Why Humans Need Winter, How Too Much Christmas Is Dangerous, Rites Of Passage & More With Paul Chek.

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

Two months ago, I released one of the most popular podcast episodes of the year: “Heavy Rock Lifting, Building Your Own “Water Charging” Station, Biomechanical Fixes, Plant Medicine Journeys & More With Paul Chek.

In that episode, you discovered one of the most internationally-renowned experts in the fields of corrective and high-performance exercise kinesiology – a guy who's unique, holistic approach to treatment and education has changed the lives of countless people worldwide. We delved into everything from Mandala art therapy and ayahuasca/DMT (an experience Paul and I journeyed into before recording today's podcast episode) to how to build your own water rock charging station to Paul's extremely crazy past as a top triathlete, boxer, motocross and rally car racer and beyond.

I found Paul to be such an intriguing man who I consider to be literally decades ahead of just about every health and exercise professional on the face of the planet, that I ventured back down to San Diego to spend a few more days with him. So on today's podcast, Paul is back.

During our discussion, you'll discover:

-Paul's special tea blend that we drank for stabilized energy before heavy rock lifting…[5:30]

-The easy-to-learn morning Tai Chi practice that is the ONE practice that will totally transform your life if you do it every morning for 100 days…[8:50]

-What Paul means when he says you should “never rush in a rock garden”…[17:35]

-The single biggest mistake that people make when they finish a big goal like an Ironman triathlon, a marathon, losing lots of weight, writing a book, etc…[22:45]

-Why every human needs a winter in their life, and exactly what type of physical activities to do during that winter…[28:15]

-Why pro athletes like Danny Way, Laird Hamilton and Robbie Madison come to Paul when nothing else is working…[34:40]

-What a “One Prong Guru” is and how you can break the mold of falling into that trap…[38:10]

-How Paul Chek picked a 6'8″ 245 pound Highland Games competitor over his head and did walking lunges…[44:00]

-Why too much Christmas is dangerous…[48:09]

-How to ensure that you put yourself, or your children, through a rite of passage…[55:30]

-And much more!

Resources from this episode:

-All of Paul Chek's books

-Chek Institute (gives you Lesson 1 of HLC 1 Online for FREE and a free download of Chek Healthy Core cycle)! 

-Paul's Coaching Program for Training Unhealthy Clients. And Use Code “Special4Ben” For $50 off!

Fongha.com for the Tai Chi exercise Paul discusses

Metabolic Man: Ten Thousand Years from Eden (The Long Search for a Personal Nutrition From our Forest Origins to the Supermarkets of Today)

Vision Quests at Twin Eagles Wilderness School

Paul's Tea Recipe

Organic Guayusa – either loose leaf in a tea strainer or a teabag.

RR Superfoods Eucommia bark – ¼ tsp.

RR Superfoods He Sho Wu – ¼ tsp.

Shilajit resin – a smidgen about the size of a small pea.

ODNOVA Clarity – approx. 1 tsp or to taste. A herbal, royal honey infusion with a special blend of ingredients that revitalize the mind and naturally balance energy levels, created by Gosia Reed.

Stargazer Solar System Planetary Essence – 4 drops
A handcrafted mix created by Stargazer Li combining a planet essence, with a tree essence and a rock essence.

Show Sponsors:

-Organifi – Go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/Organifi and use discount code BEN for 20% off your Green Juice order!

-Human Charger – Go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/HumanCharger and use the code BEN20 for 20% off.

-Casper – Go to Casper.com/Ben AND use promo code BEN to save $50 off your purchase.

Do you have questions, thoughts or feedback for Paul or me? Leave your comments below and one of us will reply, and enjoy the photos below Paul lifting a strongman over his head!

Ask Ben a Podcast Question

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27 thoughts on “Why Humans Need Winter, How Too Much Christmas Is Dangerous, Rites Of Passage & More With Paul Chek.

  1. Luke says:

    Wow, its amazing I have never come across this guy until now. he is great!! have him back on soon please and thanks for the extras!!

  2. Chris says:

    Re: the tea recipe how do you have the essences of the planets in a supplement?

    1. From Paul Chek: All planets produce electromagnetic forces, just as the moon's ELM field moves our oceans.
      Using both astrology, and modern astrological calculations and measurements, alchemists know what substances, stones, metals, and plants resonate with the forces of each of the planets in our solar system, and can use the elements and the timing of their influence on earth (think for example of what happens to computer systems when mercury is in retrograde…). Therefore, a planetary essence can be made by using a combination of plants, stones, and metals coupled with the timing of the orbits of the planet they are focusing on to infuse the energetic influences into a tincture. This is all totally in harmony with the science of energy medicine, which is well developed today, as well as quantum energy medicine. Alchemists have been using these principles for thousands of years, so have native medicine men and shaman. If you search "The principles of Alchemy" on Google, and then look at the various charts in the images section, you'll probably find many showing the correlations that relate to what I'm sharing here, and countless articles, books, web pages, and videos out there elaborating on them more.

      What I put in Ben's tea was a tincture made via these principles.
      Love and chi,
      Paul Chek

  3. Chris says:

    Can you give specifics on what type of tai chi or qi gong Paul practices?

    1. From Paul Chek: Initially, I studied with Master Fong Ha (you can learn more about him at http://www.fongha.com) and started off with zhan zung (Stand Like A Tree tai-chi practice), then I did three gongs of the tai-chi ruler practice that he learned from a master during his own development. I also completed a training course in Chi Lel Qi-gong, which is medical Qi-gong. Having studied numerous books on various forms of tai-chi, and having worked with many students of traditional forms of tai-chi, Qi-gonig, and other soft martial arts, I found over and over that most people practicing the traditional styles were still very trapped in their heads/intellect, and even as much as a year and a half to two years later, had not learned to relax and enter no mind. I’ve also rehabilitated various master yoga teachers and practitioners, who were still stuck in their gray matter….

      This lead me to creating several very simple forms of tai-chi based on breathing and movement, designed to calm the intellect, harmonize the biological oscillators, and induce flow states much more efficiently than most forms I’ve studied, practiced, or seen. These are taught in my Holistic Lifestyle Coaching programs, and to my clients and patients. As a side note, prior to all that I’ve mentioned here, I was raised in a Self-Realization Fellowship family; Paramahansa Yogananda is the guru of that Fellowship. I studied with monks for a summer when I was 15, and through temple services and time with the monks, was initiated into two forms of meditation. From there, I branched out and studied and tried many other forms, and have been using them all my life as part of my own spiritual practice, and part of my work as a therapist to help people get to the deeper issues that are often the unconscious drivers behind the beliefs, choices and behaviors that led them to pain, but were not being addressed through traditional and allied health care approaches; I make this point because I came into my tai-chi and Qi-gong training with a fair bit of previous spiritual development. I feel this helped me get more out of Master Fong Ha’s teachings, and allowed me to grow in and from them more efficiently.

      I don’t have any specific name for the forms I teach, but in short, we can call them “simple and effective tai-chi”. I’ve taught it to many children, and they catch on faster than adults in general, and most always have expansion experiences in their first session or two :-)
      Love and chi,
      Paul Chek

  4. Alejandro Valdes says:

    Can you a winter of different sorts all happening at staggered rates?


    Lean down for 3 months and work on functional lifting and building a base

    have “winter” for diet which is a maintenance and enter strength phase for lifting

    basically was a summer for dieting and winter for lifting

    and then a winter for dieting and summer for lifting

    or does it not work like that?

    1. Certainly, but I would stick to the recommendations in the podcast for optimal results!

  5. elvis says:

    IM so happy I have learned about Paul .. Thank you Ben. Im so glad to know there are still “Bruce Lees” in this world. Nothing like living life the way it’s meant to be lived. Very few podcasts and trainers i feel truly speak from the heart and from being in the trenches ( like Ben put it in this podcast). This has definitely been one of them.. Puting Paul in my small list of mentors. Thank you once again.

  6. Robert says:

    in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Winter is considered the ‘water’ season. Be like water. 水

    “Yielding, like ice about to melt.”

  7. Jeff Leonard says:

    Loved the podcast, thank you. Water seems to be a important aspect of health. I spend lots of time in the backcountry drinking through small water filters. My question is: do you think pulling natural water through a filter effect the structure of the water? Would a UV purification system be better? What about boiling? Of course springs are ideal but not always available. Thanks again

    1. Check out Greenfield Naturals for structuring (they have a portable unit as well): https://greenfieldfitnesssystems.com/product/stru…
      and Lifestraw for the pre-filtering: http://goo.gl/uHbbD5
      In my experience, this is the best one two combo. Hope this helps!

  8. Redwoodrunner says:

    Thank you for all the energy and time you spend finding and presenting such interesting information. If I look back into your podcasts for the only the last two years and tried to practice maybe half of the things you talked about I probably would have little time to eat and sleep. Since you’ve tried and investigated all these techniques, please help me out by telling me what ones you still use on a routine basis.

    For example Why can’t HRV be used to inform you when you should be going into the Chek winter phase. You’ve been using HRV for years. What do you really use it for?

    Both Dr. Barry Morguelan and Paul Chek’s tai chi stick practices seem to get you to much the same place. They both require time disapline and money to get there. Doing both seems too much. Help me

    You did some Telomere testing 6 months ago and were bummed out because your telo age was low. What did you do? Have you retested yet? Any suggestions or results

    How did you use the interesting results from Viome to improve your own health. Any more testing or changes you think are a result of the information contained in the Viome results

    Thanks again


  9. Paul Chek says:

    Paul’s Tea Recipe for all those interested.

    Organic Guaysua – either loose leaf in a tea strainer or a teabag. Paul gets his from Amazon.com

    Loose leaf – http://amzn.to/2iXB8My
    Teabags – https://amzn.to/2zbrERR

    RR Superfoods Eucommia bark – ¼ tsp

    RR Superfoods He Sho Wu – ¼ tsp

    Shilajit resin – a smidgen about the size of a small pea. Paul gets his from Amazon.com

    ODNOVA Clarity – approx. 1 tsp or to taste. A herbal, royal honey infusion with a special blend of ingredients that revitalize the mind and naturally balance energy levels, created by Gosia Reed.

    Stargazer Solar System Planetary Essence – 4 drops

    A handcrafted mix created by Stargazer Li combining a planet essence, with a tree essence and a rock essence.

  10. Penny Crozier says:

    Hi Max – apologies from the C.H.E.K Institute. Some pesky internet imps seem to have been at work!

    The links are working properly now and you should be able to request your Healthy Core Checklist now from

  11. Pete says:

    Been following Paul for a while and more recently yourself, great podcast and very exciting to hear you are doing more together. As a PT in the UK, educating clients away from eternal bootcamp beastings and involving a complete approach to fitness starting in the family home can be hard sometimes, I’d love to see the sort of information you guys were discussing disseminated out to every home, so many need re educating.

  12. Adam says:

    Enjoyed the podcast Ben. For an average joe who lifts weights a few times a week (using a conjugate training method), how long would a “winter” last? Are we talking about a deload week once every 10-12 weeks, or are we talking going through weeks of minimal strength training?

    1. That totally depends on your training intensity, training volume, experience, and a whole whole lot more that makes this the type of question to hire a coach or trainer to ask.

  13. John Brown says:

    Very good podcast, lots of information to think about. His comments about Trump was naive, we live in a dangerous world and you cannot reason with Isis or Rocketman.

  14. GJ says:

    One of the best episodes i’ve heard. Loved it! Thanks!!

  15. Mark says:

    I am also having trouble downloading the checklist!

    1. Let me know if you're still having issues and I'll get somebody on it…seems to be working on my end! Thanks for the feedback.

  16. Jeffrey says:

    I second Justin! Tea recipe, please!

  17. Justin says:

    Tea recipe, please?

    1. Michael says:

      I found it difficult to make out what Paul said. Possibly it was “Ossa tea”. This is another name for Greek Mountain Tea (sideritis):


      This is because it grows on Mounts Olympus, Ossa and Pelion in Greece. I thought I also caught the word “Gaia” in there–but that fits, because Ossa was the daughter of Elpis and Gaia in Greek mythology.

      They do drink mountain tea with honey in Greece. Obviously, Paul had a lot of other things he’d put in there.

  18. max says:

    Healthy Core Cycle Checklist link working for anyone?

    1. Let me know if you're still having issues, and I'll get somebody on it! Seems to be working fine on my end.

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