Most successful founders are fit and healthy. The reasons aren’t skin-deep. Improve focus, mood and productivity with daily exercise.
Imagine the stereotypical coder. The hacker in your mind’s eye probably has a bag of Cheetos open next to his keyboard and an office chair struggling to contain his girth as he looks at one of six monitors, hacking his way through orders and creating amazing products.
I’m here to tell you that while there are people that completely give up on themselves, but succeed in business, they are the exception.
I challenge you to walk into any successful tech startup and observe the percentage of people that are overweight. You’ll find most team members are healthier than the general population.
If you want to succeed, you must copy the best. The best and the brightest are fit, healthy and ready to work hard. Wouldn’t it logically make sense that the most goal-driven among us would see their personal fitness as the ultimate goal?
Ready to join the ranks of healthy and wealthy entrepreneurs? Here’s how you can hack your way to a killer body and all of the benefits of a healthy physique.
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Get Moving First Thing
If you want to get something done, you absolutely need to prioritize it. I think back to the sage words of advice from U.S. Navy Admiral Bill McRaven. While delivering the 2014 commencement address at the University of Texas at Austin, the head of the Navy’s Special Forces stated: “If you make your bed every morning you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another.”
Seem too simple to work? It’s true. If you get in the habit of accomplishing something first thing, you’ll set yourself up to power through your next task. I call this the accomplishment domino effect. Put the wind back in your sails every morning by working out. You’ll spend the rest of the day tackling more and more things on your to-do list.
Related Article: Is Your Job Killing You? How to Stay Healthy at Work
Find a Workout Routine That Is Fast, Multi-Faceted and Easy
Sound too good to be true? It’s entirely possible to find workout equipment and/or exercises that combine resistance and cardio to maximize your return on investment of time. Most dietary and physical fitness guidelines state that 30 minutes of exercise is necessary to maintain a healthy cardiovascular system. But it’s about more than just quantity; quality matters.
Proven exercises to improve mental acuity and physical fitness:
- Exercise machines, like an elliptical, help to reduce the strain on joints associated with running or walking, while positively impacting virtually every muscle group in your body.
- While circuit training with machines is a great way to get a controlled workout, a simple exercise mat is a great start towards a home gym. Try out these core-strengthening exercises with little more than gravity providing resistance.
- Standing up and taking a break from working at a computer is important. Sitting is the new smoking.
Listen to an Audiobook While Working Out
Want to double dip on the mental benefits of working out? We all know that physical stress releases endorphins, which have been proven to reduce the negative effects of stress and depression in our lives. But your workout should be a time that’s a break from the day-to-day struggle to keep up with work, family and everything else that gets piled into an average day.
To take your mind off things, while still learning or experiencing something mentally engaging, try listening to an audiobook or podcast. There are tons of great podcasts available for free in the Podcast app that comes pre-installed on your iPhone. You can even download them for listening later, in case a data connection in the gym is difficult to maintain.
If you’re looking for some great reads while working out, check out:
- "Eat That Frog" by Brian Tracy
- "Tap Dancing to Work" by Carol J Loomis
- "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg
For busy professionals and entrepreneurs, if you want to get the most out of your day, starting off with physical exercise is the perfect solution to jumpstart your efforts. Working out improves your mood, and can be incredibly efficient for burning calories; giving you the best first impression possible.