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...Tell Me More
It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!
We all know that following your dreams means hard work, dedication, follow through, and determination. But how important is what you eat in determining your chances of failing or succeeding in your life ambitions? Eating Primally has proven to be an integral part of my quest to live out my dreams. Here is my story.
Even from a young age, I’ve always been very conscientious about my food choices. I decided to stop eating red meat when I was 12 years old. It was a decision I made based on something I had read about slaughterhouses. I eventually transitioned into a full-blown vegetarian. My mom followed suit and we primarily lived off veggie burgers and salads during my teen years. Oh yeah, and popcorn was a big staple in our house, with fat free “butter” sprayed all over it. I read Fit For Life when I was a senior in high school and started practicing food combining and maintained that practice for a few years. Looking back, I cannot remember a time when I did not have some “diet” or eating strategy I was trying on for size. I wouldn’t have declared myself someone who had an eating disorder, but food and exercise consumed a considerable amount of space in my mental hard drive. When would my next meal be? What would I eat? Would I binge on something that I knew wasn’t good for me and feel bad about myself ? Would I work out extra hard to help offset the extra calories, or would I have the mental fortitude to avoid the “bad food” and eat something “healthy” like a whole grain pizza with extra vegetables? No matter which decision I made, I inevitably came right back to thinking about my next meal. I assumed the incessant chatter that went on in my mind was a side effect of my health conscious outlook. Most of the other women I knew had the same affliction and we just accepted it as the norm.
I don’t regret trying all the various dieting strategies. It was an important part of my journey and it helped me learn a lot about myself and what actually works for me. I still enjoy tweaking the way I eat, sleep, and train, and enjoy experimenting on myself regularly. This isn’t to say that early experiments went over so well…
Eating a high-grain low-fat diet was causing a host of issues, including an increase in seasonal allergies, acne problems, and constant digestion trouble. In 2006, when I started training with Robb Wolf, I had already eliminated gluten and most grains and realized that adding animal protein to my diet was in my best interest. I was feeling better, but had yet to go completely paleo. Over the course of the next several years I transitioned to a strict paleo diet, and the most interesting side effect took place. I stopped obsessing over food. I didn’t notice it right away, but it struck me one day. I could completely lose myself in whatever task was at hand without the nagging voice in the back of my head reminding me to think about food. This was a remarkably freeing time in my life. I found that my creative side intensified and my energy levels skyrocketed. I believe this enabled me to start using my mental faculties to focus on things I wanted to accomplish, dreams I wanted to achieve. I realized that I had been putting off so many things because I just couldn’t imagine adding one more thing to my list of to do’s. I was already juggling life, career, school, and family. How could there possibly be room for my dreams!
It seems like a small thing, but I really believe that living a more Primal lifestyle gave me the energy and the mental stamina to start tackling all of my aspirations. One of which was to make a go at my ambition to be a musician. Another of which was to take my experience working with Robb Wolf and my passion for the paleo lifestyle and turn it into a career. Over the next several years I made a host of bold moves and my Primal lifestyle helped me along. I no longer had to dedicate hours to the gym everyday or worry about meals. I could use my time to write music, record and perform.
After a stint of living in Nashville and recording my first album, I moved back to California to Los Angeles. This is when I saw a job opening at Primal Nutrition and knew it was the perfect opportunity to do something I love. I met with Mark and his team and the rest is history. I’ve been part of the team myself for several years now. Many of you may know me from PrimalCon where my husband Adam Lambert and I coach on strength training. I’m also involved in Personal Coaching and the Luxury Retreats, and I’ve been able to do all this while pursuing my career in music. Both careers are extremely consuming and extremely gratifying, and I’m convinced I never could have done it without the Primal lifestyle.
I just want to thank Mark for not only being a great mentor and boss, but a great friend and someone I truly respect and admire. It has been wonderful being part of the Primal team and none of this would have been possible had he not dared to share his dream and passion with all of us.
P.S. For anyone who would like to check out my new album, or learn more about my musical alter ego Nesta!, here are some links. Grok on!