What is your most pressing fitness challenge? Is it staying motivated, finding the time to exercise, or cleaning up your eating habits?
Perhaps you can’t decide which diet to follow, or maybe you thought you were eating right, but your waistline is telling a different story.
Maybe you don’t have an exercise routine you can stick with, or you’re battling an injury, or everyone in your family is heavy and it feels like you’re serving a life sentence in gene pool prison.
If any of this sounds familiar, I have good news for you: Getting fit is not as complicated as you’ve been led to believe. The truth is I’ve spent the past 12 years proving that it is actually very simple. So simple, in fact…a caveman could do it.
So, what does a caveman know about fitness? As it turns out, quite a bit.
Here are just a few examples you can take to your cave:
Graze Don’t Gorge
. Despite any evolutionary changes that have taken place in the past 6 millennium, the human body still runs best on small, incremental meals that are delivered every 90 to 120 minutes. This is the approximate time it takes for a fist-size portion of food to digest and become fuel for the body. The caveman is always on the go, foraging for food, looking for shelter and building huts and stuff. There’s no time for long hours languishing over heavy, complicated meals. Grazing is the most efficient means of feeding the body, and in caveman land, a meal is a meal is a meal. One isn’t bigger or smaller than another, and ideally, they are consumed every 2 hours or so.
Gorge On Occasion
. Every so often, the caveman makes a lucky shot and spears a really slow rhino or a wooly mammoth. During these rare opportunities, once or twice a month, Mr. Caveman gets to let loose and totally pig out. Doing this not only helps replenish nutrients that are missing from the whole grazing routine, it also reassures the body that starvation is no longer imminent. On these intermittent big-feast days, something we refer to these days as “cheat day,” the weight loss benefits of consuming more calories than usual are substantial, both physically and psychologically.
Sprint Don’t Run
. Have you ever wondered why so many distance runners tend to hold onto pockets of fat despite running hours on end? Well, one explanation is that all that running convinces the body that it’s in trouble. The caveman typically chooses to run long distances only when lost or being chased by large bear-like creatures. The biological response to this activity is appropriately called “fight-or-flight.” It’s thought that the fight-or-flight mechanism triggers the body to lay down an extra reserve of fat, via a nasty stress hormone called cortisol. This subsequent resilient layer of fat, typically located around the midsection, hips and thighs, forms to provide the body with insurance against starvation and death - just in case it happens to get really lost or finds itself stuck up a tree for an extended period of time.
The caveman naturally chooses shorter bursts of intensity followed by periods of rest (what we modern-day folks call interval training.) This kind of training may prove to be the best choice for keeping the body in prime shape, because it is much more in line with the caveman’s usual activity, especially as it relates to hunting. The skilled hunter sneaks up on his prey and waits quietly until just the right time to burst out of the bushes and attempt the kill. In other words, it’s not likely that a caveman would consider running after its food for more than a few minutes. Therefore, long distance running means trouble, and trouble means extra body fat in caveman land.
So, if you have been feeling overwhelmed about all your contemporary choices, perhaps you should consider the caveman way.
Caveman Way #1
. Everyday, do a little work that is interval in nature – think: walk, run, walk run. 20 minutes a day is really all it takes.
Caveman Way # 2
. Eat meals that are just slightly smaller than your two clinched fists held together, and eat often – about every 3 hours.
Caveman Way #3
. Give yourself a break every 7 to 14 days by taking one day to have anything and everything your little stone age heart desires.
Simple or not, when it comes to reshaping the body, the most important thing to remember is that getting fit takes patience, persistence and, above all, time. Transformation, like evolution, cannot be rushed.
Dianne Orwig is a personal development coach, motivational speaker, fitness expert, and founder of LivingFit Online, a program that has helped thousands of men and women transform their bodies and live healthier, happier lives though her synergistic approach to fitness. For more information, go to www.lovelivingfit.com
. Copyright © 2012 Dianne Orwig. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.