There is a tremendous amount of written information on the important subject of fitness and health. But there is one common thread that holds true in all of it. You can acquire all manner of information and read every possible perspective from information, based on examples of personal experience to purely technical data of a scientific based nature, like physiological outcomes and expectations. But the one fact that is a constant is this, if you do NOT put the information to use or actually test it for yourself, it is not only somewhat worthless, but you will not see any actual benefit, unless some effort is expended. So talking about it and acquiring information is a first step, and an important step, but taking action is what actually makes it happen and has any real effect. I hope to help you do that part just by wrapping your head around it, and pointing you to that action!
We all react slightly differently to the food we take in and the physical stimulus we apply to our bodies. So it makes a lot of sense to realize that a sort of “playing with it all”, as though it is an experiment, will likely yield all manner of feedback we can use to expand our efforts and results. Having this attitude and frame of mind is actually critical to the results one will achieve. It helps create a relaxed mental state about starting your own program, which is of course a personal journey of sorts. A conscious decision to improve one’s health and overall physical functions.
The purpose of such endeavors is, many times, spawned by the acceptance or realization that we need to lose some weight or are experiencing some sort of physical problems/injuries, or maybe just want to feel better and perhaps look better. There are many motivating factors, as we are all slightly different physiologically and psychologically. I would point out that, if you take a perspective of purely health benefit, guess what happens; the good looking/feeling parts will automatically be a byproduct of your efforts and all else will simply follow. So focus on the health issues, like reducing body fat, blood pressure, cholesterol, and just how good it makes you feel. Realize looking good and all these benefits will simply be a byproduct of your own personal program, as well as clear mindedness. Healthy diet/nutrition is key to this effort but not the only component, for sure. A balance of all factors is necessary.
This is a very empowering concept because it helps us wrap our head around the highest purpose to accomplish our goals in such endeavors. This mindset will help you stay focused, yet relaxed mentally, so you do not defeat yourself and, therefore, can reach a higher state of accomplishment. When all is said and done, the only thing that matters is your actual results that you can see and feel. The benefits will be mental, as well as physical, because the body, mind, and spirit are very much interconnected. The shin bone is definitely connected to the thigh bone, as a metaphoric analogy, but completely accurate and valid. Remember, when we are exerting that energy, we are circulating blood to all parts of the body and that, too, is highly beneficial for many reasons. Blood carrying oxygen and removing toxins is a very good thing. So it really is all about our mindset and how we think about it, and then take action to bring it all to fruition.
Recently I interviewed a guy named Gary Collins. He may be familiar to some of you. He is almost 25 years younger than myself. Gary is a professional in the field, I am not. I am a common sense guy that found what works and how to heal myself. But I realized we have reached a very similar place in our health/fitness endeavors. The underlying common denominator was putting out the effort to make our thesis or goals come to fruition. Gary takes a much more technical approach than myself with data. I was motivated largely by an effort to heal myself after a major accident to regain and, hopefully, surpass my previous physical capacities from sports related endeavors of many years. And, with a lot of effort and tweaking, it worked ! It seems Gary has had some similar experiences and motivations. My own experience has been a lot of reading, but mostly hands on trial and error of what worked and what didn’t. I am simply built that way psychologically. I am all about hands on, try it and see what happens, after gathering the necessary information. You will find that some will work for you and some not so much. So we have to fiddle with it all a bit and fine tune our own program that fits us both physiologically and mentally. I gained a new level of understanding from my interaction with Gary for numerous reasons. He has a lot of excellent information, and zeros in on the most basic points to focus on that actually matter and will yield results. I highly recommend his book on the Primal Power Method. I just finished it. The information about the glucose/insulin connection was the most important and relevant for me. Although there are many good points and a wealth of data to be gleaned. Gary breaks it down to its simplest forms. I like that part , because that works for me. He explains how to apply the information, rather than just, here is the data. And he is not hung up in Paleo dogma so prevalent from many sources. He does NOT say or claim that Paleo whatever will make you fit and or healthy. He squarely shows it to be just a piece of the puzzle, but for good reasons.
I clearly state on my site fitness page that I am simply a common sense guy that set about to heal himself and willing to share the things I learned to accomplish that goal. For me, all I need to know is the results of those endeavors. I really don’t care how I got there, except for the fact that it is just good information at that point. Something worked. Another major issue I had to cross was simply being honest with myself about my current condition and where I was headed and how to get there. Being injured, the outcome was all unknown. So a trial and error method was completely necessary and appropriate. For me, that always works the best and I imagine for many, as well. I have a basic workout and some basic minimums at my site, as well, to help as a reference point to get you started. I offer some proofs of sort or guidelines to help you to your goals and success. Below is a simple chart of photos that will help you identify your current physical condition of body fat. The photo method is really simple and that is why I use it and mention it. It is a great guideline and reference point. There is a full page link on my site that gives much more info. If you are honest with yourself, it does NOT lie! The purpose is to NOT defeat yourself or injure yourself and to have the correct starting point of reference for yourself. As well, simply by looking at yourself naked in the mirror does not lie. So these are excellent reference points, based in reality, that are the absolute best place to start. There is also more technical measuring methods at my site, as well in the links.
So why am I focusing on body fat? It is the single most important factor most of us face to good health and fitness. A person with lesser body fat will have all the benefits mentioned above and will have a higher state of physical ability and performance. A person with 10% BF will simply outperform a person with 20% and the 25% plus person is not even in the ballpark of equal performance of overall strength, stamina, endurance. They will simply not be able to keep up past a certain level, in a very short time frame. As well, the benefits of the healthy state are ever present in equal abundance and relationship. How do we gain control over the body fat? With a combination of nutrition and physical stimulus. What we put in our bodies is our fuel and is critical. And simply taking count of our current habits can cause us to make some simple, but profound, changes that will help us immensely and rather easily. We do not have to suffer for food in any way. I explain what I eat in great detail and I do without nothing really, except JUNK. I simply eat real foods and it all tastes great.
I have seen many people who talk about Paleo this and that, or various other techniques, resolutions and plans over the years, and they are not fit. You can see it easily visually. So I pretty much discount most of what they say, because it is obvious they are 25% body fat or more. Talk never works for me. I am all about results and that takes action, not talk. Bottom line, it is our specific effort and mindset that really matters the most to making any real accomplishment or changing our fitness/health for the better. So we must take the information and put it into action and not just talk about it or think that simply eating meat or limiting white carbs is going to accomplish fitness or health. It won’t, it can’t. It is just a small piece of the puzzle and still must be tempered per individual. You have to take action, although the Paleo thinking can help for sure, it is NOT a panacea or fix all. There is more to the picture and that boils down to taking action for yourself. That is what separates the talkers from the doers and accomplishers, simple as that. It always reminds me of back in the day when many people, where I lived in Eugene, were continuously talking about and complaining about pollution and the evils of the world, while smoking a cigarette or a joint. No question a nonsensical set of double standards and completely self defeating, hey? But supposedly mellow , whatever that means. I saw this a lot and still do in a slightly different way, when I see people talking Paleo and they are obviously not fit. And there is definitely a relationship to fitness and our health. So we can fool ourselves and create our own illusions in every part of our lives. As I see it, our government does that to us a bunch, so I don’t really want anymore if I can help it.
So wrap your head around your current state of fitness/health and take charge of your body, mind, and spirit. The benefits will be many and, when all is said and done, it won’t make a bit of difference how you get there, only that you arrive! Amazing, hey? There is an abundance of good information out there, but it does all simply come down to you and your actions. By the way, I am probably a 75% Paleo guy and have been for a long while, well before it was a popular item. But I don’t even consider it Paleo actually and I am very healthy and fit, with little effort. The only fitness God I worship is the results God! You can choose any level you want to reach. I was crippled for 5 years and healed myself and now going to a slightly higher level with little effort or angst. I am heading back to below 10% BF for a while and see if it works for me this time any better. I lost another 10 pounds this winter, so it will be fairly easy. As Joni Mitchell said quite a while ago “it all comes down to you.” Nothing has really changed.
I am all about our Inner Powers in every aspect of our life. We just have to recognize and utilize them in every event and purpose. Good on Ya and good luck in your endeavors. Keep it fun and enjoy. Hope you can glean some helpful insights from my own experiences at my site. It is FREE! Steve Baze wwwdowntoearthprepper.com