Tony Horton, creator of the hugely successful P90X series as a part of Beach Body shows us how to stay fit as we age. His fitness lifestyle allowed him to overcome a horrific bout of Shingles.
[00:02:19.240] – Allan Tony, welcome to 40+ Fitness.
[00:02:21.860] – Tony Allan, my pleasure to be here, man.
[00:02:24.590] – Allan No, actually, it's my pleasure. You've been a big part of my life early on anyway. I had gotten out of out of college, and in college I was a gym rat. I was the guy who was always in the gym every day from 2-3:00. The guy that owned the gym knew I was going to be there.
[00:02:42.210] – Allan So I actually started spelling him for his lunches each day is like, Allan, just make sure nobody kills anybody while I'm gone. And he would he would go get some lunch. And the only bad day we had was when he got food poisoning for eating bad fish and he didn't come back. I didn't know what to do. But after I got out, I had this supposed to have this great job. You go to college, get a great job.
[00:03:01.120] – Allan But my income was actually less. And so I was like, OK, I can't afford a gym membership, but I need to stay in shape. I like where I am. I like what I'm doing and I want to stay in shape. And so I happened upon an infomercial for P90X and there you are, smiling and active and energetic and a little bit a little bit intimidating, but in a cool way. In a cool way.
[00:03:29.370] – Tony I like the way you put that. I like that.
[00:03:31.830] – Allan Well, you know, you have a certain persona and you bring that out and you talk in one of the videos that I watched about, you know, how when you first started, someone said, just be Tony. And you did. And it clicked. And I think that's the thing about you is that you were just this genuine cool guy that everybody wants to hang out.
[00:03:53.350] – Allan I want to come work out in your backyard with you because your gym in your backyard are just so cool. Now, I wouldn't I wouldn't necessarily be able to keep up with you. And you're nine years older than me. But damn, it looks like you have a fun, fun time. We do.
[00:04:08.220] – Tony We do. The whole property is a gym, pretty much. You could work out in the bathroom. Dang it. There's so many other places to do it. Yeah. I mean, you know, it's been an amazing ride for me. It's hard to believe I'm 62. I don't know what the heck that's supposed to feel like. It feels kind of better than twenty two or thirty or forty two, you know what I mean. And that's just because I, because I've learned a lot along the way.
[00:04:30.930] – Tony I mean and I'm always making adjustments along the way. and P90X was sort of one one phase, one stage of my learning process. Prior to that. I was a gym rat too. I was just going to the gym and I was doing cardio and weights and that was it. Sometimes I would do both the same day and sometimes I would alter them. But I had a very sort of limited, myopic view of what fitness was. And I just I was very fortunate.
[00:04:53.190] – Tony I had a lot of kismet in my life. And I ran into some really interesting people and I put myself in situations where I was uncomfortable and I wasn't very good. I mean, right now I'm in the middle of a handstand challenge with my sister, her and her daughter, my niece and some friends, and only because I can't do them. So, I mean, if I can't do something, then it's interesting, then I will I'll spend months trying to get good at handstands, you know what I mean.
[00:05:15.960] – Tony So just being curious, man, that's all I've ever been. I know there wasn't really a question there, but know that your comments kind of leave me in my path at this point.
[00:05:25.860] – Allan So absolutely. And I think we all can actually talk in our lifetimes about how we we have these stages. And so you had your beachbody stage and now you've got these kind of these new cool things happen, your power life supplement brand and your Tony Talks podcast. It's a video podcast that comes out. I saw it on YouTube. At least the first one was out a couple of weeks ago. And, man, it's like I said, you just you just doing so much good for so many people that I'm I'm proud to have you on the show.
[00:05:56.280] – Tony Oh, wow. Well, thank you, man. Thank you very much. Appreciate that.
[00:05:59.970] – Allan So what are the things that that you shared in one of the interviews I saw, and, you know, there's a lot of them, but I've kind of pulled together because you you have this really cool keys to success concept in your head and applies to fitness. It applies to your business side. It applies to probably everything you do in your life, including your relationship with your wife, Shawna, can you talk about your keys to success and particularly as it relates to fitness?
[00:06:29.280] – Tony Well, gosh, you know, I mean, I have these paragon events here at my home. We've had four so far. And we invite people from around the world. We had a couple come in from Kuwait City. You know what I mean, most folks are coming in from Canada and other places in the US. And the seminar that I'm doing right now is is really way outside of the box of things that we're in In my book, The Big Picture: 11 Laws That Will Change Your Life. You know variety, consistency, intensity, accountability, different kinds of things.
[00:06:55.350] – Tony But if you really kind of pull back from sixty five thousand feet and you look down, you know, what is the foundation of who you are? And so this is just my story. But whenever I disseminate my story to different people in interviews or or live events or whatever it is or a paragon, I've been here at my home. You know, I always tell people I was a C- student with a speech impediment who was the most lazy procrastinator you ever met your life.
[00:07:19.380] – Tony You know what I mean, I just I didn't really see that I had much of a future, you know what I mean? And then I started getting into some in some personal development. And that really changed my life, you know. And then when I moved out to California in 1980, you know, I had worked out in the gym here and there, I took a weightlifting class in college. It kind of helped build my confidence. And miraculously my GPA went up that semester because I was working out.
[00:07:42.360] – Tony So I didn't understand the exercise, the science behind exercise. In fact you at least norepinephrine and dopamine and serotonin and brain derived neurotrophic factor inside the temporal lobe area in the brain, it's teeny it's called the dentate gyrus. So whenever you exercise and breathe heavily, the molecules and the proteins inside of your brain come together. It's like Miracle-Gro for your brain. So everything improves. Sex, drive, memory, cognition, ambition. I mean, it's an amazing process.
[00:08:09.660] – Tony And a lot of people cheat their way there through sex, drugs and rock and roll. Not that there's anything wrong with that. But, you know what I mean I mean, there's always payback. You know, short term solutions, temporary solutions can lead to long term problems. You know what I mean, type two diabetes, hypertension, heart attacks, you know what I mean, Parkinson's disease, all these different things. You know what I mean. So so I kept the rock and roll and the sex, but I got rid of the drugs in the alcohol and the poor eating habits and the lack of movement.
[00:08:39.620] – Tony So, you know what I mean, there are there are three things that are really under your control. And a lot of things aren't traffic, whether other people, work, you know what I mean? The stress is one of these kind of amorphous energies that are sort of hard to put your fingers on. So if you do these three things and this is I'm giving you the long term answer here, because we have time.
[00:09:03.920] – Tony Its fitness, food and mindfulness. I used to say it was fitness and food, but the mindfulness thing is really become an important thing for me. And I got really sick back in twenty seventeen. I ended up with Ramsey Hunt syndrome, which was basically shingles in your ear, which means shingles in your brain, which means shingles in your brain or frying nerves in your brain, which really affects everything.
[00:09:25.460] – Tony Smell, taste, balance, creating tons of inflammation, tons of fatigue, constantly vomiting, being noxious all the time. Right. So the mindfulness practice kind of came into play there for me, it was really, really important. I mean, I you know, I meditated once in a while and I would play with my dogs and I would take a nap. I mean, whatever forms of mindfulness you want to call those types of things.
[00:09:46.400] – Tony But for me, it was full-blown meditation. That's the only thing. All the tinctures and doctors and all the king's horses and all the king's men couldn't put me back together again, you know what I mean?
[00:09:55.020] – Tony So all I had was my breath. I can't work out. I can't drive, I can't eat. I got to take some deep breaths because most of us all use the top part of our lungs, especially now with covid, you know what I mean. Like that that virus lives at the bottom. So I may not do a cardio and plyo three times a week just to flush that out, make them strong in case I get this thing I'm ready to rock, you know.
[00:10:16.430] – Tony So when I was a struggling kid, a young kid who was really not doing very well, not very happy financially, in big trouble, in debt, no relationship, really. You know whenever I would exercise, I was just more productive. I mean, I read John Rateys book years later, Spark the effects of physical activity on the brain.
[00:10:36.200] – Tony And and I was oh, this is why when I'm really consistent with my fitness, when I work out five, six, seven days a week because five is the minimum, like, you know what I mean, you go to work five days a week, you go to sleep every night, you eat every day. We do a lot of these things so that we can survive on planet Earth. But I wanted to thrive. I didn't like where I was.
[00:10:57.690] – Tony So when I exercised often, I was releasing all these chemicals in my head and I was just a better man. I was about a human being. I was more productive. I was happier. I was getting stuff done. I was checking boxes, you know what I mean. And then later the food thing came into play, you know what I mean. I was just I love double cheese, chimichangas and bacon cheeseburgers with Dr. Pepper. I mean, come on, it's yummy.
[00:11:17.780] – Tony But it didn't serve me, man, you know what I mean. So and I was Keto and paleo and vegan and blah blah. But now I'm all those things, you know what I mean, I don't I don't limit myself from anything. I just eat really healthy versions of all these different types of food philosophies, which is really what my book is going to be about, probably come out in 2021, you know what I mean and and taking all the pressure off.
[00:11:37.890] – Tony Because so often when we're trying to figure out the food element, there's always some form of restriction. Right. You can do this, but you can't do that. And if you do that, it's going to lead you down that bad path again. Where you are going to be right back where you were. And so I just thought, you know, and this is this is kind of an anomaly, really.
[00:11:56.730] – Tony I mean, I eat keto and vegan and paleo and vegetarian and Mediterranean, Vietnamese and Chinese and French. You know what I mean, like, wow, the world is my oyster. I just eat versions that my great, great great grandparents probably ate. And it wasn't Dr. Pepper or Red Bull and Doritos in a Twinkie.
[00:12:17.120] – Tony I mean, like, you have to get you have to eliminate certain types of foods and you have to figure out how to make all these other foods taste good enough that you want to eat them all the time. Hello. Like, what's so hard about that? Like, people are still scratching their head, trying to figure it out. So I exercise five to seven days a week. I really healthy. I have cheap snacks because snacks are calorically smaller.
[00:12:37.490] – Tony I mean, like there's these little chocolate chip cookies that are kind of gluten free. They're chocolate chip and screw it, I'm going to eat them. But once in a while it satisfies and it quills my my cravings. And then I'm rockin. And then I meditate in the car. I meditate when I first thing I get up in the morning, I meditate before I go to bed and I'm talking five minutes.
[00:12:55.520] – Tony I'm talking sometimes two minutes. I'm not sitting there in Lotus in a dark room with a candle meditating for 90 minutes. I don't have the time or patience for that, but I have to like if I know if I'm in distress (taking a breathe) All I need is about ten of those men, and I'm going to go and yoga and Pilates and other types of mindful fitness. There you go, man. You got the whole cabana.
[00:13:28.570] – Allan That's a lot to wrap. But no, really, there's a lot in there. And one of the things I wanted to I wanted to really dive in with you on is, you know, in your training, because even even when I was doing P90X wasn't the same workout. Every week, every day there were different workouts or different things. And they were all the right thing to do at the right time. And I was looking as you went through, you have a ninja course in your backyard, you have a hatchet throwing. And if you miss, you do push ups.
[00:13:59.740] – Tony Doesn't everybody Allan?
[00:14:01.510] – Allan And you have a balance what they call the balance line. The taut line. And so it's like you you know, you train for life, you train a lot of different variety. Why do you why do you put so much variety into your training?
[00:14:20.800] – Tony Well, you know, I mean, if you look at the original P90X, I had about a year of research for that program and prior to that we did something called power 90. And power 90 was kind of fitness one to one as far as far as I was concerned at that stage of my my career. I mean, I've been training Tom Petty and Billy Idol and Annie Lennox from Eurythmics and Sean Connery.
[00:14:45.320] – Tony Every time I do Sean Connery, I'm going to do that. But I was training The Boss, Bruce Springsteen and different kinds of people. And so, you know, you've got these really. These icons in fitness and acting, Allison Janney and Bryce Dallas Howard and I mean, the list was pretty long for a long, long time.
[00:15:03.500] – Tony And so, you know, there's a lot that was a lot of pressure for me to make sure that they got good results in a relatively short period of time. And so it was up to me to kind of dive into different types of area to prevent boredom, injuries and plateaus or lack of results over time. And so, you know, when my first client was Tom Petty and Tom was not an athletic guy at all. I mean, the first day I met him, he was smoking a cigarette and put that down.
[00:15:31.130] – Tony Hey, Tony, I'm not really a fitness guy. You know, I'm I'm a rocker. So I just I got to increase my stamina. Nobody likes a fat rocker. I mean, so it's like, OK, I got four months, man. I got him on the bench pass. I had him hitting the heavy bag. We were on the stationary bike and we started from scratch. And so I knew even back then that I had to give Tom as many different things to kind of keep him entertained.
[00:15:57.470] – Tony And I noticed where his weaknesses were. And almost all of his stuff was weaknesses early on. And but it was that variety, right? It was that variety. It was the heavy bag. It was it was the it was the core work. It was the cardio work. It was the resistance work. It was all that kind of stuff. And so I was laying the foundation of what eventually would be power 90 and then would be P90X which was, you know, the coup de gras of fitness at that time. And so we had long debates about how much variety there should be. Do you really need? Martial arts? Do you really need yoga? Do you really need classes? Do you really need more specific stuff? Like you're working on balance, too, you know?
[00:16:32.570] – Tony I mean, is it necessary? Let's just get these people looking good. And for me, it wasn't about looking good. It was about health and wellness. It was always about how I mean, when I was younger and when most people are young, you know, I mean, they want to they want a six pack and they want big arms and they want all these different things. I understand that. But that's not a very good objective. I mean, if your purpose is locked into the quality of your life, which affects the quality of other people's lives, that's a bigger picture kind of look at me.
[00:17:00.260] – Tony If it's just so you could walk down the beach so girls could talk about your six pack. Well, you better form a personality while you're at it because you're six pack is only going to to take you so far. Like what's your sense of humor? Like, what kind of job do you have? What kind of person are you in the world? Because your arms and your six pack and your booty, that's an ephemeral thing. That's not it to me. It's not important.
[00:17:19.520] – Allan Well, it gets you into the party but to stay you're going to have to do a lot more.
[00:17:24.880] – Tony Yeah. Yeah. I mean, so still to this day, I mean, why don't I have a ninja course, and a slack line. Because I'm always learning. I'm always growing. I like working on my my weaknesses. And that's what P90X was. I mean if you look at the way I train now, I spend as much or more time on speed, balance and flexibility as I do cardio and resistance. Right. Because the world still is about cardio and resistance, like, oh, fine, that's better than sit on the couch and smoking pot, you know, I'm saying but you might want to try to delve into some other area.
[00:17:55.590] – Tony That's why I go to a track man at 62 and I and I do hundreds and two hundreds and four hundreds. Right. Because I'm teaching my body to move quickly. That's why there's martial arts in all my stuff. Right. Because old folks, old fit folks, people who exercise to go to the gym often. Right. They reached sideways to grab the shampoo on the shelf and they're jacked up for a month because the range of motion sucks.
[00:18:18.650] – Tony Or, you know, you've got to hustle down the down the terminal to catch the catch your airplane and you blowout the hamstring because you haven't run fast since softball in ninth grade. I mean, so these are these are other really important elements. And and so that's that's why I train that way that I mean, it keeps me young. I mean I'm sixty two things that I can think of.
[00:18:39.040] – Tony I mean, I have a routine in the backyard. We go up a pegboard about 12 feet off the ground from top to bottom. Then we grab this being that basically supports my patio up to the top of 17 feet off the ground where if you fall, you're going to break your leg and then we ring a bell up there, which means you have to hold on to the beam with one hand, ring a bell, come down the rope, go back up the rope, ring the bell, go down the beam across the pegboard and then do maximum pull ups in my 20s, 30s, 40s. Couldn't do that. No, no way. I would have been scared to death to climb up this beam.
[00:19:10.750] – Tony And it's about always challenging yourself. Does it mean that I mean, I heli ski. I mean, I've been heli skiing a couple of dozen times, you know what I mean, like pull up land on the top of a mountain with guides in front of me and behind me, just skiing with snow going over my shoulders. I could I would have been scared to death to do that as a kid, you know what I mean? So, I mean, life is short. It's such a short, ridiculous ride. The fact that I just turned 62, I'm going to turn 72 and I'm going to be 82.
[00:19:38.840] – Tony And so this is the part of my life where I can enjoy it. Like I finally have enough bread in the bank that I can go and do things. Like when I was young I was poor. I mean like I had like really work I had to couch surf friends places when I a ski hill, you know what I mean. And you know, and I was getting by eating Cheerios and yogurt three meals you know, those were those are fun days and days of exploration. But you know, it's too bad a lot of people finally get to a point in their life because most people are retiring about now, by sixty five and they're not physically fit and strong enough and flexible enough to to go and do things.
[00:20:18.190] So, you know, so they fish or they or they play shuffleboard, sorry man.
[00:20:23.710] – Allan Or they crochet.
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[00:22:36.140] – Allan So, yeah, I mean, I get it. It's easy to get locked into things you're good at. I'm I'm pretty decent when it comes to strength and for endurance, if I'm slow, I can go. When it comes to just doing sprints and I hate them like that. Hundred yards or two hundred yards or four hundred yards. That would be the worst day of my life. But I see value in it and understand that it needs to be the worst day of my life because that's the weak spot and that's where I'm actually changing.
[00:23:04.790] – Tony There's so many lessons there, though. I think if you warm up properly, you got a good coach. You know me. Understand that you're not going to be. You know, Usain Bolt or anything, or just go out there and you're just learning the technique and driving the knees and leaning forward and doing all the thing and breathing properly, this, you know, I mean, it's know I'm not saying everybody needs to do all the crazy stuff that I'm doing, but you need to do something.
[00:23:30.040] – Tony You need to if you really want to be. Because to me, it's about joy and happiness. It's joy and happiness. Right. And when you know, you're releasing all these chemicals and you're taking care of yourself and you're leaning up and you feel you're just you just lighter on your feet, you know what I mean? You just feel like, oh, wow. And I get thousands and I'm talking thousands of stories from people who say who I was as a human being, above and beyond the physical and who I am now, mentally and emotionally and spiritually is day and night purely because I ate right. And I moved my butt and I got quiet once in a while. I mean, how powerful is that?
[00:24:04.560] – Tony And you control those things like you you can pick what time to do it. I mean, I get at work and I got kids. Fine. I got ten minute workouts, man. You know what? If you can make as many excuses as you want, but the fact of the matter is, you just don't care. You're not prioritizing. And so you can continue to survive, yea surviving, taking care of me, paying my bills, going to work, watching the game, having some beers and then maybe you'll live to seventy five, maybe, maybe you want or you want to thrive and you just you just learn what you need to do to do it and and then it's a whole different ballgame.
[00:24:36.310] – Allan Yeah. Now you went through shingles and that's kind of one of the topics my mother suffered from shingles about two and a half years ago or so. And so I started doing some research on it, thinking, OK, is this something I you know, I need to go ahead and get the vaccine or do something with. And I opted not to do the vaccine at the time. But now reading it, hearing your story with Ramsey Hunt, I guess there is the new light shined on it by me.
[00:25:04.510] – Allan So I'd like to understand your experience and your recovery as you went through that, because you went into it extremely healthy and then lost twenty five pounds. And, you know, but it's still recovery for you was a chore. It was a task. And so what did you do to recover? What are your what are your thoughts on someone that just hasn't had it yet. I'm nine years younger than you are at this point. What would what would your advice be on just getting fit, getting happy, getting healthy, eating right foods? What would what should we do as a protocol to make sure that we're we're staying healthy and not falling prey to things like this?
[00:25:42.400] – Tony Well, yeah, it's a great question. Man it just kind of came out of nowhere. I mean, if you've had chicken pox, it's in there. It's sitting there waiting for you to get too stressed out in the wrong moment, the wrong time to rear its ugly head and make your life a living hell. Now, it really depends on where you get a lot of people get it across their shoulder or on their neck or their mid back or top of their butt.
[00:26:04.120] – Tony There's all kinds of crazy places that'll get it. It just it lives at the end of these nerves. And at that time, I was going through some contractual stuff with Beachbody and it wasn't going very well. And it's one of the reasons why I'm not with the organization anymore. I still have a great relationship with them. And I mean, we're just they were moving in one direction. I was moving in another and it was freaking me out. I mean, I'm not going to lie to you when you're with the same company for 20 years. Yeah. You just assume that, you know, hey, I got twenty more in me, you know what I mean? So, you know, whatever.
[00:26:31.620] – Allan The same guys that bought the P90X are going to buy your P100X.
[00:26:36.610] – Tony Yeah yeah yeah. I mean everyone's like, where's P90X4. I can't make that one sadly because I'm not with them anymore. So that was, that was really weighing on me. That was sort of the main thing, it was really weighing on me because you know, you're riding this amazing wave for so long and then and then you go, OK, well then I would assume that you guys, based on my track record, would continue to want to do X, Y and Z, and they didn't want to do X, Y and Z.
[00:27:01.840] – Tony And I was like, wow, really? OK, well, and then, you know, then, you know, that that was coming to a close. And at that same time there was that shooting in Vegas. And I had friends that were there and a good friend of mine was just sitting there listening to the concert. And the gentleman right next to her, she was just sitting and they were just talking and he catches a bullet right here in front of her and dies, you know? I mean, I had other friends that were there as well.
[00:27:29.530] – Tony I don't know, man. That really was heavy duty for me. I just I just I thought, where do we live? Like, what is going on in this country? And then and then Tom Petty died the next day, and I've been training Tom for 30 years and he was a friend. I mean, he was just a client initially. But I went on tour with Tom and it was I knew his ex-wife. I knew his new wife. I knew his mother in law. I knew his kids, you know what I mean, you know, and my history with him was was just phenomenal.
[00:27:59.290] – Tony I mean, he was just an amazing, talented, super cool. And he was gone and for all the wrong reasons, you know, I'm like, golly. And then I always I kind of blame myself a little bit for that because his manager called me the summer before and said, you've got to work with Tom. He really needs it badly, but I wasn't getting all the intel. I didn't realize that he was struggling with some things that I wasn't aware he was struggling with. And if I had known that, you know, maybe I could have had, you know, because he he trusted me more than almost anybody.
[00:28:28.800] – Tony His wife he trust his management he trust. But he really was like, OK, what am I going to do? What are we got to eat? And I wasn't getting all the intel. So when contract stuff, the shooting, Tom, and then all of a sudden I had a workout crew here, had about 50 people here, and everybody was acting like everything was normal. I mean, like two days before 50 plus people were killed in Vegas.
[00:28:50.910] – Tony And we just chat and they're kind of goofing off. And I invite them to come to my house for free to train, and I snapped. I mean, I went ballistic. I went because if I even reenact that, I'll probably get Ramsey right now. And I was just really upset that everybody was just dogging it. And then life is too important and you have to be strong and durable in life, because if you're not, you could be a victim as well, or you could die before your time.
[00:29:13.840] – Tony And then within a week, I had this rockin headache on the right side of my head. I told Sean, I go when I feel a little bit off, my equilibrium is weird, and then it got so bad that I started throwing up and then I thought, well, maybe maybe I had a stroke or a mini stroke or something. So I went to a couple of doctors and they didn't know and then so the rash was all in my right ear. It didn't appear yet, but it was happening. I mean, yeah. And if I had known and I take any antiviral medication, I could have beat it. Aan, it was tough.
[00:29:47.250] – Tony It was really tough. And it lasted for weeks and weeks and weeks and months and months and months. And it took about a year before I was able to recover. And I remember the first time I attempted to work out, I got on the treadmill, walked on the treadmill for five minutes. I forced myself. I was in such pain and I got off the treadmill and I threw up and I laid down for almost two hours. And it was that very slow.
[00:30:09.000] – Tony Took months and months, man. And so then I hooked up with these folks, created power life because they knew my story. I was posting about it and stuff. And, you know, I lost twenty five pounds and as weak as a chicken. I remember trying to do push ups for the first time.
[00:30:22.680] – Tony I knocked out, like I can usually do like seventy push ups if I had to, if there was a contest and there was money on it and I can do like 30 pull ups pretty pretty much and I could do like eight pull ups and I was dying and I could do maybe 15 push ups. It was huge for me, no cardiovascular strength but but you know, it was it was getting back in the game. And I had the foundation right.
[00:30:43.530] – Tony I had that original foundation. I knew what to do. I knew what to eat once I could. But I needed supplements, man. I needed a decent supplements that I wasn't getting, you know? I mean, the cool thing about what we're doing at Power Life is we're making these really unique formulas. I mean, there's whey proteins and there's plant based proteins, but we're putting in chromium and vitamin D and and HMV and, you know, probiotics, prebiotics and sun fiber and all these really, really interesting combinations of different things based on tons and tons of research.
[00:31:11.100] – Tony And really, they were making it for me, you know, I mean, like, hey, you guys and people our age, we we're all going to suffer from Sarcopenia at some point. I mean, some people sooner than later. But Sarcopenia is age related muscle loss. And I had I had accelerated Age-Related muscle loss as a result of my illness. And so, you know, I mean, that's a sixty two year old arm, that thing's doing OK.
[00:31:32.250] – Tony And, you know, the six pack is back and my quads are strong and and it feels good. I mean it took a year to come back man and it wasn't easy, but thank God I ran into the right people the right time to make these supplements for me, you know, I mean to help because I wasn't getting it from, you know, what I was taking. I just wasn't getting enough. And I could it was just a struggle. And I was still dealing with with pain and fatigue. You know, I talk about this in my latest seminar.
[00:32:01.460] – Tony If there's two things that really slow people down, it's those two. It's pain and fatigue. And if you've got if you're exhausted and you've got joint pain, back pain or neck pain and knee pain or ankle pain or whatever, hip pain, then you just there's no enthusiasm to kind of attack life. But if you can find the right, the right kind of foods, that brings inflammation down, getting regular blood work done. I get blood work done every every six months.
[00:32:25.020] – Tony Yeah, but every six months, twice a year. And I look at my panel and I mean they take 12 vials on my arm. It's like it's like a vampire comes in here. Right. And but I learned about it all. You know what I mean. I mean this. What's my hormone stuff. What's my thyroid stuff. What's my testosterone estrogen. Vitamin D, vitamin C, like all these different things. Chromium like what are all these where are my high or my low.
[00:32:45.730] – Tony And we make those adjustments every time. And then once I started taking my own stuff, you know, my last blood work was she's like, oh my God, your testosterones to the roof, you supplement your testosterone. I go, No, no, I just I don't have the joint pain.
[00:33:02.190] – Tony So when I lift or I do stuff, I'm not fighting pain. It prevents me from doing the amount of repetitions, the amount of weight that I want to do. I can just really go, you know what I mean? Like my right shoulder. I have bursitis, arthritis, tendinitis in two bonesetter's and a three percent torn labrum in his arm. But I can do handstands.
[00:33:19.110] – Tony And I was doing I was doing military before when my shoulder ached, I had to stop here. Right. But it was awesome to come all the way down without that searing pain in my shoulder and full range of motion. That was just awesome, you know. I mean, I'm not Hercules, but I'm, I'm pushing 50's, one hundred pounds and I felt good man.
[00:33:40.320] – Tony So it's just for me it's just. Always researching, always, you know, staying curious, knowing when to take downtime, when I have to and this is thirty, thirty seven years of playing with this stuff, man.
[00:33:53.870] – Tony So, yeah, that was a brutal period. And and I would recommend anybody, because the old vaccine for shingles was kind of the hair of the dog that bites you, right? I mean, so it can actually give you shingles. I mean, it's terrible. But the new one is is a completely different formula. I think it's the GlaxoSmithKline new vaccine. And so when I got this thing, I can't tell you how many thousand people ran out and got the vaccine after they heard my story.
[00:34:20.680] – Allan Yeah, I can imagine. Well, Tony, I define wellness as being the healthiest, fittest and happiest you can be. What are three strategies or tactics to get and stay?
[00:34:31.100] – Tony Well, without repeating myself, it's finding an exercise program that you can stick with. And then when that program is over, you find another one and another one and another one. And if you want to do the first one five times in a row, fine. But then you want to I mean, that's why I made Power Ninety, P90X, P90X2, X3, 22 minute hard core. I've given people enough variety so they don't get bored, they don't get hurt, they don't plateau. Right. So the foundation of who I am and I would recommend that to anybody is figure out a way to be consistent with your fitness.
[00:35:06.070] – Tony Intensity is important. You want to you want to always up the ante over the course of time because that helps with improvement. You don't want to lift the same ten pound weights and the same exercise for 10 years. It's a waste of time, you know what I mean, so, so intense consistency is everything. Fitness is the first thing. But on top of that is being consistent with your fitness. Right.
[00:35:26.840] – Tony And then accountability is everything. A lot of people can't. I'm talking just the fitness category right now. I'm not talking about all the other aspects of your life, but when it comes to fitness, you've got to be accountable. You've got to be accountable somehow. And some people who live in Minnesota in the middle of winter, who go down into the basement and do yoga for an hour and a half or plyo and fifty seven degrees down there, and then they get up in the dark and go make breakfast for their kids before school superheros like they should get medals every time they go down there and do that.
[00:35:53.910] – Tony Me, I need other people. So they're either in my house, they're online, they're somewhere. Right. I mean the all the days that I work out, I've got somebody here. And even during the quarantine, we're doing it on Zoom call just like this. All right. It's your turn to do pull ups.
[00:36:08.990] – Tony How many are you going to do? Fifteen. All right. You mean the number is really sixteen? OK, well, all right. And there's all this back and forth and on Zoom. It's easy. I mean, there's always solutions when there's a problem, right?
[00:36:17.610] – Tony So and then you need a plan. I mean, without a plan, like what do you figure out what you're going to do, what time you're going to do it and write it down in advance, like predict the future. Get a calendar. Right. So here's an example. Here's my wall calendar. I started a wall calander. I got two calendars on my computer, but I don't do this any more.
[00:36:37.670] – Allan Yeah, they still they still sell those.
[00:36:39.410] – Tony They still sell these man. And you can go to they're called a stationery store and you write down playo yoga, chest and back cardio, but you write them all down and you hang. I don't have a red one here. I did wait here it is just like this. I get to go. I'm so lucky right now.
[00:36:56.600] – Tony You hang this. That's a red Sharpie, you tie a red Sharpie on your calendar, so I got them all written down here and you should have about twenty five workouts written on your calendar. And every time you do that, you take your red magic marker and you make Xs at the bottom of the calendar on the last day you write how many you did you count Xs and you write and if it says 15 you lost or you're tied because 15 workouts in the course of one month means you took 15 days off.
[00:37:25.730] – Tony Try doing that with food. Try doing that with work. Try doing that with sleep. Forget it. Not a shot. You're a dead man. All right. So but if you have 22 Xs more days than not, then you have succeeded, then you're going to see results. Then you're going to feel better. Then you're going to get stronger. Then you're going to be more flexible. Then you're going to be happier. All right.
[00:37:44.630] – Tony Because the more you do, the better you get. The less you do, the more you're going to struggle, period. All right. So purpose why why are you doing this thing? I'm giving you 4. But you've got to decide why and if it's to be sexy. Well, you better be a swimsuit model or a bodybuilder or whatever. But if you're if your goal is to improve the quality of your life physically, mentally, emotionally and even spiritually for some people, and to start to really make an impact in other people's lives because you've gotten your act together, that's powerful.
[00:38:15.560] – Tony I workout today. I'm going to plyo today at 5:30pm. Do I want to? No, but I know who I'm going to be after I'm done. I mean, I mean, you know, my legs. People look at my legs. I mean, they're super striated. Here you go. I'm going to show you right now Allan. Look at these pythons. Man, can you see that thing? Hold on.
[00:38:32.230] – Allan Awesome.
[00:38:33.380] – Tony Right. That's all. There it is.
[00:38:36.680] – Allan That does not look like that does not look like a 62 year old leg.
[00:38:40.390] – Tony And all I do is jump. Jump up and down, jump up and down and do squats and lunges, you know what I mean? And so my purpose is that I know I'm going to feel afterward and I just repeat day after day after day, purpose, plan, accountability, consistency. That's the foundation of really being the person that you want. And then from there, the world is your oyster man, I'm telling you..
[00:39:01.490] – Allan Very cool. Very cool. Well, Tony, thank you so much for coming on the podcast. If someone wanted to learn more about you, learn more about Power Life, the supplement line and then again, Tony talks and all the other cool things you're doing, where would you like for me to send them.
[00:39:16.060] – Tony Go to TonyHortonlife.com. It's all right there. We're in the process of actually upgrading the website. There's a lot of really cool new things that we're doing above and beyond. Tony Talks and Power Life. And I've got a brand new fitness equipment line called TH Fitness. You know, a lot of the factories now all across the world are trying to catch up because they were closed. So we're sort of the last in line. But we hope that within about three months we're going to have jump ropes and mats, med balls and stability ball, different things on the website.
[00:39:43.310] – Tony So TonyHortonlife.com, you learn about everything you need to know about your T. Horton right here. So check it out.
[00:39:49.470] – Allan Awesome. Go to 40plusfitnesspodcast.com/446 and I'll be sure to have a link there for you if you're driving or can't write that down right now. But Episode four four six. So Tony, thank you for being a part of 40+ Fitness.
[00:40:02.490] – Tony Allan. My pleasure, man. Thanks for having me on today. Appreciate it.
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I learned last week that my mother has shingles. I had called her to plan my Thanksgiving trip up to see her and the rest of my family. I realized as we were talking and she was sharing her experience that all I knew about shingles came from a 30 second TV commercial for the vaccination. So, I decided I needed to learn more not only to possibly help my mother but to make sure my family and I are prepared.
I am not a doctor. I'm just going over my research as I make health decisions for myself. You should do your own research and work with your doctor to make decisions for yourself.
What the heck is shingles?
A virus called varicella-zoster causes Shingles. This is the same virus that causes chickenpox. After your body beat down chickenpox, the virus retreated into the nerve tissue in your spinal cord and brain. As we age, the likelihood we will get shingles goes up.
Shingles is a very painful rash (much worse than the chickenpox you experienced). The blistering rash causes pain, itching and may cause a fever. The rash can be anywhere, but it tends to be on your torso.
This virus is in the herpes family which includes nine different known types:
herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1), which is also known as a fever blister;
herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2), which is also known as herpes;
varicella-zoster virus (VZV), which is also known as chickenpox or shingles;
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), which is also known as mono;
human cytomegalovirus (HCMV);
human herpesvirus 6A (HHV-6A);
human herpesvirus 6b (HHV-6B);
human herpesvirus 7 (HHV-7); and
Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV).
If you had chicken pox, you can get shingles. In fact, experts estimate that 50% of people over 80 who have had chicken pox get shingles. Since we're all here to improve our health and therefore live longer, we make sure we're dealing with this risk.
You're at increased risk when your immune system is depressed. This can happen if you're taking certain drugs, have HIV, or cancer. Remember this isn't about exposure, you already have the virus. It just comes back when you're too weak to fight back.
The pain associated with shingles can continue long after the rash goes away. Depending on the severity and duration of the virus, you can lose vision and/or deal with neurological issues. You can also face infection from the rash. This is why you want to focus on quick and direct treatment when you get an outbreak.
Avoid treatment – Don't try to tough it out. Seek treatment.
Allow chronic stress – Stress causes an increase in cortisol, which turns off your immune system. When you're stressed, your body redirects energy to deal with the stressor and leaves you vulnerable.
Eat foods high in or take the amino acid Arginine – Typically, chocolate (dark low sugar), nuts, coconut, bone broth, and gelatin are healthy, but not if you're dealing with shingles. Arginine is the balancing amino acid against lysine (see below)
Be a fertile female – There really isn't a good theory on why this happens, but women tend to get outbreaks of herpes viruses during their period. Obviously, you want a good healthy reproductive system, so use some of the strategies to boost your immune system detailed in the “do”, which I cover next.
Inoculation – I'm not going to go into the pros and cons of vaccinations. Just know that getting the vaccination will decrease your risk of getting shingles. However, it won't drop it to zero and there are some potential side effects. If you're going this route, do your own research and have some thoughtful conversations with your doctor.
Anti-virals – If you have shingles, your doctor may prescribe anti-viral medication. Work with your doctor to treat your shingles quickly. Complications often occur when not addressed timely.
Immunity weakness – As we've noted, your immune system is the only think keeping shingles at bay. Anything that weakens your immunity will give you a higher risk of it getting out.
Lysine – This is an essential amino acid, which means you have to consume it to get it. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. We get lysine from animal proteins. If you're at risk (immune system depressed, chronic stress), you may want to supplement with lysine. To get the best benefit from this supplement, you should take it on an empty stomach.
Adaptogens – Many cultures have used plants and herbs to manage health. I won't go into this too much here, but there are plants and herbs that can enhance your immune system and help you deal with stress. These adaptogens have been used for centuries with no adverse affect, but do your research and find reputable sources.
Vitamin D, K2, and Calcium – These vitamins and mineral are key nutrients for many functions of the human body. But most importantly they relate to bone health. I'm not sure why these have been linked to shingles prevention, but it seems there is a link to bone health and this virus.