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posted by Justin - 2013-02-25 09:53:11

Get Fit Quick!

This essay is probably the opposite of what you might have assumed from the title, as I'm writing to decry all the pills, procedures and potions people seem to think will turn them from flabby to fit overnight (and you can be thin and flabby, by the way; this is not about size).

I get why out of shape folks want to get in shape. We should all be in great shape. I remember, back in my go-on-all-the-dates phase, someone was upfront about the fact that her health was unimportant to her, which was honest, I suppose, but what does it say that we've reached a point of societal privilege where we can afford to simply not care about the state of our bodies and minds?

College time ends, we get a few years, and then we have to care, we must. And the thing about it is, it's not going to be quick or easy to get and stay healthy. It shouldn't be. If it were, we wouldn't sweat, we wouldn't be sore, we wouldn't ache. This is not to say that you should injure yourself or be reckless, but you should welcome the struggle and see it as a necessary part of improvement.

Think of it this way: if you are able-bodied (and not infirm), and it's very difficult for you to walk, say, a few flights of stairs, you have mucho work to do. And we need to embrace the slow, gradual improvement that will result.

We have got to eschew this "well if I take this pill I can eat ANYTHING YAY" nonsense we see on TV. There are indeed prescription medications that can help manage various conditions, but a pill, by itself, is not going to get you in shape. Hell, the ads themselves say the same thing, in fine print: "Subjects lost weight when combined with diet and exercise." (Again, this isn't about weight, at all. If you're fat and you can power up the stairs, more power to you. And if you're skinny and it takes half a minute of jogging for you to be winded, get to work.)

Suffice it to say, we all need to be reasonably fit. And we're not getting in shape quickly and without gallons of sweat. (And without cigarettes, so cut that idiocy out.) The only thing that's going to get you in shape is you. And that's not a bad thing at all.

Peace and love,
Justin PBG
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