Host Brad Kearns welcomes favored recurring guest Andrew MacNaughton of TheAthletesPotential. It's been a while since we caught up with Andrew, so he details his dietary experimentation with keto, his return to training after a year of minimal exercise, and the usual assortment of juicy asides and insights about adopting the proper mindset for endurance exercise. Andrew went deep with some 24-hour and even 48-hour fasting, saying that it was no trouble--even while doing moderate aerobic workouts during the fasting period. The show discusses the great potential of functional medicine to help athletes get healthy, the necessary first step to pursuing fitness goals. Gut dysfunction is so prevalent these days, and functional testing can go where traditional medicine does not. Andrew does complete testing every two years so he can track his progression of aging and make sure he is doing the best he can to sustain peak function.
Andrew recommends that athletes ask themselves the important questions of, "what would be best?” "how can I do better?" (for health, for peak performance, etc.) and then work toward the best accommodation of those goals. Putting health as the absolute #1 priority is a good start. Enjoy the show. Please take a moment to leave the show a review on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts and spread the word to your peeps on social media.
What did Andrew learn when he tried the Keto experiment as well as trying fasting? [00:01:18]
It takes less time to recover from no meal than it does to recover from bad food! [00:04:08]
What about damage from the vegetable oils? [00:08:07]
What happens as you age when your childhood eating habits were poor? [00:10:06]
What kind of functional testing does he do with his clients? [00:14:24]
What are some of the results Andrew finds in his own testing? [00:16:05]
Can one always tell when they have a problem like in the digestive system? [00:19:33]
When acknowledging that our bodies aren't functioning perfectly, it is important to at least learn what would be best for you as you move forward. [00:20:45]
It is very common in this current lifestyle to be so busy that you ignore your body. [00:24:24]
With Andrew's experimenting in diet, what were the effects on his exercise and training? [00:27:39]
Comfort food will eventually make you uncomfortable. [00:39:07]
Do you know what it feels like to feel good? [00:40:35]
Brad Kearns tackles more interesting Q&A from Primal Endurance podcast listeners and book readers. Submit your questions at www.primalblueprint.com/
Candy is a coach and she is asking about training young kids and how to prevent injury and burnout. [00:00:53]
David asks about aerobic vs. anaerobic training. He has slowed down his training and now he wants to compete. Will he have to start all over again after he competes using maximum speed? [00:07:30]
Another David, age 28, finds it difficult to contain his heart rate when something beyond his control comes into the picture. What happens to his heart rate? [00.19.12]
Ward asks about skipping workouts. He asks about muscle loss in older people (sarcopenia) and whether your skills get depleted if you are not consistent. [00:22:35]
What about de-training due to illness or injury? Can you get it back? [00:30:05]
Travis asks, "Does ketosis protect me from injury?" [00:32:53]
Josh is asking about a massive Navy Seal challenge he participated in and whether such an event is damaging. How can you go about participating in Primal Obstacle Race? [00:35:43]
Brad continues to discuss topics of recent interest and new strategies he is trying out in training experiments, including his plunging deep into the world of temperature therapy. In consult with Dr. Kelly Starrett, author of Becoming a Supple Leopard and founder of MobilityWOD.com, you’ll get tips to start using cold water therapy as well as heat therapy to pursue the vaunted benefits.
Brad has a chest freezer filled with near-freezing water for both morning and evening plunges. For morning, it’s a hermetic stressor to boost adaptive hormones and naturally sharpen central nervous system function. For before bed, a quick plunge helps facilitate a good night’s sleep by lowering body temperature. Brad’s game is to stay for ~3 min at temperatures 36-40F. Not long enough to suffer or shiver for hours afterward.
Check out his YouTube videos: Check out his YouTube demonstration coming soon!
Short demo to get you started: Coming Soon!
A detailed description of benefits and demo: Coming Soon!
The deal with cold therapy is to keep it far away from training stimulus. You want the inflammatory process to run its course after a workout, despite the fact that it feels great to cool your legs in an icy river after a hard run or the like.
With heat therapy, the infrared sauna causes a mini-fever effect to enhance cellular function and improve cardiovascular function. Starrett likes the hot sauna where you can really sweat and even get uncomfortable before getting out. Brad is doing Chris Kelly’s Nourish BalanceThrive detox protocol of going into a sauna for a big sweat, and immediately scrubbing off with Dr. Bronners soap to clear toxins (since his NBT tests showed residue of toxic metals and rubber by-products in his blood! Possibly a consequence of growing up in smoggy LA or perhaps even drinking from plastic water bottles that have been exposed to heat - like a sunny car.)
In furthering the concept of a more varied and relaxed approach to training, Brad references the podcast where he discussed the Simply Running approach of New Zealand Olympic 1500 meter silver and bronze medalist Nick Willis. The takeaway message is to design a training program that is enjoyable, fits conveniently into your other life responsibilities, and tone down the obsessive need to hit arbitrary time or volume standards. Consistency in the context of building fitness is simply not as important as we think it is. Don’t compare yourself to the elites. They are out there for hours every largely because they do have plenty of time to spend on training and are looking for those incremental benefits.
Take a page from the bodybuilding scene. Ridicule the bro science if you must, but bodybuilders respect and appreciate the importance of balancing stress and rest—breaking down muscles with intense training and then resting and hyper-nourishing to come back with huge muscles.
On the other hand, realize the disastrous consequences of a chronic approach, as we now see the elevated cardiovascular disease risk factors in hard training.
Brad also refers to his super nutrition morning green smoothie, also available on YouTube: Coming Soon!
Great topics to get you thinking about ways to optimize your approach to training!
Muscleheads ripping on cardio article:
Cold water - long:
Cold water - quick demo:
Smoothie - long:
Smoothie - quick demo:
What is cold temperature therapy and what are the benefits of it? [00:01:44]
How does melatonin work in helping one sleep? What else helps one sleep? [00:09:51]
You do not want the cold exposure anywhere near your workout. [00:13:17]
What is the role of heat therapy? [00:17:00]
How does Brad start his day? What motivates him? [00:24:20]
Kickstart your digestive circadian rhythm with a green smoothie. [00:29:16]
Do we need to eat more calories when we are focused on Keto dieting? [00:32:59]
How do we know if we have a carb dependency problem? [00:37:09]
Brad updates you on topics of recent interest and new strategies he is trying out in training. Included is his experiment to bring more downtime into his exercise patterns. This means periods of 24-36 hours where there are no formal workouts; this is in order to perform at a higher level when he pushes himself with challenging endurance or high-intensity workouts. That said, Brad also discusses the importance of establishing a baseline routine of general everyday movement, mobility/flexibility exercises, random strength/explosive efforts, and not worrying as much about filling in all the blanks of a training log.
Brad reports that despite reduced overall running frequency and monthly volume, he felt stronger than ever delivering a maximum effort to get his first win in a Speedgolf tournament—playing 18 holes on a hilly course in San Luis Obispo in 52 min and shooting 85 for a Speedgolf score of 137. Brad credits being fully rested, along with having some good sprint workouts, for a strong endurance performance at the tournament. Yes, high-intensity sprint sessions will greatly improve your endurance if they are conducted properly and not in an overly strenuous manner. Then, you pair occasional hard stuff with very comfortably paced aerobic workouts that are safely below MAF heart rate or perhaps WAY below MAF heart rate. Don’t worry; you still get a significant aerobic stimulus even if it’s a brisk walk or a cruiser bike trip to Farmer’s Market. Dr. Maffetone details these concepts in his series of outstanding videos in the Primal Endurance Mastery Course at primalendurance.fit
Brad lets us in on some of the fitness routines that keep him in shape. What?? Downtime?? [00:02:21]
Does slowing down interfere with the competition? What happens when Brad plays Speed Golf? [00:14:39]
"Simply Running" is a book about modifying training by Nick Willis suggesting the same slowing down theory. [00:18:30]
Is excessive cardio really unhealthy? [00:20:54]
What happens if you are sleep deprived? What is Leptin? What is Ghrelin? [00:24:06]
Are endurance athletes at risk? [00:26:44]
Does genetics come into play? [00:30:21]