Why Fitness?

DrSquat's picture

For many centuries, perhaps as far back as man’s ascendance on this planet, man has recognized himself as a dichotomous being. This ancient self-awareness saw that part of us which is visible as comprising the natural man, and, that part of us which is invisible as comprising the mind. Somewhere along the evolutionary path, the concept of man possessing a spirit entered into the equation, giving rise to the notion of man being a “mind, body, spirit” trichotomous being. Contemporaneously, a heated discussion rages among theologists whether man is di- or trichotomous.

Before I progress with this discussion, I want to make it clear that I am quite aware of the myriad views on creation vs. evolution, theism vs. atheism, religiosity vs. spirituality and the often-bitter disagreements among the Abrahamic faiths. Indeed, I have some rather pointed views on these topics myself. I would invite you to fight the urge to howl in protest should the points of view I express diverge from yours. Instead, keep the point of this discussion in mind, namely, “why fitness”.

What Is Man?

Two thousand years ago, Jesus, the Christ, brought man the message of the Kingdom of God (also called the Kingdom of Heaven), pronouncing that it was within men. His apostle Paul spoke of the “inward man” and the “outward man” as being spiritual and carnal respectively. James, the brother of Jesus, made it very clear that the outward man was constantly at enmity against God (e.g., "the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak"). This theme is repeated in many ways throughout the New Testament. So, the message of Christianity is quite clear on this point, that God would be King of your life, and that “self” must die in order that God may rule.

Now, there are two obvious parts to the natural man, the body and the mind. The body is your material being, that part of you that you can see. Your body and mind are intimately connected via sensory mechanisms. Of course, your mind is the seat of self-consciousness, of your personality. It embraces your will, intellect, emotions, and desires. In biblical references, it is often referred to as the “heart”. It is also referred to as one’s soul. In the soul, SELF sits on the throne. Man’s spirit, on the other hand, is the seat of God-consciousness, and only there (in His Kingdom, which is Heaven) will He sit.

Fitness for the Whole Man?

This whole inward and outward man concept may seem irrelevant to fitness on the surface, but there are some fundamental questions that beg to be addressed. Namely, which takes precedence? Which become subservient? Or, are they equally important? How do you nourish each, and to what end? Indeed, must each be nourished in the first place? These questions beg the greater question, "Why Fitness?" After all, if getting fit is naught but a carnal endeavor to glorify one’s SELF, wouldn’t this constitute enmity against God? Is fitness more than just an ego trip? Or, can we conclude that fitness and the activities which promote fitness are just plain “fun”?


Dr. Squat- Fred

A blast from the past. Middletown YMCA- Peter Thorne
Rocky Neck, Sandra & Winnie..memory lane. Just talked with Peter.

Comgratulations on your SUCCESS! It proves where there is a will, there is a way. Best regards, Sandra

Why Fitness?

It.... and life .... seem to be about balance: One's spirit (or religion), love and personal relationships, career, education, health/fitness, and the need to enjoy fun and entertaining life experiences, and rest too. When a balance of these are achieved over time people tend to be happier, healthier and feel more fulfilled. When we fall into more singular pursuits at the expense of others over long stretches, not so much. I've heard religious pastors say "a God shaped vacuum exists in everyone's soul" because people are hungry to know if there is a God and hope for an afterlife. But I'd expand that to include these other areas as well, either by design or through evolution. And all these facets of our being need to be exercised-challenged, nurtured and rested too, just like the approach we take with training to improve our bodies.

And more to the point of "Why Fitness"? We feel and look better, are healthier and more energetic. All of which lead to greater confidence, self fulfillment, and ultimately, happiness and well being.

Be well.

Fitness help us to be strong ,happy and healthier

Fitness help us to be strong ,happy and healthier so we should do exercise ,eat healthier food and also if we are fit it also helps to keep our mind fresh even if we have tension or work load so my advice to all keep yourself fit and be happy.

Preplins chart and Dr Squat's thoughts

First time on a blog. Been training for many years and the most influential research I have used in my programs have been from Dr. Hatfield. I've done all sorts of training and found his books The Science of Powerlifting and Bodybuilding what I used most. I've been a competitive powerlfiter in my 20's and now again in my late 40's I am again hitting the iron. Preplins chart and Westside Barbell training is very popular with young powerlifters. I want to ask Dr. Squat his thoughts on the perfect repetition/set/volume scheme. I don't know if it holds the weight most people believe it does. I am trying to re-vamp my training. My recent best lifts have been a 650 squat, 661 D.L. and 554 bench getting back into this sport. I have training cycles, but I have always included cycles of what most people would consider extremely high repetitions. I am always told it is counter-productive and I should use the Preplins chart, but I have put on a lot of muscular size and strength because of this without the use of any steroids ever. I also only work each body-part once per week. At least it is my perception the added high repetitions have contributed to this. I always go back to your books where you talk about including all rep ranges and speed of movements as well which I have always done. I did find one article recently about high repetition training and the author talks about red/white and gray muscle fibers. It was his theory the gray fibers are often never stimulated with only low rep heavy training. I actually don't do high reps with every exercise. Deadlifts kill me for high reps so I rarely go higher than 12 on those ever, but with the bench press I will frequently do sets with 30-40 repetitions. I also change hand positions and use different bars to change angles since my shoulders are shot after years of grappling type sports. This tends to save my joints. An example, I am currently on a high rep phase and I did my heaviest two bench sets for 25 reps at 365lbs. with a Swiss bar. What are your thoughts, is there any real research as to Preplins and low reps and not going over a maximum volume and in opposition research on benefits of high rep. training? Am I better off trying to stick to a chart like Preplins theory? Thank you for all you have done and contributed for the sport and the fitness community.