Yesterday, I listened to Tim Ferriss interview Tony Robbins about his new book “Money Master The Game: 7 Simple Steps To Financial Freedom.” Excellent interview and I highly recommend you check it out. (Link at the bottom of this post)
In the interview, Tony talks about the primary principle that the smartest investors in the world use to make money. Long story short, they all have different strategies but the one thing they have in common is that they focus on risk first – they are obsessed about not losing money.
This is contrary to how the average person invests their money. Many of us get seduced by the high potential return of riskier stocks or mutual funds without giving much thought to the risk.
As I listened to the interview I couldn’t help but think how this applies to fitness as well. So many of us focus on trying to get the most results in the shortest amount of time, without giving too much thought to the risk involved.
For example, most of us men turn to weight lifting when we want to get in better shape. And that makes sense. The right weight lifting program will help to build lean muscle and burn fat better than any other type of exercise. High intensity resistance training has been demonstrated to burn fat and build lean muscle faster than other methods.
However, there is high risk involved in weight training. Even if you do every single rep with perfect form (which most people do NOT do), the risk of injury is pretty high.
What happens when you get injured or lose money in the stock market?
You get set back. You may not be able to workout for weeks or months or in the case of investing, you have to achieve substantially high earnings just to get you back to the amount you had when you started investing.
So what’s the exercise equivalent of an investment that provides maximum progress with the least amount of risk?
I can’t believe I’m saying that because I’ve always been a believer that bodyweight exercises don’t really get you into great shape like weights do.
I’m now changing my mind on that one. I think it is possible to keep making gains with bodyweight exercises. You have to be more creative and it’s a slower process, but it’s definitely possible. Especially if you make a few tweaks.
Why am I so sure? Because I’m seeing the results myself. I started doing 5 minutes of bodyweight exercises 15 weeks ago after reading some of James Clear’s material on Changing Habits. You can read about that here.
Anyway, I do 5 minutes of bodyweight exercise each day and that’s it. I’m not going to get all “infomercial” on you and tell you I’ve made the biggest gains I’ve ever seen. No, it’s been slow and there have been days where I feel like it’s not really doing much.
But my numbers (reps) keep going up. Proof I’m at least getting stronger. And I can see and feel the difference. Plus my younger brother Dan just asked me the other day if I’ve been working out. So, I’ll take that as proof the visual results are showing up.
So, if you’ve ever been a doubter of bodyweight exercises, stop doubting. They work. You can build muscle and get more cut with bodyweight exercises. And you know what, I think it’s even easier. I mean seriously, how hard is it do do 5 minutes of pushups each day?
Will you make progress as quickly with bodyweight exercises as you would with weights? No, I don’t think so. But if you do it every day or even a few days a week, you will make progress.
And I guarantee you will be a hell of a lot safer doing bodyweight exercises which will allow you to be more consistent and reap the reward of marginal gains as James Clear discusses here. It’s the idea that small gains lead to remarkable improvement.
So, just like smart financial investing, compounding (interest or reps) over the long-term with minimal loss is the key to big returns.
Plus, bodyweight exercises offer so many other advantages.
For example, bodyweight exercise allows you to:
* Save Money on Equipment: No equipment to buy!
* Save Money on Gas: You don’t need to drive anywhere to do bodyweight exercises!
* Save Money on the Gym Membership: The world is your gym! No need to pay for a membership to workout in your home!
* Save Time: How much time does it take to commute to and from the gym? You can do bodyweight exercsies anywhere. No commuting necessary.
* Save Time: No waiting for someone else to be finished with the equipment you want to use!
* Avoid Other People’s Germs: You don’t have to touch equipment that someone else just got all sweaty.
* Avoid Awkward Locker Room Moments: Nobody likes to walk into the locker room and see grandpa toweling off his junk for the world to see.
So as you can see, bodyweight exercises make a lot of sense! And hey, maybe you can use some of that saved money to do some smart investing? Double whammy!
Oh and one thing I didn’t mention, if you are a parent like me, you may be thinking about the next phase of life – how to age well.
I don’t know about you, but I’d like to be able to move as pain free as possible when I get into my 60’s, 70’s and beyond.
Maybe you could throw around some heavy weight when you were in your 20’s and not get injured. But the stakes get higher as we get older. We just don’t heal as well as we used to.
So if the thought of injury right now doesn’t bother you, think about how an injury now could impact you down the road. How long would it take you to heal from a bad shoulder or knee injury? And how would that affect you later in life?
Don’t get me wrong, I still love weight lifting and I plan to get back to it at some point. But this daily 5 minute bodyweight workout is everything I need right now. It’s fast, convenient, simple and producing results with very little risk of injury.
So what are you waiting for? You can start your bodyweight exercise program right this second. Just stand up and do 5 Air Squats right now. Then congratulate yourself, you just did your first day of your new bodyweight exercise program.
Need some help getting started on the Air Squat? Click Here for a great video from Mark Sisson demonstrating various types of Air Squats that you can do no matter what fitness level you are at right now.
I’ll be sharing more details on my own program and tips on how you can create your program in the coming weeks so check back soon.
Below is the link to the Tim Ferriss interview with Tony Robbins. There is a TON of great info in there. You should definitely check it out!
Tim Ferriss’ Interview with Tony Robbins: http://fourhourworkweek.com/2014/10/15/money-master-the-game/