“This is way too deep to write about!” Rob Dyrdek tells me in the SoCal drawl that’s dominated MTV airwaves for the past two decades. He’s just reached the end of a lengthy tangent on the cutting-edge therapies he uses to track muscle damage in his body, having already caught me up to speed on his meditation dome and the supplement-saturated “super-shake” he fixes himself every day. We’ve covered Mindright, his new brand of superfood bars, his life-optimizing crystals, and his “no negative thoughts” mantra. And sure, it’s definitely strange to hear a voice typically reserved for howling at disastrous home videos on Ridiculousness talking about manifestation and omega-3s. But after a come-to-Jesus moment five years ago, Dyrdek talks a lot less like a reality TV bro and a lot more like someone truly operating on a higher plane.
Dyrdek, who originally arrived at MTV to document his outlandish life as a pro skateboarder, has always lived an active lifestyle. But he hit a breaking point later on, when he was working out harder than he’d been his entire life—and in constant pain.
“I was, like, ‘At 38 years old this can’t be,'” he says. “‘I’m in the best shape of my life, and I’m just achy all the time.'” It took him over five years to fine-tune an elaborate system of therapies, supplements, and inner work (plus one 30-pound crystal) and get keyed into what he calls a “life of intention.” And now, he caught up with GQ to talk manifestation, muscles, smoothies, and whether he really has no negative thoughts.
For Real-Life Diet, GQ talks to high-performing people about their diet, exercise routines, and pursuit of wellness. Keep in mind that what works for them might not necessarily be healthy for you.
GQ: What’s your morning routine like?
Rob Dyrdek: I get up whenever my body feels like it’s had its sleep, which is usually around 7 hours. So I get up every day around 4:30. Between 4 and 5, depending on how late I get to bed. I try to get to sleep around 9:00.
I like to do a little cross arm breathing and giving thanks every morning. I brain train with the Lumosity app, then I have a meditation machine called the Somadome, which is basically a guided meditation through light and sound. It’s a much easier way to stay committed to meditating every single day.
I think we’re gonna need a little more detail on that meditation dome.
I got it in January 2018, and my life has never been the same. Every single day I do a 20-minute guided manifestation meditation. It calibrates your entire physical energy and mindset into all of the things that you hope to achieve in your life. I use it to feel all of these things that I want to happen in the future as if I’m experiencing them. I never miss a day. I wouldn’t even consider it.
Had you been meditating at all before you got the dome?
I wasn’t. As the universe does, it gave me all those different signs leading towards meditation. I was introduced to the Somadome by a doctor friend, and as soon as I found it I knew that was the solution for me. I needed the experience of getting in a machine and putting on headphones in order to get committed to it.
What’s up next, post manifestation?
Then I hit the gym every day around 7:30. I do natural body weight exercises, moving, stretches, rolling out. It really is just your own natural movements. It’s all just breathing and movement. I believe the true path to a pain-free, high-energy extraordinary life is the relationship between your neuromuscular structure and your skeletal structure. That’s the root cause of almost all of the body’s dysfunction, whether that’s inflammation, nerve pain, aches. Everything I do with my physical body is about making sure my muscles are firing properly. I’ve watched my bloodwork completely change by just re-engineering the firing systems between my muscle and skeletal structure, and from seeing the functionality of the body go to a more natural state.
There’s two therapies I triangulated called NeuroKinetic therapy and Proprioceptive Deep Tendon Reflex therapy. I have a doctor who I work out with five days a week. When I work out, I’m testing the functionality of these muscles. You can test every muscle in your body, and it will tell you it’s hypertonic (dead), or it’s firing normally. I track all dysfunction and correct it anytime it builds up in my system. It’s this cutting-edge way of building and working on your body while making sure quantitatively that there’s no dysfunction .
Does every day involve cardio, or are some just stretching?
Some days it’s just stretching and sauna. I like to load up on electrolytes—really trying to keep the system as clean as possible. That all plays a part in the total functionality of how the whole system works so that everything works together more effortlessly.
How does food factor into that?
I wanna just be clean. I’m realistic—for me this is just light protein, greens, and a bit of rice. I eat at 11 and 5 o’clock each day, and depending on how I feel in the afternoon I’ll have a snack in between. I try not to eat between 5 and 11. It allows you to get this incredible night of sleep, because your body isn’t trying to work while you’re sleeping, it can just recover.
I supplement that diet with a shake that has all of the nutrients I may have missed through the food, supporting my muscles and tendons and ligaments. My baseline vitamins are vitamin c, glutathione, zinc. I take these in liquid form from a vitamin called Manna, which is a lysosome encapsulation that basically allows your body to absorb so much more of the nutrient. Instead of a regular omega I use Elysium’s Matter, which is a much more available omega along with B vitamins and antioxidants. That’s my multivitamin, if you will, a really high-end bioavailability combination. I add a collagen supplement, which has vitamin C and other things to synthesize the collagen and support the tendons and ligaments, and just a regular protein. I use a super-green mix on top of that, then I blend all of that together for my daily super-shake.
How did you start educating yourself about this lifestyle?
I used to do these extraordinary workouts where I would wear a heart monitor and do these circuit workouts that included running hills and lifting. I hated that there was nothing validating how hard I was trying. So I created a system to track effort: the heart monitor would show me what percentage of time I was above anaerobic threshold. So if I took the time I was above anaerobic threshold against the amount of time it took me to do the circuit, what would pop out is my effort number. I got in the most insane possible shape a human being can get into. But I ached. I always had plantar fasciitis, my one hamstring would always pop, my trap muscle was always achy, I had nerve pain in my glutes…I was, like, at 38 years old this can’t be. I’m in the best shape of my life, and I’m just achy all the time.
I started this mission to just have a flawless functioning system. I thought I would be able to create that in a year, year and a half. The journey took five years. And through that process I learned every single thing about the body and all aspects of what you put in it and how it reacts. I began to look at my entire system multidimensionally, which led to all different types of doctors and people and treatments and therapies, before I realized ultimately it is the relationship between your neuromuscular and skeletal structures that corrects almost everything.
If I had discovered this in my late 20s or early 30s, I probably would still be a pro skateboarder, Tom Brady style. Now I can look back and see where all my dysfunction and breakdown and injuries kept occurring. What I’ve discovered is essentially what Tom Brady’s doing and why he’s still able to play at such a high level.
Can you tell me about your crystals?
I have a giant citrine abundance crystal. I had bought a smaller abundance stone when my wife wanted to go to a crystal store, and so much abundance started pouring into my life. So I was, like, “Okay, I need a super abundance stone.” I went out and bought the biggest mega abundance stone that I could get, which is now the centerpiece my life of intention. I look at life as a whole as arts, science, and magic. You gotta be creative, and then there’s the proven systems and fundamentals of life. But then the magic side is that intangible, unexplainable stuff. Call it what you want, but I have become extraordinarily abundant ever since I’ve had an abundance stone.
Do you have any others?
My wife has gotten me some others that she thinks will help me. She got me a manifestation amplifier for Christmas that I put underneath my dome, so whenever I’m in there visualizing, it’s, amplifying it. But I have citrine in all different types. I make citrine and I put our little logo on it and give it to everyone I build a company with. We’re about to start selling ‘em on the website.
You’ve started using this tagline of having “no negative thoughts.” Is that really true?
For years I’d use qualitative data, where I would just ask myself every day, zero to ten, how do I feel about my life, work, and health? Anytime it was a five and below, I would mark what that was. You end up seeing all these patterns that I eventually went and cleared out over the years. I live such a life of intention, it’s very rare that I’d do something outside of some specific purpose. Even when something comes in unexpectedly, it doesn’t really stress you out or make you upset, because you are so clear on so many aspects of your life, you understand this is just part of life. And then you handle it immediately. When you do that year in year out, you become truly optimized, where it’s just hard to even have a negative thought. It’s very hard to get to, though. It demands an extraordinary amount of self development and self awareness, and then discipline to eventually eliminate the ability for negative thoughts to make their way into your existence. That’s a lot to write down!