Sometimes it’s time to reset and go back to basics. In the business world this is called our default diary. It’s the routine you know you should have but one that over time you veer away from. It’s the path that takes us towards our goal. The daily actions that move us towards our vision of the future. We all get those ah’ha moments. The slap the forehead moment. Where we realise we’ve lost our way a bit. So every now and then it’s time to take stock and when everything seems to be running away from us, pause and press the reset button
Heeding my own advice that’s what I’ve decided to do.
Over the last 12 months I’ve been burning the candle at both ends and inevitably I’m now paying the price. Carrying an extra 10lbs, tight shoulders, headaches, fatigue and just generally weariness. And yes I’ve probably pushed it further than I should and I knew I would have to pay the price further down the line. Well I’m at the end of that line. So today I’ve decided to work on the basics
The last few years my journey to health, well-being and vitality has been exciting and I’ve discovered lots of amazing and interesting ‘hacks’. But sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in these and forget that it all comes down to the basics-Light, Water, Food and Environment.
Over the following 4 weeks I’m going to be focusing in on these 4 fundamentals of health ‘4 Pillars’. So first let’s tackle the weight.
I know that my diet is pretty good – good protein, lots of veg, no bread, no pasta, small amounts of alcohol, little bit of dark chocolate – so why the extra 10lbs? Well stress is definitely playing a role in my extra weight. So my ‘environment’ is playing a role with my weight. There could be other factors however (work) stress is more likely to be the cause so for this post I’ll stick with that. To help kick start me off I’ve decided to have a couple days of fasting. I’ve not gone for a full water fast but decided to do intermittent fasting. I often intermittent fast where I’ll eat before 8pm and not eat until 1pm the following day. I’ll also have a Bulletproof Coffee for breakfast. This consists of Upgraded Low toxic coffee beans, Brain Octane oil and unsalted grass-fed butter. I decided to extend my fast this time round as I wanted my body to produce more Ketones and stay longer in Ketosis so I’m only eating my evening meal.
Here’s what my day looked like for the past 2 days
6.00am upon waking Glass of water (with added Pink Himalayan Salt)
6.00-6.30am Infrared Sauna while practicing 15-30 minutes mindfulness
7.30 -8.00 am Bulletproof Coffee (Grass fed unsalted butter, Brain Octane Oil)
Morning – Water with added Dr Flanagan Crystal Energy
12.00-1.00pm Cacao butter, Brain Octane and decaf coffee (like a Bulletproof coffee but no caffeine and no butter)
Afternoon – Sparkling water
6.30-7.00pm Evening meal – Homemade chicken curry, made with coconut milk, cauliflower, broccoli, spinach, spices (turmeric) / Pork chops dusted in spices alongside, asparagus, avocado, broccoli & spinach with melted butter.
This is my basic routine. I’m working on all 4 pillars
Light – Living in Scotland isn’t the best when it comes to the quality of light and receiving the full spectrum. I also work in doors. Usually I would get outside more but as I’ve been working more focused I’ve been missing my lunchtime walks. I have 2 children under 10 so getting outside first thing isn’t practical when you have to get them ready for school. I drive them to school and myself to work. My lighting at work is fluorescent. What I’m missing is the ‘red’ light. The kind you get with sunrise and sunset
It’s the red light that sets my body clock, letting it know the rhythms of the day. Studies are showing that we are now being subject to more blue light than is natural to our physiology which is in turn wreaking havoc with our circadian rhythm – switching off our melatonin production. Luckily I have an infrared sauna short of relocating to a country which is closer to the equator this will have to do.
Water – We all ‘know’ we should drink more water and yet it has to be the right water. Did you know there were 4 types? Vapour, Liquid, Ice and EZ water. Yes EZ water. Turns out this phase of water is the type we have in our cells and its a little more like a gel then liquid. It’s often referred to as structured water. Dr Flanagan’s Crystal energy contains minerals that help structure the water to be more like the water in our cells, making it easier to absorb. It’s ‘wetter’! The Infrared sauna also helps my cells produce more EZ water.
Environment – Stress, I’m tackling this in a number of ways. Firstly by adding in some salt to my water and drinking that as soon as I wake I’m giving my adrenals a little kick-start. This gives them a little boost when they need it and helps my cortisol levels in the morning. It’s the cortisol that gets me out of bed and when we experience long term stress this production can become low or be produced at the wrong time of the day. Secondly the infrared Sauna is helping reduce inflammation within my body. And I’m boosting that by my morning mindfulness practice which helps clear my mind and reduce mental stress.
Food – My diet has been pretty good but as stress levels have risen I’ve started to get cravings for sweeter foods. Stress can shut down the digestion, which in turn leads to a lower immune system and creates an environment in the gut for an imbalance of bacteria the knock on affect is 10lbs! Well not exactly but you get the point. So I’m fasting for a couple of reasons. 1- To switch on my in built repair mode within my cells. 2-I’m using Ketones in the form of Brain Octane oil to help provide my brain with energy while I’m fasting but also its a good anti-microbial so will help re balance my gut. I’m cutting the carbs (read sugar) to starve the bacteria that have taken hold within my gut
Alongside the routine above I’ve also been to see my chiropractor to tackle the headaches. After weeks of having these and finally admitting to myself it’s not a brain tumour I had one of those ‘doh’ moments I referred to at the beginning. Of course these were being caused by my tight neck and shoulders and as they had not gone away as usual I needed to fix that. I’ve got to tell you that after seeing him I felt a million dollars. I added in a sports massage from my favourite therapist and “ta dah” – headaches cleared. I’ve also just sent off a Dutch test which looks at my hormones and that should give me a really good look at where I’m at. I didn’t mention sleep which is another important pillar. I am working on improving this. I’m playing with cold showers (only just started) to help with my sleep and I’m working at getting to bed earlier
So I’ll continue this routine for this week, I’ll likely ease off on the fasting otherwise I’m in danger of taxing my adrenals further. But I’ll just play this by ear and see how I’m feeling. Minimum I’ll do 2 days fast and then introduce a little more carbs to my days.
And of course I’ll keep you posted along the way