September 29, 2017
Podcast from: https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/podcast/ben-greenfield-2017-spartan-world-championships-special/
[03:03] Ben, Brock, and The MindPump Guys
[09:27] The Obstacles At This Year's Spartan Race
[16:16] Why MindPump's Podcasting Studio Still Has Couches
[20:16] The MindPump Guys' Whys
[30:59] MindPump Being A Business On It's Own
[35:31] Meatheads Or Beyond
[46:52] The MindPump Guys' Spartan Race Plans
[53:50] The Next Big Thing To Take The Fitness World By Storm
[1:02:20] The Most Hypocritical Thing The MindPump Guys Did The Last Month
[1:10:56] Why The MindPump Guys Haven't Gone Back To Spokane
[1:14:52] End of Podcast
Ben: Hello. What's up? It's Ben Greenfield. Hey, I have a pretty special series, a doozy full of series of interviews for you coming up today and on a whole bunch of other days this week. I'm churning out the podcasts this week because I just got back from Lake Tahoe. I got a chance to hang out with some of the world's top athletes, and biohackers, and inventors, and physicians, and more down at the Spartan World Championships. Even if you're not an obstacle course racer, you're going to dig today's show. You can access the show notes where I have a special video for you over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/sparta17. Yes, as in Sparta 17. Like the movie “300” where they all talk with Scottish accents even though they're supposedly from Greece. Anyways though, we digress.
So in that video that I posted for you at bengreenfieldfitness.com/sparta17, I actually have a fascinating discussion, this is at the top of the page that you see there, about legal ways to dope your blood, legal ways to get nitric oxide up like Viagra for your whole body without actually taking the little blue pill, how to max your ATP and what are called your erythrocytes levels using some pretty fringe formulas that are out there.
So when you visit that page over at bengreenfieldfitness.com/sparta17, you're going to want to watch my interview there at the top of the page with this guy named Craig Dinkel. Craig, you may have heard on previous podcast episodes. He's like a total whiz when it comes to formulating very potent and unique supplements. I got a bunch of discount codes for you over there too on some of the stuff that Craig and I talk about. So that is what is bringing into today's show, that video and those supplements which I consider to be not only some of the best supplements for altitude, but some of the best supplements for sex, and for nitric oxide, and for recovery from jetlag, and for enhanced blood flow, and for just about any situation where you want more blood. So check it out, bengreenfieldfitness.com/sparta17. Alright. Let's move forward, shall we?
Brock: Hey, everybody. Welcome back to the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast. And it kind of feels weird to say that because we're not using any of our gear, we're not in our space, it's totally, this is MindPump nationale. National? International?
Ben: I don't know, but I hope somebody washed these microphones because I only really trust our equipment. These could have anything from…
Adam: That is…
Ben: Oh, god. I'm going to get MRSA on my lips! That's gross!
Adam: He said that you guys had made out before, so we didn't worry about washing that one. He said, “No, Ben and I have made out.”
Ben: But they had him sprayed down with Clorox first. This is awkward.
Brock: Good lord. It's already gone off the rails.
Adam: So we're here in the 2017 Spartan Championship Race. You just got after it yesterday. How do you feel, my man?
Ben: I feel like I got hit by a semi-truck, actually.
Adam: What place did you finish?
Ben: That's exactly what I told Brock yesterday. I got back from the race and I took a nap. And I woke up and I was like, “I think a semi-truck ran over me while I was taking a nap.”
Brock: It sounded like it ran over his lungs.
Ben: Oh, yeah. My lungs were, it was the worst race I've ever had my life.
Adam: Ben, you've done so many of these. Do you know how many you've done total?
Ben: Over 50. I mean I've been racing since I was 19 in endurance sport. So 6,000 plus miles of racing. But for Spartan, I don't know, 50 plus races. And I raced yesterday injured, and it was one of those frustrating races where I had the fitness, and I crushed the obstacles, and I ran up all the hills, but I had to walk all the downhills. So yes, I'm completely sandbaggy.
Justin: The endurance is there, everybody's walking by.
Ben: But I was telling you guys earlier, like I hate to sign up for a race and not go do it. Or worse yet, to go to the race and show up and just be sidelined doing like the announcing or something like that. ‘Cause that's torture for me. I know I should be out there doing it…
Adam: Just watching everybody.
Ben: And then you have that thought at the back of your mind, like, “Well maybe I could've actually gone out there and tried this.” So I just like to get out…
Justin: That's the athlete in you.
Adam: Now how does your ego handle that? Knowing that you're a competitive guy, I know you like to win, I know you work…
Ben: Hate it. Hate it. But it's good for you. It's good for two reasons. Number one, it's humbling to go out there and to know that you're not even going to come close to the podium based off of where your body's at.
Adam: And you knew that before you even started?
Brock: He knew that like three weeks ago.
Ben: But number two, you also, you get to see a lot of what goes on at the back of the pack. You get to kind of get a chance to chat up some fellow racers and do things you wouldn't normally otherwise do when you're charging hard.
Adam: You guys actually talk when you're running an obstacle course?
Adam: Oh, I didn't know that.
Ben: Yeah! Well, when you're that far back in the pack, it's like these are the guys that aren't going very fast, so they're chatting and talking, kind of encouraging each other. And you get to see all the, there's a lot of, and again all due respect to my fellow races, but there's a lot of mistakes made at the back of the pack. Like I'll be running behind a guy for like an hour and 40 minutes and he's not drinking or eating anything, and then he slowly goes to like a jog, and then to a walk, and you're like, “Oh. You just bonked.” And you see people making nutrition mistakes and things like, like you see that a lot more towards the back of the pack than the front of the pack. And you also see people, like the front of the pack, like the 40 degree swim at the top of the mountain, Hunter McIntyre and Ryan Atkins, those guys, they don't carry like a little Ziploc trash bag full of warm clothes to change into after the swim and gingerly dress down.
Brock: Wait a second. You did that!
Ben: They go through the swim and keep on running. I did not do that. Actually, I thought about doing that. But then when you're at the back, like a lot more people are just taking their time, changing their clothing and…
Sal: They're more interested in finishing.
Ben: Right. It's like one of the first times I did Ironman triathlon, which I thought was just, I had watched Kona on TV and thought it was just like this full-on like everybody's racing their ass off. And I remember my first Ironman triathlon, I pass a guy who had literally brought one of those red and white checkered picnic blankets with him and a little bag of goodies from McDonald's. And about halfway through the bike, he stopped and he had a picnic. And those are the kind of things you see and you realize that the cool thing about sports like this is that both the super fast pros and the age groupers all get to race at the same time and you see that vaudeville of different approaches to what some people would call “racing”. But at the same time, it does catch the sport a little bit of flak. You aren't going to see an NBA basketball game. You aren't going to see half of the guys playing hard and the other half wearing MP3 players.
Adam: Now do you think they're going, as this sport grows, 'cause I've seen it grow and you obviously have seen it grown even more, do you think they're going to start to separate that in the future when it continues to get really, really…
Ben: No. Because the bread and butter for these races is the age grouper. The pros, they don't pay to race. They bring some sponsors and stuff like that. But the pros or actually, that's the money sack for the race. That's where the cash prize and everything goes to. The age groupers, the thousands of age groupers that come in and pay the money, and buy the gear, and are the devotees, I mean that's how Ironman triathlon was built, the same as Spartan was built. Like the bread and butter is not the professional racing. Very few people will come pay for a ticket to watch a Spartan race, very few people will buy a bunch of paraphernalia with the face of their favorite pro on it, the jerseys, and the photographs, and all the paraphernalia that other bigger sports can do with their sport to generate revenue like basketball, and football, and baseball. Instead with endurance sports, like marathoning, triathloning, Spartan racing, the money for those is all in age group registrations.
Brock: What did Krusty The Clown say? “T-shirts are the sweetest plum,” in terms of making money. I think Krusty The Clown said that. Very wise words from Krusty The Clown…
Justin: Droppin' some knowledge.
Adam: Brock droppin' knowledge right there…
Sal: I'm like, “Is this the same Krusty The Clown from The Simpsons?”
Brock: Nobody seemed to be with me there. C'mon, guys!
Adam: That's the first time anyone's referenced Krusty The Clown before.
Sal: I love it.
Sal: So Ben, I don't know, I just walked in a little late. Did you walk through the course…
Ben: It's 'cause you were taking a glorious dump.
Sal: And you guys are jealous.
Justin: He was dropping his own knowledge.
Sal: I'm still moving.
Brock: That's a Krusty The Clown.
Sal: Were you able to go over and tell everybody kind of what the course looks like and explain like what did this course look like, what were the obstacles, for people listening, in this type of a race?
Ben: Well, for those of you listening who really don't give a crap about obstacle course racing and would never do a Spartan race, this would still be interesting for you 'cause some of the obstacles are actually kind of cool when it comes to cool ideas for any type of a little fitness crucible. But some of the cool ones were like one at the top. They took out atlas balls, like the big atlas balls, but they put handles on them and you did like a farmer's walk with two pretty heavy atlas. And the interesting thing about these heavy obstacles is the really fast mountain runners who you don't think you're ever going to catch, all of a sudden you get to an obstacle like that they're doing burpees 'cause they can't even pick up the rocks off of it. So that's what I like about Spartan is the race can kind of go back and forth.
Justin: Levels out a little bit, huh?
Ben: Yeah. Another cool one is called the “ape hanger” where there's a giant moat and it's about 40 degree water and you climb a rope up to these monkey bars. But they aren't just monkey bars, they go up in a pyramid, like up, up, up, and then down, down, down. And at the very end, whether or not you make it or you don't make it, you still have to drop into the water at the very end. So it's kind of unfair. Like even if you if conquer the obstacle, you're still dropping into the water, thank you very much. That was an interesting one. They had another one that…
Adam: The bucket carry one looked crazy. That looked like that was challenging. I think you had to carry it down and up the hill?
Ben: Well you guys have been to my house. You've seen that driveway in my house. Like for me, I'll just carry sandbags up and down that driveway. That's easy peasy. I'll walk out my front door, my workout is carry the sandbags up and down the driveway 10 times, do the monkey bars at the top. So I like the obstacles. Another interesting one is they took what's called a twister, which is like monkey bars that rotate. And so you would go across the monkey bars that rotate, and then there's another set of monkey bars, and then another set of twisters after that, like a complete grip destroyer.
Adam: The handles spin when you grab them?
Ben: The handles spin, yeah.
Adam: Oh, wow.
Ben: Yeah. So they're very good at coming up with, they're not as good at the corporation Tough Mudder. You go to a Tough Mudder, they literally spend thousands and thousands of dollars on one single Tough Mudder obstacle and it's like a circus. Like they have one called “the birth canal”. It's these long slosh pipes filled with like pink goo that you crawl under like you're literally coming out the birth canal.
Justin: I'm in a vagina!
Ben: Spartan's more known for little wood splinters, and barbed wire, and cheap ass walls, and stuff like that. So Spartan's a little bit more Spartan-esque, Tough Mudder's more like a carnival of obstacles that they put a lot more money into. Both are fun. Spartan's more like a race, Tough Mudder is more like an experience over there…
Adam: I was talking to one of the pros from Kuwait. I don't remember his name. Do you remember his name? Really nice guy. And he's just done, he's in the forces. What does he do…
Sal: Special forces for Kuwait and he competes in these obstacle course races all over the world.
Adam: All over.
Sal: All the organizations, and he was telling us all about 'em. And he was saying how the Spartan races, you need to be a really good runner to do well in them. Whereas the other obstacle course races may benefit, or may be better for someone who's stronger upper body, can climb better, and stuff like that.
Ben: Yeah. I have two thoughts on that. There's three skills that you need to be a good obstacle course races. Especially in Spartan. Number one, you need to be able to run. Number two, you need massive lactic acid tolerance because you need to do an obstacle that generates a lot of lactic acid 'cause the obstacles are very glycolytic. And then right after you finish that obstacle, you need to be able to start running again and buffer the lactic acid and move the blood back into the legs. So for your training for something like an obstacle course race, it's concurrent training really. Strength, endurance. So you're on the treadmill, to the weights, back to the treadmill, to the weights, to the bicycle, to the weights.
The other thing is that they had a massive amount of what would be considered cheating yesterday. And the reason for this, and I had a very interesting discussion with some of the referees about this yesterday, in a lot of the international competitions they don't have a lot of referee so the guys will be able to just like fill their buckets half full, maybe just grab one sandbag instead of two sandbags. And so yesterday in the race they had all these international athletes who, they aren't used to people actually checking, and some of them had to do the bucket carry three times 'cause they filled their bucket and it wasn't a full enough, they do the whole freaking loop, come back, “Nope. Sorry. Do it again.”
Adam: And they would wait for them to get back…
Ben: Yeah. So the US races are known to be a little bit more of a stickler in terms of you having to do what you're supposed to do. Now I'm actually, I'm supposed to go back over to the finish line and do the announcing. NBC's doing like a big Facebook Live event where they're doing a big finish line ceremony for the race and I've already agreed to go back over there and announce for that. However, Brock here, hello, Brock.
Brock: Hello. Hello.
Ben: Okay. So I decided that I wanted to ask you guys a bunch of questions that would probably make you want to punch me in the face. I told Brock, I said, “You know what? I've got some uncomfortable questions that I want to ask these guys, but because I know I'm not going to be able to be there,” so for those of you listening in, you're about to hear the MindPump guys squirm.
Ben: However, you're also about to hear me completely disappear off to my next appointment while these guys squirm. Now Brock, if they wind up like tying you up and tarring and feathering you, hanging from the ceiling…
Brock: Hey, this is not me. You guys…
Ben: I take full responsibility, I feel really bad about it, but it'll be good. It'll be good podcasting.
Brock: I'm glad you feel bad about it. Thank you.
Ben: Yeah. I feel horribly about it.
Adam: It'll be good radio.
Ben: So anyways, Brock's got a list of questions that I wanted him to ask you guys, I think you'll find them quite interesting. I know that you guys are all about like radical honesty and sheer brutality on your podcast, and I'm sure this is going to come back around to bite me in the ass, but anyways, so I'm going to boogie…
Adam: We'll do a follow-up.
Ben: And I'm going to literally just like run back across the golf course and go back over to the finish line. But for those of you listening in, prepare to hear the MindPump guys squirm-slash-dish out some amazing advice.
Adam: Right on.
Ben: And Brock is going take this thing over.
Brock: I'm taking over.
Ben: I'm going to rock and roll.
Ben: So, alright.
Sal: Alright, brother. Thank you, man! Love you, brother! Good to see you again.
Ben: I'm going to leave my own podcast now. Alright. Later, guys.
Adam: See you brother!
Justin: Let's do it, man.
Sal: Alright, Mr. Brock. Take us through the gauntlet of questions.
Brock: I want to remind you, these are Ben's questions, not my questions. Even though I'm asking you, these…
Adam: Were you there when he was trying to put these together?
Justin: You seem like a nice guy.
Brock: I'm Canadian!
Justin: That's what it is! That must be it.
Brock: That's always my excuse for being a nice guy. I can't help it. Yeah, he dictated these to me. I typed them down, I took some of the swears out and stuff to make it a little bit more friendly. But the first question, an easy one. You guys have a killer recording studio. Why have you not swapped out your couches ala Kelly Starrett's advice?
Sal: Why? We should stand?
Justin: He wants a standing podcast!
Adam: So let's talk about this.
Brock: Or treadmills. You should be walking.
Adam: I'll never forget the first time that we showed up to Ben's house.
Sal: Oh, yeah. That was a good story.
Adam: Right. We showed up to Ben's house. And aside from him making us bale fucking hay or carry hay the first time we roll up to his house, but we get into his little room where he podcasts at, and I'm looking around and I'm like, “There's no seats in this place.” And I'm thinking, “Is this guy not going to let us sit down? We're going to stand?”
Adam: We've never podcasted standing before. So, we did. We stood the entire time.
Sal: And then we had dinner. And we all did sit down, we had chairs. But Ben, he perches up on his chair like a freakin' bird, like a prehistoric, he's like just squatting down. And he's eating with…
Justin: And he's feeding himself with his hands.
Sal: And we're like, “This guy's awesome.”
Justin: He is interesting.
Sal: The entire goal and purpose of our recording studio and our entire media facility is business. It is for business. And so we have a lot of guests that come in from all different walks of life. We want it to be comfortable, we want it to be a place where we do that. We sit down and we conduct business.
Sal: Yeah. Inviting and all that stuff. So although we are a fitness podcast, we also want to make sure that we're kind of a little normal in that sense.
Sal: Inclusive and normal in that sense 'cause we're trying to build relationships and build a good business.
Brock: And nothing says friendship like tight hip flexors. (laughs) Come on over to our place! We'll tighten your hips.
Adam: Or nothing says like showing up off of a flight from four hours or across the country and, “Hey, you're going to stand for this entire podcast.”
Sal: Let's do some squats while we podcast.
Brock: Speaking of Kelly Starrett, he spoke at a conference last year that I was at and I was watching him just sort of mingling like he, nobody knew who he was, nobody knew his face, so he was just mingling around in the corridors and stuff. And he stood there, he pulled his phone out of his pocket, held his arms out to the side, rotated his arms backward so his shoulders went nice and down, went down into a full squat, put the phone right in front of his face not down by a stomach so he's cranking his head down, held the phone right up, and he worked like that for like a half an hour. I was like, “Damn. That guy he doesn't talk about it. He really, really does it.”
Sal: Or he was in front of a lot of people.
Brock: He knew I was watching. That could be the other reason.
Justin: Sal has a point! Sal has a point!
Adam: He looked pretty comfortable in them fucking couches when we were interviewing him.
Sal: I will say this. You do find a lot in the fitness sphere, in the fitness world that we all work in is what, I'm going to invent a term right now, I'm going to borrow it from Paul Chek. He talks about spiritual righteousness, but I'll talk about fitness righteousness. And these are individuals in our space who, they'll walk around with blue blockers, and technology, and they're going to squat everywhere, and they're going to stand and stretch. We've had guests like this. They'll come into our studio and they'll do all these different movements and stretches while we're just having a normal conversation.
Justin: It's all about the culture of it, right?
Sal: And it's like, it's almost like, it kind of becomes a show a little bit.
Brock: Yeah. It's a performance.
Sal: And I don't know if it is or if it isn't, but it can come across that way, and because we're a podcast, which is communication, we're very careful to not show that kind of righteousness to people. ‘Cause sometimes you do have guests who may be more in the business side who aren't so much on the fitness side and they may want to have a burger. You know what I mean?
Brock: A burger? Good lord! Alright. Well, I think was a good answer to that one. So let's move on to the second one.
Sal: I bet they get worse, don't they, as they…
Brock: They do.
Justin: Yeah. He's starting nice.
Sal: I feel like that was easy.
Justin: He's going down the totem pole.
Brock: At one point, like the seventh one he gave me, he's like, “I'll put this one near the beginning 'cause it's a little easier.” So last night, actually two nights ago at this point, we went to a talk with Cal Fussman and he talked about having a “Why”. So Ben says, “Why are you guys doing this podcast? Other than to, of course, take over the podcasting world.”
Adam: That's a great question.
Sal: I want to get new rims for my Jetta.
Adam: I just finished reading Simon Sinek's “Find Your Why”, and we just had a meeting, I don't know, maybe a couple weeks ago and we were talking about when we first started this, I think we were very clear about our why and that was a major focus and topic. As the business grew, we've become focused on managing employees, and working on growing, and all these other things become important, and I think it's extremely important to remember why we started all this. And I think the main reason why we got going is because we saw a major division in fitness. I still see it. I mean I see it this weekend when we're up with the Spartan race.
People tend to want to be in a camp, they want to identify with something, and the fitness industry loves to put us all in boxes 'cause it's easier to market to us that way. And we really wanted to get rid of that, get rid of all these dividers amongst all of us. We're all in search of a better version of ourselves, and some of us find that through obstacle course racing, some of us find that through yoga practice, some of us find that through ripping heavy ass weight off the floor, and I think there's something to take from all of them and I don't think we should get into this debating over who's modality is better than the others. I think what we wanted to do was to help educate people on all of them, and explain the benefits and the drawbacks of all of them, and I don't think there's a lot of people doing that. I think a lot of people tend to kind of stay in their world of what they like, or what they like to speak to, or what they identify with most, and I think we're always trying to challenge ourselves to come out of our comfort zone.
Justin: Yeah. I think that, and also, I mean we're just trying to have fun. Like we're trying to bring a different kind of energy into this industry and make it sort of presentable in a way where the general public, the masses are going to gravitate more towards it because it's entertaining. So how can we get the general public who needs to hear, like your Kelly Starretts out there, your Paul Cheks, like these kinds of people that would never, they'd never be exposed to them otherwise. Like how can we get their attention? So we have a little bit more of a secret sort of flavor with that and we're just trying to be more fun, and loose, and not so dogmatic and rigid in our approach or the way that we even talk. Like I mean we're loose cannons, and that's just how we roll.
Sal: At the end of the day, we want to influence the fitness industry for the better. And the three of us also understand how important effective communication is, or as other people might call it, sales, how effective your ability is to sell your ideas. And it's just the reality of life that the people winning the game or winning the war of selling ideas in fitness are the ones that are selling shitty ideas, and they're winning, bad ideas, the “30 days to get ripped”, and the “skinny tea”, and the horrible fitness advice. And so we want to change that, and we know that we need to be entertaining, we also know that we need to be able to sell the ideas well and communicate them well in a way that people want to listen, but at the same time sneak in good information and influence the industry as a whole in that way. It's a big why, but it is our driving factor.
Adam: Well, you see, I mean you pick on the skinny teas and people like that, but I see a lot of problem with even academia. The names even that we're rattling off, like I love all these guys, and you know who they are, you're a smart guy, we're all well-read in this, but we're not the majority, we're the minority. And a lot of the guys that are putting out really good information for us doesn't connect with the average person that doesn't understand, they don't understand pronation, an external rotation, and protracted shoulders, and lower cross syndrome. That just goes right over their head.
Brock: They shouldn't have to know what that is either. Everyday jobs don't require knowing these terms.
Adam: Right. And so guys like us that are passionate about fitness, we connect to that. So we love these brilliant minds, but these brilliant minds really aren't, they're not impacting as many people as you think they are, they're not reaching the people that really need help and real advice. They're reaching more of the rest of us. They're like, “Oh, man. That's really good. That's a great book. That's great information.” We're going to use Kelly Starrett, and I love Kelly, but I mean his book, like “Supple Leopard” is amazing, was amazing read for all of us, but how many other average Jane or Joe pick up that book? It's like the Bible for fitness. And like the Bible, it's got amazing content in it, but some people are just never going to pick that up and read it. And so we've tried to entertain people and educate them at the same time, and we know that the entertainment side and the fun side has to be a majority because, like Sal said, those are the people that are winning right now, the people that are purely entertaining, giving no good information are getting a message across better than some of the people with some of the best advice.
Sal: I like to give the example of Carl Sagan. Carl Sagan did more for physics than a lot of the brilliant minds before him, and it was because Carl Sagan was really good at communicating it. You watched him on TV as a kid. How many people got into science because they watched Carl Sagan on TV, and he was just so compelling and did such a good job of communicating it. So it's very important that we understand that and focus on that, and we want to master that. MindPump is trying to master the whole communication, how can we communicate this in effective ways, how can we mold and shape the industry so that people get the right information, so that people actually become more fit, become more healthy as a whole, long term.
Brock: Everything that you guys have said make complete sense to me, but the marketing guy inside me is just dying. Because when you're trying to, the reason that some of those people are winning that we were talking about is because they have a really specific message and is really easy to market, and really easy to pin down, and really easy to…
Adam: I'm going to challenge that.
Justin: There is no spoon. How about that?
Adam: And here's why I'm going to challenge that, because that's like business school from 1990. And we're in a world now…
Brock: Funny. That's when I went.
Adam: And you know what? It was so true. I remember one of the first times we were talking to somebody, building this business, everyone's like, “Well who's your niche? Who's your market that you're trying,” what's going on is we have the ability to reach so many people and connect to so many people. The rules are different now. It's not like it used to be. You don't have to pigeonhole yourself to only appealing to one audience. Why can't I speak to somebody that's 20 years old, a young kid who's totally entertained by these things, and also still reach and touch the 50 to 60 year old. I think when you look at our audience, that's what it looks like.
Sal: Well, I think maybe you're thinking it's going to be just us three. The three of us, we have the podcast and we are the loudest voices of MindPump right now. But in the future, we're going to have other people who are going to represent our brand who are going to reach these other audiences. ‘Cause we're not stupid. We know that as good as we are at communicating, me, Adam, and Justin are not going to connect with every niche market or whatever you want to call it in the fitness industry. But MindPump Media is looking to reach all these people and looking to reach them, perhaps, through different mediums or different communicators.
Brock: Yeah. I guess my thought is on iTunes alone, there's 380,000 podcasts.
Sal: Wow. I didn't know that.
Brock: So if you're not casting a more narrow net or you are being a little more niche, you're competing with 380,000 thousand other podcasts, and the health and fitness division of those 380,000 is quite big.
Sal: So I'll give you a great example of what you're talking about. So let's say MindPump started, so we started two and a half years ago. Let's say we named our podcast Keto Podcast. I guarantee you we would've gotten way more downloads early on.
Sal: Because it says “Keto” in our…
Brock: Actually, probably right now because keto, I think, is hit, it’s pinnacle in like sort of the general public.
Justin: [0:28:43] ______ to Paleo. Real quick.
Sal: Sure. So we would have probably gotten more hits right off the bat. And then what? Like now you're screwed. You're fucked.
Brock: Now you're stuck.
Sal: How are you going to grow beyond that?
Brock: When the next thing comes along.
Sal: Exactly. How are you going to grow beyond that? So I understand what you're saying, I just think…
Justin: It depends on how big your vision is for your company.
Adam: We were thinking way, way bigger than…
Sal: In fact, when we named our show…
Justin: Our vision's a lot bigger.
Sal: In fact when we named our show, it's funny you say that, we actually had a long discussion about the name of our podcast because we knew we were fitness but we didn't want to name it something that was so fitness that we were going to be screwed in the future and we couldn't talk about other things. So that's literally why it's called “MindPump”, because…
Brock: It's a great name. It is.
Sal: Because we could go a lot of different directions with that.
Justin: It worked out somehow.
Sal: Yeah. It did.
Justin: It's better than “The Bro Show”.
Adam: We tried that one. It was stupid.
Brock: Oh, really?
Adam: No. It wasn't…
Sal: We were going to call it Justin's podcast.
Justin: Just Justin Show.
Adam: No, I think a lot of companies, they're not even companies, a lot of small businesses make this mistake of, if we would've, we're trying right now and this is already something we think about, detaching ourselves from a lot of the things that we do currently right now, the podcast, hundred percent, is us. But if you watch our YouTube channel, every single day we drop a new YouTube video, and majority of that is a collaboration with one of us with somebody else, and there are people that we think are giving really good information that not enough people know about them and we're trying to provide that to the audience. We don't want it to be about us, we don't want this to be the Adam, Sal, and Justin Show, it's MindPump and there's going to be a ton of different people, and minds, and ideas underneath that and we're going to go all different directions. So I think yeah, when you're first starting, people think that's crazy and it's not focused enough, but we're pretty crazy.
Justin: We are crazy. That's our brand.
Brock: That's an amazing answer because it leads right into one of the other questions. I'm going to jump over a question from Ben that leads really nicely into this one, which is: Do you think MindPump can become a business on its own or do you think you need to add more? And then he added, “Do share your secrets.”
Adam: Well, I mean MindPump is a successful business right now making its way into being a good company, and so it's already a standalone successful business. And if we were to just do the podcast, we could all survive, make good money for all of our families, and have a good time, and enjoy…
Brock: Really? The podcast is doing that well?
Brock: Sorry. I didn't mean to sound surprised. That wasn't an inadvertent diss.
Justin: I mean look at his house! C'mon, man! C'mon, Brock!
Brock: Yeah. You guys live in a beautiful place here. Strange art though.
Justin: It is weird.
Adam: Yeah. No, it does well, like I said, it's a business transitioning into, and it's where we make all our money right now. We turn down advertising money for almost two years, and even the advertising money that we make now, we don't even look at that as real revenue for us. Most of the revenue comes from all of our program sales and the podcast is the top of the funnel on that. Oh, if you were to look at the podcast in advertising money, that's definitely not enough to support the team that we have for sure. And I think that's the mistake a lot of people that get into podcasting think, they think, “Oh, if I get a great podcast and a lot of listeners, I'll make a few hundred thousand dollars a year just in advertising…”
Brock: Yeah. That's always the goal is like get enough downloads so that I can get some advertising.
Adam: Right. And that couldn't be further from the truth. And it's funny that by the time we actually were making really good advertising money, it didn't matter anymore. We'd already built the business, and so…
Sal: Yeah. With social media, with podcasting, with all these different mediums where you can build your business, I think the paradigm that everybody accepts is get a ton a ton of followers and then you'll make money. So get millions of followers. That's all you got to do is get millions of followers.
Brock: That's all.
Sal: Getting millions in followers is a lot more difficult than people think. In fact, it's extremely difficult and extremely rare, and you can pretty much count on the fact that you won't. However, if you have a good message, do a good job, and you have a little bit of talent, you can definitely get thousands of people to follow you and you can get thousands of people to value your information and what you have to provide. And if you can do that, now you've got a successful business if you do business with those fans directly rather than counting on the sponsorships, you know what I'm saying.
There was another podcast, I can't remember the name, I think it was “Entrepreneur On Fire” or something like that, our show was much bigger than their show in terms of reach or whatever, but his fans were very loyal, he provided quality information, and he sold a high ticket item. I think he sold, it was like a $5,000 course where he would help you with your business or whatever. You don't need very many customers when they're going to pay, give you $5,000 dollars for this intensive kind of coaching or whatever. And he was very successful as a result. So I think most people, a lot of people, if you got a good message, you got a little bit of talent, and you do a good job, you can get those 10,000 followers that really like your information. Don't worry about sponsors 'cause the sponsors, you get millions of followers, sure you're going to make money off a sponsor. But until you get there, sponsors…
Justin: Yes. The community or tribe. And then you want to make sure that you're constantly communicating with them, you're constantly in contact with them so you understand what it is they want, what it is you're doing right, what it is you're doing wrong, and this is a constant conversation where you're altering your business accordingly.
Sal: Plus, let's be honest. If you really think about what you're trying to do, again we talked about the why earlier, I would rather truly impact 10,000 people in a way where it's meaningful than have 10 million people watch me and barely make any changes to anything. I really don't care about that. To be honest with you, I love the 10,000 people far more because there's also the shit that comes with the 10 million, like the fame, and the recognition, and loss of privacy, and all the bullshit that comes with that. I'd rather make an impact on fewer people, and you can do that. A lot of people can do that through these mediums.
Brock: Nice. Good answer. Good answer.
Sal: We got the answers, the questions beforehand.
Brock: That's where my phone went. I knew my phone was missing for a while.
Justin: I unlocked it. I have skills.
Brock: Alright. The next question from Ben is, and I think this is the one he actually warned you guys about, “Do you guys feel like you are muscle bound meathead podcasters, or do you really think you are going beyond the body to teach full optimization of body, mind, and spirit? And if so, how are you doing that?”
Adam: I don't think that the…
Sal: We look like, because we're…
Justin: That might be like a first impression or something.
Sal: Yeah. I mean we're muscular and we're good looking.
Adam: It's tough.
Justin: Lots of people revere…
Sal: Chicks like us and that kind of stuff.
Adam: It's become…
Justin: It's like every room we walk in, we own. It's weird. Is that what you're getting at?
Sal: We're super humble.
Brock: I think so, I think so.
Adam: It was actually something that I think, at the very beginning, was a disadvantage that has now become an advantage for us. When we first started, and nobody knew who the hell MindPump was and we were trying to get interviews, and meetings, and this and that, and you look at us at first glance, absolutely. You see three meathead-looking guys. And so we probably didn't get a lot of meetings, didn't get a lot of interviews, didn't get a lot of attention at the beginning. Well, now that we've been around for as long as we've been around and where we're at in iTunes, and with people, and interviews, and yadda, yadda, I think people realize that we can have some really intelligent conversations with some really intelligent people. And I actually think it's an advantage now because when we sit down, 'cause once you get moving this fast like we are with interviews…
Justin: They underestimate us.
Adam: A lot of times, and I know Ben's definitely dealt with this before where you're walking in an interview, you don't know shit about the person who's interviewing you, you don't know anything, and a lot of times, the little bit that you look at them in social media, you've probably got this idea in your head of what we're like. So it's kind of like going to a movie that everyone told you is really shitty, and then you get in and it's actually pretty good. And you're like, “Whoa.” Or it's actually really good. That's kind of like the impression that MindPump gets for people, 'cause they see, “Oh, I'm going to go into this,” especially when you get some really smart guys that come in here, they go like, “Oh. We're going to have bro talk, we're going to talk about macros, and PRs, and shit we're going to get into.” And then all of a sudden we take them on some journey getting into mindfulness and self-awareness, and they're like, “Whoa, where this come from?” And then it totally changes. And I feel you can hear that change in the podcast from the very beginning, these kind of like…
Sal: Oh, especially the early interviews. You would hear the interviewer all of a sudden, just like, “Oh!” We experienced it with Dr. Terry Wahls. I remember that was one of our earlier interviews. We're on the phone with her…
Adam: It started out rough.
Sal: And you could tell she was kind of like, “Oh, god. There's a couple of meatheads,” then we get into conversation and then we were having a great time, became great friends. Earlier when Adam was talking about how there's these different camps, when you look at wellness, you have your, if I were to say “wellness”, “He's a wellness expert,” you're expecting some dude with long hair, maybe a beard, kind of lanky, maybe a couple peace tattoos, smells a little bit…
Brock: You're describing me.
Sal: Okay. When I say like “muscle building”, this guy talks a lot about muscle building, you're going to picture some dude that's going to walk in kind of jacked, tight t-shirt, maybe a really good tan, whatever…
Brock: You're describing Ben!
Sal: But there's all these different camps and we look the way we do, but then we talk about other things. And really if you listen to our podcast, and here's the other thing you want to understand: our experience, the vast majority of our experience in the 20 plus years in fitness as professionals was dealing with everyday people that we trained as trainers and we all became extremely successful doing it in our respective fields.
We trained trainers for a very long time, so trainers would work for us, and we didn't train trainers to make them, to turn them into like the hardest training trainers, people are going to come to you, get their asses kicked. We understand what real success is when it comes to fitness, and that's longevity. And so we would teach trainers how to bring that to their clients, teach trainers how to correct imbalances, to work on the mindfulness aspect, to work around people's lives, to support people, and how to build their business. So that's really where we come from when we talk about what we talk about. So to be honest with you, very little of our show is talking about like the deadlift or the squat unless we're talking about how it's going to benefit most people, and then usually in combination with, well let's see how your body's working, let's talk about the mindfulness aspect, let's talk about nutrition, let's talk about how fat impacts you, carbohydrates can impact you, proteins, what organic means, what it means to fast. I mean, we talk about all of it because I think it's important to know all of it if you're going to seek out what's going to work best for you.
Brock: So what you're saying is Ben's question was completely off base 'cause you're already there? Kind of.
Sal: No. Nobody's there. I don't ever think anybody's there. It is a practice and a journey.
Adam: The way Ben worded that, it's as if I feel like that's more him. I mean that's Ben's show. Ben's show is human optimisation and he's always pushing the limits and trying things that, what's new, and…
Brock: I have no idea how many things he's injected into his penis at this point. Yeah. It's flabbergasting.
Sal: So last night we go to dinner and we see Ben, “Hey, what's up? What's up?” We love Ben. Ben's a good friend of ours.
Justin: “Dude, I'm doing the penis pump!”
Sal: He's got his kids with him and his wife over there, and we're at this like nice dinner and he comes up to us, and two seconds later he's talking about how he injected his penis, he's got this electronic pump on it, how it's grown, it's getting over this many inches…
Justin: I mean he was excited about it!
Sal: And everything feels great and this is awesome. I'm just like…
Justin: He just added like an inch.
Sal: This is literally Ben Greenfield. He is his own person.
Justin: Yeah, but we love that.
Adam: I think that's a lot of his focus. And we may dabble in that a little bit, but like Sal said, I think we're really focused on the average person. We know this. I know that 80% of the people that walk in, get a gym membership at the beginning of the year and say, “I'm going to change my life this year,” 80% of those people don't and they fail. I feel like…
Sal: This topic weighed more than that.
Adam: I feel like a lot of, the fitness industry, a lot of all the successful professionals out there, we're all battling for the 20% that actually kind of get it already and trying to say like, “I've got the latest new science on this,” or, “Oh, my way is better than this.” We're trying to really touch the 80%.
Justin: We're torn all the time because we're thinking, we're like, “Are we overthinking this? Are we really simplifying our message?” And like every video like we put out, we're always like, “Can we just put on a bicep video?” I'm like, “That's so lame,” but it's like people want that kind of stuff. Who are we to like do something so complex and cool it just feeds our ego when somebody just wants something simple?
Adam: And I think that is. That's a lot of what you see in our field is a lot of ego feeding, a lot of people wanting to put out stuff that they think is cool, or awesome, or great new science. And like Justin said, we still make this mistake. We think we're simplifying things, and then sure as shit we'll put something out that we think is just too basic and it's what goes viral, or gets shared the most, and more comments on it…
Sal: But it's good information. I'm going to tell you something right now. Here's what's interesting: as long as I've been doing this, the most simple basic stuff is the stuff that I still have to practice now.
Justin: You keep coming back to it.
Sal: Like breathing. Like the impact of breathing. That's something you talk to a beginner about, or at least you should if you're a good instructor, you talk about the benefits of breathing properly, and breathing patterns, and what that means in sleep, and what that means, and how to do a proper sleep routine, and all that. And then chewing your food, and how you eat, and being mindful around your food, these are the things that you need to learn as a beginner but you never master even as a master. You continue to practice these things and continue to get better. And when you've perfected your deadlift, and your squat, and you're running fast, and you've got good flexibility and mobility, at the end of the day, you know what you're going to be practicing? Breathing, sleeping properly, mindfulness, the same stuff that you have to do when you're a beginner. So these are the things that we like to talk about focus on.
Brock: It's true. And actually we get, and this is a little peek behind the kimono, as Ben likes to say, we do get a lot of feedback on the, yeah, sorry about that.
Justin: There's a visual there.
Brock: We get a lot of feedback from the audience saying, “Yo. I've been listening to you for like 10 years, Ben, and you're great and stuff, but I'm tired of hearing about all these million dollar procedures that I'll never be able to afford and stuff.” But they've been listening for 10 years and they don't say anything about unsubscribing. But it is funny that it can be overload really easy if you're going that far.
Sal: Here's the thing about Ben: Ben is the real deal. So I would not, if it was anybody else delivering his message, if it was some random dude and he wasn't living it, I'd be like, “You're full of shit.” This is Ben.
Adam: If Ben was probably almost anybody else, we'd probably tear into Ben. But Ben literally does live and breathe what he talks about. And that's rare. It's rare that somebody…
Sal: Yeah. He's legit. His integrity's, I mean that's just literally what he's into, what he's talking about, what he likes, what he believes in. So I mean you just gotta love the guy, and the information he provides, it's fucking awesome. But yeah, I think when you've been doing it as long as we have, you end up, it's like, “What do I talk about next? I've already talked about all this other stuff so…”
Justin: Yeah. We talked about that with him too. It's just like you do it so long, I mean he's doing what, seven, eight years, or nine years…
Adam: No, more than that. 10.
Brock: I think it's more than 10.
Sal: You're kidding me? Wow. Yeah, he was podcasting before. I mean when people were listening on their computers…
Brock: Yeah, yeah.
Adam: So I get that. I mean he's curious guy, he's out there seeking other forms of education and so he wants to bring that to his audience and include them in his process and all that. So it's just like, I could see how that could be a natural progression, so that's why I think it is still relatable on that level. It's like he's curious. He's curious, he's looking into all these different things.
Sal: If anyone's going to benefit from doing all that stuff, it's him. For sure. The guy's dialed everything in.
Adam: And I think that's the message that really matters and why if it wasn't Ben, we'd probably tear into that because a lot of those things that he does do is really not going to optimize the average person…
Brock: Yeah. It's not going to move the needle on the general public.
Adam: Yeah. The guy who's taking all kinds of drugs, who's not sleeping at night, has poor mechanics, but then he's sticking the thing on his penis to get like a little bit better sex drive, like, “Okay, let's unpack this a little bit and figure out where is the real value for this person.” But, like Justin said, I mean this guy, Ben has evolved himself and literally lives his brand. It fits him and it's cool, but I think when we talk to our audience, and as much as we think all that stuff is cool, it's like we tend to like back up and go, “Okay. We're starting to go this direction 'cause we like all this. Are we starting to lose some of our beginners and the stuff that really is going to help them and move the needle for them.”
Brock: I like that I've seen a lot of people, it's like you go to the start of Ironman triathlon or even just any triathlon and you see people who are easily like 20, 30 pounds overweight, but they've got a $10,000 bike. Come on.
Sal: Right. Exactly.
Brock: Like that's, where are your priorities? It would be so much easier and cheaper to lose 10 pounds than to take six ounces off your bike.
Sal: But it would require some work.
Brock: Yeah. That's true.
Adam: It's one of the most challenging things for us when we answer questions 'cause of course we get questions all the time about the latest supplement…
Sal: “Do you think a 2:1 ratio of leucine to isoleucine is better than the 3:1?” Like well, how much protein are you eating? What's your diet look like? How do you exercise? ‘Cause really I don't, it's going to make a fucking difference at all even if all those things are perfect or who knows.
Brock: Alright. We've spent enough time in that one, let's move to the next one. Oh, this is kind of a softball. When are you going to do a Spartan?
Sal: So we actually talked about this and we wrote down some dates, and then we…
Adam: To be completely honest, when we, before…
Justin: We may do it.
Adam: Before we interviewed Joe De Sena about six months ago, the three of us had actually openly talked kind of bad about obstacle course racing. I shouldn't say, like bad about obstacle, it's more about the type of person that tends to be attracted to that.
Sal: Or the behavior that it may promote. It might not be a healthy relationship with exercise.
Brock: What? People have unhealthy relationships with exercise? Is that possible?
Adam: So this is how we would talk about it, and this is again coming from our experience of the clients that we've trained, the thousands of people we've trained over years that tend to gravitate towards these type races, and that it becomes this vicious kind of cycle of you're training for a race or you're completely off the wagon, and the only way you're ever in shape is when you're training for a race, and that's what you connect to health and fitness. And if you don't have your races, you're probably not fit and shape.
Sal: We see this with marathons…
Brock: I used to train marathoners a lot and I could see exactly the same.
Sal: It becomes the punishment model, it's the binge and purge model of fitness. It's no different than the way people will treat food when they binge and they purge. It's like, “Now I'm not working out. I'm going to shit. I'm drinking whatever. Oh, man. I need to get in shape. Let me look for the next race. Cool. I'm going to train for that one that.” And then they beat their bodies up and it just becomes this negative cycle of poor relationship with exercise.
Brock: If they don't get injured in the meantime.
Adam: That too.
Sal: That's what it is. And your body doesn't benefit from it, your mental state doesn't benefit from it, and it's just not good for you. And it becomes this, again it's not sustainable. You can't sustain it that way. You go down that path and you'll end up, you know many clients I've trained that were high level college athletes? They were the hardest people to train, by the way. People who used to be these elite college athletes who then totally stopped for 10 years, then we start exercising…
Adam: ‘Cause they connect to being in the best shape of their lives when they were training like an athlete.
Sal: In fact to the workouts to them are a waste of time unless they're beating the shit out of themselves. They don't know how to…
Brock: Going for a walk is ridiculous. That's not exercise.
Sal: No! Because I used to play water polo and be in the water for eight hours.
Justin: Dude, I used to be one of those guys. For sure.
Sal: Yeah. And their diet, their nutrition is so, they don't understand nutrition because they understand eating food in context when I was in the best shape of my life, when I was burning 5,000 calories a day. So I can't tell you how many times clients will tell me, “I don't eat that much, Sal. I have fitness.” Well send me a picture of your lunch, and they'll send me, and it'll be chicken, rice, and vegetables, but it's a 12 ounce chicken breast. And I'll let them know, I'll be like you realize that that's probably three times bigger than the chicken breast that I, “Oh, what do you mean? I can't eat that little.” They have no concept of what a proper amount is for them to eat because their relationship to food and exercise was so poor and it was all around, based around their intensity with college sports. And you see that with people who train for these types of events. So when we met Joe De Sena, he came to our studio, great guy by the way, one of the best storytellers we've ever had…
Adam: Episode 590. One of my favorite interviews that we've done.
Sal: Excellent episode.
Brock: Yeah. Check it out, everybody.
Sal: He's super unassuming. We actually didn't know who he was. We thought he was just the host of the Spartan podcast, and found out five minutes later who he was and we started talking and fell in love with the guy. He talks about his story and why we need to sometimes test ourselves because we live in these climate-controlled environments, we never experience any contrast of temperature or comfort, we're always fed all the time. We don't know what it's like to feel exhausted. And he goes, “You know, we're so stressed out with our daily lives, so concerned about our e-mails, and texts, and phone calls, and bullshit. When you're on these races, all you're worried about is, “I need to finish,” or “I need to eat and to get some rest,” and you forget everything else and it made a lot of sense to us. And so we can see, like any tool that's effective, it can be used for good and some people can abuse it. And we were familiar with the abuse, Joe De Sena really opened us up to the incredible benefits. And now coming to the race, this our second time going to a Spartan race and meeting with people, there's a tremendous amount of benefit from doing these as well. So it's really how you use it. But they're pretty awesome. And they're growing for a reason now. They're exploding, and I think it's in…
Adam: Well I think it's because it's really what you just said, it's the counter to what we're seeing, great book to read, “Irresistible”, Adam Alter talks about the addiction to technology, and we've only had about 10 years of this Facebook, Instagram, Twitter-type world, and we really aren't seeing the long term effects of what could happen from these behavioral patterns. And I think as time goes, and where I think Spartan is an example of we've gone to the extreme of this comfort, being detached so much that nothing makes you more present than putting you in a situation where it's like, “Oh my god. I just got to get water. I just got to finish.” I mean you become so in touch with yourself and so many people are becoming more disconnected with themselves because we're becoming so plugged in. And I think that you're going to continue to see…
Sal: Oh, it's an escape, man. People are, well it I think it could be a tool to help you become present or it can be used as an escape. Either way, they're going to keep growing.
Brock: The one thing that I do, and this is probably 'cause I come from a marathon background, the one thing I really like about the Spartan races and the obstacle course racing stuff is because it is actually functional. Like you're using your body on many different planes, you're actually doing things that will potentially save you in, say, a zombie apocalypse or something like that, or in a fire. Like we have so many people who can maybe run for a really long time in one direction out there who are fit, in quotation marks, but the people who are coming to these kind of races tend to have that functional kind of fitness that is a lot more beneficial in the long term.
Justin: I like the direction a lot of this is going. I mean I can see that with these types of races and these events, like they're trying to really think about that. Like how can we add in strength elements in here, how can we add in endurance, how can we add in like…
Sal: Technique. There's a spear throw.
Justin: Like multiple planes, like different challenges that are going to take the body through its full range of motion and capacity. So I think that even like Ninja Warrior and all these types of things, it's like these types of training, I think people are gravitating towards it because we are sick of staying in that one plane. A lot of sports and things are very focused just in that aspect, but it is interesting to watch and it seems like people have a lot of fun going through it, and then there's a lot of camaraderie with it.
Brock: Yeah. The team aspect of it is really nice. Okay. Whoops, I lost my page. Alright. Ben's next question is: What do you think is the next big thing to take the fitness world by storm?
Sal: Yo, what's funny? We've been asked that question several times since we've been up here by other podcasts and…
Brock: Oh. Okay. Should we skip the…
Adam: No! It's…
Sal: It's a fucking great question.
Adam: It's a great question and…
Sal: We're actually talking about it right now, talking about the obstacle course racing. All of us, the three of us pretty much agree that mindfulness are being present in some way or techniques to do, to be mindful, to improve mindfulness or to be present are what going to explode next in the fitness industry as a direct counter to our lives, which are becoming more, and more, and more distracted, more, and more, and more busy, never being able to detach from our electronics. So…
Brock: Wait, sorry. Can you say that again? I missed it.
Sal: Yeah, so…
Justin: Ha, ha. Got that one.
Sal: Almost as good as the Krusty The Krab…
Justin: Krusty The Clown!
Adam: Krusty The Krab!
Sal: You could tell I got two kids. I got the two cartoons mixed up. But no, mindfulness. I think that's going to be the next big thing. But the fitness industry does a very good job of this. They will take something that's got some merit, it's got some value, and then they're going to turn it into shit, and they're going to package it, inevitably process it, and it's going to become another contest. I've seen this in yoga studios for example. Like yoga is a, traditional yoga is a mindfulness-based movement practice. But I've been to studios where you've got the competitive-ness going on, and you've got the these wealthy moms that are in there that are looking at me 'cause I'm kind of this big bulky dude and, “What's he doing in my yoga studio? It's kind of weird.” So I hope the fitness industry doesn't do that with this good message, but we think that's what's going to explode.
Adam: This message, I mean history repeats itself all the time right? This message is not a new message. It was around in the ‘60s, I mean we're seeing float tanks again and everyone's talking about yoga, meditation's been around…
Sal: Altered states of consciousness…
Adam: All this stuff we've seen before, well I haven't seen it, I wasn't in the ‘60s, but we know of it. And what's different this time is we need it more than we ever have. Back in the ‘60s we didn't have cell phones that we were sucked into and we're looking at all day long, and iPads we carry or we could just throw to our kids in the back of the seat of a four hour car drive and they just plug themselves in. If there was ever a time that we needed to learn to get reconnected to ourselves, I believe it's now, and it's going to get worse because we're encouraging all these tools right now. Tech is so cool and we're becoming more, I mean we all know VR is around the corner, right?
Brock: Oh, yeah.
Adam: VR's around the corner, and real soon here…
Brock: That's a whole new level of distractedness right there.
Adam: Right? Real soon here, we're going to have this, where people, it's VR, detaching from reality, it's going to be better than reality, and people are going to struggle with staying in reality because they don't like, they're so disconnected…
Brock: We saw that with World of Warcraft, and that was kind of a shitty game even. But people still like invested way more time of their life into that. I can't even imagine…
Sal: It's no wonder that the fastest growing diagnosis for mental, if you want to call it mental disorders, anxiety, I believe it's number one now in the US, it's exploding, prescriptions for anxiety…
Brock: It's so hot right now.
Sal: And again, it's a direct result of our lifestyle, and probably our diet, and our lack of activity, and all of the above. But it's just compounding and it's getting worse, and I think you're going to see more. As far as nutrition is concerned, I can even go that route, I think, just to be more specific, we're going to start seeing the anti-protein advertisements start to come, believe or not, now because we know super high protein intake can accelerate things like aging, in the right context it could promote cancer growth. So of course the fitness industry is going to take that and they're going to go the other direction with it. I think you're going to see more stuff on fasting, more twists on fasting, if you will, more supplements to support fasting, which is really ironic considering fasting means nothing. So you're going to see all these supplements like, “Take this powder while you fast. That'll help you fast.”
Justin: Well and I think to, we see everybody trying to disconnect from technology, disconnect from their phones and all that, and so there is the mindfulness element of it on that end of the spectrum. But there's always going to be the counter to that, which is to get outside nature, beat the shit out of yourself, feel something for once when all day you're just sort of in this hum where we're getting through the day. I'm just doing my work, I'm sitting down, you know. Like just becomes sort of on autopilot where certain events like this kind of shake it up. This is a new environment, this is hot, this is cold, this is uncomfortable. A lot of people are sort of seeking out more uncomfortable things and experiences.
Adam: 20 years ago, we would probably think that's kind of silly and dumb.
Justin: Now it makes sense.
Sal: I got another really good one. We've been told, this is mainstream now we're talking, we've been told for a very, very long time, well at first exercise wasn't a big deal, and then later on we understood that you need to exercise. It's good for you. And now we're hearing these studies that exercise by itself is not effective at all when it comes to weight loss. For the average person, this is important to know because most people workout 'cause they just want to lose weight, and we think about health, it's kind of secondary now. And so now we're told like, “Oh, all these studies show if you go and do all this exercise, you're not going to lose any weight. And the problem with that is because the type of exercise that they're looking at is cardiovascular. Cardiovascular activity, although it doesn't…
Brock: It's that medium cardiovascular too. It's not…
Sal: Well, any type of activity that is asking the body to become more efficient with its energy, first and foremost you do burn a lot of calories while you do it. But second, this signal that you send the body tells the body to adapt in a way that makes it more efficient with calories, a.k.a. slowing your metabolism down. So when they look at exercise, that's what they consider exercise. Nobody ever considers resistance training. And again, I'm speaking to the mainstream, with the media. They don't consider that. Resistance training alone, there is no form of exercise that does this like resistance training, resistance training alone sends a signal to the body to that says, “Prioritize strength over everything else,” and the side effect of that is a metabolism that is “less efficient”, or a.k.a. faster metabolism. So I think you're going to see a bigger push towards resistance training. We're already seeing it. Crossfit does a good job of introducing weights, or the big, big gross motor movements to everybody, especially to women. But I think you're going to see more and more, that's going to be the prescription. Whereas the old prescription was, “Hey. Everyday, do 30 minutes of just general activity everyday and then you'll start to lose weight,” or whatever. I think it's going to be resistance training…
Adam: We see this happening already in gyms. If those that have been around the gym for a long time remember what they looked like and what they're starting to look like now more and more, which is most big gyms had this huge machine area of all the coolest, latest, cool Nautilus and Hammer Strength machines, and you're starting to see those start to disappear and make more room for more squat racks and more deadlift platforms…
Sal: And grass, and sleds…
Adam: And kettlebells and like we're starting to see that happen, and it's really exciting. It's also why MindPump talks a lot about Indian clubs, and mace bells, and kettlebells, and a lot of these unconventional tools that have been around forever that are incredible…
Brock: Much longer than Nautilus.
Adam: Right. And so I think we're starting to see that, I think it's for the positive that we're moving in that direction and we're trying to stay ahead of that curve. We've got a ton of videos out on all those tools and we promote that and try and teach people how to utilize that. So I think you see that happening already if you're familiar with a lot of the gym layouts.
Brock: So we've got heavy lifting, we've got mindfulness, we've got, what was the other one?
Sal: You're going to start to see people start talking about low protein. That's a little more specific.
Brock: I may have to buy different yogurt. Damn it! C'mon! Alright. Well those are good answers. I think were really…
Adam: Ben is being easy, man!
Sal: Yeah. These aren't that squirmy.
Justin: I thought these were hard.
Adam: I thought he was going to get personal and get all into our…
Sal: Tell us about your father.
Brock: Okay. Here's a good one. Okay. Ben says, “What is the most unhealthy and hypocritical thing that you have done within the last month?” And each one of you is supposed to answer that question.
Adam: That's a good question.
Justin: I like that.
Sal: We'll let Adam start with that. (laughs)
Adam: Whoa. Wait a sec. That's not fair. There are so many for me.
Justin: And then we'll chime in and see if he's being honest.
Adam: Well, I first have to address the question because the reason why I wouldn't call it hypocritical, although I know what he's looking for, is 'cause I'm very transparent with anything that I use, or do, or know that's a struggle for me. We talk out a lot on artificial sweeteners because we're learning more and more about them and how not ideal they are for our body.
Brock: And when you say artificial sweeteners, do you mean like things like Stevia, all the way to aspartame, or…
Sal: Artificial are the synthetic ones.
Sal: Although Stevia is on the fence. I think you're referring to like sucralose, aspartame…
Adam: Yes, yes. And I love a Diet Coke every now and then. I will, if I'm at a coffee place and I've only got options like Splenda or something, I'll put it in my coffee. So absolutely in the last month, I would say artificial sweeteners are, now the thing is and what I'm try and tell people all the time is there's all these big rocks that we have in our health and wellness journey, and I'm always trying to focus on the ones that make the greatest impact on me and I try to pay attention to when I make those choices, knowing that it's not the most ideal situation, I should probably have this, or this would be a better choice, but I really want this cup of coffee and I want to enjoy it. And for me, it's like, “Okay, if I'm going to do that, then I'm going to be mindful of taking it in right now.” And when later on tonight, when maybe I'm feeling like a Diet Coke with a drink that I'm having, I'm not going to have it because I know I did something like that. So trying to mitigate the damage if damage is being done from intaking that. So I would say if I was going to say something hypocritical I've done in the last 30 days, we openly talk out about artificial sweeteners and I absolutely have taken them in the last 30 days.
Justin: I think, well I'll go ahead, Sal. ‘Cause I know you'll go for a while.
Sal: I've got a long list.
Justin: It's long. Yeah, for me I think really we talk a lot about frequency and training, and for me like sometimes I'll get caught up where I just want to focus on hanging out with my family and I just want to like spend time with them, and so I always have…
Brock: That was a gasp, by the way.
Justin: Yeah. And really I don't feel bad about this, so hypocritical, call me whatever you want, but I've stepped away from the weights for a couple weeks, this is one of those things where, blasphemy right? Because all we do is we talk about training, and how to ramp it up and get that volume up…
Brock: Consistency, consistency!
Justin: Consistency, consistency. But my priority was like I want to spend time, I want to watch my kids play soccer, I want to go do these things with my wife. Like I'm spending so much time building this monstrous business right now that I just, I wanted to step out and take some of that time for them. But meanwhile, knowing I need to jump back in because I really need that for myself to be a better person to bring to them. So it's a struggle because it's just like one of those things where it's like push-pull, is this the right time for them. But I felt like I was taking so many things on that I wanted to give them that for now. So that's where I'm at. But I definitely want to get back in and like start the process all over again, but I definitely, I miss it. Like you step out, it's good, you come back, and then it's like you're experiencing it all over again.
Adam: I think we're all pretty good too though about stuff like this, which I love the question.
Sal: Yeah, it's a great question.
Adam: And I think not enough fitness professionals do this is, share this type of shit. Because if they're all being truly honest, like nobody is perfect all the time, nobody intakes that just the perfect amount of macronutrients every day or trains ideal every single day, and I think more people in our position should share the same struggles. And we try, and that's part of our flavor on the show, is we openly share something that we're currently struggling with. Like I know I need to be doing more of this, I know what I need to work towards this. But fuck, it's hard right now. And then we share that with people. And then we also share, so like the example I gave, that's why I knew the artificial sweetener is a good one, is because it's very much so in my mind right now, and that's kind of how I'm handling it right now is if I did it, “Okay, be mindful that I did it. Try and limit it.” Where in the past, I could not give a shit.
I would just coffee, sweetener, maybe an energy drink before I go workout, Diet Coke later on, and I'm in taking all this stuff that can't be good for me. Well how do I go from the guy who's used to having that all the time to someone who has none of it? Well, it's a progression. And every day I'm trying to be a better version of myself and I try and take snapshots of, “Okay, let's look at my diet or let's look at the things that I'm, what I'm doing or fueling my body over the last 60 to 90 days.” And am I a better me than I was the previous three months? And my goal is always to try and improve that. And if that means limiting some of these things that I know aren't ideal, and we like to share that I think. I think we do a good job with that.
Sal: Yeah. So for me, what's today? Sunday? Friday, I did a lot of cocaine and heroin.
Brock: There! That's what I was waiting for.
Sal: Nah. I'm joking. I'll tell you what.
Justin: Already messed up.
Sal: So here's how MindPump could be really hypocritical is if we became dogmatic. If I'm being truly honest, if we ever became super dogmatic, then that would be very hypocritical of us because we're not dogmatic with our message, and I'll give you a great example. So we're all talking about nutrition, and workouts, and what we, “I had artificial sweeteners”, “I didn't work out,” or “I ate that cupcake,” or whatever. Here's something that I think, two things. First, if you are dogmatic about your and fitness and nutrition to where it becomes religion for you in that sense, in the bad sense, dogma, you are not really exercising overall health and wellness. You just aren't. Orthorexia is an eating disorder where people, for example, where people will eat perfect all the time and stress out about their food…
Adam: You see this in the bodybuilding…
Sal: Bring them a lot of anxiety, and they don't have a good connections with their friends and family, and they don't do much for themselves because they're so focused on this perfect, absolute perfect nutrition. When you're looking at the whole ball of wax and you're looking at total wellness, it encompasses more, much, much more than eating the foods that are perfect for your physical body or exercising in an optimal way that's going to make you perform like the best athlete that you can possibly be. There's also the emotional connections with people around you. If I'm with my family or with friends and we're enjoying great time with each other, and I'm communicating with people, and work all connecting, and we're having some wine, or we're having some pizza, or some cake, or whatever, what's important that moment is not the the food feeding my physical body. What's important at that moment is the connections with the people around me. That's more important for my wellness. And there is a little bit of give and take, and that's a lot of what we talk about.
So it's hard to say what have I done that makes me hypocritical. I guess the only times I've been hypocritical is when I become too rigid and forgotten the big picture. Maybe I didn't do something with my kids 'cause I had to do my quick workout. And now I realize, “You know, what was more important at that moment was the time that I'm spending with my kids.” If you're looking for longevity with your wellness, you want to consider all of them. In fact I just wrote a nutrition guide that we're going to be releasing soon that talks about a lot about this, about you're at a Christmas dinner with your family and your aunt made her special Christmas pie, and you know you're so worried about your macronutrient and so you don't eat it, but you missed out on an opportunity for something that comes once a year with your family. So really if you ever see MindPump get super dogmatic and super religious about what we're doing, then we're being hypocritical. ‘Cause we really stand for the whole thing, and sometimes that means doing things that are not healthy for our physical bodies, but maybe healthy for other parts of us.
Brock: I don't know if Ben actually meant that to go so philosophical, but I'd like to think he did.
Adam: I think he knows us pretty well.
Brock: At first I was thinking it was going to be hookers and blow, but it went very, very philosophical.
Justin: We got it out of the way.
Brock: Okay. We've got only one question left, and this is actually a pretty easy one. Are you guys afraid of hay bales, afraid of Ben, or is there another reason why you haven't come back to Spokane?
Adam: Man! Hitting our heartstrings right there.
Justin: Hitting us low.
Sal: Nah. I love him!
Adam: Tell him he's too far out there, man. Out in the middle of nowhere. We absolutely love…
Justin: Tell him to move. Actually, he's got a rad house.
Adam: We love Ben. And hay bales, I grew up on a farm and used to lift them, so that was a great little twist that he did the first time we ever met. But yeah, he's a very very busy man. He couldn't even sit in this interview for longer than 15, 20 minutes. So I'm going to put it back on him. We have the huge media facility that we could shoot all of his content and our content, anytime he invites us up there and wants us to come up there, I'm pretty sure will hop on a plane and come see that man.
Justin: We'll make it happen.
Sal: Yeah. Ben's one of the… we've met quite a few personalities and people in fitness, and podcasting in particular, and Ben's one of our favorite people. He's definitely different. He's highly intelligent, he's eclectic, but he's genuine. And those are the people that I think we tend to connect with the most.
Adam: He has everybody's cell phone. Not everybody gets that, right? He has everyone's personal cell phone and we all talk to him on a group thread and we're in communication. We consider him not just a business relationship, but also a friend for sure.
Brock: That's great. And I think I've kept you guys long enough, so let's just let all the audience know as if they don't know already where, where can I find you guys?
Sal: So we're MindPump. You can find us iTunes, or Stitcher, or other podcast…
Justin: Google Play, whatever.
Sal: Yeah. Areas or whatever. Our YouTube channel is pretty awesome. We put a lot of effort into it over the last eight months. We post a new video everyday, so it's either like…
Brock: That's crazy. That's a lot.
Sal: Yeah. It's either we do five podcasts week and we also do seven YouTube videos a week.
Sal: And it's either fitness videos, so we break down technique, or we do correctional exercise, or we'll talk about different diets, or we do some kind of comedy…
Justin: Or it's me doing something stupid.
Sal: Yeah. So it's a great channel, so check it out. MindPump TV.
Adam: It's a cool time to subscribe to right now 'cause we're right, especially if you're a business person, you'll enjoy the direction that we're taking it. So there's a lot of effort put around the channel right now and a lot of entertainment. So we're trying to make it very entertaining and educating at the same time.
Sal: And fun. And if you're interested in checking out our programs, we've designed fitness programs for different goals and adaptations, whether you're trying to look like a bodybuilder, or you want to be like an ancient athlete like we like to say, or if you just want to build overall strength and muscle, or mobility, or whatever, we have all the programs available at mindpumpmedia.com.
Brock: Beautiful! Thanks guys for coming down the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast minus Ben Greenfield. But let's all get back out there to the 2017 World Championship of Spartan Racing. I know we're supposed to say that so I'm slipping it in there one more time.
Justin: Good job. Yeah.
Adam: Right on.
Sal: Excellent. Thank you.
Adam: Right on, Brock.
Brock: Bye everybody!
From the MindPump “Lake Tahoe Spartan Studio” at the 2017 Spartan World Championship race, Ben and Brock sit down with the guys from MindPump to talk OCR. In a surprising turn of events, Ben leaves the interview allowing Brock and the MindPump boys to dish behind Ben's back.