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    The no strain fitness game!

    I remember the first time I walked into a gym. I was 17 and had no idea what to expect. I was there because a friend of mine had told me that another mutual friend who was a runner, had built up his physique considerably over the summer and was running so much faster as a result. My buddy and I were sprinters plus both played rugby for the school so we figured we should see if the gym could help us too.

    As I walked in, alone (my buddy had decided to not rock up as agreed) I was fascinated to see 2 very different types of people. There were mainly guys, this was in the early 80’s and at that time in New Zealand fitness was generally men going to the gym and women in community centres doing aerobics, the new “thing” from the US. I actually did an aerobics session once, invited by my Mum and Auntie, my brother and I thought we were super fit and would find it really easy….. Yeah, that didn’t happen! We got destroyed, I remember the abs stuff was ridiculously tough!

    So here I was, in the gym that was owned by Les Mills the now very famous global fitness brand and there were 2 very distinctive types of people. Those that were sweating and those that weren’t.

    Fast forward to Jakarta 15 years later. Here I was after a year being an expat in Indonesia, fat for the first time in my life and deciding action was required. So I bought a membership in a gym in one of the gleaming new commercial towers that had been built under the watchful eye of President Soeharto.

    Walking into that gym in Jakarta that afternoon brought me back to my first day at Les Mills back in New Zealand. The big difference was there was only one type of person in the Jakarta gym and they were definitely not sweating.

    It was something I would witness time and again in the subsequent 25 years of life in Asia in and out of gyms all over the continent.

    Back in New Zealand gym-goers were either non sweaters or sweaters which at the time I didn’t know meant they were either in the gym as a way to get fitter for sport (like me) or to build muscle to get bigger in a bid to basically look better which is the “bodybuilder” mindset.

    A bodybuilder mindset is all about how your body looks, everything they do training-wise is designed to make them look better. This is because traditionally that’s what a bodybuilder does, he or she stands on a stage and is judged on the shape of their body, is it in proportion, is it lean and muscular, how well does the person pose…..it’s true, that’s what happens.

    As a result the bodybuilder isn’t always sweating it out in the gym. Except when they do “cardio” which seems to involve walking endless hours on a treadmill and they do sweat then.

    So what is the no strain fitness game? Well the short answer is there isn’t one, if we remember one of life’s most important lessons, “we only get out of something what we put in” (unless it’s Bitcoin, lol…..joking of course!!).

    Is my post title a little misleading, maybe it is but here’s the thing. If you want to do something to help yourself isn’t it about time you started doing it? And doing it properly?

    If this past year has taught me only 1 thing, which it hasn’t it’s actually taught me a lot but if I had to peel back everything and find that one gem it’s this… No pill or potion is ever going to help me create lifelong health. The only way is to behave like we’re designed to using our body as the gym, moving using our limbs, pushing, pulling, rotating, running, squatting and lunging. It’s not about adopting some murderously tough, “Train like the Navy Seals” thing but similarly doing yoga for 3 months isn’t going to cut it either.

    It’s about moving correctly, engaging the right muscles and joints the right way, engaging your energy systems across the full spectrum of aerobic and anaerobic capability and eating and resting in a complimentary fashion. And lastly it’s about your internal dialogue and keeping this language positive, not necessarily motivational just positive and using breath to focus your energy.

    So there’s no gain without a little strain! Just make sure you strain with a purpose.

    darren@3TRUTHSFitness.com
    www.3TRUTHSFitness.com

    #Building Better Humans

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      The no strain fitness game!

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