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Our guest this week is Outside magazine columnist Alex Hutchinson, author of Endure: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance. We discuss how endurance is a skill that involves drive and belief just as much as muscle - and how we all have the potential to go farther, push harder and achieve more.

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In this episode we're talking about the lost art of conversation-making. Joining us is podcaster and raconteur Ken Plume, who has conducted extensive interviews with the likes of Mel Brooks and John Cleese. We discuss how Ken got his start feeling comfortable talking to just about anyone, how he handles the awkwardness of a cocktail party (hint: It involves a fern) - and then we invent an acronym that will help you handle any conversational challenge. (Sort of.)

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This week on The Upgrade, we spoke in front of a live audience at On Air Fest with journalist Jill Abramson, the first female executive editor of the New York Times, and the co-author of Strange Justice: The Selling of Clarence Thomas. Jill is currently a political columnist for The Guardian as well as a Senior Lecturer in the English Department at Harvard. Her next book, News Wars, will be out in 2019.

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In this episode we talked with author and psychiatrist Mark Epstein, whose books include Thoughts Without a Thinker, and Going to Pieces Without Falling Apart. His latest book, Advice Not Given: A Guide to Getting Over Yourself, uses Buddhism's Noble Eightfold Path as a roadmap for spiritual and psychological growth. According to Mark, Buddhism and psychotherapy arrive at the same conclusion: When we give the ego free rein, we suffer, but when the ego learns to let go, we are free.

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On the latest episode of The Upgrade, we're talking about the self-proclaimed "front page of the internet", the massive online community known as Reddit. For some, Reddit is a second home, a place to hang out, post links, chat and trash talk with like-minded friends and foes. For others, it's a confusing rabbit warren with its own weird rules and etiquette, a teeming hive of enthusiasts and trolls, an overwhelming curiosity that they might visit every now and then, but who has time to learn to navigate what's essentially a complex system of message boards?

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In this episode of The Upgrade we're taking a closer look at alcohol - why we drink, what it does to us, and how to quit, if we're so inclined. We're joined by author Annie Grace, author of the book This Naked Mind: Control Alcohol, Find Freedom, Discover Happiness & Change Your Life.

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In this week's episode, we're talking about heartbreak. How do you know when your heart is broken? What can you do about it? And how do you help the heartbroken people in your life? Our expert guest is Guy Winch, noted TED speaker and author of the forthcoming book How to Fix a Broken Heart.

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In this episode we discussed cults: How they operate, how you identify one, what it's like to be in one, and how to get out. To that end, we spoke with author Rebecca Stott, whose book In the Days of Rain: A Father, a Daughter, a Cult details her childhood in the Exclusive Brethren, a cult that believed the world is ruled by Satan. We also talked to Rick Alan Ross, the founder and Executive Director of The Cult Education Institute. And we talked with Elizabeth Yuko, a bioethicist and journalist who's written extensively about cults.

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2017 was quite a year for Lifehacker's podcast, The Upgrade. In this episode, we talk about (and listen to) our favourite moments from the past year's episodes. In 2017, we learned how to turn our awkwardness into a social asset, how to be brilliant (while being bored), how to find real love… and more. So much more. Oh, but we had fun.

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This week we're tackling the topic of urban cycling. Our guests include Eben Weiss, author of The Ultimate Bicycle Owner's Manual: The Universal Guide to Bikes, Riding, and Everything for Beginner and Seasoned Cyclists; Rosemary Bolich, the Director of Community Outreach at We Bike NYC; and Doug Gordon, better known as Brooklyn Spoke - a TV producer and outspoken cycling advocate. We'll find out what some people have against mandatory helmet laws, how cities can make their streets safer for cyclists, and why it isn't worth it to argue with a motorist (but it is worth it to quietly hate them).

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In this episode we talked with Tim Ferriss, author, podcaster, investor, entrepreneur and self-proclaimed "human guinea pig". He's the author of several books, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers The Four-Hour Workweek and The Four-Hour Body and his latest, Tribe of Mentors. We talked with Tim about his most worthwhile investments and his biggest failures, his most valuable purchases under $100 and over $10,000, and what beliefs and behaviours have most improved his life.

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In this episode we're talking about dinner: What you should make, how you should make it, and why the idea of "dinner" is fraught for so many of us. We talk with Melissa Clark, staff reporter for The New York Times Food section and author of the cookbook Dinner in an Instant. We also chat with Dave Arnold, the Founder and President of the Brooklyn-based Museum of Food and Drink and author of the book Liquid Intelligence. And we spend quality time with Claire Lower, Lifehacker's food editor and the mastermind behind the "Will It Sous Vide" column.

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In this episode we talk to Mira Jacob, author of the novel The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing, about how her novel took her 10 years to write, and what she learned in the process. We also hear from Lifehacker staff writers Nick Douglas, Patrick Allen and Beth Skwarecki about National Novel Writing Month (also known as NaNoWriMo), wherein writers pledge to write 50,000 words in 30 days. Beth has completed NaNoWriMo 10 times; Patrick is trying it this year for the first time. Nick investigates why anyone would do such a thing.

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In this episode we talk movie myths, DIY disasters, and what it takes to troubleshoot a rocket-powered sword with Brian Louden and on Lung of Science Channel's Mythbusters. The seminal science show about disproving (and then destroying) urban legends is back, and its new hosts are ready to weld, behead and even chainsaw their way to the truth behind the rumours at the heart of every myth.

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In this episode we discuss side hustles: Those projects you pursue after work, at night, or on weekends to supplement your income or fulfil a passion. Our guests include Chris Guillebeau, author of Side Hustle: From Idea to Income in 27 Days, and journalist Catherine Baab-Muguira, who wrote a revealing story in Quartz about millennials and side hustles. Plus, our producer takes to the streets to find out from everyday people what kind of side hustles they have going on.

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In this episode we talk to Manoush Zomorodi, host of WNYC's Note to Self and author of Bored and Brilliant: How Spacing Out Can Unlock Your Most Productive and Creative Self. Back in 2015, Manoush wondered if being plugged in all the time to a constant stream of entertainment and information actually made our lives worse. She noticed that we're never bored - and she wondered, what is that lack of boredom doing to us?

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Dr Robert Lustig joined us in the studio to talk about his new book, The Hacking of the American Mind: The Science Behind the Corporate Takeover of Our Bodies and Brains. Dr Lustig is a paediatric endocrinologist who is also author of the book Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity and Disease. He talks to us about how corporate interests have worked to keep us addicted to pleasure -- and how our addictions have robbed us of happiness.

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In this episode of The Upgrade we talk about personality tests. You know, those tests that ask you personal questions about your philosophy of life or your behaviour or your ethics, and then tell you what kind of person you are. How much do they really reveal? And what does our desire to take them say about us?

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In this episode we're talking about bullshit: What it is, how to detect it, and how to call it out. First, staff writer Nick Douglas joins us for a rousing game of "Two Truths and a Lie". Then we talk to Carl Bergstrom and Jevin West, professors at the University of Washington who teach a course called Calling Bullshit. Finally, Alice talks about why we're so susceptible to bullshit with staff writer Beth Skwarecki, who writes the Bullshit Resistance School column right here on Lifehacker.