Time is scarce when you’re running an enterprise. However, being healthy is essential to withstand the pressure a CEO experiences. When you’re running against the clock, it is not always easy to make time for healthy eating and exercise.
A recent Harvard study shows that most CEOs work an average of 9.7 hours per weekday, and also that they work 79 percent of their weekends and holidays. With such a schedule, you may be wondering when do they spend time on their health? Another Harvard study shows that most successful CEOs make of time-management real art, even when it comes to healthy habits. One great example is Twitter’s CEO, Jack Dorsey.
Despite his crazy schedule, Dorsey is meticulous when it comes to health. He uses all the tricks he has up his sleeve to make health practices as time-effective as possible.
Below are three health practices Jack Dorsey religiously follows:
1. Intermittent fasting
The press has marked Dorsey as one of the top Silicon Valley’s health freaks because of his passion for intermittent fasting. He claims only to eat one single meal each weeknight, followed by a weekend-long fast. This fasting style is a peculiar variation of two of the most popular and well-researched fasting protocols around: the 5:2 and the intermittent fasting diet.
The 5:2 diet is trendy amongst city professionals around the world for its practicality. It merely involves fasting for two days each week (usually Mondays and Wednesdays). This fast is used by most to create a calorie deficit and detoxify from boozy weekends.
The intermittent fasting usually consists of a 16-20 hours fasting period, followed by a 4-8h feeding window. This diet is renowned in the fitness world for its many benefits, including fat loss, improved blood pressure, and improved heart health.
What makes intermittent fasting so appealing to busy professionals and leaders is its practicality. Not having to spend time making and eating food for most of the workday is indeed efficient.
Although Dorsey’s approach may seem a bit drastic, science shows that intermittent fasting may be the holy grail of diets for busy and stressed out people. The fact that numerous other CEOs practice fasting proves that.
Fasting has been related to improved mental performance, improved willpower, improved memory, and even to relieve depression. Despite what one may think, fasting can give you more energy and help you think clearer. Also, several religious texts like the Bible, The Coran, and many Buddhist teachings mention fasting as a way to improve one’s mind and spirit.
An excellent place to start an intermittent fasting protocol is the 16:8, where you stop eating around 8 pm and have your first meal at lunchtime. This practice can save you time in the morning, prevent you from consuming calories too late at night, and also make you experience all the other health-related benefits of fasting.
“Expect the unexpected. And whenever possible, be the unexpected.” – Jack Dorsey
2. Fast walking to work
Despite having the resources to afford a dozen race cars, Dorsey walks a five-mile commute to work every morning. Not only is walking an excellent form of exercise, but, in Dorsey’s case, walking fasted has even more health benefits. Science shows us that fasted exercise helps improve blood glucose, improve overall energy balance and also makes you less likely to skip your next exercise sessions (walking in this case).
For people short on time, walking or cycling to work can prove a very time effective strategy to get their body moving. Whether you like to get ahead with your to do list by making phone calls, or you prefer to clear your mind, walking to work is definitely one health habit worth implementing.
3. Cold showers
Only the bravest can face cold, and Jack is one of them. He claims to “have forgotten what a hot shower feels like,” but he doesn’t just stop there. Dorsey goes all in and takes three ice baths before work.
Despite this being a very extreme measure, there is a lot of science backing the health benefits of cold showers and baths. On top of various ones like fat loss and improved circulation, taking cold showers has been related to enhanced willpower.
In the bestselling book “The Willpower Instinct”, Dr. Kelly McGonigal explains how, each time we do something uncomfortable (like taking a cold shower), we build neural-connections that makes us more resilient, therefore improving our overall willpower.
Since you will have to shower anyway, taking cold showers may be a great way to catch many birds with one stone. An easy way to begin would be to have a hot shower first, then gradually turn the heating down until reaching an unpleasant temperature. At that point, you can let the cold water hit your nape (this is the spot related to improved fat loss), and stay there for a couple of minutes.
“You don’t have to start from scratch to do something interesting.” – Jack Dorsey
Jack Dorsey proved once more to be the eccentric type, and not everyone would like to torture themselves as much he does in the name of health. Despite that, there is value in his rituals, and a more moderate version of them could be highly beneficial for those busy people that are looking to improve their health.
Which one of the above time-effective strategies to maintain a healthy lifestyle resonated most with you and why? Share your thoughts with us below!
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