10 Ways to "Get Primal"

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Recently
by Mark Sisson: The
Salt/Blood Pressure Debate

 

 
 

Here at Mark’s
Daily Apple, we advocate the Primal Blueprint Lifestyle, that
is, a health philosophy that in large part acts to mimic the diet
and physical activity of our pre-agricultural ancestors.

And, while
we’ve explained in the past what it means to “Get Primal,”
we figured what’s not to love about a bulleted list that reminds
us how to incorporate these methods into our everyday lives.

Read on to
learn how you can get primal on every level on every occasion:

Hike:

Whether it
was searching for food, shelter or just greener pastures, our ancestors
spent a lot of time taking the heel-toe express! (Though, it wasn’t
exactly heel-toe
in those days.) These days, of course, we have
planes, trains and automobiles to get us from A to B, which means
hoofing it has become our least likely mode of transport. To get
back to the Primal Blueprint, set aside some time every week to
participate in sustained activity as a way to return your body to
its natural state (that is, being in a constant state of motion).
And, although hiking was the primary modality for sustained exercise
for our predecessors, feel free to substitute it for biking or any
other low-level physical activity you can do for a long period with
little interruption.

Sprint:

Although eat
or be eaten is no longer really considered a threat in today’s
society, for our ancestors, it was a pretty big (and potentially
lethal) deal. The solution? Run fast, run hard, and run for your
life! You can incorporate these same theories by adding a series
of short sprints into your exercise routine (see Mark explain his
sprint routine here).
The idea here isn’t necessarily to be the fastest kid on the
block (although that would be awesome), but rather to give all you’ve
got for a brief period of time. Also, bear in mind that this concept
of going hard and fast for a few seconds isn’t limited to the
act of sprinting; you could try water sprints, power cycling, jump
rope intervals or any other activity that requires short, intense
bursts of energy.

Lift Hard:

Think Cavemen
killed time pounding weights in a dingy gym? Think again! Our ancestors
tested their strength only in real-life situations (as opposed to
having a pose-off with the meathead in the cut-off shirt!) and grew
strong by doing, for the most part, weight bearing exercises. Naturally,
they focused on activities that would help them carry out real life
functions. Want to work out like your primal ancestors? Try weight
bearing activities such as squats or dead lifts, which our ancestors
did when lifting a heavy rock or log for building; lunges, which
mimic the action of transversing steep terrain or stepping into
a throw; pull-ups and standing rows to mimic the movement of pulling
a heavy object towards the body; pushing, to mimic the motion of…
well, pushing things; and twisting motions such as medicine ball
throws or cable woodchoppers, which our ancestors did when throwing
spears or hoisting objects. For a new challenge (and an exercise
that combines just about all of the above motions, try the Turkish
get-up:

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