Wednesday, April 6, 2011 Post By: Grayne Wetzky

Exercise on the cheap

One thing you can be certain of when reading about health topics is that there will be no shortage of conflicting information. Scientific studies contradict each other every week, probably based on who paid for the research. The net is overflowing with nutritionists and a diverse community of health experts and philosophies.

In this climate where everything can be confirmed to be both healthy or unhealthy with just a few minutes spent on google there is one thing that every one seems to agree on; Exercise is always healthy. Still, with the entire world in agreement that we should exercise more, it is still a major hurdle for many people to get started and follow through with exercise.

Luckily, getting active and improving your health dramatically doesn't have to be expensive, time consuming or require a lot of equipment. You already have everything you need to get in great shape for absolutely free.

My general approach to great health is to look for ways to live a more natural life. I apply this with great success to the way I eat, but this mindset is also great for getting active and getting great work outs.

I never set foot in a gym. The gym environment is not appealing to me, neither is the price nor the fact I have to drive to get there. Since I am not looking to build huge body builder muscles, there is nothing the gym can offer me that I can't get cheaper elsewhere.

As humans we are built to move. Modern life, especially in the USA, does not promote movement. We sit all day at work, only to sit some more in our cars before we sit around eating and watching TV. This is far from optimal and the chief reason for the wave of health problems in the world after poor diets.

Many people pass on the endless benefits of exercise because they feel too tired or too overwhelmed to get started. I think this is because people think exercise is supposed to be hard and painful to be effective, and so they can't find the motivation to get started.

This is the wrong way to look at it. Nothing in life should be purposely painful. Exercise should be enjoyable and not a chore. You don't have to run for hours on a treadmill  to be healthy, you just need to move some more. In my opinion the best possible exercise you can get is walking. There are more effective things you can do for sure, but walking is a great way to get moving, anyone can do it, it can be done anywhere and anytime, and it requires no equipment or investment. Just get up and walk somewhere.

Another great way of getting exercise is to pick up an active hobby. It doesn't have to be physically challenging like playing a sport or picking up a martial art (even if this is a great way to get exercise as well). Something as simple as working in your garden is an excellent way to get moving. Carrying watering cans, deep squats to get the weeding done, digging, raking and mowing are all ways to get moving while having fun doing it.

Another awesome way to get yourself in great shape is to play with your kids if you have any. Get into the games like your a kid again, stay in the moment and get down on the floor, up in a tree or wherever the games might take you. Not only will this be more than enough of a physical challenge, but just as importantly it will create a powerful bond with your kids and build memories you all will cherish for a long time.

Finally, if you want to built solid muscle mass, there is no need to buy expensive weightlifting equipment or go to a gym. By lifting your own body you can provide all the resistance you need for very effective  muscle building exercises. Some body weight exercises are well known, like the push up, but there are other key movements that are excellent at building muscle. By combining various squats, presses, push and pull ups you can get ripped for free.

A huge advantage of doing body weight exercises is that you are always moving naturally. It basically comes down to using your muscles to support and move your own body. This minimizes the risk of injuries from using equipment wrong. It is however important that you perform body weight exercises with good form to get the full effect and avoid injuries. A great set of instructional videos have been made by Mark Sisson of marksdailyapple.com. Mark is one of the pillars of the primal community and he offers a free primal workout ebook on his site. I highly recommend this resource, it is completely free if you subscribe to marks weekly newsletter.

The key is to move and have fun. Don't beat yourself up about not working out enough, rather get up and move. Dance , play, walk, run and climb, whatever tickles your fancy. Just move, any movement is better than sitting still.



  1. Anonymous

    It's nearly impossible to find well-informed people on this subject, but you seem like you know what you're talking about!
    Thanks

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