The stretch from Thanksgiving through New Year’s is one filled with family, friends and indulging on food and libations. So what exactly is a New Year’s Resolution. It is a tradition in the Western Hemisphere, in which a person resolves to change an undesired trait or behavior, to accomplish a personal goal or otherwise improve their life.
I make reference to the New Year’s Resolution because with it being the middle of January, fitness centers around America are slowly becoming less and less crowded as we inch our way to February. In a 2014 report, 35% of participants who failed their New Year’s Resolutions admitted they had unrealistic goals, 33% of participants didn’t keep track of their progress, and 23% forgot about them; about one in 10 respondents claimed they made too many resolutions.
Always at the top of the list for resolutions is to lose weight and exercise more. People start the year off with great intentions. They’re doing their best to workout every day, eat more veggies, cut out sweets, and on and on. As mentioned in the stat above, people tend to go back to their normal ways because they truly did make unrealistic goals and tried to bite off more than they could chew. It’s not easy to go from your normal lifestyle that you’ve been working on for many years and then all of sudden come January 1st you are going to do a 180 and adopt it 100% and feel great. Once people get sick of their new “diet” or the chronic cardio sessions on the treadmill, they slowly revert back to their old ways.
I have been working on living a Primal Lifestyle now for almost three years. I have embraced this because of the simplicity of it once you understand the basic principles. Finding your way here is a much more gradual process than the 180 degree change on January 1st! There are three main principles to grasp:
- Eat Primal “Whole” Foods
- Ditch Toxic Modern Foods
- Exercise Primally
Eating Primal foods means you can eat meat, fish, fowl, eggs, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. All of these foods are nutritious, highly satisfying, and promote stabilized energy levels and efficient burning of stored body fat for energy. You will learn to become a fat burning machine versus being carbohydrate dependent. No more “Carb Crashes”!
The excessive intake of processed carbohydrates and chemically altered fats in the Standard American Diet (SAD) may be the most health destructive element in modern life. Excess insulin production from a high carb diet leads to fatigue, burnout, disease, life-long weight gain, and a continued dependency on additional health-compromising carbs! You should seriously consider eliminating the following foods from your diet:
- Sugars and Sweetened Beverages
- Vegetable Oils
- Processed and Packaged Foods
Exercising Primally doesn’t have to mean you beat yourself up each day at the gym and run like a crazy person on the treadmill, which is what I did for many years thinking I was doing the right thing. What is great about Primal exercise is that it is much easier to fit into a busier lifestyle. These are the core elements you try to follow:
- Increase daily low-intensity aerobic workouts like walking, hiking, easy cycling, jogging, etc.
- Shoot for 2 strength sessions each week lasting no more than 30 minutes. You don’t even need to go to the gym, you can focus on the four Primal Essential Movements:
- Once every 7-10 days, push yourself to do sprints lasting 8-30 seconds for 20-30 minutes. You can do this on a treadmill, or go outside and do them.
If you can adopt this simple exercise routine, it will help to optimize fat metabolism, delay the aging process, build and maintain lean muscle mass, and develop lifelong functional fitness. This approach to fitness can deliver maximum results taking up less time and less suffering!