Find your Power Hour

Find your Power Hour

By now you have probably given up on your new year's resolution to exercise more and lose weight. But, there is some good news.

Fortunately, thanks to new evidence about how much exercise we really need, you only need to expend energy 22 minutes a day. Why 22 minutes? Compared with 1960, Americans today burn about 140 fewer calories, on average, per day because of our sedentary jobs. To offset the damages of sitting, we need to move. The latest recommendations call for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week to maintain good health. If you divide 150 minutes by seven days a week, that's 22 minutes a day.

The trick is to perform high intensity interval training.

In some respects, the same holds true when it comes to productivity. If you are on the treadmill at the same speed 9-5, that won't be as effective as taking breaks and practicing high intensity interval working. In some instances, turning off your mind is the best thing you can do. Think of it like putting your cortex on the couch.

Finding your so called "power hour"each day and taking breaks, doing your work in spurts instead of constantly, and finding quiet time, will help you get more done:

  1. Here is a summary of recent research and thinking on the value of taking breaks.

  2. Practicing creative boredom stimulates creativity.

  3. It helps you stay curious.

  4. It is part of your Innovation Resorts experience.

  5. It is an antidote to change and innovation fatique.

  6. It will validate that open space offices weren't such a good idea anyway.

  7. It will help cure your idea premature ejaculation.

  8. It will give you a way to self diagnose your entrepreneurial syndrome and stop wasting money on therapists.

  9. It' another survival skill they won't teach you in school.

  10. It's easier than taking a gap year.

Research shows there is some science to streaks, and not just hitting 6 three pointers in a row. These hot streaks tend to last for four or five years, and some people have more than one. The authors also found that a hot streak can happen at any point, even in the final years of a career—contradicting the conventional view that people in many fields are likely to do their best work in their 30s or 40s, late enough for them to have built up a solid base of experience but early enough for them to still have the energy required to sustain high productivity. While quantity of output does not increase, quality does.

You might have already played Power Hour in college. I'm sure as result you became a lot looser and came up with some really crazy ideas. However, it is unlikely you were very productive for some time afterwards.

Make finding your Power Hour an entrepreneurial habit.

Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is the President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs.

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  • Steffi Lewis

    I needed this!!!!! I did hot yoga last week and I was the biggest person in the room. That didn’t stop me it actually made me eager to continue. I will be great not only in yoga class but I’m with everything I put my exercise induced brain to!

  • Amie Hayward

    Dopamine is produced in high quantities while one exercises, reason one feels great, almost euphoric. Exercise can even cure depression.

  • Darren Grafton

    What you eat also impacts deeply affects your brain.

  • Chris Graham

    The combo of exercise and fasting absolutely can't be beat for physical and cognitive benefits!!

  • Laura Waddell

    Oh yeah, if I don't exercise after a few days I get cranky.

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Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA

Former Contributor

Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is a professor emeritus of otolaryngology, dentistry, and engineering at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Colorado School of Public Health and President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs at He has created several medical device and digital health companies. His primary research centers around biomedical and health innovation and entrepreneurship and life science technology commercialization. He consults for and speaks to companies, governments, colleges and universities around the world who need his expertise and contacts in the areas of bio entrepreneurship, bioscience, healthcare, healthcare IT, medical tourism -- nationally and internationally, new product development, product design, and financing new ventures. He is a former Harvard-Macy fellow and In 2010, he completed a Fulbright at Kings Business, the commercialization office of technology transfer at Kings College in London. He recently published "Building the Case for Biotechnology." "Optical Detection of Cancer", and " The Life Science Innovation Roadmap". He is also an associate editor of the Journal of Commercial Biotechnology and Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship and Editor-in-Chief of Medscape. In addition, He is a faculty member at the University of Colorado Denver Graduate School where he teaches Biomedical Entrepreneurship and is an iCorps participant, trainer and industry mentor. He is the Chief Medical Officer at and and Chairman of the Board at GlobalMindED at, a non-profit at risk student success network. He is honored to be named by Modern Healthcare as one of the 50 Most Influential Physician Executives of 2011 and nominated in 2012 and Best Doctors 2013.

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