Physical Fitness for Creatives
The reason I'm standing on stage here today is because I am professionally creative and I'm busted. I've been a photographer my whole life, it's literally the only career prior to taking over as CEO at Creative Live that I've ever had and in the course of that 10 to 15 years, I've really become busted up. I've got busted up ankles, knees, hips, shoulders, the whole deal. And that's through a handful of reasons. I mean, just think of the modern life of not just a creative but what we live in today. And if you are a creative like me, your craft has a whole bunch of things that gets you out of whack like holding a 80 to 200 Nikon lens out in front of your head, this thing weighs 15 pounds and here I am, and I do this 10 hours a day for 10 years. What does that do to my shoulders, my neck, my back? Also we travel, or I've traveled all over the world, 150,000 miles a year for the past 10 years. United Airlines loves me. But I hate sitting in those seats and it's not really, really good for ...
you. And also, traveling so much, I'm sleeping in like, my sleeping changes literally every night. Different amount of sleep, different beds, all over the place. So that wreaks havoc on the body. And also, let's face it, as a creative, you spend a lot of time sitting at a desk in front of a computer, writing, typing, whatever your thing is, we spend a lot of time sitting there doing repetitive motions. So I spend hours and hours and hours sitting. That also busts you up. You may have heard the phrase, sitting is the new smoking. So it's kind of for these three reasons that I wanted to have a, basically it's a little bit selfish, today's my lucky day. Because I'm gonna get put back on the road to health. That's the reason I've never opened a show, anywhere, any show before anywhere with shorts on. But I'm in that today because I have an amazing guest. This guest is a complete rock star in his world, he's a guru of fitness, he's a best-selling author, I consider him a close, personal friend, and he's gonna bend me like a pretzel and put me back into shape, please join me in welcoming Dr. Kelly Starrett. (audience cheering) C'mon buddy.
How 'bout it, you trip on that thing, we'll take a header right when you get on stage.
No problem, it's okay. Boom, breaking the ice.
Just a reminder that you can ask questions of myself and or Kelly about the course, the session. Kelly, we're actually gonna (mumbles) this into two segments. The first segment that we're gonna go into is around maintaining your body, this is why I feel like the luckiest man in the world right now, 'cause you're gonna show me how to fix all those things that I just complain.
Oh yeah in an hour, piece of cake, no problem. You're like 22? We wanna have to do 21 years of damage, its gonna be easy.
Perfect, perfect. I'm a little bit older than 22 but we'll get to that later. So the first segment I really wanna focus on maintaining your body, you do have a previous course on Creative Life called Maintaining Your Body, we're actually hoping that, folks, if you bought that class, or if you buy this class, that this little segment that we're gonna be doing here will be included in that, that's just at creativelive.com/kelly. And I want you to walk me through all of the things that are gonna fix the stuff, or at least get me on the road to that. Then the second segment is about your new book, called Ready To Run, co-authored by Mr T.J. Murphy, he's back there, he is the Editor in Chief of Competitor, and Triathlete magazines, Guru, you guys just turned that book and it's coming out soon.
It's a print, and you know I always laugh that T.J's the most famous, talented friend I have. Maybe second, most famous, talented friend I have.
So he's a souvant, and I can't wait to show everyone what we've done.
Cool, we'll talk about Ready To Run, your new book, in the second segment, but again, for now, I want you to walk me through a bunch of stuff, you're gonna break me down, and a lot of the stuff again is just the top level that points to the class that we've already done, which we called Maintaining Your Body.
And you know, to just interrupt, I mean, that was a year and a half ago.
You know that's a lot of water under the bridge. What we tried to do a year and a half ago was create a blueprint and a template for here's the structure and how it works and how you should take care of it, but we didn't get into so many of the adaptation errors that you brought up, and that's the stuff now that we're focusing on. It's public health 101.
Great, that's why this is a great analogy, you're a great buddy, a great compadre with the course we've already done. What we're gonna learn today, and the Maintaining Your Body, which is on network already, you can go check that out. That being said, I'm your guinea pig. And for the next hour in this segment, I would love for you to twist, I mean we can sit, we can stand, I can move these couches, I'm yours, I told you what I think my three biggest problems are, I'm sure you can tell me a bunch more problems that I've got. But I'm your guinea pig, again I'm ready to go. (audience laughing)
So a couple things we should talk about is that Chase moves really well, he actually has a moving practice, you train well, you really are doing so many of the right things.
How come I still feel so busted then?
Well you know the problem is, that when we are sort of addressing you know, this area of performance, and sort of optimized human function. And how do we live the fullest like expression of what it means to be human? What we've done is said that, hey, let's redefine mobility. Let's give people a template for fixing their soft tissue problems, let's give them the tools for understanding the motor control, the technique, of what it means to be human. That's only two thirds of the problem. When we sort of build a scheme for understanding and sort of the performance, right? And the way we kind of track these things is that, you know, I get injury prevention, and I get injury resolution in the bargain, but if I really keep my eye on function, and being a better human, then the performance thing kind of drivels backwards. But one of the biggest sort of errors that we see is this sort of this environmental life style adaptation error.
I live that.
And you cannot, you can be a ninja on the other sides, right? And roll and you know, and do all the things you need to do, and exercise, yeah.
But the problem is if you're still, you know, stealing on this other side, you know, one of my good friends is a guy named Alan Limb, he's a exercise physiologist, to the stars around cycling, right? He's just a brilliant athlete, a brilliant coach, and he says, "You can't cheat your physiology". And so I think the problem is for a long time, we've leveraged the fact that we are immaculate human beings, and have an immense capacity to eat little chocolate donuts and smoke cigarettes, and still win world championships in spite of that. And if we really kinda get to the bottom of this, you know, no one really sort of, grows up, maybe my children are different, but no one grows up with the embodiment of "This is how you're supposed to move, and this is how you're supposed to eat, and this is how you're supposed to sleep", and what ends up happening is we sort of get by anyway. We win Nobel Prizes anyway. And then suddenly something pops up, you know, the check engine light comes on and you're like, "I don't understand?", you know, "I've always run my car like this, I don't understand what's going on". So you know, what we wanna do for people, say, hey look, there's a whole bunch of things that you can control, that make a huge difference in terms of the quality of your mental function, the sex you're gonna have, the skin quality you're gonna have, do I have your attention now? Yeah it's all about my skin. In fact today, as a personal PR, I'm not talking about sexually, don't worry. (audience laughing)
Personal PR, whoo!
As I was putting my makeup on this morning our you know person was like, you know, she was like, "You are really tan", and I was like, "Because I'm on the jacked and tan plan". And the jacked and tan plan is about sleeping more, it's about being in the sunlight more, and unfortunately, you know, we see, professional athletes as an example, sometimes get injured or pulled out, professional soldiers, and they get sent to these camps, where nutrition is taken care of for them, and imagine like a professional athlete spa, right? Where you get to warm up for an hour, and you get to cool down for an hour, and you get a massage, and you do a recovery workout, and you strength train, and you bliss out, and you get mental coaching, and people are like, "I feel so great! Problem solved", and then as soon as you go right back into your life as a soldier professional athlete, mother, father, business creative person, that is not the way the world works at all. And we have to have a better set of tools that really allows us to make do with what we have. And sort of optimize the fact that we're gonna get hammered, and we're making basic errors, and we can talk about those today.
Great, you just outlined basically the reason I'm standing here. I don't normally host, I host a show called Chase Jarvis Live, but when I knew Kelly was in the building I took the other host and hidden him somewhere, and I just wanted to be able to be like coached, manipulated, and bent round by you for at least, what have we got now, we got 50 minutes in this segment. And I don't know if you wanna break them down by functional areas, maybe I should start out by telling you a little bit about my background, and again, my goal is, I am hopefully in some way, shape, or form, relate and connect back to everybody out here at home and the in-studio audiences, and the folks here in that you're working hardcore creative, like you said, just a part of life, you're a mother, father, dad, husband, and life gets busy, you have to travel, and I think I'm probably the most broken, because I travel hundreds of thousands of miles, not just the occasional one, and I've been holding 20 pounds in front of my head, terrible posture, like this, for the last 10 or 15 years, and I think that whether you're a photographer, designer, or whatever it is that you do in life, hopefully there's a lot of overlap with my problems, and the problems that you all out there in the world are facing.
They are ubiquitous in nature. I mean completely universal to all of us. If we just look at the studio audience how many of you guys slept nine hours of sleep last night? (audience laughing)
It's laughable, isn't it?
Okay okay, sorry, you guys misunderstood, raise your hands if you slept nine hours of sleep last night. So okay, so nine hours, and how many of you guys have a training practice? Like a strength condition practice? Right that means most of you are training like demons, because the internet now is full, like I know how the Tour de France guys, and girls, train, you know. We're buddies with these people, we know how the Olympic lifters train, you can go online and see what West Side is doing, I mean the bag is out. I mean my mom dead lifts, right? And talks about eating paleo, so if my mom is talking about her personal PR on the dead lift on her artificial knee, then something has changed in the world. What we're seeing though, is, as we have optimized our workout function, you know, and now we're seeing that some of the little hang throughs been picked, where we're still making some of these basic errors. So how many people got eight hours of sleep last night? Alright so that's like four or five of you, great. Less than six hours? Round six, raise your hand, six. So six means that you're 30% immune compromised, so don't worry about that, just your immune function, and this is what's really crazy. You are pre-diabetic, probably for the next 24, 48 hours, that that blood shock to the system, that poor sleep, your body treats that like it is a primary threat. And you, we've just talked with Dave Asprene, you can manage that for 24 hours. You do not need to sleep the night before a world championship, or big event. You can do that.
But what happens the next night? And the next night? And we start to see this cumulative micro trauma.
I personally feel that, like if, I can go four hours sleep, oh yeah man I only have sleep, I literally took 10 years in my life, and bragged about only needing four hours of sleep.
Oh yeah, you know we always laugh that Bill Clinton, people are like, what about Bill Clinton? He only sleeps like four hours a night. I'm like, Bill Clinton died. He physically died, and then we kept him alive with modern medicine, and they restarted his heart. I'm like, yeah great example, perfect, next question. (audience laughing)
You guys are on the topic of sleep, and you recently went on, well not recently, Jo Rogan's podcast, and you got a chance to go in his isolation tank, right?
We didn't talk about his isolation tank, we can talk about down regulation, and we will, we have to talk about that, so hold that idea, because you know, so much of what it is that we're doing is modern, you know, virtuosos, and creative like people, is that we are, how many of guys have had like six cups of bulletproof coffee this morning? You've woken up, you've had 9 espresso shots, herbal soy decaf chai latte, I know you. (audience laughing) But the rest of us, you know, we spend a lot of time getting up. I mean six hour energy, 500 energy drink, three, I have espresso, I have tea, I do all these things, and we are terrible at coming down, which is one of the problems. So one of the things that I want you to understand is that we came about these concepts, and they became important to us, to remain in our life, because they were messing up our athletes. And so understand what you may not be an athlete at home,
But our whole model is to take what we think is best practice, at the performance level, like Formula 1, and we spin those concepts backwards. In fact, we don't think something is valid unless for us it translates for moms and dads, grandparents, all the way down to my daughters. The scheme, it has to be the same. And sure, they vary degree a little bit. Like kids a little bit slighter nutrition than maybe a pregnant lady, right? But the bottom line is though, we have to, the only reason we ended up caring about this, is that we saw that sleep was such a big impact on our athletes. Work with the San Jose Sharks, their coach, their strength ignition coach is Mike Matenza, a brilliant, brilliant coach, and one of the things they were seeing is that those guys were traveling in so many different time zones and competing. So you're like oh that's no big deal, they're the Sharks, they compete. But the sleep research at Stanford says that for every hour of change, it takes an entire day for your body to catch up.
So going to London is rough.
Well if you're not, if you're gonna stay for two weeks, right?
No I usually stay for about four hours.
Right, right. (audience laughing)
So the real question is, what happens, and then how do you manage that. Because, you know, we started seeing this in the quality of our tissues in our athletes, that we were addressing all of the, big, you know, red flags, and yet we had these underlying pathologies, you know? We're eating better now, I think most of the people are pulling out the processed foods, taking fish oil, were trying to do the right things. But what happens is we're still leaving some of these big problems, and we're pretending like it doesn't matter because you're still extraordinary, you still get a lot done in spite of the fact that you're sleep deprived. One of the things that we're big fans on is measuring this, you know? It's observable, measurable, repeatable phenomenon, and cross fit, that's the thing that matters most to us. As a physical therapist I'm trained, if I can't see change, and experience change, there's no change. And one of the things we did at home was we bought a glucose meter, for like eight bucks at Walgreens, 'cause I was traveling, you know, teaching like you, a ton, every other weekend I was traveling for about five years, and I was come back and I would feel retched, (vibrating noise) and one of our friends asked, is that you or is that me?
Sorry, I ate something (mumbles) a little bit. (mumbles)
And one of the things that happened was that I started taking my blood glucose when I got back, the next morning, and it was wildly diabetic. Like my fasting blood glucose was off the chart. So it almost doesn't matter what I eat, it doesn't matter how I train, what only matters is wow, how do I mitigate some of those factors? So that's some of the things we've gotta drill down on for a bit.
Great, great, I think you described in the last like several minutes, articulating what all the different folks out there are feeling, what I'm feeling, my sort of three areas, my craft, the thing that I do every day, we're talking about, or have done every day for the previous 10 or 12 years, holding the camera really busted up, the sleep, and because I travel a lot, that's another like function area that I wanna get to in the next, you know, 20 minutes or so. And the last one, what was my last one? Oh yeah, just on the planes.
I'm sitting for, like sometimes 8 to 10 hours, at a time, or, I mean, lets face it, if you're an illustrator you're sitting down, we sit to work.
You don't have to.
And we'll talk about that.
Okay great so.
You'll notice that we're not sitting right now, and you guys are sitting, in fact, can you get a camera on the audience for me? Great now watch this, sit up. No sit up, like sit up like you were actually like human beings. Ah so what happens, how difficult is it to maintain a good position when you're sitting? How may of you guys have meditated, an hour of meditation? Pretty easy to do, right? Maintain a perfect position for an hour. Right, no big deal. Well what's gonna happen is, one of the coaches in our gym is a kid named Karl Palley.
Genius, freestyle movement thinker. And he was a national champion gymnast. And one of the things he's big on is saying how do we block patterns? What does that mean, is that? Well I'll give you an example. When kids jump and land, we teach them to jump and land with their feet together. So that when they land, even if they don't have the skill or strength, they can't tear their ACL's or dislocate their knees or so any damage, so they're blocked. When we have kids jump out of the airplane in the military, we teach them to jump and land with their feet together, because what they found was that feet together landing, no one got injured, right? Or we saw fewer injuries, okay? So one of the questions is, how do we block your environment, so that you don't end up defaulting and compromise. Is technology gone away? Juliette and I were just in Korea, and they spend an average, the National Koreans, are the most connected people, the South Koreans, are the most connected people on the planet, and they're spending four and a half hours a day on their smartphones. Four and a half hours a day. Right, which is not different than many of us do these other things. In the United States its two and a half hours a day, is how much time you're spending bent over on your smartphone. Right, and so we blame the technology, and it's not the technology, it's not the camera, you were always shooting, always creative, and what changed? Did the camera get heavier all of a sudden? Did someone hit you and then, you know? So something changed, what changed was our capacities to sort of buffer that.
Which is so common for all the pilots we see, all the, everyone else. So one of the things that we wanna talk about is how do we manage the situation in a way where I can optimize and protect myself in these blocked patterns? So the main thing around this is do you have a movement practice? So is running a movement practice?
Running is a very infrequent one for me, but I do it because I can do it from anywhere in the world.
My other movement practice is I see Dave Bourner, up in Seattle, at level four cross fit, he's really put me on a good path right now, that's the only reason why I'm not standing like this.
Alright now let's talk about that for a second. So the one thing he described was exercise. Right? Running is movement, great. But do you express all the things that your body's supposed to do when you run?
No it does like two things, you extend the hip, you neutral the spine, and that's it, right? This is your running motion. Which is a tiny tiny sliver of all the things that a human should do. How many people ride bikes? Seriously, here. Not a movement practice, great job. And how many people swim, big swimmers? Not a movement practice, great job. Exercise, right? And the problem is we've been confusing "I need to exercise", with, because that's how I'm gonna keep my heart alive.
And so people are doing the right things. You travel, you're like, "Okay I gotta get some work done, I gotta stay alive, and I don't wanna get too fat". Right, 'cause that's not fun either, right?
That's actually how I think about it, it's not I don't wanna get fat, I don't wanna get too fat.
Well you can only mitigate that.
I know yeah, its just donuts and.
I ask my wife I'm like, "Am I looking fat?", she's like, "You're not that fat". (audience laughing) Thanks, thanks hun. So the key here is that you need to develop a movement practice. One of the things that we're strong advocates of and our movement practice is cross fit. And take the extra size intensity out of it, and what we're doing is we're asking people to do the things their body should do, okay? So you need to develop a movement practice, that can be yoga, and there's plenty of DVD's, throw that yoga DVD in there, when you travel, it's on your laptop, and suddenly you've a portable movement practice. And you have to have a movement practice everyday.
That is a goal of mine, to sweat everyday.
Well it can be sweating, but sometimes it just needs to be moving. And what you need to look at is that Pilates, cross fit, yoga, these are codified systems of movement, swinging cattlebells efficiently, really forces into exposing the human, us, into moving in a way that supports the rest of the movement.
That is what I loved your last Creative Live class, Maintaining Your Body, is you gave, like its a very much, a system, a construct, that was easily followable, that showed people how to move healthy, and you, it was just very prescriptive, and that's what a guy like me needs, I don't really need a like, hey, here's this one thing you need to go adapt and replace, because I'm not good enough at your craft to adapt it myself, so again, referencing Kelly's earlier class, Maintaining Your Body, great blueprint for me, to be able to have something I can stick with, and know how to move my body, so I'm hoping you're gonna get there.
Totally, and what we're seeing is that people are working the limits of their understanding. You're doing what you were taught, or what you should, what the internet tells you, "Hey I just had this health scare, I'm gonna go run a marathon and get healthy!", like whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa. Are you even prepared for that? And that really does set us up for what T.J. and I tried to do, in Ready To Run, was saying here are the movement skills that are required to be able to run correctly. You know, do you have this basic range of motion? So the first thing and foremost, the thing that you can do is start to develop a practice, okay. So that's a longer conversation, that means you might need a coach, or a teacher, and if you're serious about maintaining this, and we see this everywhere. I mean let's take this down to, the fact that my wife and I coached our local swim club, we did the strength and conditioning. So these are young kids in a swim team, and when I asked a lot of them, "Show me the streamline position", they were like, "No problem coach". And I was like, "Well that's not a streamline position, full range of motion of the shoulder is all the way here", and we saw that for half of the kids couldn't even get into the position to swim.
Well evidently not. They're even more rubbery, right, back in the day we were rubber. (audience laughing) Presidential physical fitness test made us, right? Do you remember that?
Yeah I do remember it.
I know, you were a stud there.
Sit and reach, you crushed that.
Yeah go ahead, let's fire some questions up. One second, I want to again, try and relate myself to as many people in the audience as possible. I did have a very athletic youth, like a part of my life, I went to college on a soccer scholarship, I got really busted, broke both my ankles twice dislocated shoulder, full rebuild, knee full rebuild.
And you married a yogie.
I did, literally. My wife Kate is a becrum yoga instructor, and so she helps me a little bit, but I come from broken, once a high performing athlete, you know, just enough to be dangerous, and I think that I feel like I'm aligned with a lot of the people that are in my social sphere, and my group, or creatives here in the audience or in the in-studio because, we think we have been given the tools to fix ourself, and I know we have the ability to, but we haven't really been given the tools. Like I don't know what to do, I think I'm gonna go run a marathon to get healthy. But I find that that actually makes me more injured.
And you know that, what we see is two things. One is, we take it where we find it. And it's a moving target, you're never gonna be in this optimized state, why? Go and have a baby. Let me know how that goes for you. How's your sleep after that? You know, have two babies. What happens? Go and start a business. You know, like, oh work for yourself. Suddenly you know, it is a disaster. We laughed that having children is like a vampire. Like you wanna have beautiful skin? Don't have a kid, right? (audience laughing) And that guy that cut you off this morning in ignition who was a jerk.
Right, he's just sleep deprived, 'cause he has a baby. Like cut him some slack. You know there's that internet meme going around, something like, "Be kind to people, they're fighting battles that you know nothing about", it's like, they just have children and they have slept for a while. (audience laughing) That or they got off a red eye.
So again, I feel like you need to know my backstory, and I think we're familiar with the folks in the in-studio audience. We're come from broken, thought I knew just enough to fix myself, turns out I don't, I'm gonna learn it today.