Podcast #247 from http://www.bengreenfieldfitness.com/2013/07/247-can-you-
Introduction: In today’s episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast: Can You
Still Exercise When Recovering From Overtraining, How To Push
Yourself While Racing, What Is The Best Blood Test, How To Fix
Exercise Induced Anemia, Natural Remedies for Tonsil Stones,
Are Prohormone Supplements Dangerous and 3 Good
Brock: So my living room is so warm right now that I’m only wearing
Ben: Yes, that’s always, it’s a conundrum for me really, the whole
podcast with pants or podcast without pants thing.
Brock: Yeah, really there’s no technical reason why we couldn’t always do
a show pant less but yeah, right now I’m using heat as an excuse.
Ben: Yeah, it kinda depends on the quality of your chair. There can be
some logistical difficulties too if not wearing pants for you means
you’re going totally combat style.
Brock: Yeah, well I stand while we’re recording. I don’t sit during shows.
Brock: That’s not a problem for me.
Ben: See, I sit just because like the location of my microphone and
everything, and so I sit when we podcast and so I do have to
actually have something on for me. When I put on pants I get a
little bit more professional so usually, I think a podcast listener
could probably tell you know, and you tell me, folks listening in,
you know, whether or not I’m wearing pants just based off of how
professional versus unprofessional I actually am.
Brock: Actually, that kinda sums up our positions in the podcast. I’m
obviously the idiot of the podcast.
Ben: Well, yes obviously.
Brock: Since I’m not wearing pants.
Ben: Brock is always standing in the nude as we can all tell. Probably
occasionally in like a thong and some hockey skates. You know I
kinda go back and forth between like you know, the jogging suit,
you know, I’m actually wearing, well right now I’m wearing
surfboard shorts combat style so there you go.
Ben: So today’s podcast will be…..
Brock: When you said tracksuit I was thinking like Russian mobster, like
matching Adidas thing, unzipped a little too far with a gold chain.
Ben: Yeah like, it’s like the gray one from Rocky. You know, so like
when he’s running through Chicago or whatever. Getting stronger.
Brock: It’s Philadelphia man.
Ben: Oh yeah, Philadelphia. The other US City. Alright man, what are
you think, should we do this thing?
Brock: All right, cruise on over to bengreenfieldfitness.com/247 to find
these studies that will make your sporting life and health life
better and more beneficial.
Ben: That’s right. Or your diet tastier. The first thing that I wanted to
mention is ways that you can get health-promoting, endurance-
boosting nitrates cause we’ve all heard about beet juice right? Beet
juice is like the sexy grandchild of the sporting industry right now
where everybody is…..
Brock: That’s funny. I thought of hotdogs not beets when you said
Ben: Well you know, great minds think differently sometimes.
Brock: Completely opposite.
Ben: But you know, you’ve got a lot of elite athletes guzzling beet juice
before a race and you know this article that Alex Hutchinson
wrote in the Globe and Mail. Actually talked a little bit about nitric
oxide and the release of nitric oxide that we get from beets and
also he listed some of the other foods that tend to have a very very
similar effect in terms of their nitrate richness and really they all
have very similar properties. They’re all dark leaves, right you can
get a lot of the nitrates that you get from beet juice or from beets
by just eating the leaves of the beet and a lot of these other foods
are similar. Swiss chard is one, rhubarb is another, arugula which
I have growing outside in my garden and I’ve been making a
smoothie in the morning, I go out there and just grab a handful of
arugula, is another; celery and then of course beets. We have
arugula, rhubarb, celery, Swiss chard, and beet as those top 5
sources that are gonna give you that nitrate rich boost in your
cardiovascular system and you know what the one thing is that
can shut that down, that can keep these nitrates from getting
converted into the efficacious nitrites in your body?
Brock: Eating hotdogs?
Ben: You’re stuck on the hotdog thing.
Brock: I am, I’m sorry.
Ben: Is it because you’re standing pants less that you’re thinking about
Ben: The one thing that can inhibit nitrates from these foods from
getting converted to nitrate oxide, you know what it is?
Brock: It’s gotta be something to do with your saliva.
Ben: Yeah, exactly because it’s, they are friendly bacteria that live in
your mouth that convert nitrate in your saliva to nitrite.
Brock: How about yoghurt?
Brock: Eating too much yoghurt.
Ben: Mouthwash. Well anti-bacterial mouthwash, anti-bacterial
toothpaste, that kind of thing. All that beet juice guzzling is for
naught if you’re using Listerine or something like that so.
Ben: There’s 5 ways to get your nitric oxide boost whether it be for
sports performance or interestingly even for like virility and
sexual performance this stuff works and you know, the quality of
blood flow in orgasm or whatever for guys or girls but also, you
know, if you’re combining that with mouthwash, it’s really not
doing any good so there you go.
Brock: I actually, a company called Neogenis send me this stuff called
Beety Leet, it’s like this little powder thing that you put into water
and I’d be testing that over the next couple of races and just,
you’re like supposed to put in into like 4 ounces of water and
guzzle it like 30 minutes before a race and has supposedly the
equivalent of 6 beets or something jammed into that little packet.
Ben: Beety Leet.
Brock: Let see how that works.
Ben: Does it have like Captain Vegetable like jumping out of the can in
the front of it? Like…..
Brock: It does. Like Captain Vegetable’s holding somebody down….
Ben: Captain Vegetable with my carrots and my celery. Remember that
from Sesame Street?
Ben: It’s an awesome show.
Ben: You don’t remember Captain Vegetable? I’m pretty sure it’s
Sesame Street. Anyways, we’ll have, maybe what we can do at the
end of the podcast is we can find the Captain vegetable song and
play it for everyone.
Ben: So we always save little surprises at the end of the podcast. For
today’s podcast we’ll see if we can hunt down Captain Vegetable
and get ourselves get out pants suit off by public TV or whoever. I
guess we’re not wearing pants so it doesn’t matter.
Ben: Alright, so the next thing…..
Brock: You’re welcome to them.
Ben: Intramuscular triglycerides are a huge source of fuel during
endurance and this was interesting. It was a study that came out
that looked at what happens when you have folks exercise for a
long period of time in a fasted state and what actually occurs is
you get a huge huge drop in what are called intramuscular
triglycerides or these are also known as your intramyocellular
lipids. Essentially, there’ve been a few studies that have looked
into this but one looked at moderate intensity exercise in
endurance trained males in a fasted state and found that fatty
acids from the muscle and intramuscular triglycerides were a very
important substrate source during fasted endurance exercise. I’ll
get in a second to why this could be important for you if you’re
trying to boost your sports performance or to figure out what
you’re supposed to eat you know, during endurance but the other
thing that was interesting was that there was another study that
looked at basically how your body taps into this intramuscular
triglyceride and it was found that the, when your body is tapping
into intramuscular triglyceride sources, your intramuscular
triglyceride pool to use that stuff as an energy source during
exercise, it can actually cause a little bit of an insulin response and
cause your pancreas to have to work a little bit, to churn out
insulin in order for you to be able to effectively tap into this
adipose tissue and so it’s one of those things where there is a little
bit of stress on the pancreas when you’re tapping into these
intramuscular triglycerides even though they’re used as a really
really potent source of fuel for you when you’re out there
performing specifically endurance exercise and in this case, for
this fasted, male endurance athletes, 60-70% intensity.
So this got me to thinking there probably is quite a bit benefit of
giving your body an exogenous source of triglycerides while you’re
exercising. This was something I experimented with. I rarely do
this in my training ‘cause I’m big into this whole quality or
quantity thing but I rode 112 miles on my bike. I went up to
Ironman Canada, the Ironman Canada bike course up at Whistler
and I rode 112 miles 3 days ago, on Saturday. And I took a bunch
of the BulletProof MCT oil with me and I mixed that in with this
SuperStarch stuff that I usually used so I had about 4 capfuls or so
which is about 4 ounces of medium change triglycerides but I
think that comes out to right around 300 calories or so and I put a
few packets of SuperStarch in there as well and it was kinda like
an oily type of flavor. Really really interesting but you know, the
crazy thing is that I only, during 112 miles, I only consumed 600
calories and I was fine. I was just like, I wasn’t hammering hard
the whole time, I was just kinda riding the course and checking it
out and stuff but just felt great all day long so I may, and I’m
thinking about doing this as like my Ironman triathlon protocol
and possibly starting to recommend this to folks, I may start to
introduce more of this kinda like MCT oil rather than just like
throwing in to some just like you know, BulletProof coffee in the
morning. Actually start to use this stuff during endurance exercise
based of a lot of these studies I’m seeing in terms of the body’s
preference that tap into these triglycerides is a very significant
source of fuel so….
Brock: Aren’t there a few of the guys doing the Tour de France thing right
now using MCT oils?
Ben: There is word on the street and kinda rumor on Jack Cruz’s forum
for example there’s a lot of like high-fat intake enthusiasts over
there that there are folks in the Tour de France right now who are
only using MCT oil like that bike bottle that would typically be
filled with Gatorade or whatever, it is literally just pure fat. MCT
oil capsules and they have been studying this stuff in the military.
We mentioned this stuff a few weeks ago in the podcast as a
potential source of fuel as well. Just pure MCT oil. You know, it’s
also expensive. That’s one of the things. It’s some spendy stuff and
you know, I’m curious, what I need to do is go out and try and I’m
thinking about doing that this weekend, go out and try just
guzzling MCT oil during like a bike ride and then running for
maybe 20, 30 minutes afterwards and seeing it if I wind up with
nasty oily poo running down the back of my leg or something like
Brock: That seems like the biggest risk.
Ben: That’s in the back of my mind. You know, the oily poo.
Brock: Do they call it danger pants?
Ben: That’s right. Danger pants. One other thing that’s interesting,
speaking of danger pants is gluten intolerance. Here is a really
interesting study that came out that looked at the fact that there’s
no effects of gluten in many many people who thought that they
were gluten intolerant. They put these folks through a study where
they compared the effects of gluten with the effects of what are
called fodmaps which we’ve talked about in the show before but
that’s fructose, oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides,
what is it, and polyols.
Ben: Something like that.
Brock: Fermentable oligodimonosaccharides and polyols. Fodmap.
Ben: If you think that you’re gluten intolerant, you may not be at all. It
might just be that you are sensitive to these fodmaps and there are
charts, I’ll link to one in the show notes for folks listening in
where you can go print a fodmap chart, slap it on your fridge for a
week, and avoid the foods that are high in fodmaps so we’re
talking about foods typically like foods that contain a lot of
fructose, a lot of melons, you know unfortunately in the summer
are high in fodmaps, dairy is high in lactose part of fodmaps, a lot
of legumes like kidney beans and baked beans and stuff like that,
no surprise there. Apples, pears, a lot of cereals, anyways, there
are some foods that are really high so you slap this on your fridge
and just for a week try it, try eliminating fodmaps. I’m personally
kinda experimenting with this stuff myself and I am noticing a
huge change in terms of you know, like toots bloating here and
there. You know, sometimes you like to start to run, start to work
out and you gotta….
Ben: You need to duck into the restroom to like, you know…..
Brock: Did you say toots?
Ben: Toots gas, you know?
Brock: Yeah. You clearly have small children in the room.
Ben: Yes. Anyways though.
Brock: Grown men don’t call them toots.
Ben: Toots. You know me, I got me some toots.
Brock: I got badass toots.
Ben: Anyways though, fodmap chart. Hang it on your fridge, check it
out. And this is something that I’m actually looking into quite a bit
right now for a few clients is this small intestine bacterial
overgrowth issue. I think it’s something that a lot of people are
dealing with. They’re unaware of the issues. They think they’re
gluten intolerant, have nothing whatsoever to do with gluten but
has to do with fodmaps. I suspect that maybe the issue in a lot of
people and this study, when I saw it, it was right in the midst of
me kinda looking into this stuff and it’s like boom. Maybe it’s not
the gluten and not the GI effects caused by you know, bread and
pizza and stuff like that. Maybe it’s these fodmaps instead and it
turns out based on this study that many many folks, it’s the
fodmaps not the gluten so there you go.
Brock: But that doesn’t mean you should throw a whole bunch of gluten
back into your diet like I can see on this, I’ve got one of these
charts in front of me and wheat and rye, bread, crackers, cookies,
pasta, they’re all on this elimination chart as well so it’s kind of
stay off the gluten and also stay off the apples, apricots, avocados,
blackberries, cherries, etcetera.
Ben: Yeah but at the same time, let’s say you’re at an Italian restaurant
and they got like a nice artisanal you know, slice of pizza, that
kind of thing, you know, and you’ve just been completely, 100%
strict, you know, totally gluten free, kinda like you know,
whatever. Robb Wolf paleo-esque. Don’t go near gluten or it’s
gonna destroy you. You know, maybe, possibly, there are a lot of
people out there who could tolerate trace amounts of gluten, sane
amounts of gluten in their diet, you know a loaf of bread a day or
anything like that and be okay and maybe it’s a lot of these other
fermentable foods that are causing these issues instead. Possibly
due to things like small intestinal bacteria overgrowth and some
GI issues so I’m personally through my private consulting
business, you know, with the coaching calls that I do with folks,
I’ve been walking a lot of people through a lot of gut issues and
this is something I found to be more and more the cases is the
combination of bacterial overgrowth and fodmap consumption
being a big issue so.
Brock: Right. Well we’ve gotta link to the fodmap chart in the show notes
here and anybody who’s listening to this inside the app, if you just
click on that little e, there’s a little lower case e in the bottom right
hand corner, if you click on there you could find all the links laid
out really nicely for you so just scroll down there until you see the
Ben: Yeah, it’s pretty useful, that part of the app actually. Like honestly,
I would go through our own show notes and click that letter e
button just because it’s super cool and it makes me feel warm
inside when I see all our links that we worked so hard to put up
right there for people so if you wanna feel warm inside too, that’s
one way to do it.
Brock: All right, this Friday, 6:30PM, you and Jessa are going to lead
people to be your own diet sleuth.
Ben: That’s right. I was talking to Jessa last night and she was telling
me how Friday night I was gonna be watching the kids ‘cause she’s
heading off to a party with some of her girlfriends and I said 6:30,
you and me babe, we’re sitting down for the inner circle webinar
where she’s been logging her diet. We’re gonna go through and
show basically what kind of programs and apps are out there that
are good for logging your diet and then how to interpret the
numbers like how to interpret calories, carbs, protein, fat,
macronutrients, micronutrients, all the data you can glean from
something like that. I’m personally not a huge fan of logging your
diet all the time but doing it for a week or doing it for a month,
you can learn a bunch and so before Jessa heads off to that party,
I’m gonna make sure she plants her butt in a chair for at least an
hour with me and so that’s gonna be in the inner circle. Every
month we do a new webinar, every month we do a new bonus
meal plans, you know, I spend a few hours a week in there
answering questions from people on the forum.
Kinda giving a little bit more time for thought to my responses
and how I help people in like you know, the comments section on
the blog or something like that so you know, it’s kinda a cool
service. The whole thing about the inner circle is I just, I wanted a
figure out a way to help people and not feel guilty that my kids
were starving because I was doing it for 100% free so I figured 10
bucks a month, you can join the inner circle, you get a monthly
webinar from me, you take advantage of the fact that a bunch of
other people are doing it so you know, It’s not like you’re gonna
pay hundreds of dollars a month for coaching from me instead it’s
just 10 dollars a month and yeah, it’s the best 10 dollars a month
you will ever spend unless you have like an Amazon prime
membership or something like that which is honestly even cooler
than the inner circle but you know.
Brock: You know, actually, Amazon Prime sucks in Canada so maybe it’s
really good for you guys...
Ben: That’s what I heard.
Brock: It’s totally useless. But anyway, during this diet, since I hope you
actually you also cover how to ignore some of the feedback you get
from some of those apps. ‘Cause I know like I’m following a low-
carb high-fat diet and on days when I have like a BulletProof
coffee for breakfast and then avocado salad for lunch, it, like
alarms are going off and it’s like oh my God you’re killing yourself.
This is terrible.
Ben: The animated GIF of the heart exploding….
Brock: Pretty much.
Ben: Bursting in a flame of fat globules.
Brock: A little hand reaches out and knocks the food off of my hand. So
yeah, I hope you cover that information too.
Ben: Yeah, we’ll do all that. And then the other thing I wanted to
mention was that I’m in the midst of putting together our camp
over in Thailand. We’re gonna be doing a bunch of, I’d be doing
bike fits for folks….
Brock: Oh cool.
Ben: I’m gonna be doing run like track economy and efficiency drills.
I’m gonna be doing like some video recorded swim lessons, we’ll
be doing a nutrition workshop, breathing workshop, mobility
workshop, yoga workshop, strength training workshop, bunch of
stuff. This is at the 5-day camp at Thanya Pura that I’m putting on
in Thailand on November and that camp kinda culminates in a
race and then we go and party like in a few islands and then come
back and do another race. Anyways, still room to get in on that if
you have the freedom and flexibility to get away for a few weeks to
Thailand this winter and you want to experience the adventure of
a lifetime and also learn a bunch from me and some other pro
triathletes and guest lecturers I’m gonna have at that camp. It’s
pretty killer so it’s at pacificfit.net/Thailand so check that out.
Brock: Sounds awesome.
Chris Hughes: Hey Ben. I just wanna say thank you for the awesome custom
training plan you gave me. Before starting, I was overtrained and
bouncing from injury, you know. I was probably training for like
20hours a week just killing myself and missing kind of my family
and ultimately missing my goal for triathlon which is like the
whole point of the training. You know, I used to be stuck at these
giant heavy supportive shoes again just going from injury to injury
and now thanks to you training plan and the strength training,
I’ve gone from slow and big heavy supportive shoes to placing the
top 50 of my first 70.3 this season. It was just might be a race and
so I’m excited to see what’s coming and you know, I did that in
racing flats. If you told me 12 weeks ago, I would be running in
racing flats, I would be laughing at you. I’m thinner and faster
that I’d ever been without all the injuries that would just
constantly haunt me. You know, I look better. I don’t have the
skinny fat syndrome going on. You know, the icing on the cake
really has to serve as a minimalist training without any loss in
performance. I just had so much time with my family and a much
better balanced life. Looking forward to the rest of the season and
I’ll see you in Ironman Canada. Thanks again.
Ben: That is pretty cool. Chris was actually with me up in Canada 3
days ago. Chris and John and Tyler, Jim and Dan. Basically, a
group of us guys just went up there and checked out the Ironman
Canada course and we swam like about 4k every morning and
biked 112 miles on Saturday and Chris and I actually went for a
run on Sunday and kinda went on for like a half marathon run
and got lost and winded up running almost 20 miles.
But yeah, it’s kinda cool for me when I’ve got a guy say like Chris
who’s like following my triathlon dominator, or actually no, he’s
not following triathlon dominator. He’s doing the deal where what
I do with some people is you go at pacificfit.net and you fill out a
questionnaire there and then I design a customized plan for your
entire year based off the races that you’ve chosen to do and all
that jazz and you know, it’s 500 bucks and I basically just lay out
you know, which days you’re supposed to do which workout and
you know, based off what your calendar is so it’s kinda like a
hybrid between custom coaching and kinda like a generic plan.
Chris did that and for me it’s cool to go out and train with folks
who are following a plan like that that I wrote for them ‘cause you
know, he rocked it. You know, he hadn’t ridden any longer I think
ever in his life like 80 miles and you know, he basically hammered
through the 112 miles. He got 4 flat tires but he still, he killed it
and he was strong. He hung with me for 20 miles of running. You
know, we went out there with no food, no water and just like you
know, we were only planning on running 13 miles, we ended up
running 20 ‘cause we got lost but you know, no food, no water, he
hammered through that. Sat on my feet for 2 different days of
swimming hard 4k, you know, and the dude’s just been doing my
quality over quantity stuff, minimalist training, but it’s pretty cool
to see you know, when I’m writing out a plan for somebody, you
know there’s a difference between all doing zeroes and ones and
emails flying back and forth and then me getting to actually meet
them and see how the training that I have assigned to them is
actually fleshing out and yeah. So I know Chris is a podcast
listener. He’s probably sitting there with his ears burning but you
know, shoutout. Just cool to see that you know, when I’m sitting
down and looking at these studies and trying to you know take
what science is telling us and apply it to training programs that lo
and behold, big surprise.
Brock: It works.
Ben: The crap actually works regardless of whether or not I’m wearing
pants when I write it, it works, I mean you, you know, this is me
being the salesman now. I mean, you do what I tell you, you do
what I say and if you’re trying to go after feats of physical
performance, you know, follow what I tell you and it will work so
there you go. There’s me bragging and I’ll now get off my soap
Brock: I like it.
Mark: Hey Ben it’s Mark in Texas. I’ve been diagnosed with overtraining
syndrome where and it’s early on set. I’ve been prescribed like a
month and a half of just rest and recovery ‘cause I’ve been going
on for like 7 years and I’ve never stopped training. And so during
this time of 6 weeks off, other than mobility and stretching, things
like that, what are some things I could do to really enhance my
recovery as far as what kind of supplements to take or resistance
touch stuff to do. So I’d appreciate your thoughts. On that,
______ [0:28:22.3] and thanks.
Brock: All right so this is actually a little bit of a follow-up. Mark asked us
a question about high heart rate a little while ago and I guess since
he’s been diagnosed with over training syndrome.
Ben: Yeah and I have spent, I probably have been doing 4, 5 consults a
week with people who are in a state of adrenal fatigue or
overtraining in some stage of it or another. You know, they’re
going out and their doing the metametrics panel, I forgot the
name of it, it’s the 4 daily cortisol measurements and the 2 daily
DHEA measurements that the adrenal stress and XDSI. They’re
over trained, they’re adrenal fatigued, and they’re experiencing a
lot of the issues that mark is experiencing. It’s crazy how many
people have dug themselves out into a hole. Crazy. Blows my mind
really and it’s sad and it’s scary. It’s stuff that you can fix though,
and one of the biggest questions that I get is kinda similar to Mark
wants to know here, it’s like what can you do. Because quitting
cold turkey when you’re addicted to exercise or you’re relying on
the release of the dopamine and the cannabinoids and everything
else that you know, we kinda hit on on this last podcast that I did
with Mishka Shubaly. You know you could check that out at
bengreenfieldfitness.com, the podcast that we did about is it okay
to be addicted to exercise. It’s kinda weird because some people
will turn to exercise as a way to save them from smoking or drugs
or alcohol abuse or something like that ‘cause exercise gives you
Brock: Or overeating.
Ben: Yeah or overeating or whatever. And then, you know, on the
flipside, you quit exercising ‘cause you got overtrained or adrenal
fatigued or whatever. It can be easy to turn to like alcohol and
drugs or you know, or something like that or simply just refuse to
stop exercising ‘cause you’re so just like addicted basically. You
know feeling that you get. So when I’m dealing with people who
have adrenal fatigue or who have over training syndrome, the last
thing I do is tell them to lay over the couch because I know how
hard that can be. Granted in many cases….
Brock: They’ll probably ignore you too.
Ben: Yeah, and that’s what happens and I have had people who have
dropped out of my program because they simply refused to stop in
most cases, swimming, biking, and running. They just won’t stop
and they you know, and they’ll keep on floundering for years
eventually until the body just poops out. But for the folks who
kinda adhere to the program, you know the basics stuff that I
work in especially for the first 4-8 weeks and this kinda depends
on you know, we test as we go so you look at, even if it’s
impossible to test cortisol and DHEA, that can be expensive, it can
be time consuming but at least track things like your morning
heart rate variability to see how things are responding as you go
and you kinda keep your finger on the pulls of recovery of you
know, sleep quality, mood, soreness, heart rate and heart rate
variability, things of that nature. And some of the main workouts
that will do you know “workouts” are yoga. Mobility sessions that
involve a series of foam rolling moves you know, 10-15 minutes of
foam rolling followed by a dynamic warm-up of arm swings, leg
swings, balancing drills, a little bit of body weight core stuff,
moving back into foam rolling and then finishing with some light
restorative yoga. Doing like easy 20-30 minute nature walks.
Doing a lot of fascia work, mobility work like golfballs, lacrosse
balls, stuff like that using the break from training and the
restorative portions of the workout to basically reinvent the body
and you know, Brock as you being someone that I coach, you
know that these are sometimes the types of weeks that I throw in
to your program.
Brock: Yeah, I say this is sounding very familiar to what I’m doing next
Ben: Yeah, it’s kinda like the stuff that I’ll do with the athletes that I
coach every 4 weeks or every 6 weeks or depending on how much
I’m wanting to beat up an athlete to get them ready for something
as seldom as any 8 weeks but for someone who’s recovering from
adrenal fatigue and over training, I’ll take a similar recovery week
and we’ll do like 8 solid weeks of just that kind of stuff: yoga,
mobility, nature walks, easy movement. And we combine that
with a lot of for example, the supplementation protocols that I
talk about in my article on over training recovery and I’ll link to
that in the show notes over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/247 but
we combine that with stuff like high mineral and intake, high
vitamin c intake, high intake of liquor root extract to kinda
decrease the half life of cortisol and cause your body to churn out
some of that wakefulness hormone that it needs. We’ll combine it
with some herbal support from something like Inner Peace or
Tianchi, you know, some Chinese adaptogenic herbal action. You
know, and there’s a more comprehensive list that I’ll link to in the
show notes. I won’t get into all of this cause frankly, I’ve written a
free article on it and you can read over at the website. But you
combine a lot of that stuff with you know, basic movement
protocols and generally, if you’re not into deep state of adrenal
fatigue, you can kinda wean yourself back into doing basic
workouts within 4-8 weeks and when I say basic workouts, what
I’ll usually start with is I’ll take someone from just doing like the
yoga, mobility, easy nature walk, stuff like that, and I will take for
example, one of those easy nature walks and I’ll start having folks
stop and do some rock lifts and log lifts, maybe some pushups,
some kinda fitness exploring type of work that still doesn’t send
your body to that stressful structured running from a lion exercise
message but allows you to begin to stretch your muscles and joints
and heart rate and cardiovascular system a little bit. And then
we’ll throw in some bear foot sprints or some real real short high
intensity things like you know, hundred yard short sprints, 20, 50
yards, things of that nature. And then one of the first structured
sessions that I’ll throw back in is super slow strength either with a
suspension strap like a TRX or most fit suspension strap or doing
like a super slow protocol at the gym using something like Doug
McGuff’s Body by Science protocol where it’s lots of breathing,
focus and quality of movement but again, no chronic repetitive
The very very last thing that I add in and sometimes it can be a
good 12-15 weeks before I add in this component is chronic
competitive motion where it’s okay, we’re actually going out to go
on a bike ride or swim or run or something that is metabolic
conditioning roadwork because that’s the stuff in someone that is
overtrained who often times has their parasympathetic nervous
system really really beat up you know, if you test their heart rate
variability, the number called there high frequency is really really
consistently low you know usually because there are triathletes or
marathoners that’s more often I’m dealing with those people with
adrenal fatigue than I am with like a cross fitter who’s kind of an
opposite sympathetic nervous system fatigue issue but with those
parasympathetic nervous fatigue, the last thing we add back in is
the swimming and the biking and the running because it’s
important to realize that when you’re trying to recover from
adrenal fatigue or overtraining, even if you’re doing like an easy
swim or an easy bike ride or an easy run, if you’re a triathlete or a
marathoner or a swimmer or a cyclist, those easy sessions send a
message to your body that you’re training, that you’re running
from a lion and you still get that hormonal depletion and it’s so
easy for you to just turn into a depletion session and so that’s the
very very last thing that I’ll add back in so that’s kinda like the
crow’s eye view of you know, the type of things that I’ll implement
in a program for overtraining recovery, you know and you know,
this is something that people hire me to walk them through. I’m
thinking about just riding possibly you know, just riding up a plan
for training peaks or PDF of something that I can just you know,
put out there for people to use but the problem with doing
something like that is a lot of this stuff is customized like it totally
depends on genetics and your micronutrient status and how deep
into the hole you’ve dug yourself and you know, frankly require
some hand holding sometimes to get yourself out of a situation
like that. So, but those are some of the basics that I’ll start with if I
Brock: You know those wilderness fitness walk things are, they’re my
favorite. I love those. Like you do come home feeling like you had
a workout but like you said, you just don’t have that fight or flight
stressed out feeling ‘cause it was unstructured and it was just
goofy good fun.
Brock: But you still get a good workout. It’s a nice way to fool your body
into having a workout without thinking I’m working out.
Ben: Yeah exactly. It’s like my you know, my little circuit at the park I
do on Thursdays like you know, balance on park bench, jump off a
park bench, sprint over to the like picnic benches, do like a snake
crawl under those, or under the tree, do some handstand,
pushups, jump up over the fence which is about 20 yards away
from there and I’ll walk along the fence for a good 2 or 3 minutes,
hop off the fence, I’ll crawl literally on the ground like a rabbit or a
cat over to this big electrical box. Kinda do a muscle up upon to
that, jump off that, land soft like a monkey, run off to this big, it’s
like this big it’s almost like this pole that a sign is hanging from
and I’ll do 3, 4, 5 pull ups on that and then run backwards, or
sideways, or skip or bound or hop over to my original starting
point and that you know, these are the type of workouts that
Darryl Edwards talked about in his book Paleo Fitness you know,
or on his website, fitnessexplorer.com. You know, just fun stuff.
And you can do that kind of stuff when you’re recovering from
overtraining, kinda in the later stages of recovery you know, after
you’ve gotten, usually again about 4-8 weeks of kinda easy stuff
under your belt and that’s a great way to kinda reintroduce your
body to fitness and movement and you know, if you’re not over
trained, that’s a great kind of workout to include once a week you
know, do it with your kids or whatever. If you wind up in your
local municipal jail house for climbing up on the elliptical boxes at
your park just blame the Ben Greenfield Fitness podcast. There
Brett: Hello Ben and Brock. This is Brett from Sandpoint, Idaho. In the
latest podcast, Ben has been encouraging us listeners to push
ourselves beyond our comfort zones to maximize our workouts. I
have tried this approach but I’m having problems. I feel as if I am
“saving myself” for that last push of a race or a workout. Do you
have any ideas on how to go harder during the beginning and
middle of workouts or races? Thanks so much.
Ben: So Brett. You know, this reminds me of Andy Potts. Andy Potts is
a professional triathlete and I had the pleasure of seeing him
speak. He’s actually very dynamic. Cool speaker and I saw him
speak at the Triathlon Business Conference in San Diego this year
and he talked about his pre-race protocol that he uses to get
himself pumped up to go hard when the race starts from the very
very beginning and it was pretty hilarious. It’s like this
combination of like spastic yoga breathing and like this almost
like what do you call it, shamanic breathing pattern that’s like
breathing in and like hyperventilating and breathing out really
fast. It’s actually a technique that John Douillard talks about in
his book Mind, Body, Sports. I saw Andy up on stage doing this a
few months ago, John Douillard’s book and it was very very
similar. It’s almost like this process of hyperventilation in a way
but lots of crazy breathing, it was like 5 minutes he demonstrated
on stage and the whole room was cracking up because he was
literally filling his lungs with air over and over again and then
building these breaths faster and faster and faster like panting and
then he finished with one deep deep breath. He held it in and then
he blew it out really fast and went through that a few different
times and it was all the more hilarious ‘cause he was like pitting
out in this dress shirt and just sat like huge balls of sweat building
under his shirt but that’s what the dude does and he’s known for
you know, in a triathlon, just like going off the front, the first 300,
400 yards you know, and that’s where he breaks from the crowd,
right there and boom, he’s gone. And that’s what he does, that 5
minutes of breathing before his triathlon.
Ben: And I tried something similar, I tried something similar in Japan.
We had no warm-up, no swim warm-up in Japan. You know, I
went off the front with a few other swimmers and felt great the
whole time so I’ll put a link in the show notes to an actual article
that describes Andy’s swim routine. You know, if you wanna print
that out or whatever, his breathing routine that he does, so that’s
the first thing that I’d recommend or go grab John Douillard’s
book, Mind, Body, Sport and read, I don’t remember the page but
he’s got, it’s like a hyperventilation kinda blow off kind of
technique. So that’s one thing to try, these deep breathing
techniques before you go out there and do the workout or the
race. The next thing that I’d recommend, I’ll give you five
recommendations so the first one would be to breath. The second
one would be, and this is something really, you know, it sounds
simple and stupid but when I’m at a triathlon, or at an event, I see
most people not warming up properly. You know, a proper warm-
up consists of several surges that take you up in the race pace that
cause your body to begin producing its lactic acid buffering
enzymes and cause you to begin you know, increase in the
elasticity of the lungs and really opening up the blood vessels and
a lot of people do like a light jog, light bike ride, light swim,
whatever and you actually have to throw in some real hard race
pace efforts – 20, 30, sometimes up to 60 seconds long – to really
get your body into that state that it needs to be in to be ready to
push hard when the gun goes off so to speak. So that’s number
two, warm up.
Brock: Yeah, I think people are generally worried about using up their
finite amount of energy before the race starts so they’re standing
around really still trying to conserve every bit of energy they’ve
got and that’s really not how the body works.
Ben: Yeah. Even before an Ironman triathlon, for example, you, those
things start hard. You gotta be ready for it so warm up the right
way. The next thing that I’ll use personally, is, I’m a big fan of
music. That gets me pumped up. I grab like some of the podcast,
find me on iTunes, I subscribe to Paul Oakenfold’s Planet
Perfective Podcast, I subscribe to the Tiesto ClubLife Podcast, the
State of Trance Podcast, Felix Cartal’s Weekend Workout Podcast,
like for me, I’m a big fan of techno. Those are all techno podcasts
and that’s what gets me pumped up. I suspect Brock that you’re
probably like more of like an 80’s butt rock guy right?
Brock: I’d like to call it hair rock but yes. Little Pantera, maybe some Rat.
Ben: Right. Some mullet.
Brock: Van Halen of course.
Ben: Some mullet action. Anyways though, you know, there’s a reason
that armies going into battle in history used drums and trumpets
and things like that to get them pumped up, I mean you know, the
crap works so you know, use music as well. Use an mp3 player to
get yourself pumped up.
And you can have those tunes kinda continually playing in your
head too as you’re out there pushing yourself which is nice ‘cause
they kinda stick in your head.
Brock: Yeah, having that power song to call on that you know when
you’re starting to fall apart, just start singing it in your head.
Ben: Getting stronger. The next thing that I’d do is count so for me,
sometimes, especially if it’s a slow start, I’ll just be like okay, for
the swim for example. For those firsts you know, 200 yards for the
swim, I’ll just be counting the whole time like 1, 2, 3, left; 1, 2, 3,
right; 1, 2, 3 left. So it’s almost like this distraction technique. I’ll
also use that towards the end of like a race or a triathlon. I’ll
literally count to 20 over and over and over again just to distract
my mind to keep my body from shutting down and that counting
technique can work really well also. It’s something that a lot of pro
athletes would do, they’ll just like count to string themselves that
last little bit. So that’s another thing that you can use, not just in
the end but also in the beginning of an event. And then finally,
number five, so I said breathe, warm up properly, use music, use
counting, and then practice like, for example, I’ve got one workout
that I’d recommend that I use and some of my athlete uses, it’s
called my Swim Start Workout where it’s a series of 200 and 300
meter repeats where the first 25 or the fist 50 or just all out and
then you take yourself into a cruise pace for the next you know,
100, 200 meters or for example, for a run, rather than easing
yourself for a run, do a quick warm-up, you know, 5 minutes of
you know, aerobic running with a few short 20-30 second efforts
thrown in and then just push yourself, you know, rather than
waiting ‘till the end of your run for a fast finish use a fast start.
The same thing in the bike as well. Also, in your practice sessions,
for whatever it is you’re trying to get ready for, try to go hard in
the beginning rather than going hard in the end which is what
most people really do you know, and that is, for example, like I
mentioned how I you know, accidentally got lost and ended up
running 30k this past Sunday, I went out and ran the 13 miles
really hard ‘cause I was well not really hard but at a harder pace
than would I have gone if I hadn’t been running 20 miles instead
of 13 and it was almost like I tricked my body, I ran hard for 13
miles and then tacked another 7 or so on and you know, a lot of
times folks would do the opposite, they would go easy for the first
hour or so and as they’re going towards the end they start to run
harder ‘cause the light that’s at the end of the tunnel and instead
you push yourself hard at the start and you know, put your
motivational music from the start, from the get going just like
push from the get go rather than building into your pace so that’s
another way that you can do things and you know, that can
sometimes you know, treadmills and stuff like that came in handy
to set the pace for you so.
Brock: Yeah. Well practice really is the right word for it because you do
have to practice at each pace so you know what you can and can’t
do. If you start off really hard, there’s no way you’re going to be
able to stay in this pace. Of course that’s a bad strategy especially
if you’re in a race but during your practices, during your workout,
go too hard a couple of times so you know what it feels like –
where too hard is and where just hard enough is so you can gauge
that when it comes to race day.
Ben: That’s right. That’s right. And then illegal performing enhancing
drugs is gonna be number 6 but I think we’ve got a question with
that later on anyways so we’ll save that.
Brock: We’ll save that.
Julia: Hi Ben and Brock, my name is Julia and I’m from California. My
question is about recovery and this is the topic that of course you
guys approach every week usually in some way but my question is
about people who have a hard time recovering quickly and not
even quickly. It takes me 3 or 4 days between running event or
spinning. I have spin class to feel ready to do it again and to pass
injuries. I don’t like to work out on sore muscles, on weak fatigued
muscles, but at the same time waiting 3-4 days between just
cardio sessions and don’t even get me started on weights, if I do
weights, it’s usually 5 days. I don’t know if this is a diet issue or a
nutrition issue. I’m looking at changing things in my diet but
perhaps you have some supplementations, suggestions or some
training suggestions even to rectify my situation of full recovery.
Brock: Well, 5 days to recover from some resistance work, that’s a long
Ben: Yeah, I mean, it can be, depends on the resistance work. There are
for exam, I mentioned Doug McGuff’s Body by Science book
earlier and he recommends a full week of recovery in between
those slow resistance training exercises that he prescribes in that
book and that’s because they’re just so freakin’ hard, I mean you
really lay it out there and you’re really really pushing your body
and taking yourself to complete fatigue if you’re doing those
workouts properly and sometimes that takes a full week of
recovery. I remember when I was a body builder, I would have
some workouts where you’d have like chest day and if anybody
touch your chest for the next 3 or 4 days, you know, you’d punch
them in the face because you were so freakin’ sore. You know,
after literally doing bench press, push up, declined fly, inclined
fly, inclined press, declined press, and then finishing up with
whatever, pushups to exhaustion you know, and you walk out of
the gym 90 minutes later and you know, that is the type of thing
that definitely requires a fair deal of recovery. You know, there are
some workouts that are gonna take, heck, you know, there’s
evidence that something like an Ironman triathlon will take a
good 19 or as long as a month for recovery.
Brock: It doesn’t sound like Julia is doing that kind of work though.
Ben: No, it doesn’t. Which is….
Brock: What she’s indicating is spin class, running, or doing some
resistance band training, doesn’t sound as that intense.
Ben: Exactly. So in this case I recommend that you get tested. One of
the biggest biggest issues that I’ve seen with people who have
difficulty recovering after a normal workout that they should be
recovered from is that they’ve got some kind of a micronutrient
deficiency going on. Some kind of a fatty acid imbalance, amino
acid imbalance, vitamin b deficiency, vitamin d deficiency, low
antioxidant status. Something in the body that is supposed to be
there to help the body bounce back and recover the way that it’s
supposed to, the way that the body repairs holes in the cell walls
and you know, restore metabolic function, it’s simply not there.
Probably the gold standard test, well not probably but sure, the
gold standard test that I would do for something like this would
be the MetaMetrics Ion Profile Panel. It’s one of those tests that is
pretty gold standard. It’s not inexpensive. You can use something
like Direct labs and I’ll put a link in the show notes for you but
that particular panel, it’s gonna run close to I believe 800 dollars
but it tests for all your functional markers, for all your full vitamin
b panel folic acid, for vitamin a, vitamin e, keratin, coenzyme q10,
all your amino acids, your fatty acids, what are called your organic
acids, your antioxidants like your lipid peroxides, your
homocysteine, extremely comprehensive, comes with a very very
nice little report that shows you exactly where you need to kinda
like plug up the holes. I think everybody should be doing one of
those about once a year. Whether you have a doc walk you
through it, whether you just do it yourself and kinda like self-
interpret the pdf, but that is, that’s one test I recommend
everybody look into getting. Now, the other, if you really want to
go gold standard and go after like the best kinda 1-2 combo of a
blood test, you’d get that ion profile and you then you do
something like a longevity panel. Longevity panel, I’ll link to that,
that’s another, it’s gonna be another close to a thousand dollars so
you’re looking at a good 2k worth of testing but this would be like
once a year, you do something like this. And this again if you
wanna just know everything that’s going on inside your body so
longevity test has an inflammation panel and it looks into c-
reactive protein, basically and it also includes a fibrinogen
measurement, a metabolic and hormone panel so estrogen,
testosterone, cortisol, DHEA, thyroid, everything from a
hormonal standpoint. Insulin, insulin growth factor, full kidney
and liver panel so blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, CO2, body
acidity, liver health, everything like that. Electrolyte status, so all
your basic minerals. Your cardiovascular health, so you know,
your lipoprotein, your cholesterol particle size, HDL, LDL,
another measurement called Apo B, phospholipase, and you know
that particular panel comes along with an hour-long consult with
a holistic physician who’s able to kinda walk you through
So if you were to put those 2 together, I mean I know that that
sounds like you know, taking a nuclear bomb to the issue but if
you really wanna know, beyond the shadow of the doubt and
money really wasn’t an issue for you or you have whatever,
flexible savings account, health savings account, if you’re here on
the US, you can pay for this stuff tax deductible. That’s the kinda
thing that I do. If you just need help recovering, I mean honestly
like I could sit here talking for an hour about it in the podcast or
again, like I mentioned my response to Mark when he was asking
about recovering from over training, go read that, that pretty
freakin’ comprehensive article that I wrote about on how to
recover from workouts at bengreenfieldfitness.com and you know,
I’ll link to it in the show notes again but it’s called 26 Top Ways to
Recover from Workouts and Injuries with Lightning Speed. It’s
the one with Wolverine.
Ben: That’s right. Just because I like to toe the edge at how much it
takes for me to get sued by marvel comics by putting photos of
their stars on my blog but I would read that article thoroughly and
take into account everything that I talk about in there you know,
from compression to ice to you know, kinesio tape, foam rolling,
EectroStem, just like look at all my recommendations and see
which ones that are practically within your control to implement.
I talked about supplements on there too like curcumin and
proteolytic enzymes you know, magnesium salt baths, just all this
stuff. And you’d be surprised, you put it all together, you throw it
in your body post workout, you combine that with addressing
micronutrients status, inflammatory marker status, stuff like that,
and you know, the body bounces back. You just gotta give it what
it needs so that’s what I’d be doing.
Ken: Hi Ben and Brock. My name is Ken. I’m a 48 year old, healthy
omnivorous guy. I don’t take any medication and I have no
chronic health conditions until recently. I went to my doctor for
my annual checkup and found out that while I have my normal
density of red blood cells, my red blood cell size is on the low end
of normal. Measured by the test called the mean corpuscular
volume and my ferritin level is about 50% of normal. So while I’m
not yet anemic, I’ve dug pretty heavily into my body’s iron stores
and I am almost certainly headed in that direction. I have no
symptoms of any problems with my upper gastro-intestinal track
to suggest an ulcer. Now I’ve been a triathlete since 2008 and I’ve
been competing in long distance events. My question is can you
talk about iron storage issues and iron deficiency among
endurance athletes? Are there particular stressors that endurance
training places on the athletes’ ability to store iron? Thanks.
Ben: Ken, the first thing is, dude, hemorrhoids. Mild hemorrhoids, just
hemorrhoids in general. I’d get that looked into. I’d get that
Brock: Yeah, even if they’re not bleeding very much that’s still….
Ben: Yeah, I hate to use a word like squirting on the podcast but blood
squirting from the hemorrhoids can definitely cause anemia, you
know, in the same way that a woman bleeding every month can
kinda you know, eventually if iron doesn’t get replenished in a
dietary standpoint, there, you know, and you combine that with
high levels of red blood cell turnover from endurance exercise,
you can get some anemia-like symptoms so don’t blow off your
hemorrhoids. That’s you know, coming from 2 guys who are pants
less and underwear less while talking to you, I don’t know about
you Brock but I definitely make sure I nip hemorrhoids in the bud
if that ever comes up to be an issue which has only happened once
from excessive bicycle riding. But anyways though, if your red
blood cell size is on the low side of normal, that’s really not too
concerning and even hematocrit and hemoglobin levels being
slightly low, that’s pretty common in athletes, especially
endurance athletes. It’s called sports anemia. You ever heard of
that Brock, sports anemia?
Brock: Yeah, we talked about it a lot on an episode that is actually
available on iTunes.
Ben: Yeah actually, if you go to the iTunes album, I talk about how to
legally boost your hematocrit levels.
We’ll put a link to it in the show notes but what it comes down to
and this is something I didn’t talk about in that episode is what’s
called pseudo anemia which is naturally lower hemoglobin levels
of athletes so what happens is that aerobic exercise specifically, it
expands what’s called your plasma volume and this naturally
reduces the concentration of your red blood cells so what I mean
by that is when you exercise really vigorously, it will, in the short
term, while you’re exercising, reduce your plasma volume by
about 10-20%. There are a few different ways that this happens,
you get a rise in blood pressure and this muscular compression of
all these capillaries and that boost the fluid pressure inside the
capillaries of your muscles and drives out plasma volume. You get
a bunch of generation of lactic acid, another metabolite which
increases the pressure in tissues and then all of these forces drive
fluid not red blood cells but fluid from blood to tissues and then
you lose some extra plasma water through sweat. So you get about
a 10-20% kinda fluid loss and then in response to that, your body
releases all these different hormones that are responsible for
conserving water and conserving salt to bring your blood pressure
back up right, ‘cause you lost all these volume so your body’s like
crap I gotta get blood pressure back up. So it releases stuff like
rennin, aldosterone, and another one called vasopressin and your
body even releases extra albumin in your blood and when this
happens, your plasma volume expands and even though, while
your exercising short term, especially for like an aerobic session,
your plasma volume decreases by 10-20% by the time your body
has bounced back and responded a single bout of intense exercise,
especially like a long or hard session, can expand your plasma
volume or your plasma fluid by 10%. You can actually gain a
bunch of weight from a hard workout because of this expansion of
plasma volume and when that happens, when you get this plasma
volume expansion of 10% and that can happen within 24 hours,
mean, it’s pretty quick. What can happen then is, technically, your
hemoglobin concentration is gonna test, if you’re gonna test it is
below normal just because you’ve got this big expansion plasma
volume without a subsequent expansion in red blood cell
concentration and because red blood cell concentration is kinda
synonymous with your hemoglobin levels, all that drops and that’s
sports-induced anemia and really, it’s an adaptation of your
cardio-vascular system really the result is that you become a
better athlete but you may notice that this reduction in
hemoglobin, etc. That’s why something like a taper before an
important event works well because all of a sudden, your plasma
volume has expanded and you tapering your red blood cells and
hemoglobin get a chance to kinda catch up and then you’re sitting
pretty once you’re ready to go out and really take all that fitness
that you built up and do something that, whatever. Climb Mount
Everest, do an Ironman triathlon, or do whatever reason you’re
doing this aerobic exercise is so I wouldn’t worry too much about
something like low to normal hematocrit or hemoglobin levels or
low red blood cell size if you’re kinda testing yourself in the midst
of your training and it’s not during a taper or a rest period, one
would expect those numbers to kinda be higher up. What
concerns me though is the ferritin being low because ferritin is a
really critical iron storage protein and that’s one that does tends
to be low in endurance athletes and that’s very very similar to like
an iron deficiency anemia so there’s different forms of anemia like
you can have a b12 deficiency anemia, you can have a folic
deficiency anemia or you can have an iron deficiency anemia
where either iron stores are low or ferritin which is your iron
storage protein is low and this is something that you can definitely
fix. There are 2 supplements specifically that I’m a fan of using
when you have an issue with ferritin levels. One is called
Lactoferrin and what lactoferrin does is it can actually act on your
What happens is that lactoferrin kinda sequesters iron, it’s an iron
transporter and it hides iron from bacteria in your gut which
would normally be taking that iron and metabolizing it so
lactoferirn allows your body to use the iron rather than allowing
bacteria in your gut to use iron and so lactoferrin is something I
talked about on the podcast as being a really really potent like
bone-building supplement. You get it from Capraflex which is one
thing that’s always in my refrigerator for when I’m injured or
whatever. I’ll pop back about 8-12 Capraflex a day until that strain
or sprain whatever goes away. But it’s also got a ton of lactoferrin
in it and so that’s one thing that I’d really consider is using a good
lactoferrin supplement and then the other thing would be some
kind of a ferritin/iron supplement that doesn’t constipate you.
‘Cause that’s the issue with most of these supplements is that they
constipate you and the best one that I can recommend, it’s a
liquid, it’s a ferritin pyrophosphate that’s mixed with some bitters,
some herbs to enhance absorption, it’s got some other stuff in
there that keeps you regular so that the iron does not constipate
you. It’s called Floradix and I’ll put a link to that in the show
notes. Floradix. Any time I put a link to something in the show
notes by the way, and you buy it over at bengreenfieldfitness.com,
you support the show, so if I’m gonna recommend this stuff to
you. Do go over to the show and buy it through the show notes
‘cause that actually ensures that we don’t starve to death. But
those are the 2 things.
Brock: It’s the right thing to do.
Ben: It’s the right thing to do. Lactoferrin supplement or Floradix. You
could do both of those, frankly. That would help a ton as well and
then get those hemorrhoids patched up dude for sure. And I think
we’ve talked about natural hemorrhoid remedies and things like
that in the podcast before so you can go search for that at the site
but yeah, take care of that.
Brock: This is a little glimpse of the health of podcast is made. I actually I
believe I edited the part about hemorrhoids just because I didn’t
want our listeners to have to picture that while they’re out for a
run or something but Ben decided to talk about it a lot so sorry
folks, I did my best.
Ben: All right.
Zach: Hi Ben. Can you tell me everything you know about Tonsil Cheese
and what you can do to prevent it?
Brock: Okay. Warning to everyone, do not just google tonsil cheese. The
images actually made me gag.
Brock: I’m not a very squimish fellow but I gagged. I wretched a little.
Ben: We like to call them tonsil stones. Tonsil stones is much much
better than tonsil cheese.
Brock: I’m sure the google images would be just as gag-worthy though.
Ben: Tonsil stones though, if tonsil cheese just takes away your appetite
and ruins your day as a better term to use, that’s what I’ll switch
to, tonsil stones.
Brock: All right.
Ben: And these are just clusters of calcified material that form in the
crevices of your tonsils. And they can produce bad breath, they
can make it hurt when you swallow, sometimes they’re small and
they don’t really cause any noticeable issues but they can get
pretty big and these clusters can be fairly annoying. As you would
probably imagine, based off of the cheese term, a big big part of
this is related to the growth of bacteria and fungi. So many many
times, you’ll find somebody with tonsil cheese or tonsil stones has
some issues lower down in the GI tract, as Brock heaves.
Brock: Stop it.
Ben: With bacterial overgrowth or bacterial imbalance and so one
really important part of this is addressing that and we’ve talked
about that in previous podcasts but I mean, literally, just fixing
your gut, destroying bad bacteria by using something like an oil of
oregano everyday, taking a good probiotic supplement.
Eliminating the type of things that bacteria tend to feed on like
carbohydrates, starches, sugars, things of that nature and you
know, really going after this from a bacterial standpoint, that’s
number one. There are natural kind of irrigation type of remedies
that you can use for tonsil stones and I do have some
recommendations for you especially if you’re getting dragon
breath from these things so one of the things that you can do is
you can gargle with lemons and aloe vera juice and aloe vera juice
or aloe vera gel is something that’s really really great for cleaning
your tongue, for cleaning your mouth naturally but can also help
get rid of tonsil stones naturally.
And all you do is you take some lemon which has some good
vitamin c in it, which also helps to get rid of tonsil stones and you
mix a few tablespoons of the lemon juice into a cup of warm water
and you mix equal parts of aloe vera juice or aloe vera gel into that
and you just gargle for about 1-2 minutes with that and then spit it
Brock: You don’t swallow it.
Ben: You could swallow it if you want to I mean aloe vera gel has some
cool gut healing properties as well but another couple of things
that work really really well as anti-inflammatories or natural anti-
bacterials would be a combination of extra virgin olive oil and
garlic. Extra virgin olive oil and garlic, that’s another mixture that
you can gargle. You can chew raw garlic cloves if you really wanna
get bad breath but you can also make like a garlic-oil, mix that
with an extra virgin olive oil and gargle with that a few times a
day. So that would be another option. Any of these you wouldn’t
wanna do in pill form because then your swallowing it, it’s going
in you GI tract. It will have some anti-bacterial action there but
not higher up which is what you wanted, kinda like upper tract.
Apple cider vinegar would be the last thing. You can take a cup of
warm water, you can mix a few tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
into that, you can gargle with that a few times a day and that will
help quite a bit as well. So we’re talking about all things natural
anti-bacterial type of compounds like lemons and extra virgin
olive oil and garlic and apple cider vinegar and aloe vera, and
you’re just gargling with the stuff. Kinda more than one way to
skin a cat there. I’m also a fan of course of the wild mediterranean
oil of oregano. Make sure if you get oil of oregano, you get the
good stuff. Most of it is just thyme oil which has a really really low
carvacrol content. Carvacrol is active anti-bacterial component of
oil of oregano so get a really really good oil of oregano. Use some
of these others like lemons and garlic and extra virgin olive oil and
apple cider vinegar, and you should be able to get rid of this stuff
just by treating it like a bacteria, like a fungus and then go after
the underlying issue which is the fact that your gut probably needs
some of these anti-bacterials as well and fortunately, many of
these same compounds as I mentioned, if you’re using them as a
regular component of your diet, can really really help minimize a
lot of kinda fluoral overgrowth and gut overgrowth bacteria.
Brock: You know if you take all that stuff like take the oil of oregano,
garlic, some nice extra virgin olive oil, some lemon juice, and you
throw a little bit of tonsil cheese in there, you’ve got yourself a
Ben: You’ve got yourself a smoothie or a stew. Yeah. Tonsil cheese
smoothie. That will be the featured recipe on the facebook page
Chas: Hey Ben this is Chas from Ohio. My question for you is about pro-
hormone supplements and the use of them. In the past 18 months,
I’ve done 4 different month-long cycles of different pro-hormones
with at least 3 months in between each cycle. Each time I focus on
dialing both my peri cycle and post cycle supplementation,
making sure to get hydrated, get plenty of sleep, even though I
have been training pretty hard about 6 times per week with 1 day
of rest. My ultimate goal is to build size and strength but
specifically get the short term boost in strength that I get from
this prohormones which allows me to increase my training
frequency and the total time under tension which seems to lead to
more permanent size gains. What I like to know is your thoughts
on pro-hormones in general, any specific brands or companies
you’d endorse or recommend? Also any tips other than a proper
post cycle therapy to help restore endogenous hormone levels that
you recommend? Thanks for all you provide to all fellow geeks out
there. We love the podcast.
Brock: I gotta say Chas sounds like he’s got it pretty figured out.
Ben: Pretty figured out from like a muscle gain standpoint.
Brock: Yeah. And the way he’s cycling on and off, he’s taking the 3
months between the cycles. Worrying about the peri cycling and
the post cycling and everything it’s pretty good.
Ben: Yeah, that’s something that you do have to do with pro-hormones
is you have to have to cycle them if you’re gonna take them
because it allows your body to return to its normal level of
endogenous hormone production so anytime you’re using
testosterone or any of these testosterone pre-cursors, you’re
artificially increasing your testosterone levels, as a result your
body generates far less, you know, if we’re talking about
testosterone, far less testosterone than normal, and so you know
that’s not really concerning when you’re taking the pro-hormones,
once you get off them though, you feel like crap.
You’re body is used to all these endogenous artificial testosterone,
you know, your testosterone to estrogen ratio is getting messed up
and so you do have to use what’s called post cycle therapy when
you’re on pro-hormones and we won’t get into the post cycle
therapy as much on this podcast ‘cause I know we’re kinda
pushing for time but the problem is that if you don’t cycle pro
hormones, it can be tough on your liver, it can be tough on your
own endogenous production so it’s something that you do wanna
make sure that you do, that you understand how to cycle properly
and I have to be careful of course, giving out recommendations
like that on this show just because so many people who are
listening to this are competing in event like triathlons and
marathons and thing of that nature where they’re gonna be drug
tested and stuff like this would be a big no-no anyways, you know,
or they’re going after more natural means and let’s face it,
prohormones can be kinda damaging to your body and the reason
for that is because a lot of these side effects: acne and hair loss,
breast tissue enlargement, or you know, what we affectionately
call bitch tits in dudes, prostate swelling, you know, a lot of these
hormonal imbalances that get created from dumping exogenous
sources of hormones into your body and creating like a hormone
milieu that can be a real real issue from a health standpoint. This
is not stuff to play around with. It’s why there are, you know,
that’s why even if I do not feel that our government should not be
controlling drugs and pharmaceuticals per se, you know it’s the
reason for President Bush I believe it was, who signed it, the
anabolic steroid control act, in the process that really controlled a
lot of these pro hormones from getting distributed willingly you
know, over here in America because they can be so dangerous and
most of them, if you’re gonna order them you gotta go over to like
world-pharma.org and order them from the European Union just
because they’re more available over there so if you wanna order
like Andro or any of these pro hormones, something like that,
usually you’re gonna be getting it from Europe. So the effects of
pro hormone supplementation in terms of increasing muscle mass
or increasing athletic performance, it kinda goes back and forth.
You know, there have been some studies that looked at some
pretty high oral supplementation doses with stuff like Andros in a
dione or Andros in a diole and found absolutely no effect in body
composition or physical performance and actually a decrease in
HDL when, your good forms of cholesterol. We combine that with
some of the like the possible pro-cancer effects and the effects on
the prostate, on acne, on your own endogenous production of
hormones which is why you get the testicular shrinkage and you
know, the high amounts of testosterone getting converted to
estrogen and the breast tissue formation, you know I’m not really
convinced that pro hormones are worth it in my opinion. You
know, as far as tips on post cycle therapy, to restore endogenous
hormones, my main tips are cleanse your liver first of all, ‘cause
it’ll be super beat up from trying to metabolize all these estrogens
that are getting converted so you’re gonna have to use you know,
stuff like acetylcysteine is a good liver cleanse. Silymarin or milk
thistle extract is a good liver cleanse. A lot of these stuff I
recommend for women, for estrogen dominance, you know those
are the same type of cleanses that you’re gonna have to look into
using for something like pro hormone therapy. You really wanna
stay away from alcohol because, again, your liver will be pretty
beat up from metabolizing all the extra estrogens. You know, as
far as kinda flushing out your body, there is one product called
Nolvadex and that’s basically, you know, it’s not an over the
counter drug but it’s what’s called a selective estrogen receptor
modulator. It’s an anti-estrogen, it helps to keep your body from
basically taking all this extra testosterone and converting them to
a bunch of estrogens, it’s not that safe. It’s also known as
Tamoxifen. Stuff that can cause like birth defects if women are
taking it. It’s, you can get it from the same place you can get pro
hormones which a lot of these EU websites but again, I’m a bigger
fan of going after stuff naturally which is you know, I’m almost
kinda blowing off the part of this question about pro hormone
Instead, I’d recommend you just use natural testosterone
precursors. So there are decent testosterone herbal support
formulas out there and frankly, all of them will at least, they give
you a little bit of improvement in your mood, in your competitive
drive which can help you life more at the gym. They’re not gonna
turn you into complete freak of nature you know, testosterone and
andro would but they’ll at least allow you to get some benefit
without a lot of these downstream side effects so I would say
there’s 3 testosterone supplements that I tend to kinda cycle
between for herbal testosterone support. They’ve got a lot of
similar ingredients but I’ll throw it out there for you. I’ll put a link
in the show notes. The reason I’ll tell you 3 is frankly, this stuff is
so popular these days that it will tend to be sold out depending on
when you happen to land on the website where you’ll buy this
stuff from. One would be called Renew Male, it’s a mix of
cordyceps and rhodiola, it’s got some tribulus in there, it’s got
eurycoma in there which is a really really popular. You’re gonna
find that in a lot of different testosterone support herbal formulas
cause it’s, it can increase DHEA and testosterone and growth
hormone and insulin-like growth factor and then also, norvaline
and a little bit or an aroma taste inhibitor. So Renew Male is one
and that one, any of these you’d cycle, preferably 5 days on 2 days
off, and then just have 3-4 months during the year when you’re
not taking this stuff at all but Renew Male would be one and that’s
very very similar to the formula, I’m kinda privately trying to
make for my rev supplements that I’ll launch later on this year so
Renew Male. Another one is made my Mike Mahler, it’s called
Aggressive Strength. A little bit different than Renew Male. That
one is a combination of bulbine and bulbine is an herb. It’s kinda
similar to tribulus and it has some pretty decent studies behind it.
Stinging nettle root which supports your free levels of testosterone
as well as DHT and it also helps to kinda keep your sex hormone
binding globulin under control which can decrease the amount of
free testosterone that you have available and then Mucuna which
is something that’s really really cool cause it can help you produce
more dopamine and nuero transmitter but it also supports growth
hormone production, it reduces your prolactin formation which
can help to optimize testosterone levels so kind of a different
formula which is why sometimes it can be useful to cycle between
formulas as you go through the year but that’s another good one is
the Mike Mahler Aggressive Strength formula. And then the last
one that I’m using right now, again cause I kinda cycle between
testosterone supplements and again, for me, I’m not really going
after muscle mass as much as frankly my biggest boost and I don’t
wanna be crass or anything but you know, I have better erections
and better sex and better ejaculation when I use this stuff. Any
testosterone herbal support formula.
Brock: Makes sense.
Ben: I notice it more in the bedroom than I do with my workouts so
you now, for me it’s kinda like bedroom living for science but it’s
the Onnit T-Plus formula. And Onnit stuff it’s also got the Mucuna
in it. They add some branched chain amino acids in it, it has the
eurycoma in it that the Renew Male also has in it. It is a powder,
it’s like a watermelon flavored powder that you mix in the water
and you take it like a half hour before workout or half hour before
sex. It’s got some red clover, some isoflavins in there that help you
kinda not convert testosterone into excess estrogens so that’s
another one. So those would be my top 3 testosterone support
formulas would be Renew Male, the Mike Mahler Aggressive
Strength and the Onnit T-Formula. There’s nothing wrong with
kinda cycling between all three, kinda throughout the year, weekly
about 5 days on, 2 days off or just like dose with this stuff when
you plan on having whatever like a big night with your significant
other or you’ve got a whatever, a tough game or a race coming up
and you want a little bit of an extra boost. None of them are gonna
cause you to be pulled aside and kicked out of whatever like a, you
know, a triathlon for testing positive.
All this stuff is just natural herbal support formulas somewhere
like eating spinach basically. And then the last thing I would
mention cause I know we are getting long in this podcast would
be, I’d put together a muscle gain formula. It’s not a testosterone
support formula, it’s a muscle gain formula designed to enhance
growth hormone release, designed to enhance recovery. It’s a
combination of a cold-processed goat based whey protein,
colostrums, which is a growth hormone precursor and then amino
acids. I’ll link to it in the show notes but it’s essentially just like
this box that you get in the mail. It’s those 3 things. You get a
bottle of the master amino pattern, bottle of colostrums, a big tub
of cold processed, it’s a goat-based whey protein so super duper
bio available. Most of the packages I’m putting together now
kinda change the way I do things. They all ship from a warehouse
over at Philadelphia so shipping to the USA is free and then I just
you know, push these stuff out as rock bottom a cost as possible so
I’ll link to that, that muscle gain pack in the show notes as well.
That’s over at pacificfit.net you know, you put something like that
together like a good herbal testosterone support formula and you
know, you’re sitting pretty and you don’t have to spend a bunch of
money on pro hormones or worry a lot about those side effects in
the cycling and all that jazz that kinda tends to be a headache so
there you go.
Brock: So presuming the things that were meant to mitigate the side
effects sounded equally dangerous so fixing something with
somethin’ that’s also bad ain’t a great idea.
Ben: Yeah. So there you go and hey, what do you say, should we read a
kick-butt review before we play the Captain Vegetable Song?
Brock: I think that is a fantastic idea.
Ben: All right. So the deal is, if you leave a review of this podcast on
iTunes and you give it a star rating, if you hear us read your
review and then you write into the show and you let us know that
you heard us read your review, we send you, I personally send you
a care package from my office. Usually it’s like a ……
Brock: Personally made up of crap that’s on Ben’s desk.
Ben: Some tonsil cheese. No like a Ben Greenfield Fitness t-shirt and
you know, usually I’ll throw out like a CD or a DVD or a book in
there. Some supplements, stuff like that. So here is a review from
claptonfan who says get fit back, check. Leave pain behind to get
life back, check. And here’s what claptonfan has to say. Even
though I love fitness studies and advice that I get from Ben and
Brock, and Brock’s assorted collection of musical instruments, the
reason I want to leave this review is not about fitness. You see,
growing up, I underwent around 80 surgeries and procedures for
my kidney. One of which cut my right lower thoracic nerve by
accident. Before the nerve, I’ve been a 4-year varsity athlete but
since I can’t seem to get my life in order by the pain and
medications. For the advice that Ben gave me, I was able to go to
my doctor and we’re able to set me up with a lower dose of my
meds and increased focus on nutrition and vitamin supplements.
Ben and Brock, there are enough thank yous in the world that I
can give to you. One day, I hope to become an accomplished
doctor and shake your hand. Please give this podcast a try. I’m
glad I did. So there you go.
Brock: Very cool.
Ben: Leave pain behind, get life back.
Brock: Although you don’t have to be a doctor to shake our hands.
Ben: That’s right. We shake hands with everybody, not just doctors.
Brock: Yeah, everybody.
Ben: So claptonfan1992, if you heard your review, let us know. We’ll
send you some cool stuff in the mail and now it is time for Captain