Sleeping Tips- Sleep Through the Night Deeper and Faster


Sleeping Tips- Sleep Through the Night Deeper and Faster

Improvement and increase in the amount of deep sleep at night. The number of people who get far less deep sleep than they actually believe that they get is unfortunate because that’s when when a lot of the repair and recovery processes happen. Deep sleep is one of many different ways to optimize your health, along with changing your diet and exercise programs. You blunt some of the some of the natural inflammatory processes. Delve into both sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system.

Improvement and increase in the amount of deep sleep at night.

Video Transcript

we’re so happy to be connected with Ben Greenfield today and explore some of his insights on fitness he’s an extraordinarily knowledgeable and fit person is a very interesting history there is no one that I personally know that reads more books than Ben he reads one book a day 300 is about 350 books here I I thought I read a lot at 150 books but he’s got me beat by a long way and that’s the majority of them are Captain Underpants diary with a very large font and many pictures yeah we know that’s not true and you might wonder how I get a lot of the ideas I have and inspirations and even some of the guests that I’ve had on the past it’s from Ben he’s I first met him a few years ago when he actually interviewed me and I was extraordinarily impressed with his insights and his understanding of health and I have follow his side regularly because he’s got some of the most intriguing insights into health and fitness and he is a biohacker as one of the top bio hackers in the United States and introduced me to a number of bio acts of which I think we should start off and then we’ll go into some of the other things that we can talk him you know one of Ben I haven’t discussed this with you but I think one of the most important books I’ve read in 2017 was why we sleep by Matthew Walker I believe is his name who is a research scientist and in California and have you heard of him before every read the book I you know I read an article about the book I haven’t picked up the book yet I believe oh yes it’s on the Kindle somewhere but yeah yeah it is phenomenal I think everyone watching this understands that the importance of sleep but I was seriously misinformed as to how important it was it may be more important than the food wheat and the reason I’m mentioning this is because been introduced me to a device which I think anyone who’s serious about their health should pick up it’s called the aura ring that’s oh you are a and they are most likely by the time we air this interview they will have introduced the generation 2 ring which is one of the best it not what it is my view and I believe ends to the best fitness tracker on the market for a number of reasons and I’ll let Ben go into the reasons why because he introduced me to and I’ve been using it for nearly two years now thanks to Ben and here’s here’s my current gen 2 ring yeah I found it in Finland about three years ago is that a biohacking summit over there I believe I was one of the first people that to purchase one really primarily because I love the idea of fitness tracking not only does it you know it’s nice to have that carrot at the end of a stick to get your 15,000 steps in at the end of the day and sometimes quantifying it is a little bit of an extra motivator but also as you’ve alluded to sleep is incredibly important and when we looked at the sleep lab data that they’ve done on this ring including some some pretty some pretty compelling internal documents that they sent me when I when I wound up questioning them via email about the true accuracy of it it’s a it’s surprisingly close to sleep lab data you know where you go to these sleep labs and you get all the the electrodes hooked up to your head to monitor your brainwaves it gives you data that’s relatively comparable to that yeah I think they did their assessments as to Stanford sleet lab which is like a 95% correlation factor yeah exactly I believe I believe it’s called a plasma ography I believe is their pallet palm lisanna polysomnography I think yeah police in Albuquerque police in topography or plasma geography had okay I remember exactly but either way even more important than then sleep data though in the exercise tracking data you know in a heart rate body temperature for women who may want to track their cycles heart rate variability would be the fact that unlike a Fitbit or a jawbone the Bluetooth you know can be disabled and there is no Wi-Fi so there’s there’s far less of a chance of you being constantly bombarded by non-native EMF specifically from from Bluetooth signaling you know when you look at a Fitbit or a jawbone typically it’s a believe it’s a class one Bluetooth signal that’s sending out every one two three seconds in search of a device to pair with and I wasn’t that comfortable you know if you think about the two ways that you sleep I was think about this the other day right I sleep with my hand up by my head or I’ve like tucked down by my crotch so it’s either my brain or my balls that would be good Bluetooth all night long while I sleep so I I flip it into airplane mode it’s a little initially a little bit of a pain the but you know you gotta take the rain off for 30 seconds to put it back on to reactivate it but I don’t mind that is there something I can do in the morning so so yeah I like it as a tracking device it works pretty well yeah and one of the other things is that it uses an infrared sensor unlike some of the other tracking devices to measure how they measure heart rate which you screen light which we know is not a good idea to have on your body while you’re sleeping so infrared of course you can’t see and it’s an it’s extraordinarily accurate and the Gen 1 device has had the problems with the Bluetooth synchronization but Gen 2 is supposed to be a lot easier so you can set 2 times a day because the Gen 1 devices tend to go out periodically consistently and I have to check mine every day to make sure it’s still not in Bluetooth mode does look like it came out of a cereal box mystical power associated with it so unfortunately a product to give that up for the smaller Gen 2 that’s coming out yeah which looks like a wedding ring it’s about the same size as longer battery life and just a lot better features so it’s just amazing they’re able to provide that so it’s so it that’s a tangent it’s a device it’s not terribly expensive it’s well worth the investment it’s probably the best viking device that I know of and I think that I’m aware of because what we need I mean you hit you offer so many different ways to optimize your health on your site and your regular podcast under your articles but what we need is a standard and I want to talk about two of them Dave or ring is one and then heart rate variability testing is another but before we go into heart rate variability testing the just want to mention that you can get these metrics that you can do these these biohacking interventions changing your diet sleep patterns exercise whatever you want to want to change and then you can see its impact on your heart rate variability your and what we didn’t mention that the aura ring does it also gives you recovery index to let you know if if you’re exercising if we’re working out too hard and this should be a rest day and that’s when the magic from exes occurs during the rest and most people many people over exercise yeah to a truce or an extent with the caveat to that being that I will purposefully if I’m looking at my heart rate variability or my readiness score from the aura ring or if I’m looking at it from you know there’s another app that I use called nature beat that I’ll test my HRV with my heart rate variability in the morning and the reason that I use that as just about the only other device that I really would use for self quantification occasionally you know aside from the you know the occasional ketone or glucose measurement the reason for that is that unlike the ring it allows me to delve into both sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system strength meaning what’s called your your your low frequency or your high frequency power and that allows you to see which element of your nervous system may be affecting your heart rate variability and it also allows me to if I want to as an athlete because I still I still compete professionally an obstacle course racing for Reebok on the Spartan pro team and that means that there are certain periods of time during the year especially leading up to important competitions where I purposefully sustain a low heart rate variability for a number of days typically anywhere from three days up to a week after which a week you you really start to see an increase in propensity for injury or illness but that’s called a super compensation so rather than overtraining all you’re doing is just a little bit of under recovery meaning that you’re purposefully digging yourself into it just a bit of a hole and if you look at you know some some of the best training books that exist you know like two-door Bamba is kind of an old-school guy who wrote some of the better books that exist on periodization for example periodization is based on this concept that you don’t maintain peak fitness all year long you don’t maintain peak readiness all year long you have periods of time if you’re specifically trying to perform cutting edge where you’re digging yourself and into just a bit of an under recovery hole and then by allowing yourself a taper after which during during which time you you really engage in a lot of advanced recovery Madhi to kind of bounce back from that that slight amount of overtraining you super compensate you wind up even more fit than you would have been in the first place so I will I’ll test my heart rate variability but I but I sometimes will I’ll train through a low readiness score or low heart rate variability for that reason of increased fit in this long term you so be careful with it yeah yeah and that’s the that’s nature beat app which is available on both Android and iOS but actually works much better on iOS and I would not get it on an Android because it just really doesn’t work that well I’ve tried it so it’s made by sweet beat and I’d highly recommend it I think it’s a very useful tool and thank you for recommending it in making that available so one of the things I neglected to mention on your introduction is with
respect to your qualifications is that you were a pre-med student one time but then wisely chose to opt out of medical system because you had a paraprofessional experience as a surgical tech and had first-hand insights into the underpinnings of the workings of the medical world and then you went on to get your master’s degree in exercise physiology and biomechanics so why don’t you relate that history and then we’ll go back into some of the bio heck’s for improving your sleep yeah I got accepted to several medical schools and undergrad and I really did want to go into sports medicine or orthopedic surgery because of the time I was I was playing tennis in college and was actually I was into a very healthy sport called bodybuilding healthiest sports on a face of the planet in which you sustained two to three percent body fat and about four hours a day I can’t think of anything healthier actually and not not to mention having tuna fish out of the can with a little bit of relish on it for dinner chicken and and broccoli for lunch and usually a couple of protein shakes for breakfast is really in my opinion that the diet most conduce to longevity and in a very ancestral approach however that that aside yeah I was I was very into sports and fitness and exercise and and wanted to practice medicine on that level but as you alluded to I became pretty disillusioned with modern medicine you know modern allopathic medicines when I when I took up a job out of college for about six months doing hip and knee surgical sales during which time not a single physician who I spoke to encouraged me to go to medical school despite knowing that that was a that was a goal of mine and in fact at least a dozen of them told me that I would be crazy too and that it was possibly one of the the the least intelligent decisions that they made to go and all these guys with with homes and boats and and lots of money who pretty much had not a lot of time to to spend enjoying those those blessings and they were indeed very stressed out and working in a situation where people were paying a copious amount of money for fora for medical care that in many cases was unnecessary and nowhere near preventive so I I wound up actually wandering into the gym across the street from the apartment that I was living in the day after I quit my job in surgical sales and I asked for a job in the gym and wound up you know managing the fitness facility for a while and then partnered with a physician can at that facility and branched off and began opening a respect of this exercises medicine approach I did everything from a high speed biomechanical analysis where he had a whole bunch of video cameras set up to analyze things like running gait or or you know cycling fit to add EKG machines we had one of the first PRP machines in the region where we would inject joints with platelet-rich plasma we did a lot of indirect calorimetry and vo2 max test – it’s the best metabolic rate both sure sighs and then a pretty robust personal training and and nutritional counseling offering and so that’s what I did for for many years once once I kind of delved it back into the fitness scene and you know eventually when my kids were born about nine years ago I made a decision to home-school them and kind of pivoted it into doing a lot more from home which is a lot more of what I do now right writing freelance authoring podcasting blogging designing supplements and formulations advising fitness companies you know I’m doing doing a lot more at home in my underwear and occasionally hopping on a plane to go go speak somewhere so that’s kind of what I do now yeah well I’m glad you listen to those physicians who advise you to avoid going to medical school because there’s a little doubt in my mind that you’ve impacted on a positive way an order of magnitude or probably significantly more than that of people that you are helping through the work that you’re doing now than you ever possibly could have as a treating patients as it individually as a physician so and you mentioned that you’re homeschooling your children and I neglected to mention also that you and you yourself were homeschool then really one of the reasons I wanted to have you on is that you’re such a an amazing example of someone who was nurtured in a way that you developed independent thinking and then you were even though you’re early diet was less than optimal and but you were still exercising you figure things out later and and now you’re you know rereading a book a day and really it’s just amazing how you’re able to integrate all this information and synthesize practical recommendations through the work that you’re doing and it’s just a real testimony to what you can do if you’re doing things the right way well reading a book a day has come back to buy me a few times for example you know one of my rules is that you know that if I haven’t read my book and I usually have a stack up up by my bed of two or three books and then a couple in the office and I’ve got one over by the infrared sauna so I always have a book I can grab and typically I’m reading two or three at time and you know I’ll get in the game competitor for example and you know my wife and I will well make love after which time you’re supposed to fall asleep in each others arms and a loving embrace right roll over and flip on the light and start reading a book and she’s like you’re just I don’t get you but uh yeah if I don’t finish my book I have figured out time to do it last night I was reading in the bathtub actually a new book on mitochondria I don’t have it in front of me now is it by Lee no I believe it’s yeah I’m interviewing him shortly he’s brand-new relatively thin but really good book I’m not yeah yeah it was its outstanding his name of it I don’t remember the name I just remembered the author I read his first book and was really inspirational to me the right fat for fuel and really provided a lot of the groundwork groundwork on mitochondrial health but is excellent so let’s get back to the biohacking though we talked about the aura ring and the HRV application that you can use to monitor and one of the most important components of that we’d mentioned is sleep of course and what I was shocked when I initially put on the aura ring was that my deep sleep was consistently very very low most of the time the average sleep sleep deep sleep I was getting per night is zero point zero minutes and no deep sleep at all and this is one of the things that’s the aura can measure it can show you the amount of deep sleep REM sleep light sleep and the times that you’re awake and how long you’re sleeping at night so I didn’t believe it I thought this ring doesn’t work as do many other people they said there’s no way I’m not getting any deep sleep but I believe that the results are true now and I’ve been trying to biohack my deep sleep and I suspect this is you know when I talked to the the people who made the ring they said this is a common observation as people get older they just their deep sleep goes hits the dirt so I’m wondering if you could provide your insights and your details with respect to bio hacks you developed improve and increase in amount of deep sleep in the night yeah it is kind of interesting the number of people who get far less deep sleep than they actually believe that they get which is unfortunate because that’s when when a lot of the repair and recovery processes actually occur technically and you know one of one of the requirements for repair and recovery to occur especially of the nervous system would be a lower core temperature and I think that’s that’s one big thing offer people who are eating late at night or for people who are sleeping with too many blankets or people who don’t have the room properly cooled in the evening people who exercise too close to bedtime meaning that that that you’re going to enhance deep sleep if you exercise a especially high intensity exercise in the afternoon or even the early evening but that begins to you begin to see a reversal the positive effects if you finish up that exercise session within about three hours before you actually go to bed right so you’d want to wrap up let’s see or a 10 p.m. to bed type of person you’d want to wrap up any hard exercise session by about 7 p.m. and actually engage in efforts to cool the body afterwards in a way that doesn’t necessarily blunt the hormetic response to exercise I’m not talking about like a 20-minute ice bath which I’m not a big fan of post-workout because you do blunt some of the some of the natural inflammatory processes that you want to occur but it but a quick cold shower or even like a lukewarm bath you know that type of thing can can certainly help I’ll be yeah one of the things would be temperature simply sleeping too hot and you’ll notice if you pull up the aura ring dashboard where you can pull them a lot of correlative data that you can pair your body temperature both during the day and in the evening with your deep sleep percentages and see some some pretty significant correlations just between body temperature and deep sleep so that would be one you know food and movement choices before bed that that can potentially increase your temperature while sleeping as well as just the general temperature of the room overall you know and and you know when you look at bio hacks I would say that you know for that aside from just the timing which isn’t really a bio hack it’s just a lifestyle one would be like the chili pad how if you use not at all I have eye marks mark Sisson gave me one and I wasn’t impressed with the ability to maintain a low body temperature but I just interviewed mark last week and he has this pattern where he does this whirlpool or Jacuzzi at night with his wife I believe and then jumps in his regular pool in California which is not heated so he
gets to be pretty low and I used to do my infrared sauna that you do also in the morning I don’t know when you do yours but I do mine I did mine in the morning then I would jump in my pool which is pretty cold this time you’re in the 60s and do that but I’m switching it tonight and I think I’m noticed an improvement in deep sleep yeah um you know when when I was recently in Hawaii I was experiment with this a little bit because I was staying with a friend and we would do sauna and he has an ice bath so we do sauna an ice bath each evening and I noticed some really really good deep sleep numbers there and I think a big part of that was because we’d always finish with the cold which was originally you know that that’s originally something I started doing just to activate a little bit more of a conversion of white fat into brown adipose tissue you know forcing the body to reheat itself via just natural thermogenesis of brown fat but it appears that in the evening when you do that it at least in my case seemed to have an impact on deep sleep cycles and and for me um I will often use the sauna now especially mine at home both times during the day like this morning I spent about 20 to 30 minutes in sauna and I was doing a lot of like Kundalini and breath work and yoga and movement I’ll even sometimes put elastic bands in there or dumbbells or you know foam rolling type of devices just do some body work and then I generally get pretty hot pretty sweaty a little bit out of breath and then I’ll go jump in the cold pool afterwards and get ready to start my day but in the evening what I’ve started doing before dinner is going in there to do some of my reading and I’ll actually just spend about 15 to 20 minutes laying on my back I have a little acupressure mat in there so I just lay on my back in the sauna I have a little like a foam roller with a towel around I kind of tucked under my head and I’ll just lay there and read typically I’ll burn some incense burn some candle I’ve been vaporizing essential oils lately so I’ve actually got some of such and they’re like frankincense for example that I’ll vape in the same way that one would like they say like marijuana or tobacco vape essential oils and so that’s kind of bit like a nightly routine for me when I’m at home and as long as I finish up with doing something like you do that cools the body you know like all I’m I don’t live near water unfortunately I used to live on the river and I love water you know I love surfing swimming I love spearfishing you know I spent a lot of time as an Ironman triathlete another super healthy sport dude doing a lot of open water swimming and so what I did since I live out in the middle of the forest now you know we’re off-grid out here in the middle of the forest you all on solar and well but I had a crane drop a 19-foot one of these endless pools on the middle of the forest back behind the house and I keep that at about oh right right now it’s upper 40s on the summer move to the upper 50s but I go jump in that you know so I trudge to the snow in my bare feet and go jump in the cold pool and come back in you know and then have dinner with the family and and my body’s cool enough after that by the time I go to sleep that how long are you into how long you’re in the pool I go for about five minutes kind of Wow what’s impressive in the 40s yeah well you gotta remember I mean I did I did the I did like the Kokoro thing with with with Mark Devine which is like it’s kind of like the Navy SEAL hell week that they put together for civilians and I believe that during that time not only to develop a little bit of post-traumatic stress disorder I can’t really get in the ocean right now if I think about having to sit in there for eight hours hypothermic you know getting out to do burpees every hour you know they had us do all sorts of crazy things during that training but they also at one point they had me a sit in an ice bath like a full-on ice bath for 18 minutes and that was probably the the it was either that or I also competed in the Spartan death rate Vermont and that was three days is all outside at 38 degrees below zero [Laughter] five minutes at mid 40s feel like a walk in the park so it’s all relative yes but coming full sound like bodybuilding might have been a healthier choice hormetic effect that might be a little bit too pronounced anyways the the the the body temperature would be a big one when it comes to deep sleep as would be the timing of of exercise there are there are some compounds of course that a lot of people are aware of you know inhibitory neurotransmitters like gamma-aminobutyric acid that that can be increased you know somewhat like a you know small glass of wine or alcohol before bed but the problem is that you seem to have another waking cycle occur sometime between about one and wants that that evening dose of alcohol wears off and so I’ve found that some of these some of these forms of GABA you know that can be taken in supplemental form or precursors to GABA like you know passionflower extract is a perfect example they can actually help out quite a bit with these deep psyche sleep cycles anything increases gamma-aminobutyric acid um small doses of melatonin I’ve also found to have an effect you know around in the range of about 0.3 to 1/2 gram this is that deep sleep or just sleep this would be on deep sleep yeah in stark contrast you know when I travel sometimes the first day I get to an international location I’ll pop 40 to 60 milligrams of melatonin which is not only potent anti-inflammatory but can also kind of help to jumpstart your circadian rhythm but I’ll take very very small doses aside from that just before bed at night that seems to impact deep sleep cannabidiol cannabidiol is another doesn’t need to be psychoactive doesn’t need to be THC or smoking weed or a joint but just any of these you know newer cannabidiol oils or capsules or or vape pens or anything it gets a little bit of CBD into the system that also affects deep sleep it seems to improve deep sleep cycles used PMF a little bit before and while I found that to seem to improve the overall night of sleep haven’t seen a huge impact on deep sleep cycles although especially after a big bout of travel or hard training or anything else that exposes me to a lot of inflammation I find that at that PMF somewhere in the range of about three to eight Hertz seems to help out with sleep quite a bit you know very similar to the way that grounding were earthing might um those are a few things that come to mind but honestly the biggest one that I found really is temperature when it comes to deep interesting and what is your typical average amount of deep sleep per night and what your like record amount of deep sleep just curious a record amount was early 20s while I like low 20 percentages and generally I like to see somewhere between about 5 and 20 percent like in that range I don’t have my my my phone around right now so I don’t know what it was last night but it’s it’s been pretty good lately generally around and kind of like the 8 to 15 percent range that’s excellent now I’m particularly in the 1 to 2 percent but I’m working towards it now I’d say increase it and I think that my experience is that the the cold night swimming is a useful strategy for me and I thinks interestingly I noticed too it’s much easier to fall asleep you just seem to be ready to fall asleep because your body temperatures lower it’s just much much much more conducive to that I think there’s definitely something to be said for the hard exercise session that you finish up at least 3 hours before bedtime – I think some people just just go to bed too amped up without having you know gone out and done something anaerobic and now I’m certainly not a fan of excessive training but I think that that that ensuring that the body actually has some amount of physical stress during the day you know by doing something like client has the interval training they’re like this morning I try and do do something every day this morning I was really working on on mitochondrial health so I was doing 90 seconds of hypoxia followed by 30 seconds of hyperoxia and the minute of rest a minute of rest of hyperoxia using one of these live oh two training units yeah I was thought I was the one who you get him – I’ll usually use that one or two times a week you know and yesterday for example was Christmas Day actually the time that we’re recording this and so you know usually I’ll have a couple of extra drinks of alcohol on Christmas Day sometimes my I’m getting to bed a little bit later you know typically there’s there’s a little bit more caloric consumption more sugar consumption you know so I spend the morning really taking care of my body I mean this morning I did what else do you know I was I was breathing this this air from the the Nano V device which is basically middle I dare that gets exposed to a frequency that creates a little bit of a reactive oxygen species that wind up that wind up being a little bit about having a little bit of a DNA repair effect I did yeah it basically helps refold your proteins and with the structured water and I’m actually going to be interviewing Han Zhang pretty soon exactly so I did that was working on my computer for a little bit this morning with with the near and far infrared lights that I have in my office kind of shining on both sides of my body I used a photobiomodulation this morning while I was kind of stretching and warming up the water for the coffee which is a device that goes in your head which can it can activate a little bit of the cytochrome C oxidase mmm structure in mitochondria and allow for a live increased nitric oxide production as well and you know then of course I did the sauna and in the cold and you know then I’d like to pull out a little bit of you know the
the the ancestral wisdom as well like right now I’m vaporizing rosemary and peppermint while we’re talking so I’ve got a little you know cold air a little essential oil vaporizer here that’s just kind of diffusing into the air and that seems to help out quite a bit as well with with wakefulness I have a lot of fun playing with different essential oil blends and then of course used a used one of these McCants movies a human charger so it’s uh oh yeah I do I think I only use it when I’m traveling so I only probably use it a few times a year a lot of times I’ve had a you know a longer day the day before or I just need kind of a pick me up the next morning along with these these glasses that create like a like a greenish blue light so I’ll do that along with the image charger but yeah I mean you know this morning was an example of a morning where I kind of just like pull out all the stops and you wind up feeling like a million bucks but but I think a lot of these things that jumpstart your circadian rhythm early in the day like you know white light Amir’s blueish green light for the eyes you know red light therapy the heat the cold a lot of these things in the morning that jumpstart the circadian rhythm wind up assisting you with sleep later on in the night you know especially if you travel a lot for example yeah and I really appreciate your recommendation of the Jew vite for the photobiomodulation which is the near-infrared in the red and then I’m sure you got it yeah big panel yeah there you go now you’re blessed out in red so yeah I do that pretty much every day too I’d speak Li do mine before the sauna just to complement the far-infrared yeah yeah good and quit Eason and sperm cell and testosterone production as well from that yeah it’s a good complement so I’m wondering if you I know I think you’ve had some experience with QE e G’s we actually did went out to a place in California did a few weeks of training and I’m wondered if you remember the name of the unit you had and if you have any observations on its impact to improve any of your markers that you’re monitoring yeah so I went to the peak brain Institute in Culver City California and spent about a week there learning how to does Andrew help the system this Andrew he’ll run that that was that was with dr. Andrew Hill okay yeah he is he’s phenomenal like I’ve gotta have to interview him yeah he’s a he’s a he’s a good wealth of knowledge on on on neurofeedback and did a qejy and discovered several areas of some imbalance beta theta ratios some areas where I where it had concussions then developed some a DD ADHD like symptoms increased distractibility some areas that definitely needed work and what he wound up doing was outfitting me with a laptop and software that I could take home because I didn’t want to I didn’t watch her able to care for need training so take it home and for three months for 30 minutes every other day I did the neurofeedback program that’s basically like a spaceship flying with little bit of music and ignition comes out the back of the spaceship and the spaceship moves and the spaceship will stop moving ignition will stop coming out of the back of it like the smoke will disappear and the music will fade if your brain begins to stray into those areas that you do not want it to stray into it’s a it’s like a subconscious slap on the wrist after which point you know you autocorrect and your brain eventually learns to stay in a brain wave ratios that would be more beneficial and there are certain placements of the of the electrodes on the head that allow you to target different regions everything from from sleep to distractibility to you know he’s even got programs that can reset your tolerance so things like marijuana or alcohol so it’s a it’s a very interesting series of programs and so I would just keep track on an Excel spreadsheet in the cloud of each session that I did and then he would reply with notes that that made small adjustments here and there to the frequencies and to the placement of the electrodes and when I went back for my follow-up qejy it was as though the slate had been wiped clean from Wow for a distractibility standpoint I mean he literally rewired my brain you know granted I understand that everybody will will be able to afford or have the time to do you know 30 minutes a day every other day for three months with neurofeedback but it was a real game changer for me I still do it about once every 10 days or so I’ll take it out and do a session that’s kind of like a basic session specifically to go after anything related to you know post concussive symptoms because I’ve had a few concussions in my life you know almost all of us have I mean its fit their rarity vidual handsome town etc yeah so so I liked it it worked out pretty well for me with my one complaint being that I think it needs to be it needs to be made more scalable right like it would take me like 10 minutes to set up my head and put the paste on uh delay you know clean the hair and put the gel on and apply the electrodes and then you know check and see if they’re on there properly and then reapply it’s one could potentially given the the the right amount of R&D; and funding create some kind of a cap that you would wear that you could simply select which target which areas of the brain you wanted to work on and then run your neurofeedback session rather than having all these wires sticking out of your head they got a place one by one I would think there there would be the capability of great so I’m kind of like a some kind of like a hat or a cap you would wear that you could simply you know target each section of the brain with but aside from the improvement in the follow-up QE eg heaven did you note notice anything in the ways you felt or thought or any of your bio biomarkers the most significant thing that I saw was the ability to focus at a much deeper level and you know what the craziest thing was was I used to be the guy who would walk into a cocktail party unable to focus on one conversation because I could hear all the other conversations hmm and had difficulty focusing without trying to pick up on what everybody else was saying at a dinner table or at a cocktail party and now I can simply hone in and talk to one person without being distracted by all these other voices and all these other people that was the most significant thing that I saw it’s not interesting yeah that’s fascinating so you still retain that ability today yeah exactly I mean it’s a it’s a permanent change so that’s great yeah it’s something I’m seriously considering doing myself I didn’t really went out there but I didn’t make the connection till this interview that you had seen Andrew Hills so yeah I also completely forgot all of my third grade math and my sixth grade my sixth grade grammar but I think that’s just an aside do you see any changes in your sleep metrics uh you know what I it was a huge game changer for sleep yeah you’re already pretty good although it’s marketed as something could obviously pie apparently you know I I’m guessing that I didn’t have enough beta brainwaves produced during sleep just because I’m already i guard my sleep pretty heavily in terms of ensuring I don’t do a lot of work after dinner you know a lot of screen time it’s all paper books in bed I do a lot a lot of deep breathing you know I play my children music and do a lot of singing and chanting before bed which is this with vagal nerve tone you know there’s all sorts of things I do that I think created a scenario where I wasn’t creating excess excess beta before sleep I don’t like that was that was a big target for me okay one of the things that you also do that I think you’re really an early adopter on and not many people my guess less than one percent of the population have actively incorporated into the lifestyle is that you’ve essentially eliminated most EMFs from your environment in for your home your home is hardwired and you really don’t have extraneous emits and you live in the womb and the wilderness and the woods so you’re minimizing that and you you figured that out long before I did I thought I was somehow I was arrogantly ignorant and didn’t think that was harmful but now I know that’s not the case at all so you but but I want to mention too that there’s there’s always some fine-tuning and that the diffuser you held up I would challenge you and you got to be careful with any device you plug into the wall but it probably has two prongs it’s not grounded and most likely the electrical fields if you have a sensitive detector from that it’s going to be pretty high and so you got to stay at least three feet away from it yeah that one is plugged into a dirty electricity filter but it is yeah but it still – yeah yeah the dirt dirty electricity filters that can take care of the spikes it’s not going to it’s not going to stop the electric fields exactly so that and then also I have a building biologist coming out in a couple weeks all right my solar setup specifically because there’s an inverter on my solar panel setup and even though the entire house is is hard shot you know it’s hard wired with metal of chilled ‘add cat6 Ethernet cable you can’t connect to Wi-Fi there’s almost no Bluetooth devices no smart appliances you know Google devices or Amazon devices or anything like that in the home I am a little bit concerned about the solar so that’s one thing well you should be for the dirty electricity and do you know the name of your inverse I don’t recall the name of it now yeah because the the cleanest one is a sunny boy s ony Bo I they are the cleanest and I didn’t send you or a paper written by David Stetzer and one of the electronic journals but if I did I send you that I don’t think so okay I’ll send it to you after this interview because it really has a remediation strategy that you can
input a filter a series of capacitors with inside the it’s a solar inverter that will actually eliminate that dirty electricity or or you can get a sine wave inverter instead or you know a sunny boy is pretty good but they is something you definitely have to pay attention to and and but it’s but as much it’s prevention is the key you want to you know want to have the dirty electricity to begin with rather than remediate with the filters right right yeah so I’ll be getting that analyzed and I’ll probably write a little blog post on it about what I find and what I do as far as concerned well I will send you that filter and maybe you can find an electrical engineer to kind of install it should only be a hundred or two hundred dollars at the most immediate it that way so good now one of the other things I mean you you’re I think best known for your exercise hacks and you know one of the things that you also enlightened me on was and I totally discounted as I did a lot of your information until I started reflecting out and reading a mordant wild found that there was a lot of truth to it is the blood flow restrictor training so I’m wondering if you’re doing that now or some version of that you know I heard about way back in the day years and years ago I interviewed the folks from vas per you have this technology that combines cold flow restriction with grounding unlike a full-body exercise device you you you’ve used the vast burble III I own one oh you own one okay III worked out on one it was it was I believe was in San Diego’s way back in the day and um you know didn’t didn’t really give a lot more thought to blood flow restriction training and then I got my hands on one of these katsu devices from Japan which allows you to nicely in just the millimeters of mercury restrict blood flow to a joint so you’d put at around the the middle area of the thighs and and you know another couple of bands are on the middle area the biceps and by restricting blood flow you get a relatively large buildup of lactic acid in muscle tissue and a subsequent increasing growth hormone after the workout from that surge in lactic acid and restriction and blood flow and they’ve done some pretty compelling research for example in in seniors who are attempting to save off you know sarcopenia or muscle wasting with age and found that blood flow restriction training combined with with our blood flow regime about a bodyweight training seems to do a very good job allowing maintenance of muscle with very low impact because essentially the muscle you know some of like hypoxia right like I can I can work a lot less hard on a bike with a training mask or a hypoxic device on do less damage potentially to the knees or to the feet and still get a very significant training effect and blood flow restriction training is similar big increase in growth hormone big increase in proliferation of satellite cells and growth or maintenance of muscle tissue without having to lift a lot of weight because because you have blood flow restriction and there is everything from these fancy katsu devices which are literally monitored by a handheld device that allows you to precisely dial in the amount of pressure on each limb to something as simple as like what would be called like a bfr band that you could buy an Amazon and typically that’s just it’s a band that has little numbers on it that would allow you to to know you know I’m I’m putting it on a level of for a little at level of five and then you would do you know a typical session would be like thirty reps of a push-up 20 reps of a push-up and ten reps of a push-up with a short recovery period between each out the bands on the arms or something similar for the squat and yeah I used bfr training once a week once every couple of weeks all the the sauna I do when I travel more often because I’m more restricted to body weight training you know so I might do a pyramid of you know one squat one push-up one pull-up up to 15 and back down wearing the VFR bans for example so yeah there’s there’s pretty good training applicability you know I’m a big fan of that style of training I’ve really been getting into isometric training as well there’s another way to get very strong oh with low impact I’m actually experimenting right now with a force plate that’s in my gym that allows me to to measure the amount of force that I produce over anywhere from 30 seconds up to three minutes right so you do one single completely exhausting my symmetric set so a workout might be a chest press a shoulder press a lat pulldown a squat a deadlift and abdominal press and you’re simply holding all those at maximum capacity for one to three minutes technically there is an app that pairs with the force plate that will let you know once you’ve dropped off to about 60% of your starting capacity at which point you wouldn’t be getting quite as much benefit out of out of the out of the sets you just go until you drop off to about 60% of your original force production and then you stop and an isometric training is a really really great way to get strong again relatively injury free and it’s it’s very it’s mentally demanding right it’s very dependable absolutely is it some would say it’s a bit boring but it sounds similar to the it’s not similar to the rx it’s similar to the ARS but it would be almost like the expression almost like a poor man’s version of the Air Act right a small smaller footprint terms of force play the one I’m experimenting with is called a peak fit Pro and that’s available commercially I don’t even know if it’s available commercially yeah I think I think Dave Asprey introduced me to that I don’t think they’re coming out until first quarter of 2018 yeah well gives you a great workout and actually what I’ve been doing is during my rest period from the isometric Set is I’ve been hopping on in my gym here I’ve got what I’m walking on where I’m now is a trueform treadmill which forces your body into a proper biomechanical slightly forward lean position for running or walking and then I’ve got a stationary bicycle and one of these stand-up elliptical trainers called him a lift to go which is kind of cool cuz got wheels on you take it outdoors but in between my isometric sets I’ll go in and kind of do an aerobic recovery on one of those then go back and do the next set I mean within 15 minutes I can I can literally do a full body workout that just absolutely crushes me from a strength training standpoint and that and then you that’s another thing I like about what you’re doing is that you’re just you just don’t focus on what exercise you’re comprehensive and movement is a big strategy and and your lifestyles and is demonstrative what you’re doing now most of the people I heard of you or I would say 95% of them are sitting down it’s the rare person who stands up but I’ve only had one other person walk on a treadmill and that was dr. Michael Greger so you’re the second person I’ve interviewed what kind of dreadmill so congratulations now it is a manual treadmill treadmills are a pretty good source of EMF not yeah EMF so I I do have for my sport and racing I have it it’s actually it actually is a really good device if you want to to be able to maintain vo2 max and lactic acid threshold and build mitochondrial density quite quickly it’s a treadmill it goes up to 40 percent incline and so I have that up in the up in the garage and I have a hypoxic air generator made by a company called hypoxic o of metrics to it so it allows me to simulate you know like 20,000 feet elevation and that’s something that I’ll get on and I’ll do like a climbing workout on you know leading up to a race or something like that but it does have it does have a lot of a lot of dirt EMF those treadmills put out so in my office I just stick to the manual treadmill and I encourage people they they opt for a treadmill desk you know get get a manual treadmill turn and the reason I got this one the true form is you know I can straight up you know from talking you I could go into a run if I wanted to you know a lot of these treadmills so I’m running now a lot of these treadmills will just go to like three or four miles an hour I could run ten mile run as fast as my body will take me on this so I can do you know hop on and do some sprints during the day as well very good so just curious says we’re in ending the year 2017 how did you do in your competition this year with Spartan races national championships I did did pretty well but I four for the World Championships I went into that with an injury and I opted to come actually I injured my knee so I wasn’t alone as much as I wanted to oddly enough I completely rehabbed the knee and it’s pain-free now but my other knee is swollen to the size of a softball because last week I was teaching at a yoga retreat in Panama and I got bit by a scorpion I couldn’t walk for a couple of days and I made a poultice out of some local fig leaves and some ginger root and a coffee filter a lot of the poison out took a crapload of activated charcoal and you know the knee is slowly coming back around but a scorpion really really really effed up that right knee quite a bit so anyways though ultimately though yeah I had a had a good season of racing and honestly uh just turned 36 and I feel stronger than I did when I was 18 years old so well you’re a real testimony of what you can do if you apply yourself and you know they really give your body what it needs and requires and it’s paying attention to all the details so congratulations no thanks any any other tips you’d like to provide or recommendations and maybe some of the your best strategies and how to stay fit well for fitness you know the main thing that I would tell people is you know understand why you’re doing what you’re doing and which physiological parameters that you want to target because if we
step back and we look at Fitness you know cardiovascular performance for example if you’re just doing let’s say intervals in the realm of two to four minutes with short recovery period you’re doing a great job at building up your lactic acid tolerance which does result in a pretty significant increase in growth hormone like that blood flow restriction training I was just talking about but that’s not the best way to build mitochondrial density for example you know mitochondrial density you want extremely short hard efforts of 20 to 30 seconds of duration followed by long recovery periods or if we’re looking at something like let’s vo2max maximum oxygen utilization lung capacity the ability of tissue to be able to extract oxygen from blood looking at intervals closer to four to six minutes of duration with with four to six minutes of recovery in between each when we look at strength and muscle we see that especially the research done in guinea pigs if paul jamming a has a great article about this on his perfect health diet website shows that explosive muscle fiber specifically tends to be more heavily correlated with longevity compared to the type of muscle fiber you might build while doing the isometric training I was just talking about right so I don’t just do isometric training I go out of my way to to do bodyweight training it’s very quick and explosive and fast and in addition to that you want to make sure that you don’t neglect stamina the ability to occasionally go out preferably in a fasted state and just move for long periods of time you know you don’t have to be a hunter to do that even though that’s the way I like to do I like to take minimal fuel out to the high mountains of Colorado or Idaho for a week or so in bowhunt and just just not have a lot of fuel and just go for long periods of time but ultimately what I’ve been getting at here is if you step back and you look at Fitness you need vo2 max you need lactic acid tolerance you need mitochondrial density you need that kind of super slow heavy strength you also need the explosive strength and you need stamina and then finally you need you know in Kelly Starrett is probably my favorite resource on this you need mobility and you know when you put all those components together then you’ve got a complete exercise program you know versus relying upon let’s say just high-intensity interval training or just a you know long fasted workout or just super slow you know ARX fit strength training so I would say that the biggest bang for my buck comes from each week tapping into each of those different Fitness variables and ensuring that I address the body from a complete fitness standpoint because I don’t want to be the incredible hole and just have strength right and I don’t want to be you know flat and just be fast I want to be like Batman right you have strength you have power yet mobility a little bit of everything and I think that’s what allows you to really have true and lasting fitness is to be a page when it comes to tapping into each of the different parameters of fitness yes indeed and your classic example of a well-educated 21st century athlete avoiding the mistakes of many of us 20th century athletes like myself Mark Sisson Dave Scott who won six triathlons I just listened to recent podcast of his and he developed atrial flutter as a result of that Mark Sisson has PVCs I’d had problems with left ventricular diastolic dysfunction so this chronic cardio long-term endurance is it’s just not something that’s healthy long term her especially a highly competitive levels aside from my brief foray of ten years of Ironman triathlon I’d agree with you so do you ever compete against Dave uh I don’t think I ever did compete against Dave no I’m pretty sure he was full-on retired by the time I got into the sport okay ran into him at a few races but no one ever competed against him now really really good athlete but he’s fully embraced acute good uh you’re saying fully brace the ketogenic diet that that’s correct because he’s the guy well known for he would like skim the fat off of fat-free or low-fat well he’s a convert now just like Tim Noakes who had the same similar approach I didn’t know that exit that’s very cool I didn’t know Dave was was kind of oh yeah he’s full on keto absolutely he’s a convert no question so so I guess maybe if you could so you’ve addressed the fitness recommendations and you know that you’re just not exercise your the the full package with respect to integrating everything in to optimize a healthy life and optimum lifespan or a health span would be even more accurate so are there any other strategies that you would want to add to the fitness recommendations you know um we’ve already discussed heat and cold and I’m certainly a fan of exposing herself to fluctuations in environmental extremes as a way of tapping into some of the same things you get from Fitness right like nitric oxide and heat shock proteins and and better blood flow I would say from a fitness standpoint a couple of other things that come to mind that I find a that I use quite a bit one would be the concept of not ignoring even if you don’t aren’t doing a formal workout ensuring that you’re getting good lymph flow and lymph massage and you know case in point that scorpion bite that I got the three lymph nodes in my femur were the size of golf balls and I was doing copious amounts of self-inflicted lymph massage just to work the poisons out of my system but I also have a couple of devices I used one is you know I know you’ve talked about this before Joe just just a very basic jump sport mini trampoline yeah and I keep that outside the office and I’ll often go you know bounce up and down on that while I’m listening to a podcast or listening to a book just to get the lymph fluid going then the other one that I use quite a bit is the power plate I have one of these industrial size power plates now um that I my wife I think is game a bit annoyed I need to build a little separate room for all this stuff alright the power plate is like an industrial vibration platform I know we sell them on our site we’ve searches on squats push-ups things like that so any of those things that they do a fantastic job at limp fluid and and limp flow so I would not neglect the power of vibration and of bouncing and I’ll even go to the back of an airplane in many cases and just do the normal you know like the Tai Chi’s shaking exercise where you’re just you know kind of like this just shaking every part of the body for a good four or five minutes again just just to keep Flint flowing when when you’re seated for long periods of time on an airplane so I’m I’m a fan of those and if I could throw out one other one other tip for you it would be to embrace many of these movements that all and start my day off with I’m I’m a student of fitness of course and I know that I’m a bit biased and a bit privileged in that I have the ability to be able to kind of like you know study with and get certifications with with a lot of the folks who teach a lot of these principles but the idea of really caring for for for breath work and the back simultaneously through anything that decompresses the spine and two of the things that I do quite a bit when it comes to little movement snacks or movement breaks throughout the day number one would be I’d recommend you learn how to do the basic foundation exercise is created by dr. Eric Goodman and described in his book true to form myself and most of the clients that I train we’re kind of sprinkling those throughout our day only a little break so just doing basic what are called foundation exercises which are fantastic especially if you have low back pain compress vertebra you know any any history of spinal issues those things are amazing and then another form of training not training but more like stretching that you quite a bit of especially when I’m in the Sun is called Aldo ah they’ll do a the form of deep facial stretching and I think that there are so many things that we can do that keep us out of the massage therapist out of the out of the chiropractor’s office out out of the out of the office of those people who who I certainly think we need to take advantage of and see but a lot of people don’t do enough preventive care and I do quite a bit of this core foundation training by dr. Eric Goodman and then some Eldo I do a stretches for fascial work and again you know have like a toolbox study some of these things and you know there are 30 different probably more than that Eldo a moves I know three of them by heart and I chose the three best ones that their football to my body based on the ADL doaa instructor that I had teach me these moves and that that’s all I do rather choose the 8020 the best of the best came through the core foundation exercises right there’s probably again 20 or 30 plus of them a whole bunch of different workouts you could do I just have ten of the moves memorized right so if I get up in the morning I can just do those ten moves you know have them done within 10 minutes and my spine is decompressed for the day so trying to get too carried away we think you have to do all of any given program sure you know I kind of take the best of the best and sprinkle it all in and apply it well there’s only so much time at a day and another device I just remember that you introduced me to was the neuro grips which are a challenging device and I think you travel with them frequently on are you still using those yeah the neural grips were developed by John Bruni who wrote a great book called neuro mass and a follow up book utilizes the the neuro grips called a neuro grips I believe is the name of that book and these are they’re essentially push up handles that have a very small surface that is exposed to the ground with a large handle that either of your hands grasp
that activate a ton more core musculature and kind of a lot of the smaller stabilizing muscles compared to a normal push-up or even one of these perfect push-up handles you can actually attach elastic bands to them and do a wide variety of exercise it’s kind of like a gym in a box if you just want to if you just want to use those as your sole workout tool but John’s book neuro mass is really fantastic because I just got done talking about the importance of not just training for strength and super slow strength and isometrics but also training fast and explosive muscles and that’s what his entire book neuro mass is about you go through these bodyweight exercise routines that might involve an isometric hold and then you’ll do what’s called a grind which is like a super slow so after you do that deadlift you might do 10 super slow squats and then you’d finish that up with like you know 15 extremely powerful explosive squat jumps and then you move on and you do like some kind of an isometric push up hold you know where you’re doing something like this just pushing as hard against both hands as you possibly can and then you’d go into super slow push-ups like a four count down four count up grind and then you’d finish that up with some kind of explosive push-up move and you know again I’m I’m pretty agnostic when it comes to this idea there’s one single exercise program you should do to study a lot of these different programs a pretty well-versed student in like 4 to 6 different exercise modalities or exercise programs and cycle through those throughout the year it’s a really good way to stay fit right so during the during the winter for example typically choose more of a strength based program during during the the spring typically I’ll convert into something that’s a lot of times more more kind of like cardiovascular fitness based during the summer I’ll kind of mix things up and do a lot more outdoors and sporting activities during the fall I’m doing a lot of sports specific work because that’s more of my on season but but basically the big picture here Joe and Lois explain to people after I got done telling them about John Bruni’s program it is just because I’m talking about this program and that does not mean it’s like the perfect program to do the rest of your life right right what you want to do is know a few of these different programs just be able to pull them out on and rely upon them as a way to stay fit throughout the year and you can kind of mix and match as you go yeah well good well you’re just a wealth of information and if you thought you learned a lot now this is only the tip of the tip of the iceberg Brett Ben’s breadth of knowledge and I’m always learning new stuff from listening to his podcast and really is one of my favorite people to listen to because even interview some of the some interesting guys some people aren’t as interesting but most of them are pretty good and he’s a really good does a really good job at it so he’s really in a pretty interesting position to acquire this knowledge and not only acquire it but then use it and synthesize it because he’s doing the right things and his brain works the way it was designed to so thank you for everything you’re doing Ben and really appreciate the information that you provide awesome and and if folks listening to the podcast so listen to my episodes with Joe because we’ve done what three now together three I think so yeah and and we we go all over the map delve into a lot of really good stuff so if you guys you guys like Joe which I assume you do if you’re watching this you should be alright now thanks and I will see you next month at Cal Jam you will you.