pqtd 79 1960’s Fitness and Health
Sometimes, especially during the past 50-60 years or so, progress in fitness and health has been downhill. Actually, if you think about it, not only in fitness and health, but in many things.
I was 10 years old, back in 1962 when John F. Kennedy introduced the President’s Physical Fitness challenge. Our grade school gym program too the program to heart- we did pushups, sit ups and pull ups. We climbed rope ladders! We all walked, or rode our bikes to neighborhood schools! In face, I had a friend named John Brundidge (you out there John?) who was really athletic, and he convinced me that we should “run a block, walk a block” to school, and anywhere else we traveled. It was FUN, and we get really, really fit!
To this day, I really can’t imaging a better lifelong strategy for fitness, given any age- walk a block, run a block! Do plenty of pushups, sit ups and pull ups! Throw in even MORE bodyweight exercises, but just move a lot on a daily basis.
How many kids (or adults either for that matter) that seem to approach a physical ideal, such as that put forth by the ancient Greeks, which were the pinnacle of our civilization then, and still are today in terms of culture and achievement? Almost none- almost all adults are passionate about spectator sports... which are a bunch of underworked people desperately in need of exercise, watching a group of highly paid professionals...
who are desperately in need of rest!
The heck with spectator sports for the most part- play them yourselves!
We are so proud of our technology, which is a wonderful achievement- but not at the cost of our health, and our physical well-being! And making lots of money seems to be paramount nowadays... but at the cost of our health??? A bargain with Satan indeed!
I was very fit, all throughout grade school and high school- most of my fellows were. There were always one or two fat kids in our class...actually quite rare specimens back then.
Nowadays, look at any group of adolescents- try to find more than one or two who are fit, wiry, and healthy looking! Good luck, they aren’t there anymore. The norm is fat, pre-diabetic, autistic, and otherwise sick looking.
Well, my sideways turn happened in the early 1970’s, when a friend led me into weight lifting!
“You are too skinny!” he would say. “Lift heavy with me at the YMCA, and bulk up!!”
I did, and it was a huge mistake, overall. I got big alright- a big butt (from heavy squats and deadlifts), a too bulky chest and injured shoulders and elbows (from heavy bench presses and curls and presses). It took me years, I finally ditched the weights- but I got back on track- pushups, pull ups, sit ups, and running fast, then walking, then running again!
I eventually added in many other “tools” of fitness that have been largely forgotten- virtual resistance being chief among them, but also isometrics, and other tools that had been forgotten that I have since listed in my eBook Perfectly Paleo Exercise, and on my blog, www.paleojay.com.
In the process, I went “back to the future” and healed my injured joints, redesigned my physique into a symmetrical, classical Greek appearance, and rejuvenated my total health!
But I have always been obsessed with health and fitness. I admit it. I know others who were as well, and went down the also misguided long distance/aerobics/cardio Kenneth Cooper myth. Those who did also wound up with ruined joints, but instead of being bulked up in all the wrong places, they were wasted skeletons, skinny-fat people who ran for hours, day after day, and gained less than nothing!
As for diet? In the early 1960’s, everyone ate a high fat, all natural (non GMO), pretty low sugar diet with plenty of vegetables, pastured animal protein, butter, and dairy full fats. They ate grains, but all natural, ancient grain variety; and they ran around like crazy, since they had high energy, there were no video screens to distract them, and all of their friends were doing the same!
When the Mc Govern commission on health arrived in the early 1970’s, spurred on by the erroneous findings of Ancel Keye’s that pinpointed dietary fat to be the worst thing ever, due to his falsified, cherry-picked data from a deeply flawed study...
The study recommended that Americans start eating a fake foods diet, with vegetable oils and grains and sugars as the foundation! (Not their exact words, but that is the result). And they got the many Government agencies on board- the FDA, the ADA, and all other various agencies that determine the recommendations as to what we all should eat.
They came up with recommendations. A food pyramid, founded in grains and sugars. (Now My Plate; same difference)
“Move more, eat less” (This is the Ken Cooper nonsense, over again)
And they gave huge incentives to grain farmers, to overproduce GRAINS, which are insulinogenic (meaning they cause us to gain fat, and overproduce insulin, making us diabetic). And so, farmers are incentivized to produce massive amounts of grains that are making us sick, and eliminating small family farms that grow healthy foods like vegetables, fruits, and pastured dairy and meat products.
And now, we have a fat, diabetic, and sick population that is the unhealthiest in the world. But, what is even worse is that we are starting to export it worldwide via our processed, crap, nightmare foods!
We are also exporting our sedentary, consumer lifestyle as well...
What to do?
Go back to the 1960’s! Back before big, Federal government began telling us what to do- back when we listened to our forebears, our grandparents and great grandparents, to the founding fathers of America, and to the ancient Greek and Roman cultures upon which our nation is based!
Make no mistake- we are living in dark times indeed. The Paleo Diet is a wonderful revelation, a light in the darkness! But Paleo is really nothing more than a 1960’s diet- really!!
Just Eat Real Foods- and exercise NATURALLY!
It really is just that simple.