Episode #257 – Full Transcript

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Podcast #257 from https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2013/09/257-can-you-exercise-hard-if-you're-pregnant-10-ways-to-get-smarter-bitter-melon-extract-for-fat-loss/


Introduction:   In today’s episode of the Ben Greenfield fitness podcast: Bitter melon extract for fat loss, natural solutions for bloodshot eyes, home remedies for Shingles, can you exercise hard if you’re pregnant, foods that fight blood clots, and how to run a 15K.

Brock:  So I don’t know about you but I’m getting pretty darn pumped about going to Kona. I know it’s still a couple of weeks away but I, I got my sunscreen out, I got my fancy hat out, I got my floral print shorts out. What are you doing? What’s going on?

Ben:  I got stung by a bee yesterday while I was riding in my bicycle and…

Brock:  In your throat?

Ben:  Yeah. I swallowed a bee and it stung me inside of my throat.

Brock:  You know actually, I got stung inside of the mouth once ‘cause I was running along and it went in my mouth.

Ben:  I’d been like clearing my throat all in like it happened last night. All night long it’s like I had this like frog in my throat except it wasn’t a frog, it was a bee and…

Brock:  So where did it really sting you?

Ben:  Somewhere inside my throat. Like…

Brock:  Oh really?

Ben:  Yeah, like I actually swallowed it.

Brock:  I thought you were kidding.

Ben:  No I’m not kidding. Like a bee flew into my mouth while I was riding my bike and so yeah, if my voice sounds…uhm, if my voice sounds like kinda way…

Brock:  Extra buzzy?

Ben:  This morning, I’m just swallow a bee before every podcast and to make matters worse, here’s the deal. I’m journaling now. So I’m journaling every morning. My friend Uj Ramdas, he designed this brand new journal called the 5-minute Journal and it’s really cool. Journaling has been shown to reduce your blood pressure and to give you a better day and to make your biceps bigger and all sorts of cool stuff.

Brock:  Make your *beep* huge.

Ben:  Wow, you already dropped the P word.

Brock:  Yeah, sorry about that.

Ben:  We’ll have to bleep that one out. Anyways though, it’s called 5-minute Journal and I think it’s like 5minutejournal.com or something like that but it’s literally a 5-minute journal every morning and some mornings you wake up and there’s a nice quote and some mornings there’s some kind of a call to action like last week was call an old friend and this morning was sing in the shower so me and my swollen bee throat were churning out Randy Travis in the shower this morning and it was…

Brock:  Awesome.

Ben:  Just lovely.

Brock:  You know the part of cognitive behavior therapy is to do exactly that like every morning to just sit down and do some quick journaling like nothing makes sense with like 5 minutes with you way more than enough, yeah really, I found that to be incredibly beneficial. It’s one of those practices I should probably bring back into my life ‘cause…

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  You know, it’s weird like something works so well for you but then you stop doing it for a while, you kinda forget about it but I’m gonna bring that back.

Ben:  Well I like this one ‘cause it’s 5 minutes. God forbid it should be 6 minutes or 7 minutes but it’s 5 minutes and it’s just like what are you grateful for, what would make today wonderful, you know, what was great yesterday and so yeah.

Brock:  If you go 7 minutes then your *beep* shrinks.

Ben:  I’m gonna add one. That’s two. You are gonna have to bleep those out you know.

Brock:  Oh yeah. Everybody would be wondering. What did he say?

Ben:  What exactly did he say? So the last thing I’m grateful for this morning, I’m gonna add a 4th, is I’m grateful for the image of Brock standing there, excited to go to Ironman Hawaii in his shorts and his floral print shirt and his touristy hat and there’s sunscreen like the bright white sunscreen all over his lips and his face.

Brock:  I’ve already had my camera around my neck too.

Ben:  I’m grateful for that image this morning. So there you go.

News Flashes:

Ben:  Today may not be the coolest to be the nerdiest but you know what, before you even get to the news flashes let me mention speaking of nerds being cool, Brock and I shot a video for all of you guys when we were in Canada, when I was racing Ironman Canada and Brock was there, we shot a video for all of our podcast listeners and only podcast listeners can get this because we’re only ever gonna mention this URL in the podcast but if you…

Brock:  Don’t share it anywhere.

Ben:  Don’t share it.

Brock:  Don’t tell anybody.

Ben:  Or bee will fly down your throat. If you go to giftfromben.com over at giftfromben.com, Brock and I have a special surprise there waiting for you and it involves a tennis ball interestingly enough so there you go.


There is your mystery and intrigue for the morning. Visit giftfromben.com and check out what we got for you over there. You might like it.

Brock:  I don’t know if anybody can tell but we actually shot it in the driveway.

Ben:  In the driveway.

Brock:  Of the condo.

Ben:  You’ll laugh. You’ll cry.

Brock:  It’s not exactly the nicest location but it worked.

Ben:  Run away in sheer terror but it will entertain you. So news flashes for this week.

Brock:  Yeah, bring them on.

Ben:  Here is an awesome article that I wanted to tell people about and it is 10 Amazing and Wonderful Facts About Your Brain. I’ll link to the article in the show notes but the title is “Why We’re More Creative When We’re Tired and 9 Other Surprising Facts About How Our Brain Works”. Check out some of these things that might actually surprise you. Here’s one: your brain does creative work better when you’re tired.

Brock:  Yeah.

Ben:  And you know why that is?

Brock:  No. Well, maybe something to do with lowering your, like the editing function so you just get…

Ben:  You get distracted more easily and that’s a good thing for creative thinking so there’s that. Stress can change the size of your brain literally making it smaller. They found that the actual hipo…

Brock:  And that’s a bad thing right?

Ben:  In your brain shrink. In most cases, Brock, yes, I would think that brain shrinkage would be a bad thing. Yeah. What else? It’s actually impossible for your brain to multitask when you look at the regions of the brain responsible for splitting brain resources, you literally can’t multitask. What you think is multitasking is only simply extremely rapid switching between tasks so that was interesting. There’s one in there about naps, improving your brain’s day to day performance and how napping, which I actually do every day for a minimum of about 20 minutes napping can improve your brain’s performance. How about this one, your vision trumps all your other senses. This one is well I think we’re gonna be talking about eyes and vision later on in today’s podcast but…

Brock:  Yeah.

Ben:  The fact is that your brain, the human being’s brain relies on vision, more than anything else and this is also something that might be interesting for people who go and read the articles that I write at bengreenfieldfitness.com. I’ve got a really interesting article coming out about vision and biohacking your vision on this Monday, the Monday after this podcast comes out so check that out.

Brock:  Cool.

Ben:  What else was interesting in that? There’s a bunch of them. Let me read to you.

Brock:  I like the one that was… the people tend to like people who make more mistakes.

Ben:  Yeah that was really interesting. We tend to like people who make mistakes more. Somehow making mistakes make us more likeable because you see that perfection creates this distance and an air of invincibility and people with flaws tend to win out when it comes to likeability.

Brock:  I think that explains the whole popularity of this podcast.

Ben:  That would explain why anybody ever listens in to this podcast so there you go. We’ll link to that article in the show notes over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/257 and here’s another interesting one: The Myth of 1 Gram per Pound of Protein Intake for Weightlifters and for Body Builders and this is something I’ve seen since high school and I think just about every athlete has probably heard this from their coach.

Brock:  So you’re supposed to have 1 gram of protein per pound?

Ben:  One gram of protein if you wanna turn yourself into a muscular freak of nature, eat 1 gram per pound of protein and really when you look at protein powder, serving of protein powder being 20-40 grams depending on how many scoops you use and how big your man-in-a-can canister is and you look at you know, seeds and nuts being anywhere from 5-10 grams and a nice cut of steak being 20-30 grams, it’s actually pretty easy to get up to that gram per pound  but the fact is that and this article goes into this in a greater detail, pretty much every review paper on the face of the planet that looks into protein intake for maximizing muscle mass, maximizing recovery, protein uptake, everything, tops out at right about 0.8 grams per pound and that’s really the upper limit and once you get higher than that, not only is there this kind of diminishing return but you also get a greater and greater risk of ammonia toxicity, of too  much nitrogen. So it’s really interesting that the origin of the myth is it appears to be coming from the pro-body building world and that’s because when you take steroids and I’m totally not kidding about this. When you take steroids, it allows you to assimilate more protein than you normally could so all of these body builders, pro-body builders on these androgen supplements, they are actually able to get away with you know, one gram plus per pound of body weight for protein but unless you’re taking roids, you really can’t assimilate all that protein and the other thing is that there are a lot of supplement companies out there that have some pretty big financial incentives to make you believe that you need more protein than you actually do…


Brock:  Yeah.

Ben:  You know, pretty much every protein powder company on the face of the planet but you know, more is not necessarily better and I love the image that they used in the actual article to illustrate the fact that more is not better. It has to do with a female bust line but you may wanna go check out and read the image…

Brock:  I just clicked the link. I gotta see.

Ben:  Quite a good illustration for that image so we probably shouldn’t use that one for our podcast show notes but we will, I promise, put a very entertaining image up on the podcast show notes as usual so The Myth of 1 Gram/Lb of Protein. And then the last thing that I thought was interesting was a study that came out this week on the difference between working out in the morning and working out in the evening.

Brock:  I hated this study.

Ben:  Why?

Brock:  Because I hate working out in the evening.

Ben:  I love working out in the evening. That’s the only time of the day like I usually for me, about 4 or 5 PM, my body starts to wake up and wanna go work out.

Brock:  Yeah, if I don’t get it done before noon, it’s a real chore for me to get it done.

Ben:  A complete opposite.

Brock:  I just don’t like it.

Ben:  Well, this study found that you are actually a little bit less efficient. You are about 4% less efficient when you work out in the evening but you last about 20% longer and your performance tends to be about 5-6% higher in terms of oxygen utilization so what that means is if you’re gonna work out hard or long, later in the day is the time to do it and even though you’re slightly less efficient later on in the day, you’re still gonna get a better work out and really if you think about it, if you’re training when you’re less efficient, say you’re getting ready for some kind of a race or a marathon or something like that that’s gonna happen more along the lines of being in morning, you’re just gonna be all the more efficient when you finally do go and do that event that time of the event so…

Brock:  Yeah.

Ben:  My whole deal that I do is I work out in the late afternoon or the early evening and then for about a week prior to like a big event and like something like Ironman Hawaii that I’m starting up training for, or not, I’m not starting up training for I’ve been training for it.

Brock:  Been laying around on the couch, 6 months.

Ben:  Go for a little run this morning, see how a little body feels. The idea is about a week before a big event, I will shift my training to take place more at the time of day that the event is gonna be but you know, 99% of the time, I work out in the evening and this study backs up the fact that I must be an absolute genius for doing so. So there you go.

Brock:  But I know those numbers actually sound quite low like 4% doesn’t seem like it’s very significant but I know in scientific studies like in scientific practice, 3%, anything over 3% is what they call statistically significant so it’s a…

Ben:  There you go.

Brock:  There is something to be said for anything above 4%. It’s worth it.

Ben:  There’s Brock with his propeller hat again. You must have taken off the…

Brock:  That’s me spinning the propeller.

Ben:  Significant.

Special Announcements:

Brock:  Like I said before, getting excited about Kona.

Ben:  Kona. For those of you who don’t know what Kona is, that’s where Ironman Hawaii is taking place. They have the Ironman World Championships on the big island every year. This year, I’ll be down there competing and Brock is going to come and Brock is gonna be holding…

Brock:  I will not be competing.

Ben:  Brock is gonna be holding the video camera. He’s also going to be kinda overseeing the book launch of my brand new book that I’ve been working on for the past year. We are beginning pre-orders the week of Kona even though the actual book won’t be released in full with all of its glorious hard covery-ness in March is the actual book release but we’re beginning to give away a bunch of bonuses and prizes and everything. We’re gonna launch all that in the big island and so we’ll both be down there and we even put a link in the show notes for those of you who are hardly supportive of the podcast and want to ensure that Brock and I do things like purchase $20 margaritas and eat out at fancy Thai restaurants every night. If you wanna donate…

Brock:  I eat tuna every night. Please.


Ben:  If you wanna donate to the cause, then we’re putting a link over in the show notes where you can donate to support the podcast and support all of the cool content that Brock is going to bring you from Kona and of course if you’re gonna be in Ironman or be at Ironman Hawaii, on the big island that week, keep an eye out for Brock, he’ll be the guy running around with the floral print t-shirt and the camera hanging around his neck and the big white sunscreen stick drawing…

Brock:  And of course my white Canadian legs.

Ben:  And his white Canadian legs so we’ve got that going on, that’s coming up very soon. And of course, we’ll also be releasing a premium podcast after the race in which I geek out on all the nitty gritty stuff that I am doing to train for that race as well as those of you who wonder about Ironman nutrition protocols, some stuff like that, things that have changed since Ironman Canada, we’ll put out a premium podcast for that so…

Brock:  They will likely involve a couple of glasses of wine and everything.

Ben:  Hopefully. That’s right. And a lot of astaxanthin, the world’s best skin protectant. October 4th actually Jessa and I, just the other night, sat down sober, surprisingly, and shot a video for the Inner Circle. Usually about half the time, we’re halfway through a bottle of wine when we shoot a video for the Inner Circle but we actually shot a sober video for the Inner Circle and if you’re not yet an Inner Circle member, you can go check that out. It’s over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/innercircle and in that video we go into why we, at one point in our life, survived off peanut butter, captain crunch and skittles and you can go check out that video. And you’ll definitely, if you’re interested in the Inner Circle, want to get into the next webinar which is gonna be about how to get your ideal winter physique.

Brock:  Physique.

Ben:  Physique. And what we’ll go into is how you can go through the holidays and maintain your 6-pack, your tight butt, or get that if you don’t have it yet so…

Brock:  And does that just involve skipping every family function that you’re invited to? ‘Cause that’s not a very good strategy.

Ben:  It involves jumping rope and doing crunches and skipping Christmas. Yes.

Brock:  Yeah.

Ben:  We’re gonna teach you all that.

Brock:  Awesome.

Ben:  No, we’re gonna teach you how to have fun over the holidays and still maintain your physique so that’s coming up next Friday for our Inner Circle members. Inner Circle is 10 bucks a month so check that out and anything else that we need to announce Brock? I think that’s about it.

Brock:  I think that’s it.

Ben:  We’re gonna be doing our cool giveaway at the end of this podcast so make sure you tune into that and I think we’re ready for the official Q.

Listener Q & A:

Brock:  All right before we jump into the first question, this week in particular, we got 3 separate questions asking the same thing that we actually covered in the past. It’s about what should you ask for when you go to the doctor to get your physical done or to get some blood tests like if you’re an endurance athlete, what should you be doing and we have covered that in the past in episode 188 so I didn’t wanna actually officially answer it but I wanted to direct everybody to episode 188. If you are looking for information about what blood test you should ask for from the doc when you go for a physical…

Ben:  I wasn’t aware of that but you know what I have been telling people Brock? Is go to Direct Labs and we can put a link to Direct Labs in the show notes but you go to Direct Labs and they have a test there called the Top 10 Tests and all you do is print that off and bring it to your doc. And just be like, “Okay, I want these tests.” I mean like, honestly, that’s what I have been telling people to do unless you wanna order it yourself to Direct Labs in which case it might get a little bit more difficult to get it covered by insurance. Either way, you just print off that list and bring it to your doc and just be like, “hey doc, run these labs on me,” and that’s it. So…

Brock:  Yeah. You might need to be a little more forceful than that cause the doc might be like, “why? Why on earth would you want that?”

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  And tell them to, “shut up and do the test doc.”

Ben:  Yeah. Cause Brock and Ben said so. So there you go, Direct Labs.

Suzanne:  Hi Ben, hi Brock. This is Suzanne from Connecticut. I have a question about Garcinia Cambogia that I’ve been taking for weight loss and I also have been taking your suggestion in using the bitter melon extract. Does one work better than the other, can I take them together? Love your show. Thank you so much for every week. You’re making my run better so thank you very much and have a great day.


Ben:  Well first of all, as far as bitter melon extract goes, I gotta tell you. Bitter melon extract is like my new darling supplement for fat loss. It’s what I take ever single night. Now…

Brock:  Yeah, I think you’ve been doing that since Christmas. Dude, it’s been quite a while…

Ben:  I’ve been doing it pretty much all year. I weight 170 right now and that’s actually, I haven’t weighted 170 since I was in like 8th grade which is nuts but I take 2 bitter melon extract every single night before dinner because of its blood sugar lowering effects and its ability to you know, essentially keep carbohydrate from getting converted into fat. The mechanism of action is that there are what are called polypeptides that are present in bitter melon that have what you would almost consider, and I gotta be careful throwing around a word like this in the podcast ‘cause you know, we can’t manage disease but almost like anti-diabetic properties, similar to the diabetic drug metformin. So all of these polypeptides put together increase your glucose uptake and also your glycogen synthesis and in your liver and in your muscle and in your adipose tissue and so it essentially just soaks up carbohydrates, soaks up glucose. It has such a powerful effect that it can actually cause your blood sugar to become low enough to where you wouldn’t wanna take this stuff before you go to a work out.

Brock:  Yeah. Didn’t you take some before you played a tennis match one time and just about…

Ben:  Oh yeah, I got dizzy ‘cause I was hypoglycemic but taking it like before dinner. Dinner is the one time of the day where I tend to actually include some carbohydrates so I usually have a glass of wine, typically there’s some white rice or some sweet potato or yam or something like that. I popped a couple of those and they’re pretty potent kinda damage control formula when it comes to carbohydrates. I use a brand called MPX. I have no clue what that stands for but I think it’s, I think it’s around 200 milligrams of bitter melon extract. Now this garcinia stuff is something that Dr. Oz has talked about before and garcinia is a little bit different. Garcinia has what’s called HCA in it or HCA extract. That stands for hydroxy citric acid and hydroxy citric acid basically blocks fat by inhibiting this enzyme that your body needs to make fat from carbohydrates. It inhibits this enzyme called citrate lisase or citrate lyase. Now usually carbohydrates or sugars that are not something that your body uses right away that end up hanging around in your blood stream can pretty easily get converted into fats by the liver but when HCA from this garcinia stuff inhibits that enzyme, it kinda halts some of that fat making process. And then also, the HCA also increases serotonin levels, serotonin being that neurotransmitter that can help you to feel a little bit more satisfied after you’ve eaten so it’s an interesting supplement. The thing about inhibiting this citrate lyase enzyme though is that that can drive your blood sugar down as well so if you were to combine something like garcinia to something like bitter melon extract, it’s kinda sorta doing the same thing and in one sense the word, although the garcinia has that effect on the neurotransmitters. You know, if you tend to struggle with lots of cravings and that’s really an issue for you, something like garcinia might be a better choice because of that effect that it has on serotonin. If you’re okay with cravings and you just want a little bit of damage control, you wanna go with something like the bitter melon extract. I’ve never used garcinia. I don’t use it with any of my clients. I typically recommend the bitter melon for my clients who wanna lose fat fast but I definitely wouldn’t combine the 2. I don’t think this would be an appropriate stack just because you’re kinda doubling up when it comes to your fat loss supplements. Whenever I talk about fat loss supplements of course I wanna emphasize nothing beats standing, physical activity throughout the day, exercise, and watching how many calories that you eat. But if you want that extra…

Brock:  But not only calories but the type of calories, not just the number.

Ben:  Yeah, although I think sometimes we focus a bit too much on the type of calories and you know, people eat bacon all day long and then scratch their head that they’re not losing weight doing their high-fat, low-carb diet ‘cause they’re getting 3000 calories of bacon but ultimately…

Brock:  I don’t know if it’s so much bacon as it is like baked goods.

Ben:  Yes.

Brock:  I can see people just eating bread constantly during the day like it will involve some huge bun or loaf of bread.

Ben:  Yeah. I guess I used the bacon analogy just because I know our listenership seems to have taken a little more of this low-carb paleo bent so now I can just vilify bacon whenever I wanna perk-up somebody’s ears so anyways though, yeah bitter melon would be the one that I’d go for of you had to choose something.


Now if money is not an issue for you and you want like the ultimate fat loss stack, you go over to pacificfit.net and there’s this stack over there that’s thermofactor which is a thermogenic aid. You combine that with bitter melon extract, you combine that with lean factor which contain a bunch of cyclic AMP which is like a, something you take right before workout to activate more lean muscle during the workout. You put those 3 together and that’s some pretty potent shizbang but it’s also not cheap so it just kinda depends on how much money you wanna spend on your belly.

Deanna:   Hi Ben. My name is Deanna. I have a question about the whites on my eyes. I’ve notice that the past few months they’ve been really bloodshot. I don’t know if it’s something I’m lacking nutritionally or what else it could be but I’m really hoping that you can help me solve this problem. A little information about myself, I’m in my mid 30’s. I exercise pretty regularly meaning I run about 6 miles a day, most days. I eat pretty healthy, I get a lot of sleep so please help me out. I want the white in my eyes to be white again. Thanks.

Brock:  Since Deanna didn’t mention that she’s doing anything crazy like wearing contact lenses that look like cat eyes or…

Ben:  Yeah.

Brock:  Working in a sand storm or something like that, I assume that she’s not doing something weird to her eyes.

Ben:  Yes and if you are wearing cat like contact lenses, working in a sand storm then I’m curious what kind of job you have.

Brock:  That’s a cool job.

Ben:  There’s a bunch of other stuff that can cause red eye too I mean, you know, there’s the obvious kind of infection like conjunctivitis, pink eye type of thing but I mean, allergies, that can be a big one when you get that histamine reaction or a bee flying down your throat. Computer vision syndrome in which case you definitely want to read Monday’s article where I talk about how to biohack your vision and reduce computer vision syndrome and screen glare from long periods of time spent staring at a computer. You know, everything from like lack of blood flow to the eyes to some leakage to a high amount of carbohydrate intake and like glaucoma and increased pressure in the eyes, bunch of different stuff can cause red eyes I mean even you know, in an active, you know, we have a lot of triathletes that listen in but like chlorine and other pool sanitizers as well as different type of bacteria you can find in open water, all of those can reap havoc on your eyes if you’re a swimmer. That’s gonna add up to the pressure from the goggles. So you know, a lot of different kinda causes of bloodshot eyes but as far as the stuff that I would focus on, you know there’s a really interesting presentation at the Ancestral Health Symposium this year and it was by a physician who specializes in ocular health which is my fancy term for eye health and it was basically a discussion about how to get rid of things like dry eyes and cataracts and macular degeneration and glaucoma. I’ll link to that full… Her slides are available for free in the internet over at slideshare. I’ll link to all of the slides in the show notes but what I really liked was her super practical recommendations for how to improve eye health and all of the precursors that your eyes actually need to function properly so here is what her exact kind of prescription was when you look at things for like a whole food spectrum. First of all, 2 egg yolks a day. Doesn’t matter if they’re with the whites or without the whites but 2 egg yolks a day so you’re getting all that lutein from the egg yolks and you also get this other compound called zeaxanthin which is incredibly important for the eyes. So 2 egg yolks a day was the first kinda step in her healthy eye protocol. Next was the equivalent of one cup of greens a day and that could be colored, kales, spinach, swiss chard, mustard greens, turnip greens, you name it but one of the things that she really recommended that you do when you eat the greens, to increase the absorption of the specific compounds in those greens that assist with eye health was that you eat the greens with fat. So that would mean like, don’t just have like a God forbid, who would eat kale just by itself? I don’t know. But you know, you have, you cook your mustard greens in butter or you have a kale salad and you put a lot of olive oil on it. But fat is what’s going to help with the absorption of specific compounds that are gonna help with eye health. Now so you got 2 egg yolks a day, 1 cup of greens a day and neither of those are too difficult to pull off. Another thing…

Brock:  Breakfast right there?


Ben:  Yeah that’s breakfast. There you go. I mean you can even fry up your egg yolk with some butter and some greens and there’s you know, eyes will be popping out your skull. The equivalent of a pound of wild fish with the skin, with the skin, that’s important. There’s actually this old, I think it’s like an old like Indian folktale about this blind guy who’s like wandering to the forest and he comes upon some ancient medicine man who gives him like a fish to restore his sight and it’s something like that. Probably totally just butchered that entire…

Brock:  It’s not a very good folktale.

Ben:  Yeah. It’s not a good folktale but it’s a tale.

Brock:  Boring.

Ben:  It’s a little boring. Anyways though, one pound of an oily wild fish, now I eat the skin. Whenever I eat fish, I love to eat the skin.

Brock:  Oh yeah the skin is…

Ben:  So good and I get strange looks sometimes when I’m at a dinner and I rip the bottom of the skin off of the salmon and eat that first but you can do a pound of wild fish a week. The equivalent of that would be 3 tins of sardines. Okay, sardines would also work. 3 tins worth of sardines or if you aren’t a pound of fish person and you’re not a 3 tins of sardines person, that’s not per day, that’s per week that you wanna get that equivalent, you can also get your hands on a good fish oil. Use like the Super Essentials Fish Oil or use like a Green Pastures Fermented Cod Liver Oil but you’re looking at about 1-2 grams a day. That’s not a ton. You know a lot of fish oil, even 1 capsule is 1 gram so you can get away with just a little of the capsules but the fish oil component is extremely important as well. So when you put all of that together, you’re getting a really good daily ratio of what’s called your lutein and your zeaxanthin levels so you’re gonna get those in about a 5 to 1 ratio by working all of those in. There’s a few other things that she mentioned during that study or during that talks. One was yellow flowers or what’s called nasturtium. They make these edible flowers. Jessa grows them in the garden. They’re actually…

Brock:  Nasturtiums?

Ben:  Yeah nasturtiums. You can eat them and those are good for your eyes. When you cook kale, when you cook spinach, and when you cook you know, these turnip greens, colored chards, they actually release more of the lutein and zeaxanthin. It becomes more viable. So if you’re cooking and steaming that type of thing, it’s actually gonna be even better than if you say just blending it in a smoothie or eating it in a salad so those are her most practical recommendations I thought that was really really good presentation and I’ll put the slides in the show notes but those are some of the things that I would do if you want to get better eyes and kinda ensure that there’s nothing lacking in your diet that are affecting your eye health or that would be affecting your eye health.

Sam:     Hi this is Sam from Spokane, Washington and my question is not actually for me. It’s about my sister. She is, she has the shingle virus and I was wondering on your thoughts on what might be good solutions or home remedies to treat this. I look forward to hearing you as soon as possible and have a good day.

Brock:  So do you know Sam? You know everybody in Spokane, don’t you?

Ben:  You know what, I don’t know if I know this Sam or not. I may. Sam if I know you, let me know and send me a nice gift for answering your question. Come to my house and mow my lawn for taking care of your sister’s shingles issues.

Brock:  Come to Ben’s house and take away the blender that’s going in the background from the last question.

Ben:  Yes. It sounds like someone… Yesterday I recorded a podcast and my wife was hammering, building a bookshelf or something. Today sounds like she’s blending everything in the kitchen so…

Brock:  Excellent.

Ben:  I’ll need to give her a heads up when I’m podcasting. A year from now, when I actually move into my new house, this will become a non-issue. I have this office that’s like sound proof downstairs and a den completely separate from the rest of the house so we’ll be good at that point so…

Brock:  Then there’ll be noise on my side.

Ben:  Then it just be all Brock’s noise.

Brock:  I don’t have that luxury.

Ben:  So Sam there are some good home remedies that you could look into for shingles and perhaps we should play our “I’m not a doctor” disclaimer at this point in the podcast because I’m not a doctor. But shingles are a viral infection. They’re caused by a specific virus, the same virus that causes chickenpox. Similar to chickenpox, the virus can remain dormant in your nerve tissue and it can get reactivated at any point during your life. Shingles and a lot of times it will get reactivated and when you’re in a state where you have a weakened immune system.


You know, for like an exercising individual you have a weakened immune system after you have a real hard workout. Some people have a weakened immune system after they eat foods to which they might be allergic like wheat, or dairy or soy. Other people have a weakened immune system if they happen to have, say, children running around full of runny noses and germs.

Brock:  Snotty noses.

Ben:  That’s right, snotty little kids. So as far as shingles go, there are a few natural remedies that you can try. None have been proven very well to totally eliminate shingles symptoms but could help a little bit. One would be proteolytic enzyme. Now proteolytic enzymes are the enzymes that your pancreas makes and they help to digest proteins that you eat and some of the most popular ones are like papain which you find in papaya or bromelain which you find in pineapple or some of the more spendy ones that you can buy at the health foods store like trypsin or chymotrypsin which are a lot of times derived from animal pancreas products and sometimes they’re marketed as digestive enzyme supplements. Sometimes they are marketed as ways that you can reduce soreness like there’s a supplement called Recoverease that you can get at pacificfit.net that is just chalkful of papain, trypsin, chymotrypsin, and a bunch of branched chain amino acids. And that’s one that I recommend to people  after like a hard workout but there was a study in Germany where they took a bunch of people and they gave them either proteolytic enzymes or they gave them a standard anti-viral medication for shingles. Both of the group experienced pain relief, they experienced improvement in a lot of the skin symptoms that occur when you have shingles but the group that was taking the proteolytic enzymes had a lot fewer side effects so that’s something to consider about proteolytic enzymes. Now one of the things that you should also know that proteolytic enzymes have a blood thinning effect because they break down fibrinogen which is a component of blood clotting so if you’re taking morphine like coumadin or you’re taking aspirin or some other kind of blood thinning medication, you’re gonna want to bear in mind that proteolytic enzyme is gonna thin your blood even more so kinda be careful there if you’re taking a blood thinning medication. There was another study that looked at improving immune function specifically in older adults were at risk for shingles by using Tai Chi and Tai Chi is like the slow motion karate that old people do at the park.

Brock:  Some young people do it too.

Ben:  It’s something… I have a Tai Chi DVD. I’ve been going through it every couple of weeks. It’s called Tai Chi for Beginners. I got it off at Amazon. I’ll put a link to it in the show notes but it’s pretty simple, it just walks you through basic Tai Chi movements and it’s really relaxing actually. And it really is almost what it’s like. It’s like, you know, if you ever were like a kid and doing like slow-motion fighting, slow motion karate, that kind of thing, Tai Chi is kinda like that. You don’t have to do the whole like matrix bending over backwards, your arms flying over your head. We actually did, when I was in London, we a bunch of Ben Greenfield podcast listeners and some other folks met out with Darryl Edwards who’s the fitness explorer guy and we did a whole primality workshop with him for like 6 hours and we warmed up with slow-motion karate where we just had to fight each other in slow motion and it was actually kinda hard to do.

Brock:  Yeah.

Ben:  Anyways though…

Brock:  Tai Chi though is deceivingly difficult. I’ve done a couple of classes, it’s… You get a good workout. By the end you’re kinda weak and shaky and…

Ben:  Yeah, those good, darn old Chinese people in the park are more badass than you think.

Brock:  Oh yeah.

Ben:  So Tai Chi and you can get the Tai Chi for beginners DVD that’s actually pretty good and I’ll put a link to that one over in the show notes. The other thing for pain that you can get with skin pain with shingles is capsaicin cream. Capsaicin is as we know, the active ingredient in chi and pepper and chili peppers and stuff like that. But it has a topical analgesic, pain killing effect. It depletes what’s called substance P which is a neurochemical that transmits pain and you can use just a natural tube or jar of natural capsaicin cream and you can put that in areas where you’re getting pain, or tingling or burning or itching or numbness and it can actually help out with some of the those issues that you get with shingles so those are…

Brock:  And you’ll smell delicious too.

Ben:  and you’ll smell like a giant Mexican burrito so that’s right you can go join up with the older Asian Tai Chi folks in the park smelling like a Mexican burrito with a tummy full of proteolytic enzymes and your shingles will vanish.


Brock:  It’s an international culinary…

Ben:  Dr. Oz, here we come.

Ashley:   Hi Ben, it’s Ashley from South Australia. I’m a fitness trainer and I have just found out that I am pregnant which is a bit of a surprise for me. I’m, I can sense that I am 42 year old but I am fit and strong so I would like to know if you had any particular advice. Our adoptions are should ______ [00:40:42.0] make, because of that, I, yeah physically and nutritionally. That would be lovely. I love the podcast. Thank you both Brock and Ben very much. Bye.

Ben:  Well, that’s excellent mate! Another shrimp on the body.

Brock:  You know, having… I actually, my girlfriend is Australian and that’s like the weirdest myth that has ever been propagated…

Ben:  Let’s all go surfing with the great white sharks.

Brock:  Now there you go. That’s what every Australian does. But first they put on their thongs and do that.

Ben:  Well thongs.

Brock:  Thongs are shoes, not…

Ben:  This actually reminds me of a pretty controversial article that hit the news this week about the pregnant crossfit mom. Did you hear about this?

Brock:  Yeah, how could you not?

Ben:  She was like this doing, she has this hardcore crossfit workout routine and she’s doing it like 2 weeks before giving birth to her baby and there’s this video and maybe we’ll put a photo in the show notes of her 8 months pregnant with her baby, and cross fitting, granted she’s an experienced cross fitter and has been doing it for a while…

Brock:  Wasn’t she an ex-body builder, like competitive body builder?

Ben:  Yeah, ex-body builder.

Brock:  So she knows what she’s doing.

Ben:  Yeah. She knows what she’s doing but you know, she’s kinda throwing the kettle bell around and everything and it was a little bit controversial. I think it shocked some people probably in a similar way to when I had Cassandra Forsythe on the podcast and I’ll put a link to that podcast that I did with Cassandra in the show notes but she was I think in her third trimester when she came on the Ben Greenfield Fitness podcast. She was dead lifting, doing power clings, doing barbell squats. When I was managing the wellness program at the University of Idaho, we had an instructor who taught pretty hardcore spin classes like up until about 3 weeks out and so you certainly do have moms out there who are exercising over and above what you might find recommended in the typical kind of standard recommendations for what you’re supposed to be doing during pregnancy so what you typically see is that folks tell you, you know, in medical literature, that you’re not supposed to exceed a heart rate of 140 beats per minute that walking is considered safe to initiate but you wanna be careful with weight bearing activity that you wanna avoid like deep knee bends, that you wanna avoid hopping or running. You wanna avoid activities where you need to balance, you wanna avoid heavy spurts of exercise, you wanna avoid exercise in the heat. I mean there’s this huge list of recommendations for what pregnant women should not be doing during their pregnancy and I think what it leads to a lot of women doing is just sitting around ‘cause they’re afraid…

Brock:  Yeah.

Ben:  You know, my baby is gonna wind up, you know, coming out looking like a 2-headed ogre if I so much as lift a heavy weight at the gym or you know, it’s kinda this fear so women just…

Brock:  Well not only just sitting around but they’re sitting around and they’re just eating for 2 but they’re eating for 2 using M&M’s.

Ben:  Right. So the thing is, and this kinda flies under the radar, I think is people like to play on the safe side when it comes to pregnancy and it’s not like there’s something wrong with that per se but the fact is that you can actually have a better baby depending on the type of physical activity that you engage in when you are pregnant. So there’s been some studies that have looked into this. So for example, there was a study back in 2003 that looked at the effects of maternal exercise on fetal oxygenation and on placenta growth. What they found was that sustained bouts of exercise during pregnancy causes what was called an acute reduction in oxygen and nutrient delivery to the placenta which sounds like a bad thing right ‘cause you cut off oxygen and the nutrient delivery to the placenta. But what happened was, this was followed by an increase in what’s called fetal tissue profusion and oxygen uptake.


It’s kind of like when you’re exercising for a short period of time, you actually are sometimes experiencing this decrease in the amount of oxygen that’s available to the rest of your body, decreased nutrient delivery but after you finished exercising, all of a sudden you actually get a higher plasma volume, you get better oxygen uptake, you get better cardiac output, you get better cardiovascular function and it turns out…

Brock:  It’s like doing hypoxic sets and cool.

Ben:  Exactly, exactly. And this slight decrease in oxygen and nutrient delivery to the placenta actually results in what’s called the fetal sympathetic response which is almost just like a slight fight and flight response in the fetus and again that sounds like a bad thing but what actually happens is you end up getting a placenta that has better oxygen delivery, better nutrient delivery, and a child that has a more well-tuned nervous system when the mother is actually moving around during pregnancy and even engaging in spurts of physical exercise. So…

Brock:  You’ll have a little trapper baby that pops out all ready to fight.

Ben:  That’s kind of the thing. If you have a baby that is more adaptive in terms of its nervous system strength so that’s one thing to look into. There’s another study that looked at the influence of endurance exercise specifically on endurance exercise and diet and this looked at sustained exercise sessions and what happened with oxygen and substrate delivery to the placenta during sustained bouts like more kinda like longer you know, 60-90 minute bouts of exercise. And what they found was that as long as dietary intake was adequate, as long as there was enough nutrients to go around, that there was absolutely no issues with anything like fetal growth, baby weight, anything along those lines. So the important thing to realize is that if you’re gonna be training for like a bike ride or a marathon or something like that and you’re pregnant, you do need to eat a crapton of food. That’s one thing. You don’t wanna send your baby a starvation signal. Sending your baby an exercise signal turns out is better than not doing so but in most cases women have to, at a minimum increase calorie intake by at least 300 calories a day. There are weight charts that you can find out there that kinda shows you how much weight you’re supposed to gain during each trimester of your pregnancy and it’s pretty important that you make sure that you get adequate calories in and this study showed that you know well that exercise is good, you can affect birth weight if you are combining exercise with inadequate calorie intake. So it’s another thing to think about. You get a lot of recommendations out there that women should not balance and run and engage in impact-based activity but there’s another study that looked at running through pregnancy and its effect on the placenta and on cellular proliferation and on fetal growth and birth weight. And what they found on this study was that all of the mothers who ran during pregnancy, they experienced an increase in vascular volume in terms of blood flow to the placenta and also what’s called cellular proliferation which is the actual growth of the fetus itself. They also experienced higher birth weight in the baby and so it turns out that running did not result in any deleterious effect on the baby or on the birth weight or on the placenta. Now I don’t want to use any of these studies as an excuse for women to go out and beat her body up with metabolic conditioning workouts that go way over and above what you should normally be doing. There are a few things to bear in mind. One would be your fetal temperature so when we’re looking at a risk for birth defects or a miscarriage or something like that, you can actually initiate something like that when the core temperature gets too high specifically when maternal temperature rise above about a 102 degrees there some pretty serious risk for the baby. Now, hard exercise and hot conditions can definitely create that so if you’re gonna be doing crossfit, if you’re gonna be running you know, whatever you wanna make sure that none of this is taking place in saunas hot condition, you wanna still clear of hot tubs but understand the whole temperature effect if you are feeling hot and you’re feeling uncomfortably hot then you’re fetus is probably feeling that as well so that’s one thing to bear in mind is maternal and fetal temperature.


Another thing to bear in mind is what’s called hemodynamics. So, you can get to the point where once you exceed about 70% of your maximum heart rate, there’s a little bit of what’s called fetal bradycardia that goes on which means that the fetal heart rate drops pretty significantly and can drop by anywhere from 5-15 beats per minute. Now, long term fetal bradycardia (this long term drop in the fetal heart rate) can actually be deleterious to the health of the growing baby. The way that something like that would happen would you being breathless during exercise for long periods of time. So whereas aerobic exercises find once you’re getting up in the metabolic conditioning and aerobic conditioning that’s where you need to be careful especially if it’s for longer periods of time. I definitely would never exceed 2 minutes of any type of anaeorobic kinda glycolytic type of activity and I would be more prone to be very very short like 10-30 second bursts rather than anything over and above that that would cause an increase oxygen demand. So I play it safe when it comes to that. Remember that there’s a big big difference between aerobic exercise and kind of the acute slight drop in oxygen and nutrient delivery that occurs at aerobic exercise and hard metabolic conditioning that’s literally causing you know, like this true hemodynamic response that drops the heart rate of the baby. So even though the recommendations are kinda vague on this what I would personally say is, if you’re sucking air for a long period of time you probably shouldn’t be doing that. So that’s something that you need to be careful with too and I wouldn’t be going any longer than 2 minutes for doing anything that looks like really hard in terms of like say an interval for example. Another kind of a contrary indication and this is one that most women are aware of is abdominals and especially as you’re getting into the second and the third trimester spending lots of time on your back which can significantly reduce the cardiac flow and blood delivery to the placenta. So, if you’re working on your core, I’ll put a link in the show notes. I wrote an article called 14 Core Exercises for When You’re Pregnant: A Cheat Sheet for Getting Your Abs Back After You Have a Baby and what I give you are a bunch of ab exercises that you can do where you’re never really lying on your back on the ground mean everything from like sacks and bends with a weight in each hand overhead to like kneeling cable crunches and in a kneeling position to standing medicine ball rotations but basically like a bunch of stuff that very very similar to the type of exercises that my wife did when she was pregnant with River and Terran and these are things that you can do without having the concern about spending a long period of time lying on your back which actually can be something you wanna avoid when you’re pregnant. So, I put a link to that in the show notes as well. You know, ultimately like my wife did a light weight lifting about 2-3 times a week, she swam about 3-4 times a week, there are few weeks where she swam almost everyday, she rode a bike a little bit, she did some of this core exercises that I link to in the show notes and that was about it, and she didn’t go out and do crossfit or any hard and heavy metabolic conditioning workouts but I think the big take away message here is don’t let your body temperature get too high, don’t be sucking oxygen for long periods of time and aside from that it’s okay to lift heavy stuff, it’s okay to run, it’s okay to do intervals in moderation and you can actually stay pretty dang fit when you’re pregnant by doing some of these things. And of course there are sorts of things that can happen during pregnancy where you may need to be more careful than other women when it comes to overdoing it you know, if you’ve had issues in the past with pregnancy or you’ve got gestational diabetes or anything like that, there’s a bunch of other stuff where you can get into but… those are the basic…

Brock:  Vasti is old like me, she’s 42, so it sounds like she’s taking good care of herself already so that’s work really well but there could be some things she needs to take into consideration because of her age I suppose.

Ben:  I think every woman, every family who’s expecting needs to read Dave Asprey’s Better Baby Book. I’ll link to that in the show notes and even though I don’t think it’s necessary I think it’s enormously helpful Chris Kresser’s Healthy Baby Code.


If you were to put those 2 resources together, those would be the best things that you could do for the growth of a healthy baby.

Vicky:   Hi Ben, I started running for the first time in my life about a year ago, 6 months into learning how to run and after I ran a couple of races, I developed a blood clot in my neck. They’re not sure why but I was on coumadin for the last several months and I just recently had an ultrasound and the blood clot is now completely gone and I am back into running and hoping that all will go well but I was wondering what I could take to keep my blood a little thinner. I’ve had an issue with just having really thick blood. I was on high doses on coumadin and they just had difficulty regulating or keeping my blood thin enough so I’d like to take something naturally that would help keep it thin. What would be your recommendations? Thank you.

Brock:  Wow, blood clot in your neck. Now that could lead to some serious serious problems and/or death.

Ben:  I’ve always been concerned about blood clots ever since, I had an exercise physiology professor in college who did a marathon about 5 hours from our school and then after the marathon, like 2 hour later, got into his car, drove back, had a stroke from a blood clot, and was never the same again. And it was tragic. It made me think quite heavily from that point on about exercise and like sitting down after exercise and it’s something…

Brock:  So you think that was the magic combination?

Ben:  The combination of what?

Brock:  I said do you think that’s the magic combination like doing the exercise and basically like getting in your car and sitting for a while or just going home and hitting the couch for a couple of hours..

Ben:  Exactly ‘cause exercise can… the damage that’s done during exercise has a lot of that fibrinogen that’s floating around, it can cause that clotting effect you know I mentioned fibrinogen earlier in this podcast when I was talking about proteolytic enzymes to break those up but it can certainly be an issue especially if you are going into a sedentary position immediately after a long period of time spent beating your body up, you know that’s why when I fly to an Ironman triathlon or you know, a hard event like that, I try and tack at least a couple of days on afterwards before I’m getting in a car for long periods of time or before I’m flying. So if you’ve been on high doses of coumadin before because you have thick blood. More natural ways to make your blood thin, you know we already mentioned one and that would be those proteolytic enzymes. There are some other things out there though that you can do I mean there are foods that naturally fight blood clots that would definitely include in your diet. Probably one of the biggest ones and this is one that not only helps you feel better when you’ve had a poor night’s sleep or you’ve been drinking alcohol you know, and part of it is because of that blood thinning effect. It’s just the basic turmeric or curcumin extract like a high dose curcumin extract so I use one called Phenocane and it’s about a full 1000 milligrams if I take 4 capsules of Phenocane and that has a pretty potent blood thinning effect, it also is really really good for reducing pain, for reducing inflammation. It’s basically my number 1 alternative to ibuprofen but basic high dose curcumin extract, that’s one thing that you can try. Another one would be the proteolytic enzymes that I mentioned and you can use bromelain, you can use papain. The interesting thing is there’s 2 things that make proteolytic enzymes, like what you would find in pineapple and papaya and steak or in this recovery supplement that I talked about even more effective. Number one would be curcumin and number 2 would be ginger so that’s kinda like this holy triad if you combine curcumin with proteolytic enzymes, with ginger, that has a potent anti-inflammatory effect and it can also have a really really nice blood thinning effect. So ginger, I mean you could take a golf ball piece size of ginger, you can chop it into thin slices, you can boil it and make some tea, you could use a ginger extract or a ginger capsule if you wanted to but ginger is definitely another one that I would include. A couple of others, garlic, garlic has a really really good anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial effect but it’s also good for blood pressure and for thinning the blood so garlic is another one that I’d look into. And then the last thing when we’re just talking about foods in addition to turmeric, doing some proteolytic enzymes, doing ginger, doing garlic, would just be ensuring that you’re staying adequately hydrated because when you’re dehydrated, it thickens your blood, can cause stuff to clump together, to form clots so drinking enough water is gonna be really really important as well.


When you’re looking at things from a supplement standpoint, fish oil is one super duper important one that has a really really good effect in terms of its blood thinning properties and then the other thing that’s important for proper clotting, it’s not necessarily gonna thin your blood but it is important for proper clotting effect and for ensuring that everything is kinda working properly from that standpoint would be vitamin K. A lot of people are deficient in Vitamin K. You can get it from things like nato which is like a fermented soy bean, you can also take it. If you take it in supplement form, you wanna use a form called Vitamin K2. Take in about 50-100 micrograms of Vitamin K2 on a daily basis especially if you’re not eating a lot of fats in your diet, if you’re not using a fermented food like nato, that could be really effective as well. Any of these things…

Brock:  Wait, sorry. How much should you take?

Ben:  About 50-100 micrograms. That’s mcg. We had a podcast that we did with the author of a book about vitamin k. I forgot the name of the book, vitamin K something something something something but anyways, that is, that’s a book that I’d recommend that you read if you wanna learn more about vitamin k so that’s what I would do as far as the blood thinning goes. You could probably say bye bye to coumadin if you were to introduce a lot of these natural blood thinners that protect you against strokes, that protect you against blood clots, again disclaimer, I don’t want you to consider that as medical advice but it’s certainly something that I would personally do if I were concerned about clots, it is one of the reasons why when I cross the finish line on an Ironman triathlon, I’m popping Phenocane, I’m popping fish oil, and I’m popping recoverease. Like those are my top 3 for ensuring that I don’t get a blood clot after a hard work out.

Shane:  Hey Ben, this is Shane. I’m a new runner. I just started running 5ks in May and doing so I’ve lost about 50 pounds when I decided to run a 15k in about 4 weeks toward the end of October. So I wanted to know how to prepare for that, what to do. Is there something I need to take on the race course with me? I have no idea. I’m a rookie runner obviously and just wanted to get some insight on how to prepare for this next adventure in my racing. Thanks.

Brock:  Okay so absolute newbie apparently. Done some 5ks, going to 15k.

Ben:  That’s right.

Brock:  Not a lot of difference in there really.

Ben:  You know what, there actually isn’t that’s why I wanted to answer this question because you know it’s like a beginner runner question but the…

Brock:  Yeah you’d think you’re tripling your distance so you need to do something different but really…

Ben:  Yeah there’s really, there’s not a lot different you wanna do. There’s just a few little pacing and nutrition things you wanna think about and this is something that anybody running up to about 20k distance or so should bear in mind. That is that nutrition is not all that important when it comes to running distances that are less than about a half marathon and the reason for that is that…

Brock:  You’re talking about nutrition during not…

Ben:  Nutrition during like you don’t really have to take anything out there with you if you’re running a half marathon or less like I just had one of my athletes, we actually put him up on google plus. He was talking about his race, his half marathon and he actually ran and he actually ran a faster half marathon pace than any of the 5ks that he’s done in the past and you know, his breakfast that I had him do was 2 hours before he got up and he had some BulletProof coffee, you know, just the basic, like coffee bundled up with some butter and some MCT oil and then you know, that was it. Did the run. I think he may have had a tablespoon or so of SuperStarch or something. He mixed something weird in the coffee but essentially went out…

Brock:  That would be terrible.

Ben:  Yeah. Did the run and yeah, it didn’t sound appetizing. Did the run and was fine. Maintained a good pace so you know, once you’re exceeding right around 2 hours or so of aerobic exercise, that’s where you’re looking at complete you know, glycogen depletion and not eating anything at all, winding up, coming back to bite you in the butt but ultimately, for a 15k distance, just go out there. You may wanna grab water from a few aid stations as you’re thirsty. You barely even need that but don’t let the trickle down recommendations from Ironman triathlon and from marathon cause you to think that you gotta, you know, go out in the 15k with a you know, one of those running belts, yeah, one of those running belts with 6 flasks on it.


The six shooter or yeah, the camel back. You know, full of kool-aid. So as far as nutrition goes, honestly just follow, you know, just follow the SuperHuman food pyramid on bengreenfieldfitness.com, you know, eat a healthy diet and don’t worry about taking anything out there with you on the run. As far as your pacing is concerned, I am a big big fan for anything for like a half marathon to a marathon of just following a few simple rules for pacing. First of all, you wanna warm up really well. Most people don’t warm up well enough for a 5k, a half marathon and marathon. You wanna get to the point where you’ve got a kind of a decent little sweat going on and you’re breathing a little bit hard during a warm up usually that’s gonna to be anywhere from 5-15 warm up so that you can start at a good pace. A lot of people start at the pace of the rest of the crowd starts at and then they just feel like crap 2 minutes in and it sticks with you for the rest of the race because you didn’t warm up adequately. So what I recommend for a warm up is a light easy jog and during that easy jog you’re throwing a few strides up to race pace like 30 seconds strides where you’re making yourself just a little bit breathless and you do that until you’re kinda breathing hard and your body is beginning to feel warm and that’s a true warm up. Shown up and doing a few arm swings and leg swings and you know, jog into the parking lot for 2 minutes is not a warm up. So, an adequate warm up really help you start at a pace that’s gonna, that’s gonna like you feel a lot better and run off faster during the race. That’s one thing to bear in mind. Another thing…

Brock:  Actually I just wanna clarify strides. Could… just because Shane is a rookie and I know there’s probably some other rookies out there and I’ve experienced this with a lot of rookie runners, they hear the word strides and they think that’s actually what they need to be doing so they change their running game to be more of this crazy whatever they’ve sort of interpret the word stride is being but actually when Ben says stride it’s really just a… picking up the pace. Maybe turning your feet over a little bit quicker, it’s not doing some weird lungy lips servier or anything like that, It’s just running a little faster, a little harder and a little quicker.

Ben:  Exactly, exactly. So, you warm up well as far as your actual pacing goes, I’m a huge fan of the negative split approach. So you’re essentially going out you’re maintaining a relatively aerobic kinda… anything for a half marathon or less, you’re going out and you’re trying to maintain right around like a 7 on a scale of 1-10. You know, maybe an 8 on a scale of 1-10 for about the first half of the race where you’re pushing, it’s hard but it’s manageable, it’s good form, you know, something…

Brock:  You’re comfortably uncomfortable.

Ben:  Comfortably uncomfortable, exactly. You can tell that Brock is a running coach by the way. And then once you get about to the half way point that’s where something snaps inside you, you know, you pull the trigger and you start to…

Brock:  Not literally, hopefully.

Ben:  Hopefully nothing snaps inside you but you pull the trigger and you start to build at that point and you build to really uncomfortable pace to where like by the time you get to that last mile or that last k or so you’re really digging deep into the pain cave and usually that results in a really really nice negative split and what that means is you’re running the last half faster than the first half. And typically if you’re running a negative split you wind up putting in a pretty good effort, feeling pretty good about yourself when you cross the finish line. It’s a nice way to finish knowing that you ran the last half faster than you ran the first half. Another little mental trick that I used is, for me, if I’m gonna run like a 30 mile race, I treat it like a 12 mile race because I know I’m just gonna be running on a pure adrenalin for that last mile or like when I’m doing an ironman triathlon and I’m at mile 20, I tell myself “okay, I only have 5 miles to go ‘cause I know that last mile, I’ll just get on pure adrenalin”. You know it’s like when Ironman Hawaii in a couple of weeks when I get to the top of Palani Road which is like the point at which the rest of the run, you know, you still have almost a mile left but it’s all like downhill through screaming crowds and stuff. It’s like for me, I picture the finish line at the top of Palani Road ‘cause I know at that point I can just, I can dig as deep as I possibly need to dig to get to through that last little bit and knock on wood I haven’t fainted a 100 yards from the finish line yet but ….

Brock:  You run more than the risk of fainting ______ [1:09:50.3] as soon as you get across the finish line when you slam on the breaks.

Ben:  If I do that Brock, we’re capture it all on camera because we’ve got Brock hooked up with cameras, with VIP passes, with everything that he needs to deliver a kick butt Kona experience to you guys listening in so stay tuned to that.


Brock:  We’ll see Ben’s super starch mixture shooting out his nostrils as he comes to the finish line. I’ll capture that on film.

Ben:  That’s right, that’s right. Nice visual, nice visual. Speaking of shooting step out of your nostrils shall we read this week top ITunes review?

Brock:  Absolutely, I’m surprised in here that’s it’s gonna involved a nostril shooting.

Ben:  It doesn’t, that was a complete useless, and meaningless segue but remember if you leave this podcast, a review on ITunes and we read your review on the show, then you are going to get a special prize package from bengreenfieldfitness straight to your house and we’re about a week out by the way of having water bottles, shirts, hats, cool stuff available. So, this week’s review on ITunes comes from PearlAG. PearlAG titles their review “A Little Too Good?.” It says, unlucky for me that I found this podcast for the first time while studying for my written comprehensive exams. So instead of spending my time knee-deep in theory, literature and research design, I was instead listening to Ben Greenfield and clicking on links on the show notes. Hopefully, there won’t be any crossover with my committee members learning all about how heart rate variability impacts higher education policies. This is a great show, thanks for the great info, I just need to work on my timing.

Brock:  Apparently.

Ben:  So yeah, as you fail your written comprehensive exam PearlAG, you can at least take solace in the fact that winning it’s way to you is a special prize package from Ben Greenfield fitness. All you gotta do is just email your mailing address over to [email protected] if you heard us read your review. We’ll get that off to you and hope it will rebel sob in the wound of having failed your final exams. So…

Brock:  Or maybe you can use it to bribe the members of the committee or something.

Ben:  Deepest, deepest apologies. So, remember to go to giftfromben. I have no clue what would happen if you went to free gift from Ben.

Brock:  Yeah, we take no responsibility for that url.

Ben:  We figured a gift is free anyway so, just go to giftfromben. Save yourself from having to type a few extra characters and check out what we’ve got for you over there, giftfromben.com special little video from Brock and I and yeah, aside from that I think that about wraps it up. Check out the show notes at bengreenfieldfitness.com/257 for some weird photos of pregnant ladies and yeah, there you go.

Brock:  And will be back next week….


 Sep 25, 2013 Podcast: bitter melon extract for fat loss, natural solutions for bloodshot eyes, home remedies for Shingles, can you exercise hard if you’re pregnant, and how to run a 15K.

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Listener Q&A:

As compiled, edited and sometimes read by Brock, the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast “sidekick”.

For those of you who asked about what blood tests to ask your doctor for, here is the DirectLabs link that I mention.

Bitter Melon Extract for fat loss

Suzanne says @ 00:19:31
She has been using Bitter Melon extract and Garcinia Cambogia for weight loss. Is one better than the other? Can she take them together? Should she?

~ In my response, I mention MPX100 Bitter Melon Extract and Garcinia with 50% HCA.

Natural solutions for bloodshot eyes

Deanna says @ 00:25:44
Wondering what she can do about the blood shot-ness in the whites of her eyes. She wants the whites to be white again! She’s in her mid-30s, she runs about 6 miles a day, she eats healthy and gets plenty of sleep. Could it be something lacking in her diet?

~ In my reply, I recommend this presentation on eye health from the Ancestral Health Symposium.

Home remedies for Shingles

Sam says @ 00:32:57
His sister just found out that she has the shingles virus. What might be good solutions or home remedies to treat shingles?

~ In my response, I mention this Tai Chi DVD and proteolytic enzymes from Recoverease.

Can you exercise hard if you’re pregnant?

Vashti says @ 00:40:23
She is a fitness trainer… who is pregnant (bit of a surprise to her). She is 42 but fit and strong. Is there anything she should adjust? Any adaptions physically and nutritionally that she should make due to her age?

~ In my reply, I mention this controversial article on a Crossfit pregnant mom. I recommend these 14 core exercises for pregnancy. I also recommend this podcast on pregnancy with Cassandra Forsythe, and Chris Kresser’s Healthy Baby Code.

Foods that fight blood clots

Vicki says @ 00:55:16
She just started learning to run about a year ago. 6 months in she developed a blood clot in her neck. She was on coumadin for the last few months but she just had an ultrasound and the blood clot is now gone. She is back to running but she would like to keep her blood a little more thin. She has an issue with thick blood (she was on high doses on coumadin). Is there a natural way to make her blood more thin?

~ In my reply, I mention fish oil and Phenocane and proteolytic enzymes from Recoverease. I also recommend a full fat soluble vitamin spectrum that includes Vitamin K2 – 50-100mcg per day.

How to run a 15K

Shane says @ 01:02:12
He is a new runner, running 5ks, and has lost about 50lbs. He has decided to run a 15k at the end of October. How should he prepare? What should he take on the run? He is a complete rookie.

Read more https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2013/09/257-can-you-exercise-hard-if-you're-pregnant-10-ways-to-get-smarter-bitter-melon-extract-for-fat-loss/

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