Content Source: 7 Wellness Trends that are Here to Stay 

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Kyle Case: Hello and welcome to the Huntsman World Senior Games Active Life, my name is Kyle Case and I'll be your host on this amazing journey as we attempt to help you get the most out of your life. Joining me in the studio today is my copilot Jeff Harding. Jeff, how you doing today?

Jeff Harding: I am fantismal, whatever that means.

Kyle Case: Fantismal!

Jeff Harding: My grandson said that the other day, so I'm fantismal.

Kyle Case: Oh, he did?

Jeff Harding: Yeah.

Kyle Case: That's awesome. Hey, it's been a while since we've been together on this show.

Jeff Harding: It has, it has.

Kyle Case: I've been traveling a little bit, doing some recruiting. I know that you've had the chance to do that as well, and I'm glad to be back.

Jeff Harding: It is nice to be back. It's good to be back in the studio with Jeremy, our technician and he just took a bow. You couldn't see it, but he did bow for you.

Kyle Case: So I know that the last couple of weeks, because I've listened to the show, actually, even though I've been out of town, that you've talked about some of the health fads, maybe of the past few decades.

Jeff Harding: The exercise fads, yeah.

Kyle Case: I found that very fascinating, I found it really interesting. Today I wanted to acknowledge that the health and wellness industry and the health and wellness world is always changing.

Jeff Harding: It is, it is.

Kyle Case: One day it seems like eggs are really, really bad for you and the next day they're really, really good for you.

Jeff Harding: They're the it food.

Kyle Case: Yeah, eat carbs, don't eat carbs. It's kinda like a roller coaster sometimes. Really it's hard to differentiate between what's new, what's a trend, what's a fad and you know, what's something that's gonna stick around and is worth paying attention to?

Jeff Harding: That's true.

Kyle Case: But today I found a few trends that at least according to Style Magazine-

Jeff Harding: And Style Magazine does not lie.

Kyle Case: They would never be wrong for sure.

Jeff Harding: They would never lie.

Kyle Case: But they say these are trends that are here to stay. They're not just fads. Some of them make a lot of sense, so let's jump into them, all right? The first one, it's called unplugging. Have you ever heard of it?

Jeff Harding: Oh yeah, I like to do that.

Kyle Case: You like to unplug?

Jeff Harding: I do.

Kyle Case: Unwind.

Jeff Harding: Just disconnect from all the electronics.

Kyle Case: Well that's really what it's all about. So they're saying and have noticed that people like Sean Parker who is a tech billionaire and was actually Facebook's very first president to media big wigs like Jason [Hershborne 00:02:07] and many other tech executives have noted the potential danger and the dark side of constantly being plugged in to our smart phones or our iPads. It's well documented that Steve Jobs imposed strict screen time on his children, in addition to not allowing them to even have iPads. Did you know that?

Jeff Harding: Steve was a smart man.

Kyle Case: Yeah.

Jeff Harding: Yeah.

Kyle Case: So anyway, recent research is showing us that too much screen usage and too much screen time is changing the way that our brain chemistry works. It makes us more disconnected, stressed out, and depressed. So it's important to unplug and find your own happy balance with technology. I'm not saying, no one is saying that technology is not a good thing. But it is important that we unplug once and a while. So there are a number of apps that can help you do that and help you control your phone usage, such as ( OFFTIME ) and Moment. Or just tech free retreats and digital detoxes, there's all kinds of ways to unplug and like you said, just kinda distance yourself from the technology and just enjoy the real world once and a while.

Jeff Harding: But there is one thing we wanna make clear, do not do it during our show.

Kyle Case: Correct. That's right.

Jeff Harding: Or during our podcast. Do not do that.

Kyle Case: Don't unplug at that time. But yeah, it is important. I think it's important that we get away from some of the electronics every once and a while. Here's another one that keeps coming up, it's intermittent fasting.

Jeff Harding: You like that one, I know you've mentioned it once or twice.

Kyle Case: Yeah, we need to have a show on it 'cause we haven't dedicated an entire show to it, but it's an intriguing idea to me. So let me talk just a little bit about it. Intermittent fasting has become the latest biohacking craze among executives and CEOs. They say that it helps increase productivity and longevity. It is backed by science, there are numerous scientific studies that show that intermittent fasting can have powerful benefits on your body and your brain. So in addition to trimming your waistline, it reduces inflammation, it slows aging, it lowers your risk of cardiovascular diseases. It improves sleep quality, which we know is really important.

Kyle Case: There are a few ways to experiment with the phenomenon of intermittent fasting ranging from the popular five to two, which means eating normally for five days and then fasting for two, which seems hard. That seems like a big commitment. They also have alternate day fasting where you eat normally one day and then you fast for the next day. Or, if you tend to find yourself on the verge of something of an emotional crisis when you're hungry, which maybe is a good description of you and I, Jeff.

Jeff Harding: Oh yeah, definitely for me.

Kyle Case: They have the 16 : 8 rule which is where you fast for 16 hours of the day and then you eat within an eight hour window. Benefits of the 16 : 8 is that it's easier to work into a busy schedule and the social nature of real life. Honestly, that's the one that people that I know that have done intermittent fasting have participated in, the 16 : 8. I have a brother who's experimented a little bit with it and you know, he had some success with weight loss and some other things. So I don't know, it's a trend that's out there, something to consider for the long run.

Kyle Case: The other one that I wanted to talk on briefly is Morinda, you ever heard of Morinda?

Jeff Harding: It's a dance craze, isn't it? That's the Merengue, sorry.

Kyle Case: It is not a dance craze, but there is a dance craze or a dance that has a similar name. It's the next super food.

Jeff Harding: Oh, I don't ...

Kyle Case: You haven't heard of it?

Jeff Harding: No, I haven't and usually once I hear about them I usually am not very excited about them but go ahead.

Kyle Case: Not too excited about the next super food. Well, it's native to certain parts of Africa and Asia. The Moringa tree is a fast growing plant which is a rich source of vitamin A, C and E. It also has calcium and potassium. It's very high in antioxidants and contains all nine essential amino acids. So it's got some good stuff in it. The benefits include managing blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels as well as fighting free radicals and boosting immunity, and the list goes on and on. The taste though is grassy.

Jeff Harding: That was my question, does it taste good? 'Cause that's what means the most to me.

Kyle Case: They say the taste is grassy, earthy, and slightly bitter. So the recommendation is to pair it with a sweet fruit like a banana or a strawberry or something like that.

Jeff Harding: Or just sugar, just put sugar on it.

Kyle Case: Or put sugar on it and blend it into your smoothie. This is, again it's considered a super food, something that's worth looking at. They say that it's here to stay. Honestly, I haven't heard of this one yet either but I anticipate that we'll probably start seeing more and more about it.

Jeff Harding: Probably.

Kyle Case: So there you go, there's a few things, a few trends according to Style Magazine that they say are here to stay, not fads that will be a flash in the pan and gone but considerations to include in your health and wellness regime.

Jeff Harding: Yes.

Kyle Case: So there you go, our guest today, Jeff, is joining us by phone from Lehi, Utah. He is USATF national championship race walking team member Eric Johnson. Eric has excelled, in addition, in multiple disciplines in addition to the race walking within track and field. Most recently, though, he has had a lot of success in the race walking. He's racking up a medal count that would impress anyone, and we're gonna talk about that and we're glad that he's joining us today on the Huntsman World Senior Games Active Life. Eric, welcome to the show.

Eric Johnson: Hi guys, thank you for having me on the show, it's good to hear from you.

Jeff Harding: Well, and you forgot to mention the most important thing is that he was our table mate at the last Best of State Awards where he won the Best Male Amateur Athlete in the state of Utah when we won the Best Multi Sport Event in the state of Utah.

Kyle Case: I was gonna mention that, that was the time when we actually met-

Jeff Harding: Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to steal your thunder.

Kyle Case: No, no, not at all. We met face to face, we had a chance to share a table together and a wonderful evening and received some accolades in the industry. It was kinda fun, so again, we're glad to have you with us, Eric, and look forward to visiting with you for just a few minutes today.

Kyle Case: First of all, I wanna ask you do you know what Morinda is? Have you ever heard of Morinda?

Eric Johnson: I have not.

Kyle Case: Okay, so that's new to you as well.

Jeff Harding: I'm glad, thanks, you're on my side, Eric. You're on team Jeff.

Kyle Case: Well, we're all on the same team. I just saw it in the article. I hadn't heard of it before the article, but-

Jeff Harding: I still have not eaten quinoa.

Kyle Case: Oh, you haven't had quinoa?

Jeff Harding: I have not had quinoa.

Kyle Case: Maybe you've had it and didn't know you had it.

Jeff Harding: That's a possibility.

Kyle Case: 'Cause it's in a lot of stuff these days. Anyway, Eric, awesome having you on the show and we're looking forward to hearing some of the amazing things that you've been involved with. I wanna talk, to start us off with, about that race walking championships and some of the great things that you've done there. That's kind of what we talked about when we were together a couple months ago. Tell us a little bit about race walking and how you've been able to have some success in that area in the track and field world.

Eric Johnson: Well, I kinda devolved from sprinting, using my fast twitch muscle fiber into being a race walker in 1999, oh, excuse me, in 2009. I was at the Utah Summer Games and I saw the 3000 meter race walk, and a friend of mine says, "Well, Eric, how do you race walk?" I said, "Well, I'll stand up and demonstrate the form." The gentleman that won the 3000 meter race walk that day walked up to me and says, you know, "Whoever you are, you have perfect form for race walking, you actually ought to go do it."

Eric Johnson: So on a whim, I entered the USA Track and Field National Championships, and I entered the shorted distance because I'm a short distance sprinter. So I did the 1500 meter race walk that day and won the national title in my first race.

Kyle Case: Wow, Eric, congratulations.

Eric Johnson: So I've been race walking ever since. It took me two years to then win the World Senior Games title, and now I have 18 World Senior Games titles under my belt in the shorter race walk distances at the 1500 meters, 3000, and 5000 meters. But occasionally I step up closer to the Olympic distances and I, for the last couple of years I've raced in the 15000 meter race walk at the national championships, and I finished second this year in my age bracket. It's a little bit longer distance than I normally do, but occasionally I do the longer distances. It just so happened that my team won the USA Track and Field National Team title in race walking. That's my second time winning that.

Kyle Case: Wow.

Jeff Harding: Pretty cool.

Kyle Case: Yeah, again, congratulations, Eric, that's awesome. You mentioned the technique, tell us what that technique is because there is a very specific technique in race walking.

Eric Johnson: Uh-huh (affirmative). In race walking you have to create the illusion that you're making contact with the ground at all times. It's impossible to physically do that if you actually watch them on a slow motion camera, but you have to ...

Kyle Case: You have to look like it.

Eric Johnson: Be as close to that as possible with your front lead leg striking heel first and actually locking that knee on your stride. Then you pull your hips over that knee and then you can brake your knee again and swing it forward. So it's kind of a different looking walking technique, that's for sure. But it's something that I naturally had a gait in and I decided to give it a try and it's been very good to me.

Kyle Case: I think we'll all agree that, as you mentioned, Eric, there is kind of different look to it. It's a look that is very distinct and everybody can see right away that's what a race walk looks like. But it's really that straight knee that creates that look, and that's kinda the hard part of the technique is keeping that knee perfectly straight as it comes underneath your body, and then as you said, you know, your hips kind of naturally swing out there as well to accommodate that movement and then you move right back into your next stride.

Kyle Case: I've been around the sport enough to know that, independent of what it may look like, it's an athletic event.

Jeff Harding: It is very challenging.

Kyle Case: It requires a lot of athleticism and again, that discipline to maintain the technique for such a distance. As you said, we're at the Huntsman World Senior Games, we do the shorter distances, the 1500, the 3000, and the 5000. But in Europe and in the national championships, they are much longer races. In Europe in fact, they race 40K, 50K, even 60K races sometimes, don't they?

Eric Johnson: Yes, the Olympic distances are currently 20000 meters and 50000 meters. The very best of them, like Nick Christie here in the US, he does a six minute flat mile in race walking. So it's amazing what the best race walkers in the world can do right now.

Jeff Harding: Is there an advantage to being tall or having longer legs? Or is it just how quickly you can move your body?

Eric Johnson: Actually, it's just leg turnover, as to what creates the speed. Actually, shorter strides make you go faster. Longer strides can actually give you shin splints and other hip issues. But a quicker leg speed is what makes you faster. Me being a former world class sprinter in my prime, I have the leg turnover. So it has been a good sport for me to switch over for the most part from sprinting into race walking as I've aged.

Jeff Harding: That's almost counterintuitive. You'd think that the longer strides, but I can say where you're saying that the sooner you get your heel back down and start pulling yourself forward, the greater speed you'd be able to generate. So I've been doing it all wrong, Kyle, I've been trying to stretch my legs out and make long strides in race walking and you do shorter strides.

Kyle Case: But faster leg movements.

Jeff Harding: Yes.

Kyle Case: Well there you go, now we've learned something.

Eric Johnson: I started getting quicker times when I shortened my stride.

Kyle Case: Wow, that's interesting.

Jeff Harding: That is.

Kyle Case: So Eric, you've had the opportunity to compete in a variety of different disciplines all over the nation and even internationally. I'm curious, is there a couple of stories, a couple of experiences that you've had that just stand out in some of those opportunities to compete around the nation and around the world?

Eric Johnson: Well, I've had the opportunity to meet some terrific people in my life. Carl Lewis, racing him in my career when he was in his prime and I was in my prime. That was quite a thrill. When I was a college student, racing some of the best people in the history of track and field. I've had a chance to travel all over the world, I've traveled and raced throughout Europe six times and seen a lot of wonderful venues for racing. But I guess my favorite place in the whole world to race is Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.

Eric Johnson: I raced there this season because they're gonna be renovating Hayward Field and I wanted to race in their stadium one last time before they changed everything this season. I was fortunate enough to win my age bracket in the mile race walk in the 3000 meters. At the time, I posted the fastest time in the world this year. But Hayward Field is the mecca of track and field and it's an incredible venue for racing.

Jeff Harding: Is that where Steve Prefontaine ran?

Eric Johnson: Yes, that was his home turf.

Jeff Harding: That's what I was thinking.

Eric Johnson: All the legends of University of Oregon and Steve Prefontaine are located there. It's just a magic place to go to. It's held many, many Olympic trials there and I'm sure there's other runners around the country that feel the same as me about racing there where it's legendary.

Kyle Case: Sacred ground to a lot of people, that's amazing. As you said, they're renovating so I'm glad that you were able to get one more race in. You're listening to the Huntsman World Senior Games Active Life and we're visiting with national track and field champion, Eric Johnson. Talking about some of his experiences as he himself has lived the active life.

Kyle Case: Now, Eric, you've spent most of your life competing at a very high level, is that fair to say?

Eric Johnson: Yes, I've been literally racing since I was eight years old but in my high school years I was state champion and state record holder and then I ran for Brigham Young University and I've been racing on a world level since then.

Kyle Case: Now, I wanna talk about some of the success that you've had. You've mentioned a few of the things, and again congratulations on an incredible career. But you have been able to amass a pretty impressive medal count. Tell us where you're at in your total count and what your goals are when it comes to the amassing of medals for winning races.

Eric Johnson: Well, my current medal count is 1900. I have a personal goal in my career to try and get 2020 medals by 2020. So I have 120 medals to go, and I have the rest of this track and field season and next year to do that. Some people may say, "Well, 120 medals in the next year and a half is maybe tough," but I average between 90 and 100 medals a season when I'm healthy, and my best season ever was 156 medals in 2012 when I had a number of different number one in the world rankings. I raced a lot that year and had a lot of success that season. But yeah, 2020 medals by 2020 is a current goal of mine.

Jeff Harding: So it sounds very doable.

Eric Johnson: It's very doable as long as I'm healthy, it's-

Jeff Harding: For you, not for me. Let's ... that's for you, not for me.

Eric Johnson: It is gonna happen.

Kyle Case: Eric, that is awesome. That is awesome. So you have already amassed, earned, won 1900 medals. Your goal is to win 2020 medals by the year 2020. That's incredible. So every event that you go to you're competing in multiple disciplines, is that correct?

Eric Johnson: Yes, I just competed at the Southeast Idaho Senior Games recently and I competed in seven events on one day, and seven events the next day. So I'm not shy to compete more like when I go into two meets because I have success competing like that, but I do have my specialties that's sprinting and race walking and throwing the javelin also.

Kyle Case: Wow. So your sprinting events, do you do all the sprints, 50 all the way up to 400?

Eric Johnson: Well, it just depends on the meet and how close other events tie into those. I try and space things out some, but I always run a couple of the short sprints and do all of the race walks. Usually most meets offer at least two race walks, and I do those. Then I'll just do high jump, long jump, triple jump, javelin, shot put, discus.

Jeff Harding: You heard him say just do those things, right?

Eric Johnson: The only thing I currently don't do is pole vault, and I'm learning how to do that because I have some additional goals in the all American category to give that a go and try to get all American in a field event this year and next year.

Kyle Case: Wow, that's impressive.

Jeff Harding: Very, very.

Kyle Case: That's amazing, that's amazing. Now, you've competed at the Huntsman World Senior Games a number of times. I'm curious if you have a memory from your competition here in St Georges that stands out.

Eric Johnson: Yes, in 2012, well I'll take you a step back here. In 2011, I won all my age groups in the 1500, 3000 and 5000 meter race walk events. But in 2012, I had trained through the winter and really wanted to have a special showing at the 2012 Huntsman World Senior Games. When I showed up there, I was in the best shape of my whole season, I was peaking at the right time. I won the all around titles in the 1500 meter race walk, 3000 meter race walk, 5000 meter race walk, and I also medal-ed in the sprints that day in the 50 meter dash.

Eric Johnson: That season I was ranked number one in the world in the 50 meter dash, but I had to do the 1500 meter race walk and then the very next event at the meet was the 50 meter dash and I wasn't 100% fresh. So I bronze medal-ed in the sprinting on the very next event after doing the 1500 meter race walk. So I was hoping to win them both, but you can't always have everything. So I came home with three gold medals, three honorary gold medals for winning the overall title, and a bronze medal in sprinting. So that was a special day for me at Huntsman.

Kyle Case: Wow, well congratulations on a great meet. Like you said, you know, in some ways it might be a little disappointing. But holy cow, what an incredible effort and a great meet. So as I said earlier, Eric, you've competed your whole life. You've really, as much as anybody exemplified this concept of the active life. What has competing so consistently throughout your entire career and throughout your entire life taught you?

Eric Johnson: Well, it's taught me to never give up. Even when you ... we all, as we age, get our little dings here and there as athletes, if we're competing as often as I do. You get little dings here and there, and injuries. You just have to pull yourself back up and get healthy and just keep at it. Persistence is everything and I don't ever give up even when I've had a health issue at times, I don't ever give up. I just regroup and reinvent myself and go at it again the next day and give my best. I've been competing as a master athlete for 18 straight years now and been on a world level for that long, and it's been a terrific career. I would encourage anyone to give it a go. You're never too old to reinvent yourself and become who you wanna become.

Kyle Case: I love that. Jeff, thank you so much ... that's, excuse me, Eric. Eric, excuse me. I was looking at Jeff, excuse me. Great advice though, Eric. Great, great advice and something I think that we can all learn from, that concept of not giving up and just going for it.

Jeff Harding: Very true.

Kyle Case: Well Eric, that's all the time that we have to chat with you today, but once again, thank you so much for joining us on the radio show.

Jeff Harding: You've been a great guest.

Eric Johnson: Thank you so much, guys, for having me on the show today. You all are terrific and it was wonderful, again, seeing you at the Best of State Awards earlier this year.

Kyle Case: Awesome, look forward to seeing you in October, hopefully.

Kyle Case: Jeff, it's time for my weekly invitation.

Jeff Harding: Yes.

Kyle Case: Get registered for Huntsman World Senior Games.

Jeff Harding: It never gets old, Kyle.

Kyle Case: Now is the time, now is the time. As of this morning, we have reached almost 8000 registered athletes.

Jeff Harding: That's pretty impressive. It really is.

Kyle Case: Which is incredibly high for this time of year. It's gonna be a great year, in fact, it's most likely going to be a record breaking year. So don't delay, visit and register today for the Huntsman World Senior Games. 30 different sports to choose from, there's something there for you. The 2018 dates of this year's games are October 8th through the 20th. Remember to tune in live next and every Thursday at 5:30 PM mountain time on AM 1450 or FM 93.1 for the Huntsman World Senior Games Active Life.

Kyle Case: You can also subscribe to our podcast pretty much anywhere that podcasts are found, including iTunes, Google and Stitcher as well as TuneIn and Spotify. It's easy to add us to your list of favorite podcasts, just search for the Huntsman World Senior Games Active Life, hit that subscribe button and every time we release a new episode you will be notified. Once you've subscribed, give us a rating and write a quick review. It really helps us spread the word.

Kyle Case: If you have an idea for a show or a question for us, shoot us an email at And Jeff, our inspirational thought for the day is by H. Jackson Brown, Jr. He says, "The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today."

Jeff Harding: That's right.

Kyle Case: Until next Thursday, stay active.

Jeff Harding: Bye, everyone.