How much do you value your time?

Disclaimer: This post is without doubt self-serving as I am deconstructing some common arguments about buying material that can, arguably, be found for “free.” I’m going to make a case that many folks are not thinking this process through…and then I’ll hit you at the end with a pitch to buy my (and other folks) swag. So, yes, I have mierda for sale, but I’m asking that you take this whole thing in and then pass it through your BS detectors.

Keto Trends

If you follow health and fitness at all you are likely aware that in a very Battlestar Galactica way (this has all happened before, it will all happen again) the ketogenic diet has been incredibly popular the past few years, Just look at the Google search trends for ‘ketogenic diet’

There are many reasons for this ongoing popularity, but here are some likely contributors:

1- Many folks (although certainly not everyone) find fat loss to be comparatively easy on a ketogenic diet. It is NOT the only tool in the shed, but it is a good one. 

2- A remarkable amount of research on keto has been published in the past few years. This research looks at everything from anti-aging to certain medical conditions such as neurodegenerative disease. Although preliminary, it has painted keto in a pretty favorable light. the next five years will be really interesting to see more of this research come in. 

I first tinkered with keto and low carb diets in 1998 and have been a fan ever since (20 years now!). I’ve tried just about every conceivable permutation around diet (have not gone full carnivore yet…I just like asparagus, avocados and berries too much!). I’ve fiddled with “safe starches” and every Ancestral Health way of eating, and for me low carb works the best. Some recent genetic testing (importing my 23&me info to DNAFIT) revealed I am, genetically speaking, likely to be terrible at handling carbs:

A bit counterintuitively, “High Sensitivity” means I do NOT handle carbs well. Confirmation bias FTW!

It’s important to note that type of testing is very preliminary, but it’s nice to find some confirmation bias that at least seems sciency. This information + my tinkering has finally made me relax a bit that yea, for me, low carb is likely a good place to be, “safe starches” be damned. 

As I said, keto is pretty darn popular. Some folks love it, others hate it, and a remarkable number of people are confused. On any given day, on any given social media outlet, you‘ll find questions like these:

Is keto best accomplished with:

1- An all meat diet?

2- An all fat diet?

3- Just not eating at all?

4- Time restricted eating (intermittent fasting?)

Other common questions and concerns pop up:

1- Is keto good or bad for the adrenals?

2- Will keto ruin or fix a faltering thyroid?

3- Is keto the ticket for optimal athletic performance?

4- How will keto affect my cholesterol and blood lipids?

5- How effective is keto for fat loss?

6- Is keto a good fit for CrossFit, MMA, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and other glycolytic sports?

And that’s just scratching the surface of keto questions. If you combine the two sets of questions, which happens just about every minute of every day on social media and message boards, one is faced with a massive amount of confusion. Many of these questions have a nuanced answer and need #context. Whether keto is good or bad, effective or ineffective, depends a lot on #context. 

Lots of people have a lot of confusion. I noticed this confusion and decided to make as comprehensive a course as I could to hit every conceivable question or situation folks might find themselves in. It’s called the Keto Masterclass. More on it later. 

So far so good, yes? Ok, this is where it gets interesting for me. Some people really complain about the fact there is a product for sale. I mean, they seem affronted as if someone waltzed into their kitchen, dropped trow and deposited a deuce in the middle of a holiday gathering. These folks admonish anyone who might buy this product, directing people to YouTube and Google for “all the free information they need.” Please see the photo below of “Barb” for a case in point. 

Is it really “free*”?

A quick search of Google with the term “keto diet” returns over a million offerings in less than a second. The same speedy return on YouTube will get one nearly half a million video options to choose from.

There is a massive amount of information to choose from…it’s really an amazing thing, but let’s take the average person (honestly not sure who that is, but I digress) who is looking for information on the keto-diet for weight loss. Keep in mind this person could be male or female, old or young, active or inactive…lots of variables.

So, where do they start? Do they even know to ask these questions to try and find material that addresses their specific issues? I mean there is just one way to do keto, right? Many folks on the interwebz claim exactly this. If this one size fits all works for you, great. If not…

Based on the questions and mistakes I see, no, this person does not yet know to ask these important questions. This should not be surprising, these folks are the “noobs,” right?

Well, here is where it gets another layer of difficult: Most of the prominent “authorities” in the keto space have a better chance of dunking a lead basketball on Jupiter than handling any of this nuance. Let me say this last piece again, but in a different way: Most of the folks in this space get REALLY cranky at the suggestion there may not be One Keto To Rule Them All. The reasons for this are likely something akin to the following:

1-People naturally, instinctively, form tribes and insular, almost religious type ideology and affiliations. This is an extension of evolutionary psychology…which is ironic that this process actually bites us in the South Bound side on occasions like this.

2-Some people have no idea what they are talking about.

I think it’s safe to say that it’s a bit of a crap-shoot as to what material folks find. Maybe it works, but clearly, often, it does not, otherwise I’d not receive the volume of confused correspondences.

How many videos, blogs, and $9 “meal plans” does the person take a look at while still struggling?

This process is time consuming, random, and I’d self-servingly argue, not an effective use of one’s time.

 

But “it’s free” right?

Not really.

No offense, but people stink at considering the real costs of many things in the same way people are terrible at assessing the real risks of an activity—”Dude, I’d never swim in the ocean, because, you know, SHARKS! But I will totally drive with you on that hairpin road to the beach!”

Consider the following:

If you make $50k per year, that translates into about $25/hr if one is working 40hrs per week (technically $52K/year translates to $25/hr x 40hrs/week x 52 weeks…but just cutting things in half is damn close).  So, someone who makes $100k/year is at about $50/hr. Think about what your yearly income is and then consider what that means to you as far as how much your time may be worth. I’d argue your time is worth a whole lot more than that, but this IS a concrete way of putting a number to this.

So, how many “free” videos, blogs, etc. do you need to take in to get your keto “just right”? I have no idea, but it seems like one could easily spend hours, if not days hashing around, trying to figure things out. Will you have all your questions answered with six hours invested? Ten? It’s easy to cook ten hours of your time on this topic and still be lost. Take your hourly value for your Life and multiply that by ten. Or twenty. “Free” is not looking like such a bargain. 

Again, I see a lot of very confused people who seem to be casting around and either getting lackluster results or actually getting heavier and less healthy on a keto diet. These folks have built their keto diet from percentages (70% fat, 10% carbs, 20% protein…or something similar) and they are hungry and gaining weight. (I suspect 80% of you reading this are wondering what the problem is here…I have a video coming up next week digging deep into this problem). 

But the nice folks in the free video (who also have their own crap for sale…) said to do this.

When you hopped onto this person’s Facebook page and described your situation, several of the helpful folks in the group said to reduce protein and up fat! Track those ketones! Heck buy that new-fangled ketone supplement…its gets you into ketosis in only 60 min! (and is $5 a serving…)

At some point people just abandon what could have been a great tool, and blame keto for the failure. This is understandable, but also likely wrong. Some things lend themselves to Do it Yourself (DIY). Other things are a terrible idea, and again, this a largely individual thing. I am NOT that good at swinging a hammer or turning a wrench, so I find good folks I can trust to do that. Yes, I can find a YouTube video on how to lay tile, yes I can rent a tile saw and start figuring that out…but I can only master so many things in life and laying tile is just not going to be one of them.

I don’t want to belabor this point, but I’m also tired of this weird sense of entitlement that has grown out of information becoming a commodity. Want to cook it all up on your own? Great, just don’t blame anyone other than yourself if you get lackluster results. And, please, be a bit curcumspect about turning a confused person out into the wilds of The Interwebz, telling them to figure it out on their own. 

There are likely millions of hours of YouTube videos on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. I could, and some people do, grab a few friends and just try to figure this stuff out on their own. They absolutely make progress but it is NOT the same as attending a class with a competent instructor and getting real coaching.

It’s not, let’s be honest and not hyperbolic.

I’m not saying one way is right or wrong, but I will make the case that if you give two-shits about something, you might save both time and money paying someone who is further down the path than you.

So, back to my self-serving angle to this post: I created and am selling a course called Keto Masterclass. It’s $49, has a 30 day money-back guarantee and is composed of 13 modules of video and written material, including a 126 page workbook to help you keep on track. It helps you to triage what your specific needs are based on your situation. It digs into how to do keto while doing Crossfit and other glycolytic sports, it digs into cholesterol and CVD potential. It’s the closest thing you can get to a live coach helping you through a process. It’s a good option if you want to give keto a try. If you want additional support, join the KetoGains bootcamp: https://ketogains.com/coachingconsulting/boot-camps/

I’ll close with two more (self-serving) thoughts:

1- If you want to go it your own or the “free” route, just be honest about the opportunity costs of that process. The “free” material most people consume is, well, wrong. It is the equivalent of a $6 haircut, and I find I spend a lot of time fixing $6 haircuts. If you are new to a topic you will devote a lot of your “free time” to trying to figure things out.

 

2- If you buy the Keto Masterclass and follow it for a year, it will cost you $0.13 per day.

Yes, information has become a commodity. Like many things in the modern world, it’s cost is effectively going to Zero. There are huge opportunities due to this process but one of the potential pitfalls is folks mistake information with wisdom.

Can you tell the difference?

UPDATE:

Brandon made a damn insightfull comment:

“Another interesting aspect is the disorganized nature of the free knowledge. A class such as this (or any quality training program) will naturally progress you through the topic, making sure you know what you need to know, in the order you need to know it. It’ll take you through the basic 100 level course before the 200, etc.

When wading through the information minefield that is the average google search, Facebook group discussion, etc that goes out the window. So you get a beginner pianist simultaneously being told to learn to play hot cross buns and to learn Liszt’s Campanella.

Orderly introduction of knowledge is critical to implementing and retaining it, which seems a bit lost in our high information age.”

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