I recently read a very interesting article about daily healthy habits. The question was posed by the author to a number of elite strength coaches and athletes. So, I’m going to break down that article for you today, because there is most certainly something in here for everybody.
Dr. Chad Waterbury – Taking Cold Showers
The benefits of cold water immersion have been suspected for a long time and current science is showing strong and mounting evidence of great health benefits. I realize this isn’t for everyone, but for those willing to give it a shot, you can start in your own shower, and at the end of the shower, turn the water to cold and immerse yourself for 20 seconds, gradually building up your stamina.
Below are three known benefits:
- Improved tolerance to cold temperature.
- Improved circulation in the extremities.
- Deeper sleep and faster recovery from workouts.
Dan John – Preparing the Night Before
“We plant the seeds for a successful day the previous night. So I try to make a good “to do” list late in the afternoon.”
This covers everything from prepping your meals ahead of time to making the coffee the night before, and even setting out your clothes the night before. It’s also about preparing for a great nights sleep. Think about what steps you can take to cut down on screen time and other artificial lighting, things to unwind and relax, etc…Even what you eat matters. And when you get a good night’s sleep, that sets you up for a great day ahead.
Mark Dugdale – Hot Yoga
“I believe it has significantly contributed to my health, mobility, recovery, insulin sensitivity and body composition.”
Recent studies have shown that infrared sauna benefits include detoxification through excessive sweating, recovery via increased blood flow, and activation of heat shock protein to protect against insulin resistance. Hot yoga is typically conducted at 100 degrees and studies show that it may induce the same benefits as sauna if done for about an hour. And just think, after all that sweating, you’ll probably be ready for a cold shower! Double whammy!
Christian Thibaudeau – Walking
Christian walks 45-60 minutes every morning in a fasted state. A recent study showed that morning fasted cardio doesn’t burn more fat directly, but it does increase the enzymes responsible for using fat for fuel. Thus, over time, you are actually programming your body to rely more on fat, which will help you to get leaner.
Eric Cressey – Sleep Tracking
According to Eric, sleep deprivation impacts a myriad of physiological functions mediated by hormones like insulin, testosterone, growth hormone, and cortisol. And these are the big players that determine whether you get fatter or leaner, and stronger or weaker.
“Whether you want to go the wearable technology route or just start documenting sleep and wake times and rating your sleep quality, it’s a good move to look closer at the sleep side of the equation before you start overhauling the training and nutrition components.”
Paul Carter – Intermittent Fasting
“The thing that got me interested in IF was all of the research that showed the impact it had on reducing inflammation, autophagy, improved insulin sensitivity, reduced oxidative stress, and increasing mitochondrial biogenesis. So I eat between 2 PM and 10 PM now, and feel great. For guys over 40, or anyone who’s looking to improve their health, I recommend doing some IF at least 2-3 times a week just to take advantage of some of these benefits.”
How many of these daily health practices do you do? Have you tried any of them? What’s stopping you? If you have some anxiety or fair over trying one of these, re-frame it in your mind and consider it an investment in your health!