Caveman Resurrection

Strategies & Tips for a Primal/Paleo Approach to Enhanced Health

Archive for the category “Health”

Coffee is Paleo, Right?

Coffee is Paleo.  Coffee is good.  Coffee is righteous.

Bacon is Paleo (mostly).  Bacon is good.  Bacon is righteous.Image

Does that mean Coffee is Bacon?

Well, if you are a follower of Seattle’s Best, you’ll soon find out that Coffee is Bacon of a sort.  Simply because soon they will be coming out with a Bacon Flavored Coffee.  I’m not making this up people.  See for yourself as Seattle’s Best Jumps On the Bacon Train.

I only learned of this new feat due to my friends over at French Press Authority.  They just launched a new site that is half devoted to the art of making French Press coffee, but also to how to prepare, funny news about coffee and more to come.  They’re pretty new, but they are going to be putting together an e-book on French Press for newbies that haven’t tried the beautiful drink known as French Press.

So, would you try the Bacon Coffee if placed in front of you?


What Does An Average Paleo Day Look Like?

If there is one question I get from people the most, it is what does an ideal Paleo day look like?  I get it all the time, but truth be told, I enjoy those kinds of questions because it shows interest and gives me a chance to show people how truly easy it is.  So with no real plan this morning about how I would end my day blogging about this, here is what I did today.  Before I go any further, I’m not advocating EVERYONE HAS TO DO IT THIS WAY.  There are  many average Paleo Days and variations.  This is simply how I spent mine, OK?

My alarm woke me at 5 A.M.  OK, let’s start there – that is not ideal, waking up that early, right?  But I choose to do that so that I can get my workout in and start my day feeling productive.  From there I headed to my garage where I have a squat rack and an Olympic weight set.  I did a little stretching and then did my Stronglifts 5X5 program.  That consisted of 5 reps of 5 sets of compound movements; today’s exercises were squats, overhead presses and deadlifts.  I rested a little between sets and then finished up.  Coming back inside, I grabbed my iPod and looked at where I am on the 100 Pushups Program, something else I enjoy doing as part of my workout.  I finished a total of 100 pushups and then got my day started.

One topic that comes into play at some point with Paleo/Primal folks is intermittent fasting.  What that means for me is I typically don’t eat past 8 PM at night, I train fasted which is shown to raise growth hormone levels and then I hold off eating until noon.  This fasting period allows the body’s system to rest and recover.  In addition, like the Paleo Man, it forces my body to turn to body fat for energy versus being the standard American sugar burner.  It works for me, but it may not work for everyone.  If you are new to a Paleo/Primal diet, I’d suggest focusing on that first.  Once you have your diet dialed in, you may wish to fast from time to time as well.  I pick up a lot of my intermittent fasting advice from Martin Berkhan over at LeanGains.

I brought my lunch to work today, which is pretty typical.  I brought an organic yam and some Smokey Pot Roast.  But as lunch time got closer, I felt like chicken.  A nearby grocery store sells rotisserie chickens, so I went and picked one up, eating about half to 3/4 of it.  Yum!  The yam was awesome too, but it took about 10 minutes to cook off in the microwave.  It WAS a monster!  That would be my only carb source of the day.

Once home, I wanted to save some foods in the fridge for the next evening, so I kept it simple.  I made breakfast for dinner and had four strips of bacon, sauteed some mushrooms in my bacon fat, added my eggs to the pan and scrambled them up.  Then I added half of a sliced avocado, grabbed a big cup of water and settled in to watch the World Series (Go Cardinals!).  I also supplemented the meal with 5 fish oil capsules and 5 Vitamin D capsules.

The one thing I miss but I am experimenting with is less coffee this week.  My morning main stay is coffee with heavy cream.  My adrenals get overloaded with my coffee intake, so once in a while I pull back from coffee for up to a month to make sure my system is not overly reliant on it and to change things up.

And that, my friends, is a typical Paleo day for me.  How about you?

Are You a Creature of Habit….or Hobbit?

Ok, my apologies to the Lord of the Rings crowd, but I couldn’t resist.  I can think of no better analogy for my post than between a creature of habit…and a Hobbit.

How many people reading this post are creatures of habit?  ‘Fess up – if you really think about it, do you tend to gravitate to the things in your box, rather than things outside your box of comfort?  Me, too.

A few weeks ago I was part of a weekend retreat that totally challenged me and my comfort zone.  I participated in activities I would never engage in unless there was some serious cash on the line.  I saw others, like me, who for that weekend, allowed ourselves to be challenged.  Truth be told, although it was hard, I enjoy a good challenge.  To not know what is coming around the corner.  To live the unexpected.  And the after-effects are still within me.  It is fun to live a little on the edge.

When was the last time you really challenged yourself?  I don’t care if you are super-fit or super-fat.  Maybe you’re that guy who does 750 push-ups.  Congrats.  But have you fallen down THAT hole and only do push-ups?  Or do you challenge yourself now on another activity?  If you are inactive and recline on the couch to watch TV – what is holding you back from a new activity?

C’mon people!  Wake up!  When was the last time you took a look at yourself?  Are you stuck going through the motions?  Need a challenge?  Then here are a few words of advice.  Just Do It.

At some point in time, we all just got too damn analytical.  But in our hearts, we know when it’s the right time to act.  And I have to believe, for many of us, it’s simply time to be a Hobbit.  You remember Frodo, right?  Just a small shadow of a man, basically a boy.  But he embarked on an adventure way beyond his expectations.  He surrounded himself with friends.  When challenged, he stood tall (or as tall as he could be), he did what was right, and he finished the task.  Yes, he was tempted.  Aren’t we all?  But he stood for his friends – and his friends stood for him.

Success never stops.  It can be snatched away in a flash.  So what are you doing TODAY to ensure success is in your corner?

The unexamined life is not worth living.  – Socrates

Take a few moments and look deep inside.  What did you do today?  Or what will you do tomorrow that will push you to your edge?  Will you be satisfied doing the same old routine?  Or will you take one small step, one small challenge?  That one small change could improve your life.  So why over-analyze it?  Embrace the challenge within you.

Primal/Paleo Eating is Just a Crock!

Normally when you hear someone say something like, “That’s load of crock,” they are are usually making a negative reference to said topic.

In this case, it’s just the opposite.  Primal/Paleo Eating IS Just a Crock – crock-pot that is.  And Thank God it is!

This time of year, especially, you couldn’t have a more appropriate and timely product in your kitchen than the beloved Crock Pot.  It’s versatile, efficient, safe and easy to clean up.

Case in point:  many people find excuses why they can’t do anything.  So in the case of eating Primal/Paleo, it’s easy to say food preparation takes a lot of time.  So, here is what I did yesterday in order to make a meal that will feed me 3-4 times this week:

  1. Place Crock Pot on counter:  10 seconds
  2. Open package of meat (chicken, pork, beef, etc.): 15 seconds
  3. Grab coconut oil or olive oil and rub it over the meat and place in crock pot: 30 seconds
  4. Combine any concoction of spices that you enjoy, mix then and rub or pour the spices over the meat:  90 seconds (generous allowance time to find your spices)
  5. Grab some celery, carrots, parsnips, and CAREFULLY slice them: 180 seconds (we don’t want to rush this point since safety in the kitchen is a must)
  6. Pour the veggies around the meat and plug in the crock pot, setting it to low: 30 seconds
TOTAL TIME TO PREPARE CROCK POT MEAL:  355 seconds (6 minutes)

Smokey Roast

There are some fantastic change ups you can add to your crock pot meal and there are any number of recipes to that extent.  Everyday Paleo’s Smokey Roast actually uses coffee in its rub – and it’s oh-so-good!

And if you have some tough meat, toss it in the crock pot for that slow simmer action that leaves it so tender at the end.
If you are hurting for time and want something fast – add the Crock Pot to your weekend To Do list and enjoy the efforts all week long.  For only $20, it can be yours to enjoy in many ways.  What are you waiting for?
What recipes do you enjoy most with your Crock Pot?  And, most important, where did that statement ever come from (that’s a load of crock)?

Wanna Get Primal?

Last summer I put together this primer on the Primal lifestyle.  Granted the stats are outdated and at the time Robb Wolf’s Paleolithic Solution had not come out yet.  So forgive me for some of those details.  But the content is still good – and if not, let me know in the comments section.

I hope you enjoy.

It’s the Most Overlooked Piece of Equipment in the Gym

On any given night, set your DVR or VCR (do they even make those anymore?) to tape a few hours on any random channel between the hours of 1 a.m. and 3 a.m.  and you’ll no doubt learn of the latest ab device that will melt the fat with less effort.  Oh wait, you own that, don’t you?  Let’s be honest, we’ve all been suckered and probably own more than one device to shed the pounds.

At the end of the day, there are several pieces of equipment that are the “go to” pieces that never fail: barbells loaded with weight, squat racks, kettlebells, and a host of many others.  But the most overlooked piece of equipment in the gym isn’t usually found in the gym – unless you bring it with you.  It’s low-tech, pretty cheap, very portable and extremely powerful.  It’s called The Journal.

You can’t manage what you don’t measure.

Perhaps you’ve heard the quote above.  Regardless, it rings a sincere note of truth.   In the area of transformation and resurrection, there are many ways you can measure and track in your journal, right?

  • Bodyweight
  • Body fat percentage
  • Inches (hips, legs, waist, biceps, stomach, chest, etc.)
  • Strength (how many lbs. you can lift or how many reps you did)
  • Endurance (how far or how fast)
  • Blood pressure

The journal is an amazing tool – and something I personally use almost everyday.  I log my workouts, my nutrition, my highs/lows and areas of opportunity or challenge.  It allows me to go back and see how far I’ve come or how far I have to go.  I can see my progress, good or bad.  I highly encourage everyone to track progress, but before beginning, be sure you’ve discovered your Why? and write that on the initial pages, as we discussed yesterday.  And now there is one more thing you can add to your initial pages.  What is your HOW?

Your HOW? is something you won’t usually find in weight loss or transformational journeys.  To me it is one of the most important.  We’re not talking about how you are going to lose the weight.  Oh we’ll get to that, trust me!  🙂  At this early point in time, let’s go deeper, just as I promised we would.

Your HOW? focuses on this question: how did you get into the place you are in today?  Whether you are overweight, lacking self-esteem or simply making poor choices – how did you arrive in that space?  Sheila, a past client of mine, was overweight, divorced and wanting a new life.  Through a series of questions and introspection, we identified Sheila’s HOW.  During her childhood, Sheila was advancing, branching out, and becoming independent.  Her mother interfered with Sheila’s progress and took various steps to stall Sheila’s independence.  Buried deep inside after many years, those months of sabotage were still showing up in Sheila’s subconscious.  Her mom’s voice telling her she wasn’t good enough continued to echo thirty years later.  Our parents aren’t perfect, just as we will never be.  The exercise about HOW we arrive at our own places of inadequacy isn’t so much about blame but one of forgiveness.

Whether a parent issue, divorce, abuse or something else, dig deep to determine where in your  life did things start to go wrong.  Write that down in your journal.  Then start the next sentence with “I forgive…”  The person you forgive for mostly contributing to your state of inadequacy may be your parent, spouse or perhaps even yourself.  Forgive that person.  There is no magic time machine we can jump in to take away the hurt that may have led to your weight gain.  So forgive.  With that written down, it’s now logged as a reminder that you know the HOW and it is forgiven.  If forgiveness is hard to arrive at, seek the help of a professional counselor or therapist in your area.

Is your HOW a new step in determining how you will change for the better?  Does writing in a journal seem like a good idea or something you’ve seen that helps you progress?  If so, tell me about it in the comments section.

Why? Why? Why?

For those who remember the Olympics when Nancy Kerrigan got hit by a pipe and cried out, “Why?  Why?  Why!?” let me just say we’re not going down THAT road.  Our best to Nancy and all, but this post takes us to the root of it all – to the root of why you seek a resurrection.  Why are you here?  Why do you want to improve?  Why do you think THIS TIME will be different as you pursue a healthier, more improved you?

As a former personal trainer, I always liked to lead off a program with my clients by asking that basic of all questions –  “Why?”  This is a question that typically catches people off guard, but it’s important because identifying your WHY? makes your reason to change so much more compelling.
This would be a typical scenario:

Client:  “Hey, Jeff, I came here today to get better, to stop over eating, to change my appearance and my lifestyle – can you help me?”
Jeff:  “Why do you want to improve all of that?”
At this point the client would look at me a little dumbfounded.
Client:  “Uh, well, I want to get healthier.  Isn’t that pretty obvious?”
Jeff:  “Why do you want to get healthier?”
Client:  “Well, I watch those shows on TV and they make it look doable and I think I can do it.”
Jeff:  “Why do you think you can do it?”
Client (now a little annoyed):  “I think I can do it because I’m sick and tired of looking or feeling like I do.”
Jeff:  “Why are you sick and tired of feeling like you do?”
Client (now really annoyed):  “Why are you asking me all of these questions?!  Isn’t it obvious?  I’m overweight, I’m not happy and if I don’t do something about this, my doctor says I have serious health risks and I could end up dying!  How’s that for Why?”
Jeff:  “Good.  Let’s get started.”

Determining why you are ready to begin a transformation journey or a lifestyle change is not an easy task.  For that and many other reasons, it requires a hard look at things – and inside YOU.  Wanting to get in better shape so you can impress the opposite sex, run a 5K, fit in clothing, gain more friends – I’m not here to say there is anything wrong with that reasoning.  But why do you want to impress others?  Why do you want to run a 5K?  Why do you want to fit in clothing?  And the bottom line is usually close to this as the question “Why?” probes deeper:  something is missing from your life.  There’s a hole, a void and no matter how much you eat, you can never fill that void.  Right?

That void, that unhappiness, is partly your subconscious and it’s reminding you that if you continue, you will eat yourself into a casket having left many things undone in your life, including friends and family.  I encourage you to deeply examine your Why.  For me, my daughters are my Why.  If I choose poor habits and unhealthy choices, not only does this impede my health, but it sets a poor example for them to follow.  Imagining them growing up without a father – or a father who dies before seeing them married or with kids of their own – those are images I can control by making improved choices today.  Knowing your WHY? is usable in many areas of your life, including your financial freedom.

Before we go any further down this journey, what is YOUR WHY?  I challenge you to identify it – and then post it in the comments section.  Whether you are just beginning a program or ongoing with a lifestyle transformation – tell us your WHY? and post it in the comments section below.  You’ll be glad you did – and one step closer to a new YOU.

Not Just Another Blog

Welcome world to yet another blog.  I hope the information you find here is actually useful and not just another person droning on about a topic that has no meaning for you.  So, let’s skip right to the relevance of it all.  I mean blogs are supposed to be about relevant content, so let’s get to it.  This blog is about resurrecting one’s self.  It’s about making healthy choices.  It’s about making quality choices.  It’s about honoring those past mistakes you’ve made – that we’ve all made.  None of us are perfect.  But we’re ready to attempt it again.  We’re ready to resurrect ourselves.

Now, when I use the word resurrection, some people may get a bit uncomfortable.  Is this guy getting all religious on me?  The answer is no.  Resurrection, quite simply, is the re-birth of one’s self.  And, to make that point more clear – you can’t have re-birth until you have allowed a part of you to die.  If you are ready to make some healthier decisions in life, then it’s time to see the error of your ways and close that door.  That person doesn’t exist.  That’s not to say you won’t mess up again.  But let’s not even acknowledge that person is there any longer.  Today is about a new YOU.  Today is about looking back one last time and then turning to the present and future – and seeing a whole new opportunity to be the person you always wanted to be.  It’s about opportunity.  It’s about resurrection.

For some of you reading this, you may have been a past reader of my former blog, Primal Chat.  You can try to Google it, but you won’t find it.  You’ll find a former Twitter account and some other references to PrimalChat or Primal Chat.  But those days are gone.  I have died to that self.  But my mission is still the same.  Helping others achieve the best within themselves.

So, what’s different about this blog than any other?  Well, to demonstrate, I have a great e-book I wrote called Caveman Resurrection.  It is for sale.  But not today.  And not next week.  It’s for sale when I have proven to you, the reader, that this content is actually what I say it is and worthy of purchase.  It’s not about a quick fix.  It’s not about topical decisions.  This work is deep.  It will force you at times to look within yourself to the decisions you make and why.  It may be uncomfortable at times.  But discomfort on this side leads to freedom on the other side.  And who can’t use a little freedom?

Look for more to come – the journey is about to begin.

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