My New Year Focus

Xperience Growthblogposts

There’s facts and then there’s reality.

The fact is that the calendar will change from December 31st to January 1st. The reality is that the new year will feel different.

Katy Milkman calls this the “Fresh Start Effect” and it’s a powerful feeling of optimism based on the perception of a clean slate.

New Years is a time when this effect is felt on a societal level, so there’s tons of momentum to do new things and make changes that we’ve wanted to make. (We’ll get into KEEPING those changes in future articles.)

There’s tons of research around doing resolutions vs not doing resolutions. I am in the camp of intentions & focus.

Here’s what I’m going to focus on this coming year:

Nutrition + Activity

I am healthy. By all medical standards, I fall into “normal” categories. I know that I also have room for improvement.

My mind… what I think and how I think… have been focuses of mine over the past few years. In fact, my professional coaching practice is based on helping people rewire and retrain their mind for peak performance + joy. I use precise frameworks, techniques & skills to accomplish results.

In this new year, I am turning that precision toward my physical body through nutrition and activity.

The Importance of Nutrition

Food is fuel. Plain and simple. Many of us resist this statement for a couple reasons… 1) We inherently know that we’re not fueling our body in the best ways;  or 2) The best ”fuel” comes from food that is not as yummy.

The foods we consume fuels every system in our body from our metabolic functions, to our health, to our likelihood of disease, even our psychology.

A rising tide of research points to food as the leading cause of whatever state you find your body in. Essentially, if you have a physical or even mental health issue you want to solve, there’s a good chance your nutrition will be a huge component of that.

Bottom line, whatever you might want to fix or optimize for, your nutrition will be a huge piece of the puzzle.

Focus on the sugars

A growing trend in wellness is the management of blood-sugar levels in our body. Monitoring was once reserved for people with diabetes and is now being done by people without it.

Why? In her recent book “Glucose Revolution” researcher & author Jessie Inchauspe says that many of the common issues we deal with from constant hunger, fatigue, brain fog, poor sleep, immunity, migraines, chronic stress to long term issues like skin conditions, aging, arthritis, dementia, cancer risk, depression, gut issues, heart disease, Type 2 Diabetes – even wrinkles and cataracts are ALL linked to sugars in our diet.

Inchauspe & Dr. Robert Lustig, an endocrinologist & leading researcher on nutritional links to disease & wellness, among others says that these problems stem from inflammation in the body, which is traced to the amount of insulin our body produces to deal with the sugars that go into it.

Hack the sugar spike

When we ingest high sugar content we experience a “spike” in our glucose levels. Our body produces insulin to deal with the glucose and funnel it throughout the body… some necessary & good (like providing energy to our organs) much not so good (like liver fat and flooding the bloodstream).

The quick hack around this is not just what you eat, it’s also HOW you eat it according to Inchauspe. Start meals with non-sugar fiber food sources first. Whole food vegetables as the preference. Then consume protein sources – meats, cheeses, nuts, etc. Then eat higher sugar (glucose, fructose & sucrose) which look like sweets, starches, carbs etc.

This order is proven to level out the glucose spike you would otherwise experience if you ate the sugary foods first. When the spike is not there, there’s not as much insulin necessary, therefore reduced inflammation. Over time, decreased health risks and increased health optimization is the result. Sounds simple, yet the science is there!

Getting to know me

The sugar information, tracking and hacking are good – however, there’s much more to optimizing my health than hacking sugar spikes. There are dozens of vitamins, nutrients, biomarkers, and hormones that lead to an optimized body & mind, which is the foundation of the performance & activities that give us the results that we have.

In the coming weeks, I’m getting bloodwork done on as many of these markers as possible. Two rounds of bloodwork in fact that will provide the baseline for what is going in my body today.

Based on what results come back, I’ll work with doctors, nutritionists, other professionals as needed, to create a whole body health regime that will be unique to me including diet, exercise, sleep, mediation, etc.

The goal is to create increased performance & joy in the short-term and healthy longevity moving forward.

Learning + Sharing

My second focus is on intentional learning & sharing that learning in actionable ways.

I’ve been writing these articles for 3 years without missing a week. I love doing this because it causes me to learn & internalize the subject matter at a higher level and I believe that the information contained in these 150+ articles is helpful to this audience.

Admittedly, I’ve been slacking on other communication channels – social media, videos, in person events. The Xperiential MBA community gets me, yet I know I can be of even greater value.

Start looking for more stories, lessons, actionable strategies for peak mental performance + joy on my instagram @Coach.CarterW, Facebook and other channels this year.

These are my focuses and intentions: Nutrition + Exercise; Learning + Sharing. What are yours? Let me know how I and our team can support you on your fresh start this coming year.

Here’s to a successful & joyous year!