The Wim Hof Method - anybody tried it?

Has anyone tried the Wim Hof Method. I just bought the book. I don’t like cold, so it doesn’t bode well :joy::rofl:

yeah, the breathing technique is fantastic. Makes you feel good and i am sure it helps with recovery.
I do the cold showers too and you do get used to it. First few are tough but again it is meant to help with recovery and to improve your immune system. FOr 30 seconds of coldness the benefits seem worth it. Even been in the Irish sea a few times this year which i would never had done if it wasn’t for discovering this.
Certainly worth a go but commit to it.


Timely post. I’ve not read the book but last week decided to try cold showers in the morning.

Slowly getting colder but currently still at “warm” :grimacing:


I finished What doesn’t Kill Us by Scott Carney not too long ago. I’m not 100% convinced, but did try the breathing and cold showers for awhile. There’s a group in my city that does cold water swims in the winter that I think I’ll try to join regularly.

A deep dive from Chad would be interesting. Do the breathing techniques help us as cyclists in any way? I could hold my breath for longer, but does that transfer into better lung function on the bike? Getting acclimated to the cold is beneficial for winter ultras, I’m curious if there are other benefits too.

Let us know how your journey goes!


Agreed, a deep dive from Chad would be great. I’ll let you know my experience…


Me neither, but now I’ve just bought the kindle edition, after reading your post. :snowflake: :snowflake: :snowflake: :snowman_with_snow: :snowman_with_snow: :snowman_with_snow:

1 Like

Running/hiking in the winter in nothing but shorts isn’t that bad, if you keep moving and wear gloves. With the wind chill, biking’s cold enough as is. I find I unintentionally wim hof myself most of the winter by not wearing quite enough clothing anyways. My brown fat stores have grown out of pure stupidity and unpreparedness.

I tried cold showers for a bit after reading ‘what doesn’t kill us’, but found that after a 3+hr bike ride in the cold and constant wind…the absolute last thing I wanted to do was take a cold shower, no matter the long term or training benefit. It’s fine and easily manageable after a summer ride or indoor trainer session though.

Didn’t try any breathing stuff. Would definitely be interested in a Chad deep dive.


. My brown fat stores have grown out of pure stupidity and unpreparedness.


Agree we need a deep dive here. Just finished Breath by James Nestor who references Wim Hof a bit. There are comments on breath control, 02 and C02 saturation levels and effects on endurance that need the full @chad


Re: effects of breath holding on endurance sports. Also, curious. I’ve heard of some beneficial effects for the anaerobic systems. My understanding is that the adaptations from apnea are the opposite of what you want from aerobic training, like capillary density, metabolism. :man_shrugging:

Watch your heart rate as you hold your breath while doing Z2. It’s quite remarkable. I was freediving for a while in my 20s. I got to a 6 minute static and 140 metre DYN in the pool


Before training, what was your PR?

1 Like

I’ve discussed the breathing method on this forum before. I got interested in it because somebody told me they were doing it and it lead to 20%+ gains. That was a pretty incredible claim so I figured…it’s free & probably won’t hurt anything. I’ll give it a whirl.

I don’t think it’s really gonna help your performance but it does two things really well.

1.) It helps you get to sleep. Best thing ever for insomnia.

2.) Used in conjunction with a pulse oximeter (as described in my earlier thread) it’s a great way to monitor your state over recovery.

Now, a word of warning before you slap that pulse oximeter on and go all Wim Hoff: alarms will go off! If you watch your blood oxygen level it’s going to make you freak out. If other people are watching they’re probably going to ask you to please stop. Don’t worry, though, you’re going to be perfectly OK.

1 Like

Which breathing exercises help for sleep? Any articles or guides?

There are several interesting podcasts about breathing techniques, just search for Wim Hof or James Nestor. Ben Greenfield has interviewed lots of other breathing technique proponents as well.
My take home from trying a few including Wim Hof was that results are likely very different for different individuals but it seems like a good idea to explore and learn about breathing, oxygenation and perfusion being very important to our life.

I did 3m20 at my first freediving class on Koh Tao. 5 min came pretty quickly.

1 Like

Death Island?! Bas@$$ I’m impressed.
That’s such a long time underwater. Seems like a super power to me.

1 Like

I’ll drag this to the surface again…
I got a copy of Wim Hof’s book for Christmas, and just sat down to it today. I tried the breathing technique, and while I’m not yet sure that it’s a life changer, it certainly is interesting. Maybe in a while, I’ll start the cold showers. Honestly, I’d rather jump in a cold lake. That end of his schtick certainly gives me pause, but I’m sure I could get used to it.

Anyway, tonight, while doing a TR workout, I played with “over breathing” between intervals. Anyone used this technique? I got through my intervals just fine, but I can’t tell if the breathing helped any, to be honest. It just seems like it could work like putting a little “in the bank” to draw from during the next interval.

I’m going to keep working with the breathing technique. I’m interested to hear what Y’all’s ( I live in Maine, did I do that right?) opinion/experiences with this are. Cheers, and Happy New year to everybody!

respiratory training has helped me out a lot, and also listening to James Nestor on Joe Rogan got me to mouth tape at night and my nasal passages have expanded, allowing more nasal breathing on the bike. two separate topics, but FTP work after respiratory training makes it so much easier than before; and while Vo2max work still sucks, the breath control is pretty amazing. The lungs never hate me as much as the legs do.

I’m sure these Wim breathing techniques would be great, but haven’t specifically tried them

I did try cold showers twice and y’all savage. I love 1% gains but not sure I’m in for that one.

1 Like

I did try cold showers twice and y’all savage. I love 1% gains but not sure I’m in for that one.

I (non-voluntarily) took 2 ice cold showers while trekking in South America. I have met my life quota for cold showers, lol.

Edited to add: I normally take showers in lava


I’ve been taking cold showers for years. It started as a myth that it would make me tougher mentally because you know it will be uncomfortable going in and you must force yourself into the water. In the interest of full disclosure, I grew up playing in the cold and snow is my friend.

Several years ago, I read something about brown adipose tissue (brown fat) being and cold exposure being good for training the body to burn fat to stay warm.

After hearing about Wim, and listening to his interview with Jordan and Mikayla Peterson, I tried the breath work and just witnessing how I felt in the cold water. A strange thing happened. I stopped breathing. For minutes. Just witnessing as he put it. I stopped noticing cold at all. It’s so weird.

I don’t know what to make of it. I’ve only done it a few times since last week. I’m going to keep doing it. If there are and side effects, I’ll let y’all know. Unless the side effects are fatal, then I won’t.