Monday, August 22, 2005

Making a Difference

A logical development of the higher heart beat and largest muscles in isolation training objectives, was the synthesis of these two in the even more absurd notion that all that mattered was highest caloric expenditure or consumption -- while developing no particular skill or mastery in this practice. To anybody who’s ever been involved in training themselves to achieve a high level of skill and proficiency in a discipline they have discovered is suitable to their natural abilities, such advice would be at first offering recognized as an example of the blind leading the blind, and one who knew absolutely nothing about what they were talking about. But because many have no familiarity with a learning besides what others tell them is true, they are highly susceptible to marketing propaganda -- having no way to test the validity of claims through their own experience and thought processes. They are entirely at the mercy of self-designated experts and the institutions that vouchsafe their credibility.

When one observes the great performers of dance and most athletics, what is most impressive and striking besides the extraordinary things they can do, is also how effortless and graceful they make it all seem. They have learned to move with the greatest economy and efficiency of purpose -- and never simply for the sake of burning the most calories doing so. In fact, if there is a great imperative of all life, it is the commandment to conserve energy as one of its highest principles ensuring survival and exhibiting intelligence. The predator in the wild that is most impressive is one that stealthily stalks its prey and sets up the conditions by which a single, quick, decisive movement achieves its goal -- rather than the specimen wildly chasing everything that moves until finally it is exhausted in futility, thinking that gross, random effort is enough to achieve one’s desired results.

Yet many have been convinced that a fitness program should have no component for skill-building as their focusing activity and organizing principle. Thus the objective of a treadmill user is simply to burn as many calories as possible -- while that same amount of energy and less, could mold one into a world champion, or just looking like one, if their intent and purpose were clear. That kind of random “fitness” program, is one of the most damaging conditioning experiences one can do to themselves. It reinforces the notion that the objective of any activity is simply to go through the motions, wasting as much energy and other resources as possible, with no definitive productive purpose in mind. It is so mindless that it is quite all right to grab a magazine while doing it and displace one’s attention to some pleasurable mental diversion.

I hope this does not all sound too familiar -- what one has been led to believe is a qualified, certified, productive fitness program -- because if it is, it is no wonder that many think exercise programs are not worthwhile, and may be entirely a negative drain on one’s life. I wouldn’t engage in such an activity; why would any thinking person? And yet, that kind of fitness for the masses has been propagated by the mass media for these past several decades because they lack this ability and familiarity with any authentic expertise themselves, and are totally reliant on the hearsay of "professionals" -- as the truth.


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