If you are not getting the results with your health and wellbeing or fitness that you require, I’d be willing to bet a large amount of money it’s not because you’re missing the magic bullet that everyone else has found.
It is, however, due to the fact that you are still looking for it at the exclusion of concentrating on the basics and getting the basics right in your diet and lifestyle.
When I see someone who is confused why they are not getting optimal results it can take a matter of minutes to run through the list of basics before they say, “ah yeah well, I’m not doing that and oh yeah I forgot about that”.
So let’s stop following fads and get the rock solid basics right. Then by all means, lets look to fine tune and get an extra percentage here and there with fancy tips and tricks.
Doing that without the basics will create the equivalent of a house being built on quicksand, not a good long-term bet!
So what are these basics I keep going on about?
We need to move every day, to a greater or lesser degree but we need to move.
Getting up, going in the shower and sitting at your desk all day to come home and sit on the sofa before bed will not lead to good things for your spine, muscle tone and cardiovascular system.
Stretch and mobile your body on a daily basis, even a commitment of 10 minutes per day can yield great results, when done consistently.
Only use the level of exercise you can recover from, if you have a busy week and you are already feeling a little tired, don’t then go and blast through a hard workout. It will drain your resources even more – choose breathing exercises or tai chi for example. Stretching in such a case is a wonderful de-stressor.
Pick a variety of movements and intensities to stimulate development of all the different systems of the body.
Slower technique-based movements, muscles development for metabolise and toning, strengthening for life related movements (picking suitcases up, pots in the garden, children etc).
Don’t run before you can walk – by this I mean develop excellent core control and coordination before attempting to do fancy movements and intense exercise. Only once your core is functional should you begin looking at weight bearing exercises such as squats, lunges or deadlifts for example.
Follow the ideal movement formula for fewer aches and pains and optimal musclulo-skeletal function – mobilise / stabilise / strengthen. Mobilise joints and muscles that are stiff and restricting optimal movement. Stabilise weak and vulnerable areas and strengthen the major movements of the body (squat, lunge, bend, push, pull and twist).
We need to be getting eight good hours of sleep per day and be getting to bed at 10pm, 11pm at the latest.
Your circadian rhythm, the sleep cycle, that is dictated by the sun and moon is way more powerful than you might believe. We are designed to start winding down when the sun goes down and wake with the rising sun.
Light on the skin is shown to stimulate the hormones that get us up and going.
Stop thinking you can get to bed a midnight or after and get up eight hours later. It’s going to lead to a cascade of other hormonal affects.
Sure, you can cope with this in the short term, but over a period of months and years there are consequences.
Get to bed by 11pm at the latest and make sure you wind down without bright lights and tablets for at least 90 minutes beforehand.
Water, good filtered water that is what your body is designed to drink.
Not juices, not other concoctions, water.
Measure your weight in kilos. Then multiply by 0.033 and you’ll get the amount YOU require in litres per day.
If you’re not doing this your digestion is never going to be optimal, your joints, all of which require water and will suffer and your concentration and memory will be impaired.
In case you are someone who thinks “more is better” it really isn’t. The word balance should be your mantra, the right amount is better, not more!
Add a pinch of unrefined Celtic sea salt to each litre and you’ll remineralise the water to optimal levels, closer to what the body desires.
If you are living a life that is not to your choosing, make some changes.
If you hate your job, are unhappy in a relationship or feeling frustrated, get clear on what it is that you DO want and set about putting plans in place.
Get clear on what your core values are and which are being met and where there are roadblocks.
Unblock those things and the energy flowing around your life already will be building what you DO want not what you DON’t want.
If you were to sit and tell me everything that is wrong currently with work/home/friends etc but you couldn’t tell me what it is that you DO want, your focus is in the wrong place and you are attracting that stuff towards you like a magnet.
Your mind is an incredibly powerful tool. Use it wisely.
Ok we’re onto the “biggy” I’ll try and keep this short:
Eat three meals per day until you are healthy and balanced, fasting is not for those who are unhealthy as a magic bullet, for example!
Balance your blood sugar so that you can last 4-5 hours between meals and feel satisfied. If you are getting hungry 2-3 hours after eating, your meal was not balanced correctly. Play with the amount of protein, carbohydrate and fat.
Use the palm-fist-tablespoon, measuring system for your food. One palm is one serving of protein, one fist is one serving of carbohydrate and one tablespoon is a serving of fat. Now you can quantify how much of each you are having and what does and doesn’t work for you.
Eat organic for as much of your diet as you can afford to do. Meats are most important to prioritise first, then vegetables.
Rotate your foods so that you are not consuming the same foods more often than every four days to avoid food intolerance and inflammation.
Eat whole foods, real whole food. Avoid products in packets as much as you can. If it’s in a packet it is usually a product with a marketing team behind it.
Avoid gluten. I’m yet to meet someone who has had proper core function and was eating a diet containing gluten, it shuts down the abdominal muscles secondary to inflammation of the gut. Gluten is in all grains except core, rice, buckwheat and millet.
Tight necks, sore upper backs and shoulders that slouch forwards are all affected or even caused by faulty breathing mechanics.
Lay on a foam roller and practice breathing with your belly.
WAY too many people are eating foods that irritate the digestive system, getting stressed or sitting poorly which impede optimal breathing.
The first two thirds of every breath should come from the belly with NO chest movement at all.
Only if you are running, or just generally physically active should the shoulders and neck be involved in breathing.
Two thirds belly, one third neck.
I warned you it was a rant and if it came across that way, well it was a bit, sorry!
If that leaves you unclear any way we should talk, comment below and we’ll get you booked into a complimentary consultation.