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

Dear Mark: Pregnant Exercise, Low-Carb and Alcohol Tolerance, Ancestral Sun Dosages, and Knee Mobility

pregnant2Today is Monday, which heralds another edition of Dear Mark. This week, I’m giving my two cents on what could be causing the widespread incidence of lowered alcohol tolerance in Primal eaters. It’s nice to be a cheap date, but sometimes we want to keep up with everyone else, right? I give a few ideas on exercises for pregnant women who want to remain active without any complications arising, and I discuss whether the amount of sun our ancestral homelands saw play a role in how much sun we should get. Finally, I discuss whether a knee should be mobile or stable, along with a few strategies to have and maintain healthy knees.

Let’s go.

Dear Mark,

I’ve been following your (awesome!) PB Fitness protocol for over a year now. I’m not pregnant at the time but I might be in the future, and I’m starting to wonder how to get on with my Four Essential Movements with a big belly in front of me. Some movements may be no probs, but how about doing pushups if the belly touches the ground right from ‘up’ position? And deep squatting, I’ve got this awkward feeling it might make you accidentally pee yourself due to all the extra pressure on the bladder… So, long story short: How do I subsitute the Five Essential Movements workout to make it suitable for pregnancy?

Thank you so much for all your work and a great webstie!

Anna

Let’s go through each of the movements.

Though I’ve never carried a child in my (nonexistent) womb, I think squats should be okay. I mean, have you seen elite powerlifters? They’re big dudes, some with big bellies (mostly muscle, though), and they have no problem squatting. Besides, squatting is a legitimate birthing position. If you’re worried about peeing yourself, there’s an easy fix: avoid exercising with a full bladder. You’ll want to squat with a fairly wide stance, wide enough to give your belly enough room to pass. Too narrow a stance and you might hit your femurs with your belly (again, see powerlifters, who tend to squat with a super wide stance).

Alternatives include lunges and Bulgarian split squats (featured in this WOW).

Do normal pushups until your belly starts cheating for you. Then, switch to feet elevated pushups. As long as you’re maintaining the rigid plank position through the legs, hips, and torso, elevating your feet will also elevate your belly. Once your belly starts cheating on the feet elevated pushups, move to feet and hands elevated pushups. Parallel (dip) bars work well for these, as do a pair of sturdy, dependable chairs. The key is allowing your belly to move freely through space.

Alternatives include the bench press and the floor press.

Pullups are obviously fine. Just avoid doing pullups on flimsy bars. Enjoy the added resistance!

Be very careful going upside down for handstand pushups. If you’re not comfortable with these, go for the inverted V pushups: keep your feet and hands on the ground and stick your butt in the air to form an upside down V with your body; get your torso as vertical as possible and press using your shoulders as the prime movers. (And, by the way, if I were forced to choose 4 Essential Movements this would be the odd man out.)

If “elbows down” planks makes you belly-cheat, go with “hands down” planks. Fully extend your elbows and place your hands on the floor, as if you were in the top position of a pushup. Hold it. It’s not as tough as the elbow plank, but given the circumstances, that’s okay. Plus, you’ve got added central mass to support, which makes it hard in its own right.

I actually think PBF is perfect for pregnant women, because it’s bodyweight-based, very simple, and scalable to all levels of fitness. Of course, if you did want to increase intensity or handle big weights, you probably still could. Want proof? A fantastic blog – One Fit Mom – actually chronicles the pregnancy of a diehard Crossfitter who, rather than taking it easy, kept up with her workouts. She didn’t exactly break her PRs, but she stayed active and maintained her fitness and most of her strength. She gives lots of recommendations for exercise substitutions. And yes, she kept squatting and deadlifting.

Hi Mark,

I have been wondering about maintaining the Primal Blueprint diet and becoming more sensitive to wine and caffeine. Is there a physiological reason for this observation? Is it because less carb is consumed thus level of tolerance is lowered (considering how much carb can absorb wine/caffeine…)

Thanks for your input!

Angela

Interesting question, Angela (and thanks for the thanks). It’s not a new one. We get a lot of reports about Primal eating reducing alcohol tolerance, and while I don’t have a definite answer, I do have a rough inkling as to why alcohol tolerance worsens.

You mention eating fewer carbs – a normal, expected change for most people who adopt Primal eating. The carbs you’re no longer eating weren’t actually soaking up the alcohol; even though I knew guys in college who swore by swallowing hunks of white bread whole to absorb booze and prevent a hangover, it’s the simple presence of food in your stomach that slows the absorption of alcohol, not just carbs in particular. My guess is that breaking down and detoxifying the ethanol you’re imbibing is hard work for a liver that’s already tasked with the creation of glucose from amino acids in a low dietary glucose state (gluconeogenesis). We know that alcohol consumption inhibits gluconeogenesis by decreasing the availability of the “intrahepatic gluconeogenic precursors” by 61%. If alcohol detox and gluconeogenesis are competing for the same raw materials along similar pathways, and if the effects of alcohol increase with inefficient detoxification, it follows that someone drinking alcohol in a gluconeogenic state may be more sensitive to its effects.

If your tolerance to alcohol has become unpleasantly low with a correspondingly low carb intake, a simple fix may be to eat a couple sweet potatoes on days that you’ll be drinking. I don’t have the issue, and I stay around 100-150 grams per day, so I don’t think it takes a huge amount. Anyone else with lowered alcohol tolerance on the Primal Blueprint eating plan?

Hi Mark,

I’ve enjoyed your books and website. I just wanted to quickly comment on the sunlight issue.

Your blog posts discuss how we’ve evolved with sun exposure, and shouldn’t fear it, but don’t seem to remind readers that location matters.

For example I’m a red head, Caucasian of Irish descent, but I live in north Queensland, Australia. Hunter gathers native to this part of the world were black. I’m white and freckled. The amount of sunlight I should expose myself to here is surely a lot less than if I lived in a similar environment to my direct ancestors.

I’m not sure if some of your readers may overlook this if they are also living away from evolutionary roots.

Regards,

Mike

This is a good point, Mike. Not everyone has the same level of innate sun tolerance, and I think ancestry is the major determinant. Sure, lifestyle factors in big time – what you eat (and, perhaps more importantly, what you don’t eat) famously affects your skin’s susceptibility to sun damage – but as for genetic sun tolerance? Where your ancestors grew up and how much sun they were exposed to on a regular basis probably determines how much sun you can tolerate, as a baseline. So for you, a red-headed Irish guy with freckles, a full hour in the midday Australian sun is excessive and probably even harmful.

Although I may not have recommended that readers pay attention to their ancestry when considering sun dosages, I have always maintained that people should avoid burning. My thinking is that as long as you avoid burning (or even developing a nice pink color), sun bathing is beneficial. This usually boils down to getting out of the sun as soon as it starts to feel uncomfortably hot, and I think it naturally dovetails with the ancestry idea. Just as the person with pale skin whose ancestors hailed from foggy climates can safely assume he will tolerate far less UV exposure than the person with dark skin whose ancestors lived on the equator, that same person with the pale skin/ancestors will feel uncomfortably hot sooner and get out of the sun earlier. It’s an important point that deserves explicit mention. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

Dear Mark,

I’ve been working through some of the mobility exercises you’ve posted and I was just wondering if you could suggest anything specific regarding the knee. You’ve done posts on feet, ankle, hip, wrist, spine, and shoulder– is there any chance for a knee post in the future? I’m hoping you might have some Primal pointers, especially considering your recovery from your Ultimate mishap. Thanks in advance!

Conor

Well, my knee injury was an acute one, a freak accident caused by impact with the ground. It wasn’t exactly a mobility issue (although I suppose that could have played an indirect role somehow, maybe by impeding proper movement and landing). That said, this is a great question that deserves a response.

With the knee, we actually want stability – not mobility. Consider that as you go along the kinetic chain of the body and examine the joints that comprise it, their primary functions alternate. First is the thoracic spine (which needs mobility), then the lumbar spine (stability), then the hip (mobility), then the knee (stability), then the ankle (mobility). This is also true starting at the shoulder (mobility and stability), followed by the elbow (stability), and then the wrist (mobility). See how that works?

So in fact we want a stable knee, rather than a mobile one. A stable knee doesn’t bow inward when walking or squatting. It doesn’t collapse on you or buckle beneath you. A good, stable knee is a hinge joint. It definitely shouldn’t be rotating and bending every which way. That’s pathological mobility.

To protect your knee, then, you must maintain good mobility in the other areas, especially those immediately above (hip) and below (ankle). If you lose mobility in the hip or ankle, your knee must compensate for the missing movement. Your knee becomes mobile to make up for the missing mobility above and below, and since the knee isn’t supposed to be mobile, you get pain, and injury, and downtime, and co-pays, and surgery bills. All those hip mobility drills, and the ankle mobility exercises – that’s what you want. Those are the keys to healthy knees.

Bone up on the mobility series (which you’ve already been doing). They’re a good introduction into the world of mobility.

Foam roll your calves, quads, glutes, IT band, hamstrings, and basically everything in and around your hips, knees, and lower body in general. If your knees are hurting, you’re probably tight all over. If the foam roller isn’t getting the job done, graduate to a lacrosse ball.

Familiarize yourself with MobilityWOD. Run a search for “knee” and “hip” and “ankle” and “calf” and pretty much every body part. It’s not the most organized, but everything is good and worth watching. Consider picking up some of the stretch bands they use.

Even if your knees feel great now, by ignoring mobility issues up and downstream, you could be setting yourself up for disappointment – and injury – in the future. Take an active role in the health and movement of your tissues before it’s too late.

That’s it for this week. I have a decent queue of questions built up that I’m trying to get through, but I’m always accepting more – so send ‘em along! Thanks for reading and leave your thoughts in the comment section.

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. My midwife has warned me against any movements that involve inverting my torso late in pregnancy. She thinks it can encourage/enable the baby to flip to a breech position from its current ideal head-down state. I’m not sure if this is supported by the evidence, but it seemed worth throwing out there, since there are two things on the list that might invert the torso. Anyone know if this is a valid concern?

    Cord wrote on December 12th, 2011
    • Inversions are often also used to flip babies *into* the cephalic (head-down) position!

      It is extremely uncommon for babies to flip back to breech once they have gone cephalic, as there’s not a whole lot of room for acrobatics in there, and their head usually gets locked and loaded into the pelvis. But I wouldn’t rule out the possibility…

      Carli wrote on December 12th, 2011
  2. I was just thinking about the sun exposure information over the past day or two. I remember studying about the Inuit Indians, they sent the children out in the sun for recess when they were at school and a 5″ x 5″ patch of skin was all that was exposed, and studies said they had their vitamin D requirement filled…..But now I wonder if the Vitamin D in the fatty fish they ate had more to do with them keeping up their Vitamin D requirement.

    Brenda Living Primal wrote on December 12th, 2011
  3. I noticed when we went to Mexico on vacation recently, I did get pretty pink (not “burned”, though) but amazing to me I didn’t peel. No peeling at all! That’s never happened to me before. Don’t know what that means. And the only thing I used as “lotion” is coconut oil.

    priller wrote on December 12th, 2011
  4. I found that drinking alcohol and how it made me feel afterward (bad) stood in stark contrast with how going Primal made me feel (good).

    The better I felt from being Primal, the less inclined I was to give up the good feeling in exchange for getting to have some wine.

    So I decided to see what it would be like without the wine. And by the end of a 30 day trial period, I didn’t want it anymore. I’m glad I tried it, because before I did, I thought I “enjoyed” wine. The trial made me realize it wasn’t as much about enjoying something as it was about being used to it. Once I stopped, I didn’t miss it. That was well over a year ago.

    I don’t expect most people to go this route, and for those with low tolerance, if the sweet potatoes idea helps, that’s good. But I have to say, eating carbs so you can drink carbs seems a little incongruous with what Primal’s all about. :-)

    Susan Alexander wrote on December 12th, 2011
  5. Ah, I’m glad for the ancestry/sun stuff. I’m also a pale person in Australia (albeit far more south). Another thing to worry about as a white person in places like this is the hole in the ozone, which makes the sun even more harmful to us.

    Audrey H wrote on December 12th, 2011
  6. No fear of getting burnt in Sydney at the moment. It’s the coldest, greyest summer start in 50 years. Good weather to build alcohol tolerance, though! :)

    Craigp81 wrote on December 12th, 2011
  7. Nobody’s mentioned less tolerance for caffeine (although the question did include that). I was a regular tea drinker and occasional coffee drinker for decades, but after going primal, all I can tolerate now is decaf. I thought I was immune to the effects of caffeine, but now I get heart-pounding jitters that last for hours if I drink it.

    Mo wrote on December 12th, 2011
  8. My son is now 1. All through my pregnancy I did yoga 2 x a week and lifted free weights for 2 days. I’d get some great looks in the gym. I was careful to alter some lifts that put too much pressure on my stomach or groin such as incline presses as I got further along. But, I lifted and actually increased my weights every week until 6 months and then kept them the same until 8 months when lifting became hard. I did the yoga until about 3 weeks before I was due. (By then I’d gained 40 lbs and my body wasn’t moving a whole lot) My Dr said I was the fittest preg woman he’d had. He encouraged me the whole time. This was my 3rd child and by far the easiest pregnancy. I ate well the whole time with carbs around 150 a day, but 40 lbs is just hard on a body. But, I was only exhausted the last 2 weeks. (Very good by most women’s standards)

    Kel wrote on December 12th, 2011
  9. I’ve heard that you shouldnt do explicitly abdominal exercises while pregnant because tight abdominals press on the uterus or something. Writing it just now it sounds silly but I know that my mother has said that she was told pregnant women shouldnt do ab exercises and my boyfriend’s mother was told that my boyfriend was born with a squished (not in those words) ankle because he didnt have enough room to grow in-uterine because she did heaps of yoga ab stuff while pregnant. Thoughts?

    SophieE wrote on December 12th, 2011
    • Old wives tale, for sure :)

      Carli wrote on December 13th, 2011
  10. All I have to say about the caffeine intolerance is, weird! For a while I was drinking multiple cups of coffee a day and wishing I felt it more, but I must admit I think I was in a state of adrenal fatigue while training for CrossFit Regionals Comp. Either way, I haven’t noticed as much of an intolerance to caffeine as I have alcohol. Actually reading this post put the pieces together as to why I’ve had such bad hangover any time I’ve drank over the past 6 months or so. Headaches, grumpiness, overall fatigue and hating the day. Not overdoing it is definitely the answer! And actually, it seems much better if I stick to ONLY tequila, not mixing alcohols and especially not red wine.

    Jen wrote on December 12th, 2011
  11. I have lower tolerance to both alcohol and caffeine. If I am very low carb, less than a glass of red wine will have me feeling the effects in minutes. It’s pretty crazy, actually, and kind of annoying if I am cooking or want to be able to read or focus shortly after a few sips! I also never had hangovers in the past, but I had a bad one just two weeks ago from too many glasses of red wine and a glass of champagne. I blamed it on the volume and the champagne, but I am wondering if my overall tolerance is just lower.

    As far as caffeine goes, I used to be able to have it later in the day no problem, but now it makes me go into to super speed. My boyfriend has even commented on my odd behavior and essentially banned me from having any coffee later in the eve because I won’t stop talking a mile a minute!

    What is really odd is that in the past week or so I am noticing that I just don’t even tolerate coffee well anymore–even my regular morning cup. It seems to make my stomach feel all acidic and irritated. So I can’t even finish a cup of it lately(I tended to drink Americanos or drip every morning with cream). I am seriously considering giving it up as now I am starting to build an aversion to it based on the previous week or so’s experiences. It just does not even sound good…

    Broth is my fall back. Whole pots of green tea at sushi dinners seem to be fine, though…

    One December 29th or so it will be a year since I went primal so these are both newer developments.

    obligatecarnivore wrote on December 12th, 2011
  12. Yes to lowered alcohol tolerance for both my wife and I since changing our WOE.

    Of course, for those complaining of increased hangovers – it might be good to remember that the stuff is poisonous. I’m not a tea-totaller, but erhaps a good hangover is a nice reminder to be good to your precious liver.

    Gene wrote on December 13th, 2011
  13. I’ve found the complete opposite with the alcohol tolerance! Since I’ve gone….mostly….Primal (20%+), I’ve found I can drink very regularly (sometimes a scotch bottle a weekend) and not get a hangover or even that drunk. That said I primarily drink scotch with soda water, and keep it spaced out. Coke/sugar drinks give me an increased hangover. I just assumed it was less fat in my liver and thus better processing the alcohol….perhaps not!

    MattyD wrote on December 13th, 2011
  14. Being short, and mostly primal/paleo, means only one glass of wine for me, too, unless it’s a party over several hours. Then, as long as I alternate a glass of water with glasses of wine, and follow the last glass of wine with a glass of water, then I have no problems. Even given that, I generally can only tolerate 2 glasses of wine! Talk about a cheap date! Back in the pre-primal days, I would easily have 3 or 4 glasses of wine at a party, and only suffer if I didn’t follow it up with water before bed.

    Sue wrote on December 13th, 2011
  15. Mark, you say you stay at 100 to 150 grams per day: but of what. A bottle of wine is 74 grams of alcohol according to nutritiondata.self.com. I like a couple of 6oz glasses of wine a day myself, which doesn’t cause any problems for me on a low carb/primal diet.

    DebLee wrote on December 13th, 2011
    • Did Mark maybe mean 100-150 grams of carbs?

      Lynn wrote on December 13th, 2011
      • Nope, according to the same source, a bottle of wine has 17.6 grams of carbohydrates,4.4 of which are sugar.

        DebLee wrote on December 13th, 2011
        • ?
          17.6 is less than 150…

          Wulf wrote on December 13th, 2011
  16. Hi all, Love the site, love the comments..
    Just a short story about sun and Australia. I live on the Sunshine Coast, and we often get very hot days around 35-40 deg is summer (Celsius). Im olive skinned, and can easily burn badly in ten to fifteen mins here even on a day where it is about 25 deg.
    A few years ago I went to Minnesota in summer and went to a fair where I sat in the midday sun watching a show for two hours on what was later reported to be the hottest day since 1901. People died in their homes on this day – I saw it on the nightly news. I do not remember the temp (it was in F so didnt mean anything to me) but I assume it was damn hot. However it didnt “feel” hot to me. There was no “sting” in the heat. It didn’t hurt me to sit in it for hours at all.

    So for all those attempting sun exposure in Australia – please take it slowly. Its a totally different heat down under. Ive been all over the world and never felt sun like it anywhere else.

    I got burned recently on my arm from inside my tinted windows car.

    Jane

    Jane wrote on December 13th, 2011
  17. Since eating lower carb, I’ve not really noticed a difference in the intoxicating effects of alcohol, although this is not saying much in that I rarely drink more than 1-2 beers in a night anyway. However, I HAVE noticed that I will wake up after 3-4 hours of good sleep, and only sleep very restlessly the remainder of the night. If I drink my yummy ale a few hours before bed, as I’m cooking dinner, I dont have the same problem.

    Dave Pryor wrote on December 13th, 2011
  18. From the perspective of a Midwife, I think modification of movements are a fine way to go as long as you are listening to what your body (and your baby) are telling you.
    I’ve seen moms who work out to the day they deliver and do really well and I’ve also seen mom’s crash and burn, mostly because they felt the “need” to exercise and ignored their bodies ques to slow down and rest more.
    Please, listen to your body. If it is telling you to rest and not work out (aside from a gentle swim or walk) then honouring that is really important. Pregnancy isn’t the time to push your limits or find new personal bests, it’s the time to grow a beautiful baby, eat healthy food and connect with your body.

    On another note, as you progress week by week, your body produces more of a hormone called relaxin, which makes your joints flexible (so baby can fit through the pelvis) and predisposes you to injury. Use proper form and if you feel ‘wobbly’ then stop. Taking care of a new baby with a busted ACL is not fun ;0

    Meghanne wrote on December 13th, 2011
  19. Wow, thanks for the timely post on exercising while pregnant! I have just started following the primal lifestyle and actually got pg during the challenge this fall. (I credit the challenge with my increased fertility that month :-) ). I was pretty ill the first trimester and now that I’m feeling great in the second trimester, I’m ready to jump back into an exercise routine. I’m definitely checking out One Fit Mom and will also try some recommendations here.

    Tricia wrote on December 13th, 2011
  20. I have become completely alcohol intolerant since going primal about 5 months ago. Living in Ireland this isn’t necessarily a good thing as social events tend to involve a alot of drink. I am not a heavy drinker but if I have more than a few glasses I start getting drunk and the ‘snowball’ effect can come into play. Leaving me in a aterrible state for several days afterwards.

    I think it’s primarily down to a lower body mass as I’ve lost weight. I’m laughing at the comments above from people of Irish descent. People living in Ireland don’t know what sun is especially this time of year!

    David wrote on December 13th, 2011
  21. I have noticed a dramatic change in my alcohol tolerance.

    It makes no difference how much food I have consumed. It seems to have no effect on the level of tolerance.

    One year ago (almost) at a New Years party, I tried to get drunk for the first time in my life (I was 40 and had never gotten drunk). Everyone was surprised at how much it took to get me smashed. three shots of 80 year old scotch, 4 or 5 mixed drinks (mixed strong)and three beers. I don’t know what it takes for most people but that seemed like a lot to me.

    About four weeks ago (after being Primal for two months) after eating a large meal because I knew I was going to drink and wanted to counter the effects of alcohol (so I thought), I went to Twin Peaks with some friends. After one “man sized” Coors on draft (basically two beers) I could hardly stand up.

    Yes, my tolerance for alcohol has dramatically changed. I get a buzz from one Budweiser. One mixed drink will have me smashed, no matter how much I have eaten.

    While I have lost 28 lbs. since last year (when it was hard to get drunk), I can’t see the loss of weight having this much of an effect.

    Something is definitely different in my body now. It is a little embarrassing and I get some ribbing from my friends, but it is so much cheaper to get a buzz now. Not that I drink very often anyway, but… it certainly doesn’t take very much before I am loopy. lol

    Gary Morris wrote on December 13th, 2011
  22. Re: lower alcohol tolerance.

    I have also noticed a huge difference. Now to make the adjustment. I have not found the correct amount yet and recently just decided it wasn’t worth any more “testing”, so to speak.

    Over and done with it thanks to PB.

    Pam wrote on December 13th, 2011
  23. Alcohol and caffeine cause sugar levels to crash on a cellular level. They are perhaps the most potent triggers of these crashes, which you can test by monitoring your urine with an agricultural tool called a refractometer.

    The fewer carbs you eat, the more prone you are to these crashes – for one because you are not offsetting the effects by consuming carbs with them (always consume coffee with lots of sugar if you have this problem). And I suspect another reason is diminishing glycogen storage capacity, which is to be expected when you are relying on glycogen less and less to fuel your body. The storage depot diminishes.

    Matt Stone wrote on December 13th, 2011
  24. I do notice reduced alcohol tolerance but it’s difficult to sort out which factors are affecting it the most since I also weigh less and drink less in general. I had been attributing it to those things up til now.

    Tina wrote on December 13th, 2011
  25. I was not primal when I was pregnant but I did do low carb, with that said I will give you the lowdown on my pregnancies as I became older. With my first two I didn’t really pay a whole lot of attention to what I ate, but my last two I did a low carb diet, because I found out I was borderline diabetic, I refused insulin and controlled my blood sugars very nicely just by diet alone, I found out that any grain type product would set me off, as well as many processed foods, therefore I basically started on a low carb journey and now I am going to primal. I had no problem staying active throughout my pregnancy, right to the last day, I never discussed my diet with the doctors for obvious reasons. I wish I could have my results with my blood sugars said it all.

    As far as exercise I would do what works for you. You may have to do shorter workouts or just change your routine.

    Just to let you know how a primal/low carb diet effects you, my first son was 8 pounds 14 ounces when I was not watching what I ate. My last ones where 7 pounds 8 ounces and 7 pounds 1 ounce. More the average(normal) sized baby and very easy labors.

    rdzins wrote on December 13th, 2011
  26. I will suggest a less biological explanation for lowered alcohol tolerance. When you go for primal living, you get more attuned, you are used to a nice sober state. Of course, breaking down alcohol can make you feel down, but also the feeling of inebriation itself, the loss of that precious clarity. It’s not only how the alcohol works on your body, but also on your mind.

    At least for me, the pleasure of inebriation has diminished.

    Hipparchia wrote on December 14th, 2011
  27. “Anyone else with lowered alcohol tolerance on the Primal Blueprint eating plan?”

    Oh yes, yes and yes. Overall a good thing, but requires to learn new drinking habits. If I drink as I used to, I’ll be wasted in no time! Proper meals and some water during the evening will help though.

    Johanna wrote on December 14th, 2011
    • The problem is, I get a better buzz out of my sober state now that I am more primal. If it’s a problem at all.

      Anyway, I would never manage Bulgarian social drinking anyhow. It’s called social, but the requirements to socialize with rakia are too high:) both in quantity and the strength of the stuff.

      Hipparchia wrote on December 14th, 2011
  28. Definitely YES on squatting when pregnant. It’s such a natural pose that traditional peoples do all the time. It encourages better baby position than sitting (sitting leaning back can encourage a posterior or sunny-side-up baby, while leaning a little forward like in a squat encourages the correct position). It stretches and tones your pelvic floor. And according this lady, it’s much better than Kegels for preventing incontinence later! http://mamasweat.blogspot.com/2010/05/pelvic-floor-party-kegels-are-not.html

    Unfortunately, I have a very wobbly pelvis which causes me a whole lot of pain, so I’m not doing a lot of squats this pregnancy. You do need to watch how you feel and what joints are loosening up.

    And if your doctor or midwife is open-minded enough to let you out of the stirrups (ugh, hated those), squatting is probably the very best position you could get in for birth. It widens the pelvic outlet while letting your tailbone out of the way — so way fewer cases of “cephalo-pelvic disproportion.” And I hear tears are unlikely in that position too — especially if you squat a lot so that your perineum is used to that degree of stretch.

    Really, we should all give up chairs during pregnancy and squat instead! And definitely squat instead of bending over to pick things up — you know how awful it is to bend over when your belly is enormous. Squat instead and you’ll be a lot less sore at the end of the day.

    Sheila wrote on December 14th, 2011

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