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Real world, real workouts, real nutrition - keeping it simple and REAL with MND

As I wrote earlier this week, to help you get through my long posts, from now on I will put bullet points at the start, telling you in brief what the post is about, and in brief, the main conclusions or points that I come to.

This way, if you are short of time, you can read the bullet points, which only takes 30 seconds, and it should tell you the essence of the post – if it sounds interesting, you will find the 5 minutes you need to read the whole thing, but otherwise, the bullet points tell you enough to get the main idea.

I will try to remember to summarize all future posts this way. I hope this is helpful!

What is this post about?

  • We live in a time when we are drowning in information, the Internet offers more health, diet and fitness advice than you could ever read
  • The trouble is, most of it is rubbish!
  • The vast majority of diet and fitness information online, is unnecessarily complicated, usually because someone is trying to sell you something
  • I see far too many people wrapped up in all this time-wasting, complex detail, and yet they don’t have ‘the basics’ covered

Main conclusions:

  • In my opinion, the basics are simple things we can all do - eat real food, stay well hydrated, and demonstrate a solid. basic level of strength and fitness that can be adapted to all sports and fitness programs
  • Be able to run a few miles, do a few push-ups, lift your own bodyweight on a chinning bar - this is simple, basic stuff

Read on to learn more.

The diet and fitness industry online

In recent days, I’ve spent a few hours reading a variety of ‘health and nutrition’ pages on Facebook. I don’t want to put anyone else down, and I’m not trying to blow my own trumpet (well, maybe a bit, MND is the best page on Facebook!!)…but I have to say, there really is a total load of rubbish out there. There are loads of sites promoting supplements, loads focussed on weight loss, loads for body building, there are ‘disease-specific’ support groups, there are ‘tone up your tummy’ type diet pages, but there is an overwhelming amount of noise, with very little practical advice and sales-pitch-free useful information lost in the general hubbub of attention seeking marketing.

I’m not saying MotherNaturesDiet is all things to everyone, but this page is about REAL world stuff. I’m not a personal trainer, fitness model, yoga goddess, body builder or some other health and fitness professional. I’m a ‘normal’ guy, I have young kids, a day job and a busy life. I was fat and unhealthy for 20 years and I smoked and drank and made poor choices. But after 2 decades of making those poor choices, I figured out how to be healthy, and now I am sharing what I know with YOU.

Real world healthy lifestyle advice

This is REAL WORLD stuff - practical tips, advice, recipes, exercise ideas.

Don’t get lost in the bulls**t online about how you need this supplement and that superfood, how you need to follow this complex series of gym workouts, these weight training progressions, blah, blah, blah. Seriously, I meet people getting wrapped up in detailed weight training programs, talking about improving their form on their bench press, and they can’t bang out a set of 50 push-ups.

Or they are getting deeply involved in barbell complexes and protein consumption, amino acid profiles and timing of recovery shakes…and they are 60 pounds overweight. That’s fat.

I meet people who are absorbed in perfecting the details of their deadlift or squat, and they are collapsed on the floor in exhaustion if I try to push them through a set of 25 burpees.

I meet people who measure their calories and macros, who argue over their protein intake per kilo of bodyweight, and then on their ‘cheat day’ they eat pizza, beer, and ice cream.

In my opinion, that’s all pretty daft. Eat clean and master your own bodyweight before you get lost in the details of anything more complex than that. Seriously, if you can’t run a few miles, pull some chin ups (a person should be able to lift their own bodyweight) and crank some push ups, forget hefting barbells around, forget protein and amino acids, forget vegan diets, split times and micronutrient intakes - cover the basics before getting lost in the details.

Cover the basics

  • Eat real food - meat, vegetables, fish, fruit, eggs, nuts and seeds
  • Drink more water
  • Get outside every day
  • Get fresh air

Master some basic movements. I have a kind of ‘base line’ fitness idea - I hold myself to a standard, and if I can’t perform this routine - below - at any time, any place, then I am missing my mark:

  • Run 5 miles at a steady pace (personally, I’m good for a half mara, any time) shutterstock_77316415
  • Walk for 10 or 12 miles over mixed (hilly) off-road terrain
  • 50 push-ups in one set
  • 50 crunches in one set
  • 10 chins or pull-ups
  • 20 dips
  • 20 burpees
  • 50 squat thrusts
  • Ride 20 miles on a bike, any time
  • Swim half a mile, any stroke
  • Basic flexibility, be able to touch your own toes comfortably with you knees locked out

For me, the above is an absolute minimum standard. Of course, I’m not saying everyone else should be able to do everything, what I mean is, this kind of level of basic fitness just shows (to my mind) that I am fit and flexible and strong. I fail to understand why people get wrapped up in detailed training plans when they don’t have these basics covered.

I meet people who lift massive weights but can’t run 300 yards without feeling puffed out, and I meet endurance runners who can’t bang out 10 or 20 push-ups. I just think a balanced approach is better. And what’s the point of all this? In the above list, except the swimming (needs a pool, unless you live near water) and the cycling (needs a bike) you can do all the rest with no expensive equipment, no gym fees, no fancy equipment. You can train any place, any time, while travelling, in hotels, etc. is about keeping it real, and keeping things simple, and I want to help people see that basic good health and fitness does not need to be complicated and expensive.

Try this. Wake up in the morning, eat a banana, then go run round a local park, stopping every ten minutes to do a set of 20 or 30 push-ups. Elevate your feet on a park bench or rubbish bin or railings to make them decline push-ups. If you see a tree with a convenient ‘head height’ low branch, grab it and do a set of 10 chins. If you see railings such as a bike rack or children’s play area, you might use the bars for bunny hops, dips, etc.

By the end of such a workout, after an hour out, you will have run 5 miles and done 120 push ups and 30 chins and a few sumo squats, burpees and squat thrusts. You’ll have had a complete, full-body workout and got a good sweat on. See? It’s easy, right?


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