We often hear health care and fitness professionals talking about optimal human performance or optimal health. This concept is centered on getting you to live and perform at your very best. Well naturally, that was not enough for some people. Allow me to introduce you to the new kid on the block, ultimate human performance, which is performing at your very best when death is a possibility. To illustrate this idea, think of the tight rope walker wearing no safety gear, the surfer taking on a 100′ behemoth wave, or the downhill skier rocketing down a mountainside at speeds of 100 mph. All of these activities allow very little room for error, and even the slightest misstep could mean serious injury or ultimately death.
Not everybody is interested in putting their lives on the line in order to see what they can achieve, but the curiosity surrounding what you are capable of is sure to creep in your mind at some point. Well, one of the things we focus on here at Elite Spine & Sport is goals. Every patient we see is asked what they hope to achieve by coming into our clinic. Some people simply want to get out of pain, others hope to be able to play with their grandchildren, and maybe another hopes to complete their first Ironman race. Our goal is to help you achieve and exceed your health goals, and empower you to maximize living to your fullest potential. Regardless of what your own goals are, you need a place to start. For that reason, Dr. Grenfell has compiled a list of his favorite resources and tools to help you achieve ultimate human performance. Today, we challenge you to think outside the box and start pushing the limits of what you think is possible. You only have one life here on Earth, so go make the most of it!
1. The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance by Steven Kotler
2. Your Personal Paleo Code by Chris Kresser
3. Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers by Robert Sapolsky
4. Cholesterol Clarity/Keto Clarity by Jimmy Moore (These are two different books)
5. Beyond Training: Mastering Endurance, Health and Life by Ben Greenfield
6. It Starts with Food by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig
Podcasts are free digital audio files which you can stream or download and listen to at your own convenience. There are a wide range of topics from politics, comedy, science and finances and many times they feature expert guests. You can access them on itunes which you can also download for free. The following list is made up of podcasts that deal with getting the most out of life through health, fitness, and finances.
1. Bulletproof Radio with Dave Asprey
2. Revolution Health Radio with Chris Kresser
3. Total Human Optimization with Aubrey Marcus
4. The Dave Ramsey Show
5. The Tim Ferriss Show
6. Ben Greenfield Fitness
Sorry, but you won’t find Facebook and Twitter on this list.
1. onnit.com or onnit.com/academy
1. Foam roll and/or tennis and lacrosse ball: When used correctly, these tools are great for improving mobility, which many of us begin to lack as we age.
2. Kettlebell and/or Battle Rope: Dr. Grenfell’s favorite tools for at home intense workouts. Start incorporating High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) into your schedule today. You can get in a great workout in as little as 4 minutes of all-out exercise.
3. Seconds Pro timing app for phone
4. Old Fashioned Notebook: If you have goals, write them down. If you don’t have goals, get some and then write them down. Once you have goals written out, make a list of the things you need to do today, this week and this month in order to achieve them. Review your goals briefly everyday and in detail at least once per week. Share your goals with others so that they may hold you accountable.
5. DoTERRA Essential Oils: Essential oils are extremely versatile. They can be used in things like home hygiene products (deodorant and soap), cleaning products, and home remedies for things like the flu, congestion, or indigestion. They are very safe when used correctly and allow you to avoid harsh chemicals used in many common products we use regularly around the house.
6. Chiropractor: A shameless plug, but the right chiropractor can assist you with many things from pain, mobility/stability, illness, wellness and overall performance. All things that can help keep you running at your very best.
Foods to include today
These foods are great, but to put it simply: EAT REAL FOOD. Eat food that grows from the ground, or food that ate food that grew from the ground. Shop the perimeter of your grocery store or market. When you follow this simple rule, you’re already well on your way to living a much healthier life.
1. Coconut oil
2. Pastured Eggs: A high quality egg from a chicken eating things like bugs is like nature’s own multivitamin. The nutrient profile of a pastured egg is awesome.
3. Greens of all sorts: spinach, kale, lettuces, chard…you get the idea.
5. Fermented foods: True lacto-fermented foods (unpasteurized) such as sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha tea, pickles, kefir, and yogurt are of great benefit to your gut. They are loaded with healthy bacteria that help line your gut. These microorganisms aid in things like immunity and synthesizing vitamins.
Foods to eliminate today
1. Sugar: This guy is simply no good. Sugar contains no essential nutrients, is bad for your liver driving disease processes like diabetes, obesity raising bad cholesterol and possibly heart disease.
2. Refined flours/grains: These are drivers of inflammation and in general lack much, if any, nutritional benefit. A general rule is if vitamins need to be added to a food to make it healthy, it probably should just be avoided and replaced with real food.
3. Seed oils: Oils like canola, soybean, sunflower, and safflower are all high in omega-6 fats which are drivers of inflammation. Stick to things like extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil and fats in good foods like avocados and nuts.
4. Lowfat anything: Fat in general is not the enemy. Fats that occur naturally in foods do not need to be avoided. However, we should avoid nasty trans fats and the fats/oils listed above. In addition, when fat is removed from a food, it is often times replaced with a sweetener in order to keep that food appetizing.
There are certainly far more resources to help you on your journey to ultimate human performance, but this should help get you started.