Sunday, January 27, 2013

A brain reboot and kick-boxing. That's 2013!

It's now way, way into 2013 and it's time to get things moving forward with Man V2. I have some big plans for the blogg and for offering some coaching via podcasts and an e-book on my training methods and lifestyle hacks. I think that it's a good thing to write about that in a few weeks when I'll have some more information. Until then I'm going to focus on a personal update.

I'll be starting this off by telling you a few lifestyle tweaks and training changes that I'm currently working with. Whilst on a Christmas holiday to Gran Canaria I settled down with a book which I had received several years ago - "Natural Highs" by Patrick Holford and Dr. Hyla Cass (link to Amazon). I had never gotten around to reading it. I'm so glad that I dug it up. It goes into depth of the micro nutrients, supplements that we can use to protect and enhance our brains and boost our thought processes. It really inspired me and after some more research I've tracked down Neurozan (link to Vitabiotics) which contains many of the nutrients and supplements in one (huge) pill. I've started taking them a few days ago and I'll keep the blogg updated about my experiences.

I stopped using caffeine. Caffeine was my last unhealthy over-indulgence in life but after reading "Natural Highs" and researching the effects of caffeine on the brain I decided enough was enough. The withdrawal was terrible. I got every side-effect that I was warned about. I was cursed with migraine, tiredness, mild depression, even short-temper for the first two weeks and a general lack of motivation for a month. The lights are finally switching back on in my mind now but it has been tough. As with anything in my life I can be masochistic and turn pain into a drive to continue. A typical internal conversation is "this must be doing me good as it hurts so much." Not always sensible, rarely logical, but it works for me. Maybe I'll do a post or two following this up or offering advice on quitting. Let me know in a comment if you're interested. My ambition is to stay off it for another month or two and gradually introduce the odd cup as a treat or use it for a specific purpose such as staying up late or driving. Making it a functional tool. Or maybe I'll just stay off it - this is what tends to happen when I make or break a habit. I have a lot to report on the positive effects. Yes, I will write a follow up on this.

The third big thing is that I've been training kick-boxing for five months and just got my first belt. I haven't written anything about this before as I wanted to work out how I felt about it, whether I would continue before singing it's praises too highly. Now I shall. I feel everybody under the age of seventy who is fit should try a martial art. They benefit balance, core-strength, motivation, and discipline. The incredible amount of flexibility required for the kicks and intense interval workouts we do are benefiting my overall health and balancing my running which is mostly aerobic.

A small change I will also mention is going over to only eating ecologically produced meat and eggs. Not much to mention in addition to that but it feels right.

So I have plans for a few marathons this year, the first being the Bergen City Marathon which is only into it's second year - possibly Oslo in September and maybe Berlin. We'll just have to see. I haven't run a marathon for two years. I felt I really needed a break, but I feel ready again. Maybe it's time to resurrect the marathon training blogg posts?

I'm writing this above the Arctic circle. My dad and I have travelled to Tromsø in Northern Norway to see the northern lights or Aurora Borealis. It's -8 out there with a biting wind and half a metre of snow but I will be going out for a run tomorrow morning. It's going to be tough but, hey, there goes that masochist again.

Let me know if you have any requests for themes in physical and mental personal development  and I promise to follow up.

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