The New and Improved M&F Food Pyramid
via Muscle & Fitness https://ift.tt/2zjtGBz
March 20, 2019 at 12:07PM
Sword Guy is Training to Defeat Thanos
By now, most of us know Instragram's @apiecebyguy and his sword-wielding, workout antics at Don Saladino's Drive gym. Lately, he's been upping his sword fighting workouts, but this week he went into comic territory by battling “Thanos.”
In the latest video, the sword fighting trainee defended himself against a Thanos-armed Saladino. At one point, sword guy was held by Thanos’ mighty grip as his hands pulled freemotion cables forward. Then he tries to defend himself with his sword, only to be taken down by Thanos, before eventually “defeating” the “villain.”
In the past, we've seen sword guy wielding his weapon on an elliptical, treadmill, and bench. Most recently, he was undergoing some type of torture defense training while his mouth was taped shut. Of course, it makes perfect sense that he's battling Marvel villains now.
As cool as it is to see a fake Thanos arm incorporated into training, we’re still a bit perplexed by these unique workout methods and still want to know: What is he training for?
via Muscle & Fitness https://ift.tt/2zjtGBz
March 20, 2019 at 11:10AM
Bodybuilders Have Been Buying Breast Milk Online to Build Muscle
PeopleImages / Getty
In recent years, there has been a growing market for people to sell their excess breast milk online. Some nursing mothers overproduce milk for various reasons, and instead of letting it go to waste, they sell it online, typically to other mothers who are unable to breast feed their own children. But a new clientele of breast milk buyers have emerged: weightlifters and bodybuilders.
Rafaela Lamprou, 24, told the New York Post she made $6,000 selling her breast milk. Lamprou, who gave birth in August of 2018, overproduces milk. Leaving an oversupply of breast milk untreated can be very uncomfortable for nursing mothers, resulting in breast engorgement and plugged ducts, according to Health.com. Lamprou initially sold her breast milk to mothers who had trouble nursing, but soon started receiving an influx of orders from men, particularly men pursuing bodybuilding. Her customers claim that breast milk is ideal for building muscle mass. Weird flex, but okay.
But is breast milk really an effective way for bodybuilders to gain muscle? The USDA says that breast milk is typically 87 percent water, seven percent lactose, 3.8 percent fat, and one percent protein. The nutritional value of the milk, however, changes depending on the baby’s age and the mother’s diet. On average, one cup of breast milk has 172 calories, 2.5 grams of protein, 10 grams of fat, and 16 grams of carbs.
This may seem like a good option until you remember that one cup of cow's milk or soy milk both have around eight grams of protein. Suddenly, someone else’s breast milk you bought over the Internet seems slightly less appealing. “When you actually look at the nutrition facts, that’s not a lot of protein for a grown man,” New York City fitness expert Chris Ryan, CSCS, CPT tells Health.com.
Breast milk is also pretty expensive, typically going for around $1 an ounce online. This isn’t even taking into consideration the health of the stranger and the cleanliness of the breast pump. Supporters of breast milk claim the milk contains certain growth factors that can be beneficial in muscle growth, but Ryan goes on to say that if you’re looking to bulk up, there a lot more effective and affordable options, such as grass-fed whey protein, containing around 20 grams of protein per scoop.
Let this be a lesson to us all to leave breast milk to the babies.
via Muscle & Fitness https://ift.tt/2zjtGBz
March 20, 2019 at 10:13AM
6 Two-Move Workouts to Save You Time and Get You Shredded
In this case, it takes only two moves, thanks to the programming chops of renowned trainer Zach Even-Esh, the founder of the Underground Strength Gym, the head strength and conditioning coach of the Rutgers University wrestling team, and the author of the best-selling book The Encyclopedia of Underground Strength & Conditioning.
The two-exercise concept is a shining example of quality over quantity. “This is called training economics,” Even-Esh says. “We take the exercises that deliver a high return of results on a short investment of time. This type of approach will always deliver results.”
Even-Esh has designed six, two-move workouts. The first four sessions alternate between upper-body (Workouts 1 and 3) and lower-body (Workouts 2 and 4) training, and each of the last two (Workouts 5 and 6) incorporates one upper and one lower for more full-body stimulus. And each move for a workout should last only 30 minutes.
The exercise menu includes familiar moves—squats, lunges, presses, cleans, pullups, deadlifts, pushups, and rows—done with high set counts and relatively heavy weights. Isolation moves are nonexistent, except for a few optional moves that can be tacked on for those who have an extra five minutes or so to spare.
There’s no fat in this program. It has all been trimmed. “These workouts focus on getting more work done in less time,” Even-Esh says. “By working larger muscle groups, you’ll add functional muscle, which helps you build a body that can perform both in the gym and in your home life—playing with the kids, doing yard work, and having generally high energy. Longer workouts and more exercises are not always better. Better is better, and that’s exactly what these workouts do. In fact, these short workouts are often implemented for our sport athletes in-season and allow them to continue making gains in overall athletic performance.”
THE TWO-MOVE SCHEDULE
Even-Esh offers six separate two-move workouts, but the intent is not to do them all in one week, let alone on six consecutive days. Rather, he recommends doing four workouts per week, training on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. “This allows you to schedule weekends off for family activities and Wednesday off for downtime,” Even-Esh says. “And if you’re really short on time or bandwidth, you can do three days per week, training on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday, taking off Tuesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Weekends should be spent in active recovery with recreational activities or stuff with friends or family.”
If you follow Even-Esh’s recommendations, two weeks’ worth of two-move workouts could look like this:
4 DAYS PER WEEK
Repeat cycle going forward, with Workout 3 done on the next Monday.
3 DAYS PER WEEK
Repeat cycle going forward, with Workout 1 done on the next Monday.
Start every workout with the following circuit-based primer.
10 reps each of:
via Muscle & Fitness https://ift.tt/2zjtGBz
March 20, 2019 at 09:59AM
Make Linear Progression Work for You
Do you feel like you’re spinning your wheels every week in the gym? Are you clueless about your progress? Training programs are created in order to work around you, the individual. Don't consider a one size fits all program, however. In the case of linear progression, you must break this rule. For a gym goer, the gradual process of adding weight is an expected plan to follow in order to make noticeable gains. In this article, I’ll go over what linear progression is and how it can provide some usefulness for your goals.
From middle school math, we understand that as we add 1 to the X-axis there will be a noticeable increase in Y. Meaning if we were to chart a linear graph it would similar to figure 1, below.
Between exercises, we should be attempting to increase weight in a similar fashion. This creates an “overload” response. Overload is defined as loading to excess. It is the ability of muscle tissue to exhibit near maximal tension to excess. However, in the case of exercising, exposing muscle continually to excessive stress elicits an “adaptation” response. Stress, in this case, provides a great stimulus for growth. This response is formally called “general adaptation syndrome” (GAS)—which according to Hans Selye (1972) is used to describe short-term and long-term reactions to stress.” The reactions are as follows:
Stage 1: Alarm Reaction (AR)
Stage 2: Stage of Resistance (SR)
Stage 3: Stage of Exhaustion (SE)
As one increases the stimulus that causes a demand on the muscles, they grow, become denser, and increase in biomechanical and neurological efficiency. This is important in understanding why one might get better after consistent weight increases and consistent use of particular muscle groups but, as we continue to ascend the proverbial exercise ladder, we develop a resistance to growth because the muscle has become smarter. Hence, there is a plateau period which looks similar to figure 2, below.
Furthermore, this allows us to understand why we might encounter a phenomenon called “fatigue.” Fatigue, as Mark Rippetoe explains in Practical Programming, is “defined physiologically as a reduction of the force-production capacity of a muscle.” My clients will tell you that they are training harder than ever with me and reach the wall a lot faster than on their own.
Fatigue is highly specific to the task being performed and, in the case of exercise, can range from squatting to box jumps or even skipping. However, expose yourself to prolonged muscle fatigue and this translates into another phenomenon called “overreaching.” Rippetoe also explains “the cumulative effects of a series of workouts, characterized by a short-term decrease in performance—depressed mood, pain, sleep disturbance—require two weeks to recover from.”
Where I disagree with this is in the case of advanced lifters because recovery can take even longer. This also doesn’t account for those with health problems and assumes that the individual is healthy and is at his or her ideal for lifting without much concern. Furthermore, this doesn’t account for individual recovery time, as some may be faster at recovering than others. What do you feel like after a hard week of lifting?
Common Issues with Linear Progression
I’m not getting any stronger! Start small, learn how to work from one push up to two push-ups, and utilize assistance exercises such as machine assisted dips and planks. Gradually progress, and if need be regress, for a short period of time in order to work on form problems which can make the exercise itself biomechanically difficult for you.
I got injured—help! First, find the source of the injury. Is it your shoulder? Elbow? Lower back? Secondly, determine what part of the movement did you fail at and when did you start experiencing symptoms related to the pain? If need be, take a de-load phase in which you lift at sub-maximal levels anywhere from 50 to 70%. If it’s a serious injury, avoid lifting and attempt only bodyweight exercises for a short period of time then regroup, record, and resume for your next workout.
I’m not seeing any muscles! Remember, the kind of training you do determines your body's response. The gym doesn’t become a remedy for poor eating habits and training in a non-hybridized fashion doesn’t “shock” the muscle. Instead, you’ll stay in muscle limbo until you change something about your training and/or nutrition. Seek a coach and then pay it forward to someone else.
Tracking Your Progression Is Beneficial
So you started a new training regimen and you’ve committed to the gym. Now what? What I suggest most (healthy) individuals do is begin with the basic body movements: the squat, push up, pull up, dip, Romanian deadlift, glute bridges, planks, shoulder presses, and cobra. As a coach, these movements give me the most basic understanding of how a particular person moves. Performing an assessment on oneself such as the plank, wall sit, push up, body weighted squat, wall push-up, TRX row, inverted bodyweight row, glute bridge, and overhead dumbbell press is viable because from there you can work forward instead of backward.
Create a plan and write down your progress—this will make it simpler for you to see where you were and how far you’ve come. This way you can determine what you can improve and what is holding you back. Never forget to trust the process.
Lift with love my friends!
via Breaking Muscle https://ift.tt/1GxgPEe
March 20, 2019 at 09:37AM
Top 10 Ways to Avoid Injury
via Muscle & Fitness https://ift.tt/2zjtGBz
March 19, 2019 at 11:57AM
Should I Care About My One-Rep Max?
Westend61 / Getty
It’s been around forever, and while it may seem like an old-school move, the one-rep max has moved into more modern workouts for the everyday athlete. And it’s exactly what it sounds like: setting yourself up to lift your absolute maximum load (while still maintaining proper form) for one rep, and one rep only. But is it totally necessary to load up on weight in order to see how well you can truly perform a squat, deadlift, or bench press? Honestly, it depends on who you ask.
Reinhard Nel, senior trainer and trainer development manager at Dogpound in New York City, says yes, knowing how to do a one-rep max (1RM) matters. “It is relevant irrespective of goals, because increasing the max amount of weight you can lift will improve the amount of weight you can lift for traditional percentage work,” Nel says. “Whether it is aimed at hypertrophy or strength endurance, the rate of perceived exertion decreases as the top end strength is higher.”
Traditional percentage work is what’s happening whenever you lift weight for multiple reps and/or multiple sets. While it can be helpful to know your 1RM to determine just how much you should be lifting in those sets, Albert Matheny, M.S., C.S.C.S, co-founder of SoHo Strength Lab in New York City, says you can get a very close estimate by doing other low-rep, heavy-weight movements. It's one of the reasons why Matheny says the 1RM actually isn’t necessary for most people and says, "It’s good to have ways to check your progress, but it doesn’t have to be a one-rep max unless your goals are really specific to systemic strength."
Instead, Matheny recommends going for a three- or five-rep max, as that’ll also lower your odds of getting hurt. “With any kind of training, the higher in intensity it gets, the higher the risk of injury,” says Matheny. If you’re set on busting out that 1RM though, Matheny says you need to do the prep work. “If you’re doing a true one-rep max, it means you have a training program in place,” he says. “You put on your calendar two weeks out that you’re going to do a one-rep max on your back squat, then adjust your training to meet that goal. If you’re just going into a CrossFit class and they say today you’re doing a one-rep max, then you won’t be as effective.”
When the day does arrive, move through proper warm-ups with mobility work (nobody’s busting out their best with cold muscles), and potentially include some activation work, suggests Nel. (RKC planks, banded good mornings, and fire hydrants, for example, will liven up your core, glutes, hips, and hamstrings for lower body work.) And always, always have an exit strategy. “If something doesn’t go exactly right or you fail to execute the movement, you have to know how to move out of the way of the weight,” Matheny says. Depending on what the exercise is (like, say, a back squat), you should plan on having a spotter, too.
Otherwise, the 1RM should be the focus. “Start performing the specific lift starting at light loads, progressively adding weight,” Nel says. “Keep reps low (around three to five), as the goal isn’t to create fatigue but to grease the movement pattern and prepare the body for the intensity that is to come.” A general rule of thumb: Work up to your 1RM in six to 12 lifts.
Oh, and don’t test more than once a month. “It’s really one of those things that the longer you’ve been training, the more you phase out your testing,” Matheny says. “If you’re a top-end athlete, they may do it every three or six months. But if you’re more new, or your training level changes a lot and you’re getting closer to your potential, your percentage is going to change [more often].”
via Muscle & Fitness https://ift.tt/2zjtGBz
March 19, 2019 at 11:00AM
Back from Philly With 3 World Titles
I’m back after a busy few months of training camp and a recent trip to Philadelphia where Katie Taylor and I picked up our third world title with a 9th round stoppage over previously undefeated Rose Volante. Katie now holds the WBA, IBF, and WBO lightweight world titles. There is just one belt remaining to become the undisputed champion.
Delfine Persoon (43-1) holds the WBC belt and we are hopeful for a fight with her in June at the Madison Square Garden in New York City. Delfine is a strong champion herself so it should make for an action packed world title fight. I’ll be sure to post updates to my social media channels when the fight is officially announced.
In the meantime, thanks to everyone for the continued support and I will get back to updating the blog again soon.
via RossTraining.com https://ift.tt/yhOp7p
March 19, 2019 at 10:27AM
Top 10 Pre-Workout Supplements for 2019
Courtesy Strong Supplements
For decades pre-workout supplements have been a staple for athletes and bodybuilders alike because of its reputation for increased energy and improved performance. And with the introduction of nootropics over the last couple of years, many pre-workouts have evolved into a new breed that also allow users to experience a laser focus during use. This powerful combination of heightened focus with crazy energy, pumps, and performance has brought pre-workouts back to the forefront of the industry, and this category represents those that users have deemed the cream of the crop when it comes to outperforming the competition.
Once again, the customers have spoken, the numbers have been tallied and without further ado…
In dominating fashion, Wild Thing claims the #1 spot for the second year in a row and continues to increase the gap between it and all other pre-workouts. The overwhelming amount of positive feedback and customer re-purchases says it all, and when we take an even closer look, it makes perfect sense why customers are going wild about Wild Thing. The formula goes beyond stimulants and performance enhancers; it’s raised the bar on the whole pre-workout category by adding in two new ingredients to the pre-workout world from a category called Nootropics. Nootropics are cognitive enhancers that give Wild Thing the unique focus component customers have been raving about. Also, new are the muscle gaining and muscle recovery nutrients rounding up the product’s tagline “Activates Your Energy and Feeds Your Body”. Wild Thing represents a paradigm shift in pre-workout supplements that has turned the industry on its head and now has many others trying to replicate its formula and success.
Seismic Surge maintains its position at #2 and is arguably the hardest hitting pre-workout this year. It’s ideal for those who love a massive rush of energy - so massive that it should only be used by advanced users who have no sensitivities to stimulants. If you are one of the hardcore look no further, as customer feedback has suggested that it delivers a stunningly vicious surge of energy.
Also maintaining its position is Edge of Insanity, a close rival to Seismic Surge as it is also a pre-workout that focuses on intense energy with a high stimulant formula. Psycho Pharma raised the stakes this past year by adding phenibut into the formula to help produce a feel good sensation with its freakish energy.
Mesomorph was the original king of pre-workouts from 2015-2017, but it was dethroned after its reformulation 2 years ago. There is no doubt that Mesomorph is still one of the best pre-workouts on the market delivering powerful increases in energy, focus, strength, and muscle pumps but customer re-purchases have declined thus leading to a drop in its overall ranking.
Dust X is the hard-hitting pre-workout from one of the most popular brands in the industry, Blackstone Labs. Blackstone Labs utilizes multiple novel stimulants to help users experience the all-out-intensity they need for their most grueling workouts, while still providing rich and full muscle pumps.
Re1gn hit the scene early last year and brought to market two new innovations: a new stimulant and a new pump ingredient. The market has responded with positive customer feedback and an improving customer repurchase rate. Rumor has it that Olympus Labs is making tweaks to the formula and potentially re-naming product as they make it their flagship pre-workout.
New to the Top 10, Turnt Up appears to be bringing the heat as customers have not only been reporting sharp increases in energy but also increased sweating, likely due to the inclusion of yohimbe to the formula. If you are looking to ramp up the intensity and finish your workout dripping wet, Turnt Up is your go-to.
Total War hit the scene last year from Aaron Singerman’s new brand Redcon1. Transparently and effectively dosed, Total War hits on all the categories that matter and even helps to elevate your mood. Customer feedback has been overall very positive but this year its repurchase rate has slightly decreased, likely due to slight alterations in the formula.
Transparently-dosed Mr. Hyde provides a 3-stage thermogenic caffeine blend (2-3x the amount of caffeine as most other pre-workouts) for intense amounts of energy. The only downside is that some users say that it is a hit or miss on muscle pumps and the enhanced endurance is moderate at best. Overall, Mr Hyde is at the top of the crowd when it comes to high-stim pre-workouts.
Nitraflex is one of the more unique pre-workouts as it seeks to help both boost your testosterone levels and your workouts. Clinically tested, Nitraflex is a high-intensity pre-training formula with potent ingredients to help magnify energy, alertness, strength, stamina, and pumps, and also enhance testosterone during workouts.
This content is supplied and sponsored by StrongSupplements.com. This list was generated and created by Strong Supplement Shop. For more information, visit http://www.strongsupplements.com/
via Muscle & Fitness https://ift.tt/2zjtGBz
March 19, 2019 at 09:21AM
Step Into the Arena Part 1: Shape Fitness to Meet Modern Needs
In a world of voyeurism where posts, comments, and retweets denote an “active” presence, more than ever are overweight, depressed, and struggling to care about physical vitality or any movement for that matter. As automation revs into overdrive, the Wall-E dystopia of robot conveyed, passively entertained, perpetual consumers, look more and more like a possibility. Human work can gradually become less necessary and the human body an evermore arbitrary relic of bygone eras. The point of life becomes satisfaction of impulse--saturation in comfort and removal of all pain. In a world where we aren’t necessary, narcissism and hedonism become the chief operating directives, but only to the detriment of us humans.
Humanity cannot be fulfilled without purpose. We need to be capable, physically active, well-nourished, refined by hardship, connected to nature, and, most importantly, useful to a cause bigger than ourselves. We need a mission and we need a tribe.
The fitness and education industries were born of these needs. As civilizations advanced, progressively more humans witnessed the deterioration of the human body and, after industrialization, the human spirit. Mindless factory work prompted higher rates of alcoholism and physical inactivity. Gyms and men’s clubs sprung up in communities to counter the pull of bars. Lectors were employed by factory owners to read workers books and newspapers to stimulate their minds, and, most essentially, companies began creating sports leagues to meet the needs of body and emotion.
Gene Staley’s Corn Manufacturing company, for example, employed an enthusiastic young George Halas to build his company football team, the Decatur Staleys. The Staleys terrorized local industrial teams such as the Moline Universal Tractors and the Champaign Legion. With Halas’s vision, this little league became more organized, building structures, schedules, and norms that eventually allowed them to grow and attract better talent. Eventually, this little team moved to Chicago where they rebranded themselves as the Bears.
The origins of our most profitable professional sports league began from a simple human need. Without the demands of war or nomadic survival, the human spirit needed occasions to organize in pursuit of shared missions. Today these needs are as prescient as ever, but competitive team sports are far less available to adults. As family life is increasingly defined by a frenzied pace and free time dominated by screens our communities grow more fractured and individuals further removed from their nature.
Finding Health in an Unusual Place
In the Winter of 2013, me and five of my best friends booked a five-day all-inclusive trip to Riviera Maya, Mexico. I was 23 and thought the idea of beach, sun, and all the food and drink I wanted was as close to a perfect five days as could be planned. There would be ten of us: four older dudes with wives and one even older dude, a bachelor like I was at the time, who’d prove to be a great roommate.
Photography by Bev Childress of Fort Worth, Texas
In the months leading up to the trip, my friends and I were invigorated with a sense of anticipation. They began joining me for a daily group workout session where a few out of shape former athletes reclaimed beach-ready bodies and grew to love the energy and zeal that accompanied the process. When obstacles interfered with the workouts, everyone found a way. There was a purpose and group accountability pulling the best out of everyone. By the time the trip came around, they had lost weight and many had built a habit they continue to this day.
We arrived in Mexico that July and it was everything we could have dreamed and more. For five days, the boys and girls from Texas owned that resort. One friend, in particular, my Brochacho, joined me as we immediately fell into a five-day pattern:
The resort featured an event staff led by a charismatic guy named JC. Every day just before 11, he’d start heckling people in an effort to get them to commit to the day’s first crazy game. These were typically bizarre, inherently funny competitions like football kicking competitions, a large Simon Says dance-off, pool relay races, and kayak tug-of-war. The games served to get the communal, competitive juices flowing around the pool and always immediately segued into traditional team sports games like pool volleyball, sand volleyball, or shallow water water-polo.
Except for brief interludes for eating, we played constantly over those five days. For each competition teams would assemble peacefully, rules would be established, and then the gloves came off. You became immersed in a new world.
Bonds were quickly made between teammates whose names you didn’t know, but who intuitively understood where to be for a crushing spike or how to get back on defense. For teammates who needed support, vulnerabilities and niceties were thrown out the window. You talked like you’d known each other for years. "Hey! If you make one extra pass that goal will completely open up!" In life, cautious and shielded communication is expected, but sport demands honest, harsh intimacy. Forget safe spaces. Real communication, both verbal and non, are inevitable. High fives, fist bumps, and guttural groans were intuitively synchronized as my temporary, impromptu brotherhood shared in a full spectrum of raw emotions.
Likewise, as soon as competition began I immediately despised members on the other team. Their snide satisfaction after scoring a point; their ability to rally players and propensity for over-intense play. I despised them for all the qualities I loved in a teammate. Regardless of the outcome, when the game ended sanity and perspective returned and I suddenly realized that this malice was really just respect. These were now people I wanted to know better and certainly hoped would play again later.
You are probably thinking something to the effect of, "Alright, calm down Mr. Gym Class Hero. These are just friendly games." I assure you, as competitive as I am, my emotions were controlled and directed. Yet, to some degree, I agree with the sentiment. Clearly, in my approach to competition, you can detect those dangerous seeds of the emotionally destructive sports parent yelling at referees and obsessively ranting about youth athletic competitions long after the final buzzer. These toxic influences are destroying youth sports and endearing kids with very unhealthy competitive norms.
However, I’d argue that these parents are often manifesting the primal, tribal, war-like tendencies that have lied latent inside. Their repressed shadow-side picks inappropriate avenues for expression and, absent of constructive channels, radiates contagious venom. Lacking for the tools of constructive discourse, we’ve seen similarly destructive patterns emerge on social media.
Let's not throw the baby out with the bath water! Particularly in our outwardly sanitized environment, we deeply need these competitions. More than anything humans need shared missions that force us to break through the self-conscious limitations of polite norms and find flow working together in raw, vulnerable dependency. Without these experiences, we struggle to know others or even ourselves. Adult game and competition hold the keys to greater physical, mental, and emotional health.
Humans Desperately Need a Mission
Over the last 30 years, America has witnessed a terrifying, steady ascent in suicide, drug-overdoses, anxiety, depression, obesity, and mass shootings. These have only worsened as smartphone ubiquity pulls us into its artificial vortex. Suicide and psychopathy are firmly rooted in alienation and lack of communal play. Likewise, obesity, anxiety, and depression are heavily influenced by physical health, authenticity of relationships, and time spent in flow states.
The causes of each disorder are clearly multi-varied and far beyond my pay grade. Still, I believe strongly that there would be a drastic reduction in all categories if every adult was engaging in team sports competitions a couple of days each week. We’ll often talk about how essential these experiences are for kids, but what makes them any less valuable for adults?
Particulars humans grow increasingly less dependent on themselves and each other for survival, we need a cultural movement towards action, physical capability, and mutually dependent team sport. These pull us back to our bodies, reality, flow, and real human connection. As early factory owners understood, team sport was not just for watching, it was the outlet that allowed us to maintain our humanity.
Over and over people decide they are willing to work all day in a cubicle and then forfeit the passive entertainment offered at home for an hour at the gym, hardening themselves into a more capable, adaptable beast. Clearly, humanity wants more than to be shielded from pain and immersed in pleasure. Unfortunately, most people’s fitness attempts are isolated, lonely, and overly compartmentalized pursuits. Exhausted from the modern mental pace, engulfed in entertainment, and pulled by social norms, most fail repeatedly at New Year’s resolutions and any attempts to honor their physical needs. We fail to meet these needs because these aren’t packaged with the other needs of the human spirit.
This has been the brilliance of Crossfit and other culture-creating community-driven gyms like it. Regardless of your feelings about Crossfit, the model is worth exploring. Yet, we still need more. Even if your training is consistent and interesting, there is likely a disconnect between fitness and life that sport can help mediate. The reactionary element of games requires semi-violent movement patterns that are actually the best microcosm for the real-life battles we once knew were coming (whether with animals, in tribal play, or as physical contests). Traditionally “athletic” or not, humans are inherently athletes. Training is essential, but it needs
performance on the life stage.
Our culture has normalized a model where sport ends at age 18 or 22 and then is reserved for only our children and our professionals. If you wish to remain physically fit, we are led to believe it should be done for its own sake. The only sports available are training modalities like running or powerlifting. Adult schedules must be dominated by the increasingly all-encompassing demands of modern parenting. Anyone bold enough to consistently take time for their health is working against community norms. This is insanity driving the nation into ever-diminishing health and promising a worse future for those same children. It’s time we imagine a better model.
I encourage you to look for active opportunities. Perhaps it is just a really good racquetball partner. That is better than nothing, but how could we better incorporate team sport into the adult schedule? Each occupation could form a games league that met a few days a week at the end of the workday. Games could vary from volleyball to soccer, to frisbee football. These would encourage many to adopt other fitness practices. You’d probably be fine if you only added the chief habit, a daily ten-minute workout upon waking.
Perhaps there are other avenues worth exploring where you could create the same concept, but the point remains. If it's been too long since you engaged in real physical competition, something in you is not fully activated. We need to be active players in life, engaging in daily combats, connecting on a physical level that transcends the superficial, and immerses us in a mission. These needs don’t diminish as we age. We need to jump back into the arena. Life is too short to be normal.
This Week’s Mission
Explore your environment and find a way to play. Call friends until you organize an awesome sand volleyball game. If you have access to a bigger group, try soccer or frisbee football. My neighborhood used to head to the park after dark and play ghosts in the graveyard. Perhaps that is worth trying to recreate. Maybe just head to the local rec and see about jumping into a league of some sort. Force yourself to re-discover the adaptive beast you were made to be.
via Breaking Muscle https://ift.tt/1GxgPEe
March 19, 2019 at 08:56AM