Some people say I have boundless energy, but the truth is it's not an automatic thing for me. I work hard to maintain my health so I can give all that I have to my family, my business and myself. And I’m finally happy with how I feel day-in and day-out, thanks to the fire in my belly.
A few years ago, a personal trainer taught me to think of my stomach as having a fire that I could never let extinguish. This fire, he said, fueled my energy, and if I let it wane, I too would take a nosedive. And he was right: The more I began to experiment with the concept of constantly stoking the fire (i.e., my metabolism), the better I felt. Concentration hit all-time high and I started to crush my workouts, adapting to a more advanced plan every few weeks.
What this means is providing my body with protein and nourishment regularly and consistently throughout the day, every three hours. So in the morning, within 45 minutes of waking, I light the fire that’s cooled down overnight with a protein-rich meal. After this, it’s burning strong for a few hours. Then the moment I start to feel it dwindle — usually three hours later — I know that I need to rekindle the glow. Think of a new-born baby, who needs to eat every three hours throughout the day. We got away from this natural-born rhythm with the onset of school and work schedules pushing people into a three meal a day plan, which slows down our metabolic rates.
When my fire starts to go down, I reach for a protein drink, almond crusted chicken strips, hard-boiled egg or another snack to keep me going another few hours (There have been times, by the way, when I’ve only had a candy bar available to me and I’ve gone for it, because as I've learned, something is always better than nothing!).
I still eat my full breakfast, lunch and dinner, because I’m not trying to restrict my food intake whatsoever. In fact, I eat constantly and even have a timer on my phone reminding me throughout the day to keep my metabolic fire burning strong. However nowadays, I hardly have to reference the timer because my body alerts me immediately when it’s beginning to cool down, in the hard-to-ignore form of a burning stomach.
The point is that if you let your fire burn out at any point during the day, failing to give your body the fuel it needs, your body will store the next meal as fat. So even if I eat dinner at 7pm and I’m still awake at 10pm, I eat something loaded with protein. And let me tell you, living according to this “plan” (which I use loosely, because it’s a very basic idea) has allowed me to build muscle that I’ve never before had and it makes a noticeable difference in your waistline!
Talk to a nutritionist, do some research and I encourage you to live in a way that makes you feel your best each and every day. For me, it's a light that never goes out… (Thanks, Morrissey).