Elemental Exercise

How to exercise effectively without chronic cardio.

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Exercise, though only 20% of weight loss, is a very important component of overall health and wellness. A primal lifestyle emphasizes 3 elements of a healthy routine: 1) move a lot every day, 2) carry heavy things, 3) sprint every now and then.

Our ancestors moved a lot in order to forage and find the best foods. Move a lot means finding creative ways to stay moving during the times when sitting in a chair at a desk. Invest in a stand up desk or even better, a stand up desk and a treadmill. Moving a lot helps the body to burn fat and prevents metabolic syndrome. Move a lot every day.

Carrying heavy things is something our ancestors did to carry a kill back to the village or carry water from the river. Carrying heavy things can be done in a variety of ways. Do strength training at the gym, do body weight exercises like push ups or sit ups, or carry a medicine ball. Carry heavy things 30 min 3-5 days a week.

Our ancestors sprinted from time to time in order to 1) outrun predators or 2) chase down prey. Engage in 30 second sprints once or twice a week.

Doing the exercises above will prime for fat burning not sugar burning, as long as eating primal is a priority.

One way to increase your mobility is a jog or walk 3-5 times a week. Step 1: Determine your MAF heart rate which can easily be calculated by 180-your age. Step 2: Get a fitbit so you can monitor your heart rate. Step 3: Jog or walk at or beneath your MAF 30 minutes 3-5 days a week (you don’t want to overdo it).

Trapped in a cycle of “chronic cardio”, it’s possible to push too hard and load up on carbs after a big workout. This will make it difficult to prosper because fat burning can only happen with a medium intensity workout determined by your MAF heart rate. If your heart rate is above your MAF, your body is burning sugar which leads to sugar cravings when not exercising.

Author: T Ross

I spent the first part of my life playing piano and composing music. I graduated from UCLA with a degree in music composition and cognitive science. Then I became a User Interface Engineer for four years. I moved home to Raleigh, NC to be closer to my family and began to freelance. On the side, I created a company called Elemental Nutrition & Wellness that uses interactive resource calculators to give people the tools they need to lose weight and boost nutrition. Now I have my own practice as a holistic nutritionist. I help people meet their weight loss goals by fostering self-motivation. You can reach me at ross@elementalnutritionandwellness.com.

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