Ben Greenfield Podcast 102

Podcast #102 from 102-training-and-nutrition-for-runners/ Introduction: In this podcast episode: training and nutrition for runners, benefits of training while calorie depleted, exercising with a low back injury, can you rebuild cartilage? How to choose your amino acids and proteins, stomach sloshing while running, runner’s knee and how to take a rest day. Ben: Welcome to the podcast. Now, I have a question for you. Actually, it’s more of a quest for you. I want to know who you want to see featured on the podcast. I recently had a listener recommend that I get Michael Pollan, a nutritionist and author on the show. I’m working on getting him on the show. But this podcast is big enough now and ranked high enough on iTunes where I can get most people that you would like me to get on the show. But I just need to know who you want to hear from. If you could sit down with someone, have them into your living room and talk to them whether they be an author, a nutritionist, a coach, a personal trainer, a physician, who would it be? Because I have the leverage to be able to get those people on the show. But I want to know who you want to hear from. So, the way that you can tell me who you would like to hear on the show is to email [email protected] or to go to the Shownotes where I put all the goodies from each show and on those Shownotes, leave a comment and tell me who you’d like to see on the podcast. The advantage of doing it via leaving a comment is you get to engage in discussion with other people who may or may not agree with your desire to have a certain individual on the show. Because obviously health, fitness, nutrition can get a little political and opinionated at times. It’ll be interesting to hear who people want to see on the show, what people’s opinions are of those individuals and ultimately make the podcast even better and more tailored to what you want to see on it. So what are you waiting for? Go over there and leave a comment or shoot me an email and tell me who you want to see on the Ben Greenfield Fitness podcast. Finally, like I mentioned last week, a new way to communicate with me and get a hold of me is via Twitter. And to contact me via Twitter, just go to


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Transcript of Ben Greenfield Podcast 102

Page 1: Ben Greenfield Podcast 102

Podcast #102 from


Introduction: In this podcast episode: training and nutrition for runners,

benefits of training while calorie depleted, exercising with a

low back injury, can you rebuild cartilage? How to choose

your amino acids and proteins, stomach sloshing while

running, runner’s knee and how to take a rest day.

Ben: Welcome to the podcast. Now, I have a question for you.

Actually, it’s more of a quest for you. I want to know who you

want to see featured on the

podcast. I recently had a listener recommend that I get

Michael Pollan, a nutritionist and author on the show. I’m

working on getting him on the show. But this podcast is big

enough now and ranked high enough on iTunes where I can

get most people that you would like me to get on the show.

But I just need to know who you want to hear from. If you

could sit down with someone, have them into your living

room and talk to them whether they be an author, a

nutritionist, a coach, a personal trainer, a physician, who

would it be? Because I have the leverage to be able to get

those people on the show. But I want to know who you want

to hear from. So, the way that you can tell me who you would

like to hear on the show is to email

[email protected] or to go to the Shownotes

where I put all the goodies from each show and on those

Shownotes, leave a comment and tell me who you’d like to

see on the podcast. The advantage of doing it via leaving a

comment is you get to engage in discussion with other people

who may or may not agree with your desire to have a certain

individual on the show. Because obviously health, fitness,

nutrition can get a little political and opinionated at times.

It’ll be interesting to hear who people want to see on the

show, what people’s opinions are of those individuals and

ultimately make the podcast even better and more tailored to

what you want to see on it. So what are you waiting for? Go

over there and leave a comment or shoot me an email and

tell me who you want to see on the Ben Greenfield Fitness

podcast. Finally, like I mentioned last week, a new way to

communicate with me and get a hold of me is via Twitter.

And to contact me via Twitter, just go to

Page 2: Ben Greenfield Podcast 102 Hit the “follow” button and

then shoot me a message or write a post and include the

word @bengreenfield. The little “@” sign, and then

“bengreenfield” in your post or your question or your

feedback and I will get it. So let’s go ahead and move on to

this week’s special announcements and then the Listener Q

and A and an interview on training and nutrition for runners.

Alright triathletes, tune in. You’ve heard me talk about the

triathlon trip to Thailand that I’m organizing this coming

winter. But there’s been a new event that’s been added to

January and February for the winter. I’m going to be

throwing down the triathlon training camp down in Austin,

Texas once again this winter. So if you’re a triathlete and

you’re listening in, go to the Shownotes because all the

details for that camp have been posted. It’s officially going to

happen January 31st through February 7, 2011. Now is the

time to start planning and get that into your schedule. So go

to the Shownotes to check that out. In addition to that, under

the Special Announcement tab in the Shownotes, I tell you

what we talked about in the Body Transformation Club this

week. If you want to get into the Body Transformation Club,

there’s a little button you can click there where you can go

find out more about how to have me send you postcards each

week with training and nutrition tips. The Ben Greenfield

Fitness T-shirts are still going out on a weekly basis.

Anybody who donates more than 15 bucks to the show

automatically will get a T-shirt sent to you. That’s free

shipping. I don’t charge anything. I just put it in the mail and

send it to you. I usually include a bunch of goodies as well.

So those are all the special announcements for this week: the

triathlon training camp, the Body Transformation Club and

the Ben Greenfield Fitness T-shirts. So let’s go ahead and

move on to this week’s Listener Q and A.

So if you have a question, you can email

[email protected]. You can call and leave it via

audio to 8772099439 and that’s toll free. Or you can Skype to

Pacific Fit. You can also, like I mentioned earlier, ask your

question via Twitter and once again this week, I will be

sending a T-shirt to the top question of the week asked via

Twitter. So the first question comes from listener Graeme.

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Graeme asks: I understand the benefits of logic of training low, racing high

in relation to carbs. Recently I went too far with that and

bonked. My question is, is there any training benefit of

bonking and if there is any notable recovery issues?

Ben answers: Well, the issue that Graeme is referring to is the fact that

there has been research that training with low levels of

stored carbohydrates in your muscles can actually help you

become more fit. So basically there’s been studies done in the

past few years where individuals would train twice a day, but

in between those training sessions they wouldn’t eat very

much carbohydrate at all so they didn’t replenish their

energy stores for that second training session of the day. So

that second training session of the day was done in what’s

called a glycogen-depleted state or a carbohydrate-depleted

state. What happened is the athletes who trained in the

carbohydrate-depleted state actually showed better training

adaptations in their muscles. What the researchers did is

they took muscle biopsies, where they take a little clip out of

a muscle and study it under a microscope, and they found

that some of the enzymes in those muscles and particularly

the enzymes involved in fat metabolism actually increased

compared to the individuals who trained when they had a

bunch of carbohydrates on board, or they were in what’s

called a glycogen-loaded state. So the actual training

program that they used during this glycogen-depletion

training study was pretty short. It was only a few weeks and

the issue is whether or not A, training like that for a long

period of time would actually result in significant

performance improvements and B, how hard can you

actually push yourself when your blood sugar levels are low

and you’re calorie depleted? So, the way that I personally do

it is I’ll typically include at least once every couple of weeks

in my training plan, a session where I don’t eat as much as I

normally would during a normal training session. So, for

example, I will have my pre-workout meal two or three hours

prior to a workout. I’ll go out and do a workout but I will do

it before a long workout. So this will be before say for

example a two-hour bike ride. I would really only go out on

that two-hour bike ride with one gel and do it in a pretty

glycogen depleted state. The other option you can do is a two

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a day where you do one training session and you don’t eat

that much between that training session and the next

training session. And again, it can beat up the body pretty

easily doing that over and over again. But every once in a

while, there is evidence to suggest that it could help you out

quite a bit. So what Graeme says is what happens if you go

too far and you bonk? And what Graeme means is when you

bonk, a typical bonk when you’re out training and you run

out of fuel is you have all of the signs and symptoms of

hypoglycemia. So, you get fatigued, you get dizzy. You begin

to get confused. You can’t think very well. Usually can’t

produce much of a muscle force at all when it happens to

people and they’re riding their bikes. They usually have to

either slow to a crawl or begin walking their bike. When it

happens to people when they’re on a run, they usually have

to start walking, even sometimes just sit down on a park

bench or on the ground and call someone for a ride. It’s

pretty serious. It’s literally no fuel on board when even a very,

very uncomfortable feeling with any exercise is attempted. So

you’d think that someone would be able to just keep pushing

through and oxidize primarily fat, but in a true bonk you’re

going even past that stage. There’s been no research that I’ve

seen that have investigated whether someone takes

themselves to that level repeatedly will actually increase their

fitness. I can tell you that when you get yourself very, very

carbohydrate-depleted like that, it takes a longer time to

refill those carbohydrate stores. You obviously turn your

training session into a junk training session. In terms of

recovery, implications for the next day’s training sessions – if

you have 24 hours between a bonk and the next day’s

training session you’ll be fine but if you’re planning on

working out more later on in the day or you bonk in the late

afternoon or evening and you have a morning training

session planned, you’re not doing yourself any favors. So you

can use this strategy of depleting your calories on a rare basis

– every couple weeks, possibly every other week in your

training but you want to be really careful with it and not take

it to the extreme.

So the next question is from a Twitter listener.

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Listener asks: My brother-in-law is a cancer survivor with some back and

spine damage because of low back treatments. What are

some good exercises for him?

Ben answers: Well, I’ll put a link to this in the Shownotes for you, but I

have an upcoming episode over at my other podcast The Get

Fit Guy over at the Quick and Dirty Tips network and that

podcast is primarily based around what to do if you get a low

back injury and you need to exercise. Many of the same type

of concepts discussed in that article and that episode would

apply to your brother-in-law. Some of the top suggestions

that I give in that episode include aqua-jogging, swimming

and water aerobics. Anything in the water really is very non-

impact on the back. The one caution that you need to take is

if you swim freestyle, it’s very easy to hyperextend your back

and a lot of times a breaststroke or a backstroke can be easier

on the back than freestyle swimming. If you use weight

machines, those can give you a lot more controlled

environments than free weights, but the issue with weight

machines is you need to suck your belly in, keep your core

tight and really create a stomach vacuum so you’re not

slouching in your low back and creating compressive forces

on the low back. Bodyweight exercises like knee pushups or

squats if they’re pain free can help out quite a bit. A

recumbent bicycle and if it’s pain free, the elliptical trainer

are also good modes of exercise. So, there’s several options

there; more importantly what to avoid would be impact-

based exercises like running or hopping or skipping or

plyometrics as well as anything that involves a lot of flexing

and extending of the spine. A lot of people are under the

impression that if they get their abdominals strong by doing

crunches then they’re going to protect their low back or heal

a low back injury more quickly, but think of crunching the

same way you would think of bending a credit card. If you

have a credit card in your wallet or your back pocket and you

take the credit card out and you bend it repeatedly, you’ll

eventually start to see that little white crease form and after a

while, the actual plastic in the credit card will fail and it will

break. Think of flexing and extending your back in the same

way. You have a finite number of flexions and extensions

that you can perform before your low back begins to become

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overfatigued and overworked. So you need to be really

careful doing lots of crunches and low back extensions and

exercises like that, that are going to put stress on your low

back. But ultimately, what I would say for your brother-in-

law is really look at water-based activities as one of the

primary sources of aerobics and then after that non-weight

bearing activities like elliptical or bicycling and then

controlled weight bearing activities like the weight lifting

machines at the gym. Because you were the top question that

I received on Twitter this week, I’m going to say your Twitter

handle – it’s fflovessg1, I have no clue what that stands for

but if you message me on Twitter or send me an email, let me

know your postal address and I will throw a T-shirt and some

other goodies in the mail for you. So, great question. The

next question is from listener Chuck.

Chuck asks: My dad is one of the healthiest people I’ve ever met, but at 56

years old, he was competitively playing roller hockey, he got

hit, severely tore his rotator cuff and ended up having to

have surgery on it. While he has made a great recovery, the

shoulder still hurts him. The doctors told him there’s

basically cartilage left in the shoulder and eventually down

the road, he may need a shoulder replacement. Do you know

if there is either a way through diet or exercise to rebuild

healthy cartilage in a joint?

Ben answers: Well Chuck, you can rebuild cartilage to a limited extent.

Basically anything from osteoarthritis to injuries to overuse

can cause breakdown of your joint cartilage. Cartilage

typically doesn’t really have good blood flow. It takes a lot

longer time to heal. You take something like a meniscus that

has very little blood flow – that’s why mensical tears almost

always need to be repaired – but basically the idea is that it

really depends on the amount of damage that’s been done. If

the doctor is right and there’s literally no cartilage left in

your dad’s shoulder, then it is likely that if he wants to

continue with shoulder intensive base exercises and sports,

that he may have to look into a shoulder replacement or a

resurfacing. Glucosamine chondroitin is of course kind of the

gold standard supplementation protocol to use when you

have a cartilage issue. This isn’t medical advice. I’m not

saying it’s going to heal your dad but I would recommend

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that he look into a glucosamine chondroitin supplement. The

one that I typically recommend is the one called CapraFlex.

It’s by a company called Mt. Capra and that one is the only

one that I’ve actually ever had clients write to me and call me

and tell me that they actually felt it compared to other

glucosamine chondroitin supplements, which they didn’t

really feel relieved their symptoms at all. So you can try

glucosamine chondroitin supplements. It’s not necessarily

going to rebuild the cartilage if the damage is extensive, but

it can help manage the pain a little bit. If the damage

happens to be perhaps not as extensive as the physician says,

then it may be possible to rebuild some of that cartilage. The

other thing that I’d look into is another supplement called

OsteoDenks. You can go to

and Google it. I did an interview with a physician about

OsteoDenks. And the active ingredient in that – lactoferrin –

has some promising implications for bone and soft tissue

injuries. So I’d look into that as well.

Chuck has a follow up question about a creatine.

Chuck asks: Can you go over or recommend – if you recommend at all –

protocols for taking creatine? I bought some the other day

because it was on sale. Each serving is 130 calories which

includes 5 grams of creatine and 30 grams of carbs – 29 of

which come from sugar. The product suggests a five day

loading phase. Due to the high sugar content, if I were to

take this at all, should I only use it immediately after a

workout and do I need to do a loading phase? Finally, will

taking it even really help me that much?

Ben answers: Well, the idea behind creatine is there’s tons of studies that

do affirm that it increases power and strength and even as

little as five days of supplementation can increase your

creatine phosphate levels – your body’s natural creatine

phosphate levels – by 10 and up to 40%. So creatine

phosphate is used in the part of your body that generates

energy up to about 15 seconds. So it’s kind of like the power

sprint-based energy. However there have been studies that

have showed that with creatine loading, you can actually get

a glycogen sparing effect, meaning your body burns through

carbohydrates a little more slowly and the suggestion is that

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you’re using a little bit more creatine with each contraction.

And so even short term creatine supplementation has been

shown to increase your maximum power and your strength

from 5 to 15% and increase sprint speed also by 5 to 15%.

Now the issue with a lot of people is it can cause weight gain.

It can cause water retention and it can cause cramping. And

that’s why most of the triathletes or endurance athletes that I

coach – I do not recommend that they do a full loading

protocol. A full loading protocol means that for about four

days and up to a week, you take 20 grams a day of creatine

and then you taper that down to 5 grams a day and as low as

2 ½ grams a day. That ends up in most cases causing some

deleterious effects. I recommend that you half that or quarter

that and load with seven days prior to a race or an event if

you’re planning on using creatine. I’ve tried that in a sprint

triathlon with and without and always felt more powerful in

a sprint triathlon when I’ve taken that creatine just for a

week at about 5 to 10 grams a day leading up to the race and

not really doing a full-on loading protocol. Even though the

loading protocol for strength and power athletes who don’t

have to worry about cramping issues or weight issues ends

up being superior. So typically creatine loading for gold

standard recommendation for non-endurance athletes would

be load with that 20 grams for around four to seven days. If

you want to do even more exact in terms of your loading

rather than loading with 20 grams, you’re supposed to load

with about 3,000 milligrams per kilogram of body weight.

And so if you figure out that you are 70 kilograms, then you

would basically multiply that by .3. That would be the

number of grams that you take in per day. And then after

that, you move into just 2 to 5 grams per day. And the idea is

that to really amplify creatine storage, you’re supposed to

cycle. So you load for a week and then you take 5 grams a day

for three weeks and then you don’t load for another three

weeks or don’t take any for three weeks. Then you go back

into that maintenance phase or reload. The idea is that after

about two to four weeks of creatine supplementation and

then stopping creatine supplementation, your body will kind

of revert back to its original natural levels of creatine stores.

Now, the interesting thing with the sugar concept, Chuck, is

the idea is that the insulin spike that occurs when you

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consume sugar along with creatine is supposed to help you

absorb and retain more creatine. But there’s been some

newer research that shows that when you cut the sugar in

half and replace that with protein, you get the best boosting

effect. So my recommendation would be that you ultimately

don’t get a creatine powder that has a bunch of sugar added.

But you instead get a creatine capsule that’s just creatine and

nothing else. No other funky calorie based compounds. Then

you just consume that with a regular meal like quinoa and

chicken or a piece of pizza or whatever else happens to be

your meal for that day. Ideally, it should be consumed with

your pre-workout meal and not post-workout. You want to

have that creatine in pre-workout. So, the stuff that I

personally use is called CreO2. It’s from a company called

Millennium Sports. If you’re one of the athletes I coach, then

you know about that company. You get a 50% discount on all

their stuff. But that’s the one I recommend using and it’s in

that capsule form, and I would definitely not use something

that has as much sugar as what you just explained, Chuck. So

the next question comes from listener Brad.

Brad asks: I frequently recommend you two different versions of amino

acid supplementation. The whole chain amino acid powder

from Bioletics, or the Recoveries branch chain amino acids

featured on I am a 25 year old cross-fitter

with the goal of increasing my fitness through Cross Fit. I’m

hoping that the inclusion of amino acids to my

supplementation regimen will increase musculature repair in

response to my frequent episodes of soreness. Which amino

acids should I use and what would be the protocol for taking

the supplement that you recommend?

Ben answers: Brad, there’s two different forms of amino acids that I use

and I personally recommend. One is Recoveries. Recoveries

is not all the amino acids. You’d have to take a whey protein

or eat a piece of steak or have an egg to get all your amino

acids. But Recoveries has just what are called the branch

chain amino acids. The advantage of the branch chain amino

acids is that they tend to bypass metabolism in the liver and

become available at the muscular level very quickly. The

branch chain amino acids are leucine, isoleucine and valine.

I don’t believe I’m forgetting any there. But Recoveries also

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has glutamine in it, which is another amino acid that is very

advantageous for recovery. It also has protolytic enzymes in

it which are anti-inflammatory and also help the body to

break down proteins in their amino acid components for

more speedy repair and recovery of muscle tissue. So the

idea is that the Recoveries with the branch chain amino acids,

the protolytic enzymes and the glutamine is basically like a

capsule that you can take after a workout. My protocol and

the recommended protocol on those is to take four of them

after a training session during the day and then take six to

eight of them after a race of after a hard workout. I will also

take six to eight of them on a day in which I’m very sore.

They’re actually a little bit better in terms of their anti-

inflammatory effect if you take them on an empty stomach.

Now you compare those to something like the Bioletics

amino acid and the Bioletics amino acids has more amino

acids in it. The idea is that your body has eight essential

amino acids that it essential can’t make and needs to get

from the diet. The Bioletics amino acids are those amino

acids – essential amino acids – and so you’re basically

getting more amino acids than you get with the Recoveries.

So you do not get from the Bioletics amino acids the

glutamine or the protolytic enzymes. So when you put the

two together, essentially from the Bioletics you’re getting the

essential amino acids and it’s about 10 grams of those in a

serving. Then from the Recoveries you’re getting the branch

chain amino acids which actually happen to overlap. Some of

those are essential amino acids, along with glutamine and

protolytic enzymes. So you put the two together and that’s

kind of an ideal scenario. The way that I would do something

like this there is some evidence that maintaining high daily

levels of amino acids will actually help stave off muscle

degradation and help to decrease soreness. And so what I’ll

do is I’ll typically split the serving of Bioletics amino acids

into two different servings during the day. So I’ll take two

different 5 gram servings – one in the morning and one in

the mid-afternoon or evening – and then I’ll take the

Recoveries after my workout. So three different times during

the day, I’m spiking my amino acids and assisting with body

repair, staving off protein degradation. So yes, you will get all

those essential amino acids through something like whey

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protein and steak, but the idea is that the bio-availability is a

little bit lower and the absorption basically takes a little bit

longer. So a couple of good resources for you would be to go

to, do a search for Dr. Cohen

and Bioletics, and we had an interview on branch chain

amino acids. I also interviewed Dr. Minkoff who has an

essential amino acids capsule called Master Animo Pattern.

And if you go to and do a

search for “steak in a pill” you can find more information and

an interview with Dr. Minkoff where he explains why the

stuff works and what’s in it. So hopefully that clears up the

discussion and gives you some ideas about how you would

use those and what the difference between them is.

Then I have a question from listener Ryan. Ryan’s question is

somewhat long, but essentially as we get to the end, what he

says is that he’s getting a ton of stomach sloshing during his

racing. He’s decreased what he’s drunk, he’s decreased what

he’s eating and he still gets the stomach sloshing. He finishes

by saying…

Ryan asks: My stomach normally does not digest food easily and it has

been like this for a long time. I just don’t know what else to

do. I obviously need to drink during my races but even when

I drink a small amount, I still have sloshing.

Ben answers: Well Ryan, there are a few different factors that can cause

the stomach sloshing. Here are some of the things that I’ve

worked with, with my athletes. One is because the sloshing a

lot of time occurs as soon as you get off the bike and start to

run, you actually begin to taper the number of calories and

the amount of fluid that you take in about 15 to 20 minutes

during a triathlon before you get off your bike. So you’re

pretty much kind of fueling and hydrating minimally in the

last 15 to 20 minutes of the bike ride so that some of that

gastric emptying occurs before you get out on the run. The

gastric emptying of liquids is going to take about 15 to 20

minutes. So that’s one thing that you can do if you try that

and you’re still getting some of the sloshing, then you need to

assess your bike intake to make sure that you’re not taking in

more than 30 ounces of water per hour during a bike ride

and during cooler weather bike rides, preferably closer to

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about 24 to 28 ounces of water or the equivalent of one water

bottle. You can also make sure that during the run, you’re

only taking about 10 to 15 ounces of water per hour during

something like a half Ironman event and during an Ironman

event, closer to about 14 to 18 ounces of water per hour. So

you’re not taking in as much water during the run as you do

on the bike. As far as fuel goes, if your stomach is empty it is

going to get this gassy feeling. You’re going to get basically

that feeling of stomach sloshing, so it is important that you

actually keep adequate calories coming on board. That would

be in the range of for most guys 300 to 350 calories per hour

on the bike, about 200 to 250 calories per hour on the run.

Make sure that you also maintain the proper osmolality of

the fluids you’re consuming by consuming electrolytes as

well and not consuming too many of them. So make sure that

all the fluids that you’re consuming aren’t just Gatorade.

Because for Gatorade to give you the amount of salt that you

actually need, you have to drink so much of it that gastric

emptying is going to take a lot longer time to occur and you

end up over-hydrating.

Finally, you say my stomach normally does not digest food

easily. I would look into anything that could be causing some

digestive irritation, Ryan. Look into your gluten, look into

your dairy, your whey, your soy. One of the companies that I

use for food allergy testing for my athletes is called Unikey

Health Systems. The best one to go with is through them and

you can email me if you want some information about it. But

it would be their mail-in stool sample. I know some of you

are giggling out there as you think about taking a poo and

putting it in an envelope and mailing it off to some company

out in Idaho, but it actually is pretty comprehensive. My one

complaint with that company is they do try and upsell you.

They try and upsell you a ton of different supplements after

looking at your poo, but the idea is it is a very good way to

find out everything from parasites to yeasts to food allergies

and it’s fairly comprehensive so I would definitely look into

that, and that’s Ann Louise Kittleman’s company. Unikey

Health Systems. So, good question.

Brad asks: Ben, will your Bulletproof Knee program be likely to alleviate

the classic symptoms of runner’s knee I experience. It seems

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the program is emphasizing IT band systems. Would you

please provide a comprehensive explanation of runner’s knee

as well?

Ben answers: Brad, you are correct. I designed Bulletproof Knee to

primarily be for runners, cyclists, triathletes and athletes in

general who are experiencing IT band friction syndrome or

pain on the upper or outside of the knee. Even though it’s a

lot different injury than runner’s knee, many of the protocols

in that program would definitely help with overall knee

health. But that program is specifically designed for IT band

friction syndrome. Now the runner’s knee that you refer to is

also called patello-femoral syndrome. I’ve had that before.

When I used to play a lot of volleyball, I got that. The idea

typically is that you get a little bit of worn cartilage in the

knee joint and so you get some reduced shock absorption, a

little less cushioning and if you combine that with tight

hamstring muscles or tight calf muscles, those can put some

backward pressure on the knee. You throw in a weak

quadriceps muscle so the patella or your knee cap doesn’t

track properly and you end up getting a lot of cartilage

damage when that mis-tracking knee cap irritates a lot of the

cartilage inside the femoral groove or the area inside your

femur that the knee cap is supposed to track in. So tight

hamstrings, tight calves, weak quads, lots of jumping and

impact without a lot of proper recovery and you set yourself

up perfectly for runner’s knee. Usually you feel tenderness,

like if you could reach into your knee cap back behind the

patella, that’s generally where you’d feel it. Sometimes it can

manifest itself a little bit towards the inside of the knee. But

it’s a huge problem for runners. Some of the things that you

can do are definitely to engage in a very intensive hamstring

and calf stretching program where you’re doing either

partner-assisted stretches or self stretches. I would definitely

recommend you use something called PNF stretching, which

is where you would for example lie on your back on the

ground, stretch your hamstring by pulling your straight leg

and then contract down against your hand for about six

seconds and then relax the hamstrings and they should

stretch a little bit deeper. You can do that with a partner or

you can do it yourself. Doing calf stretching from as many

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angles as possible will also be important. Doing foam rolling

on the hamstrings and the calves can also help to increase

flexibility in those muscles. The other thing that you can do

conversely is to strengthen the quadriceps. Some quadriceps

strengthening exercises that have worked really well for the

athletes I’ve helped with runner’s knee are standing straight

leg kicks, where you take a cable or an elastic band, you fix it

around the area just above your ankle and you kick straight

forward with a straight leg, trying to keep your leg almost

locked out. So your quadriceps are supporting your knee in

the same way that it would during a running gait. If you go to

my Web site where I have a bunch of free exercise videos,

that’s, go over to the resources section and

click on exercises and I’ve got the cable straight leg kick on

there. You could be doing cable straight leg kicks every day.

The other thing that can really help is to do uphill walking or

hill walking either on a treadmill or outdoors to help improve

the strength in the quadriceps. I know that the leg extension

machine in the gym is supposed to be a quadriceps exercise

but in most individuals, that aggravates runner’s knee rather

than actually helping runner’s knee. So do that stuff and then

make sure that you’re not running or engaging in impact-

based activities on consecutive days. When I had runner’s

knee it took me about four months to realize what I needed

to do and at that point, I started strengthening my

quadriceps, stretching my hamstrings and I just ran once a

week until I was pain free. And I’ve never had to deal with it

since. So hopefully that helps you out. It’s going to take a

little bit of management. The Bulletproof Knee can help you

a little bit. There are definitely some nutrition protocols in

there that will help you and some core and hip strengthening

exercises, some cross training exercises, definitely for IT

band friction syndrome it’s going to help – not specifically

designed for runner’s knee but it could help a little bit with

that. And in the meantime, I’m working on developing a

program similar to the Bulletproof Knee for your shoulders.

So, I will have that available soon for you as well for any of

you who have shoulder issues.

Bob asks: I’m currently using a recovery drink of heed (and for those of

you who don’t know what heed is, it’s basically like

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electrolytes and sugar) and whey protein powder. I use about

300 to 350 calories. And I use your recommendation of

drinking 2 calories per pound of body weight. What do you

recommend for a recovery drink and how important is the

type of protein powder used? Do you differentiate between

isolate and concentrate?

Ben answers: Well, let’s address the first part of your question – what I

recommend for a recovery drink. I personally as much as

possible to eat real food for my recovery meal. So a typical

post-workout scenario for me is I walk in the door from a run,

I take the Recoveries I talked about earlier with a glass of

water, sometimes I throw a Noon tablet in there for a few

extra electrolytes and then sometimes I’ll have a piece of fruit

with that, like a banana or an apple or an orange. Then about

20 minutes or a half hour later, I’ll sit down and have myself

a meal after I’ve showered and stretched out and the meal

will typically be real food like quinoa and chicken or a salad

with some almonds, poppy seed dressing and some fruit on it.

But the idea is that if you are going to drink your calories,

you just want to be a little bit careful that you get the ratios

correct. You’re doing pretty well with that heed and whey

protein powder. There are a few supplements out there that

actually give you the carbohydrates and protein in the proper

ratio which is 3:1 or 4:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio.

Recoverite is one example. Recoverite is made by Hammer

Nutrition. Endurox R4 is another one, and basically we’re

talking about compounds that are just sugar and protein

mixed up in the proper ratios. You can make your own

recovery drink by taking a couple of bananas, a scoop of ice

and a couple of scoops of whey protein powder or soy protein

powder or rice or hemp or whatever you tend to tolerate in

using something like that. The other thing you could do is

you could use for example the Bioletics amino acids that I

talked about earlier and put that in there for some added

amino acids and quicker absorption. A lot of different

options in terms of recovery drinks. After some real, real

hard workouts, I’ll also include antioxidants. Like I’ll include

the Solar Synergy in there – that’s a high antioxidant

beverage. You could also use frozen blueberries or thawed

blueberries and blend those in with your recovery drink as

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well. I actually had a great recovery drink the other day. I

just took frozen blueberries, water, added the Bioletics

amino acid powder and just basically ate that out of a cup

with a spoon. It was actually pretty flavorful. The type of

protein powder in terms of the isolate versus the concentrate,

basically what it comes down to is you’ve got three different

types of whey protein. You’ve got a whey protein concentrate

which generally has a little bit higher level of lactose in it,

and so if you’re lactose intolerant you need to be careful with

that. It is typically a bit more affordable. The isolates – the

whey protein isolates – they process that to remove the fat

and the lactose, but you also lose some of what are called

your bio-active compounds which help your body to absorb

that protein a little bit better. So you could get a little bit

better absorption with the concentrate, but you could also

get higher fat, higher cholesterol and more lactose. I’m not

really worried about the fat and the cholesterol but for those

of you that are lactose intolerant, that can be an issue if

you’re using a whey protein concentrate, you’re getting

stomach upset, you might be able to fix that by switching to

an isolate. And then finally there’s a new more expensive

form of whey protein called a hydrosylate and what that

means is that it’s pre-digested. They partially – what they do

is called hydrolyzing the protein which means they break

them up with water and so they’re more easily absorbed but

they do tend to cost more. The interesting thing is there’s

really only one non-industry funded research study on the

market that shows that the whey protein hydrosylate is any

better than the whey protein isolate. I tend to recommend

the Mt. Capra double bonded whey protein and that would

be classified as a whey protein isolate. They also add casein

protein to it and casein basically results in a little bit slower,

longer absorption of the amino acids in the protein. So a lot

of different options out there. What I would recommend is

that for your recovery drink after your very hard workouts,

you make sure your recovery drink has antioxidants, it has

electrolytes. It has a 3:1 or 4:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio.

After your easier workouts, you can get away with some

Recoveries capsules, piece of fruit and then just a regular

meal afterwards. So I typically will save my full-on recovery

drinks for after a real, real key hard workout and that’s when

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I’ll use either a pre-mixed formula or I’ll use an actual recipe

where I’ll mix the recipe with the fruit and just do that in a

blender with some ice. I neglected to mention one other

brand of recovery supplement which I’m probably going to

get in big trouble for now because they’re one of my sponsors.

Goo Recovery Brew. Goo Recovery Brew is actually the one I

have in my cupboard right now. I mentioned the Recoverite

and Endurox R4 and this will fall into that category of being

kind of a pre-formulated recovery beverage. But that’s also

the really good and quite tasty one. They have a watermelon

flavor that’s pretty good. So we have one more question and

it’s from listener Ron.

Ron asks: I signed up for my first triathlon and have been reading

about training. Most sources suggest taking off one day per

week. I found this to be challenging. On the day off, can you

still workout if it’s not a run, bike or swim? Would an easy

bike ride with my wife or a yoga class be okay for that day off?

Ben answers: Well Ron, a couple of things. First of all, it depends on the

training volume. If you’re just doing a six or seven hour

training week for a sprint triathlon, a lot of people are

successful with not ever having a day off but just having a

day that includes an easier technique based swim, technique

based ride, soft surface run but essentially still includes

elements of triathlon training. If you’ve got a real hard or

high volume training program, you’d definitely benefit from

an easy day but the easy day even in the hardest of programs

should never include just sitting on the couch. Light walking,

some time splashing and playing in the water, basically

getting the blood flowing helps to remove a lot of the

inflammation from the week’s workouts and speed up your

recovery. On my recovery days I play a tennis match. For me

it’s a mental break, but it’s a little bit of a physical break too.

A tennis match does not take as much out of me as a typical

hour and a half training day of bike and run intervals. So it

really depends on your training program but ultimately yes, a

light workout on a recovery day is going to be much better

than a day that is typically off. In my personal program I take

a day that’s completely off, like literally nothing at all about

once every two to three weeks where it’s just a day where it’s

absolutely nothing. And even those days still include walking

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around and stretching and activities of daily living. So great


Now we’re going to move on to the training and nutrition

interview with me and the idea behind this interview is that

it was released over at the Marathon Training Academy. A

couple of people from over there interviewed me and it was a

really good interview I thought and so I wanted to give it to

you guys over here and let you listen in, so enjoy.

Male Speaker: Alright, well we’re going to get going on the podcast. We’re

here with Ben Greenfield and I’m so glad that he came on

letting us interview him. He’s recognized as one of the top

fitness triathlon nutrition and metabolism experts in the

nation. Ben coaches and trains individuals for weight loss,

lean muscle gain, holistic wellness and sports performance in

Spokane Washington and Corti’lane, Idaho. He also runs the

Rock Star Triathlete Academy, the Internet’s top school for

learning the sport of triathlon and how to be a better

triathlete. He was voted in 2008 as the personal trainer of

the year by the National Strength and Conditioning

Association – an internationally recognized and respected

agency. Ben’s also a public speaker on fitness and nutrition

and training and he’s the host of one of the top ranked

fitness podcasts on iTunes. The Get Fit Guy with the Quick

and Dirty Tips network. Real good podcast. And Ben’s also

on the board of directors for Tri-Fusion Triathlete Team and

the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the Spokane Health

and Fitness Advisory Committee. As a triathlete, coach and

competitor he competes at Ironman and half Ironman World

Championships holding a ranking as of USAT’s top ranked

age grouper triathletes and competes in 15 to 20 triathlons

each year both nationally and internationally. Ben, do you

have any time to breathe?

Ben: I don’t know. It sounded like you didn’t have much time to

breathe during the bio. I should take you with me places so

you can introduce me. That was quite comprehensive.

Male Speaker: Oh man, tell our audience what is involved in the Ironman

triathlon. I think that’s pretty awesome.

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Ben: Well a marathon of course is involved but you’re a little bit

smoked by the time you get there. You swim 2.4 miles and

bike 112 miles and then you run your marathon and if you

are trying to make the time cutoff you need to do that in 17

hours and my goal is always to get it done in 10 or less.

Angie: Wow.

Ben: So that’s what the Ironman triathlon is.

Angie: I always thought that it’d be easier to do the run second and

then have the bike ride for the last thing, but I suppose

they’re not in it to make it easier for anyone.

Ben: And then have lots of people drown during the swim because

their calves are cramping.

Angie: No, I thought swim first and then run and then bike.

Ben: Oh, I see what you’re saying. Yeah that could work. It would

still be uncomfortable. I personally would rather bike 112

miles knowing that I have to run a marathon then run a

marathon knowing that when I finish I need to bike 112 miles.

Angie: I guess you have the experience doing it. I just thought it’d be

nice to sit after a marathon, you know?

Ben: Yeah, it would. I don’t know, for some reason I find it easier

to run after I bike than I do to bike after I run.

Male Speaker: I can’t imagine how sore you are after one of those things.

Ben: Well the swimming and biking are non-weight bearing so

that’s mostly just glycogen depleting and it leaves you tired

but not necessarily sore. Anybody who’s gone out and done a

century bike ride that probably the sorest part of your body is

anywhere where you forgot to put Chamois cream because of

the chafing. But when you’re running, it always leaves you

sore. But really if you were to go out and swim 2.4 miles and

bike 112 miles, you wouldn’t be that sore. So the soreness

really is about what you would get after running a marathon

at a difficult race pace.

Angie: It’s interesting. I guess if I got my swimming up to par, then

you know, I might have to try one of those sometime.

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Ben: You should. Just hop into your local friendly neighborhood


Angie: Yeah exactly.

Male Speaker: I think you need to start in one of those smaller ones first.

Angie: You’re right.

Male Speaker: So how did you get into triathlon?

Ben: When I was in university, I was studying sports science and

exercise science and ended up discovering the triathlon club

as a great avenue to use myself as a guinea pig for a lot of the

stuff I was learning. And so, because I was already – I was

swimming, I was doing a little bit of lifeguarding, playing

some water polo, so I had the swimming component down. I

was a really ugly swimmer but I could swim. I was riding my

big heavy mountain bike with a backpack full of books to

school every day. At that point, all I really had to do was run

and my wife now, who was my girlfriend then, actually ran

for the University of Idaho. So she was a good motivation

and good teacher for me to learn how to really run distance

since all I’d done up to that point was sprint style training. At

that point, I kind of had all the components to try out – like

you just mentioned the short triathlon – the sprint triathlon,

and I loved it and I’ve been doing them ever since. So that

was really how I got into it, was as an avenue for exercise

science and to meet some people and get involved in a sport

where I could apply some of those physiological concepts

and it really became a passion.

Male Speaker: Awesome. So what’s your favorite event?

Ben: Eating. Probably other than that, biking. Because you get to

play around with all sorts of cool little toys on the bike and

bikes are just fun. It’s like the next best thing to being able to

work on a motorcycle or race car when you have a bike that

you can do all sorts of cool things with. Granted swimming

and running are fun, but biking – something about having an

extra piece of equipment, that’s a pretty involved and

necessary piece of equipment, it makes it fun for me. I like

the bike split.

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Male Speaker: Yeah, well I was hoping you’d say running because this is

Marathon Training Academy.

Ben: I know.

Male Speaker: I don’t know if we can continue with this conversation.

Ben: I do love to run, but you just asked me what I like better:

chocolate, peanut butter or pizza… I mean I like them all, but


Male Speaker: We do have some triathletes in our community and of course

everyone I think is going to benefit from this interview today

because we’re going to get into nutrition and Angie’s had so

many questions about that. So, let me ask you what got you

interested in the study of nutrition?

Ben: Well, it goes hand in hand with physiology. So as I was

studying sports science at the undergraduate level, I was

exposed to quite a bit of human nutrition. Then when I

moved on to my Master’s course of study, I wanted to

continue to learn that component of exercise and sports

science just because by that time, I already understood it’s a

big component of fitness and competition and diet, so I

studied a lot of biochemistry and more advanced human

nutrition and after the Master’s degree, I went on and got a

sports nutrition certification and now I find that just the

biochemistry and the challenges of eating properly are just as

interesting to me as training properly and putting together a

solid training program. So for me, the enjoyment I get out of

it is the fact that I understood its enormous importance in

actually bringing you to the next level or getting you to the

point where your body actually feels good and you have


Angie: Yeah, I think I heard you say that the nutrition part of it is

like 50% of training for a marathon. It’s so important.

Ben: Any sport of attrition, any sport where glycogen depletion is

an issue which would include marathoning and triathloning,

is going to be very dependent on your nutritional status and

that’s not to say that a 100 meter sprinter isn’t going to

benefit from taking some sort of nutritional supplement or

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eating effectively but when you’re looking at wanting to spare

carbohydrate stores and keep your body going for long

periods of time, it moves to the forefront in terms of its

importance. So absolutely. I would say 50% and in some

cases even more.

Angie: Right, that makes sense. So what do you see as the key

components to a healthy diet for a long distance runner or an

endurance athlete?

Ben: Well as you’d probably guess, carbohydrate intake can be

skewed towards a slightly higher percentage in that

population. Really in any active populations, simply because

in a sedentary population if you dump a bunch of glucose

into your bloodstream you’re eventually going to become

unresponsive to the hormone that gets released in response

to glucose – insulin. But when you’re exercising a lot, you

don’t do quite as much damage to your body when you’re

putting more fuel in the tank, when you’re filling your body

with more carbohydrates. And so, an endurance athlete can

benefit from slightly increased carbohydrate intakes to a

certain extent. There are a lot of people who take that to a

very high level and will consume 75 to 80% carbohydrates as

part of their daily diet. Even if that’s a healthy type of

carbohydrate – even if you’re eating gluten free and avoiding

sugars and cokes and things of that nature, still 75 to 80% is

a big load of insulin being released. Unless you have a

screaming high metabolism then that’s a pretty high

carbohydrate intake. 55 to 60% is better unless you’re carb

loading and as you’re carb loading through race week, you’ll

gradually get up to about 80% carb intake. But about 55 to

60% carbs is good and that’s generally accompanied by

anywhere between 20 and 30% protein and 20 and 30% fat.

Those ranges are so big because I’m very big on people eating

according to their metabolic types and the type of fueling

that’s actually correct for their body. So I don’t want to give

an exact, specific range because somebody who’s of Icelandic

descent is going to be different than someone who’s of Asian

descent is going to be different than somebody who’s

Hispanic. So the actual metabolic rates really vary but for the

most part if you’re hitting that 50 to 60% carbohydrate, 20 to

30% fat, 20 to 30% protein window it’s pretty good. There

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have been studies that have looked at the fact that endurance

athletes consume or burn more fat so maybe they should eat

more fat and they’ve taken endurance athletes, put them in a

lab and given them mostly fat as a fuel – like put the fat up to

40, 50% of the diet with the theory being that you’re going to

perform just as well, but the fact is there’s a lot of GI distress

that occurs with that and there is actually no increase in

performance that was observed. So, that’s why even though

we’re burning more fat, the higher fat doesn’t really work too

well. The higher protein gets to be pretty tough on the liver

and the kidneys after a while so you’re kind of left with that

macro nutrient ratio that’s been observed in a lot of studies

to be really good for athletes in general, and especially

endurance athletes.

Male Speaker: Ben, when you got to the GI distress, I was distressed. I don’t

have to remind you and Angie since you both have a medical

background to keep it simple for us.

Ben: Gastrointestinal.

Male Speaker: I know now. She whispered in my ear.

Ben: I’m not talking about the army.

Male Speaker: So for us in the audience that are not as elite as you two, keep

it simple for us simple guys.

Ben: Yes sir.

Angie: Well, you read a lot about the different recommendations of

percentages of carbohydrate and protein ratios and I think a

lot of people get bogged down by that because they don’t

understand sometimes even the basics of nutrition. So trying

to get down those percentages can be really confusing to

them. Personally, I think it’s the quality of the foods that you

eat also. The quality of the fats like you were talking about –

what is your take on that?

Ben: Yeah. I think it’s enormously important what the protein,

fats, and carbohydrates are derived from and before I

comment on that I want to be clear, I don’t have a scale in

my kitchen. I don’t keep track of those percentages very

carefully. For me, if at the end of the day I can close my eyes

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and put all the food that I consumed on one of those divider

plates in my mind then carbohydrates should be about half

that plate and the protein should be on a third of it and the

fat should be on a third of it.

Angie: Right.

Ben: So basically, as far as the actual quality – yeah, it’s

enormously important because obviously you could go out

and buy whatever… the Weight Watchers meals, the pre-

packaged… I’m blanking on the name of the really popular

one… Nutrisystem. Any of those type of pre-packaged meals

and they can put them in the percentages that are correct for

your body, but you’re getting tons of sodium and

preservatives and chemicals and artificial sweeteners and

neurotoxins and all sorts of stuff dumped into your body

when you’re eating those versus real food. So the quality is

enormously important and of course the easiest way to just

dial in the quality instantly is to make sure when you’re

shopping for the carbs, the proteins and the fats, you’re

shopping on the perimeter of the grocery store. Or the

Farmer’s Market if you’re lucky enough to have access to one

of those. You’ve got all your produce and your dairy and your

meat and your starches and everything that really doesn’t

come in a package or a box, generally around the perimeter

of the store, especially the produce, the fruit, the vegetable

aisles. So that’s where the quality comes in. And the quality

really, truly is important. The fewer chemicals that you can

put into your body when you’re eating, the better.

Angie: That’s a great point. I like to tell people that if they don’t

understand what’s written on the label, they probably

shouldn’t put it in their body.

Ben: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, to a certain extent, you look at a lot

of sports supplements and they’ll say something like

maltodextrin on them – a lot of people don’t know what

maltodextrin is but it’s just sugar. You burn it for energy.

Something like that is fine. But it’s very rare that you’re

going to find a list of ingredients that are not pronounceable

in a food that you’re eating and have that food actually be

good for you, or be doing you a service or helping you out

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with your sports performance. In most cases, it’s going to be

more deleterious to your function than it’s going to help you

out. So that’s one of the things – a lot of the athletes that I

work with, because I do a lot of nutrition consulting – I

mostly work from my computer helping people out via phone

and email and I get lots of questions from people about

nutrition labels and adding up the calories on the nutrition

labels and reading the ingredient labels. One of the first

things I tell them is okay, as I’m explaining this to you, one of

the first things you should know is that you should not be

eating many foods that have labels. Period. You should not

be eating many foods that you’re taking out of a box anyways.

The pepper that you get at the grocery store or the apple,

those don’t have labels, UPC codes on them or bars or

anything like that. They’re just food.

Angie: That’s a good point.

Ben: It’s really important that if you find yourself always looking

at labels, then maybe you need to step back and look at your

diet from a crow’s eye view and kind of see how many things

you’re eating out of boxes and how many things that you’re

eating the same way that your great, great grandparents

would have eaten or hunted 150 years ago.

Angie: Right, yeah that’s a good point. I mean your body is going to

perform so much better on the fat that an avocado contains

as opposed to the fat in a bag of chips. That’s pretty far ends

of the spectrum there.

Ben: Exactly. Exactly.

Angie: So what are some cutting edge nutritional principles that you


Ben: Cutting edge… well, we all know that gluten free is very

cutting edge right now.

Angie: Right.

Ben: I actually – I’m not on that bandwagon full force. It really is

good for some people and then some people get really carried

away with it but the idea behind gluten free or paleo style

eating is that essentially the use of breads and starches and

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the glutenated proteins that are formed while things like that

are made is something relatively new in the human diet. So

from an evolution of the human body perspective, and when

I say evolution what I mean is just the body’s ability to adapt

to certain foods that our bodies are not quite capable of

digesting that very quickly – and so there’s a lot of inhibition

of absorption that goes on and a lot of undigested food

fragments that end up in the bloodstream, a lot of allergic

reactions, inflammation and basically it’s not a clean burning

carbohydrate and so one of the cutting edge concepts is that

you limit the number of carbohydrates that you take in from

gluten or you eliminate it all together. Now I fall into the

former camp with myself and the athletes that I coach unless

they have something like celiac disease or they’re gluten

intolerant – I tell them it’s not that breads are bad

necessarily and you can’t have whole grains or whole wheat

and you can’t have brown rice or any of these foods but you

should experiment with some foods that aren’t grain based.

You should try things like sweet potatoes and yams and

carrots and parsnips and beets. And these vegetable-based,

root-based, tuber-based carbohydrates that still give you

food energy, carbohydrate energy but don’t contain those

glutenated proteins. You can choose foods that are kind of

halfway in between too. Oats have a little bit of gluten in

them but they’re not quite so bad. Three grains that I really

like that technically somebody who is big on the paleo diet

or the non-gluten diet would be completely against these, but

that I use quite a bit are quinoa, amaranth and millet. Those

are foods that are just the endurance athlete’s best friend

because they’re kind of like rice. You get them, you cook

them the same way as rice. You can batch cook them at the

beginning of the week and use them as breakfast foods. For

example when my children have breakfast, we mash it with

bananas, the quinoa with bananas. You can throw a little bit

of feta cheese and chopped up spinach and kale, some

almonds and some tomatoes and turn it into an afternoon or

evening salad. So, there’s a lot of versatility in some of those

grains that go beyond spaghetti or rice and have a little bit

higher protein content as well. So when you say cutting edge

nutrition concepts, especially when we started off this

discussion talking about carbs, the idea of really expanding

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your horizons when it comes to carbs and thinking beyond

the almighty bagel is really a good thing. All my athletes who

have ever PR-ed on any event have done it on sweet potatoes

or yams. That’s just a fact. That holds true for myself as well.

So, the carbohydrate concept is really important in terms of

one of the cutting edge nutrition concepts that’s probably

utilized most frequently among myself and the athletes that I

work with.

Angie: I think that’s great. To think outside the box a little bit, and

you can only eat so much spaghetti to do your carbo loading

and I think people don’t even know that there are other

options out there. So those are some great hints there.

Male Speaker: It made me hungry.

Ben: Oh sorry.

Male Speaker: That salad you were talking about.

Ben: I didn’t mention nuts and legumes but those are also really

effective for that front as well. For us marathoners and

endurance athletes, a big problem for us is gas. Because

we’re always eating all these carbohydrates and we’re eating

more foods anyways. You’re kind of that endurance athlete

who already has gas or you’re the one that’s going to get it.

So for that, if you’re using the legumes and the beans and the

nuts and things like that as your carbohydrates stores –

doing things like soaking can really help, which can help pre-

digest a little bit and you mentioned the Rock Star Triathlete

Academy. I shoot nutrition videos for them and do training

videos. I just recently shot a video on how to make your own

hummus and a couple really simple things you can do to

make garbanzo beans digest a little bit easier is you soak

them overnight before you put them in the blender with all

the ingredients and then as you boil them just right before

you put them in the blender, you add a little bit of seaweed

and there are enzymes in the seaweed that help to digest the

stuff in the garbanzo beans that can give you gas.

Angie: Wow.

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Ben: So little tricks like that can help you out and of course Beano

is really good as well. You just have to eat that stuff about

five minutes before you eat a bean-heavy meal. That’s the

trick. So yeah, those are other good carbohydrate sources

that you have to know the tricks of the trade when you’re

using those as primary fuel sources.

Angie: Yeah, that’s awesome. I had a listener ask me recently if

using decreased water or I guess not consuming any water or

gels during an 18 mile run would make him have more

endurance. If it would train his body to be able to respond

better on less. What’s your take on that?

Ben: You know, you always hear the human body isn’t a camel. If

your mom didn’t tell you that, your teacher did or your P.E.

coach. You got to drink water, your body isn’t a camel, but

you can condition your body to conserve a little bit of extra

water by doing unhydrated exercise sessions in the heat. The

problem is that the blood markers produced after a session

like that are indicative of a high amount of inflammation and

risk of overtraining. And the question is do the hydration

adaptations that you incur during a session like that where

you go out and do a tough training session with limited

amounts of water – do those training adaptations that make

you better able to exercise in the heat overshadow the fact

that it beats up your body a lot more when you’re doing a

dehydrated exercise session. It takes a lot longer to recover

and if you don’t recover properly, you’ll end up increasing

your risk of overtraining or not getting as good as a fitness

response out of that training session. So you got to be really

careful. If you’re getting ready for a hot weather race, then it

makes sense to ensure that you’re trying to expose yourself to

hot, humid conditions; trying not to take in tons of water in

those conditions and choosing very carefully the training

sessions that you do that for. Preferably making them not

your longer training sessions or your really, really intense

training sessions. So that would be the strategy that you’d

want to use if you were not going to consume water. You just

want to be careful the sessions that you do that with. For

example, case in point, I’m getting ready for a race in Hawaii

that I go down to in a week and I’ve been doing exercise

sessions in the steam room, in the sauna. I’m doing core

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training sessions, yoga sessions, calisthenics sessions and

they’re only 20 to 30 minutes long and they’re kind of like

child’s play compared to an 18 mile run but that’s enough for

my body. If I go out and do that without drinking much

water then that’s conditioning my body and it’s not doing as

much damage or putting as much stress on my body as going

out and trying an 18 mile run on six ounces of water.

Angie: Right. So you’re saying more limited sessions and probably

not for the beginner who’s not sure how their body is going

to respond in the first place to long distance.

Ben: Yeah, this would be an advanced technique. You’re looking

for the extra 5 or 10% if you’re doing this technique. So, and

the same really goes for fuel. Same thing. There have been

studies that looked at people depleting themselves of

carbohydrate and going out, doing their sessions – both their

hard sessions and their long sessions with minimal fueling –

and again, there is indications at the muscular level that you

actually – you can cause the muscles to respond a little bit

better to that exercise session when you do it that way. But

again, it’s very stressful to the body as well. The blood

markers that indicate stress during training goes sky-high

when you do that. And then you get to the point where

mentally, how hard are you going to be able to push yourself?

How high quality of a training session are you going to be

able to have if you’re starving and you’re kind of in that

dazed pure fat burning mode? So again, that’s a session that

you’d want to use really infrequently. I’ll tell you when I use

that session in the athletes that I coach. I’ll do it with really

muscular athletes who we need to cannibalize muscle from,

and literally put them out there and do training sessions

completely unfueled just to strip muscle off their body. I

don’t do it with people who are wanting to engage in fat loss,

because you can actually depress the metabolism a little bit,

decrease the post exercise metabolic rate and decrease the

number of calories burned during that session. I use high

intensity interval training for my fat loss folks. Really, the

only other people who do that glycogen depletion as well are

the people who need to get a little more mental toughness

and I need to have them go out and do a hard exercise

session, push through discomfort and do so with minimal

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fuelling. But only the people who are trying to cannibalize

muscle or really get them the mental edge are the people who

I have go out and do that. I don’t work with ultra-

marathoners. That’s just not a niche that I’ve really done

much coaching in. If I was coaching an ultra-marathoner,

they would also fall into that category because they train

really slow. So they can move at a rate that really efficiently

uses fat and they can get away with more mobilizing their

own fat stores, assuming that they have some than putting a

ton of calories on board. So that would kind of be the third

category, if I worked with them, who I would have do that.

Angie: Okay. That’s great.

Male Speaker: Alright. Well I’m going to ask the next question and people

have also been wondering about this. What do you eat before,

during and after a long workout?

Ben: I guess long is relative. Since we’re talking to marathoners,

would long be kind of in that 90 minute plus, two hours plus?

In that range?

Angie: Yes, that would be good.

Ben: Before is the time when you really want to avoid proteins and

fats. They take a long time to digest. They divert a lot of

blood into the stomach and they essentially – by diverting a

lot of blood into the stomach, deplete your extremities, your

arms and your legs, from the blood they would need to

deliver oxygen and to cool. So doing the whole Rocky steak

and eggs, raw eggs in a blender type of thing before a long

training session would not be advised. The caveat to that

would be if you’re going for a super-long session. Like a five

or a six hour ultra-endurance Ironman type of session where

you do need a little bit of proteins and fats on board. But for

everything up to about two hours, just pure carbohydrates is

fine. Most studies show the glycemic index of the

carbohydrates doesn’t matter and what I mean by that is you

could eat really sweet carbohydrates or you could eat

carbohydrates that are less sweet. So you could do your

carbohydrate pre-workout, it’s supposed to be two hours pre-

workout at least to allow for the gastric emptying to occur.

You could do that with some sports drink and some fruit and

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an energy bar. That would be the sweeter way to go. Or you

could do it with sweet potatoes, a couple of sweet potatoes, a

couple of yams, a big bowl of quinoa and that would be more

the complex carbohydrate route. What I find is when I go

with the sweet route, I tend to have an energy slump before

the training session. So I prefer to use the complex

carbohydrate. Research doesn’t back me up on that. But I do

know just my own body and how I feel, I do better on the

complex than the simple carbohydrates. Now, during the

session, it really ranges for runners. You’re usually looking at

maxing out in terms of the max amount that a runner can

really consume and this would be for marathon style training,

not for ultra-marathon style training – at about 250 calories

per hour. Most of the females I work with will do pretty well

at about 100 to 150. Most of the guys, 150 to 200, and some

of the people who are a little bit bigger can get to around that

250 calorie mark. But basically that would be your hourly

goal in terms of simple carbohydrates. So you could take for

example a gel at the end of each hour. If you’re pushing a

little bit harder, it should be a gel every 40 minutes. If you’re

big, you’re a guy, you could go with a gel every 30 minutes.

But basically carbohydrate is fine during those sessions than

again proteins and fats wouldn’t really be advised for that

length of an exercise session. We’re looking at the really long

stuff, that’s where we’d start to work in the proteins and the

fats. Then after the workout, that’s when you pull in the

proteins and you do your post-workout protein carb blend

meal. Now the magic ratio for endurance athletes is 3:1

carbohydrate to protein ratio. That’s not super important.

Chocolate milk interestingly enough hits that ratio almost

perfectly. But what I tell people is just mix protein and

carbohydrate and try to do a little more carbohydrate than

the protein. So for example, have some brown rice and have

a little bit of chicken in there or do a fruit smoothie and put a

little bit of protein powder in there. But try and get that

protein carbohydrate blend and try to get it in within 20

minutes after the exercise session. No more than 60 minutes

after the exercise session. You really hit that window where

your muscles are likely to pull in what you’re fueling in and

actually utilize it for recovery and for energy replenishment.

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So that’s the short answer to the pre, during and post-

workout nutrition.

Angie: Yeah, that’s great. That’s really helpful. Now many runners

find themselves either gaining weight or struggling to lose

weight when they’re training for a marathon or as they’re

increasing their mileage. Why do you think this occurs and

what are some suggestions for someone who wants to run a

marathon and still lose weight?

Ben: It’s kind of tough because you’re trying to strip your body of

energy while still having enough energy to actually do the

training session. So, first of all, understand that there’s no

research to show that a bunch of aerobic training actually

helps you to lose weight. There have been studies that

compared people who have dieted and lost weight and

people who have done dieting plus cardio plus aerobic cardio,

and there was no difference in the people who dieted and did

aerobic cardio and the people who only dieted. So thinking

that all those aerobic training sessions are really going to

help you lose weight is actually false. It’s not going to work

compared to just eating healthier. But assuming that you are

eating healthy and you’re working in at least that single long

aerobic training session that’s kind of the foundation of a

marathon training program – your long weekend run – that

type of thing. The incorporation of the higher intensity

intervals are really going to help you. Like I mentioned, I

don’t have my fat loss clients actually do those sessions with

minimal fueling. We do a good pre-workout meal, we make

sure if the session’s longer than an hour that they are

actually taking fuel out there with them and everything is

high intensity intervals so what we’re inducing there is the

release of hormones like testosterone and growth hormone

that are crucial for fat loss and really spark the body’s fat

burning process. Then we’re also increasing the post-exercise

metabolic rate because when you’re really huffing and

puffing during an exercise session versus doing the entire

exercise session with 60 or 70%, you end up burning a lot

more calories for the hours after that exercise session.

Angie: Interesting.

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Ben: The high intensity intervals are really important, rather than

just focusing on the aerobic training. Eating healthy outside

of those sessions is also really important or eating in

moderation outside of those sessions. So you engage in

caloric restriction, but you don’t engage in caloric restriction

during or around the exercise sessions. You do it later on in

the day. You quit eating two hours before bed time and you

cut an afternoon snack out if you’re not an afternoon or early

evening runner. And so you really base the majority of your

fueling around your actual workout session for the day when

your body’s going to be a lot more likely to use that fuel and

not to store it as fat. Then the final trick that you can do –

and this actually works pretty well if you’re very, very careful

with this trick. I’m careful to lay down that caveat when I

share this with people but what you can do is you can quit

eating two hours before bed time, go to sleep, get up in your

fasted state when your body’s burned through its liver’s

carbohydrate stores while you’re sleeping and you go out and

do an exercise session. I know this flies in the face of what I

just said about exercising without fuel, but the trick here is

it’s a very easy exercise session. We’re just talking about

sparking the activity of the fat burning enzymes in the liver.

So we’re just going 20 to 30 minutes, very easy brisk walk,

light jog, light bike ride, that type of thing, and incorporating

that exercise session that’s very light in a fasted state and

then supplementing that with the higher intensity intervals

works really well. So that’s kind of the key 1,2 combo for

weight loss is using the intervals and more the muscular

training with those unfed very light fat burning sessions and

not just focusing everything on the aerobic training.

Angie: Right. Right. I think people just think I’ve got to be out there.

I’ve just got to run, run, run and that’s what’s going to burn

those calories and I’m going to lose the weight. But there’s

also other important elements to integrate into your


Ben: Right, exactly. I worked a lot of these concepts into a fat loss

book that I wrote called Shape21. It’s kind of this 21 day

clean up your body, lose a bunch of fat type of program. And

in Shape21, I use a lot of those same concepts but then I also

put weightlifting in there because weightlifting really is

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important as well. Maintaining lean muscles so you actually

can improve the calorie burn based on the fact that your fiber

of lean muscle is always going to burn more than a droplet of

fat. So if you’re not lifting weights at all, that can help out a

little bit too, is making sure that you include some type of

resistance training.

Angie: Good, that sounds wonderful. Now what kind of nutritional

supplements would you recommend for a long distance


Ben: Oh, there’s a lot of them out there. You could spend a few

thousand bucks a month if you were to follow every single ad

you saw in Runner’s Magazine. It’s a great question on the

nutrition supplements. I can tell you what I take and what I

recommend to my athletes based off of the research that I’ve


Angie: Okay.

Ben: I always put – if you go to my coaching Web site, which is, you’ll see that I have a lot of the

supplements that I recommend there and I break them into

three categories. Fat loss, performance and recovery. So for

the people who are trying to lose weight from a fat loss

perspective, the type of supplements that I like to focus on

are A, meal replacements that are not the type of meal

replacements we talked about earlier. They have the

chemicals and the preservatives and things like that in them.

There’s one called Living Fuel and it’s basically like a greens

supplement. You can use it as a meal but it really is whole

food. It’s real food. It’s just basically in finely ground powder.

That stuff works pretty well. The other thing for fat loss I

recommend are blood sugar stabilizers. I have my athletes

who are trying to lose weight use a lot of cinnamon. Another

couple of things that work really well are chromium and

vanadium for stabilizing insulin levels, reducing

carbohydrate cravings and there’s one supplement I have on

there called ThermoFactor which is really good for that. For

performance, there’s a lot of different supplements out there

but fish oil has a ton of research behind it, the Omega 3 fatty

acids supplements for cardiovascular health, for helping your

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joints bounce back quicker. So fish oil is something I really

recommend. Vitamin D is also extremely important. Most

multi-vitamins have 200, 400 milligrams of vitamin D. I test

most of my athletes via lab testing. I have them do all their

blood, saliva, urine testing. I hook them up with labs. I have

them do it for them in the comfort of their own homes so

they don’t have to go out and do all this for themselves. But, I

do those on myself as well. I tested my vitamin D levels in the

middle of the summer and they were just at rock bottom.

About 75% of the population has vitamin D deficiencies.

Since it’s a steroid and a hormone precursor, it’s kind of like

the secret cheap performance enhancer that nobody’s

actually using. So I take about 4000 to 6000 international

units per day of that. Ten times more the recommended dose

and I feel fantastic on vitamin D. So vitamin D in addition to

some type of fish oil is really important. Magnesium – again

tons of people are very deficient in magnesium. It’s essential

as an electrolyte. Especially if you cramp. That’s another

secret weapon in my performance protocol that I use. I

personally use a topical magnesium. I did a big interview

over at about magnesium and

all the different advantages you give yourself when you use it.

But that’s another one and finally for performance, some

type of a green supplement. There’s been lots of studies done

on the spirulina, the chorela, the algae, these types of greens

powders or green pills that you can get. Those work really

well, not only for your immune system but also for your

performance. So some type of green supplement is also really

important to include. Then for recovery, two different things.

I really recommend essential amino acids along with branch

chain amino acids. The one that I use is called Recoveries,

but some type of quickly absorbed amino acids source that

you can get into your body after a workout and amino acids

also work really well when you’re restricting calories but you

still want to give yourself enough protein so you don’t

cannibalize lean muscle. Amino acids are basically like

getting the protein without getting the calories. So you can

for example have a glass of water with some amino acids in

them in the afternoon and still get proper recovery for your

muscles without consuming too many calories. So amino

acids and then something called protolytic enzymes. Those

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really assist with digestion of proteins. Really help with post-

workout soreness and you can find them in pineapples,

papayas, thing like that. You can also get them from the

pancreas of various farm animals. But you can also get them

in pill form or capsule form and protolytic enzymes are

another one that I really recommend for recovery. So, that

would be kind of the staple of a nutrition supplement

program for endurance athletes. The fat loss stuff, you’re

wanting to do that but then definitely a fish oil, a vitamin D,

a magnesium, a green supplement, an amino acid

supplement and protolytic enzymes would be the top things

to take if you really want to give yourself the edge.

Angie: That sounds like some good suggestions. In fact, I want to go

check my multivitamin to see how much vitamin D it

contains now. You got me curious.

Ben: Probably like 200, usually not much.

Male Speaker: I’m wanting to go pee in a cup. Check my vitamin D level.

Ben: Vitamin D would be blood actually. But you can get your

mineral loss, which is really important for endurance

athletes. That’s a urine test. You can also do Ph testing. See if

you’re too acidic or alkalinic with the peeing on the strips. So

there you go.

Male Speaker: Thanks man.

Ben: No problem. Have another cup of coffee and get at it.

Male Speaker: Alright, I got the next question. What advice do you have for

a person who wants to break poor nutritional dietary habits

like sugar, soda, fast food? All the stuff that tastes good.

Ben: Well the most important thing mentally is to understand that

it takes a while for your body to form a habit, to make a

change. And your subconscious gets very rooted in the habits

that you currently have in place. So, you take for example the

study that they did on athletes at NASA and they put goggles

on them that made their whole world turn upside down.

Then they looked at things like the astronauts’ blood

pressure and their heart rate, their stress levels and it took

an average of 28 to 32 days for them to actually begin to

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accept that new world as a reality. And so the human body,

when you’re trying to force changes on yourself is no

different. It gets stressed out and your subconscious – a part

of your brain called your emigdulla will actually stress your

body out and try and keep it in the zone that it’s comfortable

in. Eating the foods that you’re comfortable with, staying

with the habits that you’re very accustomed to. So unless you

can start the entire process of change by actually getting your

subconscious into change mode, it’s very difficult to make

those changes. One of the best ways to train your

subconscious is to visualize. So a lot of my fat loss clients

especially will do the process of visualization where what we

do is we picture or you would picture yourself – you close

your eyes, you find a quiet place – you can just do this for 30

to 60 seconds a few times a day, see yourself with the body or

being at the weight that you want to be at, see yourself with a

refrigerator full of the foods that are on your meal plan, full

of the healthy foods that you’ve actually decided that you’re

going to start eating. See your pantry with the right foods in

it. See yourself at each meal making the changes and

incorporating the changes that you want to make that are

actually going to help you break that habit. Then when you

combine that with the actual knowledge of what you’re

supposed to be doing, it’s kind of the ultimate 1,2 combo. But

it has to start with the subconscious. Very, very rare to run

into somebody who tried to just quit cold turkey without

using any type of mental training and actually made it

through the first 28 to 32 days without falling off the

bandwagon. So that’s number one, is training the

subconscious. Then as far as empowering yourself with the

knowledge to actually break the nutrition habits and take in

the right things – first of all, make sure you understand

what’s going on inside your body when you’re consuming

sugar and soda and fast foods. Make sure you understand all

the damage that it does to your body. There’s tons of

resources out there. One really good one to kind of scare you

into change is a book called Suicide by Sugar. I think Nancy

Appleton wrote that one. But it really just shows you all the

things that sugar can do to your body. I interviewed her on

my podcast at and put out an

article by her over there. Really, if you know what’s going on

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in your body, it really helps you make that change and break

your habit. Then once you’ve taken care of those things,

that’s when you can start to incorporate some of the little tips.

Like I mentioned the cinnamon and the chromium and the

vanadium to reduce the carbohydrate cravings and the

appetite cravings. Making sure that you drink lots of water,

chewing gum can help out a little bit. As a matter of fact, I

wrote an entire book on all of the little things that you can do

to actually bump up your metabolism and keep your appetite

down. It’s called “100 Ways to Boost Your Metabolism.”

That’s all it is, just page after page of all these different herbs

and supplements and food choices and tricks that you can do

throughout the day to take care of habits like that. But that’s

ultimately what it comes down to.

Male Speaker: That’s powerful stuff.

Ben: Yeah, sorry I didn’t mean to get all Jedi mind trick on there.

Male Speaker: No, I liked it. That’s awesome.

Angie: It really does have to start in the mind because you see the

people who are somehow able to get down to the weight they

want to be but they don’t see themselves as that fit and

healthy person. Oftentimes they just gain the weight back

once they stop whatever program they’re doing because it

hasn’t started in the mind. So I think you’ve got the key there


Ben: Yep.

Angie: Now for people who may be trying to cut sugar out of their

diet, I hear a lot of conflicting reports about the artificial

sweeteners and the high fructose corn syrup. Do you think

those substances are harmful? What’s your take on that?

Ben: Yeah, they are. If you’re just starting to eat healthy, you have

a lot bigger fish to fry than worrying about sucralose or high

fructose corn syrup. What it really comes down to when

you’re first starting out is calories. You have to make sure

that you’re at a caloric balance. And then after you take care

of the calories, then you kind of get down to the next tier

where you take care of the hormonal response. Meaning that

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you try to choose the sugars that are released a little slower.

You try do what I talked about and eat more of your fuel in

the presence of exercise. You try not to eat two hours before

bedtime. And you do a lot of things that help get your fat loss

hormones in their proper flux, then you start to go after the

smaller battles. Like the artificial sweeteners – yeah, a lot of

them… there’s anecdotal evidence that they’re neurotoxic.

There’s been research done on sucralose that it kills 50% of

the good bacteria in the gut. There’s all sorts of things that go

on that are associated with appetite cravings. Diet sodas are

linked with obesity. So, they are a chemical and even though

there’s not tons of really solid research that says that they’re

going to kill you, I like to walk on the safe side in terms of

looking at some of the anecdotal stuff that’s out there and

really limit the amount of sucralose and acesulfame

potassium and aspartame and those types of things that I

take in. So you want to be careful with those sweeteners. I

wouldn’t say that if you’re just getting into healthy eating

that you need to be a complete zealot when it comes to

looking at every single label for artificial sweeteners. Worry

about the calories and the sugars first. You would do yourself

a service, both from a metabolic and from a health and a

mental standpoint by cutting artificial sweeteners out in as

many places as possible. If you want a non-caloric sweetener,

use something like Stevia, which is a root-based sweetener.

It’s super sweet but it’s natural. That’s a really good one.

Then Xylitol isn’t too bad either, but Xylitol can give you

bloating and gas so you want to be careful with that. Then

high fructose corn syrup, with that again it’s kind of this

villain that’s been blown out of proportion. There’s not really

a huge difference between high fructose corn syrup and just

glucose or carbohydrates when it comes to the person who’s

needing to go from 220 pounds down to 200 pounds. That’s

not going to make a big difference. Now when you’re going

after just a few pounds, a little bit of body fat, that’s where

the fact that fructose is metabolized a little bit differently in

the body doesn’t really result in the same insulin response. It

can result in a little bit more fat storage than regular sugars

like a glucose. That’s where it comes down to eliminating

that from your diet and replacing it with non high fructose

corn syrup sources can help you out a little bit. But even

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bigger than that, my issue with the high fructose corn syrup

is that if you’re taking it in, you are by definition eating

packaged foods. There’s just no natural foods out there that

have HFCS in them and so, that’s the bigger issue – is why is

this a question in the first place? Why are you worrying

about it? Because if you’re worrying about it then you’re

eating enough packaged foods to where you need to be

worrying about it. So if you start to eat real food, you just

kind of automatically take care of the whole high fructose

corn syrup problem.

Angie: Yeah, that’s a great point. That’s good.

Male Speaker: Yeah, Angie was elbowing me in the ribs when you talked

about eating two hours before going to bed, and diet sodas.

Ben: Yep, there you go. Setting you on the guilt trip.

Male Speaker: This is very convicting. No, this is great content. And I think

people are really going to enjoy this podcast. We’ve got one

more question and if you just want to remind everybody,

we’re talking to Ben Greenfield from He’s a triathlon expert and

nutrition expert. And we’ve got some great questions and

answers so far, but one more question is Ben, you lead a very

busy life with work and family. How do you take time for

training and keep that a priority and keep motivated?

Ben: Well, making family a part of your sport is really important.

It’s pretty rare to find somebody that picked up a hobby and

left their family out of it and either kept the hobby or stayed

with their family. If you pick up something like marathoning

and don’t bring your family into it at all, then you’re going to

find yourself five years down the road without a family and

marathoning or you’re going to find yourself five years down

the road having given up marathon because you just couldn’t

do it and still prioritize family. So, the important thing is

being very frank with your spouse and your family about

what’s important to you and being very clear with them when

you’re training, when you have races, about what’s

happening, what’s on the schedule, being able to make

sacrifices in your schedule for what’s going on with the rest

of your family and then making your family a part of it.

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We’re big on doing race vacations where when we go do

something that’s fun for the whole family, it’s not just like

“Go watch daddy race.” We’re planning other things around

it. Turning things into a mini-vacation, whether it be hiking

in the area or going to an amusement park or just going and

taking part in things other than just the race and the pasta

party and the post-race awards. Getting things like jogging

strollers and bicycle trailers and all the little things that help

make your kids a part of your sport is really important as

well. Then for the really focused training, the last six to eight

weeks leading up to your big event, trying to do as much

invisible training as possible – which again takes sacrifices

on your part – but that means your training is invisible to

your family. You’re setting the clock for 4:45 and throwing

down your training session between 5 and 7 a.m. Or if you

have young children, doing it during their afternoon nap like

I do a lot of the time. Basically being around when your kids

are around and when your family needs you and getting your

training session out of the way when they’re sleeping. It

makes a little bit more sense from a family perspective. So,

that’s really important. Just to make sure that your hobby is

not your hobby. It’s your family’s hobby and you’re very

communicative with them about your training and making

them a part of it as much as possible. Just one more example,

when I’m leading up to a big race and I’ve got four weeks

before the race, four weeks before I’m telling my wife, “Okay,

I’m going to be training a little bit extra on this day and this

day and this day, honey. Then this day I might not be around

for dinner.” Then a week away from the race, okay I’m

tapering. I might get a little bit grumpy, trying to take care of

my body now. So I’m going to be training a little bit less and

a lot of times I’m spending more time with the family during

a taper week. But basically just being very communicative

with your family about what’s going on with your training is

very important too. So, just don’t go solo. If you try and make

it a solo hobby, it’s just not going to work it.

Angie: Yeah, I think the lone ranger type of mentality is going to be

detrimental to your own performance and like you said, your

family in general.

Ben: Yep, exactly.

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Angie: The thing I like is scheduling your training in like you would

any other appointment too, and like you said making the

family aware of that so it’s not this big shock that you’re

skipping dinner that night of the week or whatever.

Ben: Right. Exactly. Yep.

Male Speaker: Well great. This has been a lot of fun, Ben. I want to thank

you for coming on our podcast. And can you tell the folks

how they can connect with you?

Ben: Oh yeah absolutely. I do a free newsletter and blog and all

that good stuff over at where

I do interviews kind of like this where I’ll get doctors on and

athletes and coaches and just interview and talk and share

knowledge. So that’s a really good place to go. So would probably be your best

source of information if you wanted to learn a little bit more

about what I do and get a little bit more knowledge in your

head. So go over there, we’ve got a free newsletter, a free

podcast, free blog, free articles. So good place to learn.

Male Speaker: Alright great. So everybody go over to and check that out. A lot of

good information. Ben, thanks for coming on the call.

Ben: Well, thanks for having me guys.

Angie: Thank you.

Ben: Well folks, that’s going to wrap up the podcast. But please

remember, let me know who you want me to get on the show.

I do have an upcoming interview with Dr. Roby Mitchell that

will be part of next week’s podcast and we’re going to be

talking about alternatives to getting your metabolism up and

increasing your thyroid without using popular thyroid

medications that are on the market today. And, the other

thing I would recommend that you do in addition to letting

me know who you want me to have on the podcast is to go to

iTunes and leave the show a ranking and a rating. The higher

we are on iTunes, the more likely it is that I can get some

smash, bang guests on the show for you. So until next time,

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this is Ben Greenfield signing out from Have a great week.

For personal nutrition, fitness or triathlon consulting, supplements, books or DVD’s

from Ben Greenfield, please visit Pacific Elite Fitness at