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Life-Sparring Podcast - Fighting Mediocrity, One Round At A Time
22 minutes | May 24, 2022
Life-Sparring - Round 19: Fabian - Shadowboxing April/May 2022 - New World Order
Shadowboxing rounds are solo episodes where I, Life-Sparring host Fabian Gruber share "What's On and Poppin" in my life, what current books provide "Food for Thought," and what else is going on. There are no interviews, just a bit of solo rambling and occasionally some awful singing.This episode is somewhat of a comeback after an almost four-month podcasting hiatus. As it looks, a lot changed, and in the meantime, we entered a new world order.My thoughts on the state of the world and how to deal with such a historic inflection point are the show's main topic. Even the books reviewed in the "Food for Thought" segment fit the theme.This is probably a bit of a heavier solo round; let me know if you liked it. For more information visit Life-Sparring.com/podcast
37 minutes | Jan 18, 2022
Life-Sparring Podcast - Round 18: Aiko "Little Hulk" Liu - Bodybuilding 101
For the last three years, working out during my lunch break with a personal trainer has been one of the few affordable luxuries in my life. Since the summer of last year, I have trained twice per week with Aiko Liu, also known as " Little Hulk, " in Hong Kong Bodybuilding circles and by his 10k followers on Instagram. Aiko has been successfully competing in the amateur bodybuilding circuit in Hong Kong and beyond for the past five years and is working as a coach with several other competitive athletes. In addition to competing as an athlete and working as a personal trainer, Aiko has been an investor in gyms in Hong Kong. Reason enough to take the Life-Sparring Podcast out of the comfort of my home studio and meet Aiko in his brand-new Vision PT gym, in Shatin Hong Kong, to talk about bodybuilding, gym economics, steroids, and workout and diet routines. Let's kick this year off strong and do what people usually do in January, going to the gym.More info and all links to Aiko's Social Media profiles in the Show Notes on Life-Sparring.com.
55 minutes | Dec 30, 2021
Life-Sparring Podcast - Round 17: David Siu - Food for Thought 2021
Before I started podcasting and Food for Thought became a regular book review segment in the shadowboxing solo podcasts, it was the title of an annual blog post introducing my top five books I read in the outgoing year. I just published this year’s Food for Thought blog; it is the seventh consecutive year. But since 2021 was the year of the Life-Sparring podcast, it felt unavoidable not to record a Food for Thought Podcast special. To make the best of the audio/video format and to spice things a bit up, I invited a guest for this round, Hong Kong-based executive coach and friend of the show, David Siu. Together we discuss each of our top three books of the year and more generally about reading and life.Books we are covering in the show: Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need to Know About Global Politics, by Tim MarshallUnderstanding Comics: The Invisible Art, by Scott McCloudFour Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals, by Oliver BurkemanThe Premonition: A Pandemic Story, by Michael LewisA Prayer for Owen Meany, by John Irving Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership Playbook of Silicon Valley's Bill Campbell, by Eric Schmidt, Jonathan Rosenberg & Alan EagleFor more details and links to all books, head over to Life-Sparring.com/podcast
77 minutes | Nov 11, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 16: Morten Klingenberg - Big Dog's Backyard and the Ultra Mindset
Middle of October, I was glued for 4 days to a Facebook Live stream from Bell Buckle, Tennessee, following Big Dog’s Backyard Ultra, one of the craziest ultra trail running races in the world. Different from a traditional start to finish race, “Big’s” does not have a finish line. Instead, all race contenders must start a loop of the course at every full hour. If they manage to get around the 6.7056 km / 4 miles 880 feet long loop in less than 60 minutes, the remainder of the hour can be used for resting, refueling, running to the toilets, or even sleeping. The race winner is the participant, who manages to complete one more round than the second last contender. For Morten Klingenberg, aka Løbetossen / Run Crazy, the trip from Denmark to the Big’s Backyard Ultra World Championships was a big step up to the world stage and only his second race outside of his native country. As a trail running enthusiast, albeit a slow one, I couldn’t have been more excited getting Morten on the show, talking about running with the “big dogs,” and developing the ultimate ultra mindset.For complete show notes, all relevant links and more cool content, go to Life-Sparring.com
54 minutes | Aug 30, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 15: Henrik Widegren (MD) - Never Google Your Symptoms
I always get real experts in their respective feels to join me in the virtual Life-Sparring ring. However, this time, I hit one out of the ballpark and convinced an actual rockstar of medicine to spar with me. Henrik Widegren (MD) is based in Lund, Sweden, where he works in the university clinic as Otolaryngologist or Ear, Nose & Throat doctor. When Henrik is not seeing patients or is participating in clinical research, he is composing, writing, and performing songs about healthcare and medicine. He published several albums in Swedish and English, and in 2019, Henrik landed a viral hit with his song “Never Google Your Symptoms,” attracting more than 4.3 million views on YouTube.My conversation with Henrik covers a lot of ground, Henrik’s musical career from playing the recorder to becoming a recording artist; why he chose Otolaryngology over heart surgery, how it feels to become a viral sensation, and being the most prominent singing medical professional since Dr. Alban (It’s my Life – you remember?).Last but not least, we talk about the state of the medical profession and what we believe could improve the communication between doctors and patients. We also discuss critical medical topics such as the Man Cold, snoring, excessive earwax, and losing your voice to a spicy Malaysian dish. I had an absolute blast talking to Henrik, and I am sure you will also enjoy this one.For a video version of this podcast, go to YouTube, for the full show notes to this round and more quality content, visit Life-Sparring.com/podcast
44 minutes | Aug 16, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 14: Jonathan de Potter - Lo and Behold, We talk Plant Medicine
In Life-Sparring Round 14, Jonathan de Potter, founder and CEO of Behold Retreats, takes us on a trip far outside my comfort zone and our usual range of topics. Lo and behold, we are talking psychedelic plant medicine! Psychedelics received in recent years a scientific renaissance. Reputable institutes like Johns Hopkins or the Imperial College London are conducting studies on substances like Psilocybin and Ayahuasca, showing promising results in treating addictions, trauma, and depression. However, when talking about psychedelics, you quickly enter a rabbit hole that leads from science to philosophical questions and the esoteric. Is the self just an illusion? Where does our consciousness come from? Is there really a god molecule? My discussion with Jonathan de Potter touches on a lot of these topics.For show notes and more information, visit Life-Sparring.com/podcast
53 minutes | Aug 1, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 13: Prof. Elizabeth George & Prof. Prithviraj “Raja” Chattopadhyay - Identity (Re-)Search
Round 13 of the Life-Sparring Podcast is an ambitious one. With Professor Elizabeth George and Professor Prithviraj Chattopadhyay, I face not just one but two academic heavyweights in the virtual Life-Sparing ring, and our topic is nothing less than the eternal question “Who Am I.” As Professors of Management, both Elizabeth and Raja have spent large parts of their professional lives researching and teaching what makes organizations run. The social and personal identity of employees is a recurring theme of their research. In our almost one-hour-long discussion, we cover many aspects of Elizabeth’s and Raja’s Identity (Re-)Search. How to define identity? What role does identity play in our lives? How does Social Media or working from home influence our identities? These and a lot of other questions we are trying to answer in our discussion. For detailed show notes and more information visit Life-Sparring.com/podcast.
18 minutes | Jul 25, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 12: Fabian - Shadowboxing June/July 2021 - Quantified Starch
Shadowboxing rounds are solo episodes, where I, Life-Sparring host Fabian Gruber share “What’s On and Poppin” in my life, what current books provide “Food for Thought,” and what else is going on. No interviews, just a bit of solo rambling and occasionally some awful singing. The summer heat in Hong Kong made for a slow summer. What’s On and Poppin’ is all about carbohydrate supplement UCAN SuperStarch, which I have tried for the first time. I also recap a German podcast that I just did, talking about one of my favorite topics, the quantified self. In Food For Thought, I talk about John Irving’s The Water-Method Man and The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho. For good measure, I also throw an article in the mix on the economics of Dollar Stores in the US.For more information visit Life-Sparring.com/podcast
39 minutes | Jun 14, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 11: Sonalie Figueiras - Optimizing for Impact with the Green Queen
As the founder & editor-in-chief of Green Queen, Sonalie Figueiras is somewhat of a role model for me personally and Life-Sparring. After all, Sonalie turned a personal blog that she started ten years ago, fueled by her search for a healthier and more sustainable lifestyle into a sprawling impact media outlet. Today Green Queen generates 7 million-plus monthly impressions, with the mission to inform, inspire and empower. In our discussion, Sonalie tells her story and how she, of all people, became the Green Queen of Hong Kong. Sonalie shares what she believes are the most impactful steps a mindful individuum can take to lower one’s ecological footprint and how she sees the currently blossoming sector of Alt Protein, meat or meat replacement harvested without harming animals.More info and all show notes, links, and resources, as usual, at Life-Sparring.com/podcast.
19 minutes | Jun 3, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 10: Fabian - Shadowboxing May 2021 - Vaccination with the Wife
For the May round of Life-Sparring Shadowboxing, I spare you the usual signing. I usually interpret a loneliness-themed song, but this time there is a special feature guest. No loneliness and no singing! You wonder, who that surprising guest is? Well, nobody other than The Wife. Usually, she contributes to the show through constructive or not so constructive criticism, but this time she joins me on the mic. In “What’s On and Poppin’” we recount our experience with moderate side-effects taking the BioNTech - Pfizer - Fosun vaccination and share the data from our health wearables. I also talk about the ultra-light T8 running underwear and shorts, I recently got. In "Food for Thought", the book segment of the Podcast, we are back on the topic of COVID-19, as the book I just finished reading is Michael Lewis’ brand new book “The Premonition: A Pandemic Story”.
16 minutes | May 10, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 9: Fabian Gruber - Shadowboxing April 2021 - The Ring
Shadowboxing rounds are solo episodes, where I, Life-Sparring host Fabian Gruber share “what’s On and Poppin” in my life, what current books provide “Food for Thought,” and what else is going on. No interviews, just a bit of solo rambling and occasionally some bad singing.In this round of Life-Sparring Shadowboxing: truly awful singing and an attempt to explain it, a first review of the Oura Ring health monitor and reviews of Laura Huang’s book “Edge” and the late Clayton M. Christensen’s book “Competing Against Luck.”More info and all show notes, links, and resources, as usual, at Life-Sparring.com/podcast.
55 minutes | Apr 15, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 8: Simon Klaiber - Are you OKR? Objective & Key Results for Personal Agility
OKRs, Objectives and Key Results - After the Life-Sparring Podcast has been heavy on health and fitness topics recently, it is time for an exciting business and personal productivity round. Our guest, Simon Klaiber, is not just a successful business agility consultant and coach from Frankfurt, Germany; he also runs two Podcasts (in German) on business and personal agility. In episode 21 of his Personal Agility Podcast, Simon shared his experience using OKRs for personal goal setting.Introduced initially at Intel in the late 1970s, early 1980s by then legendary CEO Andy Grove, OKRs were later popularized by Intel staffer turned private equity investor John Doerr. Doerr brought OKRs to the young team at Google and several other Silicon Valley start-ups, from where the concept diffused into the broader tech industry. Today OKRs are a widely used method to set goals for an organization and create alignment, transparency, and accountability across different corporate levels. Together Simon and Fabian explore the advantages and pitfalls of OKRs and how a tool originally designed for big corporations can be helpful to achieve your personal goals.For more details check out the show notes at Life-Sparring.com/podcast
16 minutes | Apr 7, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 7: Fabian Gruber - Shadowboxing March - Bring the Heat
Shadowboxing rounds are solo episodes, where I, Life-Sparring host Fabian Gruber share “what’s On and Poppin” in my life, what current books provide “Food for Thought” and what else is going on. No interviews, just a bit of solo rambling and occasionally some bad singing.In this round of Life-Sparring Shadoboxing: more weather complaints and thoughts on body core temperature as a metric; my first-ever coached session after 30 years of running, two book reviews, and a bit of a teaser of what to expect from the next shows.More info and all show notes, links, and resources, as usual at Life-Sparring.com/podcast.
41 minutes | Mar 13, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 6: Dr. Chun Ki Chan - Re(n)al Talk
Does your bladder really burst if you hold your pee for too long? Will you get kidney stones if you do not drink two liters of water a day? These are just two of many questions that Urologist Dr. Chun Ko Chan (Kiki) answers in our “Re(n)al Talk” Round of the Life-Sparring Podcast. The urinary system is likely the organ we know the least and have the worst misconceptions about. Reason enough to dedicate an episode to the topic and talk to a re(n)al expert. Will Dr. Kiki Chan be able to address Fabian’s Childhood trauma of kidney stones and bursting bladders? Listen in to Round 6 of Life-Sparring.Show notes and more at Life-Sparring.com/podcast
18 minutes | Mar 9, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 5: Fabian Gruber - Shadowboxing February - The End is Always Near
Shadowboxing rounds are solo episodes, where Life-Sparring host Fabian Gruber shares “What’s On and Poppin” in his life, which current books provide “Food for Thought” and what else is going on. No interviews, just a bit of solo rambling. The winter in Hong Kong ended rather abruptly and muggy spring weather made it rather unlikely that Fabian still will try to improve on his rater embarrassing record for the Translantau 50k trail race. At least gyms are back open in Hong Kong and the first personal training sessions take their toll. There is not much that’s “On and Poppin’” in February, at least not in terms of new tools and gadgets. Time to appreciate some old favorites and their new use cases. Food for Thought is all gloom and doom this time, with Dan Carlin’s “The End is Always Near”. This and a bit more in a short and sweet round of Life-Sparring.
48 minutes | Feb 17, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 4: Dena Goldberg aka Dena DNA - Deconstructed Me II
After listening to her carrying a few Clubhouse panels on genetics, I somehow tricked the fabulous Dena Goldberg, aka Dena DNA, to jump into the Life-Sparring ring with me to discuss genetic testing for health. Dena holds a master’s degree in genetic counseling from the University of California, Irvine, and is one of 5,000 board accredited Genetic Counselors. She also made it her mission to increase the public awareness of genetic testing for health and created her personal brand Dena DNA around it. My discussion with Dena covers many aspects of genetic testing: We talk about the role of a genetic counselor, the fundamental difference between DTC genotyping and targeted sequencing panels, potential pitfalls in interpreting genotyping data, nutrigenomics, critical genetic defects to look for, the future of gene therapy and even CRISPR gene editing. Dena is exceptionally knowledgeable and has the talent to break complicated scientific topics down so that even people without much background knowledge can easily digest them. If you are interested in understanding your genetic makeup, I am sure you will find this Life-Sparring Round with Dena DNA as insightful as I do.
26 minutes | Jan 26, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 3: Fabian Gruber - Shadowboxing January: Clubhouse, Keto, Life-Sparring, Urine Analysis
The first two rounds of the Life-Sparring Podcast were well received, but a few listeners' feedback was that they wanted to hear more from me, the host, and not just from the guests. Be careful, what you ask for, your wishes might come true. Here we go with the first solo shadowboxing round. Topics covered in this round: Story of Life-Sparring, Clubhouse, Urine Analysis, Keto Diet, and The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.More details on the episode page: life-sparring.com/podcast/2021/01/26/life-sparring-round-3-shadow-boxing-life-sparring-clubhouse-urineanalysis
43 minutes | Jan 11, 2021
Life-Sparring - Round 2: Eva Hilf - A Polarizing Discussion of Sales and Wearables
For Life-Sparring - Round 2, host Fabian is joined by sales veteran and Managing Director DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) of sports wearable manufacturer Polar Electro, Eva Hilf.After deciding against running a guest house in the Jordanian desert, joining Procter & Gamble instead, Eva made an impressive career in consumer goods' sales & marketing.In our conversation, we dig into Eva's "eternal truths of sales" applicable in all circumstances. With Eva working with Polar Electro for the past 8 years, the wearable industry's massive transformation is another topic we dig in. If you want to hear how Polar navigates this watershed for the industry and how Eva sees the future of wearables listen to the show!As usual: more info and a lot more content at life-sparring.com/podcast
1 minutes | Dec 30, 2020
Life-Sparring - Podcast Launch Trailer
Don't want to commit to a full episode just yet? Check out our trailer to get an idea of what you can expect from the Life-Sparring Podcast.More on Life-Sparring.com/Podcast !
43 minutes | Dec 21, 2020
Life-Sparring - Round 1: Vlad Ixel on Running Successfully and Successfully Running a Supplement Start-Up
Life-Sparring - Round 1 kicks of with trail running heavyweight, Vlad Ixel from Perth, Australia. Vlad has an inspiring story to tell and has three successful careers: a professional trail runner with an insane winning rate, a running coach and fitness influencer with more than 70k followers on Instagram and an entrepreneur who recently started supplement company BIX. We cover all three of Vlad's careers and what becomes very clear during the interview is that despite Vlad's innate athletic talents, his success is as much a product of his strategic approach. More info on this episode, including all links mentioned in the show and more inspiring Life-Sparring content, you can find at Life-Sparring.com/podcast.
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