26 Unconventional Ways To Get In The Best Shape Of Your Life

By Tommy B. Even the most dedicated of gym people likely only spend 5-6 hours a week in the gym doing physical training – and that’s a lot. The average of gym goers is around 2.5 – which is minuscule to the 168 hours we have in a week. That means what we do outside of the gym in daily life matters, and it matters a lot when we’re pushing to create new results, break plateaus and looking to look and feel the part. Fitness makes life better, that’s hard to argue. What it does for our self-esteem, energy, the way we connect with others and of course the physical benefits are countless. By using unconventional methods that we’re detailing below, you can stack up an impressive amount of results without being in the gym.
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#1: PARK VERY FAR AWAY I’ve been relegated to the last possible person anyone wants to drive somewhere with, particularly to watch a movie or go grocery shopping. Why? I park as far as humanely possible, especially when I know I’m going to carry something in the process. Use this technique to add in steps and fat burning to your day, especially if you live somewhere that requires a car – this will add up in a major way. #2: TAKE A FREEZING COLD SHOWER! Cold showers are an amazing way to start your day with energy (trust me, it’s like a natural caffeine shot) and due to your body being shocked by the cold and needing to raise temperature quickly, you’ll increase your metabolic rate. If you’re feeling super intense, check out the Whim Hof method that uses cold therapy to increase fat loss and build an unbreakable immune system. #3: INTERMITTENT FASTING Although not as controversial as it once was, intermittent fasting still sounds crazy to most people. In a nutshell, it involves not eating any food for up to 16-20 hours per day to stimulate fat loss and increase secretion of hormones that keep us lean and fit. Even a planned fast every couple weeks can have tremendous benefits, but do your research ahead of time. In this article, John Romaniello details the 4 main ways to make this happen.
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#4: GET A STAND UP DESK Work a traditional 9-5? The latest research on sitting is astounding and points to increased weight gain, low energy, tight muscles and lower back pain. Stand up desks will increase blood flow, circulation, vitality and naturally raise the energy of your body, stimulating your metabolic rate. #5: EAT SPICY FOODS! Spices not only add amazing flavor to virtually any meal, they can boost your metabolism, increase your fat burning rate and build up your immune system. Even if you’re not traditionally a fan of it, start incorporating it into your meals with spices such as cayenne pepper. You’ll start building your tolerance for them and notice the effects on how they make you feel. #6: DRINK A SUPERHUMAN SHAKE Starting your day off with a mix of powerful super-foods, along with greens – is not only a great way to boost your immune system and overall health but promote fat burning activities. Some of my favorite ingredients include: pea protein, chia seeds, cacao nibs, cayenne, ginger, greens, turmeric and more.
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#7: NEVER JOG AGAIN Jogging, as described in Anchorman -- or even medium intensity exercise (including long circuits) can have a negative impact on body composition due to the release of high levels of cortisol. Hormones are all about balance and the right amount of each, which can easily be manipulated through lifestyle, nutrition and how we train our bodies. Instead of going on that 30-minute jog, find a hill and do some sprints or hop on your gym’s bike machine. Go hard for 10-15 seconds, rest a couple minutes and repeat until you can’t anymore. #8: MEDITATE DAILY The benefits of meditation are endless but they also include rebalancing our emotional stress, lowering cortisol and impact our bodies on a cellular level. Meditation is a practice and there’s no right or wrong way to do it. Start simple with a few minutes and make it non-negotiable, even on weekends or family vacations. #9: EAT MORE! Ladies, I’m looking at you. After years of running gyms and online programs, I’ve noticed it’s the ladies who are the ones who cut calories to a point where they are depleted. Think about this from an evolutionary perspective: our bodies, without knowing when the next meal is coming, want to keep as much fat on us as possible just in case. When you are sending this signal all the time, the fat burning processes naturally stop. Remember, with fat loss we want to eat as much as we can while still burning slow, consistent fat – hopefully that makes sense. #10: MAKE FITNESS RELATED BETS One of the super fun things you can do to increase your activity is to make fitness related bets with your friends. Instead of dinner bets, go for 50 burpees instead – or whatever you love doing. You can have them pay for your next spinning class or buy the next healthy smoothie.
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#11: DITCH TRADITIONAL DATES & MEETINGS Got a business meeting or a hot date? Ditch the usual drinks and dinner and sweat together – this will not only get both of you healthier but we all know what happens after a workout. We’re more level-headed, inspired, feel clearer and open. Hit a class or workout instead and meet after with a delicious healthy smoothie…win-win. #12: BECOME A CLEANING MACHINE! Cleaning isn’t necessarily fun to me, but I’ve made it fun – and used it to shed more calories. Pump up your favorite tunes and podcast, set a clock and see how long it takes you to clean your place. It’ll be fun, plus the intense scrubbing and clock will keep you moving and it’ll feel like a pseudo-workout once you’re done. #13: DRINK A GALLON OF WATER If I ever don’t get an aisle seat on a plane, I feel bad for that person. That means I’ll be getting up at least 10 times, because I’m super hydrated. Hydration is simple, yet often overlooked – front load it, and have most of your day’s liquids before 6PM to avoid interrupted sleep. The fact is more than 75% of people walking around are dehydrated and your body halts all fat burning once you reach this state. If you’re thirsty, it’s too late. #14: DANCE, DANCE & DANCE SOME MORE Dancing is not only a great way to have fun and experience life, but to burn tons of calories in the process. Building body awareness, agility and physical confidence are part of the endless benefits. Maybe it’s a live music show or a night out on the town – regardless, own the dance floor. #15: STAY ACTIVE ON A ROAD TRIP Got a long drive ahead of you? Strategically plan to stop every 45-60 minutes for some fresh air or even a quick circuit of air squats, pushups and lunges. Your hips will thank you, you’ll see an uptick in energy and feel amazing once you arrive at your destination. #16: CURE JET LAG WITH AN INTENSE WORKOUT You just traveled across a huge number of time zones and want to pass out upon arriving – don’t. An amazing cure for jet lag is to get your body moving – even a 10 minute, intense workout will usually cause a faster adaptation to your new time zone and wake you up feeling more refreshed.
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#17: OWN THE BEDROOM! The bedroom should be for only two things – pure rest and well, you know. Make sure you’re setting time aside for connection – and in the process, burning some extra calories and setting off a cascade of powerful hormones. #18: MAKE IT A GAME! Fitness apps and tracking devices have made fitness into a game where you can track steps, calories burned and everything in between. This increases accountability and wanting to create new ways to add 1,000 steps to beat your best friends. Use these apps to keep you dialed in on a daily basis. #19: CRUSH YOUR CAFFEINE Coffee lovers will love this one, that’s for sure. Make sure to have your caffeine without all the usual, unhealthy additives such as sugar, cream and flavoring (always check nutrition facts on pre-made drinks too). However, caffeine will boost your metabolism and helps mobilize fat tissue at a faster rate than without it. Additionally, it can curb normal appetite cravings so use it wisely!
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#20: CREATE YOUR PERFECT GYM PLAYLIST For most people, music can be an inspiring tool to get them to work harder, faster and more focused during workouts. Creating the perfect training playlist when you hit the gym will make you more efficient, pumped up and excited to train. #21: DRINK WITH SELTZER AND LIME! Having a delicious summer cocktail? Good for you. Add in some seltzer which will improve the rate of alcohol absorption (meaning you’ll need less empty calories to feel good) and the lime will blunt insulin response, signaling less fat storage from the alcohol. Have you tried the NorCal margarita? #22: ASK FOR NO AGAVE Agave sounds healthy – but your body will treat is just like any other sugar, causing a high insulin response. If you’re getting a smoothie, Acai bowl or anywhere else where agave is plentiful, go without and save yourself the extra calories and fat storage. #23: DRINK BCAA’S TO CURB CRAVINGS Craving food at night? It happens to most people and they can come on quite strong, adding 300 calories a night, which adds up big time. A great way to curb cravings is to have some BCAAs’ – powdered branch chain amino acids that have been proven to signal satiety and keep you from grabbing whatever’s around before you go to bed. #24: EAT MORE FAT! Although less controversial, most people still shy away from fats – even the high quality ones. Proper use of high quality fats such as raw nuts, avocado, MCT oil, coconut oil and more will keep you satisfied longer plus provides a direct hit of raw energy due to the way it’s digested. #25: INTEGRATE PHYSICAL BREAKS! Research has proven that sitting down for hours at a time is not only terrible for our bodies, but lowers our productivity in major ways. Set alarms every 45-60 minutes to walk up and down stairs, crank out some pushups or simply get some fresh air. If you do 3-4 of these every day you’ll feel happier, more connected, increase your workflow and look and feel better too.
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#26: BUY SOME NEW GEAR! One major psychological hack for improving your fitness and fat loss goals is to buy some new gym swag that makes you feel and look the part. Investing some money into your fitness wardrobe will inspire you to, you know, make good use of it. Our fitness bags can have the same exact effect, designed for people just like you. FINAL THOUGHTS Well, there you have it. Remember: what you do outside of the gym, while seemingly small – adds up in a major, major way. The above activities over the course of a year and that can easily be the difference between losing those last, stubborn annoying 10 pounds of fat that seem to creep up year after year. What’s one thing you can incorporate starting today? Post below and share with your friends.


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