What is The (No) Tantrum Program?
Weight Loss on The (No) Tantrum Program
- Do we count calories?
- Why we don’t believe all calories are created equal.
- How we ensure you keep the weight off
- Is this a Keto Plan? (or why we don’t count macros).
- Why don’t we count points?
- How is stress a factor in weight loss?
Exercise on The (No) Tantrum Program
- Why you wont be spending all day in the gym.
- But there’s some exercise in the Program isn’t there?
- So how do we approach exercise?
Injury Prevention on The (No) Tantrum Program
Anti Ageing on The (No) Tantrum Program
The (No) Tantrum Program
Why is The (No) Tantrum Program Different
DEFINING THE PROBLEM – ARNOLD’S STORY
Before I start what is about to follow is not about a person…it’s about a system.
About the results we believe that system yields.
Results which are wildly different from the actual reality most people who use that system for long periods of time experience.
I’m talking about the system of health and fitness we have been spoon fed since we were young. The system which tells us if we just eat healthy and do enough exercise we’ll stay in great shape and health for our entire life.
Sadly for most of us nothing could be further from the truth. (Thankfully the answer is very simple it’s just nothing you’ve ever heard of)
For years Arnold Schwarzenegger was the golden boy of the health and fitness industry. His techniques were copied across literally 100’s of different health and fitness programs and became the benchmark for how to look and feel great across the world.
In 2002 the movie “Collateral Damage” came out, Arnie looked great and at 55 really seemed to be beating the game, he looked incredible.
Then Arnold got a job.
He moved from a world where his job was to look great and look after his body (and could spend as long as he wanted dedicated to this pursuit), to a world where his job was to govern, and his time to look after himself went to pretty much zero.
In just 2 years he went from pin up boy for the Health and Fitness industry to Governor of California with a dad bod.
Because his system didn’t work in the real world.
Sure, it worked fine when he could pack himself into a gym all day and spend hours recovering in the sauna after his workout, eat expertly prepared food following a meal plan laid down by a top nutritionist …but when the pressures of a real job combined with the normal process of ageing caught up with him, it all fell apart.
Why did the system which worked so well for Arnold, the icon of the system itself, so suddenly fail when he became Governor?
To answer this we have to address the underlying belief, centred right at the heart of the health and fitness industry which is causing us normal people a huge amount of pain.
The belief that because something is good for a top athlete or movie star it’s good for us.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Sauce for the goose in this case, is NOT sauce for the gander.
What we need to understand is that while following a fitness lifestyle is effective, as Arnold found right up to getting a job. It is not very efficient, meaning we need to dedicate a HUGE amount of time to it if it is to work properly, even more so as we pass 35 and the natural role of ageing starts to have an effect.
The truth is, as Arnie discovered, as soon as we don’t have that time, this system fails us.
Comparing a pro athlete or movie star to a busy CEO or a stay at home mum with kids to look after, who often simply doesn’t have ANY time to hit the gym, to meal prep, to go to the sauna, is not comparing like for like.
When you then add in:
- The creeping effects of time on the body as we age, as you start discovering that the things which worked for you at 20 no longer work so well.
- A little understood mechanism which makes it highly likely that fat cells will simply regrow (as a biological necessity) after a period of fat loss (we go deep in to this mechanism in the No Tantrum Program).
- A modern world which presents so many challenges to the optimal functioning of a biological organism
At this point you start to realise a COMPLETELY different program is needed to what has been championed by Arnie and by extension the entire Health and Fitness Industry for all these years.
A program which works –
- When life gets in the way and your time is reduced to zero.
- When you simply don’t have the time to think about preparing another healthy meal,.
- When you don’t have time to go to the gym.
- When you don’t have the time to spend hours at the masseuse.
- When you’re no longer in your 20’s and your body simply does not respond to exercise in the same way, does not respond to peak nutrition in the same way.
When this happens you need a program which will keep you in great shape, keep you young, keep you feeling and looking great and massively slow down the rate of ageing, when you have ZERO time, whatever your age.
Welcome to the (No) Tantrum Program.
On the (No) Tantrum Program we take a different view. You see…
The body has a hierarchy of needs. A hierarchy of things without which it will die.
A lot of these we know about from birth.
- We can go for years without exercise.
- We can go for months without food.
- We can go for about a week without sleep.
- We can go for a few days without water.
- We can go for a few minutes without oxygen.
Now there are others even higher in the chain (for example you can last for a few seconds without ATP) but for our purposes today we don’t need to worry about them.
If we want to affect a system, the higher up the hierarchy we go the more control we can exert over that system. (Think about a river, the closer to the source you can divert it, the easier it is to divert and the greater effect you can have on its route)
Most people, when they are looking at health look at diet and exercise, and diet and exercise are hugely important parts of the chain. However in the list of priorities we have just built we can see they are the LEAST important.
Sleep, water and oxygen are all MUCH higher up in the hierarchy and so have MUCH more power to affect human health.
And as I said there are systems even higher than these in the hierarchy, systems such as immune function and ATP production. And if we can control those systems we never really need to worry about anything else.
So why is no one talking about these systems?
Hell, why have most of us have never even considered them?
Well quite frankly I’m not sure, I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that a lot of this knowledge is pretty cutting edge and we’ve had the diet and exercise message drummed into us from birth and so just never looked any further.
On the (No) Tantrum Program I’ll teach you exactly how to control these systems at the very top of the hierarchy so you can build health quickly and effortlessly even if you’ve got zero spare time.
Do We Count Calories?
Thomas, a client of mine, came to me after failing to lose weight counting calories. He’d lost weight initially, then stalled and so cut even more calories. This had caused him to start piling weight on. So he’d gone to the gym and things had only got worse.
He was confused and at his wits end…
“What the hell was going on!?”
I told him to stop going to the gym and put him on a diet where he could eat as many calories as he liked..I told him if he was ever hungry he was doing it wrong!
You can imagine his reaction…
But (after a few weeks of convincing) he gave it a try…
He lost 12 kilos in the next 6 weeks, looked amazing and never felt better.
Let’s delve into what was going on a bit deeper…
Ok so we all understand the basic model of dieting.
Eat less calories than we burn…
- Easy to remember…
- Easy to calculate…
And for most people TOTALLY INEFFECTIVE to the point of being down right wrong.
(there are some people it works for especially if this is your first time losing weight but I’ll talk about that later)
Ok before I dive into this I have to clear up a few fundamentals.
The first of these is that fat is a system. It isn’t just comprised of fat cells, but of stem cells, endothelial precursor cells, TREGS, Macrophages, smooth muscle cells, FAULKS, pericytes, preadipocytes and an Extra Cellular Matrix (think of this like a scaffold to hold your fat cells in place made of collagens). In short it is a system.
Like any system it can have different configurations. So just like a car may have different configurations for its suspension so your fat can have different configurations.
The configuration of your fat system changes as you age. So trying to lose weight when your 20 is very different to losing weight when you are 50 as you are dealing with a fundamentally different system (or at least a system which is configured entirely differently).
Here’s the other thing (sit up and take notes!)
Your fat configuration changes (almost) IRREVERSIBLY when you lose weight.
So losing weight the first time when you are relatively young and your fat is in “young/healthy” configuration is easy…losing weight when you are older and have already cycled your weight up and down a few times and so changed the configuration of your fat to something entirely different is really, really hard!
In fact this is why most of the diet books out there are, for most of the population, total garbage.
Why? Because they were written by someone who, at a relatively young age, decided to turn it all around and lose all the weight. Having done this relatively easily they decide they have found the miracle cure and so decided to write about it, after all the world needs to know about this right?
The reality is they could have chosen any number of ways to lose weight and almost all of them would have worked as the configuration of their fat was that of a young person and it was their first time losing weight.
Whereas for someone older with a history of weight cycling, trying to follow the same diet will potentially do a lot of harm and almost certainly not work.
Why? Because the configuration of their fat system is ENTIRELY different. Of course they will be told they didn’t do it right or some similar nonsense, when the truth is the system they are working with is fundamentally different and so requires totally different techniques to fix.
Not convinced? Ok let’s take a different approach and look at the science…
Three high calorie diets were tested in a group of people between the ages of 18-35. They had a BMI of 19-30, with some people being normal weight, and others being overweight. The participants were placed on three high calorie diets with varying amounts of protein and fat.
Some had a diet higher in protein and lower in fat, others lower in protein and higher in fat and others more of a mix.
Subjects ate the same amount of calories.
So if calories are all that matter, they should all gain the same amount of weight.
The low protein group gained HALF as much as the other 2 groups.
Clearly something else is going on.
First off, could it be that different subjects in this experiment had different histories (of weight cycling vs first time weight loss) and so reacted differently? Could be, it could also be that not all calories are created equal which I talk about in a bit.
Before we get there however let’s look at this from a different point of view.
If I asked you to hold your breath until you passed out, you’d look at me as if I was crazy, and you’d be right. Now it turns out breathing is pretty important for our survival, so our body has very powerful survival mechanisms in place to ensure we keep breathing.
Eating is also governed by the same survival mechanism, so just giving up food is pretty much impossible too, as survival mechanisms kick in and force you to eat (late night refrigerator raid anyone!?). So when someone tells you weight loss is all down to willpower they don’t know what they are talking about. Weight loss is about overcoming the most powerful instinct mankind has…survival.
No mean feat.
Let’s look a bit closer at some of these survival mechanisms.
The problem with fad diets, which generally cause you to lose a lot of weight in a very short time simply by eating less, is as you are restricting calories to such an excessive degree your body literally thinks it’s starving. It thinks an ice age must be coming where food is scarce and so starts to make adaptions to enable you to survive long term in a food scarce environment.
The first thing it does is drop your base metabolic rate. This means you are using less energy (read calories) just to stay alive on a day to day basis.
So whereas before you might burn 2000 calories even if you simply sat on the sofa all day long and didn’t move, after your fad, calories restricted diet you now burn only 1800.
That’s 200 calories less you are burning each day.
This means once you go back to eating normally again it’s MUCH easier to pile weight back on.
Enter the dreaded yo yo diet effect.
“Ok, no problem” you may think, “now I’m slimmer and my body has less energy demands I’ll be less hungry and so eat less naturally.”
If only it were that simple.
Leptin is the hormone which tells you you’re satiated, that you’re full after eating.
As you calorie restrict the levels of leptin in the body decrease, meaning you never feel satiated.
Instead you constantly feel famished despite not really needing to eat.
And it makes perfect sense. If you’re heading into an ice age you want to make sure you eat anything which crosses your path. So your body ensures you’re constantly hungry so that beetle in front of you suddenly looks like a rib eye steak.
All this means, as soon as you stop calorie restricting… (as let’s face it, who can live like this forever?)
You gain more weight than you were originally trying to lose.
And that’s just one of these survival mechanisms, the body has literally hundreds, including changing your genetic expression to promote weight regain!
So can counting calories be totally discounted? No, of course not.
If civilisation were to end tomorrow and we went back to being hunter gatherers, in a very short time EVERYONE would be lean. Environmental and survival pressures would ensure you lost weight as you would simply be expending a LOT more calories than you could take in. Under these circumstances weight loss in almost all cases would be inevitable.
The problem is, in many cases it is impossible in the modern world to expose ourselves to these extreme levels of exercise and calorific restriction, so we have to take other measures into account and use other tools to circumvent the environment we live in
So the answer is we may count calories depending on the configuration of your fat and your goals, we may not. The configuration of your fat, your age, your medical background will all determine what tools we need to use to get the job done.
Why All Calories Are NOT Created Equal
Calorie counting assumes that food is simply energy, the reality is that food is much more than that.
As an example a calorie from an Oreo is not the same as a calorie from broccoli.
Sure when it comes to the energy they release when burned maybe but in terms of downstream effects on the body they are totally different.
Take any of the following:
- Blood Sugar
- Toxic Load
- Hormonal Cascade
- Nutrient Value
And Broccoli Wins (I’m sorry to say!)
Let’s take just two of these and show you why this is such a huge deal.
Contrary to popular belief the main purpose of fat isn’t to store energy but to act as a storage place for toxins which the liver cannot deal with. So if you’re eating a high toxin diet the liver becomes overwhelmed. At which point rather than have an overload of toxins rampaging round the body causing all sorts of carnage, the body decides to encase the toxins in fat somewhere they can’t do any harm, until such a point in the future when the liver has cleared its backlog and can go to work clearing them out. At which point the body gets rid of the fat, releasing the toxins and allowing the liver to do its job.
So the higher toxic load the food you’re eating has, the more fat you are going to store.
When you eat something which spikes your blood sugar the body releases insulin, which tells the body to store any energy from what you’ve just eaten as fat.
So if you’re eating something which spikes blood sugar, you’re literally telling your body to store fat.
And so now you can see why all calories are not created equal.
Most people at this point ask me, “Does That Mean I Just Have To Eat Broccoli?”
Not at all, I’m just trying to show you why counting calories is a waste of your time.
But it doesn’t end there…Even between different types of broccoli, a calorie is not equal to a calorie!
I’m sure you heard the fear mongering in the newspapers… Bacon more carcinogenic than smoking…etc…etc. (Often these days related to meat products.)
What they fail to take into account is…
Broccoli grown in nutrient depleted soil and treated with pesticides its entire life will be almost a different food to broccoli grown in nutrient dense soil with the natural pesticides provided by being grown in its true habitat.
The same is true for organically raised chickens which live off the land, eating their natural diet, moving around all day in natural sunlight and as a result are highly nutritious. As opposed to battery raised birds which never see the sun, live in terrible overcrowded conditions, are injected with all sorts of antibiotics to keep them alive in such horrendous conditions and as a result, suffer with poor health themselves.
Which would you rather eat?
Simply by understanding this key principle you can understand why it’s actually possible to eat a huge range of delicious foods which the media and many well known diet programs tell us we can’t, if we just focus on quality.
We don’t need to be afraid of our food we simply need to understand it better.
But I Can Never Keep The Weight Off
90% of all dieters will have regained any weight lost within 5 years. 90%!! I don’t know about you but that doesn’t look like sucess to me.
Why the hell would you work so hard to lose all the weight only to put it all back on again?
Turns out this is really nothing to do with you but our old friend survival again.
You see, back when humans were chasing mammoths and mastodons on the plains of Africa, fat was an extremely precious resource. It was hard to put on and even harder to keep hold of. The constant cycles of famine, combined with lots of physical exertion just to stay alive, ensured that a fat human was hard to find.
In those days energy was scarce and so the more fat the body could store the higher your chances of survival long term as you were better able to withstand inevitable periods of starvation.
So when the body dropped fat it immediately did everything it could to regain it, changing the expression of genes and making a whole host of other changes to prioritise the regaining of fat stores. These fat regain mechanisms are EXTREMELY powerful and highly effective, which in those days was a good thing as without them we wouldn’t be here to discuss this today. So it also seems logical that evolution favoured humans who were able to regain fat faster meaning most of us alive today are highly evolved and VERY efficient at putting weight back on after a period of weight loss.
Now I’m sure you’ve spotted the sting in the tail here…our body still thinks we’re living in those times. So when you drop weight those same hugely powerful mechanisms kick into place to ensure you regain the weight right back again.
On the (No) Tantrum Program once we’ve got you to your target weight we spend a good few month’s over coming these mechanisms until we’ve convinced your body that your new, current weight is the weight it now needs to maintain going forward and so ensure you keep the weight off for good
Is this a Keto Plan? (or why we don’t count macros)
This absolutely is NOT a Keto Plan and I’ll tell you why.
Keto works, there is no doubt about it, I’ve tried it on myself and others and seen great results. But my reasoning for not using it as a method for weight loss comes back to our guiding principle of building health rather than focussing exclusively on weight loss.
You see my experience with Keto and that of many of many clients is that while it works great short term, it has major implications for health, long term.
And when it comes to health, long term is the ONLY way we can possibly measure it if we are being realistic.
Keto works by dropping glucose and raising base levels of ketones, this mimics the effect of fasting in the body.
But fasting’s great for me isn’t it?
Yes it is, when done in controlled short bursts, when done for extended periods of time it is a highly potent stressor for the body. So much so that long term Keto often destroys people’s adrenal systems, leading to burnout symptoms as they are under chronic stress for weeks and months (sometimes years) at a time, and while they may lose weight they will often feel awful after a few months on a Keto plan.
I have to caveat this, for some people Keto seems to work really well long term, we are all different and react differently to different diets. But in general it is not an approach which I advocate.
Why We Don’t Count Points
Again this comes back to our principle of health over weight loss. Point plans often allow you to eat or drink REALLY unhealthy foods in vast quantities. Back when my mum was doing Slimming World (a point based diet) I would regularly see her knocking back litres of Diet Coke a day.
Due to its low sugar profile it was considered a low point food and so could be consumed in vast quantities.
The fact is, diet coke is highly toxic to the body and was doing all sorts of harm to her internal systems, her hormones and her digestive tract whilst adding a lot of stress to her poor liver.
Stress, Health and Weight Loss
My first car was a boy racer red Astra 1.6TD, I loved it! But I (being a young, foolish 17 year old) wanted to impress my mates and a couple of girls by making it go even faster. So I hatched a master plan.
I went out and I found the highest octane, most powerful fuel I could possibly find…no joke this stuff was literally rocket fuel!
I filled the car up, invited some mates and some ladies over, got in, turned the key and squeezed on the pedal…
The car shot forward, bunny hopped to a stop…and NEVER moved again.
You see, no matter how good the fuel was the car simply wasn’t able to process it…
In the weight loss game so many people are repeating the same mistake I made with my car.
Focussing on the fuel and totally ignoring the engine, the chassis, the wheels.
You need to understand.
It’s not about calories, it’s not about exercise, it’s not about your macros and it’s not about how much water you drink.
Your body is exactly the weight it is supposed to be based on the signals you are sending it…
WHAT? I hear you cry…
Hang on a minute, let me explain.
I knew loads of people who are exercising all the time, counting every single calorie…are HUGELY driven, and very successful but still can’t lose weight and are often actually putting it on…
Because they haven’t got to the root cause of their weight gain…haven’t identified the signals they are sending to their body.
One such signal we’ve already talked about is stress…
Now it’s not the only signal but it’s a good starting point as it’s one we can all relate to.
Just to recap…
Stress forces the body to release cortisol which raises blood sugar, so the body releases insulin which tells the body to store fat.
Long story short, if you’re stressed and trying to lose weight…good luck.
Ok, so what’s the problem?
The problem is that in this day and age we are ALL chronically stressed.
Now some of you may be sitting there saying,
“I’m not stressed”
And while that may be true intellectually I would be hard pushed to believe that your body is not stressed.
You see we can categorise stress in 2 ways:
External stress we’re all familiar with, you get cut up in traffic, your boss or spouse yells at you, you can’t pay the rent this month.
Internal stress we are generally less aware of,
- the toxin laden meal causing stress to your liver as it works overtime to process it,
- the unnatural, man made light you sit under all day which causes your brain to work harder interpreting the signal from your eyes,
- the fact you don’t move enough which prevents your lymphatic system from doing its job properly.
It’s crucial to realise…the body only has one response to stress OF ANY FORM…
Fight or Flight (or activate red mode)
Let me show you why this is so important…
Think of your body as having 2 modes:
The Green Mode is when you are calm and relaxed. When you’re in this mode your body wants to take in nutrients from good food and make love to reproduce the species…It is also the mode in which the body repairs damage and grows new cells. In short we like being in the green mode and we are designed to spend most of our time there.
We also have Red Mode. This is when the body is under stress. For example in cave man terms when you see a tiger.
At this point the body behaves a bit like the Starship Enterprise at battle stations. It shifts all its energy away from non essential systems and sends it all to the systems crucial for escape at that moment…the muscles, the lungs, the heart.
Now the body is really smart. It knows which systems are important and which are not. In that moment do you think it cares about taking in nutrition from food….?
Because if you don’t get away from that tiger right now you’ll never eat again, this is why many people defecate themselves when scared, it’s an automated response to switch off digestion and make you lighter at the same time.
Do you think the body cares about the reproductive system and having sex…?
You guessed it…NO. Why?
Because if you don’t get away from that tiger right now you’ll never make sweet love again, so it switches all energy from the reproductive system to those it needs right now.
Now while you’re being chased your body diverts all its resources from the green systems to the red and strips any energy including raw materials from the green systems to power the red systems.
So in the time you are actually running from the tiger you are actually getting weaker as your body strips more and more resources to power the red system.
You escape but your body tells itself this can never happen again so it rebuilds stronger.
It’s only when you get away from the tiger and back in to Green Mode that you actually start to rebuild the damage done and get stronger.
Well if your body thinks it’s running away from a tiger every day as you’re exercising to the max every day, it’s constantly in Red Mode.
It’s constantly in fight or flight, it’s constantly stressed.
And the body only has one response to stress.
Release cortisol, which raises blood sugar, so insulin is released which causes fat to be stored.
Let’s look at a real world example.
Why Navy Seals Are Big Girls…Literally. (not that I’d ever tell one to his face!)
When people think of macho, Navy Seals come pretty much at the top of the list and for good reason, they are amongst the elite of the worlds warriors (not as elite as the SBS but that’s an argument for another day!)
At the end of their training Navy Seals are put through something called “Hell Week” which as it sounds is pretty miserable.
Now one year they decided to take the Navy Seals testosterone levels just after finishing Hell Week. What they discovered blew their minds.
These big macho Navy Seals averaged the testosterone levels of a 13 year old girl!
They had been in Red Mode for so long without ever going back into Green that they had totally destroyed their hormone levels. Which eventually if not rebalanced would have led to weight gain and a whole host of other problems.
But they’re Navy Seals what on earth does this have to do with us…?
Think about all these stressors in modern life…
Some of these we know about:
- Emotional angst
- Existential crisis
- Financial stress
- Work stress
- Spending too much time in our head worrying
But what about:
- Over Exercise – your body thinks it’s being chased by a tiger
- Calorie restriction – your body thinks its starving
- Lack of nutrients in the diet – again, your body thinks it’s starving
- Stress over not losing weight – this is just ironic and cruel
- Stress of missing out on one of the greatest pleasures of life – eating itself is a de stressor so when we’re denied it we get more stressed, added to which eating out is a great social activity which we often deny ourselves when dieting
- Self image stress – every time you look in a mirror or try to squeeze into those trousers
- Junk light
- 24/7 light
- Breathing or not breathing properly
- Disrupted circadian rhythms
- Not moving enough – sedentary lifestyle
- EMF – Electro Magnetic Frequencies
- Parasites/Disrupted microbiome
- Endocrine disruptors in beauty products
- Heavy metals in the air and water
- Mould & mycotoxins
- Inability to regulate temperature
- Lack of laughter
And the list goes on and on.
And every one of these is placing more stress on your body and there’s only one response to stress
Activate Red Mode and store fat.
To go back to our original point every one of these is a CAUSE, a SIGNAL, which you are sending to your body telling it to hold on to the fat.
Once we change the signal, we change the response and you drop weight effortlessly.
Why We Don’t Spend All Day In The Gym?
When I used to work in a gym there was a woman named Julie. She was the fittest person I’d ever seen. She would run for 1 hour, do 2 classes of circuit training and then hit the gym.
She was a machine.
She was also…
Constantly ill, looked about 20 years older than her actual age and was always complaining she wasn’t making any progress in her fitness, in fact she was going backwards.
Amazingly, despite all this exercise she still had a muffin top which she just could not shift.
Watching Julie’s struggles led me to a great realisation.
- If you are healthy you are by default fit.
- If you are fit you are NOT by default healthy.
Simply put, exercise wrongly done is as bad or worse than no exercise.
Studies done on competitive marathon runners show them to have serious compromises in health and lifespan.
Exercise is actually a stressor, it breaks the body down.
That’s what that aching in your muscles the day after hitting the gym is, your muscles complaining as you’ve actually ripped them apart!
In short too much exercise will send you straight into Red Mode and it’s only through adequate RECOVERY that we go back into Green Mode, actually rebuild the body stronger and gain the benefits from the exercise we do. So we need to exercise effectively and then recover like a pro if we are to get stronger and avoid being constantly in Red Mode.
How much exercise do we need to be doing? Let’s have a look at the science.
In a study at McMaster University in Canada, 2 groups were tested to see how long it took them to cycle 18.6 miles.
One group then went on to perform a high intensity workout on a stationary bike, comprising 30 seconds of intense bike riding at 250% of their VO2 max (a common marker used to determine fitness), followed by 4 minutes of rest. They repeated this 3 – 5 times until they had completed a total of 2 – 3 minutes of hard cycling.
The second group cycled at 65% of their Vo2 max for 90 to 120 minutes.
Both groups cycled for 3 consecutive days every week for 2 weeks.
Breaking it down over the 2 weeks, the first group performed a total of 12 – 18 minutes of high intensity exercise. The second group 9 – 12 hours of much lower intensity exercise.
After this 2 week period both groups were told to repeat the initial 18.6 mile test.
Both groups improved to the same degree.
Biopsies were performed and even at this level they noted the same improvements.
In short, zero additional benefit was gained by the low endurance group, but they did get a lot more wear and tear on the body…97% more!
What we can surmise and what increasingly sport scientists are coming to realise is that exercise, like a drug, has a Minimum Effective Dose (MED).
A MED in terms of frequency, concentration and dosage. Or speaking of exercise a MED in terms of number of times a week, intensity and amount of reps or sets which will give the greatest benefit. Transgress this window and do more than the MED and we do not get more benefits but more toxicity and wear and tear, don’t do enough and we don’t stimulate the adaption response.
This study seems to point towards the possibility the MED for exercise could be much lower than we ever thought, as long as the exercise is performed in a certain way.
In fact after the completion of these studies the lead scientist began investigating whether even the tiny amount of exercise performed in this study was above the MED.
He conceded that as little as 5 minutes of this form of High Intensity Exercise every 7-10 days could be enough to provoke a significant adaption response in subjects.
As long as the subject then effectively RECOVERS from the exercise. In short it’s the recovery where the magic happens. This is especially true in todays modern, super stressed world, where we rush from the gym to a high powered job, grab some lunch on the go and then head back home to act as a taxi driver for the kids all evening.
Remember most professional athletes don’t have another job, they literally spend about 20 hours a day recovering which is why they can consistently push themselves harder and harder, most of us just do not have that luxury.
Over exercising or exercising and not recovering effectively, is locking us in a downward spiral where we are adding more stress to the body, not allowing it time to deal with that stress and are actually making ourselves LESS healthy as a result.
But it doesn’t end there…
One of the big comments I hear is,
“Well I want to lose weight but I don’t want to lose so much that I look ill”
You see you have several different types of fat, for our purposes we are concerned with inflammatory fat and structural fat. Structural fat is the fat in between your joints, the fat which gives your body structure and shape.
Inflammatory fat is your muffin top.
Cortisol also puts a lock on your inflammatory fat.
When you diet and you’re stressed your cortisol has locked down the inflammatory fat so you burn the structural fat…so you end up looking haggard and ill, have aching joints and look a bit like Skeletor…
…and STILL have the damn muffin top.
Just like Julie.
But Exercise Is Included In The Program Isn’t It?
So am I saying don’t exercise?
No, no exercise is as bad as the wrong exercise…
What I am saying is that exercise isn’t the magic bullet we think it is…or that the fitness industry would have you believe it is.
Exercise and RECOVERY is where it’s at.
Without adequate recovery you have people literally exercising themselves fat. So we need to exercise the absolute minimum we can to get the benefits we are after, without provoking a stress response and then recover like a BEAST.
How do we recover? Well that’s what we cover on the rest of the program, eat great food, sleep lots, laugh lots, be with people, move lots, get outside in natural light and the list goes on.
And herein lies the problem with most personal training programs, they only focus on fitness, which ironically enough often comes at the expense of health and your waist line.
So How Do We Approach Exercise?
Most exercise science is based on the study of elite athletes. Following the ethos “if it works for Usain Bolt, it’ll work for me.”
But what isn’t taken into account is that most of these athletes are looking to be the absolute best they can be right now. They want to win the gold medal this year, they want to make the team this week.
No one’s really looking at how to ensure they still make the team in 10 – 20 years time. This leads to a huge focus on short term, high impact strategies often totally ignoring the long term effects of training this way.
At the heart of this problem is …
The LONGER, MORE MODEL.
This is the idea that the only way to get fit is to do more exercise at a higher intensity, for longer.
AND IT WORKS!
Of course it does, otherwise it wouldn’t be what every single personal trainer out there is teaching…
So what’s the problem?
The Longer, More Model is great when you’re an athlete who works out for a few hours a day, then spends hours recovering in the hot tub, with ice baths etc. Most of us however leave the gym and head straight to a stressful job with very little in built recovery time. So we constantly build up more and more stress in the system and we’ve seen what effect that has.
Without access to the advanced recovery methods, personal masseurs and physios which a professional athlete has, the Longer, More Model also causes a huge amount of strain on the body, strain which comes back to haunt us as we pass 30/35.
Leading to a massively increased risk of injury.
So instead we work to find your MED of exercise, work at that level and then focus on recovery for the rest of the time. We may at certain times of the program use exercise as a tool to achieve other aims, but this will always be focussed with intent rather than than the general, blunderbuss approach favoured by many modern programs
Why We Put Such Importance on Injury Prevention
I have a mate Dave. At 30 Dave was an amazing athlete, never got injured and was the fittest person I knew.
Now 45, he’s given up pretty much every sport he used to do, rarely leaves the sofa and has pretty much stopped. And it could have all have been easily avoided.
At about 35 Dave tripped over a paving flag in the street and damaged his knee. Nothing major, certainly nothing worth getting looked at (or so he thought at the time). But it meant that every time he did any sport his knee caused him pain.
As a result he didn’t push himself as hard, didn’t improve as much, didn’t enjoy what he was doing as much and inevitably did less and less.
As he did less his fitness declined, to the point where he struggled when he did get out. He started putting on weight which made the whole process just that little bit harder…
Until eventually he gave up all together and rather than doing the sports he loved, contented himself watching others do them on YouTube.
All Because Of A Stupid Knee Injury.
Which could have been easily dealt with.
However, injuries like this are the main reason I see people slow down and eventually stop altogether. I’m not just talking about sports, but many of the things they love. And I’m a true believer in one key thing…
We don’t stop because we get old, we get old because we STOP.
Is It Actually Possible To Rejuvenate Yourself And Slow Down Ageing?
For those of you old enough to remember, there’s a classic sketch in Only Fools and Horses where Trigger is talking about his road sweeping broom…
“I’ve had the same broom for the last 20 years, I look after it well, this old broom has had 17 new heads and 14 new handles.” says Trigger.
“How the hell can it be the same bloody broom then?” says Rodney.
In this case you’re Trigger’s Broom.
Your cells die, replicate and are replaced with new ones over a time span ranging from every few days to 7 -10 years…
Meaning in 7 – 10 years you will be an entirely new person, just like Trigger’s Broom.
This cellular replication process is not perfect. Things like toxins in the environment, exposure to sunlight, poor diet, lack of movement and a whole host of other things cause new cells to be slightly less perfect copies.
Think of it like taking photocopies of photocopies, until finally the document is unreadable.
This is the basis of ageing and declining performance which we call “growing old.”
Here’s the thing. Your body holds a copy of the original, perfect cell, the blueprint if you like.
And it’s possible, by doing some very specific things, to move your cells back towards that blueprint.
Meaning you can literally rejuvenate yourself at a cellular level and actually IMPROVE your performance as you get older.
Just like this chap…
Tom Brady, star quarterback, 7 times Super Bowl winner and greatest quarterback EVER, is the golden boy of the NFL with a career spanning more than 20 years in a sport where the average career length is just 3 years.
One more important fact…
Most of us are struggling to get out bed at 43 let alone getting hit by 250 pound plus linebackers on a daily basis.
What’s amazing about Tom is that at 26 he was ready to give up…he couldn’t break into the first team and was in constant pain from the beatings he was taking in training. Working with a team of experts, Tom decided to take the long term view, embarking upon a program very similar to the (No) Tantrum Program…
And promptly became the laughing stock of the NFL.
Tom and his “hippy” methods were ridiculed by players, coaches and doctors alike.
Tom stuck to his guns, he continued to believe in what he was doing, kept using the same techniques, kept the same methods of training.
After a few months something amazing happened…
He started to improve…at rates never before seen. Until by 35 he was getting better each year and this improvement continues to this day…he’s quite literally getting better despite the fact he’s in his 40’s.
What’s the Best Way To Get Started With The (No) Tantrum Program?
Just give me a shout by dropping me an email here letting me know what you’re looking for and I’ll point you in the right direction.