7 Fitness hacks to save time and money.
As a busy business owner who is dedicated to his clients, my own fitness and of course, my family, I am looking for any way to make my life easier and more productive. I have found that I am most productive in coffee bars and can get most of my creative juices flowing in this environment, that is why, I am currently writing this blog post whilst enjoying my favourite beverage, a basic good ole Americano. Now, my wife is Canadian and she’s got me hooked on having my coffee with cream (because that’s how they roll over across the pond, milk in coffee is now blasphemy in our household) – Granted, the cream adds to my daily calorie allowance so I only add a splash but back at home or at my studio, i’ll opt for the healthier option of blending my coffee with a tea spoon of coconut oil.
Anyway, where were we?
Ah yes, productivity hacks.
Now, these aren’t your usual productivity hacks, these have a spice of the fitness flavour because I really want to impress upon you the importance of health and fitness and tying them to your other goals in life including your business goals, career goals, relationship and family goals and your own spiritual goals.
So first of all, let’s quickly define productivity in its most basic and simplest definition. I believe it is your ability to perform tasks efficiently and without interruption in order to get a desired results. Is that a fair defintion? (After all, the dictionary definition is, the effectiveness of productive effort, especially in industry, as measured in terms of the rate of output per unit of input.)
So the goal of any personal productivity hack is to allow you to become more effective and get more done in a given period of time.
So, without further adue (because I know you’re busy and don’t want to read too much more waffle), here are my 5 fitness based productivity hacks!
Workout – Working out releases hormones in the brain, it gets the blood pumping and full of oxygen. You feel better for it and if you’ve done a bit of weights or some type of workout like hitting the punch bag, you may experience a raise in testosterone levels, all of which will help you feel more productive and put you in a more positive frame of mind to tackle the day. Now, working out doesn’t need to be time consuming. The idea that you need to spend hours in the gym to get results is foolishness and unless your goal is to increase a sport specific skill, train for an endurance event like a marathon or triathlon or have little else to do, a session that is around 45 minutes long is an optimum time to get a workout but even if that’s a stretch, you can really get a great fat burning workout in under 30 minutes with a metabolic conditioning workout.
Meal Prep – Meal prepping not only keeps you on the straight and narrow when it comes to your diet but will actually save you time in the long run. After all, having pre packed food ready to eat with you can save you time as you’ll not be at your local Starbucks queuing for food. The key to meal prepping is to batch cook food. Batch cooking foods like chicken, eggs and a favourite of ours, Chilli, and then freezing or refrigerating them (we’ve not frozen our eggs yet!) will save you a lot of time!
Eat Brain Food – Foods high in vitamins and essential fatty acids like Avocados, Nuts, Oily fish etc will not only keep you healthy but they’ll stimulate your mood and your brain power to and thus increase your productivity. If you eat good fats as part of a sensible diet, you’ll see your waistline slim down too.
Plan – Planning is a productivity hack that is both obvious and can be applied to areas outside of fitness too. The clever thing is though, fitness is a gateway habit in other words, when you start forming habits with your fitness, it’s easier to apply the same principles to the other areas of life. So, if you find planning your life and work a bit of a challenge, start by planning your workouts and meals, that’s simple enough and when you start seeing results in the fitness department, the brain will find the same type of planning applied to other areas of your life as a welcome change.
Have Accountability – Probably one of my key productivity hacks that I use myself. If I want to get shit done, I become accountable to someone. In business, I have a business mentor and I am also part of a coaching group. The investment I’ve made to these groups since the start of the year may scare some off the idea but it has reaped dividends for me. Now, don’t worry, you don’t have to spend thousands of pounds like me to get accountability, you could just get accountability from a friend, training partner, spouse or a group you set up on line but I will say, there’s great power in financially investing in accountability and I have heard it said, those that pay, pay attention and the more they pay, the more attention they give too. The bonus of investing in mentoring for accountability is that you get coaching too to help you get to your goals faster. If fitness is an area of your life which you’d like to fast track then feel free to get in touch with us about coaching and accountability for your health and fitness.
Track and Measure – American “Super Coach” Jesse Elder once told me, If you can measure it, you can change it. In other words, when you keep track of the data and the metrics, you’ll be able to improve your situation in any given area of your life. How does this help you boost productivity and output? Quite simply, just by having the knowledge at hand that you’re doing something, whether it’s steps per day or workouts per week, time spent and load lifted, you’ll know what’s working and what’s not and how to shave time off your workouts to find the optimum zone for you.
You can use a fitness tracker which are very popular these days to help you with this but be warned, they can be a bit inaccurate.
Eat that frog! – In his seminal book entitled Eat That Frog, Business author extraordinaire, Brian Tracy, writes about tackling your biggest tasks first. I often find that the best time for busy people to work out is first thing in the morning. Not only will this morning ritual allow you to get your work out in but it also has the added bonus that you’ll feel really good for doing so and that will positively effect the rest of your day – as Master Coach and Mentor Garrett J White says, you want to work out first thing in the morning to put you into power for the rest of your day!
Physical fitness has been shown time and time again to create positive effects in all areas of your life and even promote work-life balance and I wanted to leave you with a quick story I heard whilst listening to the “I love marketing” podcast with Dean Jackson and Joe Polish. Now, you may never have heard of Joe Polish but you’ve probably heard of Richard Branson (And let’s be honest, that dude has got to be productive!). Well Joe was on Necker Island with Richard Branson and he asked Sir Richard, “What’s your number one tip to increase productivity?” – Sir Richard’s response was simply to WORK OUT!