Reading Time: 6 min
“How do you become more productive?”
“Richard Branson leaned back and thought for a second…Twenty people sat around him at rapt attention, wondering what a billionaire’s answer would be to one of the big questions — perhaps the biggest question — of business…Then he broke the silence: ‘Work Out.’”
Tim Ferriss has become a hero of mine after I heard his name mentioned at a business workshop. I read the 4 hour work week and if you recall my post for my first Toastmasters speech, I mentioned he was one of the top 5 influencers in my life. Recently, I have been recalling tips and strategies from the 4-Hour Body “An Uncommon Guide To Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman”. Only after taking Tim’s challenge of making myself the experiment, did I learn a few more things that will help you on your way through incorporating the advice in the book, in your life. I call it the 4.5-Hour Body since the lessons will add on some time to the experiment, but will also add on the results.
Cracking The Harajuku Moment
Tim starts by saying there is no point in following the advice in his book until you have your Harajuku Moment: The epiphany that turns a nice-to-have into a must-have.
I am positive that I have not been the only one to start following Tim’s tips without a Harajuku moment. So how did I follow through when so many others failed to receive results for lack of their Harajuku moment?
The Harajuku Moment[s]
Ever since I had mononucleosis in 5th grade when I lost all my baby fat and plenty more of my muscle, I have been called skinny by almost everyone I meet.
In middle school, I lost nearly every arm wrestling match I had with my friends.
During high school basketball, I never wanted to take my shirt off because of my paleness, skinniness and bacne.
After meeting a girl, I couldn’t have any other guy able to ‘take me’.
So far, these are the biggest moments that have motivated me to truly follow Tim’s advice in his book the 4-hour Body to become super human. The reason why I could follow through while so few others without a Harajuku moment could was that I had Harajuku moment[s] throughout my life.
However, I agree that having a Harajuku moment will amp up the results tenfold. Nothing could have gotten me as motivated to make larger improvements then when
Someone once important to me said she would like me to gain some more weight and lean muscle.
While she meant it in a positive way, in my mind I could only think “She thinks I’m skinny and weak.” This alone may not have gotten me to make vast changes, but it was the cherry on top of all the other layers of degradation I have received throughout the years.
To crack the Harajuku moment, write a list of all the past smaller moments.
Every passion borders on the chaotic, but the collector’s passion borders on the chaos of memories
The more you begin to do things after your Harajuku Moment(s), the more you will wish you had taken photos. Tim says, “The fastest way to correct a behavior is to be aware of it in real-time, not after-the-fact.”
Reminder: Take direct photos in the same light and same area every time. You will have an incredibly hard time seeing the relationship between your photos if you do not follow this advice. There is a reason I don’t have before and after pictures.
What Tim failed to mention was the mental battle that goes along with it (both in real-time AND after-the-fact). When taking picture, you have to keep seeing what you want, instead of focusing in on what is. Especially when “what is”, is a lack of results or even a backtrack. The reason I pushed through was that I looked at the photo process the same as the Slow-Carb diet/binge day process. During the diet, it’s typical to gain up to 5 pounds after binge day but it will go back down even further than when it spiked up. I had to take this mental attitude toward the photos. If I did not see progress or saw my body showing the opposite direction I wanted, I had to remind myself that this was a process and my body is going to have its ups and downs – it’s the end result that matters and that is what you need to continuously focus on.
And the results after only two weeks are incredible.
Measurement + A Bit of Competition = Motivation
By the time you view this post, I am going to expect that you know that what can’t be measured, can’t be managed.
16% body-fat according to the reference pictures in the book.
Neck: 14 inches
Chest: 35.5 inches
Waist: 31.5 inches
Hips: 37 inches
Thighs: 21.5 inches
Calves: 15 inches
Biceps: 11 inches.
Weight: 165 pounds.
My most recent measurement will be found at the end.
Like the majority of people, I feel that I have an average amount of competition adrenaline. Competition streams in all of our veins, some more than others because they have learned to harness it to become Superhuman. While I had the competition of wanting to be bigger and better than my friends, my biggest challenge was that my roommate was also doing the diet and I knew that she was going after pure and noticeable results. I found my real competition. My point: When you don’t have competition, make it.
The Slow-Carb Diet
is only hard if you don’t like to cook (like me). Realize that I said “don’t like”, not “don’t know how”. Lucky for me, I left it up to my roommate to control the Slow-Carb diet and cook the majority of the meals.
The fact that there are so few things you can eat makes cooking and making meals easy. Actually, the diet might even add an extra hour a day to your schedule. While you have to be creative when you cook, you don’t have to spend so much time cooking. The meals required for the Slow-Carb diet can be made for a week in one day.
A Precaution to Air-Squats
Stretch before you do them.
I went into the bathroom at work to perform my squats and slightly pulled my hamstring because I had been sitting for most of the morning. Just because air-squats are a very light form of exercise, stretching beforehand is still vital. (Clearly).
How To Cheat Out Of Ice Baths
Instead of ice baths, I wore less layers and let my body feel the cold without tipping the point of getting the flu – which the Slow-Carb diet and exercise will work to prevent anyways. Want to lose weight and save money? Leave the heat off in your home, make your body work to keep itself warm by burning fat. These two steps take care of the outside of your body. Now, add only drinking ice water to the list and you have yourself roughly the same results as taking an ice bath if not better results.
The Caliber Test
My roommate surprised me by ordering a Caliber device off the internet so that we could more accurately know our body fat percentage. You will recall that I was at an estimated 16% body fat according to the reference pictures Tim provided in his book. She got the Caliber around a week and a half after we began the diet. Did I get from 16% to the 8.3% that the Caliber said I was at? We will never know for certain. Given that I could have been off by 5% in my beginning estimations and the fact that the Calibers can be off by much higher than 5% who knows the true improvement.
The reason I bring this up is to suggest to you to not measure your body fat percentage unless you want to do it for fun or expect to make drastic results. I was often referenced as skinny, so you can expect that I did not have much body fat to lose. When I mentioned the importance of measurements, it is best to know that it is even more important to have very accurate measurements.
is much more of a workout than you will first expect. Start off with a light weight and work your way up slowly.
Dead-lifts Suck For Some
Mainly people with past back problems. If you have had any previous back issues, start doing dead-lifts without any weights. To prepare yourself for the intensity and the extreme results of dead-lifts you can try these real simple back exercises and really focus on your core strength. In addition, kettle ball swings are perfect for preparing every muscle in your body for dead-lifts.
The Vertical Jump
I increased my jump by almost 5 inches by following the tips. The advice also allowed me to almost jump onto a 5 foot high box at Gymfinity during Parkour training.
Sleep Is For The Weak, Sleep is For The Strong
I always say sleep is for the weak because I am up late every night writing, researching, working and living the success journey. It’s sad that there are more people out there that want sleep more than they want to be successful. Thanks to the 4-Hour Body, I am now able to sleep even less and have more energy. I now understand my REM cycle and the other sleeping lessons Tim shared. As a result, I would like to revert my statement. Sleep is not for the weak, Sleep is for the strong. It is for the strong because I know that those who get the most done and accomplish the most each day sleep the best without the need to sleep the longest and they will be more successful than everyone else.
The Best way to predict the future is to invent it – Alan Kay
Beginning Measurements>>>> Most Recent Measurements
16% body-fat according to the reference pictures in the book. >>>> 7% body-fat according to caliber
Neck: 14 inches >>>> 14 inches
Chest: 35.5 inches >>>> 36 inches
Waist: 31.5 inches >>>> 31.5 inches
Hips: 37 inches >>>> 38 inches
Thighs: 21.5 inches >>>> 21.5 inches
Calves: 15 inches >>>>> 15 inches
Biceps 11 inches. >>>>> 11 inches
Weight 165 pounds. >>>> 154 pounds
Notice how almost all of my measurements stayed the same, but I lost 11 pounds. The 4 Hour Body technique allows you to cut the fat but keep the muscle. Uniquely for me, my loss of fat was at a equal relationship with the gain of muscle. Now it’s time to really kick up the muscle gain.
Stay Positive and Experimental
Garth E. Beyer