Lessons From My 20’s Part 1

I am writing this two weeks away from my 30th birthday.  Each year around my birthday I do a reflection time and share with you, lessons from the past year.  Since I am starting a new decade I thought I would look back at the past decade and share some things I have learned.  Most of these you will have heard me talk about before but repetition is a good thing.  🙂

This post is going to stay focused on health and fitness.  It is crazy to think back 10 years ago, I was a freshman and UW Madison going into Meteorology.  I must admit I didn’t know much about nutrition and exercise.  I had a good six pack, so I could tell you every variation of a crunch or core exercise but that was about it.  It wasn’t until I was 20 and switched my major over to Kinesiology that I started to learn more.

I have been blessed to work with so many clients (over 5000 paying, and 10,000s more who read and follow my programs) in the past 8 years and been able to APPLY the science to see if it actually works in real life.  Science can only go so far, if it can’t be replicated in the real world.

Here are some of my lessons:

-Eating more fat doesn’t correlate with getting fat, in many cases it is an inverse relationship.  Click here to read about coconut oil.

-There are so many ways to exercise that work, but it seems the way to get the quickest results and change your shape and performance of the body is to do a combination of heavy strength training and burst training.

-It is important to find activities that you LOVE to do.  Find things that are active in which you have a good time doing.

-Fruit not in moderation, can cause weight gain problems.  Too much fructose in fruit means moderation in fruit.

-You don’t have to train hard running in order to improve your 5K or 10K times… Making your legs and core stronger along with burst training can do wonders.

-A strong core is the foundation to a strong body.  The core will be the weakest link for most people.  Click here to get started on my Got Core Program.

-The body and the brain get tired of the same workouts, so every few workouts or every 4 weeks at the max, try something new to mix your body up.

-Heavy strength training is the #1 form of exercise to help combat bone density issues which will affect 90% of women.

-As a person ages, flexibility and balance are two things that diminish quicker and much be trained more.

I could go on and on, but will end this first part right now.

Question:  What have you learned about exercise and nutrition?  Please comment below.



  1. Things I’ve learned:
    It’s never too late to get in better shape (but start now…tomorrow or next week never comes)
    You can do a lot more than you think you can – anything is possible if you want it bad enough and work hard enough.
    Consistency, not perfection, is the key to success. Especially long term success.
    Just because a food is healthy it still does not mean you can eat as much as you want.
    You need to have goals and keep pushing yourself to achieve those goals

  2. Sharon Jimenez says

    Great blog Dustin!

    Some of what I have learned:

    *Drink a lot of water! It really does help!

    *Journal what you eat. Seeing it in writing is very powerful and helps keep you on track.

    *Working out at 5:30 in the morning with great trainers and great people really is fun!

  3. Being close to my mid sixties, former wt. loss strategies are no longer as effective; I have been experimenting with some info on Dr. Mercola’s site where he features “experts” on different combinations of mini fasts, i.e. not eating til lunchtime, then eating basically paleo til sev. hrs. before bedtime. Naturally, they all advise exercise along with this eating plan too :).
    Thanks Dustin, for recapping stuff for us, and it was fun looking back to 4 yrs. ago when Tracie started educating us on coconut oil! I have shared LOTS of my homemade dark chocolate with our kids and friends from recipes found on The Coconut Mama and mommypotamus sites, plus homemade heathcare products-this Christmas the kids got a kick out of my chapstick as a stocking stuffer! They still roll their eyes when I tell them I make my own toothpaste and deodorant, however :).
    One more little story…..I think it was this past December that you featured Mary Stewart and her huge success story using your DVD programs. Well, about a week ago I was visiting with a sweet gal, Annie, at this Christian dude ranch out of Estes Park where Greg and I were volunteering at….one thing led to another when all of a sudden she said, “OHMYGOSH”, are you Dustin Maher’s parents??! My sister did his program for 2 yrs. and lost a lot of weight, and my Mom and I do it too!!! Turns out that she is Mary Stewart’s little sister! Mary worked with Dustin’s little sis, Angela, at this same ranch, around 8 years ago and through her learned of Dustin’s DVD’s! Small world, eh?
    We are all hoping to meet up with Dustin in Madison later this summer :).

  4. Being that i have been thinking in my mind about losing weight but never doing anything about it makes me wonder when i am going to put my weight where my mouth is so with that being said ive learn that doing and thinking it is two different things you will never see results if you don’t start from somewhere and once i get it together and start eating and drinking whats good for a women of my age which is 53 and taking suggestions i will be well on my way to success of losing some pounds thanks for the inspiration hope i can do it.

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