Jason interviews Dan Hollingsworth about staying fit in retirement. Check out the video of Jason doing the exercises created for you.
Dan Hollingsworth is the owner of Kitsap CrossFit in Poulsbo, WA. Prior to starting his own fitness business he was a physical therapist in the U.S. Navy for 10 years, where he was the first physical therapist to be selected to work with the Marine Corps Special Operations Command. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he also completed an Athletic Training internship. He went on to earn a master’s Degree in Physical Therapy from the U.S. Army-Baylor University Graduate PT program in San Antonio, TX. In addition to owning a business, Dan is also a member of the CrossFit Seminar Staff Team and travels worldwide teaching the CrossFit methodology to prospective trainers. Dan lives in Poulsbo, WA with his wife and 2 daughters.
To learn more visit: www.kitsapcrossfit.com
Below is the full transcript:
Announcer: Welcome back, America, to Sound Retirement Radio, where we bring you concepts, ideas and strategies designed to help you achieve clarity, confidence and freedom as you prepare for and transition through retirement. Now, here is your host, Jason Parker.
Jason: America, welcome back to another round of Sound Retirement Radio. So glad to have you tuning in this morning. We have an excellent program lined up for you, but before we get started I’d like to get the morning start right, and a gentleman reached out to us recently, his name’s Michael, and he shared with me, in the spirit of Sound Retirement Radio, he shared with me a verse and a joke so I thought I’d share those both with you this morning.
The verse that he gave me was a Proverbs 16:9, “In their hearts, humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.”
Jason: Here’s the joke, I thought I was the only one with bad jokes, but I’m glad to see that they’re being circulated around, so here’s a joke, why do chicken coops have two doors? If they had four doors, they would be chicken sedans. Thank you, Michael.
All right, so you’re listening to episode 151. It is my good fortune to bring Dan Hollingsworth on to the program this morning. Let me give you a bit of a bio on Dan. Dan Hollingsworth is the owner of Kitsap Crossfit in Poulsbo, Washington. Prior to starting his fitness business, he was a physical therapist in the U.S. Navy for 10 years where he was the first physical therapist to be selected to work with the Marine Corps special operations command. He earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise science from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he also completed the athletic training internship. He went on to earn a Master’s degree in physical therapy from the US Army Baylor University graduate PT program in San Antonio, Texas. In addition to owning a business, Dan is also a member of the CrossFit seminar staff team and travels worldwide teaching the CrossFit methodology to prospective trainers. Dan lives in in Poulsbo, Washington with his wife and two daughters. Dan Hollingsworth, welcome to Sound Retirement Radio.
Dan: Thank you very much. I’m excited to be here.
Jason: Man, I’m excited to have you. Now, let me clarify for our listeners why we’re doing this because this is a show about retirement planning and most of the time we’re talking about financial issues, but sometimes we’re talking about estate planning issues, so to have a health fitness guy on the program is really unusual, but I want to share with our listeners the statistic because Fidelity does a study every year and the most recent healthcare study from Fidelity says that a 65-year-old couple retiring this year will need an average of $275,000 in today’s dollars to cover medical expenses through retirement. Of course, that’s dealing with old age and all the disease and issues that come along with old age, and one of the reasons I wanted to have you on the program was so that we could talk about how to reduce that cost, that $275,000, by being proactive.
Before we get into the tips that we want to share with people and some of the expertise you have, I’m just curious, how did life take you down this path of physical fitness and being a trainer and owning a CrossFit gym? Is it something you’ve always had a passion in or an interest in?
Dan: No. Interestingly enough, when I was in high school, toward the end of my senior year in high school, I was trying to figure out what the heck I was going to do, and I actually thought I was going to be an accountant. My stepdad is a retired accountant and, honestly I saw the lifestyle that he led and he had his own practice and I thought that seems cool, that’s something I could do.
When I went to college initially, I started off as a business major and, long story short, I wasn’t fit for college that first year. I found that out very quickly. So I took some time off from school and thought about the things that I want to do, and something that always interested me was just the human body and so I went back to school that’s what I started pursuing was some field dealing with the human body. So I bounced around from thinking physical therapy to athletic training to going to medical school, and what I realized is I really wanted to be in the trenches day-to-day, working with patients on a day-to-day basis, and so that’s how I ended up pursuing physical therapy. The Navy give me a an amazing opportunity to do that.
But there’s challenges in that field for sure. A lot of times you find that you’re working with people that don’t necessarily want to be there, they’re there because they have to be there, and so that becomes very, very frustrating. It’s also you’re dealing with people who are in pain every day so just emotionally that can be taxing on the clinician.
I’ve always been interested in fitness, and my wife and I were doing endurance sports for a long time, and when I was in the Navy I did a class, we were actually deployed on a ship and they did this big group fitness class, and I thought, “This is really, really cool. I think someday after the Navy I’d like to do a fitness business that incorporates this kind of thing,” but that’s all I knew. I didn’t have a real vision of it.
When I left the ship, I talked my wife into trying this CrossFit thing that I’d heard about but didn’t really know much about, and so we went and tried it and we thought this was really interesting, and literally within a week or two of trying that first-class and going back for a subsequent classes, I looked at my wife and I said, “Remember that fitness idea thing that I had?” I said, “This is it. This is the thing that I want to do.”
Jason: That’s cool. That’s awesome. Our listeners don’t know this. but you are the guy that I hired to be my running coach last year and I really enjoyed that time together, and it was really eye-opening for me to be just this casual runner that goes out and hits the streets but doesn’t really think a lot about form or technique or how I could be injuring myself as a result. So it was really interesting to dig into it from that side.
I’m reminded of this verse that says, “In their hearts, humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps,” and just remembering that … One of the things that I was reminded of by this gentleman that wrote in and shared that verse was how important it is to have a coach, somebody that can help you, that’s been down this path so many times that can help you see things that maybe you can’t see, but, Dan, when I shared that the $275,000 price tag for how much retirees are going to spend retirement, what do you think about that?
Dan: I mean, A, its mind blowing. I mean to think that you’re going to need more than a quarter of a million dollars just to pay for your healthcare, that’s not money that you get to spend to have fun and go on vacation or have good food. I mean, you work your whole life to enjoy your retirement and now a good chunk, and for many people their entire retirement is going to go toward paying for their healthcare cost, and it’s sad.
Jason: Yeah. You and I, we did something I want to share with our listeners before we get too far into this interview, but we did something that was really different than we’ve ever done in the past where I had Dan come into my office here and we recorded a video, and so we’ll tell people more about that video in a minute as we get going, but one of the excuses we might hear, Dan, is people say, “I haven’t exercised in years, why should I start now?”
Dan: Yeah. I think one of the great misconceptions about exercise or about fitness is that, especially when we’re talking about this population is that whole idea that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, and nothing could be further from the truth. I mean, there are countless stories of people who waited until later in their life, 67 years old, to really start their fitness program, and we see them do just amazing things. What we know is that the sooner you start, the quicker you start to build, but we term it as a hedge against decrepitude, and decrepitude is just that inability to care for yourself. Inability to get in and out of a chair, inability to get off the toilet seat, those types of things. What we know is that the sooner you start working to prevent that, the less likely you are to end up in that state.
Jason: That’s what we want, we want to help people stay as healthy as they can, as long as they can so they can really have an amazing retirement for a really long time and also keep their costs down. That’s one of the benefits of not just feeling better today, but spending less money over lifetime.
Dan: Yeah, absolutely.
Jason: As you’re talking about any age, at 28 years old my dad ran a marathon, when I was 28 years old I woke up that year and I said I’m going to run a marathon, and I wasn’t running at all that year so I just started running. But I’ll never forget right there, towards the end of the Seattle Marathon, I was coming to the finish line and I looked up and there was a guy in front of me, he must’ve been 80 years old, and he had this American flag jacket on, and he was hunched over, shoulders hunched over, and he’s in front of me. All I could think of was, “There is no way I’m letting this 80-year-old dude beat me to the finish line,” and I tell you, even though I was dead tired at that last half-mile, I kicked it into gear because I was going to beat this 80-year-old man across the finish line. But, man, talk about inspiring, it’s just cool to see somebody 80 years old out running a … I mean, he had to have been 80 years old.
Dan: It’s amazing. One of my goals with anyone that I work with, but especially with people in the retirement population and then also, I’ll say women, one of my big goals as a trainer is to help them realize that they’re way more stronger, way stronger and way more capable as human beings than society really wants them … I shouldn’t say wants them to believe, but leads them to believe. There’s all kinds of myths and misconceptions about what we’re capable of as we age, and I think the reality is that it’s almost a self-fulfilling prophecy. It’s a negative feedback loop, we hear we’re not capable so we don’t try things that might be a little bit outside of our comfort zone, and then the myth is realized. “You’re right, I’m not capable.” Well, you never really tried in the first place.
What we find is that if you get people to try some things that are a little bit outside of their comfort zone, they are of capable of blowing your mind and blowing their own mind. We see people all the time come in and do things and they’re like, “I had no idea I could do that.” Yeah, you just hadn’t tried.
Jason: As you talk about those social myths and misconceptions, one is that males are stronger than females, I’ll tell you, participating in your classes, there’s a certain level of humility, for me at least, being I just turned 43, but last year I remember showing up to those CrossFit classes and every woman in that gym was stronger than me and there was a little slice of humble pie that I had to eat. But at the same time, it broke through that misconception for me. I don’t know where that got into my head that men are stronger than women, but that … Boy, every woman there proved that that wasn’t the case.
Dan: Yeah. I mean if you look at just brute, raw strength, like number of pounds a person can lift, then sure, but we started breaking it down pound for pound and what we see is that when you look at what they can lift as a percentage of their body weight, women are pretty darn capable. It’s pretty amazing. The same thing is true for our retirement population. We have people in our facility that can do pretty amazing things. But I also want to emphasize that it’s not about trying to get our retirement population to deadlift 400 pounds, it’s about getting them to embrace this idea of an active retirement.
Jason: This video that you and I created, four and a half minute exercise routine, four and a half minutes, and I thought to myself … Because I’m out running all the time, I’m running four or five days a week, 60 miles a month, I feel like I’m taking pretty good care of myself, but at this point I’m not doing a lot of strength training. So you come in and you say, “Jason, I’m going to lead you through a four and a half minute exercise routine. We’re going to record this for our listeners today because we wanted to be able to give them an actual tool.” We didn’t just want to talk about fitness in abstract like, “hey, here’s what you need to … ” You said, “Jason, I wanted to create something that required no equipment, no mats, no weights, no stretchy bands. Nothing like that. Just something people can do four and a half minutes a day.” Man, I got to tell you, first of all, getting through those four and a half minutes was really tough for me, and then I was really sore about two days later. I mean, I was really sore, more so than I thought I was going to be.
Dan: Yeah. That’s just the function of the intensity of the exercise that you did. The body adapts to stresses that’s placed on it, and so what we find a lot is that people will start an exercise program and initially they see all kinds of changes, they see changes in their fitness, meaning their endurance and their strength and their stamina and flexibility, and things like that, they see changes in body fat and body composition, and then a few months down the road things start to plateau. The reason that happens is because the stimulus hasn’t changed, so they’re doing the exact same thing that they had always been doing. Once the body accommodates to that, it doesn’t have to adapt anymore, and so the idea with the CrossFit methodology is changing things constantly.
The workout that I had you do last week that was four and a half minutes, if you just did that work out every single day, you would find the same thing, eventually you wouldn’t be sore, eventually you wouldn’t see changes, so even that has to be changed up in intensity level, in the duration of the workout. Once you start to get adapted to it maybe you do add some sort of weight where you’re just picking up a 10 pound weight or maybe a backpack filled with something to make weight or something like that.
Jason: Folks, if you’re just tuning in, driving down the road this morning in Seattle, you’re listening to episode 151. If you visit soundretirementplanning.com, we created a video so that you can see this four and a half minute exercise where Dan’s basically … I feel like I’m going to die about halfway through it. So I want to encourage you, if you’ve been thinking about starting to get in better shape, either you’re preparing for retirement or you’re recently retired and you just want to avoid these healthcare costs, go check out this video that Dan created. I’d be curious, in the comments below the post, if you just share with me what your experience was as you were [inaudible 00:14:34], but, Dan, what do you say about the person that says I’m too old to start a new program?
Dan: Again, it’s just a complete myth. We can pick up new skills throughout our entire life. I honestly think that as we age it becomes more important for us to try to pick up these new skills and learn things that we didn’t try before. There is definitely some truth to the fact that it’s harder to learn new skills as you age, but again, it could also be part of that negative feedback loop where it’s hard for me to learn something new so I’m going to avoid learning something new, so therefore you don’t learn anything new. But going in and getting started at any age … I mean, when we look at the health benefits of just improved cardiovascular function, heart function, improved blood pressure, really important things like improve balanced and improve bone density, those are really, really critical things as we age.
Jason: Yeah, that’s awesome. Every year at the first part of the year I get together with a group of guys and we do this mastermind goal setting day, and as I start and now that we’re coming to the end of the year, I’m starting to think about what this New Year’s going to look like. I always try to identify one or two words that are important to me, that I want to focus on as I’m going into the new year. In the past some of those words have been purpose, passion, curiosity, creativity, but this year, one of the ones … These are words just when I’m working within those realms I feel the most alive. When I really feel like I’m living on purpose. But you just touched on something there, curiosity, learning something new, but the other one for me discovery.
When I’m reading a Bible verse and all of a sudden I have this aha moment that I’ve never had before, I realize something that I never had discovered before, there’s something in me that comes alive in that moment of discovery. It’s like when you were sharing with me technique for running, and this idea of allowing your body to fall forward as you’re running, there was just this discovery that happened and I realized for me it’s in those moments that I really feel like I’m living my best life, so I want to talk to you about this idea of …. Some people say, “Jason, I go out and I walk every day or I’m in the garden every day, isn’t that enough to keep people physically active and fit?”
Dan: Yeah, those things definitely count as activity and it’s certainly better than doing nothing, but what we really want to try to do is develop a robust, well-rounded fitness, and so what I would encourage people to do is to just supplement those activities with some weightlifting, some weight training, some resistance style work and then also some things that are specifically designed to improve your fitness. A lot of people will say, “I’m active, I stand all day at work.” That’s perhaps better than sitting, but it’s not driving you toward fitness. That’s what we’re always trying to do is try to push a little bit more and try to increase our ability level or our capacity in things like strength and endurance and those types of things. So it has to be guided and directed toward that specific goal, as you just mentioned, like goal setting. You have to have a goal of, I’m going to improve my strength.
Again, working in the garden is great and it’s better than not doing anything. There’s all kinds of benefit to it, but it doesn’t drive you toward that goal.
Jason: I went in for a physical recently, and I was surprised, my doctor said that my BMI, my body mass index, is within the healthy range for a guy my age, but at the same time when they had me stand on the scale I weigh more now than I’ve ever weighed in my entire life. At the same time, you talk about … I realized that I’m lopsided in this area of fitness, I enjoy running but I’m questioning whether I’m really getting the benefit of that activity anymore because my body’s not responding to it. You touched on that, this idea that you may be plateaued or you’re not mixing it up.
Dan: Absolutely, absolutely, and yeah. Again, the body adapts to the demands that you impose upon it, and if you don’t change the stimulus the body has nothing to adapt to, and so that’s why we encourage people to just mix it up. Do lots of different things.
The cool thing is that you talked about discovery, it’s amazing the number of people that’ll come in our facility and had said “I’ve never touched bar bell before in my life. I’m not really interested in it,” and then six months later they love it, and a year later, they’re signing up for their first weightlifting competition. That’s crazy. A year ago I wasn’t even sure if you were going to stick around here and now you’re doing weight lifting competition. So there’s this really cool discovery that happens when you just try new activities.
Jason: Weightlifting is something that intimidates me a little bit, how important is weightlifting in the big picture of maintaining good physical fitness?
Dan: Resistance training is critical. We know that one of the things that happens when we age is we have the tendency to lose bone density, our bones become weaker, our bones respond to stress and part of that stress is either impact and/or resistance training, and so what we encourage is both. Impact training in the form of walking, running, jumping, hopping, those kinds of things, and then load-bearing activities or weight-resisted activities. You need a significant load. You can’t just be a two-pound dumbbell. It needs to be a load that’s challenging, and the benefit for bone density is huge, but also, it improves the strength of your tendons, improves the strength of your muscles. When we look at people that are trying to become better runners and those types of things, all the research says that a strength training program will benefit that.
Jason: Awesome. Not to put you on the spot or anything now that we’re on a radio show and a podcast, but for the local listeners, I’ve been working on Dan to start what he calls a mission fit class come January first, 30 minutes, 6 AM, and I haven’t gotten to commit yet but here-
Dan: We’re close. We’re close.
Jason: Here’s what I know, if he gets a bunch of people calling in, saying, “Hey, I’m going to participate, I’m going to be a part of this deal come January first,” I just think that’d be cool to have a group of fellow local people getting together and taking 30 minutes out of their day to just work harder at having a better future. That was something you talked about a minute ago when we were first getting ready for the show was trying to get people to understand that you’re making a deposit in the future.
Jason: This isn’t just about how you feel today, although there are incredible benefits, but it is about the future. The other thing I was a little bit nervous about when I went to this physical that I had was my doctor said I’m pre-hypertension. Now, I don’t drink alcohol, I exercise on a regular basis, my diets not out of control, and I’m thinking to myself, “Pre-hypertension? What’s going on here?” So that brings us to nutrition, and you said you really wanted to talk about how important that was.
Dan: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, the reality is nutrition is the foundation. We say you can’t out-train a bad diet, meaning you can’t eat whatever you want and go out and exercise really, really hard, thinking you can reverse that, and so it’s really, really important.
I just heard on the radio yesterday that they’re actually lowering the standards on what they’re considering hypertension so-
Jason: I have hypertension based on that new standard.
Dan: Right, exactly. It’s interesting, it’s one of the few areas where they’re actually making the standard harder. In the past, if you were overweight, if you were at a certain percent body fat, then they said, “Well, so many of the population is overweight. let’s move the standard,” and they moved the standard to the right. You could actually be a little bit fatter and not be overweight yet. But here they be made the standard a little tighter because it’s important. If you are hypertensive, it’s potentially life-threatening.
All of the different markers that your physician tests can be improved with exercise, but they can also be improved through nutrition and, probably more profoundly improved through nutrition. Then, everything you do exercise-wise can be improved through nutrition. It’s the foundation.
Jason: As I think about, and we’re almost out of time here, but I think about my own life because I’m in the financial space all the time I feel like I’ve developed that muscle, it’s really good, it’s pretty strong, and because I run a lot I’ve developed that muscle. It’s really good, it’s really strong, but in terms of just this other level of fitness, I haven’t developed it, and it’s something that you have. So one of the things I’ve learned is you got to surround yourself with other people that are at different levels than you are, in different areas of their life so that you guys can grow together. That’s another reason I’m excited about this class.
The other thing is, the cool thing that you guys really get down there at your CrossFit, is you’ve really discovered that it’s about community. It’s about bringing people together. It’s not about going to a place by yourself.
The last … Actually, I just realized we’re out of time, but Dan Hollingsworth from Kitsap CrossFit. Thank you for being a guest on Sound Retirement Radio.
Dan: My pleasure. Thanks for having me.
Jason: All right, until next week, folks. This is Jason Parker signing out. I want to encourage you, go to episode 151 online, watch this video that Dan takes us through, tell me what you think. I’m curious to know if you can get in as many reps as I did. Until next week, this is Jason Parker signing out.
Announcer: Information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate and complete, for general information only and should not be construed as specific packs, legal or financial advice for any individual and does not constitute a solicitation for any securities or insurance products. Please consult with your financial professional before taking action on anything discussed in this program. Parker Financial, its representatives or its affiliates have no liability for investment decisions or other actions taken or made by you based on the information provided in this program. All insurance related discussion are subject to the paying ability of the company. Investing involves risk. Jason Parker is the President of Parker Financial, an independent fee based wealth management firm located at 9057 Washington Avenue Northwest, Silverdale, Washington. For additional information, call 1-800-514-5046 or visit us online at soundretirementplanning.com.