#920 Borrowed Energy

Where’s the Energy-Mint App to Track It?!

In one of our very first Notes, we took a quick look at Brendan Brazier’s The Thrive Diet.

I read the book when it came out nearly a dozen years ago. Loved it. Then Brendan and I met at an event, became friends, etc.

If you’re looking for ideas on how to be a high-performance plant-based athlete/human, I think you’ll enjoy Brendan and his work. He’s a former professional endurance athlete and the formulator (and cofounder) of the Vega nutrition brand.

Today we’re going to chat about one of my favorite Ideas from his book.

It popped into my head during the Q&A with our Coaches after our session on Sleep as we discussed having curfews on our caffeine while remembering the fact that when we routinely get less than 6 or 7 hours of sleep we DOUBLE (!) our risk for cancer.

First, here’s the wisdom from Brendan: “I consider coffee drinking an uncomplementary stress. I view it as a form of credit, similar to shopping with a credit card. You get energy now that you don’t actually have, but you pay for it later—when the ‘bill,’ or fatigue, hits. (Simply drinking more coffee to put off the inevitable is like paying off one credit card with another: It will catch up with you sooner or later.) You’ll most likely pay a high interest rate as well, needing more time to recover than if that energy had not been borrowed in the first place. This is the beginning of a vicious cycle.

Let’s call that “Borrowed Energy.”

Now, let’s connect that to the Matthew Walker gem we keep on talking about: “Two thirds of adults throughout all developed nations fail to obtain the recommended eight hours of nightly sleep. I doubt you’re surprised by this fact, but you may be surprised by the consequences. Routinely sleeping less than six or seven hours a night demolishes your immune system, more than doubling your risk of cancer.


You know what MOST of those two-thirds of adults who aren’t getting enough sleep do to make up for the fatigue they almost certainly feel most days?

They (of course) BORROW ENERGY.

In the form of caffeine via coffee, sodas, tea, etc. And/or sugar, etc.


It would be GREAT if we actually had a running tab on all the energy we’ve borrowed. Some super simple energy budgeting App like Mint for Energy.

One glance and we can see how much more energy we borrowed Today and how high our interest rates are, etc.

Unfortunately (and this is TRULY unfortunate), we don’t.

Instead, we go on borrowing more and more and more energy. Day in and day out. Week in and week out. Month in and month out. Year in and year out. Decade in and decade out.

And then…

We don’t just continue to feel fatigue…


We double our risk of getting cancer and make ourselves unnecessarily vulnerable to all the other chronic illnesses we don’t want.



Our debt is due.

And we run a vey high risk of paying a VERY steep price in the form of one of those dreaded chronic diseases that are currently plaguing our modern society.

Let’s remember that the vast majority of chronic diseases could be prevented with a few simple (fundamental!) lifestyle changes.

I repeat myself (yet again): One of the biggest levers we can pull?

Get a good night of sleep.

Stop borrowing so much Energy.

Pay down your Energy debt. Start building your Energy wealth portfolio.


(How will you +1 it, my Energized friend?!)

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