I’ve been consuming podcasts and videos more than I’ve been reading for a few years now.
It’s a change I’ve been feeling increasingly uncomfortable about. Reading books has impacted my life in a big way – yet here I am reading significantly less. Podcasts and videos feel like a shallower version of reading – yet I’m consuming them alot (probably 10-15 hours a week).
I’ve come to realise that podcasts and videos can be incredibly powerful though – just in a different way to books.
I find podcasts more tactical. They often inspire me to make immediate changes in my life. This type of immediate change helps me iterate on my behaviours and habits regularly.
I find books are generally more useful for understanding broader themes. These themes tend to shift my thinking at a macro level, but in a much slower way. If an idea or a theme clicks for me in a book, it’s like a seed has been planted. And then over time, this helps to change or inform new beliefs – which then leads to an actual shift in how I live my life.
Here are a few examples of how podcasts and videos have helped me make immediate, tactical changes in my life recently:
The Foot Ability Protocol by Ben Patrick (Kneesovertoesguy)
I’ve been aware of Ben Patrick for a while. I watched his interview with Joe Rogan. Since then, I’ve kept up with him on Instagram and YouTube. I also bought his Knee Ability Zero book. That said, I hadn’t yet incorporated any of his ideas into my training.
His recent video The Foot Ability Protocol got my attention. He shared a very simple routine that includes the foundational exercises he often recommends for good foot and knee health.
This felt like something really easy I could fold into my training once or twice a week, and would be very beneficial to do. And I’ve done exactly that. Eventually. I’m going to buy a drag sled so I can add some extra stimulus for backward walking.
The Max Lugavere interview with Joe Rogan is possibly one of the best well rounded conversations on metabolic health I’ve listened to. It inspired a few immediate changes in my health habits.
Joe and Max talk about the benefits of the sauna and cold exposure and Joe’s sauna and cold routine.
- Sauna: 20 mins
- Cold plunge: 3 mins
- Sauna: 20 mins
- Cold plunge: 3 mins
Always starting with the sauna, and ending with cold.
The benefits of hot and cold exposure aren’t new to me. I just haven’t found a way to incorporate it into my life. And then it clicked. My local outdoor swimming pool has a sauna. If I were to use that, I could then use the pool for cold exposure (it’s currently 15 degrees celsius, and gets down to 4 degrees celsius in the winter). It’s a perfect way to get cold and heat exposure.
Four days later, I turned up at the swimming pool at 7.30AM on a Sunday morning. I did the above routine and it felt amazing. It was such a nice way to start the day. I plan to do this at least once a week going forward.
Joe and Max also talked about oral hygiene (benefits of flossing and concerns around fluoride and mouthwash). This caused me to stop using mouthwash and start using a fluoride free toothpaste. I also intend to start flossing each night too.
The conversation around dairy fats is also well timed, as I’m currently re-evaluating my diet. I’m already starting to be more flexible in incorporating some cheese, milk and greek yoghurt into my diet.
Metabolic Flexibility and Longevity by Crossfit Health
I’ve been doing time-restricted fasting for many years. I keep to an 8 hour eating window and a 16 hour fasting window, which I achieve by skipping breakfast. I have my first meal of the day around 13.00 / 14.00 and almost always train before that in a fasted state.
I am very inflexible on this. That’s because once I start eating, my appetite starts to ramp up and I end up feeling the temptation to snack and graze throughout the day (and often do!). By skipping breakfast I am essentially pushing this out. I also love the efficiency of not having to think about food until the afternoon.
However, the panel in the video defines metabolic flexibility as ‘being able to optimally switch from one fuel source (carbs, fat etc.) to another’. Essentially you want your body to be able to cope and be efficient with various states of training and fasting. When you do one thing all the time (i.e skip breakfast and train fasted), your body only gets very good at doing that.
It made me realise that I need a bit more variation if I want my body to be metabolically flexible. I’ve already started to add some variation into my fasting and have done a couple of unfasted training sessions. As I suspected, it didn’t feel great – a sign that I probably have some work to do to be more metabolically flexible.
The above are just three examples of how podcasts and videos have helped me change some of my habits and behaviours for the better.
We literally have access to some of the smartest people on ANY topic you can imagine – and for FREE. If you’re not consuming podcasts and videos regularly, you really are missing out on opportunities to be inspired and better educated – and to become the best version of yourself.
A final tip. You must become a good curator of the podcast and video channels you subscribe to. You have to really care about your information diet and be willing to put in the effort to have it serve you. It’s SO easy for podcast and YouTube feeds to become noisy and overwhelming. I might write up some ideas for how to do that well in a future post.
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