Tag: dear mark

Dear Mark: Should I Join a Gym?

Dear Mark,

The last year or so I’ve been trying to get in better shape but have had to start from a pretty low level. With the help of some pretty major weight loss (thanks to the Primal diet) and a steady exercise routine I’m ready to kick it up a notch or two. I’ve thought about joining a gym but wonder if I should put my money toward some home equipment instead. I’ve been pretty basic up to this point. Where would you suggest I start? Is it worth it for a beginner like myself to join a gym? I don’t think there are any CrossFit clubs where I live.

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Dear Mark: Common Stumbling Blocks

Dear Mark,

As a newbie to MDA I’m interested in doing the Primal Challenge for the year. I’m sold on the idea of PB and understand how it should work. The problem is I’ve had one failure after another when it comes to diets, and I’m a little gun-shy going in. The PB is definitely different than diets I’ve tried in the past. I just want to feel prepared this time for the stumbling blocks and know what to look out for. I’d love to hear your advice and tips!

I’ve been hearing from a lot of new folks since the New Year’s Primal Challenge. Thanks for your comments and questions. I’m thrilled you’ve all joined us!

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Dear Mark: Brain Pills

Dear Mark,

I’ve been a faithful reader of your blog for a couple of months now since Tony Horton turned me on to it at one of his fitness camps. Anyway, the reason I am writing today is to refer you to an article about some scientists who are proposing “cognitive enhancing drugs” for healthy people. I had to check the dateline to make sure it wasn’t recycled from April 1st. I’m sure you’ll be interested in it and I’m sure your readers would enjoy your commentary on it:

Scientists Back Brain Drugs for Healthy People

Thanks to reader Dave for forwarding the article. A number of people I know actually sent me the news with various questions and comments of their own. It’s made for a lot of interesting conversations, shall we say, in the last several days.

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Dear Mark: Flu Shots

Dear Mark,

I’m sure you know it’s gearing up toward flu season again, and the folks at work have started pushing for flu vaccination sign-ups.  I’m always a bit wary of Big Pharm and the “common knowledge” of what’s good for us (more so than ever since I first started reading MDA), so you’ll understand my hesitance in claiming my free shot. What’s your take on this issue?  Is it worth getting stuck, or am I better off left to my own healthy devices?

Thanks to Sarah for the timely question. You’re right that the ads and advice are everywhere this time of year. Some people rush to get their shots as soon as they’re released in early fall. Others swear them off. And then, I think, there’s a large group in the middle who waffle back and forth about the need for them.

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Dear Mark: Weight Loss and Workout Routine

For this week’s Dear Mark I thought I’d publish a couple email correspondences I’ve had with MDA readers lately. Hit me up with your questions and comments in the comment board.

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Dear Mark: Post-Workout Fasting

Before I jump into this week’s Dear Mark post I wanted to direct everyone’s attention to Andrew Rubalcava’s site, Go Healthy Go Fit. Andrew just published an interview with me. Here are just a few of the questions I answered:
Who have been your top 3 favorite bloggers over the years?
How did you get involved in physical competition such as your experience as a triathlete?
If you could give a few words of advice for those who are just beginning to enter a world of health and fitness, what would you say?
Check out the interview here, and check back on Thursday when I’ll be publishing Andrew’s guest post on how to stay healthy no matter what type of lifestyle you lead.

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Dear Mark: Rest Days

Hi Mark,

Do you ever take a rest day? I know Jack LaLanne claims he exercises even when tired and Art DeVany says you should do something every day. Spent last weekend splitting wood and lugging it into the barn and then Monday I did a 6 mile fall foliage hike in the mountains. Tuesday I was too tired to do anything. Today I took another rest day as I struggled getting up for work after 8 hours of sleep. I imagine Grok must have taken rest days where he dozed or just rested in camp after an especially grueling hunt. What’s your opinion on taking a day off?

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Dear Mark: Muscle Building and Carbs

Dear Mark,

I am a loyal Daily Apple reader who’s just begun a full-scale primal + IF + HIIT lifestyle. My only worry is that of muscle loss or impeded muscle growth. As a friend of multiple muscle builders, I’ve been told that carbohydrates are necessary for that muscle growth. While I’m not about to go back to my high-carb ways, I am willing to make an exception for post-lifting meals (within an hour window). I’ve heard this is the optimal time for carb-intake as your muscles are depleted of glycogen stores. I am wondering if you could shed light on this. Is this method actually effective for muscle growth? If so, how many carbs should I consume, and of what kind? And finally, will making this one compromise induce inflammation or impede fat loss?

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Dear Mark: Running Across the U.S.

Dear Mark,

My name is Katie, and I’m planning on running across the U.S. from Boston to San Diego starting this March! I’m 23 and have been an avid runner since high school. I train on my own now and am deciding whether to run 9-12 miles a day or kick it up to an average of 20 miles a day. I’d like to understand what the effects of the two choices would be. Under the 20 mile plan, I’d run long, slow distance with some walking. The 9-12 mile plan would be the same with less walking. If I’m going slow, would covering the extra 10 miles a day be harmful to my body? What is the risk of injury and long term health/bone problems if I did 8 months of 100 mile weeks compared to 12 months of 60 mile weeks?

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Dear Mark: Is Flax Bad?

Dear Mark,

I’ve been researching flax and am ready to pull the plug on my dedicated flaxseed grinder. The kicker was seeing flaxseeds associated with prostate cancer. What?s your take?

Thanks to reader Clare for the thoughtful correspondence on flax. This is exactly why I love doing this blog. Research continues to unfold, and the conversation never fails to engage and inspire me.

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