Often someone who has been frustrated for a long time with a lack of fitness progress in transforming their body can be elated by simply tweaking or improving one of these 3 areas.
The 3 foundational pillars to a healthy body and mind are:
- GUT HEALTH
No fitness results can exist quickly, effectively or at all in most instances if these three aspects of your life are not optimal. Gut health is always one that comes up constantly for people when I chat to them and gain an understanding of their lifestyle habits.
There is a crossover between all three but gut health 100% relies on nutritional intake. And because that is such a minefield, it’s often the one people struggle with the most.
People think muscle development happens during the workout. It does not...
Gut health also impacts Sleep and Stress, it’s a big one. That’s why there are entire Modules dedicated to it (nutrition) and we touch upon the other two factors within other Modules where appropriate throughout the programs.
Why are these the foundations we need to optimise for transforming our bodies anywhere? Let’s get straight to the point on that…
We are most anabolic when we sleep. Anabolic means to grow, build and repair. From what we need to know, that means repairing and growing quality, healthy muscle. Skip on sleep and you skip on recovery. Skip on recovery and you skip on transforming your physique.
People think muscle development happens during the workout. It does not. The signal pathways that tell your body to build and repair better and stronger here (here=this muscle) happen during a workout. Your body repairs and improves that muscle after a workout. Actual body transformation happens mostly at sleep.
Did you know Rodger Federer sleeps for 11 hours a day without fail? Why? Because it means he is giving his body the best chance to recover stronger and better.
It means he can train more often, which means he has more chances to learn and improve. More chances to take those small stepping stones we previously talked about. I’ve seen the difference getting quality sleep has for people wanting to transform their body.
It’s unbelievable how much they improve (for fat burning and muscle building)when they consistently get a good nights sleep.
We aren’t paid, professional athletes. But, we should aim for at least 7-8 hours of sleep minimum.
Four life rules that can help us achieve that:
1. No screen time
No screen time 1 hour before bed. Especially no phone or laptop.
2. No caffeine
None at all after 2 pm. It has what they call a deadweight effect that can last up to 8 hours.
3. In bed aiming to fall asleep before 10 pm
I don’t know what it is but studies show that something magic happens in our first sleep cycle between 10 pm and midnight. If you had 8 hours sleep from 10 pm and compared it to 8 hours sleep from midnight. You would categorically feel better and perform better with the 8 hours from 10 pm. Regardless that the sleep is the same amount of time.
4. Consistency in your routine
Have a routine and go to bed at the same time each night and wake up at the same time each day. Yes life gets in the way and we can’t be 100% on this but we can take responsibility and be accountable when we don’t and say to ourselves – “tomorrow I will do better.”
These 4 rules are what I consistently adhere to and they make a positive measurable difference on my body (physique), mind and general life.
I’m in bed for 9 pm reading and normally fall asleep 30-40 mins later. I then get up at 6 am and my non-negotiable morning routine (discussed below) and workout, begins.
We go into this deeper in the Fitness Freedom Mindset Unlocked as it can dramatically hinder transforming our body. The body has 2 states it can be in:
Stressed, anxious, mouth breathing, on alert, mind is expecting something to happen, it wants easy energy so craves carbs, only carb-burning pathways are used, fight mode. I call this warrior mode.
Relaxed, calm, nasal steady breathing, sleep, fat burning pathways are used, repair and re-build to the body happens, growth happens. I call this buddha mode.
Which state do out think is the most beneficial and productive for us? That’s right number 2, Parasympathetic mode/buddha mode. There is a time and place where we can utilise number 1, warrior mode, effectively. Which we’ll come onto later.
That’s why it’s important to manage stress when we can. These things can help greatly with regards to managing stress:
- what we eat
As they affect our fitness results, we cover these things in more detail within the intermediate Program.
3. Gut health
The gut has 100 million neurons. These neurons are the same that are found within the brain. The gut is our second brain. Think about that fact and consider its implications.
The gut is where we produce serotonin. The chemical that makes us feel happy. Also, the chemical that drug makers make millions from by selling as anti-depressants designed to replace serotonin.
Fitness results aside, knowing that one thing is incredible.
I’ve felt the difference that low levels of serotonin have on my overall happiness when I’ve done dirty bulks (eating fast food and big brand created food).
I simply wasn’t anywhere near as happy or smiley compared to when I consistently ate healthy, nutritious food and took the steps to care for my second brain (the gut).
There are other factors at play, but it’s a big one we can tick off to help us feel great.
By the way, I go into a lot of detail on improving your 3 pillars along with the right nutrition in my Bonus Nutrition and Supplements guide that come with all of my Fitness Freedom TRX Suspension Trainer and Resistance Band Programs.
If you want to learn how to build learn muscle and transform your body without ever relying on a gym, checkout the out here.
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