Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Exercise For Couch Potatoes (and Other Sedentary Beings)

Like it or not, most people these days live a sedentary life -- which most prefer to being on their feet (toes) all day -- and that is true the older and wiser one gets in life. The downside of course, as with many good things, is that a few and then many, overdo too much of a good thing -- which is the relief from the needless wear and tear on the body and mind, which are not infinite resources, but have to be managed prudently, efficiently and intelligently, to maximize one's best life.

That is best expressed through peak moments in life and activities -- which is not simply an average effort (experience) sustained for as long as possible (state), but the ability to focus one's energies to peak with an effort, and then relaxing and recovering for the next peak effort (dynamism) -- and that is how "peak performance" is achieved, and not simply the mediocre, or average, sustained for as long as possible.

However, many so-called exercise studies, determine the "average" performance, as though that was the meaningful measure, while being totally oblivious to the concept of range and peak (optimal) performance -- as though the objective was to achieve the average rather than the peak, which more accurately determines the difference between the best and the worst, of the meaningful range of individual actualizations.

Then when all are actually doing their best, it then becomes meaningful to determine ranking in abilities, rather than the average, which implies (necessitates) randomness -- and not a directed effort or outcome. Unfortunately, that misunderstanding leads to a lot of poorly designed studies, of which it is then possible to "prove" exactly what the researcher wanted to prove from the very inception -- rather than what would actually be the most significant to observe, measure, and maximize. And in fact, in such a design, every other factor but what the researcher wanted to study, would in fact, be eliminated, so that the only thing possible to arrive at, was one's preconceived idea -- and how they would rig the results to achieve precisely that effect.

And then those results (knowledge), would supplant one's actual experiences, or the truth of one's own results as what one should believe -- although it doesn't work for them, or for that matter, anybody else -- but it is supposedly true, somewhere, somehow -- but it is a top secret that only those way at the very top, are privy to.

So that is the first thing one should know, when a presenter's only argument, is the claim that studies show (say), but nothing in real life experience can corroborate and verify that independently, and "experts" are not so because they've tried everything, and know first hand, everything that doesn't work but knowing that it should.

The true test of anything, is whether any individual, can actually verify and validate the truth of any observation, for themselves, in the actuality -- and not as a belief based merely on authority, or credentials overriding actual experiences.

Human beings, like most other animals, were designed for sedentary activities and life, and not being on the go constantly, working tirelessly like machines. They pick the time and place, to be at their best -- and so the lasting distinction, is who runs the fastest marathon, and not simply who runs the most marathons -- though that is also possible to note. In most events, they are quite happy to have as many participants as possible, subject to individuals determining for themselves, what is a suitable schedule by which they can peak appropriately, to achieve their maximum performance, which is what they'll be known for, and judged by -- and not by the average of how they spend their day.

Champion athletes are notable for how composed and calm they are when they are not "onstage," invariably trying to become as relaxed as possible preparatory to their greatest effort (moment). That is the paradigm, or prototype of conditioning one hopes to achieve, which does not preclude those who spend substantial time seated or even lying throughout much of their day -- as long as they can briefly, still attain the peak.

Once that can be attained, it is less significant, how long that can be maintained -- because that peak, defines the range. If one can do one somersault, one doesn't have to do fifty, to be determined "capable." That also means that performing a treadmill for an hour each day, doesn't imply one could do one somersault -- which would indicate a level of mastery sufficient to have life saving value, in an emergency situation requiring extraordinary agility.

Amazing as it may seem, the most telling areas for which one can determine the vibrancy of individuals, is their range of movement, at the head, hands, and feet -- which people with decidedly poor health and deteriorating prospects for recovery, as well as athletes of poor responsiveness do not articulate, is the range of movement at these junctures -- but people of vibrancy do. That is in fact, their distinguishing characteristic of full vitality -- regardless of their condition otherwise, which is also, not surprisingly, supportive of that dynamism (movement).

It doesn't matter that such people are not running around all day -- doing everything they can still think to do. But if they can keep in mind, while watching television or sitting long hours at a computer, to take a minute from time to time, to articulate the head, hands and feet for at least a minute at a time, they won't suffer from the debilitating effects of maintaining a constant state of muscular tension that constricts the blood flow to their extremities that result in the nerve damage that invariably results from the lack of oxygen and other nutrients that are impeded when there is a sustained constant tension, instead of the healthful alternation of full contraction relieved by full relaxation -- that if sustained for at least a minute (50 repetitions), is the very definition of what it means to be an aerobic movement (while breathing) -- because nothing else is possible, in effecting a fully relaxed phase, alternated by a fully contracted peak.

No amount of walking, running, or typically sustainable activities for indefinite periods of time, will achieve that significant effect, of a minute of conscious movement to express that flushing of the extremities, that allows health maintaining (bodybuilding) nutrients to enter because the space has been created for it to do so.


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