Cultivating a Joyful Lifestyle for Health and Longevity
If you’ve spent any time at all in the wellness world over the past decade, you’re familiar with mindbodygreen, the premier health and wellness website for articles, courses, certifications, and more. In this episode, I’m so excited to host the founders, Jason and Colleen Wachob—it’s also the first time I’ve had a couple on the podcast at the same time!
Colleen and Jason have just released their new book, The Joy Of Well-Being: A Practical Guide to a Happy, Healthy, and Long Life, which challenges our definition of self-improvement by revealing what a healthy lifestyle looks like at the fundamental level—and how it’s not what you think.
In our current health-influencer culture, we are bombarded with information about what we should be doing. But this information often focuses on the latest trends and assumes you have endless time and money to tackle every new health fad that comes your way. To top it off, the information you get is often conflicting.
Colleen and Jason’s goal is to help you cut through the noise and find a recipe for well-being that brings joy and happiness to your life and focuses on emotional health as much as physical health.
You’ll be so encouraged by this conversation and come away with a few practical tips on how you can bring more well-being into your life today, without sacrificing all of your precious time and resources.
00:01:05 – Introducing Colleen & Jason Wachob from mindbodygreen
00:04:42 – Jason’s background and the “why” behind mindbodygreen
00:07:19 – Colleen’s health crisis and journey to well-being
00:10:50 – The distinction between wellness and well-being
00:16:15 – The Roseto study and the impact of strong social connections
00:17:58 – The importance of emotional health for well-being
00:21:36 – The fundamentals of health
00:27:58 – How we get you 80% of the way to health
00:32:18 – The “wellness wave” and building momentum toward health
00:33:20 – The shift toward protein and resistance training for health and longevity
00:41:28 – Being flexible with health choices rather than dogmatic
00:44:45 – The Joy of Well-Being and the mindbodygreen supplement line
Freebies From Today’s Episode
Use code JJPOD for 15% off supplements at mindbodygreen (new customers only)
Resources Mentioned in this episode
Discover mindbodygreen, founded by Jason & Colleen Wachob
Get your copy of The Joy Of Well-Being
Study: The Roseto Effect
Check your lab numbers with YourLabwork
WB40 Ep 555 Colleen & Jason Wachob
[00:00:00] I am JJ Virgin, PhD Dropout. Sorry, mom, turn four time New York Times bestselling author. Yes, I'm a certified nutrition specialist, fitness Hall of Famer, and I speak at health conferences and trainings around the globe, but I'm driven by my insatiable curiosity and love of science to keep asking questions, digging for answers, and sharing the information that I uncover with as many [00:00:25] people as I can, and that's why I created the Well Beyond 40 podcast.
To synthesize and simplify the science of health into actionable strategies to help you thrive. In each episode we'll talk about what's working in the world of wellness, from personalized nutrition and healing your metabolism to healthy aging and prescriptive fitness. Join me on the journey to better help so you can love how you look and feel right now [00:00:50] and have the energy to play full out at 100.
This is a. New moment in the Well Beyond 40 podcast never before happened. I have a couple on the show and it is a couple that Tim and I have gotten to be really good friends with. I've known them for over a decade now, and it is our buddies, Colleen and Jason [00:01:15] Walkup from MINDBODY Green. They're co-founders and co-CEOs of Mind, body Green.
And you're gonna hear the story of how Mind Body Green started, and I'm sure you've been on Mind Body Green Site. They are the premier site for wellness. They've got great courses, they've got a really great health certification program, great products, all sorts of cool stuff. I've been blogging on there for years and what's gonna [00:01:40] be really fun in this interview is they've seen it all, oh my gosh.
Like talk about seeing it all over the last 14 years with all the interviews, blogs, et cetera. They've seen all the wellness trends. So that has been super cool because they now have really synthesized what you need to do to get to your first 80% in health. So wherever you're now, what, what can you do to get 80% healthier?
And what are those [00:02:05] fundamentals that you need to do and, and really looking at rather than wellness, wellbeing. And so their new book is called The Joy of Wellbeing, and it is, About simple things that you can do. A lot of them that will not cost you any money or time to make major shifts in your health.
And you're going to hear Colleen's story. She's a Stanford University grad, what she was doing before, and then [00:02:30] Jason's story, who was a basketball player in college. I think he was at Cornell. They were both living in New York City and you know, some major life changes led to them founding co-founding Mind Body Green, and now they are Miami, nearly neighbors where they live with their two daughters, Ellie and Grace.
All right, I am going to put all the cool show notes at jj [00:02:55] virgin.com/wellbeing. Stay with me here because I'm going to be right back with them when we again, are gonna talk about what are those fundamentals to get your health 80% of the way there. Then you can do all the hacks and whatever else you wanna do.
But you gotta get the fundamentals right and a lot of these are things you probably never, ever thought about before. And again, you're gonna give some tips right now that you can put into place that won't take you any time and it won't cost you any money. I'll be right [00:03:20] back with Colleen and Jason. Stay with me.
So I'm super excited cuz we have a, a two for one going on here today to have both of you, Jason and Colleen on an interview. Welcome. Thank you so much for having us, jj. We, we love you as a person and we're so excited to be here. Yeah, such an honor. Thank you. Yay. Well, we've, you know, we've done interviews before on the Mindshare side, but [00:03:45] I've never had you.
In my health community and I'm very excited to share you with everybody and you know, I know everybody listening is a big fan of Mind Body Green because I don't know how you pay attention to wellness without like, you know, paying attention to Mind Body Green. You guys have been kinda leading the charge now for what, 14 years?
Yes. Coming up on 14. It's quite something, quite something to have that [00:04:10] vision way back when. To even do this. So I'd love to start there as to, you know, cuz you guys do not come from the health world. Whenever ever anybody asks me, oh, you know, when did you get interested in health? I'm like, five. You know?
But you guys had very different jobs, right? Definitely. So you had very different jobs when you started. So I would love to kind of dig [00:04:35] into where the heck did Mind, body Green start from, and then we're going to go into some of the key concepts of your new book. I'm so excited about. So it's definitely been an evolution and a journey along the way.
And, you know, if we were to go back to the beginnings, my background, I, I played basketball in college and was an equity trader on Wall Street. And then after I was living in New York at the time of nine 11, and like many New Yorkers was deeply affected by that [00:05:00] event and just decided like I, I wanted to maybe explore other things.
And that big thing became, I want to become an entrepreneur. I was part of a series of companies. Most of them did not do well, but I learned a lot in the process, and the biggest learning came from the last startup I was part of Premi Buddy Green. It was an organic chocolate chip cookie company, which was in every whole Foods market in the country in the time in 2007.[00:05:25]
Cookies were amazing and the company wasn't doing well, and I found myself flying a ton. I flew over a hundred thousand miles domestic in a year. My six foot seven body in a coach seat is not good for me or anyone else in front of me. And the stress and the flying and old basketball injury led to two extruded discs.
My lower back L four, L five S one excruciating sciatica. I could not walk. I. Went to a [00:05:50] doctor who said, you need back surgery. I have nothing against surgery, but generally see it as a last resort. And also worth noting that the success rates with back surgery are not good. Right. That's an understatement.
Yes. It's a great annuity because you never just have one. Very, very, yes. Mm-hmm. Tried cortisol shots that didn't work, sought a second opinion. That doctor more or less did the same thing. He looked at the x-ray and said, you need back [00:06:15] surgery. And it was almost like an afterthought. He said, you know, maybe some yoga or therapy could help.
And I said, okay, you know, I'll try some yoga. And sure enough, 10 to 15 minutes of really light yoga over the course of six months worked. And I went from couldn't walk at all to being fine. And to this day I've never had back surgery. And it was through that process. I had this epiphany. We had to rewind here to 2008 now.
Where the view on [00:06:40] wellness, anything holistic was a little bit too new. Agey only, yeah. Thanks. Choir. People live in Venice or Brooklyn. Or Boulder. Mm-hmm. And it was, it was very clear to me that true wellness, or as we like to call it wellbeing now, and Colleen will explain to you why we like wellbeing over wellness.
Was this fundamental, physical, spiritual, emotional, and environmental wellbeing. A lot of people did not understand the environmental [00:07:05] piece back then. Everyone's clear on those reasons today, and that all of these pillars were interconnected. Hence my buddy Green. One word, not three. And that was like the why.
We've had a series of whys. Colleen had a big why when she decided to come on full-time and I'll Yeah, so, you know, my, my journey to wellbeing, my journey to writing this book with Jason really started from near catastrophic pulmonary embolism when I was 32, I [00:07:30] was working jobs prior to my body, green I w gap, Walmart, Amazon, so very different sphere.
One Saturday I was going to Terrace Styles is 11:00 AM yoga class in the city. Something I did every weekend. And after class I was walking around the West Village and I called Jason. I was like, I'm having trouble breathing. Can you come into the city? So we, he came in immediately. We were walking around.
I was like, I think I need to go home. So I [00:07:55] traveled with Jason home on the subway. And then as we were walking up the a train steps, which are quite steep, I collapsed, got up, got myself out of the subway. And did what so many women do. I, I gaslit myself and was like, I'm okay. I'm fine. I'm sure I just overextended myself.
It's really hot and, you know, came up with every excuse to justify not going to a [00:08:20] doctor. And over the weekend I did things I never did. Like I, I napped, I slept, like, there was clearly signs that something was, you know, deeper wrong. On Monday morning, Jason was like, you can't go to Amazon at your job unless you go to the doctor on the way.
So I traveled from Brooklyn to soho, get to my doctor. He does one test and he is like, you're having a pulmonary aism. I was totally confused. I didn't really know what the term meant, the time. I probably [00:08:45] didn't have a smartphone to Google it, you know, on arrival. He gave me a sign that said I'm having a pulmonary embolism, cuz he was really confused and concerned that I wouldn't be able to articulate what was happening with me once I got to the er.
So, once I got to the er, they, you know, did some scans. I had, you know, showers of clots in my lungs. I hadn't seen anyone with this many clots who was still. You know, living, that was definitely the point where [00:09:10] I went from breakdown to a very long journey to get to a breakthrough and I wrote a story, um, mind Buddy Green, about this experience.
Of having a pulmonary embolism. The story went viral and I heard from so many women, daughters, cousins, friends who everyone seemed to know someone were someone who was seemingly healthy, who didn't have the risk factors for a clot, had this happen to them, even though I [00:09:35] think the clot incidents supposed to be about one in 10,000.
So, you know, a huge experience in terms of. Really being the c e o of your own healthcare, I think I had been like, oh, that's something that happens to smokers or other people and, and not people who were like me. And you know, I definitely learned about the responsibility that I, I needed to take over my own health and wellness.
And it was the start of this very long journey [00:10:00] to try to get to that breakthrough of trying everything. Some of it wonderful, some of it closer to Charlatan to kind of figure out what would work for me. And you know, the joy of wellbeing is really the roadmap that I wished I had when I was starting on this journey that would've saved me a lot of time and hopefully got me to the answer a lot sooner.
And what's super exciting is that you have had [00:10:25] now really 14 years of being around some of the top. People in wellness and having access that most people will never have, you know, and really being able to see firsthand all this different information, and again, kind of all levels of information, some super science based, some sort of, you know, pseudo everything in between to come to this.
Realization. [00:10:50] And so first off, I'd love to know like this decision that it's not wellness, it's wellbeing. What's the distinction between that? And then I'd like to go into the big shift you've seen. So I think there two reasons. We have a, a very complicated relationship with the word wellness. On the one hand, I recognize that these.
Principles and tools and techniques have helped me, Jason and so many other people in our family. However, when I look at [00:11:15] the way in which I see wellness and air quotes personified throughout social media and the world, it causes me concern. I. We use this phrase in the book of Kardashian Wellness, and I think that's a lot of what I see on social media, which is a lot of a focus on things that aren't gonna really move the needle and less of a focus on the fundamentals that are proven to actually move the needle.[00:11:40]
And second, there's a big focus on the self and part of that is very rational cuz you do have to tune into yourself and you know, work on your own wellness before you can start in your family or your community. But I think it loses this connection that there's something bigger around us, and that true wellbeing will never be attained unless you know, you and your community and your environment are also in a state of wellbeing.
And we [00:12:05] view the kind of 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0. And I think 1.0 is, is the conversational longevity. We're essentially, Let's get someone to live as long as they can say to a hundred years old and 2.0. The conversation shifted in a positive way to health span, where the idea is, let's make sure you live to a hundred, but let's focus on quality of life.
So up until say, 99 [00:12:30] years, 11 months, you know, three weeks you're, you're mobile, you're healthy, you're doing all the things you want to do, and then you decline very rapidly and you die, maybe even overnight, a catastrophic event like a heart attack, and then. We like to, to shift the conversation to 3.0 on what we call joy span because what's the point of being healthy and mobile and doing all the things you wanna do physically?
[00:12:55] If you're on marriage number eight and your children don't speak to you and you have no friends, that's not a joyful existence. And so that to us is paramount. And if you look at. All of the great studies you were just referencing a new one that that came out we were unaware of on the power of meaningful real life connection.
It [00:13:20] is just so compelling and that should be part of the conversation. And, and if you think about like taking a step back in, in terms of all the things we can do to extend longevity, health span or joy spann, we are embedded in the space and this is our job and we're overwhelmed. We can't do all of these things.
And the major objections to our world to being healthy is I don't have the [00:13:45] time, I don't have the resources. And then when you start digging around on social media or on Google and looking at content, it is overwhelming so much. The information is conflicting and confusing. And for us, this became a passion where we are at the point where, There are so many scientifically proven, time-tested modalities or techniques that [00:14:10] anyone can do.
You know, assuming they're able-bodied, if you have a life, if you have kids, spouses, that you can fit into your day and that we can get you 80% there because I can see how someone looking at our space, you know, picking up the book of the month very quickly, just. It gets turned off and they say, I can't do this.
Mm-hmm. I'll never get there. [00:14:35] And that is just heartbreaking for us. Yeah. I hate celery juice. What do I do now? Oh god, don't get me. Great example. Ironically, I did like a food sensitivity test years ago and who knows if it's accurate, but apparently I was allergic to celery juice. And you know what? How fortunate for you.
I know how fortunate. It's amazing. Saved from that one. You know, you brought up a couple really important points, and it's, [00:15:00] it's interesting because I have a mom who's 90, 93. Wow. Wow. Not my genetics, sadly. And she, you know, she lives a de two story house. She walks up the stairs. I have a son, a, a brother who also is not my genetics, who's schizophrenic, who she takes care of.
So I feel that's some of her purpose. And she's golfed her whole life and had this golf group and everything else, but all of her golfing friends basically have died, right? All of the fam, like everyone has [00:15:25] died. Mom's still there, and she's like, she's lost that connection stuff that she's always had. I'm like, mom, you gotta get younger friends.
Like that's it, you know? You just gotta get some youngins in there. But it is interesting to see, because literally she called me this last week. She goes, okay, I'm done with. This being sad and depressed. I'm like, okay. Because I was like, I don't know what to do here besides move you out to Florida and get you at the villages, you know, which you, you look at these [00:15:50] retirement communities and you go here.
There's definitely a reason that this works so well because there's all that social connection and fun and joy in them that we need to have. And Rada Agro and I were talking about this, it's like there needs to be a prescription for joy. You ask people like, what have you done for fun lately? And they look at you like, especially if they're a parent.
I remember someone asked me that and I went, I went to my kid's soccer game. Does that count? No. Okay. I don't know. [00:16:15] You know, it's such an important point and I think all of us, including ourselves, can get caught up in, in nutrition and exercise a and look, there's good reason. They do tend to work. But you know, with that said, one of our favorite studies, which we mentioned in the book, is a study called the Rosetta Study.
And Rosetta was a small town in Merle, Pennsylvania in the 1950s, and you know, you [00:16:40] rewind back then, this is when heart disease enters America. Unfortunately, however, it didn't enter Rosetta, and so they studied Rosetta. Because the rate of heart attacks under age 65 was half that of the nation. And for men under 55 0 heart attacks nonexistent.
So it's like, what are these people doing? What are they eating? What are they drinking? Well, it turns out they're doing all of the things that all of us. Think are probably [00:17:05] not good. They're smoking, they're drinking, they're eating lots of pasta and meatballs. This makes, so it's a town full of George Burns E.
Exactly. Strong social connections. Multi-generational living is common. There were lots of parties and parades and celebrations, but enjoying the wine and the food. With family and friends. Guess what happens in the 1960s? Community starts to break apart. People move away, [00:17:30] boom. Heart disease arrives, catches up with a national average.
You know, it speaks volumes to the power of connection, the science of connection, which we think is extraordinarily relevant given where we are today in 2023. There's a great stat in the book. There was a study in 2019 from Cigna that said, Half of Americans say they have meaningful daily face-to-face interactions.
2019. Can you imagine [00:17:55] what that statistic is today? Oh boy. And you brought up a lot of people aren't able to articulate what brings them joy. And you know, C couldn't agree more. I. Arthur Brooks coined the term a personal mission statement, and we think it's really good practice for everyone to, to visit and then revisit kind of their, their own purpose and ask themselves, what is it that that brings you joy?
Why [00:18:20] do you get outta bed in the morning? What feels like a higher calling? You know, and, and we go into more detail around it in, in the joy of wellbeing. But that's probably the hardest part of all of this is, you know, tuning into yourself. And checking in on am I living the most authentic life for myself?
And I think most people are aware if they're not exercising enough, if they're not eating well. [00:18:45] But I think when someone's emotionally unwell, that's often an inner dialogue that's a little bit more difficult, and asking the question, you know, If something were to go wrong, who's that midnight call to a friend?
Well, if I don't have a friend, well that's probably an issue and start to do the inner work. Why is that? You know, are you looking forwards to something or [00:19:10] are you looking backwards and. Emotional health often in our world just really gets put to the back burner, and we've talked about this offline.
There are a lot of people in our world who are extraordinarily healthy and putting out tremendous information, but they're emotionally unwell and it's something that should be top of mind and shouldn't be discounted. And we [00:19:35] really want to help people with the right tools and asking the right questions.
You know, I think about the blue zones and I think if there were some real way, cuz right now it's like what you do an adrenal salivary index or you look at your H R V, but there's not something like you get on a body composition scale or you take your blood pressure for your emotional health and you look at, you know, they talk about the blue zones and they try to make it about the [00:20:00] diet.
I don't believe it's about the diet whatsoever. And I think what you just talked about with that town, Rosetta showed it. I think these people are respected as elders have great relationships, social ties, and a purpose. You know, you look at like one of the key, most important parts of health that just isn't ever talked about cuz probably.
You know, hey, if you're doing nutrition, you can sell a nutrition program and supplements and shakes. If you're [00:20:25] doing exercise, you can sell training. What the heck do you sell parties? Like what do you do now? I love putting on parties, so this is making, you're enjoy. You're quite good. And we encourage you to move to Miami so we can do that more parties.
So I think this is a huge thing to bring up. And I wanna go through now the fundamentals, because it made me joyful just to hear this because I. Feel like [00:20:50] people approach their health, like they approach like the opposite of how they would approach buying a car. I don't think most people would go to the car dealership and go, you know what?
I really wanna know, you know, what are the rim options for that car? And go, I don't really care about the engine man. Doesn't matter. I just want it to look really pretty. And yet, you know, I feel like we approach health in that way. What's the latest thing? What's the hack? [00:21:15] What's the thing? And those things have a place after the fundamentals are in place.
But most people haven't done the basics and they're looking for this thing over here and it irks me because you know, you gotta get the foundation right first. So when you talk fundamentals, what are they?
We start with breath because it breath is life. It is [00:21:40] the most fundamental part of our existence. We breathe between 17,000 and 30,000 times a day, and, and more than half the population is breathing all wrong and their, and their breathing through their mouths. Breathing is, is personal to me because of, you know, when I had my pulmonary embolism, it was the first time I struggled to breathe something I, I took for granted.
It was a six month. [00:22:05] Process to, to breathe normally again. But I was living with this invisible illness where I looked pretty fine, healthy-ish, you know, on the outside, but I would, you know, fight the senior citizen for the subway seat because it was a struggle to, to stand for long periods of time. And when you look at the place where you can have the most fundamental impact, On anxiety and you know, [00:22:30] activating your rest and digest system on your immune response.
It has this wonderful wellness wave on so many parts of your body. And you know, the wellness wave to us is this idea that momentum begets momentum. So once one part of your life, Starts working and you're starting to see the health benefits and you're like, wow, this, this made me feel really good. I got some more sleep now I'm gonna exercise in the morning.
Or [00:22:55] do whatever it is that you know your body needs that day. Other parts of your body seem to fall in shock. So when I think of, you know, the highest r y activity for about 50% of us, that's a good place to start. I also want to call out, like doing lab work and in the book I go into great detail here and I think, you know, in terms of, of killers, cardiovascular disease is the number one killer in America.
For me personally, that's a big one. My [00:23:20] father died of heart disease at 47. My maternal grandfather died of heart disease at 49, and then I guess my paternal grandfather died of cancer at 44. So men in my my family have a terrible track record with regards to longevity. And so that's something I wanted to get ahead of.
I do comprehensive blood work and as it, as it relates to, to C v D, you know, the big ones. I encourage everyone to do apo B, LP little A, get a, get a [00:23:45] calcium score. Those are like the big three that I think everyone should focus on. And the, and the fourth one, which I think most people are unaware, and this is very personal to me, homocysteine.
Homocysteine for those unfamiliar is a marker of inflammation. Homocysteine at very high levels could lead to a catastrophic event like a pulmonary embolism or an aneurysm or a stroke. Your homocysteine should be under [00:24:10] 15. A lot of functional medicine practitioners will say under 10. When I first started to get familiar with testing, I work with Dr.
Frank Lipman. I said, you know what? Let's, let's go a little deeper here than just the blood pressure. So I do the 28 Vials of blood. My esteem was 63. Holy. I've never, never seen anyone that high. I've never even heard of anyone being that high. I, I will joke that, you know, I'm six seven, so I have the height, so maybe that, [00:24:35] so that, wow.
That must just. Be why your whole, like, why you have this whole familial history of this. Yeah, I know. So my father had something structurally wrong with his heart, which I don't have, so I don't, I'm, I'm fine there. My paternal grandfather, I have no idea cuz he died before I was, I was born. There is something possible there.
And so [00:25:00] I'll never forget the moment I, Frank Lipman called me and he said, I think it's a mistake. Take the test. And it wasn't. Wow. This was years ago. I didn't go immediately to Dr. Google. I did later. Good restraint. I would've been like on there, man. I was like preoccupied with work. He called me in the middle of a meeting, he called.
So I picked up. Usually it's like he doesn't call me. I. And he, he was like, what [00:25:25] do I do? Is there, you know, medication, surgery, diet? And he was like, you're not methylating properly. I'm gonna messenger you over B vitamins in the Yeah. Like mess. I was like, okay, this is serious. Like, we both live in New York City.
He's messengering over the supplements. I went from 60, couldn't wait for that next day. Yeah. I went from 63 to 23 and 30 days. Wow. And then today I'm 10. Nice. And just purely by getting, [00:25:50] uh, your methylation pathways going. Yeah, purely by supplements that led to our, like my passion for supplements and testing and everything.
Yeah, so that's a big one. Homocysteine a lot of people. LP little A A O B, homocysteine, get 'em checked. My husband Tim has his dad died in his early fifties. I. And so it, like everyone in the family, cardiovascular disease. So I've been on it, same thing. He's got, you [00:26:15] know, we've worked through a lot of it, but pyo, apo, b plaque, everything.
So I was like, good thing you met me. Save ya. You know, not, not to be a W downer, but with C, b, D, if you just, if you take a step back, it's gonna be difficult for people to wrap their head around it. But everyone has C v D and you die with it. The difference is, the distinction is does [00:26:40] it kill you? So everyone develops plaque.
You know, there there was, I talked to Peter Atia about this the other day and I think it illustrates the point. They did an autopsy and a 20 something year old young adult who, who died from a violent act. And sure enough, even though he died from a gunshot wound, he had plaque, he had C V D was developing.
So the memo is [00:27:05] here is it should be a concern for everyone, whether it's familiar risk or not, cuz it's there. And if you die at a hundred you could, you could die with it or you could die from it. Well, don't you think if we approached all of this and not, like, I always think to be super aspirational and positive and glass half full, right?
However, if we all went, you know what, I am like pre-diabetic with heart [00:27:30] disease and cancer cells. So like you would treat yourself very differently if that was going on versus, you know, just kind of a free for all. So that's how I've always approached this is assume you're insulin resistant with heart disease and cancer.
What would you do? You know, and do that, which I think is pretty interesting when you look at all the research on exercise and cancer and it's like you just don't see fit people getting cancer, it's a [00:27:55] rarity. Yeah. And, and I think, you know, a goal with the book is like, was how do we get people 80% there and we think, yeah, we can get you there if you only have a half hour a day, and if maybe you've limited, you know, limited resources as well, we can get you there.
And going back to like, this is why we started with breath. We breathe 17 to 30,000 times a day. Breathing through the nose alone has a downstream effect in terms of immune [00:28:20] function, in terms of how we deal with anxiety impacting sleep. It's huge. We're breathing no matter what, and it's free. What you're doing.
No extra time, no extra cost. It's a, you know, upgraded shift. That's all you did. I know with these labs, not all of those types of labs are covered by insurance, but you've just named a couple that can be pretty inexpensive. Yeah. L A [00:28:45] O B L P a, homo, they're not inex, they're, they're not really expensive, and I just encourage everyone to just understand their baseline risk.
Yeah. And you only have to do LP little A once, so. Correct. You know, so they're, that's cool. Okay. What, what el And I love the 80% because that is such an important frame because I think we try to jump to the 20% without doing the 80%, which doesn't work. When we strive for perfection, then we just get to this point where we don't [00:29:10] even start.
It's too intimidating. There's too many obstacles where it's like one foot in front of the other. Let's get to the 80%, and if you wanna get to that 20%, awesome. That's fantastic. It's just not. The time, resources, and other obstacles. It's just not realistic for everyone. Well, you, you mentioned 30 minutes a day.
So if someone, and I'm assuming you're talking about fitness in that one, was that what you're referring to? Cause I wanna know what you would do with that 30 minutes a day. [00:29:35] So if you're, if you're right now really embedded in long longevity or health span, you know, I'll give you a typical day of what someone may see on social media.
I, I, I pick up, I meditate for 20 minutes. I do cold plunge and then I go sauna, and then I do plunge again. Then I go exercise for 45 minutes. Yeah. I'm like, when are you working? Actually, like, people ask me that stuff all the time. I'm like, okay, yeah, I do some [00:30:00] stuff in the morning, but then I actually have to go do work.
You know? Like we work, we do things. So, you know, I kind of went, if I can get, uh, one to two self-care things in a day, winner, maybe start with just one. A hundred percent. But what I just outlined is something that you commonly see online, and it's a, it's a recipe for divorce. It's a re, you know what happens with your kids screaming and you've got drop off and look, no, but I've gotta get in the sauna, Jason, e Exactly.[00:30:25]
Exactly. And, and you know, like, like you, this is our life. We're embedded in this space. We're passionate about it. It's what we do professionally, and yet we don't have time for all of this. And I, I think, you know, look, you can put in a lot of time and, and we're not knocking that if you do have the time and resources to spend three or four hours a day and it, and it brings you joy, by all means do it.
But if you don't have the time, we believe you can get there in a half hour [00:30:50] with exercise, with your protocols, if you will. And whether that's carving out the time for 30, whether if you're gonna work out or we're big believers in micro moments, whether that means, you know, people talk about zone two training a lot, and essentially zone two is being slightly out of breath.
Or you can have a conversation, but it's somewhat difficult. You don't need to wear a tracker like I do to do it. That's like what that looks like. [00:31:15] How do you get there? Take the stairs. I don't have time. You know how long it takes me to take the stairs, five flights, about 30 seconds. Granted, I'm in pretty good shape, but if you're not, it probably takes you a minute.
If you're able-bodied, everyone can do that. Do it a couple times. It's just one example and I think, mm-hmm. You know, it's setting up your day. It's this idea. I think a lot of people in our space, I think approach it from, I need to do all these extra [00:31:40] things, and our approach is, how do I make all of these things fit into my life?
And I would assume one by like, I really love the approach that you're sharing too, is is you know, it's the January one, I'm gonna do all of these things and then you do none of the things cuz you're overwhelm. But if you just started with, you know what, I'm just gonna make sure that I'm actually breathing correctly and get that dialed, then I can go to the next thing.
And again, [00:32:05] what was it you said? Because they all, they all do, like you do one, a wellness wave. Like you have so many great terms, what you call it, the Kardashian Wellness. These are, things are so funny. They're just fantastic. You guys kill me. Yeah, no, it it, it's a good one. I think the wellness wave, it's this idea of building momentum because I think very, to your point, January 1st comes, I've got all these, these big goals, all the, that I wanna accomplish, and then you run on steam [00:32:30] very quickly.
I think it's like January 17th, the majority of us quitter's day or it's always great in the gym in February. January sucks. You know, I'm like, get outta here. You're not gonna be here long. Just leave. You know, you're in the way. So you gotta, you gotta build it into your life and you gotta have fun. You gotta have joy.
And it's our feeling that a lot of joy is being, being sucked out of wellbeing. And if it's not joyful, don't do [00:32:55] it. So one thing I would love to just. Hear about is cuz again, you've now been, you know, heading up Mind Body Green for 14 years. You've seen a lot of shifts over the years. What are some of the shifts that you've seen that, you know, you now might have thought one way, but now you're definitely shifted into a new way of thinking?
The biggest shift, and I feel like we've probably talked about this together at one point in [00:33:20] time, has, has really been around our approach to protein and resistance training and the the two going hand in hand. And how we view building muscle. I think we've, you've probably heard this stat, if you're over 65, there's a 25% chance that you fall, and if you do fall studies show that your chances of falling again, double.
And if you fall and break your hip, then there's a 30 to 40% chance that you will die within a year. And of, and of course it's not [00:33:45] the fall that is the only issue. It's everything happens after that wellness pile up. And another, another term from the book where once one thing goes wrong, it just sets off this domino effect and it makes it harder to get back to your baseline.
And I think a lot of folks in the holistic world, You know, when I think of like the 2010s, there was a lot of yoga conversation. There was a lot of vegetarian [00:34:10] conversation because I've, I've really asked myself, well, how did this become such a dominant kind of way of thinking? When I look at the 20. 20 decade that we're now in.
There's been such a wonderful shift in terms of exercise modalities. You know, for the first time on ClassPass, one of the most popular classes is women's weightlifting. Yay. I know. Y Big. Yay. Right? And as these exercise modalities [00:34:35] change, they're now changing how we think about nutrition. And I'll let you speak to.
Resistance training and protein i i is nothing new. This has been around for a while, but I think the, the shift has been the context around longevity and so like, let's go to that like theoretical fall. So what do you want to happen? One, you wanna be mobile and agile enough. So if you are about to fall and strong enough, maybe you can like grab something or regain your balance [00:35:00] or you want enough muscle so that muscle becomes your armor and you break that fall.
And that's a really important issue because sarcopenia is very real. It is more common than you think with up to 13% of people in their sixties suffering from it and half of people in their eighties. So let's just say we make it to eighties, but half people are living with sarcopenia and we lose bone density as we age up to [00:35:25] 1% a year after 40.
And for me, this at home personally. In that, you know, as I said, yoga saved me from back surgery and I, I became obsessed with yoga. It became my, my why. And there's so many people in our space where whether it's a a, a food choice or a a practice saves them. And it becomes almost like religion. They put [00:35:50] everything else that becomes their identity.
And that happened to me and. You know, I really stopped doing resistance training. I started to do a little bit, but I stopped doing legs. I hated doing legs in college. The, the, like, the last time I did legs was the day before my last basketball game in 1998. I'm like, I'm never doing legs again. And a CO had a year and a half ago.
I, I, I didn't really get on the scale often, but I got in the scale I [00:36:15] noticed I had lost about almost close to 10 pounds. And I'm like, what's going on? Like, And then I look cuz my waist felt the same mu and then I look in the mirror and I said, oh my God, you're fluffy. I've got no, I've got old white man's ass.
My, my basketball. That's what I call, it's the fluffy. Yeah. My basketball fluffy is like, disappeared. I'm like, oh my God, it's catching up. It's me. [00:36:40] Was Colleen just being nice and not mentioning this to you? Pretty much. Uh, and then that was my aha moment where I, I've gotten back in the gym and, you know, since then I, I, I've gained, I'm, I'm proud to say I've gained five pounds of lean muscle mass and I saw, I mean like just recently we were comparing biceps.
You're getting close to me. Well, I'm kidding. I dunno. Well, no, as you said a high bar, Jake, you just said a high bar. It really [00:37:05] hit home. And as you get older, it becomes more challenging to, to put on lean muscle mass. And this is where. You know, the, the science is un unequivocal. Mm-hmm. To put on lean muscle mass, one, you have to do resistance training, period.
Like you have to, you have to lift things. You have to, you have, or, or use your body weight in a way that's like very effective. I think it's harder to do, but to do so, [00:37:30] you need to ingest protein. And this is an emotional topic because protein off often leads to animal versus plant protein. In the context of this conversation, you know, without a doubt.
Animal protein is superior and you need to ingest enough. The R d A of 0.36 grams per pound is really the bare minimum. It's ridiculous. It it, it is. Yeah. It's [00:37:55] to survive. Everyone needs to hear that. Survive. This is to survive. This is not gonna protect you from sarcopenia. It's not, it's not gonna protect your bones and you, and you probably need at least double, maybe triple.
If you want to be aggressive about putting on weight and you need enough, the right amino acids, specifically leucine, you need that two and a half grams for every. It's probably be 25 to 30 grams, uh, depending on the percentage of leucine [00:38:20] in order to promote muscle protein synthesis. And I, you know, and, and to summarize, when you're young, it really doesn't matter as much, but when you're older, essentially, if you don't get the two and a half grams of leucine, that protein just like goes to waste.
It doesn't build muscle to get the amount of protein and leucine you need and plant protein. It is just the amount you have to consume. Is really a lot. Have you heard of the protein leverage [00:38:45] hypothesis? No. No, please. Oh, this is so cool. These insect researchers discovered this and then, um, kind of follow through on like insects to reptiles, to humans, and the, the theory was, We will, and just think about this cuz it makes complete sense, is that we will continue to eat if we are not getting the protein we need in our food, we just continue to eat.
To be able to get to that [00:39:10] threshold, we need a protein. So eating low protein causes you to overeat because you'll continue to eat to try to get to the level of protein that you need. And it makes a ton of sense. I, I think of like when I go to a vegan restaurant and I'm like, I just could never. Get to the point where I felt satiated.
I was like, I'm, I need to go out and get a chicken or something. Like, you know, can I bring a roast to my purse? That's probably not okay. But, you know, I think it's what, what are the stats that [00:39:35] Gabrielle Line says that, you know, it's six cups of quinoa to a to one chicken breast. Like Yeah, there's no way without extreme supplementation.
And I always question a diet. Where you have to supplement in order to survive. Yes. Like there's something wrong. Like the reality is, cuz I know it's a very, it, it's like this religious topic where it's science. It's not religion and any diet where if you were out in the wild, you would [00:40:00] die is a problem.
It doesn't make sense, you know? So you wouldn't have the B12 you needed, you would not make it. Y could you do it if you had some big religious reason to do it? You have to massively, you have to be so, uh, advanced in your nutritional knowledge and your supplementation and your protein supplementation to pull this thing off and to push yourself past the anabolic resistance that starts.
As we get 40 plus [00:40:25] where we just can't build muscle like we used to, that it is, it's like, why make this so hard? Mm-hmm. You know, like if you're doing it for health, You know, and, and I know there's this huge discussion, this huge battle with these two groups of longevity is keeping mTOR low. And it's like, well, if you keep mTOR low all the time, like I'm seeing this now in friends that have been on the Omad diet needing one meal a day, and all of a sudden I'm [00:40:50] looking at them going, what has happened to you?
Mm, you've lost muscle. You're now, you're fluffy. Like you shouldn't be fluffy. You wanna be solid like a rock, not fluffy. As we age, we do not wanna get fluffier. You know, I had someone brag to me that they weighed the same weight that they'd weighed in high school. I go, you may weigh the same weight, but you definitely don't have the same body composition.
Yeah, yeah. You know, it's, it doesn't matter. Weight is, it's not what you weigh, it's what the weight's made up of. We've gotta [00:41:15] get so past that, so, That has been a big wrap up that I know is a big thing or a big shift I know is big for you cuz you guys were in the hotbed of yoga and veganism there in Brooklyn.
We've experimented with everything and, and our view has been that we've always tried to be flexible and find something that works until it doesn't. And if you're going [00:41:40] to be, I think in our, in our world, it's very easy to be rigid and dogmatic. And you know, for us it's been about what, what is, what does the science say?
What also feels good in our body? You know, we believe you have to be the c e o of your own health and be open to change. Like if you're gonna be rigid, be rigid about being flexible because what works for you in your twenties is probably gonna [00:42:05] change in your thirties and your forties and so on. You know what, so does the science.
Mm-hmm. And you need to be open to that. I know, I know what I have believed. I always go, sorry to those of you who are my clients in my twenties, but you know, I was doing the best with the science at the time. Like even all the stuff that I learned in grad school for exercise physiology, like what we know now is, is different.
Come on. Right? So you have to be constantly looking at the research, [00:42:30] but there is a piece to that that's so mission critical and it's like, well, how do you actually feel? Right. Yes. You know, you, you've probably tapped into the hardest bit of all of this to unlock is you can look at all the data, you can look at all the research, you can read all the books, but at the end of the day, we are all an end of one experiment, and only you can, you know, be the c e o of your own.
[00:42:55] Of your own health and wellbeing, and you can take all this information, but you also have to tune into the intuitive work of how you feel. Looking at your Big T little T trauma, uh, body keeps the score of, you know, what's impacting on the inside. And really navigate and advocate for yourself of what is the right next step in your journey and, and be kind to yourself in this journey.
You know, something we write in the book is we prefer not to [00:43:20] use cheats. We like treats and, and perspective is everything. Be kind about having that slice of cake with your friends enjoying a birthday or. Just don't do it every day. And if you're gonna have the cake, make sure the cake's amazing. Or having a glass of wine.
If you enjoy wine, have a glass of wine, make sure it's an incredible glass of wine. Don't have a terrible glass of wine and beat yourself up over it. [00:43:45] And I, I think perspective is everything. And I, I think we can, we can often start to feel guilty around some of the choices we make, and then we lose any momentum we may have had, have joy.
Build your practices around the lifestyle you wanna live. So you know there, there's a great line with exercise. The best exercise is the one you actually do. So I love this. Designing your life. Start with [00:44:10] that. What's the design? Do the 80% by getting the fundamentals. Right for you, which is what the book, the Joy of Wellbeing shares.
So that's the starting point. And then beyond that, you can start to mess around with other things. But start with the fundamentals because you know you don't frost a cake when there's no cake. You gotta bake the cake to frost the cake, right? So, by the way, I just made the best [00:44:35] keto, gluten-free carrot cake ever for Easter, I must say.
Anyway, so I was like, we still eat cake, and it's actually pretty delicious. All right, this has been fantastic. I'm so thrilled that you guys did this book, like this book. Uh, you know, we all needed this book synthesizing. All of your life experiences and all of the learning of the last 14 years of running Mind body green and [00:45:00] being able to put.
You know, these best practices into this book. And then also I think this idea of really what will get you to that 80% is it's so fundamental. And I've never heard anyone say it like, it's like, well, duh, I've never heard anyone say it. And it's like, oh, well of course. So I love that. I'm gonna put all of this in this show notes.
I'm gonna put it at jj virgin.com/wellbeing. We'll also have [00:45:25] 15% off your amazing supplement line two. Yay. Tell us a little bit about why you launched a supplement line and what you've got going on there. So, so the big why was my homocysteine story. I'd always believed in supplements, but not to this extent, where I saw my homocysteine go from 63 to 10, and it was my wow, aha moment and really was the [00:45:50] inspiration to what, what are, what are some of the other problems that we could provide.
Some solutions for people. Common ones like sleep for Colleen. Which, which is a big one, and kind of went down the line and now we've got 20 plus products, uh, that we're extraordinarily proud of. That is a lot of work. Yeah. It, it is. My, you know, I do all, oh my gosh. Even though, look, I think our goal with the [00:46:15] book is to get people to 80%.
I like to tinker. I'm trying to get to a hundred. I wear all the wearables and do all the tests. But, but it's, it's, it's our passion as well. Yeah. Fun. Well, it shows because I know what it takes to do that stuff, and you've gotta be passionate about it to go that extra mile. So that's fantastic. So again, jj virgin.com/wellbeing.
I'll put the links to what we talked about and the link to grab the book. Make [00:46:40] sure you get the book. Tell your friends about it. Share it. And the link to get the supplement deal of 15% off. And thank you both so much for hanging out with me and for also being such great friends. We, Tim and I love and adore you guys and hopefully we'll be neighbors.
Love that. Oh, love that you. Well, we just gotta work a little more on Tim. That's your job.
Be sure to join me [00:47:05] next time for more tools, tips, and techniques you can incorporate into everyday life to ensure you look and feel great, and more importantly, that you're built to last. And check me out on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and my website, jj virgin.com. And make sure to follow my podcast so you don't miss a single episode.
At subscribe to jj.com. See you next time.[00:47:30]