#527: The Science Of Energy Production and Recovery & How To Balance Out Cortisol and Melatonin with Kristen Holmes

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Episode Summary

Something we all relate to is wanting to feel more energized. Between working, providing for our families, and all the other hats we wear, it’s so common to feel burnt out and totally drained from day to day. 

Besides being a mama, I help women feel their best by optimizing their hormones and metabolism. And because of this, I’ve been able to avoid burnout (for the most part!)  since I’ve learned tools that allow me to become my most energized self. 

That’s due to incredible experts like the one here today– Kristen Holmes– who deliver so much knowledge and offer high-value tools you can start implementing immediately. Kristen is here to share with you habits that move the needle in harnessing more mitochondrial energy, giving you better recovery from long, busy days, and guiding you on a path towards many years of energy. 

Not only is she an expert in our psychological and physiological health, but she also works as the vice president of performance science for WHOOP. WHOOP is a wearable health and fitness coach providing you with 24/7 personalized insights. It monitors your sleep cycles, quality, and performance, then gives you guidance so you can learn to unlock your potential and optimize your energy levels. 

So, join Kristen and me today as we discuss how to enhance human performance as women. Plus, you’ll discover easy adjustments you can make each day to give you the long-lasting energy you’ve been craving. 

We’ll discuss the importance of keeping a consistent sleep schedule, and when the optimal time is to fall asleep. Deep, restful sleep is so critical. And I know you know what it feels like to be sleep deprived. So you’ll want to have all the tools to prevent this feeling in the future. 

Working with WHOOP, Kristen sees firsthand how the data doesn’t lie. And as a long-term WHOOP user myself, this data that’s tracked my sleep-wake cycle, stress, and heart rate has helped me plan my day fiercely and protect my sleep. 

Check out this podcast to get aligned with what you truly want to feel in your body. So you can focus on increasing your energy and honoring your circadian rhythm to promote overall wellness. 

Kristen Holmes

Kristen is the Vice President of Performance Science at WHOOP. She uses her background in athletics, coaching, performance technology, psychology, and exercise physiology to drive research and product development. She uses WHOOP with all kinds of people to optimize training, recovery, and sleep behavior. 

The focus of Kristen’s research is on circadian influences and their effect on resilience. She was a 3 time All-American and 2 time Big 10 Athlete of the Year at the University of Iowa, competing in field hockey and basketball. She has numerous credentials including a master’s in psychology and sports performance, a degree in political science, and she’s a Ph.D. candidate. 


“If you’re waking up around 2 or 3 am, you can probably trace it back to the light in the morning OR not enough evening restriction of light AND stress management through the day. Those are 3 behaviors that will impact the quality of your sleep at night.” 

“[A study] showed any light between 11pm and 4am was enough to disrupt the next day’s dopamine system. So 11pm is that time when you definitely want to be asleep” 

“One of the top three things that influence fertility and uterine receptivity is the degree to which you’re stabilizing your sleep-wake time.”

“It takes a lot of effort to digest. We’re basically diverting all of the resources away from rejuvenation and recovery…So we really want to make sure we’re being super thoughtful that all of our calories are in this 10 or 12-hour period.” 

“If we want to fix our sleep, we have to fix our circadian rhythm. If we want to fix our reproductive health, we’ve got to fix our circadian rhythm.” 

In This Episode

  1. How to maintain our energy and our resilience 
  2. Managing acute stress
  3. Circadian rhythm and your psychological and physiological health 
  4. Sleep as a foundation for optimal performance 
  5. Importance of hormonal balance 
  6. Poor sleeping habits and their negative impacts 
  7. Time-restricted eating and metabolic outcomes 
  8. Strategies for managing stress and improving our health 
  9. Why data tracking aligns the body with optimal health 
  10. What WHOOP can tell us about our body & how it helps us to understand our health   

Resources Mentioned

Check Out WHOOP!  | WHOOP Instagram 

Kristen’s Instagram  | Kristen’s LinkedIn

Related Episodes

#411: 5 Big Benefits Of The Powerhouse Hormone: Cortisol

#488: The Benefits Of Circadian-Based Intermittent Fasting + How To Implement With Ease

#359: 5 Tools To Lower Cortisol Levels

#240: How To Conquer Stress And Hormonal Imbalance Through Optimizing Mitochondria And Cortisol With Dr. Carrie Jones

#438: 5 Big Benefits Of The Powerhouse Hormone: Melatonin

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