Episode 19: Supercharge Exercise Performance & Recovery with Cooling

Huberman Lab Podcast Episode 19 Title Card

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In this episode, Dr. Huberman explains the science of heating and cooling the body, a process called thermoregulation—and how to apply that knowledge to significantly improve physical performance. He describes the three areas of our body that can remove heat (or bring heat into the body) faster than anywhere else, why that is so, and how proper cooling of these areas with specific protocols can allow people to perform 200-600% more volume and repetitions of resistance exercises at the same weight loads, or to run, cycle or swim significantly further. He also describes how to use directed cooling of so-called glabrous skin: the bottoms of feet, palms and face, to significantly enhance recovery times from exercise. Also, why the common practices of trying to heat up or cool the body via the torso or whole-body submersion in the cold can be inefficient and/or dangerous—and the better alternatives. Finally, Dr. Huberman discusses the temperature effects of caffeine, alcohol and anti-inflammatory compounds. The information in this episode is focused on mechanisms and tools for increasing athletic or exercise performance.