I’m not a caveman and neither are you. The Closest I’ve ever come to living like one involved a mountainous nation filled with angry locals who wanted my fellow squad mates and me dead no matter the cost. It was not enjoyable or something I reminisce about or long to experience again and neither should any intelligent person. So why do some many people today romanticize a time in our history that was so severe and deadly? Sure it was a simpler time but remember back then we were part of the menu for a large crowd of carnivores and simply walking to the woods to take a leak could get you killed. Yeah, I think I’ll stick with my modern conveniences and Saber-tooth cat free bathroom. I’m not even going to get into how they wiped their asses.
Primal, Paleo, and natural are big business words today. They invoke images of a better way of life. “Back in the day” they will tell you we lived a more connected and pure existence. We were part of nature and life had purpose and meaning. That’s a pretty ballsy claim if you ask me because it’s founded on the notion that most of us today in the modern world lead shit lives and have no purpose. Further more if we’d shuck it all and leave behind our modern trappings and follow the advice of a few books (printed by machines, on tree killing paper, nonetheless) that all will be well and return to a miraculous state of homeostasis.
I’ll tell you something about this theory that I’ve learned from personal experience. A man can eat as naturally as he possibly can, Workout five days a week using the most intense popular method available, grow his own food, build his own house, wipe with 100% natural recycled paper and wear biodegradable clothes and none of it will matter if he spends all his days focused on the how and not the why.
I see a lot of this in Paleo and especially CrossFit. I prescribe to both and you know that but these trends are just tools for me, a means to an end, but not the goal itself. I work out to be stronger, healthier, and more athletic so that I can do and enjoy the things I love more. I’m a man in search of experiences and freedom not more labels and rules to constrain me. The food I eat is fuel and nothing more. Sure I’d like it to taste good and I look for the foods that are best for my body and provide the nutrition I need without causing harmful degenerative side-effects. What that style of eating may be called; I really could care less. And if some things I eat go against the conventions of one system or another it does not bother me.
People are becoming so wrapped up in how they work out and eat healthy that they’re forgetting the point of all this; a better more varied, satisfying life. How is my workout or lunch satisfying or good if I’m stressing about whether or not it meets some arbitrary criteria. Who cares? That should be your new motto. Rules are chains my friends and yokes on our necks and unfortunately every time something new comes along to buck tradition we become so obsessed about it, and passionate about embracing it that we make it the new convention that smothers us. Who cares if your workout isn’t meeting a CF standard, who cares if Peanut Butter isn’t Paleo? I don’t and neither should you. Never replace common sense and practicality with arbitrary rules that were designed to sell books, memberships, clothes, and shoes. That’s called becoming a puppet and you deserve more.
I call myself a Modern Savage, does that mean I want to walk around with an ax beating people and scratching my balls? No it means I understand that there is a lot to be admired in the past but accept that we live in the present. I accept that the way we once did things may no longer be practical or even best. Times change and they change for a reason and we have to be able to change with them. CrossFit began as a system promoting adaptability and flexibility, now its own standards and rules threaten to devour it in a bureaucracy of bullshit. Paleo was supposed to a be a simpler common sense approach to healthy eating now it has more rules and conditions than my last enlistment contract and you almost need a lawyer to approve anything you eat so you don’t piss some uber-primal off, I say enough of that. Once again I think I’ll take the path less traveled and decide for myself what works best for me.