The Science Behind Staying Strong & Injury-Free | Zach Long | Better Man Podcast Ep. 064

The Science Behind Staying Strong & Injury-Free | Zach Long | Better Man Podcast Ep. 064

When you exercise consistently and push your body past its limits, injuries can happen. The problem is, most guys don’t know the best way to recover from current injuries and prevent future ones. 

For example, most guys think passive stretching can reduce injuries, but this isn’t exactly true. Stretching does provide relief, but without strengthening the underlying muscles, joints, and tendons around the injured body part, you won’t prevent future injuries from happening. 

The same is true for resting through an injury — in fact, staying active helps you recover from injuries faster than simply resting. 

That’s why I’m pumped that Zach Long, a personal trainer, owner of The Barbell Physio, and expert in injury prevention and recovery joins us on this episode. 

We cover a ton of injury prevention and recovery information in this episode, including… 

  • Why the “Rest” component of RICE is outdated (and how to exercise safely when you’re injured) 
  • Why technique isn’t the most important aspect for injury prevention (even though it is important) 
  • The weird way your nervous system can make you experience pain that isn’t there 
  • The 3 most common (and preventable) injuries for men 40+

And more!

Listen Now

The Better Man Podcast is an exploration of our health and well-being outside of our physical fitness, exploring and redefining what it means to be better as a man; being the best version of ourselves we can be, while adopting a more comprehensive understanding of our total health and wellness. I hope it inspires you to be better!

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Watch a Clip From Episode 064

The Science Behind Staying Strong & Injury-Free with Physical Therapist Zach Long | Ep 64

Show Highlights with Zach Long

  • The easiest way to determine if your physical therapist is worth their salt or not (8:19) 
  • Why resting after an injury can actually cause more problems than staying active (10:44) 
  • The “PEACE & LOVE” injury rehabilitation method which is wildly more effective than the popular “RICE” method (11:43) 
  • Why seeing a physical therapist before scheduling a surgery prevents you from having an unnecessary and costly surgery (19:36)
  • The eye-opening “Surgery Placebo” experiment that may change your mind on whether or not you need surgery (20:49)  
  • How to cut your risk of injury in half by simply sleeping 8 hours each night (25:54) 
  • The “Red Light, Green Light” system to strengthen injured muscles without causing more severe injuries (29:51) 
  • Why forgiving yourself for coming up short on your fitness goals actually increases your chances of reaching them (1:18:26) 
  • Haven’t hit your protein intake goal today? Here’s a quick snack to help you eat enough protein every day (1:21:39)

Resources mentioned in this episode: 

  1. The Barbell Physio: Want to improve your performance while reducing injuries? Head to Zach’s website here: https://thebarbellphysio.com/ 
  2. Performance Plus Programming: Want to prevent injuring yourself in just 10 to 15 minutes per day? Check out Performance Plus Programming to find supplementary injury prevention programs for any part of your body here: https://performanceplusprogramming.com/
  3. Follow Zach Long on Instagram: Want to learn more about preventing injuries (without sacrificing your strength and fitness)? Follow Zach on Instagram at @thebarbellphysio
  4. Rhone: Save 20% on all high-quality, long-lasting, and comfy workout gear from Rhone by using this link: ManFlowYoga.com/rhone
Episode 064: The Science Behind Staying Strong & Injury-Free – Zach Long – Transcript

Dean Pohlman: Hey, guys, it’s Dean. Welcome to the Better Man podcast. Today I am joined by Zach Long. He is a six, which basically means he’s a physical therapist with a lot of qualifications. We’ll talk about that in a second. He has an incredibly popular social media channel. He has a lot of experience in the clinical setting. He has a website and app called Performance Plus, and he is an extremely knowledgeable guy.

Dean Pohlman: Super excited to have him on the podcast today. So, Zach, thanks for joining me.

Zach Long: Thanks for having me. Excited to chat.

Dean Pohlman: Yes. All right. So first off, I’ll say that my wife is a big fan of yours and I’ll have her friends. My wife is a physical therapist. She also has a she’s a deputy. She has her own. Yes. You have your ex. So little different. But anyways, they all know you, so this is pretty cool for me. Can you first of just tell it.

Dean Pohlman: Tell me what? What is DVT X mean?

Zach Long: DVT stands for Doctor and Physical Therapy, then stands for Sports Certified Specialist or what? Your wife has the orthopedic certified specialist. That’s just in the medical world. So I go and see you’re a doctor, an M.D. you would see an orthopedist. They’ve not only graduated from medical school, but they’ve gone and done extra training in the orthopedic realm.

Zach Long: That’s kind of their distinction of why they have the specific name that they have for physical therapists. We just have to get our degree and pass our licensure exam. And you can practice in any setting with that, but you’ll see a small proportion of physical therapists do more training and study for a test that gives them that distinction of CSR.

Zach Long: Okay, so there are there are a few others that are out there that just signals that that person’s done a little bit of extra training in the setting.

Dean Pohlman: Cool. Got it. So what are what are some misconceptions about, you know, being a DPT? What are you know, what knowledge does a deputy have that people might not realize?

Zach Long: So physical therapy degree is just a very general degree in terms of understanding the human body and a little bit of movement science. But it’s preparing you to pass a test that then lets you practice in a wide variety of settings. And there’s going to be physical therapists that work in more athletic populations. Like I do. They’re physical therapists of more general population with orthopedic injuries, which is based on what we talked about off air, probably a little bit more of what your wife does.

Zach Long: But there’s also physical therapists that work in like skilled nursing facilities, acute care hospitals, long term care facilities, helping people with things as far away from what like you, your wife does and I do spinal cord and stroke rehabilitation. So it’s really a wide ranging profession. And so, you know, if somebody is dealing with something and they’re looking to see a physical therapist that’s where they probably really want to dial into finding a physical therapist that actually knows the thing that they struggle with to help them out, rather than seeing somebody that’s just a generalist.

Dean Pohlman: Got it. And so what are some common reasons why people would want to go see a physical therapist versus, you know, if they let’s say they get injured, they have a let’s see, they’d tear their hamstring like a really common injury or something like that, or they have some some unfamiliar undiagnosed pain. What are some reasons that they would want to go see a physical therapist versus going straight to an orthopedist or seeking out, you know, help from, I don’t know, somebody less qualified like a or less educated, less educated like like a personal trainer or something.

Zach Long: So it’s a the distinction between the personal trainer and the medical world, whether that’s a physical therapist, an orthopedic, etc., is when it comes to pain. So, you know, anybody in the medical world, physical therapist, chiropractor, M.D., etc., etc., have been trained in how we go about screening in or out different diagnosis so we can talk about, all right, is this pain running down the back of your leg?

Zach Long: Is that actual like a hamstring strain or hamstring tear? Is that referred pain from your back? Is that referred pain from the hip joint or the muscles around the hip? And our role is to screen those out and try to actually identify what are the specific tissues or areas that are generating those symptoms. And that’s where what you see a medical person versus a personal trainer that’s going to be more focused on somebody that is generally in okay shape from a health perspective.

Zach Long: I mean, maybe they have cardiovascular disease or other things like that. We’re not dealing with like an orthopedic injury that they’re trying to diagnose and figure out how to work around their focus on building up somebody’s overall fitness. So then, you know, in terms of where you go from a physical therapist to an orthopedist, I really look at the medical world as like, this is whatever license you have, that is your license to practice, at least within the scope that the laws in your state allow you to practice.

Zach Long: So when people ask me, should I see a P.T. or a chiropractor, well, that doesn’t really mean a whole lot to me because I know some physical therapists that are great clinicians at screening in or out different things and progressively loading people up to get them back to the activities that they love. There are also ones out there that are not very good at that same thing in the chiropractic world.

Zach Long: So for me it’s more about less about the letters behind their name, more about what they actually do with the person in front of them.

Dean Pohlman: Got it. So what.

Zach Long: Are question? How much do I know?

Dean Pohlman: That’s okay. That’s helpful. So that kind of leads me to my other my other question, which is how can you tell if you’ve got a good physical therapists? What are some things that you should look look for? You know, what are some general guidelines they should follow and maybe what are some red flags.

Zach Long: That say one of the biggest things to look for, to know somebody is a really good physical therapist and that would also be a red flag that you’re not saying they’re really good therapist is how accurately they are tracking your symptoms. So let’s say you go to your doctor and you’re having issues with your blood pressure. Every time you go and see your doctor, the first thing that they do is they measure your blood pressure because they can accurately, reliably test that between sessions.

Zach Long: And now they know if the medicine that they’re giving you and the dose of that medicine they’re giving you is having the desired effect. Well, we need to do the same in rehabilitation of injuries. So when somebody comes to see me, let’s use your hamstring strain, for example. I want to know Art, last time you told me that when you were doing leg curls with £75, that that created a four out of ten pain that when you were done with your workouts that pain lasted for 4 hours afterwards.

Zach Long: Now we’ve got something measurable, observable, repeatable that week by week we should see changes in that. And I really think that we have to be like that dialed in. So we want to in general, the way I practice and the way we teach in the company that I teach courses for is that we want to have to subject to basic science and to objective astrocytes, subjective meaning, like things you’re coming in and telling me that we can measure.

Zach Long: I can run a mile before my pain gets greater than three out of ten. Hmm. Objective being if it was a hamstring strain, like if you have your legs straight and you’ve been four and reached your toes to stretch your hamstrings, if you have a hamstring strain at a certain point, stretching your hamstrings will probably irritated a little bit.

Zach Long: Well, I’m going to measure how far down you can bend before that becomes irritated. And maybe one other objective ascertain. I know I have four different things that I’m testing every single time I see a patient, so there is absolutely no guesswork if what we’re doing is working or not, it’s not working. We’ve got to change directions. If it is working, we’ve got to figure out, do we have the dose right or can we up that dose a little bit more, just like with your fitness, Like you’re not going to go to the gym every week trying to improve your let’s say you’re trying to improve your max back squat.

Zach Long: You’re looking at your logbook week by week. You’re making sure you put a little bit more weight on the bar. You get a few more reps, whatever it is, you’re objectively tracking what you’re doing. We need to do the same in rehab. So that’s probably my biggest red flag that I’m looking for. And the second thing that to me is a giant red flag with people is when they’re just told to rest versus being given lots of modifications for what they’re doing.

Zach Long: So, you know, if somebody has a hamstring strain, there’s so many different exercises and adjustments that we can make to try to maintain as much fitness as possible. You’ve worked really hard for your fitness. Let’s not take a month off from doing everything. And not only deal with that hamstring being damaged, weak or broken down, but now because we’re not training lower body at all, our casts are getting weaker, our hips are getting weaker, our clogs are getting weaker, we’re losing all this other area of fitness.

Zach Long: And now that hamstring strain calms down. We pop back into doing what we were doing and now those weakened glutes become an issue where your back sort of by a knee starts to bother you. So the second big fight to me is do they have the skills to really help you modify what you’re doing to keep you doing some version of the things that you love and want to be doing or need to be doing?

Zach Long: Hmm.

Dean Pohlman: So that brings me that. That reminds me of this this new acronym. You know, I think a lot of people are stuck in the 1980s when it comes to rehabilitation and rice is right. Ah, I see. That’s like the that is like what people think what people think is the gold standard. And it’s actually a new one now called Have you Heard of Peace and Love?

Dean Pohlman: Oh sure you.

Zach Long: Have to love.

Dean Pohlman: OC It’s like it’s called Peace and love. I’m, I’m pretty sure it’s peace and love. Maybe I’m maybe I’m messing that up. Yeah, It’s called Peace and love. It was developed by it was developed by I don’t know if it was physical therapist in Britain, but it was a British development of some sort. And it’s a different acronym on how people should be addressing injuries now, because we know that if you avoid it, if you avoid, you know, addressing an injury and you just let it rest, that there’s no circulation going there, there’s no sort of recovery happening.

Dean Pohlman: And especially with things like back pain, Back pain doesn’t get better unless you’re actually doing exercises. So, like, you know, I get a lot of people who messaged me, they’re like, Oh, I’ve got some back pain, so I’ll just going to wait till it goes away. And I’m kind of like, No, no, no. That’s like, That’s why you do it.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, that’s why you do the exercises.

Zach Long: So the fact that exercising with back pain is like is the thing that you have to do. Yeah. One thing that everybody agrees on is when you have back pain, you exercise. And I love the word to use air circulation, like when you have an injury, an acute injury, not chronic stuff, that’s that’s a different ballpark. But when you have an acute injury, you have tissues that have been damaged and broken down and you also have an inflammatory response that happens from it.

Zach Long: That inflammatory response is good, but some of those inflammatory chemicals will keep things a little bit more irritated and painful than they actually are from a damage standpoint. And so pumping blood into an area, moving forwards in and out of an area so often helps with people’s pain, not just for like a general whole body, like endorphin relief release when you exercise, but actual down to those tissues, pumping some of that inflammation out is a huge part of rehabilitation.

Zach Long: Mhm.

Dean Pohlman: So what’s would you say that, Would you say that race is outdated or what aspects of it do you think people are stressed out.

Zach Long: Davis.

Dean Pohlman: Okay, so what about it? Like what about it? Should people totally, you know, not follow the rest?

Zach Long: So we want to be doing rest know. I mean, even if someone got me with like highly irritable back pain, we can do something like get on an exercise bike or an echo bike. Is this probably my favorite? So echo bike or Schwinn airborne bike? More people are probably familiar about that. You have a pedal as well as arm pumps, and so your back’s not even really doing anything but your legs moving gets blood pumping from your heart all the way down to the lower body, your arms moving back and forth, you know, gets everything pumping in your arms.

Zach Long: You just can get your heart rate jacked up and you’re gonna work. The biggest mover of fluids in your body being your heart. And so, I mean, even if we have to scale stuff down to just that, I want people doing some form of movement. You’ll hear a lot of debate right now on the ice component of race, where a lot of people are saying like, I think even the doctor that originally came up with the race acronym.

Zach Long: Yeah. Has come out and said he no longer believes in ICE.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, his name is Gary. Gary, something I have is I have his book. It’s called like Yeah, exactly. That’s exactly it. He came out and said like, this is not valid anymore because race restricts because ice restricts circulation and that’s exactly what you need to recover. So so people use ice at all.

Zach Long: I think there are times you use it in times not. I think that’s I think that’s one of the more minor details in terms of rehab, whether it’s to go as fast as possible or slow as possible. I could be wrong about this. I’m telling you, this is more my opinion, not not science based. But look, if you’re really, really irritated and you need to ice something down to know that for a period of time, please do it rather than going and getting on like a pill that we all know that that getting on, you know, big time pain reliever medication, it’s not going to be good for you long term.

Zach Long: I’d rather you ice than do that. Okay. If something is actually like super swelling up, like you sprain your ankle right now, do I want you to ice it to try to reduce a little bit of that swelling so that we can get you moving a little bit faster tomorrow? Absolutely. Do I want you icing something, you know, three weeks after an initial injury?

Zach Long: At that point, I don’t think it’s probably the best thing for you. I want you moving and pumping fluids a little bit more on.

Dean Pohlman: So to recap.

Zach Long: It’s it’s not a it’s a and not more thing.

Dean Pohlman: Okay. So it’s good for when the initial when the an injury injury initially happens and if you need temporary pain reduction but.

Zach Long: Pain reduction and somethings like activity really slowly then utilize it. Other than that I don’t think it has a big effect. Positive, maybe a minor effect, a negative.

Dean Pohlman: Okay. So I’m going to ask you this because I personally do this. So I’m into I got on the ice bath train, you know, probably a few years ago I had a I had a chest freezer that I found on Craigslist, filled it with water and like, swapped out the water every couple of weeks when it started to get too smelly.

Dean Pohlman: And and now I actually have like a, you know, one of the cool cold plunge is like a stand alone unit with a built in filtration. Keeps the water cold. How can that be helpful with recovery versus, you know, I mean, most from what I understand, most professional athletes use it, especially soccer players, football players best. I mean, basketball players, people who have a lot of pound in ground, a lot of stress on the joints.

Dean Pohlman: But at what extent does that become at what extent that does that kind of hinder the tender or hinder circulation and the muscle growth process? Or is there data on that.

Zach Long: Deepest dive into the research? So I’m going to tell you the couple of things that I know on it that I think are worth people considering. If they do that. Number one, what do I think probably the biggest benefit of it is, is probably the like the psychological point in general. If you’re listening this podcast, you’re living a pretty easy life compared to what people are living 100 years ago or more.

Zach Long: And there’s something to be said about us challenging our body in our psyche on a regular basis. I think that’s one of the big reasons why it’s really important for people to exercise really hard or to put themselves through physical challenges, such as an ice bath thinking, ice baths, also going to from a meditation standpoint, like I’m not somebody that you will ever get to stop and meditate.

Zach Long: It’s just not who I am challenged. You could get me.

Dean Pohlman: Accepted.

Zach Long: Challenge myself to get into this. The wrong podcast set about that. You could get me to jump into an ice bath and just be solely focused on that and thinking about that and working through it. I think it’s a form of meditation, form of downregulation for some people. So on the negative side, there is research that shows that icing will have a inhibition effect on muscle hypertrophy.

Zach Long: So if your goal is muscle hypertrophy, then you might want to look into what some people say in terms of when to ice bath around your training so that you don’t blunt the inflammation response That happens after training that as a positive inflammation response that would then result in you having less potential hypertrophy if that is your your goal.

Zach Long: There’s also the same research in terms of taking NSAIDs like ibuprofen around your workouts. People that take ibuprofen regularly see less hypertrophy because it blunts the inflammation response that’s necessary for that process to happen. That’s the extent of what I know about it.

Dean Pohlman: That’s good to know. All right. So for me, that means I need to stop jumping in the ice baths after my workouts, but I can do them after a while.

Zach Long: My gut would say that, like if you wake up in the morning and you do that and then you work out a couple of hours later, that is probably have a negligible effect on anything at all. Hmm. Okay. In terms of laboratory response, but I think it probably is really valuable again, from that the mental side.

Dean Pohlman: Got it. Yeah, I, I can attest definitely. It’s like the, the mental benefit of it of getting in and challenging yourself and also being able to carry that over to other things like ten breaths, ten breaths and ice baths and then going to like ten breaths a pigeon. I’m like, okay, I can do this. This is manageable now.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. So I have a question, another question about people going to see orthopedist like an orthopedist or a doctor who especially one who’s knife happy versus going to a physical therapist and, you know, focusing on the proper exercises instead of seeking out surgical intervention. What are your thoughts on that?

Zach Long: So I’m going to be biased, just like an orthopedic surgeon is going to be biased. And my bias as a physical therapist is what I do. Like The worst affected you? Seeing me for six weeks is that I delayed you getting some sort of surgical intervention. Mm hmm. A little bit. Which in general, when you look at most surgeries, not all, but most surgeries, like delaying them a little bit, doesn’t significantly change your long term outcomes.

Zach Long: Mm hmm. But once you’ve been cut into, we can’t cut you.

Dean Pohlman: Right?

Zach Long: So, you know, if something goes bad in surgery, then we are stuck with that. So I would much rather in general, for the vast majority of things that people start with, with a, you know, six weeks of conservative care, with somebody that’s doing a great job of tracking your symptoms like we discussed earlier. And if we’re seeing some good improvements in that and that a lot of times won’t be that you’re completely pain free.

Zach Long: But if we have this objective marker saying that, hey, things are really improving, then let’s look at continuing that, because so many different surgeries lately have been challenged quite a bit in the research, like even in some some placebo surgery research done lately where they put people to sleep half of them, they actually do a surgery on half of them.

Zach Long: They’re sitting there in the room and the doctors say, All right, give me the scalpel. And they say, making the incision, but they’re not even doing it in the clinic. In total, together, they’re literally pretending like they’re doing the surgery. They wake people up. They put them all through a plan, a post-op rehab. And a number of these studies have shown that we kind of see the same outcomes.

Zach Long: Some but don’t miscarry. I’m not saying that all orthopedic surgeries are worthless. I’m just saying that I really think that those things should make us stop and think. Do we have to go surgery first or can we try more conservative things prior to.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, that’s that’s an important question for me. I had I had knee surgery when I was 16. I had a, uh, I think I had my M.S. laterally released. And so I lengthened my tendon and or I shorten my tendon in an attempt to make it more an attempt to make it pop in an attempt to keep my kneecap where it was supposed to be, I shorten that attendance.

Dean Pohlman: I’m just saying that. And I had to I was I had to go back and ask like even like a few years ago. I’m like, What happened? Like, what did I get knee surgery for? Which was kind of goes, which is kind of reflective of this idea of like people get surgery and they don’t really know what it’s for.

Dean Pohlman: And I was 16, you know, I was in really good shape and looking back, if I had had the proper education for someone to come out and say, like, Hey, yeah, you have a knee injury, but also your hip mobility is garbage and you have no ankle mobility and you’re playing sports like 3 hours a day and you have all these imbalances that you don’t know about.

Dean Pohlman: And if you just worked on those and did the appropriate exercises, worked on your strength training, you know, maybe weren’t such a such a bro science person in the weightlifting room, then you would learn like, oh, squats or, you know, you know, back squats are good for me even though I’m not a lineman because I thought like when I was 17, even 18, someone was like, Aren’t you going to do backflips?

Dean Pohlman: I was like, No, I’m not a lineman. I don’t do this. I don’t do any like, I don’t do lower body, I just do core and like pull ups and stuff and I do deadlifts, but I only use my lower back instead of my my hamstrings and glutes. So I think I just had this really, you know, weak understanding of, of physical fitness in general and not really understanding why I was getting surgery.

Dean Pohlman: And I’m reading this into a question, which is, do you think that people are getting less surgery now than they were 20 years ago?

Zach Long: I don’t think the research would support that. I think we’re probably still seeing more than we were then.

Dean Pohlman: Wow. Okay.

Zach Long: I cannot confirm that with data outside of the health. Probably the thing I treat more than anything is hip impingement and fitness athletes. And at least in that area, the surgeries are through the roof. So there’s type of like hip labrum repairs being done, tons more things where they basically shave the ball and sock out of your hip.

Zach Long: That surgery is kind of probably like Temple of what it was 15 years ago. Wow. Comment on other areas.

Dean Pohlman: So that that actually leads me to a big question of mind, which is what are some of the really common what are some of the most common preventable injuries that you see, particularly in the in the 40 plus male population? And can those be prevented with the right exercises or are some of them, you know, are they do they get do they require surgery?

Dean Pohlman: Would they have required surgery no matter what? Or have they just gotten to the extent that they now require surgery because there was no proper intervention prior.

Zach Long: Well, pieces of that. So I.

Dean Pohlman: Know. So first question, common preventable injuries in the in the plus 40 population.

Zach Long: So I’d say in general, when you look at most research studies that look at where injuries happen in so many different populations of recreational fitness athletes, most of the time it says the shoulder is the number one. It injured area in the body. Number two back. And the number three is typically like the knee and hip. So I’d say that I mostly I see more hips than anything else but shoulders and back are number one or two almost always.

Zach Long: And yeah, I think there are a lot of different things that people can do in general to reduce their risk of having those injuries. And that’s everything from just following solid training, like not going 0 to 100 if you’re used to working out three days a week and you decide all of a sudden that you know, you want to work out six days a week, that’s a huge jump.

Zach Long: You’re seeing a double in the amount of training volume your body is used to. So maybe instead of doing that, sorry, I’ve been going three days a week, next month I’m going to go four days a month After that, five days a week, a month after that, six days a week, nobody signs up for a marathon that they’re going to run the next day.

Zach Long: You take months and months and months to prep and ramp up the body doesn’t like these rapid huge changes in their training volume. So just be smart about your training volume. Think about the variety of different lifestyles that you’re from. There’s a million studies on sleep and how much sleep is associated with people’s risk of injury. If you’re not getting seven or 8 hours of sleep a night, your risk of injury is almost double what it is if you are getting 8 hours of sleep.

Zach Long: Nutrition is not talked about enough. You know, are you getting enough calories, you’re getting enough protein to recover from the work that you’re asking your body to do. And then it’s just following good training programing. But that’s everybody talks about technique when it comes to injury prevention and everything. Everything. Technique is a is a huge component to that.

Zach Long: But we don’t address the lifestyle stuff near and often the training volume stuff near enough.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. So I would assume that a lot of the people who do the 0 to 100 are people who are former, you know, who who played sports in high school, maybe who think of themselves and think of thought thought of themselves as athletes, maybe still think of themselves as athletes and then go into you know, they find they find something like, sorry, I’m just going to throw this this business under the bus.

Dean Pohlman: But what’s the one that’s like? It’s just super intense and they have rowing and high intensity and like, I think they have a heart monitor and everybody’s monitor is up on the screen. It’s a big chain.

Zach Long: But I don’t know what they.

Dean Pohlman: Are. I don’t oh, this is good. This is going to kill me. Wow. I can’t think of a discussion.

Zach Long: I’ll give you a good example of this, that that’s kind of common runners. They’re used to running three days a week for long distance. All of a sudden they start hearing, All right, I need to do cross-training. And so then they jump into orange theory as orange theory.

Dean Pohlman: That’s what I was thinking.

Zach Long: Okay.

Dean Pohlman: That’s exactly I was thinking.

Zach Long: About orange theory overall. Yeah, but like, if you’re a runner and you’re cross-training as orange theory, where literally half of the workout is running most of the week, then that’s not really cross-training. That’s you doing more of the same thing over and over. Hmm.

Dean Pohlman: Got it.

Zach Long: Yeah. Okay.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, they’re huge. And I know a lot of people get really addicted to the the intensity of it. And, you know, then they, they three weeks in, they’re like, oh, I can’t do a plank, you know, because the shoulders are garbage. So anyways, that’s, that’s what I was thinking of. But regarding that, we can lead into a muscle strain.

Dean Pohlman: This is the big question that I have or it’s, I think there’s a big misconception on what to do when you have a muscle strain because everyone comes in, you know, I get I get a lot of the muscle strains from people. You know, they’re doing too much and they push themselves too much. And then they’ll they’ll come in and say, like, I strain my hamstring.

Dean Pohlman: So I’m going to stretch out today. And I’m like, no, no, no, no, no. Stop, stop stretching it. So what should people be doing instead?

Zach Long: It’s just define what a muscle strain is for. Sort of what happens is you ask that muscle to do a little bit more than it was prepared to do in that mismatch between what it can do and what it was prepared to do led to it being overloaded and broken down a little bit more than it can recover from.

Zach Long: And that’s more than just like your typical muscle soreness. That’s where it broke down enough that it became painful and wasn’t tolerated much lower. So if the problem was that what you were asking it to do is more than where it currently was, and then it got injured. So there’s an even bigger gap there. The answer isn’t to stretch it because stretching is that stretching has like minor impacts on muscle hypertrophy, but like stretching doesn’t make tissue stronger.

Zach Long: And the issue in the first place was that tissue wasn’t strong or fit enough to do what you’re asking it to do. So instead, what we want to do with the muscle strain is progressively load it up, make it a stronger, fitter, more resilient tissue. Well, obviously you have to be smart about that because it’s not like I strained my hamstring, Zach said, Go get it stronger.

Zach Long: I’m going to go max out my Romanian deadlift and go as heavy as I can. With ten out of ten pain. It’s more about being smart about that. So one thing I really like in terms of loading muscles and tendons is it’s called the Silber pain monitoring model and that’s kind of like a red light yellow light, green light parameters for how much you’re loading the tissue.

Zach Long: If pain is greater than a five out of ten, that would be a red light like what you’re asking it to do is too much based on its current irritability. And you’re probably going to break that tissue down a little bit more. DeLay your healing process, a green light, something that’s 0 to 2, like a little bit of minor discomfort with a muscle strain is 100% fine to exercise with.

Zach Long: In between that that yellow line of like a three or a four out of ten discomfort, maybe a hair more than that is also okay, so long as your body recovers within 24 hours. So when I’m having somebody rehab a muscle strain, then I’m looking usually for like a yellow light on the thing that challenges that tissue so that we’re putting a little load on it enough that we irritated a little bit and we’re basically telling our body, Hey, this area needs your attention.

Zach Long: Then the hormones, the chemicals, all of that stuff there to help heal that up a little bit more. If we under does that like if it’s completely pain free, we’re probably not going to challenge the body enough to to speed up that healing process as much as we like. And if we overloaded, if we’re doing exercises that are, you know, sixes and sevens out of ten, then we’re probably going to break it down a little bit more.

Dean Pohlman: Got it. So, you know, this this actually leads me to another question that I had. But when these types of, let’s say minor injuries or setbacks occur, things where it’s like, you know, you didn’t have this this horrific bone break, but you wake up and you’re like, okay, something’s not feeling right. I don’t think I can do my workout today.

Dean Pohlman: To what extent can people treat themselves using, you know, using the proper information, whether they find it on like, for example, by the way, if you haven’t seen Zach’s Instagram yet, that’s how I found Zach. His geez, like every post is just it’s like it’s like a blog and a single post. It is just a huge amount of information that’s extremely helpful.

Dean Pohlman: So, you know, my kind of question is to what extent can people use info like something that they’d see on, you know, your Instagram or maybe something that they would see on YouTube versus needing individualized guidance?

Zach Long: I like to define this as like most people know if they’re dealing with a tweak or an injury, if it’s a tweet, if it’s a thing that like when you’re pushing your performance, you know, there are days where you wake up or you walk in the gym and you start doing something that doesn’t feel right. It’s not injured, it’s a little uncomfortable.

Zach Long: But like I know if I just am smart about today’s training, I’ll be fine next week. If it’s a tweak, don’t worry about it. Just modify, move around, make little adjustments, those sorts of things. When it’s a little bit more than that. I do think a lot of people can self-treat but that that means do you know what tissue is during those symptoms?

Zach Long: Like it’s really easy most of the time to know if it’s a hamstring strike. Like if you sit on the leg like curl machine and you curl your leg in and that hurts, but you do a squat that doesn’t really use squats, don’t use your hamstrings that much, it doesn’t hurt and you can kind of self isolate. Okay, this feels like a hamstring strain.

Zach Long: Mm hmm. Now what we want to do is are we tracking our symptoms regularly to make sure that it’s progressing? If you know what tissues injured and you’re seeing it regularly progress and you’re tracking that, then continue doing that. As long as you’re happy with the speed at which it’s recovered. But if you don’t know what’s injured or what area is generating your symptoms or you’re not seeing it regularly improve or just in the stage where, you know, like, all right, I know this is my hamstring, but this thing is bad and I need somebody else’s guidance and help to speed this up.

Zach Long: Then go see somebody, for instance.

Dean Pohlman: Got it. If for me, like, if you’re not sure what’s happening and you know, you’re you’re thinking. I mean, I’m thinking that if I have something happen to me and I don’t know what it is, and I’m thinking about the value of me working out for two weeks or three weeks or however long it would take to to bounce back from that little tweak and how much it would cost.

Dean Pohlman: You just go see like a qualified professional. I’m like, Done, Let’s go. Let’s go find let’s go find a good P.T. And I’m biased because, you know, my wife is a beauty and I understand how much training they’ve gone through. So I would rather I would most the time I would rather go see a P.T. than a chiropractor unless I feel like unless I can tell, like, okay, my spine is out of whack.

Dean Pohlman: Like it just feels off. And I think I need someone to like, you know, put it back into place. Like for the most part, for me, like if I have an issue, I’m going to go I’m going to go find a P.T. Actually brings it up to another point. So how hard is it to go see a pet?

Dean Pohlman: Because I know here in Texas we don’t have what’s called direct access to boots. We have to we have to go to a physician and then they will refer us to a PG. But I think in like 46 states or something like that, or 44 states like you can we’re talking about the United States, by the way. So if you’re not here, this might not be relevant.

Dean Pohlman: But is it easy to go see a physical therapist for the most part, or.

Zach Long: All right, you’re going to open up a can of worms on this. You can hear a little bit first of all, in general, usually in most states, it is generally easy to go see a physical therapist. Most states now have recognized that for so many different injuries, going and seeing a physical therapist early on saves the entire medical system a lot of money.

Zach Long: So your insurance played is lost money, you pay lost money, etc. So they said, sure, let’s open up direct access and not have you have to go see your primary care. Who refers you to an orthopedist who then refers to the physical therapist? That’s just skip, right? Those two visits and x rays and other imaging that might not be necessary for you.

Zach Long: Yeah. And there are some states like Texas, where direct access is not currently legal, which is a shame right now. Yeah, Texas, you have to, like you said, go see a physician and get a referral. Despite all of that research, the Texas M.D. lobbying lobbyists have done a really good job of producing false information.

Dean Pohlman: Well, from what I understand. So one of my more of my wife’s colleagues at her clinic she used to work at is very familiar like this. And it’s I think it’s one doctor. It’s like this one doctor who is in a certain position who like, just shuts down the conversation every time. It’s that there’s it comes up. So it’s like it’s just one guy.

Zach Long: That like they have testified that, like physical therapists only have to do like 20 hours of training. And that’s what they said to their state Congress, which the truth is, yes, they do 20 hours of continuing education on a yearly basis after getting their degree, which is anywhere from a bachelor’s degree to a doctorate degree, depending on when that person graduated from physical therapy school.

Zach Long: Now it’s on a doctorate degrees and then pass licensure exam, and then they regularly do continuing education and maintain their licensure status. So it’s like, Wow.

Dean Pohlman: That’s.

Zach Long: A B.S. presentation of what the truth is. Wow.

Dean Pohlman: I’m going to go. I’m going to go. If I had a Twitter, I would go send him some angry tweets. But I don’t have Twitter.

Zach Long: So I seminar. So I have to look in my I’m a partner in a series of clinics where we have 21 clinics around the country, and it’s one of the few states that’s kind of off limits right now to license Texas, because the way we operate and we market is we go direct public, like I’m in CrossFit gyms doing workshops and talking to athletes about, you know, helping them out.

Zach Long: And in Texas, you’re kind of stuck in that whole loophole B.S. thing of direct that muscle.

Dean Pohlman: That sucks. Yeah. So outside of Texas, is it easy to go see a physical therapist?

Zach Long: Yeah, I think there’s only like three states now that don’t have full direct access. Don’t quote me on that number. But yet in Texas, Breezy.

Dean Pohlman: Got it. So I think I think a good question to ask you is what kind of going based on what we were just talking about, what are some resources that people can use to kind of educate themselves to get kind of just a basic understanding of, okay, this is what a hamstring like? Just just generalized fitness knowledge that can help them with easily identifiable issues.

Dean Pohlman: There are certain books are there, you know, is there should I just go ahead and say performance plus or like what are some things that can can help with that.

Zach Long: In terms of understanding injuries?

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. In terms of intersecting injuries or maybe just just getting more getting a more general understanding of their body from a from a consumer from like a fitness consumer standpoint, not a fitness professional standpoint.

Zach Long: Be honest. I’ll have a great answer for you on that. Okay. Because you know what I consumers are meant for the fitness professional, health care professional, not as much the facing the patients.

Dean Pohlman: Right. You educate you train for I mean, you educate physical therapist, correct?

Zach Long: Yeah. Yeah. I teach continuing education, of course, as the physical therapist. I mean, I’ve got hundreds of blogs on my website, the kind of who’s taking that to consumer, said the barber office. Zillow.com has that, I think one of the best resources out there. No, no, no. The one I can really think of right now for your answers, CrossFit Journal.

Zach Long: So for years CrossFit put out their own articles and they’re kind of really well written. Easy ways. They have articles on anatomy, they have articles on lifting technique for different movements. They have articles on programing, thousands of articles probably. That’s another fantastic research to check out. That’s not going to happen. You like reading, you know, scientific research articles, right?

Zach Long: Go through the methods. It’s dilutive for the masses.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, there’s some books that I’ve got that I purchased based on recommendations, and I’ve gotten like three pages and I’m like, Oh yeah, this isn’t going to work and this isn’t for me.

Zach Long: So you got answer this for me now. What would you recommend there?

Dean Pohlman: What would I.

Zach Long: Recommend? You have something in mind without.

Dean Pohlman: My I mean, for me it’s, it’s just been following, following my interest. It’s Like if I, if I’m interested in something or if somebody puts out some content that, you know, that I see that like, Oh, this is helpful, then I’ll go deeper into whatever, you know, whatever they’re presenting or I’ll do some, you know, I’ll do some Google searches and I’ll try to find I’ll try to find you know, I’ll try to find information from from medical articles and, you know, I can’t read the I don’t understand the the testing process, but I scroll down to the bottom and I like the conclusion.

Dean Pohlman: I’m like, okay, well, this is what they’re saying. So, you know, I kind of let my interest guide me. And I’ve also had I’ve had like, you know, I’ve broken 12 bones, I’ve had wrist issues, I’ve had shoulder issues or my collarbone. I had my knee surgery. I’ve had multiple sub of multiple partial subluxation in my knee. I had a really bad high ankle sprain when I was a senior in college and playing lacrosse have had random foot pain like I’ve had tons of different things and I’ve educated myself on those through just, you know, my own personal interests.

Dean Pohlman: And as a result, I’ve learned about a lot of injuries. So like when people come to me and they’re like, it hurts. When I left my arm over had I’m like, That’s a rotator cuff issue. Let me tell you how. And let me tell you what I know about that. And here are some exercises that you can do to work on that because I’ve been through them.

Dean Pohlman: So for me, it’s been just you know, it’s been years and years and years of working out and just exploring, you know, things relevant to my own fitness goals.

Zach Long: I guess. Got one other answer now that I heard. Talk through that if you go and you and you start researching a topic and you see repeated names pop up in terms of research on an area. Mm hmm. Go to your favorite podcast app and search for that researcher’s name and what your end up finding is them doing a podcast with somebody where they have really diluted the whole body of their research into, you know, a 15 to 45 minute podcast episode.

Zach Long: So I’d be a great way to learn about stuff. Okay, Yeah.

Dean Pohlman: That’s a great suggestion.

Zach Long: So if you wanted to know more about muscle hypertrophy and you went to the research, you’re going to see Brad Schoenfeld name everywhere in the hypertrophy research that he’s been on 20 or 30 different podcasts where he talks for an hour on all the mechanism hypertrophy and you can get all of that information done really quickly.

Dean Pohlman: What’s his book? I just bought I bought his book within the last year. I’m pretty sure.

Zach Long: Gosh.

Dean Pohlman: Like my my bookshelf moved. There used to be I used to be able to look at it and stay on it, stay on the interview at the same time. But now I can’t. But I know he has a good book, I’m pretty sure. So we talked about backtracking a little bit here, but we talked about working out through pain.

Dean Pohlman: How do you you know, because a lot of people hear that now. I go along. I don’t know. I’m scared of working out through pain or they work out through pain and they’re like, you told me I could work out their pain and now it’s worse. So like, how do you you know, how do you kind of how do you kind of tell if you’re able to work out through pain and, you know, what are some general guidelines for modification?

Zach Long: So you first got to kind of determine what what’s the tissue like. If it’s a muscle or tendon injury, then the silver, an angle pain monitoring model we talked about earlier, the red light, yellow light, green light. There’s great metrics to know that you’re exercising. You’re challenging those tissues, but you’re not overloading them so long as they’re kind of back to baseline in 24 hours.

Zach Long: But if we’re talking about a stress fracture, for example, if that’s your injury that you’re dealing with, with a stress fracture, we want absolutely zero pain while we exercise. And so that might be one of the really rare exceptions where we have to really pull of exercise level down the time. Because if we overload stress fracture, we run the risk of turning that into a full fracture.

Zach Long: And so often stress fractures happen in areas of the bone that have poor blood supply, and a stress fracture can be a career ender for certain people. So we wouldn’t want them exercising on that or, you know, if you have an arm fracture, you know, you fracture your wrist, even if it’s like uncomfortable a bench press, we’re probably not bench pressing.

Zach Long: It’s a broken bone, but we do other things to modify injury around it, like we put an ankle weight around your wrist and do at least like shoulder raises and stuff like that to try to maintain what level of fitness we can. So I think that has to we have to answer first what the tissue has to be actually answer that.

Zach Long: But most people, most injuries are in muscle tendon injuries and the majority of injured people. And so the severe neck pain monitoring model’s just a great metric to follow there. To give yourself a little bit of a guide rails on what you can and can’t do. Okay.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. For me I, I typically if people ask me about that, I typically say, you know, go through it, see how it feels while you’re doing it. But but how do you feel to me, like the day afterwards or like the following days afterward? Those are really good indicators, like if it’s the day afterwards and you’re like, okay, this is sore, but like, it’s not painful.

Dean Pohlman: You’re like, okay, that was good. And then but if it’s two days afterwards and you’re like, okay, this still.

Zach Long: Then yeah.

Dean Pohlman: You know.

Zach Long: Yeah. So the find the marker when we talk about, you know, tracking your symptoms, let’s say you’re dealing with, let’s say you’re dealing with shoulder pain like rotator cuff tendon opposite the rest of the stuff that you reached up in the cabinet. You grab a coffee cup in the morning. If that’s a two out of ten today, you do a heavy shoulder workout today and in biology a little bit during it, but you felt like it was fine to continue going during that workout.

Zach Long: But tomorrow you going to reach up in the coffee mugs? You know, it’s a four out of ten to get it. So it’s kind of doubled in that morning. Pain. That baseline is a lot higher than we know. Okay. What we did yesterday was too much. And next time I have a shoulder workout plan, I need to dial it back in intensity or volume or something or change the exercise a little bit.

Zach Long: If the ridge up to the coffee mugs, two out of ten today, two out of ten tomorrow. So we’re back to our baseline. We’re good. We did an appropriate amount of volume, intensity, whatever that our body could easily recover from back to where it was that that first day. Hmm.

Dean Pohlman: How does you know? You haven’t. We haven’t talked about this at all. Yeah. So I wanted to ask you about this, but how do you think self myofascial release works? Figures into the recovery process? Is it is it helpful to do, you know, like a vibrating foam or a foam or lacrosse ball or tennis ball in general?

Zach Long: Most of the manual therapy things, you’re getting a massage, myofascial release, dry needling, spinal manipulation. None of those create permanent changes in tissues. So my metric for if something’s really, really good or not in the long term is would I actually use that to improve my fitness? So let’s say you’re trying to increase your bench is getting myofascial release in your pecs, going to make your pecs hypertrophy or get stronger to improve your trust?

Zach Long: No, it doesn’t change those tissues and that what? Mm hmm. So it’s not going to be that the only thing that you need to do. But that stuff can have a good pain relieving effect, but then allows you to do a better job of loading up those irritating tissues. They can create a localized pump and movement of fluids to reduce a little bit of that, that inflammation that’s keeping things more painful.

Zach Long: So use it, but you need to use it in tandem with progressive loading.

Dean Pohlman: Cool. Yeah, I think that’s an awesome description. It’s like it’s great to do if you use it with another modality of use it with something else. But if you just do it on its own, kind of like, you know, there’s a lot of that’s kind of like the, that’s a lot of the science behind stretching right now, right?

Dean Pohlman: Is that it’s good if it’s you know, it can bring some temporary relief. It does temporary stuff. But if that’s all you’re doing, then you know it’s not going to do much.

Zach Long: Yeah. Now everybody is always, you know, we do this or that, we stretch or we strengthen or we do manual therapy or we don’t do manual therapy. We only exercise. And the magic is truly like always in the middle on almost everything in life. It’s in the middle like so we’re both in the United States. Our country will be really bad if we only had Republicans running it or we only had Democrats running it.

Zach Long: There’s something beautiful about the fact that we go back and forth every few years. Congress and the president shifts and somehow we still stay in the middle. Yes, that’s the way most things in the.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. And so that’s a that’s that leads a good that leads to a really good question. But, you know, a lot of a lot of what I see and a lot of I think some of the most easy to consume content that you’ll see on social media when it comes to fitness information is the do this not that or here’s right, here’s wrong.

Dean Pohlman: And my question not specifically with that, but with with, you know, with with social media and fitness in general is what do you think is missing from the majority of fitness influencers today.

Zach Long: To make a big name in the online space? Often you have to have a loud voice that kind of disrupts the status quo and I deliver, gets Lever King is a perfect example of that. But you you make a big splash. Can you just take strictly contrarian views and you get a lot of followers And that that to me is kind of a red flag when somebody is only on social media, like just regularly bashing the things that other people are doing.

Zach Long: That’s a pretty red flag against wanting to follow somebody or believe in what they say. People are really dogmatic on certain things. So I’ll give another example, like a Joel Seaman, if you’re familiar with him, his talks about like, you know, it’s only safe to go out in 90 degrees. And basically all of his exercises, you only take the joints to a 90 degree angle versus going through a full range of motion and interesting, very opposite of what the research says.

Zach Long: But like all of his posts are very much like, this is the way, this is the only way this is how we do it. Yes, That’s.

Dean Pohlman: I mean.

Zach Long: The correct.

Dean Pohlman: People like it when it’s painted in black and white. Right. And when they see that, it gives them permission to think that way. I’m not just talking about fitness here, but I won’t get into other things. So there we go. Along those lines. How can you tell the difference between, you know, if you if you do have people who you follow on social media and you’re like, this guy’s really cool or like, I like his content, how can you tell if somebody is qualified and they’re putting out really good information, valid, valid information versus somebody who’s doing something just gimmicky or trendy?

Zach Long: It’s the eyeball test. There’s not like a really good way to quantify it. I wish there was like we were talking off air and I’ll try to explain that. Like not to try to make a poster. I say like, here are the things look out for, but for me it’s really the eyeball test. Like, does this just look weird?

Zach Long: Are they only talking contrarian things or they only bought into one way of thinking and not willing to think outside of that, in which case, like they’re not somebody that that I think is worth following. Mm hmm.

Dean Pohlman: So, like, kind of delving a little bit deeper into this is it is the complexity of the movement important? Is it should we be focusing more on simple basic movements or and that’s it’s not a great it’s not as I’m not asking a specific question there. But, you know, in general.

Zach Long: For the general.

Dean Pohlman: Population. Sure. Okay. Yeah. Yeah. Like most of us, let’s say 40 plus just.

Zach Long: You will see tons of different variations because I think having subtle variations on certain patterns is great. The human body loves variety. That doesn’t mean, like every week I’m trying something different, but like there’s value in doing, you know, a Romanian if stance, you know, for a period of time and then doing a Romanian deadlift with a split stance or a single leg Romanian.

Zach Long: Then there’s there’s that little subtle changes and variations. I think it’s positive. But when people are always going nuts and they’re always going crazy with, you know, bands hanging off or just super complex stuff, I don’t think the majority of people need that. They need to be training general movement patterns, you know, the squat, the hands overhead press, horizontal press, horizontal pole, horizontal push in a variety of rep ranges in a variety of different energy systems.

Zach Long: And that’s pretty simple way to in general, get fitter across all domains of fitness.

Dean Pohlman: Okay, cool. Let’s talk about rehab a little bit. So what are what are some of the psychological factors that get in the way of people recovering from injuries? And I’m asking this for you as a you know, as a physical therapist, by the way, I think it’s worth mentioning that, you know, we talked about this before, but you you know, you’re day to day now.

Dean Pohlman: You’re you’re seeing I think you said you treat 10 hours a week and you’re you’re seeing people one on one an hour sessions. So you’re not a you’re not a traditional physical therapist in that sense. But, you know, I’m assuming before you you are where you are now, you are doing, you know, the traditional caseload. So, you know, you were really involved in people one on one or maybe two on one.

Dean Pohlman: I don’t know. But and charting their progress over, you know, at least 12 weeks trying to get them to and I’m saying this because I’m familiar with my wife’s with my wife’s practice and her goal was always like, let’s get you better, let’s get you better. Let’s get this pain down from a four out of ten to a two out of ten so I can discharge you because I got other people to see.

Dean Pohlman: And that’s my goal. I want to get you pain free. So what gets in the way of people when it comes to being consistent with their rehab and recovering?

Zach Long: So I cheat primarily right now. CrossFit are power lifters, Olympic weightlifters, and for many of them like that is either their favorite part of the day or they associate themselves, as I am a CrossFit or I am the powerlifter. And it’s like that is almost more important than what their job is. And when they can’t do that because of an injury, psychologic care that can be really challenging at times to deal with.

Zach Long: Like, I want to be doing this, I can’t be doing this. And if we can’t find really good ways to modify to keep them doing something that feels like that thing that they love doing or they associate their life with, that that could be really difficult for them to then want to stay consistently. They can get kind of stuck in a little cycle of feeling helpless or hopeless, so they don’t do the pieces that they need to do to get fully back to what they want to do.

Zach Long: And so they just get stuck in not doing their home exercise program because they feel hopeless, but then not results and not being able to get back to the thing that they want to do. I think that’s probably the biggest thing.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah.

Zach Long: That’s what I think. Like, but you got to find somebody to work with that has a really good skill set at modifying what you’re doing because we can’t conventional deadlift right now because you’ve got a lot of nerve tension on board in your lower body. But we consume a lot of it because when we spread your legs wider, that decreases nerve tension.

Zach Long: And if you show up with this type of presentation, this exercise is typically much more tolerated by you. Mm hmm.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. I think people, when they’re injured and they’re they’re going through that, it almost feels like it feels like they’re going to be stuck there forever. Like they’re never going to get better. And it’s it’s hard to it’s hard to have kind of like an emotional understanding that things are going to get better, like logically, you might know, like, hey, like, I’m here right now and this sucks, but I’m going to get better.

Dean Pohlman: But like, emotionally, you’re stuck in this man. This sucks. And I don’t think it’s going to get better. And you know, especially if, like you’re saying, they’re associating that with their identity, it’s tough there. So I think this is something that’s kind of fascinating to me is is is pain. And I’m not an expert on pain, but from what I’ve learned about pain, pain is pain is often pain is often kind of like an idea Like you you have a you have a familiar experience or previous experience with when I do this with my body, this causes pain.

Dean Pohlman: And so when you do it again, there might not actually be the physical component there. That’s causing the pain. But mentally you’re like, There is pain. I’m experiencing it. Yes. Can you can you talk about that a little bit? And I think it’s a pretty complex topic.

Zach Long: So it is.

Dean Pohlman: So feel free to collect yourself.

Zach Long: We tissue’s healed, but a lot of times in some individuals dealing with more chronic pain, the tissues might heal or maybe they don’t heal. But the nervous system does not recover or hyper responds the opposite direction. So our bodies nervous system, that’s really complex. And so think of it like this. Like I’ve treated a number of people in the past with what’s called hyperalgesia.

Zach Long: So they have a hyper active response to stimulus. So let’s say it’s back pain. They’re laying on their stomach and I’m evaluating their back and I touch their skin like lighter than you would touch a button on your remote control to your TV. And they associate that as painful when you barely touch them. Was that amount of pressure enough that we damage any tissue, you know, so we didn’t like, you know, if I’d slammed them with that, you know, £100 sledgehammer, is that enough that it could have caused more damage?

Zach Long: Yes. But touching them wasn’t. So that is an example of somebody whose nervous system is so ramped up and overprotective of an area that non damaging stimuli become painful. And that is a whole different ballpark in terms of treating people’s pain. I don’t treat a whole lot of chronic pain right now that my job is to inoculate people against becoming chronic pain patients.

Zach Long: But for those people, so often the the rehab interventions that they’re still doing is focused solely on the tissue and not on the nervous system. So people that have chronic pain or maladaptive pain is what’s what is probably more commonly called now. You can have them do some crazy tests where they look at pictures of somebody right hand versus left hand.

Zach Long: Let’s say they have like a right shoulder injury that’s now like maladaptive in their nervous system, overprotective. You show them pictures of a right hand versus left hand. You have them say, oh, that’s right. That’s not that’s right. That’s left. And they actually their brain won’t be able to as accurately identify which side it is when it’s that painful side.

Zach Long: But they just get all these insane nervous system changes. And so if you’re in that situation, you have to find somebody that not only addresses the underlying tissues that might still have some damage to them, but that is also skilled at helping you understand how to resolve this nervous system components to it as well.

Dean Pohlman: MM Yeah. So I’m thinking of the mirror thing and I’m thinking of setting up like you set up a mirror. So basically you can put your right arm in front of it and then you move it, but your brain is like, That’s my left arm. And then you feel pain in your right, You’re feel pain in your left shoulder.

Dean Pohlman: If you have pain there, if you have that maladaptive injury. What I forgot what you said. But yeah, it’s fascinating that like your brain’s like, oh, that’s hurting. And your body’s like, No, no, we’re not even moving that though. It just looks like it.

Zach Long: Phantom Limb syndrome is a great example of this where like, people’s hand will hurt. Like it’s like you would cut your arm off below the elbow. Amputees will say that their hand hurts on that side. They actually have a hand in your hand hurt. It’s crazy for the nervous system.

Dean Pohlman: So what are some nervous system treatments for going beyond the tissue? What are some things that you can do when you continue to have that pain.

Zach Long: With those individuals? You have to, number one, focus a lot and function like you’ve been dealing with this amount of pain for forever. Well, let’s just figure out ways to at least get you doing more of the things that you love while still having this amount of pain. Like if you’re always, let’s say, worst case scenario, you’re always going to have this.

Zach Long: Well, would you rather always have this pain sitting in your house all day long, or would you have rather have that pain when you’re going out and you’re watching your grandkids soccer game and you’re going shopping in the mall like whatever it is you love, I guess figure out how to focus on function, We got to look at a lot of lifestyle factors where we’re down regulating the overall nervous system, getting on more anti inflammatory diet, figuring out ways to move and exercise, improving your sleep quality, those sorts of things.

Zach Long: And then if we go to actually training the nervous system, there’s there’s tons of different things like the tests we talked about, where you’re looking at pictures, just working through things like that can help with the nervous system as well. It’s one of my my friends and colleagues and Justin Dunaway is like one of the leading experts in the world on this type of stuff.

Zach Long: More you can look at books by Adrian Lowe. I think that’s l0uw okay. If he has some books on why you hurt, or there’s a guy named Greg Leeman who has a free workbook out on his website. Lehman spelled L M and those guys are much more into that than I am. I’m standing like big picture because I don’t, I don’t listen to that very often.

Dean Pohlman: MM Wow. That’s so.

Zach Long: And.

Dean Pohlman: It’s so interesting and it’s so weird. It is weird. Wow. So I want to switch gears a little bit because I’m, I’m really intrigued about you and I want to ask you questions about you and I. I honestly don’t know how much you I don’t know how much you you do this, like talk about yourself and your content.

Dean Pohlman: Or maybe you do. And I missed it. But I think something that people you know, something that’s apparent just looking at, you know, all the different things that you do, first off, your content machine, like you crank out a ton of content, you put a ton of effort into your content. And you know, I’m curious like, how do you how do you have the energy to create that much content balancing, running all these clinics, treating people on your own?

Dean Pohlman: Where’s that? Where does that desire to create content come from?

Zach Long: The desire to create content is I honestly believe that if you’re doing things different and you have something to share with the world, that it’s kind of your moral obligation to try to push things to the next level so that whether I was making money on my online content or not, I think I’m doing things differently that I think is changing the profession of physical therapy in the right way.

Zach Long: So whether I made money doing that or not, I’d be sharing it because I just I believe it’s my moral obligation. So then how do I get it all done? I’m really good at batching. So like on my desk right now, I just kind of like a list of things that I need to film. And I’m fortunate. We just moved to a new house.

Zach Long: I built out the garage to be my filming studio, so like my camera set up on the tripod right now, I literally walk in a press a button on the phone, all my lights turn on, turn my camera on, and I’m ready to go to film and I’ll just film all of that at once.

Dean Pohlman: That was amazing.

Zach Long: And they now have a video editor, so I just then send him the videos and he takes care of that. And I’ve done that for so long and I’ve done so many live presentations that it is rare that I have to shoot something more than twice 90% the time I get it done. The first take less than 2% the time you have to do like three takes of something.

Zach Long: So that just makes it happen a lot faster, which makes it quite a bit easier. But in general, like I’ve just had to get really good, especially since my kid was born. It like looking at my schedule and blocking out periods of time for very specific tasks and knowing that you had during these 2 hours. This is, this is what I’m doing to make sure.

Zach Long: Yeah, But yeah, some people don’t feel this way, but I do. I live on stress like it’s not a whole lot to do. I would be so bored in life. I actually like I dread retirement, retire.

Dean Pohlman: I hear that for I yeah. Whenever I’m like sitting down and I’m relaxing my my mind is like, dude, why don’t you stress like, I’ll find something to go find something to do. Go find some work to do. There’s some work to do. There’s something. Go do something. And I have to, like, force myself to. No, no, no.

Dean Pohlman: Just sit here, enjoy your house, enjoy your family. Yeah, Enjoy this mundane tasks that you’re doing. And that’s like. That’s a that’s a struggle for me.

Zach Long: I’m with you there. I have to constantly remind myself, like, to stop and, like, block in my head. Like, this time I’m done working and my focus is on this. Yeah, like, I even just try to make myself enjoy, like, mundane tasks, like folding towels. I try to look at it as, like, how pristine can I do this?

Zach Long: Like I get in the zone. Yeah, focus on this and like, turn little things like that into, like, my form of meditation.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, I when I’m doing that, I try.

Zach Long: To thinking about the towel.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. I like when I’m doing something like that. I try to. I try to. I try to like you said I try to like enjoy the task or like make it like, how can I do this well, But I also when I’m doing things like that, my tendency is to like, rush through it, like it’s a to do list.

Dean Pohlman: And I have to stop and remind myself like, you are not you’re not being chased by like a frickin tiger right now or like, this is not like a life or death situation. You need to chill the F out. You’re just, you know, you’re just boarding a towel like this. Laundry will get done in 5 minutes if you brush maybe 3 minutes.

Dean Pohlman: But like that, 2 minutes is not going to make a difference. And the added stress that you’re putting on yourself, folding laundry like you. No, not worth it there. Yeah. So like something else that I’ve so with content creation and I’m just focusing on this because this is kind of this is this is what I know I’m a big I’m a big content creator.

Dean Pohlman: And I had a I had Lynch on the podcast earlier. He’s a he’s a well-known American comedian. He was on America’s Got Talent in 2015, got in second place and I talked about this with him, about content creation and how it kind of helps you. It kind of helps. I don’t know if you identify as a content creator or not, but like for me, it kind of helps me with making sense of things in my head.

Dean Pohlman: Like it’s like it’s a form of it helps me kind of process things that I’m thinking of. And once I get it, then I’m like, okay, that that conundrum is solved. Like that’s out of my head now and I can move on to something else. So I’m, you know, I’m curious for you, like, how do you find do you find content creation helps you mentally or do you you know, how do you see it?

Zach Long: Long form content does like sitting out and trying to write a blog to explain something really helps me. Like I’ll sit on a long form, like article for a while at times where I really try to hash out like the specific details and why that might be happening. The pros and cons of something problem solve it.

Dean Pohlman: Got it. So when there’s when there’s a lot of when it’s in depth, when there’s a lot when there’s a lot of thinking that goes into it, then it’s something that when you do, when you go through that, then it’s like, okay, that, that helps, you know, But like if you’re just making like a, like a two minute video or something like that off the cuff, like that’s not.

Zach Long: How making a real I’d say in general, usually that’s not stuff that’s like making me think, Yeah, most of the time when I tell people, when people ask me like where I go to learn more about you, I say, Go to the website where you can get like an in-depth analysis of something not Instagram, where you see like a 15 seconds snippet video of one exercise and why use that one exercise?

Zach Long: You’re better off to go to the article, right? Dissect everything. That’s why use it. The clinical reasoning behind it, those sorts of things.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. I think, you know, I’m I’m just been a proponent of Instagram here because it’s so good. But like I remember seeing I think the first piece of content that I saw with you, you were going through a you’re going through how to lift your arm over head without pain and I was like, Oh, they’ll be like three exercises here.

Dean Pohlman: And you had like ten phases. You had like ten different progressions. I’m like, Holy crap, this is really intense. This is like there’s a lot of content. But anyways.

Zach Long: The thing that really helps me, all of that is taking students at physical therapy, students that come and work at my clinic, forcing me to slow down and say, Why did I choose this exercise? Over that span, both have the same goal of strengthening the same tissue that like with a, let’s say, upper hamstring strain. Why did I choose to do that with the hip flexed or extended?

Zach Long: And breaking that out helps me up quite a bit.

Dean Pohlman: So now I’m kind of curious, where does this where does this way, where does this approach to your work come from? Like, have you always been like this? Did you develop it out of necessity? Was your dad like this? Or like, where does this method of, you know, your work methodology, where does it come from?

Zach Long: So my dad always told me just to not look for what the world needs. I forget who said this quote, Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive because what the world needs. People have come alive. So we’re one of decision making processes on anything I do is am I going to be excited to do this on a daily basis?

Zach Long: Yeah. So let’s do it. If not, I’m not worth my time right now, not worth my energy. It’s going to suck a lot more out of that. So I’m gonna choose things that that I’m super excited to work on so that makes it very easy to crank away at it.

Dean Pohlman: Do you find that you have to go back every few months and like reassess things and if they’re no longer exciting, do you absolve yourself of them somehow or do you do you only take things that you’re excited on and like and you and you’re pretty good about not overloading yourself.

Zach Long: At this point? I’m really good at not taking things that I don’t want to be doing, but I’m just where I’m at, like financially across my businesses. That makes it really easy. So there have certainly been times in the past where I didn’t have that luxury. So like right now I don’t take new patients. But if you call the clinic up and I’m talking to you on the phone about like what you’re dealing with in Europe, CrossFit or that’s dealing with like hit impingement, I’m like, okay, I’d be excited to treat this person, then I might bring them in.

Zach Long: But if it’s somebody like that just spring their ankle yesterday, they want to go back to playing soccer. I have somebody on my team that’s number one better at that. Number two, more excited to treat that than I am so that that makes it a little bit fortunate more so now like my focus is not like because I’m already only doing the stuff I love.

Zach Long: It’s what’s the stuff that I love doing, but that’s not the best use of my time. Like, I enjoy editing my videos. I like being the person that does that work, but I don’t have time for anymore, so I’d outsource that. Yeah, there’ll be more little things like that. You know, it’s the business. The businesses continue to evolve.

Dean Pohlman: Was it difficult for you to start letting go, letting go of control of things as they got, you know, as they got bigger. Yes. Yes.

Zach Long: So less. Yeah.

Dean Pohlman: What was what’s what’s the what’s the hard part of that.

Zach Long: I think it’s hard to communicate your vision to people sometimes.

Dean Pohlman: Yes.

Zach Long: That comes down to you not setting the right expectations from the start. Yeah. We assume that everybody else has our same drive and desire, our same vision to do things a certain way. And more times than not, when I failed on some delegation and I look back on it is my problem. I have to take ownership of the fact that I didn’t set down the right expectations and give people the right guidance.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, I’m always shocked when people can’t read my mind. Like, what do you mean? Like, why isn’t this clear? And then, you know, there’s follow up questions. I’m like, what do you like? And, you know, I’ve been working with the team for, I don’t know, however many years now, but, you know, it’s like I still, I guess almost almost eight years now, but like, I still have this issue where, you know, someone comes back with something and I’m like, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.

Dean Pohlman: What? What? Wasn’t clear. And then, you know, we go back like, Oh, I didn’t give you any sort of, like, expectations on.

Zach Long: So that’s a hard pill to swallow to sit back and say, that was my fault.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, I.

Zach Long: Do the right thing to set you up for success, and I’ll be the first to tell you that I was not very good at that even a year ago. I still know I need to get better at that. But now when people fail, I’m try to force myself to have. The first question I ask is why did you do it that way?

Zach Long: It’s What did I not do that led to me doing it that way.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah, Yeah, That’s tough to do. It’s tough to be unselfish like that. And, you know, put the blame on yourself. What are some ways that, you know, and I’m just I’m kind of just asking these questions based on a lot of the themes that we’ve explored on this The Better Man podcast and I think a one of the big themes that we explore is I think men don’t take care of themselves enough.

Dean Pohlman: And so I’m kind of curious like what that sounds like. So one way that your, you know, in a way not being selfish, I think ultimately when you reflect on it, it is selfish. It is within your best this is best interest to like put the blame on yourself and to have a better relationship with your team members.

Dean Pohlman: But what are some things that you do for yourself selfishly to, you know, just take care, take care of yourself?

Zach Long: I Think the biggest thing for me is exercise. I need that hour long exercise on a daily basis. And so I have to be really good at staying ahead of my schedule. And when a day starts to get really full I got to stop and block my hour, that is non-negotiable, that I will be exercising for that hour and I will not change it, delete it for almost any day sort of family issues.

Zach Long: Mm hmm. The second thing is, I had to give myself permission to work hard and work a lot of hours so that I don’t feel bad when I’m not doing that, we can then focus on family stuff. Yeah, I think you can be selfless during times of the day or times of your weeks that you can be selfless at other times.

Dean Pohlman: Is that something that you So it’s it’s you, your wife, You have a almost one year old. Yeah. When is when’s his birthday?

Zach Long: May 24th.

Dean Pohlman: Okay, cool. So is that a conversation that you you had to have with your wife at some point, like, hey, like business is getting bigger. I need this out of myself. Like, how did you go about having that conversation?

Zach Long: My wife and I had a lot of conversations prior to getting married or engaged around a number of different things. Just because the divorce rates are so high that we made sure prior to getting married that we are on the exact same page financially. We also had a lot of conversation about where we wanted to go career wise.

Zach Long: My wife’s an amazing pharmacist, very highly trained to do certain things in the pharmacy world. And you know, prior to us getting married, I said, This is what I want to do. My goal is to change the way that physical therapy is done. That’s going to require me being more than a clinician at a local clinic. Mm hmm.

Zach Long: What do you want to do with your career? My wife said that she wanted to be a great clinician for the people in front of her, and so we kind of knew from the start that we have different goals, that we’re not both trying to do things that are conflict. Mm hmm. And then just as different things have grown, we’d been fortunate that, like, she can work a little less hours, that gets her a little bit more downtime, lets her do a few more things around the house.

Zach Long: And communication and marriage is always up and down. But we do decent job of regularly talking and making sure we’re both doing what we need to do for the other people. And obviously there’s always times where you don’t do that for the other person or they don’t do it for you. But we touch on that enough and this the shifts always heading in general in the right direction.

Zach Long: It just needs to be turned back ten or 15 years. Yeah.

Dean Pohlman: What are some.

Zach Long: Oh, that’s a lot of conversations after, you know, multiple rounds of couples counseling, too.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. No, I’m a huge fan. I’m a huge proponent of couples counseling. I talk about it a lot. I had a I just saw a podcast a few weeks ago when I talked about couples counseling as and how it was so helpful just to being able to facilitate the framework for having a conversation. You know, I think most people, you know, I can only say about myself, but I think the default for for relationships when they have conversations is to this is my point.

Dean Pohlman: This is why you’re wrong and then it’s the same person from the other person and then just back and forth without anyone ever feeling heard. And there’s no like sort of resolution and it’s yeah, that’s not the way to do it.

Zach Long: So I’ll order something to tell you in my marriage that, like, I’m not in charge of the house, my wife’s in charge of the house. So next week and I’m traveling to teach a course. Mm hmm. And so I’m being selfish and going out and doing the thing that I really love. And even though business is boring, I love doing it.

Zach Long: So this coming weekend, I’m doing whatever she wants to do. I am not making plans to go out and do anything. I’m going to exercise on Saturday. But other than that, whatever my wife wants to do, I’m doing all weekend long because that’s my time to be focused on her. Mm hmm.

Dean Pohlman: Do you have do you have regular bro time? A regular time where you hang out with other guys?

Zach Long: Not that much. So much. Yeah. I consider my best friends of all my work. Friends. Okay, that’s good.

Dean Pohlman: So you interact each other?

Zach Long: Yeah, but, like, we’re spread out all over the country? Yeah, I do occasionally, like, hang out with local friends. I feel much more connected to them because it’s with that entrepreneur drive that I have and how much I’m doing business wise. I sometimes don’t feel relatable to people that have that amount of drugs. Hmm. And I don’t I don’t mean that negatively against them at all.

Zach Long: Too many times I’m jealous of people that just want to work. 8 to 5. Mm hmm. Yeah. Yeah.

Dean Pohlman: No, it’s. It’s. Yeah, it’s. It’s tough to.

Zach Long: Travel often, too, so that also makes it even harder. Yeah. Got it. Okay.

Dean Pohlman: Is that something that. Do you feel like that is something that long term you would like to improve or like? Is that something that like you feel does it feel like you’re getting enough the way that you’re doing things now?

Zach Long: I wouldn’t mind a few more hours in the day on a daily basis, but I’m pretty happy with how everything is right now in my life. And I feel I feel very balanced.

Dean Pohlman: Cool. All right. So, um, kind of along those lines, you know, you became a dad a year ago. What’s the biggest change in your fitness and maybe more broadly in your life, in your work life, when it comes to you being a dad now work?

Zach Long: I think the biggest change overall is just a few months, hours in the day and quit. I’m used to getting up every day at 5 a.m. and starting work at six. Now. There are a couple of days a week where I’m in charge of Keegan in the morning and I have to be the one that gets them to daycare.

Zach Long: And so that that cuts a little bit of time out there other than missing out on, you know, a handful of hours on a weekly basis and missing home a little bit more when I’m on the road traveling and teaching courses. I think biggest change for me from a fitness perspective is just not that I’m working out less.

Zach Long: It’s just that I have to be more forgiving of myself, of knowing what I come in and, you know, I should be able to hit this weight for this many reps. And it doesn’t happen that day because I had to get up last night in the middle of the night to give them a bottle, and I didn’t sleep as well.

Zach Long: Or he was coughing all day all and woke me up five times. The baby monitor. I just have to be more forgiving of myself and understand that my recovery is not where it should be. My performance isn’t going to be as great as it could be right now, and that’s been super tough as well, just to be honest about that.

Zach Long: But I was a month ago, I was just so ticked off and I retested the max and I’m like, why can I not do that? That was 40 less than I benched two years ago. And I just had a great training cycle, but I missed the weight that I should have been able to cross. And that’s okay. This week Keegan’s been and sloughed well all week long.

Zach Long: Yeah, yeah.

Dean Pohlman: Yeah. That’s tough when you realize that you’re you’re not doing you’re not as strong as you thought you would be and it’s Yeah. I mean the sleep factor, right. Yeah. And I’m laughing I was laughing at the, the coughing on the monitor thing because as soon as I hear a cough on the monitor, I’m like, great, I know he’s coughing.

Dean Pohlman: We’re going to turn this off now. And my wife doesn’t really have a say in it because she’s asleep anyways. But I’m like, I’m, I’m awake to that coughing. So I just I walk over and I turn it off and then we go upstairs in the morning and there are child is still alive and well. But, you know, she worries more than I do for, you know, probably good reason.

Zach Long: But yeah.

Dean Pohlman: All right. Well, I’m going to let’s get into our rapid fire questions. And I’ve already kind of asked a few similar of these types of questions just based on where the conversation went. But I have these a few questions that I, I have a few questions that I ask just to everybody on this are on the show. So are you ready?

Zach Long: Yep.

Dean Pohlman: Cool. What Do you think is one habit, belief or mindset that has helped you the most in terms of your overall happiness?

Zach Long: I would believe would be that quote that I said earlier that my dad talked about. Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive? Because what the world needs is people who have come alive. Hmm. Yeah, that’s it.

Dean Pohlman: What is? I got to ask you is your dad, your desolate.

Zach Long: Desolate, desolate football coach for 30 years. Okay.

Dean Pohlman: You guys talk a lot.

Zach Long: A lot? Yeah.

Dean Pohlman: That’s awesome. Happy for you guys. What’s one thing that you do for your health that you believe is overlooked or undervalued by others?

Zach Long: Tracking caloric intake.

Dean Pohlman: Shopping.

Zach Long: Tracking. Sorry.

Dean Pohlman: Tracking others that are.

Zach Long: Tracking my total calories. I don’t believe that you have to specifically track your calories, but you need if you’re worried about your nutrition and optimizing your performance, you have to be measuring what your intake in some way, form or fashion that I’ve always when I stopped tracking for a period of time and realize how far off I’ve gotten over where I should be.

Dean Pohlman: Need more or less for you.

Zach Long: Less protein than I should be, like at It’s very common for me to stop tracking and get 120 grams of protein on a daily basis. But I should be getting somewhere between 160 and 200 on a daily basis.

Dean Pohlman: What’s the easiest way for you to add in that mass protein of?

Zach Long: For me, the easiest way to add in is end of the day, what I haven’t gotten in a Greek yogurt with a scoop of protein powder and it just makes Greek yogurt taste really good and super easy. Get down. Okay.

Dean Pohlman: Cool. Great tip. What’s the most important activity you regularly do for your stress management?

Zach Long: Exercise.

Dean Pohlman: Exercise Okay. What’s the most stressful part of your day to day life?

Zach Long: Manage other human beings, Especially the stressful component of my life, trying to convey your beliefs and expectations to other people. Yeah.

Dean Pohlman: I was just thinking of your, you know, all the tough things you have going on, but it sounds like you have compartmentalized everything so well that you’re able to do. You do have you heard of a work shutdown process? Is this something you’re familiar with? So this is a concept by Cal Newport, but basically, by the end of the before the end of the workday, you wrap up all the things you do and you can just leave a note like where you left off and then you kind of shut the book and they’re like, okay, I know everything’s done it.

Dean Pohlman: Is that something that you do or a similar thing to that? Or how do you try to.

Zach Long: I’ve got this glass marker board sitting underneath my computer monitor. The things in white are the big projects that are ongoing. The things in yellow are the things that I want to get done that day or that. And so it’s pretty much that awesome.

Dean Pohlman: It’s a great system. Last question What do you think is the biggest challenge facing men and their well-being? And right now.

Zach Long: Women not being vulnerable with their spouse and telling them the truth?

Dean Pohlman: MM Yeah, it’s a good it’s a good one. I think the I think they’re not being vulnerable in general is the big theme that, that I like. And then the with your spouse I think it’s shocking how tall not close so many men are with their with their with their partners like you think like oh we talk a lot but you’re like, well, you’re kind of just doing you’re just planning things.

Dean Pohlman: You’re not actually talking and sharing your feelings. They’re just sitting down at the end and say like, Hey, how are you feeling right now and what’s going on? And it’s just like those short little those short little bits, I’ll call them, that lead into having like these really that can lead into having these, like really simple conversations, but like, so effective for just like, feeling better in your marriage.

Zach Long: Right?

Dean Pohlman: So cool. All right. Well, I think that was an awesome we got through so much. That was amazing. We got through a ton of questions and then we got through all of like my all my, all of my non fitness questions going into you, your relationship, your beliefs, your habits. That was awesome. So I want to thank you for your time thank you for your incredibly concise answers that allowed us to like, have so much information.

Dean Pohlman: So this was a really good episode. What’s the best way for people to keep up with you too, to learn more about what you do and and to help help their bodies.

Zach Long: The Barbell Physio Ecom is my website. Other website where we also put out a lot of content is performance plus programing dot com and same username on Instagram is our main platform in terms of social media. Okay.

Dean Pohlman: How does the can you really like 30 seconds? Can you briefly explain the performance plus programing like how that works?

Zach Long: Yes. So what my business partner there, her name is Pamela Gabrielson. Pamela Gaghan is just super well-known in the CrossFit gymnastics space, and so she understands gymnastics. I understand programing for strength and programing for mobility. And so for people that have any goals in that spectrum, a lot of times they’re already following solid programs. So say you’re across that or you’re going to your gym on a daily basis.

Zach Long: You’re getting in your daily dose of fitness that you have little aspects of your fitness that need extra attention. You’re hit mobility stick. So you’re you’ve got a good strong, stripped chest of our pull up, but you haven’t figured out how to turn that to a muscle up. We have accessory programs that are just quick, 10 to 15 minute workouts that you do at the end of your workout to help kind of bridge that gap between the big fitness stuff you’re doing in your daily programing and your next goals that you want to have.

Dean Pohlman: That’s awesome. That’s like that’s so helpful, like breaking it down like that and then short, like 10 minutes stuff they can just throw in. That’s fantastic. All right. I might have to link for that. Is there we didn’t talk about this for is there any sort of promo code or some sort of freebie that we can mention to people who listen to this podcast that we can get people in to get them going on, that.

Zach Long: We have a ton of free resources. I don’t even know what the link is like. We’ve got a number of like free programs that give you an example of what we do. If people send me a DM like we have a great program, we have a gymnastics based core program and a couple other, So if they send me a DM on Instagram, I can send them links to example programs like that to check out.

Dean Pohlman: Perfect. Cool. All right, guys, thanks. Tuning in for the Better Man podcast. Doc, that was amazing. Thank you so much for your time. Yeah. All right, guys. I’ll see you guys on the next episode of this inspires you to be a better man.


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