Pavel Tsatsouline on the Science of Strength and the Art of Physical Performance

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Tim Ferriss and Pavel Tsatsouline on Strength

This episode was a real treat. It was one of the most enlightening and lucid conversations about physical training I’ve ever had.  If you want strength, power, endurance, and flexibility, it’s all covered in this one interview.

Pavel Tsatsouline is Chairman of StrongFirst, Inc. and was born in Minsk, USSR, which is now part of Belarus.

In the 1980s, he was a physical-training instructor for Spetnaz, the elite Soviet special-forces units. Pavel is now a subject matter expert to the US Marine Corps, the US Secret Service, and the US Navy SEALs. He is widely credited with introducing the now ubiquitous kettlebell to the United States.

Over the last several years, Pavel has become a friend, and his input was critical to the success (and experiments) of The 4-Hour Body.  His massively popular post on 80/20 Powerlifting and How to Add 110+ Pounds to Your Lifts appears on this blog.

Whether you’ve heard of him or not, prepare to have your mind blown, and I don’t say that lightly :)  Enjoy!

This podcast is brought to you by 99Designs, the world’s largest marketplace of graphic designers. Did you know I used 99Designs to rapid prototype the cover for The 4-Hour Body? Here are some of the impressive results.

QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What’s the most valuable exercise tip you’ve ever received or learned? Please let me know in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes… Read More

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Are We Really 10% Human and 90% Bacteria? Exploring The Microbiome…

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By popular demand, an entire episode dedicated to exploring the human microbiome!

Are you really 90% bacteria and 10% human? How can you manage or optimize your own microbiome? Should we do fecal-matter transplants from “untouched” indigenous tribes to reverse chronic illness? We tackle all this and much more…

Jessica Richman is co-founder and CEO of uBiome, a startup backed by Y Combinator and Andreessen Horowitz, which uses citizen science to understand the human microbiome.

Jonathan Eisen is a Full Professor at the University of California, Davis with appointments in the School of Medicine and the College of Biological Sciences. Dr. Eisen’s research focuses on the evolution, ecology and function of communities of microorganisms.

This podcast is brought to you by 99Designs, the world’s largest marketplace of graphic designers. Did you know I used 99Designs to rapid prototype the cover for The 4-Hour Body? Here are some of the impressive results.

QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY:  What’s the most interesting or helpful thing you’ve ever learned from a medical or biological test? Please share in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes… Read More

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Ed Cooke, Grandmaster of Memory, on Mental Performance, Imagination, and Productive Mischief

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Ed Cooke on the Tim Ferriss Show

One tiny favor! If you’re enjoying the podcast, could you please take 30 seconds now to leave a brief review on iTunes? Just click “View in iTunes” under my pic here. Once I pass 2,000 reviews, I’ll reciprocate by writing a massive, behind-the-scenes post on everything I’ve learned about podcasting. I promise tricks of the trade galore, just as in-depth as the “Hacking Kickstarter” post. Speaking of which…

Ed Cooke is a dear friend and a Grandmaster of Memory.  In 2010, he was interviewed by a journalist named Joshua Foer. Under Ed’s Yoda-like training, Joshua became the very next American Memory Champion in 2011.  It took less than a year for Ed to transform a novice from unknown to world-class.

But how?!?

Aha… This interview explores Ed Cooke’s brilliant techniques (many of which I use), strategies, and practical philosophies.  To boot, he’s also a wicked funny bastard!  If you enjoyed the epic interviews with Kevin Kelly, Josh Waitzkin, or Maria Popova, you’ll love Ed.  He’s one of a kind.


This podcast is brought to you by 99Designs, the world’s largest marketplace of graphic designers. Did you know I used 99Designs to rapid prototype the cover for The 4-Hour Body? Here are some of the impressive results.

QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What’s one mental feat you’d love to accomplish in 2015? Any tips or tricks you can share? Please share in the comments by clicking here.

Scroll below for links and show notes… Read More

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Looking for a Change in 2015? How About Becoming My Managing Editor?

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I’m looking for the perfect Managing Editor.

This person will be my right hand for all things related to content. Some of things you’d get to work with:

- One of the world’s most popular blogs (this one). Typically 1.5-2 million readers per month. See “The Tim Ferriss Effect” on Forbes for a funny description of what it can do.

- One of the world’s most popular podcasts — The Tim Ferriss Show — selected by iTunes as “Best of 2014″ and often the #1 business podcast across all of iTunes (at times, #1 across all categories).

- Email broadcasts to nearly 500,000 people.

- Social media accounts that reach millions of people.

- New top-secret projects for 2015, including high-end video and new book stuff.

Things would start with a paid one-month trial, probably around 20 hours per week. If things go gangbusters, there would be potential to expand significantly from there. Competitive pay and tons of interesting options.

Here’s more on me, if needed.

JOB DESCRIPTION

To help me focus exclusively on writing, interviewing, and other content creation, I need someone who’s expert at handling quite a bit.

The Managing Editor’s responsibilities would include, but not be limited to, the following:

* Spearheading the editorial calendar for the blog, podcast, email, etc. for the next 6-12 months. I’m too ad hoc and last-minute right now. It’s unnecessarily stressful. I need someone to manage most or all of it, including…

* Helping me reach out to would-be podcast guests and book them, prep them, confirm them, etc., whether celebrities, world-class investors, or scientists.

* Helping me draft blog posts that I don’t otherwise have the bandwidth to adapt. For instance, great unused parts of The 4-Hour Body that are currently Word docs with footnotes, etc. A past example of such adaptation: The Truth About “Homeopathic” Medicine.

* Sourcing great guest posts and guest authors. Here are two different but equally successful examples: Hacking Kickstarter and 20 Things I’ve Learned From Traveling Around the World for Three Years.

* Helping plan and implement content promotion. This would include social accounts reaching millions of people, cutting-edge experimental stuff, and more.

* Experiment with different ways of increasing traffic (syndication, managing SEO/SEM contractors, etc.).

PERKS

* You’d be working behind the curtains on high-profile projects. You’ll see all of my projects first, and get to play a critical role in their creation and launch. This could range from interviewing icons to wordsmithing posts or book chapters that will be seen by millions of people.

* I will ask your advice and look to you for original ideas, new experiments, and more.

* If you’re in SF (or willing to visit), you will also be invited to spend time with the most impressive people in my network. In fact, that would be part of your job.

* I might send you great tequila, there will be strange assignments, and you get to work with a weirdo. That’s me. There won’t be a lot of boredom.

JOB REQUIREMENTS

Please note that most of the below are “must have,” not “nice to have.”

First and foremost, you need to understand and love the goal of my content — helping people unlock their latent potential, and providing non-obvious toolkits to that end.

These types of stories must make you excited to conquer the world, do huge things, and tackle big problems. Alignment with the above mission is the most important, but you should also:

1) Have at least 2-4 years of writing/editorial experience
2) Be a great writer and equally good at editing/improving other people’s writing.
3) Have managed tight deadlines and successfully put together editorial calendars.
4) Ideal: Have managed other writers.
5) Ideal: Comfortable with WordPress.
6) Ideal but not required: Live in or near SF.  Remote is also possible.

I need someone with relevant experience. This is non-negotiable. I cannot take fresh grads or people who don’t check most of the above boxes. I’m hiring a pro, not looking to mentor someone from ground zero.

DOWNSIDES

A friend and well-known editor for a massive site cautioned me about this section. In his words:

“[It’s] great to tell people about these, but maybe be a little less brutal with your self-descriptions? These are reasonable expectations in my trade.”

Alas, I still prefer the Shackleton approach to job descriptions. Being my Managing Editor will not be easy. Rewarding? Definitely. Exciting at many times? Absolutely. Easy? Not likely. Think of it like a professional sports team.  I’m not going to haze you or anything stupid, but my content works because I take it very, very seriously. We’re here to create posts that are more valuable (traffic-wise) two years after publication than the week we put them out. We want epic content that gets linked to by “real” media all over the world. If you have the right personality for it, you’ll love this. But…

Here are some fair expectations:

* I’m an unrelenting perfectionist. If you’re not the same, it will probably make you insane.
* I live and die by deadlines. They are absolutely sacred, and I am merciless about this.
* You will need to be self-directed and very self-organized. Besides inflexible deadlines, I won’t provide a lot of structure. I assume you’re bringing a lot of your own process and best practices.
* You need good mental and physical stamina, and you MUST have the discipline to “turn off” and recharge during off hours. You should have a regular exercise regimen or activities for decompressing.

STILL INTERESTED? NEXT STEPS…

Great!

Just to re-emphasize: I absolutely need someone with experience. If you have no experience, there will be other opportunities with me in 2015. Please don’t clog things up here.

If you do check most boxes, I’d LOVE to hear from you.  2015 is going to be a LOT of fun.

Please click here to tell me about yourself.  Any questions?  Please let me know in the comments, which I’ll be watching.

Thank you for reading this far, and Happy New Year, all!

Pura vida,

Tim

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What I’d Add To The 4-Hour Workweek for 2015 (And Much More)

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mexico 4hww

(Photo: Aaron Benitez)

“Luxury is feeling unrushed. It is designing a life that allows you to do what you want with high leverage, with many options, all while feeling unrushed.”
-Tim Ferriss [30:36]

The short audio below answers your 20+ most popular questions, as determined by 7,000+ votes.  For those who missed it, I’ve included a bonus part 3 on how to avoid decision fatigue.



This was a fun opportunity to answer great questions, including:

1. “If you were to write The 4-Hour Workweek 2.0 for 2015, what would you change or update from the original version? Are there new tools, technology, business models, or ideas that would make it more adaptable to today’s realities?” – Matt Coughlin, Costa Rica [2:56]

2. “What is a main communication technique that you use to network with people of higher status, especially before you reached mainstream success?” - Andrei, Canada [6:26]

3. “Regardless of industry, what is a trend you see developing that you think most people are missing?” – Malcolm, DC [12:56]

4. “What is the one thing that you have absolutely have to do everyday no matter what your schedule is?” – Vik Dulat, Toronto, Canada [16:01]

…and about 15 more questions.

This episode is brought to you by Onnit. I own Onnit supplements (like chewable melatonin for jetlag and flights), maces, battle ropes (not “battle robes,” as I first heard it), kettlebells, and enough gear to ensure a lifetime of self-inflicted torture and higher performance.

This podcast is also brought to you by 99Designs, the world’s largest marketplace of graphic designers. Did you know I used 99Designs to rapid prototype the cover for The 4-Hour Body? Here are some of the impressive results.

QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What would you like to see in an updated 4-Hour Workweek? OR Do you have any morning routines that make a huge difference in your day? Please share (or read others’ ideas) in the comments!

Scroll below for links and show notes…

Enjoy!

Do you enjoy this podcast? If so, please leave a short review here. It keeps me going…

Subscribe to The Tim Ferriss Show on iTunes.
Non-iTunes RSS feed

Select Links from Parts 1 and 2

People Mentioned

 

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Dr. Peter Attia on Life-Extension, Drinking Jet Fuel, Ultra-Endurance, Human Foie Gras, and More

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Tim Ferriss and Peter Attia

“How do you balance the desire to live longer with the desire to perform well?” (Tweet It)
– Peter Attia, MD

This episode delves into all types of performance enhancement and tracking — optimizing blood testing, drinking “jet fuel,” training for ultra-endurance sports, consuming synthetic ketones, using metabolic chambers, extending longevity by avoiding certain types of exercise, and much more.

Peter Attia is the co-founder and current president of the Nutritional Science Initiatives (NuSI).

He is an ultra-endurance athlete, compulsive self-experimenter, and one of the most fascinating human beings I know. Peter also earned his M.D. from Stanford University and holds a B.Sc. in mechanical engineering and applied mathematics from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. He resided at John Hopkins Hospital as a general surgeon, then conducted research at the National Cancer Institute under Dr. Steve Rosenberg, where Peter focused on the role of regulatory T cells in cancer regression and other immune-based therapies for cancer.

PLEASE:  Join Peter and I (I’m matching up to $50,000) in supporting this high-leverage project, ideally before the end of December.

This episode is brought to you by Onnit. Joe Rogan introduced me to Onnit, and since then, my garage has resembled a showroom. I own Onnit supplements (like chewable melatonin for jetlag and flights), maces, battle ropes (not “battle robes,” as I first heard it), kettlebells, and enough gear to ensure a lifetime of self-inflicted torture and higher performance.

This podcast is also brought to you by 99Designs, the world’s largest marketplace of graphic designers. Did you know I used 99Designs to rapid prototype the cover for The 4-Hour Body? Here are some of the impressive results.

QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY:  What counter-intuitive physical “hacks” or dietary approaches have been most impactful in your life? Please let me know in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes…

Enjoy! Read More

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Human Foie Gras — A Golden Opportunity

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foie-creative-commons

To kick things off, what is foie gras?

It can be explained with a short missive from our friend Wikipedia:

The California foie gras law, California S.B. 1520, is a California State statute that prohibits the “force feed[ing of] a bird for the purpose of enlarging the bird’s liver beyond normal size”…

Former Senator John Burton called foie gras production “an inhumane process that other countries have sensibly banned.”

Given this outrage related to mistreating birds, you might be surprised to learn that human foie gras industries are booming.  Children’s livers are apparently particularly tasty. Not unlike veal, I suppose.

I’m putting $50K of my own money into related investments, but we’ll get back to that in a minute. First, some background…

For most of the 20th century, fatty liver and liver cirrhosis had two primary causes: drinking too much alcohol (e.g. Mickey Mantle) or hepatitis B or C (via IV drug use, unhygienic tattooing, tainted blood transfusions, etc.).

But in the last few decades, even infants are showing up with livers that should belong to hardcore alcoholics.  And the numbers aren’t small.

It’s estimated that one in ten American children now suffer from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), alongside 40 million affected adults. If you’re an obese Mexican-American boy, the odds are 50-50 (!) that you have NAFLD, thanks to genetic predisposition (PNPLA3 gene).

15 years ago, this disease was unheard of.  In 10 years, it’s projected to be the #1 cause of liver transplants. Put another way — In 2001, NAFLD was the reason for 1 out of every 100 liver transplants; by 2010, it was up a ten-fold to 1 in 10; by 2025, assuming nothing stems this tide, there could be five million Americans who need new livers because of it.

Who are driving this trend?

Some point fingers at good folks such as Coca-Cola, juice “cocktail” manufacturers, and the like.  Given that many researchers blame fructose, it’s not a huge stretch. Personally, the whole thing makes me sick.  I’d like to sic the best scientists in the country on them.

Ah, and this is where the good news comes in.

There is a way, albeit an indirect way, to do this. I implore you to read on and bear with me.  This is where it gets exciting.

The NIH alone has spent $155 billion on cancer research since 1972, and cancer survival is up a paltry 3% as a result. The US government spends over $25 billion EACH year on HIV/AIDS. That’s a lot of money.

One might assume fatty liver disease would require similar sums. After all, more American adults have NAFLD than prostate cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, or type 2 diabetes.

NAFLD

That’s the disconnect…and the opportunity to be part of history.

Enter the “Manhattan Project of Nutrition”

The Nutrition Science InitiativeNuSI–has been called the “Manhattan Project of nutrition.” They are run like a lean startup, and I’m proud to be a part of their advisory board.

They don’t take industry money, so they have no interests to protect.

They believe the NAFLD epidemic can be curtailed for a total of $50 million, but the whole domino effect starts with just $1 million.  It is a rare day in science when fundamental questions about an epidemic can be answered with such little money (respectively). It’s an incredible Archimedes lever.

For context, NuSI argues that there are dietary triggers of diseases, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, cancer, and fatty liver disease. To determine what the triggers are, NuSI assembles teams of the best scientists in the country (e.g., from Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, NIH, UCSF, UCSD, Emory, etc.) to fund and execute the kind of research nobody else is willing (or able) to perform.

For NAFLD, NuSI’s team of experts have designed three trials to determine the respective roles of too many calories, too many carbohydrates, and too much sugar–the leading three hypotheses–as dietary triggers.

In early 2015, this team will begin the first ever controlled clinical trial to see if removing sugars from the diet can reverse fatty liver disease in children.

40 kids with NAFLD will be split into two groups, with 20 simply observed on their normal diet as controls, and 20 provided with a diet that’s identical to what they usually eat, but completely devoid of added or refined sugars. The scientists’ hypothesis is that the sugar-free diet will at least stop the progression of NAFLD in these kids, and may even reduce the amount of fat in their livers.

If that’s the case, it’ll be the best evidence we have linking sugar to fatty liver disease.

My $50,000 Challenge…And How to Get Involved

I’m personally matching up to $50,000 for whatever is raised through this blog post, and every donation–big or small–makes a major difference.

[UPDATE: An anonymous donor — a generous reader of this blog — has offered to match up to another $150,000. That means that if you all help donate or contribute just $200,000, another $200,000 will be matched for a total of $400,000!]

Any donation is also a tax write-off, as NuSI is a non-profit organization (of course, speak with your tax advisor). Perfect for end-of-the-year giving.

NuSI is looking to raise $1 million dollars for the first of these three trials—the one that determines how the rest get done.  The snowball that starts the avalanche. There are few chances in the world to have this type of impact for this type of money.  Could it end up forcing labeling changes, product modifications, obligatory package warnings, policy shifts, and more?  I believe so.

Supporting this campaign very easy, and remember–I’m excited to be putting my own skin in this game.  I sincerely hope you join me.  Every bit counts.

There are three options:

1. Donate by credit or debit card. Visit: http://nusi.org/donate. Enter your donation amount, indicate “NAFLD — Tim Ferriss” in the message field, and click “Donate.”  Done.

2. Donate by check. Send your check to: NuSI, attention: Lacey Stenson, 6020 Cornerstone Court W. Suite 240, San Diego, CA 92121. Be sure to write “NAFLD – Tim Ferriss” in the memo line.

3. Donate by transferring securities (stocks, etc.). Email TimFerriss1million@nusi.org [remember the double “r” and double “s”] and they’ll do as much heavy lifting as possible.

Thank you for reading, and thank you for supporting if you’re able.  This is a good fight.

If you’d also like to hear a fascinating chat with Peter Attia, MD, co-founder of NuSI, I interview him here on radical sports experimentation, synthetic ketones, meditation, and more. He’s a competitive ultra-endurance athlete, MD, surgeon, and obsessive self-tracker, so we get along great :)


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Relevant reading and citations:

Browning JD et al. Prevalence of hepatic steatosis in an urban population in the United States: Impact of ethnicity. Hepatology, 2004.

Welsh JA, Karpen S, Vos MB. Increasing prevalence of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease among United States adolescents, 1988-1994 to 2007-2010. Journal of Pediatrics, 2013.

Targher G, Day CP, Bonora E. Risk of cardiovascular disease in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. The New England Journal of Medicine, 2010.

Dudekula A et al. Weight loss in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease patients in an ambulatory care setting is largely unsuccessful but correlates with frequency of clinic visits. PLoS One, 2014.

Kawasaki T et al. Rats fed fructose-enriched diets have characteristics of nonalcoholic hepatic steatosis. The Journal of Nutrition, 2009.

Sanchez-Lozada LG et al. Comparison of free fructose and glucose to sucrose in the ability to cause fatty liver. European Journal of Nutrition, 2010.

Best CH et al. Liver damage produced by feeding alcohol or sugar and its prevention by choline. British Medical Journal, 1949.

Ouyang X et al. Fructose consumption as a risk factor for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Journal of Hepatology, 2008.

Abid A et al. Soft drink consumption is associated with fatty liver disease independent of metabolic syndrome. Journal of Hepatology, 2009.

Abdelmalek MF et al. Increased fructose consumption is associated with fibrosis severity in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Hepatology, 2010.

Assy N et al. Soft drink consumption linked with fatty liver in the absence of traditional risk factors. Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology, 2008.

Stanhope KL et al. Consuming fructose-sweetened, not glucose-sweetened, beverages increases visceral adiposity and lipids and decreases insulin sensitivity in overweight/obese humans. The Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2009.

Maersk M et al. Sucrose-sweetened beverages increase fat storage in liver, muscle, and visceral fat depot: a 6-mo randomized intervention study. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2012.

Browning JD et al. Short-term weight loss and hepatic triglyceride reduction: Evidence of a metabolic advantage with dietary carbohydrate restriction. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2011.

Vos MB, Lavine JE. Dietary fructose in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Hepatology, 2013.
Chung M et al. Fructose, high-fructose corn syrup, sucrose, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease or indexes of liver health: a systematic review and meta-analysis. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2014.

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