The whole focus of the fitness industry including traditional personal trainers needs to shift. We talk about weight loss & obesity, cardiovascular disease & type II diabetes prevention. We talk about making time to get out of the office & the home so that we can go to a gym, get on a cross trainer, put a pair of headphones on and move in an air conditioned environment whilst watching MTV.
What the hell has happened?
This picture is wrong. The psychology of driving people to gyms to lose weight to avoid a disease that can cause death is immoral, and particularly stark considering they sell supposed clean & healthy lifestyles. As well as that, as a nation getting to the point where we only look to exercise once we are overweight/diagnosed with something means that we have taken this “drive by, convenience, touch of a button lifestyle” disproportionately far.
The body has been neglected. Time to re-train the mind.
Movement is the key to life, move anyway you like, find a sport, find a sport buddy, make the time, play a game, meet in a park not in a pub, do some cartwheels, have an arm wrestling competition, a race to the nearest tree, hide and seek anyone?
Try this: take your shoes off, find some soft ground like sand or grass and chose a nice day. How does it feel trotting around the field/beach? What feedback is your body giving you? How are your feet feeling? Is it a different feeling to what you notice when you wear shoes and do this? What is happening to your breathing? Is your body working as one piece of machinery or does each part of you feel remote?
There are no right or wrong answers here. The exercise is designed to encourage feedback from sensory inputs (in this case from the ground through your feet) to your brain processing centres. Inputs that are largely ignored when you have shoes on and/or headphones in. You don’t need to beast yourself in these sessions so hard that you feel you need to zone out to the TV, just experiment and play with your body learn its capabilities and listen to what it tells you. Don’t be afraid of it it is the greatest tool you will ever have, the biggest computer you can ever find and the most sophisticated and adaptable machine in production on this planet!