Boost Your Human Growth Hormone in 20 Minutes!

Watch Dr. Mercola and exercise physiologist Phil Campbell do a 20-minute exercise protocol that can stimulate your own production of HGH by 771%.  HGH levels and telomere length are indicators of life span and health.

How to boost your human growth hormone by 771% in 20 minutes

MY TITLE headline is compelling: How to Boost Your Human Growth Hormone in 20 Minutes! If I came across that title, it would certainly stimulate me to find out more about it, even as I wondered what the gimmick might be.

People are interested in Human Growth Hormone (“HGH”) because they’ve heard that it’s important for preserving youthful vigor, looks and strength.  HGH is on my radar because one of my main focuses in life is to live a long and strong life.

Attaining this without HGH would be an overwhelming challenge.

Just look at what happens to your body’s production of HGH over time:

Even you twenty-somethings are at the halfway mark of HGH production.  At forty, you’re producing about half as much as at twenty, or about 3.5 times less than at your peak.  The rate of decline slows after forty, but the slope is still downward.


Why Care About HGH?

There is debate about the value of stimulating the HGH levels of someone at the norm per the above chart.  WebMD has a succinct post, on the subject, which distills down to:

“It isn’t clear if human growth hormone may offer other benefits to healthy adults.”

The “other” in “other benefits” refers to an increase in muscle mass and a concurrent reduction in body fat; however, strangely, the increased muscle doesn’t seem to increase strength.

Could it be that strength wasn’t increased because WebMD’s review, like most evaluations of HGH, is based upon it being injected or introduced some other way into the human body?

That’s not what I’m writing about.

I’m reporting about stimulating more HGH naturally by your own body through doing a certain, precise type of exercise.

This is something I’ve been doing myself for about a month.

But before I get into the exercise bit and it’s affect on HGH production, a word from Dr. Mercola about HGH’s influence on health and longevity:

“Peak Fitness” promotes the production of HGH, “a synergistic, foundational biochemical underpinning that promotes muscle and effectively burns excessive fat. It also plays an important part in promoting overall health and longevity.”

“If you’re over the age of 30, especially if you lead an increasingly sedentary lifestyle, you’ve likely entered a phase known as somatopause (age-related growth hormone deficiency). As your HGH levels decrease, your levels of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) also decrease. This is another important part of what drives your body’s aging process.”


The Telomere Factor

The telomere story about its affect on longevity is deserving of it’s own post, or series of them, and, indeed I have written about them before and will continue to do so.

{See Three Months to Longer Life, How Exercise Slows the Aging Process and How to Live to 100.}

But I want to sneak telomeres in here because they too are favorably affected by the exercise protocol I’m about to divulge, which is what Dr. Mercola refers to as “Peak Performance”, and what exercise physiologist Phil Campbell calls “Sprint 8”.

Telomeres are found at the ends of chromosomes.  Their length foretell life span. They shorten as cells divide.  The shorter they are, the closer you are to meeting your maker.

Back to Dr. Mercola, who says:

“Interestingly enough, telomere length is also modulated by the growth hormone/insulin-like growth factor system, which confirms the beneficial influence of high-intensity exercises on physical aging.”

Enter a Univeristy of Ohio study published in 2008, which maintains that the two interventions most consistently associated with increased lifespan in animal models are caloric restriction, and (as with HGH) the repression of the HGH/IGF-1/insulin axis:

“In humans as well as other species, a reduction in the GH/IGF-1 axis is correlated with increased percentage of total body and visceral fat, decreased muscle mass, decreased physical fitness, decreased immune function, and physiological declines in estrogen and androgen concentrations.”

“Thus, the natural declines in GH and IGF-1 that accompanies age-related degenerative processes implies that the GH/IGF-1 axis may be a causative determinant.”

So, what we have so far is the contention that HGH levels and Telomere length are both determinants of longevity and overall health, and that a certain type of exercise protocol can positively impact them.


Bust Your Ass 8

Since Phil Campbell and Dr. Mercola have their own, different names for this exercise protocol that boosts HGH and telomere length, I’m going to pen one of my own:

“BYA8”, short for “Bust Your Ass 8”

Perhaps not poetic, but quite descriptive, my newly named BYA8 protocol (the same as “Peak Performance” and “Sprint 8”) has been tested to maximize the body’s own production of HGH.

This exercise protocol can boots HGH by 771% in just twenty minutes.

The name suggests the protocol, for to get the HGH boost you must bust your ass eight times.  And, indeed, the type of exercise you’re busting yourself over must involve your buttocks, one of our largest muscles.

How to do BYA8:

1. The Exercise Type.  Choose an anaerobic exercise such as sprinting, running up stairs, running up a hill, biking, stationary biking, an elliptical exerciser or rowing machine.  (Note that any of these will, at minimum, engage your entire quadriceps, hamstrings and buttocks  — the big muscles in the body that you need to exhaust.)

As Phil Campbell puts it:

“There are many different ways you could do Sprint 8. As long as you can get totally exhausted in 30 seconds or less. That’s the key. If you can’t go longer than 30 seconds — no matter if you’re a professional athlete or just starting — that means you’re doing it correctly. It has to be so intense that after 30 seconds, you’re just praying for those last seconds to go by … “

2. Do 8 Sets, 30 Seconds Each.  After a warm-up, do the exercise as fast/hard as you can for 30 seconds.  Then slow way down (for instance, if you’re sprinting, walk) for 90 seconds and then leap to it again for 30 seconds, and so on eight times.

3. Ingest Protein. Within 30 minutes after the BYA8 session, ingest 20 to 30 grams of protein, either a protein drink (whey is good) or food.  You will accentuate HGH production and muscle-building if you reduce carbohydrate ingestion right now; in contrast, exercise recovery is accentuated if you do consume carbs.  Basically, it’s a trade-off, so do what supports your objective.

BYA8 Words of Wisdom:

1. Ease Into It.  You will not be able to do 8 sets right away.  If you do, you’re probably not busting enough during the 30 seconds.  Particularly if you’re past 40 years of age or have been rather sedentary, begin slowly.  After warming up, try doing the 30 seconds at half power at first.  I’m doing four at full bust and four slower. Doing eight, even if just two sets are hard, is a good idea so that you’ll get accustomed to the protocol.

2. Rest.  Most of us will need at least two days of recovery.  For most of us, you will injure or exhaust yourself if you try to do BYA8 more often than every third day.

3. Eat Protein. You’ll need to eat more protein than usual to feed your muscles during the anabolic and growth phases post exercise; otherwise you won’t build enough muscle or recover sufficiently to keep the program going. (Anabolic recovery begins about 45 minutes after exercise, and the growth phase kicks in thereafter till the next catabolic, muscle break-down, creating workout.)

Now, before you get all “gun ho” about this, watch the two videos below.  One is Dr. Mercola’s interview with Phil Campbell (yes it’s long).  The other is of Mr. Campbell putting Dr. Mercola through the protocol on an elliptical machine, which Campbell considers the best equipment for this ass busting.

You may also wish to read Dr Mercola’s views on HGH and exercise, a post he titled, Boosts Your Youth Hormone by 771% in Just 20 Minutes. There’s more juice on the subject there.

–> If you’re also going to use supplements, save time and money with this exceptionally comprehensive guide <–

Finally, as mentioned, I’ve jumped into and am busting my butt with this protocol. I’ll write about my experience once I have something definitive to report…

UPDATE 10/4/14: I’ve been sprinting stairs now twice a week over the two years since this was originally posted. After four months, I injured myself by going too hard too soon, and not taking time off when I began to feel a twinge in my Achilles tendon. This caused a several month interruption, so what did I gain by not taking it slowly? Nada. I did get back to it, and reaping the benefits — leaner, stronger, more energetic. Read about this, but mostly about how supplements compare to HIIT when it comes to boosting HGH, in a post I just wrote called, HIIT It Hard for Your HGH Boost.

Let us know what you think of all this in the Comments below.  Are you interested in trying it out?  If not, why do you hesitate?


Ciao for now.

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Joe Garma

I help people live with more vitality and strength. I'm a big believer in sustainability, and am a bit nutty about optimizing my diet, supplements, hormones and exercise. To get exclusive Updates, tips and be on your way to a stronger, more youthful body, join my weekly Newsletter.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 27 comments
San Diego Chiro - March 22, 2012

Well, I think that the natural method in increasing HGH is way better than those that they inject to your body, which if you get too fascinated with, can harm your body. That’s why it’s really great that you’ve enumerated the exercises here with the video.

Fat Loss - July 7, 2012

Absolutely extraordinary stuff. I really liked this idea. The methods listed here are certainly effective. It is a very informational and valuable post for everyone interested in fitness. Great sharing…
Thanks for sharing this…

Joe - July 7, 2012

I’ve been applying this to my own workout regimen. Using stairs rather than sprinting or the elliptical. Is taking time to maintain intensity and to recover, but the progress is steady and it’s making me feel stronger overall.

rrrrrrrrrr - January 28, 2013

I started lifting weights 1 year ago some everyday until it hurts.i do 6 sets of sprints 3 to 4 times a week at the end of a jog or by itself.Im 62.doesnt take long but i am increasing it.Its hard but good.

Joe - January 28, 2013

As I sit here nursing a sore Achilles tendon, I feel compelled to suggest that you give yourself enough time between exercise sessions in order to properly recover. Sprinting 3 or 4 times a week is a lot for the post-40 crowd like us, Ralph, assuming you’re going flat out. Suggest you reduce the number of sprinting sessions per week and instead do a couple of mobility exercises aimed at getting a full range of motion in the joints. Check out for inspiration and technique.

rrrrrrrrrr - January 29, 2013

hey Hoe thanks for quick reply.Should one warm up before sprintimg and is it stressful for the heart?Mine is ok and I have been working out all my adult life.My son and I started boxing last year which was hard but seemed to get umore used to it as time goes on.

rrrrrrrrrr - January 29, 2013

Joe didnt mean to call you hoe sorry bout that!

Joe - January 29, 2013

Yes, warm up is essential, and it should be a similar action to the sprint. So if you’re sprinting on flat ground, the warm up should be gradually increasing your running pace, set by set, till you’re ready for a full out effort. That said, know that even with well-coached, nationally ranked, young athletes, pulled muscles and other injuries are common to sprinting. So beware.

Richard Carter - February 28, 2013

I’ve added this workout to my routine. I really wonder if I can “channel” exactly where the HGH goes in my body, or does it just spread out wherever it wants to go… Great stuff!

Joe - February 28, 2013

No, you can’t “channel” human growth hormone. It works in your body systemically. Check wikipedia for details:

Anon - March 20, 2013

Does it help you grow taller? I’m under 20 and I’m just starting to do this, if it does help you get taller, how much taller would you say?

Joe - March 20, 2013

My understanding is that hGH could only help one grow taller if the person’s “growth plates” have not “closed”, which usually happens in late teens, perhaps 20. Check out this video by an MD speaking on this subject:

kris - May 28, 2014

Wondering what you think of aerobic threshold exercise as espoused by Maffetone? Wondering if it might be good to combine both somehow.

Joe Garma - May 29, 2014

Kris, don’t know about Maffetone, but can comment on mixing aerobics and the anaerobic HIIT.

The first thing to say is that form is impt w/ any exercise. Without proper form, not only will the exercise not delver its intended purpose, but injury is inevitable. Jogging is a pertinent example. Most people I observe jogging are using poor form, or they themselves are structurally unsound. The longer they run that way, the more potential problems will occur.

Next, the blending of the strength/muscle, hGH producing HIIT with the cardiovascular/endurance conditioning of aerobics is ideal. After a warm-up, I would first do the HIIT and then the aerobics. If you reverse the order, the HIIT output will suffer. You could also do them on separate days, but make sure there’s enough time for your body to recover.

kris - May 31, 2014

Thanks for the response Joe.
I think my form is good. I hardly ever get injuries.

Maffetone basically says that athletes of all levels should fully develop their aerobic fitness before moving onto incorporating interval workouts.

He’s trained many successful pro athletes and claims this works.

I’ve been doing his protocol for a little while now and I am seeing the improvements he talks about, however I wonder if I am missing out by leaving out the HIIT workouts in the meantime.

I guess in the end I just need to follow what feels right for me and maybe experiment and measure the results.

Joe Garma - May 31, 2014

Kris, makes sense that a person has a decent level of aerobic capacity before jumping into HIIT. And, I would add, some decent mobility in the joints and flexibility in the soft tissue is good too before HIIT. The question is how much is enough? I’ve benefited quite a bit from HIIT. In my case, it’s mostly sprinting stairs. When I started this I had decent, but by no means “fully developed” aerobic fitness. I did have, however, pretty good mobility given my yoga. Now, I’m just one data point, but I doubt that many people that have benefited from HIIT first were fully aerobically developed. I think the key thing is to start slowly — don’t go full out until you have some experience with it, make sure you fully recover after each session (I can only do it twice per week, and in the beginning, only once), and stretch, stretch, stretch. My 2 cents.

Andrew - September 3, 2014

Wonderful stuff.. Since I was a kid running wasn’t for me, id rather sprint like a cat … I always tensed my muscles and i have always had a great body on me. I loved getting out of breath really quick and people would say I was unhealthy including my PE teacher but I always knew and tried to explain even as a child that faster your heart goes the better your body reacts. I’m definitely biking hard and sprinting back.

Joe Garma - September 3, 2014

Well, Andrew, your predilection will serve you well as the years pass and — through your HIIT — you keep your human growth hormone pumping.

The key is to give yourself the space to recover (including the right food and stretching) so that you don’t injure yourself.

Anonymous - May 15, 2015

thanks for that article

Stewart - June 29, 2015

Quite interesting article on HGH. Very useful.


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