#71: Alex Hutchinson — Author of "Endure: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance," 2X Canadian Olympic Runner, Cambridge Ph.D.
Bring It In | The Future of Work, Jobs, and Education
What do we mean when we say “hitting our limit?” Especially in a time when reports of burnout are hitting record high for workers across the globe, it’s never been more important for employees and employers to understand how to effectively and safely push themselves. Today’s guest, Alex Hutchinson, has a bold idea. In his book “Endure” Alex claims that hitting your limit and giving up is always a mental decision. As a lifelong runner, 2X Canadian Olympic team member, repetitive ultra marathon runner, a prolific award winning journalist, and even a quantum computer researcher, Alex is no stranger to pushing, and exceeding, one's own limitations. In a time when companies are often having to get more done with less workers, and workers everywhere are feeling more pressure than ever, being able to safely, and effectively push yourself to your limits is an essential skill, so with that it’s time to kick off Season 3 of the pod. Let’s bring it in!
On this episode of the podcast, Matt speaks with sports-science journalist and New York Times Bestselling Author Alex Hutchinson (P.h.D). Alex shares his experience running at the elite level, managing a knee injury, and the importance of maintaining a healthy relationship with running as a sport or hobby. Alex also speaks about whether humans have reached the physiological limit of performance and where the next big breakthrough is likely to come from.
Exploring the Limits of Human Performance with Alex Hutchinson
This week on The MiFit Podcast i’m accompanied by Alex Hutchinson. Alex is a sports science journalist, author of the book Endure- which explores the science of endurance and the real limits of human performance, and former competitive runner for the Canadian national team. Alex has devoted his professional life to researching and finding out why some athletes quit while others can continue as well as decipher how much of human performance is dictated by the mind vs. the body. Alex’s elite level background as well as his experiences along side some of the best runners in the world have given him tremendous insight and knowledge in this area and I am so excited to share it with you all. Topics-Falling in love with endurance training-Stumbling upon a PR that catapulted a new career-Reflecting upon the Breaking2 marathon record-Understanding the Central Governor -Using RPE to overcome mental barriers-The relationship we have with pain and how it differs from person to person-The importance of your inner voice-Seeing that thirst is often times a perceived limitShow References:Alex on Twitter: https://twitter.com/sweatscience?lang=enAlex’s blog: https://alexhutchinson.netAlex’s best selling book ENDURE: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/endure-alex-hutchinson/1126647022Breaking2 Documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26VhcxatsmsIf you enjoyed this show be sure to leave a rating and review as that helps this show grow tremendously. Thank you all for the continued support - Enjoy the show!
Why are people who are physically active better at regulating their appetite?And are fats or carbs a better fuel source when you’re exercising? Science journalist and former elite distance runner Alex Hutchinson joins Dr Giles Yeo to explore whether it’s possible to build muscle on a plant-based diet, and why it’s so much easier to consume calories than burn them. Giles also takes the opportunity to ask Alex why he ‘hit the wall’ during a cycling endurance race despite carb-loading the night before.Why Calories Don’t Count: http://hyperurl.co/CaloriesDontCount Dr Giles Yeo Chews The Fat is produced by Anouszka Tate for Orion Publishing Ltd. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
#133. Alex Hutchinson on The Latest in Sweat Science
The Dr. Greg Wells Podcast
Welcome back! In the first episode of Season 5, I’m super excited to share my conversation with world class sports science journalist Alex Hutchinson. He’s one of the best sports science journalists out there and he focuses a lot on endurance training and what we can do as endurance athletes to be better. He has a great blog called Sweat Science which you can check out at Outside magazine. You can also follow him on twitter @sweatscience. We have a great chat all about pushing the limits, heat, the latest research on how the brain copes with suffering and pain, recovery from injury, and how to exercise at an even higher level. Enjoy the conversation!--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/dr-greg-wells/support
The Mr. Bill Podcast - Episode 82 - Alex Hutchinson
The Mr. Bill Podcast
Alex Hutchinson graduated from the University of Montana in the Spring of 2012 with a BA in Philosophy and a certificate in Entertainment Management. While attending the University, Mr. Hutchinson served as Concert Coordinator for UM Productions, that oversaw the logistics for all of the concerts at the Adams Center Arena, as well as a multitude of freelance stage management and event production gigs across the Northwest for Live Nation and Knitting Factory Presents. In 2013, he was hired by the boutique booking agency Hello Booking based in Minneapolis, MN to start their first ever electronic music roster. A few years later he was offered a position at Am Only/ Paradigm as an agent and relocated to Brooklyn, NY. While working at the larger agency he decided he didn't like the corporate environment of the music industry and made a decision to transition to a smaller firm. He took on a role at Surefire Agency based in San Francisco, CA as the head of their NY office in addition to booking shows at Knitting Factory Brooklyn. Alex Hutchinson has relocated north of New York City to Vermont to take on a role as Event Manager for Mount Snow Resort and a touring audio engineer for multiple bands and sound companies. Most notably he works as the Tour Manager and FOH engineer for Beats Antique.
Run to the Top Podcast | The Ultimate Guide to Running
When you’re running hard, pushing yourself to extremes, which do you think is the more limiting factor, your body or your brain? Alex Hutchinson has done extensive research on exactly that question. The Toronto-based author and journalist focuses on the science of endurance and fitness. You may know him from his book ENDURE: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance or from Outside magazine where he’s a contributing editor and writes the Sweat Science column. Alex believes that our limits are elastic, stretchable, and as of yet, undefined. He and Coach Claire discuss those limits, and also tackle hydration, fueling, carbohydrates, strength training, aging and more. And just for fun, they also get into the science of why Coach Claire loves an out-and-back course way more than a loop! Alex also writes the Jockology column for The Globe and Mail, and his writing has appeared in Canadian Running magazine, Popular Mechanics (where he earned a National Magazine Award for his energy reporting), the New York Times, and he was a Runner’s World columnist from 2012 to 2017. Prior to ENDURE, Alex wrote a practical guide to the science of fitness called Which Comes First, Cardio or Weights? Fitness Myths, Training Truths, and Other Surprising Discoveries from the Science of Exercise, which was published in 2011. He is also the author of the 2009 book, Big Ideas: 100 Modern Inventions That Have Transformed Our World. Alex started out as a physicist, with a Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge, followed by a few years as a postdoctoral researcher with the U.S. National Security Agency, working on quantum computing and nanomechanics. During that time, he competed as a middle- and long-distance runner for the Canadian national team, mostly as a miler but also dabbling in cross-country and even a bit of mountain running. He still runs most days, enjoys the rigors of hard training, and occasionally races, but hates to think of how he’d do on an undergraduate physics exam! Alex’s best-selling book Endure has a forward written by Malcolm Gladwell, another famous Canadian runner and writer, and the updated version is now out in paperback. Questions Alex is asked: 3:34 You are an author and a journalist, but you really seem like a scientist at heart. How did you get into writing about fitness and endurance sports? 5:22 What fascinates you most about how the body works when exercising? 6:10 Your book Endure, if you could really sum it up, I would say that it is trying to discover whether it’s the body or the brain that’s mostly the limiting factor when you’re trying to go to extremes but it’s clear that it’s a mix of the two. You can’t say, “Oh, it’s just the brain” or “It’s just the body.” Can you talk a little bit more about how they’re interrelated and what we are finding out? 7:41 Tim Noakes is a South African scientist that has been very controversial. He’s written a lot of things that turned out to be totally true and then he’s written a bunch of things that maybe people have not found to be true. Can you talk a little bit about the controversy, both the good and bad things that Tim Noakes has contributed? 10:35 I would love to distill the lessons that you’ve learned so far about things that can help runners do better. The two main topics I would love to get into are hydration and fueling. Let’s talk about hydration specifically for the marathon. Hydration needs are different for every type of body. Are there any rules of thumb that recreational runners should think about when coming up with a hydration plan for the marathon? 15:25 ‘Drink to thirst’ is starting to become more popular but there are some populations that their thirst isn’t reliable. I’ve heard that as you age, your sense of thirst is not as strong. Have you heard that as well? 18:05 We could talk about fueling during the race or we could talk about nutrition in general, but what I have found is that human studies are just notoriously bad when it comes to nutrition because we’re not rats and we can’t put humans in cages and measure everything. So what would you say are the limitations to studying nutrition on humans? 23:53 Let’s get into the great carbohydrate debate. As I often tell people, what’s frustrating about the word carbohydrate is that lentils, lollipops, and lumber are all carbohydrate. And if you say do eat carbohydrates or don’t eat carbohydrates, clearly those three things are processed differently in your body. First of all, why do we lump carbohydrate? It’s an absolutely massive category of food and clearly our body treats it differently. Carbohydrate is the preferred fuel of the brain. It’s the preferred fuel of the muscles. So why isn’t everybody on the carbohydrate train? 25:35 Sugar or simple carbohydrate is bad if you’re not exercising but it’s exactly what you need if you are trying to run a fast marathon. 27:29 A keto diet could be exactly what an ultramarathoner would want to do. They’re not so concerned about ultimate speed; they’re concerned about eating all the time. Isn't that what they say about ultras is that it’s not really a running race; it’s an eating race? 28:58 What’s the point of all this science if the answer is always “It depends?” 30:22 Let's talk about strength training. What is the minimum effective dose for a runner who is highly active and competitive but not at the elite level? 34:36 What is the minimum effective dose of strength training for somebody who is actively training to be competitive in a race but still at a sub-elite level? 40:10 I think a lot of what we attribute to normal aging is actually more of lack of activity, and all the decline is mostly for the couch potatoes, the more sedentary people, and we runners think that maybe we’re immune to all of that stuff. Would you agree a little bit with that? 44:12 You recently wrote an interesting article about the science of finish lines or teleoanticipation and you related it to not knowing when the pandemic will end. Can you explain? 47:46 I like out and backs better than loops because I know what to expect on the way back. There’s science that proves it, right? 49:28 The brain loves knowing what to expect and it predicts what’s going to happen whether it’s right or wrong, right? 49:42 What questions are left unanswered? What kind of science are you looking forward to in the future? 51:33 I think everybody wants to figure out how to make their brains stronger, not just in running but in life and dealing with little kids. Questions I ask everyone: 52:22 If you could go back and talk to yourself when you started running, what advice would you give? 53:32 What is the greatest gift running has given you? 53:58 Where can listeners connect with you? Quotes by Alex: “For every situation that you think of the answer is both. The answer is “Yes.” It’s just like nature and nurture. The answer is your fate is 100% nature and it’s 100% nurture, and your physical performance is 100% your body and 100% your brain.” “If you look at the list right now of the top 100 men’s marathon times ever run, 98 of them have been run by Kenyan or Ethiopian marathoners so if they’re doing something wrong, I want to do it wrong like they’re doing it because they’re pretty successful. And if you look at the data, in both cases they’re getting more than 60% of their calories throughout the day from carbohydrates. And for the Kenyans, apparently it’s more than 20% of their calories come from the added sugar that they put in their oatmeal and their tea. So is this healthy for a couch dwelling office worker in North America? Probably not. But if you want to run fast or if you’re training hard, sugar is not only like you can use it, but like you said, you need it.” “There is some pretty interesting evidence showing that older runners like Masters runners get a much larger and more immediate benefit from weight training for their running than younger runners do because the younger runners have more muscle to spare.” “Your body knows, even parts of your body that you wouldn’t think know exactly where the finish line is.” Take a Listen on Your Next Run Leave a space for libsyn link Want more awesome interviews and advice? Subscribe to our iTunes channel Mentioned in this podcast: Endure: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance Alex Hutchinson | Outside Online Runners Connect Winner's Circle Facebook Community RunnersConnect Facebook page RunnersConnect Focus Classes email Coach Claire Follow Alex on: Twitter Facebook We really hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Run to the Top. The best way you can show your support of the show is to share this podcast with your family and friends and share it on your Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media channel you use. The more people who know about the podcast and download the episodes, the more I can reach out to and get top running influencers, to bring them on and share their advice, which hopefully makes the show even more enjoyable for you!
The Rundown: Alex Hutchinson Helps Us Navigate The "Super Shoes" Debate
The Shakeout Podcast
Each week Canadian Running staff writer Maddy Kelly and Shakeout host Kate Van Buskirk bring you a recap from the exciting world of running. This week on The Rundown we're joined by journalist and author Alex Hutchinson. Last year Alex came on The Shakeout to discuss the carbon shoe revolution. This week he returns to update us on the evolution of running shoe tech. He also offers his thoughts on our current track and road running landscape. And as always, we recap the stellar results from the last week including standout Canadian performances!Learn more about The Shakeout Podcast and Canadian Running Magazine on our website https://runningmagazine.ca/category/shakeout-podcast/Follow The Shakeout Podcast on Twitter https://twitter.com/ShakeoutPodcastInstagram https://www.instagram.com/shakeoutpodcast/ andFacebook https://www.facebook.com/theshakeoutpodcast/Subscribe to our weekly show on Apple Podcasts https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/the-shakeout-podcast/id1224828899243
#151 - Alex Hutchinson, Ph.D.: Translating the science of endurance and extreme human performance
The Peter Attia Drive
Alex Hutchinson is a sports science journalist, author of the book Endure—which explores the science of endurance and the real limits of human performance—and former competitive runner for the Canadian national team. In this episode, Alex tells the story of his “aha moment” during a meaningless track meet that catapulted his running career and seeded his interest in the power of the mind. He then explains the science behind VO2 max, the difference between maximum aerobic capacity and efficiency, and extracts insights from examples of extreme human performance, such as the recent attempts to break the 2-hour mark in the marathon. Finally, he brings it back to what this all means for the everyday person: optimal exercise volume for maintaining health, how to avoid acute and chronic injuries, how to diversify your exercise portfolio, HIIT protocols, and much more. We discuss: Alex’s background and passion for running (3:00); The power of the mind: Alex’s “aha moment” that catapulted his running career (9:00); Pursuing a Ph.D. in physics while prioritizing his running career, and doing the hardest thing possible (19:00); Career transition to journalism, tips for improving your writing, and insights from the best writers (26:00); Breaking down VO2 max: Definition, history, why it plateaus, and whether it really matters (38:15); The case study of Oskar Svensson: Why a higher VO2 Max isn’t always better, and the difference between maximum aerobic capacity and efficiency (49:15); The sub 2-hour marathon: The amazing feat by Kipchoge, and what will it take to “officially” run a 2-hour marathon (1:01:00); Comparing the greatest mile runners from the 1950s to today (1:14:45); How the brain influences the limits of endurance (1:20:15); Relationship between exercise volume and health: Minimum dose, optimal dose, and whether too much exercise can shorten lifespan (1:23:45); Age-associated decline in aerobic capacity and muscle mass, and the quick decline with extreme inactivity (1:40:45); Strength or muscle mass—which is more important? (1:47:00); Avoiding acute and chronic injuries from exercise (1:48:45); High intensity interval training: Evolution of the Tabata protocol, pros and cons of HIIT training, and how it fits into a healthy exercise program (1:54:15); The importance of understanding why you are engaging in exercise (2:03:00); How we can encourage better science journalism and reduce the number of sensationalized headlines (2:05:45); and More. Learn more: https://peterattiamd.com/ Show notes page for this episode: https://peterattiamd.com/AlexHutchinson Subscribe to receive exclusive subscriber-only content: https://peterattiamd.com/subscribe/ Sign up to receive Peter's email newsletter: https://peterattiamd.com/newsletter/ Connect with Peter on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.
Alex Hutchinson - The Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance
All About Fitness
From lifting heavy weights to running for incredible distances we are constantly pushing the limits of what the human body can do. In his book Endure, journalist Alex Hutchinson explores the science of endurance training, documenting how scientists and athletes are working together to explore the outer limits of human performance. On this throwback episode he discusses how science is studying the human body to help athletes improve their ability to perform, compete and set new records.Order a copy of Alex's book, Endure: Mind, Body and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance: https://amzn.to/34uIHPjhttps://petemccallfitness.comOrder a copy of Ageless Intensity: High Intensity Workouts to Slow the Aging Process: https://amzn.to/3wJHKi4Order a copy of Smarter Workouts: The Science of Exercise Made Simplehttps://amzn.to/3fub1YlGet relief from sore muscles and promote recovery after hard workouts; order the NIMBL XLR8 massage gun - use code AAF20 to save 20% https://joinnimbl.com/products/xlr8Dynamic anatomy; $29https://allaboutfitness.inspire360.com/allaboutfitness/dynamic-anatomy-recorded-webinar-and-e-book-bundle-copyLearn how your muscles and fascia function as an integrated system to move your body along with how to design the most effective exercise programs for the core, legs, inner thighs, shoulders AND glutes. 0.2 CECs - ACE, NASM and AFAADynamic anatomy e-book; $7Learn how your muscles and fascia work to move your body.dynamic-anatomy-how-your-body-moves-during-exerciseExercise program design for the fountain of youth; $49https://allaboutfitness.inspire360.com/allaboutfitness/exercise-for-the-fountain-of-youthLearn the science of how exercise can burn fat, build muscle AND slow down the aging process, includes workout programs to help you find your fountain of youth. 0.3 ACE, 0.4 NASM and 4 AFAAExercise for the Fountain of Youth e-book; $7Learn how exercise can help you to slow aging and find your fountain of youth.https://allaboutfitness.inspire360.com/allaboutfitness/allaboutfitness/exercise-for-the-fountain-of-youth-e-bookTotal Body Core Training; $67https://allaboutfitness.inspire360.com/allaboutfitness/total-body-core-training-continuing-education-program-for-fitness-professionalsLearn the science of exercise program design and how to build a stronger body by first creating the foundation of a strong core. The course includes a progressively challenging exercise program that will keep you working out all year long. 0.4 ACE, 0.5 NASM and 5 AFAA CECsFunctional Core Training; $7Explains how to build a strong body starting with your core muscles.https://allaboutfitness.inspire360.com/allaboutfitness/allaboutfitness/functional-core-training-e-bookGlute Reboot; $29https://allaboutfitness.inspire360.com/allaboutfitness/glute-reboot-all-about-exercise-for-the-glutesAn online course in collaboration with Master Trainer Abbie Appel; learn how the muscles of the gluteal complex work as well as a number of effective exercises to help them function (and look) better 0.2 ACE, NASM and AFAA CECs - $29Bundle: Functional Core Training, Dynamic Anatomy and Exercise for the Fountain of Youth; $17https://allaboutfitness.inspire360.com/allaboutfitness/e-book-bundle-exercise-for-the-fountain-of-youth-functional Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices