Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.

Archive for the ‘ Fitness ’ Category

7 Jan

Dear Mark: Periodization Training, My Ideal Garden, and “Real” Strength

For today’s edition of Dear Mark, we’ve got a quick three-parter. First, I briefly cover periodization training, explaining how and why I think everyone participates in it (even if they don’t know it yet). Next up is a question about my ideal garden. Now, I’m no gardener, but I do have some ideas about what […]

3 Jan

A Different Kind of Fitness Resolution

It’s the month when gym memberships spike and fitness equipment flies off store shelves. I think most of us begin the year wanting to be healthier, and fitness stands as an essential element of that endeavor. Logical. Reasonable. Commendable. Yet, the common interpretation of what it will take to get there suddenly veers off in […]

31 Dec

Dear Mark: Superfoods, BCAAs and Fasted Training, Hot Sauce, and Three More Questions

In today’s edition of Dear Mark, I cover six reader questions, starting with one on superfoods. Next is branched chain amino acid supplementation before a “fasted” workout, and whether taking them negates the benefits. Then I discuss whether hot sauce is healthy and Primal, assuming it’s otherwise free of sugary ingredients. Lactase supplementation for lactose-intolerants […]

17 Dec

Dear Mark: Strong but Stiff, Denatured Proteins, Weeklong Fasting, and Oxalates

Today’s edition of Dear Mark is a bit of a grab-bag. First, I give advice on how to loosen up after strength training. Being able to deadlift however many pounds is nice and all, but what if you’re too stiff on your days off to do anything with the strength? Next, I briefly discuss the […]

26 Nov

Dear Mark: Workout Break, Raw Milk, Banana Breakfast, Ketosis in Breastfeeding, and Bikram Yoga

In this edition of Dear Mark, I provide rapid fire answers to five of your questions. First, I discuss another situation where the deload week(s) make(s) sense and may even have to be extended: when exercise starts taking away from the quality of your life. Next I explain why for some people raw milk is […]

7 Nov

8 Ways You Might Be Inadvertently Sabotaging Your Fitness Routine

Last week, I went over a few ways Primal Blueprinters experiencing a weight loss plateau (or fast approaching one) might be inadvertently sabotaging their own weight loss efforts. This week, I thought I’d do a similar post on how we tend to sabotage our pursuit of fitness. What do I mean by inadvertently sabotaging your […]

24 Oct

The Deload Week: What It Is, How to Do it, and Why It Might Help You Get Stronger

Machines are amazing. They can perform at maximum output for months upon months upon years without skipping a beat. And when they do slip up, they can just get the parts replaced or their programming retooled. Humans are not machines. We can’t perform at maximum output for months and even years, only stopping to get […]

15 Oct

Dear Mark: Maximum 4,000 Calories a Week of Exercise?

Last week, I made the suggestion that people interested in maintaining health and immunity while avoiding excessive oxidative stress should expend no more than 4,000 calories per week through focused exercise, a recommendation that I’ve found to be pretty sound for most of the general population. You guys had plenty of questions about that recommendation, […]

10 Oct

Why You Shouldn’t Burn More Than 4,000 Calories a Week Through Exercise

Everyone agrees that being sedentary is bad and unhealthy and that being active is good and healthy. The research agrees, too; regular physical activity leads to good health, longer lives, and an improved ability to function throughout normal life. When you’re able to walk to the store, carry your groceries home, take the stairs, get […]

19 Sep

Action Item #4: Exercise Primally – Move, Lift, and Sprint!

For as much as I emphasize the importance of food with regards to health and body composition and deemphasize the purely mechanical act of burning calories through arduous, protracted exercise, you still do have to move. You have to lift heavy things. You have to move very quickly every once in awhile. You have to […]

23 Jul

Dear Mark: Training Edition

I’m no stranger to spending the bulk of your time thinking about training, programming your training, planning your meals so that they support your training, modifying your training to affect your performance, and modifying your training to affect your body composition. I was an elite endurance athlete who dabbled extensively in strength training; I’ve been […]

14 Jun

How to Fuel Ultra-Distances: The World’s Toughest Mudder

A couple weeks ago, I received an enthusiastic email from a group of Aussies. They were planning on competing in the World’s Toughest Mudder (WTM), a perversely-warped, extreme version of the regular Tough Mudder that has contestants complete as many 8-10 mile circuits as they can in a single 24-hour period. To get the spot […]

28 May

Dear Mark: I Hate to Exercise

Many of us enjoy exercise, probably more just tolerate it, but have you ever known someone to detest it with every fiber of their being? Today, we have a question from a reader with precisely that issue. She hates exercise, and even feels near to tears when she has to do it. Moreover, she doesn’t get the […]

12 Apr

Why Fast? Part Five – Exercise

In previous installments, I’ve discussed the powerful effect of fasting on weight loss, particularly with respect to adipose tissue. I’ve explained how intermittent bouts of going without food have been shown to increase cancer survival and resistance and improve patient and tumor response to chemotherapy, and I went over the considerable evidence suggesting that fasting […]

11 Apr

The Importance of Pull-up Bar Training

This is a guest post from Al Kavadlo of AlKavadlo.com. If you’re like me, part of the appeal of Primal living is the simplicity of it all. Modern society has a funny way of making things more complicated than they need to be. In studying the intricacies of healthy eating and proper exercise, we often […]

22 Feb

How Should Children Exercise?

People often write in with questions about raising kids Primally. And you might find this surprising, but the plurality of kid-related questions I receive pertain to exercise. Not food – though I do still receive a lot of questions about feeding kids Primal food, I guess people are finally realizing that babies don’t have to […]

20 Feb

Dear Mark: Should I Consume Caffeine Before My Workout?

In today’s edition of Dear Mark, I cover a topic near and dear to many of your hearts: caffeine. But I don’t just cover caffeine; I explore whether caffeine truly does act as a diuretic, especially during exercise, and whether or not caffeine can actually be helpful to athletic performance. Should we all be downing […]

30 Jan

Dear Mark: Mysterious Omegas and a Beginner’s Exercise Routine

Today’s installment of Dear Mark covers two questions. In the first, a reader wonders whether or not all those mysterious omegas popping up lately are worth taking. Are omega-3s enough, or should we be supplementing with omega-5s, omega-7s, and omega-9s as well? Read on to find out. Then, I take on a question about exercise […]

17 Jan

The Relationship Between Exercise and Inflammation (and What It Means for Your Workouts)

Since we’ve been on an inflammation kick the past couple weeks, I figured I’d start covering some of the areas of health and lifestyle that interact with inflammation. That doesn’t exactly narrow things down, seeing as how inflammation is involved in just about everything, but it does give me plenty of things to discuss. Today’s […]

16 Jan

Dear Mark: Fenugreek and HGH, Marathons and Strength Training, Gluten and Eczema, and Insect Nutrition

Today’s Monday Dear Mark question and answer post is a fun one. I look into whether a claim about fenugreek and human growth hormone by the great Dr. Mehmet Oz pans out (hint: he’s off, but not by much). Then, I discuss how to strength train as a marathon runner (hint: short and intense), after […]

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