Sunday, February 20, 2011

Why "Fitness" Needs To Die...

Fitness. If this word doesn't give you an impending sense of doom then you need to pay attention. If the first thing you think of when you see or hear that word is someone lightly jogging while holding a pair of 1.5lb pink rubber coated dumbbells or doing their 1500th sit-up for the day then the icy cold fingers of "Fitness" are firmly wrapped around you.

Now, don't get me wrong, I am not saying that everyone should be fat and no one should ever exercise. In fact, I am saying completely the opposite. I think everyone should work and exercise very hard to reduce the obesity epidemic that is making it almost impossible to walk through a Wal-Mart without bumping into everyone. For health purposes, everyone needs to exercise. A body in motion stays in motion... unless it stops. Then, it gets fat and dies.

What I am trying to get across is that the fad that is "Fitness" has created copious amounts of terrible information. This information is not only not beneficial to whatever your personal health goals may be but, it could also be making it harder to reach them. Even worse, the information may be sending you backwards, away from your goals.

In order to understand why fitness is terrible now, you have to understand how awesome it was when the word was first being thrown around. Fitness, in the classical definition, used to mean the preparedness of Olympic athletes to win medals. Weightlifters from the Old Eastern Block countries, China, Bulgaria, and pretty much every other country that crushes the United States in strength related sports, would constantly be trying to increase their fitness levels. A test of fitness would often include things such as lifting maximal weights, throwing barbells as far as possible, and other various forms of bad-assery that don't ever cross the mind of the average fitness enthusiast. Now-a-days, this is fitness:

Damn. Humans were not meant to be this way. We weren't meant for insane amounts of random exercises thrown together. We weren't meant to diet. We were meant to be in shape and work very hard to get and stay that way. Think about how people used to live. Think of a caveman. He didn't spend hours at a time doing calisthenics in his cave. He was too busy sprinting after animals, using every ounce of force and strength he could muster to kill said animals, and then he ate them. Training toward your goals should be structured in a similar way.

So much emphasis is placed on being "fit" and "tone" these days. Girls want to be skinny as rails so they don't eat and don't lift weights because they don't want to get "bulky." Guys want to be "ripped" so they follow aimless programs they read in muscle magazines and buy supplements that don't do anything but make their pee turn neon-glow-in-the-dark yellow. Sport-Specific training has turned into countless hours of mindless sit-ups because everyone knows having abs makes you a good athlete... and crunches will give you abs if you do 50 billion of them twice a day. False. Fitness lies.

So, onto the point of this blog: To expel fitness myths. To give advice that will actually help people reach their physical goals, whatever they may be. To convince people that there is more to life than the never ending journey to be chiseled out of granite. Rather, it is more in out nature to be violently chopped out of wood. Stop tapping away and put the hammer down. Pick up an axe and start swinging like hell.
Sprint. Kill. Eat.

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