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episode #218

Interview with Brad Kearns: Problems with Restrictive Diets, How to Lose that Spare Tire and Healthy Habits for 2023!

January 16, 2023 in Podcast


This week I interviewed the best selling author, health crusader, and podcast host of B.Rad podcast, Brad Kearns!

Brad is a good friend of mine and we had a great discussion regarding what he learned over the past year regarding restrictive diets along with:

  • Problems with Stacking Stressors
  • Importance of Showing Up
  • Issues with Visceral Fat around your waistline
  • Setting Attainable Health Goals

and his 2 main tips to get your body back in 2023!!

Brian (0s):

Coming up on the Get Lean e Klean podcast

Brad (3s):

And realizing that my greatest interests, and I think my greatest payoff for longevity is to perform and recover as an athlete in, in my fitness endeavors. And so I want to direct the vast majority of my stress resources to performing and recovering. And in doing so, I'm going to rethink and second guess my personal need to engage in any form of restrictive dieting, because I'm stacking another stressor on top of my sprint workouts and my high jump workouts and my strength training sessions, and all those things that I'm doing to my body. And Mike Mutzel published a great video.

Brad (44s):

It was called Why I Stopped Fasting and what I'm doing instead. And he talks about research where you get these amazing autophagy benefits after a 48 hour fast. And this is aligned with the research of the great longevity leaders like Walter Longo and Davidson Sinclair. And yeah, if you starve yourself for a long time, oh my gosh, you're gonna shrink your inflamed organs and the the damaged cellular material will be recycled and you're, you'll get a youthful boost. And isn't that great? However, the research also shows that a high-intensity strength training session in the gym lasting for an hour will give you a similar autophagy response to fasting for 48 hours.

Brad (1m 29s):

And then Mike gives his punchline on the video, I don't know about you, but which one would you prefer? Do you wanna slam it in the gym for an hour or starve yourself for two days? You get the same benefits in the end.

Brian (1m 40s):

Hello and welcome to the Getline ean podcast. I'm Brian Grn, and I'm here to give you actionable tips to get your body back to what it once was, five, 10, even 15 years ago. Each week, I'll give you an in-depth interview with a health expert from around the world to cut through the fluff and get you long-term sustainable results. This week I interviewed the best-selling author, health crusader and podcast host of B RAD podcast, Brad Kearns. Brad's a good friend of mine, and we had a great discussion regarding what he learned over the past year regarding restrictive diets, along with problems with stacking stressors, the importance of showing up issues with visceral fat around your waistline, setting attainable health goals, and his two main tips to get your body back in 2023.

Brian (2m 29s):

Really enjoyed my interview with Brad. This was a third time he's come around to the podcast. I hope you enjoy the interview. Thanks so much for listening. All right. Welcome to the Get Lean e Klean podcast. My name is Brian Grn and I have a special guest on for the third time, Brad Kearns.

Brad (2m 49s):

Brian, what a pleasure to reconnect. And I'd say we're warmed up cuz we've been talking before we hit that record button. And one of the things I shared with you is that my goal in 2023 and beyond is to get even more authentic and unplugged and, and honest and direct with the audience. We were talking about some of the controversies that we've seen in recent times about Liver King, you know, admitting that he lied about his performance enhancing drug use. And I recorded the show in response, it was called Is Brad Natty or Not on the B Rad podcast. And one of the thing I said to my audience was, you know, after reflecting on all the shows that I've produced, I realized that I've been a hundred percent honest and transparent.

Brad (3m 33s):

I haven't embellished or lied about anything that I mentioned with my own personal lifestyle. And I think that's pretty important these days when we have the ability to connect so directly. So I'm gonna try to have as much fun as possible, just not even trying to be sort of a performer. As you and I are talking here, of course we're, we're recording this and people are listening, but I think it's really important to just get real about anything that comes up.

Brian (4m 3s):

Yeah, and I love your podcast side note, the Bead podcast, and I think transparency's everything nowadays, and I think it's tough sometimes with the social media age that we're in with Instagram and stuff, and you see people, you know, always in these certain types of lifestyles and these, these bodies on Instagram and, and it, you know, they're, they're trying to catch your attention, right? Because there's a lot of people out there that are trying to catch your attention. So what, what stands out the most? And so I think, I think transparency is key and being, you know, someone that, you know, you, you you can trust and you know, I know Brad, you you're, you're transparent and yeah, so I think something that happened with Liver King is, you know, he, he lost that trust with a lot of people, which is a shame.

Brad (4m 52s):

Yeah. And I've been associated with Lance Armstrong in the past and I was in, you know, writing a book about him and my company sponsored him. I was doing sports marketing for the company, Silicon Valley software company. So, and I spent time with Lance way back when he was a triathlete and I was also competing on the pro circuit. So I've known him for a long time and seen that whole doping controversy play out. And it's like when you become a public figure and you start to get into these nuances and repercussions, boy, things start to get really messy and tricky. In Lance's case, of course, he had to lie his ass off and sue other people because he was part of a massive coverup that involved the entire sport.

Brad (5m 37s):

And so people need to understand that he wasn't really cheating in the sense that he was sticking a needle in his body and the rest of his competitors were drinking orange juice and, and trying to get a lot of sleep. And in Liver King's case, it's important to understand that he's not an Olympic athlete who is trying to win a gold medal for the USA and cheating his way to the podium through artificial means. He's simply a public figure and he got heavily criticized for, for lying, deservedly so. But then now they're trying to make this connection and there's a class action lawsuit saying Liver King is getting sued for, you know, claiming that the supplements will, will give you this big physique.

Brad (6m 19s):

And he never once did that. He almost never mentioned his supplements or his products. He was just building his brand and giving his unique content out there, which has a lot of positive messaging and it has a tremendous amount of authenticity because he does live his life in that extreme crazy ass manner. But again, being asked point blank, are you using any performance enhancing drugs and saying, no, you deserve to get slammed and he is gonna be taking a beating for a long time, but we're all gonna be better for it because I think in my case, I believe the guy because he's so badass and real life and I've spent time with him, we work together, we promote the mofo product together.

Brad (7m 1s):

He actually does eat that way. He actually does train to that extreme level every day and go in his cold plunge at 38 degrees for eight minutes. I remember when he was just getting started, he converted his spa to a cold plunge, you know, his actual in-ground spa, he put a chiller unit instead of instead of the heater. And he is like, yeah, I'm going in for around eight minutes, is that good? And I'm like, oh my God, dude, are you kidding me? You know? So anyway, you know, he had all these attributes going for him and it was just kind of a, hopefully just a, a blip on the radar screen. But we all need to wake up to, I think, this critical importance, like you say, of, you know, being the the real you like it or not.

Brad (7m 44s):

And if you don't like it, go listen to a different podcast. But here's Brian in his basement doing his workout. And if if it's not impressive, that's fine too, but it's the real deal. It's not like you're spraying fake sweat on and saying, yeah, I just did my 20th rep with the orange band.

Brian (8m 1s):

No, I completely agree. I was just thinking I wanted to ask you, Brad, now we've, we can reflect on a year 2022. What was maybe one of the big things that you, you learned from the year that you're gonna apply for the next year, you know, with all your interviews and, you know, you've written books and this and that. What was, what were some of the takeaways that you can, that you plan on bringing into the next year?

Brad (8m 31s):

Well, I think as you know, our association with Jay Feldman and his energy balance message really hit me hard. And I'm also seeing a trend happening overall in the progressive health space, the ancestral health space where there's a lot of voices coming forward and rethinking or recalibrating some of the foundational principles of ancestral health. And particularly I'm talking about the, the, the, the passion and the interest in restrictive diets to deliver health benefits. So when you engage in intermittent fasting or time-restricted feeding or the ketogenic diet or a, a strict low carb protocol or a, a strict carnivore protocol or what have you, you are going to prompt an assortment of beneficial adaptations in the body in general.

Brad (9m 24s):

So I've written for a long time about the, the science and the research that when your body is in a fasted state, it's working at its most efficient, the anti-inflammatory processes, the immune boost, all these things are profound. The cell repair, we talk about autophagy a lot. So all these things are highly validated by science. But one thing that I, I give Jay a lot of credit for having me take a few steps back and look at the big picture is that these mechanisms are part of the stress response. So when you starve the cells of energy, they respond by working more efficiently. They upregulate the process of autophagy, which is the natural internal cellular detoxification process to clean out damage cellular material and prevent cancer and get a renewal effect in your organs and even your muscle tissue.

Brad (10m 16s):

So all that stuff is great, but we have to realize that when we restrict the cells of energy, it is a stressor to the body. And then we start getting out a piece of paper with a stress scoreboard on it, and you write down all the various stressors that you face in modern everyday life and then all the things that you do to rest and restore and recover and sleep and all that great stuff. And I'm looking at my scoreboard and realizing that my greatest interests, and I think my greatest payoff for longevity is to perform and recover as an athlete in, in my fitness endeavors. And so I want to direct the vast majority of my stress resources to performing and recovering.

Brad (11m 0s):

And in doing so, I'm going to rethink and second guess my personal need to engage in any form of restrictive dieting because I'm stacking another stressor on top of my sprint workouts and my high jump workouts and my strength training sessions and all those things that I'm doing to my body. And Mike Mutzel published a great video, it was called Why I Stopped Fasting and what I'm doing instead. And he talks about research where you get these amazing autophagy benefits after a 48 hour fast. And this is aligned with the research of the great longevity leaders like Walter Longo and Davidson Sinclair.

Brad (11m 40s):

And yeah, if you starve yourself for a long time, oh my gosh, you're gonna shrink your inflamed organs and the the damaged cellular material will be recycled and you're, you'll get a youthful boost and isn't that great? However, the research also shows that a high intensity strength training session in the gym lasting for an hour will give you a similar autophagy response to fasting for 48 hours. And then Mike gives his punchline on the video, I don't know about you, but which one would you prefer? Do you wanna slam it in the gym for an hour or starve yourself for two days? You get the same benefits in the end.

Brian (12m 18s):

Yeah, very interesting point. And like you mentioned with Jay Feldman, I've also implemented carbs back into my life, mainly like yourself in the morning where I was not having anything and it's been interesting. I'm curious, I know you mentioned that you has your body composition as you've implemented your morning, now you have a morning shake where you, where you put your, your whey protein in and along with I've seen you put fruit, fruit. Do you put liver in there? Rosen liver And, and what, what have you noticed from doing this for the past, what, six to eight months you've been doing at

Brad (13m 3s):

Least? Right? Yeah. Let's see, my experiment is now in month number 10 or so, this is where I've made a devoted effort to consume more total daily calories, especially more nutritious carbohydrates. So I kind of traded my historical morning fasting period where I would eat nothing or I would maybe nibble on dark chocolate until midday and then make a nice big meal. I traded that in instead for deliberately going and consuming a huge bowl of fresh fruit and a giant high protein smoothie with my new product, the whey protein super fuel, as well as a whole bunch of other performance ingredients and other things thrown into the smoothie.

Brad (13m 45s):

So I'd have a lot of frozen fruit, I would have frozen liver chunks, I would have couple scoops of protein and then all kinds of other capsules and things that I'm testing out at current time or my, my organ supplements that I talked about mofo and other ancestral supplements products. So it was a real high calorie, high nutritional benefit smoothie that goes along with the fruit just about every day in the morning. No

Brian (14m 11s):


Brad (14m 11s):

In this has been, yeah, no more the, the, the raw green produce, which was a different phase back when. And I talk about how consuming high levels of these plant toxins in raw form can really be a potential drawback even though it has all these nutritional benefits. But I've, I can report that the experiment has gone really well. I feel great. I can't say I've had amazing breakthroughs as an athlete or any of that nonsense that sometimes you hear people trafficking in when they, they make one change and they start taking a supplement and they, they feel, you know, night and day better. I was pretty healthy and, and fit beforehand. But I do believe in the entire concept here that we have to pay attention to our overall stress scoreboard in life and try to minimize that as best as possible.

Brad (15m 2s):

I remember Jay's funny quip on one of the podcasts where he said, you know, we talk about hormetic stressors of fasting, jumping in the cold water, doing a sprint workout and the, and the benefit, but no one says an argument with your girlfriend counts as a hormetic stressor. It's just a bad deal. Even though on the stress scoreboard, those things that I mentioned all line up on the stressor part and we were talking about cold therapy before we got on and I've, over the past six years now have taken my duration in the tub down from trying to be a badass in the old days and staying there for five minutes or six minutes down to one and a half or two and a half minutes and I'm fine.

Brad (15m 46s):

I get the hormonal response, I get the psychological benefit, the resiliency of saying, yeah, I just went out in the cold weather and jumped into the lake or jumped into the cold tub, but mindful of potentially overdoing it. And just to make the important point here, when I talk about fasting keto, not eating in the morning and pushing myself with a challenging workout that I contend has great potential to be overly stressful and unnecessary and potentially kicking into gear, compensatory mechanisms in the body, such as slowing down my overall energy level and rate of recovery because I'm trying to fast and do a sprint workout.

Brian (16m 33s):

Yeah, you talk about these stacking these stressors is where you can sort of run into a problem, you know, on that, on another side of that, there's a lot of people who've had a ton of success and tremendous amount of results using like a keto diet and you know, this is a higher fat, like moderate protein in a lower carb diet and is the reason for the success from going from the standard American diet into perhaps a keto diet, the fact that they've eliminated a lot of these maybe gut stressors, the, you know, the the polyunsaturated fatty acids consumption, the seed oils that could be coming from a standard American diet, you know, eliminating those junk foods and then increasing animal proteins and you know, the consumption of saturated fats and things like that.

Brad (17m 33s):

Yeah, that's a important insight. I mean that's the essence of any departure from unfettered access to indulgent foods, which characterizes the standard American standard western diet. Right? We've exported it to a whole bunch of other countries, so we could call it the standard modern diet or something. Yeah. Right. And so when you start to take your, take control of your life and say, I'm gonna make a change, I'm gonna do something better, I'm gonna be more mindful of my eating habits, you are gonna get a fantastic net positive benefit. It could even be going vegan plant-based, which sure, we don't need to spend too much time criticizing that whole scene, but I'm gonna call it a high risk diet.

Brad (18m 15s):

And I don't think anyone can dispute when you eliminate most of the foods that fueled human evolution for the last two and a half million years, you're going on a high risk journey there, which is ill advised in, in my opinion. However, anybody who takes control and starts to be mindful of, you know, for example, like you said, ditching the processed foods, that's gonna be a huge win. So I like to kind of avoid the controversy and the faction building and just say, look, for anyone listening, whatever your belief systems are, if you just eliminate processed foods, that is going to be your biggest return on investment.

Brad (18m 55s):

Where your diet's going to improve, your health's going to improve. You don't necessarily have to look at the clock and try to go for the 18 and six pattern or count your macros to make sure you maintain membership in the keto club. But we know from the, the great emergence of the ketogenic diet movement that you get all these health benefits from, you know, adhering to that for a period of time, you upregulate your fat burning and things that might have been muted by lifelong or decades long consumption of heavily processed foods that spike insulin and, and make you a, a, a lousy fat burner as evidenced by your inability to even skip a single meal.

Brad (19m 38s):

So when someone comes back to me and says, yeah, I've tried keto for eight weeks, I lost weight, I have more alertness during the, the hours of the day at work when I used to crash and burn on my desk, this is all 100% thumbs up. But as we continue to advance the conversation and especially talk to a highly informed audience that might be checking a lot of boxes and living a pretty clean, eating clean and getting lean or they're on that path right now, that's when it's fun to kind of look at the nuances and say, Hey, wait a second, most of the benefits of fasting or ketogenic diet, for example, are indirect.

Brad (20m 22s):

And what I mean by that is you skip breakfast in the morning and you feel better and you're more alert and more productive. Maybe it's because you skipped a shitty all-American breakfast that you've been having for years and decades full of processed foods that are difficult to digest and inhibit your ability to generate cellular energy internally. So if you skip the waffles and the muffins and the pancakes and the syrup on top and feel better, it's not be, it's not necessarily because of fasting, it's because you, you stayed away from that, that garbage. And that's kind of an important point to reflect upon to say, you know, is there, is there something better here than just kind of towing the line and doing these restrictive behaviors because you can't help yourself and you can't control your appetite or something, you know?

Brian (21m 14s):

Yeah. And also too, on that note, like, you know, picking a time to stop eating, let's just say seven o'clock really helps I think in a lot of sense. Like sleep could help with sleep, not eating too close to bedtime. And a lot of times what we're eating after seven o'clock is not, for the most part, probably not good, not advantageous. Most people are snacking on things later on in the evening. They're not snacking on, I don't know, they're not snacking

Brad (21m 47s):

Carrots and yeah,

Brian (21m 49s):

Well some people might be snacking on carrots but you know, they're not snacking on like some, you know, liver bites or let's just say, you know,

Brad (21m 57s):

Yeah, it's mostly popcorn. In my case I'll, I'll admit and it happens after 7:00 PM every time.

Brian (22m 4s):

So yeah. So I think the one thing that fasting does do, it does give you boundaries around your day. And I do think that's important for some people. Some people don't need those boundaries and they have the self-discipline or they just, it's just sort of, they're wired a certain way. They don't need those boundaries. But I guess I was thinking about before this interview, I was like, well what, you know, what's one common theme I feel like that can help people in the next year, you know, maybe take that next step in their health and become a better version of themselves? And I just look back at like what I've done throughout the last 20 years in the health and fitness arena and what's the one standing thing that's always been there for any of this.

Brian (22m 54s):

And I think it's just being consistent. Hmm. I don't think it's anything other than that. And when I say consistent, that could be with workouts, that could be just with your eating regimen is, and if it's, you're not doing it consistently cuz you hear it so many times people do stuff or get on something for a few weeks and I hear it with clients, you know, I was on this for a couple weeks and then I just went back to my old ways. And so that was just like the one thing in my mind that, you know, even when I started working out, like I was working out three days a week back in high school, luckily my parents exposed me to lifting weights early on, which I think is a great thing for kids to start early, not like super early, but in high school's probably a good start.

Brian (23m 40s):

Sta you know, ju I think I was a junior in high school and so it just became a habit cuz we always talk about setting goals, but I think it should be about implementing habits and, and, and something that you can do day in or week in, week out. So for me the, the thing that came to my mind was just consistency is does that ring with you Brad, or what, you know, you've been in the health and fitness arena longer than I have.

Brad (24m 6s):

Yeah. And I like how you transition over to the exercise element because that's where I think the consistency can be life changing and the struggle for consistency with diet is likely driven by some super disturbing outside variables that make it difficult to succeed. And if you have appetite dysregulation and you have emotional issues in association with eating and you have adverse lifestyle practices like not getting enough sleep or not being active enough, your diet is probably going to suck. And that's just how it is. If you have a chronically, overly stressful lifestyle, stressful job, stressful girlfriend, stressful boyfriend, whatever, those are gonna kind of end up with making accordant choices, reaching for quick energy junk food rather than being a, a clean burning high energy machine.

Brad (25m 1s):

And I like how some of the leaders in our space are really emphasizing this point of starting with exercise in pursuit of metabolic health and longevity rather than obsessing about diet, especially the restrictive diets where you're now asked to start fasting until noon in the name of health, but you have all these other things in your lifestyle that are screwed up. Like you're not exercising, you're not good at generating energy internally, you're gonna have a hard time lasting as you tell the story of those people that have the attrition after however many weeks. And so if you can just get moving more in general everyday life and not in a way that has the potential to be overly stressful.

Brad (25m 43s):

Again, we're talking about that stress scoreboard from the start of our discussion, but just getting up and leashing that dog and walking around the block as the first thing you do every morning and turning that into a habit and then ideally getting in some resistance exercise and some explosive high intensity efforts and some comfortably paced cardio. If you start sprinkling those into your lifestyle in a way that's natural sustainable, not super time consuming, that's when your diet magically has the ability to clean up and you're able to adhere to your, your, your goals and dreams of you know, how to, how to eat nicely.

Brian (26m 21s):

Yeah. And you know, consistency to me, I mean if someone tells me, I think what happens a lot of times is especially just going in the new year, they're like, okay, I gotta start working out. So they go to the gym five, six days a week, but we, but it does, it won't last, right? It won't, they, they won't be able to do that week in, week out and things will get in the way. I'd rather have someone go twice a week and know that they're going to guarantee that they're gonna go twice a week for the whole year than start out going five, six days a week and then just fall off the bandwagon after a month. So I think make, making that commitment right of, of just being consistent, whether it's twice a week, that's fine cuz I think that'll sort of lead if, you know, down the road of, you know, like I, I was three times a week for a long time and I've added in another day, but like I, I added another day to the point where I was already consistently three times a week.

Brian (27m 19s):

So I think you have to do something consistently long enough and then from there you can reassess it if you wanna step it up a little bit more, you can, you don't, you know, so

Brad (27m 29s):

Nice. Very nice. Yeah, I mean look, the number one best-selling book in the world right now is Atomic Habits by James Beard. Is it really? Yeah. And it's been for a while. I mean record sales numbers and his point about setting these low bars and these very doable goals to wire into habit is where the magic happens. And what we mostly do is we get overwhelmed by a really daunting goal and it's too much and we fall off and then we feel discouraged, then we engage in, you know, self-defeating behavior patterns because we're not meant to be a gym person anyway cuz we, we can't seem to get there five days a week out of the gate from, from not being, not even joining for the previous years.

Brad (28m 19s):

And so if you can do something that's so simple and easy that you're gonna laugh and and smirk and nod your head, of course I can exercise for five minutes every morning. That's a joke that's no, you know, that's no big deal. But it's super, super important to climb over these, you know, jump over these very low bars and then start reflecting on how I might escalate my commitment because I enjoy the process and it's not daunting and I'm not feeling discouraged and defeated because it's too hard. And I guess the same goes for making dietary changes like zero in on one aspect of cleaning up your diet, ditching processed foods and that might be to cut out the sweetened beverages and the Starbucks concoctions and then you just focus on that for however long it takes to really, you know, get that into, get that into control and then you can look further down the road to further optimization.

Brad (29m 15s):

But you see this pattern so frequently if people taken on too much failing and then giving up.

Brian (29m 21s):

And I think another underrated aspect of health and just creating habits is surrounding yourself with like a supportive community and just being around people who are like-minded and positive and have these healthy habits. Cuz you see it all the time and like the CrossFit community as, as much as some people might wanna knock, maybe CrossFit in the fact that maybe it's a little bit overdone and people can get injured and things like that. I think what really makes them tick is the fact that, you know, there's this community and I think we've lost that a bit. I just feel like with C O V and with people just doing all their workouts in their basement, which I have nothing against cuz I've been doing that.

Brian (30m 5s):

But there is something to be said about being around people and, and whether it's 1, 2, 3 or four individuals or whatever it is, and working out in that atmosphere and how that can just, you know, help guide you along and build momentum as opposed to just doing everything on your own.

Brad (30m 24s):

Oh my gosh, I have the most wonderful home fitness environment with everything I need to do all kinds of different badass workouts, but I absolutely love getting in the car and driving over to the gym and placing myself in that environment where I don't need to summon my own discipline, willpower and motivation. I just walk into the gym and I know I'm not gonna stand in the lobby and watch the TV for an hour. I'm just gonna go in there and get work done. And so the sense of community doesn't have to be these perfect training partners that are fun and easy to chat with and engage with. It's like just parking your car at the trailhead and taking off and running by yourself, but nodding hello to five different runners that you pass by.

Brad (31m 10s):

Those kind of things count tremendously. Also, of course, it's great to have buddy systems and make exercise part of your actual social community like it is at a CrossFit box, but I think just being physically present at the gym amidst other exercises, even if you're not taking the group class. So I go with my wife and she jumps into her class and says hi to all her friends and they get their floor space and they go at the teacher's command for an hour and I'm doing my own thing and my very specific protocol and I, I don't even know anybody that I'm mixing with, but I smile, say a few words here, say a few words there, and I'm present at the gym. And that's a wonderful aspect of success again without making it this huge complex thing where you have to go find five body buddies to work out with in order to succeed.

Brian (31m 58s):

Yeah, I actually joined a gym not too long ago, a few months ago and yeah, I mean I did it one just for some VA variety. I mean, there's things I could do at the gym that I can't do in the basement, but I do find just going there it is energizing and I just being around other people and it's, you know, just great to get out and be social and you know, be part of a community of like-minded individuals. But you do see that people join gyms and they don't go and they, or they show it like it's been really busy this last few weeks and then, oh, you know, in a month I'm, I imagine that the usage rate goes down about probably 50%. So

Brad (32m 35s):

Yeah, I mean if, if you don't mind, I'm going to slam the fitness industry for a moment because I think there are some tremendous forces that don't serve a lot of people. And what I see from decades of observation is the traditional fitness programming, the outfits, the, the programming that's, that's earning a lot of revenue and making it a multi-billion dollar business is largely designed in a manner that easily makes it overly stressful for most people. And so when you pop for that Peloton bike and get it into your house and the wonderful technology and joining the instructors and the favorite Pepe instructor from the New York City class, or you head to the gym and sign up for the group exercise class or you sign up for one of those group training programs that raise money for charity and you're gonna go complete the Chicago marathon in the fall, and so you're gonna meet twice a week.

Brad (33m 33s):

All that stuff is fantastic. It's a step away from sedentary culture, which is, you know, the big disaster here. But what I often see are people who are compelled to push their bodies too hard or engage in programming that is overly stressful in a, in a chronic manner. So the workout is a little bit too hard on Tuesday morning spin bicycle class, and then you go back on Thursday for the bootcamp class and it's a little bit too hard. And then on Saturday you do a hike with some fit people where the pace is a little bit too challenging for you and you get immersed into this cycle of an overly stressful exercise program.

Brad (34m 15s):

Maybe that's not talking to a huge portion of the population, but I think it's a big portion of the fitness community themselves where people get drawn in and they go to extremes where it starts to become unhealthy. How do you know you're in that category? Have you had recurrent illnesses, injuries, nagging conditions, a sense of burnout, fatigue at rest or during your everyday life on account of the workout programming that you've been indulging in? And I think the secret that the fitness industry sort of doesn't want people to know is that it's much easier and more simple than it's been drummed up to be where you have to be this six pack person who sweats like crazy and then grabs a towel and, and dries off and then continues with your amazing bicycle workout.

Brad (35m 5s):

That's so difficult and challenging. And really if people can just kind of dabble in fitness, it's gonna go a long way toward improving their life, making them feel better, getting them fitter without interruption from breakdown, burnout, illness and injury. And then maybe one day they can aspire to big wonderful challenging goals like hike to the top of the mountain in the summertime or ride a century bike ride or do something that's a nice bucket list item. But I think we lose a lot of people and we have have a high rate of attrition. We know this to be a fact in the gym community where they cycle through a shit ton of members in order to pay the bills.

Brad (35m 46s):

And so there's typically, you know, 12,000 members at your local gym that can only hold 472 maximum fire marshal sign on the wall. And they need it to be that way in order to, you know, to operate as a business. So something's wrong with that model when most people in the fitness community are, you know, not really taking advantage as as they should.

Brian (36m 10s):

Well, well said, well said Brad. And, and I'll say, and you, you mentioned it briefly there about, you know, what is really true health, right? Like you, you mentioned is it having a six pack and I think the, the the social media society that we're in now and how everyone looks so great on, on Instagram and you see all these people and you think, well, is that true health? You know, and what would you say your definition of true health is? And you know, because I think I fell under this for a while too. I mean I was, you know, you talk about being somewhat restrictive as far as fasting and low carb.

Brian (36m 53s):

I mean, I was probably in the low one 70 s and I'm looking at my DEXA scan right now and I was, you know, body fat percentage was nine-ish and you know, had a decent six-pack. But was it, was that true health? You know, I think it it it encompasses a lot more than just having a six pack. It's stable energy restored of deep sleep, clean skin, thick hair, good libido, a peaceful mood, low stress, you know, lean muscle mass, a well-functioning gut. And so I think some of these things can get overlooked when you're just looking at the outside on an Instagram page and you see an individual that's completely ripped because really, you know, that might not be true health for 99% of the population.

Brad (37m 48s):

Yep. And the other 1% good on ya, six pack equals true health. Well, you know, kidding aside, I think that if, you know, if, if you can look better, you're, you're gonna be most likely improving your health until you get to those extreme levels where you're, you're trying to go from, you know, 10% body fat to to eight or in the body building scene the most, the most ridiculous example where they're literally trashing their health temporarily to get the winning shot to go up on stage. And so I think most people are aware of that, you know, that, that that fallacy of equating a a a hot looking body with someone who's healthy inside and out.

Brad (38m 39s):

But we also tend to traffic in self-defeating behavior patterns, self-limiting beliefs where we can really quickly and easily trash the six pack community for being vain and superficial and extreme and all those things while we're walking around with a scoreboard of visceral fat that is too high and putting our health and our hormones at risk. So when I talk to males of my age group to, to be straight and direct for a moment, the truth is that we are fighting this epic battle against the accumulation of the spare tire because the spare tire, that's the accumulation of visceral fat, that's a special kind of fat that's different than subcutaneous body fat.

Brad (39m 23s):

It's a special kind of fat that collects in the midsection around the organs and it is a, a highly health destructive type of fat that shouldn't be there. It is its own organ. It's defined as a separate organ because it secretes inflammatory chemicals into the bloodstream called cytokines. And so you become inflamed because of this accumulation of a little bit of belly fat to the extent that you compromise your adaptive hormones, testosterone, growth hormone and things that make you youthful, energetic and and so forth. You start to tank these hormones because of the presence of the visceral fat.

Brad (40m 4s):

And so when you have a little bit of belly fat, it sets you up for the accumulation of more belly fat because your testosterone is tanked. And what happens when you have poor male hormone status is you start to lose muscle mass and gain visceral fat as well as fat on the other areas of your body. So if all we have to do is look in the mirror and pull up our shirts and say, you know, how's my, how's my condition, how's my physique looking? That is indeed a great starting point to figure out what things you can do to optimize. And then you just gave the list like healthy gut function, good sleep nurturing, social relationships, lack of dysfunctional relationships, and chronically stressful circumstances in your life.

Brad (40m 52s):

Those things are gonna help you control that systemic wide inflammation that you're suffering from. But again, starting point is probably sleep, diet, increasing general everyday movement and then getting in some good workouts. So they all, they all go together. But the scoreboard, I talk about the stress scoreboard, we can also look at the wash board scoreboard and, and see how we're doing there. And for females, different hormonal processes, different body composition elements, however, the accumulation of visceral fat is also a huge health risk for the female and it's distinct and different from the accumulation of fat in other parts of the body.

Brad (41m 35s):

So that is the battle in front of us and it's a big deal because of that snowball effect when you lo lose yourself a little bit, when you let yourself go a little bit when you're 40 or 37 or 47 or 57, it's gonna set you up for, for an accelerated decline over the next decade and the next decade.

Brian (41m 59s):

Yeah. So what would you say, we've talked a a a lot about, you know, different areas of healthcare, mainly diet, exercise, you know, consistency. What would you say, if you would sum it up, if someone was just, you know, starting up or wanted to get back into, you know, some type of program in 2023, what would you say some, what would be some first steps to start get to get themselves on the right foot?

Brad (42m 29s):

Yeah, thanks. The first thing is we gotta get the garbage can out and go through your house and toss out these nutrient deficient processed foods that are interfering with your metabolic and hormonal function. And so until you clean up your diet, you don't really have much of a chance to, you know, strive toward your potential because you keep feeding yourself these poisons. And when I make that statement about interfering with your ability to generate energy internally, Jay Feldman talks about that at length on your shows and on on mine and elsewhere, where when you have that nice hit of sugar or those seed oils that are in the processed foods, you are arresting the natural generation of energy inside the body.

Brad (43m 16s):

And therefore because you're interfering with your ability to burn fat and even burn the, the, the, the sugar that you just ate, you start to become reliant upon more feedings of these nutrient deficient processed foods. Your appetite hormones get outta whack, you start overeating and under moving because you're tired and drag and generally a, a person functioning at level four instead of level six or level seven or level eight. So cleaning up the diet, I know that's a big challenge for people. I interact with real people myself who are not as dialed in as I am. And it seems simple to me to say, oh, this food is unhealthy, throw it away. But we have all kinds of things in the mix and habits and perhaps even addictions to especially the, the, the propensity for sugar to become addictive.

Brad (44m 7s):

Dr. Robert Lasik talks about that in his book. So it's a real deal. It's up there at the highest ranking along with, you know, the, the bad drugs that people get addicted to. So it's no joke, but I think it will become easier and more doable if you can give yourself permission to surround yourself with all kinds of nutritious foods that you enjoy that are easy and convenient to prepare and that you can consume in place of whatever crap is still lingering in your diet. And so when I talk about my morning indulgence of the huge bowl of fruit and the huge protein smoothie and getting email feedback from listeners saying, well that's great for you Brad, you're already low body fat, but if I ate more food every day, I'd get fat.

Brad (44m 54s):

And I'm gonna challenge that because I think what happens is when you front load yourself for success, when you set yourself up with a winning environment, like instead of old boxes in Brian's basement, he's got a fitness center. So he's setting himself up to walk down a staircase and get into it easy and convenient manner. When you surround your home with healthy, nutritious foods that you enjoy and the fresh fruit is always available and there's a bowl sitting there ready for you to grab a banana or an orange or whatever, or some, some, some healthy strips of beef jerky or whatever it is, that's when you're gonna succeed with cleaning up your diet rather than thinking of this dietary cleanup as, you know, micro restricted a challenge or suing and suffering, depriving and using your willpower, that's not gonna succeed for any time length.

Brian (45m 48s):

Right? So it's almost like getting rid of the complete junk, which we all know what that is. We don't need to go into that and replacing it maybe with something that's nutrient dense, like you mentioned. This could be fruit, this could be vegetables, quality protein sources, like you said. I think for me, I have been consuming more food, but the food I've been consuming are single ingredient foods, you know, so that right there I think can go a long way. And then what about on, on the, on the exercise point of it, what, you know, you've been in endurance sports and you know how you're, you're like a professional, well you were a professional high jumper, right?

Brian (46m 31s):

For a long time and a sprinter and a and a speed golfer, which is how we first met, right, Brad, right. What would you say to someone that's wanting to get into exercise but they just don't like to exercise, they assist this, you

Brad (46m 49s):

Know. Yeah, I'm, I'm going to reflect that the reason someone doesn't like it is cuz they've had an adverse experience before, probably related to that fitness programming in the fitness industry luring you in, drawing you in with the, the dangling incentives and then pushing your body too hard and you crashing and burning. And the brain is very good at avoiding things that generate pain and instead pursuing things that are easy and comfortable. And so if there's a way to hack this, this disastrous cycle of living an a lifestyle that's inactive, it's to get out there and do something that's so easy and doable and sustainable that you will actually enjoy it.

Brad (47m 33s):

I, I don't think there's too many people that are gonna say, yeah, I hate walking my dog seven minutes around my block. It's such a waste of time. I have so many more important things to do with my mobile device or whatever. No, you're gonna enjoy it. The fresh air, if it's raining, if it's snowing, if it's cold, it's okay. People, that's why we buy expensive jackets so we can get out there and test them out and walk around the block anyway. And I mentioned the dog so often because one, because the dog had a cameo in your background for all you guys watching this, this program on YouTube. But secondly, like you've made a commitment to an animal to give it a good life and it's a commitment that's bigger than yourself and your own, you know, fragile motivation, willpower, mood, energy level, self-esteem, whatever the hell it is, leash up the damn dog and get the dog outta the house for a proper walk around the block at least twice a day as your minimum commitment to giving the animal a proper life.

Brad (48m 30s):

So even if you don't care or you don't enjoy exercise or you're not motivated, there are things that can, you know, that can kick in beyond that, that won't work for you. And then you mentioned joining the gym, which is another one. Like get in your freaking car, drive over to the gym, walk in the front door, say hi to the check-in person, and if you want to go sit on the couch in the lobby and watch a few minutes of TV to gather yourself, that's fine, but I'm going to bet that something's gonna happen. Something magical is gonna happen when you show up at the gym, show up and p get on your bicycle seat in the class. And if you're not fit enough as the other riders, guess what?

Brad (49m 11s):

It's a stationary bike. And that's what's so wonderful about group programming is, you know, you can go at your own pace and not be embarrassed like you might be if you jumped into the, you know, the club ride on the Lakeshore Boulevard in the summertime and they're going 27 miles an hour and you're going 18, it's over.

Brian (49m 31s):

Yeah. I mean, showing up, right? And so, I mean for, for me, I, I've never liked running, I've never liked riding a bike. You know, my form of let's just say cardio or high intensity has always been other things, things that I've enjoyed that I look forward to. And I think that's important because I don't, I've done spin, it's just not for me. I've tried spin classes, we're not going anywhere. I, you know, if I, I guess if I'm gonna ride a bike, that's probably better, but, you know, I'm in Chicago so we don't have a ton of, you know, great weather to go riding and we don't have a lot of hills and things like that. Maybe if I lived in California, but I enjoy, I've enjoyed mixed mixed martial arts and, and I do some kickboxing in Muay Thai.

Brian (50m 14s):

I've done that on and off for, you know, whatever, 20 years now. And for me that's, that's a good outlet. And so I think it like, on your point, not only just showing up at the gym, but maybe finding something that you actually, actually might enjoy. Like if, if you don't enjoy riding a bike, don't do that, right? Like, there's plenty of other options that you could do. So while this was great, Brad, I mean we could go talk for another hour at least, but just to highlight, you know, replace junk foods with nutrient, nutrient dense foods and then just show up and, and I think some type of group atmosphere is, is a great way, especially someone that's just starting out that maybe, you know, the self-discipline of just going in your basement isn't there yet, but actually signing up and doing something, whether it's tennis or whatever it is, that's sort of a group atmosphere, I think can help sort of pull you along.

Brian (51m 12s):

And I think those two steps are great ways to, you know, get the new year off on, on the right foot and, and then listening to podcasts like ourselves. I think feeding your mind is part of it. I think to me, I it get, it gets me going, listening to Brad's podcast or any of the other ones that I've listened to or even finding a coach that can sort of help you, you know, cuz I know I coach plenty of people and you know, I'm not, you know, just finding someone that maybe you can hold you accountable is a big one as well. Anything else, Brad, you want to add on that? I think we've touched on a lot.

Brad (51m 50s):

Yeah, that's great. I like how you, you mentioned listen to podcasts cuz it does keep you motivation focused, excited, exposure to new information. But I will address the potential listener who has a tendency to feel discouraged or get overwhelmed because I think we also have this risk today with all the information that's upon us and all the influencers and all the people that are extremely fit and extremely rich and performing, living these wonderful, incredible lives on their private jets and, and frolicking on the beach and their perfect bodies. This kind of thing can have a, a negative net impact. So let's focus in 2023, focus on yourselves and the little baby steps you can take to form winning habits.

Brad (52m 39s):

And nothing is too small. James clear in his book, talks about setting the goal of flossing one tooth in the evening if you're not a good tooth flosser and your first reaction, everybody can smirk and go one tooth, come on. But he, he's dead serious and he says it with great, you know, scientific support behind him that if you can start flossing one tooth, guess what's gonna happen in 30 days? You're gonna be a good tooth flosser. And the same goes with exercise and you know, the ability to like look at a staircase and see it as a fitness opportunity, look at a parking lot and hang on left instead of a right and see that as a fitness opportunity that you're gonna walk further to the door and all these little things count.

Brad (53m 21s):

And I can't emphasize that enough where I've seen people succeed with these baby steps with a smile the whole way and not trafficking in any of that potential to get discouraged and and brought down because you're not enough and you don't measure up to others.

Brian (53m 37s):

Yeah. Great points and this was great Brad, where's, I know you got a lot of stuff going on. What about, why don't we offer the listeners a something like your, your your whey protein, right? Is that out and about? People can get that

Brad (53m 53s):

Maybe just Yeah, they can find a bera is the brand. Okay. Just like the podcast, the Be Rad podcast. I have a great whey protein, that's my centerpiece morning drink and you can learn about everything over@bradkearns.com, including the podcast. You can go search for past shows and listen to Brian throwing down. I think we had some good golf talk in there in the past, but a lot of, lot of great guests and having a lot of fun just connecting with people like you. So it was a privilege to be on the show. I love the great work that you're doing, especially the friendly debate with, with Jay Feldman and Dom Dino, that was, was one of your highlight shows and so there's definitely great content, but you give a lot of simple practical tips for people and I think we did a good job covering that today too, where you can go and leash up the damn dog and get out there people no matter

Brian (54m 41s):

What. Yeah. Meanwhile, my dogs are just been steering at me and I, I've, they've been on two walks already today, so I'm not, I'm not feeling bad. I have one right here. Excellent. Brad walt brad kearns.com Be rad podcast, check out his new whey protein. I do, I wanna try it actually, Brad, so maybe we'll work something out. Could we offer a discount for the audience? Do you have or like a five or 10% or?

Brad (55m 8s):

I can't, I can't do that cuz it's for sale on Amazon.

Brian (55m 12s):


Brad (55m 12s):

But I, I guarantee you're gonna like it. Okay. And if you, if you heard about it from Brian's show and you purchase one, send me an email cuz we will figure out a wonderful free gift to send you. And I appreciate you spreading the word about it cuz there's a lot of protein supplements. A lot of people think it's mainly for the muscle people, but the great research now is coming out how this is super important for everyone in every stage of life to prioritize protein in the diet for a lot of reasons. One of 'em is managing your, your appetite and your body fat levels. So it's kind of great initial reception. It's a new product, but it's the very, very best. And I've traveled, I've looked all over the world to find the best quality protein that's clean, doesn't have any crap in there.

Brad (55m 55s):

So many of 'em have artificial sweeteners and fillers and chemicals, and so you can be confident that you're getting a good product and getting started on a good habit.

Brian (56m 5s):

Awesome. Excellent. And check that out brad kearns.com. Thank you so much for coming on the podcast, Brad. Appreciate

Brad (56m 12s):

It. Thank you.

Brian (56m 15s):

Thanks for listening to the Get Lean EAN podcast. I understand there are millions of other podcasts out there and you've chosen to listen to mine and I appreciate that. Check out the show notes@briangrin.com for everything that was mentioned in this episode. Feel free to subscribe to the podcast and share it with a friend or family member who's looking to get their body back to what it once was. Thanks again and have a great day.

Brad Kearns

Brad Kearns, 58, is a New York Times bestselling author, Guinness World Record setting professional Speedgolfer, #1 USA-ranked Masters age 55-59 track&field high jumper in 2020, and former national champion and #3 world-ranked professional triathlete.

He has written twenty books on diet, health, peak performance, and ancestral living, and is a popular speaker, retreat host, and face of the Primal Blueprint online multimedia educational courses. In 2017, The Keto Reset Diet became a New York Times bestseller, and briefly ranked as the #1 overall bestselling book on amazon.com.

Brad hosts the B.rad podcast, covering healthy living, peak performance, and personal growth with his carefree style and lively sense of humor. He promotes the idea of pursuing peak performance with passion throughout life. The podcast features a mix of interviews with world-leading experts and brief “Breather” shows from Brad with practical tips and strategies.


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