Want Extra Brain Power and Energy? HIIT me!

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Here's a list of excuses.  Familiar with any?

I really don't have time to work out or eat healthy. No seriously, I don't. I work full time. I have 3 year old twin boys. I have 2 different side businesses. I'm a dedicated husband and father so I'm intentional with my family and if they're important to me I'll have to carve out time for them. I'm too tired. I'm always exhausted. I don't have extra money for a gym membership. I can't afford all that healthy food either. The last thing I want to do is cook when I get home from work and my wife is just as exhausted (if not more) than I am. It doesn't really make that big of a difference anyway, right?

Let's take a closer look...

We all have the exact same amount of time as everyone else. With me so far? So then how do all the other people who have busy lives manage to fit working out and eating healthy into their lives then? They're probably lying. They probably have nannies or at least a family member who does a lot of the heavy lifting at home. They're probably independantly wealthy and don't have to spend 50 hours a week at a job grinding it out. They probably have well behaved young children who don't drain every last ounce of energy and patience and dignity out of them. They probably "insert clever excuse as to why that couldn't possibly be real".

Well, I do it. And I just came up with all those excuses because they're all real life examples from my own life. The difference is, I know it's all nonsense because I'm one of those busy people with a young family that manages to fit working out and eating healthy in. I'm not lying. I don't have a nanny or any help from family. I don't have a gym membership. I'm most certainly not independently wealthy. My kids are completely out of control every waking minute. (Honestly I think the sentencing for certain crimes should be to have to raise 3 year old twin boys and live in an apartment in Seattle) All I'm saying here is I GET IT. It takes work to be healthy. But first of all you can't afford not to be and I'll explain that right after I explain my second point, you DO HAVE TIME. Let me prove it to you.

TOTAL HOURS IN A WEEK = 168  (Using my life as an example break down)
  • You gotta work, right? = 50 hours (this allows for commute, extra hours, etc.)
  • I need sleep! = 56 hours (most people don't sleep 8 hours a night but you should at minimum)
  • I have 2 side businesses bro! = 21 hours (3 hours a day, every day)
  • I love my Family = 21 hours (Say 2 hours on week days and 5.5 hours for Sat. & Sun.)
  • Honey do's/Errands = 5 hours (Grocery shopping, washing the car, shaving sheep, etc.)
  • Chef Boyardee = 5 hours (Meal planning, Food prep & Cooking for the week)
  • Down Time = 7 hours (An hour a day for whatever I want to do - read, meditate, pray, etc.)
  • WORKOUTS = 3 hours (4 - 45 minutes sessions, 15 minute warm up, 30 minutes of work)

As you can see, there is very generous allotment for family time, sleep, work and side business. Setting aside 8 hours out of the 168 you have available shouldn't be a big deal no matter how much you have going on.

That's nice. What about your click-bait title?

So there's really 3 reasons a nutrient dense diet and HIIT type exercise is something that can't be avoided especially if you're already maxed out AND trying to build a business on the side.

  1. Cognitive Function - Even better than those Brain Training games on your iPhone
  2. Emotional Stability - Important so you don't open your front door and tell your kids, "Your free!"
  3. Boosted Energy Levels - Sort of counterintuitive but it's true - like a "hormone hack"

Ok, what can I get done in 45 minutes of exercise? 

Don't I need to spend at least an hour Won the elliptical and at least another hour doing bench press and hack squats on the Smith machine bro? I can't even write that with a straight face it's so ridiculous. For anyone that still thinks that's what will get you in shape, I'm sorry. Ain't nobody got time for dat! Here's a few suggestions for exercise:

  1. CrossFit - say what you will, it's effective, comprehensive and the workouts are usually between 8-20 minutes but be careful to select a quality affiliate of which there are many
  2. HIIT - Stands for High Intensity Interval Training, again short workouts with high intensity mixed with short periods of rest or lower intensity work - Google it!
  3. Tabata - Created by a Japanese Doctor this is a series of intervals where you work for 20 seconds followed by 10 seconds of rest for 8 total rounds or 4 minutes total per exercise. For example you could pick burpees and kettlebell swings. The workout would be a total of 8 minutes. You would do burpees 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off for a total of 8 rounds or 4 minutes total and then you would go directly into your kettlebell swings and do the exact same.

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What should I eat?

I'll get into more detail with food and nutrition in another post because I'm tired and if you know what I know about this topic, it's simple but it's not easy and I don't want to get into it right now, ok? Ok.

But I'll do you a favor. Out of all my years of nutrition research the!re's a super comprehensive resource that I typically refer people to for a crash course in healthy eating, nutrition and an overall healthy lifestyle. It's Chris Kresser's 9 Steps to Perfect Health. Do yourself the biggest favor of your life and read one section at a time for 9 days. You're welcome. :-)

https://chriskresser.com/ perfect-health/

So there you go. No excuses. We're all busy. Especially us folks with young families. But overall I think our culture is just obsessed with packing our calendars or we feel inadequate or something. Either way, the boosted cognitive function, emotional stability and extra energy obtained through exercise and healthy eating cannot be ignored especially if you want that extra edge you need to do some blogging late at night like me and still be able to string together coherent thought!

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