To be honest, I have grown a little wary of changing locations every two or three weeks for the past five months while working almost normal hours (Kuta, Ubud, Canggu, Osaka, Sapporo, Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei). First world problems I know ;) I am blessed to be able to do what I do.
However, my mindset coming to Australia has been to be a bit of a hedonist and enjoy my time here the way I like to. No collecting experiences. That can become an obsession too. With that in mind I decided to go to a place that is beautiful where I can do the things I like, and settle down for a while.
I am in Byron Bay, Australia, and I am not going to lie this is a special place. I have been here for about three weeks and am settled into my routine. To make the most of my time here I am instilling what I've been calling in my head the 3x3 plan. I picked 3 activities to focus on and do each of them 3x/week on average. Of course, other stuff trickles in, but these are the mains. I have a history of going "all in" to a detrimental degree, and choosing to spend my free time on three things has led to what feels like the best balance I have had in my life.
Tues-Thurs-Sun are my yogi days. As an ex-athlete I am still working through tight spots and old injuries. Indulging in yoga 3x/week so far has felt utterly fantastic. I truly feel younger when yoga is a consistent part of my life. Unless you are blessed with natural mobility and low stress levels, yoga can improve your quality of life. If I could go back in time to when I was playing hockey and lacrosse, I'd spend half of the time I did in the gym, and the rest of that time on yoga.
Mon-Wed-Fri are my lifting days. The gym is 10.5km away and the grocery store is 5km away so I have not been doing much extra cardio at the gym since I'm hitting 10-30km each day on my 90's racer bike I got for $100. On lifting days it is a 20km+ round trip in 31 C heat. I have been going to Crossfit Byron Bay, and it is a dream gym. Chill atmosphere, cool coaches, lots of room for activities, and since its hot I can go tarps off ;) I have been doing mostly olympic lifting, strength, and of course some bodybuilding.
100kg Snatch in Australia :)
Tues/Thurs/Weekends. I've gotta be honest. I think surfing is the most difficult sport I have spent time on. The ocean here is also the real deal. Full power. Also, I am terrified of sharks, and signs like this don't help a prairie boy trying to repress their existence. The learning curve for surfing is a steep one for me. However, there is something so refreshing about trying a new sport and being a beginner. The guys and girls out here also make it look way too easy. The other day after getting dummied for over an hour with little success I remembered something an older kid said to me on my first day of snowboarding. "It sucks to suck eh?" That guy was a bit of a prick and those words stung me, but at this age, I feel like its actually kind of cool to suck at something. Learning new things that are challenging makes you smarter, tougher, and more humble.
The 3x3 plan is something I want to explore more in the future, and hopefully bring back home. Fitness is marketed as a series of mutually exclusive and polarizing approaches which is a bit shit in my opinion. I think I can make a strong case that your overall health and ability will be greater if your routine includes some form of relaxation (yoga, meditation), some form of focused training (bodybuilding, crossfit, powerlifting, etc.), and some form of play (wreck hockey, surfing, Brazilian jiu jitsu, volleyball). However, if you are really trying to train for something (for example wanting to deadlift 500#), then you need to sacrifice balance for specialization. This is ok too, but definitely a different feel and approach to your fitness.
This will likely turn into a deeper blog in the future, as I guess there needs to be some room for some steady-state cardio such as my biking which I feel is a part of the balance I am feeling right now. Anyway, I'll think more about this and get back to ya'll. The challenge for me is going to be trying to replicate this balance when I return to the motherland!
Ps- Aussie's eat Kangaroo. I do too now. It is delicious. Deer vibes.
Grit Human Performance