Episode #93: Swimmer Dara Torres “Secret Fitness Weapon”.

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode

In this May 5th audio episode: resistance stretching, best temperature for ice baths, skipping meals, exercise headaches, runner's knee, slow metabolism, hay fever and exercise, carbo-loading, sodium phosphate supplements, v8 juice, alcohol health effects, altitude training and trouble sleeping.

Remember, if you have any trouble listening, downloading, or transferring to your mp3 player just e-mail [email protected]. And don't forget to leave the podcast a ranking in iTunes – it only takes 2 minutes of your time and helps grow our healthy community! Just click here to go to our iTunes page and leave feedback.

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Featured Topic:

Dara Torres is a 12 time Olympic medalist, including 5 time Olympian, American Record Holder, Oldest Female Swimming Medalist Ever and the Most Decorated American Female Swimmer of all time. Dara refers to something called resistance training as her ’secret weapon’ when it comes to keeping fit.  Recently, she released a DVD Resistance Stretching With Dara Torres in collaboration with Steve Sierra and Anne Tierney from Innovative Body Solution that teaches resistance training.  In today's featured topic, I interview Anne about Resistance Stretching. My questions include:

-What is resistance stretching?

-Who would it benefit?

-How long is a typical session?

-Will it make an athlete “too flexible”?

-Would it be best performed before or after a workout?

-Can it be used a substitute for a workout?

Overall, resistance training is a mild form of exercise that increases flexibility and also prevents injury and it’s something that both athletes and non-athletes should add to their daily workout routine. The DVD includes new ways of stretching and also includes strength training, flexibility training and aerobics.  You get a total of 17 exercises for the upper and lower body all of which Torres takes you through in 20 minutes. I did it in my living room a couple weeks ago, and it's surprisingly a cardiovascular workout that also includes the flexibility component.


Special Announcements:

mst-motherofarace-cover1. “Triathlon: A Mother of a Sport! Super Moms Who Train, Race and Win” is now available for free from Mindset Triathlon! Click here to download a free copy now that you can send to your mom! Being a mother is hard enough. But being a mother and a triathlete earns  women a whole new level of respect. This Mother's Day, we want to hear  about the amazing, strong and motivated women in your lives! We want to  know about the Herculean efforts they have made in order succeed in their sport and still excel at their most important job: being a Mom.

2. $300 in cold, hard cash, a FREE Gymstick, and a 1 hour personal interview with Ben Greenfield…a free one year membership and access to all past archives of Ben’s Body Transformation Club….a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get the body and health you’ve always wanted….Sound interesting? From May 1-May 15, Ben will be accepting entries for a brand new event called Ben’s 2010 Summer Body Challenge. To qualify for competition in the challenge and be entered into the drawing for the prizes above, you MUST follow the four easy steps that you get by clicking here.

3. The 2010 Ironman CDA Triathlon Camp is being taught by Ben Greenfield from Sunday, May 16- Wednesday May 19, 2010, and is specifically designed to completely prepare you for the race course, race day tactics and nutrition and pacing strategies for Ironman Coeur D' Alene! Click here for more information and to register.

4. Ever wonder if your swimming technique is all it could be? Want to know if your bike is fit properly, or if you have a good pedal stroke? Would you like to know if your running gait is slowing you down or setting you up for injury? Our online video analysis of swim, bike or run is quick way to get professional feedback, inexpensively. Click here to get started now with a swim, bike or run video analysis from Ben Greenfield and the team at Pacific Elite Fitness. Want to see what a video analysis looks like? Check it out by clicking here.

5. Get insider VIP tips and discounts from Ben – conveniently delivered directly to your phone! Just complete the information below…

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Listener Q&A

Do you have a question for Ben? Just click Ask a Podcast Question at the bottom of this page and leave a voicemail, leave a Skype voicemail to username “pacificfit”, or e-mail [email protected].

Listener Tina asks: Hey Ben, in training for my Ironman I finally decided to try the dreaded ice baths and I was amazed how well I felt the next day.  I've tried it by running down to the lake which is close to my home, and standing in up to my hips for 10 minutes.  I've also sat in luke warm water in my tub and slowly added cold water up to the big dump of the ice tray from my refrigerator.  So my question is, is there a certain temperature that ice baths work better in? If I'm still sore on the second day of a hard weekend, would another ice bath be beneficial?

Listener Fitz asks: Ben – how do you feel about paleo/primal diet proponents who advise skipping meals, avoiding carbs, even skipping breakfast? Seems like there's a lot of science behind it (although as a distance runner, I wouldn't skip meals or avoid carbs). Mark Sisson at marksdailyapple.com is big on this.

Listener David asks: Question on headaches and working out. One of my clients complains of headaches halfway through the workout. I train him pretty hard, usually circuits with minimum breaks in between sets. He doesn’t drink coffee/tea. He keeps caffeine intake to a minimum (under 30 milligrams), and most day avoids all caffinated drinks, including his workout days. He’s 30 years old, male in good shape and of average weight with no special conditions, ie no diabetes, hypertension, high lipids, etc.. I’m working to build his upper body strength and improve his core. I think it could have something to do with his breathing technique. But I do watch him and make sure he’s exhaling on concentrics and  inhaling on eccentrics. So maybe he’s not breathing correctly or deep enough. What other possibilities do you think could be causing his headaches and if its with his breathing, do you have breathing tips/techniques? Could be low carbs or lack there of?

In my response, I direct David to this breathing article I wrote…and also recommend Topical Magnesium.

Listener Mike asks: Question 1:  I was hoping you could point me in the right direction on your recommended brands for the suggested 4 supplements (Vit D, Magnesium, Omega 3's, and Greens Multi-Vit).  I know not all supplements are created equal. Question 2:  Any treatment/ supplement recommendations for ‘Jumpers knee'?  I'm 32 and developed a severe case playing volleyball a couple years ago and still struggle with it (even after physical therapy and avoiding any activities that cause patella inflammation/ pain).  I can run just fine, infact I'm training for the Hood to Coast again this year, but I want to be able to play other sports and jump again — any suggestions?

Listener Lance asks: 1) Are there any other sunscreens worth considering other than the interview subject own product? It doesn't sound like it all that available yet. BTW thanks for the vitamin D question, it was exactly what I was wondering. 2) In Podcast 92, I was puzzled by your fat recommendations. The research I have looked at indicates we need single digit percentages of daily calories from omega 3 and 6 EFAs. Why do you recommend 15-25%? Is there a benefit that outweighs the cardiovascular risk?

Listener Josh asks: It's been a mantra in my family that “slow metabolism” is a curse. Is it true that some people struggle with a “slower” metabolism? Or does those people (like me) just eat a little bit (or a lot) more and slowly add to their body fat? I ask because I monitor what I take in, and most days, I get in 1800 calories (I'm 5'10”, 190) and I exercise 6 days a week. No diet or meal plan seems to really be able to help me drop my body fat. My physician says my blood tests don't indicate a “slow metabolism”, but even his dietary advice doesn't work. Can you help? Second question, much easier: how far in advance do you plan your workouts? How do you anticipate muscles that you're overtraining (and thus avoid overtraining that muscle) when you're planning ahead?

Congratulations to Josh, who was nominated as the top question for this week's podcast! Josh will receive a free month of membership to the Body Transformation Club, full access to the Club's secret video page, the life-changing piece of Club mail that I will personally send him  each week, and much more. To learn more about the Body Transformation Club, click here.

Listener John asks: What’s your opinion on V8 juice?  The 5.5oz cans are really convenient for eating on the go.  Should I be concerned with BPA like most other canned tomato products?

Listener Casey asks: I have to work and go to school full time right now and I often lose sleep and can't wind down until very late because of it (not to mention the mass consumption of alcohol which has become my main goal to eliminate).Do you have any suggestions that do not involve quitting my work or school? I cannot afford to quit either, but I know the stress is slowly killing my body. I suffer from heartburn, fatigue, anxiety, high stress, etc. and I am only 21! If you have any suggestions they would be greatly appreciated. I don't want to vent or complain, I just would like a real world solution to what I'm sure is a pretty common issue.

Listener Jeff asks: What are the benefits of Sodium Phosphate.  Thinking of trying Race Boost from Hammer.  Any thoughts?

Listener Rich asks: Just a quick question, I have a good diet (helped by your tips and advice) which focuses on the anti inflammatory foods and wondered if you had any further tips on reducing my hay fever symptoms. I can deal with the extra mucous and itchy eyes using topical homeopathic remedies but it is the systemic effect that really kills my performance.  I notice a dramatic change in form throughout May, June, July in my running, cycling and rowing times and recover more slowly after a tough session.

Listener Chuck asks:
I was wondering for what distance should one do a specific carb-load?  Obviously for a full or half Ironman, but should I implement like a tapered version for an Olympic distance or is there a certain point where it's just not necessary to do at all? If a shorter load was best, would it be using the same technique you described, just for a shorter period of time?

Listener Chris asks: I just got my butt royally kicked this past weekend at the Devil's PunchBowl bike race.  I believe that the altitude (3,800ft at the start) had a lot to do with that, as I live and train at sea level.  My heart rate was sky rocketing the entire race much higher than it ever had in the past.  Do you have any practical advice on how to prepare for 3 days of hard racing at a similar elevation in mid-June? Also, is it possible to improve one's lactate threshold?  If so, how might I do so?

Listener Ken asks: I am having problems staying asleep.  I am going to bed around 10-10:30. I am waking up to go to the bathroom and I am not able to fall back to sleep.  Very wide awake after 4-5 hrs. Also, I am drenched in sweat when I wake up.  I do not work out before bed.  Most of my stuff is done morning or early evening. Is this normal? What can I do about it?

Remember, if you have any trouble listening, downloading, or transferring to your mp3 player just e-mail [email protected] And don't forget to leave the podcast a ranking in iTunes – it only takes 2 minutes of your time and helps grow our healthy community! Just click here to go to our iTunes page and leave feedback.

Brand new – get insider VIP tips and discounts from Ben – conveniently delivered directly to your phone! Just complete the information below…

First Name
Last Name
Cell # (1+area code):

Ask Ben a Podcast Question

6 thoughts on “Episode #93: Swimmer Dara Torres “Secret Fitness Weapon”.

  1. Joeie says:

    jaQhM8 Very true! Makes a change to see seoomne spell it out like that. :)

  2. toddhouston says:

    These six steps are really helping me, Ben. I have been struggling lately with food cravings, and this. was exactly what I needed to help me with them. Thanks!

  3. Awesome…you'll get the first mailing by next Wednesday-Friday, depending on your geographical location…

  4. John Hansen says:

    Thanks for clearing up my question on V8! My wife will only buy packaged tomatoes like pomi or that which comes in glass containers because of the concern of BPA, I was thinking V8 would be along the same lines. However, your point of the vegetables being highly processed made an even more valid point to nix the V8.

    I've listened to all your podcast (long commutes) and checked out the podcast that Rob Wolf puts out (in reference to your RSTA podcast), wow does he go into detail! Truly appreciate your expertise, practicle advice and all your listeners relevant questions. You must be a busy man!

    Signed up for your body transformation club last week…itching to recieve my 1st mailing so I can get crackin!

  5. feerlessfood says:

    Great podcast Ben!

    My first half Ironman is on Saturday- how do you guys (other listeners) eat for breakfast before a race of that distance? Thanks!

    1. Sweet potatoes and yams! With little dab of almond butter and dash of salt. That’s it.

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