"You can never be too rich or too thin," goes the famous quote. But in this fitness obsessed society, too much of a good thing, is well, too much of a good thing. What's got me excited these days is the science backing up the effectiveness of HIIT workouts. Seriously good news for those of us with time constraints. Why work out for an hour, when you can get better results in a 1, 10 or 20-minute workout? Why kill ourselves?
I found this interesting article by Jonathan Angelilli and thought he definitely has a point. What do you think?
There is a massive trend in the fitness industry to glorify exercise as an all-out war on the body. I calls it the militarization of fitness—all the boot camps, Marine-inspired workouts, ridiculously intense body building routines, and general glorification of pain. Even our recovery and regeneration techniques are prioritized by how painful they are. (Got a knot in your hip flexor? Go roll that with a baseball!)
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This trend is a symptom of a much larger disease. We live in a culture obsessed with aggression, and it has found its way into every facet of our lives, even our workouts.
Exhaustion Is Not a Status Symbol
Well, exhaustion actually is a status symbol in our culture. And that’s the problem—we’re working and training ourselves to death. From a young age, we’re bombarded with the message that to be successful, we must work overtime, sacrifice our health, friends, even happiness and sanity to achieve what we want.
Being chronically exhausted is not the key to success. It's a race toward disease and dysfunction. And in most cases, it causes suffering that is 100 percent preventable. Some people, like Dr. Meyer Freidman, the doctor who first identified the type-A personality trait, calls this western disease "the hurry sickness."
We never say things like "I bet I can experience kidney failure before you!" But that’s how many of us behave. Even in the fitness industry, there are tons of people who look strong on the outside and are weak as sh!t on the inside. And do you know what we call them? Leaders. Because other people pay them good money to inherit their same warped and superficial understanding of fitness.
Our cultural pathology can be summed up pretty easily: too much yang, not enough yin; too much doing, not enough being; too much work, not enough play; too masculine, not enough feminine.
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