Here’s how it happens, fitness folks get in shape then you think they have something extra, something extraordinary. You want to look like them or perform like them or you just revere them like they have some sort of super power.
We have lost count of the times personal training clients have said to us “sure but you guys are in great shape” as though they couldn’t and wouldn’t ever be like us. Here’s the truth – very few fitness types have the rare genetics of top level athletes. More often what looks to be special is just ridiculous amounts of practice and sadly performance enhancing drugs.
Most fitness folks are like us just normal people who have a choice – keep the strength, flexibility and resiliency of youth or lose it from lack of use. Though we can perform feats of strength and stamina far above the average Joe or Jane it’s not a level which is super normal. What has happened is society has slowly and somewhat imperceptibly lowered the bar of normal.
Look at it this way; citing an example we often use, it turned out in a meta analysis of research done on double-decker bus drivers propensity for cardiac disease verses the ticket taker:
The ticket taker always moving about and climbing stairs all day did not have less than average cardiac problems…the drivers had more.
The activity of the ticket taker just maintained normal while the sedentary driver sunk below normal.
We aren’t just benefiting from being strong and enduring, the majority of the public is suffering from being weak. All disease, except in incredibly rare cases, begins with weakness in part or whole of your biological system. A weakening body is dramatically less resistant to regular old life stressors. Regular old stress turns into something much worse yet something which could have been totally avoided.
Think you look fine and feel fine? If you don’t lift weights at least once a week you would be shocked to know how much strength and stamina you lose every month. On the other hand do you feel aches and pains and energy issues which ‘must just be a normal part of life and aging? Think again, you’re just the product of the erosion of muscular atrophy.
We’re not strong – you’re weak, don’t buy into the hype.
Get strong, stay strong,
Andrew and Tierney