Do you have an 'edge'? Is there something that you do in your life that makes you feel like you have an 'edge' somehow? Some kind of personal secret weapon? Like when you do this thing, or think this idea, perform some mental or spiritual ritual, take some kind of supplement or have a strict nutritional program.... it gives you a boost in performance and you have this driven feeling like you are 'in the zone.' It takes your body and mind to a different kind of level and focus. What is your 'edge'?
My 'edge' is multi-faceted. What gives me clarity and focus is to have a sound spiritual and philosophical basis from which I can achieve peace and contentment... and also be driven to move with the force and strength of nature. As far as athletic performance goes... it is a combination of creative vision and sound nutrition, supplementation of the diet, flexibility, repetitive training, and breath.
Creative vision is the ability to see yourself doing something and creating it as you see it in your mind's eye. Like if a skateboarder is going down a hill fast and needs to ollie up a curb, he may tell himself a word like 'up' and envision himself doing the trick effortlessly so he can boost a big ollie. Or if he is going to do an elaborate and dangerous trick such a s a 180 kickflip to noseslide down a 10 stair set... he needs to visually see himself doing it to be able to land it properly.... it is the ability of a snowboarder to safely navigate their way down a treacherous mountain and feeling like some kind of ninja... foreseeing the proper path to snowboarding nirvana. Creative vision also can be the ability to envision your ideas whether they be music, art, business, etc... and manifest them with clarity and passion.
Flexibility is key to having an edge in athletics. Yoga is one of the best ways to stay flexible. It is like an owner's manual to the human body. For thousands of years... yogi's have understood the importance of being flexible and also properly oxygenating the body with deep breathing exercises. Lack of flexibility leads to pain, stiffness, poor circulation, and improper energy flow. The more flexible we are... the more our energy can flow and the more vibrant and energetic we can become. Not to mention, muscles that are loose and oxygenated are much less likely to be injured. Much strength and endurance can be gained by making one's body flexible. A good style of Yoga to start with is 'Hatha' (Sun/Moon) Yoga. The postures are static. This allows one to sink into the pose only as far as they can go... then to breathe deep breaths and slowly releasing the tension. The basic Sun Salutation in Hatha Yoga... if done every day... would take about 5-10 minutes a day but would give a lifetime of benefit.
As far as diet and supplementation go... they are the foundation and building blocks for muscle and a healthy body so definitely are extremely important. I am vegetarian mostly but on occasion eat some fresh seafood. Living in Hawaii for so long it is almost sacrilege to not eat some good Ahi or Mahi or Ono etc... and I must admit it tastes pretty darn delicious. But it seems to give me an edge and my body feels clean and light. Plenty of leafy greens... Spinach, butter lettuce, salads, veggie stir fry, fresh fruits, Thai curries, spicy Mexican. I get as natural as possible when I can afford it. We are what we eat so try to at least treat yourself well. Even if you do eat meat... I do suggest treating yourself to the highest quality and the most natural cuts of meat. Our fuel is key. As athletes... and even just as human beings. I also like to drink fresh juices: orange, ginger, lemon, apple, spinach, garlic, beet, carrot, and wheat grass.
My number one supplement for athletic performance though, is a supplement called NO2 by a company called MRI. The Founder of this company, Edward Byrd, is one of the head scientists behind the formation of EAS (Myoplex, AdvantEdge etc.). This product increases the uptake of oxygen and nutrients to the body and makes one feel supercharged and full of lasting energy. I have found myself feeling so amazing on my 40-60 mile rides around San Diego. I get pumped from this stuff. There is no doubt it is legit. It is one of the most important breakthroughs for strength and endurance athletes and is not exactly a new thing. I recommend the original NO2 formula or NO2 Black by MRI. When I hit the single-track trails with my friends and we go mach speed in the summer heat over mixed terrain for hours...this product gives me a definite physical edge. And a definite advantage. I pedal with fury and feel like I have more strength than ever and my endurance increases in obvious amounts. There are plenty of products with Nitric Oxide in them but the original is the best in my opinion. Some of the others tend to give me a headache. This is the pure NO2. It is expensive but worth it. Highly recommended for physical advantage in any sports discipline.
So overall I feel that a good combination of mental and spiritual balance, along with proper physical fitness, focus, vision, nutrition, and supplementation, are what bring me a feeling of confidence when I take on a challenge... whether it be physical, mental, or spiritual.
What is your 'Edge'? I want to know. Please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am always interested in improving and learning.... and knowing what others consider to give them an advantage in life. Maybe I will even write about the most interesting replies. Thanks for reading and stay tuned....