The James Bond 007 Guide to Stealth Paleo Workouts

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Is James Bond paleo, you think?

Despite the fact that we conveniently overlook the fact that every few years he rearranges his features to a completely different visage, I think we can say he is. 😉

He’s a fit, alpha male. Looks good naked. His definitive meal is eggs, bacon and sausage. He does a lot of strolling around, he can lift heavy things and can outrun some seriously fast enemies. He doesn’t do stupid things, he uses his brain. He plays a lot and sleeps a lot, especially with beautiful women.

So yes, I think we can say he’s paleo. He’s also a master of disguise. He appears to be one thing while, in fact, being another. A playboy, a spy.

While we think he’s doing one thing, he’s actually doing another.  Stealthily, secretly…

When my kids were young, I could lift them in their car seats and stop traffic with my biceps. (Not literally of course, that would be dangerous and counterproductive. ;-))

But, from being the mother of twin boys, I’d got a mean set of pecs and the like. This taught me the value of fitting workouts into our normal daily activities. Stealthily, secretly. It required just a tweak here and there.

Now, my kids were a bit of a handful. Getting them dressed was an ordeal. And strapping them in their carseats involved wrestling of WWE proportions. (Hulk Hogan had nothing on me, man.)

I’d respond to the plaintive cry of ‘Uppie’ many times each day, lifting child after child onto my hip, sometimes both. There was no need for a gym membership. Cardio and resistance training were already built into my day.

But as they’ve got older and the car seat wrestle gave way (getting dressed remains an issue, however,) I’ve had to become more creative about how I maximize my physical output.

I’ve come up with some ideas so that, like James Bond, I appear to be doing one thing, while actually doing another. Secretly, stealthily.

Read on and learn that carrying all those bags does contain a subtle benefit. That child hanging on to your leg as you limp around does have a purpose. For you, that is.

(But take it from me, don’t get sweaty folding laundry – it ruins the wash 🙂 And, obviously, take care as you try these things. )

Here are 50 secret ways to exercise so stealthily, no-one will even notice.

Including you. 😉

1. Stretch high to get something off the top shelf rather than use a step.

2. Use, the biggest, heaviest cookery book you can find. I have a huge Delia Smith cookbook whose recipes I adapt for paleo.

3. Do pushups against the counter while you’re waiting for the kettle to boil.

4. Hold your stomach in when you bend over to tuck the sheets under the mattress.

5. Do a squat as you pick up the toys.

6. Do some chin-ups on the monkey bars when you’re at the park.

7. Use a hand whisk when blending – make sure you use both hands. And whisk HARD!

8. Keep your tush tucked and your shoulders down when you vacuum.

9. Bend your arms forward at the elbow when carrying in groceries. You could even try some bicep curls if the bags are not too heavy. Or hold your bags away from your body.

10. Sprint across the quad at school.

11. Stand up while using the computer.

12. Watch TV crossed-legged, back straight and over the hips, hands on your knees.

13. Fill laundry baskets high, hold them away from you body and appreciate the arm, back and butt exercise as you lift it around the house putting clothes away. (This is a tough one.)

14. Set up an obstacle course and race the kids. Use things you have around your home. Play tents, bean bags, skipping ropes, bottles of rice (now you don’t eat it any more – perfect! 🙂 Get creative.

15. Walk on tiptoe. Or march. In the house. It would look strange if you did it outside. 😉

16. Pull your shoulders back and down while driving. Pull your stomach in for as long as you can.

17. Encourage your kids to use the tire swing and push and spin them to exhaustion. They will love you for it.

18. Put your kids in a stroller and walk, walk, and walk some more. Especially up hills. (Go with a friend and get exercise, vitamin D, fresh air, and some social all at the same time – oh, how I miss this ultimate workout.)

19. When your toddlers demand ‘uppie!,’ give in. Every time. Aside from the fact it’s a good workout, there will come a time when you wish you could still do that. 🙂

20. Bend over as far as possible when blow drying your hair upside down, feet hip width apart, bent slightly at the knees, knees pushing out to little toe.

21. Unload your plates from the dishwasher and carry as many of them as possible at one time to their spot on the shelf.

22. Wear a pedometer. It doesn’t actually cause you to exercise but it does count how many steps you take as part of your day and that makes you feel good. 🙂

23. Buy a trampoline for the kids and use it yourself.

24. Keep a kettlebell or other weight in plain sight in your bedroom and every time you pass it, give it a few swings or pumps.

25. When you bend over to spit out your toothpaste, clench your buns and stomach. Do not use your non-dominant hand to support yourself against the basin.

26. Consider the navigation of a child, bag and a stroller through a narrow doorway when there is no-one to help (or bothering to help,) as a mind/body workout.

27. Straighten your leg every time you go up a step before putting the other foot down.

28. Take steps two at a time but see above and make sure you keep your shoulders over hips as you do so.

29. Walking around a theme park for hours is exercise, you know. Trust me on that one.

30. And if you go on a rollercoaster, brace yourself hard against the sides. (Note to self: Why am I even telling you that when a) of course you would do that or b) you wouldn’t dream of going on a roller coaster in the first place – and I don’t blame you, me neither.)

31. Install a pull up bar in a highly trafficked doorway in your house. Have it in the kitchen so you can practice a few while the vegetables steam.

32. Whatever you do, go to your max. No-one else’s.

33. Wear workout clothes as much as possible. Always be ready to squeeze exercise in.

34. If you have a sedentary job, work for a period of time that you determine, then go move. Get a drink, walk round the office, fold some laundry. You get the idea.

35. Choose a workout style that works out for you. No one size fits all. Perhaps you’re a hiker, or you do Crossfit, or you workout at home. When it comes to exercise you will do what works for you, so do that.

36. Split exercise into bursts throughout your day. Five minutes here, a minute there.

37. When you’re driving, hold your sports water bottle between your thighs and squeeze. Do it gently though, or else you’ll get a wet bum and be too embarrassed to get out the car.  Trust me, on that one. 😉

38. Wear Vibram Five Fingers. You won’t regret it!

39. Carry your child in a backpack, on your shoulders.

40. Grow vegetables. There’s a lot of stretching and weight-bearing going on in gardening.

41. Sweep the patio and save water by not doing a wet sweep.

42. As you brush your hair, hold a squat position.

43. Playing “Just Dance” on the Wii, is totally overlooked as a form of exercise, if you ask me.

44. Play anything with your kids. Even if it’s not physical initially, it has funny habit of turning out that way.

45. Go to the beach. If you live near a beach, of course. 😉 If not, just get outside. Head for the hills if you can but the main thing is to get you and your family some vitamin D and fresh air.

46. Join your kids in the tent in the backyard for the night. If nothing else, you’ll find out how hard the ground has gotten in the last twenty years.

47. See the value in manual – doors, kitchen tools, stairs. Don’t always go for electronic conveniences.

48. Several times every day, squeeze your fists tight for four seconds, then stretch out your palms, fingers wide for four seconds. As wide as they can go. Do that several times. Good for blood flow and lymph pumping.

49. Set a timer for five minutes and sit up at the computer. No slouching, no leaning against the back of the chair for support, feet even on the floor. Can you last five minutes?

50. Exercise your ‘No’ muscle. Every time you say ‘No’ to doing something non-paleo, you increase your strength to say ‘No’ in the future. Seriously.

And there you have it. Fifty ways to sneak exercise into your day.

Are you a master of exercise disguise? What stealthy ways do you fit your exercise in? Are you shaken or stirred by this list? Let us know in the comments!

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Photo credit: Steve Spangler Science



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Alison Golden writes on the topic of paleo over at Paleo/NonPaleo. She aims to share ideas, inspire and motivate readers by teaching them how to live paleo in a non-paleo world. She is also the author of the bestselling book, The Modern, No-Nonsense Guide to Paleo, a unique tool that gives the reader hundreds of strategies to navigate the learning process to successful paleo living.

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