Foreword Reviews - - Foresight Health & Fitness -

Jef Geys, Prim­e­fit (NOVEM­BER) Soft­cover $16.99 (176pp), 978-908273100-2

Do you go to bed tired and wake up tired in the morn­ing? Do you have burnout—dif­fi­culty con­cen­trat­ing, trou­ble sleep­ing, or an el­e­vated heart rate? Jef Geys, a sports phys­io­ther­a­pist and os­teopath with fif­teen years of re­search and ex­pe­ri­ence work­ing with spe­cial forces in Bel­gium’s mil­i­tary, writes that these symp­toms, and many oth­ers not usu­ally associated with fa­tigue, are signs that your body is not re­cu­per­at­ing from the stress caused by time pres­sures, daily re­spon­si­bil­i­ties, and phys­i­cal ex­er­tion.

Geys writes that while stress it­self isn’t nec­es­sar­ily un­healthy—our bod­ies are pro­grammed to re­spond to sud­den, tem­po­rary threats fol­lowed by a re­cov­ery pe­riod—liv­ing in a state of per­pet­ual “over­drive” puts our health at risk. “A charg­ing lion is an acute but tem­po­rary threat,” he writes. “The prob­lem is that our present-day chal­lenges last longer, they pile up, and flight is not an op­tion.”

His re­search into the body’s need for re­cov­ery af­ter ex­er­tion re­vealed that seven out of ev­ery ten peo­ple are too fa­tigued to en­gage in a phys­i­cal train­ing pro­gram with­out risk of in­jury and even­tual ill­ness. These days, even our sup­posed “down­time,” filled with the er­rands and chores left un­done dur­ing the hec­tic work week and topped off with a work­out, has be­come stress­ful. This causes the body to for­get how to switch into its re­cov­ery phase, and we’re left “run­ning on fumes.”

Geys iden­ti­fies the four types of fa­tigue— phys­i­cal, hor­monal, men­tal, and meta­bolic— teaches how to iden­tify which of them we are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing, and gives spe­cific re­cov­ery train­ing plans and nu­tri­tional guide­lines for each.

“The trick,” he says, “is not to re­duce your stress stim­uli, but to in­crease your ca­pac­ity. You do that by prop­erly re­cov­er­ing from your ex­er­tions.”

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