Dean Gladstone on the Power of the Breath, Wim Hof Method and Overcoming Challenges

Dean Gladstone, former national gold medalist in swimming and surf lifesaving. Deano is a qualified and practising yoga teacher, personal trainer and holistic health coach. Wim Hof, method instructor and, of course, a Bondi lifeguard (from Bondi Rescue) joins me to talk about the power of the breath, the Wim Hof method and overcoming challenges.

Deano Gladstone

Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:00:05] I’d like to acknowledge Aboriginal, and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the traditional custodians of our land, Australia, the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation are the traditional custodians of this place we now call Sydney, where I record this podcast. The Unstress podcast is proud to be an ongoing supporter of the Healing Foundation, a national Aboriginal organization that partners with communities to address the ongoing trauma caused by actions like the Stolen Generation. We have so much to learn from our First Nations people. This land always was and always will be Aboriginal.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:00:47] Hello and welcome to Unstress. My name is Dr Ron Ehrlich.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:00:51] Well, today we’re going to be exploring the breath again, but in a different way. Yet again, the breath is something that keeps coming back to you because it’s important to be reminded of just how important it is. I am aware of its power, but I still really find reminding myself of these things important. And today’s is going to be a really interesting episode. I’m my guest today is Dean Gladstone. Now, many of you will know Dean Gladstone or Deano from that legendary show Bondi Rescue, now in its 16th year. But there is a lot more to Dean than you may know. Let me share some of that with you. Dean is a former national gold medalist in swimming and surf lifesaving. He’s a qualified and practicing yoga teacher, personal trainer and holistic health coach. Wim Hof, method instructor and, of course, a Bondi lifeguard. He has 20 years of experience coaching both kids and adults, ensuring a unique and individual approach to improving the health and performance of all these students and clients for the past four years. Dean has been facilitating power of the breath workshops and courses, and thousands of students have gained a full understanding of the health benefits associated with breathwork and are healing themselves from a range of challenges, including anxiety, respiratory conditions, sleep disorders, snoring and fatigue his primary focus on the study of many breathing techniques, including the oxygen advantage, XPT, traditional Pranayama, Tuomo Holotropic and the power of CO2 carbon dioxide tolerance for performance. This specialization in all things breathwork resulted in some vast improvements for some elite athletes who see Dean for performance training. He’s always had an interest in the breath, and as it is as you will hear as an asthmatic child, he managed this through his swim training at first and incorporated nutrition breathing movement and particularly yoga. Dean believes firmly that by improving diet, hydration and mind setting and goal setting and mobility and movement and of course, both are one way of overcoming many challenges. He has had an incredible career as a lifeguard, literally rescuing people and bringing them back to life with the power of breath, which means he’s got a unique perspective on this whole story. Listen, I’ve been hanging I’ve known Dean Deano for quite a few years. We first met at Aaron McKenzie’s origin of energy, gym. And we’ve got to know each other. And I have been, as you will hear, a huge fan of Bondi Rescue. I believe they are Australia’s greatest ambassadors, and Deano is certainly one of those. So it’s great it’s a great chat. It was great to catch up with him. I hope you enjoy this conversation I had with Dean Gladstone.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:04:01] Welcome to the show, Deano.


Dean Gladstone [00:04:03] Thanks, Ron. Good to be here. Great to chat.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:04:05] Yes, mate, look, I have been so looking forward to this because, you know, I am there’s so much I want to talk to you about today.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:04:13] You know, you are one of the legends of the Bondi rescue team. And I have been a huge fan of that show for Dear. Is it sixteen years Deano?


Dean Gladstone [00:04:22] Yeah, I think so. I think it’s they’re setting out they’re starting to film season 16 this Saturday.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:04:28] And we’re going to be talking about all the stuff that you’re doing on top of that, as well as that in a breath, in yoga, in swimming as well. But I’ve wanted to take a step back to that show because I have said this to you many times when we’ve spoken that I actually think you guys on Bondi Rescue are the best ambassadors Australia has ever had.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:04:53] I mean, the way you guys approach this international audience who are often beach illiterate and do silly things and you maintain this respectful yet irreverent approach to them, you walk this really fine line. Tell us a little bit about Bondi Rescue. Give us a little bit of behind the scenes of how it all started, how it’s done, how you guys do it.


Dean Gladstone [00:05:18] Yeah, thanks for a lovely, lovely compliment. You know, some of the bits that I like about the show is when we they sort of show us losing our composure a little bit. And the show is very real. So kudos to Council for actually letting us do it, because, you know, I’m surprised that they let it go ahead because it’s you know, it’s not clear exactly how we do things sometimes. You know, sometimes if someone needs rescuing, we might wait and let that person. Not suffer, but let them understand that they’re in a rip, so they understand they need rescuing and other times it’s you go straight in and pull them out as quick as possible. So it’s not clear exactly how and how and why we do things. But, yeah, they’ve let us be ourselves and encouraged us to be ourselves and filmed it warts and all, we could say. And it’s been extremely popular, and it seems to be character-driven. And the kids like it, the educational component of it, which is just so much better than traditional education, it seems. And the way I’ve sort of changed the way I teach and getting kids having fun seems to be a great way to get them to learn.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:06:39] Because it goes into how many countries.


Dean Gladstone [00:06:43] That’s on in over two hundred countries. So it was on Foxtel, National Geographic and Netflix has been big for it. And they take it on and off Netflix here and there.


Dean Gladstone [00:06:54] I see I see a little surge in my Instagram followers every now and then because I’ve heard you say that the impact on life-saving, on surf safety has been profound.


Dean Gladstone [00:07:06] Yeah, absolutely. Our rescues have caught on considerably in the last 20 years, maybe at least 50, 60, possibly 70 percent down.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:07:15] Yeah, because Bondi must be one of the busiest beaches in the world.


Dean Gladstone [00:07:21] Yeah, well, Australia, most certainly. Southern Hemisphere maybe.


Dean Gladstone [00:07:25] Yeah, I’m not sure I will.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:07:28] Probably a bit because I love those kinds of big, big statements.


Dean Gladstone [00:07:31] But you know, in terms of proximity to the CBD, you know, you look at Sydney Bondi is five minutes out of the CBD. So on an on a busy summer afternoon, you know, a lot of the city has the opportunity just to go down and have a swim at Bondi. So it’s it does allow big crowds just to get down there and cool off.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:07:54] And it’s often a destination for overseas visitors. Just have to see the beach. And that scene behind you now is that iconic view of Bondi with Bondi bands right there in front of it.


Dean Gladstone [00:08:07] Yeah, it’s incredible. You know, when I was well, when I just before I started working, we had the Sydney Olympics on Bondi Beach. And I started about a month or two after that. And I would say they kept a crew on the Olympics and people used to come to Bondi to see the Olympics. That was good for Tourism Australia, I’d say. But now when I tell kids of the Olympics were here, it was before their time. So they don’t know about it as much,


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:08:36] But it was such an impressive construction down there.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:08:39] It was quite awesome, really what they’ve done.


Dean Gladstone [00:08:42] Yeah, I’m friends with [00:08:43]Kari Potter [0.2s] actually. And there’s a photo of her sort of that gold medal is on the wall. It’s a mural now, which is pretty cool to see. I think it was a really iconic moment for Australia.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:08:56] But Deano those that is Bondi Rescue. And as I said, I just admire you guys so much, and I think you’re terrific.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:09:03] But you’ve gone on to do some a lot of other stuff. I mean, you’re involved in well, yoga is one thing you have been doing a lot of and fitness, trying to tell us a bit about how that fits in and what you’re doing there.


Dean Gladstone [00:09:15] Yeah, Ron, I guess, you know, long story short, we could take it right back. I was an asthmatic as a kid. I was hospitalized when I was nine. And that led me to become or led me to stay swimming, training. I had to regulate the breath. And that’s probably why I’m so passionate about teaching breathwork now. And it probably gave me a career as a lifeguard, although the breathing, the breathing struggle struggles that I had, may of all also led to the learning difficulties that I also possessed as a kid. But either way, it ended up as a really cool thing for me. And I always swam, always kept fit, and I felt like I had to. And that probably gave me or helped give me a career as a lifeguard. So. So that’s where it started. Then, yeah, I guess, yeah, I became super passionate about health and fitness after I was assaulted and almost killed in two thousand five. And as you know, because you did a bit of work with me, I had my four front teeth knocked out when I was king hit. And after that, I lost my health. And we’ve talked a lot about health. Both you and I are very passionate about it over the years. And this health journey that I’ve that while I was wasn’t unhealthy. But I just really fine tune things to get my health back so I could for me if I couldn’t work as a lifeguard. I was also a personal trainer before this happened, and I’m a plumber by trade as well. So if I couldn’t if I couldn’t work, if I if my body didn’t work too well, I couldn’t work. So it was quite a stressful thing. So getting my body working was very important for me back then. And and again, I’m so grateful for that at the moment and is such such something. I’m so grateful for this, to have a working body that’s able to lift from swim and save people’s lives, you know, and the difference between being good and very good at what you do could be someone’s life. So that’s always a great motivator. You know, you’re not you’re not training and not being healthy for yourself. You’re doing it for others.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:11:33] That King hit I mean, 2005. I mean, many people, not many people have died absolutely. From that.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:11:41] And I mean, the physical assault is one thing, but the impact that has mentally on you literally knocking the confidence out of you is another I mean, that would have that. How long how did you work through that?


Dean Gladstone [00:11:56] Yeah, there was it all happened. There was post-traumatic stress syndrome. I had allergies. I you know, I was I couldn’t have sugar. I had this gluten problem. I used to scratch myself till I bled at night, the slightest bit of dairy or something in my nasal passages blocked off. And I couldn’t sleep through my nose. And, gosh, I’d bang on about nose breathing at the moment. So and I was aware of that then, like when my nose blocked, I wouldn’t sleep and I was unhappy and and it was horrible. So, yeah, it was everything was problematic. I didn’t want to leave the house. I felt uncomfortable around people drinking. There was a whole range of issues going on and I was very anxious and and hyper sensitive. I guess what I talk about with all those things, I had this hypersensitivity to food, Ron, where if I had something slightly bad and I highly suspect it was sugar, vegetable oil and gluten, if I had one of those things that would set me off and it just wasn’t worth it. So I generally cooked all my own meals, mainly organic, for a number of years for my sort of I was able to heal my own gut and do all the sort of things that we that we’re so passionate about. It’s just hard to quantify exactly which one helped and which one did.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:13:22] And, you know, it was a process that you went through for many years.


Dean Gladstone [00:13:28] Many years.


Dean Gladstone [00:13:29] It was some you know, in a sense, I was able to compete at a really high level and do things very well, eating a horrible diet. And after the assault, it just I wasn’t able to do anything pretty much. So there was a huge rebuilding process. And Aaron Mckenzie, who has probably been on the show.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:13:53] Oh, yes, he has. And this is where you and I met first of many, many years ago. Yeah, Aaron.


Dean Gladstone [00:13:59] So before Aaron, I found Paul Cheks Eat, Move and be healthy. And that was just like it was just written profoundly and it just really explained so much to me. And still to this day, it’s relevant. And he was very far ahead of his time. This is before Paleo was even a fad word and he was basically on a paleo diet, actually drinking raw milk as well.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:14:24] I remember. I know that. Yes.


Dean Gladstone [00:14:27] Which is hard to find these days.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:14:29] It is. But Paul Chek’s is very much about the holistic approach and the totem pole, I think.


Dean Gladstone [00:14:34] Yeah.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:14:35] Talks about foundations of health, foundations of health and would be great ahead of his time. And Aaron and of course, a legend in his own right. We’ve both benefited from that. But then you move into. Well you know, it’s ironic really isn’t it, because as a life saver, talk about life being the breath you guys are, they’re doing it for real. But then yoga also says life is in the breath and then you’re exploring breathing in lots of other ways. Tell us a little bit of. About that exploration and what you’ve come up with along the way.


Dean Gladstone [00:15:10] Yeah, I guess the mid-20s. So I think I I was swimming a lot competitive competitively, and I could barely touch my knees when I bent over a little on my toes. So I started doing yoga for some flexibility. And it was the breathing that I said, well, hang on, this is this is actually helping my asthma. I don’t actually have to swim as much as I as much as I used to to maintain my maintain my breath.


Dean Gladstone [00:15:42] So, yeah, that was that was brilliant for me. And I sort of fell in love with yoga, started implementing, implementing it with my training clients, was sort of teaching it to people. And then yeah, I did my formal yoga teaching about five years ago.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:15:58] Yeah. Because then we, I mean we both explored Buteyko and I know you’re very you’re in very close contact with Patrick McKeown, who’s also been a guest on the on the coming. Patrick is Buteyko worldwide.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:16:13] Yeah. This guy, isn’t he.


Dean Gladstone [00:16:14] Yeah, absolutely.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:16:15] Yeah.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:16:16] And and he’s progressed that along a little bit to what is some of what are some of the principles of Buteyko, which then Patrick and now with you as being the instructor here in Australia have taken on to the next level. Tell us a bit about Buteyko and and where Patrick’s taken it.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:16:34] Yeah, well, I guess Dr Constantine Buteyko was a Russian. He wasn’t born Russian. He was working in Russia as a doctor in the 20s, 30s, and he started suffering from hypertension, which which was his specialist specialty as a doctor. And the outcome wasn’t looking good for someone suffering from hypertension back then. He thought it was certain death and that his words, not mine. So he started looking at what he could do to help himself and realized that breathing was such a major contributor to his health and the health of others. So he started noticing people that were sick, that were breathing incorrectly, and he started correlating the two and by changing some people’s breathing, he was able to make them less sick or possibly heal them. So, yeah, it took off on a bit of a worldwide phenomenon.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:17:28] Yeah, and then and the whole concept of Buteyko is really about controlling the breath.


Dean Gladstone [00:17:36] Control.


Dean Gladstone [00:17:36] Yeah. So I guess it’s Nasal breathing and when we breathe through the nose, we actually get less oxygen into the body than we breathe through the mouth because it the holes. But when we breathe through the nose that filters the air, it spiralizes it, it humidifies it and it makes it ideal for our lungs to absorb and and get that that oxygen to our working muscles.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:18:02] I mean, I was I was when I did the Buteyko technique. I’ve done it twice. The course is one of the things that struck me was the use of micropore type and the mouth at night. And I know we’ve you know, it’s something that we do a lot in the surgery. That’s that’s pretty profound, isn’t it?


Dean Gladstone [00:18:20] Yeah, well, absolutely. And it wasn’t you know, when I started delving into this functional breathing stuff, I’d done it either with you or with Paul Chek back in the day. So these things weren’t what you should maybe like Patrick doesn’t sort of claim them as his own. He just is functional breathing techniques that work for people. And when I run online courses and it’s hard to quantify, you know, I talked about it earlier, the mouth taping seems to be a huge aspect of it. So, you know, they say evolution for many reasons. Humans aren’t breathing the way we’ve meant to and our mouths are shaped very differently. And I’m sure there’d be a back episode about this. So I know I’ve had eight teeth taken out and I was a dysfunctional breathing kid as an asthmatic. So did the mouth taping has been revolutionary for me and I literally feel like I struggled at school like there was. I didn’t know the alphabet when I left school. I tell the story that I had to as an apprentice plumber. I’ve been looking through the street directory and I’d get confused around the TXTW and I’d to relearn the alphabet in my when I was about 20 so I could look through street directory. So yeah, I certainly struggled as a kid and now to be teaching three day courses and running online courses. And that, I’m sure my teachers would be scratching their heads.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:19:52] Well, I mean, it’s the power of the breath, isn’t it, and balancing it all out, because I know I’ve been I’ve been a chronic mouth breather for my entire life up until about ten or fifteen years ago when I really embrace this, not this taping of the mouth.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:20:09] And it’s been it’s been really interesting and very profound. But you but Patrick’s taken a little bit further because he’s also, you know, there’s a limit to because of the name Buteyko and that’s patented and all that. Whatever it is, he’s taken it further and he’s written this. He’s written several books. But the oxygen advantage is one of those things. Tell us a bit about what that means and what you what you teach there.


Dean Gladstone [00:20:37] Yeah, I think Buteyko was more skewed to asthma and medical and with the oxygen advantage, Patrick’s been able to implement this stuff for performance. So working with athletes and top CEOs and the science now shows Ron and this is what I tell people, if you breathe better, you’re going to perform better mentally and physically. So what doesn’t that cover?


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:21:02] Hmm. Yes.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:21:04] Well, I know when I spoke to Patrick and, you know, this is the kind of that this sort of archetypal thing is the athlete, you know, breathing through their mouth and breathing really hard. And but that’s not to their advantage, isn’t?


Dean Gladstone [00:21:20] No, it’s not. In some cases, the big one, I think, is, is the immune benefits, quite simply breathing through the nose. And I think over time, the compound you get from from recovery, from filtering the air, from from getting less sick, from sleeping better, that’s going to build up to training better. And if we can train breathing through the nose. That just allows that top gear right at the end, where if we do need to open our mouth and give that complete last 10, 20 percent, we can keep that Top Gear and really open up that open up the the gas, so to speak,.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:22:03] Because ultimately breathings about well, it’s not about specifically oxygen.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:22:09] It’s about getting the oxygen to where it’s needed.


Dean Gladstone [00:22:13] Yeah.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:22:13] And that’s the advantage, isn’t it, really.


Dean Gladstone [00:22:15] That’s the advantage. And the Bohr effective. You know much about the.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:22:18] No, go on. Tell us about Patrick.


Dean Gladstone [00:22:20] Would it. So that was discovered in 1904 by a Danish biochemist, Christian Bohr, whose son, I think, won a Nobel Peace Prize in the 40s. But so the Bohr effect is the relationship between oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood. So there’s too much oxygen. The bond, the bond increases with the hemoglobin. So we need CO2 in the blood for gas to gas to exchange on a cellular level. So basically, when you’re running fast and breathing through your mouth, we’re getting more oxygen in. But the bond increases in the hemoglobin, which is our red blood cells, and that means it’s not we’re not exchanging gas. So once we’ve got more oxygen in the system, we’re not getting it down on a cellular level to exchange and get rid of that CO2. So slowing that breath down, breathing in through the nose is more functional and more effective. Now, it is difficult at first for people to adapt. So there’s a couple of steps backwards before you really reach that benefit.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:23:28] And then, of course, along comes a guy called Wim hoff. And I mean, for those that don’t aren’t familiar, give us give us a little bit of background of who this guy is and why he’s attractive, because, you know, we did something together a week ago, two weeks ago. Tell us about Wim Hof.


Dean Gladstone [00:23:46] Wim is everyone’s heard of Wim now. And he is he’s a crazy Dutchman in his early sixties and he’s broken twenty five, maybe more world records. But what he’s famous for and I did a study in 2011, his breathing method, he’s able to influence his immune system. So they did a study in 2011 when they injected with an endotoxin, sort of like the flu, and he was able to breathe that out. Now, that was pretty cool. And they said, you know, you’ve broken all these world records, you’re the iceman, you’ve been doing this. You know, it’s a bit of a bounce off. He said, I’ll be able to train other people to do it. And he took a group of volunteers up the mountain and he trained them for four days. And I think they practiced for a couple more days at home and they were able to pass the same test. Now, I think with better analysis, maybe ten thousand people had been injected with an endotoxin and the results were pretty consistent. They had early, early signs of getting the flu headache, swelling, and all these people doing the Wim Hof technique were able to fight that off. And interestingly enough, that’s very different to what people can see as normal meditation. We would think relaxing and trying to calm the body. And it’s actually the opposite.


Dean Gladstone [00:25:14] It’s this technique which releases cortisol and adrenaline in the blood, and it’s actually those things that fight off the pro inflammatory and increase the anti inflammatory markers in the blood. So it’s fascinating.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:25:31] Yeah. Yeah. And yet and so different from Buteyko or.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:25:38] Well, I’m not sure about the oxygen advantage, but, you know, the Buteyko is all about breath holding and and gentle breathing through the nose and all that. But this is I mean, we went Dr. Lewis and I, we went over to your place two weeks ago to do this little bit of a taste of the Wim Hof a technique. And I was telling you before we came on that I generally would not go into the ocean if it was under 18 degrees. I mean, I am the all time wimp.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:26:10] And and.


Dean Gladstone [00:26:11] I see to you walking on the beach, surely you have a swim at the end.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:26:14] Yeah, I do. I do. I do. But but anyway, you know this.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:26:18] I knew we were facing water that was pretty close to zero. I think it was one or two degrees Celsius. And I thought this is going to be really interesting. And it was and we ran through that. We ran through. That was amazing.


Dean Gladstone [00:26:33] Yeah. It is an amazing, amazing technique. And worldwide, there’s literally thousands, probably hundreds of thousands of people doing it. And the data coming through from it is amazing. It’s it’s like a religion for some people. If you jump on the Facebook pages, they just accredit everything to it and, you know, whatever whatever it takes some people to. To align themselves with for some people that diet change, it might be going to go ongoing paleo or it might be starting yoga and may attach themselves to this thing that helps their health. Yeah, that’s brilliant for them. I love seeing people on the bus.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:27:16] But you spent some time with him doing doing some stuff, didn’t you?


Dean Gladstone [00:27:21] Yeah, I trained to be a Wm Hof certified instructor, so it involves me going to Europe twice and I’m pretty grateful for those trips now, thinking I was a little bit of a little bit expensive. And I went to Wim’s House in Strew just outside Amsterdam and trained there for three or four days. And then as. As the master instructor module, we went to Poland and climbed a mountain with Wim in my board shorts basically well, and for me, who was pretty terrified of the cold, a little bit like, you Ron, not keen to get in there when it’s cold or if I did, I certainly wanted a wetsuit. That was that was a big feat for me to overcome.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:28:06] But getting in that ice bath for me was a three minute under just under three minute thing, which I was very proud of.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:28:13] But going for a walk up the Ice Mountain for you in your shorts is a several Althing.


Dean Gladstone [00:28:21] Yeah,.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:28:22] That’s a big difference. Or is it.


Dean Gladstone [00:28:25] Yeah, no absolutely how I was. I guess I had time to train so I literally bought. You saw the freezer at my house. I’ve got a five hundred a chest freezer that I that I jump in and before, before going overseas to climb a mountain with, with Wim Hof and some other people you want to prepare. So I was literally training my cold exposure limits, trying to build it up before we did the climbing mountain. We did some pretty you know, we did a lot of breathing. We did a lot of meditation. We prepped for it. We went in woods. And it was really fascinating during the ascent up the mountain trying to focus because I had had my go pro and I had my phone and I wanted to get footage to share so I could share with people. But if I was stuffing around too much with my camera so I would get cold, so I would put it away and just internalize and focus on the breath. And it’s was almost like it’s almost like I was omming my way up the mountain, all creating a little bit of internal vibration and heat. And and when you focus on staying warm, you stay warm. And as soon as that attention goes, it’s it’s getting cold.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:29:40] Well, you know, it’s interesting you should say that, because on that Saturday we were over at your place. When we got in the first time, I was really impressed that I could do that. And I was very focused. And then we got into the sauna and then we got back into the bath.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:29:56] And I was feeling pretty cocky about thinking that we were just chatting and I got cold really quickly. And I said, you do. I just have to stop talking. And I refocused so I could just imagine you walking up that mountain with a camera trying to get it all focused wrong.


Dean Gladstone [00:30:13] Yeah. Yeah.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:30:14] How do you incorporate that? How I mean, how often are you doing that in a week. Because this is all about intentional stress isn’t for me.


Dean Gladstone [00:30:23] Absolutely.


Dean Gladstone [00:30:25] Yeah, I sort of. When I run a workshop and I don’t run Wim Hof specific workshops because the functional breathing works that Patrick McKeown teaches, we had people coming to my Wim Hof workshops that were mouth breathe as well. And it’s just getting them to breathe through the nose is such a priority. So I really have a big functional breathing component in in my workshops. But a lot of it is about understanding stress and not being afraid of stress and the way breathing effect stress and then to finish getting in the ice bath, which is a stressor on the body and how we breathe during that stress. So a lot of it is stress related.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:31:13] Hmm. Yes.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:31:15] Well, that that.


Dean Gladstone [00:31:16] You’ve written a book about this, Ron you know, and then everything links. Right. The three things linked to the way we sleep, the sleep, things linked to the way we recover and the way we feel and our chances of exercise. It’s literally the yoga world comes in. The people that are rescue going to fight or flight response, and they’re more likely to drown and die like it’s all my role sort of collide in this one place than people. We’ve inflamed respiratory organs, a possibly drinking too much dairy and eating processed foods. So it’s everything comes back in the circle where it’s like, oh, hang on, we’ve just got to see everything breathe properly.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:31:57] It’s so interesting to hear about that. Intentional stress, hormesis it’s called. And when, like another intentional stress is fasting, you know and I’ve had this discussion with people who are into fasting and they say you actually have to prepare somebody before they go into fasting or intermittent fasting, because if they’re on a low carb sorry, a low fat diet and they go to intermittent fasting, they are not going to be able to do.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:32:27] So you’ve got to prepare first for a few weeks to go low carb, change your need for or your balance for glucose, and then you can go into intermittent fasting. And here you are saying, yeah, when Wim Hof thing is, is an intentional stress. But unless somebody actually prepares with functional breathing first, it makes it really difficult. So it’s interesting to draw those comparisons.


Dean Gladstone [00:32:52] Yeah, I often use the analogy about fasting and the other one I use is sort of barefoot. And so some people really respond well to to making life a little bit tougher, getting cold, occasionally, getting a meal and sort of taking off their shoes and all these fancy footwear. We’re seeing some people respond really well to being barefoot, missing a meal or getting cold occasionally. So, yeah, and they’re all types of hormesis or hormetic stress thing and sauna or exercise. There are other types of yeah, some people respond really well to some of those individually and that’s a combination. They respond well to them altogether as well. And I often use that analogy.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:33:39] How do you incorporate what you’ve learned with Wim Hof? I mean, apart from running your courses, which of course I’m going to have links to and all of that, but I’m interested as to how you incorporate that into your weekly or daily routine.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:33:54] Like, would you therapeutically hop into an ice bath two or three times a week or every day or in the freezer?


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:34:03] I thought you just use the freezer to store the ice, but you actually got in there.


Dean Gladstone [00:34:07] The freezer, was sitting at sort of between one and two degrees constantly first thing in the morning. Sometimes I just jump in the freezer for 30 seconds and you just it lights you up. It increases your metabolism, it makes you alert. It’s a cold shower on steroids, basically.


Dean Gladstone [00:34:25] So having that there is when I was training for Paul and preparing, having the freezer that was essential and a lot of the of people have had their own freezers so they can they can do it. So the cold therapy for some people, Ron, is a game changer. It is absolutely mind blowing. I don’t know if I told you the story about the lovely Irish guy at the Wim Hof thing. He got up and he talked about throwing himself in front of a bus and the room just stopped and it’s slow. And he goes, I caught contact with the bus driver on the way down. He’s like, I’ve ruined my life and I’m going to ruin this guy’s life. Obviously, he didn’t die, but he tried to commit suicide. The bus swerved. He ended up in one of hot icebox and they were going in and out sauna, an ice bath. And he said, oh, gives me, goose bumps when I tell the story for the first time in his life.


Dean Gladstone [00:35:26] He had the clarity of his head and he never knew what it was before because his whole life he had had voices and things in his head and he never had this ability to think clearly, and he found that in the ice. So I’ve read bits and pieces, sort of 70, 80 percent of mental health could be inflammation of the brain. So this Ice Bath thing for some people and some people that I’ve worked with, anxiety, stress disorders is just so good. For me I it’s a bit like fasting. I know it’s good for me. It’s not easy. I don’t love it. I only do it because it’s good for me. Whereas these, these people, they, they need it. It’s essential for them. Yeah. So yeah. Does that explain it.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:36:22] Yeah. Well yeah.


Dean Gladstone [00:36:24] Different things have more effect on, on some people than others so yeah. I love the breathing and an ice bath once a week but more, more my mindset about it now is if I get cold I’m not worried I’m going to get sick, I know I’m going to be okay and I know I’m going to get warm. So when I ride my little scooter around, if it starts raining, I don’t have a jacket. I get cold, cold. It’s probably even good for me. So. So yeah, a little dose of cold here and there and it’s on.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:36:59] Well, it’s certainly empowered me to dove in. Even when it reaches the 16 degrees, I’ll have nothing but listen.


Dean Gladstone [00:37:09] Empower is a brilliant word, Ron.


Dean Gladstone [00:37:11] So getting people in the ball. Yes. Thinking they can do something that I can’t do that really life changing for some people. And the more people getting out of their comfort zone in water, wherever it may be, might be as simple as going for a swim. But the ice bath seems to be. Tony Robbins gets people to walk cross fire. Right. It’s one of those things that’s it just seems to break the chains.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:37:37] Yeah. Now, listen, this has been great because we’ve covered some great territory. I just want to take a step back from you.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:37:45] Your role is in Bondi, rescued from you being a yoga breath Wim Hoff oxygen advantage teacher, because we’re all on this health journey together through life.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:37:55] And, you know, what do you think the biggest challenges for people on that journey?


Dean Gladstone [00:38:01] There so much information out there Ron and I think different things work for different people. And there’s people out there on a carnival diet just eating steak, there’s a doctor in the US who are going following.


Dean Gladstone [00:38:17] He’s doing really well, right? He’s breaking world records.


Dean Gladstone [00:38:19] And then you see people on the other end of the scale on a vegan diet and some of them look like they’re doing really well as well. Others not so well, that some people probably eating steak, not doing well. So it’s probably trying to find out what’s right for the the individual.


Dean Gladstone [00:38:36] And there’s so much so much crap out there and people selling so much crap. It’s really hard for people to find out what’s right for them and not to get caught up trying to buy the latest shakes or teas or supplements and and do the simple things right. And we talked about a couple of them sort of breathing and diet and mind set earlier.


Dean Gladstone [00:39:03] Deano, thank you so much for joining us today. I’m going to have links to all of your great stuff that you’ve got on offering. And again, thank you for everything you’ve been doing.


Dean Gladstone [00:39:13] Ron, thank you. You know, people probably don’t know. You did a lot for me in those times when I was really struggling. And it’s always a pleasure to catch up and chat health with you when we don’t we don’t see each other anywhere near as often as we used to. So we’ll have to organize another ice bath in the New Year.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:39:31] Definitely. Definitely. Thank you so much.


Dean Gladstone [00:39:33] My pleasure. Mate.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:39:35] So I’m often asked, is all stress bad? And the answer is no, it’s not. I would define a bad stress as something that compromises your immune system and promote chronic inflammation, which is the common denominator in all diseases, mental and physical. So a stress that is of concern is one that compromises the immune system and promotes chronic inflammation. And that’s why I’ve used the model of the five stresses emotional, environmental postural, nutritional and dental stress. And regular listeners of this podcast will know that understanding stress is an important aspect to the show. But there are stresses which are actually good for us, and they are called hormetic stress or hormesis intentional stresses that actually promote or enhance the immune function. And examples of that we touched on today called baths, fasting, exercise, saunas. I might even include meditation as an intentional stress that is good for us, but it was quite a revelation for me to do the ice baths with Deano just two weeks a few weeks ago. And I’m certainly looking forward to doing more of his workshops to explore this further, maybe even to crawl into a freezer.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:41:07] Now, I never thought I would actually say that, but it could be an interesting thing to do. I feel really empowered by what Deano taught me and shared with me, and I’m very, very grateful to him for that. We’re going to be doing OK. We’re going to be doing some workshops together in the coming year, and we’ll certainly have links to some of the terrific programs he runs face to face and online. We’ll have those link to the show notes. So this year is going to be a very exciting year and we’re going to be focusing on personal empowerment as a theme. And we’re going to be exploring all the different pillars and all the different stresses. We’re going to be doing that in online events and live events and working with some of my guests in workshops, hopefully around the country. Dear I even say that, that we’re going to be traveling around the country? Well, we may not be able to go overseas. So traveling around the country is something I’m actually really looking forward to.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:42:04] So I hope you enjoyed today’s program until next time. This is Dr Ron Ehrlich be well.


Dr Ron Ehrlich [00:42:12] This podcast provides general information and discussion about medicine, health and related subjects. Content is not intended and should not be construed as medical advice or as a substitute for care by qualified medical practitioner. If you or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately qualified medical practitioner. Guests who speak in this podcast express their own opinions, experiences and conclusions.