Saturday, July 07, 2012

It Doesn't Take Much

People have been conditioned to think that the best way to make things easy, is to make them impossibly hard (and difficult), so that the actual doing of it, seems easy by comparison -- rather than to make things as ridiculously easy in the first place, so that it doesn't take much to do them at all.

This is particularly important in exercise -- as the tendency to find even the easiest things difficult in time, so that eventually, one no longer even attempts to do anything any more, because just the thought of doing it anymore, discourages them.

That is especially unfortunate for those who can no longer do very punishing workloads any longer -- because their bodies just can't take it anymore, and recover for the next.  So one of the key concepts in retaining this lifelong ability to keep on doing what one has been doing, is to actually discover ways to make it easier -- and not as many people erroneously do, make everything in life as hard, difficult and complicated, so that eventually, they just don't even try anymore -- or even think about it.

That is the conditioning we know as "aging" -- or finally reaching that point at which we just give up trying -- as perfectly acceptable and justifiable, because it is just too hard, difficult, and impossible anymore.  In exercise, we call that increasing the "resistance" or workload, until finally it crushes you, and then one has a perfectly good reason for not doing it anymore.  Your permanently crippled and disabled body is proof enough that you don't have to do anything anymore, but just let nature take its course to the ultimate end.

So it's really a mind-boggling, and earth-shaking proposition, to make exercise increasingly easier -- so that one can always do them -- with no excuses for not.  That's not what people want to hear -- who are conditioned to the excuses for not doing anything anymore.

All those movements that can be done with weights or on weight machines, can be done even more effectively, without weights (resistance) -- better and longer without them!  That's been known for a long time -- that the lighter the weight, the better the form in performing that movement -- and it is the movement itself that is important, and not any amount of weight or added resistance -- that makes that movement difficult and corrupted.

And as people age, doing the movement itself -- without any weight, is often difficult or impossible anymore -- and in most cases, even imaginable anymore.  Thus obviously, just being able to perform a movement as lifting one's arms overhead would be quite an achievement -- and doing that for 50 times, would be enough to retain and even improve that movement -- without danger of injury because no extra-ordinary resistance or load is imposed -- that simply adds to the risk of injury, while doing nothing to increase the benefit in perfecting that movement.  In short, the reward-risk ratio, begins at zero and proceeds to negative -- until there is only the certainty of injury, death or disability, and at that point, the wise person retires, or withdraws from further competition.

One simply recognizes their limits -- rather than taking it to the ultimate end.  There is no shame in that.  One should explore their abilities until they reach those limits -- and then move on to explore and develop other aspects of their potential in which they haven't reached those limits but still can double their gains daily.  And that obviously, would be in doing those things one hasn't done before -- so that in going from zero to even one, is a tremendous improvement, and then up to fifty (50), is most people's point of exhaustion -- in any movement, even without any resistance.

It doesn't have to be a particularly difficult movement to begin with -- but in doing it for 50 times, will require one to develop a proficiency and efficiency of that movement, that simply doing it once, twice, ten or twenty times, won't necessarily require.  Yet adding weight (resistance), ensures that one will fail before 50 repetitions of a movement have been accomplished -- which is self-defeating, if the greatest value of that movement, is achieved at simply the ability to perform that movement for a minimum of 50 times -- which is the indicator that one has mastered the movement enough to persist at it indefinitely longer, if an occasion should require it.

This persistence of movement, is what makes "work" possible -- or the capacity to endure at anything sufficiently long, as to be meaningful and productive.  One revolution on a bicycle, or one stride, doesn't mean much or get one far, but 50 is likely to be sufficient in getting from one place to any other in the normal organization and layout of their lives -- to accomplish most everything in the normal course of their day.  In that scheme of relevance, a marathon would necessarily be a once-in-a-lifetime event -- if at all necessary, and someone in a large pool of people, would likely volunteer for that task -- in notifying the capitol (next town), that the invaders had arrived but the locals had prevailed -- as one's ultimate sacrifice and act of valor.

More often than not, one wins by being the only person to show up -- after recognizing what really needs to be done, while the masses are doing what everybody else is doing, in a typical duplication of efforts, leading up to the cancellation of everybody else's efforts in a competitive event simply to eliminate everybody else.  That is the ultimate resistance, or workload -- that everybody's efforts are worthless, but only the one -- and everything else was in vain.

Most, therefore, grow out of that competitive mentality at some point in their lives, and have to create a meaning beyond the competition -- for their ultimate fulfillment, as individuals and unique destinies.  That is every person's study of their own lives -- and personal fulfillment not dictated by anybody else, but just deciding to do what is right for themselves -- uniquely.  That is what one person cannot decide for another -- find out for any other.

But the practical and productive movements are not infinite -- and in fact, are surprisingly few.  They are the movements at the extremities of the human body -- of the head, hands and feet -- to do the essential tasks of being human, where we uniquely differentiate from all the other animals and life forms.  The human head, hands and feet are like no other.  All have similarly functioning hearts, lungs, digestive tracts, internal organs.  That part has been perfected for all.  Where we really differentiate and distinguish ourselves uniquely, are at these furthest extremities of evolution -- the farthest reaches of life so far.

And that is what we need to exercise, master, and perfect -- throughout life.


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