Researchers from Massachusetts found that the average man’s testosterone (not just older men) has dropped 22% in the last 20 years, and that one out of every four men has below average testosterone.
That’s no bueno, friends!
Testosterone is what makes men…well, men.
It is responsible for our sex drives, our ambition, our sense of well being, and a whole bunch of other important stuff.
When testosterone is low, it is almost impossible to be the best versions of ourselves. We become ordinary, not the alphas we were intended to be.
My friends Adam and Roman, co-authors of Man 2.0: Engineering the Alpha, stopped by the show last week to discuss all things alpha, including how to balance male hormones naturally through diet, lifestyle, mindset, and exercise.
To listen to our podcast, click the player at the bottom of this post.
Here are my notes…
3:30 – Another awkward live radio moment
5:45 – Redefining the alpha man
7:08 – Stop defining yourself by other people
7:45 – Alpha trait: Be prideful but not arrogant
9:34 – Alpha trait: Be dedicated but not obsessed
12:36 – Toeing the line between genius and obsession
13:12 – Alpha rule: Answer all insults with a smile
15:45 – Success is the best revenge
17:07 – Why are so many ordinary and so few alpha?
20:33 – It starts with psychology
21:51 – How hormonal dysfunction can create an ordinary life
22:20 – Sex drive and ambition come from the same place
23:50 – Your greatness threshold
25:52 – Why Todd Durkin is a beast!
26:55 – Low T: It’s not just an issue for older guys
29:17 – Lifestyle factors that offset the natural decline of testosterone
31:40 – Red meat, cholesterol, and testosterone production
33:08 – What Star Wars has to do with fitness
40:51 – Lies, Myths, and Why Men are Fat!
41:00 – Why breakfast is NOT the most important meal of the day
44:45 – Why eating at night is one of the BEST things for your body
47:50 – How cheat days keep your metabolism up while dieting
51:44 – The top 3 benefits of the feast-fast model
55:44 – How to reset your sensitivity to insulin
57:16 – Shout out to Martin Berkhan
58:18 – Caller Q: How to boost testosterone through weight training
1:02:15 – How lactic acid production increases growth hormone
1:05:53 – The final phase of fat loss
1:09:55 – Caller Q: Tips for coming off of testosterone gel
1:14:22 – Caller Q: How to keep from losing testosterone while dieting
1:18:56 – Wrapping up
Last night, Functional Diagnostic Nutrition founder, Reed Davis, myself, and about 400 attendees got together for this year’s first FREE webinar. The topic: Functional Fat Loss.
What does Functional Fat Loss mean?
Well, it means that fat loss is not just a matter of diet and exercise. As Reed pointed out early in his presentation, fat accumulation can be a symptom of some underlying — and often unaddressed — dysfunction within the hormonal, digestive, detoxification, and immune systems.
Diet and exercise are just two pieces of a MUCH larger puzzle.
For example, did you know that 60-percent of your thyroid hormone is activated in your liver? This particular hormone holds great influence over your metabolism. So if your liver is clogged up — due to toxins from food, personal care and cleaning products, as well as the general environment — this can put the brakes on your fat loss goals!
As a matter of fact, another 20-percent of thyroid is activated by the bacteria in your gut. The problem is that most of us have imbalanced gut flora, thus compromised metabolisms.
Click below to WATCH last night’s webinar.
I’ll be honest with you. While we intended this webinar to be for the general population, Reed got a bit carried away and was a bit too technical and jargon-y. That’s my fault for not reviewing the slides beforehand. My bad.
Due to this, Reed and I have decided to record a simplified version of the presentation. I’ll be posting it to this blog as soon as it is done.
So if you’re relatively new to this functional stuff, this may not be the webinar for you. But if you’re a trainer, health practitioner, or a nerd like me, this will be like brain candy for you.
Be sure to stick around to the end, when Reed and I offer you a $300 discount on the Functional Diagnostic Nutrition certification course. Use the coupon code UW300 at www.fdncourse.com.
If you’re interested in finding an FDN practitioner to work with, you may locate one HERE.
And last but not least, I will be hosting a Q&A session with Reed TOMORROW morning at 8am PT/11am ET on the radio show.
The line separating the two can be a fine one and, for most, a blur. In fact, crossing this line is often perceived as admirable, even worthy of envy.
From the outside an ultra-lean, sculptured female physique may be looked upon by her peers as a body to die for. However, from the inside it may be a body she is dying for.
Okay, maybe that’s a bit of an overstatement.
Then again, maybe not.
Working as a personal trainer for eight years and then as a diet and lifestyle coach for three, I learned many lessons. The lesson I will share with you today is this:
Looks can be deceiving.
In every gym exists at least one woman rocking a bra top to show off all eight of her abs. The one who seems to be there no matter what time you go. The one who women gawk at more than the men.
My female training clients would often express envy over this woman, however unbeknownst to the damage taking place beneath the hard-bodied surface.
Looks can kill you.
Oh, there I go again…
Behind closed doors many — but not all — of these women are dealing with significant health challenges. I should know, as I have consulted with dozens of figure competitors and female bodybuilders experiencing various lifestyle-related symptoms including chronic constipation, intermittent diarrhea, poor libido, loss of menstruation, brain fog, depression, and more.
In fact, after reviewing their lab test results with me and actually seeing on paper what their ambitions (or addictions) for the perfect body had done, a handful of my figure model clients retired on the spot. To them, it just wasn’t worth it.
And that brings us today’s video. Dr. Kelly Austin, a naturopathic doctor, stopped by the studio to discuss Female Athlete Triad Syndrome. This triad involves the following three criteria:
Disordered eating. This doesn’t have to be a full-blown eating disorder — although it could. Instead it can be the woman who consumes a 1000-calorie diet but burns 800 calories on the treadmill daily and works out. There simply are not enough calories coming in to support activity. Very common.
Amenorrhea (loss of menstruation). Losing your period is a sure sign that bodyfat percentage has gone too low. A woman needs sufficient fat stores in order to maintain reproductivity. Amenorrhea involves low levels of estrogen, which can be a product of excessive stress on the body, including the stress of over-training.
Bone loss. There typically comes a point when the woman who spends too much time on the treadmill finds herself in a walking boot. This is often do to stress fractures, which may result from a combination of overtraining and the impact of low estrogen levels on bone loss.
I’ve said enough. Now, let’s hear from Dr. Austin.
Check out the video below. You may also listen to our entire radio show HERE.
If I could turn back the hands of time and become a personal trainer again, I would do a LOT of things differently.
Of course, I would NOT have put my clients on the Food Guide Pyramid diet plan. Whoops!
But in hindsight, I think one of my biggest mistakes was pushing so much cardio on my clients. If you’ve read the intro to my ebook — which you can get for free HERE — you’re familiar with my old “cardio sign-in sheets”.
Each week, I assigned my clients a specific number of calories to burn off on their cardio machine(s) of choice. For example, if the goal was to burn 5000 calories in a week, clients were required to document each cardio session on the sign-in sheet that hung up in my office. For some, a 5000-calorie objective called for five 1000-calorie sessions over a seven-day period. This could take as long as 2 hours a day for my smaller clients. Sometimes, they even had to pull double-duty, coming in twice a day to meet their weekly goals.
What drove me bat-sh*t crazy was the fact that, despite these arduous cardio sessions in addition to severely calorie-restricted diets, most clients wouldn’t drop a single pound. Some even gained weight. It was the most perplexing thing ever!
Fast forward half a decade, and I finally learned the truth about why my approach was failing over and over again. Not only were my clients consuming the wrong foods, but the majority of them actually needed LESS exercise.
My clients were already stressed out enough as it was — emotionally, financially, socially, and spiritually. My methods of gross overtraining were only making matters worse.
While it is true that exercise can be a form of medicine, we often forget that is possible to overdose on it. With overtraining eventually comes a point of diminishing returns — and a ton of frustration.
The impact of overtraining on the hormonal system can be quite extensive. Working as a Functional Diagnostic Nutritionist, I often found — via salivary hormone testing — that the clients who spent the most time exercising had the worst markers, including late-stage adrenal dysfunction, declining cortisol level, low DHEA, and depressed testosterone scores.
Try losing fat with low testosterone. Not gonna happen!
While corrective protocols may vary from person to person, one recommendation remained the same — REST.
It seems counterintuitive to recommend to a client that he or she skip the morning spin class beatdown session in favor of a yoga, tai chi, or meditation class. Most clients are initially resistant to this recommendation. However, after a healthy dose of Croxton persuasion, they concede and agree to give it a try.
I cannot tell you how many of my long-frustrated consulting clients have FINALLY witnessed their bodies change for the better by exercising LESS.
No, I’m not saying exercise is bad – don’t get it twisted — but I am saying that if the time you’re spending in the gym does not match the results you are getting, do your body a favor and give it some time off. While you’re at it, have your hormones tested by a qualified practitioner. See what’s really going on under the hood.
Check out the video below to learn more. And although I brought up the popular workout video Insanity in this clip, I’m not saying that it is a bad program. It just may not be the right program for you right now.
Albert Einstein once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result. If you’re killing yourself with high-intensity Insanity workouts every day without seeing any results, I’d say that the program is certainly true to its name.
Only in a food system this weird would the above recommendation be necessary.
Seriously, who would ever imagine that vanilla and raspberry natural flavorings were derived from secretions from the anal glands of beavers?
Maybe an even better question is who discovered this. And how?
It is a little-known fact that the natural and artificial flavors listed on ingredients labels are a whole list of chemical nastiness themselves.
Unfortunately, you don’t get to see them since they are protected by trade secret laws. To be honest, if I were a food manufacturer I’d want to keep the whole beaver anal glands thing a secret, too.
Maybe that’s the solution. Maybe we should push for the elimination of these trade secrets, thus requiring companies to include what their flavorings are really made out of. Reading a label and stumbling upon the words “beaver ass” may be exactly what we need to get people to think about what they’re putting into their bodies.
Just an idea.
Anyway, my main man and fellow podcaster, Abel James (a.k.a. The Fat-Burning Man), stopped by the show this week to discuss a ton of topics from his fantastic ebook The Wild Diet, including…
* How dairy consumption may stall fat loss
* Clean carbs to eat after a workout
* The importance of visualization in achieving long-term fat loss
* The role of genetics in body composition
* Beaver butt juice (of course!)
This was a GREAT show. I’ve been having a lot of fun doing the show lately, engaging in more discussions rather than just firing off questions.
Abel was also kind enough to answer your questions from the audience. Good questions, gang!!!
Click the player below to listen to the entire show.
So since you have a whole extra day to yourself, why not squeeze in a workout???
Back by popular demand, Brett Klika and I got together yesterday to shoot a new episode of our Friday Fun Day workouts.
In this episode, we keep it simple with some funky push-ups, pull-ups, and split squats.
These will get your heart rate up!!!
Try them out for yourself. You can do all three movements back-to-back-to-back in a circuit for multiple sets, or you can take your time and gear it to your own fitness level.
By the way, the 4-Day Memorial Day Sale is ON!
Now until Monday at 11:59pm PT, The Dark Side of Fat Loss (DSFL), Underground Workout Manual, and Paleo Summit are ON SALE at ridiculously discounted prices.
The Dark Side is going for just $24 — that’s $15 off!
Don’t forget that it comes with The Underground Cookbook which delivers over 80 Real Food recipes and 40 videos that show you how to cook them.
When you order DSFL, you’ll have the one-time opportunity to purchase Brett’s Underground Workout Manual — complete with 12 weeks of in-home workouts and over 80 instructional exercise videos — also for $24 ($15 OFF)!
Click HERE to order The Dark Side of Fat Loss with the discounted Workout Manual option.
And if you missed the special event-week-only Paleo Summit price of only $67, NOW is your time to take advantage.
The summit package gets you all 23 video/audio presentations and transcripts along with bonus e-books by Diane Sanfilippo, Paul Chek, and Dallas & Melissa Hartwig.
This is an INCREDIBLE deal! Presenters include:
* Chris Kresser
* Paul Chek
* Nora Gedgaudas
* Dr. Jack Kruse
* Dr. Cate Shanahan
* Dean Dwyer
* Mark Sisson
* Matt Lalonde
* Denise Minger
Spend your weekend getting your learn on with me and the whos-who of the Paleo world!
You know, that duck in your head that quacks pretty much all day long, telling you how much you suck and just how worthless you are.
We’re all ducked. Some of us have ducks that are louder than others, going out of their way to really duck with us.
The duck is part of the human machinery. You can’t dodge it. You can’t duck it. But you can turn the ducking volume down on it.
I should know. My duck used to quack at full blast. From the moment I woke up until I fell asleep, those negative, self-defeating thoughts raced through my mind. In fact, sleep seemed to be my only reprieve for the quacking. That is, when my duck wasn’t keeping me up all hours of the night.
My duck lied.
It still does. The only difference is that I know how to control my duck. I know how to quack back.
Way back in 2005, a book called The Game by Neil Strauss (it’s not what you think) led me to begin studying Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), or the art and science of personal excellence. Maybe the second or third NLP book I read was The Structure of Magic by Richard Bandler and John Grinder. This single book was likely the most effective weapon I had encountered in shutting my duck up.
What I learned from Bandler and Grinder is that we as human beings represent our experiences through language, whether that language be outwardly expressed verbally or through that chatterbox (the duck) in our heads. The representation of our world is the map or model we use to generate our behavior.
The problem is that our nervous systems tend to generalize, distort, and delete entire portions of what’s going on in the real world.
A generalization is defined by the authors as the process by which elements or pieces of a person’s model become detached from their original experience and come to represent the entire category of which the experience is an example.
A generalization can be both helpful and harmful. For instance, if when you were a young child you walked against a red light on a busy street and almost got hit by a bus, you may generalize that you should never cross a street when the light is red. However, to generalize that all streets are unsafe to cross would become quite a problem.
A deletion is defined as a process by which we selectively pay attention to certain dimensions of our experience and exclude others.
I can totally relate to this one, as my duck used to tell me that people did not like me (a generalization).
Is that really true?
Not one single person in the history of my life has ever found me likable?
That’s bullcrap. Tomfoolery. QUACKery!
But I believed it wholeheartedly.
Just imagine how it affected my interactions with others! I didn’t even try to connect with people since I just KNEW that they weren’t going to like me anyway. I took every positive social experience, sent it to my internal junk folder, and deleted them all.
The example Bandler and Grinder use in their book is something that a lot of people may relate to. Take for instance a man who has made the generalization that he is not worth caring about. This man continually complains to his wife about how she never shows him how much she cares for him.
Upon visiting the couple’s home, the authors found that the wife expressed her care for her husband in many ways. However, since her caring words and actions conflicted with his generalizations of having no self-worth and not being cared about, he deleted and ignored her messages.
Interesting, huh? I can see your wheels turning.
Lastly, a distortion is the process which allows us to make shifts in our experience of sensory data. I still have a bit of trouble with this one. Let’s go back to the man described above. He distorts the real world by bending and shaping his experiences to fit his own model of reality. When his wife shows that she cares about him, he thinks that the only reason she is expressing her affection is because she wants something from him!
She can’t win!
I used to do the exact same thing. I thought that people wanted to hang out with me because they wanted something from me. Today I still struggle with this one, as my duck starts quacking whenever someone in the fitness and health industry wants to get into my inner circle. I wonder if they’re truly being genuine or if there is something they want from me. It becomes a big-time mind fudge. The good part is that I’m aware of it. I can make a choice as to whether or not I want to believe my duck.
We have a choice to shut the duck up.
In yesterday’s UW Radio podcast, Pete Cohen and I discussed how and why shutting the duck up (a phrase coined by Cohen) is a ginormous — and often overlooked — aspect of losing fat.
Yeah, we can do our best to implement the recommendations of last week’s guest Jonathan Bailor. But if we are constantly playing victim to our own minds, even our most stalwart attempts to get healthy and lose fat will prove futile.
In this episode, Pete and I cover the following topics:
* How generalizations can be a giant obstacle in losing fat long-term.
* The habits we have that thwart the achievement of our health goals.
* How affirming ourselves in ways other than food consumption can be critical to successful fat loss.
* Why it is important to set ourselves up for wins while on our journeys.
* Pete’s Four Ps of Fat Loss
* The formula for true happiness.
* One of the greatest contributions you can make to the world.
Click the PLAY button below to listen to this life-changing episode of UW Radio.
Naturopathic doctor Trevor Cates makes her debut appearance on Underground Wellness Radio, as she shares her very BEST tips for aging gracefully, inside and out, without the weird creams and overhyped, expensive berries.