The Hard Way w/ Joe De Sena

Joe De Sena


Learn the Spartan mindset. Founder & CEO of Spartan Race and NY Times best-selling author, travels the globe seeking and answers authors, academics, athletes, adventurers, entrepreneurs, CEOs and thought leaders. It will shift your thinking, make you laugh and and give you the tools you need. He’s on a mission to find the secrets to success in all aspects of life. Not only does Joe interview epic people, he has brought together an amazing panel to break down and analyze every aspect of these interviews. We give you the ultimate blueprint and action steps to assimilating these powerful conversations into your own life.

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887 episodes

Achieving Your Dreams: The Power of Your Circle and Consistent Action | Dominic Schlueter

Dominic Schlueter was a regular kid who loved running. Through consistency, the right influences, and taking action on his dreams, he's built a thriving podcast and brand at just 18 years old.   In this episode, Dominic recounts how from a young age he found joy in challenging himself on the track. That drive soon led him to seek out greater obstacles through podcasts and books. And it inspired him to start his own show to share the stories of people that he found inspiring.   Dominic talks about his fascination with Joe’s podcast and “threats” from his dad to send him to Joe De Sena's infamous farm. Years later, he is having an interview with Joe himself and talking about pushing himself to the limit through running, life-changing lessons he learned about grit, a circle of influence, and turning passion into purpose.   Tune in to hear more from this fascinating young man!

Dec 05
SquidHaus's Secret Weapon: How to Dominate the Fitness World | Lukas Pakter

Joe De Sena sits down with a young entrepreneur Lukas Pakter, the founder of the SquidHaus fitness apparel company, to discuss sensitive global issues with nuance, as well as Lucas' unconventional path to building his booming athletic apparel brand.   Lucas shares his viral strategy of leveraging an "influential army" of top fitness creators to take over the scene. He plans to sell thousands of discounted tickets to Joe's Spartan Race using influencer codes, donating over $1M to charity in the process. Joe gives the plan his stamp of approval.   Viewers will learn Lucas's unique brand story, top tips for starting young, and lessons on accountability from these experienced leaders. With open discussion on controversy and actionable advice, this episode is a must-watch for anyone pursuing a business or looking to better understand complex issues.   HIGHLIGHTS: 00:00 Joe’s “controversial” post on IG 02:34 The conversation has to happen 04:06 We shy away from having a stance 05:59 What does SquidHaus mean and represent? 08:06 Finding a job vs. starting a company 10:04 Leveraging business through Spartan Race 14:34 How to start a business? 16:44 Three things every entrepreneur should do every day 19:55 Three books everybody needs to read 21:57 How to find Lukas Pakter?

Nov 28
Forging Anti-Fragility: Build Strength Through Challenge | Brian Johnson

* In this powerful episode, Spartan founder Joe De Sena sits down for an in-depth conversation with the amazing Brian Johnson, also known as the Heroic Philosopher CEO. They discuss Brian's strategies for building anti-fragile confidence through consistent action. *   * Brian shares how we can close the gap between who we are and who we want to be by doing what we say we'll do. He explains the importance of living each day with virtue and intensity. *   * Joe and Brian also discuss forging strength through challenges and gaining emotional stamina. Brian provides practical tools for taking control of your life through developing a clear protocol. *   * This episode will motivate and inspire you to play the ultimate game of life to your fullest potential. You'll walk away with actionable advice for overcoming obstacles and living without regret. Tune in to hear more! *   * Highlights: * 00:00 Intro * 01:19 Who is Brian Johnson? * 02:52 Why did Brian write a book? * 05:13 How do we become our best selves? * 07:26 The power of Now * 11:17 The new “phone” generation * 14:16 Training heroes to become gods * 16:57 Forge anti-fragile confidence * 20:13 Surviving was the way of life * 21:48 Anxiety and depression in today’s world * 25:01 Brian’s protocol and advice * 29:12 The eulogy exercise * 32:44 How to find Brian? * 34:31 Behind the scenes of the podcast

Nov 21
Time to Escape the Comfort Zone | Michael Easter

* In this hard-hitting episode, bestselling author Michael Easter joins Joe De Sena to discuss the * dangers of our addiction to comfort in the modern world.  *   * They explore how technologies like social media and junk food use the same psychological tricks * as slot machines to hijack our brains. Easter reveals the "scarcity loop" that makes these activities so addictive. They also debate controversial solutions like taxing junk food and mandatory military service.  *   * This thought-provoking discussion will make you rethink everything you thought you knew about comfort - and maybe inspire you to get a little uncomfortable yourself! *   * Highlights: * 00:00 Intro * 01:18 Michael Easter’s background * 05:02 Lessons learned from skiing * 06:27 Parenting mistakes and the danger of technology * 09:44 The casino laboratory and a 3-part behavior loop * 13:35 The negative consequences of casino games and phones * 14:58 Snacking and junk food industry * 17:02 Challenging things will make you thrive * 20:37 Overeating and managing food * 25:26 The power of phones and what to do * 28:09 Mandatory military service and recruiting * 30:53 Three things everybody should do daily * 32:56 How to find Michael?

Nov 14
Re-Invent Yourself to Find Your True Self | Craig Siegel

Joe De Sena interviews Craig Siegel who is an author and motivational speaker. While having a successful business on Wall St Craig felt unfulfilled. He re-invented himself and constantly pushed himself into discomfort until he found a passion that would get him out of bed in the morning. He now helps others find their true potential and calling.

Nov 08
The Plant Based Truth Exposed? | Kameron Waters

Joe De Sena sits down with Co-Director of Christspiracy, Kameron Waters who talks about his upcoming film which he and his co-director bought back from Netflix making it the first of its kind to do so. This is the sequel to the popular Seaspiracy, What the Health and Cowspiracy which explores The Spirituality Secret kept hidden for thousands of years. To help Kameron buy the movie back from Netflix they are launching a kickstarter which you can find here:

Nov 01
Unlocking Your Inner Zelensky | Jessie Kanzer

Jessie Kanzer, author of UNLOCKING YOUR INNER ZELENSKY shares profound life lessons drawn from Volodymyr Zelensky's words and actions, and shows us how we too can access our Inner Zelensky to improve how we lead, conduct ourselves, and how we live. Jessie Kanzer, a half-Ukrainian child of the USSR who had a small part in Zelensky’s first major film, sees Zelensky as "a spiritual leader for our times." Joe sits down with her to discover what we can do to become better leaders.   For those interested in the book please visit:

Oct 03
From Retired Navy Seal to COO of Defy

On this episode Joe De Sena interviews Eric Frohardt who is a retired Navy Seal and purple heart recipient. Eric talks about his time in active service and his transition to becoming COO of Defy. Episode presented by Mudgear.

Sep 20
Persevering Through Life's Obstacles | Ed Hajim

On this episode of The Hard Way Joe De Sena sits down with Ed Hajim, a successful Wall Street executive who persevered through some of life's hardest tests as a young child.   Ed was kidnapped by his father at 3 years old and left in foster care and continued to fight through all the obstacles in front of him to now living a life of giving back to younger generations. In his latest book, The Island of the Four P's, he created a fable that helps prepare the youth for their future.    To learn more about Ed or buy a copy of his book visit:

Sep 12
Why You Should Spartan The F*** Up | Zack Even Esh

Joe brings on longtime friend and an original Spartan; Zach Even Esh. Joe and Zach talk about why it's important to toughen up in modern times and what the reasons are for the increase of softness in society.

Aug 08
Fighting against loneliness + fostering human connection | Andrea Miller

Andrea Miller is the founder and CEO of YourTango, an independent, purpose-driven publisher focused on relationships, emotional resilience, love, and self-empowerment tha attracts more than 23 million unique visitors each month organically. Joe and Andrea talk about the loneliness epidemic and how the modern tools out there have made fostering relationships more difficult than ever. For more info head to: 

Jul 18
Solving the Mystery of the Metabolism | Angelo Poli

Joe interviews Angelo Poli who is the founder of Metabolic Profiling (MetPro), which is an advanced methodology that analyzes a person’s specific response to diet and activity, and adjusts based on their personal needs and goals. Angelo breaks down his process for helping thousands of people achieve their goal weight and how the metabolism works differently for every single person. For more info head to:

Jul 05
How to Manifest the Relationship of Your Dreams | Jaime Bronstein

Jaime Bronstein, LCSW is a relationship therapist, coach, host of “Love Talk Live” on LA Talk Radio, wife, and mama. She was named the #1 relationship coach transforming lives in 2020 by YahooFinance. Joe sits down with her to talk about manifesting and what it takes to turn dreams into reality through hard work and faith.    Instagram:  Website: Amazon Link for my book, "MAN*ifesting: A Step-By-Step Guide to Attracting the Love That's Meant for You."    

Jun 27
The Essential Habits to Help You Move Freely and Live Fully | Juliet + Kelly Starrett

Kelly and Juliet Starrett are pioneers in creating functional movement to improve quality of life. They have worked with Navy SEALS, Olympic and pro athletes, and weekend warriors to help them prevent injury and improve performance through customized programs. Kelly and Juliet are the co-founders of The Ready State, a virtual mobility coaching platform, and San Francisco CrossFit.   Their new book Built to Move: The 10 Essential Habits to Help You Move Freely and Live Fully aims to present 10 practices proven to enhance mobility, make you feel energetic and improve your quality of life.   You can order their new book at:

Jun 20
The Journey to Success Looks Like This | 10x Growth Con Speech Special

After receiving millions of views on social media and dozens of comments asking where the full speech is we've published Joe De Sena's 10x Growth Con Speech. In this speech Joe talks about what it takes to become successful in whatever you're pursuing. The journey is always the same and this is what to expect. Episode is Presented by Athletic Brewing Co.

Jun 13
How To Get Into Shape with The Trainer to the Stars

Joe De Sena sits down with Don Saladino, aka The Trainer to the Stars. Don is known for whipping celebrities into shape for major movies. He's worked with Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, John Krasinski any many more. For more info on Don click here: 

Jun 06
How to Turn Anxiety Into Power with Harvard Psychotherapist Dr. Luana Marques

Dr. Luana Marques is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, Founder and Director of Community Psychiatry PRIDE at Massachusetts General Hospital, and the former President of the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. In her new book, she outlines an accessible approach for readers to not only manage their anxiety, but also address its root—avoidance. Get a copy of her new book here:

May 30
102 Year Old Mother of Holistic Medicine Reveals Secrets to Longevity

Joe De Sena sits down with Dr. Gladys McGarey, author of "The Well-Lived Life" and talks about what it takes to live a long, healthy and happy life.

May 29
102 Year Old Mother of Holistic Medicine Reveals Secrets to Longevity

Joe De Sena sits down with Dr. Gladys McGarey, author of "The Well-Lived Life" and talks about what it takes to live a long, healthy and happy life.

May 29
102 Year Old Mother of Holistic Medicine Reveals Her Health Secrets

Joe De Sena sits down with the "mother of holistic medicine” Dr. Gladys McGarey. At 102 years old she reveals her six secrets to health and happiness at every age. Her book can be purchased at:

May 23
If Only People Knew This About Entrepreneurship | Dave Colina

The CEO of O2 Hydration joins the show to talk about the obstacles and life of entrepreneurship. What has Dave learned through his journey of building O2 and what does the future of sports drinks look like?

May 09
Boost Your Brain Health from The Brain Doctor | Dr. Amen

Dr. Amen is a physician, psychiatrist, and founder of Amen Clinics with 11 locations across the U.S. Amen Clinics has the world’s largest database of brain scans for psychiatry totaling more than 210,000 SPECT scans on patients from 155 countries. He is the founder of BrainMD, a science-based nutraceutical company, and Amen University, which has trained thousands of medical and mental health professionals on the methods he has developed. He is the go-to resource for all things brain health and Joe De Sena asks him ways to boost overall brain health.

May 02
Become the Hero of Your Life with These Secrets | Brian Johnson

Brian Johnson is the creator of Optimize and the Founder + CEΦ of Heroic. He’s spent half of the last twenty-five years as a Founder/CEO and the other half as a Philosopher. Not only does Brian know the secrets in creating successful businesses but he also knows the secrets to living an optimal life.   For more information on Brian click here:

Apr 18
What We Got Wrong About Food

Dr. Amy Shah Dr. Shah graduated Magna Cum Laude from Cornell University's world renowned school of nutrition. She helps busy people transform their health using cutting-edge nutritional and medical science. Her proven techniques to heal inflammation utilize the power of the microbiome to help digestion, obtain natural hormone balance and heal food sensitivities. She is a well-known expert on intermittent fasting for women. In this interview she explains what we got wrong about food, how our cravings can be controlled and the impact food has on our entire health.

Apr 11
Unlocking the Art of Living with Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

Joe sits down with Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is a humanitarian, spiritual leader and an ambassador of peace and human values. Through his life and work, Gurudev has inspired millions around the world with a vision of a stress-free, violence-free world.  To follow Gurudev visit:

Apr 04
Unlocking the Secrets to Optimal Health: The Ultimate Guide to Feeling Your Best

Paul Chek is a world-renowned expert in the fields of corrective and high-performance exercise kinesiology, stress management and holistic wellness. In a world of biohacking and shortcuts to achieve health Paul breaks down what it truly takes to achieve optimal health. Please like and subscribe!   You can follow Paul here:

Mar 28
Unlocking Peak Performance with Dr. Vonda Wright

On this episode renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. Vonda Wright shares what she does to help athletes unlock peak performance.

Mar 21
111 Days at Sea...Turning the Improbable to Possible | Jack Jarvis

Jack Jarvis, a soldier from Hamble, Hampshire, spent 111 days at sea becoming the first solo rower to have rowed from mainland Europe to North America. Joe sits down to interview how the soldier rowed 4,500 nautical miles (8,334km) from Portugal to South Florida.

Mar 14
Change your habits = change your life | Michael Chernow


Mar 07
How to Create Ultra Habits to UNLOCK Ultra Performance | RJ Singh

RJ Singh is on a mission to achieve ultra-performance in all areas of life. His mastery of ultra-habits helped him turn his life around and now he hopes to inspire others to do the same. Through commitment and absolute dedication to the evolution of the mind, body, and spirit, people can prosper in all areas of their lives. To achieve this, we require intention, discipline, and solid habits.   Can follow RJ here:

Feb 28