Primal Endurance Podcast

Welcome to The Primal Endurance Podcast, where we challenge the ineffective, overly stressful conventional approach to endurance training and provide a refreshing, sensible, healthy, fun alternative. Going primal frees you from carbohydrate dependency and turns you into a fat burning beast! Enjoy interviews from elite athletes, coaches, authors and scientists on the cutting edge of endurance training and performance.
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Primal Endurance Podcast



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Now displaying: June, 2017
Jun 30, 2017

Brad Kearns tackles more interesting Q&A from Primal Endurance podcast listeners and book readers. Submit your questions at and they will get covered on the air. Some recurring themes are coming through with many questioners. While the questions relate to the specific needs of the individual, the answers are presented in a manner that applies to a broad audience. Listen and enjoy learning about the challenges and successes of your endurance peers, and come away with plenty of practical tips to help improve your training and competitive results.

Jun 27, 2017

Endurance sports are tough and involve plenty of suffering. The Type A behavior patterns common among enthusiasts can actually hamper your progress by promoting chronic patterns, insufficient stress/rest balance, and an overly stressful mindset about your workouts and races. The key is to release your attachment to the outcome of your competitive efforts, take what your body gives you each day and nothing more, and finally - get over yourself! This will free you from the tightly wound disposition that increases the overall stress factor of your endurance pursuits and compromises your performance and enjoyment of the process. 

Jun 23, 2017

Lindsay Taylor is the host of today's listener Q&A show and will not be rapping at the beginning of the show. She will be answering questions about fueling that come in from listeners.

If you want to be fat adapted, it doesn't mean you have to be totally anti-carb. [00:01:54] 

If you choose to fuel, does that mean you are not fat-adapted? [00:06:07] 

From Danielle: What do you suggest for training and racing fuel? [00:07:24] 

What does "trickle in carbohydrates" mean? [00:08:42] 

What type of real food can be use during events? [00:11:14] 

It is a terrible idea to change your fueling strategy just before an event. [00:15:50] 

From David: We are a group running a long run race with four different legs, and we want to know the best fuel to bring with us. [00:17:10] 

There are good primal friendly bread recipes so you can still carry sandwiches. [00:18:41] 

From Carl: Are there any food recommendations for some primal foods I can take for my long trek on the Appalacian Trail? Most of the dehydrated foods available are "fat free” which does not go with the primal diet.

And Scott asks a similar question for his solo bike-packing trip. What can I use in addition to Almond Butter and MCT for fueling on my long trip? [00:20:58] 

Don't MCT oil and coconut oil cause some people digestive distress? [00:24:35] 


Elana’s Pantry


Jun 20, 2017

Increase Everyday Movement, Part 3: Practical Tips

On the heels of two shows detailing the problems associated with insufficient movement and the importance of finding ways to move more each day, host Brad Kearns offers up some practical suggestions to increase general everyday movement. Topics include: walk everywhere you can!; take frequent cognitive breaks (refreshes brain neurons for peak performance; develop a custom morning movement/mobility ritual that you will do every day without fail (YouTube “Brad Kearns Morning Ritual”).

Jun 16, 2017

Mark Sisson chats with Joe DeSena - the founder and CEO of Spartan Race, the world’s leading obstacle racing company. Mark and Joe talk about endurance racing, including the wildly popular Spartan Race brand that Joe has built, and other entrepreneurial topics in this show. 

Talking about Spartan Race, this obstacle race, Mark wonders why this concept wasn't around years ago? [00:02:48] 

How did he get started? [00:07:05] 

What does his famous expression, "Get shit done!" mean? [00:09:40] 

One of the bullet points in the marketing of your racing style is "Conquer your greatest obstacles, your will." What does that mean? [00:12:28] 

What is normal today?  How does one push beyond? [00:14:27] 

Does he expect a lot from other people? [00:20:33] 

How does he set up an event in a town to prepare for the race? [00:24:02] 

What does this mean? "Embrace your greatest friend: Discipline!" [00:26:19] 

Attrition is one of the greatest contributors to other people's success. [00:31:09] 

Other events breed sheep. Spartan events breed wolves. What does that mean? [00:35:12] 

Life is about facing stuff you haven't yet faced. [00:37:38] 

"Get rid of stuff" is one piece of advice from Joe. [00:38:50] is the way to get in touch. [00:39:37] 


Joe DeSena


Jun 13, 2017

Host Brad Kearns talks about avoiding the “lazy athlete” mentality, where you give yourself permission to be less active and perhaps overeat due to the fact you completed an impressive workout. Realize that even a serious-training athlete putting in 10,15, or 20 hours a week is moving for just a small fraction of the 168 hours in a week. Mayo Clinic study suggests most people sit for 13 hrs/day (commute, work, leisure), sleep for 8 and are moving for only 3. Keep in mind even basic movement delivers an aerobic training effect.

Jun 7, 2017

Increasing all forms of general everyday movement is a critical element of the endurance athlete’s lifestyle. There are adverse metabolic and cognitive consequences from prolonged periods of sitting - you become more insulin resistant, dysregulate critical appetite and metabolic hormones, and suffer from assorted musculoskeletal problems, such as weakened glutes and tight hamstrings and hip flexors. Being more generally active makes you better at burning fat, more energetic, and more focused.

Jun 2, 2017

Dr. Tommy Wood On Optimizing Performance and Diet

Host Brad Kearns talks to Dr. Tommy Wood, Chief Medical Officer of Nourish, Balance, Thrive, an online-based company using advanced biochemical testing to optimize performance in athletes. Tommy is big-time, with a bachelor's degree in biochemistry from the University of Cambridge, a medical degree from the University of Oxford, and a PhD in physiology and neuroscience from the University of Oslo. He is also Chief Scientific Officer and President-elect for Physicians for Ancestral Health, and a Director of the British Society of Lifestyle Medicine. 

Tommy has put some 1,000 athletes through his comprehensive testing protocol, featuring blood and stool testing and lifestyle evaluations. Tommy hits some hot topics for primal enthusiasts, including: 

  1. Fasting and carb restriction are being used inappropriately, rather than to the athlete’s advantage.
  2. Finding a way to balance the drive to perform at 100% in multiple areas of life without using the appropriate strategies needed to recover.

This fast moving conversation covers many other interesting topics for peak performers including:

  • Difference between subcutaneous fat (okay) and visceral fat (bad, inflammatory)
  • Important blood tests like triglycerides, glucose tolerance, and coronary calcium score (yes, even athletes—especially athletes—can be at risk of heart disease)
  • How to optimize carb intake. Warning - if you have signs of metabolic damage (fat gain even with devoted attention to diet, history of yo-yo dieting), you may need a gradual approach. Warning: If you don’t eat enough fat you can have problems with testosterone, thyroid, and cortisol regulation. 
  • You can eat more and not gain weight if you eat the right stuff that optimizes metabolic function (non-exercise activity thermogenesis)
  • Protein intake should be enough to recover, but not too much to promote excess growth factors (a tricky balance)
  • The challenge between balancing peak performance and longevity
  • When you are fat adapted, you use glucose on a different metabolic pathway than a high carb athlete


Dr. Tommy Wood, the Chief Medical Officer at Nourish, Balance, Thrive talks his background. [00:02:14] 

If one has excess body fat is restricting carbs the path to reducing that body fat or is it not so simple? [00:04:45] 

What is the difference between subcutaneous fat and visceral fat? [00:06:57] 

What about the high risk for heart disease, even in athletes as a result of their training regimen? [00:11:50] 

What do they do at Nourish, Balance, Thrive? [00:15:21] 

What do folks misunderstand about fasting and proteins and all the other health information that is out there? [00:17:27] 

How does a person know if they are getting the most out of their body? [00:23:38] 

If you have excess body fat, you should first ask yourself, "What is it about my body fat that makes me think it's in excess?"  [00:24:46] 

How does "calories in/calories out" come into play here when we are talking about body fat? [00:27:55] 

What happens if you have a high protein diet? [00:33:42] 

Even if you are fat and keto-adapted, you run the risk of depleting lean muscle tissue to perform. [00:37:55] 

What about fasting after a peak performance? [00:38:15] 

Will my appetite hormones guide me to know when I can get benefits fasting and when I should eat? [00:41:29] 

Can the pursuit of peak performance in the advancing decades somehow compromise longevity? [00:43:33] 


Nourish, Balance, Thrive