The pH system of your body, which is the second system of Physiologic Flexibility, can be acutely stressed by . . .
When you hyperventilate (fast, rapid breathing), you are blowing off (exhaling) more carbon dioxide.
Less CO2 = more alkaline pH temporarily.
The reverse happens when you hold your breath. Your metabolism does not stop (luckily), and you are still producing CO2, so it builds up since you are not exchanging any air.
Higher levels of CO2 combine with water to form carbonic acid in your blood. More acid acutely lowers pH.
Different types of breathing have completely different acute effects on pH.
Just like with the concept of Matching Macros (as taught in the Flex Diet Cert), you want to match the correct intervention to your fitness goals.
2) High-Intensity Intervals
The other way (of many) to stress your pH system is a high-intensity exercise where your body produces lactate and H ions.
H ions are literally an acid being dumped into the local muscle. Wahooooo!
You will feel this when you do some 30-sec all-out work on the Concept 2 rower, assault bike, or high rep sets of an exercise like leg extensions.
Now you have 3 ways to challenge your pH system
1) Hyperventilation methods
2) Hypoventilation / breathe holds
3) High-intensity exercise
In the upcoming course on Physiologic Flexibility, I will go into a ton more depth and give you direct examples of what each one looks like and how to add it into your current routine with just a few extra minutes per day.
Here is an inside trick – you can intelligently combine methods together. One example is nasal only breathing while doing sub-maximal work on the rower or bike. This will build up more CO2 (on purpose) than hyperventilating through your mouth like a panting dog in the TX heat, yet it is still sub max and can be performed more often than all-out true HIIT.
Stress your pH to increase physiologic flexibility!
PS – stay tuned for more examples of how to drop this into your current routine and the live date for when the complete system goes on sale.