Way of the Warrior Kid

Way of the Warrior Kid – Jocko Willink
(Buy from Amazon; Buy from The Book Depository)

Fifth grade was the worst year of Marc’s life. He stunk at gym class, math was too hard for him, the school lunch was horrible, and his class field trip was ruined because he couldn’t swim. But what was most awful thing about fifth grade? Kenny Williamson, the class bully, who calls himself the “King of the Jungle.”

When Marc’s mother tells him that his Uncle Jake is coming to stay for the whole summer, Marc can’t wait. Uncle Jake is a for real, super-cool Navy SEAL. And Uncle Jake has a plan.

He’s going to turn Marc into a warrior.

Becoming a warrior isn’t easy. It means a lot of pull ups, sit ups, pushups, squats, swimming, eating right, and studying harder than ever before! Can Marc transform himself into a warrior before school starts in the fall – and finally stand up to the King of the Jungle himself?

 

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Movement Matters

Movement Matters – Katy Bowman
(Buy from Amazon; Buy from The Book Depository)

What if we can make ourselves, our communities, and our planet healthier all at the same time by moving our bodies more?

Movement Matters
is a collection of essays in which biomechanist Katy Bowman continues her groundbreaking investigation of the mechanics of our sedentary culture and the profound potential of human movement. Here she widens her You are how you move message and invites us to consider our personal relationship with sedentarism, privilege, and nature. Bowman explores:* how convenience often means less movement, not more time

* the missing movement nutrients in our food

* how to include more nature in education

* the impact of adding movement to permaculture and ecological models

* our need for vitamin Community and group movement

Unapologetically direct, often hilarious, and always compassionate, Movement Matters demonstrates that human movement is powerful and important, and that living a movement-filled life is perhaps the most joyful and efficient way to transform your body, community, and world.

 

Disclaimer: This page contains affiliate links that may provide monetary compensation to help support the Whole Guidance Vision of Creating a Happy and Healthy Planet should you make a purchase. We very much appreciate and thank you for your support.

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WGP 048: Obesity – It’s Your Hormones, Not the Calories

In this podcast I’ll be exploring Obesity:

  • I’ll explain why obesity is a disease and also a major hidden cause of other diseases
  • I’ll talk about the difference between being obese and being overweight
  • I’ll explain how obesity is caused by hormonal imbalances and not by eating too many calories
  • Finally, I’ll give you a few holistic lifestyle strategies to reduce obesity, regain health, and feel awesome in your own skin


CLICK HERE TO LEARN WHAT ARE THE BEST FAT BURNING FOODS TO GET YOU LEAN

It’s no secret. The world today has a lot more fat and sick people than there were 150 years ago. Seeing an obese person way back in the day meant having to visit a carnival or circus that’s how rare obesity was. Unfortunately today you just got to walk outside or turn on the tele and you’ll see excessively large people everywhere.

Since the 1980s obesity rates have doubled. Hmm, I wonder what happened in the 80s? Ah that’s right the low fat recommendation from the American health authorities. Good one guys. Today this misguided unscientific nonsensical low-fat strategy has lead to about 13% of the world’s adult population being categorised as obese and about 50 million kids worldwide under the age of 5 being defined as obese. That’s what gets me the most, seeing overweight and obese infants and children.

Now the World Health Organization has a list of the top 10 leading causes of death and smoking tobacco isn’t even on the list, but we all know that smoking causes many chronic diseases that eventually will lead to death. This is what the World Health Organisation says about smoking:

“Tobacco use is a major cause of many of the world’s top killer diseases – including cardiovascular disease, chronic obstructive lung disease and lung cancer. In total, tobacco use is responsible for the death of about 1 in 10 adults worldwide. Smoking is often the hidden cause of the disease recorded as responsible for death.”

Interesting right? In fact the World Health Organization label smoking as the number one killer, but they still don’t put it on the list. Instead you’ll see diseases relating to the heart, brain, lungs, and infections.

This is where obesity comes in. Even though it’s not listed, just like smoking as a leading cause of death, obesity is a major hidden cause of many of those on the list. The top 3 by the way are heart disease, stroke, and lung related diseases all of which are due to the obstruction in blood and oxygen flow to the heart, brain, and lungs.

The thing about obesity is that most people think it’s just a weight issue and obese people are eating too much and not exercising enough. While I agree that some of the health problems associated with obesity is due to the large amount of weight on the body causing physical dysfunction, obesity causes more harm through physiological and biochemical damage because of its ability to disrupt the function of other systems in your body.

You see your body isn’t stupid. It has specific feedback loops and safety mechanisms to prevent the excessive loss or accumulation of fat and it has to control the amount of fat on your body because your fat cells are actually another organ. So when your fat levels get out of balance the key functions that they perform will be disrupted.

One of the functions of fat is fat acts as a warehouse for toxins. When your body is unable to fully metabolise, process, and eliminate toxins it stores the toxins in fat cells. Fat also sends signals and hormones that can have a positive or negative effect on your immune system and your metabolism. Your fat cells send out immune signals controlling inflammation and stress in your body. Your fat cells also send out hormones telling you that you’re full and will increase fat metabolism, i.e. fat-burning.

But when you have too much fat this will increase the amount of pro-inflammatory signals called cytokines increasing the amount of inflammation and stress in your body putting it in a catabolic state or a state of breaking down. Too much fat will also cause your satiety hormone leptin to be produced in excessively large amounts and your brain will become leptin resistant because there’s too much to take in. Meaning you will still feel hungry even though your body may already be carrying a lot of fat. Plus leptin resistance reduces fat metabolism and the amount of fat you burn causing you to hold onto more fat.

So just as there is heart disease, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s, kidney stones, thyroiditis, arthritis, osteoporosis, autoimmune conditions and many other illnesses centred around particular organs and systems there is an illness, a disease of your fat cells and that my friend is called obesity and obesity is a disease that can cause further health issues in the future.

Now I don’t like to use the conventional classification system for defining whether someone is overweight or obese. Currently this is defined by your body mass index or BMI. BMI is supposed to calculate body fat based on your weight and height, but the calculation has a massive flaw. It doesn’t take into account lean muscle mass and bone mass and water weight. So you could have a fit athlete with 10% body fat, but a high BMI and have a very sick person with 30% body fat, but a medium BMI and the athlete would be categorised as obese and the sick person overweight, and this is not a good indicator of a healthy body.

So I define being overweight as holding on to a few extra kilos of fat and looking a bit soft and fluffy and chubby in the mirror, but still having normal healthy metabolic, hormonal, and immune function. This is very different to being obese, which is a person who is also carrying extra fat weight and has a broken metabolism and a weak immune system because their hormones are out of balance.

Okay so what causes obesity?

“Obesity is not caused by consuming too many calories.”

Yes you heard right. Obesity is not caused by consuming too many calories. It is true that you can become overweight by eating a huge amount of calories even those calories come from whole real food sources, but you would never become obese. Your hormonal system regulating hunger and appetite would kick in and prevent you from eating more then you need. Once you do become obese this is when you will be unable to control the amount of calories you take in and will begin to eat well beyond your body’s requirements.

What pushes you over the edge from being overweight to becoming obese isn’t the calories. It is an underlying hidden malfunction in your body’s hormonal system. When your sex hormones, growth hormones, hormones regulating metabolism and stress, when these are no longer playing the same song and in sync with each other a lot of things go wrong in your body including broken detox pathways, lowered immunity, decrease in muscle mass, increase in fat mass, and an increase in appetite for nutrient-poor foods.

So in this respect obesity turns out to be a symptom of other health issues that are already going on in your body.

The leading cause for your hormones going out of balance and for obesity in my book is eating a nutrient deficient diet. Your body is not a finite object, but an infinite process in constant flux and change. It’s constantly breaking itself down and building itself up. If you don’t consume enough nutrient dense foods then your body is left hanging without the right building blocks to build hormones, neurotransmitters, immune cells, bone, muscle, cartilage, ligaments, organs, blood, etc. Also after a meal your body will search for the nutrients it needs in that meal and if it doesn’t find it guess what happens? You get hungry again a lot sooner than you should and you eat more food. And while your body is craving nutrition you begin to crave less nutritious food.

So if all you eat is junk nutrient deficient fake pretend food-like products like commercial bread, biscuits, corn chips, French fries, candy, vegetable oils, soy milk, etc then you are setting your body up for hormonal havoc and mayhem and chronic hunger as it won’t have the necessary parts to make hormones and this will increase your chances of becoming obese. As you can see here it’s not how much you eat, but what you eat that matters most.

“You can be overfed, but so undernourished”

Which is the sad state for a third of westernised populations today.

Another cause for hormonal dysfunction deals with insulin sensitivity. When your cells are insulin sensitive nutrients are taken out of your bloodstream and absorbed. However, just as you can become leptin resistant due to excessive leptin production, excessive insulin production will cause your cells to become insulin resistant. This means that when there are nutrients in your blood, like glucose it will not be absorbed by your cells and this will cause damage to your tissues. So in order to prevent further damage from happening sugar in your blood will be turned into fat and stored away in your fat cells. Eating too many carbohydrates especially processed and refined sugar and fructose and not getting enough quality restorative sleep will cause high insulin production and insulin resistance.

Another cause for obesity is an underactive or hypoactive thyroid gland. Your thyroid produces thyroid hormones that regulate your metabolism and temperature and if your thyroid is hypoactive your metabolism slows right down making it very difficult for your body to burn stored fat as fuel. Here’s a list of things that can disrupt thyroid function:

  • Gluten
  • Stress
  • Too much exercise
  • Chemicals in tap water
  • Chemical compounds found in plastics and
  • Certain medications


Another underlying cause for hormonal mayhem and obesity is stress.
Whether it be physical, emotional, or mental any perceived stress if left to linger long enough becoming chronic will cause chronic inflammation upsetting your normal hormonal rhythm moving you from an anabolic and growing state to a catabolic and breakdown state and unfortunately in this catabolic state the one thing that does keep growing are your fat cells.

The health of your gut and gut microbiota will also determine the health of your hormonal system and your fat levels. If your gut is leaky, meaning it’s damaged, and if you have dysbiosis, meaning you have more harmful pathogens than beneficial probiotics living in your gut this will cause a rise in inflammatory signals, stress hormones and depending on your genetics and epigenetic expression this may lead to obesity. Plus a damaged gut will mean you won’t be digesting and absorbing the full amount of nutrients from your foods leaving your body in a nutrient deficient state, which I talked about earlier.

Probably the least known root cause for obesity are obesogens. Which is ironic because these obesogens are Persistent Organic Pollutants or POPs and they are actually out in the open in plain sight for all to see. Obesogens are chemical compounds found in the environment that act as endocrine disrupters, meaning they screw up your hormonal system. They hijack it and create chemical chaos throughout your entire body. This hormonal havoc causes a whole wealth of health issues from cancer to autoimmune conditions and it also increases fat cell number and fat cell size. Obesogens can be found in:

  • Plastics
  • Pesticides and herbicides
  • Flame retardant materials (such as in clothing and furniture)
  • Treated wood and textiles (such as in building materials)
  • Additives used in paints
  • Non-stick cookware and even in certain
  • Pharmaceutical drugs

 
Let me put all these obesogens together into a pretty terrifying yet common scenario we see today. Let’s say you have a new born baby. You bring him home to your brand new house with building materials, furniture, paint, and new carpets all chemically treated, some of them containing flame retardant chemicals and all of this is off-gassing or releasing chemicals into the air, also known as that beautiful new house smell. You dress your beautiful boy in flame retardant pyjamas. You use a plastic bottle to feed him non-organic formula, which contains sprayed ingredients. And finally you put him to bed in a brand new non-organic chemically treated cot. This is just a chemical toxic soup that this poor kid is living in and he doesn’t stand a chance against growing up without becoming obese or at least experiencing other health issues.

Now along with obesogens I have to mention environmental toxins and toxic chemicals. Remember fat cells are used by your body as a storage unit for toxins. So if you’re chronically exposed to heavy metals, air pollution, and eating a lot of pesticide and herbicide sprayed foods and eating meat from sick toxic animals your liver, kidneys, your entire detoxification system will become overloaded and will be unable to process, breakdown, and eliminate the excessive amount of toxins. As a last resort, so your body doesn’t shut down and die due to toxic poisoning, all those toxins that are not eliminated will be shoved into your fat cells.

“Fat cells don’t just store energy they also store poison.”

This is also why a rapid and dramatic reduction in fat isn’t a good idea without proper supervision and guidance. A lot of obese people their health actually gets worse when burning a lot fat too quickly. Just keep in mind the saying slow and steady wins the race. If you lose fat too fast those toxins are going to be flooding your system and you do not want that.

So those are a few examples and there are more of how a person can become obese without eating a lot of calories. Obesity like every other disease is not caused by one thing, but many things related to your environment, your food, and how you perceive life.

It isn’t just a physical weight problem, but more a physiological, biochemical, and really a hormonal problem. Obesity is a symptom of an underlying hormonal issue in your body and is not caused by eating too many calories, but it will cause you to overeat.

Obesity is also a disease that gives rise to the top leading causes of death.

Alright let’s get into how to heal from and prevent obesity and how to get your hormones humming to a happy and healthy tune.

First up, watch what you eat. Watch it. Get off the inflammatory foods, the chemically sprayed foods, and the highly refined and processed junk fake pretend food-like products. No gluten, no sugars, no pasteurised dairy, no industrial seed oils, no junk. Watch out for the carbs especially as eating too many carbs will cause a lot of insulin to be produced and you want insulin and blood sugar to be in the Goldilocks zone, just right. Real food from Mother Nature communicates with your hormones on an informational level where they speak the same language. By just eating real food you’ll keep your hormones in balance and in harmony and this hormonal bliss will keep your body composition balanced and in check.

Next up, reduce your perceived stress. Practise relaxation techniques. Get a massage, meditate, breathe mindfully, and watch the amount of physical stress you’re under. If you don’t have a formal exercise routine get moving and start working out. If you do exercise regularly and religiously maybe you’re overdoing it and need to do less working out and more working in. If you’re obese then your body is already under enough physical stress as it is, so working out would just add to that stress so look at working in. Working in is where instead of expending energy with a workout you’re cultivating energy, building up your energy stores. Movement practises like:

  • Tai-chi
  • Qi-gong
  • Restorative yoga
  • Hatha yoga
  • Iyengar yoga

 
Are the perfect work in exercises.

Biggest thing you can do to prevent and heal from obesity is to clean up your environment. Remove the obesogens and toxic chemicals and clean up your habitat. Use glass and stainless steel drink bottles instead of plastic. Wear organic chemical-free clothing and buy organic chemical-free furniture and use chemical-free building materials. Cook with ceramic and stainless steel cookware. Actually there’s a lot more to this topic and you can find an entire podcast I did on this quite a while back about how to purify and clean up your environment and support your detoxification system. Look for episode 12.

Along with clean eating, clean thinking, and clean living there are other holistic lifestyle principles to consider in order to fully heal and to keep your bodymind in a happy and healthy state. Listen to episode 30 about the 7 Holistic Lifestyle Principles you can follow in order to live happy, healthy, whole, and complete.

An awesome book that covers everything from diet and exercise to cleaning up your environment and your thinking is How to Eat, Move and Be Healthy! by holistic health practitioner Paul Chek. This book is my bible and really is a one-stop shop for holistic living.

I’ll leave you with this thought.

“Obesity isn’t about energy in and energy out.”

It’s about so much more.

If you’re fat or overweight, sure you may be eating more than you should.

But if you’re obese then it’s not about how much you eat, but what you eat and the environment you’re eating in. If you’re obese you are probably eating nutrient-poor and sugar-rich foods and you’re living in a very stressful and very toxic environment.

Remember your health is 100% your responsibility so make the choice to own your lifestyle and eat, drink, move, breathe, live, sleep better, and think and feel like you deserve a happy and healthy life. The only person who can save you is you. So don’t play the victim. Be the hero. Because you are awesome and very much worth it.

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WGP 027: 5 Ways You Can Reset Your Bodymind After Binge Eating

In this podcast I’ll be exploring How to get Yourself Back on a Holistic Track after Overindulging on Food:

  • I’ll explain how overeating can be a gateway to many other dream-negating bad habits
  • I’ll talk about some of the causes for overeating
  • Finally I’ll share five tips that’ll help get your bodymind back into a holistic way of being after an episode of overeating


CLICK HERE TO LEARN WHAT ARE THE BEST FOODS TO GET YOU LEAN

Overeating, binging, and overindulging on food are habits that other animals don’t seem to exhibit. The human animal, however, practises this habitual way of eating to the extreme a lot more than it should.

When you binge eat there’s the possibility of thinking that since you’re already doing something that’s not exactly health-promoting you may as well do some other non-healthy things like indulge in some alcohol, sloth around all day, or just think horrible negative thoughts like how sucky it is to be you right now for not having the willpower to just say no to food.

As a kid I would binge eat on cookies or crackers and hot chocolate (yummy) and I still have binge eating episodes to this day. I know for myself that once I start going down the binge eating path my return to the path of a healthy way of eating can be a long and difficult one as other healthy habits fall by the wayside as well. My sleeping pattern would go all over the place, I’d forget (on purpose) about keeping up with my usual movement practise, and I’d find my thoughts heading down a dark corridor.

One reason for overeating is not being mindful and conscious of your own actions.

I know many people who literally eat like ducks. They barely chew their food and end up swallowing big portions of food down their gullets. I know many people like this because I used to be one. You can only see what you have within you, so that’s why it’s easy for me to see this because I definitely had this mindless habit for a long time. Back in the day I was one of the fastest eaters on the planet (true story) and I never took the time to chew my food, you know to just enjoy the taste. I was never fully involved in the whole eating process. I guess you could say I thought eating was a waste of time and I had better things to do. Problem is because I ate so fast I wasn’t giving my body the proper signals that I’ve eaten and it’s time to stop now. So I would have seconds, thirds, and all too often a fourth serving. Looking back at it now all I can think is ‘man I really was a pig… or a duck.

Another reason for binge eating is emotional.

Feeling alone or hurt. Feeling like you don’t have a purpose and don’t know who you are and what you want or living a life that you really aren’t in love with. So loneliness, confusion, and fear of life itself will cause many people to turn to food for comfort and this can turn into a long period of binge eating.

Last reason I’ll give for overindulging on food is the season.

What I’m talking about here are special occasions such as birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, and holidays, all of these are perfect excuses to get off the health train and on the indulgence express (my kind of ride). I mean who doesn’t love pumpkin pies, fruit salads with ice cream, cakes, and my personal favourite homemade smoked salmon. Smoked salmon, you may be thinking how is that unhealthy? Well let me tell you how. If you can sit down and eat half a whole salmon including the head in less than 20 minutes that my friend is overindulging of the highest degree. Remember:

“Too much of a good thing is no longer a good thing.”

All right so let’s get into five ways you can get yourself back to living a holistic healthy lifestyle after an episode of overeating.

So the day after your however-long binge first thing you want to do is to get back in touch with your dream. What is your dream? Do you even have a dream? Have you written it down with specific goals and outlined the steps you need to take to get you there? Have you got clear personal core values on when to say yes or no when it comes to your dream? If you haven’t got a dream with clear goals and core values then you’re living life with no real direction.

A dream is your compass, your GPS that keeps you on your chosen path.

As the saying goes:

“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”

So unless your dream is to gain massive amounts of weight or to outdo everyone at a buffet meal or to win an all-you-can-eat contest then overeating, binging, and overindulging on food are not dream-affirmative actions. Listen to the Dream Building podcast I did for more information on using dreams to help guide your holistic lifestyle, it’s podcast number 14.

Second tip: get outdoors. Strip to the bare essentials (not fully naked, but if you can get fully naked more power to you) and get some sunshine on your skin and ground yourself to the Earth by going barefoot on the grass, soil, or sand. Connecting with nature will help improve your mood, boost your immune system, and help reduce the inflammation caused by the excessive amounts of energy you’ve been putting into your body.

Third tip is to do a little fasting. Digestion is a 4-6 hour process and your body has to focus a lot of attention on this very important function. Nutrients and energy will be diverted to your stomach and intestines to ensure proper digestion takes place, but this means other functions in your body will be somewhat affected.

One process that happens in your cells only during times your body isn’t digesting and when you haven’t eaten in a long time is called autophagy. Autophagy is when cells destroy, clear out, and recycle old, damaged, and unused proteins. This makes for a healthier, cleaner internal environment for the cell giving it longevity and maintaining its ability to function at an optimal level. By fasting you give your cells the chance to clear out the junk and to repair or get rid of what’s not working.

Now there are many different ways to fast. You could do a 24 hour fast once or twice a week, a 48 hour water fast, 3 day fruit fast, couple weeks of juice fasting, or what I normally practise intermittent fasting where you fast between 12-18 hours and eat only within a certain feeding window of 12-6 hours.

Right now I’m doing a 12 hour fast with a 12 hour feeding window. So I usually finish eating dinner before 7 and don’t have breakfast until 7 the next morning.

Fourth tip is to move at high intensities. High intensity movement patterns include lifting heavy (at least 80% your 1 rep maximum) and high intensity interval training where you go all out for a certain amount of time and then rest for a certain amount of time and you repeat this over and over.

High intensity training helps maintain and build lean muscle mass, which is a metabolically rich part of your body, meaning the more muscle you have the more energy you actually need to maintain it. HIT also keeps your metabolism raised long after the workout, up to 48 hours in some cases, allowing your body to burn energy and fat even while you’re at rest. HIT compared to longer endurance activities stops your stress hormone cortisol from staying too high for too long, which is exactly what you want as cortisol is catabolic, meaning it breaks things down including muscle tissue. Last benefit to high intensity workouts is that they can be extremely short. So instead of going for an hour long run you could do sprints on a spin bike with the whole workout lasting no more than 20 minutes and turn yourself into a metabolic beast.

Last tip to getting yourself back on track after an episode of binge eating is to get back to eating real food. Stick to whole foods from Mother Nature and skip the packaged and processed junk from Father Industry. If for one week you can lower your starch and fruit intake that’d be even better.

Remember:

“Real food is real medicine.”

And by eating real food you’re giving your body exactly what it needs to heal and repair itself. Especially important after a period of feeding it an excessive amount of energy or significant amounts of fake pretend food-like products.

So follow your dream, connect with nature, do a little fasting, do intense movements, and just eat real food and in no time you’ll be back on track to living your dream and living a holistic healthy lifestyle.

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WGP 023: The Calorie Myth and Hormonal Harmony – The Truth to Reducing Body Fat

In this podcast I’ll be exploring Calories and Hormones:

  • I’ll explain what calories are and how counting calories won’t do much for your health
  • I’ll talk about hormones and how they affect your health a lot more than calories
  • Finally I’ll give a few tips on how to balance your hormones naturally to turn you into a fat-burning machine


CLICK HERE TO LEARN WHAT ARE THE BEST FOODS TO GET YOU LEAN

Calories are all people talk about when it comes to dieting and changing body composition. Funny thing is most people have no clue what a calorie actually is.

Well a calorie is a unit of heat energy where 1 calorie equals the amount of energy needed to heat 1 gram of water 1 degree Centigrade.

The way calories are measured is to burn the dry weight of the object you want to find the calorie value of and then measure how much heat is given off. So if you wanted to find out the number of calories in a banana, for example, you would first dehydrate it and then burn it and by measuring the amount of heat it gives off you will be able to work out the amount of calories it contained.

Now this is all fine and dandy when measuring calories using a calorimeter in a stale, stable, stagnant setting like a scientific laboratory, but when you’re talking about measuring the burning of foods in the human body or the metabolic-effect of how food calories are utilised by human physiology then Houston… we have a problem.

You see if you were to ask an aboriginal tribe in a South American jungle or African bushland or Australian outback who are excellent specimens of optimal human health whether they weighed, measured, and counted the amount of calories or energy or foods they ate on a regular basis, they would just look at you sideways, show off their bright-white teeth with a wide grin, and then they’d start laughing their bottoms off. They have a lot more important things to be concerned with than calories like maintaining shelters, hunting and gathering food, and getting back to telling stories and playing around all day. Sounds like the life right?

Your ancestors as far back as 100 years ago were not concerned with counting calories and obesity wasn’t even an issue back then. Today, however, it seems like the more calories we count as a society the more obese we seem to be getting. What’s up with that?

The reason is human beings are not calorimeters. You are not a simple input and output device. Your body is one of the most complex biological machines in the universe. Your body is an interconnected system of trillions of inputs and outputs.

For someone to say that they know exactly what happens to the hundred calories they eat from food or say that they know exactly how much calories they burned during exercise is human hubris at it again, meaning we think we know better than Mother Nature. It is impossible to know the exact amount of fuel energy you get from food and how much energy you burn from movement.

Another thing is that not all calories are created equal. 2000 calories of sugar water, for example, if you were to compare this to 2000 calories of coloured vegetables, yes they are the same amount of energy, exactly the same amount of energy, but when your body begins to digest, absorb, assimilate and metabolise and make use of the macro and micronutrients you will see a totally different effect in how your body looks, in how you think and feel, and how you act in life. A human body made up of sugar water compared to one made up of vegetables would be the same as comparing a house made up of straw and one made up of brick and mortar. One is weak and full of holes (tumours) whereas the other is strong and solid (healthy).

Ask yourself are the calories that you’re currently consuming on a regular basis turning you into a person of straw or into a solid piece of human awesomeness?

There are a number of ways the foods you eat and the movements you perform affect your biology way beyond calories and energy expenditure. You need to stop focusing on calories when it comes to happiness and health because there’s more to your wellbeing than just energy in and energy out.

The foods you eat and the movements you perform will absolutely determine the physical structure and functionality of your organs, they will determine your mood, and food and movement have a huge impact on your hormones.

Speaking of hormones these are molecules that your body uses to communicate between the many different organs, glands, and tissues. Hormones affect your body’s metabolism, immune function, growth and repair, your mood, your stress levels, and your body composition.

The major hormones you need to know about are:

  • Insulin
  • Cortisol
  • Melatonin
  • Leptin
  • Ghrelin
  • Oestrogen and testosterone and
  • Thyroid hormones


Insulin is an anabolic or growth hormone
released by your pancreas and helps transport nutrients from your bloodstream into your cells. Excessive amounts of glucose (sugar) in your bloodstream leads to the transformation of most of this glucose into fatty acids and high levels of nutrients in your blood causes your pancreas to release large amounts of insulin. Once insulin gets into your bloodstream it then does its job of storing all those nutrients into your cells as well as putting any leftover fatty acids into your fat cells, so insulin plays a major role in fat accumulation.

Cortisol known as the stress hormone is catabolic meaning it breaks things down and it is released by your adrenal glands in response to physical or perceived stress, low blood sugar levels, or low leptin levels. When your blood sugar levels get too low this will cause a cortisol spike. This sudden increase in cortisol then raises your blood sugar levels and when blood glucose gets too high insulin will need to be released to bring it back to a healthy low level and if your blood glucose drops too far then cortisol comes out to play again and this sugar and hormonal rollercoaster continues on and on making for a fatter and heavier you.

Melatonin is your antioxidant, anti-tumour, circadian clock time for bed hormone. Melatonin needs to be low in the morning and high in the evening for the best sleep and recovery as well as for the most growth hormone release during sleep, which helps you burn fat as you dream. This is the opposite rhythm to cortisol. Cortisol needs to be high in the morning and low in the evening. So if you don’t get enough daylight exposure during the day, you’re exposed to too much blue and bright lights after sundown, and if your cortisol rhythm is not normal, this will cause your melatonin levels to be low making it difficult for you to fall asleep and to get a full nights rest.

Leptin is a satiety hormone meaning it signals to your brain when you have enough energy in your body and is released by your fat cells. The more fat you have the more leptin your fat cells release signalling to your brain that you have plenty of energy on board and you don’t need to eat. The less fat you have the less leptin gets released signalling to your brain that you don’t have enough energy on board and that it’s time to eat. The problem for obese individuals is something called leptin resistance where you have so many fat cells releasing a lot of leptin that your brain just can’t take the excessive amounts of communication anymore and just stops listening. So even though your fat cells are signalling non-stop to your brain that your body has more than enough energy on board and that you don’t need to eat, your brain ignores these signals and still thinks you’re low on leptin and therefore low on energy and fat stores. Chronically low leptin levels as perceived by your brain will cause an increased release of the stress hormone cortisol and high cortisol levels keep your leptin levels low.

Ghrelin is a hunger hormone and works opposite to leptin. Low levels of leptin usually mean you are low on energy reserves and this causes a release of ghrelin which then increases your appetite. Once your appetite is satisfied and enough leptin hormone reaches your brain telling it you have enough energy on board then ghrelin hormone reduces which also lowers your appetite. Now if you have high levels of cortisol in your body this will cause leptin levels to be low meaning ghrelin will increase giving you an appetite. So the more stress you have the hungrier you get.

Oestrogen and testosterone are sex hormones used for growth and for reproduction. Women have slightly higher levels of oestrogen hormones compared to men and men have a lot more testosterone than women. Chronically high levels of insulin in your bloodstream (due to a high sugar diet for example) leads to an increase of testosterone in women and a decrease of testosterone in men as well as an increase of oestrogen in men. When cortisol is low testosterone and insulin are high, but when cortisol is high testosterone and insulin are low making cortisol a muscle wasting hormone. Chronically high levels of cortisol interferes with the normal production of your sex hormones, so too much stress overtime leads to low libido or sex drive, infertility, and the end of sexy times in the bedroom.

Last group of major hormones you really need to know about are your thyroid hormones. Your thyroid hormones are responsible for your body’s overall metabolism, meaning your cells ability to process energy. The two main thyroid hormones are T4 and T3. T4 is the inactive thyroid hormone and this is produced by your thyroid gland. The conversion of T4 to the active form T3 takes place primarily in your liver and in your gut. If your thyroid, liver, or gut are unhealthy and unable to do the work that they should then the production of T4 and T3 hormones will be dramatically impacted. Your body will either produce too much thyroid hormones leading to hyperthyroidism or having a very fast metabolic rate where you feel nervous or anxious a lot of the time, have irregular heartbeats, trouble sleeping, dry skin, excessive weight reduction, and excessive bowel movements. Or your body won’t produce enough thyroid hormones leading to hypothyroidism or having a very slow rate of metabolism where you feel depressed and irritable, experience hair loss and memory loss, feel tired and weak a lot of the time, find it difficult to reduce weight or have a dramatic increase in weight, have muscle cramps, feel cold a lot, have brittle nails, and constipation. High levels of perceived stress interferes with the production of T4 and high levels of the stress hormone cortisol interferes with the conversion of T4 to T3 causing abnormal metabolic function throughout your entire body.

Okay so that was a lot of information to take in about your major hormones. Now I’m not sure if you noticed, but there was one constant between them all. There was one hormone that popped up time and again and it has an impact on all the other hormones. Do you know the hormone I’m talking about? Yes, the stress hormone cortisol. That’s the hormone I’m talking about.

High cortisol leads to the increase of glucose in your bloodstream eventually causing a spike in insulin and this high insulin release causes fat storage and an increase in fat cell number and fat cell size.

High cortisol at night prevents melatonin from rising leading to trouble with sleep, less growth hormone release, less fat burning, a weakened immune system, and an increased risk of cancer.

High cortisol levels equal low leptin and high ghrelin levels meaning even if you’re obese or if you’ve eaten a big enough meal that normally would have satisfied you in the past, you will still have an appetite and feel hungry and will want to keep eating and you may never feel satiated.

High production of cortisol equals low production of your growth and sex hormones. More cortisol means less growth and more stress means less sex.

Finally high stress and rich cortisol production equals poor thyroid hormone production causing an abnormal rate of metabolism, either too high or too low. The majority of thyroid issues deal with a very slow rate of metabolism leading to difficulty reducing fat cell number and fat cell size.

So the big takeaway from all this hormone talk is that if you can control your cortisol you can control the rest of your hormones and you can determine the overall health of your body.

Not only that, but by taking control of your cortisol levels and the levels of all your other major hormones you can determine the amount of muscle and fat that your body synthesises and burns… without the need for counting calories.

Imagine that your hormones are an orchestra and that when they play in perfect harmony you get to hear wonderful music a beautiful symphony being played. However, when you have disharmony in the orchestra, when there’s a group or single instrument out of tune, out of sync, out of beat and rhythm then you’re left listening to something that would probably even make the walking dead turn and run in the other direction.

Homeostasis is a term that means a system is in balance and functioning as it should. When your many hormones are in harmony and playing sweet beautiful music together then you can consider your body to be in a homeostatic state. When your body is in homeostasis, where you’ve achieved hormonal harmony, then your body’s ability to burn fat and maintain or build health and muscle will be easy peasy lemon squeezy.

However, if your hormones are not in harmony with each other well then your ability to reduce fat and maintain or build health and muscle go right out the window. It doesn’t matter how many calories you count or restrict and no matter how hard you push yourself in the gym because if your cortisol and other hormone levels are not in healthy ranges then your body has bigger issues to deal with than worrying about energy in and energy out.

What I’m ultimately saying is that when your hormones are in balance with each other you’re a lean, mean, and very keen playful, happy, and healthy human being. But when your hormones are ‘out of whack’ (yes that’s a scientific term where I’m from) when your hormones are out of balance then oops-a-daisy you become flabby, fat, and lazy.

So what causes hormone imbalances?

High levels of stress and inflammation and stress and inflammation are caused by unhealthy relationships, disconnection from Mother Nature, exposure to toxic compounds, improper sleep, too much not enough exercise, eating inflammatory foods, not drinking enough quality water, and incorrect breathing patterns.

To get your hormones in a happy and healthy harmonious state you need to reduce your stress levels and lower the amount of inflammation in your body and you can do this by living a holistic healthy lifestyle. If you listen to episodes 2-15 of the Whole Guidance Podcast I go into detail about how to do this, but I will share a few quick and easy tips here on how to keep cortisol your stress hormone in check which will reduce the amount of stress and inflammation in your body.

First tip is to remove sugars and grains from your diet. Pasteurised dairy too if you’re really serious about keeping your cortisol levels balanced. Sugars and grains and highly treated dairy products are pro-inflammatory causing a lot of fire in your belly and in your body and also cause a lot of insulin to be secreted by your pancreas. By removing these foods from your diet for 21 days you can then try reintroducing them again to see how you feel and I bet you’ll notice a difference. With less insulin in your bloodstream your body’s metabolism will gradually shift from burning sugar and storing fat to not needing sugar and burning fat. Replace the sugars, grains, and dairy with more animal and fruit fats and oils.

Second tip is to get quality sleep. Now I said quality, not quantity and this means consistently going to bed before 11p and getting up around 6 or 7a for at least 21 days. This will reset your circadian clock and help restore your melatonin to its correct levels, low in the morning and high in the evening.

Third tip is to breathe deep diaphragmatic belly breaths through your nose. This helps keep your body in a rest, digest, calm, and connect state and so reduces your cortisol and increases your fat burning potential as well as your growth and sex hormone levels. Listen to episode 4 on how to practise proper breathing technique.

Fourth tip is to sprint more and cardio less. What I mean is that instead of doing 30 minute, 60 minute, or 2 hour long duration cardio sessions, why not try 4 minutes of high intensity interval training. H I I T or HIIT is where you go all out at 80-100% effort for 30 seconds and then rest for 90 seconds and repeat this seven more times. Timing isn’t set in concrete so you can go hard for 60 seconds and rest for 60-240 seconds if you wanted to. There’s no set rules. Find what works for you. You can do HIIT on a spin bike, sprinting up hills, or by performing exercises like burpees. Sprint training burns fewer calories during the exercise than long duration cardio does, but it produces a healthier hormonal profile after the exercise is completed meaning cortisol levels don’t stay elevated for long periods after a sprint session and your metabolism remains higher for longer periods after HIIT as well.

Fifth tip is to support your liver and gut health to ensure optimal conversion of your inactive T4 hormone into the more active T3 hormone making you a metabolism beast. Easiest way to support your liver is to reduce your exposure to toxic chemicals in your environment. You can do this by swapping out commercial home and personal care products for organic plant-based ones. Easiest way to support your digestive system is to eat real food. Real food is from Mother Nature. Anything from Father Industry I consider fake pretend food-like products and these will only create inflammation in your gut.

As Michael Pollan an author who writes about real food says:

“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”

Sixth tip is to manage your self when it comes to stress. I did a whole podcast on how stress affects your health and how to identify and reframe your perspective on the stressors in your life so listen to that for more details. Also meditation and practising mindfulness and awareness is another way to move away from past regrets and future failures and to just be in the present moment. The more you can be ‘in the now man’ then the less you will be stressing about stuff in your head.

My seventh and final tip for reducing stress and inflammation and on how to best balance cortisol and all your other hormones is to get some smart sun exposure. Vitamin D is a powerful hormone that regulates over 1000 genes in your body and today about 70% of people living in western society are deficient in vitamin D and do not have enough of this health building hormone. You need to be exposing your skin to the sun on a regular basis to get the right amount of vitamin D, but of course you don’t want to get too much sun as too much of a good thing will burn you on the outside and cause fire and inflammation on the inside. I’ll talk more about smart sun exposure and vitamin D in the next podcast.

I’ll leave you with this final thought.

Throughout human history calories were never counted or measured in order to be healthy. Building muscle, reducing fat, achieving a happy mindset, all of these were and still are easily accessible to anyone living with balanced hormones without the need for calorie counting.

When you focus on the quantity of calories this will cause an imbalance in the quantity and quality of your hormones. So at the end of the day if you want quality hormones you must focus on quality calories.

To learn more about how calories really don’t matter read The Calorie Myth by Jonathan Bailor. This book lays out the science on how hormones beat out calories time and again for achieving the best health ever.

“Health is not a math equation.”

When your body is healthy, whole, and complete you’ll never have to think about calories ever again because health has always and will always be instinctively and innately and naturally easy.

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WGP 010: Nutritious Movement as Medicine

In this podcast I’ll be exploring Movement:

  • I’ll explain how movement is one of the most essential nutrients for your body
  • I’ll talk about how a lack of movement affects your health
  • Finally, I’ll talk about the different types of movement that your body expects and how to increase your consumption of real movement nutrition


CLICK HERE TO LEARN WHAT ARE THE BEST FOODS TO GET YOU LEAN

Movement is life. Life is movement. If you’re not moving you’re not living. Movement nourishes your body and mind.

Your body and mind are actually one and the same. Clinical Professor of Psychiatry Dr Dan Siegel defines the mind as the following:

“The mind is an embodied process that regulates the flow of energy and information.”

Your mind is embodied within your entire being, your whole body, cultivating the many different life processes happening within. From your left pinky toe to your right ear lob.

Whenever I refer to your body I’m also referring to your mind and vice versa. So you can think of your body and mind as one entity called the bodymind.

Movement then moves not only the body, but the mind your entire bodymind.

Movement acts as a pump. Every time you move you contract and relax different muscles in your body and this process of restriction and expansion within each muscle acts like a pump. These pumps move water, blood, oxygen, nutrients, energy and information throughout your body. No pumping action means no nutrition for your cells.

Your lymphatic system is your waste management system and does not have a pump of its own as does your circulatory system that has the heart as a pump. Lymph fluid in your lymphatic system only moves when you move. If you don’t move then all that toxic waste just sits around in your lymphatic system and doesn’t get into your bloodstream where it can be processed for detoxification and elimination. Overtime this causes a toxic buildup in your body and when you do decide to move this will eventually overwhelm your detoxification organs such as your liver, skin, lungs, and kidneys.

You must get into the groove and move in order to transport nutrients to where they are needed the most inside of your cells and in order to transport and eliminate waste out of your body.

If you’re not moving and remain in one position for long periods of time and I’m not just talking about sitting, this applies to any long held position standing, kneeling, then your cells begin to starve due to a lack of nutrition and you also create a buildup of waste.

One of the symptoms you will experience due to a lack of movement is tiredness and low energy. When your cells do not receive the nutrients, energy and information that they need to function your metabolism begins to slow down, your bodymind begins to slow down because it’s low on nutrition and energy. Even though the energy is there inside your body your lack of movement is not transporting that energy to where it’s needed the most.

Not only does a lack of movement cause you to feel tired, but because the nutrients aren’t being transported to vital organs in your body such as your gut, heart, and brain your bodymind begins to lose focus and attention and you also begin to experience unstable mood swings and can begin to feel irritable.

Having unstable energy levels isn’t just due to a lack of nutrients reaching your cells, but also due to your inability to handle carbohydrate and sugar. Eating excess carbs and sugar creates many issues in the body including having unstable levels of blood sugar. So while you may experience an energy high at first after a carb-heavy meal or snack as the sugar rushes throughout your bloodstream it’s not too long before your energy comes crashing down as all that sugar gets quickly burnt up for energy and any excess sugar gets put into storage and then you begin to feel hungry again. You may get hungry or you may feel angry after such a sugar crash, but for me I definitely get both hungry and angry after I eat too many carbs. A phenomenon known as HANGRY!

Muscle is one area of your body where excess sugar (glucose) gets stored as glycogen. Now if you do not have enough lean muscle mass then your tolerance for carbs will be lower than someone else who has more lean muscle. One way you can maintain lean muscle is by moving. Move it or lose it right.

Also movement makes muscle cells more sensitive to the carbs you eat. After doing some high-intensity movement your muscle cells begin to scream out for nutrients and they are extremely hungry for carbs. Now your fat cells are always screaming and always hungry for additional fats made from the excess carbs and sugars you eat. But by moving your body you can at least make your muscle cells scream louder for nutrients compared to your fat cells.

So by moving you can maintain lean muscle while at the same time you can tell your muscle cells to take up most of the sugar you’re eating keeping your blood sugar levels from rising and falling too quickly. This allows you to step off and skip the next ride on the energy roller coaster.

Peristalsis is the wave-like contraction of the muscles that make up your digestive system and the more you move the more peristalsis occurs in your body meaning you will have better elimination of faecal matter — that is to say you’ll poo like a champion. Lack of movement reduces peristalsis and can make you constipated. When you’re constipated your poo sits in your colon longer than it should and water and toxins in the poo will be absorbed into your body. This reabsorption of toxins that were meant to be eliminated creates double overtime work for your liver. This extra work for your liver makes it very hungry for energy and this will cause you to feel tired and fatigued as other areas of the bodymind are not getting the energy that they need.

Also chronic constipation and exposure to toxins in your environment (such as chemicals in food and in personal and home care products) will overwhelm your liver and it will not be able to do its job 100% and usually the next organ that takes the hit for an over toxified body is the largest organ — your skin. So crap starts to come out of your skin and you can get rashes and acne all because you’re constipated and all because you are not moving and of course if you’re not well hydrated.

So if you want to move-it move-it down there you’re going to need to move-it move-it up here.

Your heart pumps blood through your circulatory system, however, it’s not a lone ranger. Your heart is part of your bodymind and works together with all other parts of your body. When you’re moving, even if it’s just fidgeting. anytime you use your skeletal muscles you’re providing additional pumps to move blood and nutrients around your body. This supports the heart so the heart no longer has to work as hard. Movement can create less strain and less stress on your heart… unless you’re doing long duration cardio, but I’ll talk more about that later.

Now this is also why sitting has been called the new smoking and why chronic sitting can lead to heart disease because without frequent movement you’re causing your heart to do more work on its own. This can create constriction in your arteries causing high blood pressure and gradually overtime due to the chronic high blood pressure and constant rushing of blood through constricted passageways in your circulatory system this will cause damage to your arteries.

Another issue with a lack of movement is your body can no longer grow and repair itself. Living life causes wear and tear on your body particularly in your muscles and joints. These are the workhorses of your body the slave workers doing hard physical labour. The cells in your muscles and joints are constantly being damaged and are dying off. If these cells are malnourished and not getting enough nutrients and energy they will not be able to repair the damage done by daily activities and the dead cells will not be replaced as quickly as they should be or will not be replaced at all. This will lead to muscle aches and joint pain. This is where slow energy-building movements come in and I’ll talk more about these soon.

So does this all mean you have to be moving 24/7 even in your sleep? No. But you do need to be moving often and change up your physical position throughout the day.

There are many different ways to incorporate movement into your life. There are informal types of movement that include play and random bouts of physical expression where there is no end goal in mind when you’re participating in the activity. So you can play outside, you can walk, run, hop, skip, jump. You can climb trees and literally just hang out and pull yourself up. You can swim, ski, go hiking, or mountain climbing. All this movement counts and yes this even includes sexy times.

Formal types of movement include training and exercise where you have particular disciplined movement patterns that require skill, proper form, and correct technique to perform.

Just as there are nutritious foods with different types of nutrients and fake foods with no nutrition whatsoever, there are also nutritious movement patterns with different types of movement nutrients and fake movement patterns with barely any movement nutrition.

One fake movement pattern that does more harm than good overtime is chronic long duration cardio. Yes joggers, cyclists, and marathon runners alike are all performing an unnatural act as it relates to your bodymind. Long duration cardio has many benefits as most movements do, but unfortunately chronically performing this type of exercise has one massive downside and that is the increase in heart muscle mass and rigidity. Your heart is a muscle and with chronic overuse this turns to abuse as the heart becomes rigid leading to heart conditions as endurance athletes age.

Another fake movement is seen in the competitive sport of bodybuilding. Again another unnatural act that puts too much strain on the bodymind as a whole and couple that with the use of artificial enhancements and drugs and it’ll lead to a lower quality of life as these athletes age.

Now there’s nothing wrong if you participate in these activities to a point. You can run marathons and become a bodybuilder for health reasons, but once you get competitive at these sports health tends to go out the window. Once you realise that you are doing something your body was not designed for and knowing that you may have to do unnatural things in order to participate you will be able to modify other aspects of your lifestyle to compensate.

There are three main types of nutritious movement your body really loves and was designed for in terms of living a happy, healthy, and long quality life.

Now before I get into these three nutritious movement patterns understand that your body doesn’t run off calories alone. Hormones play a huge role in determining the health of your mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing. These three nutritious movement patterns turn on fat-burning and growth hormones, and increase sex hormones. While these three types of movement may not burn as many calories as other forms of exercise they also won’t put your body under massive amounts of stress like other forms of exercise [cough] chronic long duration cardio. Anyhoo…

First nutritious movement is lifting really heavy things aka high intensity training. Strength training can involve weights and machines, but there’s nothing wrong and everything right with using your own body as resistance. If you’re new to lifting heavy things you will want to go through three different stages of body conditioning and preparation work beforehand to reduce your chance of injury: mobilisation, stabilisation, and flexibility. By making sure your joints and muscles are mobile and flexible enough to handle weight and by conditioning your core muscles to share the load evenly you will dramatically reduce your risk of injury. You’ll need to find a skilled exercise coach and personal trainer for this and I suggest looking for CHEK Practitioners in your area. Highly skilled with holistic and functional training CHEKkies are one the best trainers, rehabilitators, and physical therapists in the world. You can find them at chekconnect.com.

Two more great resources for conditioning your body are the books Foundation by Dr Eric Goodman and Peter Park and Becoming A Supple Leopard by Dr Kelly Starrett and Glen Cordoza.

With this strength training you want to be lifting at high intensities. So this doesn’t mean 5 sets and 30 repetitions of the same exercise. High intensity is more like 1-5 sets of 3-5 reps of a single exercise with 3-5 minutes of rest in between each set. You only need to spend about 30-50 minutes in the gym for one of these workouts. Another way to perform at high intensities is by lifting and lowering weights very slowly. This type of slow resistance workout takes less than 20 minutes to complete and can be done by anyone over the age of 16. Check out the book Body By Science by Doug McGuff and John Little for more on this slow resistance training.

Next nutritious movement pattern is sprint intervals or high intensity interval training. If you were to look at a marathon runner’s body compared to a sprinter’s body you’ll notice one isn’t quite as lean and muscle bound as the other. The sprinter’s body looks healthier because of the hormonal effects that sprint training provides.

Sprint interval training involves warming up for a few minutes and then going all out for a certain period of time and then resting for a certain period of time and repeating this pattern a certain number of times. You can use a spin bike, treadmill, or a real bike and sprint for real. You can even use weights. Any movement can be turned into high intensity interval training as it’s based on working at your hardest energy output for a set period then resting. I personally use a spin bike and warm up for three minutes. My first interval starts off with 30 seconds of going all out and then resting for 90 seconds where I go at an extremely slow recovery pace. I repeat this interval seven more times with a five minute cooldown afterwards. So that makes a total of eight sprints and a total of four minutes of actual physical high intensity activity.

I used to do 40 mins on the bike before I learnt about sprint training and it’s made me more time efficient and has been a lot more effective at improving my health.

So right away you can see these first two movement patterns are not exactly long workouts, but they are definitely intense and once done your bodymind bathes in the positive hormonal afterglow that follows.

Final nutritious movement pattern involves moving slowly and moving often aka not being stuck in one position all day every day.  These movement patterns you can call working in instead of working out. Workouts drain your body of energy, whereas working in cultivates and builds energy within your bodymind.

The most simplest and easiest work-in of them all is to breathe. You don’t even have to get out of bed for this one. Taking relaxing diaphragmatic belly breaths through the nose as described in a previous episode I did on breathing moves your body in all three dimensions as your belly expands forward, ribcage expands sideways, and your spine expands up and down.

Another easy work-in movement pattern is walking. Very simple, you don’t have to strain yourself, just walk. Maybe start off with 30 minutes a day so get a timer, set it for 15 minutes, start off on your walk and once the timer goes off you walk back.

Next work-ins are Tai-chi and Qi-gong. These are very slow forms of movement and are more meditative in nature. Along these lines of movements are Zone exercises which are a form of Qi-gong where you do the exercise not so much for meditation (but they can be used this way), but more for healing a specific health complaint that you may have. To find out more about these Zone exercises look up the book How to Eat, Move and Be Healthy! by holistic health practitioner Paul Chek.

Yoga is another form of working in. Now I’m not talking hot Bikram melt-in-your-clothes yoga that’s more of a workout, but Hatha and Iyengar yoga. That’s the yoga you want for working in.

One final tip for those stuck in a chair most of the day or stuck being in one set position for long periods of time. No amount of movement can reverse the damage caused to your arteries from being chronically stuck in the same position all day. You need to break up the static pattern with either frequent dynamic movements or by simply changing position. So set a timer to 25 minutes and every time it goes off get up for a few minutes and go for a quick stroll around the building or go outside or simply do air or chair squats, lunges, or march on the spot. If you’re fortunate enough to have a workstation that can be raised and lowered simply change from a sitting to a standing position throughout the day.

Just don’t stay in the one position for longer than an hour.

I’ll leave you with this:

“Life is a dance and Mother Nature only dances with those who dance and move along with her.”

If you ain’t movin’ and you ain’t groovin’ then Mother Nature’s bouncers aka bacteria, fungi, and parasites will gladly show you the door.

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HeartMath Heart Intelligence Training

HeartMath Heart Intelligence Training
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HeartMath is recognized as one of the world’s foremost authorities on emotional physiology, stress and optimal performance. Through their innovative technology they provide practical, scientifically validated methods that enable people to live more rewarding, healthy and productive lives personally and professionally. HeartMath have achieved global recognition for their groundbreaking products and services that have been proven to increase productivity while reducing the stress associated with living and working in this era of high-speed change.

The award winning emWave® and Inner Balance™ technology products from HeartMath offer a drug-free solution to stress, anxiety, depression, and more.

Used just a few minutes a day, this simple-to-use technology helps you transform feelings of anger, anxiety or frustration into more peace, ease and clarity.

For athletes and individuals training for health, HeartMath technology will give you a snapshot of your nervous system’s stress state indicating whether your body is ready for another hard high intensity workout or if you should take it easy with low intensity movements such as yoga, stretching, and massage.

Learn how to train your body to remain in a stress-free state even in the presence of perceived stress.

 

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Rebounder

Rebounder
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Rebounders are mini trampolines that support your body’s innate detoxification system through the act of rebounding (jumping on a mini trampoline).

Toxins are moved out of cells and transported out of the body through the lymphatic system, which is a circulatory drainage system for anything the body cannot utilise and is a major player in detoxification. The lymphatic system functions only during muscular contraction. This includes any type of movement.

Rebounding is an extremely low impact mobility/detoxification practise with no long-term adverse effects on your joints making it the best way to work your muscles and to move lymph within the body.

 

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Yoga Mat

Yoga Mat
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A yoga mat is a versatile piece of mobility equipment that can be used for a variety of exercises, stretching, meditation, and of course yoga.

 

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Swiss Ball

Swiss Ball
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The core is the midsection of your body in which all limbs are attached to. Proper movement of the whole body from head to toe and correct postural alignment is determined by the functioning of the core.

Swiss balls (also known as fitness, exercise, balance, or stability balls) are a fantastic mobility tool that will help strengthen your core. They also increase your stability, balance, and flexibility.

 

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