Hey everyone, how's it going, I'm Chase Jarvis, welcome to another episode of Chase Jarvis Live here on CreativeLive, you're tuned in specifically to the 30 Days OF Genius series. That's where I sit down with the world's top creatives, entrepreneurs, and thought leaders and extract valuable insights from them that you can apply to your day to day to help you live your dreams in career, hobby, and life. If you're new to the series or CreativeLive, just go to creativelive.com/30daysofgenius that's number 30 days of genius. All you have to do is click that blue button there that says sign up, and then you'll get one of these awesome interviews in your inbox every day for 30 days. My guest today, oh man, he's done so many things. He's a fitness guru, he transformed the crossfit world and the worlds of mobility and movement, He's a doctor in his own right, and he's also the New York Times best-selling author of, count 'em, three books. The first one, Supple Leopard, the second one, Ready to...
Run and the one that just dropped recently, a couple weeks ago, called Deskbound. My guest today is none other than Kelly Starrett. (upbeat music) (applause) They love you. My man, welcome to the show.
Oh, it is so good to be back.
It's been like three or four months since we've hung out personally. In that time I've changed a lot of habits, but before we get into the habits that I've changed, you've also been a busy man. You've been working on a book that comes out in what, a week, two weeks, something like that?
I guess it depends on when we, I'm just so used to live.
We're recorded right now, this is nuts. We're gonna deploy this thing right on the day that your book drops. So your book is gonna be available, we'll talk about that, I wanna talk about some of this notion that creatives are somehow better when they're broken.
Well, people are too happy, and you have to be able to bend yourself against your own angst, you have to create that. We have that artist friend, who was too happy, and that one of our friends was like, "Hey, maybe you should go to a strip club". So he started going to these seedy strip clubs and then his art just took off. He was so depressed. But it doesn't have to be back pain or hip pain for that.
You can crawl under a bench. But man, super good to have you.
Tell me a story, what's happening with you?
What's happening, we're in a really interesting time where we're starting to see so many convergences around how the brain works, how the body works. What we've found is that the average person is consuming information on the internet in this really shotgun haphazard approach.
If I eat this teaspoon of cinnamon and squat in the stairwell, Tim Ferriss, and then I use this turmeric
Plus we love you Tim.
I love. But if I take this turmeric, and then do this secret workout thing, then it's all gonna come together, and I think the problem is we need to put principles first. What does it mean to be human? And we can start with that fundamental question, what is the care and feeding of this machine? And then once we understand that, then you can start to think about your 24 hour cycle, and this informs maybe the quality of my sleep or am I drinking enough water, or hey, am I moving enough during the day? And so suddenly it becomes, we have some kind of archetypal view of what it means to be human over a long time, and then we kind of come out of making the traps, of stepping on the rakes that blow up.
I literally have stepped on a rake and knocked myself out before.
Right, as allegory this is what happens to us all. And it's interesting that I think people have been thinking critically about this for a long time. The yogis, Joseph Pilates was not messing around, your master coach, he's a serious coach, you've got an amazing coach that you work with. But even if we go further we can take our cues from industry like nuclear regulation, nuclear accidents.
There's some really good thinking about
We're just going we're going nuclear
we're going, let's get deep.
Like, literally nuclear.
In the early 80s, a professor named Charles Perrow looked at Three Mile Island as an accident as a case study, and what we said was, oh it was user error, everyone was like, it's user error, these people messed up. But what he seemed to think, was that the systems were so complex, and that when we added complexity to the system, and tried to understand it, without understanding the complexity in their interactions of what was happening, environment, lifestyle, my stress, my flight. You can use that as allegory for us, and then if we gave that system enough time to express itself, we saw the same normal accident. It happened over and over again, so when you tweak your back because you're at the end range picking up your camera bag, that should be not a surprise, and you're like, but I picked up my camera bag a million times. Well let's be a little more conscious about it and say, can we understand some of the components that predisposed us for that problem, 'cause we should never have a problem picking something up off the ground.
For sure, and that's one of the things, well I've got a million things I wanna talk to you about today, but I think early on, so I gave you a little intro here at the start of the show, what people know about you is that you coach Olympians and world class athletes, and I want to hear that you also coach normal people. I consider myself, again I was a college athlete, went to college on a soccer scholarship, but I'm also, I'm a little bit older now, and I want to
Wiser, that's a much better way to saying it. But I want you to tell the people that are listening that you don't just, this is not just some food for super-human feats of strength, that what we're really talking about, you have taught on CreativeLive before, your class is called Maintaining Your Body, so can we talk about this in terms of foundation? You talked about first principles, I wanna go to that level first, because I think that makes, ~certainly I've framed this whole show around creativity as one of my primary modes of being in the world, I'm trying to get the world to be a more creative place. But I wanna talk about how being fundamentally sound in your health and your body, we've talked about body and mind relationship, we'll talk about that again, but that's not just for super-humans. It's not just
for world-class athletes.
And it can't be, in fact, we need to use sport as our formula one concept, where we're gonna, the reason you have disc brakes, is disc brakes worked really well in race cars, and then that technology comes backwards. So what we think of is, hey look, we can keep going the way we are, back pain is a multi-billion dollar problem that we can't get around of, we're doing more back surgeries than ever before, kids are tearing their ACLs 400% more than they used to be ten years ago.
Things aren't trending in the right direction, in spite of the fact that we have so much information. So what we need to do is think, well, when we look at ideas and concepts, we say, does that scale? Because what we can see is that we're testing positions, we're testing mechanics, we're testing robustness of ideas under stress, we're stress-testing 'em, and that's what sport is about, so we can take those concepts, and if we don't take those concepts and spin them back to my Mom, my kids, her volleyball team, our friends, adults who are physical, but just at a degree of scale, then sport really is just circus, and that's fine
Theater, yeah, yeah.
When the bodies break we'll give them to the lions, but we can be better than that, and I think we just need to make sure that we're consummating the discussion, we're finishing the idea, saying here's what we know about how much water you should drink and when, and how much sleep you have to have for high performance. Let me give you an example. So right now there's very little correlation between pain and posture. This is a great example. And when you're talking about posture
You just made me sit up a little.
Right, I was like posture. So what's interesting, that guy sat up, when you say posture, what does that mean to you for example?
It means how I orient my body in space.
Oh, so fancy.
There you go, proprioception
Just dropping all the shit that I know.
Yeah, that's right, pull it out. Well it turns out, and your Grandma talked about posture, she seemed to think it was important, and your Mom also said it, right?
Well it turns out, posture is just a prissy word from Latin that means position, and so what we've done is we've decoupled positional mechanics, position of my spine, my resting habitus, and because we've given it a different word you're like, eh, I have bad posture, you kind of brag about it, I've always had bad posture, and can you imagine bragging about any other thing, I always have bad work output, my work flow is terrible, I'm a terrible relationship manager. You wouldn't brag about those things, and yet because we've decoupled the essential meaning, what does it mean to be human, how should my spine move? There's poor correlation between posture, sustained postures and pain. And that has some problems in it already, because we're defining function and how I move in the world, based only on, do I have pain? Yes or no. Not how much
That's the guide.
Ass-kicking can I do, or how creative can I be, or how?
It's the difference between surviving and thriving.
Which is great, look, I'm into survival, but I'm really into thriving, and thriving for the long haul, because unfortunately, I think we're all gonna be 100 years old.
We are, you know, you're gonna stick the tubes in and connect us on life support. So the issue here is, in our pilots for example, we work with a lot of the pilots in Thunderbirds, the Blue Angels, our helicopter pilots doing all this scary stuff in the military, and when they're in these bad positions wearing a helmet
Yeah, like this.
Well, how 'bout just the position that we all adopt when we sit down, because sitting causes of the shape. And what ends up happening, is that we see a lot of neck disease with those guys. Their joints get a little bit achy and pissy, cranky, their hands go numb, they start to get headaches, and what we start to see is loss of shoulder function, and partly with the helicopters it's even bad because they're going up and down, so they're wearing a helmet
And now they're in this bad position. What we've done is basically stress tested that position, we've aged it, the same way that we can test how long a camera aperture opens, let's just open and close, open and close. Did you get 20,000? Well how many duty cycles can we put into some of these positions before we're like, hey, what's a better shape? This shape. And then we can start making decisions about our body, so should we wait around, because the science doesn't say, this causes pain, but what we can see is that if bad posture's sustained out for long periods of time, we know it causes dysfunction, so compromising your abilities to breathe. So slouch for me, for example, this is how we sit. But if we sit back and we're totally normal people, one of the reasons you cross your legs is it helps you create a more stable spine that looks informal. But now just take a breath for me right there. Where'd you breathe, do you see it? Where'd he breathe?
He breathed up in his chest. Is that where your diaphragm is?
No, you're diaphragm's here.
So remember that woman who did a Ted Talk and talked about body language, and how it affects stress. Ba-ding! That's right, we're here. Well it turns out that your body, and this is where they get to the heart of the soul, I think, of what is interesting about your idea about creativity, and not stripping that creativity out of physical self, is that we know that the brain evolved out of this brain stem. The reptile brain
Yep, crock brain
Then we have this cognition on top of it. So these are integrated systems, and so what ends up happening is that when your brain sees that you're in this shape, or that you're breathing in your chest, because you're in this shape, well, the only time you ever normally would breathe in your chest is when you're running from tigers or fighting or stressed, ha, ha, ha, neck is going off, and so what your brain says, is oh you're doing that, so you must be under stress.
Shit must be heinous.
Let's fire up the cortisol, I know what to do here. How about that silly experiment, if you smile you start to feel happy.
Hey, you do feel happy I feel great actually
I feel great, this is amazing. And I'm not saying we need to be stoic about fake happiness, 'cause obviously, that's the opposite of the art of sway, striving.
Yes, we should be stoic and dark.
What we can say is, okay, well if breathing here causes this reaction in my brain and this neuro-endocrine response that makes me less able to handle stress, makes me less able to handle fat. So now we can start to say, well okay, maybe this isn't the position I was designed to be in as a human. Should I be sitting? And more importantly, what are the implications on my life around this? So we can be a little bit more granular about saying, well I could try to sit up, I can try to remember all these details, or we can take the cigarette out of the mouth, and just put it out. We can treat your smoking emphysema or you can just not smoke in the first place. And part of that idea, I think, is saying now back to this human idea. What does it mean to be human? And how do I integrate that into modern life so that I'm not crawling, and eating, and foraging my own food? 'Cause it feels crazy.
It's gone crazy.
But this is why you're on the show. And so, again, I'm in the process of interviewing 30 geniuses of which you are one, and my belief is, you are a coach, you are a physical coach, you coach people's bodies. But to me, this is a thing that I've realized, I think I knew it early on, but I didn't talk about it, 'cause it didn't fell culturally relevant, or culturally on point, but I realized that I have to get over that because physicality for me, being physical, and being healthy, and being, in your words, more human, or what are we supposed to be like, has absolutely 100% made me a better creative person. It's allowed me to live a richer life, that flows back into my So the difference between surviving and thriving, I feel like, again, I'm disproportionately physical as I've talked already, I came from that background, but it's so not talked about in the world that I come from of professional artists, or people who are entrepreneurs or building businesses, and I feel like it's an epidemic that people don't want to go there. What's the way, what are some fundamental things that we can talk about today that the people at home will take a shit-ton of value and it can apply to their life? Because it's not about surviving,
It's about thriving.
And it's not about reorganizing your whole life. You don't have to make a bunch of crazy decisions, and get rid of your couch and now you're sitting on the floor, like an Afghan warlord. People come in and they're like, what happened to your mid-century modern couch? I loved that couch. And you're like, well
It's not good for my back
It's not good for me, so. Well I think that's really it. What are the actual pieces, we realize that everyone has this innate skillset, there are such talented people. We were just watching the Oscars, and I'm just blown away, Einer Atu, that guy, I hate that guy, he makes me feel bad about myself. And I think one of the keys here is that you don't have to be responsible for an expert in all of the aspects of your life, but you need to be competent around some of the care and feeding of this thing. And one of the things that we've discovered working with the professional athletes and professional teams, as they inherit athletes who came out of a collegiate system or younger system, and so they get kids who are already having injuries or breaks, and they have to fix a lot of things and still play, 'cause they're pros. We hire you as a camera man, as a photographer, you are showing up no matter what.
And you're a pro, we're gonna stick a needle in that thing and you're gonna shoot. And all we have to do is look at the pain-killer, drug addiction phenomenon in America, which is out of hand. Our good friend Chris Bell just made a great movie called prescription thugs on iTunes,
Macklemore's new album's got a song about prescription drugs on it too.
I love it.
There ya go, just dropped yesterday. -
It's amazing how we're basically, we're treating symptoms, and I think if we use sport as an allegory for a second, so you go back to college and you're like, well God guys, how come you didn't solve it? Well when I talk to the college coaches they're like, have you seen all the all-Americans we get from high school? They're all messed up, they already have pain. They can't squat pain free, they're already eating terribly. And so you're like, let's go to high school. So then you go to high school and you see the same sets of problems, and then we go to, well we gotta start at middle school, and literally we have been doing this. I was at a high school recently teaching their physiology course. I had 200 kids, and I'm like, how many of you guys are pain free? And there was a bunch of super jocks in the room, like the all-star pitcher and the girl who's the all-american, and no one raises their hand, and the coaches kinda look around, and the parents are like, what?
These are kids.
Yeah, and then literally the coach is like, you mean your elbow hurts? But you're the star pitcher, how come you never mentioned? And he's like, you never asked. And so what we start to see is that we're inheriting these problems, so we go further. I work with my daughter's volleyball team, just movement skills, basics, not a coach, I'm trying to create physical literacy and movement so that they can be coached.
That's really, that's what today's about, by the way. If you're just listening, that is why I want you to care about this episode so much, is because you need some basic physical literacy to be a badass human, let alone creator over all the other things that you wanna do in your life. Back to physical literacy.
I asked those kids, from 5th graders to 8th graders. So I'm like, so how many of you guys are pain free? And no one raises their hand, three kids.
And I'm like, how many people have heard of Sever's disease? And kids, and I'm like Osgood Schlatter's, and I'm like and who's got, and I literally, the kids are just dinging off all the overuse
Well who's got plantar fascitis? And then like three kids raise their hands, and the parents are looking around, and I'm like, "how old are you?", and she's like, "ten". And these kids are already literate in the language of physicality, so what we have said to people is, be active, go do sports, that solves all problems. Now, what we can get it to, the heart is that, boy, we have a hard time in the United States right now, and my daughter's, we live in Marin, we have a great public school we go to, but we actually have to pay extra for an art teacher, it's not part of the curriculum.
Nuts. And we have a great art teacher.
That's why this place exists, by the way, but keep going.
Exactly right. So we're trying to realize, so we're a little bit like, so you're realizing that we don't support foundational creative thinking and skills like every kid should be able to draw and play an instrument, it's not whether or not you're interested in that, you need to be able to be competent in that. Well we can say the same thing about how to move. So now we start asking this fundamental question. Who teaches movement skills?
Unless you're lucky enough to be in ballet
Or gymnasts, or in a codified Brazilian jiu jitsu, karate, where they talked about mechanics and posture and breathing stability.
Every time you say the word posture, by the way.
Ching, posture. So now we can start to say, well okay, so what is the functional unit of this. And unfortunately for a lot of our creative path, because we have this social stigma about you're a jock, or you're a creative person, you suddenly divorce the idea of physicality supports arts, and art supports physicality.
That was a huge deal for me. This isn't about me, but for what it's worth
No, this is you as allegory for this whole thing.
Well then I'm the classic case of I couldn't reconcile those two things and that's part of, again, why I wanted you on the show is because now that I've started taking care of my body in a way that I never had before, because I just took it for granted that I was reasonably athletic, but as an adult who's carrying around a camera or sitting at a desk, and this isn't just for designers and photographers, those are the primary people that this audience reaches, but I know you're gonna introduce your art, and for anything that you're doing, that's one of the reasons, we're getting to your book Deskbound, but I just look around and there's so much fatigue and struggle and conflict between what we do on a daily basis and what we're supposed to function and move like, it pisses me off, it's literally a source of frustration, and since I started personally paying attention to it and preaching it my whole world has changed around like a half a dozen fundamental things. So that's really, as you're talking about going backwards and backwards, we were never taught to move right, so we need to get that, we need to get it from you, we need to get it from your books.
Right, so what are the fundamentals, so if I said, everyone in this room, get tight, get tight, get stiff.
How's that gonna feel tomorrow.
Embrace your spine. Now I'm like, okay, what is that, what did you do? He held his breath, and I'm like, that's great, now you're screwed, 'cause you're gonna have to breathe again. So what we see is that people are good at winging it, and the body is really good at dealing with winging it for a long time, until it's not. So this concept of, we can say, I'll borrow Charles Perrow again. He has this great concepts of, he says, this is a trivial event, or trivial events in non-trivial systems, because you can round your back and lift up that camera bag a lot. In fact we know that you can do that for millions of times, you can bend over and pick up your kids, until you can't one day. And so the question is, well did you get lucky, unlucky? Were you just dehydrated that day? Did you lift something heavy, did you get off the airplane? Or boy, I realized that I was about to pick up something heavy, so maybe my strategies change a little bit. So how do I formalize the instruction around that, so that it's repeatable, that I can explain it to my kids, and that it's translatable? Now, don't get me wrong, we're not asking people to be formal like ballerinas all the time, this is my dance space, this is your dance space. Your spine is dynamic, and you should go watch modern dancers or gymnasts, and see with the marvels of the spine, and we should be able to have that fluency.
But are you asking them to everybody have to have a trainer, and everyone has to think about this.
No, and that is the other problem. What we're benefiting from right now is that the world-wide web, the internet allows us to suddenly become experts. We just have to clear off some positions, or clear off some information for people where they can learn and see those things for themselves, because the functional unit, we can make the assumption that human beings are learning animals. You lived with your parents for a long time, this is the heart and soul of CreativeLive and the teaching we do. There's never a time when you can't learn something. At what point did you think you didn't need a learning movement teacher coach, and if you were lucky enough to be in tai chi, or chi gong, or like you found a yogi, who you've been following for a long time, those are learned and taught environments. But most of us don't have access to that
thousands of years, yeah.
'cause we don't know to look for it or it doesn't interest us. So the heart, I think, of this is what's a physical practice look like? What are the components to that? So one of the first things is
Actually I'm gonna put a macro, so we're gonna talk, what are the components of physical practice? So what are the core components, is there some sort of daily things that you should avoid? But I also wanna talk about nutrition and sleep.
So that's the next five minutes or ten minutes
I don't think we can, the problem is, when I say physical practice, we're looking at all of these things. So let's pretend like you have a couple kids and a busy work flow, work output schedule, a production schedule, and you work, and you have to commute, and all the sudden your time, and then you also need to be with your loved one, whoever they are, and maybe you have a friend and a hobby. What's it look like then? Where are you squeezing this in? So it would be great if we could spend four hours a day crawling on the doing exploration of living in the trees, I love that, but that doesn't work, and it's not scalable. So the first and foremost around this thing is saying, what can I do to contribute to my physical practice? Well, maybe that means today I just, I eat like a ninja today, I eat six to eight fists of vegetables today. People are like, hey let's talk about nutrition, how many grams of protein? I'm like, did you eat breakfast? Okay, if you didn't did you eat six to eight fists of vegetables? Show me that you're actually eating food, first and foremost, and then we can start talking. So I can maybe control that piece today, and I'm gonna be on an airplane for a long time tomorrow. What am I gonna do? I'm not gonna drink, I'm gonna make sure that I walk around as much as I can, when I get off the airplane I'm gonna do some basic tissue work, and I'm not gonna exercise, I'm not gonna freak out and run to the gym and try to undo that, but what I'm gonna do is say, I can contribute to the health of the system. And I think as we're walking around the airport tomorrow, we'll walk, we won't take the escalator, and part of this isn't, I don't have to remember all these details, I just have to remember, in this physical practice one of the central tenets is, how can I move more? How can I just be upright and moving, because that is the thing that makes us human, it's why you have a heel cord, this is why your lymphatic system, which is the drainage to all the congestion, all the lymphatic system, its' driven by the muscle contraction, so if you sit down, what happens to your lymphatics? They turn off. If you sit down and your leg musculature turns off, your blood sugar spikes, 'cause your body's suddenly not burning that glucose, that sugar in your muscles and so suddenly you look pre-diabetic all the sudden. So what's interesting is if you think in that gestaltist global term.
Gestalt, look at the use of GRE word right there, that was amazing, the gestalt.
Two points, ding
That's right. What if I say the word iterative, that is the five point word. The key here is suddenly you start to unravel what your life looks like underneath all of this, without ever getting lost in the weeds, because it is so easy to get lost in the weeds. And we we remain agnostic, man, did you walk today. Yes or no? Can you walk enough? We see that one of the biggest problems is this thing called non-exercise activity. And that is your body needs to be in motion through the day, so even a standing desk is imperfect, because you're not moving at the standing desk.
But if you combine that with walking on the way to the airport, with walking meetings
Now hey Now my body's being like, I know what this is, I'm being a human being. And now we're starting to have a conversation. So there was a great calculator that we have on our website stand up kits, which we'll talk about, but my wife did this little calculation and she's like, "Kelly, do you realize if I stand at work "I burn as many calories as if I ran 33 marathons a year?", and I'm like, "well I'll tell you which one I would do, "and it does not include 33 marathons in a year".
33 and nothing.
That's a lot of calories just burned because you're upright and organized.
Can you claim that you ran 33 marathons if you're actually
I think so,
I think you just have to have an asterisk, I could PR done all my marathons this year.
This T-shirt with an asterisk in the lower corner.
So I think that's what we need people to understand is okay, I can take the general principals, but the other piece around exercise, I think in training, is that what we've said, and convinced ourselves is that if I just work harder, it solves all problems.
Oh man, I could tell you stories.
And I just need to work harder, like if I just give a little more effort, and high intensity exercise is out in the world, I mean orange theories, go to soul cycle, if you survive we'll talk about the experience, it's so hard, but there's not a lot of skill at soul cycle, your butt goes here, hands go here, be a piece of meat. And what we need to do is put the skill back in movement, so we value skilled technically proficient people, at what point does this not have to be skilled proficient? We can say it's good enough, but it's always a conversation, and then that skill bucket is infinite, you can always refine your skill
of course you can go super deep, but for the people like, again, we're not talking to superstar athletes,
No, no, not at all
To gold medalists, we're talking to everybody, and your advice, I'm gonna put it in a nutshell, is find ten ways to be doing something more active, standing moving than you're doing right now, whether it's getting up and walking in the airplane, walking through the airport, standing at a desk, which is again, we still have to get to that, and taking walking meetings. And do you think, is that baseline gonna
That's a massive, massive start, and the problem now is that you're gonna have to undo a lot of habit. So as you stand, and it's not like we haven't, I'm gonna just go on a limb here, there are these places that are amazing where people congregate called pubs, you ever been to one of those?
I've heard stories.
They have alcohol there.
I think, yeah.
At the bottom of the pub, there's this thing called the rail, have you ever seen that?
I have, the brass one.
Why are pubs this height, bar height, it's a term.
It's a term literally, yeah.
For standing, because it allows you to stand there for a long time, and drink for a long time, and if you don't have that, or you stand there and you put your foot up there too, you're like, dude, I could stand here and drink all day. All you need to do is do this experiment, go work all day, be on your feet, sit down, whatever, go to a bar, stand around without any skill or technique, just hope that the meat supports you, have a cold beverage, and see how beautiful everyone in the room is. And your backs gonna ache a little bit like you're at a concert, like ten o'clock, and you're shifting around, doing all these weird poses, and the music's not very good, and he's not very handsome, and then all the sudden, if you suddenly put your foot up and lean you're like
Whole new game.
Bing, your brain's like this is amazing, this is the best thing I've ever had, that woman's so hot.
So is that part of the therapy, is that everyone should go to the bar?
Well what we can say is bartenders figured it out, hey, people congregate and stand here for long periods of time, how can we make the environment fit the human? And now we're having a conversation about which backpack is best for your camera. The one that allows you to remain your most human self. It's not if I put a strap here, is that a very human shape?
No, so I can make the environment work me. That's the advantage of having thumbs right?
We can shape our environment.
We can shape our environment. And so if you're at a desk, for example, we say that, hey, don't give yourself the option to sit down, if you need to go sit down, go sit on the couch. If you understand that the human being is designed for survival, we are good at that, and if there's a place where you can take a shortcut, you will, so what we do is we have in movement, I'll step out back into my experience now, is that we'll do these things called blocked movement patterns. This comes from a coach friend, and his idea is, hey look, if you don't want people, when you jump up off the ground or get up off the ground and jump and land, if you don't want your feet to be all collapsed and knees to be wobbly, just land with your feet together. They figured this out in the army, when people jump out of the airplane, they land with their feet together, and what happens is it protects the knees. You just can't blow out your knee that way. So what we do is, by saying hey, we want you to jump and land with your feet together, we automatically get a behavioral outcome that we don't have to teach, we don't have to correct, so it's protected, so if you go to your workstation and there's no chair, guess what you don't do?
You don't sit.
That's right. In my house if you leave a pint of ice cream there, my brain at two in the morning will be like, hey, I think there's ice cream in there, and I'll literally wake up hot, I'll create some, oh I heard a raccoon, and I'll go crush that ice cream, and guess what? The way for me to avoid that, is not to have ice cream in the house. So I wake up, and I'm like, oh, there's no ice cream, so I go back to bed. And I think that's what we can start to do to shape our environments a little bit.
I love that conceptually, not only, again, I've become, I have standing desks here, I take walking meetings, all this has been learned, and one of the things that I was so shocked about is this is something that I literally did overnight. I just started tracking my habits. Am I walking a certain amount, am I standing instead of sitting, am I getting eight hours of sleep, I started tracking these things, and these were super subtle changes in my behavior that had dramatic effects in my physical well-being, which in turn affects my psychology. So I've been in a good mood perpetually for like six months now.
That is a pain in the ass for us all, because you, when you're firing on 12 cylinders, you go up to 11, it's tough.
It is tough, yeah, we've already been talking for like two hours before we started even recording this, so I feel like I have a good understanding, and I think the folks at home do, about shaping your behavior around things like standing and moving, let's talk about the sitting thing specifically, because you've got a new book that's called Deskbound, give us the short back-story, and give us what the book's about and why, why we care. I mean, obviously it's in this sort of context.
So use Deskbound, working at a desk, use it as allegory for sedentary lifestyle, and what we've come to realize right now is that most
So we've been talking about this the whole time, because this is what the book is, not just about the desk. That's right, it's not about the desk, it's that, in the book Deskbound we try to give people a template for some real basics about how to pinge, how to pick things up, how to hold things, how to carry things, how to take care of your body, and some real basics, just like if becoming Supple Leopard was the Jacques Pepin, this is like Betty Crocker. Let's keep it simple.
For sure, and for the view, like you're going ahead, which is, I appreciate, Supple Leopard was your first book, it's your New York Times bestseller, and I own that book, I've referred to it often, it's beautiful, it's like the Bible, it's like this big sexy cookbook for the body.
It's big and sexy.
It's big and sexy, it's a beautiful book. The follow-on to that was about how to run, because that's what so much of our culture does this day to try and stay fit, so you try to give some people instruction. This is the simple version of
This is the most important thing my wife and I have ever done. And the reason is, is that if we look at the behaviors as the physical behaviors of people, that ultimately are gonna impact their creativity, what are the pieces, what are the errors, what are the pieces of efficiency? Australia links it's number one public health problem as sedentary lifestyle, and you can see metabolic syndrome around that, non-exercise, all the orthopedic problems, obesity.
I think it's number four or five in our culture, right? Isn't it recognized
It's really high, it's high.
And what's higher than that?
Coronary artery disease, things like that.
It's in the top five, though.
It is, it's the top five, and the WHO and the world puts it there. It's more dangerous than bears, let's be honest. So what ends up happening is, you know, around thinking about are we moving enough? Because the research is showing now that if we don't move, then we're not expressing the genetics correctly, the physical machine doesn't work correctly, the epigenetics, we just actually aren't being who we're supposed to be, and one of this is productivity, so if you own a business, so there's a great study that showed where they took a company that they could track productivity, 'cause it's difficult to track productivity, and especially in a place like this, where I'm like, wow, you didn't make it very far on this gift today, or whatever, you know? I tried to use the lowest form of tech there.
Nice, nice, very, my underbite is coming through.
That's right, so the idea here was they were able to track sales, made a call, closed a deal, sale. People who stood closed deals two to one, so twice as many closed calls in a call center than people who sat versus standing. That only made a difference of 80 million dollars to the company in one year, just by making sure everyone stood and talked on the phone. And if you are real about this, like your parents when you were in trouble, you had to sit down, didn't you?
Yeah. I would sit next to the corner
They walked around and you had to sit down, and you sat down, and you were like, oh, this is, your body language is screwed, your brain turns off, a whole bunch of things. If you have to take an important call, you stand up and walk around.
and pace, you bet.
And pace 'cause your brain is like, sing, I know this, so your brain becomes more active, we know that you're more creative. When we're looking at Deskbound as allegory for sedentarianism, then we start to capture some of the other pieces, because our bodies adapt to the sitting problem. You know in America, Pelvic Floor Dysfunction is over a billion dollar industry. And I'm talking about
I don't even know what that means, what does that mean?
If you needed an adult diaper, like you're a person who suffers from bladder incontinence, it's just easier to sell you a diaper, in fact we got these things at our gym that were marketed toward women athletes called Go Girl Pads, go girl, we know it's totally normal that you're gonna pee yourself when you jump-rope so we made this for you, in fact we branded it, Go Girl. And we think that that's really strange, and it turns out
I think it's strange.
that your pelvic floor doesn't work when you're sitting on it. It's not until you weight bear through your hips that that pelvic fascia, pelvic sling starts to support itself. You can kind of go down the list of areas and say, hey, what is the problem with sedentarianism? Well the problem is that we're sitting more than we've ever sat. And I know what you're thinking. I sat at school in the '70s, it wasn't a problem.
Yeah, I'm doing the math, alright, okay you got me. But I do feel like it was a, and I've spent my whole life trying to be active, whether it was team sports or skateboarding, but it wasn't because of my health, it was because I was a kid, and that's what kids do and did, but I'm seeing, obviously, a shift. Not to disparage video games or a different lifestyle, but we have to actually have something that combats that for sure.
Well you know, you can come at this so that what's fun is now we're getting this really good science backed data, so we can, I'm a movement expert, and we came to this problem, I think we did a Google talk in about the similar name, because we were seeing this problem in all our college athletes, they were a certain sequelle of problems, it wasn't pain, but they were short in the hip, their shoulders weren't functioning well, tackling problems, and it was just causing all these problems, and it turns out, they were sitting 12-14 hours a day, just by the time that we looked at meetings, class, hanging out with your friends, dinner. One of our power-lifting friends who was having a hip problem, I was like, Mark, when's the last time you took yourself through a full range of motion? He's like, what? Maybe that's Vietnam, 'cause I'm like, look you get off the edge of the bed, you go to the toilet, you go to the desk, you go to the breakfast table, you get in your car, or you squat to parallel, you never even have taken yourself through a full range of motion, so what ends up happening? That range of motion goes away, and what we think of is, watch kids, do they warm up before they sprint for the playground? Mm, mm, like if you and I were like, let's go! We'd be like okay, hang on a second, I need to warm up, do I have full range of motion, gotta get my heart rate up a little bit, then what we're seeing is, we can look at your movement capacity, and there's no reason why we should lose any of our abilities to move, and I'll come back to this idea, but the number one reason most of us end up in nursing homes, is that we can't get up off the floor independently. The number of falls in Japanese nursing homes is much lower than in the United States because they sleep on the ground, and toilet on the ground. And so they practice getting up off the ground all the time, and isn't that interesting? And there's a lot less lumbar disease, and hip disease in those cultures that toilet on the ground and sleep on the ground, because the hip goes through it's full range of motion. At what point did you ever stop squatting down by the fire, you know what I mean? And working in these shapes, and if you go to any developing country, you'll see that people wait for the bus stop in a full squat, it's just not a big deal, it's a thing, but if I ask an average person, squat all the way down, ass to ankle, heels on the ground, they're like, I can't do that, my doctor says it's bad for me, that I express my humanness. Don't bend your arms past 90 degrees, that's what you're doing with the hip, it's crazy. So literally, I think what we can start to say is if you imagine your body's ability to move like a house, and I know that some of us are hoarders, and that pile of magazines isn't a big deal today, but eventually I'll have ten piles of magazines that prevent me from getting to the door, but because it's a hoarder house I can still go to the bathroom, like I kick ass still, I'm like, whatever, I'm the best hoarder. But then one day I need to go somewhere and I can't. Like someone tweeted out the other day, they're like, how much range of motion do you need for running? and he's like, only enough to run, and I was like, well, what happens if you run down a steep hill or have to lower yourself off a edge of a boulder while you run, or you fall and have to get up? So suddenly now we're saying, well maybe I need to make sure that I can always maintain what I'm supposed to do like every other kid can. And what happens is we looked at sitting as the most noxious agent, and the easiest place to start to fix this.
The biggest wins, it's like if we just changed that, it's sort of like picking up bags of gold off the ground as opposed to having to go
mine them out of the hills.
We saw in our, we were volunteering at our, my wife and I were volunteering at our daughter's field day. We noticed, we were doing the sack race,
It's a good one.
It's the best, triple extension of the hip, it's so athletic. Some of the kids couldn't even get in the sack, they couldn't pick up their knee high enough to put the sack on, so they had to sit down, and we were like, whoa.
And then some of the kids were so short in the hips they couldn't hop, they stayed kinda flexed over and did this weird 80 year old man sack race thing, and we were like, what is going on? What we noticed is that when our daughter was in Kindergarten every kid runs like Usain Bolt, they all run beautifully, like on the ball of the foot, it doesn't matter what's on their, they run the same. Halfway through the first grade, those kids start heel striking, so you start to see a fundamental change in a primary motor pattern. That is, I know you can heel strike with a $400 shoe on and an orthopedic surgeon and your physical therapist, but that's not how we're running, and if you look at Daniel Liebinson's book, The story of the human body, he's the anthropologist from Harvard, you have a heel cord, because you're designed to run as a human being. That's what it is, and so if you heel strike you don't use your heel cord. So what is it about first graders, what did they go home, and they saw it on the internet or were watching it on the TV, and they were like I want some heel strike? No,
The thing is the sitting, and what we're not doing is looking at this host of problems and dysfunctions and loss of efficiency, and starting to ask the question across society, what does it mean to be human?
Sitting is the new smoking, everyone's heard that now, it's popular.
And that's James Levine at the Mayo Clinic, like that's not a casual guy, he's like dude, it's really, really bad. And his chief, he's on our board, he's an amazing human being, his chief research area was obesity, and what's happening now is that we're seeing
He's reeling it all the way back to that.
Oh yeah, he's like, we gotta solve this problem, and he's like, whoa, non-exercise activity burned more calories in the background
Non-exercise activities that's the thing
which means non-exercise activity, can you
that's walking in the airport, standing when you can
take the stairs, how can you just be moving, if you have a choice to sit or stand, sit. And we understand that there's plenty of, this is a good example of a very actual item, there's optional sitting, and non-optional sittings. So if you're on the bus, stand.
You can, 'cause you can stand up and grab the
That's right. You're in the car, it's difficult to stand in the car, unless you have a bread van from the '70s, you kidnap kids, and that has a kidnapper window in the back, but it's never gonna work that way, so what's happening is if you just see that hey, there's sometimes you're forced to sit, then make the best of the best situation, let's optimize your sitting mechanics, let's get you into the best position, let's limit that exposure, but the rest of, there's a bunch of optional sitting that you do. So for example, we have a, I love our mid-century modern couch, but my kids sit cross legged on the couch because it turns out Lotus pose and sitting on the ground is something we were designed to do, and no one sits on the ground
Hip flexibility. for eight hours, but you know, if you're that person who can't sit, this would be a much better position to sit in. Now my hips are being more organized, but what you'll see, is that people are like, yeah, I can't sit on the ground cross legged, and I'm like, whoa, that's like losing your ability to blink, that's something you need.
Let's talk about some other things that people need, because I'm bought, I'm in, I need to move, and the people at home know they need to move, what else are some things that we can talk about from the physicality, again, the big wake up for me is that I thought everything was in my mind and this body was a nice thing to have, and I was frustrated, I was creatively blocked for some time in the last 18 months, and I just went to what I knew, which was just moving my body to try and get a different set of chemicals going through my bloodstream, and lo and behold, not overnight, I started moving, and I moved forward, I progressed. A handful of other things I also did, one of them was getting some sleep, so can you talk to me a little bit about the other things? Because I look
To you as coach, like coach for movement, but there's so much lifestyle baked into our world now that
And we have to talk about the lifestyle, because I have some Olympian friends who can sneak a cigarette once in a while and eat little chocolate donuts, and they're still the best in the world. I don't like them. Comma, they know that they can't do that in the long haul, so we ultimately are gonna have to have a conversation about environment, about your stress, how are you managing that? Because we look at stress as just another, it's like carrying around a 25 pound weight, just hold this, well I don't wanna hold that, well that's what you're stress is doing to you, and we're not recognizing that as a load. People always are bragging about how they don't need much sleep, boy
I was that guy for like ten years, I lived on four or five hours a night, and I literally, and I thought it was genetic, and that was something that I wore on my sleeve as a little badge of honor, and then
Yes. Not a piece of research
That says under seven works. People are always like, well what about Bill Clinton, he got four hours of sleep? And I'm like, and then he died, and then we resurrected him, and that didn't work very well, so cross his name. One of our friends, it's a guy named Kirk Parsley, and Doc Parsley @DocParsley, and he was a physician for the Navy Seals and saw the worst sleep ever in those vampire guys, the worst, and stressful, and all the other things, high quality navy food, just take heavy loads, just the worst things you can think of, and then add sleep. And so he saw that, boy, if we could manage sleep quality a little bit, we would see massive changes. And that's what ends up happening is that everyone ends up coming to the same conversations, boy, maybe a breathing practice is really important, managing your sleep hygiene, which we can talk about in a second
Yep, I'd like to talk about that.
Hey, can you eat in a way that is sustainable and matches our physiology a little bit, which means you need to eat food, like, thanks Michael Paulen, you were talking about us all along. A lot of plants, not too much, some lean proteins in there. So suddenly you're, those things don't have to be disparate, segregated aspects of the physical practice, they are the physical practice. So one of the things that we tend to do is for people to say, hey look, build this in a, what I call the adaptation cycle, because the idea is I should be constantly getting better, and better, and better bases of stimulus on the day. I'm not recovering from anything, I'm recovering from sickness and injury, but I'm not recovering from a run, or I'm recovering from a walk, I'm adapting to that.
It is a weird language that we
It is, and well, I think it comes out of the medical community. So the first place is, I'm like, let's start with bedtime. One of the problems that we see with people is that they cannot go to sleep. And there are two really dirty secrets in professional sports, and that is Ambien, massive dirty secret, Tylenol PM, Ambien, like, oh I don't take that stuff, I just take Benadryl, oh right, that's how you go to sleep, you take Benadryl every night, oh my gosh. THC is another big one that people, I know people the only way they can fall asleep is with a pot cookie, and I'm like maybe that's not sustainable, that's a way to lean into some of these problems sometimes when peak stress, but maybe that's not the thing we're gonna do for the next 30 years. And so what are the cues around sleeping that I can improve this, so something that means, is my room cold? 62-68 room
I love a cold room is that good?
It's the best, the colder the better.
The colder the better.
So check this out.
Can you tell Kate that then?
Well my wife loves, like she'll put a sweatshirt on
Juliette who is amazing.
She is a baller. So caveat on Juliette, Juliette world time, two time world champion, like super jock, she's the CEO of all this mess, and she is my pair partner all this, she is my creative partner and as a side it should be noted that, there's a good research piece in the New York Times that really debunked genius as a solo idea, that it is a creative group of people, and Juliette is the muse, I'm like a third of a person here without Juliette, but Juliette had thyroid cancer when she was 20, so when she wakes up in the morning and towards the evening, there's no thyroid in that girl's body, and so she gets really cold, like deeply cold, like angry cold. So she wants to shut the doors, she wants a 15 foot comforter, and it is toxic, I touch her, and I'm repelled because there's so much sweat coming off the girl. She sleeps like she just needs to be hot. We found this company that makes this thing called the Chili Pad, and it circulates 55 degree water underneath my sheet all day long, all night.
So my sheet is 55 degrees, and I turn it on an hour before I go to bed, all my friends have one, all my pro, and literally you just, so it's right down the middle of the bed, so she comes near the arctic wasteland, the frozen wall of the north, and I'm like Igritte on this side, and she's like on the other side, the Lannisters.
So cold is good.
Cold is good.
Make it pitch black, and here's a thing, that iPad, that iPhone does not belong in your room.
It's not in my room.
I'm gonna let it be pregnant, 'cause you know when you've started to pay attention to these details, your room should be pitch black. There's good research to show that even one red light is enough to mess you up.
Your brain is so sensitive at picking up light.
What about a clock? Just no clock?
Well it should be a red clock, because we know that the red, hey like a dark room, but also flip it upside down, so it doesn't emit light, and if you're super nerdy, you'll take a little electrical tape on your favorite pen, and you'll go to every hotel room, and you'll just black out every light, and the next person goes, look there was a human being traveler in this room before me, 'cause every light is blacked out, so it should be pitch black
No one does that, and no one says that.
And if you can't do that there are these things called eye masks.
So I'm gonna confess, I started using one of those things, not all the time, because I can get, I started paying attention to my sleep, trying to get eight hours, and literally allowing myself, which I was just talking about earlier, for 10-15 years of my life I bragged about 4-5, and I still, I don't think I sleep, I'm not a great sleeper.
It's practice, practiced skill.
I'm getting way better, and this little face mask and some ear plugs, so they freak me out because I'm a fight or flight guy, like I'm a defender of the faith, not the faith, I don't know what that came from, but I'm like, I wanna protect my family and home.
And so then you can't hear.
I feel deathly vulnerable, but I get amazing sleep, so when I'm in a safe space
I'll throw the eye mask on, ear plugs, and it's like a catapult, it's amazing.
Well what you've done then, is really started to create a bunch of context cues. So if people are conscious about their creative process, they know
When I sit down at this computer to write
I have all the, I have my coffee, and we wanna give our brain cues that it's time to go to sleep, which means dulling the lights a little bit, getting off the TV a little earlier, not reading on our iPad, but reading on an actual book. These are the kinds of things where your brain is like, oh it's getting darker, I'm starting to down-regulate, because we are really good in this society going from zero to 60, coming back down we are not good, and our friends like Jill Miller who's been on CreativeLive has really talked about trying to use rolling on a ball to just activate your guts. So you literally take any ball in your house, roll on your stomach for ten minutes before you go to bed, it's one of the ways to trick on your parasympathetic nervous system.
How big of a ball? Like a ping-pong doesn't work
Volleyball, got it.
Volleyball, something like, you can go to get a princess ball from Walgreens and just that gut smashing is one of the ways we can trick our nervous systems into being ready. If you've ever had a massage.
We're gonna have to put a lot of this in the show now, this is the densest shit, right now, my brain's exploding
Have you ever had a massage? And we're just at the night, if you've ever had a massage, any soft tissue work, you stand up and you feel relaxed. That's how we want you to feel before you go to bed. When you get a massage you don't stand up and like, let's fight, you're like boo, your voice is low, your face is melting. So can you do some soft tissue work? So we advocate ten minutes of soft tissue work before you go to bed. Dark room, ear plugs, it's cold.
Do you have the ear plug thing?
Well, I don't need 'em
You don't need 'em.
My wife does, and my little cold machine makes a white noise, shh, it's like someone hits me in the head. But what's cool though, about this little routine is that you can take that routine with you, so when you travel, suddenly it doesn't matter if you're in a strange bed, cause it's pitch black, and the ear plugs are in, and it's cold, and your brains like, I know what we're about to do, relax, let's go to bed, let's chill out.
I started this on airplanes actually, because it was the only way I'd take a little white pill, because I'm travelling internationally a lot, ear plugs, eye mask that the plane gave ya, I fly 150, 200,000 miles a year, so I get the nice lay flat bed, and I was sleeping like a baby on airplanes, and it was really from that, that I brought that into my real life.
Here's the super nerdy, if you're traveling, take your own pillow case. This comes from our friend Phil Burt of British cycling, they would travel with their whole mattresses and pillows, and I'm like, just strip the pillow case, so suddenly it smells like your house, so you put your own pillow case over, you're getting all this contacts, and you're getting your own allergens, you're not exposed to a whole bunch of new allergens, and all the sudden, your brain is like, ah I'm right at home, boom, out.
Trying to limit caffeine after noon, do your best, I understand that we are a coffee culture, but understand that even if you fall asleep right away your sleep quality is gonna be affected.
Speaking of sleep quality, we were talking about this before we started recording, I'm drinking about 90% less than I have, my job is very social, it has been very social as a photographer, historically very social, now I'm actively drinking less, maybe one or two glasses of red wine on a very rare occasion, and again, when I said the word catapult, this is like a catapult for my sleep, I'm like next level shit, I'm sleeping so hard, in a way that I've never done before.
Well so you mean, you just stepped on, you touched the third rail, right? People are like, my alcohol, you can have it, 'cause that's how I come down, and we're like, oh, that's how you come down.
Yeah, from a stressful day
Ah, so how else can you come down? We understand
And don't get me wrong, I love a great cocktail, a great glass of wine, I love it.
No, it's one of the reasons you're an adult, like God loves us, because she made amazing red wine, totally true.
But I started on the Janu-wagon this year, like, oh, it's a little resolution, and I started sleeping, first of all, super smart, way smarter than I normally was, second of all I started sleeping like a baby, and that sleep had this additive, this cumulative effect of not only was I not drinking and slowing down, but then I would get a great night's sleep, I started moving, eating different, and not drinking, and it's like I feel like my 25 year old self.
Check it out, so our friend Tim Ferriss interviewing Laird Hamilton, great surfer, which is really important, because he's 50 right now
Can I, I'm gonna throw something in there, so he also interviewed a mutual friend of mine, I don't know if you know Jimmy Chen, Jimmy's a good friend of mine, I'm gonna see him next week in Jackson, and he said that if Chase Jarvis and Laird Hamilton had a baby, it would be Jimmy Chen, so apparently, I don't know, anyway.
I could make that happen, that would actually be a handsome baby.
Like Jimmy, both my daughters love Jimmy.
Oh, of course.
And as an aside, they'll be like, hey, it's Friday night, we're gonna watch a movie, and literally lately they were like, hey, let's watch Maroo.
And I'm like, really? And they're like, Yeah, Jimmy's so cute.
It's a docufest, it's a slow moving documentary
we have dinner, and they made him like little cartoons, Caroline drew him on the bivy on the side of that, I'm like, oh look, there he's starving in there, it's so cute.
Oh, sorry, back to Laird Hamilton, sorry.
50 years old, I think his surfing is best because he set up all this conditions where his age is irrelevant, because his practice is so good, you don't ever wanna arrive at a place where your peak of your powers, and the machine starts to decay, ah, my back hurts, I can't go out, and that's that hoarder model is all the sudden your windows of functionality start to decrease, and decrease, and decrease, and Tim asked Laird, and said, "well what would you tell your three year old self?", and he was like, "stop drinking today". And I was like whoa, that's heavy duty. And what we noticed when we track heart rate variability, which is a measurement of heart irritation and recoverability, and heart function, when you drink, it wrecks your heart rate variability, which tells you about your cardiac system readiness, and a single drink would affect that. And so what we could say is, hey make it quality, don't look at beer as an escape, have a beer as an amazing food, as an expression of creativity, have a fantastic glass of wine, but also do you need to have it every single night, because what most of us are doing is we're falling into the patterns of we are stressed out and blown out, and then don't see the short circuit in this. We're not expressing that system long enough to see the impact. So on the plane or when you're traveling, or under peak stress, pull back. I have this really good friend from Harvard named Mat Lalonde who's a biochemist there, and he's like, "Kelly when you travel, "no cookies and no wine". And I was like, oh, oh, like bro, and he's like did you just bro me bro? Yeah, like, come on that was me surviving
that's how, yeah, that's how you get through it
he's like you are so trashed he's like test your blood sugar, you can go to Walgreens, get your blood glucose meter, and he's like, when you come back, just test it, and I got back and I was like, oh look, I'm diabetic, like pre-diabetic, diabetic. And that was just from sleeping like crap for two days in a row, and then I was like, oh, so if I pour gasoline on this raging fire where I was insulin insensitive because of the travel, with the stress
Stress, travel, sugar, from the wine, the alcohol
That's right, so suddenly you were like, okay well let me just, I'll just put off my drinking until I recover, until I've slept a little bit, so now we're starting to see, okay, I can start to create this night sleep habit routine, wake up in the morning, what's the first thing I do? Well maybe that's the time to chug some salty lemon water. My wife and I feel like we never eat enough veggies, we blend, we don't juice, we blend a big massive blender of vegetables, and at least we're like, wow, I ate a salad today, 'cause once we hit the gym, or we hit our business, it's rolling, and we're lucky if we can eat at all.
I think that is so true.
So in these moments where we can control, suddenly then we're like, well is there room in our day for some exercise? Some physical practice, and again, we remain agnostic, you probably need to do some cardio-respiratory capacity stuff, you need to work on your positions, you probably need to lift something heavy once in a while, Pilates plus running, plus dead-lifting, you're there, we have some yogis
Dead lifting, yoga
Yeah, yoga, you do some sprints plus some yoga, plus some bench presses, dude, we're like, we're getting there, that's almost a complete system. Then now we're thinking, one of the tenets of our system is that we want you to spend ten or 15 minutes a day working on the quality of your tissues, and that's all it takes, which means how do you know if a tissue is normal or not, how do you know if those quads are good to go, how would you know?
Basically all I got is my quads.
'Cause they look good, when I'm naked, my wife's like, yes quads
Soccer player my whole life, that's all I got, I don't got much.
So what we're seeing is, because of the errors in our growing up, we don't even know what's right and not right, so here's a simple model, if you take any ball or a wine bottle or a roller, and you lay any of your tissues
Tie back in, you lay any of your body's parts on that ball or that roller, and it hurts, that's an area that's not normal. Pain to compression is totally not normal. What's happening is you're compressing the tissues, and instead of them sliding or adapting to that compression they kinda get pinched and torn, and your body's like, aah pain! And that's an indicator that you're not right.
Okay, to me we're getting into next level stuff, like talking about
No, this is so not next level, this is like baseline 101,
This is baseline?
Because when people have, most of the problems that people have are simple muscular skeletal problems, they're myofascial, it's the connective tissue into the muscle and we wait to go see a massage therapist every two weeks, we have this Rolfer we knew back in college, but you need to be able to solve it today. So if your elbow hurts right now
It doesn't but if it did
let's say it did, like you got some elbow pain here from holding the camera in the sustained positions, what's right downstream of that
The forearm, okay, so anything that was stiff in the forearm or painful is contributing to that. Could your triceps be stiff, is that a problem? You don't even need to know the name, is this right above this, yes? Is this right above this, yes. The knee, if you have knee pain, well your quads are right above it, your calves are right below it, let's just start exploring on making sure that we're seeing our body as a simple biomechanical system. We all should have the keys to that. If you compress any tissue on any roller that you can get at Walmart anywhere and you find that it's either stiff or painful, you've just found a problem.
Alright, I'm gonna put a bow on this, 'cause there's a lot of information, I wanna contextualize it. We're talking about, this is not survival, this is the pathway to thriving is you're moving every day way more than you did before, you're standing instead of sitting, see your book Deskbound, you're taking walking meetings, you're creating a dynamic environment for yourself, you're walking down the airport instead of taking the escalator, if you're on a long flight you're walking around, so you're just intentionally
So simple. Sleeping, there's a handful of things that we can do to get better sleep, dark room, try and make a cold room, don't use screens before you go to bed, am I over-simplifying this?
No, it's that simple.
And then for food, we're talking about drinking less, and we're not saying not drinking, the goal is not to deprive yourself of life.
No, no, no, that's not sustainable.
For sure, not sustainable.
And you look like a pariah sometimes, like you need to have something in your hand as you move around the cocktail room.
So drinking less, and compressing some tissue, like actually caring about your body enough to roll on a wine bottle or a volleyball,
Remember, we can work that soft tissue work in before we go to bed, so we can get two for one.
A two for, yeah.
So TV's on, I'm reading, I'm checking, I can start de-gristling myself, restoring what I call the sliding surfaces of your body, and I don't have to fix everything tonight, I'm just gonna do five minutes on this leg and five minutes on this leg, and then I'm going to bed.
So if I put a bow on that, what if we just did those things? How far along on this scale of thriving from surviving, is it a little bit better, or is it?
So we end up seeing, we capture a couple just standard deviations, and now we can start out having a conversation about well what kind of exercise are you doing?
Then you can get weird.
How much fish oil are you taking? How are you down-regulating and breathing? There's been a guy, there's a gentleman from Amsterdam named Wim Hof, you know Wim?
Oh yeah, Iceman.
The Iceman, and there's a little documentary of Ice that people should check out, but he has a ten week breathing program about breathing efficiency, and there's some really interesting thing happened, and if you are in this space at all yoga, you're gonna get to breathing eventually. Every athlete gets to breathing eventually. And whether it's making sure that the tubes are open, so you can breathe more when you're on the bike winning a world championship. One of our friends, her name's Evelyn Stevens, this is shadow to USA cycling, Evelyn Stevens just set the world record time trial. She biked 47 kilometers an hour for an hour. It's the world record for a woman, it's unbelievable
It sounds so hard.
It's so painful, it's unbelievable.
It's like the most painful thing.
Pretty much, and Evelyn is she's a mutant
An hour of full out?
And interesting that she is an investment banker also, and these things started to coalesce together. She's obviously a talent, and works really hard, and has amazing staff, but she has a bite guard in, and this guard that she has positions her jaw so that she can breathe more efficiently on the bike. So we're looking at some of these shapes as like, hey, these are the right limners. So I think what's interesting is when you start to put some of these pieces together, you suddenly can start to stitch a concept around, well what are the really toxic parts of my body? Okay, now I've removed the sitting, and so now I'm standing, well that's a gateway to moving, so now hey, I can learn some skill about moving more, and now I can take the next step and you have your lifetime to refine these skills. You're a skilled human being, stop being a piece of meat, stop it.
I love the fact that, I think there's a consciousness that I'm aware of right now that maybe it's just my own particular awareness or it's cultural, I'm not sure, but that just, this stuff matters, like what you put in your, obviously food, there's a food movement that's been going on for ten years, our food's getting better and you look at something like Trix, or Red Vines, like, okay that's clearly not something that I'm supposed to eat on a regular basis, 'cause it's not actually made of food, but there's this umbrella that I'm putting you as sort of the icon for me in this space of it's not all that complicated. That's what I, my hope that people take away from this conversation is that there is no brain surgery here, you do not have to have a guru, these are simple, simple things that will, my job here is to sort of deconstruct or provide access for anyone who's listening to you. Is it fair to say that, you get 80% of the benefit from doing half a dozen
Of these things
and we haven't even talked about the skill or the technique, or how should I sequence and organize my body? What is a better position to carry my camera in? And that can be second conversation, start with what you can do and there are plenty of old coaches that are saying, hey, do what you can do, where you are, with what you have. And it's that simple, literally it's that simple. And when we begin a conversation what we have seen is that if we point to cancer, we point to aah death, death by sitting, we do the scare-mongering, and fear-mongering, people are like, eh whatever I feel fucking awesome today, I'm gonna rock this. And it's difficult for us to live our lives on the scale, but if I'm like, hey I bet you could get more work done, and I bet you could be more productive, and by the way
I bet you could save a company 800 million dollars
This also costs you nothing, and that's what's amazing about it, is there's so many subtle tweaks, it's easy to integrate, and what you'll see is that you'll feel better, and that begets feeling more better. This is the part that is the most
Let's focus on performance.
I consider myself hard-charging, type A, hyperactive, excitable, enthusiastic, very active person, like I'm a better person when I'm active, and I took some of these very, very simple things and started practicing them within the last few months, and I personally feel next level.
Did you ever see the great book, Guns, Germs and Steel, by Jared Diamond?
No, but it's a crazy good title.
Guns, Germs, and Steel, and literally he looks at why is, what's western hegemony about, how did western evolution, it was a complex idea about why we were exposed to a certain amount of germs because we lived next to the livestock, that gave us immunity, that allowed us to wipe out other indigenous populations, and gave us an edge. We read it in college, and I was a geography major, and really it was a geographical perspective on the world. Why do we settle where we settle near rivers? It helps us understand that. Well what we've proposed here, is saying, hey, this is a way of viewing the world, and suddenly it doesn't mean I have to have willpower, it just means that this fits into this way of viewing the world. One of our good friends, someone was interviewing him, well they're like, "how do you get really strong?" And he's like, "squat heavy once a week for ten years, "and let me know what your experience is "on the other end of that". And that's pretty simple. So we started this thing in our neighborhood called squat club, we bring all the kids around from the neighborhood once a week and we squat. And I'm like, I got ten years on these kids, and what happens when we just give these simple processes time to bake, because we've tested these ideas at the limits of human performance, and we've seen it matters, and so we can start to lay those principals backwards, and I think I have really well behaved kids, but they go to bed at eight and they sleep 'til 6:30, and it has nothing to do with us, and we don't feed 'em a bunch of sugar, they're still kids, they're gonna go eat pizza once in a while, but even my daughters are like, "you know Dad, I ate that pizza, "and it gave me diarrhea.", and I'm like huh, that's so weird, how'd that go. And I think when you start seeing the world this way and control what you control, this is not one more thing you need to do on your health, and we don't have to wait 'til you're on fire to start figuring out what's going on. Start today with what you can control, this is a great tip.
The core of it is doing something instead of nothing, now back to your great tip.
Doing something, so people are like, drink more water, I'm trying. This message is out, but you're not absorbing the water you're drinking, so if you have to go to the pee all day long, what do you think that is? You're just flushing it through. Stacey Simms, our homey, if you take a pinch of sea salt, drop it in your water, you will absorb the water you drink, and guess what? You don't need five liters of water today, you probably only need two, 'cause there's water in your food, but you started absorbing the water you're drinking. And so anytime there's plain water, just a pinch of salt, where's that salt, and now that has made a massive difference in your tissue health, in how your brain functions, 'cause you're not hypo-hydrated, and you're not, because you're not trying to do the right thing, you just haven't optimized the right thing. Those ideas, simple.
This is how I wanna rig this, this little, our conversation up. I want the takeaway to be what we've been talking about for the last
and this is all in Deskbound by the way.
Yeah, that's what I mean. So this is in Deskbound, all of this stuff, but I want the takeaway from here to be that you can easily get 80% of the benefit from just doing these simple things we've been talking about for the last like 45 minutes.
So that's 80%, for the 20%, the pinch of salt in your stuff, I want you very much to get Deskbound, if you're watching this right now, but I also want you to pay attention to you, because all these little things that I do, because we're friends and I follow him very, very closely, and all the little movement, the little squat thing, how you should warm up, and all the way that I could break down that tissue, for the next level to obsessively follow you, you will get all of that stuff, so that's part two takeaway, but you were breathing, so what were you gonna say? I think let's put first principles first, let's control this, and tomorrow we'll know a little bit more, let's have beginner's mind, and start by saying, what does it mean to be human? I'm a physical machine.
It's nuts that that's the other way around, that we spend so much time thinking about our mind, and this actually influences this as much as this influences this.
It's a reciprocating system. The research around ADD and ADHD in children. Well if you go to David Epstein's wonderful book, "The Sports Gene", there's a wonderful passage in there, where they take mice, and some mice had a big genetic drive to move, some mice ran a mile, some mice ran three miles, and those three mile mice, they loved it, need to move, need to move, need to move, so they bred those mice, and in a couple generation they had seven mile a day mice, compared to the rest of us who are one mile a day mice, one mile is all it takes. Then they gave those mice ritalin, and they ran one mile a day. They didn't let the mice run, they fought and killed each other. Weird, hey, have you ever been in a classroom with little boys? Boys have a huge genetic drive to move, and what we're seeing is, and not that girls don't, but what we're seeing is that the education divide between boys and girls right now, there's a book called raising Cain, if you have a boy I highly recommend this, and we're seeing that boys are getting their asses kicked by girls in every academic field. Graduation rates, admissions to college, admissions to graduate schools, science fields, boys look like we're troglodytes. And what's happening?
Your vocabulary is just blowing my mind, what does troglodyte mean? Okay sorry keep going.
It's just, I don't know, whatever this sparkly water is, man it's working. And the key here is that we're seeing that boys are sitting in school, getting in trouble fidgeting, get in trouble, have a negative association with that, and so we're not seeing the problem, and that's where we're going. If we don't take what we're learning and then start to apply it to the strat of our lives we're gonna keep making the same errors, and we just have to keep doing it earlier. Our daughters now, are at the first, oh we put our money where our mouth is, our daughters are at the first all-standing school in the world. And when I say standing, yeah
That's all you.
It's so legit. Big shout out to our friend Tim Ferriss who helped us to promote
Yeah, raise some money
Yeah of course.
And what's really fun is that our friends were sort of like oh yeah, this makes total sense, why wouldn't we do this? And the research coming out of Texas and A and M to support this is insane. I think we're to a place where I could literally sue a school district for child endangerment. Oh, your child is sitting down at my school, like, it's on, you know what I mean? It's that
And I think we just, we are living in a place now, where we're touching so many different fields, that we can take Beck's practices out, and if we don't, shame on us.
That's your system, they can find all the little details about salting your water and why you should put lemon in it.
And even how to fix it, and how to organize your spine, and even breathing, it's all in Deskbound. We tried to really just say, here is the, not moving is the allegory for not being a physical human. And we know that you may still be awesome, but we know that you can be even better if you take that concept and then just spin it backwards into all aspects of your life.
Again, I was referencing my own experience of being a very active person
you're a great athlete, I mean it's still true, you're a really good athlete.
And then I've sort of, I went over and had dinner at my parents' house, I hadn't seen them in a while, and I had my Dad doing push-ups, applying torque, and externally rotating or internally rotating, and it was awesome, and I watched my Dad go from not being able to crank out push-ups, to being able to crank out, but just by changing his technique, and I don't know shit, but I know that that's powerful medicine.
But that is, this isn't, you know you, you don't need a gatekeeper between you and understanding how your body works, and then experiment in the world. Don't take our word for it, go see for yourself, better, same, worse, yes or no, one or zero, like go try some of these things, and be like, that was awesome, that was amazing.
I'm living proof that those things work, just specifically in the last six months of my life, total game changer, and I know, I think the world is seeing a lot more content from me, I hope you think that it's better content, but enough about me, 'cause I'm gonna shift, and I wanna shift to do sort of a different element or a different framework for the interview for the next like ten minutes. I wanna go, 'cause people wanna know about you specifically, so tell me, short tight answers, talk to me about your morning routine, do you have one, what's it like?
I have two daughters
what are some core elements, okay, you have two daughters.
I have two daughters, we cook them a full breakfast every day, I'm lucky in that, but we set up early. A bunch of kids in our class get up 30 or 40 minutes later than we do, it's just a nightmare, so we just solved the problem by getting up a little earlier, going to bed a little earlier, we have enough time. I probably, the thing that I do most is that my daughter turns on the hot tub, she brings me a cup of coffee, we go to the hot tub, this is my ten year old, you can have this dream too. And so we go, and we spend a few quality minutes there, and this is the most important thing my wife and I do, we walk to school. It's about a little over a mile there, we walk there and back, then we usually eat breakfast, she and I, and that is our morning routine, and I would love to have this, the only other thing that I'll add in there is that I got introduced through some friends, Brian Mackenzie, and Laird Hamilton, to Wim Hof, and that breathing practice has fundamentally altered my life, and I try to do that in the morning. I talk about meditation, I meditate, I do TM, I got Tim into TM, morning and night 20 minutes, game changer.
Game changer, and my wife and I, maybe because we're a little chaotic, and I have tried meditation a lot, back in college I took meditation classes, and it didn't ever work for me, what I can tell you is I found something that worked for me, this mechanical breathing practice catches me, if I'm wandering around, my next breath's right back in, and you can cobble together his system on the internet for free, but this thing takes me 10-12 minutes and literally is the difference. When I was tracking it on my central nervous system readiness, I could max out the green lights, all I had to do was do the breathing, ready to go, my body was like, we're back, on the breathing, so ten minutes in the morning, that is the one thing that I put my stick in and say this is it, it's amazing.
So morning routine includes moving, walking, little bit of breathing or some sort of meditation
that's it, simple, simple, and then I'm like look, no matter what happens the rest of the day, I've already walked a 5K and done my breathing, like, I'm like amazing, I've done something.
What are you great at that nobody knows you're great at?
I can mimic anyone, mimic how you move, it's one of the ways I understand, I can literally, give me ten seconds, and I can literally start to walk the way you walk. I don't think people realize that, how I'm always learning and student, I'm deep nerd about trying to pick up new skills and try new things.
What are you terrible at that nobody knows? What's a hidden thing that you're terrible at.
I'm bad at a lot of stuff, ask my wife. Inbox Zero, that does not work for me, I literally have 30,000 emails in my, on iPhone, people brag, they're like, I have 100 emails, I'm like, 30,000. And I'm like, it's all searchable information.
Is that your four hours of sleep, you're like, check it out, I got 30,000 emails
That's right, I think I started calendaring everything, I live off the calendar, if it isn't on the calendar, it doesn't exist.
That's powerful, isn't it?
It really is and I think
I've got a productivity
I always need to do a better job of touching base with the people I work with, making sure that their needs are being met. That's a work thing. One of the things that I've realized is that a lot of men in there 40s with families and businesses, sometimes lose connection of a community of guys, and they're like an island, and they start to, they're struggling to hold their marriages together, 'cause they have kids and work, and stress, and student loan debt, and I think one of the things that my wife and I have really tried to do in the last couple years is really cultivate really close people with no walls, so that you can be like, what is going on? And someone can be like, blah. And then here's the most important thing that happens in my week. My wife and I every Wednesday night have a feelings meeting. It turns out that there are these things called feelings, they're amazing.
I've heard of 'em.
But now I feel anxious when I talk about stuff, 'cause I have feelings more. And a lot of the go-getters I know, sometimes we park some of that stuff, and at the end of the day, when we were flying, flying, flying, I was like is this the time to talk about what's going on with our relationship, and ourselves, and my family, or my craziness, or some bad direction, so once a week we have it calendared, we talk about feelings, and I am telling you
That has changed my life, thank you, thank you Juliette. Feelings meeting.
Wow, that is incredible, a feelings meeting.
That's what we call it, we call it the feelings meeting, and like do not fuck with the feelings meeting, like everything else is BS, the world could be burning, but we're gonna talk about what's going on. And that really has been a powerful reflective thing, so we can talk about the week, but also it gives us a chance to really be on the same page if we're miscommunicating, 'cause it just gets crazy, I don't think people, my doctoral work was on barriers to adherence, what keeps people from doing what they say they're gonna do, and it turns out, people have really good intentions, but then the world gets busy and crazy, and so by putting this thing in, it's like a block behavior, I have to talk about what's going on, and that was a really simple way for me to be closer to my wife, and being more honest about my friends, feelings meeting man.
It's a takeaway that's amazing. You've referenced reading a lot of times in this conversation.
Yeah, I read obsessively.
What are you reading?
I'm reading the greatest piece of Sci-Fi I've read in like five years, Hyperion, it won the Hugo, it's so good. I always try to read something ha ha, Jocko Willink's book, Extreme Leadership is on my drawer to read, I'll take that to Europe tomorrow, and then I'm reading an E.O. Wilson book, which is about, he's the evolutionary biologist, called Consilience, which is about the reconciliation of all knowledge, like what are the truths around, you know when I work with artists or musicians, I look at their practice and their flow, because there are principles, even though the colors and shapes are different, the structure is the same, and they've probably solved the problem really well that I haven't solved, and that's what we can learn from that stuff, that concilience idea.
I love it, I wanna extend a personal thank you for introducing me to Dave Warner, I wanna give a shout out to Dave up at moveskill.com
Dave's up in Seattle, and I'm up in Seattle, back and forth, basically, between Seattle and San Francisco a lot, because we're here in San Francisco right now. When I'm here, and occasionally I get to see you, you always help me, maybe we should demonstrate the shit that you pulled on me earlier, which is, I got a little, my pelvis was out of line apparently. And so in San Francisco I feel like I've got you, in Seattle Dave, and he's trying to put his stuff online, so I wanted to give him a shout out.
Yeah go find a movement teacher, I think that's so great.
Yeah, and that's, you basically hand delivered me to Dave, A, thank you, B, shout out to Dave, but C, it's sort of like I have a masseuse or a meditation teacher or something like that. How important is having someone that you go to on a regular basis to assess your movement? We've already talked about, it's not necessary for that 80%, but is it worth an investment to find a professional near you?
I think being in a community of people that train, you know we still think we're the lone wolf, I could go into the internet and I buy the book, and I'm like, today it's me alone fixing myself and running sprints, and it's not sustainable. That's not how it works. I think anytime you can be in a group class, and be accountable to people and be buoyed by people, and what's nice about having a teacher, or a coach, is that that person is responsible for programming thinking about you, and you just have to show up and do what they say. And that means you've just freed up a whole bunch of this to spend on something else, instead of what am I gonna do today for training, and how do I cobble together this kettlebell work. All the master coaches I know are working towards autonomy, that you should be able to leave there, and then if you can't get in for a week or so, there's a kettlebell in your kitchen, and you know how to air squat and run, and now we're stitching, we often say, hey, don't be heroic, be consistent, and it really helps if you have
That's just so tweetable, it's goofy. Don't be heroic, be consistent. And you can pretty much be fit enough to go to the Olympics in your kitchen. We used to have this workout, 'cause if you own a gym, and you're fat and out of shape, it's sort of telling a lie, and I would get home at ten o'clock and I would do the ten, ten, ten at ten, and it was like ten minutes of ten movements, different things at ten o'clock, and that was it, that was all I got today, and Jule would be like high five. And she's like, that sucked, and that was crap work, but you did something today, good job. And that's what it is, is really just fixing it in whenever you can, but what we think is it's all or nothing. I have to be this modern warrior poet monk guy. Find a teacher, drop into a local yoga class, also be a poly math, go learn a skill. We were walking past the community center last night and there was a tap dance with like 80 ladies in there, and my younger daughter's like, that's awesome, they're dancing, and I was like, learning a new skill, memorizing new steps, having to balance, I'm like, that's it, those people are winning, that's what this is about. I think we're confusing fitness with functionality, and once we're functional, and moving, and learning, then we can start having a conversation of how fit you need to be.
I love that, we've got Maintaining Your Body, Your class on CreativeLive, it's a perennial seller
It's a good primer.
It's a great, great primer, but let's talk about if they wanna get more Kelly, which everybody pretty much when they come around you, they wanna get more Kelly, especially when you crack my hip and do all kinds of cool shit, but how do we get more Kelly?
Well we have put some books out in the space that people can find if they Google our name,
Two Rs, two Ts.
Two Rs two Ts Starrett
And then we have a YouTube channel that has a lot of folks on there, a lot of information, we started a project in 2010, where we just said, let's make a video a day for a year, just blah, what do we know, and what should everyone know? This is the things, the baselines.
How's that going for you?
Here we are at like 2,000 videos later.
2,000 videos, don't be heroic, be consistent.
Yeah, and you know what, what I really loved about the creative experience about this was there'd be times where I would pass out on the couch, and Juliette would be like, "there's no video today.", and I'd be like, "huh? "Okay let's go", and then the camera would turn on and like zing, and I would talk about something I'd been noodling on, and it ended up being a creative practice, but also sharing my work all the time gave me immediate real world feedback about what was working, and not was working.
I wanna hack into that for a second so that's
That is powerful
Making something every day, we just spent a lot of time here at CreativeLive talking about our program called 28 to make, which if you Google that, amazing, it's just a teeny little prompt that comes into your inbox everyday and any day you can sign up, it's day one, and you'll get 28 days of little prompts, it's unbelievable. But tell me how that changed your Psyche, from making something every day, again, it's midnight, you're just about to fall asleep, your wife's like, we haven't done a video, you get up, you're like, boom, I'm gonna make this thing, how did that affect you?
It set up first and foremost a background loop in my brain, like I wrote a poem a day for long time, just little crappy haiku or something, and I remember suddenly thinking, like I'd start to collect little bits of information and see the world a little bit differently, because this computer program was running in my head about hey look at that bird, and my wife's smile, and I would just stitch these things. When I started this creative practice it set up a loop of all the time, where I was always solving problems, and always thinking critically in the background or foreground actively about it. And because I had practiced, when the camera came on I was ready to go, and it really got me to see things and opportunities for teaching or moments, it was transformational. Putting my work out there made me vulnerable
Vulnerable as hell.
I'll tell ya, there are a lot of people who it's easy to be a keyboard critic, but I'm like, and where's your body of work? And we say this to our friends who are artists, I'm like, if you never show your work, you're not an artist, you're someone who paints, if you're a musician and you never perform, you're just a guy who dicks around with his guitar, you are not a musician. The act of vulnerability, of expression, is consummation of the artist cycle, and it's consummation of the practice, so me putting this work out there gave me feedback, it was an active sketch, and I was transparent in where I was and who I was, and it wasn't highly produced, and people could also track my evolution, 'cause there's a start, and where I am today, and you can see, oh, I can see how he's refining the concept, and that really was the central tenet of why we were able to write a book because the fastest thing
you had a exercise, yeah
you wanna do is look like an ass on the internet, because you don't know what you're talking about, and really, it really does hone your craft, and of course it's practice, see Daniel Coyle 10,000, whatever.
Yeah, 10,000 hours also
but that experience was the start of my brain pattern of starting to solve problems around me, because I was running this computer program in the background all the time, I started to see possibility.
I just did a little video of Jay Jarvis Rah around awareness, and that I realized post-facto that a career of looking for beautiful things, and not just beautiful, beautiful horrific noteworthy things, it has made such a difference in my ability to be a better human being, as just moving through my day, and it sounds like there's something there for you, you've got a feedback loop for yourself, on what it feels like to make something, you've got a feedback loop from sharing your work, Austin Kleon's book comes to mind, what is it, is it share your work? Show Your Work, that's what it is. How 'bout from your, do you find that there is a human, like a genetic or, you know we've talked a lot about primal self, is there a making part of that in your work?
Oh, yeah, my wife and I always kid around, 'cause Juliette's like, "I'm always like I'm the artist, "you're the engineer."
And you were just talking about being a poet, I had no idea you wrote a poem a day.
No, no, I'm not a poet, I write poems, there's a big difference.
And we just talked about those.
And Juliette, it's amazing in our work how much writing we do, and Juliette's like, "man if I hadn't gone to law school, "I don't think I would be as proficient a writer.", because she was forced to write every day. And now in our job, in our business we do so much writing, our blog, I mean, we put up little mini essays all the time.
Yeah you guys are pumping out content.
And I think if it's important, do it every day. There are these maxims that we can kinda shine on, 'cause oh that's a bullshit maxim, but what was really great is, I started with an idea about supporting my community, and that grew in the content, supported the community, and then turned into commoditization, this wasn't our plan, I was just a coach physical therapist, trying to say, hey look, if you show up at my gym with knee pain, and your quads are stiff, I'm gonna cock punch you, because no one should have to see their doctor and get a referral for physical therapy because their quads are stiff, and so there were some basic things that I was like, solve this yourself, and it's interesting is that this base practice has really led to a concept that we feel like we're really disruptive, we're trying to off-load
On my way from my desk to come meet you in the green room before we recorded this, a guy named Marcos who works here stopped to say, "Did you see Kelly Starrett's here? "That guy is, do you have any idea how big he is "in the cross-fit, and the athletic community?" I'm like, "He's my good friend, yeah I have"
No, I have no idea, we're friends.
But the community component, I mean I realize I just high-jacked you, but there's a human thing to that, is there not?
Well, one is that we're in the business of helping people better at their job, and people are infinitely grateful and gracious, it's amazing, we get stopped all the time, 'cause everyone has a, people are figuring it out. And showing people how they can go faster, and be more efficient or be better teachers, that's a win, win, win, we love it. And we're nerds about it, this is what we obsess about.
We were hanging out for two minutes, and you were like, "what's wrong with you?"
And I went like, "oh my back hurts". And you had me on the ground and fixed me, so you just walk around like perpetual healer, are you a shaman?
Yeah right, Turak Monteau. I think what we're seeing is we hit some kind of, stumbled into some kind of Zeitgeist era where people are like, hey it's gotta be on us, I'm gonna manage my own 401K, maybe there's an alternative to going to college, we're really wondering what's gonna happen to our kids because all of their friends own their own businesses, like oh yeah, Uncle Chase, yeah maybe I'll start a production company, 'cause he did it, and it's a known to us. And so what's been really interesting about this in moving towards this disruption is that we're realizing that a lot of this information should be democratized, like right now we're thinking that the functional unit for training is not the coach, it's the elementary teacher. If they can teach my daughter to read, they can teach her to squat, it's that simple. They can do some of those basics, so what we're doing is saying, hey, we gotta decouple our traditional systems of how we're disseminating information and how we're learning, and start looking at more, other ways of supporting that. And then also around the body maintenance stuff, there's no substitute for working with a brilliant coach and someone who can put their hands on you and has a lifetime of that, but we should uncouple this unskilled care, and give that back to people and to coaches
That's not skilled, this is common knowledge, and what we're trying to do right now is drag the physios, who are so good and capable, and the chiros into understanding this middle ground, not injury, cause right now if you ask injury, define injury, people are like, it's when I finally can't do what I can do, what I wanna do and I have to see a doctor. Well, I'm like, well what about, what happens to all the incidents, would your knee ever hurt running? Oh yeah, all the time, for the last, since Vietnam it's been hurting, and I'm like, well that was all information that we could've made sense of back then, but now you've worn a hole in your knee cap and your knee's on fire. So what about the before your knee even hurt, were your quads stiff, or your calves stiff? 'cause you sat all the time, because you didn't know to look for it. So we need to bring all the coaches, teachers, moms, dads up to this incident level, so we can start solving these problems, and then what happens if we don't have to go see a physical therapist as much? We can suddenly start to free up, we start to solve our own problems, and that's how we're really gonna do this. We have always operated under the assumption, early on, sorry, changing gears, early on someone was like, you're talking over people's heads, and I was like, Mm,Mm, people are way smarter than me out there. And I'm like, they'll catch up, and the fact that they're struggling right now means that they're interested, and they haven't turned me off, because they're like, what's he saying, what's that, whoa, whoa, whoa, go back. And so we have always talked up to people and always given them more information that way they can't mess themselves up and lo and behold they make better decisions, because people are so amazing, and so fucking smart. Quit it, quit talking down to people. Donald Trump.
Don't even say that, I'll slap you.
Trumpf, the real Trumpf.
The Trumpf, yeah that was funny
Make America Trumpf again, not about politics. The idea though is, I think, we don't ever around the complexity of these things, we can ask people and show them our work and show them our best experience, and here's why we know, and take it or leave it.
So the people that you're gonna talk up to, they need to find you first, they need to find you at mobilitywod, is that basically everything?
@mobilitywod is everything, and that's WOD which is workout of the day, Mobility WOD. And if you go to our site, it's a little bit like stumbling on a big river, you're like, whoa, you just need to start, one of the things that I think is the most powerful about the site is that we do a daily programming piece, and we have programmed ten or 15 minutes of work for you to do every day for the last three years.
That's so badass.
So you can just start, and I'm like, start there. You fly Virgin, it's like press anywhere to begin like on the screen, it doesn't matter where you start. Start today, here, and then let it be a journey, because you don't have to arrive today, you just have to work a little bit today.
Man, I hope it realizes that we're leaving a lot of efficiency on the table, we're messing up a lot of kids, you can feel better, you can run faster, and let's be a little bit more skilled, we'll see, I don't know, I'm really, really proud. As you know, when you deliver a big creative project, I'm just the tip of the spear, I have some ideas, but there are so many people working behind this thing, and I think this is our best effort as a creative team. I'm really proud of it.
It's gorgeous, congratulations man.
Thank you for coming, the world is going to devour your information now, at least the world that's paying attention to what we're doing here, so huge debt of gratitude, and I appreciate your time, buddy.
Signing off, bye bye. (soft music)