Primal Open Sorcery: Incidental Exercise

It’s the “routine” part of “exercise routine” that annoys me the most. I like variety, so I think it’s good to completely change up the workout now and again. I’ve stuck with sledging for the longest time, and while I love it, I’ve fallen off the regular wagon on that a bit. I hope to gain that back, but in the meantime I’ve noticed that my body has actually been predisposed to doing more exercise! While I haven’t had a very dedicated workout in a few weeks, here are some of the ways I’ve been trying to maintain muscle mass.

One quick note – maintaining muscle mass is easiest if you have enough protein to support the body as it is. When I first went about losing weight big-time (Weight Watchers) I didn’t eat with respect to protein, and while I lost a lot of weight, I was still kinda scrawny. I am almost back to that weight now, but I’m definitely a lot less scrawny.

Some of these are bigger pushes than others, but I think the net total is what makes it work. Everything counts!

Stressball – I have a 1lb ball from Gravity Gripp which is sold in with the mountain climbing gear. I’ve taken it into meetings, used it while reading documentation, sometimes it’s for squeezing and sometimes I’ve just held it straight up over my head.

Stairs – I work in a 5 story building and that’s 4 flights of stairs with 100 steps (nice round numbers!) top to bottom. I try to get at least 3 full laps (up and down) in every day. Coming in and leaving is one and down and back for lunch is two. I sometimes have to visit coworkers on other floors, but if not, it’s easy to get an extra lap by using the first floor bathrooms which are the ones available to visiting executives, so they’re nicer! Plus, I never get stuck in the elevator- which happens I’d say once a month around here.

Commercial Planks – While watching TV, I like doing planks or other isometric exercise during commercials. If you can hold a full set of planks (front and both sides) for two commercials each, you’ve not only completed the commercial break, you’re well on your way to some sweet abs. Of course, this may not work too well when skipping commercials via DVR…

Call of Duty Pushups – This is named after the game I was playing when I came to this realization: There’s a *lot* of load time in video games. Especially if playing multiplayer. What better way is there to get exercise while playing video games? Oh yeah, get a Wii/Move/Kinect…

Making coffee legwork – Coffee takes a little while. Depending on your method, there is probably enough time to do some lunges or maybe some leg deadlifts.

Hallway pullups – I installed a doorway pull-up bar in the hallway and whenever I pass it I try to do some. At one point I had made it so I was doing sets of 5 each, and one day I did 60 pullups total!

What other things do you do?


  1. I’m thinking these great suggestions are still somewhat slippery. The commitment (which I haven’t done yet either) is to get some other primal male (or several) and figure out a way to do strength activities. It comprises the “routine” by being accountable to another. And, doing strength work in the company of men most certainly adds a primal mindset the doesn’t exist in “commercial planks”

    Mmm, don’t know: parkour, chopping a big load of wood, working together building a stone wall, obstacle course, grappling, rugby, others?

  2. Me

    I certainly don’t think any of these nor even the sum of them are a replacement for a workout; but I do think having a mindset of wanting more exercise contributes to a bona-fide workout’s effectiveness.

    If I were to join a gym I think I would pick a crossfit gym – I like the idea of working out with an olympic weight set, and that program looks very solid.

    In terms of working out in a less formal group, I have threatened to teach my sledging routine to others – I got my Dad to try it – and I know at least one person who is now regularly hammering. A bunch of us swinging hammers would probably drive off the tai chi group at the park 🙂

    A grappling club sounds like it might have good practical applications… fight-club-movie-references aside.

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