Hello, boys and girls, this is Tim Ferriss, and welcome to another episode of the Tim Fair show, where it is my job to attempt to deconstruct world class performers of all different types from all different disciplines, to give you techniques, perhaps tactics, favorite books, training regimens, even recovery protocols, even that you can use. And my guests today are the best at what they do. Michael Phelps and Grant Hackett, they're very close friends. They were able to feed off of each other.
Their shared stories are incredible. So the combination of the two on this podcast was really special. Now, let me read these bios and then we'll jump right in to the conversation. Michael Phelps, you recognize his name on Twitter at Michael Phelps is widely regarded as one of the greatest athletes of all time. He captured 28 medals, including a record setting, 23 gold medals and set 39 world records. Over the course of his career, Phelps utilized his performance bonus for winning eight gold medals in 2008 to establish the Michael Phelps Foundation, which promotes water safety, healthy living, physical and mental and the pursuit of dreams.
The Foundation signature program erm is a learn to swim, healthy living and goal setting curriculum based on the principles and tools Phelps utilized in his swimming career and is available through the Boys and Girls Clubs of America and Special Olympics International. His advocacy for water safety and mental health has earned the recognition of the Boys and Girls Clubs of America Champion of Youth American Image Awards. That's the Humanitarian Award Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Special Recognition Award, the Ruderman Family Foundation, Morton E.
Rudiment Award and Inclusion and PreK Health Influencer 50 and twenty 20 Communicator of the Year, among many others. Phelps served as an executive producer and featured talent in the HBO documentary The Weight of Gold, which explores the mental health challenges Olympic athletes often face, although it really extends to many, many more people and types of people than Olympic athletes. In addition, he has published two autobiographies No Limits subtitle The Will to Succeed and Beneath the Surface that were New York Times and USA Today bestsellers and one children's book, How to Train with a T-Rex and Win eight Gold Medals.
You can find him online on Twitter, Twitter, dot com forward slash Michael Phelps, Facebook, Facebook, Dotcom Vaught's Michael Phelps and on Instagram at M Underscore Phelps zero zero. Grant Hackett on Instagram at Grant underscore underscore Hackett. That's to underscore. So I'll give that to you again at Grant. Underscore, underscore, represented and captained Australia in swimming at the Olympic Games. He collected a total of 58 medals over the course of his swimming career with 26 gold at Olympic Commonwealth and World Championship levels, along with 16 world records.
He remained unbeaten for 11 years in his pet event, the 1500 meter freestyle. That's just nuts. Grant also received prestigious honours such as the Order of Australia, the Centenary Medal and the Australian Sports Medal. Grant is a member of the Sports Australia Hall of Fame and International Swimming Hall of Fame. His qualifications include also an executive Masters of Business Administration with first class honours, a diploma of business law and a Diploma of Financial Services. Grant is the CEO of Generation Life and Australia based investment firm, managing more than one point three billion dollars.
So with all that said, please enjoy Michael Phelps and Grant Hackett.
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Tim Optimal. At this altitude, I can run flat out for a half mile before my hands start shaking. Can I ask you a personal question? Now, at the same time. Cybernetic organisms living tissue over the embryos go to Paris, so. Michael and Grant, welcome to the show. Thank you, Tim. Thanks for having us. Thank you. Thank you. So thrilled. Thrilled to have us all together.
This was The Da Vinci Code of Scheduling, the Fermat's last theorem of coordination, because we have people in every possible time zone and multiple countries.
So appreciate you guys being flexible with both making it happen. And I thought we would start with. Difficult or particularly notable races, and I'd love to start with you because I was confessing to both of you before we started, I enjoy swimming, actually did even learn to swim until I was in my 30s, which is a whole separate story. But I really enjoy swimming. But I know very, very little about competition and the history of competitions and notable races and so on.
Please speak to and describe for people what happened in the 2004 Olympics in the fifteen hundred meter freestyle.
Yeah, that was a particularly tough Olympics for me that year. I actually got pneumonia at the start of the year because I was just over training. I got a little bit sick and never missed a session. And, you know, I used to do sort of a K on average per session and I'm used to flog myself. And then I got pneumonia, went to hospital that turned into a chronic chest infection because I didn't stop training as soon as I came out of hospital, because I couldn't because I'd miss the Olympic Games.
And then when I got to the Olympics in Athens in 2004, I then one objective was to win three gold medals. And I got two gold medals, both by zero point one of the second two silver medals, sorry about point one of a second, and I wasn't too happy about that. Then I raced the 15 automative freestyle and I actually had to do it with a partially collapsed lung on my left side because it was blocked with mucus for so long that that race I probably pushed myself through more pain than I've ever had.
And one of Michael's teammates lost, and Jenson was breaking the American record and by about 12 seconds, doing a personal best time. And so it pushed me to the nth degree. And that was brutal. I came home, I went under a CAT scan and they said, oh, there's a massive lump on your lungs. We've got up to inject you with Idol and just to see what's going on. And they said, oh, it's a big bowl.
And, you know, Jeremy with a light on how to look. And I said, oh, it's OK, it's OK. And I said, What do you mean, is it OK? And they said, will you? Lower left lobe has got no oxygen for it for so long that it's actually just deflated and it's just sitting up in a big bowl. And I've got a huge lung capacity of twelve point six liters. And apparently that took something like a quarter of it off so that that race to win that gold medal was was the most painful moment that I've ever had in my career.
And yeah, but probably the most rewarding at the same time. But certainly after that, I promised I would never, never race like that again. And Michael knows how much of a sore spot that four by two freestyle relay was a few days before where we lost five point one.
And so so I've to follow up questions related to this. The first, as you mentioned, lung capacity, twelve point six leaders. Do you have any idea, just as a point of reference, what average muggle heart capacity is like? Normy is one of my Olympic friends put it enormous what that is, compared to a non Olympic swimming champion lung capacity.
So when that was done, because I'm referring to actually the stats in twenty four, it's one hundred and sixty percent above what it should be for my six and my age at the time. So it was twelve point six three leaders, my total lung capacity.
So one of those genetic things that helps the you know, it's at that level, it's with swimming and a lot of sports. It's like at the junior high level, you see all sorts of different body types. And then as you get a little bit higher, you see still different body types.
But there's a point where they start to converge on a very particular set of physical characteristics on the lung. So partially collapsed lung that to most people listening, that just seems completely baffling because so much of swimming would seem dependent on utilizing your full lung capacity. What did it feel like?
You said painful, but what does it feel like to swim at max capacity with a partially collapsed lung? It's not good, Tim. Let me tell you, that is the way I describe that Rice is like putting handcuffing someone to a treadmill, putting on a maxin climax speed and then just going for 15 minutes, that that would be intensity of the pain. Normally, where I felt that intense pain at the thousand meter mark, I felt at the five hundred made a mark in that race.
And it's excruciating, those thresholds that you have to go through. So you had to push myself through that. The funniest thing about that race, so I hadn't lost it in eight years at that particular point in time. And I was going to last a hundred meters and it was the first time it actually turned with someone next to me with one hundred meters to go. And I actually came home faster in the last hundred meters than what I did than when I broke the world record by seven seconds three years earlier.
So it actually taught me the value of competition in my worst situation that I can actually extrapolate. It'll get more out of myself, even even feeling like that. But the pain was I actually said, I'm going to retire if I can't get better after those Olympics, I'm actually going to retire from the sport because I didn't want to race like that again. What are you doing, like testing then, Hucky? Yeah, yeah, we were doing, but what do you remember what it would have been after that?
You know, it's funny, it was never that high off my 15, but I think I hit about a 12 after that where the two hundred I could hit a 13 or 14 and the 15 would normally be like a nine. But I produced all that because the oxygen saturation wasn't going down into my throat. So yeah. So it went up. That's a good point. No one's actually ever mentioned that, Impey.
Well, that's a great point. This is something I like. Snepp Think about because I mean like, I mean, you know me like I was always somebody who and still I'm like just a numbers driven person. So that stuff always just sends little key messages, whether it's to me or to Bob or to Tichina, my train of things you need to improve on or fix or maybe what we need to get tested for, too, so accurately.
Now, that was excruciating. But you still want to see stats afterwards. It's like the Olympics is over. That's the last I always of the Olympics. And, you know, you would have been doing the four by one medley probably that day as well, you know, and you still want to do everything like see what you have quickly removed the Lactaid out of your muscles after you cooled out. And that's one thing that Michael and I always share, is the stats like we can pull out any swimming time, any split, any world record split.
We're not back to front. I was going to continue with the the tough race question. And Michael, you can feel free to go there first. But I also have a question about that training obsession, competitive drive, and also just the familiarity with the numbers. Right. I do have some questions about that. But do you have a particularly tough race or competition that you'd like to mention, Michael?
I'm mean, the 200 fly, I'm really happy. It was only two hundred meters and twenty sixteen. I had been to two hundred and one meters. I would have lost that one sticks. Other than that, like I, I look back at, you know, most of my races and I can say they were pretty much pain free, but that was just because I was prepared that literally the only reason. So I was probably seventy five, eighty percent of the time really prepared and twenty twelve and like ten to twelve or kind of my fake sixty five.
Seventy percent ish.
Let's talk about prep since that's, that's where I was going to head next. I'm looking at a quote from your coach Michael Trump. Twenty three and he, he's referring to both of you guys and he's asked about the similarities between the two of you. And he said this is from an interview. At some point, they both enjoy training. It's not an ordeal for them. They're both really aware of what's going on in practice in relation to their time's speed, where everyone is and most importantly, where they are in training compared to their goals.
And I'm sure you guys get questions about competitive drive all the time. So I don't want to obsess on that phrasing. Exactly. But is that. Familiarity with the numbers and that awareness common across other team members, or is that something that is abnormally developed in the two of you? And if so, do you have any theories on why that is?
Well, I think I like a lot of it really is just God given feel and ability. Right? Like for me, like I'm somebody who is really a field swimmer and I was taught the process of it. So I was taught to swim as efficiently as I possibly could at all times. So I think that's really what allowed me to to be able to do the the repeat and feel the exact times with the stroke count or whatever we were trying to do.
But also just I mean, for me it was like training, training. I knew I had to be perfect if I ever wanted to do something that no one had ever done. Right. Like I was trying to compete and do things that people had never seen before, period in the Olympics and swimming. So it's like I had to go from a workout standpoint. I had to be as hungry as possible. And Bob kind of says jump. And I'm I'm always saying how high?
And I always wanted to break as many world records as I possibly could. So that's why I love training. And I know that you can ask and I think you'd agree that you put the two of us in a pull together training.
It is is I mean, it's pretty much like work or we're going toe to toe no matter what it is, no matter what stroke it is, just basically trying to rip each other's head off and just the pure love and competition of what we do. I think that that's something that made us very special.
But I mean, like the feel I think that's that's something that that only one, two, three, four percent of people, five percent of people in the top of of all sports probably really have any idea what we're talking about.
It's quite it's quite funny.
I think just when Michael was talking and I started thinking of the movie Days of Thunder, when they're in the wheelchair in the hospital and they kind of push forward and then the other one pushes forward, that's exactly how Michael and I trained together. It's just just constantly pushing each other and trying to take it to the next level. And you just disregard the pain and that the goal is always more important. The outcome is always more important than what you have to go through.
I think that's the way we always approached it.
I'd look to you as background for people listening, provide some context on how the two of you know each other and those in the swimming world will know the history and the similarities in trajectory and so on. But either of you could take a stab at this. So I'll let you know. Maybe, Grant, if you want to go first, just to describe the back story, how did you guys get to know each other?
It's really funny. I remember hearing Michael. I mean, there's a lot happening in our country right now because it's a twenty year anniversary since the Sydney Olympic Games. So there's plenty going on. And that was Michael's first Olympics.
And I remember when you got fourth, I think, in the tournament of fly there. And it's like a fifteen year old on the swim team.
What was a fifth moment to let's close the fourth those run next to it.
So I remember just thinking, wow, what a freak. A 15 year olds can feel wonderful. Ever hear of him again? So and then the next year, when he broke the tournament, a butterfly world record of the world championships was that one fifty two. Am I right on that?
No one should go. I was for six for there. Yeah for six fifty four and spring so.
And then I couldn't believe that a sixteen year old actually did that and I got to sort of know Michael from that moment moving forward and then you know then we got to train together and I think I just saw the eye on Michael on things like the approach towards swimming, the approach towards competition.
How did you end up training together just for those who might say, you know, you both sound like you have strong New Jersey accents, but I suspect you're from different places. How did you end up training together?
Back in two thousand and three, Michael and his coach, Bob, just came over to Australia for a coaching conference. And so he spent a few weeks in Australia. So we ended up training then. And I think at that point in time, we really got to know each other. And I saw Michael's level of application towards his training and all the new things that he was trying to bring to the sport, like the underwater of every single war which you fought for your listeners to, not me.
Too many people know when you're in the middle of a race and you're at two hundred three hundred forty two million mark, and then you try and push and go 15 metres off the wall. It is one of the most difficult things that a person can ever do. It's like a free diver, right in the last little bit of holding their breath. It is tough. And Michael started doing all these sorts of things that I thought, man, I wonder if that'll actually work and.
And so I saw just how creative and innovative in the sport that he was, and he was just a great guy, like he was just really I just enjoyed hanging out. We go out to dinner and do things together. And I think on the basis of our friendship was kind of in two thousand and three kind of spring boarded from there. And every time we saw each other, it made us because we'd obviously be traveling all the time. We just always connected and got along well.
And we had a lot of mutual respect for each other and what each other was bringing to the sport. And also there was another sort of counterpart of mine, Ian Thorpe, who's through that era. And I think both Michael and I had a lot of respect for. And so, you know, we'd all spent a lot of time together and and respect what each other was doing for the sport at that time, too.
And you mentioned I'm going to do a follow up here with with you, Grant. Then I'm going to come back to you, Michael, to ask you what you first noticed about Grant to you, Grant, when you mentioned innovation and new things being brought to the sport. What else did you notice? What were some other examples that you saw in Michael or through Michael?
Michael is the sort of guy that you never, ever want to say that he's not going to do something. You never want to be critical of Michael because he will stick it so far up you. It's not funny and not many competitors. If I actually said something about one of my competitors or tried to intimidate them a little bit, not even meaning to half the time it would get under the skin, it could almost go into their performance in a negative way.
Do that to Michael and I improve his performance by about four hundred percent that very early on, even when we played golf today.
If I'm betting on him on the last hole, it's like this intensity of focus and athletic prowess and everything else you can imagine that makes you great just comes into play, even if he's had the worst 17 holes beforehand.
So from a 20 handicap to a zero and no time and just one hole just to stick it to him.
Yeah. And I keep testing it. Right, because I'll start GM up before that hole just to see if my theory about him is correct. And one hundred percent of the time I'm proven right. So that's probably one of the other things about Michael. And, you know, that's that's an interesting characteristic that I haven't seen in many athletes across a lot of sports that are able to have that ability to increase performance to that extent because of maybe a slight bit of criticism or questioning.
So that was one of the other things I really noticed about him very, very quickly. I have some additional questions about that, but I'll let snoots on those. Michael, what did you notice about GRET? What were your some of your first impressions?
I don't know if you guys or the listeners can pick up, but I mean, as a kid growing up, like, I was a massive swimming geek, I was a nerd. I was very into it. I was trying to learn anything I possibly could. But also, like, I just respected other great athletes, other great swimmers, and growing up idolizing some of the greats that walked for hackey. And I you know, I just I learned so much history.
So being able to understand swimming from a global level very early on through my sister in a way, and I just really connected with him. And as you as you heard with with Thorpey as well, those two guys are probably the two closest swimming friends that I have to this day. I feel like I was closer with with the Aussies than I was really with the Americans. And so it was kind of strange. But, you know, like I, I do remember those two thousand and three days, you know, Bob and I were going back to some of those old sets a few weeks ago.
Hockey and pretty good seeing some of those kicking set. Some of the polling sets, the underwater stuff that we were doing with fins. I mean, just everything. And that's what I mean, like there aren't many athletes that can really take it to that level back to back days. And that was something that I saw in hockey. And obviously I respected the hell out of. And the chance that we got to spend together was always very special, always very meaningful, and obviously turned into more of a brother than anything else.
And it's been cool to see it's been. Oh, my gosh, unbelievable. So many great stories. I'm a scatterbrain. So I'm popping all over the place and I feel like I'm going to take some questions, though.
I also feel free to bounce around Scatterbrain. I've made an entire career out of it on this podcast.
So for a grant, I want to ask you about intensity, and I'm going to do it in a somewhat sideways fashion. But both of you are known for being beasts in training and having just ungodly work capacities. And I don't know if I'm getting the hours right. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but 30 to 40 hours of training a week, maybe more at times.
I want you to correct that in your in your answer, if need be. But it seems like the combination of that volume plus the intensity that you're both famous for would drive anyone into the ground. And I'm just curious. How you prevented that? From happening, if maybe you could speak to that grant. Yeah, I think, you know, first and foremost, around the 30 to 40 hours that we would train anywhere from some kind of five to seven hours a day, six days a week.
I know Michael would do seven days a week. I think he trained like five hundred thirty five hundred forty days straight into Beijing.
So he knows all about what was a little more than that. But it's like five, five, five or six straight years. Yeah.
So, I mean, that degree of application is one thing, but you're right, you have to be doing a better job, a lot harder than the guy on the other side of the world. And and I think the goal, the outcome was just so strong, the desire. And I think when something is so meaningful and purposeful to you as an individual, you're willing to to do anything. And it's funny, the body does get used to it to an extent.
You get used to getting up at four forty five, doing that eight kilometers, doing it to the intensity that you need to then going into the gym for 90 minutes doing that, then going back in the afternoon and doing it all again. So and it's amazing how much more you can absorb than what you give yourself credit for. But one of the things I always try to do is whenever my coach would set something like an insanely hot set and if I finished it, I would do one or two more reps.
And he was known as having one of the top three intense programs in the world from a lot of the physiologists out there. So I always just try to take it to the next level every single time I knew with my event, which probably is different to some of the finesse that Michael had in his events in terms of his underwater and skills. For me, it was about being tough and he's trained with a great 15 automated swimming called Eric. So he knows the intensity and the mindset.
And I was very similar to Eric in terms of if you have to pull me out of the water after this session and put me in an ambulance, I do not care as long as I get every asset on myself. And you've got to show up with that attitude every day because that's how tough the guys are that you're racing. And it's just it's just the way it is. And I think when you get the winds, it keeps you going right.
It keeps you going to the next step. It makes the bit a little bit more digestible. And I just love that feeling. I just love that feeling afterwards. And and I knew when I walked up to race day that if I'd done that work, that no one was ever going to touch me in my race.
And that's the thing, though, because it's like, you know, like there are days, obviously, you don't want to go. Right. Like like everything wasn't perfect for us. So it's like, you know, like on those days you have to be able to find that 10, 20, 30, 50 percent, you know, instead of zero. Or you could just full on pump the whole day. The workouts get lazy, like do whatever the hell you wanted to.
So it's like, you know, like to be as consistent as we both were, like throughout our career, literally every every single session, every single stroke matter. So like that that's like it's like for the listeners out there, like it was the smallest, finest details you could possibly think about. We had to think we had to go through and fine tune daily like I almost talked to. It is like you're you're going to college. And the top level is the ten thousand level class of the thousand level class, whatever the hell you want to call it.
You know, if you skip a few of those classes, like you're missing key steps that are going to help you at the very top level when the lights are on, when you might have had a bad night's sleep or your roommate might be sick, or maybe the food in the dining hall wasn't very good, or your air conditioning doesn't work, you know. So it's like all of the things that you're doing daily are prepping you for any kind of situation that you're going to face at the Olympics, at world championships, whatever your big event is.
Totally. And I suppose that's that's something that wasn't in my mind when I asked the question. And that is it's not just about developing more strength. It's not just about developing the brute attributes. It's also about the smallest technical details that you have to train to be second nature for competition.
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Are there any particular, Michael, tools or techniques for recovery that you found to really pull their weight, so to speak, and have an impact?
Because as a as a mere five foot eight here, I'm not really built for hydrodynamics.
I think about training, as you did for five to six years straight. And I just can't imagine a human body withstanding that without some portfolio of recovery techniques. Was there anything that stands out?
I mean, we had to be like we had to be on top of everything, you know, like trying to like I was saying before, trying to do something that no one's ever done before. You have to give yourself the chance. It's like you you really have to approach it in every single different way possible than ever has been done before. So, you know, there is no blueprint for it. So for us, it was one step at a time.
And for me to be able to to to swim at such a high level every single day, I had to be on top of whether it's nutrition, sleeping, drinking water, you know, like I treated my body like I was a Ferrari, like I treated my body like I'm a High-Performance race car because I'm asking it to do so many things. So, you know, I was sleeping probably eight to 10 hours a night with a two hour nap during the day.
I was eating eight to ten thousand calories a day ice tub massages. I had one like party strength conditioning guy for 15 years that was did all of my massages, all of my stretching, all of my grass and all of my cupping. I had to be super, super anal about it because I needed to ask my body to do so many things every single day. So I guess I'm kind of old school. Like, I, I never really got into cryo or anything like that.
But but still to this day, like, I work out six, seven days a week and, you know, for me to be able to do everything I need to do from playing golf, having enough energy with the kids and doing everything I need to do personally, I have to recover. So I am stretching probably forty five minutes a day. I'm probably ice tubing once, maybe twice a week. I go to acupuncturists cupping twice a week.
So I think LeBron said something about it earlier in the year. He spends a million dollars a year on recovery and honestly like that just makes sense to me because if he's like from what I just said, he's asking his body to do so much. It's such a high level. It's like you have to treat it like it like it should be treated right. You have to give it everything it needs. And that's the very basic stuff. So when I have all of my stats, like blood work, sleep numbers, lactate numbers, anything you can possibly imagine about health or recovery, I have it logged for the last 15 years, 20 years of my career.
So I was extremely I was very anal about it because I needed to be I was selfish in a way.
Yeah. That makes all the world of sense. And I think I think we're going to come back to that that focus and the pros and cons of it I'd love to ask you about. Anything you have found helpful for sleep and that that comes to mind because, Michael, you just mentioned it, you also mentioned LeBron James has been on this podcast and has a number of different techniques, including using calm app and other technological tools for helping with getting to sleep.
Did you find anything in particular? I mean, aside from training many, many hours a day, which I'm sure helps for sleep during your training or post competitive career? Yeah, I always found, you know, some of the apps are great. I actually used to put on one of these apps that used to have the rainwater coming down and falling on the leaves and those sorts of just calming type of things. It's really funny today. The best way I find to fall asleep is just breathing exercises and just focusing away from everything that kind of matters in your life or at work.
And, you know, the things that you're responsible for that normally keep you awake at night. But it's quite funny to to Michael's point, just around recovery. You know, sleep is is obviously the ultimate thing to the rest of the body. And I track everything. You know, I'm sitting here with one watch on one hand, another one on the other hand. I don't even know if either of them till the time, but they're tracking my heart rate variability that I sleep in the track, my recovery.
And I check these stats like there's no tomorrow, like I'm still a professional athlete. I think it just hard wired to be like that. But, you know, and it depends what phase you're going through. You know, those points where I had injuries in my shoulder would just be my shoulders would be aching at night. So I'd be sitting there with bags of peace on my shoulders just to get the inflammation down. And, you know, there's so many different sort of cycles throughout my career where, yeah, you'd have trouble sleeping.
Sometimes I would feel the pressure too much coming into competitions all the time for some reason. And and those are the difficult times where you need your recovery more than ever, but you're finding it hard to to be able to get that rest. So, you know, what's good for one person is not necessarily good for another. But what I know today is if I just did a lot more meditation, a lot more things of slowing down, a lot more mindfulness, those are the sorts of things that would have helped me a lot more throughout my career, because they're great techniques that I use today.
And I probably sleep better today because of just the foundation of knowledge that I've been able to build over the time, because we were just so anal and just so focused on recovery and trying to find ways to go. The body is gone. How am I going to give it back to to Michael's point, this is not a tractor. It's a Ferrari. And if it bolts a little bit loose, this thing will not perform. So everything is going to be right.
I used to want to walk somewhere. I would sit down as soon as I got there just so my hip flexors wouldn't tighten up because I wasn't as good a kick as what Michael was wearing and thought. So I had to do everything on my leg so I was better on the upper body. I could do that. I could pull it, go pulling just, you know, you tie your legs up and you swim with your arms. Only that was my strength.
But my lower wasn't. So I used to just be fixated on that every minute of the day to make sure whenever I walked up to training and particularly competition, my legs would lose. My hip flexors had full range and and I was going to get the most out of them. So, yeah, it's an obsession and that's the way it needs to be. I was spending some time, Grant, with one of our mutual friends who is deep in training right now, and we were hiking and he said, this is great, I just can't do too much hiking.
And I said, why not? And he said, because I don't want my ankles to be overly stable or strengthen, because I need the flexibility. I want the the looseness in the ankles. And I was like, wow, that's not something I hear every day.
It's only sport where you want loose angle ankles. You look at tennis players, they've got all the support in place. We're doing the opposite. We'll have a panel of wood where, you know, you get a strap across the top and you chuck your foot in there and you're leaning back to try and create more flexion and angle. And that's the thing like Michael and Ian Thorpe are incredibly flexible and incredibly strong and incredibly mobile. And I didn't have that last part around the mobility that these guys have, because think about it, you'll feel like flippers in the water.
So if you get that extra bit of angle and you get that flick right at the end, it's going to propel you just that little bit more. And, you know, I'm sitting here at an Olympic Games where I got two silver medals. I think it's over the course of about twelve hundred metres of racing and then by point two of a second in total. So every little bit matters.
Michael, I want to revisit a name that has come up a lot so far in this conversation, and that is Ian Thorpe.
And it ties into what Grant was saying about using critical or negative or doubting comments as rocket fuel for your motivation in the course of doing homework for this conversation, I came across a note on Wikipedia that said, quote, that he is yes, there are two of them that I remember.
Go ahead. I'm going to guess which one.
So Wikipedia feel free to correct any of this. It's not so much a direct quote. It just says Thorpe initially said that it would be highly unlikely for Phelps to win eight gold medals at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Phelps used the remarks as motivation and taped the words to his locker during the games. So I just wanted to fact check that is is that true?
One hundred percent, without question. The volume of words that you put on your locker.
You know, I think at that time, Bob and I were were a lot of the a major chunk of my career.
I'd say we we were big on highlighting different quotes or times and, you know, that people had done or things that we were trying to do. So like for me, like every morning I got out of bed and I saw my goal sheet of the times I wanted to do that year or at the Olympics or whatever written down. So when I was getting out of bed, I was getting into that with a purpose. So then when I got to the pool, that's where that was just honestly, if I if I was kind of having an off day, I use that as a as Hacky said, a little extra fuel.
That is something that if somebody did say it was impossible, I was going to shove that so far up that I was going to make them eat their words no matter what like that is that the there is no ifs, ands or buts about it. And again, in twenty sixteen, I believe he said something along the lines of it'll be impossible or almost impossible to see somebody over the age of thirty win an individual gold medal.
And funnily enough, I was giving him shit about it after the Olympics in sixteen and he goes, I know how you work. He said, so I was helping you give that extra fuel to really give you some extra motivation to to really make sure you kick some ass. So he because like to Grant's point, though, like I knew Grant. Probably better than any other athlete in the world I knew sort be better than any other athlete in the world and the same way for them.
We just we knew about each other because we all were just trying to learn whatever we could and use it into our everyday lifestyle to help us accomplish the goals that we wanted. Mm hmm. And to to Ian's credit or defense, I will read one of the actual quotes that is in Wikipedia in which he says, quote, I'm really proud of him, not just because he won eight golds, rather, it's how much he has grown up and matured into a great human being.
Never in my life have I been so happy to have been proved wrong. So ultimately was proved wrong. And as we're talking about this translation of using the negative or the critical into rocket fuel, like you said, Grant, it is, at least in my experience, which is very limited, but it's rare to see the one other exception that I can think of. And and maybe you guys will have have seen. This is Michael Jordan in the last dance, where every episode there is an example of this and someone will say something to him and then they'll say, fuck, shouldn't have done that.
And he comes back and breaks some universal record in the next quarter. And it was so remarkably consistent. And yet when you flash forward and you are watching this this current day footage of Michael, you can't help but get the feeling that he is still very angry, but he has lost Target at which he can direct this anger.
And so I'm curious to hear from you, Michael, because I've lived in my life with a lot of anger. And have you found that to cut both ways? What has been your experience with anger during the competitive years or afterwards?
I mean, naturally, you can agree. I, I carry a lot of a lot of anger and a lot of that, I would say, stems from my childhood and some of the things that I experienced. But I also think anger is really, really what what did feel me on those days where I just didn't want to swim. Those those were the biggest things. It was almost like turning a switch on in a way. You know, I'll say now, knowing what I know about depression, knowing what I know about anxiety, mental health and about myself as well, I know that I can approach my life for anything that I do in my life like I did in swimming, just because I, I guess I could say I was a professional or I was a doctor or whatever the hell you want to call me in the swimming world.
I feel like I understood swimming. You know, I'd like to think almost better than anybody and definitely a feel for it. So I, I don't have enough practice doing what I'm doing now in life. So I do have to take steps back and take deep breaths or I found that through covid my wife and I is communication level has gone up another level. So it's like little things like that for me. I'm constantly learning more and more about myself and about why I am how I am.
So yeah. Do I still get angry? Of course. But I play a lot of golf. As I said, I work out six or seven days a week. I lift weights three days a week. I for anywhere 60 to 90 minutes and then the other four days I'm either swimming, riding a stationary bike or I am on an elliptical. So those are kind of outlets for me, but it does get scary at times. And I will say Hackie has always been there for me through any single moment of my life, through those dark times.
But I can also say during this quarantine, you know, it's been difficult for me. I've been very open about that recently and through all of this. And I can imagine that it's been difficult for more and more people. And I'll say the one thing to the listeners out there who are listening to it, you're not alone. You know, that's the one thing I truly, truly want to repeat. You'll hear me say a lot of times to this podcast, but you are definitely not alone with your thoughts, your emotions.
But if you are afraid or you're scared or nervous, reach out to somebody for help, a trained therapist or a trained doctor. This is the it's just a very uncertain time for everybody in the world. So that was a little rant. So go. No, I enjoy rant.
That's why we have a long format. You mentioned dark times. I'd like to talk about this because I feel like both of you have been very open about this, which is a huge service, is a huge public service to people who feel alone. It's a huge public service to people who feel like they're uniquely flawed or are in a place of shame because the mental health and depression and so on can be very stigmatized still. Michael, could you speak to when you knew you needed help or when you hit rock bottom?
Could you just tell the story of that moment or moments?
The first time I experienced depression, I it was back in 2004 coming back after all that great success. And obviously you expect it to continue and you get back and it's good for a week or so and then you kind of feel like you fall off the face of the earth. So for me, it was it was just beginning to open and talk about these things honestly, like I felt there was a weight lifted off my shoulders. You know, these were things that I carried for probably twenty years, fifteen years.
And, you know, when when I really do get into those dark times, I basically isolate myself and give everybody the Heisman because I almost feel like I am causing more stress to their life or I'm a burden or this, that or the other. So like, I go strictly internal and almost like I pick at scabs or internal scabs that really hurt. So like, I almost try to inflict pain, but. Not literally inflict pain so it gets bad and when it does get bad, it really spirals.
And also one thing, hockey hockey was over here was that two years ago, hockey to two years ago. Twenty eighteen. Yeah. I mean, that was that was one of the scariest ones that I've really experienced. And I honestly, I feel like I'm alone. I feel like everybody is attacking me. And it's just it's an uncomfortable feeling. But, you know, I basically I guess the easiest way for describing it would be like a turtle going back into its shell.
I want more than anything to feel like I am a human being because I feel like that's what I am. You know, I feel like I had a great talent and I put my mind to something and I didn't give up. I went through ups and downs and I was able to accomplish some pretty amazing goals. But at times, like, I feel like I'm almost a piece of meat and an object. And I think especially during those times when I start going there, when I'm in dark times, you start going there.
It just is just downward spirals. So that's why, you know, I alluded earlier to talking about how much my mind and my wife's communication has really just grown through quarantine because I would say I had a similar incident like I had in twenty eighteen where it was very scary. And I know Nicole was doing everything she could to help and we were almost forced to grow and to change as a couple because of the current situation and the situation at the time.
It was difficult. But honestly, like I think that's the coolest thing for me that that I am so excited about with having depression or with having anxiety, because it it honestly makes me who I am. And I understand it's never going to be fixable. And it's a part of me for the rest of my life. But what I think it's it's something that I want to learn more about and something I'm excited to wake up every day and have that chance to learn more about.
So that's why I'm so you know, I've spoken about my wife and I just just communicating so much more. It's it's crazy to to even think that that was possible. But just going over leaps and bounds, you know, just learning more and more about how we both work and things we need to be careful of so we don't trigger one another. It's been a almost a blessing in disguise for us.
If I could just jump out, you said whatever is always enough. If I'm misquoting, please, please correct me. But for those who are familiar, could you describe what made twenty eighteen scary. What was the experience.
I mean in twenty eighteen I actually took a pair of golf shoes and I hit myself in the head with them. That was, that was one of the very last times that I tried to inflict pain on myself. And I knew at that point like that was like that right there. I've never done something like that. I've never thought about doing something like that. And the fact that I did that right, there was a message for me, this is a red flag.
So coming back to the house and I had a kind of a meltdown. But with Grant talking to Grant, talking to my wife like that was that was just a learning experience. They're like for me, like I basically am a pot of water. Like at the at the very last second I'm ready to blow. And when I blow, it's pretty bad and it gets pretty ugly. I was I would say throughout my career I'm great at compartmentalizing.
I would say I could probably win a few more gold medals at that, but that's not something to be proud of. So I think that's that's one thing that I've learned to just just to really talk about. I've learned more about my emotions. And if I have something I don't like, I talk about it or ask questions about it. So I think with the experiences that I've gone through and the struggles that I've gone through, I feel like I have almost let my guard down in a way, if that kind of makes sense, you know, like I dropped my shoulders, like taking a deep breath and just tried to relax, because I think throughout my whole entire life, I've been trying to shave hundredths of a second off my time.
Right. And and now for for everyday life, I'm trying to slow it down. So it's it's crazy now for me to look at life. So it's it's yeah. The last four years have been interesting, but but that in twenty eighteen, you know, that, that to this day was one of the scariest times of my life. That and twenty fourteen after my second DUI, we talked about sleeping earlier and I have opened up more and more about this story just because it's, it's a part of me.
So basically throughout our whole entire life, throughout my entire life, I most of my swimming career, I we were prescribed Ambien for traveling for trips to try to acclimate to times. And that night after my DUI, I was happy that I only had two Ambien left. That was a sleep in that I had an. Who knows what would have happened if I had more? I think those two moments for me are the two scariest moments of my life.
And recently I'd say within the last handful of weeks, I've I've had a couple of real scary breakdowns where I almost really start shaking because I just don't know what to do. I don't know how to control anything. And I yeah, that's about it.
Thank you for sharing.
Yeah. But it's like, you know, like, like honestly for for me. Yes it is. It's wild to think about. It's wild to talk about. But it's, it's, it's what makes me me and how if I can learn from just understanding why, why I am certain ways or why I react certain ways, then I feel like I'm setting myself up to be a better person. And at the end of the day, that's all I want.
I want to learn more. You've heard us talk about stats, numbers like I want to know stats. I want to know numbers. I want to know why. Like, I just I don't know why, why why should every single question that you can possibly think about. So, like, I just I always know there's so many other options out there. And if I come to a dead end, I can reach out to one of those options or I can backtrack a few steps and take a different route.
So, yeah, you know, I think really trying to simplify life and trying to slow things down for me is probably those are the two things that that I would say I focus on on a daily, daily basis just to just to give myself a chance.
Yeah. And I'm going to come back to you in just a minute because I want to do a similar expedition into some of the dark chapters to hear your stories. Before we get to that, I am looking at just a paragraph from an ESPN article that includes you, Michael, and I want to read a small portion of it and ask a question. So here's the portion. It says, In treatment, Phelps earned the nickname Preacher Mike because each day began a chapter of the Purpose Driven Life, a book given to him by former Baltimore Ravens linebacker and good friend Ray Lewis.
I don't know if you would still recommend this book or how you feel about it, but are there any books or resources that you have found particularly helpful in your journey in experiencing these things?
So I have a very close friend of mine who I feel very comfortable opening and opening up to and asking a lot of questions about. I think, you know, I'm talking about how he passes me a bunch of different books and some of the ones recently, I guess, like I, I was never somebody who like to read books. And when Ray gave me that book, I wasn't I wasn't spiritual in any way like I had, you know, I wasn't religious.
But I think through my journey I one hundred percent spiritual without question. There is a power that is greater than me. I don't know what it is, but but through my journey, I feel like I have learned so much from the books that I have received. The Purpose Driven Life is one amazing one. The power of now is an amazing one. Ego is the enemy is one that I go back to a lot. The subtle art of not giving a fuck is a great one.
I loved it takes what it takes. I thought that was a great one. Just a little thing like little books like that where I can feel for me whenever I'm listening, like I tend to do audibles and what I'm listening to it. I really just it's what we all what we're all supposed to do.
But I love just taking little small pieces that that are similar to things that I did in my career. Like for me to be as efficient as I was in swimming, I had to learn the absolute bottom line of every single stroke, like I had to be as efficient as I could with my body that I was given. So it's like I've almost done that in ways. It's opened my mind and some really interesting new thoughts. It's given me new journeys to travel down, roads to go down.
But yeah, I mean, I would say I cycle through a lot of those, depending on, as you heard before, the dark moods that I'm in. I went back to the side of not giving a fuck just because I felt like I was just attacking myself too much and I just needed to get a handle of of a few things and do what I'm teaching my kids, you know, take a breath, take a deep breath every once in a while and relax.
You know, it's not it's not it's not about racing the clock and every single thing that you do in your life. So that's one one big, big key thing for me is just trying to be as simple in every form of life as I possibly can. And it's honestly, it's it's looking at my kids. And that's the greatest example. I mean, we were talking about earlier, my my two oldest boys were playing with a metal trash can the other day, you know, one of the trash cans where you step on it, the lid pops up one of.
One is banging on the top like a drum, the other one is stomping on the lid and I was like, Blumer, what are you guys doing? And without missing a beat, he looks over and said, Dad, I've never seen one of these things before and I could do anything but start laughing. So I was like, oh, yeah, whatever. Like, go ahead. Like, meanwhile, there's a hundred different noises going on.
And I mean, I was going crazy, but I just I laughed like I, I damn near fell on the ground laughing. I was like, that's what kids are like, they are the best example of really living in the moment. And it's for me I feel like having having the time that I have around around my kids during this quarantine, like I feel like I, I have a few things that I can kind of log into the memory bank and go back to when boomers pressing that red button that I hate to be pressed inside of me and he's trying to get my nerves and go crazy.
I mean, so but kids are kids. And honestly, I've seen that one of the coolest things is they want to be so bad. And honestly, they they just love us. And it's it's not for me. Told you. I told you we'd get tears for me. Honestly, it's taken some of the dark times that I've been through. You know, I just know just literally been crying and having your kids come up and give you a hug like those things like that right there.
You know, it's the greatest thing on the planet. So, yeah, like I mean, it's just been it's been a treat. And as a dad, it's it's the greatest feeling in the world. Thank you, Michael Grant. We're going to go back into the depths here a bit.
I was going to say, if you want to keep if you want to keep going, it doesn't bother. I just need a second to wipe the tears off that I've got.
I've already been through a whole lot of emotions listening to that, just going back to twenty eighteen. And that day when Michael was, you know, not Michael or was Michael, you know, just the other side of success, you know.
So I just think, you know, it was tough to to listen to them. I actually had water in my eyes just listening to it because it was, you know, sing one of your best mates that you've known for so long and been through everything together. Just go through that. It was it was brutal. It was really, really tough. Sounds brutal.
What if what if your personal experience, what did the dark times look like for you? Or are there any particular instances that come to mind in terms of knowing when you needed help or hitting rock bottom?
The first thing I'll say at the outset, it's it's really funny. As an athlete, you were told from day one. I mean, I started swimming when I was four and being competitive when I was five. So everything throughout my childhood and throughout my sporting career was, hey, if there's an obstacle, go through it, overcome it, beat it. You're injured, you're sick, whatever. Just turn into a gladiator and just keep going forward.
That is your job. So and it was almost like adversity was your friend. And you used to I call the expression now with mental health, it's like I got used to. I'm fighting my way through difficult periods in life. And that's not right. That's great. As an athlete, that's a great attribute to have to push through pain and overcome those challenges, to get the outcome. But but in life, that actually doesn't work. And I found that out the hard way and I realize how real mental health was.
So I think, you know, for me, I remember I've been through the ups and downs and I really never recognize that about myself because I just kind of thought, OK, just put your boots back on and keep going. But, you know, a few years ago when I went through a really public divorce here in Australia and everything that followed from that and innuendo and speculation and people questioning your values, it just undid me. And I just didn't realize how much it did me and how much it took me down.
And you got to a point where, you know, early twenty, seventeen, you know, just kind of one more thing. It's one more thing where I was sitting in a hotel room, completely isolated, two security guards on that floor so no one would come near my room, you know, sitting on the front page of the newspaper in the news, just what's going on with me. And and then I think the four days that I had there and I was texting Michael at the time, I literally had over a thousand messages in my phone on WhatsApp, on my email and on my SMS within about a three hour time frame.
And I think I got back to three people and Michael was one of them. And Allison Schmitt, who lived with Michael, too, with the only people that I got back to. And I think I use words like I'm just scared and everyone thinks you're invincible for what you've done. But, you know, like everybody else, you just have those vulnerabilities. And when it's so public, it just exaggerates the situation and amplifies it and creates another layer of complexity that you have to deal with.
And I just made a commitment to myself, I think at the end of that, that I'm never going to allow myself to get to this spot again. Like any time that I feel like, you know, you're getting pushed to that edge or. Things are going wrong. I'm just going to adopt the strategies that I now know instead of denial, because I would always put myself in denial, I wouldn't let myself be vulnerable. And even my my fiance now, like, if I start talking about the way I'm feeling in isolation, I'm going through a stressful period.
And she goes, she she is so proud of me. She goes, I just love it when you're vulnerable. And I said, I feel like a bit of a pussy to be honest, but yeah. Cool.
And so it's like, you know, and then I'm like, wow, I feel better afterwards, you know, that that open and honest transparency and my relationship is better as well.
So it's like, well, doing doing this vulnerability thing, which was the number one thing that I found, I had to tap into going through those stages in life and phases whenever they embark upon you and they come across at the weirdest times to like even when things are great and going well, sometimes that's can be a low point. After that, you have to deal with that. So, yeah, I mean, I made that decision back in twenty seventeen.
I basically live with my uncle most of that year and he was, he was my biggest supporter. When I went and did therapy and got some help, he was a guy drove me there and dropped me off and we had talks till 2:00, 3:00 a.m. sometimes, you know, later in the morning and he'd come in and wake me up in the morning with the dogs and boom rickrolling on the bed all over me, which I really appreciated.
You know, it's those sorts of times where, you know, we'll just always be there for each other. But people see us as these people who have achieved great things and won multiple Olympic gold medals and world records and all that sort of stuff. But just because you're good at something doesn't mean that you don't fall into the same fate as everybody else when it comes to mental health or just being a human. And yeah, I had to learn those things definitely the hard way.
You were mentioning the the vulnerability with your significant other. I was just having a conversation last week with a coach who you could really consider on some level a therapist. And he said to me, candor is the ultimate aphrodisiac.
And it seems to have a lot of benefits, not just singular benefits. And you mentioned strategies.
I'd love to hear what other rules or strategies you have found or developed for yourself so that when you when you sense yourself edging towards the brink, you are better able to reveal yourself. Away from it. I think I'm just doing everything proactively, I exercise like Michael six, six days a week, I try and make myself have a recovery day, which is hard when you've got personalities like ours.
We don't know the importance of recovery, but we just like to keep going and going and going.
So that's one thing. The other thing that I do, it's funny, I went to stop sort of drinking for a year and then I got to a year and I was kind of like, you know what? But I don't even feel like drinking anymore, kind of. And it's not like it was ever a person who drank every day by any means. It would be far and few between. But I could go go out if we were having a night with the boys or something like that or use it to escape.
So, you know, I stopped drinking. So full stop, like I got to year and I was like, you know what? I don't even feel like that anymore. It's not something in my life that I value or I like or it brings value to it to me. So I don't do that. I also make sure that I get enough sleep. That's really important for me. That's I eat very healthy. Diet has been a big part and just that whole sort of health regime that I have to follow just to make sure that I'm in a good space.
So I and the one thing that I still find difficult that I do and we just touched on as I talk about it, I talk about where I'm at, how I'm feeling, what I'm feeling like, that instead of bottling up, Michael and I were the kings of compartmentalizing things and actually just locking them away. I'll deal with that box when I need to deal with that box. But unfortunately, that box is growing and being fueled and when it's no good, it's not good at all.
And Michael at one hundred is best. So I try and jump into that box and I try and work through it, try and get it out. And and so I think for me it's all that sort of proactive stuff that I'm doing that and I feel more settled in my life now than I ever have.
And you know what and I know this with Nicole because I know Michael's wife extremely well and the wonderful human being that she is just how good she is for Michael in that situation and how much he cares and loves him like it's actually beautiful to watch. That makes me because I've been through this stuff with her, you know, like and we've spoken about how we're there for Michael. And, you know, Charlene is the same for me. Like, I just that partnership of someone who gets you, like she gets me she gets my my drive and ambition.
And yet that that other mental, you know, sort of fault that whatever you want to call it, vulnerability, those things that that are imperfect, she gets that and she likes it and works with me on it. And I so I think I haven't necessarily had the right partnerships in life as well. So I think that's a really important part of who you surround yourself by. But that that significant other can make and break in many respects, too, because they've got to connect with a unique personality, which I know Michael and I certainly share uniqueness like that.
So they're kind of the things that really matter.
And I look, it's been a journey to to get to know all those things because I've made so many mistakes along the way. But I just know what makes me feel like more of me now and feels like a purpose and the things that help support and maintain that grant.
Do you see a someone like a therapist on a regular basis or are they used only in cases of emergency are beginning to read like I do.
If I've gone through a hard sort of period, I won't say on a consistent sort of week to week, month to month basis. But if I am going through a stressful period, I've definitely got that support network there. And I'll jump online line, however, to get it out, because sometimes it's it's and I've learned this too. I didn't have really use a sports psychologist too much when I was swimming because I always thought I was invincible and that was a weakness.
If I had to go up into that, little did I know that would have really helped me.
And I might have had a better trophy cabinet than what I've got if if I recognize that at the time. But now sometimes family members I know spoke about significant other than but I know family members sometimes aren't necessarily the ones who should be tapping into because emotion is just too close. So having someone a little bit more objective has the skill set and the understanding somebody can have a different type of conversation with is really important. So definitely got that network in there tap into it when the flags kind of come up.
What are the flags like, when do you know it's time to take yourself in for a 60 thousand mile checkup with professional, but what are some of the signs that that you notice?
I mean, we spoke about anger before. Michael was talking about that in the way he's able to channel and look, there's a negative connotation with anger because it's not always a bad thing. Sometimes I think it can push you to get more out of yourself to deliver an outcome that is amazing, you know. So but sometimes it can when you're kind of you're edgy, you're irritable, you're you know, you're not sleeping well. Things just aren't escaping the mind.
I think all those kind of, you know, little red flags that sort of start to add up and compound. And you're just removing that that stress, that white bear kind of the things that you start to recognize and go, hey, I'm going through a bit of this. This is not just a one off right now. This is not a two off. This is kind of been a little bit more sustained than what I would like. And I think I have a much greater ability to check in with that now than what I've ever had where before it would be like a little box that I said it goes into to just let's just stuff it back in there with the others.
And I don't let that happen anymore. So, yeah, it's just it's mood more than anything else. And if it's a sustained poor mood, then, yeah, that's that's the thing that I go, OK, we've got to do something about this. So, you know, I'm in a situation where I've got twins from a previous marriage and I miss them like crazy when they're not here. And the impact that that had on me for so many years that I failed to even really talk about has been a big thing that I just highlight now.
And I'll just get to show. And I'm just like, I'm really missing Jagga or Charly's or, you know, and I'll just start to talk about it.
And then all of a sudden you kind of get on the other side of that. So they're kind of the things that I recognize now that aren't as big of blind spots as they were previously.
And when you talk to a professional, if you do, what is the format look like? Is it more about really just getting it off your chest and talking to someone, or is there a particular type of guidance or a format that is helpful to you?
I have a guy who I tap into and he's almost got a comical element to his style, which are so I love that because he's extremely intelligent, very, very bright.
And look, I'll write down the things that I'm feeling and that that I feel like I've got to really check in with and get through and ask questions about. So I'll do that. So that's a structure I come in with. He'll then just pull that stuff on all of that. That just makes it takes the emotion out of it almost it almost because it's more pragmatic. He goes, you know, this is why that would happen. This is why you feel like that.
You know what you kind of catastrophizing that that's not as big as you seem like. And then you'll make comparisons and perspectives around other people or other situations, and it kind of gives you a different view. And it's like he just comes in and provides these additional lenses that I didn't have that he's just given me. And I kind of cover off all the topics like that. And then and we have a laugh through it all, too, once you kind of get on the other side of each of those areas.
And so I find that that style has really worked with me. It's a good question to no one's ever actually asked me that before.
I felt like if I can get one novel question and you guys have been interviewed five hundred million times, so I'm glad to give myself a pat on my bald head for that one.
And I'll follow it up because you mentioned something that I find very interesting and that is sending something in written form to this therapist beforehand. Is it a stream of consciousness? I'm feeling this because of this and that is it just like one gigantic paragraph or page, or is it something else that just seems like such a time saver to provide that context to someone in advance so they can actually put some some thought into how they might respond to you?
I think I mean, you probably got the sense through the chat, Michael and I were very analytical. We think through everything in every situation and every outcome. That's the reason we know every times with respect to our events and the timeline and history of our sport so. Well, and and I think if I'm going to approach something, I Miles, will do it properly and get the absolute most I can out of it. So it's just dot points, dot points and specific areas like things that have been on my mind, dot points.
That points are bullet points, I guess. And all the time. Yes. So yeah, I can I can decipher all of that stuff.
I think it looks good when I go over and say with Michael, we'll go out and I'll say something, he'll repeat it for me.
And I was like, yeah, what he said, because everyone sort of like I've got to hit but not the ultimate at deciphering Aussie slang.
Yeah. So. A bullet points is exactly what I got there. Yeah, yeah, so yeah.
And so for me that that works that kind of just cover the areas, the topics that have been on my mind or the situation. Normally it's more of a situation from a day to day. I'm pretty good. It's more if I've come across something that's sustained stress or I can't work through myself and look to to be honest, that seems to be happening a little bit less in my life. But in saying that, I know it could intensify at any point in time.
And I recognize that you've got to always stay on top of those things. And it's been great for the work that I do now and the life that I have a dad that I am. I think I've just improved across so many different areas. And and it's probably where I refer back to sport. I'm like, damn, I wish I used that sports psychologist a lot more and tapped into that. I didn't even recognize vulnerability for a split second through basically my entire career.
And I feel that that was a bit of a disaster now and it actually probably would have set me up better for a possible career as well.
It seems like a lot of superpowers have, on the other side of the coin, super weaknesses, almost by definition, because if you have if you have a hyper focus on anything in life, by definition, you have to neglect other things. You cannot you only have so much attention to slice and dice. Right.
And if you're using compartmentalisation as one of the tools for optimizing as a competitor, which every competitor I've interviewed on this podcast seems to be very good at, then sort of a price associated with that when it's when it's applied more broadly speaking.
Michael, do you do you meet with therapists or professionals on a regular basis?
I'm online all the time. I mean, with everything with traveling as much as I do. I spend a lot of time on talkfests. I've worked with locksmith's for a few years now. And honestly, for as much time as we're on our smartphones, it's just kind of a no brainer. But but also, besides that, like like the hackish point, I'll be the first one to admit I still compartmentalize a little bit when I say I don't think I would make the podium anymore if I was competing in it.
So I think I've definitely improved. But my big thing is just I pile things up sometimes and like, I can't agree with what Hockey said and what you were saying about them. Like when we did that in our career, like like I was almost selfish in a way where everything I was doing in my life was based around something, every single decision I made. And now at the family, it's it's not that way. My life is different.
So I have to take a step back and almost reassess everything. And that's how I was saying, like really simplifying everything to the smallest form, because that's that's what Grant and I did during our career. And honestly, like I was sitting here taking notes, listening to kind of like Grant was Grant does when he kind of feels himself spinning.
I literally was like, oh, my gosh, that's exactly what I had to do if I wanted to learn underwater dolphin kick or like I had to break it down to the simplest form. So that's really what I have to do more and give myself a little bit more credit from time to time where I'm as hard on myself as I am. You are the toughest person on yourself that I know, brutal, like I'm sitting here looking at like I mean, I can't even some of these names that I have on my desk, I'm not I'm not going to repeat, but I mean, like, you know, like I also like to have kids point.
Like, I love writing stuff down, writing stuff down the sea, like especially with dates, because times for me are so important. So if I know I'm going through a dark phase, like what was I writing, like why was I thinking these things? So like here, like I've felt alone or I felt dark lately. So those are things that I have written on my calendar. So like if I sit down, I see that and I'm like, why was I feeling dark?
Like I have so much to be happy for, so much to be proud of. Like there's so many amazing things going on in this world with me, with my life, with everything like why my dark, why am I afraid? Why do I feel worthless? So like I feel like writing stuff down really helps. And that's why I like for for listeners out there in particular, like if you guys find ways to simplify things because we live in an over a crazy, crazy moving Fetlar crazy fast moving world where there's always things trying to get our attention.
So if we can simplify things and focus on what's important to us, I think it just it makes our life easier.
Right? Like there's less stress to worry about. And you hear hackey, like, how can you talk, like, communicating shit? I made the joke that I learned how to communicate it to 30. Yeah. It's it's I mean, I can laugh about it because, like, I was really good at compartmentalizing but like that's not good. So that's that's why I like I talk so much about this, this quarantine and how much it's forced us to become vulnerable in a way because there's so much unknown.
So it's like if we want to give ourself a chance and we have to do something different. So, you know, if it's opening up and talking about something that is scary, try it. You know, because like I say, like all this stuff that I've talked about throughout that that happened throughout my career, I mean, should I carry that thing, like all that stuff along for ten years? So, like having that out and open, not if one makes it so much easier to talk about, but to like there's there's so much less weight on my shoulders.
I feel I feel normal, you know, like I talking about this stuff that I know there are so many other people that go through the same thing or in similar different ways, like like I just I don't know, like I just I feel so much better, like my shoulders drop. And that's just something that I will always say and try to push.
There's a weight, there's a weight to secrets or keeping things inside or there can be. And it makes me also want to mention that there is a new documentary, HBO documentary out called The Weight of Gold, in which you're featured very heavily.
Why be part of that? And I think we've probably mentioned a lot of the reasons why, but maybe a better question, because that's kind of a lazy question. And I should know better. A better question is. How does it feel having done that and maybe you could describe how it feels? Yeah, please, please, please say more. And just for those who don't have any context, the Weight of Gold is an HBO sports documentary, very, very well shot, exploring the mental health challenges that Olympic athletes often face.
Just want to provide that since I didn't explain it. But could you could you expense say more about what it's like to do that as you've heard or as people have seen or read?
I struggled throughout my whole career, so, you know, in twenty sixteen where I was probably more aware of just life in general and everything that was going on more than I ever have in my life. So, you know, at that point I saw that there are other athletes that were going through similar things, like I was going through opening ceremonies and seeing athletes, almost body language. Like I feel like that's something that I've learned to read really well over and over throughout my life.
But I started like reading people, but I also started hearing things that people were saying, you know, seeing things that people were posting or this or that. And I was like, oh, like literally I said, oh, shit, this is a lot bigger than I thought, you know, because I always knew it was mental health in general was something that was very big. But I almost like I felt like it smacked me in the face.
Twenty sixteen Olympics and losing way too many of our family members in the Olympic world over the last five years. I want to cry every time I think about it. So for me to lose it. You mean suicide, committing suicide? Yes. So for me to be able to do this documentary with the athletes that we had who were so vulnerable, I just I can't thank them enough for opening up and, you know, being them being their authentic self and feeling, I guess, sharing some stories about what we experienced and what we go through.
But, you know, as we stated earlier, this is something there's a massive stigma around mental health. And this is something that that a journey that I've started on. And I'm breaking the wall down as fast as I can. And the more that people stand up and talk about their stories and their struggles, we're going to break it down piece by piece. And doing this documentary, I feel is an awesome first step and just kind of a raw look at some of the things that go through our heads and that we experience.
And we're not this the statue. We are human being. And it was something like I said, I can't say enough. I'm super proud of it just shows just like I'm I was a kid in a candy store working on it. This is something that's it's it's like my baby. So I've I've I guess really since I opened up in 2014 about my struggles with depression and anxiety, I really kind of took it by the horns, so to say.
And this is my mission. Like, I'm going to do everything I can, one to learn as much as I can about mental health, but also try to help as many people as I can break this wall down. The suicide numbers continuing to climb, and it frustrates the hell out of me. I mean, I read a story last night going to bed of two brothers that that are on a show over in London. And honestly, I just my heart hurts because I feel some of the pain that they go through.
And I mean, I think the biggest thing I want people to know that there is help on the other side. You know, I've been and I've seen a lot of really dark places throughout my life, but I also know that I'm not alone. So when I look at that word on my on my desk like that, I wrote down like I am not alone. But that's that's part of my darkness. And I think just always, always knowing that that that there is somebody out there that that's that we all have to realize, no matter what we're going through, somebody is there to hold your hand, to give you a hug to whatever it is that you need, because we are not alone in life.
And honestly, we can't do anything in life by ourself. Like, it's really hard if you think about it. And if we can include other people that that love us and want to be around us, then it makes life ten times better. That was one thing that I had to learn the hard way with compartmentalizing throughout my career is is I couldn't do it by myself.
It was impossible. I couldn't handle the the stress of the emotions and the feelings, all that stuff that was building up inside of me while I'm trying to perform at the absolute best. Like it's it's impossible. It's unhealthy. So I think that's that's the biggest thing really, being able to do it and put it together. And I was honestly frustrated with how long I was somebody that wants stuff done fast. So I never realized how long the process I wrote.
So I had never really realized how long the process of making a piece like that takes. And to be honest, I'm extremely thankful that that it came. Out and we were able to launch it during covid because it's the single that was the one thing that I was deathly afraid of when when everything started happening was the impact on everyone's mental health that this is going to take. And we've seen suicide numbers increase. So I can't stress enough how important it is that you have something going on inside of you that's not normal.
Say something to somebody, write it down something. Don't hold on to it. I think life is life is definitely too damn short. And, you know, as I said earlier, I want to slow down time as much as I can and be able to enjoy everything that that that life has to offer totally.
One way of slowing down time is sharing time with others.
And and it's and it strikes me that, of course, on one level, I respect both of you tremendously as just icons of competition as as champions of achievement. But what impresses me even more than that is the model of male friendship and brotherhood and mutual support that you guys have demonstrated, certainly privately, but also publicly.
And I'm just so happy to have both of you on this call, because that seems so foundational to your success as not athletes necessarily, although that could be part of it as humans is having that deep bond and mutual support. And like you said, Michael, even if you are out there and feel alone, which is very easy during covid, and it's easy all the time in modern industrialized cultures because we are very much compartmentalized physically and separated from a lot of interaction and cohabitation and so on.
There are tools like talk space. There are professionals who are available and just reaching out to someone can release so much pressure in the system and there are options. So I feel like the weight of gold as a doc coming out now is is great timing during very bad times for for millions of people. So I couldn't agree more. And Grant, I realized I did not come back and ask you one of the questions that I'd asked Michael, which was related to books or resources that you've found helpful.
My audiences is always interested in books, certainly any resources or tools. But are there any books that come to mind for you that were either particularly helpful with respect to challenging times or books overall that you've recommended or gifted the most to other people?
I gave this set a lot to Michael, so that was what it was, which was that the set a lot of not giving a fuck, so I like better. Yeah. So that one I just read that probably a couple of months ago, that that book always just takes me back one or two steps and renews my perspective on situations because I'm I'm a hyper focused individual when I get onto goals and tasks and things that I want to deliver, like I sometimes get the blinkers on in such an intense way that I can lose perspective on things around me.
So I'm really a lot more aware and conscious of that now. And I to make sure I've got things like that. His follow up book was great. I really enjoyed that. I actually read that and bought it for a mutual friend of ours. Came at Target over for his birthday last year in December. So I enjoy his reading. I read a lot of journals. I even read a lot of Harvard Business Review articles. There's one I like in particular, and it's really funny.
This will sound a little bit counterintuitive around mental health, but it's about mental toughness. And there's you know, they've got sort of many books that you can you can read all the journals that they've had around that particular subject matter. And I love that because it resonates with me one hundred percent. So I find I actually need to not just read things that give me renewed perspective, but actually things that make me feel more like me. And that's one of the things that the psychologists that I've dealt with, because, you know, we always talk about purpose and meaning and all this sort of stuff.
And he had this really interesting thing that he said to me, because people have this high expectation of you once you've achieved certain things in life and you have a greater expectation of yourself more than anybody else. And he just said to me, because just do more things that make you feel like you. And that has always stuck with me because it's like, what do I value, what I truly value? And it's funny that upon the basis of that saying, well, that statement, I really go back to my own core values.
And then I did things that sort of checked into to those values. And it's funny because I always had people tell me, oh, Grant, just just slow down.
Just, you know, enjoy it. Just relax, don't, you know, don't try and do everything to the top level every single time.
I hate when people say that, oh, my God, it pisses me off so much.
I tried that. I realized that's not me. Like doing mediocre is not me. I can't stand that. And it was funny all the things that disconnected with my values that destabilised me. And so I focus on reading things, reading journals, doing things that connect more with me. And those things like mental toughness, reading about Navy SEALs, reading about different training strategies, that sort of stuff I really love. And I find that an escape from my personality.
So that's quite interesting. And then I love commerce and love business. So I read a lot of different business books and articles. So they're kind of the things that that I just enjoy. So yeah, it's always just reconnecting with purpose for me that actually slows my mind and gives me perspective. And then, yeah, the books that I just referred to certainly have helped me round out that view even more. So do you have any favorite since you mentioned it?
I know this this might seem off topic, but it's not since this is about your lives and not just one one facet, any particular favorite business books. And I'll just mention for folks, also a Harvard Business Review has a book which is Barres 10 Must reads on mental toughness and features Martin Seligman, Tony Schwartz, Warren Bennis and others. And that's a that's twenty four. Twenty five dollars. You can find that online and I'll link to that in the show.
Notes Are there any business books that are real standouts for you others?
What I'm reading at the moment that I'm really enjoying, which is filled not shuto the I've got to read this book.
It's it's I've got to read it. It's been recommended to me a hundred times. Yeah.
So so I'm in the middle of that. I'm going to say that's that's definitely one that springs to mind. That's definitely, definitely top of the list are the ones that stand out. I mean probably that one for now. The other ones that I enjoy reading, I enjoy just general sort of leadership. So I read a lot of stuff that relates to that in business and knowing and understanding what the fundamentals are probably got. If I walked into my bedroom seven or eight books that I want to read, but I haven't at the moment, I always enjoy reading things around Warren Buffett.
I've read a lot of books that relate to him just on his mindset and his approach towards things, because the one thing that I've really found in high performance, you don't actually have to read always on your specific subject matter, because when it comes to business, I always find I read articles mostly like strategy articles or growth initiatives or what was the change in Boeing and Airbus when Airbus said, OK, we're going to do the three eighty.
But you know what? If we get this wrong, it's actually going to send us bankrupt.
You know, what was the inflection point where business became great and I enjoyed Jim Collins like his books. Good to great. A really interesting just to learn about. You know, I find any sort of success story is the same. It is just a daily grind of mundane things that you just have to keep getting right and improve by point one of the percent and then do it again the next day, then do it again the next day. Then eventually, you know, momentum.
And the flywheel, as it's referred to in that book, kind of click into place. And then all of a sudden, many years later, you've got this outstanding result that people think is an overnight success that took you fifteen years to get there. So that's the way I find most things work. And so I love reading around the principles of high performance and success in any single field, whether it's a Navy SEAL, whether it's business, whether it's sport, whether it's in music, you know, the school, Julia, or whatever it might be.
Those principles are the same. And I'm always trying to to identify those because I've got to be honest, I love it. Like I'm passionate about it. I'm passionate about learning about it, talking about it, reading about it. So, yeah, they're probably always the things that I try and tap into. And again, it comes back to that, that saying that I said before, just do things that make you feel more like you. That's that's not everyone's cup of tea.
Winning Olympic gold medals is not everybody's cup of tea, because the sacrifice you have to make for that for most people is probably not often worth it. But for the two guys you've got on this call, we'll do anything to to get those things and sort of have the same approach to to everything else that I try and achieve or want to achieve.
I love that expression. Doing more things that make you feel like you have never heard anything or never heard the message worded quite that way.
But it's very succinct and. Very deep, if you if you spent some time on it, thank you for sharing that, Michael. Are there any other books or resources that that you would like to mention just to give you another dip at the.
Well, I was sitting here looking at my bookshelf that we have behind the in here, but I was sitting here looking at these books and there's there's a room that popped into my head, that one I've gone back to show for trying to slow things down.
And I tried to mix in more of a daily reading. So Mark NAPO has a good one. The Book of Awakening and then The Daily Stoic. I mean, I feel like some of those things you can really just like almost just take a step back, take a deep breath, let me read a quote, read a single page, whatever it is, let it marinate. And just for me, it's just something that's so easy to do with something that's so awesome to do, to start your day, to feel like it.
It just gives you some kind of purpose of what you're doing. And, you know, when life is too fast, then it gives you that second to take that step back. Yeah. Daily. Still, it can ego's enemy. You've got a whole lot of Ryan holiday on your bookshelf.
And it's funny because I just got the daily stock from my coach or my my old coach, Bob Bowman. And I've gotten a few of the other books, as I was saying earlier, from Seth Hackie. Yeah, yeah. He's he's like he's one of my favorite human beings on this planet to have communication conversation with excuse me, but some of the books that he's given me really have, like he he I feel like is a really good understanding about me as a person and how I work.
And he's a very, very smart human being. So I feel like some of the things that he's given me to read are, again, back to my point, just simple ways for me to understand something that I might be too hard on myself with or I might be too hyper focused on one thing. Right. So almost giving me that bigger picture, trying to be that lake instead of being that glass of water. So, yeah, I think like a lot of a lot of the books that I have that I'll rifle through time and time again.
I think I've been super helpful just to. Yeah. I mean I think more and more than anything just give me a chance. Like I feel for me like a lot of my life was focused on something and that really was it, like a hacky pack. You know, being an Olympian, your whole life is focused on one thing. Nothing else matters in life, but that I'm honestly really learning how to live on dry land. So I kind of made the joke throughout the last last few years.
I feel like I've taken more strokes in the swimming pool, that I've taken steps on land. So it's it makes it challenging when you have a freight train trying to come down the middle of the street with no tracks on it.
So it's it's a bit difficult at times. Slow me down. But but I feel like some of those simple kind of different approaches to looking at things for me just have benefited so much just because I can't expect to fill up everybody's cups if my cup isn't filled up right. Like I have. I have three boys and an amazing wife and a household here that I'm in charge of my rolls. Right. So if I'm not taking care of myself and filling my glass up by taking the time that I need for me, I have no shot in being able to be a good husband, a good friend, a good dad.
So I just want I want to have a chance. And I feel like that's what I did my career, my preparation. It was the process, like I was the whole process of it all that that I learned. But, you know, the preparation was was so key. So it's it's just trying to slow things down. I don't know if that makes sense, but, yeah, it's it's something that it does that's been it's been enjoyable.
But but as you can imagine, something that's been extremely challenging at times. You know, as you hear Grant and I talk about, we want to go fast and we we want to get to a point A to point B as fast as we can, the fastest way, but also the most effective way. So now can we do it? You know what I mean? So it's like keep going in totally.
Sometimes you want to be the lake and other times you want to take a jet ski at one hundred miles an hour across the lake.
And some days it's hard to decide which one you want to ride.
Man, well, this this has been such a fun conversation for me, and I just have one more question and it's sometimes a difficult question. So if it doesn't work, it doesn't work, but I'll give it a shot. And that is actually before I get there, I have to say I've also found stoicism very, very helpful.
And it's it's such a small world because I actually published the audiobook versions of both egos, The Enemy and the Daily Stoic.
Believe in your voice. A lot of I've heard a lot of things that you've done, some stuff with Trevor Mallard as well.
I believe I may have. Yeah.
It's it's such it's such a small world. So let me ask a question that sometimes doesn't work, because it is it is sometimes a hard question. I'll ask it of both of you. And the question is this. If you could put anything on a billboard, this is metaphorically speaking, it could be an image, a quote, a question, a word, anything non-commercial on a billboard to get something in front of billions of people. What would it be?
And if if either of you want to take a stab at it, feel free to jump if you want.
Yeah. You want to go? Go my head. But you go first. But. I mean, I would just say it's OK to not be OK. I think that's something that that for me, even in my darkest, scariest moments like that, it's the one thing that Nicole always says to me. They're all wrapped around me or ask if she can give me a hug. Sometimes if I am just like if I really want to be alone, like, that's the one thing she'll ask me, because sometimes I just need that moment by myself.
She'll ask to give me a hug. My wife will ask me to give me a hug. So it's she like we've just been able to I mean, again, I can't say it enough growth. So much so I would say again to everybody out there like it's OK to not be OK. And you're not a lot like those. Those two things I think can just go together just I mean, with everything we've talked about on this call, it's just when it's at a difficult time, it's it's something to just simplify it, take a step back, a breath, relax.
Those are great. Those are great. Grant, any thoughts?
Yeah, the first thing that popped into my head, and I often think that's always the right best answer was if you want to put something on a billboard, I just be you, be you, you two words.
Very simple, because the more you do the things that make you feel yourself, brings out your personality, brings out who you are, makes you feel good about yourself, and you don't have to be something that's false or superficial or create an image for anybody else or anything else. And I think once you get back to that simplification and to Michael's point, I think, you know, often you feel best about yourself. Often you find the things that you enjoy doing more often, often enough.
You're living a life that just makes you feel good about yourself and and connect better with the people around you. So I think just be you and feel comfortable, comfortable in that excellent man.
Like, I honestly, that's like I can just hearing you say that through through the last hour that that you've mentioned it to me, like it's brought up so many things that that would help me just like simplify life. And it just totally makes sense. You know, like there are times like I, I can say, like I mean, I play golf with or I've had the chance to play golf with a lot of professional golfers. And I recently got to play with I got to know John around a little bit.
So the first time playing with them, I'm like shit. Like I want to try to play as good as I can, like I want to be on my A game, yada, yada, yada. And I'm like, well, that's not me, because I don't have the time and the preparation to perform how I expect to perform. So I can't expect to be somebody else. I have to be me. That's something that that I struggled a lot with and at times still do that where I feel like sometimes I am just a swimmer and because I feel like that's what the story has been right.
Every single headline is about swimming, swimming, swimming, and finally not like that. Like, that's why I've really I'm so happy with everything we're doing with mental health. But, you know, like, that's that's one thing that I really just saw myself as and not a human being. So I want to say thank you because I like that that quote right. There is be you I think can simplify a thousand things for me. I don't know how.
I've never heard you can say that, but thanks. I appreciate you bringing that up today.
I could have been like you before. It just popped into my head. I just went with it.
Well, this is this has been really fun to have both of you on.
And for everybody listening, Will, we'll link to everything in the show notes as usual. I teamed up log for such a podcast so you won't miss anything. The documentary that was mentioned is The Weight of Gold that is in the HBO documentary Grant. People Can Find You on Instagram at Grant. Underscore, Underscore, Hacket C.K. ET Tu underscores.
And then Michael, people can find you on Twitter at Michael Phelps Facebook. Michael Phelps Instagram. Atem Underscore Phelps zero zero. Is there anything else that you gentlemen would would like to mention? Anything else that you'd like to add as a closing comment or anything at all. I got to say, I just I'm so proud of Michael as a friend. You know, he knows I love him like a brother. And but people have seen him as a product, right?
Because it got so successful and so amazing and achieve things that no one else ever has in the history of sport and but to hear how open and honest and transparent and forthright he is around mental health, because I know he wants to help other people, to me is just an outstanding characteristic. And you could never underestimate the strength, but Michael always has that strength to do that sort of stuff. So, yeah, man, that was it was awesome to see today.
It was it was emotional for me sitting on the other side because I've been there.
I've been right there with you sitting in the closet talking, locked my phone right there.
And then I think, yeah, no, that's that's just been awesome.
And I've really enjoyed that today. And look, I'm sure that that will help a lot of people. And I know that's exactly what you like to do. Honestly? Likewise.
I mean, we've both been through our fair share of ups and downs publicly and privately, and as you know, by my circle, the supertight and I love you like a brother. And honestly, this is awesome to see the journey that you've been on and honestly, just welcoming a new baby Jesus. It's so cool, so special. Awesome to watch. I miss you. Like, as selfish as it is, I wish you lived next door.
We need our compound.
I still do that.
But honestly, this is it's been great for for me, even though with with the relationship and as close as I am with hackey, I've been able to learn even more about him today. And I'm excited that somebody finally put this together, the two of us, to be able to just chat for for two hours. Honestly, it was a treat. And we've listened to a lot of you over the years. I look forward to listening to a lot more.
If it's OK. I'd love to grab your email from the team and stay in touch. And honestly, if you have any books or anything, I truly add something that that as I said, I think I think I've read more books in the last five years or listen to more books in the last five years than I have in the previous 30 years. So I think it's it's funny how life works and how open I am or how much more open I am now.
And, you know, that wall is down a little bit more. So, yeah, anything that I'm always eager to learn. And that's it's it's just been a fun process. I can't thank you enough for having us on today. This is this is a true treat.
Yeah. Total blast for me, a an experiment certainly especially scattered across the world as we are. And it worked out. I'm so happy that we were able to come together. And thanks for the kind words. Also, I know the book the book that I would recommend more than any other is not one of mine. It's actually a book called Awareness by Anthony DeMello. It's a short book, Yellow Anthony DeMello. And I will definitely share my email and cell with both of you guys.
And you can feel free to reach out any time, certainly. And hopefully we'll we'll meet in person sometime. And it has been such a treat.
So so thank you both very much. And I wish you both a wonderful weekend.
You too. So much for having us. Hey, guys, this is Tim again. Just a few more things before you take off. Number one, this is five Bullett Friday. Do you want to get a short email from me? And would you enjoy getting a short email from me every Friday if that provides a little morsel of fun before the weekend and five? Black Friday is a very short email where I share the coolest things I've found or that I've been pondering over the week that could include favorite new albums that I've discovered.
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