Podcast #259 from http://www.bengreenfieldfitness.com/2013/10/259-bengreenfield-fitness-uplugged-show-special-travel-health-episode-hawaii/
Introduction: In today’s episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast: Special
episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast straight from Kona,
we answer all your questions about travel and how to stay healthy
while doing it.
Welcome to the bengreenfieldfitness.com podcast. We provide
you with premier exercise, nutrition, weight loss, triathlon, and
wellness advice from the top fitness experts in the nation. So
whether you’re an ironman triathlete, or you’re just trying to shed
a few pounds, get ready for non-run-off-the-mill, cutting edge
content from bengreenfieldfitness.com.
So what’s happening, Ben?
Why are you breathing so funny?
I’m wearing an altitude training mask.
An altitude training mask, nice.
Just a minute. Let me move this off of my face.
That’s not conducive to good podcast.
I’m gonna turn blue in the face any second. Take that off.
I do have to admit though that looking and feeling like Bane from
the movie Batman is just this feeling of intense superiority
combined with hypoxia and mild light-headedness.
You actually look quite terrifying with that on, I have to admit.
You got a very sinister look on you, in your eyes.
By the way, speaking of looking terrifying, we should mention the
fact that in this special episode of the podcast, we’re recording this
entire episode via video.
Video and audio, look at us.
Sitting on the back porch of our condo here in Hawaii at Ironman
Hawaii. So for those of you who happen to be premium
subscribers of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast…
You’ll be able to see that we’ve both been freshly leid.
You can see that both Brock and I have been freshly leid, meaning
that we are wearing fresh leis around our neck, not - what were
you thinking? Sickos. And we are also wearing the brand new Ben
Greenfield Fitness t-shirts which – Oh, nice. Brock just turned
around to show off the back. But we’re gonna be sending out these
t-shirts from now on along with hats and water bottles to people
who leave iTunes reviews. So, this is the new swag. All sorts of jazz
going on. But we’re down here because I am gonna do a little work
A little eight, nine hour workout. Hopefully that’s some 10-hour
Called Ironman Hawaii on Saturday. And so on this special
episode, we actually put out Facebook post early this morning.
And we got a bunch of questions from you guys about travel. We
wanna focus on healthy travel tips, whether you’re into triathlon,
or fat loss, or you’re just somebody who wants to maximize your
mental and your physical capabilities while you’re on the road, in
the air, on your moped, riding a motorcycle trip across the
Himalayas, whatever it is that you do.
That sounds like fun.
That does sound like fun. We should do that. We’re gonna answer
all your questions, and...
Maybe not all of them. There’s a crap load of them.
Is there a lot of them?
I didn’t realize that this many people are interested in how not to
We can skip the ones about how not to contract herpes while
you’re gallivanting about Asia. Anyways, then we’re gonna answer
all those questions. And first – what is first?
Why don’t we talk about audible, our sponsor for today.
Let’s talk about travel, ‘cause here’s something interesting. Travel
is really for me personally, I don’t know about you, Brock, for me
travel is a way to satisfy my needs to constantly be - like making
life more fulfilling, making life more interesting. So, and this is
about as cheesy, woo-woo and airy-fairy as I promised I’ll get
during the whole episode. But I read a book, or started reading a
book on the way down, on the plane, called “Die Empty”. And
what Die Empty is about, and you can find this over on our - I
have to give you the correct url, so that audible, the good folks at
audible can track the podcast. Go to audiblepodcast.com/ben.
But it’s about this idea that we think that we’re always gonna have
tomorrow to do our most important work or our most valuable
work, But the fact is that tomorrow’s gonna run out a lot faster
than we think and so, it’s all about living life not selfishly in the
present but kinda like embracing this concept of mini retirements,
and going out and enjoying life and I’ll like swing ‘til you’re
seventy in a diaper.
My apologies to all our seventy-year-old listeners who I just
That’s a little early to be in a diaper.
Yeah. I hope I get to ninety before the diaper. I mean, it could
It could happen.
audiblepodcast.com/ben if you need some inspiration to inject
some excitement and some fulfillment into your life.
I love the idea of the mini retirement. I like to live that way, too.
I don’t own a lot of stuff. I don’t even own a car but I do travel a
lot because that’s a - it’s a great way to expand your horizons,
learn more about this world and feel good about your existence, I
I need some delicious food.
Delicious food! So speaking of expanding your horizons, what say
you, shall we jump into today’s episode on travel?
And by the way, well Brock’s pulling up the questions on
Facebook. If you’re a brand new listener, usually this show rocks
with special music and transitions, and a ton of audio editing and
today, you’re just getting kind of the crappy version of the Ben
Greenfield Fitness podcast.
It’s not crappy. It’s just stripped down.
Yeah, the stripped down version.
Remember in the nineties…
The unplugged version.
Exactly. Back in the nineties when everybody put out cheap
albums and they called them “unplugged”? That’s -this is…
This is Ben Greenfield Fitness (Unplugged). Let’s call this episode
The Ben Greenfield Fitness Unplugged Travel episode. There you
go. So let’s jump into your guys’ questions. Oh by the way,
something we totally forgot to mention.
The book launched this week. The book!
That’s very wonderful. What else is going on?
My brand new book just launched this week. Go to
beyondtrainingbook.com it’s the number one book in Amazon
right now for fitness.
Three days in a row.
The number one book in health. The number one book in
triathlon. My publisher tells me that – as a golf cart drive by –
The garbage truck just drove by.
My publisher tells me this book is selling 150 copies an hour right
now. So if you’re not in on that party, you can get in on it and get
over 5,000 dollars in swag…
But you have to do that - hopefully, if you’re up for 5,000 dollars
of the swag.
Raffles, giveaways, preorder with the swag engine 3 days. So if
you’re listening to this on Wednesday, October 9th, which is when
they’re releasing this podcast, once I cross the finish line of
Ironman Hawaii, you’ve got about 12 hours left to preorder your
copy. Everything that you need to do it- Barnes &Nobel, Amazon,
wherever good tasty books are sold. You can get it at
beyondtrainingbook.com. Kindle electronic version is not out yet
but if you want to get in the know once that’s out, fill out the tiny
little email address form right there at beyondtrainingbook.com,
you know you’ll get a hidden chapter that tells into all the special
medical testing I did on my heart to see what ten years of extreme
endurance would do to your cardiovascular system and the
morphology of your heart, but you’ll also get an email from us as
soon as Kindle version goes live. So, check it out
beyondtrainingbook.com. This is pretty much the last book you’ll
ever need to guide you through training, nutrition, life, bio
hacking, everything, it’s all in there along with tons of goodies,
hidden chapters, bonuses, and swag, like squatty potties and stuff
There’s a lot of squatty potties to be given away.
A lot of squatty potty going on.
First prize winner gets two of them so just in case you need to
poop in more than one bathroom. There you go.
Listener Q and A:
So after having bored you guys for like eight minutes, let’s jump
into our Q and A.
Anybody who’s watching the video will see that I have to hook the
computer very close to my face. Okay.
bengreenfieldfitness.com/premium . Check out the video.
Okay, Steve says, “I traveled a lot for the past year and I had
trouble sleeping in hotel beds. My fiancé thinks it’s because I am
now old”. He’s forty-six. “Do you think this is more of a
nutritional thing? My eating habits change or get worse when I’m
traveling. Or is it a mental thing? Do you have any
Well, everybody has trouble sleeping as they get older.
Is that true?
You actually - yes, you do. You get less sensitive to a substance
called GABA –gamma amino butyric acid as you get older. Now
GABA is something you’ll find in a lot of sleep supplements, sleep
capsules. You’ll find GABA in something I recommended in the
past couple of podcasts – as really good relaxant and a really good
sleep aid–passion flower extract. You’ll find GABA in the stuff that
I saw Brock slam last night –Somnidren GH –
Oh, that stuff’s good.
-which throws you into a – one of the athletes I coach describe as
But you actually, as you age, in the same way that as you age you
become say, less able to digest proteins. You simply produce less
hydrochloric acid. You get less protein digesting enzyme released
into your blood stream, or into your gut, rather, your stomach.
The same thing happens to GABA. So gamma amino butyric acid,
you lose sensitivity to that. What that means is that you also get a
little bit less efficacy from melatonin. Now the kinda potent one to
combo here is that as you get older, you also produce less
melatonin naturally. So your pineal gland in your brain up inside
your head is actually releasing less of the specific compound that
helps you to sleep and also helps your neurons to repair as you
sleep. So not only do you sleep less soundly but you wake up more
groggy. And you have a little bit more –Brock’s screensaver just
came on telling us it’s 1:59PM.
It’s very nice of it to tell us that.
So basically you kinda have that one-two combo, less GABA so
less deep sleep, less neuronal repair while you are sleeping and
less melatonin release. And it just doesn’t have to do with the
So his girlfriend’s right.
So, your girlfriend’s right,
He’s getting old.
It could be because you’re getting old. I’ve even found –I mean
I’m not old. I just turned the clock past thirty, I’m thirty-one now.
I even noticed I have a little bit more difficulty sleeping now than
I did when I was twenty-something college student I pretty much
crashed just about everywhere I went. And I could sleep on the
Floor of a hotel room after a few beers. And I was good to go.
That’s not actual sleep. That’s unconsciousness.
Yeah. There are shreds of truth to Brock’s observation. So
anyways, what this comes down to is that first of all, you can
totally hack this. How could you hack it? You could use something
like a passion flower extract. Get it off Amazon or wherever. You
can get it mixed in ethanol. You can get it mixed in a non-alcohol
solution. Both work equally well in my opinion. I’ve experimented
with both. You could get this Somnidren GH stuff. It’s made by a
company called Millennium Sports. That’s another good option
for the GABA and you could take that at the same time as the
passion flower. And then a third thing you can add in to that, and
all of these will play nicely with one another, would be melatonin.
And I do not recommend a melatonin taken orally. I recommend
now these slow release patches. And again you can find them on
Amazon, wherever, a lot of times they release other natural
relaxants like St. John’s wort in your bloodstream while you’re
sleeping. You put them on. If you take melatonin too close before
you go to bed, you actually wake up when it hits your
bloodstream. So take it about 30-60 minutes before you go to bed.
And that will really help. Yeah, especially if you’re struggling to
sleep more as you get older. And those would be the primary
things that I would do to kinda overcome the issue with age, sleep,
and travel. And then just bolt loads of Valium, of course.
Yes, of course. Actually, I was gonna say red wine. Actually Valium
and red wine, they usually go together.
Diazepam and booze.
That’s something I learned from David Bowie. Valium and red
wine. Potent combo. Actually here’s a question for you. We should
have discussed this before the show started. Are we gonna put
together show notes or do people have to read…
Yeah. Why don’t you pull out a little text doc, we’ll remember to
throw in some show notes there. So far the things I’ve mentioned
have been the passion flower extract, the Somnidren GH, and the
bengreenfieldfitness.com/259 will make sure, we’ll put links in
there to the stuff that I personally use, just in case you wanna not
have to navigate the wide world of confusing options out there.
And of course, we’ll link to the altitude training mask, why not?
Yes. Of course, they were nice enough to send us the…
Yeah. Full disclosure. They sent us this for free. They sent us like
five of these for free. Cool!
We did ask for it, though. Alright. You ready for the next one?
Alex wants to know –“Do you have a good blending solution while
you’re traveling? It’s monumentally harder to intake my normal
nutrients without my blender!” Exclamation point. “Thanks!”
Exclamation point. “I’m definitely looking forward to the shows”.
“Oh, and good luck!”
Well, thanks! Thanks! We actually ground our coffee in the
blender last night. We’re lucky enough to arrive at our condo and
find a blender sitting on the counter. They actually had one right
here waiting for us.
I thought that was yours, too, ‘cause when we were in Whistler,
you did bring yours.
I drove to Whistler, and so I was able to toss my Vitamix or my
Omni blender, rather, into the trunk of the car.
Now an Omni blender by the way is really good. They have a huge
engine and they fly under the radar, but they are about half the
cost of a Vitamix. They don’t sponsor the show, I don’t really
make any money off recommending them but it’s Omni blender
it’s what I use. Oh and I – blender- it’s just less spendy than a
Vitamix, honestly. And it’s an identical engine. I don’t know why
they sell it or how they sell it at half the price. But anyways, it’s
big, it’s bulky, it’s one of those blenders you can’t really travel with
if you’re flying. So option one is a Magic Bullet. I’m a big fan of the
Magic Bullet. You can’t make my quintessential “big ass” morning
smoothie in a Magic Bullet ‘cause they’re pretty small. You
wouldn’t get the big ass portion, 12 ounces maybe.
You could make a small bulk.
You could make a few Magic Bullet smoothies in a row, I guess,
and dump them on the cup. That’s one option. Another option, I
will confess to having done this. And I do not endorse this. I really
hope that no one from any major department store or local
business is listening in. But you can actually go to any store that
has a fantastic return policy, specifically Walmart, Target, or
Costco. Purchase a blender and bring it back for a full refund…
The sixteen-year-old that’s working at the counter won’t even ask
That is number two. Just take it to the man. Take it to big
commercial stores and there you go, that’s another option. You
didn’t hear that from me. The final option is simply chew your
food better. And really what happens is when you chew your food,
the digestive enzymes in your mouth work to break up that food
and it actually does a really good job. People start with leaky gut
syndrome, nutrient malabsorption, things of that nature. Twenty
to thirty times is the number of times you’re supposed to chew
your food. Most of us chew our food anywhere from like three to
five times then we swallow. So, make your mouth your blender.
And I know that sounds like a simple and stupid solution. But just
take the stuff you normally blend and eat it but chew it really,
really, well. If you’re used to blending like apples with almonds,
with coconut milk, with whatever, you really can’t just dump all
that in your mouth and chew and replicate the feeling of a
blender. But, Magic Bullet, good return policy, or chew your food
intensely; those would be my top three.
Or just bring your last shoes and pack your Omni blender.
Or pack your Omni blender.
Or stay in a condo like this.
Alright, This one’s not necessarily a health-related one but it’s athe question is simple: “Ship my bike or rent one locally?”
Assuming that you are a bike rider.
I’m assuming this is a triathlete or…
We’re trying not to keep this podcast too triathlon-specific but
you can get these fold-up bikes but they’re spendy, like over 3,000
dollars to get a nice good travel fold-up bike. So, it’s on my bucket
list for sure ‘cause I’d love to be able to have just one of those
bikes that you can carry in a suitcase.
Yeah. They come with their own suitcase. Those are kinda cool.
Almost like a briefcase.
Here’s the deal, you cannot replicate the efficiency and the
economy that you build in the muscles and the joints that you get
when you’re riding your bike at home. Say you’re a racer, and you
race bikes, you race triathlons. You simply can’t arrive at your
race, get a different bike, have it fit with the seat height
approximately where you had it or the seat fore, aft approximately
where you had it and expect for your body to simply wrap around
that bike and act just as well on that bike as it does on your “home
bike”. So if you’re serious about racing, you don’t rent, you learn
how to pack your own bike. You learn how to take the rear derailer
off, and learn how to take the handlebars off and the fork off. And
you travel with your bike. It’s a little bit of a learning curve. I have
twenty-minute long videos inside the Rockstar Triathlete
Academy at rockstartriathlete.com, we’ll link to that in the show
notes. But basically, learning how to take your bike apart is a
pretty good skill to have anyway, so what I do is I have a hard
case, it’s made by a company called TriCo. It travels well, keeps
the bike protected. It’s not a huge case. It fits in the trunk of a car.
I take the bike apart. I take the fork off, the wheels off, the rear
derailer off, the seat off, wrap it in foam and travel that way. And
if you’re serious and you don’t want to, say, get a chronic
repetitive overuse injury from using muscles you’re not used to by
riding a bike you’re not used to. That’s an option. You also take
risks. Like Brock had an interesting experience in Thailand when
he joined this last year.
Yeah. I was gonna say the only thing I have to offer is - my only
DNF was when I rented a bike.
Yes. Because what – the breaks failed or something?
They - oh, the breaks actually came…
Those are golf carts going by.
Golf carts zipping by. It’s okay, they’ll be gone, Yeah, the back
break actually came off on the one time I really needed to hammer
on the breaks near the beginning of the race. The back break
kinda went (intelligible sounds)…
Yeah. So, that being said, if it’s just for fitness, rent a bike for sure.
Like, Brock’s touring around town all week on a beach cruiser
from our condo and…
It’s awesome! Single speed, I pedal backwards. I stop.
He’s gonna have buns of steel by the end of the trip.
Are you saying I don’t already?
I was not implying that, no. I’m just saying your buns are gonna
Right. Better not. Oh, sure. Never mind. Okay. Let’s see. Oh,
yeah, okay. “I always get sick” – Oh, sorry this is Keerthi - “I
always get sick for the first week when I visit India. So I’m trying
to find ways to avoid it this time.”
Okay. Cool. So…
So he travels to India and get sick the first week he’s there.
That’s not necessarily just an India thing.
Ways to keep your immune system elevated while you’re
traveling. I’m gonna tell you exactly what I do. You see this whole
pill box right here, Brock? For our premium subscribers, this is
what I travel with, this pill box. I just can take my pills, put them
in the little box so all…
For those of you who are watching the video, it’s one of those
things that your grandmother has on her counter that has all the
days of the week on it.
Except it doesn’t have the days of the week on it. It doesn’t have
the days of the week on it.
That’s all my pills. Pass me my heart meds.
So, see these little white pills? This is colostrum. It’s a very, very
good immune system support. And I take four of those in the
morning, and four of those in the evening when I’m traveling. So
colostrum works really, really well. A few other things…
Colostrum is found in mother’s milk, right? That’s actually
I actually do not get colostrums from my mother per se. I get it
from an organic goat farm. I use this stuff called Capra Colostrum.
And we’ll probably wanna put a link to that…
Oh, yeah. When Ben goes like this…
Yeah. When I go like this, for those of you watching the video that
means… so Capra Colostrum. What I don’t have right here, it’s in
my bathroom right now. I use Echinacea/Golden Seal tincture.
Echinacea is really good for your white blood support. Golden seal
is a really good natural anti-bacterial. And I get that
Echinacea/golden seal mixed together in a tincture. You can find
that on like Amazon or whatever. That’s a really good system
support from when you’re traveling. I use an oil of oregano with a
very high carvacrol content because that’s able to break down
bacterial cell walls, very good anti-parasitic., anti-fungal. You can
put a few drops in your mouth before you get into crowded areas
like airports, buses, football games, prisons, whatever. And oil of
oregano is another thing that I’ll use. I use colostrum...
Don’t let it leak all over your luggage. That happened to me on the
last big trip.
That actually happened to me on this trip. Yeah. Make sure the lid
is screwed on tightly. It does make a mess. So Colostrum,
Echinacea/Golden Seal, oil of oregano. There’s pretty good
evidence that probiotics can help. I’m kinda careful traveling with
probiotics ‘cause they’re not very heat stable. So it’ll depend where
I’m going. I didn’t take probiotics on this trip because sometimes
you take the risk that your luggage is sitting in the belly of an
airliner kinda getting extremely hot and so I’m pretty careful with
the probiotics. I have a big bottle that I keep at home. I loaded it
with probiotics before I left but I don’t have any of those with me.
But probiotics can also help out quite a bit. And then just the
basics – making sure that you’re sleeping as much as possible
when you’re on the plane, drinking lots of water, avoiding lots of
alcohol and caffeine. You gotta take in those basic measures.
There’s a little bit of evidence out there that high dose vitamin C
can help. The issue is whether or not oral absorption is adequate.
There are some people that will literally go as far as to do vitamin
C intravenous injections like what’s called the Myer’s cocktail
prior to periods of time during which their immune system
activity is really important. A lot of time, Superbowl teams will do
this. They’ll give the folks on the team Myer’s cocktail so that their
immune system just gets chockfull of antioxidants and vitamin C.
and if you really want to step up your immune defenses, that’s like
the gold standard but you gotta go find somebody who lives on
your neighborhood who is a registered nurse and get your IV or go
to a local naturopathic medical facility or natural medicine
facility. A lot of times they’ll be able to do high dose vitamin C
injections, high dose antioxidant injections, and those can really
give your immune system a huge boost.
You’ll feel completely superhuman for like three or four days.
You’re gonna pay anywhere from $50-$150 depending on how
much you want in there. There are some docs that will literally
test you, they’ll do what’s called the spectra cell analysis. They’ll
test you for certain levels of these vitamins and minerals and
antioxidants, customize an IV formulation and just use that. So, I
actually did that once and I ended up ordering it from a physician
who sent it to me overnight on ice. Had a registered nurse who
lived a couple miles from my house give me the injection. Totally
legal, it’s not like banned by the world anti-doping association or
anything like that. It’s just kinda a lot of hoops to jump through
there to get the IV– man, if you haven’t ever tried that and you’re
listening in, it’s kind of a cool experience to feel that power
surging through your veins.
Oh, so you really did feel it.
You feel it plus the IV is a little bit cold. So your blood gets a little
cold and you feel that, too. So…
Should we answer one more.
Let’s keep going. Let’s do a few more.
Okay, so we got a question from Trevor. He wants to know –
“Should I worry about bed bugs or other gross and creepy
possibilities from my hotel room?”
Where are you staying, Trevor?
So, there’s lots of essential oils out there that are marketed as bed
bug repellants or things that are supposed to kill bed bugs. I have
never seen any studies to back any of these up. Lavender oil is a
popular one. Oil of oregano sometimes gets touted as that. I like
oil of oregano for some stuff like antibacterial. Never heard of it
being able to kill bed bugs. Lavender, great for kinda sleep and
relaxation. Might be another one to add into your relaxation
protocol, incidentally. But again, no evidence that that stuff can
take out bed bugs. So ultimately, if they were in your home, I’d say
heat is the best thing. Go run your sheets, your bed linens,
everything through a really hot cycle, through your dryer.
Or really cold.
And, yeah, cold can kill bed bugs as well. Cold or heat.
In Canada, you put it outside in the middle of winter and that just
takes care of them right away.
Yeah, so this is gonna be kinda French, it might become hard for
you to travel with enough for you to be able to sprinkle over your
bed linens, and this is not something that I’ve personally done.
But there is something that can break down the exoskeleton of
bugs, crickets, bed bugs, whatever. Literally, it breaks down the
specific cellular collagen-like make up of the exoskeleton of a bug.
It’s called Diatomaceous Earth. You’ll find it at natural health food
stores. You can find it online if you will Google it. It’s d-i-a-t-o-ma-c-e-o-u-s. It’s like a form of clay, almost. And if you’re really
serious, you check in your hotel room, sprinkle that stuff over the
actual mattress, pull the sheet up on the top mattress, put another
sheet on top of that, you can potentially kill off some bed bugs. I
am a big, big fan of using the Dr. Bronner soap when I travel. In
the bathroom at our condo right now, I’ve got Dr. Bronner’s
natural herbal soap mixed with oil of oregano, and that’s what I
shower with. And it does a pretty good job of killing infections,
fungus, bacteria and stuff from the skin. I don’t know if it does
anything against bed bugs. Knock on wood, though, I travel a lot
and I haven’t gotten bed bugs.
In my bathroom, there’s just a big gallon thing of kerosene. That’s
what I’ve been showering with.
Yeah. So Brock lights himself on fire, runs out the living room
screaming, does the stop, drop and roll. And that’s his bed bug
Really. That’s why my hair is like this, too, actually.
That’s an interesting question, though. I guess, ultimately, maybe
you ought to step it up and start getting some awards points or
whatever and go check into a Four Seasons rather than a hostel
sitting by, beside of the 7-11. By the way, I actually use- this is
totally off-topic. Well, it’s not off-topic ‘cause it’s related to travel.
I do a lot of travel hacking so I rarely buy my own airline miles. I
rarely buy my cars, anything like that. What I do is sign up for
credit cards. As soon as they become available with like thousands
of airline miles associated with them, I buy a bunch of stuff on
that credit card, pay it off, set up a reminder on my computer to
cancel the credit card within one year so I don’t pay the annual
fee. And then I use this website called the awardswallet.com. and
awardswallet.com just basically sucks in all your award miles
points, your rewards points - we can link to these folks if they
want to – and then it shows you how you can use those points and
it also sends you an email when a new credit card comes up that
has a bunch of points associated with it. So…
Oh, good! That’s a good feature.
It’s called travel hacking. Just like a whole underground
community of travel hackers.
A whole movie…
Travelhackers.org and there is– what’s the other guy who I follow
who does it? –Chris Guillebeau, The Art of Non-Conformity blog.
And at the art of non-conformity blog, he actually does a bunch of
posts about travel hacking and how to - basically stringing
together airline awards miles and hotel awards miles so that you
get to the point where you don’t have to check in to a hotel,
Trevor, that has bed bugs in the beds. So, there you go.
Alright. I like it. And that also explains why it took me eighteen
and a half hours to get to Kitsakona from Toronto. Okay, Kev has
a question. He says he’s got a 10K cross country race this week
and he’s had a lower back pain for a few days. Any advice to help it
not get any worse? And I’m assuming he means not getting worse
while he’s traveling or staying in the hotel for the race.
Low back pain. I’m gonna give you two books first of all and then
one exercise, okay? So book number one, I’ve already mentioned.
I mentioned it on last week’s podcast. It’s called Foundation.
Foundation by –he was typing a different book?_- you were
typing Supple Leopard.
Supple Leopard is a good book, but Supple Leopard is a cookbook.
It’s got a ton of stuff in there. It’s big, it helps with knee pain, hip
pain, back pain, toe pain. But it can be a little bit intimidating or
foreboding or whatever, just because there‘s so many different
things in it. So it’s good to have around but I recommend
Foundation which is a book that has ten different exercises in it.
I’ve been doing these exercises once every 48-72 hours or so. So
once every 2 to 3 days, I go out on my porch and I do these 10
exercises. It takes me about 10, 15 minutes. It turns on what’s
called your posterior chain. Turns on your butt, basically. And a
turned off butt is one of the primary reasons that you’re gonna get
low back pain in the first place. I’ll tell you how you can address a
low back pain in a second but first of all the book Foundation, you
need to get that book, learn all ten exercises, do them at least once
a week. The second book that I’m gonna recommend to you is
called Alignment Matters by Katy Bowman. You can find that at
katysays.com I’m gonna get Katy in my podcast at some point
here in the near future. Excellent knowledgeable bio-mechanist
who goes into huge choices, postural exercises, diaphragmatic
breathing exercise, a bunch of stuff that does what’s called
stacking your body in the correct position for standing or sitting
so that you learn how to have the proper vertebral and hip
alignment. Things in there like purchasing special socks that
actually spreads your toes while you’re asleep to improve
flexibility in your toes which is where posture really begins.
Special exercises like deep diaphragmatic exercise that get into a
bridging position and you do a diaphragm release, you hold your
breath and then you slowly lower that bridge to turn on some of
those deep neck proturi muscles that can brace the spine.
Anyways, it’s called Alignment Matters. So the book Foundation
and the book Alignment Matters would be two really good books
for anybody who wants long term back health to read. And even
though that other book Supple Leopard is not bad, either. And
then for fixing it, a simple trick that will help to adjust your
sacroiliac joint. Brock, I know you’ve dealt with sacroiliac joint
issues in the past.
As a runner, I’ve dealt with them primarily from cycling. What
happens is you have a joint in your body called your SI joint, or
your sacroiliac joint. It’s got two different what are called
articulating surfaces, kind of a smooth surface and a surface that’s
a little bit more grizzly. And the two surfaces can basically lock on
each other. And once that happens, it limits hip motion typically
on one side or the other. And once you start cycling or running,
you’re moving with that limited hip motion. The muscles on the
side that’s locked, the back muscles on the side that’s locked, they
spasm, they cramp, they become painful. You can go to a
chiropractor who will adjust your sacroiliac joint. You can also do
a self-adjustment. And the way that you do it, is that you lie on
your back on the ground and you put one hand on the front of
your right leg and one hand on your left leg. And then you
simultaneously push your right leg away from you while you’re
resisting the movement of pushing your right leg away from you,
And pull your left leg towards you, while you’re resisting the
movement of pulling your left leg towards you. So you’re torquing
your hips basically and using your hands to provide that
resistance as you push.
I was sort of demonstrating it in this seat but it’s hard to do sitting
Brock is doing it on the video here. You do that and then you
switch sides. So you push the left leg away from you while
resisting your left leg and pull your right leg towards you while
resisting your right leg. And you do that several times for about
three to five second pretty intense holds.
And then you finish up by putting a foam roller or a pillow, like a
hard pillow, or a medicine ball or anything like that between your
knees and squeezing that so you’re contracting your adductors,
your inner thigh muscles. You squeeze that ball as hard as
possible. And after doing those right leg and left leg exercises and
then squeezing, you’re gonna heal - you’re gonna hear a clunk and
feel a clunk as your SI joint adjusts. It’s kinda cool. This actually
works. If you’re not an audio person and you’re a visual learner,
and none of that made sense to you, google self-adjust SI joint
video. And there’s a couple different videos on youtube that will
show you how to do it. So, just google self-adjust youtube video.
Let’s put a link in the show notes for folks. We’ll make it easy for
you. bengreenfieldfitness.com/259 we’ll throw in a link there that
will show how to self-adjust your sacroiliac joint. So, what’d you
think, should we do one more question?
Yeah. I don’t think we could do a travel episode without talking
So, Ian wants to know - he is….
Both Brock and I are both mildly, ultra- mildly jetlagged right
now. Brock had an 18-hour travel day yesterday.
I’m also living six hours in the future so it’s already 8:30PM my
And I traveled with two five-year-old twin boys who insisted on
doing a triathlon as soon as we landed, as soon as the airplane
touched down. We’ve been going non-stop since yesterday,
Well, we all went to bed at 8PM.
Well, we all went to bed at 8PM and woke up at four. A little weird
but yes, we still got eight hours of sleep. That’s true.
Ian’s going to Florida with his family. He lives in the UK and –golf
cart alert! Golf cart! Jet lag is going to be an issue.
Okay, jet lag. I’ll give you some of my top tips. And they’re kinda
related to the first tips that I was giving you about relaxation. So,
jet lag. First of all, tip number one is those melatonin patches.
Those work really, really well for jet lag. So use those melatonin
patches when you land. You can use them for a good two to three
days. Put them on, whether you’re young or you’re old, melatonin
patches will help with jet lag. Number two…
Whether you’re young, or whether you’re old.
Whether you’re young, or whether you’re old…melatonin patches
will save your gold. Gold, yeah. Let’s not give up our day jobs.
Sorry, everybody. So the other thing in addition to melatonin, now
that Brock has completely distracted me - I was walking around
today. I don’t know if you noticed the sandals I was wearing,
I was wearing Earth Runner sandals. They’re made by a company
called Earth Runners, and we can link to ‘em. There’s another
company called Pluggz. So both the company Pluggz as well as
Earth Runners -yeah, you can go and grab them, hold them up to
the screen you guys for you all. They’re sitting by the front door,
dude. So Brock will go and get them. Pluggz and Earth Runners,
they make these special kind of sandals. And Pluggz actually
makes actual shoes. They have carbon plugs on the bottom of
them and they ground you. So you may have heard of the concept
of grounding or earthing. And this allows you to ground or earth
without actually say, going to the inconvenient process –that’s
actually my son’s Converse shoes, those are not mine.
Oh, those are not yours?
No, they’re size 5.
Is it? Is that? Is this it?
That’s my size 13 Earth Runner. They look like a Tama Mahara
Indian running sandals, so they’re kinda bad ass in my
perspective. These carbon plugs, though, what those do is those
actually they draw negative ions up from the surface of the earth
into your body. And offset a lot of the positive ions that build up
when you’re hurtling through space 40,000 feet above the surface
of the earth in a metal tube.
So as far as ions go, negative and positive are reversed from what
you’d assume. Negative ones are good, positive ones are bad.
Yes, exactly. Exactly. So earthing or grounding is something that
like Tour De France cyclists and a lot of European competitive
athletes, soccer players use this a lot. So European soccer players
and Tour de France cyclists always seem to be on the cutting edge
when it comes to a lot of these recovery jetlag stuff because…
Wonder why that is?
They travel to compete. And they travel a lot. And Americans just
tend to rely on our brute ability to put on helmets, eat lots of
hamburgers and go out and hit each other.
Anyways, though, get yourself a good pair of grounding shoes or
earthing shoes especially if you need to be walking around when
you get to where you’re going. You don’t have time to go into your
yoga, chattaronga post for two hours on an earthing mat outside
your front lawn. So, I like the Earth Runners ‘cause I can just be
like walking around like we were today at the Expo and be
earthing at the same time. So that really helps with jet lag.
You were actually riding your bike in those, too.
I was riding my bike in them. It’s a good trick to cool off. Yeah.
So, grounding or earthing, melatonin. I’m a big fan of avoiding
caffeine of course while you’re traveling period. So don’t drink
coffee on the plane, tea, any of that stuff, just avoid caffeine,
period. And drink oodles and oodles of water. That really helps.
Why, I so screwed up yesterday when I drank oodles and oodles of
both beer and coffee.
Bad move. Bad move. Which is possibly why Brock looks so
crappy today whereas I look shiny and new for our video.
So the next thing you wanna think about is this Chinese –it’s like a
Chinese over-the-counter herb that you can buy. You can get it off
at Amazon. You can find it at a lot of places. Hong Kong airport is
where I first discovered this stuff. It’s a mix of homeopathic
remedies. You take one when your airplane takes off. And then
you take one every two to four hours during travel. And then you
take one when you land. And it’s called No Jetlag. No Jetlag.
It just cuts right to the chase.
They just cut right to the chase as the Chinese do who defended
the Asians and the old people in today’s podcast but it’s called No
Jetlag. That stuff works really well. Now that’s another thing you
can do for the jetlag I’m a big fan of. The last thing you can try.
This one is a little bit annoying and complex but you can actually
try a jetlag diet. It’s – you could google it and get the nitty-gritty
details but here’s the basics. Go back three days from the day
you’re gonna fly out. Let’s say you’re gonna fly out on a Saturday,
So we count back Friday, Thursday, Wednesday. So Wednesday
you eat well. You don’t go hungry. You eat three square meals a
day and preferably at some point before you are going to bed,
you’re not completely avoiding carbohydrates. You’re actually
getting a little bit of serotonin release from a carbohydrate-rich
meal, or at least a meal that includes carbohydrates like white rice
or sweet potatoes or yam or whatever before you go to bed. So,
Wednesday, three days out would be a day in which you don’t
deplete calories or deny your body of calories but you also give
yourself some carbohydrates which helps to get your circadian
rhythms dialed in in the evening. And then the next day is a
fasting day where you actually do not eat much food at all. You
may have like a light breakfast, some water, or some sparkling
water, maybe some coconut water during the day, light dinner,
that’s it. So a lot fewer calories than you would normally consume.
The next day’s a fast day. Same as the day that was two days
before. So you fast, feast, fast. And the final day is your travel day.
And on your travel day it’s pretty simple. You wake up. You head
to the airport. You get on the plane. You start traveling and you
don’t eat any meals until it’s time for the main meal at whatever
destination that you’re going to. So like Paris is what? Six hours
ahead of New York? Let’s say Paris is six hours ahead of New
York. You hop on the plane to New York at 10AM and so that
would mean in Paris it’s 4PM. So what you would do is on the
plane to New York, you would simulate your dinner in Paris at
around noon, which would be two hours after your flight leaves
the ground which should be 6PM around dinner time in Paris.
And that basically helps your body become used to the eating
window in the destination that you’re going to which is highly tied
to circadian rhythms. Now this whole fast-feast-fast type of
protocol is not something I personally do because for me, a lot of
times I’m stringing together travel, like, I’ll go home from Hawaii.
A few days later, I’ll be headed down to L.A. and Malibu, and I
would be driving to Santa Barbara, come back, turn around, grab
my family, we head over to Thailand. And for me trying to string
together this whole fast-feast-fast thing doesn’t work. But if you
just travel every once in a while, it can be a pretty good protocol.
And you can just – if you google jetlag diet, that’s the most
popular jetlag diet out there and some people just swear by it.
So it’s just basically- you’re just confusing the heck out of your
body in order to reset it?
You are essentially think of it as priming your circadian rhythm.
So your circadian rhythm is tied to your feeding cycles. And so by
fasting you’re restoring your circadian rhythm. That feast day, I’m
not totally sure of the science behind the feast day in between the
two fast days. Then another fast day and then obviously the
protocol behind fasting on the day that you actually travel until
the main meal time and the time on the destination that you’re
going to makes sense because you’re just resetting your body’s
clock. So, there’s been a lot of chemistry talk. One other resource
that you guys before we start to wrap up and before we move on to
our iTunes review so we can give away some swag, look up
supermemo.com, we’ll put a link to that in the show notes.
So go to supermemo.com and at supermemo.com there’s a section
there on sleep super duper long, long article on sleep. But it really
is jam packed with a bunch of really helpful stuff especially when it
comes to napping, what’s called poly phasic sleeping, what’s called
free sleeping, circadian rhythms, jetlags. It’ll take you a good
couple weeks to read the whole article, honestly ‘cause it’s huge.
But it’s called supermemo.com. That about wraps up the time that
we have today because we have lots of important things to go and
do here on the Big Island to get ready for the big race like drink
mai tais and...
I believe there’s a slow twitch party that we are going to.
And go to a slow twitch party. Brock gets to go to the thank-GodI’m-not-racing party tomorrow. So go to beyondtrainingbook.com
to get 5,000 dollars plus in swag and preorder my brand new
Do it within 48 hours after you hear this podcast. Go to
bengreenfieldfitness.com/259 to get access to any of the helpful
links that we give on this podcast. Next week we promise we will
be back to our less crappy…
Less unplugged format. And we’ll also be telling you in that
episode how you can get some of these t-shirts for yourself. Some
of these shiny new Ben Greenfield Fitness t-shirts. We’ll be back
to reading iTunes reviews, giving away swag, and all that jazz. So,
thanks for joining us if you’re watching the video. Thank you to all
our premium members from bengreenfieldfitness.com/premium.
Over and out. We kept our clothes on so I’m gonna say this was a
Aloha and Mahalo!
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