Eat To Perform Paul Nobles on Barbell Shrugged Podcast

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In this episode of Barbell Shrugged, Paul stops in to talk about the genesis and evolution of Eat To Perform, Metabolic Flexibility, and the Science Lab.  Click here for more info!

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[0:00:00] Introductions, 26 lbs. in 26 weeks challenge

[0:04:49]  Eat To Perform, low carbing

[0:08:47]  Collecting and analyzing data, the Zone diet, accountability

[0:18:12] The ETP Science Lab, why going to extremes sucks

[0:23:18] Doug talks about cutting for MMA, putting performance first, advice and who can give it

[0:31:39]  Why you should be gaining weight, focusing on performance to get the physique you want

[0:40:36] Progenex commercial, technique WOD

[0:47:50]  Return from break, sock talk, forgetting about the six pack

[0:49:07] The difference between MetFlex and CBL, an example of how to apply ETP to your nutrition, OmegaWave, nasal strips

[1:04:52]  Nutrition for two-a-days, more on the ETP Science Lab

[1:15:04]  Going Zen, committed vs. interested people, and why it’s great to be a part of a community

[1:21:52]  Q&A:  Eating enough but feeling too full, supplements, the guys plug their current projects, and the outro

[0:00:0] Introductions, 26 lbs. in 26 weeks challenge

Mike:  this week on Barbell Shrugged, we talk to Paul Nobles of Eat To Perform and he says:
Paul:  Screw your abs!

Mike:  Welcome to Barbell Shrugged!  I’m Mike Bledsoe here with Doug Larson and Chris Moore as our…

Doug:  We’re co-hosts.

Chris:  We’re back together gang!  The band’s back together.

Mike:  We’re back together.  The last few episodes we weren’t.  We have our guest Paul Nobles from Eat To Perform.  He runs a website where they talk about nutrition and performance.  It’s gonna be pretty cool to have a conversation with.  He’s been hanging out this weekend.  We’ve had a ton of really great conversations and I can’t wait for you guys to hear some of it.

Real quick first:  make sure to go to and sign up for our newsletter so we can update you on all the stuff we’ve got going on.

Quick update for those of you that haven’t been paying attention.  We’ve doing a weight gain challenge the last two months now and these guys have been getting some incredible results.  Everyone’s hitting PRs on their lifts; snatch, clean and jerk, squat (back and front squat).

Chris:  The latest impressive lift was this dude who blew up a 405 front squat.  Was his name Josh?

Doug:  I’m not sure.

Mike:  Did he just post it yesterday or something?

Chris:  Yeah, he crushed it and…

Doug:  You mean his real name?  He has a fake Facebook name…Everyone in the group officially knows we have no idea who anyone is now.

Chris:  We’re just looking at names all day long, but the results across the board are that people are really realizing like, “Wow, I could really be strong doing this.”

Mike:  Yeah, there are 50 people in the group.  I can’t remember the weight for each person.

Chris:  God bless each one of them; they’re our children.

Mike:  But a lot of guys are making really good results.  If you go look in the shoppe on barbell and you look at the weight gain challenge…The 26 lbs. in 26 weeks, you can actually see the testimonials.  We had some guys just give us some testimonials that have been doing it for two months.  They’ve got four more months to go, and they’ve already got really impressive results from just two months of training.

Doug:  I’d say on average, each person has increased their snatch, clean and jerk, and/or front squat between 10 and 30 lbs.

Chris:  One guy said just yesterday, “I had this goal in mind that at the end of 6 months, I would hit this lift.”  315 lb. squat or whatever it was, and he’s already doing it.  And he’s like, “Well shit, how far can I go in another four months?”

Doug:  Yeah, in 8 weeks.

Mike:  It’s been really successful, so we’ve decided to launch it again.  We were thinking about launching it in October, but we’ve had so many people sign up for the one that’s going to be coming out in October that we were like, “Well, we should probably just launch it this month.”

Doug:  We’ve got over 200 people on that waiting list.  We’re only letting like 50 people in the program.

Mike:  So yeah.  We’re only letting so many people in.  that one’s gonna go on June 3rd (Monday).  That has been open for two days now, so you’d better hurry up and get signed up.  Hopefully you’re on our newsletter list, ‘cause if you were you would know about this.

If you’re interested in putting on 26 lbs. in 26 weeks and increasing your lifts while not losing your CrossFitness, you can sign up for that class/challenge.  You can sign up starting now.  It’s gonna start in July…What’s the day…

Doug:  8th I think.

Mike:  Yeah, July 8th it’s gonna start.  The sooner the better too.  I know one of the reasons we started the weight gain challenge and it being 6 months long originally when we did it was right after the open, was so that guys could get big and strong and that way they could start tapering back towards the open.  So the sooner you get on this program, the sooner you’re going to be a more competitive CrossFitter.

Chris:  You might be able to roll it over to next year’s competitive cycle.

Mike:  Yeah.  Don’t put it off; the sooner you do this, the better, for sure.

Chris:  Think action; don’t think!

Mike:  Exactly.  Don’t forget to check out our Facebook page, and you can follow us on Twitter at Barbell Shrugged.  We do a daily BS where we answer very specific questions and that’s on the website as well.  Don’t forget to check all that out.

[0:04:49]  Eat To Perform, low carbing

Mike:  So we’re here with Paul Nobles (Eat To Perform).  How did you get started with your website and advising people on how to eat differently and…WHY did you do it?  Because there are so many people out there telling people how to eat but you think that maybe you guys are giving BETTER advice.

Paul:  Well, the emphasis of what we do is basically trying to get athletes to eat like athletes.  I’ve actually been counseling people for somewhere in the neighborhood of about 3 years.  About 3 years ago, I went to the University of Minnesota to get a degree related to nutrition…I already have a four year degree.  I was sitting there talking to the woman, who…You know, great gal, but not performance-focused.

Chris:  Traditional academic mindset probably…

Paul:  Yeah, but as we were sitting there talking, asking me why I wanted to go down this path, and I was like, “Well, I need initials…Otherwise I’m not gonna have any credibility.”  And she just kinda started talking to me, like, “Why do you think that?”

Mike:  And this is about 3 years ago?

Paul:  Yeah, and I was like, “Let me give you an example of what I think you should do.”  So we started talking…The conversation probably went for about 2-3 hours and she’s like, “Dude, you do not need us.  You could teach here.”

The long story short…”You should write a book, people will recognize…Real will recognize real.”

Chris:  Wow.  Great advice.

Paul:  At that point, I had a group called LeanYou.  Right now, ETP has sort of taken over…We have 215,000 “Likes” on Facebook, which is more than the CF games page…

Mike:  How did you do that…That’s amazing.

Doug:  The incredible part’s you only had that page up for a couple of months.

Paul:  We started February 12th.  The first video we put up was the video of Neil Maddox eating the doughnut every day.  Mike and I were talking about this a little bit where…

Doug:  So far I like that diet plan by the way.

Paul:  The vision you have going in ends up being different as you cater to your audience.  What I was really just trying to get across to people was that you need to have some level of carbohydrate to fuel your athletic goals.  I’d say it was probably 3 weeks in before I realized we had all the sugar addicted people…We’ll talk about that in a little bit…

About 3 weeks in, the light bulb went off in my head…Everybody’s undereating.  Like EVERY BODY is undereating.  My background and the way I counsel people is related to body fat testing and kind of getting specific.  Formerly, I was a professional poker player.  Data is really, really important as it relates to finding trends.  So as I got healthy, that’s how I got healthy…Was basically just trying to track everything.

I’d been on the diet rollercoaster much of my life…Ended up hypothyroidism, you know…All these other types of things.  What I didn’t understand at that point was the whys.  “Why am I fat?” “Why do I have no energy?”  “What could you figure out if you started to analyze trends?”

[0:08:47]  Collecting and analyzing data, the Zone diet, accountability

One of the things I see in your gym…You guys have a scale in your bathroom.  There’s like an allergy to scales for some reason right now and I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t have some level of accountability maybe, but in general, tracking the trends started to show me…

You know, I’d had some success with low-carb.  You basically just empty out your cells, and pretty much the minute you start bringing back in the stuff you really wanna eat,  now all of a sudden your fat cells end up…And you’re on a roller coaster.  Once I started to figure that out, that you could actually cycle that a lot quicker…I know you have one question lined up and we’ll talk about that a little bit more…

But if I knew that I could just occasionally do low carb and keep my metabolism rolling, keep my muscles filled and things of that natured, that would allow me more energy/performance, whatever…I think that would be pretty enlightening.  I think that if the majority of people understood that carbohydrates come with a level of inflammation tax…So if you just occasionally eat less carbohydrate…I talk a lot about carbohydrate…People have a problem with that, because you know, they think the panacea is 75g of carbohydrate a day, or even 30g of carbohydrate a day.

Chris:  Too many rules, too many demonized words.  People are losing sight of what matters.

Paul:  Yeah, I don’t believe you should view foods as bad.  I think that in the end, that ends up with less enlightenment.  I think the more you can find out about the food that you have in your body, and what it does for you, the better.  We talk a lot about testing (Chris and I were having a conversation about that).

In general, you wanna have some understanding of food; you wanna have some understand of tracking trends and what it does for you, and how your performance kind of goes.

Chris:  The coolest thing about the weight gain challenge is that people come in kind of unsure.  “I’m gonna be eating all this stuff.  I don’t wanna get fat bro.”  and we go…All that…natural emotions.  We go, “Here’s what we’re gonna do.”  (Doug does it brilliantly) “Look.  You’re gonna plot your weight every morning…You’re gonna see some spikes, you’re gonna see some valleys…But all that shit that sways your emotion doesn’t matter ‘cause you’re gonna see this little trend line.  Here’s where you wanna be, here’s where you are…” And you look. ‘Oh, two weeks into it/4 weeks into it…I’m gaining weight, my snatch is up 15 lbs., I’m not getting fat.”  So being accountable and tracking it and seeing it for yourself is the proof.  You wake up every morning seeing proof that what you’re doing is the right thing.

Doug:  Yeah, visual displays of information really help damper the emotions.

Chris:  You can do the same with your snatch or your squat or your deadlift.  See what’s happening.  This new thing that you’re experimenting with…See if it’s having the effects you want.  Don’t go on assumption.  Don’t have the attitude that you walk into a gambling hall and say “I’m gonna roll the dice.  Let me see if I get lucky.  Let me try this thing.”  That’s not what professional gamblers are doing.  They have a science in place, they’re seeing what works, they’re taking away what doesn’t, they’re keeping what’s effective.  This is the kind of attitude you need to have no matter what you’re doin’ man.  That’s brilliant so far.

Paul:  Yeah, I think that…”Calories don’t matter.  Data doesn’t matter.”  I just don’t agree with that.  We have a calculator…I’ll talk a little bit about that.  About 3 weeks in, I started realizing that everybody was undereating.

Doug:  When you say everybody, you mean specifically CrossFit, like performance athletes?  You’re not talking about general population.  You’re talking about people trying to compete.

Paul:  Oh, 100%.  At the time, I was basically working with CF athletes.

Mike:  I’ve recognized that with a lot of athletes.  I’ve done it myself as well…Everyone gets on the Paleo bandwagon.  All of a sudden you cut out all of these carbs…A lot of people associate that with being low carb.  The only carb a lot of people might be getting is that sweet potato after they train or something like that.  It’s just not enough for the volume of training they’re doing.

I’ve seen a lot of athletes in the last year switch from…Hey, it’s okay.  Eat some grains.  Eat some rice.  There’s a lot of things out there you can eat.  Eat that doughnut, crush some ice cream once a week.

Chris:  You have to exorcise the shame out of it like, “Oh man…I ate that bowl of ice cream…I feel like a whore now.”  You’re not a whore man, you’re getting better.  Trust this for just a second, let go of this emotion and fear.  Lose the guilt.

Mike:  I’ve seen a lot of athletes switch over to a higher-carbohydrate…People who train hard, and high volume…They’ve seen a lot of benefits.  A lot of them are like, “Oh, my training’s going better.”  A lot of times they don’t attribute it to their nutrition but I can see it as a huge change for them.

Paul:  Well, let me give you a couple examples.  One regional competitor I was working with…He’s not like, “CrossFit Games Guy”.  But he wants to be more competitive…Gym owner…He reached out to me early on.  He was doing like a “Zone” approach.  I don’t have any hate for Zone or Paleo or anything like that…

Chris:  I hate it.  I think it’s fucking stupid man.  “How many strawberries I gotta eat?  Like this whole fucking tray of strawberries?  How many blocks?”  None of it ever makes sense.

Mike:  You have the Zone and then you have what people have turned the Zone into.

Chris:  What’s the difference man?

Mike:  Well, there’re people who read the zone and go “Deli meat and strawberries.”  Every fucking meal.  I mean, I’ve done it before…I’m gonna eat the zone.  So every time I drink 3 beers, I’ve gotta get 6oz of protein and “so much” fat.

Chris:  God, I hate that kind of way of thinking.  Your life every day is walking around all day eating blocks…

Mike:  I’m pretty sure Barry Sears wasn’t thinking, “You know…Beer, deli meat, and almonds is gonna be so good for people.”  But it’s what people turned Zone into that’s stupid.

Paul:  Well that’s the way they sell Weight Watchers for men right?

Chris:  By the way, if you’re a man and you listen to Weight Watchers, you’ve got a problem bigger than diet.  Your ass needs to go ride a motor cycle or something.

Paul:  In the end, the only way that what you’re going to end up anything close to what you want with WW is consistently eating at a really low calorie number.

Chris:  Can you imagine sitting at a restaurant?  You’ve got a beer…You’ve got a beautiful fucking steak in front of you and you’re like, “How many points is this here steak?”  Your life just shot off on the wrong trajectory.

Paul:  My blog used to be called “Your Diet Sucks”.  What I was trying to get a cross at that point before we decided “You know, maybe Eat To Perform is a better, less harsh way to say it.”

Chris:  They’re both pretty good.

Paul:  What was happening for instance, in the case of this athlete, he had his Zone numbers set…He was a 220 lb. man.  Had his Zone numbers set at about 2200-2500 calories.  I just basically did some math for him…I think we were at like 4000 calories…He went from 220 to 225 to 212 in about…I’d say 10 days.

He already had the muscle, he already had the metabolic functioning.  He just needed to wake it up.

We do a lot of work with Elisabeth Akinwale.  It’s kind of interesting with Elizabeth because no one can take credit for Elizabeth.  Elisabeth takes credit for Elisabeth…I mean, I do wanna say that.  I hate before and afters where the diet author is kind of putting it out there like that person would not have gotten out there without me.  I think that’s total bullshit because the people are putting themselves under the weight.  The people are doing the program, and in a lot of cases, for me, where I’m telling people to eat a little bit more and then just eat less occasionally…You know, mentally, it’s sort of difficult, especially for women…Which is the majority of my clientele or the people we work with.

It’s sort of tough to get there mentally, but we have now somewhere in the neighborhood of 2000 science lab members, 900 really active members.   We get the occasional Dougs in the group, we get the occasional, “Oh my god, I’m up 3 lbs.!”

Doug:  That’s me.  That’s me in the group.

Chris:  What about my abs!?

[0:18:12] The ETP Science Lab, why going to extremes sucks

Mike:  What is this Science Lab group?  What is that?

Chris:  Sounds cool.

Mike:  Is this a membership option on your website?  Is that right?

Paul:  Basically, we sell Metabolic Flexibility for high-intensity athletes.

Mike:  Sounds fancy.

Doug:  It does sound fancy!

Mike:  I should’ve thought of that name.

Doug:  So that’s the name for the way you guys structure your way of eating and everyone thinks you do Carb Back-Loading, which isn’t quite the same thing.  Maybe real quick, talk about Carb Back-Loading and then talk about Metabolic Flexibility; how they’re the same, how they’re different, and why you guys choose to do it the way you do.

Paul:  Just to get back to the Science Lab part, you basically become a Science Lab member, or you have an option to be in the group…What that allows you is the option to talk to me, Mike, Julia…We have basically about 8 team leaders in the group.  We deal with a lot of women.

You’re going to load most of your carbohydrate around your workouts.  We have all the various scenarios and meal planning and things of this nature…The real nice thing about this is that it’s very CrossFit.  We wrote the book specifically for CF, Olympic lifting, and powerlifting.  So how it differs from CBL…It’s a lot more flexible.

I initially started talking to Mike…Mike has done various work…Pretty much every weekend…

Doug:  Mike Nelson…

Paul:  Yeah, pretty much every weekend he presents at some conference with a bunch of nerds.  They all do their nerd thing.

Chris:  No offense nerds, we love you.

Paul:  I’m most certainly a nerd.

Chris:  It’s the best thing to be in life.

Doug:  You run a group called the Science Lab.

Paul:  Yeah, for sure, so we appreciate data.  We appreciate an understanding of yourself, and we appreciate testing.

Chris:  And results man!  That gives you the results.  That’s what everybody appreciates in the end isn’t it?  Let’s be real here.  Get some results for yourself.

Paul:  I agree.  We started selling CBL as one of our first books.  It’s kind of difficult…You’re talking to the person who’s considered to be the authority on Metabolic Flexibility.  So I’m like “Hey man, you and I have been cool for a couple years, I’ve been following your work all along, I really think we should try and figure out something.”  He’s like, “Yeah, I don’t know.  I don’t know how much of an audience there is for what you’re doing.”

So we ended up touching base afterwards, but that initial conversation, I said, well, “I’m thinking that CBL will be where I start.”

Even though it has like, gaping holes where it’s not specific for CF…I mean Kiefer talks about it in the book that it’s not written for CF.

Mike:  Yeah, he wrote it for powerlifters and strongman competitors primarily.

Paul:  Yeah, so if you’re trying to squat 1000 lbs. it’s a real good fit for you.  I do think that some of the extremes that he talks about where you’re having 600g of carbs around your workouts in the evenings and then 30g of carbs for 2 days…That’s not something that I think sets up metabolically real well for your flexibility.

Chris:  Too extreme on the other side?

Paul:  Yeah, I don’t think that’s necessary.  I’d say that if you looked at the way we do, it probably comes out to an average of about the same thing.  The majority of Mike’s clients weren’t CF-type people and it’s been pretty enlightening for Mike to see because…Most of them are truly looking for a deficit approach and that really isn’t what we teach.  We’re teaching mostly…You want to be eating close to your total daily energy expenditure most of the time.  That’s gonna set up real well for muscle maintenance, muscle building, and then fi you eat less occasionally, that’s going to set you up for better fat loss.

Doug, you talked about that a little bit with your experience related to DXA and some of the fighting stuff and I think that sets up real well to exactly what we were talking about.  So can you talk about that a little bit?

[0:23:18] Doug talks about cutting for MMA, putting performance first, advice and who can give it

Doug:  The other day, I was talking about MMA and how when I was cutting for MMA, I’d usually go from like 200-205 and then I’d cut down to like 187-185 and then I’d water-weight cut down to 170.  In that 6 week period where I’d go form 205 to 185ish, I’d lose body fat-wise, from about 13% to about 6 ½ % based on the DXA scans that I got.

Chris:  And lookin’ DAMN good when you do it.  I’ll tell ya.

Doug:  That’s right, and keeping my abs.  And you’re saying that most CF athletes, if they’re super-lean all the time, won’t perform that well.  I totally agree; if you’re trying to be incredibly lean, then you’re not gonna perform as well.  You can still look good and be a pretty trim person.  If you’re at 10% body fat or 12% body fat, you’re still gonna look pretty good.  You’re still gonna have abs, but you’re not shredded.  You’re gonna perform better having a little bit more body fat.

Certainly for me, as an MMA fighter, I performed better when I was right around 195-200 lbs. with a little more body fat.  I felt better, I was better conditioned.  In my case, as an MMA fighter, it’s a little bit different ‘cause I’m trying to get into a weight class where, compared to the other 170s, I’m bigger and stronger and (more importantly for me) I’m actually taller.

Chris:  Guys who’re cutting down from 230 to get to 205, you’re gonna get your ass beat by that guy.

Doug:  At 170, I’m bigger and stronger than pretty much everyone I fight.  And again, for me, as a person who excels more at grappling and has more trouble with boxing, with taller athletes that can punch me from farther away, that gives me a lot of trouble.  At 170, I’m taller than the guys that are at 185.

Chris:  Strategy.

Paul:  So at 170 as an example, what would you say is the percentage of your athleticism or performance.  You’re probably not at 100% as an example.

Doug:  No.

Paul:  But you already have a genetic advantage over your opponents without necessarily being a comfortable weight for you.

Doug:  Yeah, I’m definitely only like 80-85% as strong…Like measurably as strong.  My deadlifts will go from over 500 to 450-440 for a couple weeks while I’m cutting down.

Chris:  Which is still way more than those dudes who’re deadlifting who’re naturally floating around that weight.  There’s still a surplus of benefit there.

Doug:  Yeah, at 170 there’s a bigger discrepancy in strength between me and the other guys compared to if I’d just stayed at 185 and then just made that cut from 205-185.  So that’s why I do it; I like having that bigger discrepancy.  But being super lean, I’m not as athletic.  So for CF…It’s not a weight class sport.  It doesn’t necessarily matter if you’re lighter and leaner.  It’s nice to look good.  You probably will perform better if you eat more carbs, you carry a little bit more body fat, and you’re not super-shredded all the time.

Paul:  See, the problem with that is, is that I have visible abs at 15%.  I think people get it in their head that they need to be 8% or 12% or something of this nature…That is where I think some of the bf% testing goes the wrong way.  That’s why I like your 26 day challenge.

Doug:  Did you get a buzz?

Chris:  I’ve got a buzz, but it ain’t form the machinery man.

Paul:  That party yesterday was pretty crazy so I’m thinking Doug’s at least feeling  a little bit of that yesterday.  But as an example, the one thing that I always point out…We have an article about this and people constantly give me heat.   A lot of people really respond well to the article; it’s “Why CrossFit Athletes Shouldn’t Aspire To Be Shredded”.  When I say shredded I mean, you’re not gonna hit the podium at 4-5%.  Nobody has.  When you look at Khalipa, when you look at Rich Froning…I think that people that Rich Froning is shredded.  Well, if Rich Froning were to show up at a bodybuilding competition, you would know he’s not shredded but would you be happy looking like Rich Froning?  I sure as hell would.

Chris:  He’s okay.

Doug:  Which, by the way, when those bodybuilders are on stage, they look great but those guys are struggling to stand up when they’re on stage.  They are not at their best performance state.  They’re super dehydrated.

Chris:  The crazy thing I see about those guys, is like the whole story of…If you knew the pain they’re in when they’re on stage…Like, they don’t have any feet…Underneath their feet…The natural fat padding so you can walk comfortably with these bones in your feet is gone and now they’re struggling just to walk around.  It’s a terrible existence.

Doug:  They feel like shit but they look great.

Chris:  That’s why I say bodybuilders, for everything crazy about their lifestyle, are the most committed people I’ve ever seen in my life.  This is torture; you’re trying to kill yourself.

Doug:  It’s absolutely a 24 hour job.

Paul:  It’s pretty well-documented that these people are shortening their lives.  When you’re a chronic dieter, it’s not favorable as it relates to your health.

Chris:  But see, no, you’re losing the point man.  It’s okay to look huge and shredded in the coffin.  This is all that matters, we gotta be fucking huge and shredded and if I die at 32, that doesn’t matter because I’ll live forever in the minds of these meatheads that don’t give a shit about anything but being huge.  That’s the mentality that’s crazy.

Doug:  I think bodybuilding’s cool as shit as long as you know what you’re doing and why you’re doing it.

Chris:  Hit it hard, and then live it, and then get out of it when you feel like your body can’t tolerate it anymore.  Get the experience and get it out.

Paul:  Julia Ladewski is our powerlifting coach.

Chris:  I know her yeah.

Paul:  She’s actually pretty well-thought of in powerlifting and she just actually finished tow physique competitions.

Chris:  She’s got a couple kids now too right?

Paul:  Yeah.  She looks great.  She does our women’s classes with me.  The reason I have her as the leader for us is because I believe in getting strong.  Her coach is John Meadows…I don’t know how well you know John Meadows.

Doug:  I’m not familiar with John.

Paul:  The famous saying from John is that you keep the muscle that you’re earning around your workouts, and then you use the other 22 hours a day to burn fat.  That doesn’t perfectly describe what we do…I’ll just talk a little bit about how I do my workout…I mean…For a lot of people that look at me and go, well, “You’re not super jacked, I don’t know that I want to be that guy.”  I think you have to be realistic about what someone knows to compared to a lifetime of training.

I mean, I’ve only been lifting weights for less than two years…So what that will look like in 5-10 years…

Chris:  You’ve gotta be careful anyway with picking coaches and advice based on ability.  I mean, shit, my all time hero…CTP will nod his head with this…

Doug:  I thought you were saying CTP is your all-time hero.

Chris:…Is Michael Jordan.  CTP’s my homeboy.  But, when you look to people for advice you’ve gotta keep in mind…Like, Michael Jordan…If I met him I would like, fall on my knees and cry.  When I was a kid, this guy was god.  Like this guys the best there could ever be and he still is.  Don’t try to bring this “LeBron James” shit into this.  The point is that he’s the best at what he did for all-time, and a really shitty coach/GM when it comes to giving advice on how to build up a team.  What he did didn’t translate.

So when I think about advice and who can give it…Some guy has a great pearl for you and they could be just a guy who’s like, “I’ve just been doing this and something seems intuitive and beautiful for me.  You should listen to me.”  If you wanna get advice from like Rich about how to be Rich…I don’t know if that works out.  You’ve gotta keep your mind open and survey everybody who can give you great advice.  Somebody who’s struggling in your CF gym who said, “This clicks for me.  I had this beautiful thought.”  They can be what gives you the greatest advice.  They can be just a beginner who’s been doing it and they’re still struggling with weight, but they still have something to teach you too man.

[0:31:39]  Why you should be gaining weight, focusing on performance to get the physique you want

Paul:  Well, I would say that anybody looking at me and going, “Well, I don’t want to be like THAT dude…”  You could also go…I train with/work with some of the highest CrossFitters in the sport.  Most people would want to be those people.  The reality is that you have to kinda be able to take bits and pieces…

But I’m a little distracted ‘cause I want to get to two things that we’ve sort of skipped over but…I think a lot of people miss their potential related to trying to obtain abs.  I see a lot of people…

Chris:  It’s a distraction.

Paul:  ..21 year old men, that are missing their athletic potential because they’re way too focused on the fat below their naple.  I talk about this quite about.  This happens with a lot of women, but it happens with a lot of younger guys too…You need to break up your dysfunctional relationship with your fat layer.  If you can do that, you’ll probably end up lifting more.

Chris:  You’ll probably still get plenty laid too right?  Don’t worry about.

Paul:  Yeah, you’ll be fine!

Doug:  Is it Rippetoe that says like, “The first thing that all dudes need to do is go to 200 lbs.”  That’s the first thing any guy should do.

Mike:  If you don’t weigh 200, go to 200.

Doug:  Go to 200 first, and then worry about everything else.  Your performance WILL go up.

Mike:  We were talking about this earlier.  I used to be much more caught up in my physique when I was younger, and I think that stunted my growth on a lot of athletic performance.

Doug:  Now you’re married.  Don’t worry about that anymore.

Mike:  I don’t HAVE to worry about it.

Chris:  She’s obligated to give you sex in the eyes of the lord!

Mike:  Once I started focusing on performance and let my physique take a backseat, what I found was my physique was probably better than ever.  Because I wasn’t so caught up with it, I was happy with it.  I was much more able to just focus on my training and my performance and I was having a much better time with life in general because I wasn’t focused on my physique.

Chris:  That ties into all this like…Just being present now, on what matters.  Okay, what I’ve got to do, today, this work out, is the most important thing I can do.  I know what I should be eating.  These long-term aspirations of where I want to get…You need to keep that in mind, and you need to measure where you’re going and how fast you’re going against that, and change as you get a long ‘cause your goals could change…

Doug:  Talk about this in your book?

Chris:  I do…

Doug:  Your book’s called “Progress” and this sounds like a talk on “Progress.”

Chris:  Yeah, but it’s this idea of not forcing the path…You get an idea of where you start out, or where you’d like to be, and now you’re here…You know the things that will take you in a good direction…But if you say, “I’m gonna get abs no matter what.  I’m just gonna chase that.”  You’re forcing yourself down a path that won’t be important in the long run, but if you go where you need to go, you’re gonna get there anyway.  But you might not get the result that you want if you chase it hard.

Doug:  Unnecessary rabbit hole…

Chris:  Yeah, it’s a rabbit hole.

Mike:  Trying to eat for physique and then trying to eat for performance…Could be seen in a lot of people’s minds as two different things, when in fact if you’re eating for optimal performance, it means you can train harder, more frequently, and you’re gonna end up with the physique that you want.

Paul:  There’s nothing more favorable to your metabolism than muscle.  The amount of muscle that you have, and the amount of muscle that you’re able to maintain.  I think that if you wake up every morning and go, “I wanna be 8% body fat.”  That will drive you crazy.  But if you wake up every single morning and go, “Okay.  My squat is 315…I wanna get my squat to 355.”  That’s motivating.  You wake up thrilled about that every single day.

Recently, I took my deadlift form 420 to 507.  Everyone’s like, “Oh my god, what was the programming on that?”  Everybody wants like, a system.  You wanna know what the real system was?  I put on 10 lbs.  I said, you know, maybe I’m limiting myself genetically.  So I was 163…I think the day that I deadlifted I was 175…I was little watery at that point, but realistically, the weight made the biggest difference.

Chris:  It’s the easiest, most intuitive thing.  “Oh, I wanna be stronger.  Maybe I should put on a bunch of muscle ‘cause that makes me stronger…”  No bullshit telegraph program necessary man.  The complicated thing was not what you needed.

Paul:  But see, you’re making an assumption there that I gained muscle; I did not gain muscle.  The idea that I gained 12 lbs. of muscle in 3 weeks, that did not happen.  It was really more of an approach…I’d say that…Sorry…My stomach…

Chris:  Just puke man.  We’ll get back into this later.

Paul: Starting…At the time, I was trying to fuel my workouts mostly at night.  My workouts were pretty early, and so I kinda bumped my workouts to 10-11 o’ clock and started having a pre-workout drink…Actually, Elizabeth started to talk to me about this about 3 weeks ago, where she started to add some carbohydrates to her pre-workout routine in the morning.  If you’ve seen any of the workouts that she’s done, she’s won 4 out of the 5 events.

I teach people to teach themselves; they deserve all of the credit.  I think that if you’re performance focused, it allows you to get off of that deficit treadmill that everybody has been on for life.  CrossFitters are better about it in terms of the performance side of things, but what we’ve seen is that a small introduction of you know…Getting specific.

When Laura was on your show, you had talked to her many times about, you know, “You probably need to eat more.”

Chris:  She was way undereating man.  Majestically undereating.

Paul:  Nothing you guys had said to her really made a connection ‘cause she’s like, “Well okay, I’ll have a few more carrots.”  We’re not talking about a few more carrots.  We’re talking about 1200 more calories a day to fuel your performance.  Shortly after that, she squats 280 @ 110 lbs.  I think that there is this fear that you’re going to get fat.

We had a gal in our group just post…You know, I’m not real big into before/after pictures because I’m not real big into shaming-type of stuff, plus there’s also women and men so that can get a little weird at times.   But I did allow one the other day…I dunno if you saw the pictures of it or not.

Doug:  I didn’t.

Paul:  The gal gained 6 lbs.  You’d have thought she lost 30 lbs.  I mean, literally the most dramatic…Because most of the people that show up at my site, they’re coming from a really carb-restricted background.  There’s two scenarios where you can see the biggest gains:  1) you’re new.  That’s gonna allow you to gain the most amount of muscle because you haven’t been activating that muscle for a long period of time.

Your other biggest gain is if you’re coming from a carb-restricted background, ‘cause essentially your muscle is anywhere between 60-90% water at any given time.  The big magic of low carbohydrate diets is that you’re just taking all of the water out of your muscles.  Therefore, you end up being a little bit weaker  as a result…You’re not necessarily gonna perform better from a strength perspective.

Chris:  If you’re like me, you start getting the crippling tendonitis in your shoulders ‘cause you’re being dumb.  You don’t realize how dehydrated you are.

Mike:  Let’s take a break real quick!

Chris:  Sneak it in there!  You gotta pee or something?  Speaking of hydration…

Mike:  I was like, “Should I cut ‘em off or should I just leave…?”

Chris:  Let’s put your hand in a glass of warm water!

CTP:  I have a great Michael Jordan story…

[0:40:36] Progenex commercial, technique WOD

[0:47:50]  Return from break, sock talk, forgetting about the six pack

Mike:  Alright, we’re back.  Talking into socks!  This episode is brought to you by…

Chris:  Socks!

Mike:  The TSA sucks…We were coming back from Florida and those assclowns fuckin’ must’ve taken…They went through my bag full of equipment, took everything out, supposedly put everything back in…We get back to  Memphis and we have no pop filters.

Chris:  The little circular black thing that’s usually in front of our face is actually very important.

Mike:  So now, we had to get creative…And these are my dress socks.

Paul:  And he SAYS they’re clean.

Doug:  They’re working perfectly well by the way.

Mike:  They smell great.  This is how often I wear dress socks though; not ever.

Doug:  Never.

Chris:  Very kind of…Not ever.

Mike:  Even if I’m wearing a suit, I’m usually just barefoot.

Doug:  Only when you’re marrying somebody.

Mike:  That’s right.  That happens once every six months.

Anyways…So we’re back here with Paul Nobles from Eat To Perform.  We’re talking about eating for athletic performance and maybe trying to get away from the physique mentality that a lot of people have and giving them some advice on how they can actually perform better and maybe forget about the six pack a little bit.

Doug, you had a little bit more of where you wanted to go with some of the questions you had.

[0:49:07] The difference between MetFlex and CBL, an example of how to apply ETP to your nutrition, OmegaWave, nasal strips

Doug:  Yeah, earlier we were talking about Metabolic Flexibility and Carb Back-Loading.  You never really touched on exactly, specifically, what each one of those were…And how they’re the same/how they’re differently.  So for everybody that doesn’t know what CBL and Met Flex are, just give us a quick rundown of exactly, in a few short sentences, sum it up  and tell us specifically what those two things are.

Paul:  Basically, with CBL, you’re going to eat your carbohydrates before the day that you workout.  Let’s say that, throughout the day, you’re going to have mostly fats, proteins, and fibrous vegetables…That’s where you’re going to get in a lot of your micronutrients and your vitamins…

Doug:  So we’ll make it easy; we’ll say you’re eating Paleo at that time.

Paul:  Yes.  You’re eating Paleo at that time.  So, with CBL you would then have just a shit ton of carbs.

Chris:  From basically any source really.

Paul:  That’s actually the big appeal.  It really appeals to 21 year old dudes.

Chris:  A sleeve of Oreo cookies…Whatever, just get the calories.

Doug:  So when are you doing that?  When are you just crushing carbohydrates?

Paul:  Probably in the window between…Let’s say 6-10 o’ clock at night, which is usually pretty favorable for sleep ‘cause you’re really full.  Carbohydrates make you sleepy.  Kiefer had a video up where he talked a little bit about having some fat…

Doug:  Let’s not get too sidetracked; so you’re gonna eat a bunch of carbohydrates at night time, healthy fats, proteins, and vegetables the rest of the day…Is that every day?  Or is that just days you train?  How does that work?  What does that program recommend that we do?

Paul:  Well, that program is meant for powerlifters.  So very specifically, what you’re asking, something that isn’t a great fit for CF.  The majority of the time, you’re going to be lifting 3x a week, and then you’re going to have four rest days.  So on those four days, you’re gonna be eating 30g of carbohydrate.  Now, once again, I’m not a proponent of CBL…

Doug:  So on the rest days, you’re not eating a bunch of carbohydrates.  You’re eating a bunch of carbohydrates on the training days.

Chris:  The night BEFORE the training days.

Paul:  How many CrossFitters have four rest days?  The idea of Carb Back-Loading is that it sounds like you’re eating them after you’re working out, but it’s actually setting up your workouts.

Chris:  So if I’ve got a heavy deadlift session at 11 o’ clock the day after, the night before that heavy deadlift session I’m gonna crush those carbs.  But then I’ve got a couple days off or a day off…I’ll go back to the low carb, right?

Paul:  Right, so like…Where it’s similar to Met Flex is we talk about loading your carbohydrates AROUND your workouts, but we’re much more moderate towards the carbohydrate.  For instance, for myself, I’m probably 200g of carbohydrate, maybe 250g of carbohydrate.  I load maybe about 100-150 around my workouts and then I save about 100 for the evening.

If you’re a powerlifter and you’re trying to squat 1000 lbs. and things of that nature, maybe you can get away with 600g of carbohydrate…Personally, I’m not seeing a lot of people having a lot of success with that without getting some level of fat…But then they come back with this Carb Nite Solution…

Doug:  Without gaining some level of body fat, is that what you mean?

Paul:  Yeah.  So they come back with this CNS because obviously at that point, there metabolism and muscle is fueled, so they can get some real good results.  Our approach is a little bit different and a bit more gradual in that we want your workouts to be fueled, so let me give you an example.

Let’s say that you load up your carbohydrates with CBL, and let’s say that you work out at 6 p.m. the next day…Even though you had a lot of carbohydrates from the night before, you’re not gonna always walk into that 6 p.m. workout feeling 100%.  When I have tested CBL, my workouts did not always feel 100%.  They talk about that; not all your workouts are gonna be great.  Well, if you’re a CFer, you want almost all of your workouts to be great.

I said the other day…I put out a picture and it said, “If you don’t feel strong, you’re doing it wrong.”  Where our program would differ is that if you’re working out at 6 p.m., you’d have probably 50g of carbohydrate and then 25g of protein right before that workout and you’d walk into that session fueled.  I think it’s my experience, it’s been the experience of many of the athletes that I work with, that if you work out fueled, you’ll end up being better.

When I do my heavy deadlift sessions, like tonight, I’ll load up probably with white rice…

Doug:  Right before your session?

Paul:  This’ll be the night before my session.  I’ll work out at about 10-11 o’ clock and then tomorrow morning, I’ll have 50g of carbohydrate with 25g of protein and then I’ll do my big deadlift session.  It sort of depends on what my plan is for working out.  This is actually kind of an interesting thing that I do…Whenever I do a two-a-day or anything like that, I always do the woman’s weight.  Most of my sets and reps are in the 400 range right now…I’m a smaller guy than every one of you you know?  So that’s gonna take something out of me.

Chris:  Deadlifts always do.  They take a chunk of you away when you do them.

Paul:  Yeah, and usually I do some light assistance work…Whether it be like on the hyper, or…I do a lot of 3 pooed kettlebell…Just like power glute swings just to really activate my glutes…

Doug:  But here, to make this as specific and easy to understand as possible…Say Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday.  You’re gonna work out on Tuesday afternoon…Walk us through what Monday looks like, what Tuesday looks like, and what Wednesday looks like for your diet and for your carbohydrate loading.

Paul:  Well, I need to know…What we do is we walk people through how they feel in their testing…

Doug:  Don’t worry about them.  Just tell how you’d do it, just give a specific example.  I know this isn’t gonna be perfect for everyone in every specific situation.  Just give one specific example so everyone can understand.

Paul:  If I’m doing CF on Tuesday night, I’m not loading all that aggressively,  ‘cause CF doesn’t put quite a demand on me the way that squatting 300 lbs. would or deadlifting in the 400s.  So in general, I might just have like sweet potatoes that night.

Doug:  Which night?

Paul:  On Monday night.  And then I have my coconut smoothie, that’s a big recipe on ETP.

Doug:  Right before you go to bed?

Paul:  Right before I go to bed.  Yep.  Gives me a good night’s sleep.  I also do Cocoon sometimes…I usually don’t do the coconut milk smoothie AND Cocoon…It’s just like a bad flavor option so that doesn’t work out really all that well.  My wife works out at 6 p.m.  That was an adjustment for me, ‘cause I don’t really like working out at 6 p.m. but she’s my wife and I love her so I kinda wanted to support her journey.

Chris:  You’re wise.

Paul:  Yeah.

Doug:  So Monday night, you’re eating sweet potatoes, you’re having a smoothie before you go to bed, and then you’re gonna train on Tuesday.  So what’s Tuesday morning look like, what’s Tuesday night look like, and what does Wednesday look like?

Paul:  Almost every single time I’ll fast.

Doug:  You’re fasting on Tuesday morning?

Paul:  Yep.  I won’t eat ‘til about noon, maybe 1 o’ clock.

Chris:  Black coffee and some water when you get up?  Nothin’ else?

Paul:  Pretty much.  I know you guys are into Bulletproof Coffee…But I just go black coffee…I do drink a lot of coffee, I will admit that.  Coffee is an appetite suppressant.  I’m pretty good testing stress levels and things of that nature so I don’t think it adversely affects things too much there.

Chris:  All coffee in the morning, no real food, you’re training at like 11 o’ clock hour…

Paul:  No no no, this is Tuesday night with my wife at 6 p.m.

Chris:  Oh, so you didn’t eat much in the morning.  What about during the day Tuesday?

Paul:  Okay, so that first meal (it’s kind of legendary on the site)…I eat a rib eye with a couple eggs…A lot.  You know, grass fed rib eyes.

Doug:  When do you do that?

Paul:  That’s right around 12-1 o’ clock.

Doug:  Noon on the Tuesday before you train?

Paul:  Yep.  And then around, I’d say, 3:00, I found it really comfortable to have a really good salad.  The base of the salad is usually something in the level of kale, chard, and spinach and then some various vegetables…Maybe some avocado in there…Kinda far away from my training.  So maybe like 2:30-3:00 or something like that and then I’d say around 5-5:30 is when I’d have about 50g of carbohydrate with 25g of protein.

Doug:  Do you do that with whole foods?

Paul:  No, I do not.

Doug:  You do a shake?

Paul:  Yeah.  I do 50g of Vitargo and then 25g of Progenex.

Mike:  So a 2:1 ratio of carbs to protein.

Paul:  Right.  Now, I do bump that a lot…We can talk about my protocol for deadlifts…It’s a little different.  But, in general, for a 15 minute WOD…I don’t need that much carbohydrate.  I certainly don’t need 5-600g of carbohydrate.  Kiefer’s pretty honest about the fact that he doesn’t really have a lot of love for CrossFitters, it’s not written for CF…

Doug:  Okay, we’re getting off track again.

Paul:  Yep, keep me on track!

Doug:  So Tuesday night, you train at 6, you had your pre-workout shake…What do you do after that, and what do you do the next day.

Paul:  Well, give me an example of what I’m doing.

Doug:  So for you…If you did 30 minutes of strength, say you did 5×5 back squat, and then you metconned for 20 minutes…Whatever random movements, who cares…But you did some strength and then some conditioning, it took you roughly an hour. Roughly what most people do at any random CF gym.  Some strength, some conditioning on Tuesday night.  You had pre-workout, 2:1 ratio of carbs to protein in a shake right before you trained.  What do you do afterward, and what do you do the next day?

Paul:  Okay.  So I’ll set it up where it’s really super-favorable.  So let’s say that the next day, I’m gonna squat pretty heavy doing a Wendler cycle or something of that nature.

Doug:  No, we’re not squatting the next day.  You’re gonna squat on Tuesday night at 6:00, then what do you eat after that and what do you eat the next day if you’re not training the next day.

Paul:  If I’m not training the next day, that’s easy.  I will have something pretty similar…Vitargo/Progenex-type of drink.

Chris:  Right after.

Paul:  Right after.  I’ll have either a coconut milk smoothie or cocoon right before bed.  Maybe some sweet potatoes.  I certainly wouldn’t load aggressively because the next days a rest day and I don’t need a lot of energy for a rest day.  I’m almost certainly going to fast on that day.  Today, as an example, is a rest day.  I have not eaten anything…You guys made me drink this Bulletproof Coffee and it’s got me all jittery…

Doug:  We forced it on him.

Chris:  We like to have our guests drugged up.

Paul:  But normally, I’ll use that as an “eat less occasionally” day.

Chris:  But do you still do the meat and…The rib eye at lunch or whatever occurs?  Like, “Ah, a little bit of food here…”  Is it just Paleo throughout that day?

Paul:  I mean…It’s low carb.  I do low carb on those days.

Mike:  So after you trained on Tuesday night, you did a PWO shake or no?

Paul:  Yeah, I always do a PWO shake or a whole food option.  So, a whole food option if I was working out the next day would be…Steak and sweet potatoes.  There’s not a vast difference, from what I’ve seen through my various tests and a lot of people in the Science Lab group where carb sources are going to be vastly different.

I don’t think that, you know, people are getting fat because they’re not loading within 30 minutes…If you’re having a shake within 30 minutes, it’s mostly ‘cause of convenience.  The whole “anabolic window”…There is some science that’s favorable to that, but it’s real marginal.  It’s not going to be the big answer to the puzzle.  The big answer to the puzzle is always amount.

Chris:  Getting enough calories in some form.  Whatever’s convenient for you so you do it.  If you want a meal, eat a meal.  If you don’t feel like eating, just drink.

Mike:  Compliance is the biggest issue.

Paul:  Yeah.  So like on Wednesday, I’m going to fast mostly through the morning.  That’s a little bit of my Leangains background.  It’s just what I find convenient honestly and it makes things a little more intuitive for me.  The way that evening would set up on Wednesday is largely dependent upon whether I’m CFing or whether I’m lifting.  But usually after a rest day, I wanna lift.

I’m real big into OmegaWave HRV testing and just kinda checking all of that in the morning.

Chris:  So basically, you’re checking…This thing’s giving you a reading of your blood pressure…It’s trying to assess whether you’re in a state of preparedness for lifting right?  How well you’re reacting, if your body’s ready.

Paul:  It is UNREAL.  The changes that’s made in my routine…I’ve gone from working out 5-6x a week, doing a lot of two-a-days and things of that nature to working out 4-5x a week.  I started using nasal strips when I sleep.

Doug:  I love those things by the way.  I really do.

Chris:  It pairs well with your French style.

Doug:  I’ve got my eye mask, my little nasal strips.

Chris:  Aren’t you a peach when you’re sleepin’?

Doug:  Dude, if I can’t breathe, those nasal strips are the shit.  They really like magically make you able to breathe.  Sometimes I can’t go to sleep at all, because I can’t fucking breathe.  It keeps me up all night.

Chris:  Let’s get some Barbell Shrugged-branded nasal strips.  “Shrug your face; sleep with this.”

[1:04:52]  Nutrition for two-a-days, more on the ETP Science Lab

Doug:  Okay, so I’m gonna force you into one more specific example.  You just said that you do two-a-days…

Paul:  Sometimes.  Very rarely.

Doug:  But you have before.  So you have experience with it. So, say someone’s a Games athlete.  They’re four weeks out from the CrossFit games.  They’re doing two-a-days, maybe three-a-days, multiple days a week.  So back to our first example…Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday.  You’re doing doubles on each of those days.  What would you suggest someone who’s doing a double on Monday, a double on Tuesday, and a double on Wednesday, how would they structure their diet throughout the day.  They’re not trying to gain muscle, they’re not trying to burn fat, they’re just trying to maintain weight and be as efficient as possible during the workout.

Paul:  Well, some of it’s going to be based on feel…I do happen to work with CF Games athletes, so it does allow me to have…We’ve written protocols on this.  Our CF intraday article was written by myself, Mike Nelson, and Elisabeth Akin wale.  There’s some interesting things about that.  But in the two-a-day protocol that I wrote, basically you’re putting your carbs around your workouts.  You’re going to certainly up your energy levels for those days…Even if the scale ends up a little bit higher on those days, you’re certainly much better off with the workouts fueled.

Certainly, you’re going to want to dial that in as you get closer to the event because you don’t want to be super heavy, but I have athletes test that quite a bit to where they know that their athleticisim isn’t compromised by being up 2-3 lbs.  A lot of times is they’re finding is if they’re up 3-5 lbs., it doesn’t have a dramatic effect on their muscle ups…

Chris:  Especially if they’re deficient before.  If you’re a little too light and you gain a little extra, you’re going to be golden.

Paul:  That has been one really enlightening thing.  There’s such a big part of our community that believes in “clean eating”…I’m finding that, with Games athletes, that they’re not eating like athletes should eat.  You know…They kind of lose what they might have picked up in college and end up falling into this constant “using your workouts to burn calories…What we’re trying to do is that you go into your workouts where you’re performing better.  That’s going to lead to more favorable adaptation and, in the end, you can always go back to that low carbohydrate approach.

That’s the one thing that I want people to understand is that, I’m a big advocate of that occasionally.  I’m a big advocate of that if you know what you’re doing on the other side of things.  But what happens for a lot of people…We sort of joke about it in the group…

People start eating more correctly…there’s a lot of different approaches that people take because they…You know, a lot of people wanna do it low carb and you really can’t do this super-well low carb because it’s not going to favorable for protein turnover and things of this nature.  But pretty much no one reads the documentation that we sent to them; they just started CBL and there was no support for it or they just started eating more.  Then they signed up for the Science Lab and they’re like, “Help!”  So we talk people down from the cliff a lot.

Doug:  I’m gonna talk you down from the cliff right now…Let’s go back to the original question.  Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday, working out twice a day, 10:00 a.m., 6:00 p.m., specifically, for you, as an example…I know the answer’s always it depends, there’s a million situations…What do you eat specifically for those three days?

Paul:  I can do that.  Specifically, if I worked out at 10:00 a.m., I’d have probably two eggs, some bacon…I talk about bacon being a condiment, not a real meat…

Chris:  It doesn’t matter, it’s sexy.  You must have it.

Paul:  …But maybe like some hazelnut butter.  Usually I’m gonna have that about two hours before.  So I’ll probably have that about 8 o’ clock in the morning…it does sort of depend upon whether it’s a strength thing at 10:00 a.m. but in general it’s going to be either 30 minutes or an hour before ( and this is also how I counsel my athletes).  You’re going to have some carbohydrate…Usually I take creatine…We talked a little bit about loading an aggressive amount of creatine.  Some people do it, some people don’t.  I find that it works really well for me, but I’m not super-concerned about my gymnastic movements like a CF Games athlete might be.

They’re going to almost certainly have some level of carbohydrate post-workout, and usually probably in a meal.  The best example would be Chipotle with rice.  So they’ll have Chipotle with rice after they work out…

CTP:  That’s a restaurant?

Chris:  It’s like a big burrito with a lot of meat and veggies and guacamole and rice with it…It’s a big carby, delicious meal…

Paul:  They wanna recover from the workout that they put in earlier and then have some energy going into their workout at 6 p.m.  Where it does depend a little bit, is normally you would have carbohydrate if you’re feeling a little…You know, your body’s a little drawn and you don’t feel 100% going into that workout, but the majority of people got enough carbohydrate form the Chipotle where they don’t actually need any carbohydrate going into that workout.

Doug:  Going into the second workout of the day?

Paul:  Going into the second workout.  So that part is optional, and then post-workout you’re gonna have your standard 50g of carbohydrate and 25g of protein.  Then you’re gonna set up your evening meal for your workouts the following day.  A lot of it is…What we do with the calculator as an example…People wanna get super-specific, counting calories…I have no hate for that…But I think…Sort of like our conversation about the Zone earlier…You have to move to a more intuitive style of eating.  If one of my athletes is sitting there feeling a little bloated maybe from excessive carbohydrate, or the workouts they did dint’ stress them in the way that they thought it would, there’s just no reason that you would load a shit ton of carbohydrates that night going into tomorrow’s sessions.  In general, you want to be able to feel that out a little bit.

I think that having your carbohydrates around your workout and a good amount of them around your early morning workout kind of sets up the evening to where it ends up being a little bit more intuitive.  Is that helpful?

Mike:  So basically what you’re saying is that if you’re training, you should eat carbohydrates prior and post-workout, and if you’re not training you should eat low carb.

Chris:  We’re drilling down to this.  That’s the golden rule.

Mike:  And you should eat protein all the time.  And you should dial in your carbohydrates intuitively.  So if you feel good, then you should eat that…But if you don’t feel good, maybe you should bump it or lower it.

Paul:  I mean, people wanna make this super complicated…I think one of the things that our system…I dunno that you’d call it a system…

Chris:  An approach.  A philosophy.

Paul:  An approach…It really is pretty flexible.

Mike:  The calculator is just a good place to start, kinda like Zone is a good place to start, and you should probably just adjust from there.

Paul:  Okay, the reason why I did the calculator is because most people weren’t aware of total daily energy expenditure.  We had a lot of people…We talked about the sugar addicted thing…It keeps coming up.

Chris:  Oooh…Tell the story!

Paul:  I’ll tell the story right after this…But…I realized that everybody is undereating.  So I said, well, “I wonder if we could just make a calculator.”  Just to kind of enlighten people on what 4-5 CrossFit workouts a week look like.

Chris:  Like how much fuel is it gonna take to meet that demand?

Paul:  So, for your average 135 lb. woman CFing 4-5x a week, they were finding that their calories need to be 2400-2600 calories.  They knew that instinctively, they were eating 1500 calories.  What the calculator was there for is just a wake-up call.  It wasn’t meant to be…”I’m gonna meticulously eat this amount of food every single day with absolutely no direction.

I did not want to do…When we started out the site…Without some level of support.  When you read a lot of these books, you don’t have the ability to talk to the people who write this material.  People can talk to me on a daily basis.  Doug sees that in the group/in the Science Lab…Mike Nelson is answering questions, Julia Ladewski’s answering questions…

[1:15:04] Dads going Zen, committed vs. interested people, and why it’s great to be a part of a community

Mike:  So what’s happening in these groups?  So the people go to the website, they find the calculator, they start calculating their stuff, it’s a wake-up call, they join the group, they get in there and…What’s happening in the group that’s helping people out?

Paul:  Like I said, it’s very CrossFit in that people are super-supportive.  When we first started off, we had comments on the blog…We had messages on the FB page…Once we got to like 50,000 ‘Likes’ that became super-unmanageable.  So I basically shut down all of those avenues.  I think at that point, we were still selling just CBL and Mike was finishing up Metabolic Flexibility specifically for our sports…

That allowed me to kind of direct everybody to these people…I put out a post because my dad and I were talking and I said, “Yeah, I just find myself trying to convince all of these people that they need to eat adequate amounts for athletic activity…” and he’s like, “Dude, you don’t have to convince anybody of anything.  Your journey should speak for itself.”

Chris:  Your dad went all Zen on ya…

Paul:  Yeah, and he said, “I saw a bumper sticker the other day… “

Chris:  These are not the droids you’re looking for.  He pulled that move on you.  Oh shit, you blew my mind pops.

Paul:  But he said, “I saw a bumper sticker the other day and it said, “Are you interested, or are you committed?”  I quit talking the interested people and I started talking to the committed people, and the committed people to be honest with you, they either had to buy CBL…Or now they have to buy Met Flex.

Mike:  What do they get if they buy that?

Paul:  Well, they get to talk to Paul Nobles.

Doug:  That’s a big deal.

Chris:  It’s like when people get the chance to talk to us.

Paul:  It’s real similar to that!  But…You know, how many times do you buy a book and actually get to talk to the people that are writing this content?  It’s not often.

Doug:  These books aren’t expensive either…What do these books cost?

Paul:  Well, for Metabolic Flexibility, it’s $49.95.  That’s not going to be that big of a deal.  I mean, Mike…He’s made some video content that’s real specific to how you would load your carbohydrate…Like I said, the thing about Mike…I think that he works with a lot of clients that come from a deficit background so it’s been really enlightening for him to see these super-athletes and just how they work but the big train conductor is me.

Mike:  How’s buying the book different than the Science Lab?  Or is that the same thing…I’m confused.

Chris:  You’re easily confused.

Mike:  In all fairness, so are most people listening to this.  They’re as easily confused as me, I’m sure of it.

Chris:  You represent the common man.

Paul:  So the basic concept of Met Flex is load carbohydrates around your workouts.  Then Mike takes a topic that is really popular within the group and he updates that every single month with a lot of science.  Mike’s a scientist…He actually pokes rats for a living.  So he gives all the scientific references and things of this nature.  The first month, we had a lot of women who believe that they’re metabolically damaged and so he did a really great chapter on metabolic damage.

Doug:  So if you buy the book, you get access to the group?

Paul:  Yes.

Mike:  Which is the Science Lab?

Doug:  Is that what you’re looking for?

Mike:  And that’s the Science Lab?  So it’s one-in-the-same?

Paul:  That is the Science Lab.  Yes.

Chris:  You demonstrate commitment by buying the book…

Paul:  I didn’t know the answer was that simple.

Chris:  You buy the book, you get your education, you get into the group, you’ve already had the wool pulled from your eyes, you’re like, “Holy shit, this calculator showed me I’m way off…”  So the attempt to close the gap is the 80% benefit that I’m going to get initially, then you get into the group and this guy blows your fucking mind specific to the comments that are most relevant.  You drill down and get a deeper level of understanding.  The whole package gives you a fucking crushing deadlift.

Mike:  So for 50 bucks, I get access to this group forever?

Chris:  If you’re the kind of person (I’m talking to you, individual that goes “50 bucks for a book?”)  If you don’t think changing your body forever is worth 50 bucks, you’re a piece of shit.  If you’ll gladly pay 100 bucks for your iPhone every month and not fucking thing two shits about that, and spend all day on Facebook wasting time with that device…If you don’t think 50 bucks to change your life is worth it, you need to not be a part of this race.  Move your fucking ass out of our country; you’re dragging us down.

Doug:  He’s getting ornery in his old age.

Chris:  I’m serious.  If you don’t think spending some money on yourself to make yourself fucking righteous and better is worth it, I have no respect for you.

Paul:  Well, what people don’t understand is that when I have private clients…Which I can’t have private clients anymore…I make special exceptions for CF Games athletes at this point…But basically, I charge people $2000 a month.  Mike’s costs are similar, Julia’s costs are similar.  We’re high level thinkers as it relates to this type of stuff…And if you wanna have personal communication with these people…When I charge $2000 a month, they’re going to have my cell phone.  They’re going to be able to talk to me all the time.

But usually, most of those people kinda figured it out relatively quickly.  I spent a lot of time working with models and bodybuilders and taking people from 12%-5% and that was not nearly as gratifying as this has been.  The one thing that I didn’t account for when we started selling Met Flex was that I thought people would pay to talk to Paul Nobles…They would ask me a question and move on their merry way.  That’s not what happened.  It was really like a miracle; they started talking to each other.

When they started talking to each other, they started mentoring each other.  We have spreadsheets that people are tracking their PRs, talking about their meal plans, things of this nature.

Chris:  We have that going in the 26 in 26 challenge.  They start coaching each other, the magic starts coming.  We drop in to give our insight and our coaching all the time, and that is coupled with this community.  Like…A guy’s like, “Wow dude, you just motivated me ‘cause you posted this video and you look so great.  I’m gonna train better!  What do you think I’m doing wrong?”  They start going off on their own.

Mike:  The value’s not just in being able to communicate with the coach…The value’s also in being in the community.

[1:21:52]  Q&A:  Eating enough but feeling too full, supplements, the guys plug their current projects, and the outro

Doug:  Before we shut down the show, our buddy Dan said that he did your calculator and he found out that he was taking in maybe 1000 calories less than he should every day, 100g of fat less than he should every day.  For a while there, he was taking in a lot more fat off the recommendation of the calculator; he was trying to put like a coconut milk in his evening shake, multiple avocadoes a day, and he crushed nuts…He could do it for a while, but he was just so full all of the time that he found it hard to keep up with.

Is that a common thing for people that are undereating?  They start eating more and it’s so overwhelming that they feel like they’re stuffing themselves all day every day?   What do they do?  What should they do?

Paul:  First of all, what happens with the calculator (especially for bigger guys)…This happens with women too…We’ve really geared a lot of our programming…This is the nice thing about being able to change with the group as people are having some difficulty…

We found people actually drinking a spoonful of olive oil trying to meet their fat…

Doug:  We got a video on that don’t we?

Mike:  One of our first videos ever…Shots of olive oil.

Paul:  Yeah, and it’s like…No.  That really isn’t the goal.  What everybody wanted to do, is they wanted to put in a real low carb number and then solve for fats.  That’s the way our calculator works.  You can put your protein either at lean body mass, you can put your protein at 1g/lb.…

And then you can add protein.  What people wanted to do, is they wanted to do our approach low carb.  Maybe that wasn’t Dan’s scenario, but it will speak to that.  So they would put in 100g of carbohydrate and they’d be like, “Holy shit, I’m supposed to be eating 260g of fat!”

Chris:  It’s gotta come from somewhere so they’re trying to add in the fat and the amounts are crazy.

Paul:  Right, and so we actually just put out some guidelines within the calculator and said…For women, you probably want to try to solve for carbs by putting in your fat numbers.  If you’re a smaller woman, we have them start at 75g and then 100g…For most women…For men, it usually comes in between  125g and 150g for fat.  What they find is that if their protein numbers are 1g/lb. their carbohydrates usually come in between somewhere in the neighborhood of 250g-300g.  It’s a much more reasonable approach.

We’ve had to coach people, we’ve had to put out some articles…That’s the nice thing about being able to pivot as people are starting to have trouble.  That’s the problem with buying a book that is a system, this is the way you’re supposed to do it…And then in general, whatever  you do…You should be able to have some level of communication with the diet author…That’s why we tried to support CBL in the beginning.  There was a lot of CrossFitters doing it, and we just found that the better approach was to write our own damn book.

Mike:  Is this Dan from our gym?

Doug:  Oh.  He’s really lean…So you’ll probably just wanna drop your fat and up your carbs.

Chris:  Don’t.  Be.  Afraid.  To.  Eat.  Lots.  Of Carbs.

Mike:  You’d feel a lot less full, and it’ll up your appetite.

Paul:  It’ll up your metabolism.

Chris:  Did we hit that one?  Is that an acceptable answer?

Doug:  Yeah…

Chris:  Second question?  Let’s do the next question.

Doug:  Yeah, we got more questions.

Doug:  If I wanted to eat like a high-level competitor, how should I eat?  Can you sum that up in like four sentences?  Like super concise.

Paul:  I don’t think I can do anything in four sentences.

Doug:  I don’t think so either, so I’m challenging you.  Challenges work well you said.

Chris:  Okay; in your mind, you’re gonna write a PowerPoint slide.  You get four bullets, and if you exceed the four bullets, we’re gonna punch you in the dick right now.

Paul:  Okay.  I think I got this…Eat an adequate amount of calories…This is my first bullet.

Chris:  I got my fuckin’ fist clenched right now…

Three more bullets!

Paul:  My second point is eat carbohydrates around your workouts…

Chris:  So far so good homie…

Paul:  Third is…Monitor your stress levels and get adequate rest…

Chris:  That counts.  That’s three.  Good job.  You wanted to explain more, but you put that period there, the hard stop, good job…

Paul:  I’m actually struggling to have a fourth…

CTP:  Three was kinda two…”monitor stress levels AND sleep”.

Paul:  I just don’t know that it’s more difficult than that.  I mean, eat adequate amounts, have carbohydrates around your workouts.  Let’s do it.  Done.

Chris:  Add in…Slam bars, crush PRs, for my buddy John.  That’s a good one.  Fuck the bar up in the gym.  Put that on an actual PowerPoint slide…And sell it.

Mike:  50 dollars.

Chris:  50 dollars.  10 bucks.  Whatever, exclusive content.

Mike:  Doug can make it look fancy.  He’s good at making PP slides look fancy.

Chris:  Doug is fiddling with the iPad…

Mike:  You know who has the best PP slides in the world is Andy Galpin.  Andy Galpin at Cal State.

Paul:  One thing that we haven’t actually talked about is that in the Science Lab, you do have the ability to conversate with all of us, but I do seminars online virtually every day.

Mike:  Webinars?  Every day?

Paul:  Yep.  Basically, 30-40 people show up and they ask me questions.

Mike:  What do you do it on?

Doug:  Google Hangout?

Mike:  Do you have people ask questions or do you have a topic of the day?

Paul:  No.  I mean, in general, Julia and I will kick it about some strength training topics or things of that nature.

Mike:  Do you use like GoTo Webinar or something?

Paul:  I use WebEx, which is a Cisco product…

Mike:  So people just log in, they log into WebEx…Then they hang out and you answer questions?

Paul:  Yeah, we send them the link, and actually we tape it on Google Hangout…So right now you can go to…

Mike:  Google uses tapes?

Chris:  It’s just a word describing it dummie…

Paul:  Yep…But, and you can watch all of the seminars we’ve done since day 1 and it’s usually pretty enlightening.

Chris:  We’ve gotta do a lot more of that shit.

Doug:  Okay, last question.  What supplements would you prescribe to someone who’s trying specifically to train for performance in CrossFit?

Paul:  Well, I’m a big fan of creatine…I’ve written a lot about creatine.  I think that’s something that’s pretty well-researched.

Chris:  At this point, if you’re someone who gives two shits about your muscle function, your performance, your long-term neurological health and well-being…You just gotta fucking take creatine.  Everybody should be taking it.  At least a 5g scoop, but you maybe wanna play with these hyper doses of 20g, 30g…

Paul:  See, I don’t think 20g is a hyper-dose.  I haven’t really seen any problems with it.

Chris:  Well, maybe hyper to the guy who’s usually like, “Yeah, I’ll take the recommended dose.”  It’s more than what people think they should take.

Paul:  If you’re a CrossFit athlete, I don’t see why you wouldn’t be doing beta-alanine right now.

Chris:  That’s the second one, yeah.

Doug:  Agreed.

Paul:  Beta-alanine is almost like made for CF.

Chris:  Like, if you’re gonna even go to the trouble of buying Neon shoes, you’d better be taking fuckin’ beta-alanine.

Paul:  I mean…I think that what you’re saying is sort of interesting.  I mean, how many people in our community have a 50 dollar jump rope?  How many have 139 dollar customized Nanos and they go, “Aoooh, I think your book’s too expensive.”  It’s like…Screw you.

Chris:  it’s bullshit.  Like, dude, look what you’re doing with your life.

Paul:  You actually get to talk to me about it!

Chris:  I love Mike Workington’s article on CrossFit…I like Mike, I worked with him a little bit but he put that article about like, you know…If you’re spending time about your sleeves, your calf compression shit and forgetting about “Look…I just need to snatch and squat more.”  You’re losing the fucking point of what you’re doing.

Paul:  Yeah, for sure.

Mike:  Alright guys, I think it’s about time to wrap it up.  I’m gonna let you guys do your plugs.

Chris:  There’s probably a lot of questions from this…We should maybe like throw out a “Click this link”…We’ll do like an afterglow…Ask us some more questions.  We’ll dig back into this one or something.

Mike:  We’re super deep into this.

Chris:  We won’t do that shit, I’m just saying maybe we will.

Paul:  I mean, people wanna make it more complicated…But remember.  It’s pretty simple.

CTP:  Now I’m running out of juice over here.

Mike:  Doug’ll set the example for how to plug.

Doug:  He’s running out of battery life I think so…We just opened up the next round of the 6 month muscle gain challenge that started two days ago.  That only has 50 spots available.  Like I said, we have about 200 people on that waiting list right now.  Last time it filled up very quickly and we had to shut it down before the actual scheduled end-date.

If you wanna get into that program, go sign up as soon as possible.  You can sign up…go to, click on the shoppe, go to online coaching, and then click on the six month muscle gain challenge.  As part of that course, you get access to the Faction Foods nutrition course, and to Maximum Mobility.  Divided, those courses is over half the cost of that total program plus you’ll get access to me, Mike, and Chris in that Facebook group on a daily basis to watch videos of your lifts.

Chris:  And we watch that shit.

Doug:  We do, we watch all the videos on there…We make comments, we help people with their weightlifting technique, we help people with their nutrition…Really, any other questions you have, you have full access to us.  So really, it’s 100 bucks a month for six months and that’s ridiculously cheap for the value that you get through that program.  Everyone that’s doing it right now is just thrilled with it and they’re making fantastic progress.  We’re excited to start the next one and like I said, that opened two days ago if you’re watching this on Wednesday when this episode comes out…So if you’re watching this right now and you want to get into that program, go ahead and get over there, get signed up ASAP.  That way you get in without it being filled up and you have to wait ‘til the next one.

Mike:  Alright.  Paul?

Paul:  Super.  Well, we don’t really have a whole lot…We plugged it the whole show.  Metabolic Flexibility for High Intensity Athletes.   We have a challenge each month where athletes try to make decent-sized gains, focusing specifically on one lift.  On August 1st, we’re actually going to start our version of what is a Paleo challenge option…I feel like Paleo challenges, as they exist, where people are going to super-calorie deficits for 30 days and just sucking up…Is sort of broken.  We’re trying to come up with an answer for that.

Mike:  Cool.  So what website do we go to for that?

Paul:  Just  I’ve already put out a couple posts.  We’re actually using Fitocracy for the one month challenges where you’re just trying to PR.

Mike:  Cool.

Chris:  Fitocracy.

Mike:  Alright Chris, whatcha got?

Chris: Well I’m gonna go ahead and request that everybody go on iTunes… Go on Amazon…Either of those two places.  Type in “Progress” and “Chris Moore”, and you’re gonna see my book come up.  Take a look at the free previews, check it out.  The book is out.  If you like it, download a copy and please please please leave your commentary as a review.  I’m confident that you’ll want to offer a 5-star review.  A guy last night told me it was “an exquisite read “ and he wasn’t bullshitting.

Mike:  If you don’t leave 5 stars, don’t bother.

Chris:  Yeah, I mean, I think you will want to.  So please, check it out.  Leave a good review if you want.  It’s a low berry entry.  I think it’ll really help you get through some issues in terms of deciding what you want out of training.

Mike:  And it just made iBooks, so I’ll be downloading it.

Chris:  yeah.  It’s available on iPad for iBooks…Anything that’ll play…You can have the Kindle app on your iPhone or your iPad or Kindle…The Kindle app will allow you to download from Amazon.  We don’t have an iPhone option YET, but if you just download the Kindle free app, download the book, you’re good to go.  You’re gonna love it.

Mike:  Cool, I want to make sure you guys go to and sign up for the newsletter.  That way we can inform you all of the stuff we have going on.  We have some workshops, some training camps going on at different gyms.  If you sign up for those newsletters, we’ll send you information on how you can get signed up for those.  We’ve got one coming up in Atlanta, and another one in the Miami/Ft. Lauderdale area there in Miramar.

Doug:  CrossFit Bound and then CrossFit Siege?

Mike:  CrossFit Siege and then CrossFit Bound.   So if you’re interested in seeing us live and letting us coach you on weightlifting/nutrition/mobility, all the stuff we try to specialize in, you should show up to one of those.  Also, go to iTunes and leave us 5 stars if you like this podcast.  See ya next time.

Doug:  Thanks guys.

Chris:  Live sexy.

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