Monday, September 27, 2010

Slow and Steady Exercise = Paleo

From what I've read, there's a general consensus when it comes to exercising on Paleo: though many websites and books center their attention on lifting weights, doing body-weight exercises and running sprints, there's nothing wrong with the slow and steady exercise of walking.  Think of it this way: our ancestors were hunters and gatherers who migrated across the land in search of food.  How did they get from one place to another?  Walking, of course!

I'm a walker - always have been, always will be.  As long as I have something to keep my mind busy, like music, podcasts or even some Old Time Radio shows, I can walk and walk and walk until my legs finally fall off. 

Between the kids and work, I don't get a lot of exercise time these days.  Yes, I could pop them into our big stroller and stroll around the neighborhood but that's about all I can do - stroll.  When I walk, really WALK, I like to do long distances and intervals of different speeds, walking at a brisk pace to a certain point and then walking slower for a bit, then faster, etc etc.  It really gets the heart going.  Hard to do that with a 70+ lb stroller that is a (insert curse word here) to get up and down the curbs in my neighborhood.

So, what can a Single Mama do?  Well, number one is I don't stress about it - the stress will only kill me off early.  And secondly, I exercise when I can.  I lift my toddler (around 35-40 lbs)  often - Mama's little kettlebell - and play a rousing game of "tickle monster" whenever I need to break up the boredom. 

Most importantly, I take the time when I kid-less to get my exercise in.  For the last few weeks, I've been getting up early (7 AM-ish) one morning a weekend and taking a long walk.  Sometimes, when I feel adventurous, I drive up to one of the local nature preserves for a quick hike.  But most times, I stick to walking around my neighborhood - 1 lap around the circumference of my neighborhood equals 1.5 miles.  Yes, it's quite a distance but as long as I have my ipod to keep me company, it goes by pretty quickly.

As I walked out the door last Saturday, I decided, "I'm going to walk until my legs start complaining."  I turned on some music and started walking.  It wasn't until the end of the third lap that my legs started to complain.

Total distance walked this week - 4.5 miles.  Wow... 

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