Balance – The Goal Killer

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My aim is to try to keep this one short because I can feel my blood pressure starting to rise thinking about it.

What you are about to read applies to all facets of life.

F.O.M.O, other wise known as “fear of missing out”, has infiltrated deep into the modern human psyche. Clearly, the emergence and subsequent dominance of social media has played a huge role in making us feel like we are somehow always missing out on something.

Scrolling through your feed and seeing your friends holidaying and partying while you are stuck in the office pulling 13 hour days is obviously going to wreak havoc with your priorities and focus. I believe this has created the buzz around everyone sprouting the throw away cliché line “I need balance”.

Before you have an aneurysm and start yelling at your computer calling me a dickhead for thinking you can’t live without balance, let me explain a few things that I have encountered and learned over the years.

Balance to me means no specific goals or desire to achieve a higher result! As an example – I have had numerous individuals over the years seeking my advice on how to achieve a certain goal. The fucking second I start to lay down my plan for their specific circumstances they go to complete shut down mode and start spitting shit like “fuck that, I need balance in my life!”. Cool, I’m fucking more than happy for people to have “balance” and do mediocre shit, who the fuck am I to tell you how to live? But, when I am asked for my advice and opinion I will give it to you straight.

See, a certain fucked up little phenomenon has reared its ugly head called “I want shit for nothing”. Well, if it worked that way we would all be multi millionaires, running around jacked as fuck at about 3% body fat, without a worry in the world. Luckily there is a place that does exist for the delusional fucks out there, its called DISNEYLAND! Its a magical place where all your dreams come true and you get to skip around holding hands with mickey mouse!

Look, there are people who are content with doing a lot of things half ass, and I applaud them because they don’t whinge and bitch about where that are at, AWESOME. It’s the fuck bags that do fuck all, and still have the hide to whinge and bitch that nothing has happened for them? Wake the fuck up! You want that chiseled physique? haul your ass in the gym EVERY DAY and watch what you eat, you want to have more money than you know what to do with? well then get the fuck out there and work your ass off to generate it.

It staggers the shit out of me that you have to actually remind people of this? I’m not trying to pull some Tony Robbins shit here, BUT, FUCKING HELL! Sacrifice is inevitable if you want to attain a certain goal, there is no way around it, under it or over it.

If you are happy and whinge free in your life right now well good on you, I am honestly happy as shit for you! If you are not, then you need to get tunnel vision on what it is you want, and start culling the time-wasting background shit!

I will leave you with one of my favorite quotes that I have used more times than I can remember.

“Don’t be disappointed by the results you didn’t get, from the work you didn’t put in” 

– unkown 

Ash Yates

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Stop The Diet Madness!

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The mere mention of the word “diet” sends me into a state of cold sweats and dizzy spells!

I don’t think there is a book, journal, white paper or YouTube clip out there that I haven’t read or seen regarding the latest nutrition hack.  Besides that, I try to implement their key components for a period of time to validate their claims.

My finely tuned bullshit radar usually picks up on the Authors or Influence’s angle pretty quick, it often presents itself in the form of some sort of radical claim that this or that will have you looking like a Victoria’s secret supermodel, or, WWE muscle-bound freak in no time.

98% of what I have come across is nothing more than very well constructed marketing and PR campaigns that judge the success of their work on sales, not consumers results! If I were that way inclined, I’m sure it wouldn’t be hard to pay off someone “credible” (I use that term super loosely) to endorse my cutting edge diet that involves collecting your neighbors dog shit , drying it for 7 days, crushing it into a fine powder than shoving it up your ass – and turning that into the buzz diet of 2018!

In a world where we demand everything to be backed by science or celebrities, we have lost the most important factor of all, COMMON FUCKING SENSE. Like, does it seem like a good idea for your health to eat 3 servings of pizza/day washed done with a six-pack of beer? Of course not (although maybe one day might be fun)! Does it sound like a better option to include fresh fruits, vegetables and lean protein sources with each meal? mmmm maybe?

Simplifying the shit out of it is going to get way closer to where you want to be rather than scouring science journals (leave that to me) looking for that one molecule that will change your DNA to replicate Brad Pitt’s or Julia Roberts (showing my age there).

Yeah yeah, I know that not all food’s react equally with everyone. So that is where trial and error comes into the picture, you test and adjust according to how you feel after eating certain foods. We no longer have to play Russian roulette on random berries or random shit on the ground like our early friends living in caves had too. So if you don’t have any allergies try different shit.

For me personally, I have played around for years trialing different foods and approaches, and I have found that the Vegetarian way of life offers my body and lifestyle the best results. Does that mean everyone should be a vegetarian? FUCK NO! My physiology and digestive track just seems to thrive on that, I have seen very fit and healthy dudes eat half a fucking cow per day and are absolute machines with perfect blood work and health markers.

Bloating, sluggishness and excess gas can all be signs that what you just ate probably isn’t perfect for you. Don’t be afraid to play around with different foods and methodologies, because trust me, as a meat eater my whole life, the last thing I saw coming was me converting to vegetarianism! But, I was willing to go through experimentation and elimination to find what my body enjoyed and thrived on. Make no mistake though, were I to find at some point this no longer affords me the resluts I am looking for I will go back to meat in an instant. Don’t ever just keep eating a certain way because your family or friends do if it is not allowing you to function at your highest capacity.

The diet zelots out there will push their agenda on you to make themselves feel better about the way they eat (most humans are insecure as fuck). I couldn’t give two fucks if you follow the paleo diet, Atkins diet, Vegan, Vegetarian, Keto or any other shit you can think of, if it works for you then awesome, doesn’t mean it will work for everyone! So play around with a few to see what fits for you.

There are some generic rules that apply to ALL humans and should become daily staples;

  • Consuming adequte amounts of water every day (hydrate or die).
  • Eating whole foods (if it has a food label it aint real food).
  • Not over consuming at meals (case of too much of a good thing).

No matter the “diet” you choose to abide by, you cant go wrong if you keep these basics in mind!

Ash Yates

My Gut Health Nearly Ruined Me!

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Sitting around feeling lower than whale shit for no apparent reason plagued the fuck out of me for a good four to five years.

Rewind it a few years prior to that and you start to understand why I was on the verge of complete and utter insanity. For the most part of my late teens – early twenties I was upbeat, positive and full of beans. Then, completely out of the blue and for no apparent reason (at the time) I went to bed one night perfectly fine and woke up the following morning feeling like I wanted to throw myself off a fucking ten story building? What in the fuck had happened?

Being a young soldier at the time I certainly didn’t want to discuss my sudden, unexplained onset of doom and gloom with my mates. So, I did what every good soldier does and tried to bury it with copious amounts of booze. Obviously this wasn’t the answer, and my symptoms and mental state gradually got worse. At this point I sought advice from a doctor that recommended I jump straight on anti-depressants to help me bounce back. I was hesitant as fuck to try them, but due to his very confident guarantee that they would work I figured why the fuck not? Well fuck me, within a week I had slid deeper into a hole so I stopped taking them.

For the next couple of years I “soldiered on” trying to keep a positive exterior while I was struggling like a mother fucker on the inside. At the time the other huge symptom apart from the mental struggle was a constant aggravated and upset stomach. I had written this off as a result of battling the mental bullshit I was dealing with. It wasn’t until I was out of the army and working in a third world country where I contracted a stomach parasite that ended up bringing back the familiar feelings with a vengeance that I thought the gut may be playing a major role in all of this?

Being a nosy little bastard, and wanting to know the in’s and outs of everything, I started to delve into the literature on the Gut-Brain connection. You have no idea how fucking happy I was when I finally started to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. It turns out that your mental state has hell of A LOT to do with the health of your gut and immune system – I wasn’t going fucking crazy!

Some of the things that can contribute to a poor state of gut health leading to a condition known as ‘Leaky Gut Syndrome’ are;

  • Antibiotics (whilst deployed in the Army we were required to take a strong antibiotic DAILY for FOUR fucking months as an anti malarial measure)
  • Excessive alcohol consumption (say no more)
  • Processed/Fried foods (we lived on pizzas and other junk food)
  • Intestinal Parasites (no shit!)

I think it is safe to say that list pretty much sealed the deal for me!

Let’s keep in mind the fact that I had seen about four different doctors over the years trying to find answers, and not one of them had ever even mentioned the term leaky gut, let alone associated it with any of my symptoms?

Happy as fuck with my self diagnosis, I set about accumulating the knowledge I needed to rectify the state of my dog shit gut health and suppressed immune system. Firstly, I stopped all consumption of alcohol and soft drinks (soda), cut right back on simple carbs like bread, pasta, and all deep fried shit.

The following list is what I started taking on a daily basis;

  • High strength probiotics
  • Colostrum
  • St Johns Wort
  • Vitamin B complex
  • Vitamin C
  • Omega 3 fish oil

After about two months on this little cocktail as well as eating foods I knew would help the healing process I am happy to say that ALL of my symptoms pretty much disappeared and have not returned since (touch wood). I’m not sure if that means I am in the clear for good or not? But I will tell you right now I am very aware of making sure the state of my gut and immune system are high on my priorities!

I would like to emphasis the fact that I am NOT a Naturopath or Herbalist. I put this list together purely as a result of my own research. This was not a recommendation in any way, shape or form a professional. So please, if you feel you may have an issue similar to this seek the opinion and advice of a registered/Qualified professional.

 

Ash Yates

 

To Sleep, Or Not To Sleep?

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Living in the fast paced, constantly “plugged in” world we live in today, sleep quality and quantity seem to be the crucial human elements that have suffered the most!

Hearing wankers quote shit like “I will sleep when I’m dead” or “I haven’t got time to sleep”, is a clear indication to me that they have no comprehension what so ever of the power that some solid rack time elicits on the human body.

Those of you that are parents know all too well what a string of broken nights sleep does to your mental and physical state! Not getting sufficient amounts of deep Z’s throws many of the bodies systems into absolute mayhem! For it is during this “down time” that the body allocates resources and time to conduct vital cellular maintenance and repair.

Of course it is no fucking surprise then that there is a very close relationship between poor sleep patterns and issues such as body fat accumulation. Sure, there are other factors that can certainly contribute to the problem, but as I always tell people there are usually multiple elements to a problem, so addressing just one won’t fix it, but when you start to change a few things it can feel like you have a new lease on life.

For me personally, just one fucked night in the cot can have me completely fucked for a few days! In years gone by I would make the mistake of using synthetic sleeping tablets to try to rectify the problem, the issue with that is they create somewhat of a “false” sleep environment, where you may not be awake, but you certainly are not at rest like the body requires to get to work. They also have some bullshit side effects like feeling like utter dog shit the next day with hangover type symptoms.

I would strongly urge you to avoid any of the synthetic prescription drugs as much as possible, as an alternative I have found that a compound called melatonin has worked great for me when my body is still in another time zone and all fucked up from long haul international travel. It is naturally occurring in humans anyway, so it is not treated as a foreign substance by the body, which means little to no side effects. The bonus to this little bad boy is that it also posses very strong antioxidant capabilities meaning it helps fight free radical damage in the cells, nice little plus! The downside is it still requires a script in Australia and can be a little more expensive (about $80 for 100 capsules) than the other junk synthetic crap. FYI I use 3mg compounded capsules, stick to your guns when asking the Dr as I have no doubt they will try to push shit on you that see’s them get a nice little kick back from the fuck bag pharmaceutical companies.

To give my system the best opportunity to wind down from the days activities I also implement where possible a few other things;

  • Limit all blue light exposure at least 1hr before bed. This includes devices like mobile phone, Ipad and television.
  • Get the room as dark as I possibly can, I have been known to hang blankets over windows where there maybe a slight gap haha.
  • I once read that some geek in a lab had discovered the ideal room temperature for sleeping humans was 22 degrees celsius. I personally find a little cooler works better for me, but play around with it and find your sweet spot.
  • Because of my pea bladder I cease all fluid intake a couple of hours prior so I am not woken during the night busting for a piss.
  • Try and allow 3 hours between eating and bed time. By forcing the body into digestion mode while you sleep it is taking away from other more important aspects of the daily healing duties.

In the case of little humans interrupting your pleasant dreams, just keep it in the back of your mind that when they are lazy ass teenagers sleeping in everyday you get to repay the favor by waking them up each morning with a fucking air horn, CANNOT WAIT!

I guess the moral to this post is don’t ever underestimate, or take for granted the impact sleep has on your general health and well-being!

These are a few things that have worked for me over the years, if you have some kick ass things that have worked for you don’t be shy to post to comments so we can all benefit from it.

Ash Yates

 

Age Isn’t The Problem!

I throw up in my mouth every time I hear someone use their age as a major contributing factor for their piss poor state of health and well being.

Knocking on the door of 40 myself I can certainly understand the fascination with wanting to blame age as the culprit, because let’s be honest life gets hectic as fuck with work and family commitments, not to mention the changes we start to see from a biology point of view.

There is a very good reason why that middle age “mud guts” starts to balloon from the mid 30’s onward. Declining hormone profiles, stress, dwindling “spare” time, and the insane juggling act of raising a family and keeping a career on track all come together during this period to create somewhat of a perfect weight gain storm.

All of this chaos puts us in the perfect position to forgo what should always be the number one priority, and that is personal health and well being. See, without your health ALL other aspects of your life come crashing down. Abuse and neglect during this time can often lay the foundations for irreversible chronic illness/disease later down the track.

On top of all this we are inundated with 23 year old douche bags on Instagram telling us how easy it is and that everyone can look like a steroid saturated fuck stick! I have never been impressed with someones ability to stay in shape in their 20’s, even early 30’s, I’m more impressed by those that find a way to achieve results in their 40’s and beyond! That is the real test of one’s resolve and discipline. No matter where you are at in your journey it can always be turned around, but it will take insane amounts of discipline and patients to turn the tide. I know right? Not the shit you wanted to hear? I’m sorry to be the one to finally break it to you, but if you think it will be easy, and all it takes is some celebrity endorsed 8 week program, well then you will be chasing your tail for ever and a day

Trust me when I say that flogging the fuck out of yourself is NOT the answer, it becomes a case of playing it smarter not harder! I operate on the 90/10 rule, meaning that what you eat and drink is 90% of the equation and, the remaining 10% is exercise. You can absolutely make MEGA fucking progress by just being more accountable in regards to what, and how much you eat. Personally I am a hell of a lot more concerned with the ‘what’ than the ‘how much’. There is no doubt calories absolutely play a role at some point, but it is the quality of the foods you consume that have the greatest impact!

So, as you can see age has ZERO bearing on your ability to gain control of your health. My suggestion would be to become fucking tunnel vision on the 90%, question EVERYTHING you eat and drink, because when done right diet can change your world!

Ash Yates