Wits & Weights | Nutrition, Lifting, Muscle, Metabolism, & Fat Loss

Ep 143: Unique Over 40 Workout Strategies for More Muscle, Energy, and Recovery with Brad Williams

February 02, 2024 Brad Williams Episode 143
Wits & Weights | Nutrition, Lifting, Muscle, Metabolism, & Fat Loss
Ep 143: Unique Over 40 Workout Strategies for More Muscle, Energy, and Recovery with Brad Williams
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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Do you know the fitness principles that can be adapted to the over-40 age group? Discover practical tips to maintain a strong and healthy lifestyle beyond 40!

In this episode, Philip (@witsandweights) speaks with Brad Williams, host of the Over 40 Fitness Hacks podcast. Philip asked him to come on here to talk about the unique challenges and approaches for the over-40 demographic, when he was honored to be on his show recently. They discuss Brad’s motivations behind focusing on this age group, how fitness principles can be adapted to their age, and common age-related fitness myths. Brad shares his insights on effective training styles, managing stress and inflammation, and optimizing nutrition. Tune in and learn practical strategies for maintaining a strong and healthy lifestyle beyond 40.

Over the last decade, Brad has owned and operated three gym locations in Orange County, and oversaw more than 40 independent personal trainers, each with their unique training styles. He built a loyal following and sought-after client/trainer community culture within his gym locations.

Post-pandemic, Brad had to focus more on online training and started his fitness podcast called Over 40 Fitness Hacks. The show revolves around Brad’s passion for helping the over-40 crowd fight the aging process while still having a social life.

Today, you’ll learn all about:

2:17 Why focus on over-40 fitness
5:30 Personal fitness and health changes now that you're over 40
10:36 Training principles and adjustments for over 40
15:05 Common misconceptions or objections to training over 40
20:25 General training and programming principles
26:54 How to manage inflammation and stress
33:42 Mental health and fitness
41:08 Counting micros (not just calories/macros)
46:16 Muscle gain and strength expectations for 60s/70s
49:28 The question Brad wished Philip had asked
52:17 Where to find Brad
52:48 Outro

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Brad Williams:

Doing a little bit of high intensity training, you know, there's people out there that just love it to death and you know, good for you, I hate it. But having a little bit of that per week actually helps boosts the mitochondrial levels in your body, which is just part of the aging processes. As we slow down, we age we move less, our mitochondria count starts dropping in our body, and that's what keeps us youthful. And it's also the powerhouse in ourselves that utilizes fat and burns fat.

Philip Pape:

Welcome to the Wits& Weights podcast. I'm your host, Philip pape, and this twice a week podcast is dedicated to helping you achieve physical self mastery by getting stronger, optimizing your nutrition and upgrading your body composition. We'll uncover science backed strategies for movement, metabolism, muscle and mindset with a skeptical eye on the fitness industry, so you can look and feel your absolute best. Let's dive right in Wits & Weights community Welcome to another episode of the Wits & Weights Podcast. Today I'm joined by Brad Williams, host of the over 40 Fitness hacks podcast. I had the honor of being on his show recently. And I asked him to come on here to talk about the unique challenges and approaches for the over 40 demographic. We'll discuss Brad's motivations behind focusing on this age group, how fitness principles can be adapted to our age. And we're going to of course, debunk common age related fitness myths. Brad will share his insights on effective training styles, managing stress and inflammation and optimizing nutrition. And of course, you're going to learn practical strategies for maintaining a strong, healthy lifestyle beyond Florida. Over the last decade, Brett owned and operated three gym locations in Orange County, and oversaw more than 40 independent personal trainers, each with their unique training styles. He built a loyal following and sought after client trainer community culture within each of his gym locations. Post pandemic, Brad had to focus more on online training, and started his fitness podcast called over 40 Fitness hacks. He wanted the show to revolve around his passion for helping the over 40 Crowd fight the aging process while still having a social life. Brad psyched to see you again. Have you on the show?

Brad Williams:

Yeah, thanks so much for having me on your show is great. Yeah, so

Philip Pape:

it's so much fun, man. The over 40 thing is so hot right now, one of the most common questions I get all the time, is you know what to do for this thing over 40 Whatever it is training, nutrition, you name it, as if it's some magic arbitrary number. And you know, I kind of pick your brain on that, why the over 40 crowd, let's just start there. Yeah.

Brad Williams:

So you know, just as a frame of reference in your intro, you know, I've been a personal trainer for 15 years owned and operated gyms in Orange County. And I think just kind of those were the over 40 crowd was kind of who could afford you know, private personal trainers or semi private personal trainers, which is what I did, you know, I trained a few people still kind of catered the workout, each one of them, but you know, allowed them to share the cost. And just got really good at it. And, and, you know, would always notice the over 40 crowd, you're talking about their aches and pains and how, how much harder it was then in their 20s and 30s. And, you know, I always give them some props for that I get it. But you know, we could still work hard, we can still get there and kind of grind grind, you know, let's, let's get that motivation as being the personal trainer. And then you know, fast forward 15 years, you know, doing everything I've been doing. And finally turning 40 myself. And now I'm seeing the the problems, you know, it's harder to keep the weight off, I'm tired, you know, you got life, work life, family balance, and I'm like, Oh my God, all these all these clients were right, it is harder. But you know, I've got that personal trainer mindset where I refuse to quit, I will literally find the best ways of quickest ways, you know, and safest ways to still get that healthy body that athletically and aesthetically pleasing body. But also, you know, I've also kind of changed my mindset to more longevity as well, over the last few years. So that's, that's kind of where I am now. And I just love helping people, you know, being in our 20s and 30s. That was great. But you know, we had aids to help us out on that. And now we have to worry about a lot more stuff than just how many days we can get to the gym. It doesn't work like that anymore.

Philip Pape:

That's a solid answer. So first of all, thank you for your honesty on saying like it was the people who could afford it like initially is I totally understand. When I was getting into marketing, I'm like, Well, you know, I'm probably not marketing to 21 year olds need high ticket coaching or whatever. So that's funny but then you said that you know, you yourself hadn't quite experienced that yet being in your 20s or 30s at the time and and then you kind of aged into that and now you can really empathize empathize with your clients, which is also a good point because those listening you know, we have a lot in that demographic don't hire 20 year old coach come on, hire the guys that have been through it or grizzled got the little bit of the gray hairs you know, we understand? Exactly, we understand right and then and then the idea of of refusing to quit and like continuing to push appeals to me and I can relate to wanting to get younger, the older you are like now that you're in your 40s. It's like, Forget Father Time, like, we're gonna figure this out, or we're gonna keep going and making progress. But then the idea of people not having age anymore to help them is another good quote you said, because folks are listening to like, Yeah, I know what you mean. Like, in my 20s, I could do anything. And now I've got things happening, like stuff is just happening, whether it's from built up life stress, right, from obligations and their family and stuff like that, or just what happens with your body? So you said you're 42, I'm 43, we're pretty much the same age and the over 40 crowd, is there something that you experienced in the last five years that you attribute to age that you just absolutely couldn't relate to in your 30s? Because you alluded to some of that? Yeah.

Brad Williams:

So you know, I just picked 40 is the number but you know, I started noticing playing real competitive flag football with a lot of my buddies, and noticing some injuries at 30 to 35. Those were the first times I saw ankle rolls, and, you know, almost some meniscus tears in the knees, just from playing a simple sport like that. And I'm like, God, you know, so we train and try to be more functionally fit and do this things. And, you know, it's just you're just, you're fighting a losing battle, you know, if it My thing is, I mean, if you really love and it's gotta be part of your life, then you make it happen. But for me, I finally decided that, no, I'm not getting paid millions of dollars to be an NFL athlete, why am I doing this? You know, there's other things I want to do with my life. So I pretty much just took sports out, you know, minus some pickleball or, you know, whatever. But uh, that's that's kind of the thing. And then right around, I think 37 I had a pretty prominent lower back injury. And you always have to tell people it has nothing to do with the gym or any my workouts. I always got to put that out there. But it was you know, I was the I was the gym owner, I was running three gyms I was the accountant, the bathroom cleaner, the marketing guy, the front desk guy, you know everything right and so I can get these gyms going. And part of it was moving equipment around to keep it fresh and everything. So one day, I was just moving out of one of my gyms, a couple pieces of equipment and, you know, walked in, it was more of a warehouse style gym. And we use these little eye bolts that were anchored into the ground, and we hook our battle ropes to it. So they're basically OSHA trip hazards, right? So we usually put orange cones on him when we lift the shed door. While I was sitting there to grab a couple things. I'm like ADD, though, you know, I don't need to do that. Literally, as soon as I went in there, talk to someone grabbed a frame weight rack, about 45 pounds turn and totally forgot, went out tripped on this thing lunged out so violently, taught myself and stupidly held onto the rack. And immediately I heard the pop. And basically, long story short, I blew out my L five s one. And oh, it's just a nightmare experience. So with with that, and over the, you know, a five year period of time of two surgeries, tons of chiropractor visits, physical therapy, visits, everything, you know, a finally, you know, that's kind of a shock to, you know, humbling you and seeing what's what's worth it to you on, you know, what you can do now what's in it for your future and kind of longevity, you know, stuck with me like how am I supposed to play with my kid later in life, you know, what I want to be able to walk and, you know, deadlifting 450 pounds is just not my future anymore, even though I was functionally sound and safe doing it with all the, you know, personal training principles that I had. But now it's, you know, I had to adopt more of a philosophy of time under tension, you know, a lot of people have different names for it, do negatives or slow mo training, and I just call it time under tension, taking everything I do, slowing it down, you know, instead of one to two seconds to finish each rep of whatever exercise you're doing, I'd take four to five, sometimes longer. And really get that mind body connection, control, feel the contraction, but it allows you to use about half the weight. So now I've just you know, given myself that much more time expended on my body, as far as joints and you know, my spine as well. So, and I've been doing great with that. And we'll talk about other hacks that I've learned that you know, everything is about quality now not quantity. And it's not just movement, and how many times at the gym, you can get, you know, there's now sleep, inflammation, different kinds of stress, all these things that I've incorporated, that we probably should have done in our 20s That's true. But we just didn't care didn't listen to our bodies and we just had so much drive and you know that young energy that we just push past all those things?

Philip Pape:

Yeah, I've yet to meet someone in that age group who will listen, I guess, who will just say, oh, you know what you're saying is very wise. And I understand it's gonna happen to me, so let me know. It's just never happy like we all learn from the school of hard knocks and you're thinking about back surgery. So I have back surgery to I get it l five s one, same thing. So many people listening, have you know, they get the tendinopathy, or the tendinitis or tendon nesis, right, depending what you call it, they get the they have the surgeries. And you get to this fork in the road, you get to these decision points, the older you get, the more you get beat up of what do I do now. And I like your principle of finding something that allows you to continue to train and not using it as an excuse, but also not being stupid, and just saying, Well, I can do the exact same thing that I did before. So we'll get into training a little bit because I liked the idea of modifying tempo, modifying your lifts, it's all good. Like, I'm not dogmatic about that stuff at all, when it's the best thing for you. So, stepping back, what are the big rocks, like the principles for over 40. And again, I know 40 is an arbitrary number, but it's a good transition point. You know, men and women that's in your testosterone hormones start to decline, you know, during menopause, for women, it's when we all get into mid career. So all the stresses there are kids are like 10 years old, roughly. So what are the principles that do change the approach you have to take, like recovery, joint health, you mentioned stuff like that. Yeah,

Brad Williams:

so that's, that was kind of hard for me to grasp, even after the back surgery was, you know, to get to get what I wanted, I would have to put minimum five times in the gym, lifting heavy, you know, to get what I want. And what I noticed was after adopting, you know, this other style of slowing everything down, you don't need to go five times, you know, sometimes I only do two to two days a week. Usually I try to get three, but just how important movement is it doesn't need to be, you know, heavy lifting, obviously, you can do, you can do quite a bit, which is two to three days, and then your other time spent, it'd be walking, right and why I like rucking with a little light weight vest. And movement is really what matters. And I like to preface during COVID When a lot of us trainers had to go home. And we had the luxury of taking some of our gym equipment home and keep it going where our clients, you know how to use whatever they get. They had, and we would still get great workouts for an hour, hour and a half. And then for the rest of the day, we would sit there and do nothing because we weren't even really supposed to go outside, right? Every single one of us gained like 15 pounds. So we did the same workout got all our protein every day. Yeah, that was the one problem was movement, you don't realize like how much we were moving being trainers. And, you know, for me jumping from gym to gym to gym, and just hustling. No, we're not doing that. And that was the first time I was like, oh my god movement, all his matters just as much as you know, lifting to tear down the muscle and rebuild to get that lean muscle mass. And then so going down that rabbit hole, you know, that's why listening to other experts and just really getting into this over 40 Fitness theories of you got to start looking at all this stuff and slow down, give your body time to repair, you got to worry about sleeping better. Supplements stuff only if you can't get it or won't from your diet, there's people that just won't do it. So okay, we've got to supplement it. And then another big one was I really learned the benefit of doing a little bit of high intensity training, you know, there's people out there that just love it to death and you know, good for you, I hate it. But having a little bit of that per week actually helps boost the mitochondrial levels in your body, which is just part of the aging processes. As we slow down, we age we move less, our mitochondria count starts dropping in our body. And that's what keeps us youthful. And it's also the powerhouse in ourselves that utilizes fat and burns fat. So right there is a flag that saying that you're not moving as much you're not doing a lot of this high intensity stuff. You're aging. That's why we're putting on all this fat. I mean, I'm doing the same amount of workouts, I even cut my calories down even more. I'm eating more protein than I ever did. And why might Why am I getting heavier it's because you're not you're not having that same effect of having all that mitochondria. So that was a an addition I had to start adding it and sure enough, it was really easy to start boosting that and without any effort you know one day a week started seeing the results start coming in faster so that's what just kind of threw me down that rabbit hole and now I've got all these different buckets you know one for movement was more contrast one yeah, all that stuff and you don't have to master at all but if you dabble in a little bit of each one of them now being over 40 Oh my god, you can do so much damage. Alright, so

Philip Pape:

there's a lot I want to unpack because I love even the last time you said dabble in each one of them is is a great way to put it because it people try to do maybe they try to do too much. Or maybe they think they have to do everything in every category. But like you said, dabbling, maybe what you're getting at is consistency or you know, having that spread of doing all the basic routines and habits in your life. The healthy routines to some extent most people are not doing any like or most people are doing very little. So you're gonna be way beyond the next person just by doing some of that. A couple of print Suppose I want to tie him because before we started recording, we talked about how there's, there's things we may, quote unquote, disagree on or have controversy on whatever. And we'll probably talk about that at the end and put that in a bonus content for people to listen to. But the idea of doing too much, and moderating your volume and frequency, when I hear you talk about the importance of movement, I think of energy flux, right, I think of your expenditure. And like, like you said, at the cellular level, you're engaging this. But you also mentioned the time and attention principle. And I think there's probably different ways to get to that result, because I had a similar experience in the pandemic, where I had been doing CrossFit for years, which was added like crazy level, I stepped back and just started lifting three days a week. In a sense, I was reducing volume by doing that. And all of a sudden, I could recover and seek more and build, although I was lifting very heavy, but not that heavy, because it was relative to my strength. Yeah. Anyway, the principle though, is the same when people are listening. It's like, don't do too much, you know, realize that recovery demands are higher and your recovery capacities lower with age, move, walk through on a rucksack. Get your sleep, like these are all super important. Right? So thank you for Yeah, I think I think it was good. Those are the big ones. You can chime in when you want because sometimes I just ramble. But the opposite of that is the misconceptions or excuses people make that are not true. Or they cuz I'm sure you see that as well. Like we just talked about what you do need to be cognizant of what do people say? Well, I'm now I'm 40. So you know, what do they say? Yeah, well, one, one, they

Brad Williams:

say, I just don't have time for this? Well, we have we have a solution for that. You don't have to work out as long and hard as you think. And then, you know, others say, well, is you're fighting a losing battle? Well, I mean, you could say that with any aspect of life, right? We're all gonna die someday. But my thing is, when like hate said was especially like women, you know, that are kind of referencing their 20 year old bodies and college life and their friends with their friends, kids, like how I can't get back to that way. And I was like, first of all, you have denser bones now just happens with age and then eventually goes back the other way. Our body just needs more water, it has survival mechanisms to hold on to more fat, you're going to be heavy, no matter what. So the weight, the skills gotta go. Everything is about inches, how you feel, you know, having that muscle to feel functionally well, that you can walk upstairs and do anything you want. And then I mean, there is a diminishing return as we age of being able to simulate protein, how well our digestive tract works. But you don't give up, you still got to optimize it and just work smarter, not harder. And you can you can get real close, like I feel like I have my 29 to 31 year old body. And I think I can hold that for another 2030 years, and I'm barely doing any effort, because I've got my routines down pack. You know, I enjoy life. I know that. And that's the biggest thing is you got to find stuff that works for you. And we'll talk about later. But you know, what I think of for diets and all that, but I've never put anything on anyone. And I just like being a detective what we got to find things that make you feel good for, you know, diet wise, you know, things that you like for exercise, and just keep you moving. And my best thing that I tell clients is, you know, after they've been with me for a while and they're still crying about you know, I don't have my 20 year old body in VR, I talked about that. I was like, Hey, let's let's just look at you. You've been with me for a while and you feel great. And you know everything let's let's put you against your peers, all your friends the same age, how does that look? They're like, Oh my god, I'm

Philip Pape:

so much better, like top 1%

Brad Williams:

Just, you know, in some of my older clients, how much more quicker they are mentally in talking and some of their counterparts are just barely moving, talking so slowly, like that's huge. Now not everything has to be about the six pack and, and dude, I have I spent my whole 20s and 30s trying to keep and hold that six pack. And when it comes down to it, you see these bodybuilders who, you know, look effortlessly holding them, but what they're taking and what they're using for dehydration and all these compounds and chemicals. It's not representative and they only do it for that one Photoshop. What do you think they look like the rest of the year? I see them they're in my gym. they puff up just like me.

Philip Pape:

And where are you? And where are you seeing this the algorithm? Right? You're seeing the algorithm. So oh, man, the the idea of looking at your peers is really powerful, because a few things come to mind. Brad, one is that it doesn't take much to get you there like and you've seen this you can take someone who's been sedentary and within harsh weeks, even there are things that can start to, relative to their peers seem like outliers, like I've seen people who you know, they're starting to get that hunched over posture, even in their late 30s and 40s. You know, they're walking on the desk all day, and then they start lifting weights and two weeks later, you see him standing up like this, right? You know, older books in their 60s 70s who have trouble getting off the couch. Just a little bit of squatting A week later, they're getting off the couch like that stuff is is life changing? And and you talked about like the bigger and denser bones. I think it's all funny, right? Because you're right, women were just like, see how much more powerful muscular they are compared to their peers from a little bit of this? It's, that's I love that approach. It's good. Yeah, yeah. No. And you mentioned like protein MPs declines hormones. Yeah. All that is a fact. So what are you going to do about it? You just do control what you can. Okay, so I actually have a few questions from our members that are Wits, & Weights community for you. I'll sprinkle these in. The first one is really about training and programming. So I think it's a good segue into that. If we're talking over 40, and your goal is body recomp, you know, body composition, which I'm sure most of your clients are looking for that hypertrophy, physique, that kind of stuff. What's your general principle for training and programming? You know, not knowing the individual who we're talking about here? Just general? What are your principles? Yeah,

Brad Williams:

it's still very similar to how I preach to my 20s and 30s. You know, everything is about raising your BMR, your basal metabolic rate, building more lean muscle tissue, when you're burning calories during the workout, to your burning calories, while you know, the aftermath of recovery and the protein synthesis that's happening, and the thermogenics that's burning more calories, and then having a higher BMR. Because now you have you know, three, five pounds more muscle, you're burning more calories at rest, even when you're sleeping than you were before. So that's always been my theory, my whole 15 year career. But now it's just, you know, what changes after 40? Well, we're still going for that. But you know, like I mentioned before, everything's got to be quality, not quantity. So first thing is we really got to start cleaning up the diet. And if, like, one one thing is really hard is, you know, some people can do it. But I mean, I can't all my, almost all my clients can't do it, just get enough protein in the day. Okay, so we tried first real food, but now we got to use protein shakes. Well, you know, I've had bouts of problems with cheaper whey protein concentrate, because it was always the cheapest stuff. And later in life, actually found out I had a severe allergic reaction that was building up to that, that sent me to the hospital twice anaphylactic shock. And now I know I have a milk protein allergy that's been building up. And now that I look back in time, I had noticed almost every single time I had that shake, I was getting a little itch or something wrong with my lip. And those are all the telltale signs that your body's changing and liking something. I'm allergic allergic to a whole slew of other things, by the way, but we don't really have the time to talk about that stuff. So one is this, like, we got to start getting quality stuff, stuff that works with your gut. You know, there's all this science and stuff coming in about your gut biome and who knows which way to go right, but easiest thing to do is start journaling. How you feel like after you eat after you drink anything, I mean, you should never have that bloating feeling seen your liver blowed out. You know, I found out I was allergic to red wine gluten, obviously the milk broccoli, like where did that come from? I almost had a, you know about it that last year, just a good amount of broccoli and just had not like a severe allergic reaction, but enough to cause enough inflammation enough discomfort IBS slightly. And I've noticed that anytime your body's inflamed anytime your body's stress, either no pain or mental heal your cortisol levels, raise your guts not working properly. And so everything you put in your body is just a waste, it's not going to process it correctly, you're not going to get those nutrients until your body is calmed down. And so the best results I've ever gotten is journaling and making sure that everything that I put into my body, my stress, everything is just top notch, my sleep top notch, and then you start seeing the needle just start going like crazy. You're getting all the results you want. So it's not just alcohol anymore. You know, that was a big thing in our 20s and 30s. Like, well, you know what you're getting yourself into if you're drinking on the weekend that pretty much everything's turning to the fat. Well, all these other systems are doing the same thing too. So you have to watch everything now.

Philip Pape:

Yeah, first of all, I feel bad for you. Well, those allergens because like, it's hard for me to relate to some people because my body for whatever reasons, like a tank with anything, I could just put any garbage into it and it's fine. It's just amazing. Other than you're right, some protein patterns, you gotta watch out that certain, certain negative side effects depends. But I think that's important, right? Because as we get older, these tolerances start to show up, or you may develop an allergen. What I found to Brad is people have been living in this state of fog for years not realizing it until they eliminate it from their diet, right. Oh, there's the clarity I was missing. Even alcohol does that to some people. But um, you talked about stress and cortisol and gut kind of malfunctioning and therefore kind of the nutrient partitioning isn't up memo, which is, it's one of these hidden things that people need to be aware of. The journaling is a great tool. So when you talk about journaling, I assume there's many ways people can do this. Is there a particular way you really like and find that people stick with and find useful when it comes to journaling?

Brad Williams:

I don't really have like an app to use, I'm real big, and just keeping paper, I love paper, getting my To Do lists, and then little journals like that. But other clients, they use, like Microsoft notes, or, you know, or just text it to themselves, but just just something that habit and not not only for watching those items. Another one is, you know, we talked about building your routines when you finally feel like, what's the best diet, you know, what are you supposed to eat on there, you know, what type of movement you're doing each day, because you should do something and you need reminders. So you know, I have this down, and probably in mid day or late afternoon, I always see what my to do list is, next page is, you know, all these routines and like, Oh, crap, I forgot to take some fermented food products, but you know, because that helps with your gut biome, allegedly, and it does feel good to me. But just things like that, or your protein powder, you fried take your second shake, if that's something that was important to you. You know, it's hard once you start building these to remember day in day out, and you let three months, six months go by and then you're like, why is nothing working? And then you go back through this stuff. You're like, I forgot, like six of the things I was doing. Yeah. So it's just that's just not how our brain works. You know, some people probably have photographic memories, but no,

Philip Pape:

no, yeah, I hear you're saying, right, because like I used to take to Brazil nuts every day for selenium, that I remember that dropped off at some point. And I used to have a reminder, my phone and I don't anymore, and I'm like, oh, okay, maybe

Brad Williams:

like that. I do nutritional yeast and eggs for the same thing. But I'll forget. I'll forget the nutritional yeast for like, a year.

Philip Pape:

Yeah, yeah. So you gotta write this stuff down. I mean, whether it's a notebook and app reminder, I probably 20 reminders a day for all little things like take my vitamins, you know, or, yep, do this. Do that. So yeah, it's human being human. Okay, so inflammation and stress. You mentioned, physical and emotional, of course, I'm sure when we talk about stress, which increases with age, and part of it is the decades we spent not taking care of our body, like I said, or life becomes stressful with obligations of family, financial obligations, and so on. So, you know, and I'm even putting you to sleep here. Oh, you know, as well as we have this podcast, because we're probably got some stress. Just kidding, man. For those that watching the video, he just just yawns I was joking. Oh, no, I

Brad Williams:

was coughing. I'm muted, so I can pop. That's good. Oh, I

Philip Pape:

thought it was a yawn. That's so funny. And I only say that brand, because I own all the time. And I feel like I'm offending people every time.

Brad Williams:

My teeth, which is why I have some other issues with teeth, although it

Philip Pape:

sounds good. So the question is, how do we take care of the inflammation in the stress? Like, where did those come from? And are there some practical things that people can kind of easily do and then maybe more advanced strategies if you have those? Yeah, so

Brad Williams:

for inflammation as far as like, you know, we already went through that you know, what you're putting in your body, okay, you've written all that down, you're feeling great, your body's never really bloating up, you're working on your, your mental stress, you know, what's going on with work your family, I mean, that could take some time, too. But I'm telling you, until you take care of that, my job is a personal trainer, and your job, you know, trying to go through this journey. It's just, it's not going to happen, or it's going to have marginal results. And one of my favorite stories on that is one of my clients, a female at the time, she was I think, 32 she had been coming for about a year and she wanted to go the distance like almost, you know, bikini prep, if she wanted to, I'd have to refer to someone else that did that kind of stuff. We got great results. Just couldn't get that last, you know, five to 10 pounds off, maybe eight pounds Max, it didn't matter how much better on nutrition, you know, we gave her more movement homework to dues and, you know, progressive overload, like crazy, like we mapped it all out. And throughout that whole time, you know, I would I was noticing that, you know, she'd always talked about work and how she hated her coworkers, her boss, and she had jumped from job to job, she's just, you know, I'm not that person to I couldn't work for corporate anymore and deal with that stuff. But just just the stress, I didn't know how bad it was. And I I was friends with their husband as well. And he told me how bad it was God is, you know, you need to take care of this. And eventually, she got her wish her husband got a like a higher paying job and was able to give her her dream of going out, consulting, you know, LLC and doing it on your own. And I don't think it was maybe eight days, nine days, she lost like eight pounds. Like all the pounds that we were trying to get off and all sudden they came off and we had kind of given up on some of this extra work due. So she reverted back to the lesser time, you know, maybe three, four days a week, and she lost all that weight out of nowhere. That was my first time I've seen the effects of cortisol and how how that can just sit there and work against you. And you know putting seven days a week on it. Two workouts a day isn't gonna isn't gonna do anything until you solve that problem.

Philip Pape:

Hey, this is Philip. And I hope you're enjoying this guest interview on Wits & Weights. If you're finding it valuable, you can get a bonus conversation we recorded. If you're on our email list, just go to wits & weights.com/bonus or click the link in the show notes. Insiders on our email list will get a link to the bonus conversation where my guest will give you the exact steps to take related to one of the topics in today's episode. Again, these conversations are only available if you're on our free email list. To get the bonus exclusive content with today's guest, just go to wits & weights.com/bonus, or click the link in the show notes. Now back to the show.

Brad Williams:

So that was more on that side. And then for stress as far as pain, you know, I went through that chronic pain for sciatica, I don't know how bad yours was Phil, but mine, you know, I got to level 10 And then had to start counting by 10s, I got to like level 70 pain like I would have rather put my hand on a frying pan for 10 seconds, if you would have taken my back pain away. And recovering from all that still having issues and I met someone that helped me with a breathing process called diaphragmatic. Breathing. We're basically just you know, the people call it like belly breathing too. But learning how your nervous system if you can calm that down. It's not just your cortisol levels, but it's just your nervous system as well. Calming that down. And with within three days of doing this style breathing, like 70% of my paying gone. So it's just the power of using these systems properly optimizing them, you got to know about them. First of all, like I've gone down. I've been doing this for a while interviewing tons of guests. I'm sure you have as well. And you just keep learning and finding out new tricks and trade. You know, I thought I never thought I knew everything about personal training, I thought was really good until you meet people more. So

Philip Pape:

it's true. Yeah, when they're specializing. I mean, stress is one of those. It's funny because I'm putting together a podcast episode just on stress for the new year. Because of that, I think this episode might come out after that. But anyway, it's like a hidden like you said, it's this hidden insidious thing that's working against you. And it's probably the one pillar of all the nutrition and training pillars. It's like most nebulous Yeah, exactly. Right. Like eat sleep, you get sleep, it's like hours and do your sleep hygiene, right? training, nutrition, all that's pretty straightforward. With stress, it's like, okay, what do I do, you know, like, you can't necessarily eliminate sources of stress in your life, although that is one way to do it. But it's also how you cope with it. So like these breathing exercises, and things like that are great. I wish there was a kind of a prioritized or kind of simple approach for most people on what to do first. But I don't think it works that way. Because in reality, everyone's going to glom onto something different, right? Like, if you told me to, if you told me to meditate, I'm gonna say go pound sand. It's not my thing. You know, but if you said go for a walk, and then, okay, I got it, I can do that, you know, like, so we got to meet people where they're at. Exactly.

Brad Williams:

You know, for me, I found after I learned this breathing, you know how boring it is to sit there, you know, and I want to meditate. You know, I'd knocked out two birds with one stone, you know, we'll talk about, you know, I've referenced counting your micro minerals, not just your macro minerals, and we can talk about that. But vitamin D was a huge deficit for me and taking care of that was a huge one. So I Married those two together. So I do my belly breathing, while I'm sitting out there getting some sun so I get some vitamin D. So bam, I enjoy it. I love it. I'm not really meditating. I'm almost like kind of fallen asleep. But you know, I'm getting benefit from both. So it's just finding the systems and routines that are working for you. Yeah,

Philip Pape:

the habit stacking that's, that's always really good. Okay, so mental health is another thing I wanted to ask about, sort of tied to that because, you know, at least the more I learned and talk to experts, I'm sure you have as well we see how linked physical health is with mental health to the extent that I've seen people who suffer from anxiety and depression for their whole life. And they just introduce some sort of fitness routine and it starts to improve their mental physical health. What was your experience with that, especially as we get older, you know, and again, the stress probably is tied into that a lot of women I noticed have issues with like anxiety and depression. So what are your thoughts on that?

Brad Williams:

I've seen different things from all walks of life and people on on working on that and finding it in different things. Some people find it in supplements, some people find it through nutrition, I'm one of those people and we talked about that what some were just getting more sunlight a ton of them were you know, finally moving and getting the endorphins and all those hormones from working out. And you know, some people didn't like circuit training and weight training, and that's what I offered. So okay, well, you know, go ride a bike or go do this or go do it outside and something but for most people, it's just know that you have an issue. Know that, you know, maybe there's something out There are some people that there's just no hope you'd ever want to say that, you know, work with your health and wellness professionals on that, that maybe you need more crazy drugs or whatever. But just don't give up. That's the biggest thing. So, you know, being a personal trainer, I'm sure you're the same way we just we get to know clients, we kind of almost become a therapist, at some point, we don't want to give too much direct advice. But what I always give is, I mean, we know this is an issue, this is probably some of the reasons we're not getting the results we want. You got to you got to start searching for answers for this. And you know, I've got some suggestions. I'm not a therapist, I'm not a doctor. But you know, you've heard these things, start looking for it. And just write write in your journal, okay, I tried this, I tried that, you know, I tried a different type of workout, I wouldn't got some sun and don't give up. And, you know, one of the things that I had issues with, from pretty much sixth grade all the way to, you know, my first year in college was very mild, the semi severe depression. I don't know about anxiety, but I suffered through depression. And you know, people who have depression will never let anyone in the whole world know that they have. And, you know, I was one of those people, until finally, as I just can't do this anymore, you start you start looking and not really looking for help, some people need that, but I just never wanted to devote that to anybody. I just went down rabbit holes and went on YouTube, and, you know, listen to experts on podcasts and started trying out different stuff. And lo behold, you know, I find peace with changing my nutrition up and go and more on a Keto low carb diet. And, you know, I never preached that to anybody because there's no diet, that's for everybody. It's what works for you. And then I, you know, we try that with different clients and find what works. But for me, you know, ever since I did that, within less than a week, all my depression, you know, and other issues gone. And it's been like that for I think, six years now. Not once Is it ever reverted back. I mean, that's just tells you that, that doesn't mean my story is gonna be the exact same for someone else. But just, you know, just don't give up, you got to try different stuff never stop. That's

Philip Pape:

the principle I think you that people want to grasp onto is looking for answers and taking control of your health. In my community, we talk a lot recently about gaslighting, especially for women in health care. And, you know, I want to have some peeps of women on my show to talk about that. But it really applies to everyone in that no one else is gonna give you that answer. And even if you have a coach like us, even if you have a doctor, they may not be the person who has the answer. At the end of the day, you have take control and I like to tie it back to the journal and really understanding the correlations in the data between this stuff. Because I've seen very simple things like taking ashwagandha right like I noticed a lot of all of a sudden somebody was in just a woman who was in a terrible mood for two years and felt like like it was a hormonal nine it could be hormonal but started taking a little bit Asha gone and it all went away it's like just from that Yeah, wow, something was deficient and it's somehow helped regulate right and you know, it's hard to figure out what it is so don't assume other people are

Brad Williams:

gonna know or be and you know take take everything with a grain of salt and you know find that people that are kind of vibing with you that have helped you but you know, I have seen doctors research scientists on both sides all attacking each other that know my ways the best way there but otherwise, it's like endless is you can go on a you know, social media rabbit hole like looking at this stuff. And then all the trolls that are commenting attacking each other. Oh, yeah, mine is just like, Okay, I understand that side. That's what they're worried about. And my my side that I kind of believe in, okay, maybe I should not go overboard. So in life, my thing is, you know, find things that work for you. And just do stuff in moderation. Like if you're worried about, you know, I just recently started getting into cold plunging and I saw some doctor renowned doctor on tick tock that was talking about how the heart medical Heart Association doesn't recommend it. And you know, what, why would you go against them? Yeah, I just had a person, a doctor, medical doctor on my podcast three weeks ago, that basically was just trash talking the medical Heart Association and how he has friends on the board, and how they were talking about how they just discovered that they've just totally effed cholesterol and everything about it, but they can't let the world know about it. So it's like this is what's happening behind closed doors. So, I mean, we can only do the best we can do I bet you like 100 500 years from now, we're doing everything wrong. But you know, for now, we just kind of work with what's working.

Philip Pape:

But you talk about being a detective early on in this podcast, and N equals one like experiment on yourself when it comes out. And when you when you talk about trying keto, or going to keto to help when I hear people going to carnivore help. I'm like, you know, there's some truth there. So what is the truth? We need to uncover that and for an individual that could be you know, you just change something that was negative detrimental for you. You've gotten out of the way by going to XYZ, whatever it is, it's keto. Now maybe it's not the same thing that's gonna help somebody else go to their thing. But try it. That's cool. Try it out. Like I've had clients who did carnivore a bunch of things. He's got resolved, right, like gut issues and other stuff got resolved. But then we got them out back to a more balanced diet. And they were still okay. Because we identified okay, it was a couple of things that that were in there that were toxic to you. You know what I mean? So that that's, I think, a reasonable approach to take here, not just assume this is the answer. Exactly.

Brad Williams:

And even for myself, like I've even modified back down the other way, from hardcore keto, to basically just a low carb diet, and I'm able to sustain everything, all the benefits that I had before. And it just works with my lifestyle, but

Philip Pape:

your intolerance is I can see how it'd be like, You got to be careful of like, which which is causing the issue. Exactly.

Brad Williams:

So I think no matter what diet anyone's on, or regimen or anything, you know, just, you know, I think everyone across the board knows that movement is good. You know, drink clean water cleaner water, if you can mineralized water, if you can, you know, non processed foods, almost everyone's on the same page on that. But I think once we get past that platform, you know which direction you should take, that's where all the fighting is happening. So you just kind of got to find it through your own journey.

Philip Pape:

Yeah, and just again, to allude, for the listeners, we're gonna have a little conversation, that's a bonus bonus episode to the email list about one of these controversial topics. So maybe it's intermittent fasting, we'll see. Okay, so one more thing about nutrition is the micros right? Not just kept tracking calories and macros but also micros, potassium, calcium, magnesium, so on? What are your thoughts on that? What What should people track what's important for those over 40? You know, what's, what's your approach there?

Brad Williams:

Yeah, so I came across more of that. Another guest that came on my show was just nerded out on all these micro minerals and all the benefits and no, I knew some I didn't really come from an education on that, but you know, I get my bloodwork done, my doctor tells me I need to, you know, increase my calcium, increase my vitamin D, all that kind of stuff, but no, to really optimize it. And so you got to be careful there because you never know what conditions people have always gotta throw out there. You'll do this with your doctor. That's what I did. You know, I found a doctor that vibes with me that's more kind of a little bit on the holistic side and, you know, have a frame of reference to bounce stuff off. And then if he Okay, is it then I do some of the stuff I want to do. But basically, this guest that was on my show just said, you know, start counting your micro minerals and you know, he everyone believes that different RDA or where it should be. I just said let's play it safe. Let's just Google RDA is what's out there and the Medical Association. And he said you'll, you'll be surprised that you'll be very deficient in some of these minerals. Number one being potassium, okay, let's check it out. I was deficient in calcium deficient magnesium severely deficient in potassium, just like he said, high in sodium, even though I was sitting there trying my best to keep that down. And you really the thing was, you didn't really need to watch sodium too much. If you had potassium high enough to match that sodium. Well, your body works great. And he was right on that. But the other one was vitamin D. Like I mentioned before, I'm a cave dweller. I live in gyms. I don't go out ever in the sun, you know, hardly ever. And now that I do more podcasting, it's even worse. So, you know, I had to get a routine with going outside getting some sun and then supplement the rest. Right? And so

Philip Pape:

how did you hold on how did how did you test all this? Was it like with hair with just blood bloodwork bloodwork?

Brad Williams:

Yeah, it'll it'll show your vitamin D or calcium, magnesium, potassium, all the other ones I don't really test for but I just I basically made a graph took all the RDA is of all the all the vitamins, all the minerals. And then I discovered a cool website, when I'm trying to sit here and you know, use trackers to find all the stuff and I'd I'd see all these popular trackers, I can't remember the most popular one. But you know, it was more of a brain for users to update stuff. And they would totally just skip putting all the the micros in, they would only do the macros, right? Right? So you didn't know how much potassium calcium phosphorus was in any of this food. So a cool website that I found was eat this much.com. And basically, you could take every single raw food on this planet. And it would tell you all the macros and micros for being in the raw form or cooked because it does change and it does matter. So I started doing that and just nerd it out and made a whole graph on it. And that's how I discovered oh my god, my potassium is next to nothing. And had some other issues too. And sure enough, I started working on that food first and then supplement if you need to sell more bananas. Yeah. Well, on my Keto world, I can't have stuff like that. So I have a use for avocados and a little bit of coconut water and stuff like that. And green and green veggies. So after I started doing that all sudden, I just noticed a lot of bloat. You know I've always teetered around single digit body fat, but my goal is I want to be able to get back to but yet still having a social life right. And that's that's been the struggle being over 40 Well, I noticed about three pounds of waterway kicked off just by increasing my potassium right there because that's, that's what potassium and sodium do just do a dance with each other so sodium will hold more water in your cells or in your skin attack. sem will pull it intersect intracellularly into your cells and any excess it'll expel out. So already benefits from that. I felt better in the gym because potassium was plays a big role in your electrical components of your muscles and just felt amazing. So that was another thing I really started pushing on clients, you know, be careful, I couldn't really write anything for them. I don't have the degrees to do that. But just put it on their radar. So, you know, that's all I do is just start, like you said, find the detective and trying to find the deficiencies or, or things that can get them to start looking at.

Philip Pape:

Yeah, I think that's great. Especially especially if you have a diet that is restricting something right? Like, whether it is a Keto or vegan for sure. vegans are probably the most at risk of certain deficiencies that may be found mostly in animal products, not not, I mean, you could pretty much get everything from plants to I get it, but it's harder, it's a lot harder. So tracking these in some way. I like that eat this much.com The app that we use on my clients whose macro factor also can track your, your, your macros macros, okay, be aware of it, because some, like you said, it's like stress, it can be hidden in there some deficiency going on, and that's behind a lot of us like poor sleep. Maybe it's magnesium. Just you just don't know. Yeah, that's another one. Yeah. All right. I want to I want to reserve some time. I think one more. One or two more questions here. One, one was from the community, what about very much older individuals like wishing their 60s and 70s? In terms of muscle gain, like, what can they? What can they expect, if let's say they're just getting into it. Now they're training, they're using progressive overload, you know, anything different, there's really the same principles.

Brad Williams:

Same principles, but just know that as you're getting older, the one thing is injuries that are recovery time getting older, is so much setbacks, it can't happen. I mean, right now, I'm 43. And it can't happen. Imagine, you know, my mom is going through osteoporosis, she's, I think she's turning 70 today, actually. And she's going through that she literally just broke her hand, doing some landscaping, a very soft fall, and she put her hand out broke both her bones in her forearm, like, unbelievable. So that's kind of a thing that we're going to be working on. And she's always been standoffish with working out in strength training, but God that's, it's so great. You're building up bones and all that, yeah, and also calcium playing a big part. But you got to you got to worry about these things. And, you know, that's why I kind of revert back to my doing more time under tension, you can cut half the weight down, you can still progressive overload, because, you know, cut the weight down. As long as you can get the four to six seconds doing everything slow, like I've been talking about, and you can go up in weight go up and wait. There's nothing saying you can't do that. And you might still be able to get to the weights that you were doing before. You know, there's, there's all these theories of you know, that that eccentric contraction or doing negatives, gives you get to that ability to recruit more muscle fibers to get you stronger for your other lifts. But I would still, you know, slow down and watches as you age for those types of injuries. And one of the cool things that I've seen in my life for individuals who have like osteoporosis, and that kind of stuff is, remember power plates when those were big? Yeah. So now there's all these different companies that have like, you know, come in the market that cut the price down. But, you know, the whole theory behind the power plate is, you know, it's using G force, by, you know, moving up and down, left and right back and forward to a certain frequency. And it's been shown that, you know, it's like putting you on Mars or a different planet with there's a little bit more gravity. And you can do simple bodyweight movements with no weights, and get just as great as results if you're using 2030 pound weights. And I've seen that and one of my clients bought a machine for his wife, and she started reversing her, her score, whatever the score was for osteoporosis going the other way. So that's what we're, I'm trying to work on with my mom now, because she's not a huge fitness buff. She doesn't want to go to the gym. All right, I'll train her for free or this. Yeah, for sure. But if I can get her on there for 10 minutes a day, and literally just hold a squat, that's it, you don't have to do anything else. You there's benefit in that. So that's, that's going back to that theory of don't give up find something that's going to work for that client. Love

Philip Pape:

it. No, but the idea of that it takes longer to recover is definitely important, especially if you're getting into it, you still have that level of frailty or fragility. I mean, I definitely seen dudes in their 70s, who have been training for 10 years, and they're, they're stronger than me. And you know, they're fine, probably. But this recovery is still slower for other reasons. Okay, last thing, is there a question you wish I had asked? I know, maybe there's some topics we intended to get to and didn't but is there some burning question you wish I'd asked? And then what is your answer?

Brad Williams:

Tough one. I mean, we're gonna we're gonna kind of talk about maybe fasting in the next little segment, or whatever it is. I'm real big on that whole longevity things. So, a lot. I think I've really gotten into that in the last year, year and a half talking all these experts and just seeing cool Old plunging, doing more sauna type red light therapy, no everything's about stressors and in my life, you know, I understand that. That's the whole business of working out and stressing the body to repair itself. And we knew as personal trainers, like, it's not just how much weight you lift, it's, you know, volume two. And it's not just about destroying muscle fibers or they repair themselves, it's about getting the stimulus to trick your hormones into fixing this problem of being under this stress. So now, I'm starting to see that, you know, longevity is a big thing too. And bodybuilding looks great. But at that high elite level, there's nothing longevity about smashing 300 grams of protein every day, destroying your body like that. When all the signs for longevity says we should probably not be working, you know, all this stuff. So

Philip Pape:

bright, low protein don't work out calorie restriction, all that same thing,

Brad Williams:

it comes back to where do you fit in all this and for me, and my podcast, I want to be that middle ground, the liaison between all those research scientists that are putting out all these things on longevity and other research on worms and mice. And these are the longevity supplements you should be taking or cold plunge and all that, but also seen how they look and move. No, I want to I want to have a little bit more muscle mass and you know, feel like a man and still have my personal training. So I kinda want to be the middle ground and doing a little bit of both, though, you

Philip Pape:

know, I also cannot avoid making that, that declaration that these guys just they look like they're about to just break in half and fall over have some disease. And you're telling me to live out if you have to live long, like that. Forget

Brad Williams:

wasn't paying. Yeah. So I was talking to my brother about this. And he's like, my, one of my goals is to make it the 120 I want to be a guy 120 Still, with some decent size and all that. And he's like, you know, who's got the record? And it's like a, you know, some guy in Asia or I think it was a Chilean mountain man made it to like 133 that's just what's recorded, who knows what happened in the past and all that. And then I pulled up a picture of him showing my brother and he's like, shoot me by ever. Yeah. So that's, that's the other problem is I want to look good and, and be functionally fit not just my organs inside this body that's worried by the sun and wilderness. Alright, so

Philip Pape:

on that positive note? No, I'm just kidding. On that, no, no, this has been awesome. Man. This is a really good conversation. And I want listeners to know where to find you. Obviously, there's the podcasts or 40 Fitness hacks, podcasts that they can subscribe to or follow right now because they're listening to the show. Where else can they find you? Yeah, so that

Brad Williams:

podcast and basically just my website over 40 Fitness hacks.com. And it's for zero not spelled out 40. And pretty much those are my main three, I don't do a whole lot of social media. Even though I am on Twitter. The best is just the hit my website and I have a contact form on there, and just shoot me an email.

Philip Pape:

That's one way to keep stress down Stance. Okay, so I'll definitely put those in the show notes. Of course, so listeners can find you, Brad, this has been a really fantastic conversation. Thank you for sharing your wisdom with me and coming on the show. Yeah, thanks

Brad Williams:

for having me, Philip. It's been a pleasure.

Philip Pape:

Thank you for tuning in to another episode of Wits & Weights. If you found value in today's episode, and know someone else who's looking to level up their Wits & Weights. Please take a moment to share this episode with them. And make sure to hit the Follow button in your podcast platform right now to catch the next episode. Until then, stay strong.

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