Fittest CEO and 431 Project

Dr. Shawn Talbott (Ph.D., CNS, LDN, FACSM, FACN, FAIS) has gone from triathlon struggler to gut-brain guru! With a Ph.D. in Nutritional Biochemistry, he's on a mission to boost everyday human performance through the power of natural solutions and the gut-brain axis.

It was a very productive trip to Vermont last week!

On September 19-21, I was fortunate to compete in the 2014 Fittest CEO competition. These events are open to C-level executives from around the world – but you have to “qualify” in terms of both annual revenue and athletic targets. I feel lucky that I was able to compete in the 2013 version held at Blackberry Farm in Tennessee – coming in 2nd place (when it was called World’s Fittest CEO).

This year, a lot was changed, including the name of the event (Fittest CEO), the venue (Riverside Farm), and format of the race were changed.

The 2014 version included 8 events spanning 3 days – with Day 1 involving a road bike TT, physical fitness test, and mountain stair climb; Day 2 including a mountain bike ride, lake kayak, lake swim, and cross-country run; Day 3 involved a Spartan Sprint in the Elite Division. Total points for the 3 days were divided 30% for Day 1, 30% for Day 2, and 40% for Day 3 – so a lot was riding on the Spartan Race (my first one).

Out of 100 possible points over 3 days, I’m thrilled to be able to say that I finished with 94.5 points to be crowned the 2014 Fittest CEO!

This event was really my “A” race that I’ve been targeting for the last year – even more so than my ridiculous Tour of Colorado that I attempted in August.

Following the Fittest CEO events, I was equally fortunate to be asked to attend and speak at The 431 Project – described as “an exclusive group of industry leaders, executives and visionaries that convenes annually to develop actionable plans to increase the physical activity, nutrition and the overall well-being of Americans.”

At The 431 Project, I spoke about a “New Way To Think About Energy” – which is really a very old energy described by ancient traditional medicine systems – and more analogous to what we might describe as “motivation” or what I write about as “vigor.” I’ve also blogged about this different way of thinking about energy at Dr. Oz’s ShareCare site, where I have an occasional blog.

The 431 Project lecture video should be posted in a couple of weeks, so I’ll post a link to that when it’s up. Until then, I’ll post my slides from the event, as well as an artist’s concept of what I was talking about (drawn simultaneously to my talk, which was pretty cool).

Talbott 431 Project

431 Project Artist Image

One of the recurring themes that lots of us talked about at The 431 Project, was the need to “walk the walk” – and SHOW people the possible outcomes from eating right, being physically active, and supplementing appropriately – so I feel like the combination of speaking at 431 and taking the top spot at Fittest CEO was a great way to demonstrate that I try my best to do that.

Thanks for reading – until next time…



Shawn M. Talbott, Ph.D., CNS, LDN, FACN, FACSM, FAIS

Nutritional Biochemist and Author

UPCOMING BOOK:  Deadly Antioxidants – Why Your Daily Vitamins May Be Causing Cancer and Shortening Your Life (and How You Can Turn on Your Body’s Own Antioxidants for Optimal Health)

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The Secret of Vigor – How to Overcome Burnout, Restore Biochemical Balance, and Reclaim Your Natural Energy (

Killer at Large – Why Obesity is America’s Greatest Threat – an award-winning documentary film exploring the causes and solutions underlying the American obesity epidemic  (

The Cortisol Connection – Why Stress Makes You Fat and Ruins Your Health (Hunter House) –

The Cortisol Connection Diet – The Breakthrough Program to Control Stress and Lose Weight (Hunter House) –

Cortisol Control and the Beauty Connection – The All-Natural Inside-Out Approach to Reversing Wrinkles, Preventing Acne, And Improving Skin Tone (Hunter House) –

Natural Solutions for Pain-Free Living – Lasting Relief for Flexible Joints, Strong Bones and Ache-Free Muscles (Chronicle Publishers – Currant Books) –

The Immune Miracle – The All-Natural Approach for Better Health, Increased Energy and Improved Mood (GLH Nutrition, 2012) –

The Health Professionals Guide to Dietary Supplements (Lippincott, Williams & Wilkens) –

A Guide to Understanding Dietary Supplements – an Outstanding Academic Text of 2004 (Haworth Press) –

About the Author

Exercise physiologist (MS, UMass Amherst) and Nutritional Biochemist (PhD, Rutgers) who studies how lifestyle influences our biochemistry, psychology and behavior - which kind of makes me a "Psycho-Nutritionist"?!?!

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