When I picked up my 13 year old daughter from acting camp she wanted to go for a 5k run. Why? To unlock an egg in Pokémon GO. It’s a new augmented reality game that is like geocaching using the GPS on your phone. It made me realize that Pokémon might be one solution to a problem my cousin told me about a few weeks back.
At my family reunion on the 4th of July, one of my cousins asked me about my diet. In our big Irish family where six year olds freely swill Cokes and gobble cookies washed down by ice cream, then washed down by brownies, it hit me as a bit of a surprise. It inspired me to write something that would help anyone over age 40 who wants to get back to their 20's or 30's pants size and find better health. It is possible with just a few small (but not easy) changes in your life. I promise you, if you really want it, you can get your body fat percentage lower than it was in your 20's and get your cholesterol down to 150 or lower with slight modifications. Pokémon GO could be a fun way to go after one of my top three solutions. But first the real way to unlock good health.
Diet is the key. When my cousin DC and I were talking I didn’t go into a lot of detail about the ketogenic diet I follow – but I did tell him I eat 80% fat and 8% carbs, 12% protein. There are so many guys who are active (my boy DC plays tennis 2-3 times a week) but have put on an unwanted 10-15 pounds in the years when their testosterone production naturally declines and their metabolism loses a step. The problem is exacerbated by the combination of being able to afford restaurant dinners and expensive wine while not making time for themselves because of work and/or family commitments. Phew – rough combination for the mid-section. But there’s a fix and it’s quick.
Five steps will get you there. Here are the steps (ranked in order of impact) for those of you who are over 40 and want to lose the love handles in the next 6-8 weeks. If you’re only going to do three of them do the first three. If you want to make them habitual check out my video on Using Neuroscience to Create a Lasting Habit. Here they are:
- Cut out sugar and carbs from your diet – yup, let’s start out with the toughest one. No sweet drinks, no beer, no bread, no cereal, look at every label and make sure you eat less than 50 grams a day of carbs. Sugar is more addictive than cocaine so this is going to be the toughest one. It helps if you completely fast and don’t eat anything once every two weeks. Pick a day and only drink water. There will be some miserable days about two weeks in, it’s called the keto flu – push through it. Snack on macadamia nuts, almonds, cheese, etc. Eat tons of salmon, avocados and try making adventure coffee for breakfast. You'll drop the handles just from this.
- Do 4 minutes of exercise before you go to sleep – I have timed this routine and it literally can be done in a lot less than four minutes, but suffice to say it’s fast. The fantastic four serves two important functions; it speeds up your metabolism before bed and it gives you muscular stress (training) that burns calories and encourages your body to stimulate growth hormones. Here’s the routine you should do every night:
- 50 squats all the way down as low as you can go
- 30 push ups (do as many as you can take a break and do the rest)
- 60 crunches or leg-lifts
- Find workout micro-moments during the day – Play Pokémon GO, it's fun and active! Never take an elevator. Never stand still on an escalator. Carry your bags-don’t roll them. Park at the far end of the parking lot. Do side bends while you brush your teeth. Get the idea yet? If you find just 5 times during the day to burn 50 calories that will burn off the four eggs you had for breakfast (since you’re on the keto diet it’ll be eggs not beer you're burning).
- Do one long endurance workout a week – try to find two or three hours to hike, bike, paddleboard, whatever your favorite sport is. Make sure you get past that one hour mark where you used up the glycogen stored in your body and you have to get to the fat-burning fuel stage.
- Mix up workouts and diets – There’s a ton of talk about high intensity training (HIT) or intervals – that’s doing really hard efforts for 1-5 minutes then adding equal or lesser amount of rest and repeating. Intervals are great and help a lot, but only as part of an overall workout week. Same with diet. If you splurge on a Saturday and have a few beers and a pizza, then fast the next day or eat as little as you can handle. The key to both workouts and diets is to confuse your metabolism. Don’t let your muscles, heart, or digestive track get used to any one routine.
The key to losing those extra pounds and looking like an enviable old stud at the beach boils down to attitude. Discipline is easy if you know what you’re going after. I know that you can commit to a change and commit to losing those extra pounds that you picked up when your body slowed down, just get off the computer and do it now – or start doing some sit-ups while you watch one of my other videos on my latest adventure!
If you like this please share it with one of your friends who wants to feel the love and lose the love handles.
 Giving a kid under 20 a Coke or any other caffeinated, high sugar drink is the same as giving them a cigarette. In fact some doctors think it’s worse since like the Director of Harvard Medical School who thinks sugar is the culprit of 85% of all disease.