Meet Mark

Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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Category: Personal Improvement

Don’t Be So Sure: Why Doubt Is an Essential Tool for Reaching Health Goals

I’m sure we’ve all found ourselves around people who are absolutely hamstrung by their beliefs—whether about business or healthy eating, politics or fitness. Some people are overly sensitive or even overtly defensive when discussing them. Others might be congenial but simply shut down when the conversation turns to a “sacred” topic. But if conviction hampers them this much in social exchange, can you imagine how much it hampers them in the rest of their lives? Many of us tend to perceive certainty as a strength, but often it can cut us off from imagining a scope of better options. Over the years, people have invested so much time, energy and justification in their opinions that the cost to entertaining other possibilities seems too high. And that’s too bad. Because as the old saying goes, the only thing worse than making a mistake is to keep making it. That’s why today I want to talk about the value of doubt.

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?Feeling Overwhelmed? 9 Ways to Cope With and Work Past Primal Roadblocks

For all the positive effects, for all the long-term successes, for the life-changing (and in some cases life-saving) impacts of going Primal, I never want to give short shrift to the actual process of transition. Going Primal, taking it to a deeper level, or hitting a snag several years in can throw us for a loop. We hit a major fitness plateau. We get hit with a new health diagnosis or injury just as we’re making it out of the Primal starting gate. We think too much about the scale. We get caught up in analyzing how far we have to go and forget how much ground we’ve already covered. These unnerved moments and temporary backslides are all part of real-life (i.e. imperfect) natural adaptations to new challenges—challenges that will offer huge payback once we move through them. Most days and weeks things go well, but once in a while they don’t. We lose our footing. We lose our mojo. We get discouraged and slip into an emotional swampland. Times of feeling deeply overwhelmed threaten to derail some of our biggest endeavors—but it doesn’t need to go down that way.

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Why Fear May Be Blocking Your Primal Path (and How to Overcome It)

Getting healthy. It’s an admirable, enviable endeavor, you think. In fact, it’s what you’ve wanted, maybe desperately, for a long time. And then you came across Primal. You’ve been convinced for a while now that it’s a good guideline for how to live—reading the blog, maybe trying a Primal-friendly meal now and then. You’ve even read a book (or cookbook)—or two. You have the knowledge. You have the interest. Maybe you even feel a fire lit under you by a recent diagnosis, an additional medication, or an added 10, 20, or 50 pounds. The next logical step would be to put a Primal plan into action, right? Take it on, make it happen. Change your life for the inconceivable better. But, for many of us, that’s where fear rushes in to gum up the whole process.

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From Float Tanks to Silent Retreats: Why Are People Looking for More Extreme Forms of Sensory Deprivation?

I’m thinking about a Philip K. Dick story, never published, perhaps never put down on paper or even imagined. In this story, which might only exist in my mind, the world is awash in sensory stimuli. Bright lights, flashing signs, an endless cacophony. A world of quick jump cuts. It’s like the Khaosan Road at 11 PM, standing on a Los Angeles overpass at rush hour, or living inside a Youtube video. Imagine your first night in the Amazon, only instead of insects and birds and other creatures, it’s horns and conversations and alarms and drunks and car doors and rattling manhole covers and ringtones. In the world of this story, silence is a premium. To escape from your senses, you need to pay up.

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What Is the Experience of Awe and Why Does it Matter?

I camp mostly for the stargazing. Everything else is important, of course. The campfire, the smoky bacon, the muddy coffee. Trees, fresh air, endless trails. All great. But what I look forward to most of all is slipping out of my tent on a dark, moonless night, finding a clearing in the trees, looking up at the sky, and realizing that light from a star that shot out a hundred thousand years ago is only just now hitting my retina.

That’s awe.

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How Defining Moderation Can Help You Reach Your Health Goals

We’ve heard it a million times: “Eat a well-balanced diet with everything in moderation.” After all these decades of clear failure, it’s a hazy cliché still delivered by physicians, dietitians and nutritional “experts” with earnest assurance. The same goes for exercise and stress. Moderate amounts of stress are okay, moderate cardiovascular work is good, etc. We accept the concept of moderation so readily, I think, because it sounds so rational and simple. If we follow common sense, moderation suggests, we’ll be fine. But if it were that easy, most people would be healthy—and statistics on the rising rates of obesity and chronic illness tell us otherwise. So what’s the problem?

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