Ben Greenfield is a world-famous biohacker, endurance athlete, trainer, best-selling author of 14 books (and counting), wildly successful CEO of several companies, and a devoted husband and father of young twins. You don’t achieve all that, or get a body like Ben’s, by wasting time or failing to fuel yourself.
Ben’s body and mind are the laboratories and he’s the not-so-mad scientist, constantly testing new strategies and techniques for everything from smoothie ingredients and workout routines to the best way to write emails, have sex, and even poop. We sat down with Ben and went through a typical morning and beyond. Check out the interview for a loaded list of tips and strategies to get more done and feel better doing it.
Can’t watch right now but game for a quick read? These are the pillars of a highly productive Ben Greenfield morning:
Up Your Coffee Game
After waking up, Ben gets his dopamine flowing and blood circulating with 10-15 minutes of tissue work on a foam roller or massage ball. Then it’s tannin time. Ben fasts in the morning, but his superpowered coffee or tea drink is essential. You know what the caffeine does, but that’s just the start for Ben, who’s always tinkering with his tannins and looking for compounds that’ll boost AM energy and performance.
Ben recommends adding butter or coconut oil to your coffee or tea. If you’re trying to avoid a big calorie increase, add some ‘shrooms instead. Not that kind. Ben likes a calorie-free, mushroom-based addition like chaga, lion’s mane, or turkey tail. Listen to the full interview to hear some of his other favorite ingredients.
Lesson: Just a few simple and relatively inexpensive additions to your morning coffee can make a huge difference in your mental and physical performance the whole day.
Ben’s living his best life, so after he makes his coffee or tea drink, he takes off his clothes and turns on his Joovv Lights. Ben wrote one of the better Men’s Health articles of all time about the amazing effects the Joovv Light had on his testicles, and don’t you dare call that fake news. Ben didn’t just write it, he’s living it. Every morning, he sips his coffee drink in the nude on an ergonomic saddle chair as he basks in red and NIR light with the Joovv.
Ben says Joovvin every morning increases his blood flow, makes his back and muscles less stiff, helps him recover from yesterday’s workout, and enhances his mood. He swears by it as a pre-workout warm-up, and he even told us it makes his penis bigger. Really, he says when he’s traveling and misses a day or two with the Joovv, he can definitely notice the difference.
Lesson: Take it from a pro: Joovvin’ in the morning, especially before a workout or important work session, is an ideal warm up with countless health benefits.
Taking the (Cold) Plunge
After double Joovvin’ in the nude, Ben is feeling great ahead of his light morning exercise. He loves a good walk in the woods and some outdoor yoga. Sometimes he hits up the sauna to get the sweat going and to release nitric oxide. No matter how you like to work out, Ben swears by cold exposure afterward, or at some point in your day. He had a cold plunge pool installed in his yard so he can dive in anytime (clothing optional), but just a 5-minute cold shower at around 55 degrees can help you burn fat, improve your metabolism, and do a lot more to kick your body into top gear.
Lesson: Feel the burn, then do the opposite. Just like splashing some cold water on your face can help you snap into focus, a quick cold shower can help your whole body perform better.
Super Smoothie Powers, Activate!
Ben waits until an early afternoon lunch for a formal meal, but with all the exercise and work he puts in before noon, he needs more fuel. After light exercise and a cold plunge, he makes a super smoothie loaded with antioxidants. Like his coffee, he’s always experimenting with compounds and tastes.
Ben tosses in wild plants like mint with healthy fats like coconut oil and avocado. He’ll mix in nut butters, a dash of cinnamon and sea salt, and 20-30 grams of a protein powder if he’s doing heavier training that day. A squeeze of lemon stops ingredients from oxidizing and adds a kick of Vitamin C. Then he blends it all for 2 whole minutes, which gives it the texture of a Wendy’s Frosty that he can eat with a spoon as he starts his work day. Listen to the full interview for a longer list of Ben’s go-to ingredients.
Lesson: Just like with your coffee, a few of the right additions to a smoothie can boost your performance all day.
Harness Your 4-Hour Power
Ben is famous for winning endurance contests that take days of strenuous exertion. But whether you’re an elite athlete or an out-of-shape accountant, 4 good, focused hours of work goes a long way. After his loaded coffee, his Joovv session, his light workout, cold plunge, and super smoothie, Ben puts in 4 solid hours in the office. This is when he does his best, deepest thinking and creating. For him, that’s usually writing, podcasting, and strategizing for his businesses and clients.
Regardless of what you do, you should not do some of the same stuff as Ben while you work. That includes not answering emails, not checking social media, or your phone if you can get away with it. Instead, really focus in on your work in this power productivity period, “like a horse with blinders.” That takes Ben into the early afternoon and his lunch break, having done more in the first 5-6 hours than many people do in their whole day.
Lesson: Classic work smarter not harder strategy. 4 hours of focused work after you’ve gotten your body going is almost always healthier and more productive than 8+ hours of multi-tasking, meetings, and sitting in a chair all day.
Wait, No Morning Sex?!
Regardless of when you’re in the mood, Ben has expert advice for boosting testosterone and sex drive and having better orgasms (for men and women alike). So here they are, just the tips:
- Maca Root is a cheap, healthy smoothie ingredient that balances hormones and boosts sex drive.
- Don’t turn to There’s Something About Mary for pre-date advice. Doing some basic midsection yoga moves like hip openers is a great, natural way to get your blood flowing down there and increase flexibility.
- Testosterone isn’t a mystery. Get your basic zinc, magnesium, Vitamin D, and Vitamin K, and you’re going to be in good shape.
- And like we mentioned earlier, Ben swears by the testosterone boost he gets from his Joovv.
Lesson: Keep it simple, keep it sexy. Healthy, natural ingredients like maca root, some basic stretching and flexing, and the benefits of red and NIR light therapy can do wonders for your bedroom game.
Plus Two: Okay, you’re ready to revamp your morning routine, get your mind and body firing on all cylinders, and increase your productivity. So now we can get to the really important stuff, like dominating karaoke. We’re talking business in the front (of the day) and party in the back. One of Ben’s first big endurance contest championships was winning a 12-week karaoke contest in college. If you love belting out the classics, check out his wisdom on becoming a crowd-pleasing karaoke hero (including a few go-to jams).
Did we mention this interview ends with a little bonus concert? Ben grabs his guitar and croons about the one person in history he’d love to get coffee with and the one podcast he’d listen to if he had to choose.
Plus Number Two: We can’t talk morning routine without addressing the elephant in the bathroom. Ben Greenfield’s not just a biohacker, he’s also a bathroom hacker who’s not down with (or on) the toilet seat. Check out the full interview for more!