NYTimes.com – The Human Body Is Built for Distance

With all physical fitness training methods, I try my best to stay away from all the new doohickeys and gadgets that are out there nowadays. I neverliked the Bowflex or any other machine for weight-lifting. Free weights is what I believe in. I won’t get into the advantages and all that as you can look that up on your own, and you don’t need a writer wasting three hundred words on telling you about fitness. But I’ve always been all about going back to the basics where it matters. It just never made sense to me that you would get all these new-fangled technological fancies, like optimized running shoes and shirts that help you add fifty pounds to your benchpress. The human body is an ancient creation, one that existed before comfortable shoes and the safety of weight machines. Ancient man survived without all of that.

If I had the time and space, I’d love to just lift logs and chop wood all day, push a minivan around, lift heavy boxes, and otherwise perform manual labor in order keep fit. There’s nothing better than, well, using your muscles to improve them. Everyone’s all about the metagame nowadays. Instead of worrying about the numbers of fitness, I personally prefer to focus on the functional side of fitness. I’m not a bodybuilder, so I don’t need to keep constant track of just how defined my bicep is and whether or not it’s proportionate to my triceps and deltoids.I value function over form. Ancient man was able to run long distances in uneven terrain with probably nothing much but a thin piece of fabric over his feet. We cripple ourselves by spoiling ourselves with these terrific new “performance enhancing” equipment. Whenever I think of physical fitness, I think: how did people thousands of year ago stay in shape?