Death of Acuteness (The Theme of 2010)

Every year since we started down the path of the Adonis Index and looks based training, we’ve seemed to have a theme for the year.

In 2008, the theme was “attraction” (consequently, as an aside, Tim Ferriss quotes the “attractiveness ratio” for men as 1.6ish in his new book, so it seems a lot of our concepts are poised to hit the main stream in the near future)

In 2009, we focused more on the “health” aspects of the ratio and talked about genetic fitness as an indicator of health.

In 2010, we focused on “Acuteness” (and false constraints) and also Boundary and Initial Conditions (real constraints). To summarize the year, we found most people were having problems and making errors by judging things on a day by day or even hour by hour basis. Things that come to mind are:

1. Daily calories (as a threshold not average over time)
2. Daily Protein intake (as a threshold not average over time)
3 Pre and post workout meals
4. Sharing their goals with everyone
5. Intervals versus steady state
6. Imposed dietary “rules” based on daily macronutrient content or food “types” (also can be as a threshold not average over time)

All of which ultimately are false constraints.

These acute or “zoomed in” and exact approaches seemed (and still seem) to a lot of people that being on top of every little detail at every point during the day was causing a lot of stress, confusion, and non-results.

Couple the fact that most of the “effects” from acute based approaches are only measured within a corresponding acute based time frame and don’t measure the “compensatory effects” of said effect on the body, you can start to see how errors really stack up. In other words, you’re not getting both sides of the coin. You get told about the additions, but not the subtractions that the additions cause. Which obviously leads to non results and feelings of despair.

(remember, we don’t know EVERYTHING about the body, and new things, hormones, etc are being discovered everyday)

So… in 2010, we “killed” acuteness.


Simply by zooming out our measurement time frame to a weekly basis instead of a daily one. This offers the CLARITY that most people need to make the best decisions for THEMSELVES based on their initial and boundary conditions (lifestyle constraints).

By doing this, we’ve now proven time and time again that any CONVERGING SOLUTION for fat loss and/or muscle gain is PATH INDEPENDENT, so long as total calories, intensity, and consistency are accounted for.

(Calorie and “type” of food diets are selectively converging solutions, where overall convergence depends on initial state and the boundary conditions)

In other words, if you want to lose a pound a week on average, it doesn’t matter how you eat for the week, so long as the total calorie content of your food for the week is 3500 kcal less than your usage. However, to get even MORE accurate and to eliminate water “noise”, zooming out to a month or even year gives even more confidence (as multiple studies have proven, long term diets with similar caloric loads give the same results).

We’ve also seen this in transformation contests, as winners have adopted all sorts of different, lifestyle driven ways on the path of “rippedness”:

– high carb
– fasting
– low carb
– higher protein
– no sugar
– sugar
– no “junk food”
– daily “junk food”

Below is a “graphical” representation of the synopsis of 2010 and how “killing” acuteness can work for you:

Death of Acuteness

Death of Acuteness

A) Represents the time it takes for you to discover a “converging solution” based on your inital conditions and your boundary conditions. Boundary conditions are constants that you CAN’T or won’t change. For example, having 3 kids, wheat intolerance, having a broken leg. You can also call these “lifestyle constrants”. These also involved “social” responsibilities. Initial Conditions just means the conditions where you start. Are you thin? Weak. Overweight, etc.

This phase is the “finding, confidence, and gaining momentum” phase and for some (like Jason, ahem!) can last even longer than the actual results getting phase.

B.) Is the “rapid” results phase and the slope or speed is generally governed by the dance between intensity (or aggressiveness) and consistency. There’s a sweet spot you have to navigate. Too much intensity (3 a day weight training or no eating for a month) can sabotage consistency, but so can a LACK of intensity (slow or no results). At B) you have FULL CONFIDENCE in your solution.

C.) Is the point of diminishing returns. At this point, should you wish to proceed farther towards maximum capacity (or minimum when it comes to fat loss), a more delicate and PATH DEPENDENT dance is needed.

D.) Is the area of NONacuteness. In other words, you can use nonacute solutions to power your way up to the point of diminishing returns. The beauty of nonacute solutions is that they can get you 90-95% of your possible results while using up only 5-10% of your available time and brainpower. This area represents a true “lifestyle” oriented solution. Nonacute solutions focus on the CUMULATIVE effects of your efforts over time and are PATH INDEPENDENT.

E.) Is the area of ACUTENESS. This is where you literally live, eat, sleep, and breathe your solution. It will take 90-95% of your life efforts and thought to get the 5-10% of results that are left for you to attain. Acute solutions focus on day-by-day and minute-by-minute calibrations of how you live, are PATH DEPENDENT, and your results can vary day-by-day and minute-by-minute.

As you can see, you don’t have to “live the fitness lifestyle” to get great results. In fact, NONacute approaches allow you to get clarity and therefore about 95% of your possible results, without committing a lot of time and/or energy as they only focus on true PRIMARY DRIVERS.

What remains to be seen?

Whether the “perfect” Adonis Index for your height represents the maximum results of nonacute solutions.

Wouldn’t that be interesting? Showing that “attractiveness” and “health” is ultimately determined by you NOT making a big deal out of it all and not making it your overall ‘goal’ in life.

It’s a thought 🙂

So what’s in store for 2011?

My initial feeling: “GROWTH” (but its yet to been seen, it ultimately all depends on the problems and maturity of our community as a whole)

Thanks once again for making 2010 a fun ride filled with results and success. We truly couldn’t have done it without you.

About Allen Elliott

Allen is the Editor-In Chief of the Adonis Index Blog, bringing you weekly articles on contest prep, transformation testimonials' and much more!

Additionally he is a published Fitness Personality, Certified Personal Trainer, and National Competitor in the NPC Men's Physique Division.

Last but not least, as an Adonis/Venus Index Transformation Coach, he works to provide guided solutions for people who sincerely strive to meet their fitness goals.

Being a fitness model and competitor gives him a lot of valuable insights that nobody else talks about. Among other things, he will teach you how to prepare for a live show or a fitness photoshoot yourself.

Click here to get more from him.