Tim Ferriss became something of a guru in peak performance with the release of his bestselling book The 4-Hour Work Week, and people have looked to him for hints and tips for managing time and stress ever since. In a recent episode of his podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show, the author responded to several listener questions about what his current daily routine looks like, and revealed that he has learned to know when “overdoing” it can actually be a detriment rather than an asset.
He begins each morning with 20 minutes of transcendental meditation, before making coffee or tea. “From that point on, it really depends on the day,” he said. “So I organize my week in a thematic approach, meaning, rather than taking the five types of activities that I need or want to cover each week and spreading them throughout each day, I tend to have a day dedicated to different types of work.”
“So Tuesday will involve lots and lots of phone calls, or at least that’s when I’ll batch my phone calls with my team and with other people. So very frequently, I will not do any type of journaling on that day, but start walking and talking. So I’ll get a lot of my sun exposure on Tuesdays, and so on and so forth. So it really depends on the day. There could be writing following decaffeination. There could be exercise.”
As far as his fitness regime goes, Ferriss does one or two 45-minute weights workouts per week. He keeps his weight training fairly simple, describing them as “for the purpose of injury prevention, first and foremost, not performance enhancement.” The majority of his exercise comes from rock climbing and AcroYoga, both of which he does twice a week.
Ferriss began this acrobatic wellness practice with his partner during quarantine. Each session would involve up to an hour of “inversion practice” including handstands and forearm stands. “Then we do what is known as L-basing, where I’m on my back holding my girlfriend in the air with my feet and hands, and we have different roles and responsibilities in that dynamic, and then doing some version of thigh massage, often with traction towards the end of that workout,” he explains. “It’s the combination of these sympathetic activation and parasympathetic off-ramp that I think leads to a great sense of well-being, physically and emotionally for the rest of the day.”
He complements this push-based AcroYoga work with climbing, which focuses primarily on pulling motions. “I find that that tends to balance out the, say, antagonistic muscle groups, so that you don’t develop, if you approach it in a moderate way, which I am, you don’t develop the repetitive stress, pain, and injuries that have plagued me for most of my life by the virtue of overdoing things or I should say the vice of overdoing things,” he says. “So even though my body might be able to handle climbing three or four times a week, I’m limiting myself to twice a week, and that has been fantastic.”
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