Keep Moving
Sink, Float or Swim

Keep Moving

Scott Peltin and Jogi Rippel provide up-to-date life guidance on sleep, nutrition, exercise, mind-set and positive attitude.

Scott Peltin and Jogi Rippel are fun to read, smart, unpretentious and well-informed. They may repeat the personality types they frame their book around a little too often and seem a little too proud of these somewhat obvious archetypes, but they present their useful, applicable life guidance with contagious enthusiasm. 

Peltin and Rippel divide the business world’s employees and executives into “sinkers, floaters” or “swimmers.” Sinkers’ jobs crush them daily. They work hard but never work smart. They are constantly tired. Floaters are the kings and queens of mediocrity. They hover in place, lacking the willpower, energy and necessary strategic skills to move ahead in their work and their personal lives. They make little effort to acquire these skills.

Swimmers, on the other hand, are alphas, bursting with energy, vitality, purpose and superior mental acuity. They are tough-minded, passionate and resilient – top performers. The authors ask: Do you want to be a sinker, a floater or a swimmer? The choice is up to you.

Clinton’s Advice

A journalist asked former President Bill Clinton what advice he might give to President-elect Barack Obama. Clinton said he would tell Obama to get plenty of rest and to do whatever he deemed necessary to fuel his energy.

To become a swimmer, live a healthy, productive life. This approach will enable you to develop and pursue purposeful, interesting goals.


Peltin and Rippel teach that a high-performance attitude rests on a foundation of discipline, confidence, flexibility, emotional control, concentration, optimism and positive attitude. If you have a positive mind-set, people will treat you as a leader, you will be tougher in spirit and in mind, you will express yourself honestly, and you will accomplish more. 

Positive self-talk leverages your optimistic mind-set and gives you hopefulness and buoyancy. To stay upbeat, think of positive imagery.

“Performance Nutrition”

Your body is a machine and requires proper fuel – the right food – to run properly. Focus on what you consume every day. Fully 80% of your daily food choices should be conscious selections; only 20% should be indulgences.

You need quality protein for proper muscle mass and nutrient-rich food to achieve maximum performance. These selections include, “garlic, leafy green vegetables, salmon, olive oil, ginger, beans, kiwi, berries, apricot, mango, papaya, bok choy, squash, kale, sweet potato, beetroots and quinoa.” The best nutrient-dense foods are “dark, green vegetables.”

Peltin and Rippel urge you to hydrate all day long and not to skip meals. In their view, eating many small meals is much better than eating three big meals. Your body needs complex, high-fiber carbohydrates – wholegrain breads, cereals, granola, fruits and vegetables. Your body also needs “essential fatty acids” from oils “like olive oil, flaxseed, sesame, nuts and avocado,” as well as plenty of fiber for digestion. The authors’ diet advice is nothing new, but it aligns with the latest research. In only a few pages, they provide clear guidance on healthy eating.

The authors urge you to develop the valuable habit of reading the labels on food containers. Avoid processed foods and refined carbohydrates, like white flours, cakes, rolls and desserts. The more fresh fruits and vegetables you eat, the better. When you add fruits and vegetables to two of your daily meals, you increase your nutrients by 35% to 42%. Stay away from hydrogenated trans fats and partially hydrogenated fats. Seek foods in which “sugar grams” are less than 50% of all carbohydrate grams. Eat foods with the fewest possible chemicals and preservatives.

“Performance Movement”

Move – morning, noon and night. Build consistent daily exercise into your routine to minimize cholesterol; reduce cancer, heart disease and diabetes risk; reduce stress; ward off high blood pressure; and avoid lower back pain and obesity.

Effective movement routines can be as simple as climbing the stairs instead of using the elevator, taking short or long walks, and doing simple stretches and torso twists. In addition to regular body movement, maintain good posture.

“Performance Recovery”

Recharge your batteries by getting plenty of rest and sleep. Good health requires regular restoration, regeneration and recovery time. Make rest an essential priority for your executives and employees. Encourage workers to stand up from their computers to clear their minds.

Get adequate sleep. Don’t eat or work out for at least two hours before bedtime. Avoid alcohol, cigarettes and caffeine before bed.

Positive Momentum

According to Sir Isaac Newton’s First Law of Motion, a stationary object tends to remain stationary; a moving object tends to stay in motion. This applies to people who are graduating from being sinkers or floaters to being swimmers. Here the authors, unnecessarily, come back to their title thesis and beloved archetypes.

They urge you to develop social networks and repeat healthy rituals, such as drinking a glass of water when you get out of bed. Place visual reminders of what you need to accomplish in plain sight; and set challenges for yourself, such as doing your daily exercises every day for a week.

Actionable Advice

Peltin and Rippel provide an abundance of healthful, actionable advice. They avoid wellness clichés or spiritual justifications. Their tone and approach, like their suggestions, are practical and make sense throughout. You may find yourself both agreeing with their advice and feeling chagrin that you’re not already doing what they suggest. The authors understand the health hazards of stress without harping on them; their practices aim to reduce that stress. By phrasing all their worthy guidance in business terms – that is, they speak of making your personal physical machine more efficient and productive – they avoid the soul-searching that can make such advice tedious. Their straightforward presentation will help you follow their program.

Aligned books on healthy lifestyles include Tools of Titans by Timothy Ferriss; Healthy Habits Suck by Dayna Lee-Baggley and Russ Harris; and Little Book of Game Changers by Jessica Cording.

Share this Story
Show all Reviews