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The High Performance Journal

How To Slow Down The Pace Of Aging And Look Younger

high performance journal Jan 09, 2024

 The High Performance Founder Journal - January 9th, 2024


The other day I was having a conversation with someone on Twitter.

I had posted a video there about the things I learned about giving up alcohol for a full year and after watching it he had come back to me with an accusation.

You see, in the video, I had stated that alcohol had been a part of my life since 18 and at the ripe old age of 44 I stopped drinking it, which caused him to say,

"Dude, you're 34, not 44. Stop lying"

I couldn't help but chuckle a little at the comment.

Now, I'm not saying this to "flex" on you but I do take pride in how I look (doesn't everyone?).

But more important than that is that how young you look matters for your health.

A 45-year-old study was done that found that the age of your face reflects your biological age.

 

In the picture, the 2 people you see are 45 years old chronologically but biologically they were much older due to a few of the things we'll talk about in this email.

They found that those who aged faster on the face had decreased cognitive function and decreased motor skills as well as increased risk for obesity, cardiovascular disease, and kidney disease.


Now when it comes to aging there are 2 things at play:

  1. Your chronological age aka. how old you are
  2. Your biological age aka. how old you feel


Some people are 50 years old and don't look a day over 40 while others look 40 that look like their 50.

What gives?

In today's article, I'm going to show you the things that speed up the rate of aging and give you a game plan so you can start looking younger right now.

You ready? Let’s go…

 

How To Reverse The Pace Of Aging And Look Younger


Step 1 - Your Perception


“We are what we believe we are.”
- C.S. Lewis


Researchers in the study found that negative perceptions about how you age are linked to an increase in biological aging.

What does this mean?

If you say things to yourself like "I'm too old for this" or "I have old man's knees" or "Life slows down after the age of 40" they become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

What you say and think to yourself regularly causes your mind to live up to your beliefs.

This is a big reason why I regularly post things on X like this:

 

 

Your thoughts eventually become reality.

The biggest barrier to slowing down the aging process is how you think about it in the first place.

So my question to you is: Do your thoughts and beliefs about your age serve you?

If the answer is no then it's time to change.


Step 2 - Your Habits


“Habits are the invisible architecture of daily life. We repeat about 40 percent of our behavior almost daily, so our habits shape our existence, and our future. If we change our habits, we change our lives.”
- Gretchen Rubin

In Charles Duhigg's book "The Power of Habit" there was a woman named Lisa Allen who struggled with an addiction to smoking and obesity.

In her quest to improve herself, she joined Alcoholics Anonymous where she learned how habit loops - the cue, routine, and reward were shaping her behavior.

She started by identifying the cues that triggered her smoking habit, which were stress and social situations.

Instead of succumbing to the craving she chose to replace the routine of smoking with healthier alternatives (going for a walk or chewing gum).

The reward she felt was a sense of relief and relaxation and over time she replaced smoking with healthier routines.

But it didn't stop there.

As she gained confidence in her ability to change she tackled her issues with overeating and obesity where she adopted better eating habits, started exercising, and got to a healthy weight.

Something I like to ask myself regularly is,

"How would me 10 years in the future feel about doing this?"

What you can do now is take yourself through the same exercise Lisa did.

Ask yourself what are 2 habits that are currently holding you back from being the healthiest version of yourself.

Then focus on one where you can focus on the "cue, routine, and reward" system and look for ways to change them.

Here are some habits that I've seen help clients that you can start working on:

  • Shortening your eating window from 12 hours to 8
  • Drinking a protein shake in the morning
  • Journaling your nutrition
  • Exercising first thing in the morning


The great thing about habits is that as you change them you can dictate your pace of aging. All you need to do is start with one then use momentum to focus on the others.


Step 3 - Be At A Healthy Body Composition

When I say body composition I'm specifically talking about your body fat to muscle ratio.

You want to be at a body fat level that's healthy for your age and to have the subsequent muscle mass to support living a great life.


Let's Start With Muscle:

Researchers found in people with accelerated ages was a loss of strength and this is what happens when you don't maintain your body:

As we age, we lose strength and muscle at a rate of 3 to 5% per decade and this rate accelerates after the age of 60.

But the good news is that we can rebuild strength & muscle at any age.

The key here is to lift weights using good form and progressive overload at least 3x a week.

Weight lifting becomes massively critical as you age and it's a reason why we place a big emphasis on it with the clients we work with and the workouts we prescribe in the Lean Body 90.

Also, as you age make sure you're testing your strength every 6 months.

This will ensure you're setting yourself up for an amazing health span as you age.


Next, Let's Tackle Nutrition:

From my experience, eating a nutrient-dense high protein diet is the key to aging gracefully.

The foods you eat can alter gene expression as well as dictate cognitive function.

As you age, you want your diet to be rich in nutrients and foods that contain antioxidants as uncontrolled oxidative stress can accelerate the pace of aging.

You want your diet to be comprised of the following:

  • Colorful vegetables and fruits: These are packed with antioxidants and combat inflammation.
  • Healthy fats:  Omega-3 fatty acids found in avocados and fatty fish like salmon have anti-inflammatory properties and support brain health.
  • Protein:  Protein is essential for maintaining muscle mass and hormonal health. Aim for .8 to 1g per pound of body weight.
  • Fiber: This helps improve your gut health and regulate your blood sugar levels.

Now this may be controversial to say but I've found that people who stay in a long-term slight caloric deficit age better than those who don't.

It's anecdotal and there have been some research studies around it but there's not enough to make a bold claim.

This is just my experience after working with thousands of people in my coaching practice. Take that with a huge grain of salt.


Finally, Let's Talk About Sleep:

I look at sleep as a way to help your body replenish and recover.

Recent studies suggest that sleep plays the role of a housekeeper. It cleans and removes toxins from your brain and body that build while you're awake.

We all know sleep is important but for brevity's sake I'll keep it short. If you want to improve your sleep click here to get a free guide on how to make it happen.


Other Effective Ways to Slow Down Your Pace of Aging

Infrared Sauna Therapy: Saunas stimulate heat shock proteins that repair damaged proteins and improve cellular health. They've also been shown to enhance cardiovascular function, reduce inflammation, and support detoxification.

Sunscreen and Moisturizer: The skin is the largest organ in your body. We need to take care of it. Sunscreen helps protect your skin from harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation, specifically UVA and UVB rays, which can cause a range of age-related skin issues. Moisturized skin helps you retain your natural moisture barrier, which helps you achieve a youthful complexion.

Genetic Testing: Doing these tests helps you gain insights into your predispositions related to aging and health. Certain genetic variants may influence how you respond to specific nutrients and exercise.

Regular Health Monitoring: It's important to do regular bloodwork every 4-6 months. Blood tests can provide valuable insights into biomarkers associated with aging, such as cholesterol levels, insulin sensitivity, and inflammation markers.

Conclusion

Getting older is a fact. You can't jump into a time machine and wish that you were 20 again.

But aging is something we may be able to control.

I see it all the time in my practice. When a client starts taking control of their mind, habits, and behaviors around their health they inevitably start looking and feeling younger.

The key here is to focus on what you can control.

You can't control the year on your birth certificate but you can control how you live out these years.

The cool thing is we can delay, if not, reverse the effect of aging when have the right mindset and do the right things.

You don't need to overhaul anything either. Start with the easiest thing you saw in this article and take the first step.

Do that enough times and you might be surprised what you see in the mirror.

Onwards and upwards 🚀

- Dan

 

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