Sunday, May 8, 2016

Wim Hof Method : One month post 10 week program

I already posted a 10 week summary so will only share things I noticed post one month. Focus a bit more on the negative as I know some folks like to hear this side as opposed to the positives.

The negative:
1. I did have some chest pains after having gone in the water 8+ days and running in sub 20 degree weather.  It was a bit concerned but just went with it and pulled back on too much in one day.  The amazing thing is that I did not get these chest pains before, during or after being in the water.  I friend that is doing a lot of cold water immersion (and has not done the Wim Hof program) was experiencing the same thing.  The interesting thing is the heart aching subsided (still comes and goes) after below 20 degree air and below 39 degree water baseball game (we were doing a video for my friends business).
2. I felt light headed and the noise of the cold shower went in an out a few times during longer 10 minute + cold showers with multiple 1 minute + breath holds. It was a calming sensation but a bit concerned if I actually passed out.  
3. Good but ... it hurts. Sometimes when getting in hot tub, especially when very cold in water and going over 8 minutes, the pain of hands and feet is unbearable. A couple of times I had to 

The positive:
1. My son Slade told me on a weekend that we went skiing that it was the best we ever got along and I did not lose my patience.  He said there was not a time were I was relaxed with him on vacation....ever.  Nice to hear but sad for the times I did lose my patience. 
2. I go to bed at night smiling.  Feeling a sense of happiness, contentment, and accomplishment.
3. More energy but more calm. I call it a patient, urgency.  

New revelations:
I finally felt the warm body sensations in the shower when doing the breath holds!  I noticed this only happens when shower water temp is 55 or above.  Water temp before March was 50 or below in New Hampshire.  

Here are some of days videos and pictures:
March 1 : March 2 
March 2
March 3
March 4. Post swim: March 4 
March 5 Post swim: March 5 March 5
March 11
March 13
March 17 March 17 March 17 March 17
March 18
March 19 March 16
March 21
March 24
March 26 March 26
March 29
March 29
March 31

Cold immersion is a journey and not a destination, so let's just breath and jump in.

NH Seacoast Cloud Immersion Facebook Page

Week of May 1st

Spent a good amount of time in the NH seacoast water ways this week.  Solid week of breathing. Going to have to try the recommendations of one Wim Hoffers on the Wim Hof Facebook page regarding 10 breathing/hold cycles. Most I have done is 4.  

Sunday did 15 minutes in what felt like 43 degree water although NH Seacoast web site listed at 46 degrees.  Pictures of swim here:
May 1 at 6:11pm
May 1 at 6:19pm
May 1 at 6:11pm
Did breath holds before going in water of 1.20, 1.40, 1.50 and 2 minutes.

Monday did an 8 minute shower with breath holds of 40 sec, 1 min, 1 min, and 1 min in shower. Shower temp at 48 degrees.

Tuesday did 8 minutes in ocean harbor at 46 degree water temp.  Did breathing before hand with breath holds of 1.20, 1.40, 1.50 and 1.50.

Wednesday - 20 minutes in Hampton Harbor @ 46 degrees.

Thursday - 30 min mediation - 1.35, 1.45, 1.55, 2.05 holds ( no forcing).  Did a 6 mile run follow by hot tub. After hot tub, blood pressure was 117 over 78.  Did a 10 min cold shower with breath holds of 40, 45, 1 and 1 minutes.  Shower temp was 55. After shower, blood pressure was 140 over 91.This does raise blood pressure. Talk about doctor visit where blood pressure 150 over 95 and heart rate 90. also, felt warmth in shower like others. only happens when 55 or above. 55 almost too warm.

Friday - 20 minutes with real life swimming in hampton harbor.  46 degree water. My 13 year old son actually swam across the 1/4 mile channel. The rest of us did a considerable amount of swimming.  I could really notice the swimming lowering my body temp. and putting a bit of stress on heart/body.

Saturday - 17 minutes in Hampton Harbor in late afternoon.  46 degree water.   My 13 year old son did 18 minutes!

Air temp between 42 and 50 most days.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Week of April 24th

Was on vacation with week with my boys in Seattle so not much time for cold immersion.  I did about 5 fifteen minute cold showers but the water temp was between 58 and 60 degrees so not cold at all.  I did four breath holds in shower which were typically 40 seconds, 1 min, 1 min, and 1 min.  I did do a couple 2 minute stays in 39 degree river at Mt Rainer. Pictures here:
April 30 at 1:38pm

I also did a quick (a couple of minutes) in Puget Sound one day.

Wim Hof Method : Program Summary

The program was great; live changing in so many ways. It requires an extreme determination and commitment that many people would find uncomfortable. As Wim indicates, putting yourself beyond your normal comfortable zone brings much reward - health, happiness, and strength.   I have stopped drinking, run marathons, competed in bicycle races, tried vegan for 100 + days, and done a number of 21+ day clean eating programs.  However, this program requires a special level of commitment in order to get into 43 degree 10 minute showers, or 39 degree ocean water or ice baths.  Especially when it is 24 degrees outside and snowing.  The relaxed mind and body required to do the breathing exercises was another special challenge.

There were many noticeable changes in the mental, spiritual, physical, and physiology.  This blog post contains my summary of the Wim Hof method based upon my readings and listening to podcasts, and watching Wim Hof videos:
Here is quick summary of beyond fear by Wim Hof as I interpret it:

My focus at work is allowing me to get more done in a shorter period of time. I feel a calm sense of urgency.  I am able to prioritize the plethora of ideas in my mind and get them done quickly without worrying about what needs to be done next.

I can see how the Wim Hof method can be used to treat addiction.   In a way, you replace one addiction for another.  I have an addictive personality and the 'edge', adrenaline rush, and intensity you get from the cold water can be similar to the rush of drinking or extreme sports.

I have been meditating for 20+ years but my chakras' have never opened to this extent.  My root and crown charkas have never been this open.  My son told me I had never been so relaxed on a weekend ski trip we took during a one week vacation with my boys.  Getting into cold water definitely causes the monkey mind to calm...there is no other choice.

I received many comments from people that my eyes were vibrant, skin clear and tight, and I generally looked much younger. I also noticed gray hair had all but gone away and my hair color became lighter.  I did not lose weight but looked to have much less body fat and my pants were a size looser on me.  I also got a tan!  This was a distinct tan. I was told it was because of getting red when going in the very cold water for a long time.

My appetite was much more surpassed and did not have as many urges to eat.  However, daily bowel movement almost doubled.  I could tell that my body chemistry was changed significantly. I sensed an extreme change in my mood, energy, and attitude based upon changes in my body's physiology.

Lessons Learned
I could have never completed this program without a hot tub. The first few times in 10 minute showers and ocean swims required long (30+) sessions in the hot tub. Even after taking more then 20 ten minute+ showers my back is still way more sensitive to the cold water then my front or sides. I also find that when run and do breathing holding after my runs it is much more difficult to do the breath holds.  I can walk into 39 degree water without hesitation and don't feel the cold water.  This is much different then not wanting to go into 60 degree water during the summer months before I completed the program.  I also found it amazing how it is possible to run with just shorts and running shoes in sub 20 degree weather.

NH Seacoast Cloud Immersion Facebook Page

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wim Hof Method : Week 10

Here is the tenth week data, and my comments.

Summary:  For the 10th and final week, I was intending to go in the 39 degree ocean and take a cold shower ever day (or cold run everyday).  A business trip to Prague cut my run of days in the ocean to 5 (ending up doing 8 straight days when I got back from Prague). I did between 6 and 10 minutes in the ocean every day, and 5 minutes in 44 to 48 degree shower most days. I also did an hour run (7 miles) in 27 degree weather with last mile running in ocean.   I was very cold and took a long time to warm up on the first day after 10 minutes in ocean.  After the 4th day in the ocean, I noticed that shaking was not as bad and really was drawn to go into the water.

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) :  The breath holds really felt good this week, and finally getting into a peaceful state during the holds.  I really felt like the 10th week was more the beginning then the ending. Pushing myself to go in the ocean daily ,as well as cold showers in the morning, was a great way to gain momentum for continuing strong with cold immersion after the 10 week program. Look out for my blog posts that summarizes all the benefits I received from completing the program, and blog posts on post one month activities and benefits.

This was incredible life changing programming. It took my 20+ mediation practice to new frontiers, and granted me focus, clarity, creativity, restful sleep, and energy I have never had in my life.

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:

15 minute cold shower at 44 degrees. 10 minutes in ocean at 101 bridge felt very cold and not very good at all.  Core temperature was very low.  
2 5 minute cold shower in AM at 48 degrees. 6 mins today in ocean with water temp @ 39 and outside air @ 23 with wind chill. Video here: February 26.  
35 minute cold shower in AM at 45 degrees. 6 minutes in ocean at 39 degrees, video is here: February 27
4February 28 video is here.   Another 6 minute swim today. Air temps in high 40s and water temp around 39 degrees. Four straight days in the ocean between 6 to 10 minutes at 39 degrees. 
534 degrees but feels like 27 degrees. 1 hour run with only shoes and shorts, and did last mile in ocean with barefoot. Video of 8 minute ocean swim here:  February 29.  Mid 50s in air so went 8 mins in 39 degree water. 
6Prague. 30 minute meditation followed by 53 degree shower for 13 minutes. Did breath holds of  40 sec, 1 min, 1 min, and 1 min in shower.  
7Prague. 5 minute 54 degree shower in morning. 10 minute shower at nigh with breath holds of 50 secs, 1 min, 1 min, and 1 min.  Did a 1 hour run in 34 degree weather as well. 

Monday, April 25, 2016

Week of April 17th

This week was on again and off again with a total of four days (Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday).  I did breathing on these four days as well with breathing sessions (outside of shower or cold water) of 1.20, 1.40, 2.00 and 2.10 on Sunday and Tuesday. I did 1.30, 1.50, 2.10 and 2.20 the other two days.  The days were as follows:
1. Sunday - Did 20 minutes in ocean at 43 degrees. It really felt warm and did a lot of swimming across channel and around the water: April 17 at 9:23pm
2. Tuesday - The water temperature was warm at 63 degrees in Seattle hotel so did 15 minutes with breath holds of 40 minutes, 1.10, 1.10, and 1.00 minute.
3. Wednesday - Again the water temperature was at 62 degrees in Seattle hotel so did 12 minutes with breath holds of 40 minutes, 1,1, and 1.0. I also did a shower in evening for 5 minutes at 53 degrees with breath holds of 40 minutes and 1 minute.
5. Friday - Back in NH so went in ocean again for about 7 minute swim in 43 degree water. Felt a bit cold after being on a red eye Wednesday night and two days of biking and limited sleep for two nights.

I have noticed that no matter what the water temperature I typically can hold for only 40 seconds the first breath hold.   Breath holds were very good this week. Felt very good and very relaxed.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Saturday, April 16th

Did breath holds of 1.30, 1.50. 2.10. 2.20.  Very relaxed today as breathing in hotel room in NYC. Did a 10 min shower at 50 degrees with breath holds of 40 seconds, 1 min, and 1 min. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Friday, April 15th

Back in Hampton, NH.  Did a 13 minute ocean session with water temp at around 40 degrees, and air in mid 40's. The water is starting to warm up a bit in NH.  It was no lower then 38 degrees this winter, and was at 39 degrees until this past couple days. It was a great time to be back in the ocean. Had a seal visit me for a little bit. He/she did not get too close but about 20 feet away.  Facebook post here with picture after swim:

Thursday, April 14th

I again did a sorta cold shower (in morning), 56 degrees, for 15 minutes in Seattle.  I did breath holds of 40 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute and 1 minute. Before shower, did 15 minute mediation with breath holds of 1.30, 1.50, 2.00 and 2.10. The breath holds are going well now. Getting visions and body very tingly. Also, did a 5 minute cold shower in evening (54 degrees at sister's house in Seattle) after 5 mile run.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Sunday, April 10th

No cold today as was snowboarding today and yesterday. I did a great 35 minutes mediation.  The throat and heart chakras opened almost immediately.  I have never had this happen in the last 20 years of mediation. I will typically not get the wide open chakras until the last 10 minutes of a mediation. 

Wednesday, April 13th

I did a sorta cold shower, 58 degrees, for 13.30 minutes.  I did breath holds of 45 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute and 1 minute.  In Seattle at hotel, hotels tend to have warmer showers.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Wim Hof Method : Week 9

Here is the ninth week of data, and my comments.

Summary:  I noticed that when I did a day off of breathing I did not feel good in or after going in ocean the next day.  During one 5 mile run, when it was 31 degrees with wind chill, I was sweating a lot when I got home.  Breath holds felt comfortable this week. Not extremely long but very calming.  This week I also started to add going under the water at end of ocean 'swim'.  This felt like it was going to be much colder then it was, but really felt great.

I did not feel extreme warm in body like others have reported with brown fat activation. I still felt cold coming out of showers and ocean 'swims'.  I still needed 20 to 30 minute hot tubs after spending 6 to 10 minutes in 39 degree ocean water.   My body is able to tolerate the cold but not sure if that has more to do with breathing, mental focus, and mental 'toughness'.

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) :  For the first time, did not get tingling / pain in hands and feet in the water and after coming out of ocean water when in 39 degree water.   This was when spending 8 minutes in the ocean.

Had gone under the water before but now really started to go under for 10 to 20 seconds. Must say their was a bit of 'brain freeze' when first started doing this but now does not effect me; except when wind temp is under 30 degrees.

My body is adapting to the cold.   The more I run, shower, and just go into the cold ocean the more my body is focused, determined, and can tolerate the cold.

Is there a correlation between running in cold and breath holds not as good?  The longer I run or the colder it is I seem to get a 'hang over' effect where my lungs are 'burnt out' from the run and breath holds are more difficult, not as peaceful, and feel forced.  Not sure what is going on here.

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:

15 mile run in 38 degrees with a wind chill put temp at 31. I was actually sweating during this run as felt so warm.  10 minute cold shower with 30 sec, 1 min, 1 min, and 1 min holds. Brown fat activation in show as well.
25 mile run in 34 degrees with a wind chill put temp at 24 degrees. 10 min horse stance in show @ 36 degrees.  8 minute shower with 30 sec, 1 min, and 1 min breath holds and brown fat activation. 6 minutes in ocean @ Hampton Harbor with 26 degree wind chill in 38 degree water.  Went under for 20 seconds.
3Did a 'day off'. Did 10 minutes in ocean with water temp at 41 degrees.  For day three, I started off the day with a 6 minute cold shower at 45 degrees with brown fat activation. 
4This was four elapsed days but only gave myself 'credit' for one as was in Las Vegas and did 10 minute showers at 63 degrees. Then in Seattle did two days, for 10 minutes, at 55 degrees.
55 mile run (40 mins) @ 34 degrees with windchill 23 degrees. Did 6 minutes in 39 degree ocean water. Breath holds good and seemed easy to do 1.30 holds. 6 minutes in ocean at 39 degree water with 31 degree air.
68 minute swim today in new spot. It is the little area right off 101 bridge in Hampton, NH. A bit of a current but not to bad. Think about 30 degree air temp and 40 degree water temp. Really, really short video: February 23. Breath hold hard today with 7 mile run in 32 degree weather.
78 minutes in ocean in 39 degree water @ Hampton North Beach. Left feeling very good.  Hot tub recovery, do every time, did not ever hurt, and hardly any tingling in hands and feet in an out of water. 

Wim Hof Method : Week 8

Here is data and my comments for week 8.

Summary:  I have two friends you will see in the video that join me on the dips in the ocean, Bob and Dave. The interesting thing is that neither of them have done any cold showers and do not do the breath or mediation. For them, it is all about shear determination and will power. Not sure if this is good or they are getting the same benefits, but I find it even more impressive that they can get in the ocean for 10 minutes at 42 degrees without any preparation/training.

A couple things I did this week that I thought would have never been possible:
1. Run -  5K run in 23 degree weather with windchill at 7 degrees. Only shorts and running shoes.
2. Horse stance in snow - 10 minute 'horse stance' in snow in 17 degree weather with windchill at around -2.
Seriously think if someone told I would be able to do this when started the program I would have thought them insane.

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) :  In looking at Wim's notes for this week, it indicates you should do a 10 to 20 second bath or outside water. Interestingly I had already done 5 ice baths for 8-12 minutes at 39 to 42 degree water, and 7 times in ocean at temps between 42 and 49 for 3 to 10 minutes.

The first times getting into the ice bath or ocean were not so 'inviting' or easy. I definitely did not want to get into the ice baths, and my hands and feet stung very, very badly when first putting them into ice bath water or the ocean. I can remember the first time putting my hands into the ocean.  I wanted to take them out immediately.  However, I left them in and after about a minute they went numb and felt fine (or I could not really feel them). I also remember the leather feeling my skin had the first few times staying in for over five minutes.

I also remember shaking uncontrollably for a long time after. If it was not for my hot tub, I don't think going in the ocean would have been possible. However, as you can see in the video of the video of my friends and I in the hot tub are hands stung so bad and bodies felt cool in a 104 degree hot tub. The times I was traveling and did the ice baths in hotel room, I took a long hot shower after. Even after the shower I would shake for a good hour or more.

I did a few more runs this week bare chested (of course, no hat or gloves). Definitely but your thumb inside your palm and cover with your fingers. This does an amazing job of keeping your

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:

1I did the horse stand for 10 minutes in snow at 39 degrees outside. I also did a combination of 5 minutes in ocean, 10 minute walk, 1 minute in ocean, 10 minute walk and then another 1 minute in ocean. This was an interesting routine, but we felt that it was 39 degrees out and be a good day to walk the beach.  Here is video from that day, including reaction in hot tub after:
February 7 (getting in)
February 7 (in water)
February 7 (post water analysis)
February 7 (in hot tub after)
240 seconds, 1min, 1 min, and 1 min breath holds in cold shower 8 minutes (43 degrees).   Not that cold when got out of shower.  Breath holds out of shower not all that good.
3Breath holds still not feeling 'right'. Feels difficult.  Did 9 minute cold shower at 43 degrees (temp of shower in NYC) with breath holds of : 40 sec, 1 min, 1 min and 1 min.  It was challenging to do the 1 minute breath hold in the shower. Needed a 5 minute hot shower after as felt very cold after the 9 minute cold shower.
45k run today with shorts and running shoes only at 23 degrees with wind chill 7 degrees. My coldest temp to run in to date (did this on 'day off'). My actually day 4 was a 45 degree 5 minute shower in the morning. Did an 11 minute shower at night in 45 degree water in NYC with breath holds of 40 sec, 1 min, 1 min, 1 min, and 1 min; did five breath holds in shower today.  Breathing back to where it was week 6. 
5No swimming today:( Just did 10 minutes of 'horse stance' in snow for 10 mins at 17 degrees with windchill around -2 (even colder then yesterday). Who would have thought possible. Now time for warm up with 10 min cold shower with four cycles of 1 minute breath hold in 46 degree shower.
639 A lot of tingling during the forth breath hold, also felt light headed.  Push ups felt very good. 5 mile run in 21 degree weather with windchill at 17 (shoes and shorts only).  Shower was 6 minutes with holds of 30 seconds, 1 min, and 1 min.
710 minute cold shower with holds of 40 seconds, 1 min, 1 min, and 1 min. Cold after shower today.

Friday, April 8th

No swim again today but did a cold and rainy spring run again.  Air temp was 49 with wind chill around 41.  It was about a 20 MPH wind and a very high tide on the beach.  Ended up running a 5K all on the beach all in the 39 degree ocean water barefoot (of course, nothing but shorts). Half of the time I was in water up to my knees because of the rough ocean and wind which caused a strange cross water high tide.

Thursday, April 7th

No swim today but did a cold and rainy spring run.  Air temp was 38 with wind chill around 27.  It was about a 20 MPH wind and very hard rain.  Ended up running about 4 miles with the last mile and a half barefoot in the 39 degree ocean water. No breathing today.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Wednesday, April 6th

I went old school today with my neighbor Dave. We walked down, 5 minute walk, to the north beach in Hampton, NH. We took no watch as we just wanted to go in the water and enjoy it with no time 'pressure'. I ended up going for 7 to 10 minutes. I did a 20 minute meditation and breathing session before. Here are the breath holds:
1. 1.20
2. 1.30
3. 1.40
4. 1.50
On the 3rd and 4th holds, really felt the root chakra open and the breath seemed to come from there.

Wim Hof Videos

Here are some great Wim Hof videos:

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Wim Hof Method : Week 7

Here is the seventh week of data, and my comments.

Summary:  This week wasn't really a week but closer to two weeks elapsed time as I was working over 70 weeks a week and had major root canal surgery during this two week period.  For the surgery, was forced by the doctor to take three days off as otherwise stitches would have ruptured. The other days were do to working most of day and night and no energy for cold.  The breath holds continued to be very good this. I did take a couple of dips in the ocean when on break from surgery as doctor said that would be fine.

Took 3 'days off' after first day because of the surgery (no breathing, push ups etc) and spent 8 minutes in ocean on one of the days:
January 25 (This was the first day for new person and he went 8 minutes)

Also, did a 'day off' between days 2 and 3 and did 10 minutes in ocean. No video, but would have been great if there was as it was big surf:
January 30 (Bob went 10 minutes on second day in ocean)

When I was in Las Vegas, the showers were way to 'warm'. Therefore, I ended up doing some long and cold ice baths.  These were 40 degree or less ice baths for 8 to 10 minutes.

The 5 minute horse stance was doable but very hard the first four days. Then got more comfortable but still challenging.

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) :  I was really started to get 'addicted' to the time in the ocean. The total cold immersion piece is very powerful, and causes you to completely focus.  Because of work, vacations, and the surgery, I had to take a lot of time off.  I think the 10 week program turned into a 15 week program for me.  Not sure how this effected the outcome, or messed with the progress on breath holds and sensitivity to cold. Since I knew when I traveled it be hard to get cold water, I attempted to really 'hit it hard' when I was not traveling.  I also did a lot of ice baths at 42 degrees or less for 6 to 10 minutes.

On first day, had something happen that never happened and has never happened since. For about a minute went into to meditate state and came out of it still holding my breath. I totally zoned out and forgot what I was doing. Very intense!! Had another person that just finished program say this happened to them, only once as well.

I noticed that when I ran in the cold my breath holds were not as natural and harder to hold my breath.

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:
22.05 (additional breath hold)
32.06 (additional breath hold)

1Round two, first time, zoned out and forgot I was holding my breath!!!! For about a minute went into to meditate state and came out of it still holding my breath. Felt slight burning and coldness in lungs.
2Breathing Blacked out for about 20 seconds (different then when day one when forgot was holding my breath) after 4th round.  4 rounds in shower with 3 at 1.20 minutes, and one at 1 minute. 5 minute cold shower in morning as well.
3Cold shower in morning and then shower in evening with breath holds. Did four breath holds at 1.30, 1.30, 1, and 1 minute in evening shower. 
4Did the routine the first thing in the morning and had a hard time getting going. Push ups were hard. I did not sleep well the night before and had grinder my teeth so had a headache. Did an ice bath at 42 degrees for 12 minutes with breath holds of 1.20, 2, 1.20 and 1.30 minutes.  These were some of my longest cold bath breath holds. Did ice bath as in Las Vegas and shower was over 60 degrees. Had to fill tub with about 10 bags of ice to get to 42 degrees. 
540 degree ice bath at 8 minutes with breath holds of 1, 2, and 1.30 minutes.  Morning so push ups not as good.
639 degree ice bath for 9 minutes with 1, 1.30, 1 and 1.30 minute breath holds. Breath holding not as natural/easy today. Stretching was great.
747 degree Back in NH so ran 8 miles with no shirt, hat, or gloves at 37 degrees.  10 minute cold shower breath holds of 30,40, 60 and 60 seconds. 

Tuesday, April 5th

Did a run and ocean swim today.  It was about 31 degrees with wind chill at about 27 degrees during the 5K run on beach with no shirt, shoes, hat, or gloves. Did the run in ocean water on after the half way point.  Did 30 minute meditation and breathing before the run.  Breath holds were: 1.20, 1.30, 1.50 and 1.50.

The swim was still at 39 degree water temp; went 10 minutes today.  More details and video here:

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Sunday, April 3

After two long sessions -13 minutes and 15 minutes 30 seconds - that last two days, thought I would 'chill' (no pun intended) today. Instead, Tony and Chris wanted to go. The weather conditions were windy (18 mph winds) and cold: 31 degrees with 18 degrees with wind chill.  I did a 30 minute meditation, and a breathing session with the following holds right before I went to the jump in spot:
1. 1.20
2. 1.40
3. 2.00
4. 2.00

Felt good with a lot of tingling in body. I felt very oxygenated and relaxed on breath holds.

We ended up going 5 minutes today, water temp still at 39, as everyone was still cold from the last two days.  Nice one.

Wim Hof Method : Week 6

Here is the sixth week of data, and my comments.

Summary:  Think this was my best week of breath holds.   Perhaps my big discovery from last week:  I also did breathing for first time to Wim's video. I checked Wim's breath holds and they were from 1.20 to 2.00 minutes in duration. This is basically what I did this week.  He breaths much quicker then what I was doing.

The push ups moved up to their highest level as well; I do completed up and down push ups so my numbers may not look to impressive.  First week of going under the water while in the ocean (about 15 seconds under). Ocean temp. around 42 degrees. Two ocean swims (only one video):

Wim has you hold your breath for 30 seconds but felt comfortable at a minute.  I also had a couple days were I did cold shower and ocean swim.

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) :  Did breathing to the Wim Hof method video this week. Perhaps, I should have done this sooner.  It made me realize Wim does the breathing quicker then I have been doing.  Would have been good to video and track more closely the reaction to the cold ocean water.  Well, I started this week.  As stated before, I found the ocean almost easier then the showers. In the ocean, once you get over the initial shock and pain in the first minute or so, you are numb and at a certain point don't want to get out.  I really enjoyed the stretching exercises the entire 10 weeks.  I sometimes got up in the morning and just did a cold shower without breath holds. It helped to start the day.

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:
244  (not bad, tingling in face in 25)
445 (tingling in body at 32, tingling when done and felt like puking)

1I didn't do the shower breath holds. Instead did 10 minutes in the ocean at around 42 degree water temp.  I felt like I was high on drugs afterwards.  I felt light headed, and could not stop laughing.  Did the breathing to the Wim Hof video.   He does breathing much quicker then I do.  His breath holds are between 1.20 to 2 minutes on the video. 
2Breathing felt good and back to where I was before the 10 day vacation.  I like the stretching; not sure if it does anything but it feels relaxing and powerful.  I did a 16 minute meditation today. In shower, did 50 second breath hold at beginning, then 2 minutes more cold water, then hot for a bit, before 50 seconds breath hold in cold. 
3Cold shower in morning with two one minute breath holds in shower.
4Push ups felt very good today.  8 minutes total in cold shower with two breath holds at 1 minute each.  9 minutes in ocean @ Seabrook / Hampton harbor New Hampshire with video here:
Water temp was 42 degrees, and went under for about 15 seconds.
5Had tingling on breathing on 3rd and 4th rounds. 6 minutes in ocean at 42 degrees with 10 seconds under the water at end. Facebook post here:
65 minute 49 degree shower in the morning. Then did another 5 minute shower in evening with two breath holds of 1 minute in the evening.
747 degree shower in the morning with two 1 minute and 10 second breath holds. For a total shower over just over 5 minutes.

Cold Immersion : Try not

We, Dave and I started last October, have been doing dips in the NH seacoast ocean for 6 months now: After yesterdays dip, were we had a another younger person come, it got me thinking - Why have we had many more young people then adults?

Could it be that when you are young you like to try new things, you are less fearful, you like to push yourself out of your comfort zone, you like the feeling that discomfort gives you, you are open minded, you have been told less times (In todays helicopter parent world this may not be the case) that 'you can not do that' or 'your going to hurt yourself doing that', you don't have the excuse, 'I am to busy', or is it just that you embrace the moment, and do instead of try?

What do you think?

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Friday, April 1st - April Fools Day

On April fools day, we had 8 folks in the water! This not not an April fools day prank. We had Bob Kerens,Christine Kulac ReussChris Grippo, Tony Choufee, Claudia, Claudia's friend, Ian Kulac, and myself. A lot of records shattered. Christine Kulac Reuss went 8 minutes, I went 13 minutes, first timer Chris Grippo went 8 minutes, and the Bob Kerens went 16 minutes. 39 degree water but air in 60's so good.

Saturday, April 2nd

Another epic day.  Bob Kerens and I swam across the channel; another first. It was probably about a 1/4 mile + swim. By the time we got back, definitely doing some deep breathing. We (Bob KerensChris Grippo and myself) ended up doing 15 minutes 30 seconds. Longest time I have gone.  Anthony Ciolfi did 7 minutes on second day out. All good. Air temps in the high 40's with water @ 39. 

Wim Hof Method : Week 5

Here is the fifth week of data, and my comments.

Summary:  Huge discover on breathing!  I collapse my stomach on inhale instead of expanding my stomach. Think this was do to lifting weights were you tense up (not the right way to do it) when lifting a heavy weight. I stopped shivering in cold showers; unlike the week before were there was considerable shivering.  Still working on the right breathing. Tried quicker breathing with less exhale which seemed to work. First time in ocean for 10 minutes. Measured water temp between 45 and 47 degrees. Started to video and track the swims in ocean. First video here:

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) :  Challenging to get back on track with breathing and showers after the 10 days off.  Push ups the first few days had headaches and tingling.  Saw lights during meditation.  I am still working on my breathing. I thought breathing was natural...ha. Apparently, we build up strange habits like collapsing stomach on inhale. I was in the ocean during a very cold day at this point.

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:
130 (40 yesterday, headache after)
235  (felt like puking, light headed after, tingling in face)
340 (headache after)
440 (headache after)

1Saw lights while meditating - bright pin point lights. Shower was cold at 52 degrees for 10 minutes. Also did 10 minutes in morning in ocean at 47 degrees. So, that could have explained being cold in shower.
250 degree 10 minute shower felt good.  No shaking, went on back for 2 minutes when could not yesterday.  Felt warmth in belly.  Also  did 10 minutes again in ocean. Measured water temp at 45 degrees.
310 minute shower felt good but not as good as yesterday.  Breathing OK, and push very good.
4Wow, big revelation.  I tend to suck in my stomach when I am inhaling!! No wonder I am not getting more air.  Also, did quicker breaths with less out breath. Shower cold (10 minutes) but had also done 3.30 minutes in ocean at water temp of around 45 degrees and air temp at 25 (feels like 15!!)
5Faster breathing helps with less of exhale.  Shower cold from 2-4 minutes with 10 minute total. No shivering in the shower.  Did 5 minutes in ocean (Seabrook harbor) today with Dave.
6Longer inhale and less exhale.  10 minute cold shower, and felt like warm water was hitting my hitting. Light headed on 3rd and 4th breath holds.
710 minute cold shower with no shivering.  Breath holds OK.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Thursday, March 31st

Seven minutes in ocean today at 39 degrees in the water and a beautiful 67 degrees outside. However, wind in the mid to high 20s made for water splashing in your face. We had Bob KerensChristine Kulac Reuss, Claudia Ruess, Logan Laszewski, and Bob's dog. Christine was good for five , and the rest of us, including Claudia and Logan, stayed for a bit over 7. Impressive for Logan and Claudia! Good one! First time for Claudia, she is a cold immersion aficionado day one.
Photo here:photo.php 

Wednesday, March 30th

No ocean today but a 10 minute cold shower at 48 degrees. Only did one breath hold at about 9 minutes for 50 seconds. Today was a bit cold.  As always, the coldest part of my body is my back. I see many people report that it is their front/chest. However, I could do the front for a long time. Back is the coldest and then the sides.  I had another calm and peaceful extended breath holds:
1. 1.10
2. 1.50
3. 2.00
4. 2.10

I once again did a 33 minute meditation before the breathing and show.  I find the last 5 minutes of my meditation (estimated time) that my throat and heart chakras really open up and feel warmth in these chakras.  This time these chakras were very open on the breath holds. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Wim Hof Method : Week 4

Here is the forth week of data, and my comments.

Summary:  After day 5 I took a 10 day vacation with my boys to the Galapagos Island. Needless to say not a lot of cold water there so took a break for 10 days.  Continued baths and practiced keeping my hands in for a longer time. My hands hurt so bad last week when I put them in the cold water.  I was taking mostly 10 minute showers by this time as the water temp was in the mid fifties in NH at this time. I continued to do more running in low to mid 40s weather with no shirt on and no hat or gloves; only had on running shoes.

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) :  I did not realize I continued cold baths in week 4. I also did not realize I was taking 10 minute showers and/or multiple showers a day. I felt once it got this warm it was not providing same effect, so went with cold bath which is easy to do as you have access to an ice machine.  The 2.30 breath hold was one of my longest of the 10 weeks.  I did get a lot of chakra openings and tingling in body which I now remember but had forgotten about. I also remember shivering a lot in the 10 minute cold showers and the ice baths.  Week 4 is suppose to be two 1 minute intervals of cold showers with warm water in between and one 10 minute shower. I decided to go for as many 10 minute showers as I could.

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:
340 (felt like puking)
439 (tingling in head)
540 (tingling in face)
635 (first day back after 10 days off)
740 (felt like puking, light headed)

1Felt like I rushed too much on first breath hold.  More relaxed and open chest on others. Felt  tingling in body after push ups.   10 minute bath in 40-42 degree with hands in for the last 7 minutes.
2Think the key on the breathing is to relax mind and body but hyperventilate. When breathing today it felt like my mind was not focused. Did 10 minutes in the ocean with water temp at 49 degrees.
3Ran in 43 degrees with no shirt. Did 10 minutes in cold shower. A lot of tingling and open chakras during the breath holds. Root and crown chakras very open.
412 minute 54 degree shower in morning. More rhythmic breathing. Push ups were good but still doesn't feel right with breathing.
53 minute cold shower in morning, and 10 minute cold shower in evening at 58 degrees. Tingling in body on 3 and 4 round of breathing. 
66 minute shower in morning. 6 mile run at 42 degrees with no shirt.
7After 10 days of vacation with boys, breathing and breath holds not bad.  After 40 push ups, felt like puking, passing out, and tingling in face.  10 minute shower at 53 degrees. Stretching was best ever. Actually touched knee with forehead on front bend on both sides.

Tuesday, March 29th

Thought this was going to another 'pedestrian' cold immersion day of a 10 minute shower day at 48 degrees. I did this in the morning along with breath holds, out of the shower, of 1.10, 2.00, 2.20, and 2.30 minutes. Did breath holds of 40, 1 min, 1 min, and 50 secs in the shower.  The breath holds out of the shower are going great right now. The one thing I am doing is 30+ minute meditation before the I start the breathing and breath holds.  I am much more relaxed doing the breathing, and during the breath hold. Had huge chakra openings during breath holds in and out of shower. 

In the afternoon, ended up doing 10 minutes in Hampton Beach harbor at 101 bridge. Bob ended up going 13 minutes. Bob sets new NH seacoast cold immersion record! 13 minutes in water temp of 39 degrees. I did a measly 10 minutes. Bob could have gone 15 or more. He felt so goooood! Video of his last three minutes here: 

Monday, March 28, 2016

Monday, March 28th

No swim in the ocean today, but went 'back' to the 10 minute shower.  It was a 48 degree shower with four breath holds of 50 sec, 1 min, 1 min, and 50 sec.  I remember the days of shivering in a 10 minute shower but had very little shivering and didn't feel to cold after.

I did breathing before the shower, and had some of the longest retentions since weeks 4 and 5.  The breath holders were:
1. 1.30
2. 1.50
3. 2.10
4. 2.30

The nice thing was I felt at peace, calm, and nothing felt forced. I had a lot of tingling on the breath holds.  Not sure if this is changing my breath holds (longer), but doing a 30+ min meditation before the breathing the last two days and breathing was much better then has been in weeks.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Wim Hof Method : Week Three

Here is the third week of data, and my comments.

Summary:  A lot of tingling and light headed feelings during breathing and breath holding.  Also, saw some colored and pulsing lights during meditation and breath hold.   I already stated to do longer showers (over 2 minutes, 10 minutes in 65 degree water) and try out ice baths. I travel a lot for work and the temp of the water can be much higher then at home.  I read the book Becoming the Iceman and started to do the ice baths based upon what I heard Wim had students of his retreats do.

'Looking in rear view mirror' (after having completed program and seeing patterns) : This week was the start of tingling and lights during breath holds and mediation. I didn't realize how at peace I felt during breathing, breath holds, and mediation. This is definitely a very spiritual program. I did not realize I started going in ocean and ice baths this early on. In retrospect, pretty intense to start 10 minute ice baths at 43 degrees.  The Becoming the Iceman book gave me motivation and confidence it would be ok. I now remember how hard it was to get in the ice baths this week, and how much I shivered while in the tub.

Breath holds:
DayRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4

Push ups:
218 (on knuckles)

1Shower times were 2 1/2 and 3 minutes.  The method called for two 1 minute showers. Felt good in the shower.  The cold water made me laugh and feel a bit light headed. Could tell within a few seconds when I was at 1 minute on breath hold.
2Did a two minute cold shower first thing in the morning.  Did a 30 minute run in the cold.  After breathing, did two 1 minute sessions in shower. Cold all day long after cold shower in morning and run in cold. 
3My face was tingling after push ups. Tingling was during the breath holding.  On second breath hold, tongue felt like it was 'vibrating'.  I saw lights (purple, blue, and pulsating) when meditating.  Did two 2.30 minute sessions in cold shower.
4A lot of arm tingles during breath hold and breathing. Tongue 'vibrating' on third breath hold. Last two breathing rounds felt at peace. Did two 2.30 minutes in shower. 3 minute swim in ocean.  
5Was in warm climate so shower temp high so did ice bath. 10 minute shower at 67 degrees in morning. 13 minutes in 45 degree tub with last three minutes with hands in tub. Felt very, very cold after the bath.  Holding breath felt very calming.  It was hard getting in the tub.
6Traveling in warm again. 10 minute shower at 65 degrees. Eyes were blood shot. 10 minute tub at 43 degrees. Tingling in face after push ups.  Shaking a lot when in the tub and very cold when got out.
710 minute shower in morning @ 65 degrees and 10 minute ice bath at 42 at night. More tingling and light headed during breathing.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Saturday, March 26th

Felt awesome today! Some days you feel the power and some days not. As a road bike riding friend would say, "Some days you are the hammer, and some days you are the nail". Went 10 minutes but could have went longer.  

Dip in the water today. Tom in for a little over 10 minutes and me only about 2 1/2 min outside air temp 42 water temp about 38. Gooood one!

Drew and Logan (my 13 yr old son) went in as well. Both went into to neck. Drew lasted a good 2 minutes up to waist. He was feeling the power as feet were numb and he felt nothing...that is feeling the power.

The picture at the end:

Later in day did 30 minute mediation followed by breathing exercise. Best breathing exercise I have had in weeks. Did quicker breathing with less release of air. Did 1.10, 1.50, 2.10 and 2.10. Felt calm and a lot of tingling in body.  Had feeling at 1 minute could have gone forever.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Friday, March 25th

Bob Kerens and I went out for good one today. Bob went a little over 4.30 and I was a little over 7.30. Felt invigorating, and a great hot tub after. Water was still at 39 degrees. Air temp was around 38 degrees with a hardly any wind.

Wim Hof Podcast : Beyond Fear

Great Podcast. 

Wim learned early on that you can calm the 'beehive' in your head. The cold stopped this ‘bee hive’ (or what is also know as the ‘monkey mind’). Wim noticed that breathing become more controlled and deeper when in cold water.

Wim has a mission and a message. Wim’s mission is to take away suffering (anxiety), and make people happy, healthy and strong. Wim method is something anyone can do.

Wim Hof’s method combines mental, spiritual, physical, and physiology practices:
1. mental : focus, determination achieved through stressing yourself, and connecting with yourself
2. spiritual : meditation
3. physical : cold and breathing
4. physiology : cold and breathing
Method is breathing, cold exposure, and believing in yourself.

By shutting off the mind (monkey mind) and going into deep part of mind, you become a witness. Fear holds people back from getting to their potential. Fear is not being tapped into because you need to go deeper into physiology and mind in order to over come fear. The cold, meditation, and breathing allows you to go deep into the physiology and mind.

Methods are not complex. The method is accessible: breathing, gradual cold exposure, most is psychological (have to connect with yourself and your mind). Our mind (placebo effect) works like medicine. People have made this complicated. A couple of techniques. A little bit of cold (stress on the body...yes). Able to change mood, influence immune system, and get rid of disease. This comes from breathing, cold and believing in yourself.

People think happiness is comfort. Comfort weakens your body (immune system) and mind; comfort weakens your physiology. You need discomfort to deal with danger. Stress is danger, grief is danger, disease is danger, many dangers in daily life we can not deal with because of excessive comfortable. Real comfort is control, and happiness, strength, and health.

Shut off the mind and go into a deep part of the brain when stressing yourself. Releases endorphins, adrenaline, dopamine, and other chemicals which removes thinking and to be present in the moment. Placebo effect works.

Science is changing. Autonomic nervous system can be controlled. You bring up the PH level when you do the breathing which controls the autonomic nervous system. Science is too complex. Wim is changing science through what he is doing and learning in nature.

5K run this week in low twenties weather. 


Thursday, March 24, 2016

Thursday, March 24th - First barefoot run

Probably should not have chosen a 36 degree (low 20's with wind chill) to run first 5K bare foot on the beach.  Had to run some of it in the ocean as tide was coming up.  Lessons learned:
1. Do on a sunny day. Really felt the power/warmth of sun the few small times the sun came out.
2. Having both hands and feet exposed makes a huge difference in keeping both warm.
3. When I went into the 39 degree water, my hands immediately got very cold. Interesting to see how your body is working to force heat to where it is needed.

Pre run looking good:

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Wednesday, March 23rd

Actually took yesterday off as in NYC of work, and need to thaw out from the many days in ocean and running in cold.  This morning did 11 minute cold shower at 47 degrees with the following breath holds:
1. 50 seconds
2. 1 minute
3. 1 minute
4. 1 minute - Did feel a bit light headed after this hold.

My crown chakra was wide open during the breathing and breath holds.

After having not taken a cold shower (doing mostly 39 degree ocean swims from 5 - 10 minutes), it was different being in the shower.  I still remember the first 10 minute shower where I was shivering pretty bad the last five minutes, and took hours to warm up. Now shivered after shower and was warm within an hour.  

Did 5K run at 39 degrees feels 32 with only shoes and shorts but did last mile with shoes off running in 39 degree water.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Monday, March 21st

Great day in the Seacoast to NH to do some cold immersion with snow flying and on the ground from last night.   No cold water but did a run today in solid snow storm at 29 degrees with wind chill around 21.  Interesting run today:
1. Car turned around to snap photos
2. Two guys swimming (they were actually swimming) on north beach. They go ever weekend. Potential new 'members' .... Good

Breath holds as follows:
1. 1.15
2. 1.46
3. 1.47
4. 1.55

Did 10 minutes horse stance in snow before the run, and finished with a snow angel. Had epiphany at 5 minutes doing horse stance to two questions I get about doing what I do:  
1. Why cold - Because the cold focuses you.   At 5 minutes the 'monkey mind' (what Wim calls 'bee hive' mind) calmed and I was totally presented.  This was because of the cold.
2. Why that long - If you just go from 1 or 2 minutes or even 3 minutes you don't get to that state of peace and calm. It takes that long to get into to a state of focus and presence. 

Pictures after run: