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Athletic Performance, Muscle Recovery
Success is rarely the result of random behaviors. Rather, it comes from regularly repeating positive habits with persistence. Here are five ways that you can get closer to your goals and level up in every area of your life by becoming more consistent in your daily routines.
1) Establish Regular Sleep and Wake Times
Excessive alcohol and caffeine. Too much screen time. Lack of sunlight exposure. There are plenty of lifestyle factors that can derail your circadian rhythms. One of the most underrated disruptors is having inconsistent sleep and wake times. If you pulled up the alarm function on your phone right now, would you see a single alarm that you stick to seven days a week, or five different ones? And if you were to log when you go to sleep each night, would it be within 30 minutes of a certain bedtime?
If your sleep-wake schedule is all over the place, how you feel in the morning is likely to vary wildly too. As former LA Lakers strength and conditioning coach Tim DiFrancesco often says, “Your body doesn’t like it when you shake its snow globe.” In other words, your brain finds comfort in regular routines that you rarely deviate from. Sure, you need to build resilience and adaptability to handle adversity and change, but when it comes to resting better, you’d do well to start and stick with a consistent sleep and wake schedule. To augment the evening end of this routine, you could consider taking a natural sleep aid like Momentous Sleep Pack to help you fall asleep, and a nootropic such as Momentous Brain Drive to promote the release of focus-improving neurochemicals in the morning.
2) Consistent Nutrition Throughout the Day
One of our Momentous ambassadors, Meghann Featherstun, recently told us that a common mistake she finds among the athletes she coaches is that their energy levels fluctuate dramatically throughout the day. They might be getting enough macronutrients and calories overall but aren’t intaking these in fairly even doses spread sensibly across the morning, afternoon, and evening. As a result, both their performance and emotional state are compromised.
While life will inevitably throw you some curveballs in your daily eating routine, planning and preparation can help ensure you’re taking in a steady flow of macros and calories to support peak physical and mental output and keep your mood stable. Make sure that in addition to prepping main meals in advance when possible, you keep a supply of healthy snacks like nuts, fruit, and veggies to defer to when needed. Having a bag of Momentous Essential Grass-Fed Whey and a shaker bottle handy will ensure you can get enough protein in a pinch. Champions prioritize their fueling, knowing they can’t be at their best without putting enough wood on the fire.
3) Tame Your Training
There’s a reason that pro athletes and competitive amateurs alike hire coaches: they don’t want to leave their programming to chance and circumstance. And then once there’s a plan in place, they stick to it like their lives depend on it because they know that when motivation waxes and wanes, they’ll still have self-discipline to fall back on.
Even if you’re not building up for a race, this philosophy can still help you optimize the time you do have to devote to learning new skills and developing existing ones. Legendary strength coach Dan John once asked his mentor what it’d take for him to earn a Division I scholarship in the discus. “Throw the discus four times a week and lift weights three times a week for eight years,” came the reply. You might have the work capacity to check off the first two items on the list, but do you have the level of commitment to be all in for eight years, or however long it will take for you to achieve your most ambitious goals? If not, it’s time to double down and consistently chip away at it until you get to where you want to be.
4) Recover Like a Pro
It’s all very well to have a big engine and go harder, faster, and longer than your competition. But unless you take the steps necessary to rest and recover, you will never fully close the loop on adaptation. Checking the sleep box that we mentioned earlier will go a long way, as will regularly using modalities like contrast therapy (i.e., heat and cold exposure), mobility, and mindfulness.
It’s also vital that you have the nutrients your body needs to rebuild itself. When you do high intensity or heavy sessions, your body depletes its gylcogen and phosphate stores. To replenish phosphate, there’s a big body of evidence to support daily supplementation with creatine monohydrate. Another barrier to functioning optimally is that your body’s ability to produce collagen – one of the main building blocks for your joints and connective tissues – begins decreasing as early as your late 20s. Which is why taking a supplement like Momentous Collagen Peptides 30 to 60 minutes before high-impact exercise can be helpful.
Want to go further and recover faster? Then you could follow the lead of elite athletes and rub PR Lotion on any muscles that you expect to be sore tomorrow half an hour before you begin exercising. There are 50+ years of scientific studies to suggest that your workout will seem easier and you’ll feel better heading into the next one if you supplement with sodium bicarbonate. PR Lotion allows you to get all the benefits while avoiding the GI distress often associated with ingesting bicarb.
5) Develop a Daily Mental Skills Practice
As important as it is to create positive physical habits, your body will go where your brain directs it. Devoting a few minutes a day to building mental skills like self-confidence and visualization can equip you to deal with high-pressure situations and cope with anything that life has to throw at you. It doesn’t take very long to do so, and there are even some techniques that you can use on the way to or from work.
For example, inhale for five seconds and exhale for five seconds, ensuring that you’re breathing through your nose. A study published in Breathe found that this is the best breathing pattern to get your heart rate variability (HRV) back in a healthy range when you’re feeling anxious or stressed. 
Putting these techniques into practice will place you in pole position in your athletic performance, cognitive output, and recovery. Keep checking back for more content that will help you continue becoming your best self.
 Marc A. Russo, Danielle M. Santarelli, and Dean O’Rourke, “The Physiological Effects of Slow Breathing in the Healthy Human,” Breathe, December 2017, available online at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5709795/.