Contest: An Experiment of One

In keeping with the recent “How to Conduct a Personal Experiment” theme, I’ve put together a fun contest. I’ve been sharing my ideas for personal Primal experiments. Now it’s your turn. Tell me your personal experiment ideas for a chance to win a Primal prize package. All the details are below. But first, the prize…

The Prize

You think Grok took a seat on a porcelain throne when nature called? Of course not! Grok squatted, and so should you. But what are we to do? Is it time for all-out bathroom renovations? No, there’s a simpler solution, and that’s where Squatty Potty comes to the rescue. The winner of this drawing gets their pick of the Squatty Plastic, Squatty Classic or the Squatty Tao Bamboo. Learn more about the benefits of squatting here and order your own Squatty Potty today.

As the Square36 website says, “Do you ever wish you had a bit more space to fully extend and maximize your workout without feeling confined? Now you can with Square36, the world’s 1st oversized workout mat.” That about sums it up. This exercise mat is 6′ x 6′ and is 6 mm thick – thicker than most yoga/workout mats. With the Square36 mat you can easily convert your living room into a workout studio. Just unroll it and you’re set. It’s also great for couples yoga or as a play mat for children. It retails for $99.99, but you can get one for free if you are the lucky winner of this contest.

A $100 gift certificate to Tropical Traditions. If you missed out on the contest I held a couple weeks ago, this is a second chance to stock up on Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, or some Grass-Fed Lamb, Beef or Bison. Or, if that doesn’t float your boat, you could pick up some massage oils, or something for your dog. The list goes on and on, and you’ll have your pick if you win this contest.

As if that wasn’t enough, the winner will also receive one canister of either Dark Chocolate or Vanilla Creme Primal Fuel.

That’s over $300 worth of Primal goodies, and all you have to do for a chance to win is…

The Contest

I want you to come up with your own personal experiments. Do it like so:

Goal: Lose body fat.

Hypothesis: Taking a walk in a fasted state every morning will lower my body fat.

Experiment: I will walk for 30 minutes upon waking and prior to eating breakfast.

Measurements to Take: Each week I will both measure my waist and rank my subjective “clothes fit better” assessment on a scale of 1-10.

Duration of Experiment: Four weeks.

Variables to Test: After four weeks I will conduct additional experiments testing the effect of walking for different periods of time, of walking at different speeds, and of fasting for shorter or longer periods of time before my first meal of the day.


Goal: To feel less stressed out in life.

Hypothesis: Daily deep breathing exercises can reduce stress and provide a sense of calm and relaxation.

Experiment: In a quiet place I will perform 5 deep breathing cycles (4 seconds to inhale, 7 to hold, and 8 to exhale) 3 times every day.

Measurements to Take: I will rank and record my stress levels on a scale of 1-10 both immediately before and after each session, and 1 hour following each session.

Duration of Experiment: Two weeks.

Variables to Test: After two weeks I will conduct additional experiments to see if more or fewer deep breathing cycles each session, and more of fewer sessions each day provide better or worse results.

Keep it brief, don’t take my examples, give maybe a line or two for each of the six sections, and email me your experiment ideas. Your ideas can be in any area that interests you and you think might be of interest to us. Each experiment up to ten counts as one entry in today’s contest. Ten experiments means ten opportunities to win. Use the email subject heading “Experiment of One” when submitting your answers, so I can easily find and organize all submissions.

The Deadline:

June 14, midnight, PDT. Only two days!

Who is Eligible:

Anyone with an idea for a personal experiment.

How a Winner is Chosen:

A random drawing will be held among all entrants.

Fine Print:

  • I will likely be compiling select submissions into a digital book that will be made available later this month. Stay tuned for details.
  • By emailing me your advice you are agreeing to let me use it in this digital book.
  • To ensure anonymity, your name will not be published.

Thanks to everyone in advance for participating. Grok on!

About the Author

Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.

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45 thoughts on “Contest: An Experiment of One”

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    1. I’m going to customize mine with racing stripes on top and flames running along the sides.

    2. So *that’s* why I always go up on my toes and lean forward…

    3. Yeeeeees! Ive seen other squat solution type thing (Natures Toilet is one, I think) but this is the most unobtrusively designed one that Ive seen that still allows for real squatting

      1. It’s phenomenal. I own one myself. I’ve been using it daily for the past few weeks and, well, my bathroom experiences have never been better.

        Comes out easier. Less wiping. More comfortable – I hate sitting but squatting is lovely.

        You could always use something else but this thing fits right underneath your toilet!

    4. Or you could just stick a spare roll of toilet paper under each foot and save yourself the $80.

      Seriously, am I the only one who has no problems with the conventional Western throne?

  1. Controls! We must have controls! For example, 4 weeks on, 4 weeks off, so you’re measuring both with and without the intervention. Otherwise how do you know if it’s the intervention that’s making the difference?

  2. Leaning right or left helps to avoid harmful straining.

  3. My neighbors already seem curious about what I’m up to! Since mentioning to them that I’m looking to place screening around the back porch for new cats, I’ve had a few standing out front of the place, looking things over. Even had one older fellow knock on my door, ask a few questions, and yet seemed more interested in looking behind me into the house.

    Now getting a squat pot would really give them something to talk about!

  4. I’m sorry to say that squatty potty doesn’t fit the bill as far as a squat toilet goes. If you have good hip mobility, your ass will touch the toilet seat with a squatty potty, and that defeats the purpose of squatting to poop.

    I rigged up a DIY solution with bricks, and then switched to Nature’s Platform. Both options are discussed here:

    Key points:
    – You must be in a full squat
    – Your ass must not touch the seat, all the weight must be through your heels

    If you look at the squatty potty website, you’ll see a model sitting on the toilet seat with her legs bent up on the chair. That is not remotely similar to an actual squat. It may be an excellent alternative for older people or people with injuries who cannot get into a full squat, but not for the vast majority of folks.

  5. Blowing through your lips to make a “raspberry” or “horse lips” helps open the sphincters to ease release as well. It is also fun. 🙂

    1. Our paediatrician recommended our son (5, which chronic constipation) use a potty for as long as necessary as it is close to a natural squat, and also that giving him a pot of bubble mixture to blow bubbles could help (for the same reasons as ZenBowman mentions, I assume).

      1. I hope it works out for your son! I’m missing any reference to blowing through the mouth from zenbowman, I can’t find one. My suggestion comes from Ina May Gaskin’s book on natural childbirth, where she points out that we are a long tube of spincters. Relaxing one end voluntarily through blowing/vibrating will coax the other end to relax and open as well.

  6. I got the squatty potty a few weeks ago. My metabolism had been wickedly slow since having my thyroid removed in March. Almost everything resolved itself as the thyroid hormone drug got regulated, except the constipation. All I can say is IT WORKS!

  7. OMG I must get a squatty potty.

    Thank’s for highlighting this for me.

  8. Finally! I can now get rid of the cinder blocks next to my toilet.

  9. This is hilarious to me–I lived in China for awhile and all we had were squatty potties. 🙂 The toilet doubled as your shower drain in some places.

  10. Heh. I have a 5 year old and a 4 month old. My life is an unending string of n=1 experiments.

  11. Just bought 4 sqautty potties last week! Simply genius. I’ve been saying for years (since I lived in Asia)that I would one day build a house with urinals and squatter toilets. Well, until that day comes, this is a perfect solution. They will also double as perfect helpers for my boys as they potty train!

  12. LOL. Forgive me but I am having trouble getting a visual on how the (dear god what a name!) squatty potty works.

    1. On the squatty potty website there is a video that will give you the visual.

  13. HA, this is good. We live in the middle east and are quite used to squatting but we hear a lot of complaints from our western guests… we are going to start telling them about YOU guys! who actually turn your western toilets INTO a squatties!

  14. I should get this for my former colleagues (Chinese) whose shoe marks I would see on the seat of the toiler. It used to amaze me how no one ever fell in but I suppose their muscles and ability to balance were superb.

  15. I never thought I would say this, but I want a squatty potty. I just suffered through a bout of sciatica, and although it may not sound intuitive, squatting was way less painful than sitting. Sitting put pressure on the most sensitive area of the back and was excruciating. Need to look into this…or win one!

  16. Glad I’m not the only one who considered building a house with squat toilets – also glad to know that I don’t necessarily have to!

    Any idea if there’s some kind of portable option, for those of us who work in an office for a third of their day and use the bathrooms there a lot more than at home?

  17. I’d love to join in & win something, but I JUST found this site a few days ago. My Boyfriend & I are just starting a 30 day try of paleo/primal eating. Not too bad so far, today was day 3. ^_^

    1. Don’t worry. I’ve only been here a few weeks, and in that time there have been three competitions. I’m sure there’ll be another one along soon!

  18. If grok (or groka) suffered a leg(s) injuries that prevented them from squatting, how did they manage?

  19. Should I put my postal address and choice of squatty in the submission email, or will you contact me if I win?

  20. Squatting definitely looks like it’s worth a try. If my knees can take it. May check with my brother-in-law though. Bet he could run one of those out of his workshop real quick.

    or a couple of stacks of books. I’ve got plenty of those.

    1. Looks like this company will become #1 in the #2 business….or how bout this: Our crap is their bread and butter!

      1. We just started potty training our son and I realized he really wants to squat to poop… hmm.. I think there is something to this.

  21. Okay, I’m confused… I LIKE the idea, but I keep envisioning the potential for a rather dismaying splash… How does one prevent such a thing?

  22. Goal: To get my four year old to stop standing up in a squat when he poops– makes the toilet seat filthy and sometimes he’s a scooch too far back if you know what I mean. Poor guy has some seriously pellet like poop so you can hardly blame him.