43 Ways to Level Up Your Life, Starting Right Now.

Today, you’re going to level up your life.

If you’re anything like me, you’re big on the whole “come up with ideas” part of life and slightly lacking in the “JUST DO IT” part.  You’ve told yourself for days, weeks, months, years that you’re going to get in shape one day – enough with the excuses, procrastination, and delays.

It’s time for action!

Here are 43 different ways to improve your life right now. I’m a huge fan of momentum, and I’m confident that picking a thing or two off of this list and following through with it could help you turn that little snowball of yours into an avalanche of awesome.  While most of these are fitness related, some have nothing to do with fitness but will help you either feel better, look better, or help make this world a slightly better place.

Let’s do this!

1) Write down everything you eat today. Every calorie, every bite of a donut, every sip of a soda. Everything.  I’ll bet you eat more calories than you think…unless you’re trying to gain weight, in which case I bet you eat less than you think.

2) Eat less. If you want to lose weight, you have to burn more calories than you consume.  If you want to gain weight, you need to burn less calories than you consume.

3) Try a new vegetable. They won’t hurt, I promise.

4) Stop slouching! Pull your shoulder blades back and pick your chin up.  You’ll look thinner, project more confidence, and your lower back will stop hurting from sitting improperly all day.

5) Write down three goals. Write down three things right now that you need to accomplish in order for your day to feel productive.  Do the first thing, and then then second, and then the third.  Simple.

6) Stop drinking soda. Even the diet kind.

7) Start lifting weights. I don’t care who you are or what your goals are: they should involve some sort of weight training if you want to see legitimate results (here’s why).  If you’re a woman, you should be lifting weights too.  Lift HEAVY too (while staying safe).

8 ) Run one second faster today than you did yesterday.

9) Lift one more pound today in the gym than you did last time.

10) Drink more water.

11) Eat breakfast. Eggs and old fashioned oatmeal, good.  Sugary cereal with a big glass of OJ (pretty much sugar water), bad.

12) Learn how to do a proper squat. No squat machine, no leg press…a REAL ACTUAL SQUAT with a bar across your shoulders.

13) Don’t eat fast food for lunch.

14) Write down what you’re going to do in the gym. Don’t walk in there blindly, know exactly which exercises you’ll do and how much you’re going to lift.  And then, write down your results as you do them.

15) Stretch after you exercise. All of your muscles are sore and broken down…kick-start the recovery process by stretching out your muscles after working out.  Look at the stretching channel on the Nerd Fitness YouTube page if you need examples of some stretches.

16) Start a weight-loss contest at work – Everybody throws in 20 bucks, whoever loses the highest percentage of body weight in a month gets to keep the cash.  Money is one hell of a motivator.

17) Go for a brisk walk on your lunch break.

18) Ride your bike to work.

19) Download new workout music.

20) Stop making excuses – Matt lost 157 pounds in only one year because he stopped making excuses and started taking action.

21) Stop using weight machines – They suck and they’re dangerous.  Be a big boy/girl, go to the free weight section, and pick up some dumbbells.

22) Try interval training. Only have 20 minutes?  Try 20 minutes of high-intensity interval training.  Kick your ass, burn extra calories, and build up your oxygen capacity in a short amount of time.

23) Sign up for that class you’ve always wanted to go to but haven’t. I signed up for a Capoeira class last week, after putting it off for months.  There’s never going to be a “perfect” time for anything.  Call them today.

24) Do one thing that scares you. Ask out the cute girl at the coffee shop, speak in public (gasp), volunteer for a difficult task at work.  It’s time to step out of your comfort zone, and grow some bal…confidence.  This is one of the most important things you can do for yourself today.

25) Sign up for a race two months from now, and pay in advance. Once you’ve put the money down, it’s going to be tough for you to avoid training unless you want to get beat by a 10-year old girl.

26) Take 15 minutes to clean off your office desk/bedroom. Clutter can cause all kinds of stress and makes life way more complicated than it needs to be.  Get rid of the crap, unclutter your desk, unclutter your mind.

27) Sign up for your local library! I’ve rediscovered the library in my town, which has a surprisingly great collection of fitness and diet books.  Just last week I picked up The End of Overeating and The New Rules of Lifting.

28) Start working towards a pull up. You should be doing an exercise that works your ‘pull muscles’ with every workout.  If you can’t do pull ups, try doing body weight rows on a smith machine (or your kitchen table), and if you can’t do those yet, do some lat pull downs.  Your goal should be to do a few sets up pull ups eventually, so get stronger with each workout.

29) Chuck your junk food. I don’t care if you just bought it – get rid of the cookies, crackers, ice cream, soda, Ho-Hos, Twinkies, sugary cereal, whatever.  GET RID OF IT, so you won’t be tempted.

30) Sign up for a free fitness class. Find a Crossfit gym in your area, and sign up for your free class.  Sure, you might puke and you’ll be sore as hell, but it’s a free ass-kicking…and who knows, you might like it!

31) Give yourself 15 minutes of “me time.” Lock yourself in your room, put on your favorite song, turn off your phone, and just do NOTHING.

32) Run. Stop by the park on the way home, strap on a pair of sneakers, and just start running.  Feeling crazy?  Try it barefoot.

33) Shake the hand of any person you see that is/was in the military.  These brave men and women don’t get enough recognition, and you’ll be surprised how far a “thank you for your service” and a handshake will go towards making their day and making you feel better.  Random? Yup.  Good for the world? Yes.

34) Do some push ups! Puff up that chest a little bit.  Do incline push ups if regular ones are too hard, and try some dive bombers if they’re too easy.

35) Smile more. Not a creepy smile either, but a genuine one.

36) Stop thinking so much. We tend to over-analyze every situation until it’s far more complicated and stressful than it needs to be.  Sometimes you just need to shut off your brain and go for it.

37) Stop spending thirty minutes sculpting your abs. Add some planks, bird dogs, or knee tucks to your routine to work your core at the end of your routine for no more than five minutes.  Your abs are a direct result of your diet anyways, so clean THAT up first, and then worry about abs.

38) Call somebody and tell them that you love them. Your wife/husband, boyfriend/girlfriend, kids, parents, grandparents, whoever.  You probably don’t say it enough, and you know how great it is to hear it.  Spread the love!

39) Sign up for the Nerd Fitness Rebel Army (don’t worry, it’s free). Get these blog updates delivered to your e-mail inbox, win free stuff if I have things to give away, and get insider info about any cool Rebellion-type stuff going down.

40) Sign up for the Nerd Fitness Message Boards.  Join the 280 other people who are posting on there already, and start holding yourself accountable.  Plus, then we can discuss the ending to Inception.

41) Get ready for the Rebel Fitness Guide. That’s right, this sucker is going to be officially released to the Nerd Fitness population next week!  I’ve poured my heart and soul into this sucker and I’m excited to finally publish it.  Check back here next Monday for all the details.

42) Share this article with somebody you care about.

43) ???? What else would you stick on this list?  How else can people level up their lives starting today?

Add your suggestions in the comments!



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36 thoughts on “43 Ways to Level Up Your Life, Starting Right Now.

  1. Love the mix of things you've got in here.

    #25 is key for me. I gotta sign up in advance or otherwise I'll put it off forever.

    #43 – take a 20minute nap. naps are underrated 🙂

  2. re #27: Good to hear people taking advantage of their community's store-houses of (free) knowledge!

    I like to recommend http://www.goodreads.com to all the readers I encounter; it lets you keep track of your reading, rate books you've read, add friends. I use it mostly for my “to read” list (how many times do you hit the library or bookstore and then blank out on what you want?), and I also keep a list of books I'm loaning out to friends. I'm on there at http://www.goodreads.com/thekody

  3. I would add “cultivate patience”. We definitely live in a now society and rarely like to wait for anything. Fitness and weight loss take time and effort. Most people will give up long before they reach their goals because it doesn't happen fast enough. It's a long journey and worth the wait.

  4. Excellent advice, I've have followed most of them for the past few years and they have worked wonderfully.

    If I may add to #3, try exploring the fractal nature of many vegetables for extra nerdiness. Romanesco anyone?

  5. Hey Kody!

    I just friended you on GoodReads. Seems like a cool site, definitely going to dig into it deeper later on tonight or tomorrow.


  6. Good call Joel

    I should have worked “go to bed earlier tonight” because I always get suckered into staying up too late by watching reruns of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia or Seinfeld or whatever.

    DVR them at night, watch the next day after work or during lunch. Gotta work on that.


  7. This makes me feel like the worst person on the planet – Every single one I read – I realized I do the opposite. I have a lot of work to do!

  8. Oh crap, hahahaha.

    It's not supposed to make you feel bad, just give you some ideas on what you can to do step it up a notch. Oops.


  9. You're list is awesome and I must apply it to myself as soon as tomorrow. I really need this especially at this very moment of my life, I need changes that could lift up my spirit and keep going. I'd probably bookmark this blog post as my guide and share with my friends. All I want is to be happy and healthy 🙂

  10. Just found this article today! I’m 17 and just out of shape, not obese just unhappy with my life and weight! This definitley is going to help! Good stuff =) I did 43. CLEAN.

  11. Just found this article today! I’m 17 and just out of shape, not obese just unhappy with my life and weight! This definitley is going to help! Good stuff =) I did 43. CLEAN.

  12. Machines are neither dangerous nor stupid. You are both with blanket statements. Learn more, then preach.

  13. Was reading through your list when I came to the part about your trying Capoeira… Awesome! I have been doing it for 3 years now and it is seriously an amazing martial art that brings a whole new level of community into your life if you stick with it. When I started doing Paleo a year and a half ago that also really improved my game, so you already have an advantage going in 😉 Good luck with your first class!

  14. Very effective !! Each and every point is very clear and beneficial for our body. It is written so nicely that even feeling worried, I felt relieved and encouraged myself to set weight loss goals again which I left many times. This time I followed the steps and went step by step.

  15. What’s the difference between a normal squat and a widowmaker squat? I looked up videos on youtube but they look the same to me. From all i can tell widowmaker is simply 20 reps, am i wrong?

  16. I really loved all the points you mentioned. Call somebody and tell them that you love them, its necessary to show your feelings. Also about junk food, very hard to do but results are very good.
    Thanks for sharing..

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