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Old 01-06-2007, 03:32 PM   #11
Dave Van Skike
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Originally Posted by Mike ODonnell View Post
I just got this from Chek and thought it was relevant and interesting:

"Our next logical question should be, did our ancestors regularly participate in cardiovascular exercise? Not likely.
Chek's credential as an evolutionary expert aside....... The question is running.. not "cardio" per se.

Masai runners, Tarahumara, Nepalese mountain people I would wager don't get there HR above 115 on a good day. The idea of early man running about to an fro with his HR pegged at 150 is not what these guys are saying.
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Old 01-07-2007, 10:18 AM   #12
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Let's not even mention the complete inappropriateness of running for many (most? all?) as prescribed by modern media as their main source of exercise.

would you mind elaborating on this a little or just throwing some sources my way?

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Old 01-07-2007, 10:46 AM   #13
Yael Grauer
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I wasn't posting this to advocate for long-distance running. I happen to hate long-distance running. I just thought it was interesting that it may have shaped evolution, however.

Saying that your body is evolutionarily designed for sprinting because you like it better is a weak argument.

To go along with Dave's post, I have a video called The Great Dance: A Hunter's Story, which is about the Kalahari Bushmen. They would hunt their animals by running them to the death. Apparently an Olympic distance runner was hired to do camera but could not keep up with them the first night they went out... the second night he could. We're talking around four hours
(or really anywhere from 2-5) of running until the prey runs out of stamina, 75 to 100 miles. Not exactly long slow distance, but I wouldn't call it a short 400m sprint, either. I suppose one could argue that the Bushmen are the exception to the rule re: hunting today, but it is thought to be one of the oldest forms of hunting.

I don't think anyone would disagree that it's easier to run for a long time if you are on your feet as opposed to all fours.
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Old 01-07-2007, 10:48 AM   #14
Mike ODonnell
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I''ll say:
- all the advertisements for marathons
- all the Nike commercials

The ratio of "running" commercials as a way of health and fitness vs other types of workouts is pretty lopsided. I don't see alot of strength training commercials (besides Boflex).

Of course all these are industries....so of course each advertises to increase their profits.

In defense....the running magazines are starting to have more information on the importance of shorter intervals and strength training. So at least there are some good references, but I still believe that is still only a small percentage of people who take that advice.

Case in point...in the gym the other day....overhead conversation...
Lady of treadmill: "So what you have been doing lately"
Guy on Bike:"I run 5-6 times a week, but need to get to use the bike more otherwise my knees are killing me"
Guy on Bike uses bike and then does some arm curls and goes home. I've tried in the past saying the importance of some strength training....but he never took it too heart as he still believes running is the answer 100%.

Much like hockey players and figure skaters dont hang out together...probably will be the same for joggers and sprinters.
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Old 01-07-2007, 01:26 PM   #15
Steve Shafley
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I should have probably said "jogging" instead of running.

Since It's been the first week in January, and it's been unseaonally warm out, I've seen all the January joggers out in force, plodding away on the concrete sidewalks and asphalt roads.

So, you're overweight, and sedentary, and you think you should start exercises. Because of the asinine aerobics lobby in the country, which basically set sports science back 20 years, you think the best thing you could do is to start jogging.

It's stupid, ineffectual exercise, and most of the January joggers will wind up with sore feet, shin splints, battered knees, and painful hips and stop doing it as soon as the weather turns.
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Old 01-07-2007, 03:09 PM   #16
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I'm with you all the way on that.

I couldn't think of a worse - or more boring- way to start exercising than jogging for long distances-esp. for obese individuals.
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Old 01-07-2007, 07:15 PM   #17
Coach Sommer
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Default A Key Component is Being Overlooked

Forgive me, but it seems as though a key element of the hunting method being pursued by the bushman is being overlooked. Yes, they are indeed running at varying intervals for varying durations over uneven terrain, usually in the heat of the day. However they are also consistently engaged in strenuous strength work immediately following the run.

After a successful kill, of necessity, they transport their kill on their own backs. Imagine deadlifting, power cleaning, shouldering and then walking all of that distance back home with enough meat to feed a family or small village for several days. And then performing this activity on a regular basis for your entire adult life as a male.

Also, I would imagine that this type of activity is perhaps a semi-weekly event, depending on the size of the previous kill and the size of village being fed. An adult male Giraffe weighs in at approximately 4,000lbs.

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Old 01-07-2007, 07:22 PM   #18
Chris Forbis
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Good post, Coach Sommer.

Glad to see you on the boards here.
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Old 01-08-2007, 05:08 PM   #19
Robb Wolf
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Great discussion. I was looking for chapter 10 of the Paleo Diet for Athletes by Prof. Cordain...we decided to run chapter 9 to preview the book when it was released. The crux of chapter 10 is that well studied HG's had/have very impressive sprint AND distance running abilities. I think the chapter talks about an anthropologist who was a "good" 100m sprinter who was beat in a series of short sprints by most of the male members of a tribe...I think it was the Ache of Peru. This same researcher was crushed by the Ache's ability to wake and begin a very brisk trot through the underbrush in pursuit of various types of small game.

Some studies of HG muscles shows a large tri-acyl (fat) storage. I think most of the activity would be sub "lactate threshold" (whatever that really means...I guess just a high glycogen intensive activity level?) but obviously some dips into high power occurs. I don't think most ancestral eating patterns, or even modern HG diets would allow for a huge amount of GLYCOLYTIC work. Just not enough carbs to support that other than a few times per week. That may fit with how often it was necessary to seek food. I think it's important to note that the tongue and liver, which are very rich in glycogen themselves, are almost universally eaten on the spot after a kill. Can you say post work out protein carb?

Even though it does not fit with my inclinations as a sprinter I think the optimum foraging theory and persistence hunting theories, particularly when viewed through the lens of our very efficient cooling systems, points towards a good amount of scampering.

Now all that said, and as Coach Sommer points out, the skeletal remains of HG's were NOT those of a marathoner! All of the long bones are robust and supported what was obviously a strong and capable physique. I think the modern decathlete (crossfitter?) would likely model this pretty accurately.

I think it is also important to note that cranial size has done nothing but DECREASE since our species has emerged and shifted to agriculture. I suspect our ancestors were smarter and had better memories than we do.
"Survival will be neither to the strongest of the species, nor to the most intelligent, but to those most adaptable to change."
C. Darwin

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Old 01-08-2007, 05:54 PM   #20
Steve Liberati
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Great post Robb.
Thanks for making sense of it all.
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