In Search Of High Performance: the temple, the engine, the fuel.
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In Search of High Performance
My quest to intimately know and understand high performance is a lifelong journey.
To date, I’ve learnt that the number of factors that go into this equation are numerous and look slightly different for each and everyone of us. From architecting Flow moments in our daily lives to letting go of the future and being fully present in the moment - each piece of the puzzle plays a critical role in how much juice we can eek out of life.
With the addition of several new balls in the air including a beautiful baby girl, an Olympic dream and an increased leadership presence in community, I have started to consider one of the most foundational dynamics of high performance.
The temple, the engine, and the fuel.
As the scarcity of my time increases and the demands of high performance energy goes through the roof I find myself asking a very basic question...
How do I turn my body into the most efficient and effective energy machine possible. What are the collective inputs required to give me a consistent, sustained output of clean, raw, and powerful energy to apply to my passions and BHAGs in the world.
The better I can understand how all of the various inputs and stimuli affect my body, the more effectively I can manipulate this equation to yield the highest output possible.
If time is our greatest non-variable non-renewable asset, my goal is to map the most effective energy equation against any given minute, hour, or day.
Holistic and Sustainable
After nearly 20 years of being immersed in the world of high performance the learning journey I continue to travel is understanding how to build holistic and sustainable practices. I’ve failed at this many times in the past and will continue to learn through future failures. What I know today however, is that everything we do matters. From how we nurture our relationships, to our daily rituals or simply attitude we choose when commuting from point A to point B, it plays a role - I am approaching my body and it's fuel with this framework.
How do I define high performance?
In the Boardroom
I say a daily prayer of gratitude to be doing the most impactful and interesting work of my life. Each day I am faced with new challenges and complexities and it is my ability to manage these through effective leadership and resilience that over time opens up the opportunity for more growth, learning, and forward progress.
Mentally this requires sharpness and focus. An ability to work at a granular level but also make connections back to the bigger picture. Most importantly I need to understand all the moving pieces, ask the right questions and bring the right people into a facilitate conversations with clear outcomes.
One step removed I know that this also requires a constant flow of information and data between my conscious and subconscious minds. In practice this means being able to shift out of a Flow moment in work and seamlessly into a Flow moment of a completely different kind - even to the point of being able to be lost in daydreams on the 5 minute walk from work to the gym.
This walk and the energy I carry in my mind matters.
The Olympic Dream
I have finally bitten off one of my scariest goals yet. The commitment to myself, my family, and my coach Garrett to establish a 4 year training plan to qualify and compete at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and hopefully several other World Games en route.
This goal is the definition of what sustained momentum will need to look like. While every week can see up to 25 training hours contributing to this journey - I need to approach this in a way that can not only be sustained but where I can thrive amongst all the other balls in the air for another 208 weeks or about 5,000 hours until Tokyo.
I think sometimes it can seem (even to myself) that what I am talking about doing on a daily basis seems like the driving forces and priorities in my life. This couldn't be more true. I am never willing to take on a BHAG, commitment, or adventure if I cannot first make the commitment to wholeheartedly to support and thrive with Tash and Olia. This has meant that many decisions and sacrifices have had to be made along the way.
My specific energy requirement is that when I come home after a 10, 12, or 14 hour day I can walk through the front door and show up with love and vibrant passion for both of my girls. It also means in the cracks of weekends and rare days off where on the surface I am devoting 100% of my attention and energy to T & O, underneath the surface I can fuel my body with what it needs to recover as quickly and effectively as possible to get ready for the next mountain ascent.
I have been on a journey with my personal voice for over 20 years and I will continue this pilgrimage until the day I die. In the even smaller cracks, walking to Yoga, biking home from track, lying in bed - I am translating those thousands of subconscious thoughts into my passionate pursuit of continual learning.
For example, I am writing this post from a coffee shop, with O (mom’s day off out on a shopping adventure) with one foot rocking her carrier while typing away. I can never stop sharing my voice with the world and the requirement is that when I shift gears in these small gaps I am able to feed my subconscious with juicy, rich, visceral energy to dig through and distill these learnings (yes, these are the actual words I visualize when thinking about what this looks like).
It All Comes Back to Time
The problem, yet again. Is that I don’t have enough of it. Despite wanting desperately to know everything about my body, how it functions and how to most effectively pull and push each of the several thousand levers available - I just can’t afford it.
I have struggled with this notion for a long time. As the chaos of my world has increased over the past several months I finally decided for survival’s sake I needed to reach out for help.
“Dom, I am pushing the absolute limits of what’s possible in my athletics, career, personal, and leadership pursuits - can you and Body Energy Club help me understand how to get the most out of my body?”
This was the first conversation I had with Dominick Tousignant, a friend and one of the owners of my favorite health and nutrition shop, Body Energy Club. That question started a dialogue which has now become a mission to hypothesize, test, measure and iterate on what my body needs to sustain peak performance through the various demands described above.
Over the coming weeks and months I will be sharing this journey as I work with one of Body Energy Club’s top health and nutrition specialist’s Donivin Wain to learn what works and what doesn’t and more importantly the Why’s and What’s that underlie it all.
From a regular cleansing practice to optimizing supplementation and diet based on bloodwork tests- my hope is to share some of the insights, learnings and obstacles I face as I deconstruct how to manufacture the physical state of high performance.
Biting Off One Piece
Understanding the impact of what we put into our body is only one piece of the High Performance pie - but it is a big one and a more apt analogy is it likely being the crust, from which everything else powered and driven off of.
We are all at different places of this journey. And we all have something to learn that can help make us just a little bit better.
My encouragement to you is to seek out one new learning that can have an immediate impact on your energy.
Have a specific question about fuelling for high performance? Shoot me a message on Facebook or leave a comment below.
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