Getting Down the Basics

Whoa.  Phew.  The world looks even scarier today than it has for the past several months.  We thought a COVID-19 lockdown was difficult enough, but how about a war on the streets?

Deep breaths…

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  So, what would I have others do unto me in a situation such as this that we find ourselves in today?  I would want them to remind me of my divinity, of my strength, my dignity.  I would want them to help me stay centered and resilient.  I would value some deep introspection, reflection, and grounding.

For my black family, my black-block family, my blue family, and my red, white, and blue family, I want you all to be healthy, discerning, and of a clear conscience.  I want you to be the best version of yourself that you can be so that you are able to be the best to others, to say and do the things you have to do in righteousness and good faith.  This is the only way to achieve the best possible outcome for us all: by being the best possible us.

So, whether you are a protestor, a counter-protestor, military or law enforcement, a bystander, someone in government, or just someone like me who is trying to keep their family alive and safe, you will all do your best work from a healthy and grounded state.  You will communicate more clearly and take more correct action when you are your best self.  By knowing yourself, healing yourself, and expressing yourself truly, you will reach the best outcomes possible.

For these reasons, I will be writing a series of articles over the next two weeks focused solely on the concept of “Basic Lifestyle Guidelines”.  This is not something I invented.  I learned this idea from OPEX Fitness and consider it one of the most groundbreaking and important ideas I have ever learned in fitness, or anywhere else for that matter.  The idea behind the Basic Lifestyle Guidelines–or BLGs for short–is that health and optimal human performance does not begin in the gym, or even in the kitchen, it begins in your lifestyle.

I like to draw people this little picture to explain that:

Health House with labels

I hope this picture is relatively clear.  Your health is a house (you live in it).  Its foundation is your lifestyle.  On top of that, you build nourishment habits (that’s what your actual bodily tissues are made of–that’s you!).  And then, you exercise to protect the integrity of the structure.  I’ve got a more detailed version of this concept here:

Screen Shot 2020-06-01 at 8.33.16 AM

But, where do we start with “lifestyle”?  Lifestyle seems like such a squishy, woo-woo topic.  It’s no good being vague about it.  When we talk about lifestyle, we have to get into the details.  How’s your poop?  Do you like your life?  How many hours of sleep a night do you get?  This is about the nuts and bolts of your digestive system, nervous system, and endocrine system function; so we actually have to get into the details of your day-to-day rhythms and routines.

OPEX has created a really great infographic for this, and I printed it for the wall of my gym as a reference.  Here it is:


Give each of those points a quick read.  Each day over the next two weeks, I will devote an article to one of the points on that list.  I hope it helpful and educational to you.

I’m sure you’ve heard that people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.  And then there’s this one, “He who is without sin, let him cast the first stone.”  So, before you all go out there casting stones, how about you fix up your own house?  I’m sure you’ve also heard this one, “Physician, heal thyself.”  Before we can heal our country, I hope you realize there’s some work you need to do to heal yourself first.

Published by nicnakis

Nicholas |nik-uh-luhs| n. a male given name: from Greek words meaning "victory of the people" John |jon| n. a male given name: from Hebrew Yohanan, derivative of Yehohanan "God has been gracious" Nakis |nah-kis| n. a Greek family name derived from the patronymic ending -akis (from Crete) Amha |am-hah| n. an Ethiopian given name meaning "gift", from Geez Selassie |suh-la-see| n. Ethiopian name meaning "trinity", from Geez

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