5 Health Tips Veteran Tim Almond Would Give to His 20 Year Old Self
You have probably heard some of these; maybe even all of them before, but a little bit of reinforcement never never hurts.
Lots of people are now promoting breathing and how to breath correctly. In many different ways, shapes or forms, but the fact is, yes, we have dysfunctional breathing mechanics.
Yet, it is probably the single thing that could help us the most. If we change the way that we breathe. However, no matter how present you are, you are never going to do that consciously or at least consistently (ie. when you sleep). You cannot bring yourself to think about breathing so much to fix it.
The solution: tape the mouth shut at night and this is going to give you that nasal breathing. Steve Maxwell first introduced it to me, and I have been doing it for years now and it is amazing. It is a part of my life now.
You quite often hear people say, “oh, I sleep with my mouth closed!” Well it will not work, as when you sleep, you forget. It's easy to put a bit of tape over your mouth because the benefits are significant.
OK, so, shut your mouth is the first one.
Walking is the currency of health and we are really talking about daily routines, because consistent practice of daily routines are the most important thing.
There are so many things that are involved that requires upright locomotion to function optimally. The lymphatic system, the circulatory system, the mental mindset of just being outside and connected with nature.
There are so many benefits to walking. It is a part of getting your body prepared for the day. Waking up, and beginning your morning routine with a walk, creates some joint mobility, loosens the body up, sending messages to tight muscles that it is safe. It is safe to relax.
Just telling yourself, “We are going to go for a walk” and you go for a walk even if it’s just five minutes a day.
Habits like this need to be every single day.
Make an effort to get out in nature and build upon that. You know, I really wish I had started that much earlier in life because walking is an essential part of life. Just like breathing for me now and I've realized the benefits in my body and my mind. Just starting with the smallest amount, daily.
However, this is a walk for the intention of walking. It is not commuting or transiting somewhere. There is nowhere to be, nothing to do. You are going for a walk for you.
Making sure that we understand that hydrating correctly involves temperature and regularity as the kings, and then comes quality and quantity. The reason for this is to consume warm water regularly so the kidneys can operate and function properly and filter out any S**T that's in your water.
Warm water helps the kidney function, as well as helping digestion. Cold water puts out your digestive fire. It also contracts the kidneys.
It is also about regularity. It is about taking constant small sips throughout the day, not focusing on the amount as the most important thing. Focus on water temperature.
Then there is water quality. Obviously mineralised water, not rainwater. Water that has been mineralised and filtered properly. I recommend Zazen water filters. They are the Maserati of drinking water and they cost about $500 to $600 a year to run in filters and stones.
Get on board with water consumption and focus on temperature, regularity, quality and quantity. This is where herbal teas come in because it's all water consumption. Plus you can add the pharmacology of whatever you're drinking and it brings us to my 4th tip - chewing.
Chewing your food is so important for the breakdown of nutrients, so important to aid digestion, so important for slowing down so your meal goes longer, so that leptin can be released.
Leptin can be utilised by the body and you can actually feel so satisfied on less food. It is beneficial to slow down, and literally drink your food, chewing your liquids. It’s about being present with the process.
This really is where the transition comes with the three breaths, the blessing transition into the eating space, slow down and really just focus on chewing the foods, almost like an eating meditation where you're trying to discern different flavours.
My 5th tip and this is probably the thing that I would rate as #1 because I was never taught how to poo properly! Who is?!
I have pushed my whole life. So obviously having a squatty potty, bringing the knees up, and then its sacred cranial sacral work. It's about, knees up, leaning forward, relaxing, relaxing the face. I imagine there's an egg cracked on top of my head and the egg is running down, my scalp is relaxing and the eyes are relaxing. The jaw and the tongue and the neck and everything relaxes. And then let's excrete and relax and there's no pushing.
You just start breathing big deep belly breaths. And after a few breaths, you start to realize ohh s**t this is actually how I'm meant to poo.
This has changed the game for me to just breathe my poos out. You do require more time in there, because obviously, you can't rush, but you will poo less. You know, because pushing is rushing.
Even if you choose to implement one of these, you’re moving in a good direction. And wow, if you implement all five of them, how that could benefit you. But if that’s not possible, what if you were just to focus on, for example, walking five minutes a day. That's the first step of your daily routine and the end goal is to have all of your days very similar in structure so you don't need a weekend to reset.
You have days 1 to 7 and you can flow through them and have every day the same and get everything you need from every day like this. And it makes it very hard to think back on the previous weeks, to think about conversations because everything is the same, it really is. It makes the past a little bit fuzzier, and you don't think about the future as much because you are so in-the-moment and so present-with-processes. Rather than fixating and focusing on outcomes, be present in the moment, no matter what it is you are doing. That’s my 6th tip, as a bonus.
WRITTEN BY TIM ALMOND
Veteran | ex Clearance-Diver | Health and Wellbeing Expert