The Oxygen Advantage / Buteyko experience and results

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Oscar

Level 6 Valued Member
An extremely common report, and is not isolated to food. I have a theory, but it might as well be a fairy tale. But again, the theories matter not..
Since theory matters not, it would be great if you share that fairy tale...

Those results you have achieved are amazing. It comes to my attention that you refer to "breathe light " as the most important exercise. It is the one I find the most challenging. Holding my breath while walking is not that hard, but keeping focus and not getting distracted during breathe light is not easy. It makes sense anyway that is going to be the exercise with higher transference to daily breathing.

@Steve Freides I'm really interested in having an instructor, I'll send you a pm. Have you had good results by skype?

@Baron von Raschke @Craig Fern Best of luck working on those issues. From what I have investigated and the books I've read, it is likely that the Buteyko method can help you. I'd investigate a little if I were you. From what I have experienced so far it generates a very strong physiological effect. The first times I felt it I was pretty amazed.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
@Oscar, yes good results by all methods. I learned only via Skype and have never met my teacher in person. Al and I worked together via telephone and email but not video.

-S-
 

Al Ciampa

Level 8 Valued Member
Certified Instructor
Since theory matters not, it would be great if you share that fairy tale...
The brain only has so many ways of talking to you. As hunger can signal thrist, perhaps chronic low-level O2 debt signals other urges.

Those results you have achieved are amazing. It comes to my attention that you refer to "breathe light " as the most important exercise. It is the one I find the most challenging
I repeat that I completely immersed myself in the study and practice, and Steve ensured that I spent little time making mistakes.

In my perspective, VSB patterns the subconscious and pauses reset the CO2ostat in the brain. Both are powerful tools, but VSB is the core. In the beginning, I too was better able to suffocate myself with pauses rather than breathe shallow. This is probably because I had a "high idle" and couldn't sufficiently relax. It gets easier if you keep practicing.

VSB allows me to deeply meditate so I am somewhat addicted to it. On long drives, I will enter VSB for hours at a time. I've also learned to practice while I'm attending to other less mindful tasks.

The entire thing is counterintuitive until you understand the basic physiology and even then, there is nothing like the experience of being a better functioning human animal... all of which should be expected "if" you better supply a highly aerobic animal with oxygen. Not to mention the beneficial effects of CO2. But enough theory.
 

Baron von Raschke

Level 3 Valued Member
Update:

So I got The Oxygen Advantage about two weeks ago and focused on the BOLT score and Breathe Lite/Breathe Right as @aciampa and @Steve Freides have suggested. My initial BOLT score was around 16, but bear in mind that was my first try at it and was getting used to the signals my system would send me when I needed to take another breath and stop the clock. I think it was pretty accurate, though. I've been doing the nasal breathing 24/7 and immediately started putting tape over my mouth at night. No issues whatsoever with sleeping with the tape and have been getting great nights sleep with it. It hasn't been a distraction at all. In fact, my wife is now doing it comfortably, and she's a notoriously finicky sleeper. The Breathe Lite/Breathe Right has taken some getting used to, but with practice I think I'm getting better at it. I do it during my 40 minute drive to work every morning, which is almost all expressway with little traffic to distract me. I do it a few times during the day at work, and I'll do it in the evening at home. I do it for several minutes each time. I'm not 100% convinced that my breathing is consistent during those practices, but the intent to reduce it is there and I pay attention to the "oxygen hunger" and keep it at a reasonable level.

I'm becoming fully aware that this is a process and, like SF kettlebell practice, perfecting my technique should be the day-to-day focus and positive results will follow naturally. On a basic level, I understand this is about increasing our carbon dioxide tolerance from our own metabolic processes. And that this tolerance, like physical strength, can be improved slowly through progressive resistance, though in this case the "resistance" is modifying our breathing .

So now for the results, and this is only subjective because I haven't retested my BOLT just yet, but my KB swings have been noticeably better in terms of recovery between sets. I'd been doing the S&S diaphragmatic breathing as best I could before, but there always seemed to be a lot of mouth breathing after a few sets as I started to wear down. Last night's practice was fantastic. I added reps to each set, nasal breathing the entire time, even during recovery between sets, which was much shorter. My grip ended up the limiting factor, not my wind, which is unusual. I had plenty of energy for another set but I didn't trust my grip, so I stopped. I'll check my BOLT score soon, but I have to say my KB practices are already improving so I'm assuming the BOLT is creeping up.

I'll keep you posted on progress. Thanks for the recommendation!
 

Oscar

Level 6 Valued Member
@Baron von Raschke that sounds great, glad you enjoyed the book and are doing good with the practice!

my KB swings have been noticeably better in terms of recovery between sets.
I had a similar feeling the other day after a few weeks of not training: between swing sets, my HR was quite high but my breathing was calm.

I´ve been working on my breathing with Steve lately and experiencing great results. I´m seeing better improvement in the last 9 days than in the previous month. My BOLT is now aroung 45 seconds now (started 9 days ago with 24 seconds). I´ll share with you an update in a little while.
 

Al Ciampa

Level 8 Valued Member
Certified Instructor
I'm becoming fully aware that this is a process and, like SF kettlebell practice, perfecting my technique should be the day-to-day focus and positive results will follow naturally
Very well said.

I´ve been working on my breathing with Steve lately and experiencing great results
I can't emphasize enough how important a teacher can be for this seemingly natural act.
 

Tobias Wissmueller

Level 6 Valued Member
@Baron von Raschke that sounds great, glad you enjoyed the book and are doing good with the practice!

I had a similar feeling the other day after a few weeks of not training: between swing sets, my HR was quite high but my breathing was calm.

I´ve been working on my breathing with Steve lately and experiencing great results. I´m seeing better improvement in the last 9 days than in the previous month. My BOLT is now aroung 45 seconds now (started 9 days ago with 24 seconds). I´ll share with you an update in a little while.
@Oscar +1 for working with @Steve Freides, first session with him provided me with several "Aha!"-moments that I did not pick-up anywhere else. Everyone else is different and no book can cover the "nuances" of every person out there.

@aciampa Do you see improvements in people having a lower HR at the same intensity the more they do breathing exercises? Like when you put them on A+A for a while for example?
 

Al Ciampa

Level 8 Valued Member
Certified Instructor
Do you see improvements in people having a lower HR at the same intensity the more they do breathing exercises? Like when you put them on A+A for a while for example?
I don't have any subjects for this, and, there would be too many confounders with newer users. But it really doesn't matter... the idea is to change the way your brain organizes your VR during rest, which, would have some carryover to activity as well.

I can drop my HR by 10-15 BPM during practices, but rest is a physiologically different state then when aroused during activity.
 

Oscar

Level 6 Valued Member
@Oscar +1 for working with @Steve Freides, first session with him provided me with several "Aha!"-moments that I did not pick-up anywhere else. Everyone else is different and no book can cover the "nuances" of every person out there.
I can't emphasize enough how important a teacher can be for this seemingly natural act.
Agreed, a teacher is extremely important. From the books I learned the theory well (i think), but I was heading my practice in the wrong direction. Maybe in a very long time and with big effort one can eventually get good results, just maybe.
 

John Kowalski

Level 2 Valued Member
I took my CP to 60+ in about 2 months. My CP this morning was 72. Far larger than that, everything about my life improved: anxiety, mood, mental acuity, production level, running pace, etc... to include what already has been observed by some here.
How would you recommend to breathe throughout an intense exercise session like high intensity strength training (performing sets to muscular failure) or interval training etc.? According to Dr. M. Doug McGuff, author of the book Body by Science, during strength training to failure you should breathe continuously and naturally with an open mouth. As the exercise becomes more difficult causing the burning sensation in the muscles, one should deliberately breathe faster or hyperventilate - “this type of breathing blows off CO2 (carbon dioxide) and keeps your blood pH normal longer. It also allows your muscles to function for a longer duration and therefore inroad more deeply.”
I'm aware of the buteyko and oxygen advantage, Steve Maxwell recommends breathing through the nose even during the intense workouts, but I find it extremely difficult to breathe through the nose alone. I could probably surivive some light "cardio" that way, but when the exertion increases, even though I inhale through the nose - the exhalation has to be through the mouth. Any thoughts/advice?
 

Oscar

Level 6 Valued Member
I'm aware of the buteyko and oxygen advantage, Steve Maxwell recommends breathing through the nose even during the intense workouts, but I find it extremely difficult to breathe through the nose alone. I could probably surivive some light "cardio" that way, but when the exertion increases, even though I inhale through the nose - the exhalation has to be through the mouth. Any thoughts/advice?
Hi John, I´m not as experienced as Al in training or Buteyko, but I recentl didy an ergometry ECG and my heart rate went up to 186. I was able to sustain nasal breathing throughout the complete exercise. The test didnt sustain such high HR for long, it was stopped shortly after, so I´m not sure if I can keep nasal breathing at such high HR for a long time (I´m not sure I can sustain that HR for a long time to be honest). Anyway, I think I can sustain nasal breathing at HR 160 without problems, or even higher. This is well above "light cardio" IMO.

I was only able to achieve this after a few months of practicing buteyko. For you to have an idea, I started with a CP of 15 seconds and it is now around 60n seconds (CP is the same as BOLT and is the way to measure progress in buteyko practice).
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
@Oscar's example is enlightening, and you can read Al's testimonial about how life- and exercise-changing our Buteyko breathing practice can be at http//community.advancedbuteyko.com. We don't specifically teach how to breathe more easily during exercise but it does seem to happen for most people.

-S-
 

Al Ciampa

Level 8 Valued Member
Certified Instructor
How would you recommend to breathe throughout an intense exercise session like high intensity strength training (performing sets to muscular failure) or interval training etc.? According to Dr. M. Doug McGuff, author of the book Body by Science, during strength training to failure you should breathe continuously and naturally with an open mouth. As the exercise becomes more difficult causing the burning sensation in the muscles, one should deliberately breathe faster or hyperventilate - “this type of breathing blows off CO2 (carbon dioxide) and keeps your blood pH normal longer. It also allows your muscles to function for a longer duration and therefore inroad more deeply.”
I'm aware of the buteyko and oxygen advantage, Steve Maxwell recommends breathing through the nose even during the intense workouts, but I find it extremely difficult to breathe through the nose alone. I could probably surivive some light "cardio" that way, but when the exertion increases, even though I inhale through the nose - the exhalation has to be through the mouth. Any thoughts/advice?
Nose only, until the absolute redline (so, in theory, unnecessary in training). The mouth is for eating.

If you take up seated/rested practice, your ventilation patterns will change during exercise as well.

McGuff is correct about the science but perhaps not about the practice... why can't you use your nose to blow off excess CO2 during intense activity?

I'd submit that it's because you don't exclusively use your nose to breathe. It's not an easy transition to make, but you can use your nose only for breathing at rest all the way up to the redline. You just have to start using it, and be persistent.

If you had a more specific question in mind, I apologize for not answering it.
 

Tobias Wissmueller

Level 6 Valued Member
I'm aware of the buteyko and oxygen advantage, Steve Maxwell recommends breathing through the nose even during the intense workouts, but I find it extremely difficult to breathe through the nose alone. I could probably surivive some light "cardio" that way, but when the exertion increases, even though I inhale through the nose - the exhalation has to be through the mouth. Any thoughts/advice?
I am doing Simple and Sinister since Nov 2006 and started with Buteyko breathing in May 2017 under guidance of @Steve Freides.

Before, I was not able to perform the 100 swings on the minute with 16kg in sets of 10 reps with a closed mouth. Now, am able to do so without any problems and do 20 sets of 5 reps every minute with 32kg two-handed with nose breathing only. Depending on the day, my heart rate reaches 160 to 170 bpm at the end of the practice.

Now I can slowly walk a certain set of steps while holding my breath where before I had to breathe through the mouth.

Before the practice, I would wake up every night with a blocked nose. This is gone.

For me, buteyko breathing was a game changer and I feel I am just at the beginning. My practice is not always as consistent as I would like due to busy life, but it delivered and keeps improving my life.
 

John Kowalski

Level 2 Valued Member
The test didnt sustain such high HR for long, it was stopped shortly after, so I´m not sure if I can keep nasal breathing at such high HR for a long time (I´m not sure I can sustain that HR for a long time to be honest). Anyway, I think I can sustain nasal breathing at HR 160 without problems, or even higher. This is well above "light cardio" IMO.
How long was the test? And did you exhale through the nose too?
 

John Kowalski

Level 2 Valued Member
@Oscar's example is enlightening, and you can read Al's testimonial about how life- and exercise-changing our Buteyko breathing practice can be at http//community.advancedbuteyko.com. We don't specifically teach how to breathe more easily during exercise but it does seem to happen for most people.

-S-
yeah I can see the difference when I rest or walk, but during exercise it's more comfortable to exhale through the mouth in my case
 
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