The nature of health and fitness behaviours is that you will go through periods of better patterns and of course periods of worse habits. This is both normal and expected. The baseline average of these two is what I refer to as your neural connections in my book. There are different ways to handle the ebbs and flows of how healthy you are being, one such method is periodically using a rejuvenation week.
The idea of this week is to channel a lot of effort for a short period of time so you can reset your body. This has been used for years in detox retreats and detoxification type diets. When focusing for a short period of time you will find you are able to do a lot more than you expect and that you can really help your body. This is both in a physical sense and a behavioural sense where you reset the threshold of many bad behaviours. Once finished, you are in a better place to train your longer term habits or neural connections and then drop into a more sustainable plan.
The goal of this week is to introduce a few good behaviours while simultaneously cutting out a fair few ‘bad’ actions. There are many things you can include in a week focused on getting your body back on track. These are the main ones I’d consider implementing –
Bad Food Elimination – Perhaps the biggest influence on your health is consuming foods that are annoying your body. This includes sensitive foods, sugar, alcohol and ultra-processed foods. For me, the most important would be sensitive foods as they are quite subtle in how they affect the body and may be standard foods we eat every day, e.g. wheat, bread etc. Any food can agitate your body, the key is working out which ones these may be and cutting them out for a week.
Sleep Restoration – The body recovers and regenerates itself while you are asleep. Almost all of us these days are not getting enough sleep. The idea of this week would be to focus on increasing your sleep hours and/or regulating the hours at which you sleep etc. This will probably involve you shutting off your screens before bed and keeping them away from the bedroom.
Nutrient Overload – Very often we are deficient with certain nutrients within the body. This could be your vitamin intake, digestive enzymes, probiotics or more. The goal of this week would be to cover your nutrient intake to hit all your required levels. This can be done through planned food structures and/or the use of supplements to ensure every needed nutrient has been given to the body.
Exercise & Posture Correction – Most people would benefit from moving daily and/or adding in stretches that target your bad posture. If you are someone who already exercises a lot (like me) then you may do better dropping many of your exercise sessions and simply replace them with stretching protocols.
Emotional Restoration – This week can be used to work on your stress and emotions. You can look to use a stress reduction technique each day, e.g. meditations, emotional freedom technique (EFT) or breathing patters amongst others. You may use the time to do some life reviews and planning, or make moves to seek out professionals to help you going forwards.
Dopamine Reset – We live in a world of cheap dopamine fixes from using our phones, to food or the internet. If your dopamine system is little out of balance then alongside the above methods there are various things you can also eliminate. This may include social media, porn, your phone, TV, computer games and more.
With the potential to eliminate so many things it may seems like your whole life has been cut out. However, you can still socialise, exercise, read, play board games, have sex, study, try healthy recipes and much more. For only a short period of time it is really not that much of an ask compared to the immediate rewards you will receive.
What Does This Mean For You?
Many people are critical of using short term, unsustainable plans like a rejuvenation week but not me, I am all in favour of taking action. The main criticisms of this method is that you cannot undo months of bad behaviours in 7 days and the plan is unsustainable. These are fair comments but they miss the massive benefits. In just seven days you can smash apart many simple bad habits that you have developed. You can also massively feel the benefits and change within just one week. You will feel more energised, less bloated, more focused, happier and alive. I have seen these sort of weeks springboard people into months of positive action.
I would suggest you schedule a week to make some effort with one or more of the areas outlined previously. I am personally due a rejuvenation week myself. I will focus on getting sleep, eliminating wheat, dairy, sugar and any obvious junk. Finally, I would look on restricting phone usage. Alongside this, I would take a good amount of multi-vitamins and digestive supplements as well as putting in time every day using Emotional Freedom Technique. Just seven days of this will massively change how I feel inside and out. What are you prepared to do?
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Photo – A few of the possible Rejuvenation week strategies…
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