Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Post 37: Cowlean's Kickstart Advice - Finishing Touches Part 2

Hi Guys,

Welcome to this week’s post, part six (get me!) and the finale of the Cowlean Kickstart Advice series. This series was designed to help people snap out of their previous state and get started, to take some action, and begin seeing the pounds melt away. This week we continue with the final touch by adding in a little supplementation.

I’ve linked to all previous episodes of this series above, as well as my older post on my top three supplements. Each week we’ve added something new and at the end of this post I take a look at dieting concepts which I’ve been thinking about for a while now.

This week, just introduce these three supplements and class is dismissed for Christmas.

Vitamin D

You can get vitamin D from roughly 30 minutes of direct sunlight exposure each day, but you just won’t get enough unless you live in a very sunny country. If you’re like me and live in the UK, you definitely want to be supplementing with vitamin D.

Benefits include immune support, improved sleep, and better hormone regulation.

Take 1000 IU per day for every 25 lbs of bodyweight.


Iodine can be found in sea kelp, seaweed, and iodised salt, but again you just won’t get enough for it to be worth it. Save yourself some time and pick up some sea kelp tablets. Iodine is particularly good for dieting because it supports your metabolism, which will naturally slow after a period of being in a caloric deficit. In my post on my top supplements, I give a full overview of why you should supplement with iodine.

Benefits include immune support, thyroid production levels, and metabolism.

Take 1 mg per day.

Vitamin C

Just like iodine, you can get vitamin C from fruits and vegetables, but just not enough. C is another supplement I covered in my previous post (another reason to check it out!). It is amazingly cheap: I’ve had over a year’s supply for less than £20. Another great use for having it around is that when you get ill, you can up your daily dose considerably and actively fight illness.

Benefits include immune support and antioxidant production (vital for anti-aging)

Take 1-2g a day.

N.B. have you noticed that in each case, immune support is one of the benefits? This isn’t just by chance: when you become healthy, you give your body the tools to fight illness and heal itself. It’s not about directly fighting the infection, it’s about setting up an environment where the body takes care of itself.

What next?

Over the past six weeks we’ve covered a lot of topics: food, exercise (including the meals themselves), fasting, and now supplements. If you revisit the earlier posts, you’ll see that I mention that by following the advice of post 1, you’ll achieve up to 80% of your results, and I stand by that statement still.

Each week we’ve gone further up the pyramid, and each change you make will lead to smaller results than the previous change you made. It sounds depressing, but it doesn’t have to be. First of all, if you’ve followed the advice up to now, you’ll know that it’s easy to make the changes that have the most effect.

You’ve also got the framework you need to take your results even further. For example, if you reduced rather than eliminate gluten, grains, and industrial oils in week 1, then you can revisit the food part of this series and go the whole hog. Similarly, if at the exercise stage you just did the walking (which I also maintain is all you need!), then you could add in the strength based training as well.

At each stage there are opportunities to improve, just set yourself another task for the week coming and achieve it. Keep at this process until you’ve got the results you desire. If you’ve tried all six stages and are out of ideas, shoot me a message and we can work something out.

Writing this series has actually made my mind wonder back to my training in economics, how I internalised that system of thought, and now bring it to the health and fitness table. There’s the concept of low hanging fruit: pursue the easiest alternatives first. That’s why I started by introducing the simple changes to your food which have the biggest effect.

Another concept is the law of diminishing returns: as a tool is further utilised it returns less. That’s why each week you bring in something new, because beating a dead horse and endlessly exercising, for example, is less effective.


Well then, that brings us to the conclusion of our little series. Next week we’ll be back to a long form post where I’m going to be eulogising our diets as they go through their festive deaths, only to be reborn in the new year with great enthusiasm. I’ll look at what’s great about Christmas food-wise, why you shouldn’t feel as guilty as you may well do, and how to set appropriate and achievable resolutions.

Before we hobble off to scoff more mince pies, here’s this week’s takeaways:

  1. Introduce these three supplements this week
  2. Revisit each stage of the kickstart series and add something to your previous efforts
  3. Pat yourself on the back for following the series, and implementing the changes. Look at your recorded results and realise you did this.

Until next time,


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