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Thread: Failing to fully grasp what is best in terms of primal exercise page

  1. #1
    Tealia's Avatar
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    Failing to fully grasp what is best in terms of primal exercise

    Primal Fuel
    Background Info:
    I walk to university 3x a week.

    One-way is 2.5km, or 1.5 miles. It takes me about 45 minutes one-way since there are steep hills along the way, and a huge hill that the university sits on.

    I am 21, female, 5'6" and 165lbs.
    I used to be incredibly out of shape, 230lbs.

    The first time I walked to school, I arrived to class beet-red, soaked with sweat, and ready to pass out... friggin' hills.

    After much persistence I have slowly built up my walking ability. The hike to class that use to make me stop multiple times along the way, and leave me breathless, now only works up a very light sweat.

    Here's the question:
    I own a bike. I have maybe ridden that bike a grand total of five times.
    (I over-estimated my fitness level when I bought it, remember my initial challenge with walking, let alone biking!)

    I wouldn't mind riding my bike to class now that I actually have the strength to do so.
    However, which exercise is actually healthier for me?
    Mark disapproves of heavy cardio, stating that it releases stress hormones, yada yada...

    Is biking considered too 'fast' for the 'moving slowly' rule?

    Time is no real concern to me. My walking has never interfered with any other schedule. I don't mind if I walk 90 minutes round-trip versus biking 30 minutes round-trip.

    I'm just wondering which mode of transportation is better for furthering my goals of over-all health.
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    tfarny's Avatar
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    For your clear question: Which one is better - I'm going to say walking. It just seems to me to be uniquely good for weight loss, I dunno. You might try riding once or twice a week to change it up and ease up the wear on your joints, or just for a fun change. But I'm a proponent of walking, in general, for healthy weight loss.
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    If you bike very slowly, I don't see why you couldn't have a nice day cruising on the bike. It's about low-intensity, walking among the best low-intensity.

    If you'd like to enjoy a leisurely bike ride, I say go ahead. No one would see a caveman ride a bike, of course, but I'm not an orthodox grokian in terms of following a life parallelic to our ancestors. A leisurely bike ride can and does fall into the category of low-intensity, part of your "play," which is a part of living primally in the modern world.

    That walk to class though might be the best for continuing fat loss efforts, if you still have any. So just keep both.

  4. #4
    Jacksson's Avatar
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    I'm not sure if you are saying you have very little experience on a bike or that you have only ridden your current bike a couple of times but if it is the former, I would be very careful riding it to school if the hills are that steep. It could be pretty dangerous on the downhill side. And if they are really steep, it may be very difficult to ride uphill.

    Otherwise, I think mixing it up would be great. It is just my opinion but I would be careful taking everything so literally. Riding a bike will be faster than walking but it is still in the category of moving slowly as long as you arent hammering on the pedals. A guideline might be that if if feels like you are exercising on purpose, you may need to back off a bit.

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    Do you think biking, in general, would be fun? If so, and if you find it enjoyable, why not ride your bike along the route during a weekend or day off and see how your body responds to it? Make it a day where you set aside the morning or afternoon for the bike ride and don't really care how long it takes you. If at the end of the ride, you can still talk in complete sentences without too much huffing and puffing, you are probably below the range of what is strictly called chronic cardio.

    Remember that the actual line of chronic cardio is a little different for everyone. Some people can do a 5k without their heart rate sky rocketing, and some (myself included) can't. Don't overthink this too much... the main thing is to get out and get moving. By the strict definition of primal, I suppose saying that walking is probably best... this is, after all, how our ancestors migrated from place to place. That being said, I personally know someone that bikes to work day in and day out and eats primal and has leaned out significantly just because of diet and his daily routine. Get out and have fun with that bike! Moving is moving!
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    Also, just to quickly add... if biking takes less time than walking, make sure you still get in your 3-5 hours of moving at a slow pace (sticking strictly to primal blueprint fitness).
    ~All luck is earned in the end.~

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    You should always do some walking because the weight bearing aspect is good for you. Do both, enjoy the journey.
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    I've been kind of wondering this too, because I have three miles of signifigant hills to get to the train station from my house, and I'd LOVE to get there on my bike (I have a really nice cruiser!!) But I didn't know if it'd be too 'chronic cardio' to try it every day. I wouldn't be able to walk three miles in a timely fashion. (I already get up at 5:30!)

    Fortunately, they're opening a new trainstaiton about a mile from my house in 2014, so walking will be a much easier option!
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    When I started college in the dark ages (39 years ago) I road my bike 5 miles into town then around campus and back home again. What made me stop doing it was rude people. I was nearly run over twice by auto drivers and once run into a wall by another biker. After that, I walked the mile to the bus stop and took the bus in. I don't think that riding a bike for travel would be considered chronic cardio. I don't know whether drivers in BC are better than those here in the US, but I would definitely consider riding as an alternative.

  10. #10
    Dirlot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Westly View Post
    I've been kind of wondering this too, because I have three miles of signifigant hills to get to the train station from my house, and I'd LOVE to get there on my bike (I have a really nice cruiser!!) But I didn't know if it'd be too 'chronic cardio' to try it every day. I wouldn't be able to walk three miles in a timely fashion. (I already get up at 5:30!)

    Fortunately, they're opening a new trainstaiton about a mile from my house in 2014, so walking will be a much easier option!
    3 miles on a bike is not chronic cardio...it is a warm up.
    You might be able to count the hills as part of your sprints if you really attack them but really don't worry about.
    The fact that you say you LOVE the idea mean it is fun, enjoy it and listen to your body if you are getting burned out tone it down.
    Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
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