This post is for men and the women who love them. For men, living long and strong distills down to optimizing food, exercise and testosterone levels. Regarding testosterone, “Fellas, how’s your morning wood?” Watch.
UPDATE 3/27/13: I came across the following video explanation about males’ “Morning Wood” and had to share it here. It’s quite amusing and instructive, so go have a watch and then read about building testosterone naturally.
I’VE BEEN reading The Life Plan by Dr. Jeffry S. Life. Though the name may be unfamiliar to you, odds are that you’ve seen his image, for it’s planted everywhere an ad can be placed.
This is him:
It only takes a moment to see what’s so remarkable, and to get a strong hint about why his image appears in so many places.
Yes, underneath that elderly face is a body of a much younger, muscular man.
Baby Boomers simply don’t want to age the old fashion way. Medical types like Dr. Life know this very well. They know that we want a different reality from that of our parents.
And to shape that new reality, we’re going to need to adopt some decidedly different behaviors, protocols, supplements and hormone therapies than did our forefathers, who did none of these things.
To our discerning eyes and hopeful ears, Dr. Life’s image and message screams out:
“I’ll show you the way!”
Dr. Life’s “Life Plan”
I do not want to spare you from reading about how Dr. Life went from this “before” picture…
… to the “after” picture first presented above, because if you have the desire to age better than normal, it would be worth your while to learn how such could be achieved.
(The Life Plan is a place to start, after reading this post, naturally.)
OK, I’ll briefly summarize “The Plan” and then segue into explaining the title of this post: Fellas, How Sturdy Is Your Morning Wood?
The aim here is to make those food choices that will reduce fat, inflammation, glycation and excessive insulin production. Here’s what Dr. Life suggests:
1. Eat three main and two snack meals each day, wherein each meal contains the proper proportion of each macronutrient – protein (35%), fat (15%) and carbohydrates (50%) at the correct target total calories calculated to get you to the desired weight.
2. Choose healthy fats such as avocados, flax seeds, nuts, and omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fatty acids (usually liquid at room temperature and solid when cold, such as olive oil, avocado oil and peanut oil).
3. Choose low glycemic carbs, mainly non-grain foods such as vegetables. Fruit is OK in limited amounts due to the high sugar content.
4. Don’t skip meals.
5. Water: drink half your body weight in ounces daily, meaning if you weigh 200 lbs, you’d drink 100 ounces.
The Life Plan advocates a combination of anaerobic (such as weight lifting and sprinting), aerobic (such as jogging) and stretching. The science clearly shows that exercise not only improves the quality of your life, but its longevity as well.
1. Flexibility, balance and core strength keeps you mobile, reduces injuries and improves sexual function.
2. Resistance training (weights, calisthenics, and others that are anaerobic) builds strong muscles and bones that help prevent osteoporosis, burns fat and maintains youthful functional strength.
3. Aerobic exercise helps reduce or eliminate heart disease, controls/prevents diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.
This is the crux of The Plan, and all by itself it’s likely to produce noticeable results without much effort.
The reason is simple: most men over 40 years of age have less testosterone than is ideal, and so supplementing with it, or something that could promote its production, gets results pretty quickly.
The symptoms of inadequate testosterone are many – big belly, fatigue, listlessness, “man boobs”, declining sexual function and/or interest, and one pretty telling sign which gets to the title of this post… but not yet.
Two points Dr. Life makes:
1. Testosterone levels are tested via blood or saliva. A doctor makes the determination whether your “number” is adequate for your age. Unfortunately, many doctors, according to Dr. Life, underestimate the optimum testosterone number.
Treatment is typically with a bioidentical testosterone cream, although there are natural supplements available that might do the trick, such as DHEA. However, DHEA is not without controversy, as PeakTestosterone.com covers here. Also, know that increasing protein levels can also boost testosterone.
If you think you might be low in testosterone, read about my plan for boosting my own here: Get Younger And Stronger — How To Measure And Boost Your Testosterone.
2. Kegels for men. Although not a testosterone enhancer, Dr. Life advocates kegel exercises to help improve something that a man’s youthful testosterone levels once upon a time took care of – sexual gratification. If you strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, the result can be stronger and harder erections along with better ejaculatory control.
The technique is to identify the right muscle, which is the one that you contract when stopping urine flow. Then throughout the day, squeeze it, hold, and release a bunch of times. You’ll be surprised about how quickly this muscle fatigues.
Alas, it’s now time to explain why I titled this post Fellas, How Sturdy Is Your Morning Wood?
Given our propensity for rationalization, we can find excuses why this and that particular symptom of low testosterone does not apply to us. But Dr. Life says there’s one pretty good indication that would be hard to miss or argue with:
Specifically, do you wake up in the morning with wood, that sublime euphemism for el erection?
From Dr. Life, The Life Plan, page 276:
“Those early morning erections have nothing to do with the bladder, but everything to do with testosterone levels. With lowered testosterone, not only do early morning erections disappear, but so do erectile performance, libido, and sexual thoughts throughout the day. Ninety-five percent of the men who come to see me in their 40s through their upper 70s do not have erections when they wake up in the morning.”
Well, consider that question to be rhetorical; after all, I don’t want the Comments section below to become a confessional on this particular topic.
For the first time, I recently had a male hormone blood panel done. Despite all the exercise and righteous eating I do, my testosterone number came up short of ideal.
463 438 (whoops).
Yes, it’s within the range for a man of my advanced years (born 1956), but come on… am I not the guy who is aiming to circumvent the common ills of aging, such as getting old?
I want that number to be between 800 and 1,000. Dr. Life aims his patients for 800 to 1,100.
At this point I will not use pharmaceutical derived (or any other) testosterone. Instead, I have begun and will add to a regimen of various supplements, the research about which suggests they could be useful in naturally boosting testosterone.
(A girl friend could help.)
Once I get a handle on what I’m doing – and some results – I’ll post about it for your edification and enduring entertainment.
Stay tuned to this station.
(UPDATE: Here’s the latest entry about my testosterone boosting journey.)
P.S. Hey, if you’ve discovered something that boosts testosterone, tell us about it in the Comments section below!
Published on August 9, 2012