Podcast #244 from http://www.bengreenfieldfitness.com/2013/06/244-how-to-
Introduction: In today’s episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast: How to
use hot baths for performance, natural remedies for dry eyes, how
to enhance vision, how your feet affect your butt, high heart rates
on a ketogenic diet, strength training for trail runners, and how
your ears affect your muscles.
Brock: Well, it’s to be the sunny day here on Toronto. What’s going on in
your world Ben?
Ben: Home day for us. The smell of bacon and eggs is emanating from
Ben: ‘Cause the kids would normally be off at tennis camp this morning
but the rain has shut it down. So we’re making a….
Brock: At least you’re making the best of the rainy day, that’s alright.
Ben: We are. We’ve got a, we’ve got a guest over at the house right now.
Kiwi. Ironman Coeur D’alene is here on town this weekend so I’ve
got a New Zealander pro-triathlete sleeping on the couch, Bryan
Rhodes. He’s actually, he was one of the very very first guest on
the Ben Greenfield Fitness podcast. I remember like, it was like, 4
years ago, I should call him in but I think he’s stuffing his face
with bacon and coffee right now.
Brock: And Vegemite probably too.
Ben: Yes, so if you hear children screaming and dogs barking and
bacon cooking and people from New Zealand shouting, just a
typical morning in the Greenfield house. So, yeah though. That’s
about it. Got a whole lot else going on. I’ve settled in from the race
in Japan and I’m personally getting ready to head up to Ironman
Canada and do that event and I’ve been doing a, still been doing
the whole ketogenic thing. I’m doing my Metron. My breath tubes
are in, so you just breath into these tubes and if they turn purple,
you’re in ketosis and I’ve been doing a pretty good job drinking
the BulletProof coffee every morning and doing the ketogenic kale
shakes and keeping myself in that geeked-out state of ketosis and
yeah, now that all our listeners are asleep, after hearing about my
Brock: Mine’s not more exciting, I’m just like recovering from, I did a
sprint triathlon on the weekend.
Brock: You know, we talked about a couple of weeks on the show we
actually talked about a fellow Rhodian and did 2 back-to-back
marathons at a very very low pace and you’re talking about how
that doesn’t beat your body up as much sometimes as doing
something really full-out and I can really attest to that right now
like a sprint triathlon, I did it on Saturday and it’s Wednesday
now, I’m still really tired and sore.
Ben: Yeah, it is.
Brock: Like not too horrible but it took it out on me.
Ben: You know, this whole, this relates to an article, you know what, I
actually wanna link to this article in the show notes for folks but it
was over at a cool website that I like, it’s gokaleo.com and not
gopaleo.com, gokaleo is written by this chick who started off
overweight and basically just ate a lot of food, like a lot of really
nutrient-dense food, lifted weights and just got this bangin’ body.
Ben: Sorry for that description. For you women out there, I did not
mean to paint you as objects.
Brock: He’s not objectifying, that is a qualification.
Ben: But I mean, check out the website. It’s pretty amazing, Gokaleo.
And she has a guest article on there this week about low-intensity
steady state cardio and how it’s gotten such a bad wrap lately. I’ve
even been guilty of kinda jumping on the you know, endurance-
sports-can-be-bad-for-you bandwagon but in particular, there is a
guy named John Kiefer who’s, he is the author of the Carb Back
loading program that some people might be familiar with and he
wrote an article called….
Brock: The guy that eats cherry danishes all night.
Ben: Exactly. He wrote an article called “Why Women Should Not Run”
and we talked about all kind of the issues with that article a few
weeks ago about how it blames low thyroid and everything else on
low-intensity steady state cardio and just have a bunch of errors in
the way that the article is written in terms of citation errors and
she has a guest article on her website that digs into it even more
and really digs that, that whole endurance-sports-is-bad-for-
women theory to pieces.
And you know, it’s an interesting article. I’m gonna link to it
because it’s really long and folks could go read it and ultimately
one take-away and you talking about sprint triathlons made me
think about this, is that they talk about how high intensity interval
training and how high-intensity cardio in many studies has been
shown to have just as big as a “detrimental effect” on your
hormones and your thyroid and everything else as low-intensity
steady state cardio and the one thing, the one link that kind of
makes both of these “bad” for you is them being done in the
presence of calorie restriction. And you know, that was something
that I talked about, I actually wrote my race report for Ironman
Japan that I just got back from and in that race report, somebody
said, “what would you do to PR in the half-marathon?” and you
know, my answer, basically was I ate more, ran less and you know,
what it comes down to in many cases, we were talking about doing
like a sprint triathlon would be you know, bad for you, harmful
for your body, doing lots of low steady state cardio would be bad
for you, is that in most cases, most of the hormonal deficits and
the inflammation and all that stuff that shows that this stuff beats
you up, really is only proven to be that significant if your
simultaneously restricting calories so what it comes down to is
when you’re working out, when you’re racing, when you’re beating
up your body, eat.
Ben: Go enjoy some food.
Brock: I think we’ve talked about that before like prioritizing your weight
loss in the off season and then prioritizing your training on the on
season. Don’t try and do them at the same time.
Ben: Yeah. So I, you know, knock on wood, I’ve actually been stuffing
my face the more I see studies like this and I’m really not gaining
weight. I’m working out, I’m eating food, my body composition is
great, I feel fantastic and yeah, so don’t fear food. There you go.
Brock: Okay, I think we already covered one of the news flashes but we’ve
got a few more coming up and if you wanna find out all the links,
makes sure to go over to bengreenfieldfitness.com/244 and we’ll
have links to all of the studies we’re about to go through here.
Ben: That’s right. So studies, articles, I always wanna share with you
guys some of the cool or slightly nerdy things that I run across.
Brock: slightly nerdy things….
Ben: Here’s a study by our friend Alex Hutchinson, not a study but an
article. He writes for The Globe and Mail, does some fantastic
articles, and he actually….
Brock: And he’s darn fast too.
Ben: Is he?
Ben: He’s like a runner?
Brock: Yeah. He did, I think it was the London Marathon just recently
and did extremely well.
Ben: Well, he may have been electrocuting himself because what he
reported on in his article and I’ll link to it in the show notes is a
study that they recently published in the British Journal of Sports
Medicine where they used this non-invasive form of brain
stimulations called Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation and
what they did was they applied this small electrical current to
targeted areas of the brain and when you do that it causes this
little changes and neurons communicate with each other and they
did this on cyclists who were doing all out cycling tests after
getting either 20 minutes of real brain electrical stimulation or
fake brain electrical stimulation meaning the electrons were
hooked up but there wasn’t actually any stimulation going on.
Brock: Well I guess he wouldn’t…. I was thinking you should be able to
tell the difference between that but you don’t really have those
kind of receptors in your brain so…..
Ben: You don’t.
Brock: You wouldn’t really know.
Ben: You don’t. When I went down and did, I went down to Dave
Asprey’s Biohacking Conference in San Francisco and I did a
bunch of neuro feedback and I was hooked-up to electrodes for an
hour at one point and the only difference I know is every once in a
while you hear almost like a little bit of static in your ears but
aside from that you just couldn’t tell. It’s not, it’s very different
stimulating muscles with….
Brock: Yeah it’s not like being hooked up to the compex and walking your
calf freak out.
Ben: Exactly. So after the brain electrical stimulation, the cyclists who
were getting stimulated with the electricity, they had lower heart
rates, they had a lower increase in perceived exertion, meaning
they felt like they were working less hard, and they produced 4%
more power in the cycling test which in research, for cyclists, for
anybody who studies cycling research and wattage and stuff, that’s
huge. 4% is a big boost in power. Now, they actually explored
where this boost came from and that was a little bit tougher to
explain in the research.
They thought it was related to the role of something called your
insular cortex in your brain which helps to control your heart rate
and your blood pressure and what seemed to be going on was that
that was being somehow kind of regulated in a way that the
stimulation to the brain was causing the same section of your
brain that gets turned on when pleasant feelings occur like happy
voices or pleasant music or something like that. Those are getting
turned on by the stimulation that was down regulating heart rate
and blood pressure, down regulating rating of perceived exertion.
So you know, almost giving these people you know, the feeling like
they smoked a joint prior to exercise but somehow increased
power at the same time by modulating neuronal activity and it
was really really interesting and I could totally see somebody
coming up with some kind of a device that you could like put into
Brock: Put into your bike helmet….
Ben: A hat or a helmet. Totally not kidding here and super interesting
stuff so you know, and then it opens up the whole ethical kind of
worms about you know, is that need or anything you know. Put in
Andro you know, jacks you full of Andro in your right butt
Brock: Yeah, I guess.
Ben: Interesting study. I’ll link to that in the show notes.
Brock: It sounds really similar to the stuff they’re doing for a, for like
severe depression to like people who aren’t responsive to any
other sort of treatments for depression they actually pass a
current to parts of your brain and it gives a same sort of a, well not
the same but a similar sort of response.
Brock: I wonder if that’s how they discovered it. Like all these people
went from being depressed to being like super fast and powerful.
Ben: Yeah, so if you’re a depressed cyclist, all the better.
Ben: So if you’re a cyclist from Seattle….
Ben: Eggs, a study on eggs, where they compared egg whites with
regular eggs and I think that with this much of an emphasis we
have placed on the benefits of healthy fats, the benefits of
cholesterol, the benefits of a specific enzyme called lecithin found
in egg yolks that helps you to kinda break down fats, I think we’ve
established on this podcast before that egg yolks are probably
better for you than egg whites. But in this study they actually
Brock: And tastier.
Ben: And tastier, that’s right. They found that the regular consumption
of whole eggs every day compared to the use of an egg substitute,
the yolk-free egg substitute resulted in increased ability of HDL,
your good cholesterol.
Brock: Good cholesterol.
Ben: To you know, LDL isn’t bad cholesterol, but just for some antics
sake, your HDL, your good cholesterol enhanced its ability to
carry fat out of macro fascias and macro fascias are your pro-
atherogenic, they allow the formation of these foam cells and
plaque formation in the coronary arteries and so HDL had an
enhanced ability to be able to carry lipids out of this area, carry
potential for plaque formation out of this area in the presence of
whole eggs but not in the presence of egg whites and as a matter
of fact when egg whites were consumed, the HDL tended to have a
higher what’s called triglyceride content which is actually the
more triglyceride you’ve got in a lipid like HDL, the worse your
cholesterol profile is. So ultimately, and I thought about this last
night as I was driving home from dropping the truck off at the
airport, I was biking home from dropping the truck off at the
airport, I rode by the McDonald’s offering their brand new Egg
White McMuffin, you know which they’re branding as their brand
new healthy pair and so ultimately, whole eggs with the egg yolks
beat out the egg whites. So.
Brock: And don’t wrap them in whites what do they call them, English
Brock: White Flower English Muffin.
Ben: Or dump sucralose on them because there was another study that
came out at the Washington University School of Medicine where
they found out that sucralose, so they tested sucralose, they had
people eat splenda….
Brock: That’s an artificial sweetener, sucralose, like the stuff people
dump in their coffee all the time. Pink package.
Ben: Sucralose, Splenda, the little, I think it’s the yellow one is it?
Ben: I believe it’s yellow, I don’t know.
Brock: I’m colorblind, I actually have no idea.
Ben: Pink, yellow, whatever. They found that insulin levels rose about
20% after the consumption of sucralose meaning that there is a
response of what’s called your incretin hormones, your gut
hormones, in response to an artificial sweetener, that’s not
supposed to be right, it’s just artificial.
Ben: There shouldn’t be anything going on but this is why in my
opinion, people who consume diet beverages, have a higher risk
for obesity and overweight, this is why you tend to get appetite
cravings after you consumed a food that has an artificial
sweetener versus food that has real calories because you turn your
gut and your pancreas to churn out all these hormones
responsible for causing food to be showed into cells for energy or
to be digested but there’s no actual calories present.
And this study backs up the idea that artificial sweeteners, in this
case sucralose, does indeed have a very significant effect on gut
metabolism meaning you do get a significant insulin release in
response to its consumption so….
Brock: And that’s on top of it being a neurotoxin and destroying part of
the gut bacteria in your body as well.
Ben: That’s right. That’s right.
Brock: Win win win.
Ben: At least in rats, which we all know are little people…. A couple of
other things I want to mention real quick. We’re coming up on
Ramadan and there’s an interesting study that looked into fasting
and intermittent fasting specifically. This was in the Mission
University of Medical Science from the University of Nicosia.
Brock: And Ramadan’s when you can’t eat anything between sunrise and
Ben: That’s right. And I have no idea where the hell University of
Nicosia is. But….
Brock: Sounds fancy though.
Ben: It does sound fancy. So Ramadan, basically what they found was
that during this fasting window of Ramadan, young men and
older men experienced improvements in body composition,
dropping body fat percentage and some pretty good physiological
adaptations to allow them to increase their burning of fatty acids
but in women, there was not a similar response in terms of a
change in body composition or in terms of an improvement in
fatty acid utilization. And this kinda returns to something that I’ve
talked about in this podcast before and that is that with the clients
that I coached and trained for fat loss, for sports, I used fasting
protocols far less often for the women that I trained compared to
the guys that I work with because women end to get pretty messed
up with frequent fasting and they just do better with with more
regular energy intake and part of that might be due to the fact that
women are pretty good at fatty acid utilization anyways and don’t
need extra you know, kick in the pants so to speak but this was
interesting and I’ll link to the study in the show notes so there’s
increased fat utilization during Ramadan in men but you didn’t
see the same change in body composition or fat oxidation in
women and of course we also know that in women, intermittent
fasting is specially combined with exercise we kinda touched on at
the beginning of this podcast has a pretty nasty effect on your
thyroid hormones specifically your t3 as well so just for you
women who are listening in, you know, I actually don’t know if we
have any female listeners….
Brock: I think you scared them off with your objectifying them at the
beginning of the podcast.
Ben: That’s right. That’s right. Those of you hanging around after I
described your body as banging…
Ben: The intermittent fasting thing, not the great of an idea. And then
the very last thing that I wanted to mention and I promise I’d be
done geeking out, is this whole idea of grounding or earthing, and
a lot of these people are into this grounding mats or this earthing
mats for recovery, and you know it’s something that we actually
talked about in this podcast years ago. I had Jeff Spencer who’s
the team physician for, it was that time Team Radioshack I believe
and he talked about how these professional cyclists would sleep
on these grounding mats or earthing mats and I believe they
would like to….
Brock: During the Tour de France they would lay on these things.
Ben: Yeah, and they’d make full-on mattresses and everything too and
they plug in to the wall. And the problem with this and I’m gonna
link to a full-on podcast where they talk about this in detail but
the problem is that when you plug those mats in the US at least,
into the wall, they plug-in to the grounding outlets so they’re
grounded and in the US, about 70% of the power that goes into
our homes and our buildings travels back to the substation, not
through the wires but through the ground. And the earth in the
US is literally electrified with power travelling back to the
substation so you’re essentially introducing extra electrical
pollution and extra electro-magnetic frequencies into your bed or
wherever you happen to be sleeping or standing on this grounding
mat when you use grounding or earthing mats in the US.
So I recommend, unless you live in Europe and again, I don’t
know if we have any female listeners or any European listeners, I
think that most of our listeners are just red-blooded American
males in pick-up trucks….
Ben: Or Canadians. But if you do happen to be looking into the
grounding or earthing thing, I recommend you, you use one called
the BioMat. Super expensive but it’s like this magnetically-infused
mat that still releases that Schumann frequency which is the
natural frequency of the planet earth that’s supposed to help quite
a bit with sleep and with health and with cellular metabolism and
stuff like that or else you use one of these earth’s pull devices
which are, it’s like a magnetic device that you place under your
mattress that doesn’t get grounded like an earthing or grounding
mat does but I’m not a fan of these grounding or earthing mats
and I know that they’re popular and they’re sexy, whatever and a
lot of people are using it but you know, I’m gonna link in the show
notes to the podcast that explains this a lot better than I do. It’s
over at the website, It’s Rainmaking Time, which gets kinda
French sometimes in this podcast but heck, that puts them in the
same category as us right?
Brock: I guess so.
Ben: In our aluminum tinfoil hats so.
Brock: Crap, I’m not wearing my hat.
Ben: Go put your hat on and let’s do the special announcements.
Brock: So you’re gonna give everybody a helping hand in their race this
Ben: That’s right.
Brock: So you’re gonna run in front of them and just hold your hand out,
“come on, you can do it!”
Ben: That’s illegal actually in triathlons.
Brock: Hold hands?
Ben: You’re not supposed to give people any aid at all or hold hands,
yeah. One of my friends got disqualified from doing Ironman
Hawaii for life when he accepted a beer from a participant,
because he was blowing to pieces during a race and he started
walking and was just like pretty much ready to call it quits. And
one of the spectators was like, “oh here, have a beer,” so he took
the beer and was sipping the beer and he’s a pro and he got caught
in television coverage and he got banned for life from doing
Ironman Hawaii so anyways though, here in town, where I’m at,
Ironman Coeur d’Alene Triathlon is that….
Brock: And we’ll be passing out beers.
Ben: We’ll be passing out beers. No, gluten-free beer of course. Now
basically, I’m going to be over there on Saturday, that’s this
Saturday, whatever it is, the 22nd or 23rd.
Brock: That sounds about right.
Ben: But at noon, kinda over when the race starts on what’s called
Independence Stairs at Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. I will be lecturing,
which sounds really boring. I’ll be doing a Q&A basically and I’ll
be doing a Q&A kinda like the last minute nutrition pacing for
everybody who knows that it’s a really good idea the day before
Brock: The day before to change your mind completely.
Ben: To change your plan completely. Before anybody who actually
does change their plan completely. I’ll be doing a Q&A and if you
just wanna come over and hang-out, noon over at Coeur d’Alene,
Idaho for those of you who’re in town for Ironman Coeur d’Alene.
Ben: And then also, I wanted to mention, because I do know we have a
lot of triathlete listeners, the 2013 Thailand Triathlon Adventure.
Brock: Is it filling up like crazy?
Ben: It’s filling up like crazy. We still have a few spots left. What I really
wanted to emphasize this kind of the thing we’re doing from
November 17 to November 21st before our actual adventure starts
and it’s gonna be at this health resort where we’re gonna be
teaching people a ton about nutrition and healthy living and also,
you know, doing things like swimming and cycling, running
efficiency and economy and drills but just really unique training
camp. We’re gonna teach people how to have better lives, how to
move better, more efficiently. Not one of those triathlon camps
where you go and get beat up and just like you know, swim and
run and bike your ass off. It’s gonna be, you know, I’m bringin’ on
some cool lectures, some pro-triathletes. Latest one I talked to
was Thamson Lewis who’s a physician and a professional
triathlete. She’ll be there and she’ll do a guest lecture and it’s just
gonna be a really really cool experience for people who wanna
come along, who have nothing better to do this winter then go to
Thailand for 1 week or 2 weeks or 3 weeks, kinda some options in
there but email, you gotta email at this point cause it’s filling up.
I don’t, I’m not sure if you can use the register link anymore but if
you wanna get in, you gotta email me.
email@example.com. The races are sold out but I can
still get you in. I’m getting discounted hotel room blocks, lots of
cools stuff. I actually bought my plane tickets last week so.
Anyways though, email firstname.lastname@example.org if you
wanna go party and live and have fun in Thailand this winter. It’s
gonna be a blast.
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Brock: Okay, so before we get completely out of the news flash mode, I
guess we kinda have, I think this first question relates to a news
flash we had last week where you talked about taking a 20-minute
hot bath 48 hours before doing a hard effort like a race or really
hard workout and so Michael wanted to know, he’s training for an
Ironman distance triathlon so every Saturday is a long ride
followed by a transition run and then Sunday is a long run. He
wants to know if he soaks every Thursday would that be too much.
Ben: So basically he’s trying to time it so that he’s doing some hard
workouts and every single Thursday before he starts his hard
weekend he wants to do a hot bath.
Brock: Yeah. It seems that makes sense. It sounds logical.
Ben: What basically this study found was that you’d recover from your
workouts faster if you took this hot baths 48 hours prior so 20
minutes of hot bathing led to this statistically significant decrease
in exercise-induced muscle damage when the workout was done
48 hours after and there was basically the upregulation of the
satellite cells that are responsible for repairing muscle and also
some immune cell infiltration. At least in mice, in rats, which we
all know are….
Brock: Little humans.
Ben: Little people. That would be a fun study. Just giving the mouse a
nice little hot bath, give them, you know, get out a loofah and
kinda you know, give him some nice bubble bath and….
Brock: That’s cute.
Ben: Fun study. Anyways though, you know, there’s nothing to say that
wouldn’t help. You can try it out but honestly this is one of the
questions where they you know, this is all blue skies stuff, it’s like
yeah it may help I mean heck, like I mentioned when we talked
about this last week. I love to get some, I get these magnesium
flakes from a company called Ancient Minerals. I dump about half
pound of those into a nice warm bath and man, you feel magical
when you get out of that thing. Incidentally, by the way, if you’re
constipated also yeah, initiates a bowel movement with about 30
Ben: Magnesium soak is awesome for this stuff and I use these
magnesium flakes but interestingly, in the same way that they
make like these cool fat-burner vests that we’ve talked about
before in the podcast where basically they’re ice packing vest that
you wear, you put them over your collarbone….
Brock: Looks like a bullet-proof vest but it’s got ice packs instead of
Kevlar in it.
Ben: Yeah so it steps up the activation of your brown adipose tissue so
you burn fat to generate heat basically and by the way they, the
guy who owns that company, the coolfatburner.com company, he
wrote me 2 days ago and told me that he’s developing a cool fat-
burner like a weight belt where you could wear you this around
your waist and step up the activation of brown adipose tissue on
your waistline too and burn extra fat that way so….
Brock: Feels like an icy cumberbun.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. So your little icy cumberbun that you could wear to
prom but they also, I found this this clothing company called
Spartzy and its spartzy.com and what they do is they make this
special fabric that’s a heated fabric and the idea behind this
heated fabric they called it the T-X fabric material is it warms
your muscles and by warming your muscles, it increases blood
flow to the muscle and can step up metabolic rate in an area of
localized blood flow and research has indeed shown that local
heating that increases skeletal-muscle blood flow can also amplify
fat oxidation, it can amplify carbohydrate oxidation so basically
overall metabolism in whatever area is being heated and there’s a
few different studies that have actually looked into what’s called
the hemodynamic response to heat stress in in leg muscles and
arm muscles and found that there there is indeed higher muscle
metabolism when you heat up an area in that way. Its different
when in response to cold so when you’re doing something like
cold thermogenesis, you’re getting activation of like brown
adipose tissue to generate heat to keep you warm and when you
warm a muscle you get that increase in blood flow that steps up
fat oxidation and carbohydrate oxidation just because of an
increase in localized metabolism and this is probably why
something like the protocol that we talked about at the Become
Superhuman Conference a few months ago that we did where a
guy named Ray Cronise was there, a NASA materials engineer and
he was talking about how you get better fat loss results if you’re
gonna use temperature for fat loss, you get better results
alternating hot and cold water when you’re like taking a shower
you know, 20 seconds cold to 10 seconds hot 10 times through, for
example for a 5 minute shower. You get better fat loss results from
doing something like that than if you were to do just a cold shower
‘cause you’re giving yourself the best of both worlds right. You
increase blood flow, and then also the activation of the brown
adipose tissue so ultimately, you know, this whole like hot bath
thing especially if you were to follow it with like a cold shower,
you could do that. You could also do something like wear one of
these you know, cool fat-burner vests at work and then you know,
maybe put on some of this this Spartzy fabric and you know,
warm the muscle back up so, a few different ways you could play
around temperature in that sense but you know, it’s kinda funny
just because like you know, some people would do all this stuff
and be like you know, whatever eat a hamburger for lunch and
skip their workout for the day and it’s like we’re talking about the
extra like 5% here. You know, granted in the case of Ray Cronise,
he did show some data that indicated that even in the absence of
exercise, doing this hot-cold contrast showers twice a day for 5-10
minutes, he was actually inducing 20-30 pound weight loss in
some of the folks he was working with but again..
Brock: I think there was a lot of diet restriction involved as well.
Ben: There was. There was a lot. Basically, in his case they were doing
full on vegan diets I believe and so there were pretty severe calorie
restriction going on which long term was not all that great for
your brain and your nervous system but for short term you know,
really really high fat loss. You know, it definitely you know, by the
research that he showed had a significant effect. So ultimately,
you know, that was my really long way of saying I have no freakin’
Brock: But it’s not gonna hurt you.
Ben: It’s not gonna hurt you.
Brock: Michael give it a try.
Ben: Light your candles, your romantic candles and get your lavender
out and take your bubble bath and then go, go workout and let us
all know how it goes.
Jenny: Hi Ben, this is Jenny. I’ve had a problem with my eyes being really
dry and I experimented for about 5 months with just putting,
making sure I put drops on my eyes, over the counter drops, and I
also increased my, and I have Omega-3s I am taking but it just
wasn’t working and it got really bad and my doctor said that I
needed to start using restasis which is a prescription eye drop and
she said that I’ll be needing that for the rest of my life and I never
liked to hear somebody telling me that I’m gonna be needing to do
something like that for the rest of my life. It got to the point where
I couldn’t see as well as I normally do and she said it’s a
hereditary condition. She called it chronic dry eye and so anyways,
I just wanted, if you have any thoughts on how to improve this
condition without me having to be committed to using this
prescription drops forever. Thanks a lot Ben, I really appreciate it.
Ben: Yeah man, have you ever had dry eyes?
Brock: I get dry eyes quite a lot, I have to admit so this question is has a
great interest for me.
Ben: So I have not been wearing like glasses or sunglasses or eyewear
when I ride my bike and I’ve been getting a bit of dry eye myself
but that’s typically due to me. Going downhill….
Brock: Drying your eyes.
Ben: Going downhill 30 miles an hour….
Brock: With your eyes wide open….
Ben: Implicating…. You shove in a blow dryer in my face but yeah, dry
eyes syndrome you know, goes by a bunch of different names if
you wanna get scientific, the lacrimal caratejunktilitis, whatever.
Evaporative tear deficiency. I like that better than saying dry eyes,
I have a tear deficiency.
Ben: I think that just sounds much more impressive.
Brock: Actually it sounds kinda heartbreaking.
Ben: It sounds like a, yeah. Tear deficiency would elicit much greater
compassion from someone you are telling it about your issue
compared to dry eyes so Jenny’s tear deficiency. But yeah
basically, dry eye syndrome is kind of an issue because it can
eventually lead to damaging your cornea and loss of vision and
there are a bunch of different things that can cause it. Anti-
histamines and nasal decongestion are probably the biggest 2 but
a lot of women don’t realize that birth control pills can can dry
your eyes. Anti-depressants can be a big issue, a lot of blood
pressure meds can do it too, hormone replacement therapy is
another big big issue when it comes to dry eyes and there are
more physiological hormonal reasons for why some of this stuff
happens that I care to get into in the podcast but all that stuff can
cause dry eyes as can of course just allergies, infrequent blinking
because you’ve been staring at a computer or a video screen for a
long period of time or even like using contact lenses like long-
term use of contact lenses can cause this as well. I think we do
have a question about glasses and contact lenses.
Brock: Yeah. Coming right up next.
Ben: And I do have some thoughts about how to, how to avoid using
those. But as far as standard treatment for dry eyes syndrome,
usually there’s gonna be some kind of an anti-inflammatory
medication that you could get prescribed. There are devices that
they make that kinda plug the holes where tears drain from your
eyes so you essentially retain your tears.
Ben: Tear retention devices.
Brock: That doesn’t sound good.
Ben: Cool idea. And you can get surgery to permanently close your
eyes’ drainage holes if it’s a big issue.
Brock: And then your head explodes.
Ben: I’m never a huge fan of closing any of the body’s drainage holes.
Ben: The corking fix is not in favor to mine so I would not….
Brock: Yeah, they do that for excessive sweaters sometimes too not
sweaters that you wear but people who sweat a lot.
Ben: Right. Yeah.
Brock: That just sounds painful.
Ben: Yes. Eye plugs, butt plugs, whatever.
Brock: Don’t plug your butt.
Ben: I’m not a fan of plugging. So preliminary research that I’ve seen as
well as a couple of fairly conclusive studies have shown that
Omega-3 fatty acids have real real promise as a natural approach
to dry eye relief and that’s where I’d start. They did a ….
Brock: How is that? Taken orally or taken what would that be, ocular….
Ben: Dumping a fish oil capsule into your eye?
Ben: No, that would be taken orally in supplement form so salmon,
mackerel. You could do like some flax seed or chia seed. You
obviously get less absorption with something like that but
specifically in one really impressive study, where they
purposefully induced dry eyes syndrome in rats, I have no clue
how they did that, possibly by …..
Brock: They blew on them.
Ben: Putting them on bicycles, putting them on little bicycles and
having them ride downhill at a high speed.
Brock: In a wind tunnel.
Ben: With little helmets.
Brock: I bet they were at the trek bicycle window.
Ben: Yeah, but they gave them a combination of gamma linoleic acid
and the eicosapentaeonic acid and docosahexaeonic acid, the
DHA and the EPA and that lead to a significant reduction in dry
eye symptoms and they were able to replicate that study in mice
later on. Some people have anecdotally reported it so I’m a fan of
fish oil anyways as long as it’s a good high quality fish oil
preferably packaged with anti-oxidants cold-processed so you’re
not getting a lot of the free radical formation. I’m up to 8 a day
that I use so I’m which comes at, I think it comes at to about 6
grams per day of fish oil….
Ben: That I use.
Brock: Yeah, I was gonna say, ‘cause Jenny said that she did try
increasing her Omega-3s but maybe she didn’t increase them
Ben: Yeah, so I would bump yourself up. You don’t necessarily need to
do the whole mega dose you know, like those guys like Charles
Poliquin committing 40 grams or whatever but you could step up
from the standard you know standard. A lot of people are doing
like 1-3 grams and I’d bump that up, 6, 8 grams around in there.
Make sure it’s a good you know, a bad fish oil is really worse for
you than not taking fish oil at all so I’ll put a link to the one that I
take, it’s the Super Essentials Fish Oil. It’s the best fish oil on the
face of the planet that I found just because it does include you
know the astaxanthin antioxidant, the Vitamin E, the natural
cold-processed triglyceride form. It’s pretty magical fish oil. So
that’s one that I’d used and then also the other thing that you
could try is like moisture when you’re sleeping like one of these
humidifiers. I actually bought a couple of these for travel after I
read about them in, I think it was Tim Ferriss in an article on
them but this little humidifiers that you just take a standard
plastic sized water bottle and you attach it to this very small
portable device and humidifies the air next to your bed and it can
help you sleep a little bit better, could definitely help with dry
eyes, you know dry throat, if you’re congested, stuff like that but
they’re just this little, I wish I could remember the name of them.
I’ll write a note to myself here to look up our Amazon link for
these little humidifiers but I mean they’re like 20 bucks or
something like that and you just put a plastic….
Brock: And you just plug it to a socket somewhere and it just goes?
Ben: Yeah, but it’s like a very small portable humidifier. So that, you
know, especially if you travel a lot, that can help out so that’s
something else I would consider and yeah, of course, duh, stay
hydrated. That’s a big one but I assume you’re already doing that
so, yeah, those are some of the things that I would try.
Brock: Okay. So following on the heels of that we’ve got a question from
Benjamin who wrote in and said I just found out from my
optometrist that I may need vision correction and of course
they’re recommending contacts or prescription glasses but I’m
interested on whether there are some natural ways to enhance eye
sight without using glasses or contact lenses.
Ben: Yeah. We’ve talked about before in the podcast, I believe this
whole Bates Method.
Brock: Yeah. Yeah, I think we talked about that a month or 2 ago. It’s
been a while.
Ben: Yeah. And this is the method that kinda flies under the radar, I
think I mentioned it. It’s like the thing that I do if I wanted to
improve my eyesight naturally and it’s a series of techniques like
palming and visualization and ocular muscle movements like
literally eye muscle training. There’s also interestingly, even
sunning that’s involved in that protocol which is literally exposure
to sunlight and there are some people that swear by that and
probably the person most famous for saying that it really helped
in their vision was this Aldous Huxley guy.
Brock: You remember the writer Aldous Huxley? Great New World?
Ben: Yeah. And he actually wrote a book called “The Art of Seeing”
where he talked about how he used the Bates Method to help him.
I don’t believe that he actually got himself off of glasses or
prescription lenses but he got to the point where he really couldn’t
read at all without the aid of a magnifying glass to the point where
he could read as long as he was in good condition so you know.
Brock: It’s pretty darn good especially in the 1920s or 30s or whenever
Ben: Yeah, you know, I have zero…. Like my eyesight is fine. I have zero
experience in this Bates Method, but in the past I said that that is
something that I would try before turning to contact lenses or
glasses if I, if my vision started to suffer. Now, I’ve also, and I’m
waiting for my glasses to arrive, but I did a 4-hour session with
what’s called an irlen practitioner and irlen syndrome is a kind of
syndrome when when you’re reading the words bounce around a
little bit and you have poor visual acuity. And an irlen practitioner
basically does a session with you where you spend hours like
reading and looking at objects and tracking visual acuity and
comparing how well your eyes do with different colors of lenses so
we went through like 30 different color combinations and
everything and actually it turns out that like this light purple lens
with the little bit of like an amber kinda blue light reduction type
of lens placed on top of that, actually really improves personally
for me, my visual acuity and my reading speed.
Like we actually tracked how quickly I was able to go through
pages and paragraphs and so I ordered some Oakley prescription
frames and my irlen lenses aren’t here yet. This is a process I’ve
been going through the past couple of months and they’re gonna
put them in, the lenses in the frames and they’ll send them to me
and I’ll wear those when I’m playing tennis, when I’m reading,
when I’m writing not only to block blue light and glare coming
from the computer screen but also to enhance my visual acuity so.
Brock: Would you describe those lenses as being rose colored?
Ben: They’re, no, they’re purple. Like they’re literally like a light purple.
I’ll take a picture.
Brock: Rose colored glasses?
Ben: No they’re not rose colored glasses Brock.
Brock: That’s unfortunate.
Ben: But if I were able to see the world through rose colored glasses I’m
sure that I would even be happier than purple colored glasses.
Ben: There is, did you listen to the podcast that I did with Eric Cobb,
the guy from Z Health?
Ben: And he talked about, Z Health is a really really cool program and
I’ll put a link to the podcast that I did with him in the show notes
but he talked about basically enhancing your performance and
your health through the use of training your nerves, like your
vestibular system and your eyes, your ears, your balance, and
rather than just focusing on lifting weights and strengthening
muscles, you know, it really focuses on a lot of these you know,
cranial nerves and and really just training the nervous system,
making your nervous system bulletproof so to speak. So Z Health
is the name of that company but they recently like literally, I think
in the past 2 weeks, they came out with this program called the
Vision Gym and the Vision Gym is….
Brock: I like that.
Ben: Yeah, it’s a very very marke-ty name. But what it is is almost like a
modernized version of this Bates Method where you learn how to
do like eye symetriques and circles and spirals. They teach you
like this blinking routine that resets your visual system. They
teach you how to warm up your eyes using this this fingertip
warm up method and it’s like 10-20 minutes each day of exercises
that you do and it literally realigns your vision. And so they’ve got
people that they’re working with like pro boxers and Olympians.
They got some folks in the MLB and the NBA who are using these
and it’s not just for if your eyes are suffering, it gets actually to be
an ergogenic aid like to enhance your sports performance if you
just want better peripheral vision or better visual acuity but a
bunch of stuff that they teach you in this. I think, I mean it’s not
cheap. It’s like, I think it’s like a 90, it’s one of those like internet
marketing 97.77 type of programs that you download or whatever.
But I mean still, compared to like doing contact lenses or glasses.
Brock: You could pay like a thousand dollars for a pair of glasses.
Ben: Yeah. It just came out. I haven’t tried it yet, it’s on my list of things
to do. I wanna get these irlen glasses dialed in and then I’m gonna
try, cause I love to experiment with this stuff. But I mean, heck, if
you can fix your eyes and also improve hand-eye-body
coordination and your peripheral vision and everything, this thing
might be worth a go as well. And so I’ll put a link to that Vision
Gym thing in the show notes. I’ll put a link to the previous podcast
that we do with the people from Z Health as well and then I’ll keep
all of our listeners posted and send you a photo of me in my geeky
purple lenses when they arrive but those are some of the things
that I’d look into.
Brock: We’ve got a question later in the show from Troy. I think he’d
really benefit from the Zed Health as well.
Brock: You like how I call it, Zed Health?
Ben: I like, that was very European.
Brock: It’s ‘cause I’m Canadian.
Ben: Oh yeah.
Jim: Hello Ben and everyone else. My name is Jim an endurance
athlete from Florida and I’m mainly focused on the Xterra
Triathlon that I took your advice on the golf ball on my feet and
definitely an interesting interesting kinda way to break up all the
junk on my feet but I’m curious because later that day, this is kind
of I’m on downtime, I’m recovering on some pretty hard racing,
some pretty hard training and so I had a bit of work to do and I
golf ball-ed both feet and later that day I ended up doing some
yard work and it sent my left glute area into spasm and my right
as well, not as much but I’m curious did I break up that much
stuff and I just send my body into spasm or what.
Definitely not a muscle pull and I was able to stop and I rolled it
out on a film roller which helped tremendously and now today,
the day after, I’m not feeling much tenderness but it really, it shot
me down almost to the point of not being able to walk. So if you
give me insight on the bad, I’ll really appreciate it. Love the
advice. Keep up the podcast.
Brock: I like any excuse to say something about your butt in the podcast
Ben: Butt spasms most especially. If I were gonna start a band today I
would probably call it the Butt Spasms.
Brock: Ben Greenfield and the Butt Spasms.
Ben: Yeah, assuming you’ve been sitting on the golf ball Jim. I actually
keep a golf ball under my desk and I do that because you can roll
your feet with a golf ball and it really really good actually this
routine called the fast foot mobility routine for those of you who
have been listening to this podcast, I coach Brock and we’re gonna
try and get Brock to qualify for the Boston Marathon and one of
the things that Brock’s, I don’t know if he knows this yet…
Brock: I did yesterday, for the first time and I actually went so hard that I
think I bruised the bottom of….
Ben: Yes and it’s called my fast foot mobility routine. It’s just this
routine that you roll a golf ball around your feet and underneath
your feet and all over the place for about 5-10 minutes per foot.
And it really helps with mobility and your feet for foot mobility is
one of the biggest issues in terms of creating kinda up chain the
injuries like knee injuries and ankle injuries and hip injuries in
folks who have poor foot mobility due to using overbuilt shoes or
sitting too much and not spending enough time on your feet, just
having weak feet in general.
Brock: Spending your entire childhood in ballet slippers.
Ben: Or for those of us who spent their entire childhood in ballet
slippers like Brock. But the idea behind using golf balls is great so
I’m glad Jim’s using the golf balls but the problem is that once you
reinvent the feet, you just like switching the minimalist shoes or
whatever, you tend to start to use the muscles that you’re
supposed to be using. You get up the chain positive benefits but if
those muscles up the chain are not used to be activated, then you
start to get issues. So for example, when you look at the glutes.
Brock: I love to look at the glutes.
Ben: I do like to look at some glutes. Yes.
Ben: Bangin’ glutes. Glute imbalances are really common. So by nature
human beings are asymmetrical and you find that you tend to,
when you’re sitting, you tend to shift to one side or when you’re
standing for a long time, you’ll tend to shift to one side or the
other. And because of those asymmetrical patterns, we tend to
have kinda stronger glutes on one side than we do on the other
side and when you combine that with inhibiting the glutes,
through long periods of time sitting in a car or at a desk or with
shortened hip flexors, and that’s one of the best ways by the way
to turn off your glutes is to shorten your hip flexors. That,
combined with these natural asymmetries tends to create some
real glute issues. And if you have ever in your life sprained your
ankle or stubbed your toe or you know, pulled a hamstring, fell
and landed on your tailbone, any of these things, have all been
proven in research to inhibit the glutes neurally and the glutes will
stay inhibited until you fix them, until you turn them back on and
because those are your goal muscles, your propulsion muscles,
your glutes, a lot of folks, because of asymmetry and sitting and
previous injury, have glutes that need to be re-educated. So when
we’re talking about getting a better butt, you know, whether it’s
fitting out a pair of fitted jeans or whether it’s running faster, you
gotta be able to turn on your glutes and you know, we talked
about this a little bit in the interview I did with Kelly Starrett, I
think about how a lot of people have weak glutes and you know,
his book, that would be coming at supple leopard books certainly
teaches you how to mobilize your glutes and how to do a lot of the
soft tissue work that is going to like use your glutes properly. I
mean a lot of the same type of soft tissue work that Jim’s already
doing at his feet but you know, this would be more, rather than
taking a golf ball to the foot, kinda take a lacrosse ball to the glutes
but you need to be doing glute exercises as well.
If you wanna get a better butt or if you wanna activate your glutes,
best place to start is just with simply asymmetric contractions so
you’re keeping your butt squeezed when you’re driving in your
car, when you’re standing, when you’re sittin’ on an airplane,
when you’re whatever. Pretty much anything….
Brock: So whenever you think about it.
Ben: Don’t do it when you go to the bathroom because that would be
about the equivalent of using one of these butt plugs that we
talked about so aside from contracting your glutes when you’re
taking a poo though, doing a lot of isometric glute contractions
and also doing all of these different exercises, body weight
exercises that activate your glutes are a good place to start. Things
like clam shells, fire hydrants, what are called quadruped
exercises, google any of these if you wanna see pictures of them so
again, clam shells, fire hydrants, quadrupeds, any of those 3
would be really really good as just body weight glute exercises and
then of course once you’ve got your glutes turned on, doing those
type of things, that’s where you would progress to doing like
bilateral movements with this like mini bands that you can use to
attach your feet together like side to side movements, you know,
side to side shuffles, yeah exactly. Forwards monster walks,
backwards monster walks, a lot of people go straight in to the
squats, the deadlifts, the dumbbell lunges, and stuff like that but if
you haven’t taught your glutes how to be activated with some of
these smaller body exercises or somebody’s elastic band exercises,
that’s all for naught because you’re gonna use you’re low back,
you’re gonna use your knee joints, but really if you haven’t learned
how to turn on your glutes with easier exercises first, some of
these bigger moves are kind of a waste of time. But once you do it
to the point that you’ve turned on your glutes by doing preferably
every single day some kinda glute activation exercise and you’ve
learned how to kinda keep your glutes turned on, while you’re
sitting, while you’re standing, that’s when you progress into
making sure that at least once a week, preferably a few times a
week, if you’re working in like squats, single leg squats, dead lifts
and single leg dead lifts, remaining dead lifts, reverse lunges, side
lunges, front lunges, you know, I work my butt in the weight room
at least once a week and I work my butt in terms of keeping it
activated at least once a week with like elastic band type of
exercises, injure prevention type of moves, and then of course I
just kinda keep my butt squeezed a lot just cause I like to walk
around looking like I’m constipated. So but seriously though, like
glute activation issues are a big deal and by fixing your feet, you
may find that you simply kind of magnify an issue higher up with
a glute issue you know, or a lot of times like weak knees, quad
issues or another area where you tend to see manifested but you
know, it’s all fixable so what I’ll do, there’s a pretty good article by
a guy named Bret Contreras, he’s a really good strength
conditioning coach. He’s got glute training programs, he’s got like
a glute e-book, and he’s kinda noticed the glute guy. I’ll put a link
to a good article that he has on how to fix glute imbalances in the
show notes for anybody who wants a better butt or for anybody
who’s doing a lot of golf ball pulling to read so.
Brock: I wanna be known as the glute guy.
Ben: I would like to be known as the glute guy. That’s true but there’s
probably, how about we just, we give you something else. How
about the butt, the Baron of the Butt.
Brock: The Butt Bastard?
Ben: The Butt Bastard. Yeah. The Butt Buddy, how about the Butt
Buddy? You can launch the buttbuddy.com. So but seriously, I’ll
put a link to that glute imbalances article by Bret Contreras in the
show notes. So there you go.
Ketoman: Hi! I’m eating a ketogenic diet, checks the blood ketones. Heart
rate in the morning, usually in the middle of 50, sometimes 40
but I likely when I’m doing interval workouts, whether it be
running or bike, my heart rate just goes bonkers I mean I was
surprised, ______ [0:59:30.2] and I’m running out of gas.
Maybe it’s a lack of carbohydrates usually happens when I work
out later into the day and maybe that’s my issue. I’m just not
getting enough carbohydrates for a workout and it takes me out of
zone 2 so if you have any thoughts, I’d appreciate if you do.
Ben: Well, there was this whole ketogenic diet thing. First of all, before
I say anything, like Brock and I did this huge like monster podcast
for the Jimmy Moore Show, Jimmy Moore’s Living La Vida Low
Carb Show and we talked about ketogenesis the whole time.
Like basically how you do it, why you do it, and like all the
practical as, we’ll link to that in the show notes ‘cause we spent
like an hour geeking out and stuff but this question from ketoman
about whether or not you know, like a ketogenic diet could cause
your heart rate to go bonkers. There was an interesting study,
actually last night, Graham Turner, he’s actually been in this
podcast before, he emailed Brock and I this link to his study that
has yet to be released in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning
Research but they looked at the effects of a short term carb-
restricted diet on strength and power performance. And that’s
always something people get nervous about, it’s like if I’m carb
depleted, if I go into a state of ketogenesis, how the heck am I
going to produce power, produce strength, go through a crossfit
workout, go through a track intervals workout….
Brock: It requires that big burst, like sudden burst of energy.
Ben: Right. Exactly. ‘Cause the whole thinking behind that is you’re
gonna be glycogen depleted during a carbohydrate restricted diet
so your body wanted the glucose to rely on to those fast
contractions those fast twitch muscle contractions and then in this
particular study, what they did was they took folks and they
switched them from their habitual diet to a carbohydrate
restricted diet. And literally they did that over the course of 7
days. So they ate their regular diet for 7 days and then they
switched to a carbohydrate restricted diet that only had I believe
about 5% carbs for 7 days so a really really low carbohydrate diet.
And they tested their maximum repetition bench press, they
tested their 30 second anaerobic what’s called the wind gate
power test in the bike which is a really hard test, they tested their
vertical jump, their one rep max bench press, their one rep max
squat, hand grip dynamometry which is basically your hand grip
strength and what they found was that the folks who switched to
the carbohydrate restricted diet as expected, they experienced a
significant drop in body mass, so they reduced in water weight
and carb weight, probably some sodium retention as well and
despite that decrease in body mass, they retained strength output
and power output completely after this carbohydrate restricted
Ben: So it didn’t have any issue at all for them which has implications
for people who are either trying to cut weight, like wrestlers or
fighters, but also has implications for people who are switching
from like a ketogenic or a low-carb diet and who are concerned
about being able to maintain strength and power efforts. And this
is something that also Brock and I talked about in that podcast
but basically, with only protein and only fat intake, you’re able to
maintain your glycogen stores at up around 70%, up around 70%
of their peak storage capacity and so if we’re looking at being able
to store away let’s say a really really generous number, 2000
calories let’s say of storage carbohydrate. Well, you know, 70% of
those carbohydrates are what would come out to what, 1400
calories of those carbohydrates you can literally fill with just
protein getting converted to glucose and also the what’s called the
glycerol backbone of fats getting converted into glucose and that
gives you pretty good stores of glycogen to rely upon for hard
efforts or for training. The other 30%, yeah, you know, maybe
you’re eating 400-600 calories worth of carbohydrates. 100, 200
grams of carbohydrates on a daily basis if you’re training pretty
hard and that’s gonna take care of the rest of your glycogen stores
or maybe you’re doing less than that, whatever, 25, 50, 75 grams
of carbs everyday but you’re throwin’ in a re-fed day where you’re
getting a little bit of extra like 200 grams of carbs or something
like that, you know, that’s another option. But ultimately, the
reason that I’m kinda laying this out is to say that there’s no
reason that your heart rate should be going bonkers due to like
carbohydrate depletion or something like that. The only issue
would be because that carbohydrates can allow you to retain
water, can allow you to retain sodium, and retain electrolytes, this
may be related to more like an electrolyte deficiency and the
sodium deficiency which is why people get dizzy when they switch
to a low-carb or a ketogenic diet. In a case like that, you start
using some nice Himalayan sea salt, you know, there are guys like
you know, Dave Asprey, the BulletProof exec, he does 6 teaspoons
of Himalayan sea salt on a daily basis.
There are you know, guys like me, I’m doing low-carb. I do about
2 servings of liquid trace minerals. I use the natural life liquid
trace minerals every morning and I also use Himalayan sea salt
and salt my food quite liberally. There are guys like Peter Attia
who has been on this podcast before who follows a ketogenic diet
and he does 1-2 cubes of….
Brock: Bouillon cubes.
Ben: Yeah, of chicken bouillon a day. You know, and kind of in the
same lines like bone broth is another way to get minerals and
electrolytes in your diet. So could be an issue with electrolytes,
and then the last thing it could be an issue with and this is
something I had to deal with with an athlete recently who I coach
who we were seeing crazy heart rates with during his workouts
and turned out that he was using one of these wireless heart rate
monitors and the heart rate monitor was just producing a heart
rate dropout and a heart rate spike and that’s really common with
these newer heart rate monitors that are soft straps that have the
little wireless device that plugs on the front of them, here’s the
cool thing though and one of my friends, DC Rainmaker, he runs a
really cool website where he does product reviews of fitness
Brock: I didn’t know you knew that guy.
Ben: Yeah, yeah.
Brock: That’s a great website.
Ben: Rainman. At Galvestone and it was kinda interesting ‘cause we
went on that run and his heart rate monitor wasn’t working so he
actually he dropped out of the run. But dcrainmaker.com, cool
cool website if you’re like into fitness technology and heart rate
monitors and stuff like that. But he compared a bunch of different
wireless heart rate transmitters and he found that in most cases,
when you’re heart rate transmitter is the issue with you having
heart rate spikes and it’s really not your heart rate, just your
transmitter that you’re using, all you have to replace is the soft
strap that came with the heart rate monitor which is like 17 bucks
and not the entire transmitter which is like 70, 80, 90 bucks so
you may wanna just try getting a new soft strap which is the part
of the strap that goes around your chest, not the whole
transmitter, not the whole heart rate strap, you can save that little
transmitter, it comes off the straps with a little button, so you take
that off, you get a replacement strap off at Amazon or whatever
which is like, again, 15, 17 bucks, and just see if, maybe it’s the
heart rate monitor too or if you, if you really wanna go caveman
and get down with your bad self like put your hand on your neck
and take your heart rate or put your hand on your wrist and take
your heart rate and it’s kinda magical. A lot of people don’t realize
this in an era of technology but you can with your fingers, actually
feel your heart rate.
Ben: I’m being facetious.
Ben: You can. Try it. So, or put your hand over your heart, and you
could feel your heart rate. Amazing.
Brock: I can actually, if I’m laying in a quiet room, I can hear my heart
Ben: You don’t need an iPhone or a heart rate strap or anything isn’t
Ben: Amazing. But.
Brock: My girlfriend’s an ER nurse, I’d seen her just like grab somebody’s
wrist and she can assess her heart rate in like 10 seconds.
Ben: Yeah. Exactly.
Brock: It’s an art form.
Ben: Yes. Yeah, so anyways, make sure it’s not your heart rate monitor
strap too, but ultimately look at electrolytes, look at sodium, make
sure your heart rate monitor strap is good to go but don’t freak
out about being like a carb issue, it’s probably not carbs or a lack
of carbs more likely a lack of electrolytes or sodium or a
technology fart so.
Brock: Did you just call him a technology fart?
Ben: No I said it could be.
Terry: Hi Ben. I have a question in regards to a workout plan I can
present to my 17 year old son. He has always been the jock in the
family, he’s gone through a baseball phase, an archery phase, and
now it’s looking pretty serious for cross country running. And he’s
on the team at school and this morning he pleasantly surprised
me by saying he wants to tag along with me to the gym and
workout with me. By the way, as a father, that’s always a great
thing to hear. Anyway, I consider myself very savvy on working
the search engines on the internet but boy, after about an hour I
found a poultry offering of information on what a young man can
do in a gym to improve his cross country performance. So, I’m
coming to you. What have you got? Thanks.
Brock: Okay Terry first, kudos. When I was 17 years old, I didn’t want to
do anything with my dad.
Ben: Yeah, when I was 17, I didn’t know what trail running was.
I was more into bench pressing and how fast I could serve a tennis
ball. But I was actually not….
Brock: I was smoking behind the school.
Ben: Yeah. I love to trail run now. I mean actually, trail running for me,
that’s like 99% of what I do. Like I stay off concrete, I stay off the
roads, when I run, I want nature, I want a trail so yeah. I’m almost
always ducking down to this park called Seeconee Park down by
my house and just like hitting the trail, running down the river,
yeah. I freaking love trail running now.
Brock: If I do that around my house I have to dodge all the homeless
people, which actually is good practice.
Ben: Why? What’s the trail going on bridges near your place?
Brock: Yup. Nice. Talking to …..
Ben: Hurdled the cardboard boxes. There is an interesting article they
did on active.com where they interviewed a bunch of elite trail
runners on the type of core and strength training programs that
they do and frankly most of them really emphasizing on body
weight strict training that they did. Single leg, squats and hip
hikes and a lot of body core work and standing on one leg and
doing like T lay out lunges and just a lot of stuff that really wasn’t
done on the gym but was more like things that they could do after
they’ve finished trail run while they’re out there on the trail. And
part of them might be because a lot of trail runners are ultra
runners and they kinda have limited time just don’t spend a lot of
time in the gym but it’s really a good point, you don’t have to go to
a gym to get strong ankles and feet for trail running. You do a
little golf ball mobility work like we’ve talked about using glute
activation exercises and I’m really not convinced that you gotta
step in to a gym to often to be a good trail runner. But that being
said, if you are gonna go to the gym, I would definitely doing a lot
of unilateral work meaning I’d be doing a lot of single leg
deadlifts, loaded or unloaded, single leg squats, I’d be doing a lot
of lateral work, lateral lunges, side steps, side step-ups, front step-
ups, reverse lunges. I actually have a whole program that I wrote
out, It’s called “The Trail Running Terror Plan” and this was, I
created this for the endurance planet listeners ‘cause if you
subscribe to the Endurance Planet Newsletter over at
enduranceplanet.com, I put in like a 10% discount code on this
plan or whatever. But what it specifically focuses is ankle stability,
strength, change of direction and a lot of kinda
______[1:12:56.6] which is basically a random speed style
training to like become a really successful kinda lean mean trail
running machine. It’s a 12 week program, again it’s called “Trail
Running Terror” and basically what it allows you to do is that the
final 2 weeks of the program work you up to a race. It’s essentially
designed for anybody who’s doing from a 10K up to a 40k trail
running race. So, there are some distance adjustments in the
program based off how long you’re gonna run but most of the
strength training exercises that I prescribed in that program “The
Trail Running Terror” one are same thing: single leg, lay out
lunges, single leg deadlifts, single leg squats (there’s really nothing
magical here) and you can see how to do most of these stuff over
at youtube.com/bengreenfieldfitness. In that trail running plan,
and I’ll to it in the show notes, it does cost money it’s like I think
it’s like 90 bucks something like that, I used in this kinda code, it’s
80 or whatever, but it walks you through, I’ve got videos on how
to do all the stuff but I just start with that stuff, nothing magical
just lots of single leg, unilateral works, some side to side motion
and stuff that replicates the same type of condition you’re gonna
see up there on the trail.
Brock: It sounded like Terry was concerned by his son’s age. Should he be
worried at all about his son being 17 and doing this kind of stuff?
Ben: Usually if you’re looking at like somebody going through puberty
where you’ve still got the formation of the growth plates that’s
where you’re gonna be careful with excessive loading and typically
in strength conditioning research that would mean anything
below about a 12 rep weight meaning that you shouldn’t be using
a weight if you’re going through puberty that is so heavy that you
can’t do up to 12 reps of that weight and in the case of a 17 year
old, I would hope that he’s going through puberty if not I’m sorry.
Assuming your balls have dropped and your voice is lower and all
that kid’s stuff, not an issue at all, I mean really like you can lift
heavy and obviously high school football players across the nation
are lifting heavy and that’s giving them quite a bit of an
advantage. I’m a big fan of post pubertal males doing heavy
strength training for sure, heavy strength training is fine not an
issues there at all for some reason you are a super duper late
bloomer. Your growth plates haven’t fully fuse but heavy weight
training for 17 year old male not an issue at all even though for
trail running, you know, heavy weight training isn’t really
necessary but it’s something you can do. I’m actually, I’m a bigger
fan of heavy squats, heavy deadlifts, heavy lunges stuff like that.
Bigger fan based off the research that I’ve seen of doing this stuff
for cyclists that I am doing it for runners. For runners, you gonna
get a little bit more mileage of core work, single leg work and
plyometrics. If you really had to prioritize your time.
Troy: Hey Ben and Brock, it’s Troy in Canada. For years, my massage
therapist have told me that my left side is extremely tight. One
even referred to it as massaging a brick. We don’t really know why
it’s that much tighter than my right. I’m right handed, I worked on
the computer all day but I stretch, I’m pretty active, I’m a
triathlete and I’m also mostly deaf in my leaf ear, I have been for
years. And it wasn’t until I read your article the other day on
becoming a balanced Ninja that it came to me that maybe there’s
a correlation there, maybe there’s something connected that my
left ear isn’t working so I’m somehow compensating for that. I’d
love to hear your thoughts on that. Thank you.
Brock: This is the question I was thinking that would go well with that
interview that we did with Eric (what’s his name) from….. I’m just
completely forgetting his name.
Ben: What you’d say? I’m sorry!
Brock: That would help this one as well.
Ben: What’s that? I’m sorry, can’t hear you. I’m just kiddin’. Yeah! So
the link between the ears and the muscles, I’ve mentioned the
vestibular system earlier and your whole what’s called your
vestibular balance system which is based off the sensory
information about where your body is at in space is provided by
what’s called your vestibular apparatus and your vestibular
apparatus which actually sounds like something that could
impress someone at the bar if you’re bragging about the vestibular
apparatus capacity, the size of your vestibular apparatus. But
anyways, the vestibular apparatus is part of your ear that includes
3 different little semi-circular canals and then these sacs basically
that detect gravity, you know, these fluid-filled sacs and so when
you move front to back or side to side, the fluid in these sacs
detects that movement and they slash around so to speak and tell
your head or your body out in space and vice-versa and then these
semi-circular canals that are near to those same sacs, those detect
rotational movement like rotating side to side, so we’ve got these
whole system that detects front to back movement, side to side
movement, rotational movement and so anytime your head
rotates you’ve got these receptors that are sending impulses to
your brain that are telling you what kind of movement is
happening with your head and with your body. And you could
actually train these vestibular apparatuses in the way that you
take care of your body in what specific movements that you do. I
talked about this in an article that I wrote for my book on how to
increase balance and specifically some of the neglected areas that
a lot of athletes kinda forget to train. It relates to that Z health
program as well and again go listen to that interview that I did
with Eric Cobb because we talked about this stuff too.
If you’ve got issues with your ears, it could affect your muscles for
sure based off of this neuro link between vestibular system and
your muscular skeletal system. So, you’ve got these what are
called projection pathways starting from your vestibular nuclei on
either side of your brain and those are gonna send signal to your
spinal cord, to your thalamus, to a lot of your cranial nerves and
so yeah, all of these stuff are linked. So, some of the
recommendations that I gave in that article that I wrote to
improve specifically your vestibular balance, one would be to just
be really careful with loud music and loud sounds and something
a lot of people don’t think about, electro-magnetic field radiation
from your cell phone held next to your head. I recommend using
an ear tube head set or using the speaker phone setting on your
cell phone. So, never ever ever you know, my wife and I, we’ve got
this rule of thumb where we pay attention to each other and if
either of us see each other holding a phone to our ear we remind
each other knock it out of our heads, yeah, exactly. A few other
things that can train your vestibular system would be to go
unshod as much as possible or using minimalist footwear because
big support of built up shoes do a lot of the balance work for you
and if you have no feel for the ground and you’re spending your
day in these “moon boots” essentially then you’re not getting a lot
of those tiny little micro motions, those tiny little movement
patterns in your feet that feed directly into your vestibular system
so that’s another way that you kinda train your vestibular system.
Single leg balance stuff like we’ve already talked about as well as
doing stuff like on the bengreenfieldfitness phone app we have
this big interview with Darell Edwards, the fitness explorer guy
and we talked about fitness exploring in it and including in your
workout you know, balancing on fences and real posts and rocks,
fire hydrants, working some of these fun stuff and the runs and
the outdoor workouts that can also help out quite a bit with
literally training your vestibular system. So, those are some things
to think about if you’re deaf in one ear, I don’t know of any
method, we talked about this visual gym and this Bates Method
for the eyes. I don’t know of anything similar for the ears, I don’t
know really to reverse deafness in your ear. So what I would be
focusing on is a lot of these balance stuff, minimalist footwear and
barefoot stuff, being careful with the electro-magnetic radiation,
as far as like foods and supplements go, I think that one thing that
really flies into the radar when it comes to your vestibular cocliar
system specifically and the health of your ears would be folate and
there’s actually a study that they did in The American Academy of
Otolaryngology (I don’t know even how to pronounce that) the
study of ears basically, the oto doctors and they found out that
men over 60 who have a high intake of foods and supplements
high in folates had a 20% decrease in the risk of developing
hearing loss. So, folate is actually really really good way to (from
the supplementation standpoint) enhance the health of your ears
so to speak.
Brock: And if you have to get pregnant while taking it, it’s even better.
Ben: Yeah! Yeah exactly! So, you can have good hearing and babies.
And folic acid is what you’re gonna find a lot of vitamins. I’m not a
big fan of that. It is usually oxidized, it’s usually synthetic, there
are some issues with folic acid that I don’t, I don’t have time to get
into right now but if you’re looking at increasing your folate
intake, I do not recommend folic acid supplements. I recommend
you get your folates from food and the best sources of dietary
folate are gonna be your leafy greens, your cruciferous vegetables
like broccoli, cauliflower, beets are a good source of folate. If you
soak them so that you’re decreasing the amount of lactin content,
lentils are also a good source of folate, and then of course if you
wanna get a little adventurous, you can do liver. Liver pate, cow’s
liver, chicken liver, all those are really really excellent folate
sources as well. So that from like a food supplementation
standpoint would be something to look into would be the folate
for kinda enhancing your ears so. A lot of talk about the ears and
the eyes today, so….
Brock: Yeah, yeah. I like it.
Ben: It’s good stuff.
Brock: We’re usually concentrating on arms and legs. Today’s ears and
Ben: Today’s the, today we talk about your vestibular apparatus. Was
that the last question?
Brock: That is the last question.
Ben: Sweet. Well, should we read a review?
Brock: Oh, I was just gonna have my banjo handy. Wait a seconds, I’m
gonna get my guitar.
Ben: While you’re grabbing that, just this morning, I actually sent out a
couple of care packages, care packages to people who left a review
on iTunes. I sent you some books, I sent you some supplements
but I sent all these care packages out this morning so if you leave a
review on iTunes, then if we read your review on the show as
we’re about to do for one of our lucky listeners, and you hear your
review written, and you let us know that you heard your review
written on the show, you send us your address over at
email@example.com, we’ll send you some cool shiz
bang in the mail to your home.
Brock: Shiz bang.
Ben: So here is today’s review. It’s called “Taking Us to School” is the
name of the review. And it was written by alldamnday28. Here’s
what alldamnday28 has to say. Hola! Thank you so much for
kicking this knowledge right to my dome. It’s great to get very
insightful, healthy, long-living material, from your podcast. You
guys keep it smart, healthy, and funny at the same time. This is
the ultimate Steve Jobs Flow J O Steve Martin podcast. Boom. So
alldamnday28, send us your address and you’ll get a care package
in the mail for that kick-ass review. So, and for anybody else, leave
a review, leave a ranking. Go to…. What’s the URL they could go
Ben: And also, bengreenfieldfitness.com/love. If you wanna share the
wealth. So check all that out. Grab the phone app if you didn’t
grab the phone app yet.
Brock: At bengreenfieldfitness.com/app
Ben: Ton of extra interviews in there as well. A bunch of stuff. So check
all that out and yeah man, I think that wraps up this week. And
Brock: Let’s wrap it up.
Ben: Let’s wrap it out. Play us out Brock.