23 Mar #74. JL Holdsworth on Resetting Your System and Your Life With RPR
Life is hard. And when your body is constantly in fight or flight mode, it’s even harder. What if resetting your system was as simple as learning an easy technique that you could apply yourself every day? RPR, Reflexive Performance Reset, is a simple technique that, when implemented consistently, will change your entire life.
WELCOME TO THE DARIN OLIEN SHOW
JL Holdsworth was tired of living his entire life in survival mode. So he found a better way.
For the majority of his life, JL was living in a fight or flight state. He was angry all the time, flying into fits of rage over small things, and just overall unhappy. But he instinctively knew that this wasn’t the way it was supposed to be. So he searched for a better way.
Today, as one of the most respected strength coaches on the planet, JL spreads his knowledge of RPR, Reflexive Performance Reset. This simple technique allows your body to reset itself, realigns your neural pathways, and increases your overall wellness. This guy is huge, incredibly strong, and at one point had the strongest grip on the planet. Sometimes it’s hard for us to see that even the most physically strong people struggle so much inside. If RPR made such a positive impact on his life, I’m convinced it could do the same for so many of you.
When I first met JL in person, he showed me the RPR technique, and it totally blew my mind. My muscles were firing in all the wrong orders, and I had no idea! So in this episode, he breaks down what RPR is and how life-changing it was for him. Even though we have different lifestyles, we are kindred souls on the same path. This was such a heartfelt conversation, and I can’t wait for you to hear it.
Darin: You are listening to the Darin Olien Show. I’m Darin. I spent the last 15 years exploring the planet looking for healthy foods, superfoods, environmental solutions, and I’ve had my mind blown along the way by the people, the far off places I have been, and the life-altering events that have changed my life forever. My goal is to help you dive deep into some of the issues of our modern-day life, society’s fatal conveniences. The things that we do that we’re indoctrinated into thinking we have to, even though those things are negatively affecting us, and in some cases, slowly destroying us and even killing us. Every week, I have honest conversations with people that inspire me. My hope is through their knowledge and unique perspectives they’ll inspire you too. Together, we’ll explore how you can make small tweaks in your life that amount to big changes for you, the people around you and the planet, so let’s do this. This is my show, the Darin Olien Show.
Darin: Hey, everybody, welcome to the show. This show, my testosterone is already amplified by my next guest. I love this dude. He was an instant brother as soon as I started talking to him. His name is JL Holdsworth. This guy was literally one of the strongest powerlifters on the planet. He squatted 905 pounds, bench-pressed 775 pounds, and deadlifted 804 pounds. He literally is so thick and big and strong, and was measured at one point and maybe even still the strongest grip on the planet. That’s crazy. Can you imagine a guy that strong? I think he was just shy of 300 pounds when he was competing, and now he’s like 265. He came to the house. We did this live. So I’m sitting next to this dude. He has a Bachelor’s in Exercise Science at Wayne State University. Master’s work at the University of Kentucky and coaching. He’s literally one of the most well-respected strength coaches in the world. We realized when we were talking to each other for the first time, we were both fullbacks at small college schools. And I’m looking at the guy, well, yeah, you look and are a fullback. I’m smaller, but I loved hitting and we both shared that passion of just being able to unleash kind of that old Gladiator DNA or something. And so JL is like a brother. He’s a gentle, literal giant, he struggled and suffered with anger. And he was very open about it. And we cover a bit of that stuff. Then we talk about his journey, his journey to discovering himself. And then asking other questions based in physiology, science, helping people, regulating central nervous system. He literally discovered a whole other way, a whole other operating system of the body. He figured out how to turn the body on in a sequence of moves that you can do yourself that help your body, regulate and fire from your central nervous system to your muscular system, and then be able to fire in the appropriate order. This is revolutionary stuff. This is an incredible opportunity to sit down face to face with a gentle giant who is strong as hell, eloquent and smart, and was looking outside of the box to figure out ways to achieve greater heights for not only himself but for other people and athletes. He’s constructed teams and professional teams, from NHL to NBA to NFL, you name it. And this guy has got some love in his heart now. So enjoy this incredible conversation with this incredible, gentle giant, big strong mofo, JL Holdsworth.
Darin: I’m super stoked for you to be here in many ways, and we just clicked on the phone, and you just responded and literally got on a plane and came out and just follow that energy. I just want to give people a little glimpse because we don’t have a video to this thing, but you’re a monster of a man. And you’re probably even smaller than you were when you’re fully competing. So I don’t know, I mean, this is this guy’s a world champion powerlifter. So break that down a little bit. Number one, we resonated because we both played fullback in college. And I was the small end, but loved to hit and you’re the big end that loved to hit.
JL: Yeah, man, it’s so crazy. We did we clicked right away on the phone. And what’s so funny is when we got connected, I started, obviously, I’m looking up and you know, who’s this guy, bla bla bla, and your assistant had set up this call. And for me, I’m looking and honestly, before I got on the call, this guy’s a vegan. We talked about it yesterday. Literally, we talked how crazy this is. At two weeks old, I was eating pureed meat. I’m like, I don’t know why am I having con with him? We are on the phone, dude, I’m like, this is my fucking soul brother right here. You know what I mean? And we’re like, how do we do it? I was like, dude, next weekend, and you’re like, it’s free. I’m like, I’m there. And so it’s been great from the jump, man. So I appreciate you having me in your space. And this is just an amazing time. I would say this. You know, my upbringing has been super different, I think and different in our paths are different, but it’s just that click of you know, you were in neuro muscle therapy and all these things. And so it’s so funny how the universe brings these energies together that different stories, different places, but man, we’re heading to the same place.
Darin: For sure. And it’s also a beautiful thing when two people come from non-judgment about maybe the differences that they do have, well, what’s the point of focusing on that when there’s all these other– it’s almost like an opportunity of a world that gets to manifest. You know, we were now meeting and there are things opening up about potential stuff that we can do together and help get this stuff out in the world, a lot of these things that you’re doing, and I feel that immediately. But if we were focused on differences, then you’re cutting off– think of that every time you judge people, everyone here, we’re all always doing it in some degree, and some more than others, but think of judgment, how you’re fixated on one thing about someone, and you cut off the millions and billions and trillions of possibilities to understand, to explore, to see who people are and to see what potential there is. And it comes also to like both of us just kind of being present and being open to that serendipity that kind of showed up right away.
JL: I think, I love what you said. It’s so amazing because people do focus on the differences. But when you break it down, the world just light in energy, and we’re all part of the same energy. So at the end of the day, we’re all connected, we’re all apart. And so to me, our job in life is to push the collective forward. And so it’s not about looking at the differences. It’s not even about looking at the similarities because to me, we’re just all part of one big organism floating around the sun.
Darin: Hundred percent. So your story, like, I don’t even know the powerlifting side and the athlete side. And that was such a crazy, literally, I just learned this yesterday, and you just alluded to it. You were eating so much as a kid that the doctor just said, well just puree some meat and give it to him. And you were two weeks old.
JL: Look, man, and people talk about knowing their story. And for me, my story really started right when I came out of the womb. My mom had a C section, and they stabbed me in the head with the scalpel when I was born. And the doc said it was the angriest baby they’d ever seen. Well, that didn’t stop throughout my entire life. And, you know, it’s crazy that that event as basically coming into the world really shaped so much of my story over time. Obviously, briefly, we’ve talked for so much, so the main points are that elementary, high school, everything, you know, it was fighting, but I have a different upbringing where we moved 11 times from the time I was in kindergarten to ninth grade. I mean, sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth grade, I was in a different school. And so I was in survival mode from birth and then it just kept getting worse and worse and worse. And it’s one of those things as a toddler, so I ran myself into walls and have these insane outbursts of anger. Basically, the doctor said wrap him up and don’t let him hurt himself kind of thing. And then I parlayed that into sports. And so we talked on football. I was the most violent guy in the football field. I have a helmet in my house that they let me keep because I cracked it in college. And so high school, second thing, wrestling. I love that. And football, I played college football at Ferris State University. We both played fullback for Division Two. So it’s so funny our stories and then I had a bunch of knee surgeries from a skiing accident in college, and I knew my NFL dreams weren’t gonna happen. And so after that, man, I was looking, where do I put all this energy and anger. And for me, we talked right? We were both those aggressive people on the field. And for me, the difference was I was that person off the field. There was no switch. If someone looked at me funny because my body was in such a crazy survival mode that if someone gave me a funny look, I would just alright, you’re going to the hospital. I mean, there was no holdback. And it wasn’t that I wanted to hurt people, but what I’ve learned through doing all this work, and one thing that I know to be true in life is that hurt people hurt people. And my body was in such a bad place that I couldn’t help that hurt people. It wasn’t that I wanted to, it’s just I had to. I couldn’t stop myself. After that, I put it into powerlifting. So instead of smashing my body into people, let’s smash it into weights. And I did my first powerlifting meet, and did really well and got invited to a place called Westside Barbell, which is a Netflix documentary on Westside Barbell. And in that, I’m writing my name on the record board for benchpress in 775 pounds. And it’s an old club–
Darin: So there’s a strength you’ve always had naturally.
JL: You know what it is, I think my body was so shut down. It didn’t matter what it was that I could accomplish things that others didn’t think were possible. And as I’ve done the work, I’ve realized that that’s still a power that’s in me, I just have control over it now. And that makes it way more powerful.
Darin: So you’re benching 775 pounds, you’re squatting, how much?
JL: My best competition squat was 954. And my best deadlift was 804 pounds. I mean, powerlifting, it was wonderful. It gave me a place to smash, but in 2004, I was doing a 1,100-pound squat training and herniated L5 and S1. I mean, I look back at that and that was one of the worst and it put me into this depression and all this, but you know what, it changed the way I thought about things. And it really made me look at myself in a different way. And so I’m grateful for that injury because it made me really assess who am I, what do I want to do in this world?
Darin: Yeah, well, those moments if we don’t ask those questions, and then we’re going to be a victim to those accidents, and those accidents, we are defying the new, you know– So then you got hurt and you’re not competing at all anymore.
JL: I mean, I think it’s interesting. Like yourself, for me, once I find something, I want to be the best in the world. I don’t do halfway. It’s all in. And it’s not just all in, it’s not all in like other people are all in. When I do personality tests or things like this, my desire to win or my ability to win is three standard deviations above the norm. And my patience is three standard deviations below the norm. So when I decided I’m going to win at something or be the best in the world, it’s different than other people operate. It’s a capacity that other people– because part of it is I was shut down to how I felt so much. When you don’t feel anything, you can push as hard as you want, but that pushing has a limit.
Darin: Yeah. And then your body snaps at some point. So you competed, how much did you weigh at that time?
JL: I competed typically a 275 and that’s where most of my lifts were done. However, offseason, things like that. I mean, the highest I weighed was about 314. It was the biggest my weight was.
Darin: And what are you at now?
JL: About 270 and I’m really letting my weight come down because for me, just through the personal work, man, I just have felt that why do I need to walk around at 290 pounds? It just doesn’t serve what I want to do in life at this point.
Darin: What was that point of like, there’s got to be a different way, was it you say earlier, it was through injuries and then you weren’t recovering? Or what was that point where you basically took a hiatus and went on a walkabout for a couple of years?
JL: It’s funny, you asked yesterday. And you asked on the call too when we first got here, you know, where did reflexive performance reset come from? How did this happen? Because as we talked intellectually, you understood what I was saying because one, our energies were aligned. Two, you have this amazing background and neuromuscular stuff and in therapy, and exercise, and you had all this like breathwork you’ve done. So you understood 100% what I was saying, however, because it’s so different than anything you’ve ever experienced, you really– So if you have a background in this, you can understand what it is. Until you feel it, you just can’t comprehend it because it’s so different. And so what’s been interesting is and I really want to thank you because through conversation with you that first call and standing on the deck last night before I laugh, you said some things to me and it was interesting because you said, we were talking, you glossed over this. And it’s so crazy how the universe works as I was meditating this morning, and stuff started coming up. And so what I realized was there is a story to this. And sometimes, these things come together and you know or you forget. So for me, really, where our RPR came from was in 2014, man, I was on top of the world. I just won a world championship in powerlifting. So I’m the best in the world. And I said, you know what, I’m done here. I want to be the best in the world of business. And so over the next two years, I took this 2000 square foot private fitness facility I had. We built it into 220,000 square foot private fitness facilities. So people are texting me from around the world, “JL, you’re crushing it all. This is amazing. We got to come see this.” But they didn’t know what was really going on. And the thing was, every Wednesday night, I had to stay up for 24 hours straight working because I was so overwhelmed. And I was doing it just to survive, not to get ahead, to survive. And because of this man, I had to move into an apartment because I couldn’t be at home and or be around my wife and two young children. So dude, I’ll never forget this man. So seven o’clock in the morning. I’m all alone in my apartment. I’m working all night. And Dude, I just started crying. I’m working and literally, I just start crying, man. It’s funny, I remember saying to myself, JL, why are you failing to accomplish the things you want in life? The thing is, Bro, I don’t do failure. I’m a world champion. I don’t fail, I succeed. So man, it was that point, man, I said myself, so man, I’m gonna take this year, and I’m gonna travel around the world and find a different way because what I know it ain’t working. I’m burnt the fuck out. So man, I spent the year just traveling, learning. And eventually, man, ended up with a dude from South Africa. And he teaches this practitioner-based system and I’d heard about it from some super high level, some of the best strength coaches in the world would telling me about this thing. And honestly, they’re telling me about resetting the nervous system, all this. It didn’t even make sense. And Dude, I’m a world champion. I’d been doing strength conditioning for 20 years. And none of it made sense. But you know what? I remembered that pack. I remember sitting in the apartment crying. And I go, dude, there’s no way I’m going to break that. So I said I’m gonna go learn. So I spent four days with this man and at the end of it, this is something that could help change the world. And so I came back to the spot athletics, my facility in Columbus, and started working with people. Man, a guy who I worked with for 10 years, his shoulder was so bad. He was scheduled for surgery. Two weeks later, felt fine, didn’t need it. People with low backs, hips, everybody feels amazing, but the problem was all these people were dependent on me. We have hundreds of clients at the spot. I can’t do this with everybody. So I get a hold of the high-level strength coaches and say, “Hey, guys, can we simplify this? Can we make this something that just people can do themselves?”
Darin: So for years, maybe most of my life, people have been asking me, “What kind of foods do you eat? What kind of exercises do you do? What kind of water should I drink?” All of these things and so much more we put into a 21-day program so that can take you through a theme every day of knowledge, action, and then eating these delicious meals, working out, getting support, anchoring in these new habits so you can do what? So that you can kick ass. So you have the energy, the vitality to live the kind of life that you really want. That’s what it’s all about. So all in this app, we have grocery lists, we have education about real hydration and what greater oxygenation and the balance of alkalinization. All of these things we are diving into as you’re heading down this hero’s journey of implementation into a new life to give you the kind of life that you actually want. So join my Tribe. All you have to do is go 121tribe.com. Sign up, and you get three free days. Join me on this hero’s journey. Join the Tribe.
Darin: When you took off, and you started traveling, what was the actual questions you’re asking? Was it a spiritual quest? Was it, obviously, you ended up with this technique with this guy, but were you literally just saying, hey, I need a new technique to help myself to help myself, like, what was the actual target or goal you had? I gotta do something different.
JL: I would say, I think for me, there was no–
Darin: You just needed a break.
JL: It wasn’t even a break. I wasn’t searching because I wanted a way out. I was searching because I wanted a way through. And so I could obviously move in the mountains and herd goats, and I could do that. But that wasn’t me because I don’t back down from a fight. I don’t run away from a fight. I’m failing. I’m gonna figure it out. How can I make this work? How can I take what I’m doing, and be ultra successful at it. And that’s what I was searching for. What I knew was everything I had learned, everything that I had been through in my entire life, all that wasn’t working. And here’s the craziest part was, dude, if you can’t be ultra successful in the world right now with all the information that’s out there, there’s something different that’s missing. It’s not the information. And so I knew I had business mentors, this and that, and they’re saying, you got to do this, you got to do this. But for some reason, I couldn’t do it. I just couldn’t bring myself to do some of the things I knew I had to do. I’d walk into work and I go, you got to do this, you got to do this, you got to do this. And then I’m like, I didn’t do any of that. Actually, as a matter of fact, I fucked three of those things up. And I didn’t know why that was happening. So for me, the search was about how do I find– because everything I’ve learned up to this point isn’t working. For me, there was something missing. I didn’t know what it was. And so I just traveled and learned. And it really was this just, again, like I said, my desire to win is so incredibly high. Actually, I took one test. And the guy reviewed the results, he said that basically based on my results, I’d kill my mom to win. And so for me, that’s what it was about. I was losing it life and I had to find a way to win. All the knowledge and skill sets I learned wasn’t working.
Darin: And how did you get the information to go to South Africa? Why South Africa?
JL: So there’s some strength coaches, Cal Dietz, he is a USA women hockey strength coach. He has been in Minnesota for hockey for years.
JL: Yeah, there you go. You’re Minnesota guy, right? So he’s been the head strength coach from USA hockey for 20 years. And one of the best strength coaches in the world. I mean, the guy, he’s a genius. And there’s another guy, I call him a savant when it comes to sprint. He’s one of the world’s top sprint coaches. And those are really the guys that had opened it up, dude’s name’s Chris Korfist. And he’s insane. Like, you go to his house, and he’s just a dude, super humble. And he’s like, yeah, we got some people run in the driveway, and there’s Olympians and pro athletes, and they’re coming so we can assess their sprint tech. I mean, the dude’s insane. And so I got with those guys because they’re the ones who opened it up to me. So when I got with them, and it’s making me simplify–
Darin: So you went to South Africa?
JL: Well, no. So those guys actually had brought him over. It was this serendipitous– Cal, actually, we were speaking together at a clinic. And he starts telling me about these amazing results with athletes. And this neuromuscular reset, or you know all this neuro–
Darin: They started learning from this guy from South Africa a little bit. Then you got kind of invited to the fold. And then you were like, there’s got to be also a more simple way, and you started asking other questions.
JL: Yeah, I mean, this comes down. It’s that desire to win, it’s that figure it out. I’ve taken different profiles where they basically say my figure it out ability is off the charts, and I think that comes down to my desire to win. And so what happened was basically, I came back to the spot and with these amazing changes were happening with clients– I mean, a buddy of mine, so he’s super messed up from powerlifting profession and all this. I worked on him. This was a professional part of it. That day, he went and set a 90-pound squat PR
Darin: What do you mean, 90 pounds over?
JL: So his best, he did 90 pounds and he never done his best the day I reset him. The results were insane, but the issue was here’s the thing. You know, I actually did deactivated with you, which is the hands on version and RPR reflex performance reset, that’s what you do yourself. And so the analogy I always give is RPR is brushing your teeth through your nervous system. It’s what you can do every day to care for yourself. And brushing your teeth, look, if all you do is go to the dentist, you don’t brush your teeth, you got problems. And so you know be athlete is going to the dentist. He’s having someone with a lot more education, do things to you that you just can’t for yourself. And so the thing was is we work with a lot of young athletes. So at our facility, it’s private, and we work with people from 8 years old to 80 years old, whether you want to excel in sport or life, we’re gonna help you perform at your best. And the thing is, I can’t have my 25-year-old male strength coaches using their hands on 15-year-old girls. That is not gonna work. And so because of the type of facility I have in those things, that was my thing, like, holy crap, we have to give this to these people, but we’ve got to figure out how. And that was kind of what started the conversation with Cal and Chris. And then we got with Douglas, and then I started going down rabbit holes, I mean, 1000s of– like I told you, I crawled down some rabbit holes where all of a sudden I realized, man, I better get out of this hole or I’m gonna get lost.
Darin: The audience is probably going, I still don’t know what RPR is.
JL: The cool part is, is that because science is advancing so much, I can now explain it. It’s not this woo-woo. I can tell people exactly why it works, how it works in a super simple way and we have science to back it up because the science has advanced so far. So in the next 10 years from now, every single person will be doing RPR around the world because of the changes it help makes. The thing is is for those 1000s of years, it was this kind of shaman, mystical thing. Really, at its core, what it is, it’s a self applied system of breath and body work. And the cool part is it’s super quick and you can do it any time that you want to perform at your best. And so the breath work as you know is just a simple way of breathing right that we teach and the body work is just applying pressure to certain zones on your body in a specific order. And the power is in the order. The power is in the sequence that we teach because a human body operates in a certain neurological sequence. And when everything’s firing in the right order neurologically, man, as you know some pretty amazing things happen. And so for people to understand the sequence, one, I’ll just say this real quick before I talk at a higher level but we did it with you and when I tested you– so when people do hip extension, your glutes should fire first. This is a sequence that is high function where we perform at our best. Our glutes fire first, then our hamstrings fire, then our lower backfires.
Darin: That should be the order.
JL: That’s our high performer. We’re gonna be the fastest, strongest, and our back’s not going to hurt.
Darin: For everybody.
JL: For everyone. That’s how God made us.
Darin: You found out access points to the overall circuitry and patterning of the body that instead of hey, my thigh hurts so work on it here, like a massage therapist–
JL: Treating symptoms.
Darin: Treating symptoms, keep this in mind everyone, treating symptoms even though my– we always go as patients. You go, my neck hurts. So then a massage therapist, of course, most, and we learned this in neurology class, do not go by pain alone. You have to assess the body because patterns will show up all kinds of different places. So by a massage therapists going and working on the neck pain without dealing with the patterning of the body–
JL: The cause of the issue.
Darin: The real cause, the misfiring, or the mispattern or misalignment of those sequences, you have found sequences that, now listen, everyone, these are applied places. These are places you can put your own hands or it’s made that way and rub these certain areas on your body and it changes the pattern. And you can do that multiple times a day. We did it right before the podcast to align our energy systems because it’s not just the body, it’s the mind, it’s the spirit, it’s it’s everything, and it resets the whole system.
JL: And so for you, we did it. And that’s not how you were firing. Your hamstring fired first and so, again, you did 90 seconds, roll back over and at first, I could push you down with a finger. Then I was putting my whole weight on you, you can hold it up. Why? Because the glutes fired first. We’ve reset the pattern. Once the glutes fire first, do what they’re supposed to, the body gets, you know, almost double, almost twice, 80% percent stronger. And it varies for everybody, depending on where they’re at, obviously. But here’s the cool thing, and this is the part that people, they’re like, woah, that doesn’t seem real, but it’s very simple. It’s not mystical. It’s not Voodoo. No one’s surprised when they flip their light switch on in their house, and all the lights come up. Well, 200 years ago, no one understood electricity. Your nervous system’s the electricity of your body. And everything that’s been studied in modern medicine is done on cadavers. What’s not active in the cadaver? The nervous system. So it doesn’t make sense because we haven’t included this portion. We’ve learned about the neuromuscular system, but we really don’t do anything with the actual neurological lens. So what I’ll explain to people is if you walked in your house and it was dark, so if the electricity in your house is your nervous system, then all the fixtures and everything, that’s your bones, your fascia, all this stuff. Your light bulbs are your muscles. You see the light bulbs come on. You see them working just like you see your muscles working. And so what happens is now, something starts to hurt. You walk in your house when it’s dark, if you started changing light bulbs, how effective would that be on getting your lights to come on? It would take forever and it wouldn’t be real effective. So this is the thing that we’ve been skipping. And what we tell people is we’re just showing you where the light switches are in your body. And if you’re not amazed that your house gets instantly bright, then you shouldn’t be amazed by double the hip extension strength because all we’re doing is just flipping the light switch. And the cool part is, like you said, you can do it yourself and it’s fast. It’s just like a light switch. Here’s what I’ll say. So for that people, I think that resonates. We’re teaching where the switches are. It’s real simple. But here’s what I think, for me, really encapsulates RPR. And it’s kind of a simple analogy that I like. So Daron, you remember what it felt like to be a kid, right?
JL: So you wake up, your body feels freaking great. You don’t have a care in the world. But now as an adult, do you feel this way when you wake up?
Darin: Not all the time.
JL: So for me, I understand at a high level because I used to get out of bed in the morning, and I knew something was gonna hurt. The question was, how bad is it gonna hurt today? Then, by the time I walked to the bathroom, I’m already stressed out, but everyting I got to accomplished for the day, right? So what if adults didn’t have to live this way? What if we could have that same feeling we did as a kid, except we have all the knowledge and skill sets we have now. So imagine putting all your energy into having a better life, instead of wasting some fighting the pain. Imagine bringing your best self to everyone in your life because you’re relaxed, instead of stressed out. That’s what RPR helps give you the power to do. That’s what our PR helps give you the power to do. And you can do it yourself.
Darin: Kind of digging into that a little bit. Do you feel then that pain is a compensatory pattern based on the foundation of the neurology that’s just misfiring over and over and over again, therefore, creating pain. Do you believe that the root of the pain is now different than what we’ve been taught and more connected to the firing that’s off.
JL: So the way I think about it is that in the current world, we treat symptoms instead of addressing the cause. The thing is we existed for 5 million years, and our nervous system, what I call basically our original operating system, it developed to work 30,000 times faster than our conscious mind so that we can survive and live because everything in the world was trying to kill us. The thing is now, things aren’t trying to kill us except we’ve changed that in the last 200 years but our nervous system can’t evolve that fast. So the thing is, the same part of your brain that lights up, if a lion starts chasing you, is the same part of your brain that lights up when your cell phone rings, or you get cut off in traffic. The thing is, is it just doesn’t light up quite as much. So we’ve all felt these major stress events like, you know, someone close to us passes away, right? We feel knots in our stomach, we feel tightness in our chest, we’ve all felt that. Our house burns down. We feel that in our body. The thing is, those are major stress events. We feel those in our body, but these minor stress events of traffic, of looking at our computer screen, looking at our cell phone all the time, those are minor stress events. And those are the dangerous ones because it’s driving that same survival instinct in you all the time, and that’s what shifts your patterns. And the way I like to talk about it is basically those minor stress events are like someone feeding you a tiny dose of poison every day, but we’re feeding ourselves it. And the thing is that in our modern world, what happens is you can get tiny dose of poison every day, and it won’t bother you for years, for a long time, but eventually symptoms start to occur. And those symptoms might be your sleep is bad, you have high anxiety, maybe you’re making bad decisions in file, parts of your body start hurting. And then you go to the traditional solutions, and what do they do? They attack the symptoms. So that’s what’s so cool about RPR is that RPR is the antidote to the poison. The thing is because you’re feeding yourself the poison every single day, you got to be able to use the antidote every single day. And that’s the power of RPR that sometimes people don’t understand because, again, instantly, hip extension improved by 80% right away. So that instant improvement of range of motion, strength, you get those right away. Her abs, she did a situp, I pushed on her, she fell right down.
Darin: That was amazing.
JL: We go through the breathing and the self-applied pressures, we call them the wakeup drills. And so I have her do some wake up drills in a certain order. 30 seconds later, she does a sit up, I can’t even put– I mean, I’m 270 pounds, I’m pushing her, I can’t even move her because our sequence changed. And when your sequence is on, your body can do amazing things. I mean, amazing things. But the real key to me is yes, the instant stuff’s amazing and it’s awesome to show but it’s when you do RPR multiple times a day, every single day, and you’re giving yourself the antidote every day. So I’ll give you for myself, I was living in such a survival mode before I started doing this work that I literally had never read a book cover to cover my entire life.
Darin: And you went to school that way?
JL: Dude, six years of college. I would read like a paragraph, I would read a chapter, I would have 10 books going at once. It wasn’t that I wasn’t learning, I just literally, my body was in such survival mode that I couldn’t sit and do it. So six months after starting this work, I was sitting there and I finished my first book. Dude, I literally closed the book, and it hit me what just happened. And I sat there and I just literally, blank. I mean, I was just staring. I don’t know how long it was. I just sat there. And it’s crazy because now I reread that book every single year just so I don’t forget where I’ve come from.
Darin: Many of you who follow me know I’ve spent most of my life searching for the healthiest foods on the planet from the Amazon jungle to the Andes of Peru, to the Himalayas and Bhutan, to the deserts of Africa, and everything in between discovering hundreds of plants and herbs and superfoods like this is my passion. Things like sacha inch, an Incan treasure, wild [unintelligible 00:31:41] mushrooms, things like Maya nuts, another Aztec superfood, wild cocoa moringa, many adaptogenic herbs and on and on and on. If you look hard enough, there are a few unknown extraordinary foods around the world that people still don’t know about. And a few years ago, I came across my favorite superfood discovery of all time, barukas nuts. Why is that my favorite? Well, when I first tasted them, my eyes lit up. I was blown away. They’re so delicious with notes of popcorn and cocoa and chocolate with peanut butter, and with this amazing crunch, so the taste alone just absolutely blew me away. But after sending them to the lab, which I do, and getting all the tests, I realized they’re the healthiest nuts on the planet. No other nut even compares. They have an unusually high amount of fiber, which is critical for healthy digestion. We’re all getting way too low of fiber in our diet and it’s good for the healthy bacteria and microbiome. And they’re off the charts in super high antioxidants, and have few calories than any other nut. It’s jam-packed with micronutrients. And what they don’t have is just as important as what they do have because they’re found in the forest in the savanna what’s called the Cerrado biome of Brazil, not grown on a plantation or a farm. They’re untouched by industrial pesticides, larvicides, fertilizers. They’re truly a wild food. But they’re not just good for you, they’re really good for the planet. Most other nuts require millions of gallons of irrigated water, not to mention, using bees and shipping them across the United States and just horrible sustainable practices just to grow certain nuts annually, but Baruka trees require no artificial irrigation. At one time, the Cerrado’s forest were made up of millions of these trees. These trees are incredible. They’re nitrogen fixers. They give back to the other plants in the forest. Their grandfather of sacred trees, but most of them were chopped down to make way for cattle, soy, and corn production. When you’re down in Brazil, it can be absolutely shocking. And actually, I’ve cried several times with miles and miles of deforested land filled with soy farms. This beautiful Savanna filled with soy farms and cattle grazing. Our mission is to reverse that. And the long term goal is to plant 20 million new baruzeiro trees throughout the Cerrado. And if that wasn’t enough, we are also providing highly beneficial and fair jobs for thousands of indigenous people so they can stay on their land and they can thrive with this consistent income every year forging and working with Barukas. Barukas are truly good for you, good for the planet, and good for the world community. It’s a win all the way around. I really think you’ll love them, so I’m giving all of my listeners 15% off by going to barukas.com/darin. That’s B-A-R-U-K-A-S dot com backslash Darin, D-A-R-I-N and using the code “Darin” at the checkout. I know you will enjoy.
JL: If you took a fish and you threw it on dry land, you wouldn’t expect it to do well. That’s what we’ve done to our bodies. We spent billions of dollars on all this technology and everything, but what do we spend in on the most important piece of technology, ourselves. RPR is the technology that allows us to guard ourselves and perform at our best when we’ve created this environment we don’t belong in. And the thing is, it’s not going to change. When people talk about stress, resilience, all these, a lot of the stuff people talk about is eliminating stressors, and those are good techniques, but you can only eliminate so far. I got three kids. I got two businesses. I’m all over the world. I don’t want to change that. I just want to perform at my best while I’m doing that. When I was crying alone in that apartment, that’s as much survive as you can get. Now, those two gyms that burnt me out, I spend less time there, they’re more profitable and even more important than that, I spend more time with my family than ever before. But what changed? The things I’m doing in my life, I’m doing more, but I’m doing them all better. And that’s the crazy part about this to me is that when we’re in this environment, and we’re in convergence all day, so think about we are just animals, we’re animals. I know, we have these big brains and we want to think we’re so smart with our iPhones and all this other stuff, but we’re animals. The body is 30,000 times quicker than the conscious mind, the subconscious. So basically, think about putting your hand on a hot stove. You don’t think, hey, my hands burning, maybe I should do something. Your body, the nervous system, instantly pulls your hand back. And that evolved over time, so we could survive. And so if you were walking through the woods, and you’re taking everything in and all of a sudden, a tiger comes out, you converge on the tiger, which drives you into survival mode, so that you can survive if it attacks. But we’re doing that every day when we look at a cell phone and a computer, we’re driving our cars. And so because we’re in that survival mode all day long, we don’t take in the world. We don’t see all the beautiful things that are available to us. And I definitely didn’t before I started doing that. I mean, I was I was in such survival mode. We’ve all kind of exercise to the point where our vision starts to narrow, but most people live in life that way.
Darin: So then through the convergence, we’ll on that, our nervous system follows.
JL: Dude, here’s the things. We’ve talked about it. Your eyes are brain tissue. It is the direct connection to your nervous system.
Darin: We talked about it with Dr. Huberman when he was on the podcast.
JL: Yeah, exactly. He’s the dude I want to connect with.
Darin: He’s gonna flip out.
JL: So think about it like this, so we have something called our vagus nerve. And I think a lot of people know through nasal breathing are probably aware of that. The thing that people maybe aren’t of is that the vagus nerve is actually responsible for about 95% of our ANS, our autonomic nervous system, parasympathetic, performance, and survival. Your vagus nerve controls, whether you’re on performance or survival. It’s directly connected to your brain, goes all the way into your gut. And this is our ancient operating system. This is what controls us. And so the eyes, that brain tissue is instant feed into it. And it happens and you don’t even know it. Like I showed you with your eyes, I changed where you were looking, and your body instantly went weak. You didn’t know that was going to happen. And no matter how much I said resist, resist, resist, don’t go weak, could you?
JL: And that’s the thing. Everything in life right now, everyone’s focused on the conscious mind or your awareness of things. The thing is that’s psychology self-help leadership, all these things. And they’re great. You need awareness. You have to have awareness. However, your body, your subconscious, that’s your capacity. And so that’s what RPR is focusing on. And the easiest way for the listeners to understand that is, and I think we can all relate to this, someone’s going crazy, lose their shit, and you tell them to calm down. Not in the history of the world does that ever work. Here’s the thing, whether it’s diet, everyone knows, everyone’s aware of what to eat, but people can’t do it because their bodies, their subconscious won’t allow them. They don’t have the capacity. This is the crazy part. So think about it like this. Hiring another diet coach, another business coach or consultant to help you, a counselor to make you aware of an issue you don’t have the capacity to solve, that’s like hiring someone to yell calm down at the person losing it and expecting it to work. I mean, that’s what we’re doing in the world. It’s so crazy because RPR is the only methodology in the world that allows you to quickly and instantly improve your capacity. And so physically, you improve it right away, you double your range of motion, things that hurt don’t hurt. That’s cool, but to me, the real magic in RPR is that consistency of every day turning on your light switches and be in that performance mode every day because I didn’t understand that when I first started and now where I’m at where my body– I’ve had 7 knee surgeries. I’ve had 13 surgeries overall. I mean, I’ve had all these things. Dude, I was told 8 years ago I wouldn’t make it 5 without a knee replacement. I’m 8 years in. I’m doing jiu jitsu, I’m training. My body feels better than it ever has.
Darin: And you’re not on any pain meds anymore.
JL: Heck no. I mean, my back was at a point, dude, I’ll never forget this. I’m laying in bed, I wake up and I have to urinate. And I literally couldn’t stand up. So I literally fall out of my bed, and I’m crawling to the bathroom. And I remember crying in excrutiating pain. I roll into the bathtub and just let it go because I literally couldn’t stand up to go. And that’s where I was and I’m where I’m at now. I mean, the more amazing thing to me– so that with RPR, I’m not saying that change happened instantly. That type of feeling, those patterns just develop over years, 40, 50, however old you are. They’re not gonna unwind overnight but we flipped that switch every day and all of a sudden, you start to get a little more space, a little more space, a little more space. And for me, what that meant was I used to lose it so bad I would scream at my kids. I would pick up a chair and break it. I’ll put my fist through doors. And it’s to a point now where that dial of what sets me off, if 10 is where you lose it, it used to at 9.9. Over the last 5 years, now my dial is 2. I don’t even think that getting angry at my kids or yelling at my kids, I think it’s pointless. And I used to scream all the time.
Darin: And so unpacking that a little bit in terms of pain, past, emotion, whatever it is then resetting the nervous system kind of takes you from this agitation that’s constant.
JL: It’s like you’re drowning. Like what kind of decision does someone make while they’re drowning.
Darin: They’re not good. Just survive at all cost, and even take down friends and family if they’re next to you.
JL: And I took some down.
Darin: So let’s talk a little bit about the collateral benefits because if you’re really talking about this ancient, and that’s what we’re talking about, this ancient neurological system.
JL: Well, here’s what I’ll say is you know you said techniques earlier. When it was ancient, it was this mystical technique, now it’s not. It is a simple system that anyone can do. So that’s what’s cool about this is we’ve taken all this kind of mystical woo-woo and go, no, no, guys, all you got to do is apply pressure here, do it in this order and these great things will happen. And that’s all you have to know. And we have all the science and data and there are ways to measure your parasympathetic-sympathetic. So there are things you put on the head and the body and instantly measures the shifts. I mean, we have data where we’ve shifted people from survival to performance, sympathetic-parasympathetic 100% in 5 minutes.
Darin: Now more than ever with COVID, we’ve got mental issues, we’ve got a lot of the isolation, depression, all of these things. So RPR, in terms of just mental health, how would that affect and what do you see from that perspective? Clearly you’re a running example of that because you’re so damn angry all the time and you’re completely, I mean, from what I know of you, you’re not that anymore.
JL: So there was a kid who interned for us, and so he went in. And we’ve taught this system to a bunch of NFL teams and in special operations. So really what we’ve done is take this to the highest level performers in the world at this point. And I went into an NFL team and there was a kid who actually interned for me that’s an assistant coach at that team. And we had dinner and he called some other staff because he interned with me before all this. We had dinner, instantly, he called one of my other coaches, my director performance, he goes, woah, JL is a different human being. And you know what’s crazy, it’s funny being out here because we’ve really– I don’t want to say focus, but just we were like, hey, if this can help special forces, if this can help NFL, pro-athletes, and that was our focus except for about a year and a half ago, I was out here and I was teaching to some high-level people, and you have this clinic. Everyone in there was fitness people. And we talked about this, there was one lady in there who’s in cardigan and slacks and all this jewelry. It just doesn’t have the fitness look.
Darin: Older lady?
JL: Yeah, little older. So we go around, we do introductions and she was, “I’m not a personnel. I’m just here to make sure I’m doing rubbing right.” And I kind of laugh. I was like, yeah, the wake up drills. So she started telling us that she’s had this aweful sciatic pain and her back’s been killing her for years. And it got so bad she went from out here, so she’d been to every specials in LA, seen all these therapists and finally, she was on a place where they want to do surgery. Well, as the universe tends to do, it brings you what you need when you’re ready for it. And she went with her friend to her country club she’s visit. And there was a personal trainer there who had been through our course. And he’s like, okay, what’s going on? He starts looking at her patterns. She’s like, okay, breathe, rub here, do this, just self-applied pressure to specific zones in the order. So she starts doing it. She’s like, okay, things have been moving a little better. After 2 weeks, that thing she needed surgery on, that was at a 9 pain. Well, after 2 weeks, it was at a 4. After 3 weeks, it was at a 3. By the time I saw her, it was a 2. So now she still felt it because these patterns that she built over 40 or 50 years, they don’t go away overnight. But here’s what’s cool is that’s when I realized that okay, yes, this is great for these super high performers but we need to get this to just everyday people because the changes it made on this lady’s life– So we’ve been beta testing, and then we actually have an active adult course that we’ll be coming out with really soon towards the beginning of the year because that’s the thing is I know what it’s done for me and my life. At this point, I’m done powerlifting professionally. I’m not a high-level athlete anymore, but I want to be high-level at the things I’m doing. I want to be high-level as a business owner. I want to be high-level as a father. I want to be high-level as a friend, and I wasn’t because where I was, and I’ll tell you this, man. I couldn’t see anything out, and I looked back at some of the decisions I made and you know, I’m not gonna say turning my back on my friends, but just being so wrapped up in what I was doing I couldn’t be there for other people because if you’re drowning, you sure can’t save anyone else. And you can’t even be great for your kids when your drowning. As much as I love my kids, if I’m drowning and they’re drowning next to me, I’m not saving them.
Darin: To understand where we’re at and that we always can do something to change it. And this is such a powerful easy way to apply something that there’s no downside and there’s so much upside from not only physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.
JL: I mean, I would say for me, the things I’m open to, I’m a different person. I’m in of one, but I have other friends who had anger and they’re different human beings. And the thing is what I’ve said over and over is if I died today and this died with me and no one else learned it, I could die happy because I’ve already got hundreds of people that’s sending me stories how this changed their lives. And to me, in life if we just infect one life, if we can just help one life be better, that’s where we got to start.
Darin: Life well served.
JL: You know what I’m saying. And so for me, it is the instant things with the body feeling better, that’s what I came into this for. It’s the mental stuff that I had no clue that would happen when I came to this. Because the thing was that I grew up in this mechanical lense of the body. I didn’t understand the brain and body were one unit. And the things is everybody today, and I’ve counts, I’ve done all these things, they’re coming into the conscious mind. Well, what we’redoing is go in the other way. We’re coming in through the subconscious. So the crazy part is all these mental changes, I didn’t, one, try to change it. Two, I didn’t even know that it was an issue. It just changed at that subconscious level and all of a sudden, things were different and I was just different. And that’s the beauty in this, but it takes time. Like I said, there are insant changes physically which are great, but it’s that time, it’s that flipping the light switch on everyday, flipping the light switch on everyday because what I’ll say to stay with that is flipping the light switch on everyday, eventually, the light switch starts staying on a little more everyday. It starts staying on a little more everyday. And where I was living was in complete darkness. And now, there’s a whole lot of light.
Darin: Yeah, baby. So where can people follow you and find you and get ready for your programs.
JL: Yeah, as far as personally the [00:54:09] coach_jl is where I post my stuff.
Darin: Yeah, we’ll put all that in the show notes.
JL: For RPR, reflexiveperformance.com. That’s our website where they can get information and learn more, and that’s where, obviously, we’ll talk a little more about our active adult course, like I said, we’re beta testing, so people can actually kind of get on the list. Hey, when that comes out, I think we’re gonna do a little pre-sales so people will sign up before it’s out. We’ll give a little discount just for that. And so reflexiveperformance.com to learn more. And for me, what I want to say is obviously, we’ve given a lot of things for people, but what I’ll say is and I want to give this to everyone in your audience because everyone understands or most people understand, what I’ll say is that when you’re doing your breathing, everyone kind of understand how it is, if they put their hand below their belly button and when they breathe the chest stays down, if the chest raises up first that tells our body we’re in survival mode. So if they keep their chest down and they can feel the air come in to low in that belly first, the sequence. Because eventually, it will come up to the chest. But if it goes head first, that tells us we’re being chased by a lion. So I’ll only give your audience practical something. The thing is that I’m telling you how we want it to feel, but that’s also a little bit like telling the person who’s going crazy to calm down. If you’re body is in survival mode, it’s gonna be almost–
Darin: It’s gonna be hard.
JL: Yeah, a little bit. Almost impossible to do that. That’s where the wakeup drills come in. Because we don’t spend a lot of people teaching how to breathe. What I just told people right there, do that, breathe into your nose, out through your mouth. There you go. Why don’t we spend a lot of time teaching people how to breathe. I just gave that to everybody. That’s how we teach how to breathe. That’s not the magic because here’s the thing. When you were 6-month-old, you were breathing perfect. Breathing isn’t additive. I don’t need to teach you how to do it. What I need to do is remove all this poison, get those switches to flip so you can just breathe the way you did when you were a baby. And that’s the thing to me. So in through the nose, out through the mouth, put the hand over your belly button. The sequence, you should feel it feel low first. And not just in your belly but 360 degrees, you should feel your sides move, your back move. And what I’ll say is if people aren’t feeling that, then that’s a really good indicator that your body is in survival mode and you’ve got to reset with those zones in that order because that will allow your body to do that overtime.
Darin: Yeah, it’s gonna take a little bit for people just to literally just do that now, and have that hand both push out from a lower position.
JL: And you don’t push out, the air fills and it just happens naturally. That’s the key.
Darin: Dude, this has been awesome. So appreciate you coming out here.
JL: Thank you for having me. I mean, just the space that you’ve created is amazing. And I really appreciate to be a part of that.
Darin: Well, listen, I’m grateful to be a part of you and helping you get this stuff out because it’s really that important. And having felt it now and having seen it, it’s a missing element that I’m grateful that it’s you that’s leading the march and taking this out. So I appreciate you brother.
JL: Thanks brother, I really appreciate that. Thanks for having me.
Darin: Yeah, man.
Darin: That was a fantastic episode. What was the one thing that you got out of today’s conversation? If today’s episode struck a chord with you, and you want to dive a little deeper on a variety of topics, check out my live deep dives on darinolien.com/deepdive. More episodes are available on darinolien.com as well. Keep diving my friends, keep diving.
Darin: This episode is produced by my team at Must Amplify, an audio marketing company that specializes in giving a voice to a brand and making sure the right people hear it. If you would like or are thinking about doing a podcast or even would like a strategy session to add your voice to your brand in a powerful way, go to www.mustamplify.com/darin. That’s www.mustamplify.com/darin.