[Transcript] – An Ex-Amish Farmhand Millionaire Renaissance Man Spills His Insider Secrets To Getting Tough.

Affiliate Disclosure


Podcast from:  https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/2014/06/how-to-get-more-tough/

[00:0] Harry’s Razor

[0:50] Introduction

[1:23] About Tai Lopez

[6:35] How Tai Went From Being a College Dropout to Living with the Amish

[8:04] Why The Apache Indian Tribe Were Some of the Toughest People on Earth

[14:10] What Farmers and Ranchers Know About Toughness That We Don't

[17:22] How aligning your body with your natural circadian rhythms can make you tough

[35:46] Tai's top techniques for getting tough

[50:06] Tai's technique for getting through as many books as possible in as short a period of time

[1:04;47] End of Podcast

Ben:  This podcast is brought to you by Harry's which makes stuff you can shave with.  Visit harrys.com and use code Ben for $5 off your first purchase.

Hey folks, welcome to this special episode of the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.  As you may know, my podcast sidekick, Brock Armstrong is out gallivanting around Europe somewhere and I promised you that while he was gone I was going to go out and bring you some of the best of the best folks that I personally know.  Some of my mentors, some of the people who have taught me a lot of things that have really helped me to get to where I'm at in life and bring them on the podcast.  And today, I have one of those folks right here on the other line with me.  Now his name is Tai Lopez and Tai’s a really interesting guy.  He's an aspiring renaissance man and I would say he actually is a renaissance man.  He went from being a college dropout, living with the Amish, which he’ll tell you more about, to working on Joel Salatin’s farm, which he’s also gonna tell you about, to being a self-made millionaire before the age of 30.

He’s launched 12 multimillion-dollar businesses.  He’s a member of MENSA which is a high IQ society.  He’s a certified financial planner, financial consultant, chartered life underwriter.  He's got a ton of books.  I've been in his library.  He literally has 5000 plus books and he's gonna give us some excellent tips on books and how to enhance your ability to read books quickly and thoroughly.  He's been on Bravo's millionaire matchmaker.  His episode was the highest rated yet.  He is a frequent traveler.  He’s been to 51 countries on 6 different continents and he's a student of salsa dancing, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, classical piano.  He lives up in the Hollywood Hills where I happen to know that he has a little bit of a cold thermogenesis pool right off his front porch and he is just a wealth of knowledge.  You may have even seen an article that he wrote on bengreenfieldfitness.com which I’ll link to in the show notes for this episode called “50 Secrets Of The World's Longest Living People”.  That was an excellent episode but today we're gonna go way above and beyond living along and specifically what we're going to delve into today's is one of Tai’s specialties which is getting yourself to be tough and resilient.  Now, before I let Tai take things away, just a quick note, if we talk about resources, if we talk about books, if we talk about anything that would be helpful for you, I will make this easy for you.  Just go to bengreenfieldfitness.com/Tai.  That's T-A-I. bengreenfieldfitness.com/Tai and I will make sure I put references to everything that we talk about over in the show notes there.  So Tai, thanks for coming on the call, man.

Tai:  Hey, well thanks for having me.  I'm excited to be with the podcast master.

Ben:  Well, I'm excited to have the toughness and resilience master on the call.

Tai:  I don't know about that, man.  You probably are.  I’ve worked on it from the business standpoint.  You're the Ironman.  I try to keep in shape.  I played, I love sports. Believe it or not, I was one of the top basketball players in high school in the US, I played at one of the biggest schools and I'm interested in anything sports related and physical.

Ben:  Yeah.  Your dad was a bodybuilder, right?

Tai:  Yeah.  My dad’s one of the first body builders in America.  He was, it's a cool story, talk about resiliency might.  And I’m not that close with my real dad.  I didn't really know him too much growing up, but my mom got divorced when I was little.  He’s actually in prison when I was born and so my mom took me away but my dad had a good side and a bad side.  The good side of my dad is that he was supposed to be dead by 12 years old.  That's what the prediction by doctors was when he was born.  He had scarlet fever.  He was born in 1934 and right after the 1929 stock market crash and in Harlem, New York kind of poor and the doctor said, “Look. His heart is not good.  This guy's going to die at probably by 12.  So keep him inside.”  I don't think I ever told you this story, it’s a cool story.  He said, “Keep him inside.  Keep him away from the cold.”  And by 12 years old my dad was a sickly kid and he told me, finally he just got sick of it and just started going outside.  And he stumbled upon some magazines when he was 13 or 14 years old.  I don't know if it was Jack Lalanne but you’re talking about in the 40s, okay?  And he started picking up heavy weight and lifting and literally everything went away.  Every symptom, every issue.  He became Mister junior USA.  He had the world record bench press.  He was like 160 pounds, bench like 450 or something and that was a lot back then for starters.  He became Mister New York, Mister Canada, Mister Puerto Rico.

So you know right there you can see that the world has been full of BS about the value or the potential harm that comes from being tough, like there's a lot of solutions with being tough.  I tell people that, I got a million and a half people, to read a book a day and put it, and a lot of it's about business.  It’s not only about business but it's the same piece of advice.  If you want the good life which to me is health, wealth, love, and happiness, it's pretty much the same formula in all 4 areas whether it’s your body or your bank account.  People who make a lot of money, people who, win Ironman have more in common than you would think.  A lot more.

Ben:  You know, I want to get into some of those characteristics with you in a second, but first I'm kind of interested in your story.  I mean, your dad was a bodybuilder and you eventually wound up, at some point in your life, going in and living with the Amish and kind of getting your chops in terms of learning about life kind of in that scenario, but how did that all happen from you dropping out of college to getting into a place where you’re living with the Amish and eventually working on Joel Salatin’s farm?

Tai:  Well, so what happened is I was born in Southern California.  Born in Long Beach, Compton.  Kind of the ghetto when my dad was in prison, like I said my mom took me away, went back, I was raised kind of by my single mom and my grandma and grandpa then we ended up in north, like I said I played basketball in North Carolina in high school and I picked up this book.  I was always interested, it's interesting from a little kid, my grandma was an anthropologist at Yale and so I kind of have like two sides.  Like my dad was like from Harlem you know, kind of street smart and then my mom came from this side that's more academic and my grandma who was an anthropologist, loved native Americans.  So as a little kid I started studying them four, five, six years old.  I loved reading books.  I remember, it’s kind of like the Warren Buffett story.  I was like in 8th grade or something, I'm sorry, eight years old and I went to my public school library and they’re like, “We don't have any more books on Indians.  You read them all.”  Which ties into this tough enough because you've heard me talk about this cold shower story that I’m gonna talk about.  I got that from the Native Americans.  And Native American, I was fascinated by.

Ben:  Well, yeah.

Tai:  I’ve always been fascinated by the greatness and when it came, physical specimens, I just finished by the way, like I said I read this book a day and I just finished the book Geronimo, one of the newer biographies.  They say the toughest people known to mankind probably ever to live was the Apache Indians.  So anyone listening to this that wants to have an insane study on true grit and toughness, just read about the various Apache groups whether it's you know, Cochise, Geronimo, Victorio.  All those great chiefs.  I’ll tell you this little crazy, I know we’re diverging, but I got an ADD mind.

Ben:  No, this is great stuff.  This is great stuff.

Tai:  So you know, one of the things that from a little teeny kid, they would make you jog like 20 miles through, you know this is in Arizona, Northern Mexico, extremely hot and you have to hold a mouth full of water and when you got to the other side you’d have to spit it all out in a bowl or else you weren’t a man.  So imagine running through the desert 10, 20 miles and then have to spit the water out.  Another amazing story.  The Apaches, you know how they used the, there is wild horses and they were more, they didn’t really farm like the Navajo so the Apaches just had, they needed horses and, but they didn't raise them.  So you know what they would do?  Guess what you would do to get a horse back, what they would do, what they developed.

Ben:  I have no idea.

Tai:  They would run horses down ‘til the horse gave up on foot.

Ben:  Wow.  Like the persistence hunters who used to run down antelopes before they were into their spears.

Tai:  Exactly.  That was happening not that long ago, a hundred years ago.  People were doing this persistently.  So anyway, so I was a kid.  I was fascinated by, my grandma was into the pottery of Native Americans and I was a boy and rough and tumble and high testosterone and I was like, show me the fighting and Geronimo.  And Geronimo, at the very end, 12 men and about 20 women, the last band of Apache Indians.  It took 15000 soldiers to catch them and the final death count per Apache Indian killed versus US soldiers?  300 to one.  That's how tough they were.  So I was fascinated.  Then we moved to North Carolina which is more rural and I was in California and I was just doing, reading books but I read this guy, Tom Brown, I don’t know if you know who he is, but he’s considered like the number one survivalist.  He got in like Time Magazine for going to live in the wilderness with just a knife and coming back a year later weighing 25 pounds more than when he started.

So I was into this and my mom and my stepdad got into it.  We rented a little, we live in, I live in a mobile home actually growing up so I didn’t have a lot of money and we lived on this little farm we rented and my stepdad wanted to make some extra money and he got this book called “Pastured Poultry Profits: How To Make $25,000 On 10 Acres Of Land In 6 Months” and it was by Joel Salatin.  So we took a trip up to Joel Salatin.  I was in my senior year of high school and while we were up there, I don't know if I impressed Joel Salatin or he thought I was crazy because I talked a lot, as you can tell now, and Joel called on the way we were leaving, Joel said, because went up there for two days to butcher chickens.  He has this little, and this was before Joel was like the famous Joel in National Geographic and Smithsonian.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah.  I mean he’s all over the place now.

Tai:  Yeah, now he was in his, the young Joel and so he said, “I'm starting an apprenticeship.  Do you want to be the first apprentice?”  So I was supposed to, you know I graduated from high school, I was gonna go to college and I’m like, “Should I go to college?”  And my step dad’s like, “Ah!  College can wait, man.  Go to this Joel Salatin guy.”  So I wasn't even, didn't know anything about farming.  I just literally I remember, went up there and there I was in the middle of a really, I mean Joel’s a man's man, I will tell you that.  I've known Joel for a long time.  He was just at my house here in Hollywood.  We've been close friends and he's like a second father to me and I was thrown into, dude, if you want to be tough I’ll tell you the simplest formula.  Farm, man.  I did a talk once called, “A nation is born Stoic and dies Epicurean” and the Stoics, if you read Greek philosophy, the Stoics were people who believed in, forgoing present pleasure to get something bigger.  They were the modern day investors and Epicureans was, followed this guy, Epicurus, Episedis, I think his name was, who basically said, “Yolo.  Live for now.  Live for today.”  And I consider that the consumers in the modern world.

So if you’re listening to this, I mean the first path to set yourself apart in whatever you’re doing, I wrote this 67 steps to greatness.  I'm putting this together recently because then you see things online, three steps, I don't think it's three.  I have about 200 but I've narrowed it down to what I consider about 67 and one of them is you got to be an investor mentality, meaning stoic, you can always be an epicurean consumer and if you look in the world.  Look at food.  We're being hardwired and turned into consumers.  You know there's that old saying that I love.  I did a Ted talk and I talk about this, I said, this is an Amish guy, an Amish store.  I was living in Virginia and this Amish guy, Sam Chop, he said, “Tai, you know my dad told there’s three kinds of people in the world.  People who watch things happen, people who make things happen, and people who wonder what happen.”  And wondering is the state of the average consumer and in another way they put it, that old saying, it says, “If you're in a room and you don't know who the sucker is, you’re the sucker.”  You never want to be the sucker.  Look at the world now.  You walk into McDonald's it's what's called a pareto inefficiency.  The economist, Pareto, talked about pareto efficiency which is a win-win or pareto inefficiency and inefficiency is one party wins and the other one loses.  When you walk into McDonald's, I'm sure your audience doesn't like McDonald’s, but the consumers at large, they’re practicing epicurean, they're being taken advantage of.  They’re the loser.  They're not investors.  Investors forego so…

Ben:  Yeah.

Tai:  I got thrown into this Joel Salatin deal where it's like, this is like going back in time a hundred years ago, when the war you know, the year 1900, Ben, this is a crazy stat, 90 percent of the world was rural and 10 percent was urban.

Ben:  Wow, that’s amazing.

Tai:  One hundred years later, the time we live in now, it's reversed.  Ninety percent of the world is urban, 10 percent is rural.  Who do you think’s tougher?  Rural people.  That's why testosterone and sperm counts dropped in men anywhere from whatever stat you want to read 25 percent to 50 percent.  Guys like Joel Salatin, I was like these are men's men.

Ben:  Yeah and they've actually done studies on that I mean you chop wood and carry water, they’re the best ways to increase testosterone versus going to the gym.  It’s crazy. And my…

Tai:  Joel does that.  He has a wood burning stove.

Ben: Yeah, yeah.  My father-in-law is a sheep rancher and he's one of the hardest, toughest guys I know.  My brother is a logger and he logs in the middle of winter.  He gets up at 4AM and goes out in the frozen tundra and if he shakes your hand you know, right away that he could crush you with one hand.  It's nuts.  But Joel Salatin, what’d you wind up doing with him?  Like an internship or you just worked on his farm or how’d that work?

Tai:  Yeah, it’s supposed to go for summer for, he started an apprentice.  I was the first one.  It was a 3-month program and I ended up staying with him for two and a half years, started my first business with him, we became business partners but even back then when I was I think 19 years old.  So yeah, I really helped him, I mean he helped me 100 times more than I helped him but I was there at the beginning and he's built this huge internship apprenticeship but I was there.  I mean he has a 500-acre farm.  We had about 10,000 chickens.  I was in charge of 3,000.  I used to wake up at, here's a, I’m gonna bounce around here ‘cause you’re reminding me of different things, and that’s how my mind works.  But Joel’s an incredibly hard worker.  The only people I've ever met similar to Joel is the Amish because I met some Amish people when I was at Joel Salatin’s and after I spent two and a half years with Joel, I was fascinated by the Amish.  And I went and I lived.  I wrote a letter to an Amish guy, Daniel Stoltzfus in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, he said, “Come on up!”  Usually the Amish don’t let people in from the outside, but since I knew Joel and I knew a lot about farming I kind of was halfway, had a foot in the door.  So I took a bus up there to Lancaster.

I’ll never forget, I got out of this car or a bus on Bird-In-Hand was the part, the name of the town.  You walk, it was a long walk down to the barn from where I got off the bus.  So, I’m in the modern world in a bus and you walk down and I walk in the barn, and there's two mules hitched to a wagon with an Amish guy with his sons and they're sitting there barefoot.  They were shoveling apple pumice, apple peelings, to their cows.  And I remember thinking, “I just stepped back in time, 200 years ago.”  And I spent another two or three years with the Amish.  I was on a different community and those people, it's fascinating talking about tough.

So, among the Amish, there's one group of Amish people, that's the most famous for being even the toughest of all Amish.  So, I went and lived with them for a little while and I went to Scottsville, Kentucky.  It’s actually a group of Mennonites.  They’re old order Mennonites.  I get there and I stayed with this old bishop and they went to bed at 6:45 at night.  That was the first memory.  First memory was I got there, they’re like, “Do you want something to eat?”  And I was like, “Yeah.”  And they brought out cereal.  They made their own cereal.  They grew it on grains.  They didn’t really buy anything.  They were very self-sufficient group of Amish and they brought out raw milk.  And I remember going, “I don't know.  Are you allowed to drink this raw milk stuff?”  And the guy, he said, “I have 14 children.  They're all big, strong guys.  You'll probably be fine.  They all grew up drinking milk.”  So, I drink the milk and then we went to bed at 6:45 and interesting, I will tell you, man.  I’ve done everything in terms of sleep cycles.  The healthiest I've ever felt was Kentucky, going to bed at 7:00 PM.

Ben:  Wow.

Tai:  Because here's the crazy thing.  When you go to bed with the natural circadian rhythms, your eyes pop up.  I remember I heard a noise walking around that night and it was, it was like 3 in the morning.  I got up.  I thought maybe I was late.  It was 3 in the morning and I realize the wife got up to start putting the fire wood in the fire to make breakfast and so I went back to bed and then I woke up and it was like a whole town was awake.  I felt like, “Oh my god.  My first morning with these old order Mennonites that are famous for hard work and I overslept.”  And the Amish are very polite so they wouldn't wake you up, right?  So, I’m like, I jump out of bed.  There was wagons going by, kids playing outside the window.  It was like a nation was awake and I ran and I got my phone it was in my, I mean my, I didn’t have a phone, but I mean my watch and it was for 4:15 in the morning.  They were already out working, eating breakfast.

Ben:  Nowadays, you might see a paperboy, right?  In a modern urban environment.

Tai:  One, you'd see him drowsy but that's a thing if you go to bed early enough, you pop out of bed.  I'm pretty sure that even the remotest feeling of drowsiness is your body trying to tell you you're doing something wrong with your sleep patterns.

Ben:  Wow.  Did you know by the way, and this reminds me that one of the guys who is considered to be one of the toughest Tour De France cyclists that ever was out there was raised in this devout Mennonite family in an Amish community.

Tai:  Yup.

Ben:  And it’s Floyd Landis and he used to actually, his parents used to give him so many chores that he had to sneak out at like one or 2 AM in the freezing cold to go ride his bike.  And this guy wound up, you know like he was known among the, they call ‘em the “mofo of the mountains” in cycling because he was just so tough.  But yeah, he was a, he grew up Amish in a strict Mennonite family.

Tai:  They’re tremendous.  I mean when I woke up there, it was 4:15 in the morning.  First of all, when the Amish eat, they eat breakfast and then by 5:00, put it this way by noon, at that Amish community in Scottsville, you had almost worked eight hours already.  I mean a lot of Amish wake up at 3 in the morning and they work.  I mean the greatest compliment of the Amish, they speak a different language, I know their language it’s called Pennsylvania Dutch, it’s German.  The greatest compliment a man can ever give you is calling you a shafa.  And shafa means a worker and so it's interesting, the most interesting thing about the Amish relevant to this podcast is that the Amish, when you change the values of a society, people live up to it.  So, there it's in reversed peer pressure.  There's no teenagers wanting to be lazy because you're never gonna marry a pretty girl because everyone's gonna look down at you as a loser whereas in a modern society people are like, you want to just be somebody who’s chilling.

I mean as the consumer, we've been so wrapped up and lied to about this consumer and its negative reinforcement, whereas you could change the world if you could get enough people reversing what everyone values.  The second you make the values, oh, kids who can run like the Apache Indian's through the desert with water in their mouth and not spit it out, as soon as that is the hero instead of Snoop, Justin Bieber, everything changes.  People live up to societal expectations.  So, you need two things.  You need for the person who's listening to this, you and I, we need to do change inwardly, but at the same time you need enough momentum and as a society to change values to influence.  Young people are massively influenced by you know, there’s 25 cognitive biases of the human brain and one of the most powerful for young people is anything social.  So, we're queued in.  There's a good book by that Harvard professor, I think Daniel Lieberman, it's called “Social” and he talks about how our brain is finely attuned to any social cues.  That's why I tell people the greatest thing you can ever do to toughen up is not try to do it with internal resilience because the mind is weak on that.  They’ve already done studies.  Will power is finite.  Some people have more.  If you change who you’re around and your data will automatically rewire your brain to value different things.  You'll value toughness then.

Ben:  So you start hanging out with people who have that kind of Amish characteristic of being a worker.

Tai:  Exactly.

Ben:  What’d you call it, a shafa?

Tai:  A shafa.

Ben:  And do you think that in kind of our day and age from just like a social standpoint because I mean honestly, I know that you live in Hollywood.  You're not going to bed at 6:45 and get up at 4:00 AM anymore, at least I don’t think you are, but do you think that in our day and age there are things that we can still do whether it is a technique from the Apache Indian tribe or whether it's a technique that the Amish use to help make us more resilient and more tough, and if so are there some practical things that you're doing in your day to day life as far as like the way you live that you have kind of picked up from some of those cultures and some of the folks that you have studied?

Tai:  Well, yeah.  I mean look, it's like the 7 habits of highly successful people.  If you do what's in your control.  So, things could come out of our control, if you got kids you can't always be going to this but I’ll give you an example.  Something to do on the sleep thing that I try to do.  I'm not perfect at it but when I do it I feel amazing.  Once a week go to bed insanely early.  Like once a week just go to bed at 7.

Ben:  It’s so easy to do if you're out camping too like I actually just returned from a wilderness adventure race out in the middle of nowhere, out by Hood River, Oregon and once everything goes dark it's so easy to just go to bed like that.  It’s a little bit harder when you're in your home.  I try and keep my home lights dimmed a little bit at night to make that easier.  That's a really interesting technique.  You mean like 7:00, 8:00 just like when it starts to get dark you go to bed?

Tai:  Yeah.  Like on Fridays sometimes.  It's funny.  It's like a lot of people go out.  I’m just, I'm like you know, it's kind of end of the week, I’m just like, “You know what, I’ll make Fridays my night when I just go to bed early.”  And people are worried, “Oh, it’s going to throw off your rhythm.”  We're so messed up as a society, like our bodies most of ours are so messed up.  Let that be the air.  Let your body be an air off a little bit too much sleep.  You know one day a week.  I think you can do it.  If you can’t do it one day a week, one of my business partners, I used to work at G Capital, I spinoff an investment company and one of my business partners, he’s one of the smartest guys when it comes to money.  Retired at 30 years old, under 30 and he told me, “Focus on the five percent tweak.”  People always think when you talk about these things that life is this massive one time change whereas if you listen to like Warren Buffett, the great investor, who was mentored by some of smart people on planet, it can be a succession of little wins.  When in fact, there’s a good interview on YouTube with Warren Buffett and Jay-Z actually and he's like, and they ask Warren Buffett, “What did your mentor Benjamin Graham, one of the founders of stock market investing as we know it, teach you?”  And he said, “Well, you know he told me what you want to do is never make any big mistakes and then get a lot of first base hits.  If you get enough of little hits first base the next thing you know is you’re scoring a lot of goals.”  So when it comes to the toughness, you apply those same principles that, I teach in making money or I do as an investor of my business, do the same thing for your body.  Focus on a little wind.  Once a month go to bed at 7.  Start there and you proceed with this.  Once you can do it once a month.  And I think you got to have a longer end game.

I really see like, I've talked about this 4-hour work week kind of mentality when it comes to the business or the 4-hour body is that I just don't buy it, man.  I don't want to be known as the anti 4-hour week ‘cause I think Tim Ferriss is an amazing guy with a lot of amazing intentions but unfortunately I'm like, “Bro, we don't live in a world where we need the concept that there's 4-hour body.  We need Arnold Schwarzenegger.”  Now somebody might say, “Tai, you sound contradictory.  You're saying that you should start in little increments.”  And I am, but the end game should be where you’re going to bed at 7:00 three times a week.  So you set Peter Drucker the greatest of all business gurus of our time.  He invented the modern MBA program.  Great book “Managing Oneself”.  I recommend everyone to read it.  It’s a very small book.  It’s 50 pages or so, and it's applicable to anything whether it be becoming the next Ironman or making a billion dollars and he says, “build 18-month time frames.”

So with the sleeping thing, let’s say for example, be like the first month, out of the 18 months of change, one night I'm gonna go to bed at seven or eight or whatever it is.  And then you just proceed with the series and then by 18 months in, it's amazing.  That's why I said the danger of the 4-hour body, it's a good start but when the end game is I'm gonna live a life where I just got to work out four hours, I always say, my dad loved, he rewired his brain which let me bring up this Arnold Schwarzenegger thing because I think it's an insane thing.  I recommend to every single person on here, you ask the little habits, I was talking about going to bed earlier, you must read more.  You must download the external knowledge of the greatest people in the world we live in, a world full of myths that you learn inwardly.  You really don't study great people impacting change upon the world each of them learned outwardly.  That's why I talk about being a renaissance man.  I was just reading Jean-Jacques Rousseau, or Karl Marx, or Darwin, or Tesla.  They were all learning from outside.  So, one of things I've been, I read a book a day and I was reading this Arnold Schwarzenegger book.  It's called “Total Recall”.  It's the best one I've ever read about Arnold Schwarzenegger and then the fascinating thing that happened to Arnold Schwarzenegger.  Because as in terms of a man who lived out his dreams, I'm not sure anybody has ever done it better.  You know as a little kid he wanted to be the strongest man or you know, most fit guy in the world.  And he won seven times in Mister Universe.  Then he wanted to be a millionaire before 30.  People don’t realize he came here to Santa Monica, California, and was a self-made millionaire before acting.  He made a mail order weight business and learned to buy and sell real estate.

Ben:  Wow.

Tai:  Then he went on and said, “I want to be the most famous actor.”  He became the most famous actor.  Then he wanted to be the highest paid actor.  Then terminator 2.  He got 29 and a half million dollars and like 38 cents.  I saw the contract.  It's funny.  I’m like, “Why did they negotiate the 38 cents?”  I don’t know.  But then he said you know when he was a little kid he said, “I want to marry a Kennedy.”  When he's a teenager, he married a Kennedy.  “I want to be as high as a can politically in America.”  He did.  What was his formula?  I’m going to tell you what his formula.  This’ll blow your mind.  Five years old.  His father, who he had an interesting relationship.  Some good, some bad but the great thing about his father, his father said, “Before you can eat breakfast, son, you got to do five push-ups for me.”  I don’t know if you saw that recent Budweiser commercial where Arnold's playing ping pong with a guy and he says, “Do five push-ups.”  That's from his childhood because thanks to what his dad was doing rewiring the reward system in Arnold's brain to go “pain equals breakfast.”

Ben:  Yup.

Tai:  You see, if you can do those things on a small level, you can slowly but surely get tough.  It’s great if it happens at five but most of us it has.  And so the 4-hour work body idea is great for the first couple of weeks but you want to get to like Arnold Schwarzenegger where it becomes a lifestyle.  Where he's like, “Man, the burn feels like an orgasm.”  He was like working out six hours a day.  I saw that in my dad.  I remember my dad at 60 years old.  We one time came home from Disneyland or something at like two in the morning and my dad's like, “I got to do triceps.”  I was reading about “Rowdy” Roddy Piper.  I don’t know if you know who he is.  The WWF, no not “Rowdy” Roddy Piper.  The Iron Sheik, the Hulk Hogan back in that day and they said, Iron Sheik, they'd find, it’d be 4 in the morning.  They'd all be wasted from out clubbing.  They were like 20 years old and he would be in the corner doing squats, sweating and they were like, he spoke in the third person and they’d be like, “What are you doing?”  And he's like, “The Sheik has to be tough.”  You know, but he was rewiring the brain slowly but surely and if you got an 18-month timeframe, incredible amount.

I’m reading this Michael Jordan book, man.  I've read all the Michael Jordan books.  Read “Michael Jordan: The Life” that biography.  Same thing.  Incredible amounts of resilience.

Ben:  Yeah, he actually just sent out that book, I believe, in this morning's book of the day club and by the way, for those of you listening in, I’ll put a link to Tai’s book of the day club in the show notes for that Michael Jordan book.  By the way, what was the name of the Peter Drucker’s book?

Tai:  “Managing Oneself”.

Ben“Managing Oneself”.

Ben:  Hey folks, before we keep going with Tai, I want to tell you about this brand-new razor I've been using to shave with.  This is a high-quality razor blade that’s engineered in a factory in Germany for extreme sharpness and strength.  But despite it being manufactured in Germany it's not super-duper expensive.  The blades are about half the price of competitors and you can order it all online.  So this shaving system is made by a company called Harry's.  And if you go to harrys.com and use the promo code Ben, you save $5 off your first purchase and it's got totally guilt-free natural ingredients in the shaving gel with the blade it comes with.  You can even customize the blade with your own name if you'd like to and it's a really good shaving experience, a great shaving experience, but it’s a fraction of the price of any of the competitors out there who are producing fancy blades.  This one is actually nice and affordable.  So, check it out.  It’s at harrys.com and you can use code Ben to get five bucks off.  Order it now.  Just one time.  Check it out and let me know what you think.  Alright, let's get back to Tai.

It's a very interesting observation that you make about doing these little things everyday and then having that eventually become a part of your life because I see this over and over again in some of the toughest people that I know.  So for example you know Joe De Sena, the CEO of Spartan, he does 300 burpees every morning and that’s just his thing.  Another guy, actually a guy who I was just out at this adventure race with.  I was talking to his neighbor who is also out there and he's like, “Yeah, you know I'll get home from work.  I’ll be exhausted.  I’ll be laying on the couch at 9 PM and I’ll see this guy out in his driveway getting geared up and like a weighted vest and his camelback and hydration system to go off for a 10-mile run after work.”  And it's just these people, they go out of their way to do the hard things and I think that…

Tai:  But if you’re listening to this and you’re intimidated by that because you're just starting out?  What I say is what Joel Salatin told me, “Make haste slowly, Tai.”  Or the greatest of all basketball coaches John Wooden he says, “Be quick but not in a hurry.”  So, make a change today, but not in a hurry.  You're not going to get, you will hurt yourself if you try to become a Geronimo tomorrow.  But if you set long goals you'll be alright.  Stop being so, people, their sense of time, to read Stephen Hawking, the great physicist, time is an elusive, very hard thing to understand.  Make time your friend by saying, “You know what, I’m gonna be quick.”  Meaning I'm gonna jump on it, but I'm also going to know, I probably got some time in life.  If everybody, you know most people I think something like 70 percent of people who get a gym membership never show up more than once or twice.  I know why.  It's because they had an inaccurate timeframe.  Their timeline was messed up.  Look, when it comes to success, I’ve studied successful people for many many years.  I’ve been to 51 countries.  I’ve read 3, 4, 5000 books.  I’ve studied, you know I’ve had five men toward Joel Salatin, Allan Nation, a couple billionaire guys.  Now I'm looking up, I'm an investor I partner with, I go around the world find the best person in any industry.  I’ve got 12 business partners anywhere from guys making, one of my best friend making a million dollars a day.  Guys who are making billions and one thing that I see there is that they understand the right timeline.  So Warren Buffett started at 7, realizing he wanted to invest in stock market.  He wasn't a billionaire ‘til he was 57 and when it comes to body, the equivalent to me of a billionaire, in terms of the body is somebody like Arnold Schwarzenegger or somebody who's an Ironman.  This thing is done over tremendous, long periods of time.

Ben:  Yeah.

Tai:  So you got to be realistic here.

Ben:  I agree.  It's something that I recently mentioned in an article series I was writing on fat oxidation.  It takes about one and a half to two years and a minimum of six months before you even start to see changes when you begin to do something like restrict carbohydrates and expect your body to be able to oxidize fats at a fast enough rate to generate ATP quickly enough for you to be able to exercise hard on a lower carbohydrate intake.  And people, I get emails from people and phone calls from people.  They go low carb for whatever, four weeks or six weeks and then they’re like I don't have any energy.  This is all about patience.  I think it's a great point that getting tough is about patience.

Tai:  Absolutely.  That's why you got to…

Ben:  I’ve got another question for you too.

Tai:  Okay.

Ben:  Kind of related to the process of getting tough and patience, and another thing that I know you do and that’s this concept of temperature fluctuations in cold.  I know you’re a fellow kind of cold thermogenesis enthusiast.  How do you use that and where did you first discover that?

Tai:  Well, like I said I was into, I remember reading, I was probably 10, 12 years old and I’m reading one of these books on the Sioux Indians, the plains Indians and I read the story where a missionary when in middle and South Dakota or North Dakota in the winter and that place gets cold.  That's about as cold anywhere in the world and these missionaries show up and every morning, the mother, the Indian mothers would take their babies, young children, we’re talking about under 3 years old, cut a hole in the ice and make the babies go in there and take a bath naked, okay?  In the winter and of course the missionaries are like, “Why are you torturing your kids? What are you doing?”  And the women said, “No, no.  We're teaching them to be brave.”  That's what they said and now we know, in addition to the mental rewiring, because for sure bravery is built over time we know this, Entrepreneur Magazine had something about how success changes the amount of dopamine and testosterone receptors you have in the brain to receive the dopamine, so courage, reward for risks and, so on.  They were rewiring their children’s brain and we know now, in addition to that, it's like Kobe Bryant, you know using cold to cut weight and keep his joints going.  So, I think what I told you…

Ben:  Does Kobe Bryant use that?  Does he use cold?

Tai:  Yeah!

Ben:  Like cryo chambers or does he use like cold showers?

Tai:  He has huge bathtub and he fills it completely with ice and then goes in there for like 30 minutes something crazy.  Kobe Bryant is a fascinating man in terms of toughness.  He shoots anywhere from 4 to 800 made shots before practice starts.  Kobe Bryant, it's fascinating, you should, there's a good video on YouTube.  I don’t know if you’ve ever seen it.  It was like nine things Kobe Bryant recommends and he goes through all these things.  I remember, the only one I can totally remember right now is at the very end he kind of left.  They just got him impromptu and he came back and he said, “Oh, yeah.  Stretch.”  I remember that.  I don't this Laker game.  These pro athlete guys can do the splits like a gymnast girl.  Like a 280 pound 6 foot 8 guys doing the splits.  So, that's a whole another thing but they're using water.  They're using cold more and more.  Incredible amounts of cold is becoming, and so I tell people, I got these people on my book I’m like, “Take a cold shower every day.  Start small.”  Because I do it more, for me, I'd start and came from place of a lot of what I do is teaching people to become entrepreneurs and you know this.  So, it was like build courage.  Successful people have massive levels of courage but sport people are using, like they say, there's a fine line between the success of billionaires and the success of Ironman.  It's all about the same game.  Getting in the top one percent is pretty, the principles are ubiquitous.  They’re common among all the categories.

Ben:  Now, yeah, that was one thing that I found when I started doing cold thermogenesis was I would take a shower like at whatever a one minute or 90 second hot shower and then just finish up with 10 seconds of cold or 15 seconds of cold.

Tai:  Yeah, that’s exactly what they do.

Ben:  And then you know now I don't use the hot water part of my shower at all and I thought it was pretty cool when I went over to your house in Hollywood how you have basically a pool out on your front deck that's kept cold.  I kind of notice this theme.  Actually, after I went to your place, I was over at Mark Sisson’s house who's another kind of a guru when it comes to getting the most out your body.  And he also, he’s got this cold pool off of his front porch and now I'm working on a new house out in the middle of the forest and I'm putting a cold pool outside my house just to kind of make it even easier.  So you know you've talked about some of these books and certainly for those of you listening in, again, bengreenfieldfitness.com/tai, I am writing furiously as Tai is talking about, you see, these books that he mentions and by the way, like I mentioned, Tai’s mentored me a little bit and pretty much any book he recommends, I buy and I read right away.  So, check them out.  But you’ve talked about cold, you’ve talked about getting up early and trying to go to bed early at least once a month.

Tai:  I think it's going to bed.  Let me add.  I think going to bed early is more important than the wake-up thing.  I really think from my little experience there for a while.  I mean at the Amish, if you wake up at 5:30 you are like a late riser.  So, I went a solid almost 10 years on a farm waking up very early and I think it's much more about what time you go to bed.

Ben:  Yeah.

Tai:  Like I would rather go to bed at seven and sleep.  Not wake up till 10 in the morning because if you naturally sleep, your body's not stupid.  It's probably saying, “I need that much sleep.”  So, my main thing is go to bed earlier if you can.

Ben:  Yeah, I love it.  Now I definitely, before I let you go, I do want to know how in the heck you read all the books that you read but before we get into that because I know folks probably have this list of books you've already mentioned and they’re thinking, “How the heck can I actually get through all of those.”  Can you give us one other tip that you found that really helps for getting tough, for being resilient, for bouncing back whether it be mentally or physically?

Tai:  Yeah.  I'll tell you.  So, I've compiled this thing, I don’t know if I should talk about stuff on my website but I got a free download on my site called “67 Steps To Greatness”, right?  So, I compiled what I've learned as an investor, what I've learned from being around some of the most amazing people in the world mentoring and so on, and so I distilled 200 ideas down to 67.  The idea was, they say a habit takes about 66 days so I added one more for good luck.  So, 67 is the number and within that 67 you ask me for what's most relevant.  I’ll tell you what I think may be the most relevant.  Charlie Munger, the great Bill Gates is the smartest man alive right now; wisest man.  And I consume anything if I ever buy Charlie Munger.

Ben:  His almanac is amazing.

Tai:  Yes.  I just went to the…

Ben:  Poor Charlie's Almanac?

Tai:  Poor Charlie’s Almanac.  The big one but if you can flip through it.  So one of the principles he says would not only change anyone listening to this group, but would change the world if we truly understood this and would definitely change your body and he says, “To get what you want, you have to deserve what you want. The world is not yet crazy enough of a place to reward a whole bunch of undeserving people.”  So here's the deal.  You and I, for various reasons, I'm not gonna get into political, societal, let's just call a spade a spade.  We have been and become slowly but surely entitled.  We believe that this should be ours just because of our want of it.  As Jim Rohn says, “The world doesn't respond to need.  It responds to seed.”  I would say, if you’re a farmer in October looking at the ground going, “Where's my corn?” my question is what were you doing in April?  To get what you want you have to deserve it.

And so I think even at the highest levels, you still see people needing to remove this ignorance.  You have to dig deep within your brain and find the areas where you think you just deserve it for no other reason than you want it and get rid of that sentiment.  You have to go to get this.  We live in a world of 7 billion people, Ben.  It's becoming increasingly competitive whether you are a professional athlete, whether you are a person who's trying to make money, whether you’re a person trying to whatever you're trying to stake your claim in the world.  And so you got to go.  Who deserves this more than me?  And when the answer is nobody then you're in the right state of mind.  Now like John Wooden says, “God only made one Kareem Abdul Jabbar.”  Meaning 7 foot 2 amazing athlete.  Not all of us have that capacity.  We're not up on the competition with Michael Jordan.  We are in a competition with our own capacity but still, with that said, very few of us, my friend.  I mean myself included even approach minimal amounts of our capacity.  The capacity, I read Hilton, a great book.  It's called, I forget what it’s called.  Hilton story or something.  It’s the biography of Conrad Hilton.  And he built a huge empire.  Great grandfather of Paris Hilton but he was the good version of the Hilton, right?  He worked for it.  And he said he stumbled upon this book by Helen Keller.  I just bought it and one line is, it said, “optimism”.  Optimism.  He went through the depression when 90 percent of hotels fail but you know what, he always made sure he deserved it.

Michael Jordan, he knew at the end of the day, he was driven a little bit by fear.  I mean the amygdala part of your brain should not be ignored.  It's almost the strongest.  The only part stronger than the Amygdala fear part of your brain that controls your fears and your neurosis and your anxiety is maybe you can create fear annihilation memories in the prefrontal medium cortex of the front of your brain, but that's hard.  But Jordan was driven through fear, not paralyzed by it, of someone else deserving it more than him and that man didn’t have an entitled bone in his body and he arguably is the greatest athlete of all time at least in professional sports.  I mean there's nothing Michael Jordan didn’t accomplish in basketball.  Whether it was, he was the fastest guy on the court.  It's funny.  I was reading his biography.  He was, one day after he lost the NCAA championship he said to the coach at UNC, “Hey, I don't want to do this.  I need a break from basketball.”  The coach’s like, “Okay.”  And then the next morning, he walked in the gym in the summer and there was Michael Jordan playing again and he said, “Why?” and he said, “Because I got to get better, coach.  Someone else out there is getting better.”  See, he knew the ‘deserve it’ factor.  To get what you want, you got to deserve it.”  No entitlement, we're all entitled.

Ben:  That’s why one of the biggest tips I give to people for their children and one of the things that I do with my kids is I never ever praise the ability.  I always praise the effort.  So they always know that it's not about them being entitled to something because they're smart or because they're better looking or because maybe someday they’re taller.  It's all about the amount of work that they put in and I think that that's very very important for people to know.  When you open up your eyes in the morning that what you accomplish that day, whether it be what you accomplish physically, what you accomplish from a recovery standpoint, what you accomplish from a money-making standpoint, none of it has anything to do with what you may be entitled to.  Sure, there’s some natural and genetic talent involved but ultimately it just comes down to the amount of work that you put in.  And I think you got to be careful with it because you don't want to over train your body and, like I mentioned, recovery is just as important as training.  That's what I talk about in my book but it's such an important message and I think especially what you want to show your kids.

Tai:  You know what Joel Salatin told me?  Joel Salatin said, “Tai, nature laughs last.”  I remember that as a young 18-year-old kid.  So, when it comes to this factor ‘deserve it’, part of that is respecting nature and part of nature’s thing.  We come from hunter gatherers.  You better be resting a lot because if you think nature doesn't apply to you, you're not only violating one of the 67 rules, which is nature laughs last, but number two, it makes you, you deserve it less.  You deserve it less.  You must, I know we’re gonna wrap up.  I wanna read you this cool thing by, because we're talking about this timeframe thing, most people are impatient and Charlie Munger’s grandfather said to him, “Real opportunities that come to you are few.”  So if you've a very fortunate life that is just bathed in opportunity all the way.  Most people just get a few times when they can make a huge difference by seizing a huge activity, and he said, “When you find one of those huge opportunities and you can clearly recognize it, see it boldly and don't do it small.”  He's saying that you must be patient.  Life is about patience as well because that is part of nature.  The natural, if you look at nature’s cycle whether it’s an investment, it only grows at about three to six percent whether its muscle, whether it's weight loss, it needs to be gradual.  So, you got to want to deserve it but you got to be willing to follow that natural pattern or else you're basically saying, “I'm smarter than the universe.”  And you lose on that one any time.  It's hard, it should be the teacher of last resort.  Nature is not a great teacher.  It's a mean teacher.

Ben:  Yeah.  I love it.  Now Tai, I’ve got one final question for you.

Tai:  Yup.

Ben:  You have a pretty cool system for reading books and for making yourself better with reading books and also for getting through a lot of books.  What is your system for reading books?

Tai:  Well the first thing, it just follows what we just talked about.  One, change of mindset.  Drucker talks about disabling ignorance.  Most people say it’s impossible to read a lot.  That's disabling ignorance because you never tried it, you have no idea.  So, I do, I have this mentor academy and people all over the world in this private mentorship that I have but I also occasionally, people live in LA and I mentor them in person.  So I’m mentoring this guy, James Swanwick.  He's got a top podcast too and he’s a friend.

Ben:  I actually know James.

Tai:  And so now James, it's insane.  He reads a book a day and I was talking to him and I was like, “What do you think?  What is it?” “Man, I think I could do three a day.”  He goes, “All it is is just laying on the couch.”  And again, slowly but surely, you get ahead and he’s been working with me for almost a year.  And so he wasn’t that good at it a long time ago but you make haste, slowly you jump into it and the next thing you know your brain rewires itself to be able to read books quickly.  Now with books, I’ll say this.  I know I’ve quoted Charlie Munger a lot.  I always pick one guy that I focused on right now.  Munger says, “Spend each day trying to be a little wiser than you were when you woke up.”  So he says step by step you get ahead but not necessarily in fast spurts but you build discipline by preparing for fast spurts.  Slug it out one inch at a time day by day.  At the end of the day, if you live long enough most people get what they deserve.  So when it comes to this book thing, that’s another goal because really what this whole podcast I know what it's about.  I mean you told me it's about how to get big things, hard accomplishments done and so books it's kind of like, reading a book a day is kind of like being a triathlete of the brain.  Everybody here can do it.

So what you do is you train slow.  Get to at least a book a week.  Once you’re book a week, you'll be able to move to book every 3 days and then you’ll move to a book a day.  It won’t be that hard.  Now I’ll give you a few little pointers because the first one is do not feel you have to read a whole book.  Be a gold miner.  Get one nugget out of it.  Move on.  Number two, read much less volume of books in terms of, there's 130 million books published. There's only about ten thousand worth reading.  So even for that, most people, find the 500 most important books and just read them over and over for the rest of your life.  So, when you read you know on day one when you read a book like, let's say, let me pick, I think Freud wrote a book called ‘Civilization And Its Discontents’.  I think it’s one of the greatest books of all time.  Everyone should read it but you can just read one chapter, put it down, see books as your friend, close the book, put it on the shelf, and reread it in 6 months.  So, don't get attached that you have, do it kind of like you know, being running a triathlete.  You don’t always run a full marathon, I’m not a triathlete, but you don’t run a full marathon every time you start out doing a mile.  Do the same thing with books.  Don’t feel that you need to read the whole thing.

Ben:  Yeah.

Tai:  Be very picky in the books that you read.  You tell me who you’d rather invest time, money, and energy, somebody who read a hundred of the greatest books over and over for the last 2o years and has memorized the hundred greatest thinkers in different areas or some dude who reads every pop culture book that comes out?  So be the person, I actually have on my website.  I just published a free little thing you can see what I consider, of course, it’s subjective, you’ll have a different list, but I’m publishing, and I constantly change what I think are the one thousand most important books numbered from number one to number one thousand.  And I have them all.  A mixture from health, wealth, love, social, happiness.  I've got things on diet, omnivores, all these kinds of things but I also have old school books, Plato or whatever.  So, that's a good place.  Be picky.  Don't feel you need to read everything.

Start slowly but surely and then lastly, get a small group.  Robin Dunbar’s a famous anthropologist.  He said the human mind is finely attuned to this thing he called Dunbar's number.  About 150 acquaintances and friends.  That’s what he said your idea of social life.  Do the same thing with books.  Find 150 books that will become your friends until the day that you die.  Some of them, they will make you wiser, they will remove ignorance and they will get you ahead step by step and they’ll increase your ‘deserve it’ factor.  One last thing relevant to toughness.  We, this is the schedule that I like.  In the morning when you wake up, read a very short amount over breakfast, a classic book.  It needs to be over 50 years old.  It stood the test of time it's like soap of the brain.  It's literally like soap of the brain because we get bombarded by over 2000 dumb advertisements, use that to clear the brain. During the day…

Ben:  Got it.  A classic book like…

Tai:  It could be anything from Plato to How To Win Friends and Influence People. Okay.  Just something that's like really stood, not anything new, okay?  I like them over 1950 back to thousands.  Read a little Plato.  It's fascinating, this guy.  Then just, it can be small.  Five minutes.  Just a little bit of soap goes a long way then when you take your nap, and I know you recommend a nap, the best way I find a nap for me, I lay in bed, I find a book that's a “How to” book relevant to my career and I set my timer.  For me, I set it to 35 minutes.  I find it works well.  I'm not groggy.  I read for a, I read that book and it naturally makes me a little sleepy.  Twenty minutes and I literally always fall asleep with the book falling out of my hand and then I sleep for like 15 and I wake up refreshed.  But this is the last one.  So that's the ‘how to’ book is in the middle of the day during your nap.

Ben:  Got it.

Tai:  It helps you go to sleep.  The third one is the most important for your audience.  At night, read biographies.  Don't read how to books because it'll get your mind racing.  I mean, read Kon-Tiki.  You wanna read about tough guys?  Read about four [56:21]______ on Kon-Tiki.  A little book will blow your mind.  The levels of courage and these guys floated a raft six inches above water and they floated across from Chile, South America to the South Pacific islands.  That takes, I’m talking about tough.  Float across on a raft.

Ben:  That's a book that's called Across the Pacific In A Raft?

Tai:  The one I read is literally called Kon-Tiki.  K-O-N-T-I-K-I.

Ben:  Got it.

Tai:  So what happens is courage and toughness rubs off on you and then night time there's nothing more inspiring than reading whether it's Geronimo, Michael Jordan, Total Recall by Arnold Schwarzenegger or Kon-Tiki.  Man, stories of courage will increase your toughness almost as fast as, but you must do it by it rubbing it off on you.  Humans don't learn audio, they don't learn visual, they don't learn kinesthetic.  They learn, when I was on that farm I saw a mother cow, how she teaches a baby cow.  She doesn't talk, she doesn’t use a chalkboard, she doesn't even demonstrate and say, “Hey, let me help you hammer this.”  Like a construction.  Over time that baby cow just learns by the mom’s cow actions rubbing off and that's what happens whether it’s in business or toughness and the simple, I mean, let me add, and I don’t know if we’re running out of time, mentors!  Man, change who you are around and books are the simplest way to start but books I call this, I talked about it in my Ted talk, law of 33 percent.  Spend 33 percent of your time around people below you.  Those are people you can mentor and those people make you feel good about yourself because you realize somebody's doing worse than you, right?  Then you need 33 percent of people on your level.

Mahatma Gandhi, I read his autobiography, very courageous, tough man and he says, “On your rise to the top it will get lonely and your best allies will be people on your level.  They will befriend you, those are your friends.”  But the last part’s the hardest, spend 33 percent of your time around people who make you uncomfortable.  They're so far ahead of you, when I was back with Joel Salatin, I went on this trip with these group of billionaire guys that were like 60 and I remember they got a little drunk.  We were around a fireplace, they were talking, started asking me questions about money and finance and I didn’t know the answer.  They’re like, “What's the IRR on your business, Tai?”  I was like, “I don't know what IRR are.” and they were, I remember one of them said to me, they were nice when they were sober but when a drunk guy’s like, “You’re never gonna make any money being stupid like that.”

And I remember being like, I took the Michael Jordan approach, thank God.  I was like, “No one will ever be able to laugh at me like that.” And I was able then through the pain of being around people way ahead of me.  Now sometimes people way ahead of you will be nice and sometimes they won't.  But if you can get that last 33 percent, you can get three hours a day around people 20 years ahead of you wherever you want to be whether it's millionaire or being able to you know, be like Geronimo and run across the desert with water in your mouth and spit it all out.  It's the same thing.  Change who you’re around and that's very hard but you can do it.  It's easier and book are the only, the only reason I like books is because it's the only way I can get around Mahatma Gandhi.  He died, right?  Kon-Tiki, he died.  So start there but don't end there.  Get around people in person as well and make sure you feel uncomfortable because you know the oldest of all sayings in health is “No pain. No gain.”  And there’s definitely some truth to that.  Get a six pack not only of your stomach, but a six pack of the mind.  The world needs people with both.

Ben:  Same goes for fitness too.  Hang around with people who make you uncomfortable.  Do events, do workouts.  People who are a little push a little bit harder than you can and I think that makes a huge difference as well.  Man, we could talk forever but we've gone an hour and there are a ton of resources for folks.  So if you're listening, a few quick things.  First of all, I've listed six books in the show notes.  Geronimo: Leadership Strategies of an American Warrior, Arnold Schwarzenegger's Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story, Michael Jordan: The Life, Peter Drucker: Managing Life, Poor Charlie's Almanack, and the book Kon Tiki.  They're all over there in the show notes at bengreenfieldfitness.com/tai My challenge to you is over the next 30 days, go and read those books and I'm gonna make this a little bit sweeter for you.  If you're listening in and you take a picture of yourself with all six of those books, I'm going to trust you and we're gonna have a trust relationship here that you've actually read them, if you take a picture and you send it in to me or you post it at facebook.com/BGFitness holding each of those books, I’ll sign a copy of my book and I'll send it to you.  If you already own my book, that's fine.  Just give it to one of your friends but that's my 30-day challenge to you.

Tai:  Can I sweeten that deal for people and make it better for them and work for you?

Ben:  Let's do it.

Tai:  Here's the thing, just read some of the best parts of those books.

Ben:  Got it.  Read the best parts.

Tai:  Now I'm not trying to make it too easy.  I’m not talking about read you know, the table of contents and then go, “Oh, I read the six table of contents.”  But I'm saying, let's get people on this habit.  The Michael Jordan book’s a big book.

Ben:  Yeah.

Tai:  Let’s just get in there, if you even read you know six books, let's say, if they read a certain amount of pages because I want people to get in that habit of not feeling that every word, your brain can't take in every word.

Ben:  And just a simple fact, if you're like me, the simple fact of owning all six of those books and having them around, for me I’ve got a book in my bathroom, a book on my bed stand, a book in my office and so I always have those books sitting there and it's always a rotation of books each week but I know if they’re there I got to read them because they’re top of mind.  So, I read the best parts.

Tai:  Make them your friends.  Make mentors your friends.  Living and alive.

Ben:  I will put links to all those books.  I’m gonna put a link to Tai's Book of the Day list.  I’m gonna put a link to Joel Salatin, and the amazing books he has written if you don’t know about him and the amazing books he's written.  Go check that out.  Finally, just a couple of other things.  Head over to iTunes and do two things.  First of all, if you haven't yet, subscribe to or left a review for the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.  Please do so and while you’re over there, here's a nice little surprise for you, Tai also has a new podcast.  It's called “The Grand Theory Of Everything”.  Tai and I did a 90-minute show together.  I got the title of that one right, Tai?  Correct?

Tai:  Yes, perfect.

Ben:  Yeah, “The Grand Theory Of Everything”.  Go check out Tai’s show too.  Subscribe to it, take a listen, leave him a review.  He just started his podcast and it's really amazing.  Like I mentioned, Tai has mentored me and just the fact of you listening to his podcast you're gonna get a lot of the same tips that you'd get if Tai was mentoring you as well except you just basically get them for free on iTunes.  So check that out.  “The Grand Theory Of Everything” on iTunes and that…

Tai:  If they go on tailopez.com/ I’ve got links to everything.  Check out my Instagram but also go on that book of the day, I’ve got a million and a half people in 40 countries.  It’s completely free.  It's just tailopez.com/ is the place to join.  I’m big on Twitter.  I’ve got almost 170,000 people.  I like to tweet things there and they can download at 67 step thing.  That's pretty cool.  It’s not a hokey like dopey thing.  It's actually well thought out.  Things you haven't heard in other places.  So, I got that 67.  I also had a podcast on that too.  My YouTube channel, I put some stuff but tailopez.com is a good central place where they can get everything.

Ben:  Sweet.  Alright folks so check it all out.  Check out tailopez.com/, bengreenfieldfitness.com/.  Thank you so much for listening.  I promise another amazing special guest next week.  Tai, thanks so much for coming on the call, man.

Tai:  Thanks for having me, Ben.  I really appreciate it.

Ben:  Alright, folks.  This is Ben Greenfield and Tai Lopez signing out from bengreenfieldfitness.com.  Have an amazing week.



My friend Tai Lopez is a very interesting guy.

Tai is a true renaissance man.

Tai (pictured right) went from being a college dropout living with the Amish and working on Joel Salatin's farm (which we talk about in this podcast episode) to becoming a self made millionaire before the age of 30, while launching 12 multi-million dollar businesses in the process.

He is a member of MENSA: the high IQ society, a Certified Financial Planner, Chartered Financial Consultant, Chartered Life Underwriter, and most importantly a student of life with a ton of books (5000 plus at the last count). In addition to his massive book collection, he is himself the author of several books on unrelated subjects such as dating, life insurance and modeling, and the voice of the brand new podcast “The Grand Theory of Everything“.

Tai was on Bravo's “The Millionaire Matchmaker” (his episode is the highest rated yet), is addicted to traveling (51 countries on 6 continents so far), and is also a student of salsa dancing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and playing classical piano. He lives in the Hollywood Hills, where he has a cold thermogenesis pool off his front porch.

Tai also has a good way of summing up books that would normally take you a long time to read. That’s wonderful for anyone who doesn’t have the time luxury to read lots of books (and you can consider his Book of the Day list a fantastic time-hacking technique).

A few weeks ago, I featured an article by Tai entitled “50 Secrets Of The World Longest Living People“, and in this podcast we go way above and beyond just living long. You'll learn:

-How Tai went from being a college dropout to living with the Amish…

-Why the Apache Indian tribe were some of the toughest people on earth…

-What farmers and ranchers know about toughness that we don't…

-How aligning your body with your natural circadian rhythms can make you tough…

-Tai's top techniques for getting tough…

-Tai's technique for getting through as many books as possible in as short a period of time…

Resources we discuss in this episode:

-Book: Geronimo: Leadership Strategies of an American Warrior

-Book: Arnold Schwarzenegger's Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story

-Book: Michael Jordan: The Life

-Book: Peter Drucker: Managing Life

-Book: Poor Charlie's Almanack

-Book: Kon Tiki

Tai's Book of the Day list

Joel Salatin, and the amazing books he has written


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