Take a moment right now and place your hand just below the diaphragm. Inhale deeply, exhale and take a moment to thank your Liver. This little guy has been working hard for you all your life, a thankless job but one that is essential for your life as you know it. No matter what you have thrown at it, the Liver works hard to keep you on track. If you are like me, you and your liver could share some stories! Well today we are going to give thanks to our livers and Im going to give you 5 EASY DETOXIFYING TIPS to help you keep your Liver at Peak levels and boost your performance as an athlete. Given all that you two have been through, its time.. and probably overdue.
What does your liver do? Well I thought you'd never ask...
Your Liver is essential for not just athletic prowess but for making sure that all the blood passing through your body is at a certain chemical composition. The Liver produces Bile which breaks down fats and proteins and blocks harmful toxins and bacteria from entering the blood stream. As we eat and drink ourselves silly, the Liver processes all nutrients and breaks them down into a form that can be used to keep your brain healthy, muscles strong, bones hard, hormones balanced and GUT healthy. Needless to say it is a very important Job. As an athlete we rely on a healthy Liver to purge our body of the metabolites which result from training. As we break down muscles during training and stress our entire system, this produces slight imbalances in the blood. The blood NEEDS to be scrubbed in order to mitigate excess build up of 'JUNK' in the system. As I have come to find out from personal experience, most high functioning athletes have some form of Liver stress that can lead to issues if not addressed through a healthy lifestyle!
Now for the fixes. These fixes are simple to implement and many of you might be doing one or more of them already. In that case, great job! But if something jumps out at you, give it a shot. There is a lot to be left on the table if we dont try and maximize out Livers function.
1. Remove Overconsumption of Supplements and all Trans Fats.
I am leading with this because it is a an area where all athletes need to do some objective critique on their lifestyles. We all feel like, "I train hard so I can eat whatever I want" and it simply is not the case. I have spoke about the marketing machine that lives in the fitness world, trying to have you buy and consume mass amounts of supplements to boost performance. What can often happen is that you end up doing more harm than good. For instance, If you are drinking more colored liquid throughout the day than you are drinking crystal clear water, you are possibly poisoning yourself and most certainly dehydrating yourself. Kick out a bit of the sups and stick to a healthy diet for liver health. And trans Fats in your diet are literally killing you. Anything that you are consuming which can sit on a shelf for a month or more (including all the protein bars!!) contain a saturated fat that clogs up your Liver and can produce fatty liver disease. Just drop that shit right now. My prescription, eat clean and dont consume too much... moderation right?
2. Eat Beef Liver
Consuming beef liver in whole form or in pills can boost your own Livers ability to detoxify the blood. I spoke earlier about the ability the liver has of 'Scrubbing' your blood and making it chemically suitable for optimal performance. When you consume beef liver (grass fed, calf liver) the same scrubbing happens because of the nutrients inside. Beef liver is packed with 3 key components; B-12 for Red Blood Cell Production, Copper and Iron for Cleansing the blood and breakdown of Proteins, and Vitamin A for Immunity and brain Health. A stressed Liver, perhaps like yours is now, needs a boost and consuming liver can give you just that. I personally supplement with Liver Pills from Vital Proteins because sourcing and cooking liver each day can be a grind. The other benefit of the Pills is that you easily can stay within the daily RDA and not go overboard. Beef Liver does have high Cholesterol levels so be careful if that is something you need to be conscious of.
3. Drink Vegetable Juice and Turmeric
A stressed and toxic liver is one that is most likely inflamed. If you are someone who has tried everything under the sun for weight loss and you still cannot seem to lose the fluff, you may have issues with your liver! FAT BREAKDOWN IS DIRECTLY TIED TO YOUR LIVER FUNCTION. For this reason I recommend juicing some veggies and Turmeric. By veggies I do not mean simply spinach and kale. Although these are wonderful we need to juice some veggies that will make our body much more alkaline. I recommend Beets, Parsley, Cabbage, Cauliflower, celery, and Swiss chard. You can throw in some apples or a carrot for sweetness. Turmeric is my wonder root.. I have written about it extensively for inflammation but it also has the chemical properties which help the 'scrubbing' of blood in the liver. Remember that all inflammatory toxins have to pass through the liver so this is literally Ground Zero for attacking disease head on!
4. Eat Potassium Rich Foods
Potassium lowers blood pressure and reduces cholesterol (the bad kine). LDL cholesterol has been shown to increase the chances for coronary artery disease, cardiovascular diseases, stroke, erectile dysfunction, and Diabetes. Once again, your liver is the gate keeper and guard against too much LDL making its way into your blood. Foods like Sweet Potato, Beet Greens, Spinich, Bananas, and Beans are high in Potassium and dont spike your blood glucose levels which can perpetuate inflammation and further damage to your liver. You can ensure you are getting enough potassium if you are eating leafy greens at least 3 times per day. The leafy green route also is a great way to add fiber to your diet which also flushes LDL cholesterol and clearly if you are eating salad all day long you are on your way to becoming a badass.
5. Coffee Enema
This one might be a stretch but after doing them myself... you have got give it a shot. Many of you love your back side, making jokes about it, flatulating constantly, and otherwise gazing at it in the mirror but did you know that its is a portal into Liver detoxification??? When coffee is taken in to the the colon the caffeine is quickly absorbed into the blood stream through the blood vessels that line it. The caffeine is directly shot to the Liver which in turn produces extra bile and begins a flushing of toxins straight into the small intestine. The process has been used for a long time and it WORKS!. If you want to give yourself a bit of energy and do your liver some good, I suggest purchasing the simple system. You will need to buy coffee that is of a very light roast. NOT THE SAME COFFEE YOU DRINK. Percolate 3-5 cups of coffee and make sure it is cool enough for you to touch without burning yourself. Sit back and enjoy 10 minutes and I promise you will come out a better person.
Toxiciity plagues even the most in tune athlete.. If you are really trying to optimize your health then you need to look beyond just what you are consuming but also supporting the systems inside that have to process all that you are taking in. Often times we forget this important part of the process. These simple fixes and lifestyle changes could literally add years to your life so you are welcome everyone!! Keep your eyes focused on the goal, love yourself inside and out, and really effect the world in a positive way. I will be here to support you 100%!!
With Love ,
Programming Notes 4/29-5/3 ** This is Week 3 Of Speed Work . The skills and drills are meant to expand you thinking of your top end performance. Ensure your body is warmed up correctly before attempting any unilateral work or plyometric work. I will post videos on the skills to Instagram.
25 Cal Bike
10 Lateral Banded Monster Walks
10 Single Leg Banded Heel Kicks
10 Single Leg lateral banded kicks
10 Elbow TO instep Lunges W/ Reach
Squat Flow: Squat Flow: Kang Squat, Internal Rotation, Ankle Roll Out, Bootstraps, PNF Stretch, Squat W/ T Spine Stretch
Tempo Backsquats @ Bodyweight
*:02 Eccentric Tempo/ Power Drive out of the bottom
*Drive through entire foot and finish with a “POP” up onto the toes
*Rest :90-2:00 between sets
On A running Clock,
Front Squat 85-90% bodyweight
Deadbug Contralateral Reach
Core Strength :
3 Sets W/ 25# Plate
20 Russian Twist
18 Weighted Sit Ups (see the lights)
16 Tempo Hip Hinge (+:03)(Bear hug the plate)
5 Rounds for Time
35 Calorie Row
100m Opposing/ Variable Double KB Carry
*(Overhead/Farmer) (Front Rack/ Overhead)(Front Rack/Farmer)
* You pick your poison
12 Scapula Push Ups
12 Hand Release Push Ups
12 Arm Haulers
20m Bear Crawl
20m Crab Walk
Lat Band Stretch
A- 10 X Alternating Kettlebell Press
B- :30 Max Strict Pull Up (scale to Eccentric Pull Ups)
C; 10 X (Banded) Kneeling Landmine Presses
D: :30 Double Kettlebell / Single Leg Deadlifts
Roll out Lats
Roll Out Teres
Roll Out Sub Scapula
Agility Warm Up @ 10m Each
High Knee Pull
Squat 180 **stepping the leg high over hip, swing opposite leg to 180, squat
Straight leg shuffles
Fig 4 Drill
Sprint W/ Change of Direction
Speed Work 103:
3 Rounds of
50X High Knee Rope Skips
12X 3 Step Wall Drill
50m Straight Leg Scissor Drill
50m A Skip
50m B Skip
50m MEDIUM height /High Knees (dorsiflexed foot focus)
50m Power Skip VERTICAL (Heel to Butt)
50m Power Skip HORIZONTAL
50m Single Leg Lateral Bounding (Ballistic bias, stick each landing solid!)
50m Single Leg Skips (go slow at first)
4 Rounds Not For Time
10 X Back Roll , Single Leg Jumps
6X Hurdle Tuck Jumps (Horizontal Bias, plyometric)
2X Falling Start 100m Sprints (rest 1:30 Between)
Row 1 K
10 Barbell Good Mornings
10 Barbell Sumo Deadlift High Pulls
10 Behind Neck Press
10 Jump Lunges
Snatch Warm Up:
7 @ Each W/ PVC
- PVC Pass Thru
-PVC Trunk Circles
-PVC Snatch Grip Deadlift
-PVC High Pulls
-PVC Muscle Snatch
-PVC Snatch Balance (Start on toes)
-PVC Mid Hang Power Snatch
12 Min EMOM
-Tempo Snatch Deadlift :03
-Mid Hang Pausing Power Snatch
-Below Knee Pausing Power Snatch
5 Rounds For Time
5 Deadlift 255/155
10 Burpee Over Bar
*Compare to 11/18