This man says that what we have been taught about exercise takes up too much of our time and doesn’t get the best results.
I’m busy. I mean like very. Starting with a full-time job, a four-hour commute every day, three kids, church obligations, a writing career. Add participation in a few online communities, two blogs, chores, taxes, learning new technologies, reading, studying, entertainment, prayer, sleep. There is very little time left for anything else.
Like, For Exercise
Being fit is not my highest priority. In fact, it ranks low on my list. It is important, but far from being the most important.
If you have a full-time job, your workout shouldn’t consume a big chunk of your life. You have more important things to attend to, like taking care of your family and your career.
And that’s the way it should be. You shouldn’t be obsessed with your body shape. Your look doesn’t make you a living. If it does, this article may not be for you.
I don’t exercise long hours. Yet, I am fit. I’m 36 and have never been more fit. In fact, my friend, a black belt in karate has said that my performance puts me in top 1% of athletes in the world. I can do more pull-ups than the famous Canadian personal trainer, Craig Ballantyne, yet I only spend ten minutes per day exercising.
Save Time—Get Results
No matter what you hear, long workouts are not necessary to get fit and stay that way. Recommendations are made to exercise “one hour per day three days per week,” while others are made to work out “two hours per day every other day.”
Who has that much time to spare for fitness? Especially when ten minutes per day can provide the results you are looking for. Just think, fit and still with the time needed to take care of your family, career and have a bit of fun.
Take Care of Your Diet First
Let’s face it: the proper diet is crucial to being fit. You are not going to reach your goals unless you change your diet. I’ve been on my routine for the last four years. Yet, until I changed my diet, I looked fat. My physical capabilities were excellent, but my body did not reflect the significant results.
Nowadays, I don’t look like the Greek God featured on the cover of Men’s Health Magazine, but I’m ok with that. All I need is a strong, healthy body to support me in the pursuit of my grand purpose, not to build my ego. I look good enough.
Here is my daily routine:
- One series of pull-ups or chin-ups a day. Start with as many as you can do.
- 1-3 series of pushups. Start where-ever you are—If you must, start with your knees on the floor then work to a full plank then legs elevated. I usually do wide-grip, narrow-grip or diamond pushups because they are more difficult. The take less time to do and provide variety.
Each series of exercise takes one to three minutes. I work out about ten minutes a day. I don’t use any professional equipment (except a bar I bought in a supermarket for less than $10). Today I can do more than 100 consecutive legs-elevated pushups, more than 40 consecutive pull-ups, and more than 50 consecutive dips.
What’s so special about my routine? Nothing except that it works.
The Secret Sauce
OK, there are three bits of “secret sauce” here:
1. Work out every day.
I mean every single day. I’ve been tracking my results in Coach.me for the last 418 days, and I didn’t miss a day in my routine.
2. Work out intensely.
Work to your limit. Push yourself to exceed the previous day’s number for each exercise. I max out. I exercise to the point that my arms cannot support my bodyweight any longer. I score the level of my routine between High-Intensity Interval Training and Tabata interval workouts.
You may not get there each day, but you will find the repetitions you can do increasing gradually.
3. Set your intention to succeed.
I’ve just read Deepak Chopra’s The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success and learned the transformative potential of intention.
Whenever I work out, I want to break my prior record. Sometimes it takes me fifty days, sometimes just three, but I always strive to do more than I was able yesterday. This is also an important factor in my consistency.
Without a shadow of a doubt, my routine is hard. It’s painful, it’s excruciating. Is it effective? You bet! Give it a 30-day try and you’ll see the results.
Consistency Shapes Your Body
Some might say that I don’t give my muscles sufficient time to recover from my workouts. Maybe. Frankly, I don’t care.
I’m not interested in the best possible look and the most rapid results. I got fit that way and stayed fit that way. I reached my dream weight in March 2013, and I’ve been maintaining it since then.
In my experience, the long-term consistency is more important than rapid results. Your body will be your body for the rest of this earthly existence. It doesn’t make sense to set yourself for short term gains and neglect the long term perspective.
On the contrary, the focus on long-term fitness goals allows you to achieve and exceed short-term ones. The sooner you get started the sooner you will see results. Start today!!
Photo: Flickr/ Eric Mesa