GHP 017: Recover Smarter So You Can Train Harder w/ Mark Stephenson from The Detroit Lions

Today's guest

Mark Stephenson

In this episode I have the privilege of being joined by one of the leading sport scientists in the country, currently the Director of Player Performance for the Detroit Lions in the NFL, Mark Stephenson. We dive into why VO2 max is so important, and how it can dramatically impact your ability to focus and concentrate. What the pros understand about recovery that amateur athletes don’t. His work monitoring and testing the Navy Seals and Police SWAT units. And why exactly he doesn’t believe that training smarter not harder doesn’t work. 

Show Highlights

  •  We dive into why he thinks being the best conditioned teams typically have better outcomes in the third period
  • We talk about why the higher fitness level, an the higher VO2 level you have the better
  • The difference between players and goaltenders when it comes to conditioning
  • How VO2 can dramatically influence you focus and ability to concentrate
  • What exactly is Emigdula Hijacking, and how can you delay the onset of neural disruption
  • How surprisingly resilient the body is, and how much we’re capable of as humans
  • Why we typically have no idea how much we’re capable of
  •  We discuss his work with SWAT units in Colorado
  • How your body adapts through the use of stress, and how to utilize it to your advantage
  • We chat about his time with the Navy Seals, and how he was tasked with the mission to help sustain these special operators
  • How that led to the discovery of proper recovery and why it’s so important
  • Why there’s nothing that new when it comes to strength & conditioning 
  • How using different recovery modalities significantly improved the Navy Seal’s sleep
  • Cost free alternatives to recovery
  •  Why mindfulness is so important, and how meditation can help dramatically with recovery
  • The important of calming the mind to activate the parasympathetic nervous system
  • What the NFL Detroit Lions are doing that has dramatically impacted their recovery
  • The differences in recovery from sport to sport
  • The effectiveness of ice baths, and how it effects you both physically and mentally
  • How they measured the autonomic nervous system through heart rate variability
  • What the pros understand that amateur athletes don’t
  • The optimal time to nap, and what we know as of right now
  • When it comes to recovery we need to take a brain-first approach
  • Why the brain’s perception is the bodies reality, and how stress is all relative
  • What the autonomic nervous system is, and how fight or flight effects that
  • Why measuring heart rate variability is so important to monitoring recovery
  • Why train smarter not harder doesn’t work
  • You need to recover smarter, so you can train harder
  • Why some days you need to monitor your level of training in order to maximize readiness
  • Why your energy and game readiness will catch up with you if you don’t take care of yourself
  • How reading your bodies readiness day to day is important
  • Why every piece of the puzzle is important and contributes to the cost of doing business

Thanks For Listening!

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