my productivity is uh, I show up at my girlfriend’s office. She works late at night sometimes and I love going in there. And, uh, joining her because they don’t have wireless access in the building. It’s a government building. They there, you’re not allowed, there’s no password. You can’t get in there unless you work there. Right. And so I have a, uh, a designated area in my life and my daily pattern where there’s no internet access. And that’s when I get my most of my writing done and my creative work and content. And it’s such a pathetic example of, you know, what I need to do to be focused and productive is to go to some building where there’s no wireless access, but it works.

Debbie: 01:06:56 It works. That’s not authentic. I do the, I wrote my book, my manual, and I’m trying to write more because I went to a hotel room when Neil’s on a trip at a food show or something, trade show. And I just stay in the hotel room all day and take walk breaks and work out and then go back and work on something else and turn everything off. It’s the only way I can get stuff done. So it is, you know, a big part of being productive. But also if you’re tying that into how to improve, how does this help me improve my performance and my triathlon or life? I think it helps the whole overall way to improve performances, reduce stress and stress is coming from the small d tasking and leading us to the sympathetic dominant that were just on the go all the time or always on. So if you don’t know how to turn yourself off and you have to figure out what works for you to help you improve your ability to switch back and forth between those nervous systems so we can enhance our recovery pair, which will help us improve our performance when we go work out or else you’re going to go for that bike ride or run and feel like crap and go, okay, this isn’t happening. I’m not even moving. My times is my heart rate’s high and I’m not even moving. Blah, blah blah.

Brad: 01:08:15 So quick ways to activate parasympathetic would be so gentle. Movement. Debriefing.

Debbie: 01:08:27 Yeah. Walking outside. And I know we’re going to study that in the program I’m doing next is uh, that, you know, walking outside with your bare feet, the negative ions and all that. Way cool. Um, I think just simple breathing and I do a lot of the, we use vibrant blue oils is the parasympathetic oil to stimulate the vagal nerves. So I’ve been doing that and just things that you can, easiest thing is breathing, just breathing exercises, helping that reset reboot button is just your breath work and just stopping. And another day I felt like I’m, I’m like all over the place and I’m just, I can feel it when I’m revved up and I laid down on my bed, it was fifth and I got up when I was ready to get up and it was 15 minutes and then he falls asleep. I kind of was half asleep and cause I was thinking, I feel like you need a nap and I need to lay down and be still. Know when, okay, before I go for my workout, before I start working, I just need to reset. And to me that was lying down and it was just 15 minutes. But that’s all I needed to just, hi, I’m back. I feel energized again. It was weird. So sometimes you just need to figure out what works best for you and your body and your personality.

Brad: 01:09:38 Well then you have to get skilled at it too and build these skills in many cases. And I talked to a lot of people about my, uh, fondest for, for napping, which started back when I was an athlete was part of the drill when you were competing at elite level and training that hard is that we all took naps in the afternoon because they, we were that dedicated to performance that we had the time, of course that was our objective for the day was to train and, and rest and recover from it. So I took a two hour nap for a 10 year period of life. And um, that was something that carried forward into today where I can go for a 20 minute nap and get really skillful at. But people say, oh, I can’t nap. You know, uh, I’m, I’m not used to it. Or I just, I just can’t wind down. You go there and force yourself to do it and then you wind down.

Brad: 01:10:26 So yeah. Debbie, that was some heavy stuff. I’m, I’m, I’m seeing a part two in my mind and in my notes because there’s so many other things to cover, but I think we did hit some big points here, which was the sleep aspect, the focusing and then all, all the, uh, the, the commentary about eating and creating that healthy, a relaxed environment to eat your calories, eat your food. So thanks for, thanks for getting into a little, a little dip into the holistic method. Much more to come Debbie Potts up there doing her best at her, at her, uh, Fitness Forward studio to share the message with our clients and keep going yourself. Thanks for all the great work you do.

Debbie: 01:11:06 Yes. That the next thing we might want to dab into a endocrine and the hormones and been trying to write some articles on that this week of athletes have so many hormone imbalances. And what does it relate to? Stress. Chronic stress will cause this whole cascade of events for your hormonal system. So people that have low t and low progesterone and pregnenolone and thyroid, we’ve got to look at the root cause instead of just taking all these hormone replacement. So that’s what I’m trying to write about this week and get a little more into that. So love to share that information with listeners and that our athletes, triathletes, huge.

Brad: 01:11:44 Just like your, your neighbor buddy Mike Mutzel said, if you go take a testosterone because you have low t but you don’t address those causes and those imbalances, you’ll just grow man boobs cause it will get converted to estrogen. It’s like, holy crap, that doesn’t seem isn’t as compelling as it did when my doctor said, I’ll feel like a young man again.

Debbie: 01:12:01 No, everyone’s on thyroid medication. All this. It’s like you’re just putting a bandaid on people. Look at the root cause of why you need this and doctors just to give you this stuff without even figure out why. So yeah, there’s lots to go into. So thanks for having me on the show.

Brad: 01:12:17 Debbie Potts going into the root cause. Next time we got in a little bit of it here, what’s the best place we can find you and connect with the stuff you’re doing?

Debbie: 01:12:24 The Holistic Athlete on Instagram, I’ve been doing more of that way in trying to do a little more videos and on DebbiePotts.net you can find updates in our blog, my blog and our podcast, the whole athlete.

Brad: 01:12:38 Thank you for listening. Have a great day. Stay balanced. Stress and rest by day.

Debbie: 01:12:46 Squirrel, Squirrel.

Brad: 01:12:49 Thank you for listening to the show. We would love your feedback. It getoveryourselfpodcast@gmail.com and we would also love if you could leave a rating and a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop, iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves because they need to. Thanks for doing it.

SaveSave

I caught up with one of the most extraordinary athletes on the planet, the ultimate waterman of the universe and author of a new book called Life Rider.

As a longtime very casual recreational surfer (I like my waves 18-24….inches), I have long been fascinated by Laird’s continued pushing of the outer limits of human performance in the water. Laird is best known as a big-wave surfer and innovator in the world of action water sports. Laird is credited with being the driving force behind tow-in-surfing (behind a jet ski, so one can ride larger waves than paddling in), stand-up paddle boarding and hydrofoil boarding.  

One of my favorite Laird experiences came a couple of days apart during an epic storm pattern in Southern California. With record-sized waves pumping, Laird made it onto YouTube when he “shot” the Malibu Pier on a standup paddleboard. This is the extremely challenging and dangerous act of riding a wave all the way into the pier, passing through the huge wooden pylons underneath, then emerging out the other side. Considering you are traveling some 20mph on a big wave, if you hit a pylon you are likely toast. A video arriving two days later beautifully framed with a big picture of Laird. At the same Malibu Pier, a foolish body surfer became trapped in an undertow and was about to drown. Who jumps in to quickly save him but Laird. So you have the extreme athlete pulling off epic feats for the brah’s to marvel at, and then switching into his lifeguard hat to risk his own safety to save a Barney. Watch the video and look at Laird’s demeanor… 

Laird seems to touch things and have them turn to gold. His Laird Superfood coffee creamer and related products have been a smash hit, as was his innovative GolfBoard that allows golfers to get a surfing-like experience on grass instead of a lame golf cart. Laird, along with Gabby, are pioneers in underwater strength training.

TIMESTAMPS: 

When surfing, you can tell what’s happening behind you by looking in front of you. [08:12] 

Nurture the body and you’ll stimulate the brain and get it to work even better. [10:25] 

It’s a human responsibility to get out and live and experience life. Take risks.  [13:02] 

There are three ways to approach dangerous things. [21:29] 

Are we born to do certain things like extreme sports? [23:34] 

Subconscious programming takes place from age zero to six. [25:30] 

High performing people in all fields many times come from some sort of shit in their background that was tough and challenging to them. [27:36] 

How does one juggle life in the big city with communing with nature? [31:05] 

If you want to keep learning you have to seek out information. [36:14] 

This younger generation doesn’t know how to have fun. [38:13] 

If you stop having dreams, then you stop having hope. [40:30] 

We are each our own greatest restrictor. [44:34] 

What did it take for Laird to learn to be more aggressive? [48:22] 

LINKS: 

LISTEN:

Download Episode MP3

Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:08 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author and athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high-stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 03:29 I got to talk to Laird Hamilton. Man, my surfer friends can’t believe it, but he’s got a new book out called Life Rider and it is a beautiful piece of work. I highly recommend reading it and that’s saying a lot for me because who has time to read a lot these days? We’re too busy being distracted, connected to technology and, Oh, Laird has a few things to say about that. I think you’re going to love this interview. We hit it hard to, hey, teed this guy up and he just goes off and he might not be a polished professorial, eloquent speaker, but when he offers up these insights, they’re really worth reflecting more deeply upon because I think he’s locked into an existence and lifestyle that transcends the patterns and the traps that so many of us engage in and a lot of it’s through his pursuit, his constant pursuit of the outer limits of human peak performance, especially in the water.

Brad: 04:30 I’ve been following this guy for a while and he’s had a tremendous impact on me. I love his stuff so much. It’s been such a privilege to get to meet him a few times in person hanging out in Malibu with Sisson and when you see him in person, as you might imagine, he’s got that larger than life personality, this incredible positive energy always with a quick laugh, which you’ll enjoy during the show and he’s also a quote machine with these profound insights and it’s so nice to reflect on this stuff for a long time. Afterwards. I got a couple of questions off about his book and some things that I read that had been really sticking with me. So overall, I think it’s going to be a fun interview. If you haven’t heard a Laird Hamilton, keep listening and get out and live some more life. Man. Get off the rush hour traffic, go to the beach, talked to some other surfers. Okay. Watch a little bit on Youtube, but Laird is known best as the big wave surfer king, the ultimate waterman. In addition to his affinity for the water, Laird has been labeled as an inventor, author, stuntman model producer, TV host, fitness and nutrition expert, husband, father and adrenaline junkie, a renowned innovator and guiding genius of Crossover Board Sports Including Tow in surfing, standup paddle boarding and hydro foil boarding. Laird’s, the essential water man. Continuously pushing the limits and expanding all you know about his wife, Gabby Reese, the ultimate fitness power couple of the universe and they split their time between Hawaii and the urban metropolis of Los Angeles and the Malibu area. I asked him a little bit about going back and forth and managing and juggling all the things that he’s got going in life. I think you’re going to love his insights and get out there and do more. Have Fun, like Laird. Enjoy the show.

Brad: 06:20 Thanks for joining me. Laird.

Laird: 06:24 My pleasure.

Brad: 06:25 Uh, this thing is, this thing is the real deal. I’m holding up a book called Life Rder. I’m very impressed, man. And uh, I get a lot of books surprised. Well I’ll tell Ya, I get a lot of books. I write a lot of books, read a lot of books and um, a lot’s been already said and when you get into something that’s got an interesting take that hits you really hard right away, that’s something special deserving of a compliment, man.

Laird: 06:55 Well I appreciate that.

Brad: 06:56 And yeah, this guy, Julian Bora, I guess you guys are pretty tight. Your, your, your co writer and he starts out writing, uh, in his, in his person talking about you and then we jumped in. So I kind of liked that, that pattern really cool. But, um, the start of the book, you know, it, it blew me away because it was getting really deep into like the meaning of life. And I think the, uh, the takeaway message is that you gotta be physical. You got to, you got to connect the mind and the body. We’re here and a high tech life where we’re mostly just sitting in front of a screen all day instead of an going experiencing water or different environment. And I guess that’s, that’s, that’s kind of your main message, uh, that you’ve been conveying for a long time.

Laird: 07:39 Well, I mean, because we’re, this is where we are. I mean, you know, we’re, we’re on this physical plane and, and we’re, and this is who we are and where we are. It’s like when we talk about our biology, there’s certain things that you’re just not going to, no matter how sophisticated, we get techno, you know, technologically we just not gonna we’re not gonna change some aspects of our biology overnight. I mean, maybe that’ll happen, but it’s gonna take a lot more than a generation or two for that to happen.

Brad: 08:12 Um, the, there, there’s some prediction that we might get used to eating sugar and about 50,000 years. That’s about the prediction. We’re going to evolve. Meanwhile, we don’t want to wait.

Laird: 08:26 No. Oh. And we can, we can’t in a way, I think we can’t forget our, you know, part of it, it said, you’re seeing, I always use surfing as, as a metaphor, but you know, surfing is it, when you surf, you can tell what’s happening behind you by looking in front of you. And it’s kind of, it’s a pretty interesting way to go about, you know, things and at where, you know, if you can, if you, to try to begin to understand what we, where we been, uh, we have to look at where we’re going too and, and, and, and, but also be, have to be realistic about what we are. Right? We have to be realistic about that. We’re, we’re still physical beings on a physical planet. And it’s like, I remember one time I was talking to Elon Musk and I was asking that it’s a guy that just makes rockets, but eh, but I would anyways. [inaudible] it’s not about him per se as much as it, I use him as an example, but where he’s so focused and so in his head, right, he’s so much in his head that it’s like, I, I, I put my hand on his shoulder and I was like, Hey, don’t forget to take care of this like this. Like your body. Like, like, you know, as, as intelligent as as we are, and this is as an intelligent as some of people are like Ilan and these other incredible minds. We, we have to remember that they need to nurture the body too because they’re really not even optimizing, in my opinion, they’re true intelligence. Like they give, there’s so much more intelligent than that. In a way. It’s like, wow, you know, look how smart that guy is. But you’re kind of like, but yeah, but as the operating to his full potential, if you know, if you use everybody else’s a reference, you could say, well, I mean, he’s so far beyond anybody that he can, you know, that, that you can’t use them as a comparison. But for himself ultimately for himself is he really opt are operating to his, his true potential.

Laird: 10:25 And I think that’s what most of, I think we all have to be, uh, kind of responsible to that connected to, you know, where your own, your, your, your own doctor, you’re the best doctor that you’re ever going to have that. And no one can tell you how you feel better than you can tell yourself how you feel. No one can tell you better if a, if a medicine’s working for, you’re not better than you can. I mean, and kind of take responsibility. I think we live in a time where we love to just go like, Hey, I’m going to go to this guy and he’s going to tell me what’s going on. How am I going to be? And I’m going to the other guy and he’s going to tell me, you know, how it’s going to be and I’m going to go and we’re, and we’re instead of kind of taking up, taking it on ourselves and, and you know, but, but all ultimately optimizing intelligence through physicality that, you know, the brain without oxygen from the lungs and the heart doesn’t last long. So you know, it, it, you know, feed the body of nurture the body and then you’ll, and then you’ll stimulate and you’ll get the brain to work even better. Right. So I just, I just, I just like to tie it, to tie it in. I think that that’s part of the messaging and the book is for us to, is to connect everything and not departmentalized. You know, I think we’ve, I mean, you think about the fifties or the, or the forties or where, you know, it’s like, okay, he’s a jock. Well, he’s a, he’s a, he’s a professor. Like somehow, you know, but then if you look back in history, like somebody like Leonardo Da Vinci, well, he was a strong and powerful individual, right? And could chisel stone all day, but optimizing his thought. So there was a relationship between physicality and and, and mentalality. Yes. I would say, you know, I, I think there’s a connection that we have to give that we have to nurture and be aware of and consistently feed.

Brad: 12:12 Well said, doctor Laird, you’re, you’re onto something here. And I think a lot of us in modern life are getting pushed further and further away from owning this concept. And we all played when we were kids, at least people of our age played. Now, I don’t know, the kids probably don’t even play starting at age one when they get their screen in their hand. Uh, but if someone’s kind of stuck and not really grasping the importance of this, they watch you surfing the big wave and they go, wow, that’s really awesome. I would never do that. That’s crazy. Or they watch Alex Honnold climbing the, the thing in Yosemite and go, wow, that guy is, that guy is so crazy. He could, he could slip and die. What would you say to kind of bring in the, the Elon Musk or whoever you have a chance to talk to that we all can benefit from exploring those, those physical limits that you’ve been all about in your life?

Laird: 13:02 Well, I mean, I think that’s part of our responsibility is of being alive. That that’s one of our, one of the, one of our purposes is to, I mean like again, talking about reaching your full potential. When I watch Alex climb, it makes complete sense to me. Like that makes sense to me. I look at that and I go, yeah, like you’re like you’re at a level in your skill that you know that you can do something and not make a mistake. That I think I go, Bravo. I’m like, that’s, that’s, that’s what we, that’s, that’s the, the, the evolution of, of, of, of, of, of our, of our skill, you know, that’s the highest level to be able to say, hey, I can go do this thing without falling. I can ride this wave without falling. I can climb this mountain without falling. I think that’s first of all, the to the mental fortitude to be able to, to have the experience, to actually make that commitment that I’m able to, to be that.

Laird: 13:59 But I think that it’s, it’s a, it’s a human responsibility to get out and, and live and experience life and I, and I, and, and the fact is, is that that the presence of death, uh, as, as, as I would describe it as, as kind of shadowed is it may be in our, in our modern society doesn’t make it any less relevant or present. It does it just because we’ve, we’ve shadowed it and pushed it further away and disguised it and done all these things, you know, just cause we seat belted and airbags and warning signs. Yeah. Yeah. I mean all that stuff, just because we’d done all this stuff doesn’t make it any less relevant. And the fact is that, that we have lived in that presence of, and in a, in a, in an intimate relationship with that, as long as we’ve existed. That we’ve, and we, and, and in nature, it’s, I mean, I, and it’s good for us. It’s a healthy thing for us to, to be near near it and, and to, and, and to, and to operate with its presence because it affects the way we conduct ourselves. It, it makes us act differently when, when, uh, you know, when, when our, our, we’re at risk, we act, we act differently, we’re better, we’re better, we’re better.

Brad: 15:27 I think maybe some people misunderstand this who aren’t in extreme sports that your, your, your fear is okay out there when you’re facing giant waves because it brings out the best in you.

Laird: 15:40 Well, it’s mandatory. It’s a necessity. First of all, I would question your, your, your ability to understand if you were in a situation that had like, you know, like a mountain climber on a ledge that if you, if you lose your footing, you fall, you die. So pretty clear like, and it’s a pretty clear thing. Like you’re, you know, you’re, you, you know that, that a mistake we’ll make. Well and for me. So that’s I think, I think, and then it, and then that once you’re in that emotion of, of that you have, uh, and again there’s difference between being scared and having fear. And fear is a, is an emotion that you can use that can make you faster. You know, I would say, you know, if you want to see what fear looks, looks like, watch an antelope run from a cheetah. I mean, that’s what it looks like. You want to see what fears looks like. And usually the antelope gets away by the way. So, but what so is found fast as a cheetah is somehow the antelope manages to manage to get away most of the time. And, and, and that’s fear. That’s, that’s, that’s the, the, that, that understanding of, Hey, I’m smart, my, you know, my vision, my hearing, my, everything’s firing an optimum, uh, which is, which is, you know, which is part of our, you know, our life. It’s our presence. I got my attack dog. Got It.

Brad: 17:09 Love it.

Laird: 17:10 yeah, I got chickens and I heard

Brad: 17:14 Some chickens too. Yeah. Oh, beautiful. Man. So, uh, let me ask you this, Laird, when you, when you, you mentioned Alex Honnold and I remember halfway through the movie seeing him writing the notes in his journal and that’s when it lit up for me that this guy is actually memorizing every single move and that his right hand goes here into this little hook and his left foot goes up to that bump in the rock. And so he, he memorized the route. But when you’re out there in the surf, it doesn’t seem to be exactly lining up with something that he did on land because you’re at the mercy, the, the, the, the waves. Does this have that element of, of danger that you cannot control and how do you deal with that or how do you accept that risk? If it’s a, what’s the percentage? You know,

Laird: 18:03 When you look at Alex’s work, okay, you, you, he’s dealing with a fixed environment other than, okay, there’s dew on the rock are there, there’s, there’s glare or there’s something. But he’s dealing with a fixed thing where he’s accumulated this library of techniques and of moves for these situations that allow him and then a memorization pattern that it’s allows him to get through this course. Now, ours is is again different but similar because it were understand, you know, our experience at looking at waves, watching waves being on waves, watching what they do and how they do it over thousands and thousands of hours gives us a knowledge bank to be able to tap into that information and say, okay, well when it does that, this happens. Now each one being slightly different, uh, yet we have on accumulation of information to use to, to implement into the situation and then that’s what allows us to do it. Uh, like, like, and, and the, and the fact is, is that, you know, what do they say? There’s a predictability and chaos, but, but the fact, but the fact is, is that waves are highly predictable, much more than humans. I mean, humans are the ones that do the most unpredictable things that were waves don’t all of a sudden come from the land out to the sea. They’re always coming from the sea to the land. They’re always a, at a, at a given spot.

Laird: 19:29 They always move a certain direction. I mean, there’s just certain characteristics that are very reliable. Uh, it, it, for the knowledgeable, you know, for those who have knowledge, those things are very consistent and very reliable. For someone who looks from the side, it might be kind of confusing and, and, but you know, and listen, they are, you know, stuff happens. We know that, right? We know that things can happen. Um, that’s, that’s part of life. And how you respond in those moments and what you and, and the, and the, you know, the, uh, the moves that you make really feed into, you know, first of all, your intentions originally. Why were you, why do you do this? You know, I always, I always say if you really want to see, um, why someone’s doing something, put them in a situation where, uh, you know, where they, where they’re going to be tested and you’ll know right away their sincerity because it’s like if you’re doing it because you love it and it’s in your heart and it’s all you’ve ever wanted to do, that you’re good with what’s going to happen, you’re okay with it. I mean, I guarantee you that Alex was going to be okay with following that. He was going to be on the one day he stopped. I go, respectable. Good, good call. You just, you didn’t feel it. Hey, listen to your intuition. Do you know, you gotta you know, I mean, you got cameras, the whole thing. You’ve got all these distractions taken away from the thing you’re actually trying to do. Listen to your gut. Uh, so I, and a lot of respect for that, but, but that’s, you know, that’s uh, I mean, I think that, that, that’s your, I mean, this is what we do. This is what we do. This is what we love. This is what we’re born to do. This is what we’d done for our life. And so I think that’s what makes you respond correctly. I go, if you’re doing it for other reasons, uh, then, then I quit, then I’ll then I’ll, I wouldn’t be surprised if you do something, something, uh, foolish in, in a, in a, you know, in the heat of the moment,

Brad: 21:23 the Barn Barney moves out there in the ocean. We’re putting other surfers that risk too, cause they’re out there to get their picture in the magazine or something,

Laird: 21:29 or chicks dig, get school or whatever it is. I mean, you know, there’s a thousand things or there’s a thousand and judges and maybe all of us have a little of each of it. You know, we, I talk about there’s three things that you do and uh, most people that do dangerous things, there’s kind of three ways you approach it. One way is it denial. Um, another way, way is, is, uh, you know, is you operate within your kind of, your experience. Uh, and then there’s ignorance. So you have ignorance, but you just don’t know

Brad: 21:56 Two of those aren’t too good, man.

Laird: 21:58 Yeah. Well I’m saying do you have ignorance? And I think there’s a combination of all three of those, right? If I say to myself, you know, how do I go about doing something? Maybe there’s a little denial. The land grants, a lot of experience. Maybe there’s not very much experience, a lot of denial, a little ignorant. I mean there’s just a conflict. Those seem to be the three kind of, you know, those are the three elements that exist in most games in my, in my opinion, dangerous situations. And I think maybe some of us have a, an ability to implement a little bit of denial in so that it doesn’t impede our decision making and us doing the right thing. I think that we are able to, you know, that obviously there’s a, there’s a, uh, there’s some element that certain, certain people have that they have an ability to not allow certain factors in the situation to get in the way with them making the right decisions to, to, to be where they are. And, and, and, and, and I, you know, I think there’s a little that’s, it might be some DNA. You know, my, my stepdad used to say, you know, big wave riders are born and not made, you know, you don’t make, you don’t make an Alex. Alex is born. You know what I mean? You don’t, you don’t, certain people, you don’t make these people, these are people that are born like that. And then they have the fortune to be in a situation where they get to really cultivate and, and, and, and, and evolve this natural naturally given, uh, you know, drive or instinct or talent or however you want to describe it.

Brad: 23:34 So the first 10 times you were out on the water with the surfboard, did you feel something at that young age that this was something that you were meant to do or that you were uniquely suited for it?

Laird: 23:49 You know, I don’t think it was, I don’t think I was, there was any kind of like, I thought I was special. It was just, I was drawn to the water. So I was, I was naturally just, and I, it was at such a young age, you know, people I’ve been asked plenty of times, you know, what was the scariest thing that ever happened to you? And I said, honestly, I think most of the, of the real intense fear that I experienced was when I was very young, because I would, I was in very treacherous ocean conditions as a young kid and I, and I would get rescued constantly. And so I think, and, and you know, it’s, it’s like I tell people, I go, hi. You know, there’s nothing like a scary movie for a young child, right? Because of the purity and the innocence, right. That you’re, that when you’re older or scary, movies are scary, but they’re not like they are when you’re young. Right? And so the impact, because we’re like sponges when we’re really young, the impact that those things have on us is much greater than they are when we’re older. You know, our sponges are more full of water when we’re older. We just don’t absorb the same. It’s not the same. And so I think being scared so often and so much growing up, it became, it just wasn’t the same. When I got older. It didn’t mean it wasn’t scary. And usually I was, I would get more scared and sit through situations that I was unfamiliar with, but I think that was a little bit like, you know, kind of almost a trained skill that you becoming. You know, they, they, I saw that film where either, you know, they did a study with Alex’s brain where it’s not firing like in these three situations. And I go, but of course, but of course, of course that makes complete sense. You’d because, and I think it wasn’t like that before. I think it comes from being exposed to those intense situations.

Laird: 25:30 The body just goes, hey, listen, I don’t have the ability to sustain this amount of fear. This is too much work. So I’m just, and you, and we haven’t died doing it, so we’re not going to be scared. And so, and we built from that. And I think over time we get a, you know, and you could say you’re numb or callused or jaded or all these expressions, but the fact is I think that the, the system itself is so efficient, it just won’t let us operate under that intensity for that long If you’re going to climb for three or four hours, the body can’t sustain you being in that intense fear or being scared and also like knows, it’s probably not the most efficient emotion to be in during those times to make the best decisions at to B and did it be the most economic with our energy. So I think there’s a lot of things that happen, you know, and I don’t know the science, I just know what seems to make sense to me when it comes to this kind of stuff. And it made a lot of sense that you know, that you wouldn’t be as scared if you had been exposed. Right. Long periods of time growing up.

Brad: 26:35 Well, the psychologist a third that, you know, age zero to six is when most of your programming takes place. And then biology beliefs. Bruce Bruce, Bruce Lipton says we operate 95 to 99% of the time from our subconscious programming in in daily life. So the subconscious programming took place from age zero to six so if you are out there, it’s of gnarly, gnarly ocean conditions from zero to six and you got used to it and survived and realize that you get back on shore. That’s transcending the, the the many challenges that may never like the big wave surfers are born, not made, but maybe they’re made when they were little and then they go for it.

Laird: 27:17 Exactly. Well I me and maybe they’re born, they’re born with some us thing. They’d allowed them to be there when they were six, so,

Brad: 27:24 oh yeah, like a different era. The era before helicopter parenting when they would never let a kid out there doing what you are doing. We should add home videos if you get in an undertow and then

Laird: 27:36 yeah, there’d be a lot of them. Might be a loss. There would be a lot when I, I thank you for that. But for the science, like I said, in a way, because that is true. Like, I mean, I, I from zero to six, I spent, I mean, I spent my entire life on the beach from zero to six every day. And I lived from, like in my formable years, three, four years old. I lived in one of the most dangerous beaches in the world and would get sucked out to sea and people would get sucked out and never seen again. I mean, I mean, that was the environment that I grew in, grew up in. So for me it was a little, you know, what looks to, to what it looks from a distance as something, you know, so out of this world, what would seem to, is more of a normal seem normal. Like I said, of course you’re going to go do that. And of course that happens in, of course that’s stuff goes on and it’s, uh, you know, I, I, it’s back to that exposure, but having the mentality I think is a part of it too. I think there’s a piece of it that um, you know, and I don’t know, I heard this, I heard a study once that they said that there are certain people that are born with a genetic predisposition to be able to do dangerous things, you know?

Brad: 28:51 Right. I mean you wrote about this it really nicely and you, you, you called it the uh, the high stress point on the organism and you observed that these high performing people in all fields a lot of times come from some sort of shit in their background that was tough and, and challenge them. A lot of times we hear the stories where it’s a abuse, abandonment, those, those terrible things. But you know, being, being in the ocean as a young kid, it could be anything. But you’ve had these high stress experiences that kind of opened you up to, I guess being able to cope better with new challenges.

Laird: 29:25 It’s unfortunate. I mean there’s an unfortunate, I mean, somebody goes, is there any way to, to get benefits because it seems like everywhere we look, stress seems to be the thing that really triggers all this great stuff. It’s like, whether it’s heat and ice or whether it’s, whether it’s, uh, you know, okay, I’m going to be, I’m fasting now, or whether I’m on a fitness routine, I mean, everything seems to be stressed based, right? We stressed the organism, it blossoms, right? We take the road, you know, we clipped the rose tree and it, and it, and it, and it makes roses and, but it’s a little bit how the system is, you know, I told somebody to go, listen, don’t, let’s not forget that the system started with a big bang. So, uh, you know, I mean, how much stress was in the Big Bang? I mean, we’re, our whole system seems to be designed around kind of a stressed base kind of, uh, you know, performance driven design. I mean, it’s just seems like that this is, that, that’s where that’s our, that is our universe, that our universe is, is built like that. And I wish it wasn’t because it’d be great to go ahead and lay back on the couch and eat whatever you want and don’t do anything and you’ll be in the best shape of your life. Like, it’s like, you know, don’t read anything, don’t listen to anything and you’re going to be the smartest person in the world. Um, but, but there’s something to be said about, you know, observing nature. I think nature is probably one of the greatest teachers that there are. And I think anybody real intelligent, it’s just somebody who probably understands nature better. Uh, and when I say nature, I mean the universe and you know, off our planet as well. But just when they, when you understanding kind of understanding patterns, I think leads to intelligence.

Brad: 31:05 No, you, you talk about this, speaking of stress, you, you talk about, you come out of the water on those big days and you’re kind of fried, you called it PTSD, big wave PTSD. And I think that’s another thing that people don’t recognize. They just see you raising your arms as you ride the wave, but the, you know, the psychological and physical cost. I want to ask you, you know, you’re constantly forced to recalibrate back into real life and you’ve got to drive the car pool, man, we got to leave at 7:45. You’ve got to go get in line at Costco and the line’s long or you’re also, I’m going to ask you a big question with that, and also the, the going back and forth between your roots in a rural experience in Hawaii, and then you’re coming back to large metropolitan area running businesses and doing crazy stuff like that. So it seems like these alternate worlds that you’re constantly getting the, the nature experience, the massive stress of peak performance as, as athlete in your sport. And then you’re going back to hang Laird, look at this spreadsheet and we want to see how the coffee creamers doing, uh, in quarter three. So I wonder how you juggle all that man.

Laird: 32:11 Well, I mean, I think, I think, I think you’ve explained it really. I, that’s how I juggle it is I, I, you know, I go those, those, that, that, that I’m using, you know, I’m running, I’m seeking, you know, I’m seeking, uh, kind of, I’m seeking sanity, but I’m seeking a serenity or I’m seeking a sanctuary and then I go back out and I, and I run around and do all, you know, do these other, these other kind of more stressful things. You know, I have a friend, this is a great example, but I said, you know, I have a friend that plays professional basketball. And I said, you know, if you’re in a stadium, then there’s 50,000 people screaming your name, whether they like your hate you or you’re playing a bunch of all these people. I go, when you’re done with that, you need to go find a big tree somewhere and sit for awhile along underneath the big tree just to, to create some Yin and Yang. Some balance, you know, a little negative, positive little. And so I feel like that’s one of the bay, one of the fortunate blessings that I have is that I’m able, that I have a relationship with nature. I’m, I’m highly conscious of how important that is. I continue to cultivate that on a regular basis. And, but then I still, I could go and run around and, and, and be in the car pool lane with the thing and have the, you know, get cut off at school by the giant suburbans and you know, have all these people with, with rage and, and, and, and talk about, you know, things that are less interesting than writing a giant wave, which is most of the things, um, but, and be okay with that. So, and I think that that’s, you know, um, you know, that all work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy.

Laird: 33:48 We’ll all play and no work makes Johnny adult boy too. So I think there’s a certain thing about that, you know, using these things to kind of play off of each other. And I think that, that they, first of all, you come back into nature after you’ve been in these big metropolitan areas and your appreciation for the chicken creation, tricking his dog, the freedom to go with thing. And then, you know, okay, I’ve got to go change saw some, you know, some, some bad tree that that’s, that’s, you know, taking over the island because it was introduced 20 years ago or what not. You know, I’m just saying whatever that, that, that part of being the o should be in the mountains being in the river. And then you go back and you’re like, okay, I’m the 405 and there’s six lanes and there’s cars in 80 miles in every direction and I’m not going very fast.

Laird: 34:34 And, you know, and, and so I think that really allows me, I, and I think, um, you know, I think that that’s the thing that, that allows me to do it, but I have that relationship with nature. I understand how important it it is. And I go back to it. But at the same time I realized that it’s that it’s a big world and you need to participate in it. If you want to have any productivity, like if you really want to make, if you really want your life to, to, to, to, you know, not only bring meaning, but really bring value to other people. Like if you’re going to do anything substantial in the planet and have any kind of positive effect, you can’t do it in the bushes. You just stock going or you’re just not going to do it. You have to come out and participate. and if you want to have a, you know, it, we, we talk about trying to make a difference and, and, and, but to do that, you’ve got to come out and play. You gotta come out and you’re going to come out and subject yourself to the thing and say, okay, I’ll, you know, I’ll take 10 planes and be in place. I don’t want to be and do things I want to do. So I can do that. And then at the same time and then have a life that you know and then have the life you want to. So not be sitting back on a and frustrated because life hasn’t gone the way you wanted it to, but then you haven’t gone out and taken any risks. You haven’t gone out side of your comfort zone

Brad: 35:56 Or just load it up too much. Like we all know the, the classic Surfer Dude whose going nonstop surfing trips and eating fish tacos and drinking too much beer and it’s maybe they haven’t pushed that other edge of their, their personality and desire to make a contribution to the world .

Laird: 36:14 On the other side. Listen, on that note too, I think that, I mean the old saying ignorance is bliss, but the fact is is that there’s a, you know that there’s, you won’t appreciate the fish taco and the beer. I don’t drink beer but it, but I would, but you wouldn’t appreciate it. Like you would if you were, if you went and you did your, you know, you did your eight city tour and you are in the bill and you’re at the office and you’re in the freeway and you hadn’t, and then you come back and then you’re like, wow, this wave is beautiful. This sky is beautiful because the people that are always in nature don’t appreciate nature, right? Because they’re like, they just think everywhere is like that. And you’re like, yeah, everyone’s not like that. If you want to come with me for a second, I can take you somewhere,

Brad: 36:58 405 north heading from lax to, yeah,

Laird: 37:02 Any direction you’ll see it. So I think that, you know, it’s about appreciation and, and uh, and if you listen, if you want to keep up all weekend, you want to keep learning, you have to go, you have to, the information has to be sought after. You have to go and find to learn. You need to go and, and you know, and if you’re, if you’re curious like I am. And I think, listen, I think that that’s one thing, you know, you talked about not being people not having fun or not even knowing how to up on the mark. I’d say that’s probably one of the single most important thing that anyone could do for their health is just to learn how to have fun again. They’d, I mean, or just learn how to have fun period. Like you said, the new generation, they don’t even know how to have fun. They don’t even know what having fun is. They don’t know what playing is. And, and then he, and then you questioned if they understand what, you know, daydreaming is it, and having, and having, you know, kind of that creative, the way the mind works creatively when you’re, when you’re daydreaming. Like now it’s just how could you date premier on my Facebook, Google with that? I mean it’s, yeah,

Brad: 38:08 It’s rough that the thing’s going to wake you up from the daydream.

Laird: 38:11 Oh yeah, exactly.

Brad: 38:13 So Laird does this sort of a, an adult, uh, personal growth where you were that guy that was stuck, I mean, you, you talk about how you were self destructive out of the water in your youth and I think you gave the single best piece of advice from I think as Tim Ferriss at the end, right? He asks what advice would you give to your 30 year old self? And he asked every single guest that you remember what you said?

Laird: 38:36 Yeah, I think I stopped drinking.

Brad: 38:40 Oh, that’s precious. You know,

Laird: 38:42 Hey listen, you know, there’s a great, uh, a great passage is, you know, when I was a child, I behaved as a child. When I became a man, I put away my child just waste. The fact is, is that that, uh, I just took me a long longer than, than normal. I think I just got a lot of, I had to be an older man to put away some of those things and not all of those things, but, but you know, for me, I feel like a lot of it’s about discipline. A lot of it’s about wanting to maximize your life, like, you know, wanting to, wanting to, to maximize your life and, and, and, and, and being somewhat, you know, I would describe it as my mom said to me once, if you can’t be true to yourself, you can’t be true to anyone else. And so I just use that as a kind of a guiding force. Like, hey, be true to yourself. See where you’re going to do, do what you mean mean what you say? I mean, these are just, you know, like these are, these are, these are, you know, ways to live by,

Brad: 39:41 well, you had all the discipline, competitive intensity, focus, drive, all those things and all you needed to do is redirect them. And I think that’s important point for everybody to reflect on. I, I know some, some young kids who were superstar athletes in high school and absolutely at the top of their game and now they’re, you know, beyond those years and they’re struggling in real life to, to, to hold the job or get into the school rhythm or whatever. And it’s like, why can’t you just apply that discipline that made you all section player of the year? Uh, but once, once you can lock into it, I’m, it seems like that’s your story too, is you just, you just got to shore and locked in and then started w what’s the, uh, what’s the favorite? That orange, orange colored creamer. What’s the name of that? The coffee creamer. I you gave me

Laird: 40:25 Laird Superfood.

Brad: 40:26 What’s next? Let’s give a plug for that man.

Laird: 40:30 Well, you know, I mean just what you said, you know, we have a, I have a saying for that, right? Never let your memories be bigger than your dreams. So at the end of the day, don’t let you know there’s a, it was an anonymous stunt man. Said, you know, never let your memories be bigger than your dreams. And I think that we all need to remember that because if you stop happening dreams, then you stop having hope. And if there’s no, if there’s no hope, all is lost. I mean, as long as you got love, you can survive because love is the king. But without hope. It’s, it’s, it’s, it’s a pretty sad road. And I think, you know, when you, when you live off of your past, I think we just need to remember like, hey, that anything’s possible and that you can, and that you haven’t seen the best years of your life. I think it’s, I think are the best moments or the, or the, or the, or. I just think there’s so much to look forward to and there’s so many things to do. How could we possibly talk about, you know, being the champ of the football team in high school as the apex of our life? Like we got to, we got to re.., you know, then you’ve got to change something and, and, and, and, and how would you get a dream and start, you know, start working on it. But, uh, and I know it’s easy to say that and, but, but the fact is, is that, that it can be as easy as just having that thought that it really, it can be as simple as believing that you can, but we got to help some hopes. We got to have some dreams. I mean it’s, it’s, uh, you know, the, the end, uh, I mean, uh, you know, and back to what you said about the superfood stuff, you know, that my whole food thing is all based around trying to make people feel better. So how can I heard a statistic at one point that the most nutritious thing that some Americans do was drink coffee. And I’m like, if that is true, if that’s true, then we need to try to put some stuff in there. And then there, and then from that, uh, from that concept, uh, Laird Superfood was born and, and then now it’s, uh, you know, now we’re working on all kinds of, of great new products and people are loving them, loving the loving the products that we have and, and loving the new ones that were coming out with. So it’s, it’s about, I mean, now I feel like that’s a contribution that again, you want to make a difference in the world. You feed people good stuff and watch them excel. I mean, it’s, it’s, you know, it’s, it’s not that tricky.

Brad: 42:57 So you have all these hopes and dreams and ambitions. And then you’re also walking around with a little tiny healthy dose of fear or denial. And I’m wondering when you paddle out these days, what we’re the same age? Like 53 54. I got 35 going down. 55 double nickel. Michael Jordan. Yeah. Do you have any concessions to your new hip? You’re many injuries, your mortality, your, you’re a father of young people. Uh, what any adjustments. Oh, comes

Laird: 43:30 in, you know, that’s for the denial. That’s where we just bust out the denial and we’re in full denial. We’re like, no, we’re still 16 and here we go. We have healthy, you know, if I have any apprehension, um, it’s not, you know, it’s not based like, oh, I have kids now. I’m not going to do anything dangerous. It’s nothing like that. Um, it would, you know, it really has more to do out of interest that, that and that I’m not as interested in doing certain things. And it does it, you know, and some of it, the fact is that some of the lack of interest in certain things isn’t that I’m not interested in doing things because it’s dangerous. It’s just that particular discipline. I, I’ve kind of gone through my, my, my, uh, my learning graph and I, I, you know, I talk about life as a formulaic process and then I really enjoy the beginning of the art when it’s real steep and the increments are big and you’re going up and you’re not plateauing and kind of, you know, you’re not just along on a level ground, but you’re really making leaps in browns.

Laird: 44:34 And that’s comes from doing new stuff. So I’m, I’m constantly doing new things and looking for new ways to do old things, um, to keep inspired so that, and that’s my, you know, and, and I, I mean, you know, I could say I’ll be all, you’re not as fast and as this, but I go, listen, at the end of the day, my, I have a friend who has since passed away, Mr Wildman and he was talking about, you know, before steroids. In the in in Olympic lifting, the one of the strongest guys, the limping world champion was 50 years old and the guy was like the strongest guy in the world and the Olympics when he was 50 and it’s like, and people go, well 50 I mean you’re over the hill. And I’m like, well no. Like I was at the apex of strength at 50 so again, don’t put, don’t put these, these, these limitations and these barriers on yourself because that’s really what’s going to stop you more than anything we’ve talked about. We are each our own greatest restrictors. We are our own greatest inhibitors. We inhibit ourselves from doing more stuff than any, any anybody ever does it go, you can say, Oh yeah, this guy, that guy, we do it to ourselves. We say, okay, now I’m here. I can’t do that. And listen, if you don’t want to do it, that’s one thing. But don’t say it’s because you’re 40 because you’re 50 because you’re 60 and and granted there are certain things that come along. You’re not going to run the 50 yard dash at 70 years old like you will at 25 okay, great. Sure. Of course. But uh, but maybe it’ll be over this, you know, the, the, the, the dash and you want to go do something else and that you could do at 70 at a level that is better than anybody that’s 25 because all the experience and understanding it. So I, you know, I think it, it, it’s, it’s, we have to, there’s times times to aim to your strengths, right. And go that in that direction. And when age for whatever reason or injury or ailment becomes an inhibitor, just adjust and go to a place, then it’s not because there’s, there is one of those more than what you know, which field you want to go into.

Brad: 46:33 I love it man. That’s my message with my speed golf passion. You know, I’m not a, I’m not a pro triathlete anymore and I have no desire to be, and I think maybe the specialness of the magic of what you did on jaws and whatever year when it was this many feet high. I mean, doing that over and over every year, it would seem to me to kind of nullify the incredible achievement that happened on that day. And there’s no reason to go and try to repeat that over and over.

Laird: 47:02 Well, and listen. The fact is, is that that, uh, that it just becomes less interesting. I think. I really find that I enjoy doing things. I haven’t done more than I then doing the things that I’ve done over and over, like I really like to do. Like if I had, if I haven’t done something that’s a lot more interesting to me, a lot more fulfilling for, for to me as well. So, um, I, I feel like I would prefer, I’m more interested in looking for the things I haven’t done. Then he continued to do or just, or just to verify because that’s your ego. Your ego wants to go out and just go, oh yeah, well I get this. Oh, I got to do is show you how I can do this. So I’m look at this, I can do it again and again after a while. It’s kind of like a boxer. Hey, you already won. How many times do you, are you going to not stop till you get knocked out? Like, cause you haven’t done that. So then you end up doing that and you know, it’s like,

Brad: 47:52 Or do you, you’re killing it in, uh, in the slow lane in the 405 heading to the office and being an incredible success in one narrow dimension. But you haven’t, you haven’t been on a wave or a rock or a swung a golf club in years. And so I think we, the more narrow we get, the more trouble we have a, we do avoiding. I’m old.

Laird: 48:13 We’re not designed to do that. That’s not, that’s not what, that’s not what we are. We have too many fingers in, too many Joe’s to till you get unlimited gas. Yeah.

Brad: 48:22 Oh Man. Oh, there. Before I let you go. There was this passage at the beginning of the book and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. I read it. Sort of like a, a, a personality inside or uh, uh, a thing that really blew me away I think is one of the first things you said in the book where you were just a kid. Uh, I don’t know if it was 10 years old, you mentioned something and you saw a father and son heading out to the water and it was a day that you looked at the water and felt something was weird. And so you mouthed off to those guys and said, hey, I wouldn’t go out today. And the guy gave you some choice words back cause you were a punk kid and maybe you can tell the rest of the story and how you decided after that day to become more aggressive with your personality.

Laird: 49:03 Well, general, you know, I think that was one of those things. It where the guy went out into the water, then he, and then he ended up drowning and uh, you know, and then you, and then I think the lesson that you, for me, I felt like what? Like what, what, what that the impact that had on me was in the future. First of all, I won’t be so, um, I’ll be a lot more aggressive about when I, when I knew intuitively know and feel something in somebody’s interest. And I started, I started to realize that it doesn’t matter if they hate me, if I saved their life, it’s all okay. They can, they can continue to hate me and that’s, and I’ll be okay with that. So like getting over, kind of worrying about, about people’s feelings, uh, when it comes to their own interests, you know, ultimately they, you start to realize like, you know what, I might hurt somebody’s feelings, but in the interest of their safety, I’ll, I’ll have no problem doing that and I’ll do that every time.

Brad: 50:02 What about if it’s beyond that into general everyday life? Like, if someone comes up with a, a crappy design for the golf board, are you going to saying, look, this ain’t gonna fly, I’m not going to put my name on this and be aggressive in that sense too. Or is it, is it [inaudible]

Laird: 50:16 Honesty? No, I just think it’s about being honest. It’s just about, and I have a bad habit of telling people what I think. So you know, but, but you know what, at the end you don’t have to look back and, and then you don’t hold your, you know, and I always, I mean, you can preface it by and just say, hey, you know, this is my opinion. I could be wrong. So at the end of the day, it can just give a disclaimer and be like, Hey, this is my opinion. I could be wrong, but that looks pretty stupid and I’m not to be involved.

Brad: 50:44 Oh Man, it’s a pleasure to catch up with you. I appreciate you and your books so much Life Rider. People go buy it. What else do we want to, uh, how do we find you and all that good stuff. At the end to plug.

Laird: 50:55 Oh, I don’t know. I’m so bad with all that stuff but, but definitely go to Laird superfood. Get that to, you know, that’s a, that’s a product worth doing. And um, I know, I know you can, you know, you could see me on Facebook and Instagram and all that. Not Fun stuff but, but uh, if you just want to see what I’m doing, just look up, you know, foiling on waves and riding waves

Brad: 51:16 if you’re on there and get out in the water instead and were it says, you know who the other guests who told me, I don’t know, whatever. When I asked how, how people can follower, it was Gabby Reese, man.days or doing something. Laird Hamilton. Thank you so much. Thank you. A little hollow. Aloha. [inaudible] you’re the best.

Speaker 3: 51:38 Thank you for listening to the show. We would love your feedback. It’s getoveryourselfpodcast@gmail.com and we would also love if you could leave a rating and review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop, iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews, and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves because they need to. Thanks for doing it.

SaveSave

(Breather) This episode is all about how we need to devote some time and energy in order to get more time and energy.

Shopping one evening at Whole Foods in my hometown led to a chance encounter with a friend from high school, Mindy. It’s been 36 years – oh my gosh! Yes, time flies, and we quickly progress from young, carefree and taking health for granted to having to deal with real life stuff such as aging. I promise Mindy I will cough up some basic step-by-step tips to implement some healthy lifestyle practices, and hence the inspiration for a two-part show. Part 1 is about getting your mindset right and recognizing its time to make some changes against the unhealthy forces of modern life. 

Speaking with Mindy really got me thinking about the aging process. I noticed she had a tattoo that read, “Love ya more than life,” which she explained to me was done in memory of her beloved, lifelong pet who she recently had to put down. It is so fortunate that with our pets, we are to be able to decide when it is time to end their suffering….too bad it doesn’t work like that in real life! When you hit your 40s and 50s, you realize it is never too early to start making the right choices for your health. Thankfully, the little changes are the ones that make the biggest difference, which leads me to the compressed morbidity theory. Introduced in 1980 by Dr. James Fries of Stanford University’s School of Medicine, compressed morbidity means delaying the onset of debilitating illness for as long as possible, such that whatever hits will arrive around the time you might be expected to die anyway! I have long promoted a similar concept, albeit with a little spicier description: “Live Long, Drop Dead!”  

The number one change you have to make first is with your MIND. Yeah, there are great advantages to modern life, but it’s also trouble: your body has to deal with hypoconnectivity, EMF, processed foods, sedentary patterns, how light affects your system after dark, constant stimulation (and constant stimulation of stress hormones). Next, get your energy levels up by changing your DIET. Clean out 70% junk (grains, sugars, oils) and just eat colorful, wholesome, nutritious foods. Meals are a celebration and relaxed, calm, and slow, not rushed and gobbled down in a manner of minutes. The parasympathetic system is also referred to as “rest and digest” for a reason. The goal here is to escape carb dependency and get fat adapted. Can you skip a meal and feel great? 

Then, you gotta MOVE. Moving isn’t the same as working out, which can be time-consuming, stressful, and exhausting. But frequent movement helps fat burning, brain function, and stress hormones. It’s not about calories because “metabolic compensation theory” suggests as you burn more, you eat more, and get lazier. The right kind of EXERCISE is integral. Life can be so sedentary, making it easy to avoid scheduling workouts. Primal keeps it easy with 3 laws: 1. Lift Heavy Things 2. Run Really Fast Every Once in A While and 3. Move Frequently at a Slow Pace. No matter what, be sure to avoid chronic exercise: it is crucial to respect your body’s natural fight or flight response and consider recovery pie slice. The harder you train, the harder you recover. And finally, SLEEP. Sleep deficiency will throw you back to carb dependency. We are so locked in these artificially lengthened days and it puts us in a sugar craving, fat storing mode because of our genetic hardwiring. Make choices that improve your sleeping patterns: Minimize light and stimulation after dark. Try making your sleeping environment your personal sanctuary: Mellow, simple, cool, and totally dark. Being awakened by direct sunlight, versus your phone, also helps. 

Finally, consider how comfortable you are with being uncomfortable. The body actually likes being stressed and challenged (in an appropriate manner). I heard an interesting idea on a cold exposure show recently: Basically, when we constantly keep ourselves at a comfortable temperature, we are eliminating that hormetic stressor on the body, which compressed our longevity accordingly. Dr. Art DeVany is a big proponent of healthy hormetic stressors as they send a “renewal” signal to your genes. Doing a cold plunge, going to the gym or the sauna, all result in hormetic stressors: brief, positive, natural stressors that promote health and longevity by sending a renewal signal to your genes. Making the decision to turn the handle all the way to ‘COLD’ in the last few minutes of your shower isn’t easy, but it is really, really good for you, and once you change your mindset, it’s easy to choose the option that gives you longevity and good health over the so-called “easy” road. Pay now, or pay later: it’s your decision, but these basic life-changing insights are here to empower you to make the right choices so you enjoy your life, instead of experiencing a steady decline once you hit your 50s or 60s!  

TIMESTAMPS: 

Don’t tell people they need anything or they will be immediately closed off rather than open. [02:41] 

Compressed morbidity means delaying the onset of debilitating illness for as long as possible. [08:04] 

We want to get unstuck and be aware of all the health challenges in daily life. [10:13]  

When we constantly keep ourselves temperature comfortable, we are eliminating the hormetic stressor upon the body. [13:59] 

We don’t have to go to excess to receive the joy and the pleasures of modern life. [15:27] 

Clean up your diet. [17:29] 

JUST MOVE!! [21:02] 

We want to keep things comfortable with our cardiovascular exercise for the most part. [22:58] 

If you cannot hit the bare minimum standards in a mile run, or pushups, you have a very high increased mortality risk. [26:58] 

Don’t forget sprint workouts. [28:45] 

Sleep in a dark, quiet room is a priority. [30:03] 

Brad summarizes the points for basic longevity. [35:06] 

LINKS: 

LISTEN: 
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Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:08 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author, an athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 02:41 Hey listeners, thanks for listening to the podcast. Hope you’re getting all kinds of life changing insights and is on all the cutting edge topics. But I thought we would do a couple shows starting at ground zero with some basic life changing advice, tips, ways to get started in a positive direction. Share this show with someone you love, who deserves it. I said deserves instead of needs. Don’t tell people they need anything or they will be immediately closed off rather than open. And we have everything we need because we have food, clothing, and shelter, right? So people are deserving of a better life, including you. Right? So spread the word. But I was inspired to do the part one and part two, Basic Life Changing advice shows by a chance encounter while shopping in my hometown in Los Angeles at wonderful whole foods.

Brad: 04:53 And Tarzana bumped into Nick Young. They’re Swaggy P one of my favorite NBA players through that pickup on Instagram. Yo. And on this particular evening, uh, it was hearing my name called from across the salad bar area by an old friend, Mindy from high school. And Oh my gosh, it’s been 36 years. Can you believe it? We dropped our shopping baskets and looked at each other and couldn’t believe that either. Yeah, time flies. You’re young and carefree. Pretty much healthy. Taking that stuff for granted. And then even though we both still look great, you look great. So to you, hey, all right. It’s still smiling. What a big smile she has. I love bumping into old friends like that. Uh, but you know, life goes on. Time passes. You have to deal with real life challenges and most likely some health and personal challenges. One personal challenge we had to deal with that night was that Wendy got her shopping basket stolen because we were talking so long we had to go track it down.

Brad: 06:00 Anyway, I noticed that a tattoo on her arm and it said, “love you more than life.” And I said, what’s up with that? She was talking about her beloved pet that she nurtured and had a great life with for many years and finally had to say goodbye to. Thank Gosh, we’d have the decision to say goodbye to pets when it’s time rather than humans where we have to endure and suffer through some of those demises that aren’t so pleasant. Anyway. Uh, this gets us to the topic of real life circumstances and issues and watching the pain and suffering going on all around us and even in ourselves as we age. And it don’t got to be that way, right? Everybody, Right Brad? So time to start thinking about this stuff. I mean, we’re in our 50s here, me and my high school brethren. How about in your forties?

Brad: 06:51 How about in your thirties? How about anytime time to start taking action? And here’s the thing, little changes make huge, massive difference. You liked that analogy. They talking about what the sailboat where if you set sail from San Francisco to Hawaii, like my former podcast guest, Martin Brauns, winning that race, uh, across the ocean. But if you’re like a half a degree off your chartered course, you’re going to miss Hawaii by like 800 miles or something like that. Right? So think about that. When you lock in to good healthy lifestyle patterns, they make a massive difference over time. And when you’re a little bit slack and you slip and you have habits like introducing excess artificial light and digital stimulation after dark, these things add up to terrible over years and decades. So the show is going to be about starting from scratch and getting your mind right and then taking some simple actionable steps that aren’t involving a lot of time, energy, pain or suffering. Just chartering the course on target for a long, healthy, happy life. Hopefully free of pain and suffering or with as minimal as possible.

Brad: 08:04 What’s that concept? Uh, Mark and I talked about it in the book Keto Longevity. Ah, yes. It’s called”compressed morbidity.” Said Brad with a very smooth pause of the recording. So it seems like everything is on the tip of my mind. Yes. This concept called compressed morbidity, advocated by Dr. James Fry’s of Stanford longevity expert. It means delaying the onset of debilitating illness for as long as possible, such that whatever hits will arrive around the time you might be expected to die anyway. Oh my gosh. My Dad is doing just that right now and it’s a beautiful finish line because he’s 97 years old and yeah, he’s got an assortment of health challenges and disease conditions and decline, but he didn’t have them when he was 67 or 77 in fact, when he was 67 he shot a 66, 4-under part at Lakeside Golf Club. Very, very difficult course in Los Angeles. Shot his age, about 2000 more times before he stopped playing golf recently. So that is the goal, man. I’m telling you it’s worth it. Take action today and go for this concept of compressed morbidity. You know what Mark Sisson calls it diligent readers of the Primal Blueprint 21-day Total Body Transformation. No, he calls it “live long, drop dead.” Right? What can be better than that? You certainly want to go when it’s your time after a very long, healthy, productive life. And that’s exactly what the hunter gatherers did, right? There was no such thing as a long steady demise into disease, weakness and death. They had to be at full strength. They had to be strong and healthy because the clan was not capable of looking after dead weight. You had to make a contribution because it was life or death, survival circumstances. And also we didn’t have modern medicine to keep people alive for 23 more years with Type 2 diabetes or the other disease states that we can now manage with medicine but it leads to a very poor quality of life. So live long drop dead, strive to compress your morbidity curve by taking action right away.

Brad: 10:13 Number one I would say is your mindset. So now if you’re taking notes, write down. Number one is get your mind right by acknowledging that modern life is in trouble. Yeah, technological progress is great. Advancements in science and medicine are great, especially when you get sick and need an operation. And the robot does a great job reading the XRay and uh, the, uh, we moving the, the tumor from your body. Oh my gosh. Advancements in medicine and uh, medication and all those things. Fantastic. But at the same time, we are living in an era of hyper-connectivity nonstop digital stimulation, overstimulation, constant overstimulation of stress hormones. We’re living in an era of electromagnetic fields and if you talk to extremely highly respected in knowledgeable health sources like Dr. Joseph Mercola certainly have heard of his health website, one of the most popular ones on the Internet. He is big time extremely concerned about the adverse health consequences of electromagnetic fields. That’s your wireless router, blasting your brain here, cell phone at your bedside. Oh, you know what the worst is when you’re in an urban area? Like, I dunno, visiting a hotel room or somebody’s apartment and you log onto wireless, hey, can you give me your password? And there’s like 47 other wireless connections that your computer is picking up. Well, your energy field is picking those up to a,

Brad: 11:50 We’re doing better in general about our consumption of processed foods and avoiding some of these highly toxic disease-producing agents like the uh, high polyunsaturated refined vegetable oils, the trans fats and the hydrogenated fats are quickly getting removed from the food supply. Even though the big food manufacturers put them in there for years and years before the pressure finally became too much. So we’re trying to turn the corner or most people are thinking a certain percentage of society is asleep and not reflecting on this at all. They’re just going to the drive through getting their food’s sitting down for their digital entertainment and stuck. So we want to get unstuck and aware of all the health challenges in daily life. Light after dark is such a big one. There’s a beautiful book called Lights Out, Sleep, Sugar and Survival talking about the adverse health consequences of introducing artificial light and digital stimulation after dark or genetic expectation for health is to live according to the rising and setting of the sun. That means wintertime we laid around and slept a lot because when it got dark, we got tired, we went to sleep. Summertime, we’re able to get out there and be more active and enjoy the long days of summer. Uh, but we’re stuck in this pattern now of artificially lengthened days, year round, which put us in a sugar craving, fat storing mode from our genetic hard wiring. Why is that? Think about it. Back in ancestral times, when would we be craving sugar and storing fat? That’s right. In the narrow ripening seasons of the fall time period when the fruit’s ripe, we’re going to stuff our faces because we have a genetically programmed sweet tooth in order to survive those long, harsh winters when we may or may not have food. So we’re programmed to binge on carbohydrates and store those calories as fat through hormonal processes calibrated to circadian rhythm of being long days of summer. That’s a good thing for our Paleolithic ancestors trying to survive winter. And it’s a very bad thing when year round. We’re basically stuck in summer mode.

Brad: 13:59 So many other examples of struggles and problems today. So the first one is to get your mind right and be ready and willing to make some changes to your beautiful, comfortable, modern life in order to promote longevity. I’ve just heard an interesting quip today listening to yet another show on cold exposure cold therapy. And the quote was something like when we constantly keep ourselves temperature comfortable, we are eliminating that hormetic stressor upon the body. And when we eliminate the assorted hormetic stressors that have promoted health and longevity for millions of years, we compress our longevity accordingly. The body likes to be stressed and challenged in an inappropriate manner to hone those adaptive hormones. Uh, Dr Art DeVany calls it sending a renewal signal to your genes. So when I plunge in my cold tub in the morning and get my body exposed to near freezing water temperatures, I am sending a renewal signal to my genes. Same as when you go to the gym and conduct a workout or when you get hot in the sauna. There are many other examples of hormetic stressors. Those are brief, positive, natural stressors that promote health and longevity as opposed to, let’s say, the chronic stressor of blasting your eyeballs with light after dark during times when you should be winding down and allowing the sleep process to take hold.

Brad: 15:27 So if we want to acknowledge that modern life is out of balance and not contributing to our health and be open to doing crazy stuff like finishing your shower with a couple of minutes of cold water because it’s good for you and not being so addicted to comfort, conveniences, luxuries, eating too much food, thinking, that’s a decadent vacation when you go on the cruise ship, why not just go to one meal a day instead of three and enjoy the heck out of that meal and spend the other time exploring the Hawaiian islands or the Mediterranean, wherever your cruise is going. We don’t have to go to excess to receive the joy and the pleasures of modern life. All right. Is that enough? Uh, uh, bantering about getting your mind right. I thought so. Thought so.

Brad: 16:13 Okay. Okay. So exiting this step number one, you got to believe like Justin Beiber. No matter where you are right now, I don’t care if you’re dealing with disease, overweight, obese, bad blood factors, high risk category, no matter who you are, where you are right now, completely unfit. Let yourself gone to heck. Since you’re all star days as a high school athlete, whatever it is, you can turn things around very quickly, day by day, one step at a time. So you got to believe that you can turn things around. Quit verbalizing and referencing those self limiting beliefs and negative statements, kneejerk rationalizations and coping mechanisms that are not serving you anymore. Can you think of some examples I can. Oh, I’m so busy these days. I don’t have time to blank. That’s a big one. Or yeah, I used to blank, blank, blank, but blank, blank, blank, blank. Forget it. Just do the best you can with the tools you’ve been given and we march forward, so you ready?

Brad: 17:29 Number two. It’s an easy one. Clean up your diet., Mate. Get rid of that crap. Grains, sugars, and sweetened beverages and refined high polyunsaturated vegetable oils. Those are the big three offenders in modern life that are leading to widespread disease dysfunction, accelerated decline of the human. Dr. Loren Cordain, author of the Paleo Diet communicates the stat that 71% of the calories in the standard American diet, the typical modern diet filled with processed foods and junk foods. 71% comes from modern foods that are completely foreign to our genetic expectations for health. Namely refined grains, sugars, and vegetable oils. So we want to go on a 21-day Primal Transformation. You can take that course, just go to Brad kearns.com click on the link, you’ll learn all about it. It’s taking you through a step by step series of challenges, not just diet, but also the exercise in the lifestyle stuff. But whatever it takes, just ditch grains, sugars, and bad oils for 21 days and start the cleanup process going. You’ll feel great right away in its place. You don’t have to worry about any crazy Keto journey where you’re measuring macros and, uh, getting obsessed about your food intake. But just replace those heavily processed foods with colorful, wholesome, nutritious foods. And later on we can talk about advanced strategies like going Keto or experimenting with different fasting periods and things like that. But the main goal that we want to do out of the gate is to escape carbohydrate dependency and progress toward fat adaptation. That means we are skilled at burning, stored body fat for energy in the absence of these regular feedings of high carbohydrate meals that we have stuffed down our throats for our entire lives. That is an absolute disaster, uh, at the hormonal, genetic and metabolic level. That’s the setting the stage for lifelong accumulation of excess body fat, a bad blood values and disease patterns taking hold. Most notably a Type 2 diabetes, which is growing at an accelerated speed. That’s a disastrous to the extent that it could bankrupt the u s treasury by 2060 if rates continue to climb at the current speed.

Brad: 19:54 Okay, so cleaning up your diet. Also along with that, uh, make mealtimes a special experience rather than choking down food on the go and envisioning food as fuel for the gas tank for the carbohydrate dependent gas tank. You view food and meals as one of the great pleasures of life and really enjoy the experience and make it a special experience. So you’re mindful, you’re not distracted, you don’t have the TV on maybe even out of the gate for the first 21 days. You’re not even reading the newspaper or a magazine. You’re just chewing your food carefully and you’re activating parasympathetic nervous system function instead of sympathetic fight or flight nervous system function. The nickname for the parasympathetic nervous system is the rest and digest nervous system function. So calm, relaxing meal times will help you digest and process the food and assimilate it successfully for energy in your body and get rid of that uh, sugar burning sugar craving activation that comes with the sympathetic fight or flight nervous system. That’s number one. Diet number two, really simple.

New Speaker: 21:02 Don’t worry, don’t brace. Is Dr Elisha Goldstein would say is just move more. I didn’t say get in the gym and get your lazy ass in there and do some classes are through around a bunch of heavyweight. Just move more in daily life. Fitness experts are now realizing that increased general every day movement is very likely to be more important and more valuable than and hearing to a distinct workout routine of a devoted fitness efforts. All you gotta do is JFW that’s the nickname we use in the book, Keto Longevity . It stands for just effin walk! So implementing strategies because it’s so easy to avoid walking and avoid movement in daily life. Implementing strategies, purposeful strategies where you get your walking done every single day. If you have a dog, raise your hand. Don’t you owe it to your dog to at least get them out there for a walk twice a day. It’s a great motivator to get you out there walking morning and evening. If you don’t have time for your dog, you don’t deserve to be a pet owner. What a disgrace. Take care of the animal, give it the energy and movement that it needs and do the same for yourself. Okay. So that’s the first objective is just effin walk. There are other forms of movement which fall into this same category stuff like doing a set of deep squats at your cubicle every hour, maybe hauling off a set of pull ups when you walk by the bar, uh, in the side of your yard when you’re going to throw garbage in the trashcan or implementing strategies where you’re getting assorted forms of movement done in daily life. That includes the formal movement practices like Yoga, pilates, Tai Chi. So that’s your number two objective. First, clean up the Diet. Number two, increase general everyday movement.

Brad: 22:58 And then of course, number three is exercise. And getting into a workout routine. Why is that important? Is because we have these prolonged periods of stillness and sedentary existence today. So we have to actually create reasons to move the body and to exercise and to lift heavy things and sprint once in a while and engage in a cardiovascular exercise. Unlike our ancestors who all these things were woven into the fabric of daily life. They had to lift heavy things, do build shelters, or get their food for the day. And of course they had to sprint once in a while and they got plenty of cardiovascular exercise in the course of their hunter gatherer lifestyle. So today what we want to do is throw down those three primal blueprint exercise laws with a strategic plan of structured cardiovascular workouts. Want to make sure to adhere to the aerobic heart rate guidelines communicated by Dr Phil Maffetone, his MAF formula of 180 minus age in beats per minute. That is the suggested upper limit for your cardiovascular workouts for them to qualify as a low stress, energizing, invigorating fat burning session. So if you subtract your age from 180 let’s say I’m 54 for example, so my aerobic maximum heart rate would be 126 beats per minute. At that point, I am achieving maximum fat oxidation per minute with a minimal amount of anaerobic stimulation or glucose burning. So I’m getting a great fat burning workout. It’s very, very easy. And very comfortable pace. And that’s the key factor is that when you’re burning fat and getting an a aerobic

New Speaker: 24:42 session, a proper aerobic session, it’s not stressful or strenuous. In contrast, when you exceed that aerobic heart rate, which is so common in the group exercise classes or the training clubs where you’re into a charity based marathon training program or joining any group activity out there, uh, people like to routinely exceed that maximum aerobic heart rate and fall into what we call black hole, her heart rate zone or chronic cardio exercise patterns. And these over time can be stressful and fatiguing. You’ll find yourself catching a cold or getting an injury or a craving sugar in the evening after that vigorous morning workout in spin class or in step class. So we want to keep things comfortable with our cardiovascular exercise for the most part. Once in a while of course, anything’s okay, but generally speaking, you’re keeping your heart rate at 180 minus age or below. Absolutely critical out of the gate for the basic approach to fitness. So adding to the regular movement and the cardio workouts at the proper heart rate, we want to get some strength training and we want to put our muscles under a resistance load regularly.

Brad: 25:49 Lift heavy things could be machines, could be free weights, could be stretched chords and tubes, or it could be just your own body weight with the primal essential movements. But it’s critical to put your body underload for the rest of your life. So the preserve bone density, balanced muscle strength, these are the critical longevity factors that are so egregiously ignored by people who don’t do any resistance exercise whatsoever. It can be as simple as doing deep squats in your cubicle and starting today with doing a set of 10 or 20 deep squats, whatever you can manage a holding a plank position while you’re watching TV, right? So you’re doing sort of a assuming a pushup position and just locking into place there for as long as your abdominals can take it. Those simple sessions will make a huge difference, uh, in your longevity potential. In fact, there’s great research, uh, from Cooper Institute in Dallas, Texas, and then a large study of firefighters correlating one’s performance in the one mile run as a very, very strong predictor of longevity, perhaps even better than blood values and other, uh, medical attributes.

Brad: 26:58 If you can run a decent mile time at age 50, you have a very strong likelihood of making it to 80 unscathed. In contrast, if you cannot hit these bare minimum standards, you have a very high increased mortality risk. Ditto for pushups. So the firefighters who could complete 40 pushups or beyond had excellent longevity potential and if they couldn’t complete five, they had a very extreme mortality risk. So I want to get our pushup game or pushup game on point and we want to get our mile run performance. Not Saying you’ve got to go be a runner and finish five k’s and 10 ks, but you should be able to complete a mile. This is at age 50 was the research coming from. You should be able to complete a mile and a respectable time. Here we go with some times, males, superior category, exceptional category, eight minute mile or below. Females, nine minute mile or below. That’s pretty fast. Don’t joke. Try It yourself. Go to a running track, run four laps. If you can do two minutes per lap and you are rocking as a 50 year old male, of course runners would scoff at this and they can run many miles at eight minute pace. But that’s a very small segment of society. So whoever you are, if you can get down to those superior times that great. Now the bare minimum threshold to promote longevity and avoid disease and decline males, 12 minutes, females, 13 minutes. So if you head out to the track and you can’t complete four laps in an average pace of three minutes each or three and change for a female, you are in the thumbs down category and we don’t want that for you. So we want you to get more GFW, just effin walk that will improve your mile time and then put yourself under some stressful peak performance load once in a while.

Brad: 28:45 The sprint workouts where the third component of the primal blueprint fitness goal. So once in a while you want to go really hard for very short duration and just work that upper end, whoever you are, even if you’re a novice, even if you don’t care about performing in the adult basketball or soccer league, you want to conduct explosive short duration sprints, oh, once a week, maybe once every 10 days. That’s all you need to do is work that top end a little bit. If you don’t have the resilience or the experience to do a high impact sprinting, uh, running on the ground, you can do this on an exercise bicycle or a rowing machine or an elliptical or other cardio machine, but you want to up the speed to maximum effort and again, only for 10 to 20 seconds duration, never longer than that. So we sprint once in a while. We conduct a couple strength training sessions a week lasting from 10 to 30 minutes. We also throw in these mini sessions where you’re talking about doing some planks while you’re watching TV, doing a set of deep squats at your cubicle. And all manner of other options and ideas where you’re just going for ways to be fit and active during the day. So that was number three, getting the primal blueprint fitness objectives done. Okay.

Brad: 30:03 Number four: Prioritizing sleep. We talked about this at the outset, minimizing artificial light and digital stimulation after dark, absolute top priority in your life. Why? Because your exercise and your dietary efforts will be compromised if you’re not getting enough sleep. Insufficient sleep will push you back in the direction of sugar cravings, fat storage, carbohydrate dependency, overly stressful lifestyle practices. Of course it will compromise your fitness endeavors and your ability to perform and recover successfully from your workout. So putting sleep at the forefront. Best thing you can do is just tone things down after dark. Get your screen use done earlier in the night and reserve the last hour or two for wind down calming activities like socializing, walking the dog around the neighborhood, reading with a minimal light source, toning down all the light sources in your home, wearing those cool looking blue blocking, UV protection lenses at night and just minimizing your exposure to light. Getting into a bedtime ritual such as taking a warm bath, uh, getting into your pajamas and lighting some candles, writing in your gratitude journal, things that trigger a peaceful transition into a good night’s sleep. That does not include slamming the screenshot after one more show than you thought you would watch late at night and then expecting your body to sleep successfully. So dark, mellow evenings and then getting your sleep environment dialed in so that your bedroom is a special place. A sanctuary that is used just for sleep and a few more things is bought out would say a sexy time, you know, but definitely not for any form of work. No piles of papers or bills. We want to get rid of all the clutter. We want to have peaceful, calming surroundings. We know from Gretchen Ruben, Marie Kondo, the decluttering experts that merely looking at a pile of junk or an unfinished home project will trigger a stress response.

Brad: 32:09 Uh, I write about this a lot more in the book Keto Longevity. So the importance of tidying up and having psychological calmness, especially when you walk into your bedroom, of course your whole house would be great too. But keeping that bedroom tidy and also completely 100% dark, as dark as you can possibly get. That means getting blackout curtains. That means taping off or unplugging all those annoying little uh, LCD emissions and the, uh, power charging lights that can light up a room. Your body is very, very sensitive to light sources at night and it needs absolute pitch dark. If you’re a Techie, a science geek, go read the blog post from Dr. Jack Cruz where he goes through an entire 24 hour a day and the hormonal processes that are going on, and he says from 12 midnight to 3:00 AM is when the growth hormone pulses out and does all kinds of repair and regenerating activities. And even in little bit of light source can throw that off. So we need to be in a dark cave, uh, especially deep in the night, but we can’t have anything disturbing that. So if you have to get up, uh, put a flashlight by your bed or some other way to have a minimal light source to get you over to the bathroom or whatever you need to do. But we want a pitch dark room. And we wanted at cool temperatures, uh, sleeping is associated with a lowering of body temperature. That’s why we don’t want you doing a hot, sweaty workout and then trying to go to bed an hour later. So the lowering of body temperature, the room should be between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Simple, dark, cool, calm, mellow, like a cave. Huh? And then on the flip side of that, as far as good sleep hygiene is when you get up, hopefully near sunrise, that’s when our hormones are calibrated to awaken and give us energy, uh, the mood elevating hormones like dopamine, Serotonin, and even cortisol in a desirable way spike in the morning and get us going for the busy day. And those are associated with exposure to sun. So the ideal morning routine would be awakened near sunrise and get yourself exposed to direct sunlight. No sunglasses. Get your eyeballs. Uh, exposed to sun your skin and get into a movement routine right away. So moving, breathing, stretching. You can look on Youtube for my morning flexibility, mobility routine that I do as soon as I wake up every single morning followed by a cold plunge. That’s a winning morning routine for me. But the key point is to try to get some sun exposure and that will entrain your circadian rhythm to do a good job the following evening, winding things down for you and getting Melatonin release on Cue, uh, soon after it gets dark or you make it dark in your environment. So that’s your sleep hygiene and that is a lot to tackle and absorb for a basic life changing advice show.

Brad: 35:06 But man, if you can nail these objectives, you are most likely 80% of the way toward your longevity potential. That’s from Dr Peter Attia, a prominent concept in the book. Keto Longevity coming soon is this guy is at the very cutting edge of longevity medicine and research and doing all the crazy self experimentation that he’s done. And he wants us all to relax, take a deep breath and realize that just grabbing what he calls this, the low hanging fruit, well get you most of the way there. It’s as simple as that. If you only listen to one show the rest of your life, listen to this show over and over and nail these big four objectives. Ready for the summary? Number one, get your mind right. Get your mind right. Acknowledge that we have a problem here and the luxurious, decadent, comfortable, lazy ass, modern life is not contributing to your health. It’s compressing your lifespan. You want to enjoy life. Get some cold showers once in a while. Yeah, no. Okay, so open mind, ready to receive and make changes. Number two is to clean up that diet. Get rid of that junk. The grains, sugars and refined vegetable oils, the nutrient deficient modern food transition over to colorful, wholesome, nutritious foods. Let’s not get into the diet wars yet about Keto or Vegan, vegetarian or carnivore. Which one’s better? Which one’s terrible? We want to talk about eating wholesome, nutritious foods and getting rid of the junk. Calm, relaxing meal times falls into that same category. So number two is clean up the Diet. Eat well. That’s what we’ll summarize it as and then move more. JFW just fricking walk more and find other ways to engage in daily movement, especially chances to break up these prolonged periods of stillness which contribute to insulin resistance and decline in cognitive function.

Brad: 37:08 Translation, you feel tired, groggy, unfocused, lazy and hungry for sugar. When you sit at your desk all day, you got to pop up and walk around. Do some deep squats at your desk. So increased general everyday movement is number three. Number four, exercise. Nail those primal blueprint fitness objectives. It doesn’t take long, it’s not stressful, it’s not depleting or exhausting. You just have to put together a strategic blend of comfortably paced. Cardiovascular exercise, one 80 minus your age and heartbeats per minute. A couple of strength training sessions per week and a bunch of miniature strength training sessions a week where you lift a heavyweight a few times and then go about your busy day. And once in a while, a sprint workout where you worked at top end, but only for 10 to 20 seconds at a time. And of course, avoid those chronic patterns where your heart rate is too elevated and you conduct too many workouts that are quote unquote, kind of hard from Dave Scott.

Brad: 38:10 Finally, your sleeping habits. Minimize your exposure to artificial light and digital stimulation after dark. Engage in calm, mellow wind down rituals in the evening, walking your dog, playing cards, reading a book, visiting with friends and loved ones. Okay. And then your sleeping environment is a sanctuary. It’s austere, spartan, tidy. It’s dark and it’s cool. A great place to sleep. And then in the morning, awaken and expose yourself to direct sunlight and engage in a movement ritual. Pretty simple out of the gate. We’re raring to go. It sounds fun. Go for it. Do it.

Brad: 38:49 Send me your feedback. Getoveryourselfpodcast@gmail.com. Thanks for listening to the basic life changing advice. Please share the show with people who deserve it. Thank you for listening to the show. We would also love if you could leave a rating and a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop, iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves because they need to. Thanks for doing it.

(Breather) Like most people who grew up in Southern California, I understand that when you’re blessed with constant sunny skies, it’s way too easy to get used to that kind of climate and start to take it for granted. But what happens when you don’t have 365 sunny days every year?

You have to get creative. You have to figure out how to live and enjoy the outdoors in relation to your current climate. I reflect on this while sharing some highlights from my trip to the Pacific Northwest – I visited Seattle, where I had enjoyed some delicious “Salty Caramel Ash” flavored ice cream aka activated charcoal vegan ice cream, as well as Eugene and Portland.

One of the most important things I took away from my trip was how the Pacific Northwesterners really know how to make the most of their time. They use the summer months as an opportunity to cram in a ton of activities into their day, and I know people who take trips to warmer climates during colder weather to make sure they’re getting their recreational time in.   

I was so happy to be able to meet up with some cool people, like Debbie Potts, host of The Whole Athlete Podcast, to discuss her career and journey into holistic medicine, and High Intensity Health founder Mike Mutzel, who shared some amazing insights about recovery: “The harder you train, the more energy you need to devote to recovery.” We think in terms of ‘go go go’ and then collapse on the couch or into bed – but this doesn’t even qualify as recovery time. Mike’s concepts for recovery are way more sophisticated than that and he is a big proponent of Rebound Training. Another important piece of advice from Mike: When your HRV number is extra high you may think you’re recovering well, but it can mean the opposite – that your body is still fighting to recover fully, so you need to rest.

It was great to finally meet Dr. Tommy Wood (of Nourish Balance Thrive) face to face after having recorded (remotely) so many podcasts with him. Tommy is great company and super stimulating to speak with because he offers such interesting views on a wide variety of subjects. While he’s super academic and into studying scientific research, he’s also always making a sincere effort to brings things back to the simple, practical stuff – like emphasizing the importance of having a dog to literally boost your health because it forces you outside and makes you engage play. Another gem from Tommy: “You’re liquidating your assets when you overstimulate the flight or fight response with your hectic, busy life or extreme training regimen that’s too much for you.” This is so important to consider. 

After seeing Tommyhopped on the train to head on over to the beautiful town of Eugene, Oregon. I met up with my Speedgolf mentor Christopher Smith at the Eugene Country Club, and we ran all over town, checking out the updated University of Oregon campus and the Prefontaine Memorial, and just enjoying some great conversation. We talked about his incredible training concept “Train to Trust” and the importance of context specificity when practicing golf or any other performance endeavor. This means simulating your competitive experience in practice so it actually transfers into effective brain learning when it’s time to perform. 

I also had the chance to catch up (over Skype) with author Scott Carney, author of What Doesn’t Kill Us: How Freezing Water, Extreme Altitude, and Environmental Conditioning Will Renew Our Lost Evolutionary Strength. As an investigative journalist, Carney was originally assigned to cover the famous ‘Ice Man,’ Wim Hof, meeting up with him at his training center in Poland, but soon enough he was participating in training, and performing amazing feats like climbing a snowy mountain in running shorts in the middle of a freezing winter in Poland.  

My last stop was Portland, and I had a great time with Brian McAndrew, who masters all the audio and video content for Primal Blueprint’s YouTube channel. We had a great time discussing how he went from veganism and chronic cardio to finding strength training and the Keto diet. Brian has had such an interesting life at only 31 years old, and has great insights and stories to share about his career journey and pursuing your passions. I had such a fun time having incredible, stimulating conversations with so many great people, and I left the trip feeling so inspired. 

QUOTES: 
  • “You’re liquidating your assets when you overstimulate the flight or fight response with your hectic, busy life or extreme training regimen that’s too much for you.” (Dr. Tommy Wood) 

LISTEN: 

Download Episode MP3

Get Over Yourself Podcast

Brad: 00:08 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author and athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show.

Brad: 01:28 We have the stimulation from the outside world. We have things that we perceive to be difficult and stressful and then we activate the stress response because we choose to get stressed by the circumstances and happening, but we don’t necessarily have to, I could probably liquidate my assets, whatever it is, my retirement account, pay that 10% that whole t max out your credit card and go get yourself a nice big ass boat. And then as the bills pile up at home, you might experience some extraordinary pain and suffering for being a dumb math than buying a boat that you can’t really afford. The harder you train, the more energy you need to devote to recovery. We just don’t think in those parameters very well. We think in terms of go, go, go and then collapse on the couch or collapsed into bed and that qualifies as recovery.

Brad: 02:21 Welcome to another breather show. Yes, catching my breath after a whirl wind trip to the beautiful Pacific northwest Seattle, Eugene, Portland podcast, binge slash vacation offering great times up there in the summer. These folks and the Pacific northwest know how to live and enjoy the outdoors. And I think it’s because they cram a lot of it into the available summer months with the pleasant weather. It’s kind of like that stored up pent up energy where they have a greater appreciation for the recreational opportunities come summer time on the water with the boats, the paddles, whatever they’re doing, playing golf in the long hours of the evening. Uh, Kinda like Scandinavia where they’re having their parties and their festivals and all kinds of stuff crammed into those long days of summer and they can survive another winter. Also, my friends, uh, that, uh, located up there do a great job getting out during the winter months, uh, to warmer climates and kind of balancing those long, rainy months with excursions coming back, feeling refreshed and energized.

Brad: 04:55 None more so than my cousin Hilary in Portland who went to Guatemala for four months for a Spanish immersion experience. Christopher Smith, my golf guru from Eugene commonly goes down to Florida or over to France or Costa Rica to teach golf in the winter time, making it work. And guess what, with the continued science around climate change, some people think or read an article saying that the Pacific northwest could be the go to place to live because everything south of there would become too hot and inhospitable. Wow. What a terrible, scary thought that is. But a clever little joke for my breather show about my time up there. But I do notice that distinct difference, uh, when in comparison to where I grew up in southern California where generally speaking we take the weather and the various entertainment options for granted. We can play golf 355 out of 365 days a year.

Brad: 05:55 So that opportunity to go out and play 36 holes and crazy adventures like that, it’s easy to pass on it. Same with going to an athletic contest because there’s so many other things going on in LA unlike in Sacramento where the Kings, even though they’ve sucked for many, many years, still sell out the arena because it’s the only game in town. So great things to appreciate. I also appreciate about the Pacific northwest, the incredible interest in healthy eating and healthy living. Uh, I saw some bragging by Seattle is the most eco conscious, uh, settlement in America probably substantiated in some way. Portland, of course, we know from the satirical show Portlandia how big deep in to the healthy living, progressive living aspect people in Portland are fun stuff. Oh, the farmer’s markets in the summer. Fantastic. How can you eat better than that? Grabbing all those fresh berries.

Brad: 06:54 You go down to the world famous Pike’s market in downtown Seattle on the waterfront and get the fresh fish or crab. Oh yeah, that’s good. Summer living. Even the ice cream. Oh my gosh. I kind of swore off ice cream cause I tend to consume a lot of it over the past years of my life. Uh, but walking around the streets of Seattle and Portland, these gourmet, healthy natural organic ice cream is in vogue. I found a place called Frankie and Joe’s in Seattle that serves Vegan ice cream. Absolutely delicious. You can look on my Instagram. I consumed a flavor called Salty Carmel Ash, and it was black colored ice cream because they had activated charcoal in there, which is good for your digestive track. Uh, my girlfriend had a flavor that was made with Kale, actual Kale inside the ice cream, delicious green looking treat.

Brad: 07:46 And so we handled accordingly. Also had a great sequence of podcasts and meetings and learned all kinds of fun, exciting stuff. You’re going to love these shows, but I thought I’d do a breather show with some brief highlights from each of these wonderful conversations. Uh, starting with Debbie Potts because things got so busy and crazy and I had to reschedule my trip at the last minute because I got sick coming back from a vacation in Mexico for the fourth time in a row. Oh, I’m so heartbroken that I can’t go back to those places I love and a rural Mexico experience. Very scary. Now. I dunno what’s up with that, but I’m talking to a lot of experts about gut health. We’re going to have him on the show, figure out why Bradley Kearns gets knocked down every time he goes to Mexico. Anyway, new schedule didn’t connect with Debbie live for a podcast. She had to fly off for a weekend. But we met briefly and I love her holistic method that she has devised a targeting, of course, the endurance athlete population, which is where she comes from. She’s a high performing Ironman triathlete who, uh, had a extreme health consequence of years and years of going crazy and now has been on a wonderful journey into the fields of functional medicine, functional nutrition, alternative approach, trying to keep things healthy and balanced instead of constantly go, go, go, which works for a while and then you fall apart. So she’s got a great show, uh, the Holistic Athlete and we have a podcast in the future that we, uh, recorded over Skype because we’re so tight and friendly and we didn’t necessarily need to sit down, but I’m always striving to have as many sit down interviews as possible because I’m going for maximum quality, maximum insights, extracting, strengthening that connection, seeing where the conversation goes.

Brad: 09:40 And oftentimes the magic happens when you’re in person and you go in different directions than you thought when you’re sitting in front of your notes talking through the computer. We have enough of that today, don’t we? Anyway, it was a great pleasure to hang out with Mike Mutzel, the Internet sensation@highintensityhealth.com this guy is a total bad ass who a few years ago he was in the health and functional medicine peak performance space and noticed that there was a unfulfilled niche, which was with all this great audio from the early leaders in the space. No one was doing high definition, high quality video, so he taught himself how to use sophisticated camera equipment, packed his bags, and traveled all over the place to sit down with a great many leading authors, researchers, scientists, athletes, coaches, and build this high intensity health library of fabulous videos. So go check out his youtube site.

Brad: 10:40 It’s second to none. One great insight I pulled out was nose breathing at night is extremely important and critical to your health. So many people falter here. We know about the common occurrences of sleep apnea and the serious conditions, but even on a routine level where you might not notice any adverse effects, you’re getting less oxygen to the brain when your nose gets stuffed up and you start breathing through your mouth, uh, activating that sympathetic response rather than nurturing the parasympathetic response when you’re sleeping. So He’s been big into this practice called mouth taping to ensure that you breathe through your nose. He also set us straight about Keto and the concept, the important concept that’s not about stuffing your face with fat to engender ketone production entirely different. We talk about that a lot on the Keto podcast on primal blueprint, but doing it in a healthy, sensible way where you build your metabolic flexibility and get good at burning internal sources of energy, namely fat, and then producing ketones as needed.

Brad: 11:48 I also like the functional medicine space where they’re always talking about swimming upstream and identifying the causes of adverse health consequences rather than just treating the symptoms with medication tape and stuff up and sending you back out there into the game of life. So great insights from him. And then in this hotbed Seattle area of talent and health experts, I drove a short distance to catch up with the recovery based fitness guru. Joel Jamieson had a great remote podcasts with him a while back and what a great chance to connect. And this guy again blew my mind with these amazing insights where as you reflect further on his concept of recovery based training where recovery is the emphasis, the one that we most often overlook and him offering some profound one liners such as the harder you train, the more energy you need to devote to recovery.

Brad: 12:50 We just don’t think in those parameters very well. We think in terms of Go go, Go go and then collapse on the couch or collapse into bed and that qualifies as recovery. Uh, his concepts are way more sophisticated than that, especially. Uh, the concept that was newly exposed to me during the podcast called rebound training. And here he has a specific protocol, a specific sequence of exercises and movements that you can do in the gym to stimulate a parasympathetic nervous system response. That is the calming, relaxing state. The rest and digest. We know this is activated through things like Yoga classes, foam rolling, receiving a massage, all that kind of stuff. So he has a protocol where you get into the gym, even if you’re tired and fried and stiff and sore from a high intensity workout previously, and you go in and you do some gentle movement sequences, you focus on your breathing, you do even some crazy stuff like short intervals, let’s say a ten second sprint on an exercise bike or what have you.

Brad: 13:55 And then focus intently on lowering your heart rate over the next 60 seconds. A very long duration recovery period. And when you can get good at lowering your heart rate, let’s say you’re looking at the screen and concentrating intently on calming down and lowering that heart rate from the, uh, the spike of the sprint effort. When you get good at that practice, you can do it throughout the day. So when you get stressed at work and you have a choice interaction in the hallway with someone that you’re in conflict with, you can go sit at your desk, close your eyes, take some deep breaths and manage the stress response. He also further clarified some insights about the very popular practice of heart rate variability. A another amazing insight that when your HRV number is extra high, usually we’re congratulating ourselves and celebrating just how well recovered we are.

Brad: 14:45 That oftentimes can mean the opposite, that you’re still fighting hard to fully recover and you need more rest. Yes, incredible insights and listen to the show and then on to another neighbor of these folks and they north Seattle area. Dr Tommy Wood of Nourish, Balance, Thrive again, so great to meet and connect in person after numerous remote podcasts on the primal blueprint channel and also our consultations with me participating in his fabulous nourish balance, thrive testing and evaluation and consultation program for health and peak performance. So hanging out with Tommy, the greatest surprise of all was the magnificent beasts that he had at his home, especially this fabulous white boxer named Bruce Bowen. The Great San Antonio Spurs player and I didn’t even know white boxers existed. And I do believe it’s one of the finest breeds on earth. Unfortunately the American Kennel company does not believe so, and they don’t recognize the white boxer as an official breed.

Brad: 15:49 And if you tell this little champ that was so excited to see me when I first entered the home that he’s not recognized as an official breed. It might be heartbreaking news, but I doubt it because he’s so happy to be alive and lick things and jump in my face. Uh, no problem there for Bowen. What a guy waiting patiently while we recorded through two fantastic shows. And the best part about Tommy is this guy is big, big, big into the science and the research. He recently got his Phd on Pediatric Brain Disease from University of Oslo. He studied at Oxford and Cambridge top shelf scientific guy. But he’s always making a sincere effort to bring things back to the simple in the practical, the importance of having a dog to actually boost your health in a measurable way because all of a sudden you have the motivation to get outdoors frequently, twice a day, uh, and also learn how to play at all times because a dog is playful and it gets you into that playful mindset is other fabulous one liner was that you’re liquidating your assets when you overstimulate the fight or flight response with your hectic busy life or your extreme training regimen, that’s too much for you WHEW! Love that.

Brad: 17:03 And we were just talking about, uh, boats because I saw a bunch of cool boats on the harbor, uh, during my vacation time and thinking, man, wouldn’t that be fun to have a huge ass boat that you can take your friends out there and sleep a bunch of people out there and oh my gosh, looking at this thing, go by wondering how much it costs and realizing that for many of us we can look at that boat and say, yeah, I could probably liquidate my assets, whatever it is, my retirement account. Pay that 10% penalty, Max out your credit cards and go get yourself a nice big ass boat. And then, uh, as the bills pile up at home, you might experience some extraordinary pain and suffering for being a dumb ass and buying a boat that you can’t really afford. Unfortunately, we do that all the time with our decisions about fitness, exercise, uh, even our work place behavior and are taking on too much, having trouble saying no, not wanting to let people down and driving ourselves to exhaustion over and over, liquidating our assets to get through the busy day or the busiest semester or the busy a march to the IPO in our startup company or the buildup to the big magnificent, uh, peak competitive event at the end of the season.

Brad: 18:22 So don’t liquidate your assets, man. It’s bad deal. You’re going to pay for it later. Another tip Tommy gave was or reminder that the stress response is entirely under our control. Yes. A traffic jam by and large by wide agreement is a crappy thing, especially when you’re trying to get to the airport on time. Uh, it also sucks when you take your car into Firestone auto care in Sacramento, California and wait patiently for two hours for them to say, Oh, uh, we don’t have a tech that can work on this type of air conditioning system. And I say, Oh, why the eff didn’t you tell me when I pulled up here two hours ago and sit here waiting patiently for you to fix my broken air conditioning when the temperature is 99 degrees and I’m driving around sweating inside the car. So we have the stimulation from the outside world.

Brad: 19:18 We have things that we perceive to be difficult and stressful, and then we activate the stress response because we choose to get stressed by these circumstances and happenings. But we don’t necessarily have to. I could have enjoyed that time in the Firestone waiting room, uh, getting precious work done, uh, interacting on an important project and then gracefully saying, oh, okay, thank you. I’ll go somewhere else then with a big smile and none worse for the wear. But we have to constantly recalibrate and reassess what’s important to us. Is it really important to get angry and emotional over this interaction or can we choose a different response and keep the fight or flight at bay for when we really need it, which is basically for life and death matters, which hardly ever exist today or for those peak performance athletic efforts where we’re well rested, recovered, and ready to harness a peak competitive effort with the fight or flight response in full bloom at those times when we really want too much more from Tommy.

Brad: 20:23 And then I was on the train and bus to the beautiful city of Eugene, Oregon, home of the Oregon ducks and new home of speed golf guru and top golf professional teacher, Christopher Smith, Eugene Country Club. Oh my gosh. What a beautiful town and we hit it hard on my short visit there. We packed it all in. We did a very long run for us two old guys all over town checking out the constantly updated University of Oregon campus. Most particularly, they tore down the historic Hayward stadium site of many great track meets including Olympic trials, national championships, NCAA championships, and they’re building a big ole brand new one. Probably thanks to uncle Phil and other great benefactors. That’s Phil Knight, the founder of Nike who has donated many, many millions of dollars to improve that campus. Uh, but they’re going to host the world track and Field Championships in 2021 the first time, this great event as good as the Olympics, probably better in terms of the quality of track competition.

Speaker 4: 21:27 First Time in the USA. So be there in Eugene, I think it’s 2021. Anyway, we had some great conversation in between are uh, slow jaunt throughout town. We saw the Prefontaine memorial on that run as well, picked some wild blackberries and then sat down and talked to Christopher about his fabulous training concept, known as ‘Train to Trust and the idea of “context specificity” when you are practicing golf or any other peak performance endeavor. And what that means is that you want to simulate your competitive experience in practice so that it actually counts and transfers into effective brain learning when it’s time to perform. The common example, the simple example of not doing this is going to the putting green at the golf course and teaching yourself to make ten three footers in a row on the practice green under no pressure, repeating the same putt over and over and then oh my goodness, you get into the tournament and you’re on the 18th hole and have a three foot putt just like you practiced on the putting green over and over and this one’s for all the marbles and you totally choke is because you never simulated that pressure and that competitive intensity during your casual practicing on the golf putting green, whatever sport it is.

Brad: 22:51 If it’s a basketball player shooting free throws, don’t just sit there and try to make 50 free throws before you were allowed to go home and leave the gym instead. How about do a couple sprints up and down the court and then breathing hard, stop suddenly walk over to the free throw line and try to knock two of them down and then continue on with another drill just like you might experience in a game where you’re playing, playing, playing, you’re working hard and all of a sudden you’re called to the free throw line and you’re hot and sweaty rather than sitting there and we’re listening to a podcast while you’re practicing free throws or distracting your brain from total competitive focus. So Christopher taught us a lot about effective practice for whatever you’re trying to do and also about mindset and evolve mindset for the athlete. Doing things like having compassion for your mistakes. That’s a quote he offers up frequently, especially too frustrated golfers who get angry and a temper tantrum or offer self limiting beliefs and discouraging thoughts as they’re making their way through the golf course rather than enjoying a beautiful walk in nature and just taking each shot as a new opportunity to execute a peak performance endeavor without worrying or stressing about your score or what happened on your last shot. Great stuff.

New Speaker: 24:05 Also, during this trip I caught up over Skype with a, an author by the name of Scott Carney, who wrote a very interesting book called what doesn’t kill us with a very descriptive subtitle, how freezing water, extreme altitude and environmental conditioning will renew our lost evolutionary strength. And we had a very interesting conversation where he started out on this project as an investigative journalist who specializes in debunking gurus and slickster is promoting things that aren’t really legit. And he was assigned to go cover the now famous ice man, Wim Hoff of Holland, who does extraordinary feats of superhuman resistance to cold water ice. And he packs himself and uh, the himself in ice for an hour and 45 minutes to break a new world record. Uh, most people would be dead in much less time than that. He climbed Mount Everest in a pair of shorts and no other garment. And so Scott went over there to, uh, Wim Hoff training camp in Poland. This is long before he was famous and now a pretty prominent figure in the progressive health scene. Uh, and he couldn’t wait in licking his chops, couldn’t wait to expose this guy’s a fraud. And what happened was he participated in the training like any good journalist should and amazingly performed amazing feats of resistance to cold in a very short time. I think a week after he got there, he climbed a snowy mountain in the middle of winter in Poland, just wearing running shorts and reporting that he was boiling hot the whole time. Great show there

Brad: 25:51 And then wrapping everything up back in Portland, hanging out with my main man, Brian McAndrew who masters all the audios on this podcast and also all the video content, the fabulous video content that you see on my youtube as well as Primal Blueprint and we sat down and talked the reluctant guests on the podcast as the second time I’ve been able to rope him in and we had some great insights for the listeners. I think you’re going to love this show. He’s a young guy. He’s only 31 years old, but just had an amazing life journey so far including battling some serious health setbacks and detours and consequent recalibrations on a constant quest for health and peak performance. He’s been deep into the Keto thing for two and a half years now. Constantly evaluating and tweaking and putting his fabulous meals and recipes up there on his Instagram page.,Whole Doods, D-O-O-D-S. He’s also very accomplished in the gym in the strength training and high intensity workouts scene, always tweaking and offering insights. We talked so much off camera and off recording when we’re traveling together and filming. So it was really great to sit down with him. Some fun stuff. How he went down to LA after college was working in a soul sucking job and trying to keep fit and got into the vegan thing and the uh, chronic cardio thing running on the beach, eating crappy food or not enough nutrition, got really sick and lost a bunch of weight. Then he goes back and gets into this strength training mode where he got blown up with big muscles and extra size during his quest to just get a little bit stronger. Hs wife called him a fat chicken face, so he had to recalibrate, get into the Keto thing. So some really interesting, uh, life exploration, life journey, commentary from buying McAndrew always teeing us up for a practical health tips and reflection when we’re doing things like Keto or pursuing peak performance goals in the gym and in other sports. And that was my trip to the Pacific northwest and my many guests and fun insights. I hope this will entice you to go and listen to all the full length shows that I mentioned.

Brad: 28:10 Thanks for listening to this one. Dah, Dah, Dah. No, no, no. Thank you for listening to the show. We would love your feedback. It getoveryourselfpodcast@gmail.com and we would also love if you could leave a rating and a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop, iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves because they need to. Thanks for doing it.

(Breather) Dr. Art DeVany, ancestral health forefather and author of The New Evolution Diet, delivers some of the most profound life advice I’ve ever heard during a 2017 podcast interview on the Align podcast with Aaron Alexander.

At 81, DeVany is retired from his professor career and is pretty minimal on the interview/podcast/lecture scene, so please listen to the whole podcast and reflect carefully on the following commentary that came at the end of the show.  

Of course, you have to work at whatever you’re doing, you have to have high standards for your work. But you also have to realize that there’s a lot of stuff that you make too big of a fuss over. And when you stop that – it doesn’t mean you don’t care – but when you stop beating yourself or beating someone else up over it when you stop ruminating about it, you’re free.  

And you gotta set yourself free – set yourself free from your old mistakes and things that happened to you. And even set yourself free from people, thoughts, foods, and habits that bring you down. That’s when you’re free! Then you can start anew. You can renew every day. Granted, you can’t forget the past. Then you wouldn’t have any memories. Appreciating your history as strength and wisdom gained and getting a move on is necessary for good health.  

Realize that beyond his health interests, DeVany was an economics professor specializing in the complex aspects of how to predict how Hollywood movies make money. In that context, he often emphasizes the importance of random, explosive, life-changing events that apply not just to the economic realm, but in all areas of life. This will help you process a vital comment about “…it’s not the drip, drip, drip.” Can you reference explosive random events that altered your life path more so than plugging away day after day on a linear way? Pay attention to opportunities of all kinds and don’t be afraid to go for it!   

Here is one of his choice quotes, from his professional realm as an economics professor:  

“In any organization, half the work is done by the square root of the total number of workers. E.g., 100 workers, half the work is done by 10 workers.”  

Here are DeVany’s recommendations to deal with depression: “Starve and exercise. The starvation part of it is to eat up some of these dysfunctional synapses. My saying is, for every damaged molecule, there’s a damaged thought. Those are injured neurons inside the brain, and you just need to get rid of the dysfunctional molecules that are causing those neurons to malfunction. Then, heal the brain with neurotrophic factors. Be outside. New thoughts, new patterns of behavior. When my first wife was declining from a host of other things, I’d take her walking as much as I could. I would tell her bad jokes. Change her surroundings. The typical things people have to do. Being outside is enormously effective. There are stimuli you can’t even relate to, but you perceive them. Your unconscious brain is what’s going to heal you first.”  

I’m taking the starve and exercise thing to heart with an intuitive approach to keto. Some days I will wait till I’m hungry to finally eat at between 12 and 2 pm. I’ll do 10-15 min workouts, walking by deadlift bar. He has said ‘don’t jog it’s too dangerous’ and that one I have really begun reflecting upon. In November through January, I was playing too much speedgolf. I had classic burnout symptoms and can’t keep below 130! Now I play cart speedgolf for wind sprints. At over 50, it’s easy to become unhealthy with endurance training. Be sure that you are performing aerobically and that your metabolism has minimal stress. Pursue a shorter, more intense competition to avoid chronic overstimulation of stress hormones.  

LISTEN: 
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Brad: 00:08 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author and athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit, and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go.

Brad: 01:24 With the show. Of course you have to work at whatever you’re doing. You have to have high standards for your work, but you also have to realize that there was a lot of stuff that you can make too big of a fuss over and when you stopped that, it doesn’t mean you don’t care, but when you stop beating yourself or beating someone else over it, when you stop ruminating about it, you’re free and you’ve got to set yourself free. There’s stimuli that you can’t even relate to that you perceive them and lots of studies showed it being around large bodies of water have a calming effect on the central nervous system.

Brad: 02:08 If you have a workplace with a hundred worker, half of the work is done by 10 workers. This is mind blowing. I’m not a participant in the bureaucratic work place, so I have no a good reference point here. I floated this to a few people that I know that work in large organizations and they were like, oh yeah, absolutely. I barely got the sentence out of my mouth and they’re like, for sure. For sure. That’s true. Oh, that’s brutal, man. Get off. You’re dead ass if you’re not. One of those 10 people and join the join the fun. These people are probably living in the most healthy, vibrant life of uh, all the people in the, in the a hundred person workplace.

Brad: 03:47 Welcome to the breather show insights inspired by Doctor Art DeVany, one of the true forefathers of the ancestral health movement. Good friend of Mark Sisson’s going way back and oh my gosh, he started blogging 2005 2006 and was a great inspiration, uh, to Mark and others, uh, at the initiation of the Primal Paleo movement with his insights about patterning our diet and especially our exercise patterns after our ancestors. So the guy is retired now. He’s what, 82 years old and not so much in the public eye, not crank in the podcast circuit or the Paleo lecture circuit, but he has delivered some of the most profound life advice I’ve ever heard.

Brad: 05:01 If you go back and dig into his old podcasts, he has a book called The New Evolution Diet, uh, that came out several years ago and now he’s on Facebook is where he does his public communication, but he used to have a wonderful blog. I think he had to pay to sub subscribe to it and it was well worth it talking about these intuitive, simple ancestral based insights that form the foundation for this fabulous movement. Uh, we did hear him recently on a 2017 podcast interview on the aligned podcast with Aaron Alexander. That was a great show. So go look that one up. I also found one from over 10 years ago, uh, where he was talking about both economic theory as he is a retired professor of economics specializing in Hollywood economics. So he wrote a book a long time ago, uh, about, uh, how to determine if a Hollywood movie will make money or not. And I think some of is a takeaway. Insights were that the marketplace is very chaotic. A lot of it happens by word of mouth and it’s quite unpredictable. So good luck Hollywood. Keep focusing on quality.

Brad: 06:12 Like Jerry Seinfeld says, work on your act and quit trying to turn it into a metrics with, uh, analytics instead of keeping it as an art. All right. So, uh, yeah, go look for him on the aligned podcast. And I’m going to give you some great tidbits and insights. I’ve been doing a lot of research on the subject of longevity, uh, as Mark Sisson and I are working on a grand comprehensive project for a new book and it’s become sort of a hot topic these days. I know there’s some other folks, uh, working on, uh, longevity books and projects. I guess we’ve already been told enough about the mechanics of what to do, what to eat, how to exercise, how to sleep.

Brad: 06:54 And so now we want to turn our attention to uh, optimizing. Uh, what is coined the term coined is health span rather than just lifespan. Right now we’re doing pretty good extending lifespan through pharmaceutical and keeping these poor folks and lives on machines and a drug regimens where they’re barely functional but they can squeeze out a five more, 10 more years than they might have decades ago. And so we can proudly tout these, uh, heightened life expectancies in modern times. Uh, but again, just recently, some very disturbing news in the past few years is that today’s younger generations, like my children have a lower life expectancy than I do for the first time in the history of humanity. Very disturbing. Anyone who’s a parent, you want to reflect on that? Man, that’s a disaster. Especially because we have all this technological advancement and exchange of information over the Internet where we’re dialed in, we know exactly what to do to how to live a long, healthy, happy life.

Brad: 07:58 But we’re just don’t seem to be doing a great job of, for example, disengaging from technology or staying away from crappy food. Because it’s stuck in our face. The temptations are everywhere. The commercials, the billboards, the social acceptance of eating processed food. Yeah, little disturbing. Anyway, so back to Art DeVainy. Um, here’s a nice quote. He’s just talking about going for it in life and he says most things don’t matter that much. But when you see an opportunity for a mentor, a business partner, a life partner, you have to go for it. These are the moments, these are the things that will change your life. It’s not the incremental, not the steady drip, drip, drip. Very interesting. Think back into your own life and consider those times where you had life changing events or circumstances. Many times it did not come in that drip, drip, drip fashion.

Brad: 08:58 And this is an insight that’s a borrowing from his, uh, economics background where we had these chaotic explosive events both in the marketplace where you have a, a brand that took off Lulu Lemon. You have to get their clothes. They’re awesome. They’re incredible. Uh, where they here five, seven, 10 years ago. No. But Reebok was and a whole bunch of other people that have just dripped along, but haven’t seen that explosive growth to go from zero to 60 in two seconds. Yeah. Not The steady drip, drip, drip, maybe the drip, drip, drip is overrated because we always talk about keep plugging away and insights like that. Uh, I just listened to a fantastic book that’s actually a little bit old, a Seth Godin’s book called The Dip and he’s talking about the importance of quitting shit that doesn’t feel aligned with the highest expression of your talents or is just not the right direction for you.

Brad: 09:54 So get good at quitting early and quitting often. And in return you get to focus on becoming what Goden says. Try to focus on being the best in the world at something. And in this context, world means your own personal world. So trying to be the top student in your class, uh, the best plumber in town on Yelp, whatever the context is, the greatest rewards come from people who make it through intense competitive circumstances. That’s what he calls The Dip and then emerge because they’re called by the highest expression of their talents and their passions to pursue this goal no matter what. And where do we see the most dramatic example of the payoff? Is in, uh, let’s say the entertainment arts, uh, athletics, uh, entertainers where they’re making millions and zillions of dollars because they’re the very best and if made it through this dip and they were just compelled to continue going, going, going, and then have these explosive events such as getting drafted by, uh, the professional leagues or getting a hit song after you’ve been plugging away for five, 10 years, whatever. Okay? So that’s a great lesson for all of us. Go for it. When those moments come up in life, when you have that intuitive sense that it’s time to take action.

Brad: 11:17 Dang. I gotta admit, recently I went for it proposing to Mia Moore one of our favorite podcasts. Yes. And, uh, I was inspired by my interview with John Gray. Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, America’s all time bestselling relationship author. We had a wonderful show, a great interview. Uh, looking on the video at Skype and, uh, the guy was going off with this rapid fire insights and, uh, then he paused and broke down a bit because he was reflecting on the tragic loss of his wife a year ago. He was married for many, many years. His wife was a featured element of his books and his educational material, constant reference, wonderful partnership, and as pretty heavy man.

Brad: 12:00 And then he’s going on in his show describing all the attributes of an optimal relationship partner and a winning partnership. And I keep thinking he’s describing Mia Moore in every way. So what am I waiting for, man? Why the drip drip drip? Why are you going to extend it out? And so on the spur of a moment, hey man, time to propose. It’s as good a day as any other one. So there we were at baggage claim at Burbank airport going forward it in life, getting the big payoff. Okay. Back to Art DeVany. Oh, I actually, uh, uh, a butched his quoter, cut in on his quote. So he talks about, uh, those are the things that change your life, not the incremental drip, drip, drip, continuing the quote. Of course you have to work at whatever you’re doing. You have to have high standards for your work, but you also have to realize that there’s a lot of stuff that you can make too big of a fuss over.

Brad: 12:53 And when you stop that, it doesn’t mean you don’t care. But when you stop beating yourself or beating someone else up over it, when you stop ruminating about it, you’re free. And you’ve got to set yourself free. Set yourself free from your old mistakes and things that happened to you. Even set yourself free from people, thoughts, foods, and habits that bring you down. That’s when you’re free. That’s when you can start a new, you can renew every day. Granted, you can’t forget the past, then you wouldn’t have any memories, but you have this potential to renew every day end quote, oh, okay. Uh, I told you he was an economics professor specializing in the complex aspects of how you can make money with Hollywood movies and emphasizing the random explosive life changing events that apply in all areas of life. So what about setting yourself free right now? With whatever stuff is bringing you down, if it’s a crappy job or a toxic relationship or maybe some dietary habits that you’ve been talking about changing for the last six months, 12 months, 18 months, go for it. Take explosive action. Try something new. Try something different. Say, WTF and move along.

Brad: 14:17 Here’s another choice, quote, quote, and it’s kind of relating to this explosive event concept. He says, and they think this is an insight that’s a, a, a law or a principal probably has a name I forgot, but he, uh, DeVany relates that in any organization, any big bureaucratic organization, half the work is done by the square root of the total number of workers. So if you have a workplace with a hundred workers, half of the work is done by 10 workers. This is mind blowing. I’m not a participant in the bureaucratic workplace, so I have no a good reference point here. I floated this to a few people that I know that work in large organizations and they’re like, oh yeah, absolutely. I barely got the sentence out of my mouth. And they’re like, for sure. For sure. That’s true. Oh, that’s brutal, man. Get off. You’re dead ass if you’re not one of those 10 people and join the join the fun. These people were probably living in the most healthy, vibrant lives of, uh, all the people in the, in the a hundred person workplace. I don’t know, maybe some of them like, uh, what was the great movie Office Space where those guys were angling it very well. So they were, uh, you know, partying and relaxing at work and doing other fun stuff with their lives, but just making it through, surviving, making themselves look good. I don’t know, man. I’d rather be one of those hard workers getting stuff done, having the day go by quickly.

Brad: 15:37 Okay. Uh, I mentioned this on another show worth repeating our [inaudible] recommendation to deal with depression. A question was posed to him accordingly and he said, boom, starve and exercise. Continuing quote, the starvation part of it is to eat up some of those dysfunctional synapses, right? Because we know the insights about autophagy, how autophagy is optimized. That’s the natural cellular detoxification process that occurs when you starve yourselves of their usual steady stream of energy. So the starvation part of it is to eat up some of those dysfunctional synapsis, cleaning up damaged cellular material through fasting, and then back to DeVany’s quote. My saying is for every damaged molecule there’s a damaged thought. Those are the injured neurons inside the brain and you just need to get rid of the dysfunctional molecules that are causing those neurons to malfunction. Then heal the brain with neuro trophic factors.

Brad: 16:47 That’s like environmental stimulus, things like exercise. He says, quote, be outside. Think new thoughts, empowering new thoughts, engage in new patterns of behavior. When my first wife was declining from a host of other things, I’d take her walking as much as I could. I would tell her bad jokes, change her surroundings. The typical things people have to do. Being outside is enormously effective. Remember, this is one of the leading ancestral health experts ever on the planet. There are stimuli that you can’t even relate to, but you perceive them. And lots of studies show that being around large bodies of water have a calming effect on the central nervous system. This is me talking now jumping into his quote, there’s also a concept in Japan called forest bathing where they actually give medical examinations inside a park with lush foliage and they see people with lower stress hormone values in lower blood pressure because there amidst nature, we don’t even know the exact mechanisms on which these, uh, insights occur or these phenomenons occur.

Brad: 17:59 But when we’re around large bodies of water, it has a calming effect on the central nervous system. One, uh, speculation is that there’s a lack of intense stimulus, right? You’re gazing out into the ocean so your brain relaxes as opposed to when you’re on seventh avenue and 54th street and you’re trying to find time square in New York City and there’s noise pollution, light pollution, especially at night, man Times Squares. Cool, but give me like five minutes there and then, uh, take me away quickly so that don’t get blasted with all that light and the dark. Very disruptive and disturbing. No offense, Times Square back to the debate. Any quote. Uh, so he, he’s talking about his first wife who was declining, taking her outside, telling her jokes, given her different stimulation. Uh, being outside is enormously effective. They’re stimuli you can’t even relate to, but you perceive them.

Brad: 18:52 Your unconscious brain is what’s going to heal you first. You can also find our veiny talking to Tim Ferriss, Tim Ferriss show. Uh, personally, when you think about starve and exercise, I’m taking that to heart with my intuitive approach to Keto. So some days I am engaged in a starvation mode. I’ll wait until I experienced true sensations of hunger until my stomach starts growling, which is the activation of the prominent hunger hormone, Ghrelin. And they’ll go until 12. One, two, sometimes three 45. Before I have any food. Maybe I’ve done some moderate exercise, uh, not necessarily like intense sprinting and then fasting that long. But maybe I’ve done no exercise and I’m just having a day of starvation. And then other days, man banging some pretty good workouts, maybe not a pairing that with starvation, but getting both of those in, in an intuitive manner. Uh, another thing that DeVany does that’s really cool as these brief bursts of high intensity exercise, so he’ll do a 15 minutes a day of lifting heavy weights and sending that renewal signal. That’s his term renewal signal to his genes and cells throughout his body. Uh, saying that, hey man, I know I’m 82 but I still want to stay strong, so I’m going to go buy a some weights. I have a nice a hex bar in my backyard and I’d go and do a set here and set there throughout the day, honoring this insight of just sending those renewal signals to the cells throughout the body.

Brad: 20:26 Oh, finally, one of the great DeVany quotes don’t jog. It’s too dangerous. What the heck is he talking about there, man? And I think he’s alluding to the high risk of health disruption with chronic cardio. So maybe jogging would be better replaced by running and doing, uh, in between workouts. Because if you’re in good shape and you jog, that’s a different stimulus than someone who’s in moderate shape and goes out there and jogs.

Brad: 20:57 And I see these people on the roads all the time and on treadmills with their red faces looking like they’re suffering. And if you compare that to what the Olympic marathon runners are doing, those people are literally working harder. They’re working at a more elevated heart rate than the Olympic marathon runner who is out there floating along looking impressive if they pass by on the trail, but they’re working in a less stressful manner than the average jogger. So when DeVany says, don’t jog, it’s too dangerous. He’s talking to most people who are out there jogging and

Brad: 21:28 Oh, let me tell Ya. And uh, uh, November, December, a little bit of January, 2018, 2019, I got super excited about speed golf and simulating the tournament circumstances by going out there and playing a full round, a good tempo, running speed. And I did it too frequently and I plunged right back into the overtraining burnout symptoms that I’m so familiar with from decades ago when I was pushing my body out there on the professional triathlons circuit. Very disturbing chain of events where I saw my health declined due to my passion for what seems like a, uh, uh, a reasonable thing to do. And, and staying fit and being outdoors and doing all that great stuff, challenging myself with a competitive goal, but so easy to overdo it when you enjoy what you’re doing. Yeah. So had to tone that down in the process. Inventing a new sport called Speed Golf in a cart. Hey, yeah, for only six bucks more. I grab a cart and I’m still playing really fast cause I want to simulate tournament conditions where I’m hitting the ball quickly. So instead of these long, uh, uh, tempo runs between shots, you know, 300 yards here, just kidding. 240 yards here, 260 yards here, another hundred and 80 yards to the green. Uh, now I’m just doing wind sprints. So I’ll drive the cart up, jump out of the cart, maybe run from the path over to the shot, back to the cart, ram it up to the green, run over, putt the putt, run back to the cart. So I get a nice workout of wind sprints, nothing too long, nothing too strenuous. Play the golf course and go home and continue on with my life without suffering from this burnout effects of jogging due to it being so dangerous.

Brad: 23:14 So there’s what amounts to a wonderful plug for an ancestral inspired exercise program where you’re doing plenty of low level movement and making sure it is at the aerobic zone and not above the often referenced 180 minus your age formula. That’s Phil Maffetone formula to quantify your maximum aerobic limit. I’m 54, 180 minus 54 is one 26, right? I think so. And so I do not want to exceed that number if I’m doing a jog or doing a, uh, a fast walk or whatever it takes to get you up to that limit. You want to have your cardiovascular sessions below that so they’re not stressful and they don’t lead to a damage, dysfunction, breakdown, burnout, illness and injury. You want that renewal signal coming when you’re just walking and hiking and taking it easy and not stressing yourself and then package with that, sending that renewal signal to your genes through brief high intensity sessions that DeVany has been talking about now for what’s that? 13 years ago he’s been banging this drum. So dig up this old material on the Aligned podcast or the Tim Ferriss podcast. Get some inspiration and thanks for listening to the breather show.

Brad: 24:32 Thank you for listening to the show. We would love your feedback. It’s getoveryourselfpodcast@gmail.com and we would also love if you could leave a rating and a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. I know it’s a hassle. You have to go to desktop, iTunes, click on the tab that says ratings and reviews and then click to rate the show anywhere from five to five stars and it really helps spread the word so more people can find the show and get over themselves because they need to. Thanks for doing it.

Brad: 25:06 I want to enthusiastically recommend DNA fit, cutting edge genetic testing to deliver a personal profile that will guide your fitness and nutrition goals. So simple. You spit in a tube and mail it off and soon you get by email. This super cool infographic where it delivers all these important insights and elements of your genetic profile at a glance, how you metabolize carbs, caffeine, vitamin D, lactose, and much more. My exercise profile was mind blowing because it revealed my genetic muscular makeup to be 54% power strength and only 46% endurance. As a lifelong endurance athletes, I’ve been banging my head against the wall training in a manner that was in conflict with my jeans. Don’t wait 20 years making mistakes like I did. Find out what Diet and exercise patterns are most aligned with your genetics. At DNAfit.com. This stuff used to be super expensive. It was a few hundred dollars. Now it’s pennies. Not really, but it’s a great deal and you get 30% off. If you just put in the code, GOY 30 checkout everything at DNAfit.com.

(Breather) Knowledgeable health experts are really making gut dysfunction the heart and center of a variety of real issues that can arise within.

The recent discoveries being made is that the impact on our guts is enormous. Tim Noakes says insulin resistance and gut health are the future of medicine. Most of our immune function and half of our serotonin function happens in the gut. When you have a stomach that isn’t performing optimally, the digestion and assimilation of food as it’s passed doesn’t correctly absorb nutrients, and you’re left with uncomfortable gas and bloating, and nutrient deficiencies as well. High stress puts a ton of pressure on your digestive system. For example, when performing a triathlete circuit, it’s your stomach that will be the first to suffer the consequences.   

Getting off carbs is one of the best ways we can save our stomachs. You burn fewer carbs at rest, AND during a workout (including the warmup and peripheral movement before the meaty, hard stuff) where you definitely do burn carbs (glycolytic). BUT you can make carbs from fatty acid metabolism or have ketones replace your carb needs. You don’t need a bunch of carbs coming from your diet. Excess carbs end up wreaking havoc on your gut.  

Tommy points out that if you cut dietary carbs, you can still meet your glucose needs. By making carbs via gluconeogenesis (your fat metabolism makes glycerol split off of fat). Glycogen stores carbs in your muscles and liver. It binds with 3-4 grams of water/gram of carb ingested. That’s why you quickly lose 10 pounds when you dramatically cut carbs out of your diet.  

Polarized training is tremendous to metabolic efficiency. Working out at Maximum Aerobic Function (MAF) or at brief intensity works with our genetics and PB laws. We want to stay in a range of completing daily movement and entering a very short cycle of fight or flight overall. Going all the way to the threshold is a punishment not just for our hormones but our poor guts. If you don’t want a leaky gut, polarized training is the way to go.  

Tommy counters the boilerplate keto talk that fasting is actually the ultimate health practice and that eating fewer calories equals longevity. I think my calorie increase experience has increased energy AT REST because I’m not overcompensating for exercise while fasting and on keto. This is the best step toward metabolic efficiency. 

We also have to consider the emotional stress of adhering to keto. Peter Attia got tired of it after three years, after all.  

Tommy also believes that athletes that are doing depleting workouts also get autophagy.  

Personally, I like the intuitive approach where I may be fasting/keto several days and other days may pound out workouts in the morning. How awesome is it to ‘eat more food till you get fat’? …Yes, you will find ways to increase thermogenesis. It is hard to believe though because the calories in/calories out concepts are so ingrained in us.  

Tommy was talking about how we know what to do, but need the psychology part. Why is this so? We have so much temptation in modern life to engage in digital entertainment, exhaust ourselves in work or training. We also have poor mechanics like sleeping habits. We’ve become so far removed from knowing what our bodies really need.  

Lack of respect appreciation for the importance of movement – Katy Bowman lazy athlete mentality. If we sit, we store fat, if we movewe burn fat. Don’t be a fitness freak. Nutritionmovement.com – mechanotransduction  

TIMESTAMPS: 

There’s a tremendous link between gut health and cognitive conditions like depression. [02:07] 

What is the problem with canola oil once in a while? [05:57] 

A lot of people find that just eliminating gluten from the diet, causes a quick improvement in digestive symptoms. [08:08] 

If you cut process carbs from your diet, you can meet your glucose needs in other ways. [09:17] 

Water retention plays a big part as a result of carbohydrate ingestion. [11:46] 

Going over the recommended maximum heart rate is not good. Learn about polarized training. [14:56] 

You can mess up your gut health by NOT doing polarized training. [20:02] 

An interesting point is that as an athlete doing a hard workout, you’re pushing yourself pretty hard, you’re depleting cellular energy.  [20:39] 

Autophagy is a good thing: starving your cells of energy in contrast to overfeeding them. [22:03] 

Be careful about overdoing it. [24:21] 

Brad’s intuitive approach to Keto eating is working well for him. [25:38] 

If you have a “cheat day” you’ll have that concept in your brain and that means there’s something wrong with your baseline diet.  [27:25] 

Why is it so difficult to keep our commitments aligned with our highest ideals? [29:51] 

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Brad: 00:08 Welcome to the get over yourself podcast. This is author and athlete, Brad Kearns, discovering ways to be healthy, fit and happy in hectic, high stress modern life. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath. Take a cold plunge and expertly balanced that competitive intensity with an appreciation of the journey. That’s the theme of the show. Here we go though.

Brad: 00:32 If you start to restrict your level of dietary carbohydrate intake, what happened is you get better at burning stored body fat throughout the day, so at rest and during workouts, you’re a better fat burner and you have a reduced need for glucose burning, which we know is more truthful, more dirty of a fuel source. Then fat once in a while you go out there and blast yourself with whatever you want. If it’s the crossfit session and you’d go there and try to beat your time and write it on the whiteboard once a week or once every 10 days, hey, go for it.

Brad: 01:13 Or you go and do a 10 k race. If you’re an endurance athlete or you get to the starting line and you light it up and your heart rate to anaerobic threshold for an hour once in a while that delivers a training stimulus and give you a fitness breakthrough. The problem is that the same pattern of the, if that happened too frequently, why would you need a cheat day? Yeah, I guess you could call it a celebration day where in my case I mentioned eating more popcorn and mark dark chocolate on a particular day then is aligned with let’s say a Ketogenic Diet pattern, but I’m not even calling it a celebration day. I’m just calling it another day and following that intuitive, uh, approach to eating where the, you know what it turns out in many cases my increased carbon taken, increased caloric intake is aligned side by side with an increased exercise output. Make sure I recover restock glycogen, all that stuff.

Brad: 04:32 Okay. Breathers show. Part two, deconstructing my two shows with Dr. Tommy would so go back and listen to the first one. It kind of sets this up. Not really, but it’s nice to get that basic overview of our overly stressful lifestyle patterns today and then get into some of these extremely popular progressive health topics today. Things like gut dysfunction, leaky gut syndrome, you’re hearing this more and more, and if you haven’t heard of it, you better start looking into it because this is becoming centerpiece of health concern, disease prevention, uh, attributing so many things to the health of our gut microbiome where previously, let’s say three, four, five years ago, no one even talked about it. No one made that connection, didn’t realize that, uh, the 80% of your serotonin is made in the gut and the tremendous link between gut health and cognitive conditions like depression, uh, also being the root cause of all kinds of autoimmune difficulties and disturbances and so many people now ditching the grains, sugars and the refined vegetable oils healing, they’re damaged gut lining and reclaiming their health whereby a whole bunch of other stuff didn’t work, including eating a healthy diet.

Brad: 05:57 When you have leaky gut, a, you’re not even getting the nutrients that you deserve from all that expensive stuff. At the overprice national supermarket chain, supposedly filled with healthy, wholesome foods. And I’m making a little dig there because if you go into some of these unnamed stores, there are so many packaged processed foods and even fresh foods made in their fresh area with canola oil. They don’t care. They haven’t seen the light or embrace the concept that these refined vegetable oils are arguably the single worst thing that you can ingest into your body. That’s from Dr Cate Shanahan and many others who are highlighting the importance of complete eradication of these offensive agents from your diet. Ben Greenfield on a recent show on the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast, and listen to my interview with him on, get over yourself. Fantastic stuff. He’s doing great work, cranking out that crazy content of his biohacking and optimize lifestyle practices, but a lot of good things to learn and take away at whatever level you’re comfortable with.

Brad: 07:09 He said that the evidence shows the residue, the damage caused by vegetable oil ingestion, uh, stays in your system for around 18 days. So he said, that’s not a cheat day with your French fries or whatever. That’s a cheat month by the time you add it all up. Oh mercy. Okay. So a little dig at Whole Foods there because for some reason they allow a vegetable oil products all over the store. How about Whole Dude’s instead? That’s my friend Brian’s Instagram account with his delicious meals. And we are working on a cookbook together just for dudes. So there’s a little plug there, two commercials in the middle of the show. Anyway, back to Tommy. So the topic of gut dysfunction, uh, if you have gas, bloating, digestive disturbances, conditions ending with itis, this is being more and more traced to the integrity of your gut lining.

Brad: 08:08 And the gut lining is compromised by these offensive inflammatory foods, especially gluten. That’s why gluten free is a giant health food category these days. A lot of people find that just eliminating gluten from the diet, uh, causes a quick, uh, improvement in digestive symptoms. And of course the digestive symptoms are direct, but there’s all kinds of downstream symptoms that start with a gut health. So not just ditching the gluten, but ditching all grains because gluten is the most offensive, uh, found in wheat product. But there are similar inflammatory agents, agents similar to gluten that are contained in oats, corn, uh, rice, things like that. So if you’re sensitive and you have some damage, you have some permeability and your gut. Now, uh, it warrants a complete elimination of the big three modern offensive foods, sugars, grains, and refined vegetable oils. Maybe there can be some add back and reintroduction over time as you regain gut health.

Brad: 09:17 But out of the gate, you really want to clean things up and try to get some healing going. Uh, so then Tommy talks about getting off carbs, man, getting off those processed carbs. One thing that we’ll do, we’ll save your stomach because the inflammatory, the stressful effects of ingesting sugar and trying to digest it really compromises your gut health. So that’s one reason to dial down the process. CARBS, we’re not talking about the colorful nutrient dense, nutritious carbs, vegetables, fruits, sweet potatoes. I’ll even put dark chocolate in there. Black is a color, right? As colorful, as long as it’s not beige or white. Uh, we’re talking about eliminating the processed carbs to help nurture your gut health. So if you start to restrict your level of dietary carbohydrate intake, what happens is you get better at burning stored body fat throughout the day. So at rest and during workouts, you’re a better fat burner and you have a reduced need for glucose burning, which we know is a more stressful, more dirty, uh, more dirty of a fuel source, than fat.

Brad: 10:30 It creates oxidative stress. Free radicals are produced when you’re burning glucose, especially when you’re a high glucose burner in carbohydrate dependency. So when you simply, uh, minimize it or ditch processed carbs in your diet, you burn fewer carbs at rest, you burn fewer carbs during workouts because you to become more adapted to burning fatty acids in your muscles during workouts, as well as burning ketones as needed. So we’re talking about burning fewer carbs at your desk, burning fewer carbs when you get out of your car, climb up two flights of stairs, enter the gym, get on the treadmill or the bicycle and do a brief warm up and then head over to the vigorous or high intensity session where you’re definitely burning carbs during those, uh, they call them glycolytic workouts. That’s a high glucose burning workout. But overall when you compare to a carb addict who has high carbohydrate intake in the diet and high carbohydrate burning both at rest, during moderate exercise and of course during strenuous exercise, this is the path to escaping carbohydrate dependency and becoming a fat burning beast.

Brad: 11:46 And not only to become a more efficient athlete, you have much better success with reducing excess body fat and you dramatically reduce your risk of diet related diseases that are so prevalent today, a metabolic syndrome type two diabetes. And even for those fitness freaks, with the six pack, they’re still showing signs of oxidative stress and disease patterns just like we talked about with the uh, Afib, the cardiovascular problems that a high performing athletes get. That’s related to not only the stressful nature of their workout patterns, but the stressful aspect of the diet. So in this part of the show, uh, Tommy got a little sciency, but the takeaway point is if you cut process carbs from your diet, you can meet your glucose needs in other ways. Uh, remember the brain has sort of a baseline requirement for 150 grams per day of energy. Uh, a carbohydrate dependent eater, most of us, most people on the planet, uh, are getting, you know, 99% of their energy needs and the brain meant by glucose because the brain is not really burning fatty acids. It’s burning glucose or ketones if you’re in the Keto scene, it also can burn lactate. Uh, surprisingly a amazingly, but putting that, uh, insight aside for a moment where either a sugar burning brain or we start to transition over into the world of fat and Keto Adaptation. So we can even reduce that baseline glucose requirement. But you can meet your baseline glucose needs via gluconeogenesis. That’s the conversion of amino acids into sugar. You can meet it through some fat metabolism such as the glycerol molecule splitting off from the fatty acid molecules. That’s why they call it triglycerides. That’s three fat molecules bound with a glycerol molecule. So when you’re not consuming carbs in the diet, you’re getting your glucose needs met in other ways.

Brad: 13:54 Don’t stress it, don’t worry about it. Another side benefit of transitioning away from carb dependency eating is you tend to lose maybe a significant amount of weight in a short time. That’s because, uh, three to four grams of water bind with each gram of carbohydrate ingested. So if you pig out on a giant bowl of popcorn, and not naming any names, but I do that once in while Yeah, it’s all right sometimes whatever. Um, and you eat this much weight in a sandwich or whatever the carb source of your choice, the popcorn, you’re going to gain four times as much weight because of the water retention aspect of maxing out those glycogen stores. And then when you get fat and Keto adapted, you don’t have to have this obsessive a stocking of glycogen at all times because you’re so good at burning fat. And that is why people lose 10 pounds in the first two weeks of transitioning over to low carbohydrate eating.

Brad: 14:56 Then the wonderful topic of polarized training comes up. That means, uh, you know, the polar opposites. So you’re either going really easy or you’re hitting it really hard with a short duration, high intensity workout. And we’re trying to get away from this no man’s land. This in between zone of what Dave Scott calls “kind of hard” workouts where you’re beyond your maximum aerobic heart rate, your math heart rate, which again for cardiovascular sustained workouts is 180 minus your age in beats per minute. So when you calculate that out, I’m 54 now, so that would be 126 beats per minute is my maximum aerobics heart rate. So if I’m going to go do a jog or bike ride or anything that’s a cardio related, I’m going to keep my heart rate under 126 which translates to a very, very slow, comfortable pace and thereby have a productive fitness and health outing.

Brad: 15:59 But when I exceed that maximum aerobic heart rate, such as when I’m playing around of speed golf and running at a tournament conditions where I’m running a tempo or anaerobic threshold pace and my heart rate’s up there, 165-170 for an hour, that is a highly stressful event and can lead to breakdown burnout, illness and injury, hormone dysfunction, immune suppression. If you do those in a repeated pattern. So that’s the opposite of polarized training is going out there and going quote kind of hard several days a week and I’m sorry, gotta break it to you, most of the crossfit scene, because of the stressful nature of that workout and how they blend a strength with cardio, your heart rate is up way above maximum aerobic heart rate for most of the 45 minute session or however long you’re going, especially when people don’t pay proper attention to a gentle warm up, they go jump onto the bike and they warm up, quote unquote, at a heart rate, vastly exceeding their maximum aerobic function.

Brad: 17:00 Same with the endurance community where they’re going out on these pack rides or pack runs and they’re 15, 20, 25 beats above their maximum aerobic heart rate because they don’t feel like they’re getting a workout when they’re doing jogging./walking, which is really the proper workout to develop the aerobic system. Uh, my shows with Dr Phil Maffetone get deep into this on the primal endurance channel, so it’s a tough one to tell people to slow down, but polarized training is where it’s at. Of course, we want to a favor and advocate for those brief high intensity sessions. On the other side of the coin, the other side of the polar opposites, but again, the featured, uh, aspect of those is that they’re brief in duration. So it’s stimulating the fight or flight hormones in a genetically desirable manner for a short duration workout where you really hit it hard.

Brad: 17:51 So you’re not kind of going into this in between session, uh, in the gym with strength training where you’re lifting a whole bunch of reps, have a pretty easy weight and you’re falling into that same category as the endurance athlete who’s jogging a little bit too quickly. I call these blended workouts where you’re going in the gym, you’re not resting much in between sets and so your heart rate’s elevated for 45 to 60 minutes. Your trainers, they’re urging you on saying, all right, let’s go to the next station. Uh, don’t rest too much. We’ve got to start hitting these other weights. But again, they’re not too hard because you’re tired and you’re getting a broken down and worn out over the course of your session. That is not a productive workout pattern. Again, once in a while you go out there and blast yourself with whatever you want.

Brad: 18:37 If it’s a crossfit session and you go there and try to beat your time and write it on the whiteboard once a week or once every 10 days, hey, go for it. Or you go and do a 10 k race. If you’re an endurance athlete where you get to the starting line and you light it up and your heart rate’s and anaerobic threshold for an hour once in a while that delivers a training stimulus and gives you a fitness breakthrough. The problem is the sustained pattern of these that happen too frequently. These are horribly in conflict with our genetic expectations for health because as I detailed on the first breather show, our ancestors didn’t do any of this nonsense. They did the bare minimum necessary to survive. What’s happening during these blended workouts, these chronic workouts is that you’re overstimulating the fight or flight response both too many days a week. If you’re heading to crossfit too much and for too long of a duration, so the optimal high intensity session is going to last for hey, 15-20 minutes, that’s plenty.

Brad: 19:40 Of course not counting the warmup and the in between stuff, but your hard work periods of time are very short and you get out of the gym and go home and allow your hormones to settle back down to a homeostasis rather than buzzing out for too long and getting these endorphin rushes. That make you feel good? But they’re leading to breakdown burnout, illness and injury. And

Brad: 20:02 Another problem with the polarized training, excuse me, and the other problem with not doing polarized training but doing these kind of hard workouts is you’re really messing up your gut health because by definition, when you’re doing, let’s say an anaerobic threshold session, your gut becomes permeable. When your body temperature heats up, stays elevated for a while, your cells are a burning, a lot of energy for a sustained period of time, and that is leading to opening up the pipes and putting yourself at risk for a leaky gut syndrome.

Brad: 20:39 Next we transitioned into the discussion of metabolic efficiency and Tommy offers an interesting and expanded perspective to the narrowly focused a boiler plate. Talk about the Keto Diet. That fasting is the ultimate health practice and eating fewer calories over your lifetime equals longevity. Now, that’s not a false statement. There’s a lot of truth to that. There’s a lot of science behind that. Uh, that fasting extends lifespan. Uh, but the counterpoint that Tommy’s trying to make is to bring in that, uh, that high stress modern life aspect, both with athletic training and busy, stressful, hectic pace in the workplace where you’re using your brain, uh, in a sustained and intense manner that’s vastly different than any hunter gatherer. So possibly needing additional calories and having the fasting perhaps becoming too stressful when combined in conjunction with these high intensity workouts. Uh, Tommy made an interesting point that as an athlete doing a depleting workout where you’re depleting your cells of energy, you pushing yourself pretty hard, whether it’s a high intensity, doing a bunch of box jumps and then going over and doing some dead lifts and then doing some bench press and going hard for 20 minutes, you’re depleting cellular energy.

Brad: 22:03 And when you starve yourself of energy, this is a very good thing for your health because it kickstarts. It optimizes the natural internal cellular detox, suffocation process known as autophagy. You’re cleaning up damaged cellular material so you don’t get freaking cancer and immune suppression and chronic illness and uh, autoimmune conditions and things like that. So autophagy, good thing starving your cells of energy in contrast to overfeeding them. What happens when you overfeed your cells all your life, which is pretty much what we’ve been doing when we’re going on our three meals a day or when we’re athletes, obsessive Lee refueling and purchasing the before, during, and after products memo and Gatorade had that series of products. If you’re reading through the sports, fitness endurrance magazines of old where they had you take something before, I think it was like a powder or something, then you had your drink during and then, or are you had your little gel packets during and then you had another powder after.

Brad: 23:09 So the opposite of health and longevity and WOOF. Luckily we’ve come a long way and now we realize the wonderful benefits of fasting to, uh, restrict cellular energy or doing a depleting workout. And I can also say, and or because if you get really metabolically flexible, highly fat and Keto adapted, you can benefit from pairing high intensity workouts with fasting for a real turbocharge in fat burning autophagy, aptosis that’s the, uh, program, death of undesirable cells, the potentially precancerous cells. Uh, Mark Sisson talks about this pairing fascinated with intense exercise. Ben Greenfield talks about this. Our [inaudible] talks about this. He says, starve and exercise Art Devini is the key to getting rid of damaged cellular material. And the question was posed to him, uh, what kind of recommendations do you have to treat depression? And he said, starve an exercise man, because that will clear out those damaged brain neurons, those damaged cells that are thinking bad thoughts.

Brad: 24:21 Pretty trippy stuff, man, but starve and exercise. One of the keys to health and longevity. Just be careful about overdoing it and realizing that in many ways, that period of fasting waiting until noon til your first meal is giving you a very similar benefit to the high intensity workout. And uh, we know, especially, uh, Brad knows that sometimes you can overdo it with the fasting and exercise to the extent that couple of days later you kind of feel like crap. So I’ve had a reoccurring pattern with my own personal R and D where let’s say I do a sprint workout in the morning in a fasted state feel fantastic. Uh, and then afterward I fast for three, four or five more hours to maximize all these benefits. And I guess what? 24 to 36 hours later, I kinda noticed I feel like crap and badly need a nap and feel a little stiff and sore, you know, a delayed aspect to this. I’m not stiff and sore and feel like crap right after the workout. I feel buzzed on, uh, the, the cocktail of stress hormones, but within an hour or two after a high intensity workout, uh, you might want to get a nutritious meal into your body to promote recovery.

Brad: 25:38 Okay. So that’s just my own personal insight and I really am liking the intuitive approach here. So if you ask me, how’s my, uh, Keto eating pattern these days, what am I doing? Uh, many days I’m engaging in prolonged fasting a Keto aligned meals, maybe stringing them together. And then right out of the next side of my mouth, you can find me bingeing on evening popcorn, dark chocolate, sweet potatoes, and increased carb intake on particular days. Uh, Ben Greenfield calls this concept, uh, the best of both worlds where he loves doing fasted and workouts. He loves eating Keto aligned meals.

Speaker 2: 26:22 He’s banking a lot of hours in that fasted or, um, calorically minimal state. And then in the evening he calls it family time and enjoying his lifetime and he’ll make all these preparations with his boys and his wife in the kitchen. And Ingest, sometimes a lot of carbs up to 150 grams just in one evening. But he says what that happens is it kind of keeps him free from the risks of hormone disregulation. They talk about the thyroid slowing down when you’re doing intense workouts and also doing Keto, uh, I believe Tommy and, uh, Chris Kelly saw that on my nourish balance thrive report that my thyroid was looking a little sluggish. And thus the suggestion to consume more calories. So if you get good at fasting and put in some fasting work, put in some fasting days, a delay your first meal, and then, hey man, the very next morning, get up and make yourself a delicious omelette, especially when it comes to enjoying your life and trying to align with patterns of your family and friends.

Brad: 27:25 You’re sitting there in the corner like, “no thanks. I’m Keto”. I’m not going to have any of that. And kind of feel like this, uh, a disengagement from enjoyable modern life. But don’t get me wrong, I’m not talking about, uh, pushing over to eating the garbage. So, uh, I don’t like the statement. “Everything in moderation”. I think it’s a disgrace because, uh, we’re so unhealthy and have so many adverse trends in modern lifestyle that we need to have an extreme and devoted commitment to health rather than ever saying that term. Uh, when it comes to food choices, uh, and, and, and sleep habits and things like that, moderation will get you into a early death and demise these days. No joke. So when we have an extreme commitment to dietary quality, uh, our indulgences are celebrations are extremely well chosen rather than mindless rationalizations under the category of everything in moderation.

Brad: 28:22 So if I’m going to have an apple pie, it’s going to be that apple pie made by grandma steaming hot out of the oven, made from scratch with whatever might not be on the ketogenic diet, but it’s certainly not one of the intimates garbage with all the chemicals and the refined vegetable oils and whatever else they throw in there that comes off the shelf, right? So make it count when you’re doing a dietary indulgence and then have that, you know, extreme commitment to high quality and complete enjoyment of the celebration rather than a, these feelings of guilt and rationalizations going through your head, which might keep you locked into a adverse lifestyle practices where you can’t seem to keep your commitments. Okay. So that kind of discounts the, uh, the notion of cheat days. Because if you have to say the word cheat day and have that concept in your brain, that means there’s something wrong with your baseline diet.

Brad: 29:17 Why would you need a cheat day? Yeah, I guess you could call it a celebration day where in my case I mentioned eating more popcorn and more dark chocolate on a particular day. Then is aligned with let’s say a ketogenic diet pattern, but I’m not even calling it a celebration day. I’m just calling it another day. And following that intuitive, uh, approach to eating where you know, what it turns out. In many cases, my increased carbon take and increased caloric intake is aligned side by side with a increased exercise output to make sure I recover, restock glycogen. All that stuff.

Brad: 29:51 Enough on that. Are you getting me? You get where I’m coming from? Okay. Almost home. A little long for a breather show. But this stuff is important. Folks. Tommy finished up talking about the psychology part. We know what to do in many cases. Maybe you’re not in your head through 70% of this breather show in the previous one, but what’s going on? Why is it so difficult to keep our commitments aligned with our highest ideals? You know, one reason, the temptations that surround us in modern life, we’re tempted every evening to engage in digital entertainment. You should see my list of shows to watch a call at. It’s on my notes, on the apple software, on my phone and on my laptop because someone says, oh, you gotta check out this show. Escape from Dannemora by Ben Stiller, the true story of these guys breaking free from jail only a couple of years ago from maximum security. It was a great show. I’m on episode number three. It was an eight part series and cheese. It’s one of the few things I’ve been able to watch in the last six months. So this list of stuff to watch is just off the page. It’s so long because every evening when it’s time to make the decision whether I should plug into get started on another series cause I have so many good recommendations or just go to sleep, I’m usually too tired and I want to go to sleep.

Brad: 31:13 So we have that constant temptation to engage in digital, digital entertainment. For some reason the type a hard driving goal oriented, uh, population has this temptation to exhaust ourselves with too much training and too much work in the workplace. We’re constantly being pushed and even encouraged to go out of balance. What happens to the worker that goes out of balance and works too much. The mofo probably gets promoted these days, you know what I’m saying? So these days we have this baseline cultural acceptance and even embracing of disastrous health practices, like a poor sleeping habits. People are blasting their eyeballs with digital stimulation from a small screen, medium or large screen late into the evening. Like it’s normal everyday pattern. And that makes it okay. Ah, enough already. Let’s stand up and take charge and say, no, I don’t want to struggle and suffer and get old too quickly and make some compromises and make some commitment. Of course you can still enjoy your digital entertainment. Maybe do it a little earlier in the evening. Right. Okay. Be mindful about it anyway and if you’re going to celebrate and indulge maybe a, make a commitment to yourself to kind of turn things around or balance things out the following day.

Brad: 32:33 Wow. What a show. Thank you so much Dr. Tommy would for the inspiration. We pretty much kept to the uh, summary of what we talked about in the two shows, but definitely go listen to those to hear it from him and hopefully, this stuff will resonate.

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