The Muscle Growth Doctor: Exercise At Night Is A Terrible Idea! Grip Strength Predicts Disease!

The Muscle Growth Doctor: Exercise At Night Is A Terrible Idea! Grip Strength Predicts Disease!

Intro (00:00:00)

  • Grip strength can predict the risk of Alzheimer's and Dementia.
  • Leg strength and VO2 Max are also strong predictors of longevity.
  • Smoking and diabetes increase the risk of dying by 40%, while low VO2 Max increases the risk by 300%.
  • There is no scientific evidence to support the claim that exercising at night is detrimental to muscle growth or overall health.
  • In fact, some studies have shown that exercising at night can actually improve sleep quality and recovery.
  • Grip strength is a strong predictor of overall health and longevity.
  • Weak grip strength is associated with an increased risk of various diseases, including Alzheimer's, dementia, and cardiovascular disease.
  • Improving grip strength can help reduce the risk of these diseases and promote overall health.

Enhancing People's Physical & Cognitive Performance (00:02:49)

  • The speaker's goal is to enhance human performance, which includes looking a certain way, feeling a certain way, and performing a certain way.
  • The speaker wants to help people achieve their goals, whether it's gaining muscle, losing weight, getting stronger, or improving cognitive function.
  • The speaker believes that everyone has the potential to improve their physical health and that there are no genetic or physiological markers that indicate otherwise.

Why You Care About Human Performance? (00:04:54)

  • Grew up with sports being everywhere and played sports.
  • Was told that if he wanted to get better at sports, he had to train and work harder than everyone else.
  • Parents were positive and supportive, and raised him with a sense of "you deserve nothing, you have to work for it".
  • Human performance represented a chance to get out of difficult situations and have more control over his life.
  • Experienced challenges as a child, but his parents' positivity and support helped him overcome them.
  • Has an undergraduate degree in exercise science/physiology.
  • Completed a master's in human movement sciences.
  • Earned a PhD in human bioenergetics.
  • Started his lab at Cal State Fullerton after completing his PhD.
  • Now works as one of the directors of the Center for Sport Performance at Cal State Fullerton.
  • The center studies and disseminates research that enhances human performance.

What's the Range of People That Come to You & What Do They Want Fixing? (00:11:36)

  • Dr. Andy Galpin works with a range of clients, including professional athletes, executive clients, and non-athletes.
  • Many clients come to him wanting to improve their overall health, appearance, and performance.
  • Some clients have specific goals, such as running a marathon, while others have been struggling with health issues for years and want a comprehensive solution.
  • Dr. Galpin and his team conduct extensive testing to identify "performance anchors" that are holding clients back from reaching their goals.
  • They then provide clients with specific and personalized solutions to address these constraints and improve their overall health and performance.

What Stops Us from Reaching Our Optimal Performance? (00:14:21)

  • Visible stressors include exercise, alcohol consumption, poor sleep, smoking, and diet.
  • Hidden stressors include vitamin or mineral deficiencies, pathogens, immune system suppression, endocrine system issues, oxidative stress, and sleep problems.
  • Grip strength is a strong predictor of overall physiological health and can indicate risks for conditions like Alzheimer's and dementia.
  • Muscle quality and dementia risk can be predicted through four blood markers that are directly tied to grip strength.
  • Grip strength asymmetry (difference between right and left hand strength) can be an early predictor of neurological decline, indicating stress on the nervous system (allostatic load) or early denervation (loss of nerve supply) on the weaker side.
  • Grip strength asymmetry may also be caused by one-sided training or lifestyle factors.

How Vitamin Deficiencies Affect Our Body (00:20:51)

  • Vitamin D deficiency is common and can lead to various health issues, including low bone mineral density, low muscle size and strength, cognitive dysfunction, immune system problems, and mental health issues.
  • Vitamin D is generally safe to supplement, and it's better to get it from sunlight, but supplements can be beneficial for those who are deficient or have limited access to sunlight.
  • Other vitamin deficiencies to be concerned about are those that are less commonly known and not routinely tested for.
  • When interpreting blood work, it's important to note that reference ranges for vitamin and mineral levels can be misleading, as they may not accurately reflect optimal levels.

Why We Don't Get Accurate Results from Blood Tests (00:24:35)

  • Blood test results can be inaccurate due to several reasons.
  • Reference ranges are often based on unhealthy populations, such as the UK biobank and NHANES database.
  • Reference ranges vary between different companies that offer blood tests.
  • The 95% curve used to determine reference ranges means that 2.5% of people will fall outside the normal range even though they are healthy.
  • For example, a fasting blood glucose of 108 mg/dL is within the reference range but is not considered optimally healthy and can increase the risk of oxidative stress and retinopathy.
  • Pushing up low markers without understanding the physiological response can lead to unintended consequences.

You Need to Understand Why Your Body Markers Are Down (00:28:20)

  • Low testosterone is often a symptom of an underlying issue.
  • It's important to identify the root cause of low testosterone rather than solely relying on hormone therapy.
  • Certain blood markers, such as basophils, can indicate allergic reactions.
  • Albumin levels can be affected by hydration and inflammation, making it a less reliable indicator of overall health.
  • Be cautious about self-medicating with minerals and medications without proper guidance from a qualified physician.
  • Vitamin D is generally safe to supplement, but others should be approached with caution.

Why People Struggle to Sleep (00:32:23)

  • Sleep is essential for health and performance and can be affected by environmental, behavioral, physiological, and psychological factors.
  • Advanced sleep studies can be conducted at home to measure sleep depth, autonomic nervous system response, and body movements.
  • Environmental factors that can disrupt sleep include temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide levels, allergens, and molds.
  • Behavioral factors that can impact sleep include watching exciting TV, using laptops or answering emails before bed, and poor sleep hygiene.
  • Physiological factors that can affect sleep include melatonin concentrations, serotonin and dopamine levels, blood biochemistry, and nutrient deficiencies.
  • Psychological factors such as trauma, PTSD, and negative associations with sleep can also contribute to sleep disorders.
  • Common sleep issues include falling asleep immediately but waking up after 2-3 hours or feeling wide awake after exercising at night.
  • Solutions to sleep problems often involve simple lifestyle changes rather than relying on supplements.

How to Improve Your Sleep (00:37:21)

  • Sleep problems can be caused by behavioral factors such as caffeine consumption, melatonin use, and poor sleep habits.
  • Sleep restriction training involves waking up at a set time every morning and gradually increasing your bedtime by 10-15 minutes each week.
  • This method helps break the pattern of sleeplessness and teaches your body to fall asleep quickly and stay asleep.
  • Avoid strenuous exercise close to bedtime and activities that can negatively impact sleep, such as watching TV or using social media first thing in the morning.
  • If struggling to fall asleep, it's better to get out of bed rather than tossing and turning.

Is 8h the Optimal Sleep Time? (00:42:57)

  • Sleep extension research suggests that increasing sleep duration can improve athletic performance, reaction time, mood, and reduce the likelihood of catching a cold.
  • A study on Stanford basketball players showed significant improvements in shooting percentages, reaction time, and reduced sleepiness when they increased their sleep duration by 2 hours per night for 5 to 8 weeks.
  • Even small increases in sleep duration, such as 30-45 minutes per night for 3 days, can reduce cortisol levels, improve body fat composition, and enhance V2 Max in athletes.
  • Napping can be effective for some people, especially those with busy schedules, but going to bed earlier is generally better.
  • While increasing sleep duration from 8 hours to 8.5 hours may not significantly increase longevity, it can improve performance.

The Misconceptions of Sleep Debt (00:48:32)

  • Sleep debt cannot be made up by sleeping more on other days.
  • Inconsistent sleep patterns are detrimental to health, even if the total amount of sleep is the same.
  • Sleep quality and consistency are just as important as total sleep duration.
  • Aim to go to bed and wake up at roughly the same time each day, within a 30-minute window.
  • Consistent sleep patterns can provide many of the benefits of longer sleep duration.

The Power of Doing Tasks at Your Usual Circadian Times (00:50:49)

  • The time of day you perform certain tasks is as important as sleep duration and quality.
  • Athletes who perform at their usual circadian time, even when traveling, have a competitive advantage.
  • The University of Washington football team maintained their sleep schedule when playing on the East Coast, giving them an advantage over the Ohio team who had to adjust their schedule.
  • Executive professionals should schedule important meetings or negotiations during their local circadian time for better cognitive performance.
  • Training at night can disrupt sleep quality due to the carryover effect of high-intensity exercise.
  • The carryover effect can last for a few hours to six hours, depending on the individual.
  • For those who train at night, it's recommended to do restorative training with a short duration, low heart rate, and minimal neurological fatigue.
  • Professional athletes who have to perform at night due to their job or schedule can work around it, but it's not ideal.

Environmental Factors That Affect Our Sleep (00:55:02)

  • Environmental factors, including pathogens and CO2 levels, can impact muscle growth and overall health.
  • CO2 buildup in the body is a primary regulator of pH levels, and the body tightly controls pH to ensure enzyme function.
  • Holding one's breath leads to CO2 buildup, which drives respiration, not a lack of oxygen.
  • CO2 levels affect the body's sympathetic and parasympathetic drives, influencing focus, alertness, and arousal.
  • Exercise and psychological stressors elevate CO2 levels, priming the nervous system for action.
  • Over-breathing (16-18 breaths per minute) may indicate sleep apnea or excessive sympathetic drive.
  • Over-breathing can lead to respiratory alkalosis, which is often misdiagnosed as metabolic acidosis.
  • CO2 sensitivity and intolerance can cause over-breathing and worsen heart rate variability (HRV) and the ability to fall asleep.
  • Checking respiratory rate and CO2 tolerance can help identify the cause of sleep problems.

Create the Optimal Environment for Restorative Sleep (01:04:55)

  • A closed room with multiple people sleeping can lead to an increase in CO2 concentration.
  • Elevated CO2 levels can trigger sympathetic drive, causing increased heart rate, decreased HRV, and disrupted sleep stages.
  • Some studies suggest that CO2 concentrations of 900 parts per million can negatively impact sleep quality.

Sleep Debt (01:06:34)

  • High levels of CO2 (1100 parts per million and above) can significantly reduce sleep quality, cognitive function, memory, reaction time, sleepiness, wakefulness, and executive function.
  • Poor air quality, particularly high CO2 levels, can lead to a condition called "building sickness," characterized by headaches, brain fog, and other symptoms.
  • CO2 levels as high as 2,000-3,500 parts per million can compromise sleep onset, increase waking events and disturbances, and impair next-day sleepiness, wakefulness, and cognitive function.
  • Strategies to manage CO2 levels in the bedroom include increasing ventilation, using a fan (below 35 decibels), avoiding loud white noise machines, and opening doors and windows when possible.

How to Stop Travels Disrupting Your Sleep (01:09:50)

  • Pattern your sleep environment at home and on the road for better sleep.
  • Make your sleep environment similar to your home by using familiar scents, sounds, and temperatures.
  • Use lavender scent, as it is associated with sleep quality.
  • Maintain a consistent sleep routine, including your pre-sleep activities, even when traveling.
  • Bring familiar items like a noise machine to create a similar sleep environment.

How Important Is Your Heart Rate Variability (HRV)? (01:12:06)

  • HRV is a strong metric that reflects the balance of the autonomic nervous system.
  • Low HRV is associated with long-term cardiovascular risks such as strokes, hypertension, blood glucose, and hypercholesterolemia.
  • HRV is also linked to mental health issues like anxiety and depression.
  • Positive interventions like exercise, stress regulation, breathwork, and meditation can improve HRV.
  • Negative factors like lack of exercise, poor nutrition, and alcohol consumption can lower HRV.

The Impact of Keto Diet and Carbs on Your HRV? (01:13:33)

  • The speaker experienced a significant drop in HRV while following a keto diet for four to five weeks.
  • HRV only started to recover in mid-February, several weeks after stopping the keto diet.
  • The speaker suggests that blood work could provide insights into the underlying causes of the HRV changes.
  • A combination of low testosterone, high sex hormone-binding globulin, and low insulin is often observed in such cases.
  • Insufficient carbohydrate intake can lead to low insulin, which in turn affects sex hormone-binding globulin and testosterone levels.

The Effects of Introducing Carbs Back into Your Diet (01:16:16)

  • Carbohydrates can increase insulin and testosterone levels, leading to improved sleep and overall well-being.
  • There's a correlation between carbohydrate intake and serotonin concentrations, which aid in falling asleep.
  • Meta-analyses show a strong link between carbohydrate intake and sleep onset and quality.
  • Being in ketosis doesn't necessarily mean poor sleep or low testosterone.
  • Individual responses to dietary changes vary, and a ketogenic diet may be beneficial for specific health reasons.
  • Additional carbohydrates at night can improve sleep and testosterone levels without affecting body composition if calorie intake is adjusted accordingly.
  • High-quality carbohydrates are used at night, not right before bed, to optimize sleep and overall well-being.

How to Have a Healthy HRV? (01:18:20)

  • To improve HRV (heart rate variability), it's important to identify and reduce non-specific stressors that are not helping you achieve adaptation.
  • Examine your total stress levels and address any relationship or environmental stressors that may be affecting your HRV.
  • Practice stress management techniques such as intentional decompression and spending time without sensory input to improve stress resilience.
  • Incorporate 1-3 10-minute walks daily without any sensory input (e.g., music, podcasts) to help manage stress and improve HRV.
  • Taking regular breaks throughout the day is important for productivity and stress management.
  • During breaks, try doing breath work, closing your eyes, or meditating for 10 minutes to relax and clear your mind.
  • Taking a walk outside can also be a helpful way to relax and improve HRV.

Good Morning Routines for Improved HRV (01:23:15)

  • Waking up with creative energy and excitement is common, while others may experience anxiety. Taking a few minutes in the morning and during the day to calm down and recenter can be beneficial.
  • Heart rate variability (HRV), respiratory rate, and sleep quality are all interconnected but independent variables that affect overall health.
  • Mental health and stress levels should be considered when optimizing human experience, as a stressed physiology can exist even without major mental health issues.
  • Sleep and recovery are associated but not the same; one can sleep well but still not recover physiologically.
  • HRV can help identify areas where improvements can be made in health and fitness.

Does Red Light Have an Effect on Our Bodies? (01:27:52)

  • Red light therapy uses specific wavelengths (640 nm and 850 nm) that can penetrate the skin and activate beneficial cascades for skin health.
  • It has shown positive effects on injury recovery, hormone balance, and overall muscle soreness and damage.
  • Red light therapy can be particularly beneficial for athletes recovering from surgery or specific tissue damage.
  • While not essential for everyone, it can be a valuable tool for optimizing recovery and performance, especially for individuals with high-demanding jobs or intense training routines.

The Importance of Choosing the Right Training Exercises (01:30:14)

  • Lower intensity, longer duration training often increases HRV over time.
  • Higher intensity training can put people in a sympathetic drive hole, especially when combined with demanding jobs.
  • Balancing high-intensity training with lower intensity activities and recovery strategies is crucial for maintaining overall health and performance.

Gain Muscle Mass and Stay Lean (01:31:08)

  • It is possible to gain muscle mass and stay lean, but it depends on your baseline fitness and how lean you are to start.
  • If you are very unfit and overweight, it is easier to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time.
  • If you have been training for a few years, it will be more challenging to gain muscle and stay lean, but it is still possible.
  • Set reasonable expectations for yourself. Aim to gain 4.5 kg of muscle and 1 kg of fat.
  • Train consistently and be in a slight caloric surplus.
  • Increase your protein intake to at least 2 g per kg of body weight.
  • Adjust your calorie and fat intake to reach your desired body composition.

When to Eat When Exercising (01:34:57)

  • Timing of protein is not crucial for muscle growth.
  • Timing of carbohydrates is important for recovery, especially for athletes who train multiple times a day.
  • Intermittent fasting (16:8) does not provide any additional benefits for fat loss compared to non-fasting when calories and protein are accounted for.
  • The practical challenge of consuming enough food within a specific eating window may vary among individuals.

Best Training for Best & Lasting Performance (01:36:56)

  • To age well and perform optimally, one needs to develop several physiological skills.
  • Movement skill, including flexibility, mobility, and proper posture, is essential to avoid pain and injuries.
  • Consistency in training is crucial for successful aging, and mobility plays a role in maintaining consistency.
  • Speed and power are important to reduce the risk of falls, a significant issue during aging.

The Death Dangers of Falling at 60+ Years Old (01:39:00)

  • Falling can be dangerous for people over 60, with a 50% chance of death within 15 years after a hip break.
  • To prevent falls, it is important to train balance, foot speed, and hand speed.
  • Leg strength and V2 Max are strong predictors of mortality, more so than traditional clinical risk factors like blood pressure and cardiovascular disease markers.
  • A study involving 174,000 people found that smoking and diabetes increased the hazard ratio (HR) of dying by 30-40%, while V2 Max increased the HR by 4-5 times.

What Is VO2 Max? (01:42:09)

  • VO2 max is the maximum ability to bring in and utilize oxygen.
  • It is a measure of cardiovascular fitness.
  • Leg strength is comparable to VO2 max in predicting health outcomes.
  • VO2 max drops by about 1% per year after the age of 40-45.
  • Regular exercise can slow the decline in VO2 max.
  • Even highly trained individuals experience a decline in VO2 max with age.
  • VO2 max is typically higher in trained individuals compared to untrained individuals of the same age.

What VO2 Max Says About Your Health (01:44:41)

  • Low V2 Max (below 18 mL/kg/min for men and 15-16 mL/kg/min for women) can lead to a decline in physical function and independence, affecting daily activities and increasing cardiovascular stress.
  • Reduced V2 Max is associated with poor sleep and decreased heart rate variability (HRV).
  • Low leg strength is a strong predictor of physical activity levels and can lead to a sedentary lifestyle and further decline in physical function.
  • Trainability remains high even in older adults, but starting with a low V2 Max at a younger age can lead to crossing the "line of independence" earlier in life.
  • Building a high V2 Max buffer early on can help mitigate the effects of aging and unexpected life events that may disrupt exercise routines.
  • Controlling what you can, such as prioritizing exercise when possible, can provide a buffer against future challenges that may limit physical activity.
  • Grip strength is a predictor of overall health and disease risk.
  • Prioritizing health should take precedence over muscle growth.

People Don't Believe Their Health Problems Can Be Fixed (01:49:11)

  • Many people believe that health problems, especially in older age, are irreversible and unchangeable.
  • There is extensive evidence showing that exercise can significantly improve strength and muscle growth in untrained individuals, even in those over 80 years old.
  • The belief that physical decline is inevitable after a certain age is fundamentally untrue.
  • Studies have shown that consistent training can stop or significantly slow down the rate of physiological decline, such as maintaining a high V2 Max (a measure of cardiovascular fitness) into older age.
  • The ability to make positive changes through exercise never stops, regardless of age.

The Exercise and Steps to Improve VO2 Max (01:52:02)

  • To improve VO2 max, challenge your heart to pump consistently over time.
  • This can be achieved through lower intensity, more continuous work such as running, swimming, cycling, pushing a sled, doing a circuit, or joining a group activity class.
  • Aim for 20-60 minutes of continuous activity that elevates your heart rate.
  • Additionally, incorporate higher intensity, shorter duration activities to get your heart rate closer to its maximum.
  • Examples include 30 seconds of intense effort followed by 30 seconds of rest for 4-6 rounds, or attending a group activity class such as spin, kettlebell circuit, or cardio kickboxing.
  • Specificity matters, but at the highest level, the key is to consistently challenge your heart to improve your VO2 max.

To Build Muscle You Need to Add Variations to Your Exercise Routine (01:54:21)

  • To build muscle, you need to add variations to your exercise routine to avoid overuse injuries and plateaus.
  • Progressive overload is essential for muscle growth, which can be achieved by increasing load, reps, sets, exercises, frequency, or reducing rest intervals.
  • Aim for a 10% increase in intensity or volume each week to ensure progressive overload without significantly increasing injury risk.
  • Plan out 50 workouts in advance and complete them in any order, allowing for flexibility and adaptation to your schedule.
  • Sleep is crucial for muscle growth and recovery.
  • For every 45 minutes of sleep debt, decision-making ability drops by up to 10%.
  • Chronic undersleeping impairs physical and mental performance.

Creatine Benefits for Your Body (01:58:31)

  • Creatine is beneficial for both men and women, young and old, and improves muscle strength with a low risk of side effects.
  • Creatine is a fuel source, not a hormone or mineral, and is the third fastest fuel source after carbohydrates and fat.
  • Creatine has been extensively researched for performance-based activities and has shown benefits for bone health, mood, and traumatic brain injury.
  • Recent research on creatine has shifted focus from muscle growth in young healthy males to other areas, including neurological benefits and antioxidant properties.

Fat Loss (02:03:47)

  • Adherence to a workout and nutrition program is the most important factor in long-term successful weight loss.
  • Finding a flexible and enjoyable nutritional approach, as well as an exercise system that you can sustain, is crucial for long-term success.
  • Different training and nutrition programs can be effective, depending on individual preferences and physiology.
  • Personalizing nutrition and exercise plans based on individual pain points and preferences is more effective than focusing on generic factors.
  • Adequate protein intake and regular strength training are essential for maintaining muscle mass.
  • Consistency in following a personalized plan over time is key to achieving fitness goals.

Depriving Yourself from Food Isn't Beneficial in Weight Loss (02:11:08)

  • Depriving yourself of food is not beneficial for weight loss.
  • It can lead to psychological issues that affect consistency and adherence to a weight loss plan.
  • A balanced approach that includes both strength training and steady-state cardio is recommended.
  • For a three-day workout routine, one day should be dedicated to long-duration cardio, while the other two days should combine strength training with high-intensity cardio.
  • Working out with others can be beneficial for motivation and adherence.

Why Should You Do Strength Before Endurance? (02:12:12)

  • Doing strength training before endurance work will not compromise endurance and may even enhance it.
  • Doing endurance training first can lead to fatigue and reduced strength, resulting in worse performance in strength training.

How Technology Will Shape Our Health (02:12:36)

  • Precision exercise and nutrition will become more accessible and affordable, allowing for personalized optimization of health outcomes.
  • The "Human Digital Twin" project combines various data sources to create a digital model of an individual's physiology, enabling simulations and predictions of responses to different health interventions.
  • This technology, already used for organs like the heart and kidneys, aims to reduce trial and error in health optimization and provide more accurate and personalized guidance.
  • Stress reduction, historically important, has become less emphasized in modern society, while the study of stress effects on human physiology is crucial, as seen in astronauts returning from space.
  • Ethical considerations regarding genetic testing and human enhancement are necessary.
  • Human experience and aspects beyond scientific answers should be valued, and caution is needed when pursuing certain questions without fully understanding the consequences.

The Impact of Minimizing Stressors in Our Lives (02:18:18)

  • The current health position is a result of minimizing stressors, leading to the need to reintroduce stress intentionally.
  • AI poses challenges in making good choices for health and performance.
  • The four key components for success in health and performance are assessment, qualification, intervention, and personalization.
  • There is a lack of data and understanding of what constitutes good health, making it difficult to set goals and track progress.
  • In-person training is becoming more valued and sought after compared to online coaching due to the companionship and personal connection of having a trainer present during workouts.

Last Guest Question (02:24:21)

  • Jeff Nippard's wife, Natasha, is the person he can't function without and rarely gets the credit she deserves.
  • Natasha is fundamental to Jeff's success and provides emotional support when needed.
  • Jeff appreciates her ability to understand his needs and provide the necessary support.
  • Zoe is a sponsor of Jeff Nippard's podcast and a company Jeff has invested in.
  • Jeff emphasizes the importance of health and praises Zoe's incredible growth story.
  • Zoe's recent breakthroughs in research have allowed them to offer the most scientifically advanced gut health test on the market.
  • The new test can analyze 100 bacteria types in the gut, a significant step forward compared to the previous 30 bacteria types.
  • Jeff encourages listeners to visit and use the exclusive code CE10 for a 10% discount on their Zoe journey.

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