Don’t confuse correlation with causality
You want to look like a marathon runner, slim and sleek? Train yourself as a marathon runner.
Want to look like a sprinter, dry and muscular? Train yourself like a sprinter.
Want to look like a basketball player? Train yourself as a basketball player.
Oh wait. Last doesn’t work, nor for the two examples. This makes perfect sense, once again it looked attractive in its simplicity. Here are 3 questions we can ask ourselves to avoid similar mistakes:
A) Is it possible that the arrow of causality is reversed? Example: people who are naturally dry and muscular are often chosen as sprinter? Yes.
B) Are we a mix of absence and presence? Example: If it has been shown that a diet without meat increased lifetime averaged 5.15%. Is it possible that more presence of vegetables and not the absence of meat, that extends lifespan ? Yes, clearly.
C) Is it possible that you have tested a specific demographic and other variables were responsible for a difference? Example: If we know that Yoga improves heart health, and that the experimental group consisting of people of higher social class, is likely to influence people. Is it possible that the group control can help people eat better? Yes, you bet how much?
The fact isn’t a speculation of a hundred possible explanations.
The fact is to be skeptical, especially for sensational headline. Most “new studies” in the media are observational studies that can, at best, establish the correlation (Y did that while Z did this) but not causality (Y did this suddenly Z must do this ).
If I fall asleep during the world cup, when there is an advertisement , I caused this ? This isn’t a haiku (poem). The summary: correlation doesn’t prove causality. Be skeptical when people say that Y caused Z.
They’re wrong the most of the time at more than 50%.
Use the yo-yo effect for cycles
Yo-yo effect have a bad reputation.
Rather of fighting yourself, go to the shrink or eat an entire cake instead of ruining your diet with only a cookie. Let me tell you one thing: this is normal.
Eat more, then less, then more so on as in a continuous sine wave is an opportunity that we can leverage to achieve our goals more rapidly. Try to prevent this (trying to maintain a reduced calorie diet for a whole year, for example, you will see) to prevent the yo-yo effect becomes pathological and uncontrollable. Schedule a specific time to overeating, solves problems instead of creating them.
The top bodybuilders in the world and even include it in their diet phase before a competition, they have a cycle of calories to avoid down-regulation of hormones. The average daily could be 4000 calories a day but there is a type of cycle: Monday 4000 Tuesday 4500 Wednesday 3500, etc.
Ed Coan, described as the Michael Jordan of powerlifting, over 70 world records in this sport. Among others, he did an incredible deadlift at 901 pounds (408kg) while his bodyweight was at 220 pounds (100kg), it makes it even beat athletes of higher categories, super-heavy weight. His coach at the time, Marty Gallagher said neutrally “maintaining peak condition a whole year is a ticket to the psychiatric hospital”.
You can have your cake and eat as long as time is permits. The best part is these moments of ups and downs planned accelerates rather than reverse the progress.
Forget balance and accept cycles. This is the key ingredient to quickly reshape your body.
Predisposition VS predestination don’t blame your genes
Kenyan marathoners are legendary.
Kenyans have won all but one of the last 12 Boston Marathon. In the Olympic Games of 1988, Kenyans have won gold in the 800 meters, 1500 meters and 5000 meters and also the 3000 meters steeplechase. The factor in their population is approximately 30 million, the statistical probability for an international athlete of the Olympic level is about 1 in 1.6 billion.
If you are in the world of exercise science and sports, you can guess the composition of their muscle fibers that is inherited trait: slow twitch. Muscle fibers of type slow-twitch are perfect for endurance sports. Lucky.
But there is a problem: it doesn’t appear to be entirely true. To the surprise of researchers who conducted muscle biopsies of Kenyan runners, there was a high proportion of fast twitch muscle fibers, the type you’d expect to find among sprinters. Why ? Because they are often trained to be used for low mileage and high density.
If you are overweight and your parents are overweight, the inclination is blame genetics, but there is also an alternative explanation.
If the fatness gene or overeating behavior is removed? After all, obese people tend to be obese.
Even if you’re predisposed to being obese, you’re not destined to be obese.
Eric Lander, leader of the “Human Genome Project” highlights several time the folly of learned helplessness through genetic determinism:
People will think that because genes play something they determine all. We see again and again people said, “it’s genetic. I can’t do anything about it.”. It’s absurd. To say that some thing has a genetic component doesn’t mean it’s unchangeable.
Don’t accept predisposition. You don’t have and we can feed you and train you to have a different physical in the future. Almost all the personal experiences of Tim Ferriss implies improving few things that should be fixed genetically, unchangeable.
You can redirect your genetic profile you had at birth. From now on, “bad gene” can’t be no longer your excuse.