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Hunter McIntyre – Inside the Mind of an Elite Athlete

Content by: Hunter McIntyre

Watch the full interview below or listen to the full episode on your iPhone HERE.

Stu: This week, I’m excited to welcome Hunter McIntyre to the podcast. Hunter is a professional athlete and fitness trainer who established himself as a dominant force in the world of obstacle course racing and is one of the most decorated multi-sport athletes in history. He brings his magnetic personality to all his fitness endeavours, which has led him to create a variety of online programs, events, and sport specific resources. In this episode, we discuss the mindset, nutrition and recovery strategies he calls upon to ensure that he continues to dominate. Whether you’re a weekend warrior or an elite athlete, you’ll definitely get a lot out of this conversation. Over to Hunter…

Audio Version

downloaditunes Questions asked during our conversation:

  • Why do you think that so many people are hard-wired to enjoy punishing workouts/events?
  • What does your pre/post race nutrition look like?
  • What motivates you to find that extra 1% when you’re feeling smashed?

Get More of Hunter McIntyre

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Brian Mackenzie: Pushing All Boundaries Of Health & Wellness

Ben Greenfield: Achieve Superhuman Feats Of Physical Performance Without Destroying Your Body

Laird Hamilton: Extreme Performance Training & Big Waves

Full Transcript

Stu

00:03

Hey, this is Stu from 180 Nutrition and welcome to another episode of the Health Sessions. It’s here that we connect with the world’s best experts in health, wellness, and human performance in an attempt to cut through the confusion around what it actually takes to achieve a long lasting health. Now, I’m sure that’s something that we all strive to have. I certainly do.

Before we get into the show today, you might not know that we make products too. That’s right. We’re into whole food nutrition and have a range of super foods and natural supplements to help support your day. If you are curious, want to find out more, just jump over to our website, that is 180nutrition.com.au, and take a look. Okay, back to the show.

This week, I’m excited to welcome Hunter McIntyre to the podcast. Hunter is a professional athlete and fitness trainer who established himself as a dominant force in the world of obstacle course racing and is one of the most decorated multi-sport athletes in history. He brings his magnetic personality to all his fitness endeavors, which has led him to create a variety of online programs, events, and sport specific resources. In this episode, we discuss the mindset, nutrition and recovery strategies he calls upon to ensure that he continues to dominate. Whether you’re a weekend warrior or an elite athlete, you’ll definitely get a lot out of this conversation. Over to Hunter.

Hey guys, this is Stu from 180 Nutrition and I am delighted to welcome Hunter McIntyre to the podcast. Hunter, how are you, mate?

Hunter

01:35

Fantastic, buddy. I’m actually drinking some protein right now.

Stu

01:39

Well, you’re looking cool and we’re going to get into that in just a second. But first up for all of our listeners that may not be familiar with you, your work, all the crazy stuff that you do, I’d love it if you could just tell us a little bit about yourself, please.

Hunter

01:53

Yeah. It’s always tough to do this because you feel like you’re bragging but whatever, I’ll do my best to be without being braggadocios. But I mean, I live in the world of a kind of extreme independent competition, kind of like the X Games version of running and fitness. I don’t do Olympic distance running. I do Tough Mudders and Spartan Races and we travel the globe doing races and HYROXs and CrossFit Games. Whatever you could throw at me, I’ll do, kind of like a hitman for hire. I dropped out on college and I needed to find a way to make money so I loved working out and I realized that you could work out and make money in these sports. And I was like, “All right, I’ll just be a hitman. If you put cash down, I’ll show up and I’ll beat everybody.”

So that was kind of my motto and my lifestyle when I was a little bit younger. Obviously. I still love to do that stuff but I’ve kind of transformed my life into being more of a businessman nowadays and I actually spend more time at a desk that you can imagine, sadly. But, trust me, if any of you guys got $100,000 and you’re putting it down to see who is fittest person on earth, I’ll show up and probably cream everybody.

Stu

03:02

Oh, I love it. I love it. So we’re going to talk in a second as to why maybe you’ve transitioned a bit more to desk time that you spoke about but it’s funny because these kind of punishing workouts, like the Extreme, the Spartan, Tough Mudder, whatever it may be. I mean, we’ve got a series on at the moment in Australia called SAS Australia, where celebrities are pushed through SAS training and they are pushed to the extreme. And there are so many people there that are sitting on their couch thinking, “I would love to do that.” And these guys are doing radical stuff, pushing sleds through snow, diving in and underneath the ice, just being flogged to death, but we seem to enjoy it. And you obviously excel in this, enjoying this craziness, why? Why do we enjoy this?

Hunter

03:51

I was actually going on a run this morning and I was thinking about writing a book about how to get your ass kicked royally, and not in a typical bar fight kind of style but just the best ways to test your guts around the globe. Because, I don’t know why but when I was younger, I didn’t ever like to run or like to lift weights at all. But eventually, when I hit a certain age, I was just like, “Fuck it. I’m going to kill everybody. I’m either going to beat them or they’re going to beat me and I’m going to see what I’m made of.” And there’s something exciting about it. I mean, there’s only so much flavor you can get out of your day. And to be honest, there’s a handful of vices in the world. It’s either sex, drugs, and rock and roll.

And now, a really big thing, an outlet these days, has become fitness. 50 years ago, people were not working out, to be honest. The only time you’d see somebody who worked out was probably in the military or if they were going to the Olympics. And nowadays, it’s just if you don’t have a home gym or a gym membership, you’re considered to be quite odd, at least in my world. I live here in Malibu and everybody’s got anywhere from a 10 to $100,000 private home gym with trainers and blah, blah, blah. It’s just the thing to do. And for me, I’ve certainly done a lot of working out but I’d rather get outside and kind of put my hand on the hot stove kind of thing and just feel that burn again. So, that’s why I like to do it. Can’t explain it for anybody else.

Stu

05:16

And in terms of… And again, I revert back to this SAS Australia, they’re just talking about like, “It’s the mindset. Once your mind is gone, your body’s gone,” and your body can do a damn sight more than you think it can, given the right mindset. So you clearly got either a screw loose or you got the right mindset. How do you push through the pain when you know that it is just… You got, I don’t know, two hours ahead of you of just insane punishment. What keeps you going? What’s your mental chatter?

Hunter

05:56

I mean, to be honest, I think it’s just kind of one of those… I think it’s in the movie, Finding Nemo, where you just keep the motto up, “Just keep swimming.”

Stu

06:05

Yeah. Yeah.

Hunter

06:06

It’s kind of just basic like that. I think people think too much about it. There’s all these human optimization… I hope I’m not shitting on your trade but there’s all these books on human optimization and I’ve been part of these very high level, extremely expensive programs where they have me in as a speaker to talk to people and people are spending a lot of money. And they’re like, “How do you become a grand achiever like you?” And I’m like, ” It’s actually far more simple than you guys are making it. Just stop fucking complaining and just enjoy it. Be part of it. And if you don’t want to do it, then quit now rather than thinking about it for the next 30 minutes, 30 hours, 30 days.”

And I just keep it simple. I either enjoy it or I don’t. You have to be very passionate about it or you need to quit. And if you put yourself in that spot, just be passionate about it. I’ve done a couple of these KOKORO camp, which I’m sure is similar to that SAS thing.

Stu

07:01

Yeah, yeah.

Hunter

07:01

A guy named Mark Divine put it on. And it’s like a civilian version of hell week. And I really wanted to be a Navy SEAL and they wouldn’t let me in because I have a legal background of not most.. It’s more colorful than the average Army or Navy signup guy, and they wouldn’t let me in. So I was like, “Fuck those guys.” And then all of a sudden I found out that they had this private version. I showed up and I was like, “I want to prove to everybody that I’m better than them.”

And I did it. And then at the end of the camp… I smoked everybody. At the end of the camp, they’re like, “Hunter, you didn’t come here and didn’t absorb any of the things we were trying to teach you.” And I was like, “I didn’t want to learn. I just wanted to hurt and I wanted to run fast and I wanted to push hard.” And there’s something about it, once you get done with it, there’s a sense of accomplishment. But honestly, I’ll be totally honest, I have more medals than you can imagine none of them are really worth shit. It’s the training and the thought of doing it rather than the actual act of doing it that’s probably more exciting than the act of doing it.

Stu

08:02

That makes sense. That makes sense. Well, do you think that you’re genetically gifted in terms of, when I look at some other sports like CrossFit, for instance, there’s kind of a size, a body type for CrossFit, and it’s almost like a Viking. You’re short, you’re stocky. You’ve got less distance to lift things over your head and you kind of excel in everything.

Hunter

08:25

Yeah. I mean, that’s a certain body type.

Stu

08:27

Yeah. Do you-

Hunter

08:29

I don’t think I’m necessarily genetically gifted. I’ve had my muscle fibers tested. I’ve had my VO2 max tested, I’ve had my body fat tested. I mean, sure, I have a high VO2 max, not nearly the highest. I have endurance based muscle fibers, not necessarily so world-class that it would blow your mind. I have a 30 inch vertical. I don’t have extremely off the charts numbers in any one thing that would make me a world class person. I just keep on going out and doing it. I mean, it’s interesting. My sport, I’m 210 pounds almost right now, 208, and I’m still running against guys that weigh 145 to 160. And I’m 6’2″ and I still do CrossFit, not nearly as good as the best guys but the best guys, they’re about 5’5″ to 5’7″, so that sports really characterized… I mean, you really got to be in the bubble for that one.

Just like in the NBA. You’re probably not going to play in the NBA unless you’re over 6’4″ and you’re probably not going to be in the NFL on the line unless you’re over 275 pounds. You know what I mean?

Stu

09:41

Yeah.

Hunter

09:42

Our sport hasn’t necessarily, at least in our version of sport, which is endurance and stuff, you don’t need a super specified body, at least at this point.

Stu

09:53

What would you say to those people? Because I kind of look at it like there’s kind of two camps, at least where I am at the moment, those people that want to look good and get big by lifting weights. And then there’s the other side of the camp that just want to be really, really cardiovascular fit in terms of just pounding the streets, so they’re really lean.

Hunter

10:14

Sure.

Stu

10:15

But then you see the CrossFit athletes that just look like kind of Norse gods who have just shredded, but can still do this stuff as well. How do you maintain the physique to be able to lift stuff as well as then entertain all this ultra endurance stuff? What kind of training would you do to be able to do that? Because you’d think, “Well, if you’re training for a marathon, your body is going to lean up, right?” Because it just wants to get rid of the excess weight and make it easier for you. But these guys and you-

Hunter

10:45

Well, at that point, it’s just nutrition.

Stu

10:47

Okay.

Hunter

10:47

I mean, it’s interesting. I was very small all throughout high school and middle school. I was actually the smallest of all my friends. And then in high school, I had a little bit of a growth spurt and I got 5’11” and I was 150 pounds, skinny. And then first year out of high school, I went to 6’2″ and 215 pounds. I exploded but I had done all this running and conditioning when I was younger, just because I was spending a lot of time outside and I was on the cross country team. And so, I had a really good engine and I was stuck in this big body. When I was growing into that big body, I was a logger in Montana so I was doing a lot of cardiovascular work and strength training work all day long. I was kind of just built into it, to be honest. But if you want to be a certain body type, I mean, it’s truly just nutrition and then training influence. There’s a girl that I’m dating right now, she’s incredibly talented but she doesn’t necessarily know how to apply the training and the nutrition together. I’ve been doing this for nine seasons now, on my 10th one next year, and I researched it so much and

Hunter

12:00

… failed so many times that I had to give myself the tools to continue to succeed. Otherwise, it’s just stupidity repeating the same thing over and over again. And it’s so impressive. As soon as you start to take a certain training plan and really stick to it and a certain diet, and when I say diet, I don’t necessarily mean like vegan, keto, blah, blah, blah. I’m talking more about at least the parameters of the nutrient level that you’re taking in and the nutrient design and what you’re taking in, you can make a big difference. I went from probably eating about 2,500 to 3,000 calories a day, most of this off season, just because I didn’t care to now I’m back up to 4,000 to 5,000, and I’m getting leaner and stronger and faster just because, but it takes so much time that I set a timer on my watch. Every two hours, I have to eat five to 700 calories.

Stu

12:52

Right. And do you care about the … Is calories just a number?

Hunter

13:01

I think so.

Stu

13:01

Right.

Hunter

13:02

I think that the sports nutrition industry is a little bit of a … it’s a bit scammy and I think there’s all this human optimization shit that’s coming out and people are talking about things that truly, I worked with the best sports nutritionist in the world, Dr. John Ivy, out of Texas. And he helped formulate a lot of the products for a sponsor that I had named HumanN. And I asked him, because I was working with a CrossFit coach, and I won’t name him because he’d probably get upset. This guy was having me take in like absurd, like high fat, all this kind of stuff, stuff that he thought was going to optimize me, and the guy who hadn’t really done the studies, I don’t believe, to really back up what he was saying. He was just chasing a trend.

And then I go with John Ivy, who I read a lot about him before I even met him. And he was one of the … He wrote Nutrient Timing, all these other books that were really, really like top of the class to nutrition for athletes. And he was like, “Dude, the best athletes in the world that I test can just eat sugar and they drink soda and they’re eating Twinkies while I’m testing them and everything. And it’s just you need to supply the engine rather than focus on having the perfect fuel. You need to give it fuel.” And I think too many people focus on that stuff.

If you’re a sedentary desk jockey and you’re like a 55 to 65 year old woman who gardens most of the day and maybe has a glass of wine at night, don’t eat what I eat because that’s not going to ever apply to your lifestyle. But if you’re somebody who’s in the gym eating 1,500 calories of a keto diet, you’re screwed.

Stu

14:39

So tell us about your … So you’ve got an event coming up and your events typically are going to be very-

Hunter

14:47

We’ve been doing it for the past … Are you talking about the one I’m leading right now?

Stu

14:50

Yeah, yeah.

Hunter

14:51

We’ve been doing it for the past month. The last event is on Thursday.

Stu

14:56

So, tell us about the event on Thursday.

Hunter

15:00

Well, the whole event was called OCR Stars. I basically was put in a position basically by COVID where I was basically barred from being able to do what I do. I cannot travel. I cannot compete. We can’t have any mass partition patient events, which fund basically my lifestyle financially. And just from like basically pleasure standpoint as an athlete. And I was just sick and tired of it. I can’t control the world outcome, but I can control mine. So, I put in $30,000 of my own money and my brother gave me $30,000 too because he thought it was a good idea. And I basically put up a huge cash prize and started a business, which was going to be similar to the CrossFit Open but geared towards obstacle course racing endurance athletes. Two runs outside, basically logistically supported by Strava, which is a great app. And two workouts inside supported by a app called WODProof where you filmed yourself and then you could put it into our database at Comp Corner.

And my idea was, is to find … I’ve been training … I have a coaching business and I train myself, and I designed workouts perfectly to get to basically get a goal done. And I wanted to find out the fittest OCR athlete. So, we created this thing and we’ve been basically testing four workouts, one each week over the month. So, we started out with a one mile time trial. Next was what was called gripper chipper, which was like basically a grip based calisthenics workout to test how much grip capacity endurance you had. This next one, is the star this week is the six mile road race. And the last one’s called burpee mountain, which is meant to be a very similar capacity to if you were training for our beast or long level distance, which is tons and tons of mountain climbing, particularly for Spartan race and has a lot of carry.

So, I designed all these things so that you could at least experience something similar in your own home or a local gym. And it’s been working really well. We got a thousand people to sign up. We have a global impact on people who are training for our sport. It qualifies you for a world championship in a physical presence. So if you do this, you actually get a spot to go compete in the world championships next year. So, we created a very decorated and exciting program for people to follow. So pretty pumped.

Stu

17:23

That’s fantastic. That’s awesome. And so, what would you eat? So let’s say for instance that last course you were talking about is far more intensive. What would your pre- or post race nutrition look like? So people can get an understanding of what the elites do.

Hunter

17:42

The actual workout or the true event, championship?

Stu

17:45

The championship.

Hunter

17:46

Oh, well, I mean, that’s tough. I mean, I never tell anybody to do what I do. I say do it exactly what you do, because there’s no point in trying to say, if I said, I like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches … I remember telling people that I used to eat five peanut butter and jelly sandwiches a day, which is true. And I ended up becoming friends with the dude who was a big fan of mine before I actually knew him. He was a huge fan of mine for years. And he would listen to podcasts and shit. He ended up being my roommate, this guy named Benny. And he was like, “Dude, I don’t think you understand. I only ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for like months after hearing that interview because I heard that you did it. And I felt like shit all the time.” And I was like, “Yeah, I can’t give you nutrition advice. That’s stupid of me. I can tell you that this is what you should probably do, but I can’t make the sandwich and put it in your mouth type thing.”

But at least for me, I mean, I’m probably every single day eating about four to 600 grams of carbohydrates. So, that’s important to have before. And I think your hydration and what you put in it is really important from electrolyte standpoint and amino acids standpoint. And then day of, dude, just eat what makes you pumped because you’re not going to change anything other than the fact that you could be dehydrated or give yourself a stomachache if you eat too much. So sometimes I even go into events fasted, because I just don’t feel it that day. I just give myself a cup of coffee with honey.

Stu

19:12

Wow. Okay. And I read and I think it might’ve even been on a Ben Greenfield podcast with you where he was talking about you don’t get a huge amount of sleep and you quite enjoy eating sugar yet you do smash your body like you smash yourself and you clearly excel at what you do. How does that work into your recovery? Because obviously, to be able to continue to perform at your level, you’d want to ensure that you’re recovered. So, what do you do from that standpoint?

Hunter

19:43

I don’t know, man. It’s pretty silly. I went to a competition just recently at the Spartan games and the athlete showed up with the recovery boots and the vibrating massage guns. And they had the creams, the powders, the everything. And to be honest, I think those are all just training wheels on a bike. You just got like 15 pairs of training wheels holding you up. And what happens, for some reason, one of them falls off, you start to lose balance and then the next one falls off, you start to lose balance. I think people become mentally dependent on those things rather than only dependent on actual hard work and sustainability. So from a recovery standpoint, it’s just nutrition and water for me and sleep. It’s like close your eyes when you’re tired, open your eyes when it’s time to wake up. The blacked out tinted blah, blah, blahs and sleeping with special blankets and stuff or … I think that’s all bullshit.

But truthfully, the only other thing that I eat that like actually makes a difference is I take a tremendous amount of CBD like tremendous. I think the average … the industry standard is the … they underdose the actual dosage I think just because it’s from a affordability standpoint, it’s not very advisable for them to give a big dosage. Otherwise, they couldn’t mark the margins up that much. And I have a sponsor that has helped me out. And I think that they are the cat’s pajamas. They’re called Pure Spectrum. And I use their products all the time. I mean, like I’ve got … this has nothing to do with being a plug, but I have 1,000 mg on my desk right now because I just pulled it out of my garage and make sure … Some nights I’ll have 500 mg of CBD if I’m just overridden.

And like my back’s jacked up right now because I did heavy back squats yesterday and it’s not damaged. It just needs time to recover. And I can’t sleep and I can’t sit at my desk, and if I’m throbbing, I just take a ton of this stuff and it just at least takes the edge off of the resistance on my body. And it’s pretty much a game changer. I’m not going to lie. Even my 90 year old grandfather takes this stuff, and it’s pretty, pretty good. So truthfully dude, water, food, and don’t think about it too much. Just get your shit together, and CBD, if you’re really rocked.

Stu

22:06

Yeah. I love your casual approach to this. And so my next question is based around, do you take that casual approach to your training in terms of you’re super structured and you know exactly what you have to do when you need to do it or do you just go out there and just do whatever you feel like doing?

Hunter

22:26

One more time, say that. I’m sorry [crosstalk 00:22:28]

Stu

22:28

Yeah. So, training. So, what type of training would you do? And my question was really, is it super casual for you or are you scientific about your training?

Hunter

22:37

No, I’m actually very scientific about my training. And I hire coaches every single year for thousands of dollars. And I don’t hire them to train me necessarily, but I hire them to consult me. So, what I will do is like I want to set the world record on the 200 pound marathon and I contacted Ryan Hall who’s a buddy of mine from work. And he used to held the record for the marathon and he holds the marathon record for the United States and the half marathon. So, he’s tremendously talented. So we’ll … if we do end up working together, he’ll probably give me like a rubric of some of the miles that I need to do and rubric of some of the times I should lift. And then I’ll basically go from there.

But then, after I worked with him for about three months, I’ll probably go off and do my own thing. It’s just like reading a book. You can’t read the same book over and over and over again and think you learned so much about life because there’s thousands if not millions of books out there. So I mean, in my corner right here, I probably have over a hundred books on strength and conditioning and then in my phone even more than that. And I have my own training business called HAOS, Hunter’s Academy of Strength. And I’ll have my ninth, 10th certification by first quarter next year. And I think truly, as I said earlier, it’s like proper training. I have to … I have ADD.

Hunter

24:00

I have to give myself periodization otherwise I’ll get too distracted. And there are certain times a year where you just screw off and don’t let yourself think about it too much otherwise it doesn’t get fun. You get bored. But then all of a sudden, like right now I got contacted to potentially go over to Germany on December 10th to go compete in a championship. And it’s random that likelihood of it happening, I don’t know, but if I can pull it off, I’m going to show up in tremendously good shape. And it’s not because I was sporadic, it’s because I was precise.

Stu

24:34

Yeah. You know what you’re doing. So I was intrigued when you’re talking about the marathon, and I’ve heard two very different schools of thought in terms of training for a marathon. One is that you just run and you hit the distance every day. And the other one is completely different more based on the CrossFit style Kelly Starrett with mobility and putting in loads and loads of heavy back squats, dead lifts to make the engine bigger. So you don’t have to run the distance. Do you-

Hunter

25:04

It doesn’t make any sense, dude.

Stu

25:06

Yeah. Well, it was in The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss and it was essentially a hack to be able to run a marathon without training for it.

Hunter

25:15

I’ve read the 4-Hour Body, and it was the first book that I actually read in fitness. And I remember when I picked it up and it was like a Bible to me, then all of a sudden I realized no offense Tim Ferriss, but it was a marketing ploy. I mean, there’s no athlete in the entire world that can train at a tremendously low level and have a tremendously high level of success. It just doesn’t happen. There’s a reason if you really want to do well at things, don’t buy books that are exciting. Read the training logs of the athletes or the coaches who set the world record in that event. And they’re never going to be you, so you can’t take everything that they do, but you can learn what it really takes. And if you can handle even 50% of their level of volume and intensity, you’re probably going to be pretty great athlete.

Truth be told, fuck dude, every single day for me is a minimum of two hours of training. Minimum. And every single week is a minimum of 15 miles, that’s when I’m not even running. And then the higher weeks are 70 to 80 miles and you can’t hide from work. I mean, there’s just cardiovascular adaptation, capillary density, muscle fiber porousness, how your muscle fiber actually breathes and handles workloads, very dense muscle fiber that’s meant for explosive heavy lifting athletes does not process oxygen and blood the same way a cardiovascular athlete with very, very supple Type 1 fibers does.

And I know this sounds geeky and scientific, but it’s just the reality. If I go touch the body of a runner, you can move their tissue around very, very easily, like a water balloon. If you go up to a super, super well-trained high-intensity athlete, their muscle fibers are extremely dense. And that’s just because of the way that they’re designed and the operations that they’re trying to pull off. And I think you can hybrid it for sure, but I’m never going to tell you that I’m going to set a world record off of dead lifts, and squats, and box jumps when it comes to running.

Stu

27:30

I love it. I love it. And you ventured into the super geeky there. I’m guessing that you’ve tested your DNA and you’ve been recommended through your test results as to maybe the type of diet and lifestyle that could help you? Is that… Do you pay any notice to?

Hunter

27:52

Well, I will say I got pretty upset, so I did a piece with Ben. Ben and I used… Ben Grieve, Phil and I used to share a podcast called Obstacle Dominator. And I got testing done by this company called DNAFit, and he read my results to me. And one of the things it said is that I should not have a lot of cooked meat, specifically red meat. And I love red meat and I barbecue every single night. And I was like, “Fuck this guy and fuck this test, is bull crap.” But in reality, I’ll be totally honest as I’ve gotten older, I actually do not process meat that well. So now I eat a lot more chicken than I do steak. I’m actually transferring on changing into more fish. So there’s some truth to it. Maybe it’s just a mental thing or maybe it’s just word of the gods.

Stu

28:45

Yeah. It’s interesting stuff, we’ve had the founders of DNAFit on here and I’ve been tested and I generally do the opposite of what I’m supposed to do, even though the data says that you’re supposed to excel in here. I really like lifting weights in the gym, I don’t like running, but I’m good at running according to my app, but that’s another story.

Hunter

29:06

Well, I will say I know that AJ Robertson was the world record holder in the overall powerlifting, and he had more slow twitch muscle fibers and fast twitch yet he held the world record overall, of all weight classes. So you’re not necessarily stapled to the ground on some of these things. I think there are variables and opportunities for you to not necessarily be bound to what told you are, but I will say probably if you listen to the signs, there may be some suggestions you should listen to, but it’s not word of the gods as I said-

Stu

29:43

No. Exactly right. And in terms of other type of tech I mean, we’ll get into your blue blockers in a minute, but are you strapped up with heart rate monitors and aura rings and everything under the sun to track your progress and tweak or do you just go by how you feel?

Hunter

30:00

Sadly, I’ll just give you my honest truth. And if they were sitting in front of me, I’d tell you the truth too. I’ve sat down with some of the CEOs of these multi million dollar companies of tech, and I’ve told them, “I don’t believe in your stuff.” I told the guy who owned Theragun Jason, that I didn’t think that it is a power drill massage or was worth the amount of money that people were spending. And I wasn’t trying to be rude. I was just like, you can’t mark it up that much because there’s competitors to do the same thing and the tech behind, it’s not as good as you say it is. And then something like WHOOP, I think WHOOP could be really cool, but to be honest, I’ve had six of them and I broken all six.

And the likely hood of you being able to have a clear connection with a wrist strap compared to a heart rate monitor, it’s a struggle. So I’ll just tell you, I’ve got a lot of hair on my arms, so the hair is going to interfere with that, sweat will interfere with that, connectivity will interfere with that, and your numbers will be off. And then all of a sudden you’ll think that you’re a bad athlete or a better athlete than you are because of the data that’s coming in. Do I think that they’re bad companies? No. Do I think that 1.0, 2.0 is never going to be as good as… Remember iPhone 1? Now we’re on iPhone 12? I’m going to wait til iPhone 12 [crosstalk 00:07:17].

So, no offense to any of these things, but I’m just giving people the facts that I can only state for my own existence. So I use a heart rate monitor, chest strap, because it’s good to monitor the level of intensity you have. It’s either you’re not working hard enough, or you’re not working easy enough often. And I use [inaudible 00:07:38] when I wake up and I’m just like, I want to know where my homeostasis is at, sometimes I’m too revved up and I need to chill. Other than that, I use a GPS watch to track my miles, but there’s not much else you can give me that’s going to change my life. Even a heart rate variability, I’ve worked with the best tech in heart rate variability, and it’s only told me things that I knew before I had it.

Stu

32:07

Yeah. It’s funny how that happens. I think the body naturally gravitates to give you the information that you need, you wake up and you feel knackered. So you just go easy on that day. You probably don’t need thousand dollars worth of kit to tell you that your HRV is too low and you should give it a rest today. It’s true, it’s true. So just tell me about the blue blockers because we were speaking before we press the record button that you had a bit of a story around them and then as consequences you’re sitting in front of the computer quite a lot, so I’d love to know about the story and why.

Hunter

32:41

Well, I’ve always made fun of people who wear these things, so they think it’s silly and I still think it’s silly, but I bumped into this kid. I had a flat tire in the middle of nowhere, far back in the ass crack of Malibu. And I was screwed in bike shoes, so how am I going to walk out of there? I’m not going to bare foot it on the road for 13 miles. So I’m like, “Oh my gosh dude, I’m so screwed.” And it’s freezing cold and wet outside the fog’s there. The next thing you know, van rolls up, big sprinter van. I wave the kid down. I’m like, “Hey, could you give me a ride? And it’s COVID and I’m a stranger.” And he still let me in. What’s this kid name Matt. And he owns this company called Ra Optics. And I’m like, “What’s your story?”

And he tells me a little bit about himself, he’s like, “Yeah, I got a sunglass company. We’re doing a photo shoot for out here.” And I was like, “Ah, cool.” And I just thought he was just like another kid who’s trying to start online business little did I know it’s a massive online business and the guy’s 21, and he’s a tremendously successful, very smart. And I’m sure he doesn’t even know that I think about him this often, and I wear these glasses often, but he gave them to me and I was like, “Maybe I’ll try them on.” And then all of a sudden I’m wearing them for a fair amount than I’m wearing a lot them out.

And now… I was wearing it before bedtime reading my phone at night just to settle in because that’s the purpose of them. And then all of a sudden I was like, “Wonder what happens if I wear them during the day in front of my computer?” And it makes a fricking huge difference, man. I honestly, I’m looking at screens so much. It feels like somebody’s pressing on my eyeballs back into my head. And when I wear these things, it’s actually a release. It’s pretty silly. Maybe it’s a possible factor, or maybe it’s just fricking awesome.

Stu

34:14

Yeah. It’s funny, I’ve been wearing them for a long time and I just wear them in the evening. But when you put them on, or at least I do, I feel calmer. I feel more calm and just settled and relaxed and yeah, I don’t know. It just works for me. So why are you sitting in front of a computer more now than these days? Because I would have thought that you would be smashing it on the road, in the trails, in the gym, whatever you’re doing day after day.

Hunter

34:40

That is typically my lifestyle. My real lifestyle, if it wasn’t for COVID years, probably about four to five hours of training a day, a lot of hanging out with friends, a lot of eating, a lot of relaxing, you just want to feel good. You don’t want to have any stress. Stress gets in the way of training. When training goes down, results go down, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. So it’s got to be like good friends, good sex, good training, just the basic stuff. It should always be positive. And I’m a big believer in that. You don’t want hurdles in the way of what you’re trying to get to, because it’s just going to slow you down. And it’s a selfish lifestyle as an athlete, if you want to be the most elite level, but surround yourself with people who understand why that’s a purpose for you.

And dude, I was doing very well. I was very successful. I was establishing a career for myself as the best name in my sport and growing around the sports marketing globally. And I was pretty excited about it. And dude, this year I had flights. I had set a world record already, had won every single race. I hadn’t lost a race since 2017. And I was just so pumped. I was having a great year and the next thing you know, COVID hits and then all of a sudden, two weeks into COVID all my sponsors, but PeerSpectrum contact me and they let me go.

Hunter

36:00

And I was like whoa, that’s weird. I’ve never been let go, and I was like, this is definitely really weird. And next thing you know, I was like, okay, maybe we’ll come back in a couple months. And all these companies are really struggling, so I don’t blame them, I’m not upset with them, it totally makes sense. But then all of a sudden there’s no races and I’m like, Holy crap. So now I don’t have any support money from sponsors, and I don’t have any of my real money, which is coming through winning. And I was like, Holy crap. And I have never taken an unemployment check, and I will never take an unemployment check. I don’t give a shit, I’ll shovel poop for cash instead of take unemployment money because I’m not a pussy to be honest.

And I hate it dude, my friends were going to Hawaii, they were going and buying new cars and stuff, and this is off of unemployment checks. They’re sitting in hot tubs, smiling all day. And I’m like, Holy crap, I am not going to end up a hundred feet back, a hundred miles back from where I just started, I’m going to be a hundred miles ahead of where I was by the end of this year. And dude, I just started working. I launched my training business house, I launched this OCR Stars business. I’m doing consultations for companies. I have a media company now, I hired a full-time camera man. I’m working with advertising agencies, and truth be told, nobody gives a crap about your stuff, except for you. If it’s not their baby, then they don’t give a damn,

You are the person that got to take care of it. And I’m just on my computer all day long, emails, emails, content, content. I have three Instagrams, I have four emails. I’m just telling you the truth dude. If you want to be a rock star, you got to do it yourself. And the same amount of intensity that I put into winning races, I just put into this stuff. I told myself I was going to host the most popular event this year. And I can’t say it’s the most popular event, but it is kicking ass, that was the OCR stars one. I told myself I’d be making $10,000 a month by the end of the year with my house training program, and I’m getting close to it. And I’m just hustling man. That’s just me sitting in front of a desk wearing blue blockers.

Stu

38:29

Mate I have to say, I think you’re probably one of the most honest guests that I’ve had on and I really appreciate you, you’re sharing some of this honesty, because there are so many times from that because we can get caught up in all of the hype that the online world, the nutritional hype and the fear-based stuff coming out as well. But you’re clearly just put in the hard work and it works for you. Like no nobody else.

Hunter

38:55

Well, that’s just because, to be honest man, I’m so sick and tired of seeing what you see on the internet every day.

Stu

39:02

Yeah.

Hunter

39:03

All these people that are getting all the likes and have all of the filters have none of the money and none of the things to back it up. And I meet them in real life and I’m like, you’re my superhero, and then I meet him and I’m like, you’re not what you are on your pictures. And people are getting the wool pulled over their eyes. They’re not understanding the truth behind a lot of this stuff. And I’m not saying I’m the person who has all the answers, I’m still so far behind most of the world when it comes to success, and I’m constantly reading and constantly putting myself in situations that will challenge me and make me feel stupid, and make me have to adapt to be better.

And COVID was probably the best thing that’s ever happened to me in my life, because I always talked about wanting to launch my own businesses and take my life into my own hands, because basically I’ve always allowed my name to be on top of other people’s brands, rather than my own. And I had to really just have this sink or float mentality, whether or not I was going to take advantage of this time that I had, or if I was just going to wait for people to call me and give me a paycheck again. So that’s where I’m at. And I can’t say that it’s going to succeed, but I’m fricking pumped to be here and work on it every day.

Stu: 

40:11

It sounds like you’re moving the ship in the right direction mate, you’re crushing it. So, mate I’m conscious of your time, so I just got a couple of wrap up questions. One, I know that people are always really keen to hear from whichever expert comes on the show and it’s about non-negotiables, what are the things that you do each and every day that help you crush that day? And it doesn’t matter what it is, it can be weird and wacky wonderful. But the things that it’s just like if you don’t do it, your day just doesn’t work right.

Hunter

40:46

I do go outside and I appreciate it every single day, I’ll say that’s one thing, I have an incredible view at my house here in Malibu. But then the other thing that I do is, I write down everything that I do and I use stars to let myself know that I’m succeeding.

Stu

41:01

Right.

Hunter

41:02

When I first started this business, I was not doing well. And I was like, gosh, you’re a loser. So I bought a calendar, and I made sure every single day that I made a sale, I put a star down. And I’m telling you right now that star feels like a line of crack cocaine, it’s just like damn, you sold something today man, you are the shit.

So I put that star down, and first month it was one to five star, second month, it was five to 10 stars. Now I’m having months where I’m like 50 stars. And you feel fucking great, it’s these little wins, and no one’s going to pat you on the back like yourself dude. So just be like, yes, you’re the man, people come in and they look at my desk, like what is all that stuff? I’m like, you don’t even know bro. These are all little wins. So the star system has helped me.

Stu

41:49

That’s awesome. Your stars are twinkling back at you every night, it’s your career in a universe.

Hunter

41:55

Yeah, it’s pretty good.

Stu

41:59

This year, we’re almost over, it’s been a very interesting year. Everybody’s grasping for 2021 to be quite different. What have you got in the pipeline?

Hunter

42:10

Well, as I said, I’m supposed to go to Germany to go compete Iraq’s and I really hope that I can, but I just don’t think I’m going to be able to, to be honest, it sucks. So that’s a heartbreaker, but I’m going to try to go out and just go do some big epic adventures. I just signed up for a marathon randomly. In January, we’re going to ride across America, we’re going to Ram Race across America on bikes, a couple of my friends and I. I just want to do some things that are far beyond what I’m asked to do as an athlete, I’m trying to really just stir the fricking pot. So that’s going to be next year. I do want to perform my best for my sport and represent my sport and my name, but I also do want to get out there in the waters with the sharks. So we’re going to go for the big stuff.

Stu

42:59

Yeah, fantastic. Well, mate, if you’re ever over in Australia, we’ve got plenty of sharks in the waters for you to swim with. We’ll take you out, and that dream will be realized for you.

Hunter

43:10

I hope so, what part of Australia are you in?

Stu

43:12

So we’re in Byron Bay. So, on the East coast of Australia, about two hours South of Brisbane.

Hunter

43:17

Yeah.

Stu

43:19

It’s a bit stereotypical hippie surfy town, but very vibrant [crosstalk 00:43:23]

Hunter

43:23

Hit my buddy [inaudible 00:43:23] there, he moved there from the United States. He met a girl, beautiful Australian girl and he just left. What the hell dude, I haven’t heard from barely much at all. It must be so good down there, he’s just too busy to get on his computer. I write him an email like five days, five weeks later I get a response back, and I’m like damn you must be having a good time.

Stu

43:42

Yeah, Byron has quite a lot to offer. And during lockdown, I think many of us felt like we were locked down in this Nirvana, because you’ve got surf and hinterland, perfect weather, and just glorious sunshine. So it’s [crosstalk 00:43:58]

Hunter

43:59

If the U.S. just ends up being such a bag of idiots, I’m out. I’ll come down there in a heartbeat, trust me. I’m ready to throw in the towel on this thing, now the election’s over, we got nothing to bitch about, we got a president. But now it’s Corona and there’s going to be something else, we’re just drama queens over here, so I’m out. So, please send a postcard with your address, I’ll see you soon.

Stu

44:23

I will do mate, I’ll pop it in the mail this afternoon. And for everybody that wants to find out more, and I’m pretty sure that a lot of our listeners are going to want to dial into your story, because you’re so honest and open. Where can we send them, what’s the best address?

Hunter

44:41

If you type in a Hunter McIntyre on Instagram, hunt the sheriff, it’s pretty easy. We always are doing cool stuff, I try to be a very easy access point and I don’t try to be this mega celebrity at all. I’m not, but I’m just saying some people won’t even answer a message. I try to at least respond back. So if you ever reach out, I’ll do my best to correspond with you. And if you’re ever in the Malibu area once this whole nastiness goes over dude, I have people over my house every single day. You don’t have to be a world-class athlete to hang out and have a world-class time.

Stu

45:12

Awesome, mate, I will put all of the notes and the links that we’ve spoken about today in the show notes, including pointing to you, the courses and everything else that you’re doing. We’ll send some traffic your way because it has been an absolute delight. I thoroughly enjoyed [crosstalk 00:45:27]

Hunter

45:27

I’m glad we finally linked up, I know we’ve been a lot of emails and stuff, but I’m pumped that we got it together.

Stu 

45:31

Busy times. Thank you so much, mate. [crosstalk 00:45:35].

Hunter

45:32

Take care brother.

Stu

45:33

We’ll speak to you soon.

 

Hunter McIntyre

This podcast features Hunter McIntyre who is a professional athlete and fitness trainer who has established himself as a dominant force in the world of obstacle course racing.
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