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The Highlander Program: Overview
What to expect in our daily program
The primary product of this Substack is a daily training program for beginners new to training for longevity. The intent of the program is to help Highlanders defy age at every age, the progress of which is measured against the Highlander Standards.
One of the fundamental principles of the program, our fifth law of Remember and Act, is inspired by English philosopher Samuel Johnson observation: “Man needs more often to be reminded than to be instructed.”
Most of the recommendations and training protocols of the Highlander Program are common sense. We know we shouldn’t eat the things restricted in the Three Strikes Diet. We know we should sleep more. We know we should explore purpose and gratitude. The Highlander Program’s value as a daily reminder to act on the majors is just as useful as the specific recommendations for action.
The daily program suggests 30-60 minutes of training for each of the majors. The total time investment for the program is about six hours per week. Explore each of the dedicated pages to the majors for more about the specific goals and benefits of our training:
Strength. The Highlander Program includes two days of full body strength training built on the key strength tools: carries, drags, hinges, pushes, pulls, and throws. We carry or hinge once a week. We drag, push, pull, and throw twice a week. Strength training should take about 50 minutes.
Cardio. The Highlander Program schedules two days of 30 minute zone 2 cardio and one day that combines 30 minutes of zone 2 and 20 minutes of zone 5 cardio.
Sleep. The Highlander Program reminds Highlanders to try to get at least seven hours of sleep per night, which requires about eight total hours in bed.
Nutrition and Supplementation. The Highlander Program is built on the Three Strikes Diet. Eat less than three servings of restricted foods: pasta, bread, desserts, sodas, chips, and alcohol. The program also includes minimum standards for protein and water intake. Follow the program’s simple rules, and you will see changes in how you look and feel.
Mental Power. The Highlander Program schedules a daily five minute meditation to enhance focus and a daily five minute journaling session with a recommended topic to explore purpose and gratitude. The program also schedules 20 minute device-free walks four times per week to encourage creativity.
Life Enhancing Drugs. The Highlander Program does not include any specific suggestions for drugs to pursue. It does incorporate periodic recommendations to get blood tested, do DEXA scans, explore continuous glucose monitoring, and consult with a doctor that may result in LED prescription.
Graduation from the Program
The Highlander Program hits all of the major elements one needs for a highly effective longevity regimen. The untrained or undertrained individual will see significant improvements in strength, appearance, mental power, and biomarkers related to aging.
As a Highlander fully embraces the identity of defying age at every age, he or she can use the program as a framework for a more individually tailored longevity program.
The next steps beyond the basic program would be to:
Add additional strength training sessions and techniques.
Add more zone 2 cardio time, ideally three >45 minute sessions per week.
Add sauna to your program, ideally prior to bedtime.
Explore more restrictive diets like keto or Carnivore.
Work with a strength or cardio coach.
Work with a nutritionist.
Work with a longevity-focused doctor.
Explore life enhancing drugs.
No matter how your program evolves, remember: Reminders are often more powerful than new instructions. Invest your time wisely.
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