I have actually read from directly from Mark that the primal blueprint is not about asceticism...but I feel the way I am doing it seems to be a very basic form of asceticism.
For those of you that do not know, asceticism is (according to wikipedia)
"Asceticism (from the Greek: ???????, ásk?sis, "exercise" or "training" in the sense of athletic training) describes a lifestyle characterized by abstinence from various sorts of worldly pleasures (especially sexual activity and consumption of alcohol) often with the aim of pursuing religious and spiritual goals."
The reason that I say this is because I am basically eating the same thing every day. For breakfast I eat an apple and a handful of almonds. For second breakfast I eat 4 eggs fried in ghee, with onions, peppers, and sometimes tomatoes. For my next two meals I will basically eat a piece of meat with a large portion of veggies (9/10 times broccoli, cauliflower, and carrot mix) with olive oil on it. And I eat another couple handfuls of nuts throughout the day.
I have been doing this for a while now, and I feel great and I have shed off some pounds. But I am starting to tire of my meals a bit. I just had some dry pork and veggies with olive oil and I didn't really enjoy it. The lack of variety is actually starting to repulse me a bit. Foods that I was really liking before just taste OK, or even unappealing.
Anyway, today I was thinking about it, and I don't think this is actually that bad. Basically it all comes down to discipline. When I was eating unhealthy, food was for pleasure and only pleasure. Yes, obviously it was needed, but I didn't treat it like that. So I think the best way for me to make sure that I never go back to eating a horrible diet, I will change my view on food forever. Food is fuel, not something to be used for pleasure.
Some of you may disagree with me, and I will definitely end up enjoying certain things that I eat (even if I just learn to like them), but I feel like this approach isn't all that bad. Not only will I not be constantly thinking of eating fast food and cheat meals (as I seem to be now) but I will discipline myself.
What do you guys think of this approach to diet?
I'm with klcarbaugh on this. I don't see it as deprivation in any way. There is an abundance of things you can eat. It just takes a little imagination to shake oneself out of the box. If you eat the same things, that's entirely your choice.
Hmm, I don't know, it is for me. As an English kid growing up, I was fed a wide variety of food, including the traditional Sunday roast. I enjoyed the vegetables, but ate the meat because I had to. My favourite part was the roast potatoes, and my mother's awesome desserts.
I became vegetarian at 16 and didn't miss meat at all. It wasn't something I'd ever craved. At best, it was OK. At worse...well, it was something I choked down in order to get to the bits of the meal I enjoyed.
I dropped vegetarianism 5 years later when I was starting to get into lifting seriously and realised it was holding me back. I still preferred eggs, cheese and protein shakes but found tuna tolerable and ate a lot of that because it was cheap.
Years on, I've battled hard to drop carbs, but primal still has me basing my meals around the element I enjoy the least and avoiding the bits I love the most. Ascetism? Definitely.
I have to say that pre-primal I always felt deprived trying to follow a 'conventionally healthy' diet. Now that I've been on primal for a while, I do not, in the slightest, feel deprived.
The key is creativity in the kitchen I find.
And as for "abstinence from various sorts of worldly pleasures (especially sexual activity and consumption of alcohol)", HELL NO!
I'm not sure if I explained this right to be honest. I realize that I can eat this diet without it being a basic form of asceticism, but I don't want to. I feel like the discipline that this is giving me is actually better in the long run. I believe that it is just part of a whole mindset. Personally, I am a spiritual person, and as the definition says, I am doing this with a spiritual goal in mind.
As for the alcohol and sexual activity, I have practically given up alcohol already. I do still drink on the occasion, but any time I drink more than a couple I always regret it. Also, I have an 11 month old son right now, and I never want to be caught in an emergency while drunk. As for the sex though, I don't think I'm going to be giving that up. My wife wouldn't be too happy about that one.
To be honest, I just feel like this basic asceticism is the first step in me becoming a better person. I constantly say things like "I should do this, or do that" but I end up not doing them because I am too lazy. I just think that the discipline this will bring me will help me out with these things.
lifestyle characterized by abstinence from various sorts of worldly pleasures</blockquote>
you have to be kidding me
I agree... :)
I think you could pretty much define *all* "modern diets" as asceticism under that definition.
You can pretty much eat the same thing every day, or choose not to.
It's your call.
Personally as soon as I did the "primal thing" I started cooking way better, and have much more interesting meals.
Pretty much anything "conventional" can be made primal. Just substitute almond meal and/or coconut flour for example.
I'm not going to ramble on.
But I feel like "going primal" forces you to actually eat more types of meals that you may find an a nice restaurant as opposed to out of a box, or can, etc...
In my opinion it's the bodybuilders and figure competitors who follow asceticism almost to a "T."
They only eat for the result, not for their pleasure.
OK done now :)
I'm not the least bit spiritual, I've never had the slightest desire to drink alcohol, and there is absolutely NO way I'm going to do primal in any ascetic manner.
It's all about sensual enjoyment -- fatty foods, sunshine, leisurely exercise. When I feel up for it, I'll be adding "lift heavy things" and I can promise you that will be an enjoyment as well.
I can't figure out the link between "asceticism" and "better person". To me it's an oxymoron.
I think that there is a HUGE link between asceticism and being a better person. It is just a foreign concept in the west. I think when you stop focusing on physical pleasures you will actually have time to think about your life and how it is going. Once your mind is not clouded by worldly desires, you can really start understanding who you are and what you want to do with the rest of your life. Also, I must admit I am not promoting asceticism in a classical sense. I am not saying renounce most food, shelter, and cleanliness, I am just saying that a little discipline in your life will actually help you to see things as they really are.
Sean and Grokette, I completely agree.
bobbylight, I am not sure what definition of "better person" we are using here. Is it how successfully one adheres to an absolute arbitrary moral code?
To me, the happier someone becomes without harming others, the better person he or she becomes. And happiness is extremely related to feeling good. And feeling good is tightly linked to sensory pleasure.
I do agree on that the stimulation of the senses can interfere with our ability to think. But then, as long as we continue to focus our efforts on pursuing clear long-term goals and do not make important decisions while "sensorially intoxicated", sensory deprivation shouldn't be an issue.