Dr. Stephen Seiler on “Aha” Moments, Tailoring High-Intensity Training, and How Much Food to Carry

FT273 - Potluck with Dr. Seiler

Welcome to another potluck conversation with regulars Grant Holicky, Trevor Connor, and Rob Pickels. In these discussions, we pick topics that we find interesting and break them apart using a mix of science, humor, and our own experience.  

This week’s potluck is a special episode because joining us is Dr. Stephen Seiler. He’s going to discuss with us:    

Our Biggest “Aha” Moments 
All of our hosts have decades of experience as exercise physiologists, coaches, and athletes. All of them have had “aha” moments where they have made big realizations about working with athletes or about their own training. Coach Holicky asks our four hosts to share these “aha’ moments. What may surprise you, considering how much science they have all read, is how non-technical their realizations were.  

How to Determine Just How Much High Intensity an Athlete Can Tolerate 
Dr. Seiler recently met with the coaches from a top World Tour cycling team and what they wanted to know was how to determine how much high intensity work an athlete can tolerate when focusing on that 20% in a polarized model. Dr Seiler posed this question to our team and our answer got more at the art of coaching than any science that could be universally applied to every athlete.  

How Much Water and Food Should You Carry? 
We recorded this episode right before Rob Pickels headed to Europe for a big multi-day adventure race. His question was whether you should carry little and rely on the feed stations or pack as much food and water on the bike as possible. Our team gave a variety of answers and they really depended on the nature of the event.  

So, get ready for an episode with lots of Dr Seiler and hot sauce – you’ll understand when you listen – and let’s make you fast! 

Episode Transcript

Rob Pickels  00:04

Hello, and welcome to Fast Talk, your source for the science of endurance performance. I’m your host Rob Pickels here with Grant Holicky, and Coach Connor. Today, we have another potluck episode for you, and this is a special one because joining us all the way from Norway is Dr. Stephen Seiler. He’s here to answer both our pressing questions and raise one of his own. So with no further-ado, let’s get to the show, and let’s make you fast.

Trevor Connor  00:32

Fast Talk listeners. This is Trevor Connor. Would it be cool to decide what Rob and I are going to chat about on an upcoming show? Or how about we answer a question that polarized training you’re dying to know? What about a 30 minute zoom call with Robert me on your favorite sports endurance topic. This is all possible to become a fast talk Patreon member. We have four monthly membership levels to fit your level of support. If you enjoy fast talk help us stay independent in dishing out your favorite sports science topic by becoming a fast talk Patreon member. You can join us at patreon.com/fast Talk podcast. Well welcome everybody to another potluck episode. This one’s a little bit special because joining us it’s not just another potluck. It is not just another potluck. We have Dr. Steven Siler here and he has a question which none of us know what is going to be. So welcome to a potluck.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  01:26

Oh, I have so many questions that no one knows what. It does feel like potluck because I have a whole I have an extensive variety of chili sauces on my desk here. Because we’re talking about future episodes.

Rob Pickels  01:42

Yeah, we bait and switch Dr. Sylar today with the the allure of hot sauce episode. And he showed up with bells on and a desk full of some of the hottest sauces that are out there. This guy is a pro. And then at the last minute, we yanked that hot sauce away from him and we stuck a potluck in front of him instead.


Yeah, and just to prepare everybody we are going to be doing a video where we’re going to talk physiology will eating increasingly hot, hot sauces, which is completely targeted me because being Canadian, I would put cottage cheese somewhere on the hot scale.

Rob Pickels  02:18

Negative Scoville on that one, I believe it actually sucks heat out of things.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  02:24

This was my idea, because I’m just jealous that I’m never gonna get invited to the hot ones episodes that are on YouTube, you know, because those are for real stars, you know? So we’re just going to create our own little ecosystem,

Rob Pickels  02:36

I think, can we write a guest request? We can get you on hot ones? I bet you we can.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  02:43

I doubt it, man, because you have to be like there’s a level B level C level. You know, these these stars, and I don’t know how many letters I would have to go down the list before they would come to me. But you did

Rob Pickels  02:55

an amazing TED talk. You’re like a

Trevor Connor  03:00

Well, Dr. Seiler, you are hopefully used to professional hosts on the show we do our research we come prepared. We have a a deep and thoroughly thought out physiology conversation today is none of those things.

Rob Pickels  03:17

It’s a junk show.


So I hope you are ready for this will hopefully have some fun. Welcome grant.

Grant Holicky  03:24

Yeah, good to be here. Like that’s why I’m here to facilitate the juncture.

Rob Pickels  03:30

Grant is actually not sitting next to us. He is off in the wilderness at this point with a very blurry video, I will say so we’ll see how much grant contributes to this episode.


And with that, Grant, we’ll start with your question as always.

Grant Holicky  03:45

All right. So my question to you guys is as coaches, physiologist, sports scientists, whatever you consider your role, what was your biggest aha moment in your career? So what was it that happened to you happen to an athlete happened to a colleague that really changed your perspective dramatically on sport, and how we train people for sport, or how you pursued your career?

Rob Pickels  04:16

It’s an interesting question, Grant. I’ll do mine real quick, actually, because it’s kind of in some regard, maybe not relevant to the topic, or maybe it is. For me, Grant. It’s that. As a sports scientist, a big part of my job is sharing information with people. And when you’re having conversations with other sports scientists, you don’t want to talk about the basics. You don’t sound smart, you don’t sound like you know what you’re doing. You want to talk about the new and the cutting edge, and the most exciting and 99% of the time when you’re trying to disseminate information to the people who are actually going to be using it, whether that’s an athlete or a coach. What really matters is the basics. What really matters is the stuff that you learned a long time ago, what really matters is the stuff you assume everybody already knows. Because that’s a bad assumption, not everybody knows sometimes the most solid information. And even though you might not feel like you’re getting people that knew the cutting edge, you know, the things that you think are important, that’s not what they find important. And so oftentimes, for me, I have to take a step back and say, What does this person actually need so that they can make progress in whatever they’re trying to do? And it’s not necessarily about the research paper that happened yesterday is not necessarily about the acronyms. It’s not necessarily about the minutiae. And it’s okay, if you say the same thing over and over and over again, you don’t have to say new things for the sake of being novel.

Grant Holicky  05:51

I think that’s really good. Because, you know, we’ve talked about many times on this show that training itself is about the boring, the dull, the repeatability, the ability to just kind of do this over and over and over again. And really, that’s what’s special. And even in a training program, the special workout isn’t really what’s special. It’s the consistency that’s special. Steven, what do you think

Dr. Stephen Seiler  06:18

you guys have heard my, my Genesis story as far as living under the stairs and, and moving Norway and seeing the girl walk up the hill and all this stuff. But my epiphany moment, or it’s been more of a slow epiphany that’s partly related to you guys, is this issue of, yes, I’ve done some research that has had some impact, it gets cited and so forth. But I find it interesting that, you know, when I first got invited to a podcast, and I thought, well, maybe I’ll do this two or three times, and then everybody will be finished with me, because then I will have said what I know. But it hasn’t been that way. And it’s essentially for the reason that Rob talks about is that it really comes down to doing the simple things well, doing the basics, things that we’ve learned from research, or from experience, doing those things. Well, that accounts for so much of the success of a coach athlete relationship of the athletes performance and so forth. So you guys keep invited me back. And people keep invited me to do podcasts? And I keep thinking, haven’t I? I’ve said all this stuff, what new do they get from me. And the reality is, is that we’ve got to keep talking about some of the same things that we have to keep dealing with our mental models of how intensity works, or how interval training works, or whatever it might be. And so those things, even though they seem simple, they don’t, they are still relevant. And they need to be repeated, you know, because the audience is also changing. So I guess that’s something I’ve learned.


And that’s something that I have noticed myself as a coach, which is, when I started as a coach, I was probably giving way over complicated training plans, and over explaining things to my athletes, and figuring out overly complex training zones, and all that sort of stuff. And what I’ve noticed, as I have learned more and more about the physiology, and gone deeper and deeper into very complex science, when I apply that, as a coach, I have gone to increasingly simple approaches. And what I’m finding is the solutions tend to be quite simple. The trick is finding the right simple solution.

Rob Pickels  08:35

I didn’t necessarily expect to like be starting a trend in one direction with with my comment, I actually thought everyone else was going to go on to a totally different idea. You know, grant you you came up with this question, I’m sure that you have had some preconceived notions. Where did you see this going? What’s your thought on this?

Grant Holicky  08:55

Well, I think I’m a little bit different than you guys in terms of profession. I mean, Dr. Slather kind of alluded to this when we were in the green room, so to speak, but I come at this from a coaching perspective, and I think you guys come at it, and traverse a little bit foot in both worlds, but from a sports science direction. But my my moment was years ago, I spent a long time coaching, swimming. And you know, I was an overnight sensation after 20 years of coaching and had a woman win open water national championships and make the world’s team and open water and I was named to the world staff and she went to World Championships and got six and 25k. And I really came back as a coach and said, everything’s going to be different now. Everybody’s gonna want to come swim for me. And I really thought that that was going to bolster my team. And what I learned was the results don’t really The matter, I hate to say it that way. But what really matters in coaching was the relationships. I was keeping kids on my team or I was coaching athletes because they felt solid about the relationship that we had. And the same thing happened years later, as I left the pool deck, and I was coaching cycling, and somebody won a national championship. And I remember the same thought going through my head, everything’s gonna be different. Now I’m going to be flooded with clients like this is going to be amazing. And the same thing happened, maybe I got one or two. But frankly, those weren’t long term clients, where I’m getting clients. And what really is special about what I do in my profession, I believe, is the word of mouth from my other clients, my 40 year old masters clients that are talking to a young up and coming kid that’s racing locally. And they go, man, this relationship is what’s special. And that really changed my perspective. And I always felt like I coached with a little bit of that mentality. But now, you know, having been in this for 30, some years, everything that I do is geared towards that relationship side, the results are going to come if the relationship is solid, and the training is good, but they feel like they’ve got that support. That’s when the success really comes. And everybody’s success can be defined differently, right? Well, I may have me go out and successfully ride on bound. That’s a huge success for me. And that’s totally different than the 22 year old kid that I’m coaching that’s trying to win a national championship, but just as important, honestly. So that’s really that was my epiphany. And that was kind of my moment.

Rob Pickels  11:38

I think it’s interesting that we’re discussing epiphanies within our career professional lives. We have varying level of physiologist on this call, we have grant who’s in unknown level of coach, but nobody, nobody is saying anything technical, right? Nobody is saying, Oh, it was when I realized how insulin interacted with this receptor. And then a NPK was upregulated and Krantz not Oh, it wasn’t until I realized that if you do this workout, and then that workout, or when I switch from a three week to a four week, nobody is saying anything technical like that. We’re talking about some some very soft sort of things. We’re talking about how we communicate how we establish relationships. And ultimately, I will say, I wish that more people had these epiphanies. And I wish that some educators, you know, maybe a wink, wink, nudge, nudge, a little bit here, that this was built into the education system, because I never learned this when I went through an undergraduate and just a master’s degree. And these are skills that are so important, as you become more effective throughout your career. Or maybe we don’t want to teach people this, maybe maybe we want them to learn it on their own, so that the rest of us old people are able to, you know, one up the rest of the people vying for our our jobs. But um, no, I find that really interesting that we’re kind of all on the same page here.


Well, I was being nice, because I felt like I broke you last week when we talked about Dr. Holly. Dr. Sally, you would appreciate this. I forget the title of the paper. But there’s a one of Dr. Holly’s heaviest papers, we covered it in an episode last week. And Rob Rob was not having fun, he fell off

Dr. Stephen Seiler  13:25

his chair.

Rob Pickels  13:26

Man, I just don’t care.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  13:29

I think it’s important to say that as a physiologist, I still am interested in the details. And I still, you know, I was just reading this afternoon on control of ventilation and hormone, some issues on hormones and reminding myself of some things. But what I find is that I’m, I think the publicly facing part of me that is doing podcasts and talking about mental models around intensity zones, and that that is the most important things for them to hear. And then meanwhile, I may be also working on you might call it tip of the spear stuff, that eventually I hope we’ll move into the corpus of knowledge as more mundane things. So I think we have to be able to use our brain in two places at the same time. One being pushing the boundaries, trying new things, but I’m not going to talk about those things until I really understand them well enough to feel like that I can explain them. Well, if that makes sense. So I have certain things going on up in my head that they’re not it’s not ready for primetime. But but that part of me I love I love that part of the process. And then then we have the things that we’re talking about, like basics of training, intensity distribution, that I feel like I have a pre a reasonable grip on, but it’s because of 20 years of work. So both things are happening at the same time.

Rob Pickels  14:53

I mean, I think that that stuff’s the spice, right? That’s the salt the pepper it’s it’s the scorpion disco if you will Though on top of that, otherwise well cooked chicken wings,

Dr. Stephen Seiler  15:04

I’m sure a lot of people are not going to understand that at all.


That is the hottest of the spices that we’re going to end with on this recording.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  15:12

But those who didn’t get it,

Rob Pickels  15:14

those who get it are going to be like, Oh, I see what you did there. So I go for the appreciation of the few that that

Dr. Stephen Seiler  15:24

400 People just signed out off the show. Those guys are on drugs. I have no idea they just scorpions and biscuits.


You realize the reason we aren’t recording that today is because our videographer wants to be there to film the moment when I fall off the chair.

Rob Pickels  15:44

When he slips off the chair from all the sweat, I think is what it is. Yeah.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  15:49

Oh, see, that brings up I could ask another physiology question. But about about that whole chili sauce thing. But but I’ll wait.


Do we want to dive into capsaicin because I can go there? Do we save that for that episode?

Dr. Stephen Seiler  16:03

No. But I bet for the episode,

Rob Pickels  16:05

I do think that we dive into Dr. Silas question. GRANT Did we do? Did we get through yours? You happy with that? Yeah, I

Grant Holicky  16:12

think that’s great. And I think that’s really kind of what I was looking for out of all you guys was, because that’s been the big piece of it for me lately is is exactly what Dr. Sylar is saying. I mean, we all have those things that we’re doing under the surface. But so much of what we do is public facing. And it’s really important that what we’re putting out there in the world, is stuff that’s consistent things that we know are really going to work. And we all get caught up in the latest great we were talking about earlier, that bike gonna make me faster. And we all get caught up in the marginal gains of what we do in our careers. But we make our careers with them, the maximal gains, right, the low hanging fruit is really what you can do well, and then, as you said, Rob, you know, the spice, what do you bring in it’s next level. And I think everybody at this table, we’re not at a table, this virtual table has that element of what they do. And I think that’s what what’s special.


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Well, Dr. Sadler, your questions gonna be a surprise for us. So hit us I’m looking forward to this conversation.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  17:51

Actually, I’m relaying a question that I received this morning, I was invited to speak to and interact with the all coaches meeting for yumbo visma, which is for those of you who follow cycling is one of the top cycling teams, I think it’s fair to say in the world. This is the team of Roglic and Vaughn art and Chris Laporte, you know, it’s a really good team. But they also have a Women’s World Tour team, they have a developmental team. And so periodically, they have meetings where all the coaches bring come together. And and I think that in itself is really organizationally interesting and important. And so they invited me to speak on some just where I’m at what I’m doing. And I talked about some different mental models with them around, you know, some of the things that we’ve discussed load stress, strain and intensity distribution and so forth. And, and I think they as a team, according to what I’ve heard, they do, you know, a lot of this polarized training, but the question that emerged was, they say, Look, we experienced that not all of our riders respond, as well to that kind of a polarized program in that in some of their riders, maybe they they do better with pyramidal or they’re doing, they’re bringing down the intensity, using more threshold training. And so they’re, you know, they’re, they were asking me, Dr. Seiler, do you have any indicators that you think would help us to be able to predict in advance which intensity distribution is optimal for which athlete in the sense that we’re still talking at 20? Roughly, we’re still, you know, we’re not it’s not a big controversy that you’re suddenly going to do no low intensity, but how do we use the 20%? You know, as one of the coaches said, that’s where the magic is, it seems, is getting that right. I’m not sure if that’s true, but but, but I get what they’re saying. And so the question then But I will pose to you guys, which they pose to me and I have to be upfront. So I don’t have the answers to that, at least not in a very, you know, I can’t throw down any papers for you, which is, do you in your coaching experience? see situations where you say this athlete, they do not, they’re just not able to handle the really high intensity intervals, we do more threshold training with them instead, or, you know, I’m saying we shift that 20% down a bit. Whereas this type of athlete, they’re gonna they really handle the polarized approach quite well, and, and so forth. Do you have any indicators or markers that you use?

Rob Pickels  20:42

Damn, we are never inviting this guy to another potluck. I love it.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  20:49

We’re at the heart of it. Now, guys. I mean, you’re you’re talking these coaches are coaching the best cyclists in the world. And they’re still trying to deal with the same questions.

Rob Pickels  20:58

Can I ask a real quick clarifying question? Are we talking about say something phenotypical about the athlete something innate to the athlete? Or can we discuss this from the context of what the athlete is trying to achieve? The output the event that they’re trying to be good at? Or are we talking? You know, before we even get there?

Dr. Stephen Seiler  21:20

Yeah, well, obviously, there’s lots of detail here. And you know, let’s say Jumbo visma. Those who know jumbo visible visma know, they have, they have GC candidates like Roglic. They have classic riders like Vaughn, art, Laporte. And so yeah, they deal with some nuance themselves in terms of what they’re trying to coax out of these athletes who are already amazingly talented and extremely well trained. But they also work with younger, you know, they have developmental teams, they have teams where there is still, you know, they have some big stars that are coming to the team, and they’re pretty much already at the top right. But then you’re going to have these 1819 year olds, a couple of them are from Norway, they’re on the developmental team, and they’re still emerging, and they’re still increasing training loads. So perhaps those are the ones that may be more than any, they’re trying to say, you know, how do we, how do we optimize their intensity distribution? Is it a fiber type issue? I think perhaps fiber type may be an issue. But what I would, my perspective on a lot of this that has shifted over the years is that it’s not so much the signaling issue, because there’s so many ways to get there. You know, there’s so much redundancy at the cellular level, when it comes to cellular signaling. I suspect there’s some issues related to the ric, how they recover their, how their autonomic nervous system responds, how they’re, you know, inflammatory responses, some of these athletes, if you watch high level cycling, it just seems that they recover faster, they just seem to be able to do repeated days not only repeated efforts in a day, but repeated days, you know, if you think about the ultimate challenge in cycling, it’s got to be these Grand Tours, or at least at one level, it’s those, that’s one of the ultimate challenges is the grand tour, and being good for three weeks, you know, in a with two rest days,


you know, that’s certainly at least one answer to that I’ve certainly seen in the research and I’ve been fascinated by this research. So I dig into it whenever I can, which is oxidative stress, the fact that they’ve shown that you take a lower level endurance athlete or you take a recreational endurance athlete, and they go do some hard training and they will quickly be overwhelmed by oxidative stress and need that recovery. But there was a fascinating study where they looked at top top level cyclists doing the the dolphin a and discovered that by the end of the dolphin a their oxidative stress had actually gone down because their body’s natural defense mechanisms were so good that when they started activating, they were able to just deal with all that oxidative stress and that’s why they were able to go day after day after day and be okay. As opposed to getting overwhelmed.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  24:24

And I think that speaks to the direction I’m kind of leaning is that I do think there are probably genetic differences and maybe certain degree of trainability but but a lot of it is on the side of nature is just how they their recovery cycles. So you know, I don’t know if you’ve paid attention Derek G I think was the name of the is it a Canadian guy that he got second in the zero he was second in like a bunch of different stuff four times he was second in different stages. He was second in the points race and he was second in the mountain right Just you know, it was just amazing. And that’s a track guy. But man alive, the guy could just tear himself inside out day after day, you know, because usually you do one of these breakaways and then you’re toasted, you know, for the next two days in the stage races, but he would just he would break away three days in a row, and hauled in and be a pain in the butt for the peloton. So, in my mind, I’m thinking, Well, looks like you’re a kind of athlete that you do not have the absolute upper level, top level qualities like a sprint finish or whatever, you’re not going to win a lot of races, but you have an incredible recovery ability, you know, that seemed to be is just like, this guy comes out of nowhere and has an amazing ability to within 24 hours be ready to go again, despite having drained his tank completely,

Grant Holicky  25:55

I think you’re hitting something with Derek G that I think is so so relevant. And that’s the individuality of these athletes of what they can do, what they believe they can do, how they believe they train the best how they believe they recover the best. And I always bring this back a little bit to the relationship and the athlete side, because that’s, you know, that’s my job, right. And one of the things that, that I think is super important is you have these people that come to the table and they say, you know, I’m my best when I do this. And how do you take that, as a coach, listen to what it is that they’re saying. And kind of understand that information for what it is they may be coming to the table going on my best when I’m doing four workouts in a row. And you can still polarize that that person’s training plan, you can still load the rest on one side, you can still do a four day on two day off, you can still do a pattern at some of those things. But how they feel. And this may be a huge product of how they actually recover, right what the genetic pieces of that puzzle are. But that athlete may be able to tell us so much of that information that we need to listen to. And then there’s, you know, the other side of this, that’s purely physiological. And that’s one of the things that Neil used to say to me all the time, me as an athlete, you’ve got a big shop. And that means you can dig it, dig a really big hole. And just who that athlete is genetically, I can go out and do high end vo two Max workouts. And I’m cooked because what I can do on that high end is very, very different than say what Trevor can do on that one. So Trevor goes and does that workout, he’s not cooked, I go and do that workout, and I’m smashed. And so how do we kind of layer that load? And how do we play around with those things on an individual basis? And then you start layering all those pieces? Like what Rob said, Is this a climber? Is this a GC person? Where are they in their career? What do we want them to be able to do? I just think there’s so many elements of this that are so individual. And I think sometimes not not we at the table, but the really generic we says, Are we talking to the athlete? Did we ask them? And what can they bring to the table? Because they have 18 years of experience with themselves 20 years of experience with themselves that we don’t have?


That was going to be my answer to your question, which is, your your what you’re getting into is the art of coaching. You know, we’ve talked on the show before how there’s a lot of coaches who think to show themselves as great coaches have to come up with these overly complicated interval plans. And and we’ve had that conversation of just keep the interval simple and make it so the athletes and getting done. I think as a coach, the the approach and the hard part of coaching is, first, you find that philosophy, that approach that works. So obviously, we all here are more on that polarized approach. But certainly we’ve had frank over down the show is more into the sweet spot approach. But you have to land in that philosophy that you believe, then you apply that generally to each athlete, and when you have a new athlete, you kind of have to apply it generically. And then to me, that’s when the art of coaching comes in is figuring out what’s unique about this athlete, what works for this athlete, and that’s where you have to start modifying and experimenting to find what really resonates for them. And it can be difficult, particularly when you’re dealing with the pro because you might want to experiment on let’s try doing three interval days in a row. See how you handle that. But you can’t experiment so much that you ruin an athlete’s season because if they’re a pro, they need to get results they need to be able to perform so. That to me is also where experience comes in as a coach with if a coach has worked with enough athletes. They start recognizing the types of athletes going, Okay, this is somebody who I know, needs lots of recovery, or they’re going to start falling apart quickly. Or this is an athlete who I’d really need to beat up day after day after day after day for them to get an adaptation, you start learning these things and be able to identify those and athletes, but to me, it’s the art of coaching, what makes a great coach is they start with a fairly generic, here’s my philosophy, here’s my approach, and then learn the athlete and start customizing a more on the fringes for each athlete.

Rob Pickels  30:30

I so desperately want to have a terrific answer to this. But you know, at the end of the day, I certainly don’t I think it’s a really interesting question. And it’s interesting listening to everybody and describing, you know, kind of the the lag in information, I’ll say, right, the, the one technique that we have in front of us is prescribe workouts in the beginning generically, because you don’t know this athlete, maybe change the workouts, try new things over time, see how the athlete responds, both physically, both mentally and what they’re telling you. But the question ultimately was, how do we do this ahead of time? How do we identify so that we don’t have to go through that long term process so that we can begin writing effective training for this person, you know, from day one, and that’s where I think at this point, we very much don’t have that information. I think one way that we’re able to get there is if we had a way to better quantify the load and strain on the body for intensities that were more reliant on anaerobic energy production, right, and I think that TSS and whatnot makes sense if we’re talking about relatively steady workload at a at a base zone, maybe a tempo zone, but it begins to fall apart. And we talk about this concept a lot, you can go out and do the world’s hardest quote unquote vo two Max workout, it’s a TSS of 35, it feels like you didn’t do anything, it should have been a recovery ride, but you’re you’re dead, or a sprint interval workout, or whatever it is. And I almost feel like we don’t have the tools in front of us to create the models that help us understand what would go into this because if we had that solid, objective information, then we could begin looking at it maybe even statistically, to say, hey, the athlete performs better when this is the load, we then see that this is the performance improvement. And then we backtrack that and we say oh look, that’s correlated with higher type two fiber density, with higher hemoglobin mass with higher natural antioxidant capability. And that’s where we can begin to do that. But I’m not sure that we’re able to do that with clarity, as we continue to work on these longer term, somewhat anecdotal sort of observations that we have at the each individual athlete level.

Grant Holicky  32:53

I have a quick question for you guys, too, though, one of the things and this is mostly for you, Dr. Sylar is looking at this from the perspective of what the athlete is already good at. Is that possibly relevant and I feel like it is but is that possibly relevant to see what they might respond to, you know, if you go out, you do a performance, power profile on somebody, and they come back and they’re woefully averaged at 20 minute power, and they’re really, really special at one minute power. And it’s, you can see a trend towards the shorter efforts. I feel like it’s somewhat of a logical explanation. And there are outliers this trust me, I have sprint swimmers that we needed to train with all kinds of volume. And I’ve had, you know, open water swimmers that I needed to train with all kinds of intensity. But I do think they’ll follow that trend a little bit. If you take somebody fairly young that comes to the table, and they’re 20 minutes off the chart. And if you gave them a 60 minute Hour of Power, they’d light it up. But on five minutes, and women and they’re really weak. You know, sometimes that power profile can give us a lot of information about how they may train or how they may respond.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  34:06

Yeah, I think for sure the power profile I was showing them. We had really good data on the world junior champion from 2021. He’s on the Jumbo visma developmental team now. So he’s a Norwegian guy, but we asked Ben airshield, who’s been on your podcast, he had this athlete when he was a junior, and he had four years of data 14 1560s Five years of data on his training, and you could just see the power profile for the kid at every year. It just It just moved up vertically. The entire profile. Yeah, you know, it was just like, in fact, the average improvement was almost identical across the profile, and he just rides away from the peloton and wins the World Championship and then he gets pulled onto the team so so this is a kid that you know, you say oh, we’re not sure where he’s gonna end up but but he’s good across the board right now. And then maybe His ultimate top qualities are going to still emerge within that, you know, but as a junior, he could do everything. If that makes sense to you, it really didn’t matter, he could beat him in a sprint, or he could just ride away from him. And now that kid is going to be challenged in the coming years, because it won’t be that way forever. Right? And they’re going to have to work and decide, okay, everything’s pretty darn good. But But where is his best chance? What are we going to try to bring forward? Are we going to try to turn him into a sprinter? Is he going to become a classics racer, you know? Or is where is this guy, you know, and so I think that’s a really interesting thing, because some of these young kids, they’re really talented kind of across the board. They’re just, they’re just good. You know, they beat most kids at everything, at 15 years old, you know, but then we start peeling away, and we move them up to higher and higher levels where everybody is filtered tore in they all have, you know, we got to remember that, even in the pro peloton in the world tour peloton. Even a pure a so called Pure sprinter. They climb better than almost anybody. They climb better than 99% of the cyclists in the world. You know, and they’re sprinters. So it really is a you know, at that level, it’s really as a matter of degrees, you know, in terms of when you talk about sprinter versus climber versus puncher, you know, if I go in and look at their fiber type, it’s not like 9010 versus 1090. It’s 6040. Maybe you know what I’m saying it’s, it’s, they’re, they’re in this moving around a 10 or 15% difference in fiber distribution one way or the other Not, not like Usain Bolt versus a marathoner. You know, what I’m saying, it’s, it’s a much narrower scope of variation when we start looking at things like fiber type. But when you add it all up, they do distribute out and you do have some that are going to be they can produce an extra 150 watts in a sprint. And he got these guys have a couple of several tenths of a watt per kilo and a climb. And it makes a difference. It’s, it’s decisive. Right? So the differences are pretty are actually smaller than we speak of them. We speak of them as if they’re very clear, you know, clearly a sprinter. Clearly a climber clearly this and that. But the reality is, are they’re there. They’re not big, big differences.


I was always shocked when I read a study that I’m pretty sure it was about Cavendish, you know, they didn’t use the name. But when they gave all the data about this writer, you kind of went that’s Cavendish. And they showed his data, winning a sprint finish in a big spring classic. And the thing that shocked me was he barely broke 1000 watts in the sprint. And I learned that what I can kind of do that. Yeah, when I’m fresh exactly at the end of five, six hours. But what they showed in the study was it really came down to the five minutes before that it was the positioning, and they looked at all his race performances through the year, and showed when he came into that final kilometer, if he was outside of the top eight, or first or second coming into the final kilometer, he’d lose. Yep, he had to be in a very particular place there. And so actually wouldn’t

Dr. Stephen Seiler  38:33

be sitting close. Couldn’t be too far away from the front.


A great sprinter did more about positioning than that pure power.

Rob Pickels  38:41

Well, and it’s the ability, right because he was doing or they just didn’t say they were doing 500 watts for minutes prior to that D in the right position. And then the 1000 Watt punch on top five minutes


leading into the sprint, he averaged high for hundreds. Yeah,

Rob Pickels  38:57

exactly. But I do think that Dr. Siler, you open this up with 80% of the training is going to be low intensity, it’s the additional 20% that we’re discussing. And I think that that is very much tied to this. We’re talking about a relatively homogenous group of athletes. And we wouldn’t necessarily apply this same 8020 principle to a true elite track sprinter, whether they’re trying cycling sprinter or running track sprinter. And obviously, that recommendation is not universal, the best possible way to improve your fitness at all possible levels. It doesn’t work that way. But we are discussing nuances in training equal nuances in performance. And on both ends of that spectrum, a small change can have relatively profound effects. Raising threshold 10 Watts, doesn’t sound like a lot and when you’re at 300 Plus watts, for threshold, it’s a very small percent, but we’re talking you know, minutes by the time you’re at the top Have a long climb. Well, and

Dr. Stephen Seiler  40:01

I think also I bring back my daughter, you talked about having a big shovel and being able to dig, I think it was Grant, you were talking about this and, and my daughter exact was exactly the same thing. So you got personality issues at play in. And I had done research on four times, four minutes, four times, eight minutes, four times 16 minutes, I had hundreds of workouts and I kind of knew, if I prescribe four times eight minutes, it’s going to create this lactate, this RPE, this heart rate, you know, on average, and so I prescribed four times eight minutes to my daughter. And she’s like, not in the distribution, because she is is pushing herself so hard, and she’s so damn tough on her so that every value, the heart rates are too high, the RPS are too high. And she cooks herself, you know, and so then I have to change the rules. So well, okay, I tried to do to you what i’ve used in research and how it all worked, and it worked fine, on average, but with you, I gotta change the rules, you don’t get to use maximum session effort, you have to be I put a governor on you, you only get to work at 90%. And that changed everything. You know, everything came into line, as soon as we made that little small change. And then she got PRs and several races in a row everything she says pop, and now I’m in the flow, you know. And so these little, you know, making just small corrections to get the recovery versus work, you know, kind of on the plus side can make such a difference. Well, I

Grant Holicky  41:35

think it’s interesting, I had a cyclist years ago, and they came from the cyclocross and they transition to the road. And they would they would attack and nobody would ever go with them. And they’d be out front and they, they’d be off the front of the group, big races off the front of the group doing great and they blow up, I came back and said, Well, I can’t forget it. Nobody goes with me. And then I blow up, and we came back to the big shovel idea, well, you’re attacking at 900 Watts, nobody can go with you, you have to understand how to who you are, right. And so I had to teach this athlete to hold back on their attacks to go to other people to come with them. And it solved two problems, they now had companions in the break, and they weren’t so cooked, that they couldn’t recover from it. So I do think that individuality is so crucial and who they are, and how they’re going to respond to training. And, I mean, a lot of times, I mean, I hate to sound to really simplify this, but sometimes we just have to ask and, and see what they come back with. And if you pick take enough of that data together, you’re going to start seeing trends and how these athletes respond to those questions. And then I think you’re going to be able to draw that a little bit more to physiology, and say, Okay, well, this type of response falls into a little bit of this big shell bucket, to really simplify things, right, or this response falls into that slow burn kind of bucket,

Dr. Stephen Seiler  43:09

just to give people an understanding of just how amazing the physiology is on some of these athletes that you’ve never even heard of, or the one athlete I know of you 23 Road Time Trial champion from Norway, but in a in a classics race, when I go into his file, and he hasn’t won anything in the classic sense, he broke 1000 was 127 times in a six hour raise, she’s gonna think about that, just let that let that kind of curl over you, you know, is 127 times, you know, coming out of coming out of curves, you know, out of swings, starting to attack cobbles, just all these different things, of course, and he cooks himself because he can, he’s got that kind of power, you know, but then the next step, and maybe an athlete like that the revolution is learning how not to use it, you know, what I mean? When not to use it, and bring bring 127 down to say, at times, and now he’s got enough in the tank, to be in the final selection, perhaps down the road, you know. So that’s, I think that’s where part of this is, is some of these best athletes in the world or it’s not on the on the engine side, it’s perhaps other places where, you know, fueling glycogen burn, saving energy, better tactics on swing, so they don’t have to accelerate as much all these little things that can add up to being able to have a little bit more in the tank. And that that can also be trainable. Right. So we’re trying to figure out ways to help the athletes see all of this and understand themselves like you grant understand their athlete, you know, and he understands okay, my 900 Watt attack, it goes up and Smoke, because you know, and I waste a lot of energy. Because of this and this, I’ve got to learn how to save that, you know. And so I think those are part of the future of, of the training process is not only to train the physiology but to train the details of where they use their energy in races, because the race is beget more and more dynamic, they get more aggressive for television, you know, there, there’s more curves and in in swings and things to negotiate, which makes accelerations more challenging and all this. So it’s a really interesting, I think it’s an interesting evolution of cycling, that’s on the vanguard of endurance sports in general, that just become more and more stochastic. And how do you train for that?


That’s a good example of going back to, to me that’s, that’s the art of coaching. So I had a an athlete who was like that as well, you’d come out of every corner and a credit and absolutely, pin it, you know, basically try to sprint out and by the end of the credits, he’d be done, and couldn’t really compete in the race, because he had just blown out his legs. So something I did with him is when he went to the local credits that he didn’t care as much about, we made a rule that he wasn’t allowed to stand up, had to figure out how to get through the corners using more technique, and save the power which

Rob Pickels  46:18

was, well and that’s coaching the athlete, right, that’s taking the athlete as a whole, and finding out what they need to be successful. And sometimes that’s not a workout. Yep.

Ryan Kohler  46:28

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Trevor Connor  46:52

Well, Rob, yes, Dr. Will have to keep it a little bit shorter, because we had a really good conversation there. But what’s your question?

Rob Pickels  47:00

That conversation can be edited down to about 30 seconds, I believe I’ll just keep in what I said. I’ll get rid of everybody else. And then we have more than

Trevor Connor  47:10

others questions. Yeah, exactly.

Rob Pickels  47:13

But we’ll have plenty of time to go through the answer to my question, which is obviously the most important. That’s a big fanfare

Trevor Connor  47:21

that’s better be good.

Rob Pickels  47:22

Well, I’m maybe the most egocentric person here so you know this.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  47:27

Drinking some of my hot sauce.

Rob Pickels  47:31

Hey, hey, I bought you that hot sausage. You’re holding buddy. Just thinking about? Like just splash it in your eyes while you’re at it. It’ll really experience I think

Dr. Stephen Seiler  47:48

somebody did that on all at once. I remember. Oh, god.

Rob Pickels  47:52

Yeah. Do don’t don’t deviate.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  47:56

From jackass. Stiva he did that itself.

Rob Pickels  48:02

Bad news, man. That’s talking about abusing your body.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  48:05

Bring it on, Rob. All right, fine.

Rob Pickels  48:06

Let’s see egocentric we’ll kick off with that I am. I’m a thirsty individual. I’m a sweaty individual. I like doing longer events. I’m leaving soon for Finland gravel Siler. I’ll be as close to you as I’m ever gonna get. Okay, geographically, I mean, geographically. And maybe grant, maybe you have insight into this question, because you have some riders that are that are switching into, say being more longer gravel events. Unbound recently, when it comes to preparation when it comes to on bike fueling on bike hydration, and utilizing resources that are on the course. Right? We’re always trying to balance various aspects of performance, weight, rolling resistance time and aid stations. And my question is, is simply this? Is it better to carry more hydration and nutrition with you? Or to stop more often carry less weight? Maybe you’re more or less aerodynamic and utilize the Course Resources instead of loading up your bike and your body?

Dr. Stephen Seiler  49:13

That’s a cool, that’s actually a pretty good question. I’m surprisingly impressed with that question.

Rob Pickels  49:21

Wow. I’ll give a little bit more detail. So for this event, Finland gravel, and maybe we’ll talk about it maybe it’s easier if we have one specific event in mind because the answer probably changes but the Finland gravel race that I’m doing or have done by the time people are listening to this, it’s about 120 ish miles long, and only 6800 feet of climbing, which ultimately, in my opinion, is not a lot of climbing. It’s a relatively flat course it’s relatively rolling. aid stations are approximately every 20 miles. There’s about five aid stations throughout the 120 miles. So sort of copious amounts quite already of aid station is going to be great. There’s there’s more than products, there’s general aid station products. So that’s not really an issue as well. And I have the ability on my bike to carry as much or as little as I want through various backpacks or putting a bottle in my rear pocket strapping bottles to my bikes, all of that. But like I said, I am looking at this from, you know, I’m probably going to be taking in 750 milliliters an hour is what I’m going to shoot for on average, I’m good going up to a leader in our on hot sweaty days, I just I don’t think it’s going to warrant that. So my system is able to process this number of calories and hydration. That’s not an issue for me either. So a little bit more context to everybody.

Trevor Connor  50:44

I’m personally going to give you two answers, because it depends on the context of the event. So you’re talking about an event where there are aid stations, and you can stop. Yep, I think there you are safe knowing the aid stations are going to be there. And you can grab what you need. And in you have the time for it. So there I would probably favor relying on the aid stations a little more. The answer I’ll give you from a racing perspective is I always so I did half of my career solo, where I wasn’t on a team. And I couldn’t go back to a team car to get water. Yeah, they have feed zones, but you never knew what was going to happen in the feed zone. And I still think too, there was this really important race. This was the race that was going to determine whether we were funded for nationals or not, we had a feeder, and it was a hot day it was 100 mile race, we had a feeder who was supposed to be in the feed zones, he missed the first feed zone. And the second feed zone, he missed me. So I had to do this 100 mile race where I had finished both of my water bottles in the first hour and a half and then had to do many hours without water. And we were down to a group about seven or eight that I was feeling good about and I just cracked horrifically in the last 45 minutes of the race because of dehydration. So I personally always when I raced, I’d have two big full size water bottles on the bike and one of my pocket, always Yep. And I know people worry about that. I always cringe when I see people that have the little water bottles because they want to affect themselves too much on the climb. I used to go up climbs with a water bottle in my pocket and these big water bottles. It was never the thing that made or broke the race. Yeah, sure. Grant.

Grant Holicky  52:26

I do think that it depends on the events. But I what I will say when we come to so much of this gravel stuff is that you’re not stopped as long as you think you’re stopped. And when you come into a place or an aid station. So often our mind is screaming, get out, get out, get out, we gotta get going, we gotta get going. I’m wasting too much time I gotta get going and don’t want to do any of this stuff. And we saw a lot of unbound this weekend, one of our writers came in with a pet chain and he had been riding on a bent link for two hours, came into the aid station, then a new chain on his bike and had him out by cleaned and refueled within within three minutes. So you start talking about some of those things that mentally feel like I can’t stop, or we had a kid ride out, forgot his water bottles, rode around the corner, came back and got his water bottles. And people were kind of laughing at him that he forgot his water bottles and only then went through my head as mental performance coach was, Wow, that kid actually thought it through and came back. I can’t tell you how many athletes I know that would have just kept going. Because they’re so panic that they’re going to lose time. So that small like if I’m looking at a race like you’re doing Rob every 20 miles, I wouldn’t bring anything other than two bottles a day. How do I what do I know I can get

Rob Pickels  53:49

grit? What do you think people lose for time? And I’m gonna give two scenarios, right? You you are supporting riders, meaning there was a group of people helping that particular rider out. What do you think time loss is there for an individual versus somebody that’s rolling up to a table and filling their own bottles perusing the snacks? How much can people expect

Grant Holicky  54:11

from a time perspective, it’s minimal. Um, we’re probably talking five seconds, you’re talking about seconds. I do think the benefit of having a pit crew is the ability for that rider to get off the bike we posted a video of of taking care of Scott at Unbound, and he got off the bike and he’s looking around and he’s grabbing food and he’s washing his face off and he’s watching the ride or he came in with to make sure that this guy doesn’t leave before him. But he is seriously being the driver in a NASCAR race and just kind of taking that moment to slow down and relax and calm his brain. And you see it all the time on the World Tour. Those guys are amazing at it when they have to do a bike change. They grab their computer, they grab a water bottle, they’re taking a couple sips they’re looking around their neck They’re saying a couple of things to the mechanic. But that calmness, right? What’s the old John Wooden, quote, be quick, but don’t hurry. That mentality, I think makes such a big difference in the sport of gravel and some of these long endurance events, you can be quick and don’t hurry. And in the best case scenario, when you’re hurrying you maybe gain a second, maybe you gain two seconds, but that calmness is probably going to give you 10 seconds, 20 seconds, minutes down the road, because you’re sorted as you get back on the bike and move forward.

Rob Pickels  55:32

Interesting. Dr. Sylar, what do you think?

Dr. Stephen Seiler  55:35

Yeah, I would be the way you described it with the mountain products and predictability and that I would for sure not want to carry the weight, I would, I would rather lose a few seconds and then feel like, you know, each time I’m on the bike, I’m in an optimal situation to go at a reasonably good pace, you know, I’ve given myself some some advantages. So psychologically, that just sounds better than for me, then if I had a whole bunch of food on me and so forth, that I’m carrying with me, when I know those aid stations are there, and the mountain products are, you know, they’re, they’re good, and you’re going to be able to the jails or whatever you need are going to be excessive, I guess I would have a plan for what I’m going to grab, you know, I would, I would want to have worked out, what’s my fuelling strategy? When I get to the aid station? What What am I looking for, you know, typically, if you were, if someone was there serving you, you’d have a water bottle with a jail attached, you know, with Velcro or whatever, they they do different things in the pro peloton to make that process as smooth as possible. But I would be on the side of carrying less stopping and sorting it out. And the other you know, we know psychologically, just just tasting the sweetness of the car drinks, improves performance, right? So that that’s the kind of thing I was thinking about is, yeah, just use that little micro break for all it’s worth to gather yourself to sort yourself, and to even break the race up into these chunks of time, that you’re giving yourself a little prize after every 20 miles, you know, that sounds like a good strategy for psychologically just kind of pacing yourself. It’s station to station, boom, boom, boom, you know, and then maybe you race through the last station or something. It depends on if you’re, I do think some of this depends on if it was a road race where there’s a peloton where there’s huge advantages to stay in on the wheel of some breakaway group. Yeah, that’s a different scenario. But I don’t guess that’s going to be the case in a gravel race.

Rob Pickels  57:42

Yeah, we’ll see I did, I ran some numbers prior to this. And I oftentimes ride with a liter bottle, I might not run two liter sized bottles on my bike, because if I use my small frame bag, I actually can’t fit a liter on my down tube. So at the very least, I’ll have one liter plus a 26 ounce bottle, which is like 750 milliliters about that. So I can do one easy setup is just over two hours, about two hours and 15 minutes worth of hydration. Or I can add, Trevor, as you suggested in additional liter size bottle in my back pocket. And if I use best bike split, to look at the time difference, and just carrying an extra 2.2 pounds, one kilo for a liter of water, that adds about a minute for this course, is what best bike split is predicting, you know. And so that’s interesting. Grant, you know, the thing that you said about you don’t spend as much time at aid stations as you think you do that really sort of resonated, because in my mind, what I was doing was I was matching it to this minute. Well, if I’m going to lose a minute, is going in and out of aid stations slower or faster than that minute that I would otherwise lose. I will say though, the one thing I like and maybe it’s less apparent I but I have this mindset because I just came from writing trans Portugal, having the additional water on me feels like it improves my range. What if 750 isn’t enough? What if I’m finding that I’m needing to drink more than that? An additional leader with me means that I’m not going to end up in a place where I’m out in between stations, I have a slightly longer range. I very much had that mindset in Portugal because the water stops were so few and far between because it was naturally occurring water on the side of the trail or a cafe there were no aid stations, there was nothing that you could rely on. And in all honesty, some of those naturally occurring water stops were not actually running and so there was no possible way to get water there. And so the boy scout in me even though I was never a Boy Scout says take more always be prepared. But the other part of me you know, certainly agrees that hey, it’s nice to have that mental Rick, maybe I want variety. Maybe I want to stop and grab a coke because I’m just so sick of drinking table sugar, because that’s what I’m probably going to fuel this with. For myself, in addition to the Morton product,

Trevor Connor  1:00:11

two things I will say one is having been there many times. If you time it wrong, and you’re out of fluid, and let’s say it’s a hot day, yeah. And it takes you too long to get to a place where you can get some more fluid and you crack you, you hit that level of dehydration that your body can’t tolerate, there’s no coming back, you can’t take out, you can get to the aid station and drink three bottles, and you’re still going to be cooked. So that’s the one thing to keep in mind. So that’s why I’m always personally a little more cautious. Well, and

Rob Pickels  1:00:43

that’s what happened to me on my first day of trans Portugal, because in my mind, I didn’t adjust my hydration strategy. I had been riding in Colorado that was relatively cool, relatively damp, I was used to doing 500 milliliters an hour. And I just I don’t know in the in the craziness that was the beginning of trans Portugal. For me, I just kept that strategy. And I ended up in that place, I ended up in the deepest, darkest place I’ve ever been, because I think that I ended up in pretty severely dehydrated, and coming back from that was extremely difficult

Trevor Connor  1:01:15

it is and it can affect you the next day too. The other warning that I will give is if you are going to rely on aid stations, you can’t be picky, you can’t show up to an aid station and go I use Cliff products and you have scratch products. That doesn’t work. Yeah, you’re going to eat whatever they have. If you are concerned about that, and you want to rely on aid stations, find out what the events going to have in the aid station and start on your training rides, eating those foods so that you’re used to it.

Rob Pickels  1:01:44

And I think that really ties in with what Dr. Seiler said of planning, one you’re going to get at aid stations because it ties into what Grant said of getting in and out quickly. If you roll into things with a plan, you’re not just browsing, digging, perusing, being indecisive because I get a little indecisive when I’m when I’m glycogen depleted, then I think that all of those tie together really well for great advice.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:02:09

What’s your normal drinking and eating? If you were riding a five hour ride and you had food on board? Are you do you tend to take a big, you know, like you down the whole half liter at one time or you sipping every 10 minutes? Which How do you normally consume your fluids and sugars?

Rob Pickels  1:02:29

Yeah, I like to basically consume half my hourly rate in half hour increments. So a relatively large bolus at once a half hour at a time, every half hour, okay, every half hour. And I have to keep it very simple like that. Whenever I’ve tried to do anything more complex in terms of nutrition strategy, I’m somebody that kind of loses my ability to think during like these long, hard events, where I keep a timer going specifically on my bike for nutrition, because I’ll forget 15 minutes later, I forget if I ate something 15 minutes ago, and if I forget to reset the timer, I’m in this mental place of like, shoot, did I eat? Or didn’t I eat? Should I eat now just in case. And so I need the simplest plan I possibly can. And oftentimes, you know that that’s four or 500 milliliters at a time every half hour.

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:03:20

And I would say to you, if you feel like you can eat or drink, do it. I mean, it’s more an issue. I would just like that would never be if you feel like you can put it down do it. Because it will get used. It seems like based on what all the research says if you can manage to get that through your gut. There’s, there’s there’s a role for it to play at the muscular level. But I want to change my answer then based on what you’re saying, I think I would use a 5050 solution on you where I would carry something. But I would try to bring it down by about half maybe what you might carry otherwise, and then depend on the feed stations and try to distribute because my only concern would be that if you’re going big chunks of time between refuels then you put a big load on your stomach, you know, then you’re you’re under pressure to get a pretty big bolus of both carbs and fluid at once. And you know, maybe you handle that well maybe you don’t so I would probably do a bit of a 5050

Rob Pickels  1:04:22

Yeah, I’m somebody that’s pretty fortunate I can process a lot of calories really well. Ultimately the intensity level for this right we’re looking six and a half to seven and a half hours somewhere in there. The intensity level is not very high. I think it’s a little bit different if you’re doing repeat 1000 Watt efforts, but for me, it’s gonna be relatively steady, you know, bass high bass, low tempo zone effort, and I’m planning on doing 90 grams an hour from table sugar with sodium citrate in my bottles, plus an additional gel an hour. I just don’t like the taste of doing 120 grams an hour in my bottle. It’s too sweet. It’s too much for me. But I do really well with 90 plus a gel. But to do that I do need to consume a relatively large volume of water. If I’m trying to do that number of calories in 500 milliliters, then I get some stomach distress. But when I’m at that 750 to a liter than I’m able to process it,

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:05:19

and why are the sodium citrate, you know, we would call that would be a buffer, but but you’re going at low intensity. So what’s up with that?

Rob Pickels  1:05:25

I just said, If any buffering is worthwhile, it seems beneficial overdoing just a sodium chloride as a supplement to ultimately it’s a sodium supplement that I’m utilizing it for but figured, hey, let’s go with the citrate instead of chloride just just in case it does anything. Because I’m legitimately just using table sugar with no premix and no other electrolytes or anything else. So

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:05:49

and that’s just because of cost or because that’s just works for you.

Rob Pickels  1:05:53

You know, it has worked really well to tell you the truth and cost is I don’t know it doesn’t doesn’t play into it. Right. It’s it’s nice to not be spending a ton of money on pre made mixes, I do still use them in regular training, because it’s easy. But for travel and everything, it’s just a heck of a lot easier to get there and via some table sugar and call it good. So less weight in my luggage and the taste is fine to me and all of that. So it goes back

Trevor Connor  1:06:20

to the whole point of the more we learn the science, the more we seem to simplify.

Rob Pickels  1:06:24

No, certainly. Well, I mean, and that’s what a lot of research has been coming out recently, right? We’re getting to that 5050 mix or in the research, it’s usually one to 0.8 glucose to fructose ratio seems like it does really well at these high high rates of ingestion. And you know, the Morton products as they work well, for me, they’re in that same range. flow formula, I believe is in that same range. So there’s a few things in the market that are kind of, you know, ultimately, right there.

Trevor Connor  1:06:50

Fair enough. Well, Dr. Sylar, that was your first potluck. What are your thoughts?

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:06:55

Ah, interesting. You know, I came close to downing a whole bottle of seed Ranch, pain and agony. No, it was good. My son is saying, Dad, when are you going to be done talking to these people? So now I’ve got, you know, I’m getting some pressure from my family saying, you know, could you please get alive? You know, Mr. podcast, so no, but I thought we went into some interesting questions and reasonably useful.

Rob Pickels  1:07:29

Maze how we aim for reasonably so what?

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:07:34

Well, I mean, it’s potluck. You know, you take what you get.

Trevor Connor  1:07:37

I was gonna say, that’s kind of the motto of the potluck. Right? I

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:07:41

grew up in the church, you know, Sunday afternoon, it was potluck, and everybody had to bring food and you just didn’t know what you get. So it’s kind of like Forrest Gump. So that’s just how it is. Well, with that,

Trevor Connor  1:07:52

we will leave it there. So thank you for joining us, Grant. Thanks for joining us for a Montana. That was a fun conversation, guys.

Rob Pickels  1:08:00

Scratch that from Grants secret hideaway.

Grant Holicky  1:08:02

There you go. Yeah. Don’t tell anybody where

Rob Pickels  1:08:06

he’s off the grid. Somehow. Dr. Sadler is in Norway. And his internet connection is better than grants who is still in this country so

Grant Holicky  1:08:11

well, that gives you some indication of where I am. It’s called

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:08:17

Infrastructure guys, you need politicians to pay for. Need some politicians that spend money on infrastructure. Anyway. Trevor, the next time we do this, you will be experiencing something new and we will be witnessing it. You will have sweat coming out of your eyeballs. This is a new thing. Because those capsaicinoids they do some funky stuff to our stress response.

Trevor Connor  1:08:46

You are not making me look forward to that I will be

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:08:52

the capsaicin, it co ops it tricks the brain, the brain thinks either I’m on fire, there’s literally I’m being burned. or somebody’s hitting me really hard. It gets confused by the whole thing. So you’re gonna love

Trevor Connor  1:09:05

  1. Well, do you want to talk about what it does? Or the tight junctions or your gut because that’s a really fun conversation, the tight

Dr. Stephen Seiler  1:09:11

junctions of my gut. My gut has enough tight junctions without you

Trevor Connor  1:09:23

All right. Thanks, guys.

Rob Pickels  1:09:26

That was another episode of Fast Talk. Subscribe to Fast Talk wherever you prefer to find your favorite podcast. Be sure to leave us a rating and a review. The thoughts and opinions expressed on Fast Talk are those of the individual. As always, we love your feedback. Tweet us @FastTalkLabs or join the conversation at forums.fasttalklabs.com. Learn from our experts at fasttalklabs.com or keep us independent by supporting us on Patreon. For Dr. Stephen Seiler, Grant Holicky and Trevor Connor, I’m Rob Pickels. Thanks for listening.