"Think Critically" is my disclaimer.
If you only learn one thing from me, then I pray it is the art of critical thinking.
Always think critically before making decisions!
If you want to make the best choices for yourself (and others), then you must think critically. How many times have you done something without giving it a second thought, merely because a teacher, personal trainer, tv personality or boss told you to do it? Monkey see monkey do? We are all guilty of this because the reality is that our thoughts are greatly influenced by those around us. Oftentimes, we are not even aware that we allow others to think for us. Why does this happen? Here are some of my theories:
- "Credible" sources and celebrities are preaching concept X, therefore concept X must be correct. No need to do any research or think for yourself.
- Everyone else is doing it, so it must be the gold standard, right? And if everyone jumped off a bridge, then you would too, right?
- We frequently do not recognize our own illogical tendencies. How many times have we thought we were right, when in fact we were wrong?
- From an early age, we are taught to accept the views of our parents and teachers.
- If you hire an expert, logic dictates that you will heed his/her advice. This person has credentials and celebrity testimonials, so he/she must be offering credible services based on the latest research, right? Oh, and of course you will do what the expert tells you to do because you spent your hard earned money on it!
- Despite our efforts to think for ourselves, the reality is that the impact of our surrounding environmental influences is much greater than we realize.
This is why it is important to THINK CRITICALLY. Every protocol, theory, treatment, decision, product, et cetera has
- advantages and disadvantages
- advocates and opponents
- research for and against it
- a potentially biased perspective (ie. someone is trying to convince you to do something because they are being paid to endorse it).
Before you Proceed:
ALWAYS think critically before adopting any approach.
- Beware of consumerism.
- Cereal companies will tell you that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Supplement companies will tell you to "stoke your metabolic fire by eating every 2 hours because they know it's not feasible for you to cook every 2 hours (meaning you will have to drink their protein shakes and eat their protein bars).
- Beware of incompetent people propagating misinformation.
- My dad always says, "it's what you don't know that can hurt other people". And the problem is that you don't know what you don't know! He told me my responsibility as a dentist is to "do no harm", which means I must recognize my limitations.
- Beware of competent people propagating misinformation.
- Many nutritionists and personal trainers will tell you to purchase the services they offer (because this is how they earn income). The problem is that many of them do not keep up with the latest research, or perhaps they don't want to update their websites/ebooks/exercise programs/nutrition plans/etc because this takes time and effort. Some people have built their entire brand based on outdated methodologies, and they probably fear losing credibility and income if they suddenly start marching to the beat of a different drum.
Did you know that I constantly re-write my old content on my website to ensure I'm presenting the latest research? I'm always reading and writing! I'm proud to say the content on my website is evidence-based ... and I practice what I preach!
Shakespeare's, As You Like It: "The fool doth think he is wise. The wise man knows himself to be a fool".
I went to university for 8 years. My 8 years of training also included critical examination of studies & study methodology. You may think that I, a physiotherapist and a dentist, would be the last person from whom you should take advice regarding exercise & nutrition. However, very few people in the fitness industry have an academic background like mine: 2 years of medical school plus dental school, exercise physiology, exercise prescription, injury prevention, and more. Don't forget I also competed 9 times in fitness competitions, tried every dietary and fitness protocol preached under the sun, and even sustained and overcame metabolic damage.
At the end of the day, you know what is best for your sanity, schedule and health: never let anyone else tell you otherwise (especially if you are paying them). Notice I offer an enormous selection of FREE recipes and FREE workouts on drsarasolomon.com. Also notice I never say one approach is superior to another. If I did, I would potentially do harm and jeopardize my integrity.
I recognize that no two people are alike. Everyone has different physique goals, eating personalities, schedules, medical histories etc. Different approaches work for different people. Do what works for you 365 days a year.
This is what works for me:
I have Six-pack ABS 365 days/year! I didn't always have 6-pack abs, but that's because I didn't always think critically!
What's my secret?
- I KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) with an endurable & maintainable approach. I'm not telling you to do this too. I am merely telling you this is what I do. The only thing I will ever insist YOU DO is think critically!
1. I never exercise more than 30 minutes a day. I save even more time and money by exercising at home.
a) I jump rope for 10 minutes. Try my FREE jump rope workout video.
b) I do high intensity interval resistance circuits for 20 minutes. Try my FREE video workouts.
2. I minimize injury with daily stretching & foam rolling.
3. I save time because I never do meal prep and NEVER follow a meal plan. I threw away my cooler. I don't stop my busy day every 2-3 hours to eat tiny portions of cold & putrid leftovers from tupperware that leave me hungrier than a hostage in a holdup situation. I'm never hungry (which is a synonym for "never bitchy") thanks to intermittent fasting. If you love eating small portions every 2-3 hours and have time to do hours of meal prep, then let me give you a high five. For everyone else, I recommend my eBook, Fat Loss Fast, because it will instantly get your started INTERMITTENT FASTING and FLEXIBLE DIETING.
6. My sanity, time and metabolic health are my top priority. This is why I like to follow steps 1 through 5. You can do what works for you (Just make sure you think critically before doing it!).
Final Thoughts (for now):
- Don’t knock something until you have tried it.
- If what you are doing is not generating results, then continuing to do it is not going to suddenly generate results. You are merely spinning your wheels doing something that obviously does not work for you anymore. It’s time to make changes.
- An effective diet and exercise program is one that:
- Provides results that are MAINTAINABLE. You shouldn’t just look great on stage or in your photo shoots. You should look great every day!
- Is endurable (ie. something you can tolerate) for seasons and years. You should love your fitness lifestyle. If you dread your daily fitness regime, or feel like a slave to your program, then you need to read the rest of this article.
- Causes no physiological, metabolic, endocrine or psychological harm.
- Is not all-consuming. Exercising should be something that you can quickly integrate into your daily schedule. Very few people have the time or the ability to stay energetic and happy while being a slave to hours of daily exercise and endless meal preparations. Most of us are also working, studying and/or raising children while trying to live life to the fullest. Leading a healthy lifestyle should never be a burden or a source of anxiety. Exercising is supposed to be cathartic, and when properly prescribed, it will actually help reduce anxiety.
- Always think critically. Don’t be deceived into thinking something is right just because it’s been that way for a long time. There used to be a time when sailors thought the world was flat, and if they sailed too far they would fall off the edge. Thank goodness for the brave pioneers who proved the Earth is a sphere!