When it comes to considering our health, we often view pain, exhaustion, and weight gain as unavoidable. But being unwell is never something you have to accept. No matter how powerless and overwhelmed you may feel now, you can live an optimized life.
That’s what David Hauser discovered after years of suffering. Like millions of people around the world, he tried dozens of diets in his lifetime. He exercised himself to the brink of insanity at the gym. David even endured five years of relentless endurance sports competitions, which nearly destroyed his knees, yet left him restless inside. All this suffering in the name of having control over his weight, how he looked, but most importantly, how he felt.
David wondered if he was doomed to spend the rest of his life searching for the best diet, the best workout, or the best version of himself. That’s when David had a realization: the information he needed wasn’t available in popular media about health and wellness. It was something that he’d have to find in himself and after years of experimentation, testing, and tracking.
But David did find answers, and in his new book Unstoppable, he shares the ups and downs of his journey and what he learned throughout the process. I sat down with David to find out what inspired him to write Unstoppable and his favorite lesson from the book.
What happened that made you decide to write the book? What was the exact moment when you realized these ideas needed to get out there?
I never intended to write a book. If you had told me even three years ago that I would write a book, I would have told you absolutely not. Very much like how if you told me I would practice yoga six days a week, I would have told you I would not even do it once.
After making massive changes in my life and finally losing weight I’d struggled to lose for decades, people kept asking me how I did it. I quickly realized it did not matter how I did it, as the key is finding what works for you. What I needed to share was the process that I used to find answers that popular media about health and wellness wouldn’t give me.
That is why I wrote this book: to shortcut the years of experimentation, testing, and tracking I went through by presenting many of my learnings. In this way, I’d help them jumpstart their journey and empower them to work through this process on their own.
What’s your favorite specific, actionable idea from the book?
There are so many things, both big and small, that have had such a large impact on my life. If had to pick any single one, it would be sleep. Go to bed by 9 or 9:30 and wake up with the sun naturally. No alarm clock needed. Also, don’t eat within three hours of bed time.
Sounds extreme, but if you’re trying to tap into your body’s natural circadian rhythm, there’s really no need to ever go to bed later than 9:00 or 9:30, the latest. In general, the more you can get back in line with the rising and setting of the sun, the more you’ll tap into your body’s natural routine. But no matter the schedule you establish, try to stick to it on weekends, too. The more your body becomes patterned, the more you’ll optimize your quality of sleep. I know it’s tempting to stick to this strategy only on weekdays and then nix it on the weekends, but it doesn’t work (I’ve tried it). Keep things consistent seven days a week and your body will reward you.
What’s a story of how you’ve applied this lesson in your own life? What has this lesson done for you?
I changed all my sleep patterns, from being a late night person to an early morning person. I changed my bed time from 11 pm (sometimes even later) to 9 pm. I used to stay up working until 3 or 4 am, thinking I was being productive during these “good working hours.”
Now I know I was not productive at all during those late night work sessions. Over time, as I worked less than 100 hours a week, I still stayed up late and did even less productive things like watching TV. For a while I would even fall asleep after dinner and then wake up only to stay up, which made even less sense. As I shifted to waking up early and going to sleep early, I gained many more productive hours in the day and just ended up cutting out TV and wasted hours. I felt better, and I stopped falling asleep after dinner only to get up again hours later.
The other amazing benefit of waking up early is I get two to three hours in before everyone else is awake, which is like getting more hours in the day, something every entrepreneur wants and asks for. Additionally I get on a good roll, having been productive and gotten things done before emails and calls start to come in. This practice sets up my day for success.
For more advice on rediscovering your health, check out Unstoppable on Amazon.