Many of us are now reverting to more “primal” ways of eating, turning the clock back and eating as our ancestors used to eat by following primal, paleo and ketogenic diets.
Exercise also plays in important role in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and there are many conflicting views on the most beneficial way of achieving this. Should we be in the gym every day, lifting weights, running or swimming?
I have been reading various articles regarding a more primal approach to exercise. Our ancestors would be able to sprint when hunting or perhaps being chased by a predator, walk throughout the day and swim, again to hunt for valuable food sources and to keep clean. The thought is that we shouldn’t put too much stress and exertion on our bodies but be conscious to keep moving, be able to sprint on occasion and be able to lift heavy weights.
I have recently started to swim more regularly with this in mind, alongside some bodyweight exercises at home and walking the dog on a regular basis too. Occasionally I may go for a jog and incorporate some sprinting.
Swimming was an essential primal skill. Humans have always settled near rivers, lakes or sea so that they can hunt for one of their best food sources, swimming is therefore “in your blood”.
It places low stress on your body and is easy on the joints but working your entire body at the same time. Any type of exercise done in the water boosts the effect of increased blood flow to the brain. It builds lung capacity and is reported to sometimes be beneficial for asthma sufferers. In addition, cool water will burn more calories as the body tries to maintain its core temperature.
Personally I think it’s much nicer than sweating it out in the gym – it leaves you feeling refreshed and alert. Even if you can’t swim, don’t let that put you off – you could use a float in the swimming pool, go for a paddle in the sea, or maybe take an aquaerobics class.