Exercised Book Summary By Daniel E. Lieberman

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Exercised (2020) is a revolutionary book about the connection between physical activity, rest and our health.

Written with cutting-edge insights from exercise science, evolutionary theory, and anthropology, it looks at the human body's needs and capabilities in new and original ways.

It dives deep into the impact of physical activity on our overall health, as well as what makes an effective restorative program.

With a thorough data-driven approach to analysis, this book provides readers with compelling evidence and powerful arguments to support its claims.

Exercised is sure to be an essential reading for any fitness enthusiast or anyone interested in better understanding the relationship between exercise and wellbeing.

Exercised Book

Book Name: Exercised (Why Something We Never Evolved to Do Is Healthy and Rewarding)

Author(s): Daniel E. Lieberman

Rating: 4.3/5

Reading Time: 25 Minutes

Categories: Health & Nutrition

Author Bio

In Exercised, author Daniel Lieberman creates a fascinating journey into the science behind success and improving human performance.

His vast knowledge of human evolution and his expertise in the medical field are incredibly valuable assets to have when trying to understand what it takes to be successful in life.

Professor Lieberman teaches Human Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University and has published over 150 peer-reviewed articles.

He is well-known for his books The Story of the Human Body and The Evolution of the Human Head, which delve deeper into how humans shape and adapt our bodies, as well as our health, through study and lifestyle choices.

Unlock Your Best Self With A Healthy Exercise Regimen: Understanding The Human Body In Evolutionary And Scientific Terms

Healthy Exercise

When it comes to exercise, there is so much information thrown at us that it can become confusing.

How much exercise do we need? Is running good for your joints? The Exercised Book Summary provides a unique approach by reconciling the health studies of today with the evolutionary past of humans.

This groundbreaking research gives readers insight into why some peoples’ physical capabilities differ, and why some may not need as much sleep as others.

It also sheds light on whether walking is actually beneficial for weight loss.

In short, this book helps readers rediscover exercise in the light of modern anthropology.

By presenting the best of both ancient wisdom and cutting-edge science, readers can walk away with an invigorating new vision of their own health!

We Shouldn’T Shame People For Not Wanting To Exercise: An Evolutionary Perspective

We don’t have an inborn compulsion to exercise.

That’s the message this Exercised Book Summary sends, and it’s an important one.

Humans evolved to be active when circumstances necessitate it – like when food is low.

But, unlike our distant ancestors, we have the luxury of being able to get food from a supermarket.

Because of this, we don’t have any biological urge that compels us to engage in activities like running or jogging that aren’t absolutely required.

What’s more, our evolutionary aversion to unnecessary activity makes perfect sense.

Investing energy on life-preserving tasks such as finding food means consuming fewer resources and increasing the chances of survival – something which was vital for early humans but is less pressing today due to our abundance of access to food.

Yet even with no stipulations from our ancient ancestry compelling us to stay active, we should still strive for physical wellbeing – just not out of guilt or feeling compelled by societies’ expectations.

Although voluntary physical activity isn’t part of evolutionarily programmed behaviors, taking these steps towards improving health should still be seen as a source of pride and accomplishment rather than an arduous duty or obligation.

We Don’T Need 8 Hours Of Sleep – Stunning Studies Show We Actually Need Less

The idea that we must sleep for a full eight hours to be healthy has been around for some time, but it turns out it’s not always the case.

Studies by sleep researcher Jerome Siegel and his team involving hunter-gatherer and hunter-farmer groups in Tanzania, the Amazon rainforest, and the Kalahari desert have shown that these populations actually slept fewer than those of industrialised nations, getting an average of 6.5 hours.

Further studies in Amish farmers, rural Haitians, and subsistence farmers in Madagascar also showed similar results-some slept less than the average seven or eight hours recommended by health professionals.

It does not mean we should get less than five hours of sleep every night though; on the contrary, seven hours is more sufficient for most people.

Moreover, research indicates that people who get seven hours’ sleep tend to live longer than those with either more or less sleeping patterns.

So when it comes down to it, getting eight hours of sleep isn’t necessary for everyone; what matters more is how you spend your waking times by making sure you continue being active during the day and participating in regular exercise which can all help improve your quality of sleep at night.

We Didn’t Evolve To Be Naturally Muscular And Strong

Naturally Muscular

Many people assume that, because of their everyday activities, our hunter-gatherer and caveman ancestors must have had extremely strong, muscular and lean bodies.

This view is encouraged by so-called ‘primal fitness enthusiasts’.

However, studies of modern hunter-gatherer populations such as the Hadza of Tanzania have found that their muscle size and strength is no higher than what we would expect within Western norms – to say nothing of athletes.

So why is this the case? For one thing, body-weight exercises might help you stay fit but won’t make you noticeably brawnier over time.

Moreover, in terms of evolution it doesn’t make much sense either: maintaining additional muscle mass requires a lot of energy which may not be worth it when benefits like killing big predators or wooing mates are often negligible.

In conclusion: We didn’t evolve to be naturally brawny.

Rather, our hunter-gather or caveman predecessors had bodies just strong enough to cope with everyday challenges – not buffed up like a bodybuilder.

Walking Is Not A Miracle Pill For Weight Loss, But It Can Play An Important Role

It is widely accepted that exercising is an important part of achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight.

However, until recently the question of whether or not walking helps to lose weight remained controversial.

Research showed that walking does have a role to play in losing weight – it’s just not as efficient as some other forms of exercise.

At first glance, it may seem true that moderate exercise like walking requires more energy than your intake, thus making you burn fat.

But studies showed that walkers often end up consuming more than they burned because they felt hungrier after their walks – leading to no net loss of weight.

But all hope was not lost!

When researchers increased the amount someone walked – from 150 minutes a week to 300 minutes a week – those individuals lost an average of six pounds in twelve weeks!

That kind of sustained effort could mean 26 pounds off the scales when done for one year!

The Benefits Of Running And Minimizing Risk Of Injury

Running can be daunting, especially when the horror stories of veterans come up talking about wear and tear on muscles and joints.

But let’s keep in mind that it doesn’t have to result in injuries at all.

Research suggests that for novice and experienced runners alike, running injuries occur less often than you’d think.

Evidence hints at a U-shaped injury curve, meaning moderate runners are less likely to experience any kind of running-related injury than those beginning running or taking it more seriously.

In addition, research also indicates that contrary to popular belief, running does not lead to osteoarthritis over time – in fact, studies show that regular physical activity helps promote healthy cartilage growth.

That being said, there are still ways to reduce the risk of injury while running – such as gradually increasing your distance or speed per week by no more than ten percent every time.

This gives your body time to adjust properly so you don’t overload yourself too quickly and cause an opportunity for injury.

Even with the 8 runners who ran across the US and reported 50 injuries, 75% of them occurred within the first month – after they had adjusted and adapted their bodies around month 5 they reported no injuries whatsoever!

So yes, running doesn’t have to lead to injuries so long as you take proper steps towards caring for your body during exercise.

Staying Active Is Key To Aging Gracefully And Living Longer

Living Longer

Maintaining physical activity as you age is something that we must all strive to do in order to stay healthy and live longer.

The best example of this comes from the Hadza, a Tanzanian hunter-gatherer people.

They stay active well into old age, with their activity levels remaining much more moderate than those of people in industrialized countries.

As a result, they stay fit and strong for much longer.

This proves the point: even without access to modern medicine, hunter-gatherers still have long life expectancies – typically between sixty-eight and seventy-eight years old.

Not too far off from what life expectancy is in the United States today.

The lesson here? We need to stay active as we age if we want to remain healthy and productive over the years.

It’s been shown time and again that staying physically active helps stave off illnesses such as heart disease and Alzheimer’s that are otherwise common among elderly populations.

It also helps maintain one’s physical abilities, such as walking or dressing oneself–something that can be difficult to do should mobility decline with age.

The Stanford Runners Study compared five hundred amateur runners aged fifty and over with four hundred inactive but healthy participants over several years–and showed how non-runners were approximately three times more likely to die in a given year than their running counterparts!

It’s clear: exercising regularly helps us age gracefully and enjoy better health for many years down the road!

How To Make Exercise More Necessary And Fun

If you want to establish a regular exercise routine, then it isn’t enough to merely “do it”; you need to make good use of the fact that exercising is not a necessity and make it both fun and important.

We know from history and our ancestors that physical activity is not necessary for survival, so when it’s voluntary or boring, most of us tend to avoid it.

Luckily, there are ways we can tap into this intrinsic instinct that aids us in making exercise more fun and necessary – essentially ‘coercing’ ourselves into staying fit.

Take asking someone close to you who could hold you accountable and check your progress or signing up for a race (even if there’s no guarantee that you’ll participate) by putting money on the line – there is some vested value added in doing this as completing training will seem even more critical when there is a financial consequence involved.

Beyond coercion, focusing on making exercise social can have major benefits too.

In tribal societies, women often worked together when searching for honey or food items while men frequently hunted in twosomes.

This underscored the importance of socializing during physical activity which helps shift the focus off the laborious activity itself and makes running together more enjoyable.

So find yourself an exercise buddy or join up with friends in fitness classes; either way connecting with other people during physical exertion will help create a healthier environment both physically and mentally!

Wrap Up

The message of Exercised is clear – keep your physical activity simple and consistent.

That means committing to an exercise program that includes both cardio and weight lifting, challenging yourself but not overtraining, and resting well in-between workouts.

In addition, try to make physical activity both necessary and fun – that way you’ll be more likely to stick with it.

It can also help to break down your goals into smaller, achievable targets so that you don’t become overwhelmed by the whole process.

Overall, the key takeaway from this book is that regular exercise does not have to be complex or unpleasant – a little bit of effort each day can lead to greater rewards for years to come.

Arturo Miller

Hi, I am Arturo Miller, the Chief Editor of this blog. I'm a passionate reader, learner and blogger. Motivated by the desire to help others reach their fullest potential, I draw from my own experiences and insights to curate blogs.

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