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180DegreeHealth #11: Athletes Must Eat Carbs, with Stephanie Gaudreau


Yeah, I said it. Hate having to say the P word, but when you’ve got someone who is leading the “Hey Paleo people, eat your carbs” movement eager and willing to talk to you about it, I can’t say no. Plus, she’s been known to watch Labyrinth from time to time. So she’s definitely on my good list.

Today I talk with fierce athlete and Olympic hopeful Stephanie Gaudreau (well sort of, that might be a bit of a stretch, but she is training for Nationals in Olympic lifting so that’s kind of a big deal), author of The Paleo Athlete and blogger at Stupid Easy Paleo. We talk about training–how building strength and building muscle are not the same thing–and of course we talk about carbs, glorious carbs, and their essential role for athletic performance. Check it out…

  1. Hello,
    Thanks for a great pod!
    I have always been told that the longer, more frequent and harder you train the better..
    I am wondering if it is possible for you to post an example of how a workout routine could look like? Like how many times to work out? Which excersises are good? And how long time you should maximum work out? Just to keep one happy, Healthy and hard to kill 😉 Or maybe direct me to a site with all this info?

  2. This was great thank you. Do you have any reading recommendations for someone new to the idea of the weight training you discussed for improving health?

    • I’ve been reading Nia Shanks Train to Be Awesome, which is written by a woman, for women. Earlier Matt had recommended the female body breakthrough which is good, but the workouts are very long. Nia has a more minimalist approach and her workouts are a bit shorter and aim to do the things that Matt is always talking about steady improvements in the amount you are able to list over time, consistency and focusing on fitness goals instead of body image goals.

      • Also, Nia is hilarious and reminds me of Matt a lot with the number of 80s references, constantly talking about her dogs as if they were people and her devotion to ice cream. She ends one of her Train to Be Awesome videos with moonwalking.

  3. I took a look at Stupid Easy Paleo and it looks pretty sensible. Still the recommendation to supplement with Vitamin D and Fish oil. Honestly EVERYONE is doing that, including Nia Shanks (probably left over from her Paleo bout a year or so back that she talks about in her book).

  4. Hey Matt, I recently heard in a podcast that humans are born in a ketogenic state. What do you think about this statement?

    • Sounds ridiculous–like some obscure faux factoid that a tater hater would use to deny the truth in defense of their bizarre dietary religion. Kind of like health food fanatics pointing out that fast food doesn’t rot as proof that it is bad for you, when really it’s the high salt content and low water content that keeps fast food from spoiling, no different from beef jerky.

  5. Matt, would a program like Max-OT be like the principles you were talking about?

    • I’m not sure if I’m familiar with that. Not sure if I remember what I said in this podcast either, lol. What is it?

  6. Max OT is a program that Skip LaCour used. It’s 4-6 reps, compound exercises, 2-3 minute rests, low volume 6-9 sets p/bodypart, one major bodypart p/workout, each bodypart worked once a week. Perhaps the only thing about that system that wouldn’t be good is it emphasizes going to failure. Mostly it sounded kind of similar to what you were talking about as far as being kind to the adrenals, CNS and wear and tear on the joints.

    • That’s still a lot of work, and approaches that are even more minimalist than that can still yield results. There’s nothing wrong with doing more training, but I’m a realist, and doing the absolute minimum that can still lead to improvement simply has a much lower dropout/burnout rate.

      My daughter for example has been doing 1 set of 6 exercises once every 7-10 days (workout takes about 10-12 minutes), rarely goes to failure, and even 6 months into it she shows small improvements in strength every single workout. Yes she’s young, but I have a woman in her early 60’s that’s reported excellent results with a similar approach.

      • It’s good to know progress can be made on such a low level of volume! Thanks, I’m going to experiment with your ideas.