A Sneak Peek Into One Day In The Life Of A Fitness Coach.

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Articles, Lifestyle

When it comes to teaching you how to live healthy, eat better, and stay active, I try to do my best to lead by example – and I know that sometimes you may wonder…how does a personal trainer or a “health guru” structure their daily routine, eat and exercise? 

So in today’s post, as follow-up to last month’s post “How I Went From A 210 Pound 3% Body Fat Bodybuilder To A 175 Pound Ironman Triathlete” and last year’s audio interview, Who Is Ben Greenfield, I’m going to give you a sneak peek into my daily routine. Since I am, to a fault, a creature of habit, I can guarantee that what you are about to read is how I live 99% of my life.

Ready?

OK, here we go, along with some pictures (and feel free to leave your questions, criticisms, and feedback in the comments section below this post):

-6:00AM: Wakey-time. To enhance sleep quality, which has a host of hormonal benefits such as increased testosterone, stabilized appetite, and lower cortisol, I use a sleep mask, ear plugs, and a white noise app on my iPhone while I slumber. I do not use an alarm clock – I simply wake at about the same time each morning.

-6:30AM: After a morning trip to the bathroom and a daily Scripture reading, I progress to do The Exact Stretch Routine That I Do Every Morning, No Matter What.

-7:00AM: Pop open the computer and begin first task of the day. To stay productive, I have a specific set of tasks that are assigned to each day. For example, on Mondays and Tuesdays I record podcast interviews or write blog articles, on Wednesdays I release the BenGreenfieldFitness Podcast, on Thursdays and Fridays, I write in my books, and on Saturdays and Sundays I speak on the phone with and review weekly training logs and diets of clients. Typically, every late afternoon or early evening I am either teaching seminars or meeting with clients. For most of the day, about 5-7 hours, I am typically at a standing workstation.

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-8:00AM: If I am in a “fat loss” phase, I will usually perform an easy aerobic workout prior to breakfast. Otherwise, I am simply working until breakfast. Before breakfast, I take my morning supplements – typically a fish oil, vitamin D, a greens supplement, Coenzyme Q-10, digestive enzymes, a probiotic and and colostrum. For more insight into which supplements I take and why, download and listen to this nutrition supplements audio interview with me. 

-8:30AM: River and Terran, our twin boys, emerge from their bedrooms. Snuggle time, story time and occasionally, wrestling.

-9:00AM: I eat breakfast. This may seem like a late breakfast. Want to know why? Go open a new browser window, go to https://bengreenfieldfitness.com, and on upper right side of page, do search for “fasting”. For fat burning and longevity benefits, I try to work a 12 hour fast into most days (i.e. 9pm to 9am). 

For the clients who I personally coach, or for members of the Inner Circle, I now keep a photo and journal of my daily diet, where clients can ask questions about why I’m eating what I’m eating. Here is the breakfast I eat most mornings – a slurry of coconut milk, whey protein, almond butter, cinnamon, fresh fruit, and about 4 tablespoons of raw oats:

-10:30AM: My thirst starts to get the best of me, but water gets boring sometimes. These days, in the mid-morning, I pour about 8 ounces of home-made, pro-biotic packed Kombucha over ice. My wife Jessa has a 3 step process for making Kombucha, and below is the first step in Part 1 of a three-part “Make Your Own Kombucha” video series we have inside the BenGreenfieldFitness Inner Circle.

-11:00am: More time with boys, usually off to play tennis, read books, go fishing, go on a walk, play cars, etc. For over a decade, I operated gyms and personal training studios, and was gone the entire day. When my kids were born, I made the decision to focus more on writing and working with online clients, which gives me the advantage of being able to spend time with my kids and wife while they’re awake. We’re homeschooling the boys, and our curriculum is very “reading intensive” , so at this point, I’m usually reading a few stories each day to the kids, and arranged follow-up activities based on those stories. 

-1:30pm: Lunch. Typically lunch is a mix of dark leafy greens, healthy fats, protein, and only a very small amount of carbohydrate. Below is a a photo example from yesterday’s lunch log, which is fresh kale from out garden, sardines (read about why I like them here), sliced tomato with sea salt, homemade hummus, feta cheese, and rice crackers. 

-2:30pm: I try to do a workout in the afternoon while the kids are asleep, and most days of the week, I’m working out twice per day, such as during the kid’s nap, and then again in the late evening. I usually consume 5-10 Master Amino Pattern amino acid capsules prior to exercise, and to understand why, please read this article series on amino acids: “Do Amino Acids Really Help You Exercise Or Are Nutrition Supplement Companies Pulling A Fast One On You?. Please remember that I do not set expectations for everyone to exercise as much as I do, since I am usually in training for Ironman triathlon competition, which involves 10-15 hours of exercise per week. Currently my workout routine is as follows:

  • M: Upper Body Lift for 1 Hour, 60-90 minute full court basketball (ride bike to gym for basketball)
  • T: 30 Minute Swim, 1 Hour Tennis
  • W: Low Body Lift for 1 Hour, 60-90 minute full court basketball (ride bike to gym for basketball)
  • R: 30 Minute Swim, 1 Hour Tennis
  • F: Massage, yoga or stretching in afternoon.
  • S: 90 minute Sufferfest bike (indoors), 30 minute swim
  • S: 60-90 minute run

Post-Workout Nutrition: I usually don’t prioritize post-workout  nutrition very much, since I eat 3-4 times during the day, and this means that I have enough carbohydrates and amino acids on board to support recovery. To learn more about the philosophy behind this, read this article, in which I put the pre and post-workout nutrition debate into the grave, and tell you why everything you know about pre and post-workout nutrition is wrong!

-4:00pm. Afternoon snack. OK, OK – I know the photo below looks *fraggin’ nasty*. But this snack actually tastes quite good, and is a typical appetite satiating snack for me. It is coconut milk, Living Protein, almond butter, cinnamon, and some cocochia flakes, all stirred into a bowl – and I have no clue why it looks “green”, but I’m blaming it on poor lighting.

-Late Afternoon/Early Evening: Shower. I never use hot water when I shower, but instead choose as icy cold a setting as possible. This gives me a surge of energy in the afternoon, and may have some metabolic and hormonal benefits which you can learn about here. Lately, I’ve gotten very serious about taking better care of my hair and skin so that I don’t end up getting wrinkly elephant skin from my frequent sun exposure and age. Although I’m still in my 20’s, I do want to keep my skin moist and supple from an early age, so I cleanse, hydrate and protect, and usually do this post-shower, trying to use products with as few chemicals as possible. Rightnow, for both showering and skin care, I use this Everymanjack stuff  (25% discount code: GREENFIELD).

-7:30pm: Dinner. That time is a very rough approximation. If I have an evening workout, sometimes dinner is as late as 9pm. We usually eat breakfast and lunch as a family, but because the kids have soccer or swim practice in the evening, and I am often in teleseminars during the later times of day, we don’t eat dinner together as a family. This means that I may exercise at 7:30, and thus not eat dinner until 9pm sometimes. Below is an example of a typical dinner for me – this is 3 eggs cooked in coconut oil, with fresh tomatoes and kale. I eat the eggs by wrapping them in a Nori seaweed wrap. Typically, for added fats, I will also include avocados or olives with a meal like this.

-9:30pm: Extracurriculars, including strumming guitar, reading research articles or book chapters, watching my favorite programs on Hulu (currently “America’s Got Talent”), or spending time with my wife.

-10:30pm: Bed. I will usually consume about 250mg of Natural Calm magnesium before bed. Because I don’t want to interrupt sleep by waking up and peeing during the night, I do not dissolve the magnesium in water, but instead just dump the packet into my mouth, which, yes, gets a bit chalky. I’m going to go more into supplements, meal timing, etc. this coming Monday, at which point I am going to release a new dietary protocol called “REV Diet“, which I’ve designed to allow you to understand more about timing, meal choices, food preparation, etc.

So there you have it. I hope that was helpful for you! Please realize that the reason I give you a sneak peek into my daily routine is so you can learn, ask your questions, and engage in healthy discussion – and you can do that in the comments section below.

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21 thoughts on “A Sneak Peek Into One Day In The Life Of A Fitness Coach.

  1. carline says:

    great looking food

  2. Krystle says:

    Thanks for posting this, Ben!
    For meals, what would you suggest for a 105lb 5 foot tall female who doesn't exercise nearly as much as you do. Your meals are great, but they're too high in calories for someone my size. You're metabolism is way faster than mine. Also, I can't find your blog post about why fasting is beneficial.
    Thanks again!

  3. Tracy Passmore says:

    I enjoy learning about what kind of structure and career you, as a personal trainer, have choosen. I have been in the health/medical and fitness industry for the past 5 years and am find your approach to training/work very appealing. My husband also listens to many of your podcast and soaks up your practical life tips for living a healthy-well balanced life. Keep up the good work!

  4. Kelcey says:

    It's nice to read about people that eat as "weird" as me. Most of my friends think I'm a fanatic or "health food nut."

  5. Kym says:

    What womens skincare line would you recommend? I'm not a big fan of elephant skin either!

    1. Lisa says:

      Kym, someone from my local health food store had me try the Evan Healy skincare line and it's been amazing. I've been using the Pomegranate Repair Serum day and night and my skin has never looked better. For natural skincare lines, Dr. Hauschka, Lush products and Ole Henriksen are also good ones that I've liked a lot.

      1. Jessa says:

        I honestly don't use one. Coconut oil OCM wash and an apple cider vinegar tonic is what I clean with. Also a honey mask is something I do 3 times a week. The lotion I use is alba sea lipids and I like that one the best.

  6. Mer says:

    you're family is ridiculously cute and inspiring…ugh yuck.
    ha, thanks for sharing so much of your real life and being so accessible, it's awesome.

  7. Cara says:

    Aren't you worried about the EMF from your cell phone white noise app? I think I read or heard from a podcast about how the EMF can affect the quality of your sleep.

    I make a similar looking mush for breakfast using a combo of flax seed, hemp seed, chia seed, maca powder and cinnamon.

    Just got the rumble roller thanks to your recommendation. I bought the small one which I can still fit both my legs on – there's one advantage of being small. I hope to heal my IT band and glute before my duathlon Aug 7th. Thanks for all the work you do! Your twins are adorable. I can't believe mine are already 8 years old.

    1. I supposed if the phone were next to my ear it would be an issue, but it's across the room…

  8. Michelle Gordon says:

    I really appreciate your post Ben, thank you so much. Coming from a bodybuilding and a '6 meal a day' back ground, I'm really trying to change my thinking. I think your Rev diet will really help me! Thanks!!

  9. Morris Brossette says:

    Sounds like a great day Ben. 2 questions. 1) for ironman distance training you only train 12-15hrs per week? 2) what brand of coconut milk do you like?

  10. Michelle Gordon says:

    I really appreciate your post Ben, thank you so much. Coming from a bodybuilding and a '6 meal a day' back ground, I'm really trying to change my thinking. I think your Rev diet will really help me! Thanks!!
    Michelle Gordon (shell)

  11. Craig Huggart says:

    Great post Ben! I sleep with ear plugs, sleep mask, and noise maker as well. It helps all the time but especially when I'm travelling. It makes ALL the difference. Thanks for sharing your whole routine.

    I know that the Magnesium is helping me sleep. I've been taking it with supper but I'm going to try at bedtime.

  12. Lorna says:

    Just done a bit of research on Kombucha and it has solved a conundrum! I recently found a growth in my vinegar and assumed it was some type of fungi – but it looks like a SCOBY culture. Given the SCOBY used in Kombucha are Acetobacter, I had inadvertently created my mother culture. Don't worry, I have binned the culture and get to work on a 'tea' based culture medium.

  13. Fernando says:

    Ben, great post. I find myself always trying to loose those last pounds (30 for me) and finding it very difficult. I guess my problem is consitency, and finding a good training / nutrition plan, so I guess I will be contacting you to ask you about it.
    Fernando

  14. Jennifer says:

    What book of daily scriptures do you read from? the Bible?

    1. yes, the Bible. I cycle through it like this. 1 chapter Genesis, next day 1 chapter Ezra, next day 1 chapter Matthew, next day 1 chapter Acts and just move through whole Bible each year like that.

  15. jeff Hoening says:

    Great stuff, B, thanks for sharing. A lot of my diet isn't so photogenic either. When you say 30 minute swim workout, when not training specifically for a triathlon, do you swim sets or intervals or just mix it up and swim for 30 minutes as you feel?

    1. If I'm not training for a triathlon, I don't swim. Otherwise, I usually have an easier skills workout, one harder speed workout, and 1 longer steady swim.

  16. Fred Firestine says:

    Thanks for posting this! I always wonder how some people manage to accomplish a lot more than I do with the same 168 hours per week. There's always room for improvement, I guess. I have written out a weekly schedule several times. Maybe I can apply some of these ideas to my own daily routine. Add a few pets, evening activities away from home…

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