Why I do itOne of the most important aspects - and I mean actually important - of my life working full time and for a small company as a CTO is fitness. It's super important and it can be one of those things that helps you move from being kind of awesome to goddam incredible. The immediate benefits to having a active workout routine are:
- Better sleep schedule
- Larger, more defined 'glamour' or 'beach' muscles to impress people.
- For whatever reason, and it's probably the sleep, but you'll have a sharper mind and a more extroverted personality.
So, I work out early as all hell in the morning at this thing called ELMNTL Fitness. The guy, Kevin, has us running around in the woods in the dark carrying rocks and logs and doing a bunch of other crap. Long story short: while our competition is still asleep in bed I am dragging a log down a gravel trail in the woods. I'm home, showered, fed and reading the news by 7:30 AM and most other startups aren't even out of bed. It's a definite advantage.
How I do it
It's not as easy as I'm making it sound, and it certainly takes a little bit of getting used to. A huge part of it for me is working out with a group of people. I can't stress that enough. Trying to get up and get on the treadmill in my building just never happens. I always put it off. Kevin, however, plans out the days exercises based on how many people and who they are. If you skip, you screw up not only yourself, but everyone else scheduled. You never want to be the asshole.
Sleep is another big thing. To wake up at 5am every day you have to start going to bed earlier. I know a lot of devs and startups think they need to work until 4am, but that shit's out. I like to work earlier when I'm the most productive, and use my late afternoon and evenings for leisure time and events. No one ever plans a happy hour at 8am. So instead of skipping events so that I can workout or do work, I just schedule that stuff earlier. It's ridiculously simple if you think about it.
Oh yeah, eat well
Every morning I have a smoothie for breakfast. This contains: a banana, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, peanut butter, protein powder, spinach and soymilk. Every day. That is the breakfast of champions. It's delicious, it's easy, and it's healthier than anything you'll eat all day. Not to mention the fiber. I also try to eat one salad per day, either for lunch or for dinner, and I eat a crapload of nuts. Pistachios, almonds, cashews, whatever.
Do not ever eat fastfood ever. I'm telling you, don't do it. Also, don't drink pop (or soda for you weird people). Drink water and coffee and as much alcohol as you want. Pizza is okay, because if you're in tech you can't give up pizza. But never go to McDonald's, Burger King, Chick-fil-a, any of that stuff. That stuff will kill you.
Do I need to say something about smoking?
Exercising will make you a better CTO and a better person than your competition. Eating healthy makes you awesome. Follow these instructions and you'll get rich. Or at least skinny.