If I asked what you’re doing to nourish your body, you’d probably start telling me about your diet. We’ve been programmed to think of nutrition in that way.

That concept needs to be expanded into the realm of movement and exercise. I’ve been pushing hard the concept of “movement nutrition”—thinking about movement as nutrition the same as you do with food.

Without movement, it’s nearly imposible to have good health. For example, without movement your lymphatic system can’t flush toxins and waste from the body very well.

Another reason why this comparison is helpful is because, like food, movement can be nutritious or destructive.

I’ve worked with thousands of men and women around the world and have come to realize that the vast majority of them believe that destructive exercise is good for them.

It’s not their fault, of course. The mainstream health and fitness industry promotes destructive exercise and movement as necessary and beneficial.

I was talking to a guy the other day who wants to buckle down and get serious about restoring his health and dropping some body fat, possibly through our Total Body Reboot program. He immediately told me that his goal is to run a marathon with his daughter.

I stopped him right there. I told him that I loved the fact that he was getting serious about his health, but cautioned him that running a marathon was highly counterproductive.

This is where the power of the “movement nutrition” concept comes in. It gives you a tangible question you can ask yourself about the type of movement and exercise you’re engaging in.

Let’s say you ran a marathon and talked with me about it at the finish line. What would your response be if I asked, “Do you feel like that was nutritious for your body?”

I’ve seen people at the finish line of marathons before. They look like death. They often say they feel like death. They’re body is totally broken down. Many don’t even make it.

It’s not just the distance and stress that’s involved, it’s the movement piece as well. Running on pavement in running shoes is highly destructive to the musculoskeletal system all the way from the feet to the neck. This is proven by the fact that running has the highest injury rate of any physical activity.

By all standards, this is not nutritious movement or exercise. It’s a highly destructive environment for the body to be exposed to. But for some reason, it’s heralded—along with its little brother the half-marathon—as the epitome of health and fitness.

I’ve said the same about CrossFit in certain contexts. While CrossFit can certainly be nutritious, it has a huge potential to be destructive.

So my challenge to you is this: Start thinking about exercise and movement as nutrition. Assess your movement and exercise plans (both during and after) with the question, “does this feel nutritious?”

Oh, and disregard the messaging you’re getting from the “no pain no gain” health and fitness industry. They’ve been working to keep you stuck and dependent in a myriad of ways for decades now. You don’t need them…

Founder of Rebooted Body and host of The Rebooted Body Podcast. Kevin helps men and women finally get a body and life they love with his unique blend of real food, functional movement, and psychology. To work with him personally, choose a program.

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