87: Ben Greenfield on how to Become Superhuman

May 3, 2016

“I’m stimulating my hunter gatherer farmer ancestor genes by moving while I talk.” Ben’s podcasting while walking on a treadmill. Why? Aerobic movement stimulates neurotrophic factors, so moving makes you smarter!

 

Ben was, by his own admission, a complete nerd growing up: video games, chess, violin—until one day, he discovered tennis. “I fell in love with the sport because I had a crush on my tennis instructor.” Being bitten by the tennis bug opened up a whole new world for Ben, who began tapping into nutrition and exercise science, which he went on to study at multiple universities. He spent five years pursuing BAs and Masters in exercise physiology and getting certified as a trainer. While working in the private sector he became completely disillusioned with modern medicine and decided to go back to fitness. He opened up his own training studio, but working 14 hour days wasn’t sustainable when Ben’s wife got pregnant. Wanting to be there for her and spend time with his family, Ben started a blog, public speaking, and writing books like Beyond Training – Mastering Endurance, Health & Life.

 

He now does online consulting, helping people burn fat, boost libido, defy aging and enhance every aspect of their body. He also competes professionally in obstacle racing. “I try to live life to the fullest—archery, spear fishing, playing music, writing fiction—I try to optimize the body and the brain, and the spirit and the soul too.” Ben’s goal is to tap into the ultimate combination of performance health and longevity, and teach as many people as possible how to become superhuman.

 

“It all starts out with not watching TV.”  Every day Ben goes through a routine that includes 30 burpees, deep tissue massage therapy, deep breathing, kundalini yoga, and eating 20-30 portions of vegetables. All these little things add up. Ben’s routine is changeable depending on his body. He starts his day by testing his sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system strength with the NatureBeat app which he designed. This clever app allows him to measure his heart rate variability and the strength of his body, enabling him to adapt his routine depending on what his body needs that day. So for example when the readings show a strong system, Ben starts his day with burpees and hill sprinting, but if his system needs more rest, he begins the day with kundalini yoga or deep breathing.  Check out Ben’s blog post about this and how he’s combined it with sleep monitoring using the Oura ring to better adapt his routines to what his body really needs.

 

Sleep is massively important to Ben. Blue light, from laptops, phones and televisions, suppresses melatonin production, which in turns disrupts sleep. But there are things you can do to avoid this. For example, installing the f.lux app on a computer will remove the blue light at sunset, and the new iOs software has a setting that enables you to switch to night-light mode. Ben’s book How to Bio-Hack a Healthy Home teaches ways you can make your home a healthier environment for your body.

 

Ben is an entrepreneur. He owns his own company Greenfield Fitness Systems and is an author, podcaster, and public speaker—we think he’s superhuman! Home-schooled from a young age, he was an independent learner. “I’m hardwired to be an entrepreneur,” says Ben, whose dad used to run seven different businesses. When he mastered tennis, he began teaching his friends how to play, and used the money to pay for college. In college, he worked at a bakery, at a gym and at a pub. “I enjoy hard work, and I enjoy creating things,” Ben’s turned his passion for fitness and outdoors into his career.

 

And he’s teaching his children to do the same. For Ben, the positives of home schooling include learning at an accelerated pace, having plenty of freedom when it comes to what you want to study, as well as developing independent learning and motivation skills. Ben teaches his children how to list on Craig’s list and AirBNB, in a modern version of the old fashioned lemonade stand! Ben’s philosophy on education is: “Take a little bit from each of the different modalities out there to create a really good combination of skills.”

 

Ben Greenfield’s Bio

Author of the New York Times Bestseller “Beyond Training“, Ben Greenfield’s balanced approach to fitness, nutrition and health comes from his extensive experience in the fitness and wellness industry as one of the country’s leading personal trainers and wellness consultants. In 2008, Ben was nominated by the NSCA as America’s top personal trainer, and in 2013 and 2014, Ben was voted as one of the top 100 most influential individuals in health and fitness.

A frequent contributor to health and wellness publications and a highly sought after speaker, Ben’s understanding of functional exercise, nutrition, and the delicate balance between performance and health has helped thousands of people around the world achieve their goals and improve their quality of life.

He is the founder and owner of Greenfield Fitness Systems, a company that develops innovative and cutting-edge fitness and nutrition services and solutions to help people reach their physical and mental performance goals, whether that be to defy aging and achieve longevity, cross the finish line of an Ironman triathlon, or simply shed a few pounds.

Ben coaches and trains individuals for general health, longevity, weight loss, lean muscle gain, holistic wellness, and sports performance, both from his physical location in Spokane, Washington, as well as all over the world via online training and consulting. In college, Ben competed in tennis, water polo, and volleyball, and now competes as a top ranked triathlete and Spartan athlete and a multiple Ironman Hawaii finisher. Ben resides in Spokane, Washington with his wife, Jessa, and twin boys, River and Terran.

Ben coaches and trains individuals for general health, longevity, weight loss, lean muscle gain, holistic wellness, and sports performance, both from his physical location in Spokane, Washington, as well as all over the world via online training and consulting. In college, Ben competed in tennis, water polo, and volleyball, and now competes as a top ranked triathlete and Spartan athlete and a multiple Ironman Hawaii finisher. Ben resides in Spokane, Washington with his wife, Jessa, and twin boys, River and Terran.

Ben hosts the highly popular fitness, nutrition and wellness website Ben Greenfield Fitness, a site with over a quarter million monthly visitors which features blogs, podcasts, and product reviews from Ben. He is a frequent contributor to the Huffington Post, Triathlete magazine and LAVA Magazine, Endurance Planet, the outdoor sports magazine OutThere Monthly and has been featured in WebMD, the Spokesman-Review, Inlander magazine, In-Health magazine, Fit-Pro magazine, PTontheNet, Prevention magazine, Shape magazine, Men’s Health magazine, Women’s Running magazine, Inside Triathlon magazine, NBC, Fox, Entheos Academy, CreativeLIVE, Udemy, Veria Live TV and CBS Sports.

As a public speaker on fitness, nutrition, and training, Ben hosts several top ranked fitness and health podcasts in iTunes, including the Get-Fit Guy, the Ben Greenfield Fitness show and the Obstacle Dominator.  Ben speaks around the world and in addition to presenting multi-day conferences in global hotspots such as Dubai, London, and Thailand, he has been a keynote lecturer at the Hawaii Ironman World Championships Medical Conference, the Coeur d’Alene Ironman Medical Conference, USAT Art & Science of Coaching Symposium, Can-Fit Pro Conference, Pilgrim’s Wellness Center Education Series, Fleet Feet Sports Endurance Sports Clinic, Concordia University, REI Nutrition Clinics, PaleoFX and the Ancestral Health Symposium.

 

 

Ben Greenfield’s Links

Website: bengreenfieldfitness.com

greenfieldfitnesssystems.com

Instagram

Facebook

Twitter

SnapChat

Youtube

Podcast

 

Our Favorite Moments:

@5:10 Just you, your husband, and a vibrator

@26:01 What does Ben use socks and long underwear for?

@37:17 That’s where most photos of me in my underwear are going to appear.

 

Listen NOW on iTunes!

 

Tweetables:

(Click to tweet)

Tweet: Do something scary every week @BenGreenfield @FoodHealsNation http://bit.ly/Ben-Greenfield

Tweet: Sleep matters—turn that blue light off @BenGreenfield @FoodHeals Nation #FoodHealsPodcast http://foodhealsnation.com/87

Tweet: Moving makes your smarter #moveyourbody #FoodHealsPodcast http://bit.ly/Ben-Greenfield

 

This episode is sponsored by:

Thrive MarketIt’s a game changer for those trying to live a healthy life.  It’s Costco meets Whole Foods at up to 50% off retail. Shipped naturally to your door for free! When you become a member, Thrive market will donate a membership to a teacher, military or low income family.  We scored an exclusive discount with thrivemarket.com/FoodHeals and get a 3 months free membership and 15% off your first order.

 

Links from show:

NatureBeat app

OURA Ring

f.lux app

Sleep Master sleep mask

Screen Shot 2016-05-04 at 10.06.16 AMThe Art of Learning by Josh Waitskin

 

 

 

 

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About Us:

Being hailed as “Sex and the City for Food,” The Food Heals Podcast brings together experts in the field of nutrition, health and healing to teach you the best-kept natural secrets to being a hotter, healthier, happier YOU!
The Food Heals Podcast is hosted by Allison Melody and Suzy Hardy – two self-proclaimed natural chicks who will rock your world and change your beliefs about health! This sexy, savvy duo provides eco-friendly advice on a variety of issues including the healing power of nutrition, living authentically, turning your passion into your career, choosing the best natural health and beauty products, the benefits of a plant-based diet and so much more!

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