A BRIEF PREAMBLE:
So, ‘mens sana in corpore sano’, a great (and potent) latin phrase normally translated as:
“a sound mind in a sound body”
Hah, got ya. Bet you didn’t think i was so smart as to know latin, right?!
Ok, fair enough, i’m not. I’m actually pretty much as dumb as a brick when it comes to just about any other language that isn’t my own. English that is. Of course there are those who say that i struggle with that too…really, who needs enemies with friends and family like that, hey?!?
CUTTING TO THE CHASE:
In more modern times, and depending upon where you were born and raised, you may have heard it expressed slightly differently. Something like this:
“a healthy body makes for a healthy mind!”
Basically, the phrase‘mens sana in corpore sano’ is used to express the notion that physical exercise is a very important, even critical, part of a person’s mental and psychological well-being.
However you prefer to express it, i absolutely, totally, and wholeheartedly agree!
Physical exercise is an absolute must. Man or woman, young or old or in between. You gotta do it. It doesn’t have to be eight-hours-per-day ‘pumping-iron-til-you-drop’ or ‘run-til-you-can’t-even-walk’ type of exercise…
…It just needs to be regular, good quality, effective, and wherever possible, enjoyable…for your mental state as well as your physical condition.
To put it bluntly and simply, as is my habit, work fkn hard for a few minutes (at least 20 minutes is good), at least three times per week, with some form of exercise that suits you and gets your skin leaking…use it or lose it dude/dudess!
Of course, just like anything and everything that you have ever mastered, or are yet to master, exercise takes effort, time and practise. But it isn’t as bad as you may think. And if you do think it’s bad and not worth your time and effort, then there’s really only one answer for you…
You’re just plain lazy…simple!
And if you choose to be lazy, then you choose to ensure a negative effect on your self-confidence. It’s a proven fact. As your physical health declines, so will you mental health. Most especially if it’s because of nothing else but your own fault.
Don’t get me wrong here, i’m not saying you have to be a world-class body builder or an ‘adonis’. You don’t have to be a cat-walk model – in fact i assure you these types have their own unique health “issues” that we won’t go into right now.
It really doesn’t matter that your physical appearance or ‘shape’ is not the “perceived” perfect shape that the fashion and so-called health magazines would have you believe you need to be…that’s just total bollox!
You don’t have to have a rippling six-pack, biceps the size of small planets or perfect ‘toit’ buns to be comfortable and self-confident with your appearance.
You DO need to ensure you don’t have an enlarged heart, clogged arteries or ‘fatty’ liver!
I’m sure you know what i mean. All the types of problems or chronic diseases associated with “Obesity” and general bad health that’s been well proven to be caused by a severe lack of physical exercise and of course poor dietary and life choices.
What you DO need to be, is comfortable with yourself, while being confident that you’re life isn’t gonna come to a sudden and abrupt end because you’ve been too lazy to do what you simply must do…habitually working on your physical health.
Now everybody who exercises has a favourite method. A favourite routine. It may take you sometime to settle on your perfect choice.
And it may also take some time to become accustomed to the method and the style.
But it can literally be anything that you’re comfortable with i.e a specific sport played on a regular basis…
…or a daily brisk walk. I know a few people, including myself when i get the chance, who love to carry out short-distance hill sprints.
And you don’t have to have expensive equipment or clothing, or an expensive ‘almost-impossible-to-get-out-of’ gym membership.
Personally, i practise my exercise routine in the privacy and comfort of my own home. I make use of a combination of three different, but very proven, methodologies. A small amount of yoga, a substantial amount of Special Forces core work and some moderate free-weights training, with the (very) odd bit of hill sprinting here and there.
I’m most certainly not a fan of the generally accepted forms of “cardio” exercise.
Especially running. I personally think running is a punishment and not a pleasure…but hey, whatever blows your hair back!
I average about one hour per day. Sometimes shorter, sometimes a little longer, depending on the exact routine i’m doing for that day. For example, if i’m doing upper body weight-training on top of my basic core-work, then i’ll likely take a little longer…there’s one more muscle group to work than there is in my lower body weight-training session.
No fancy-schmancy spandex pants or costly high-tech equipment for me either!
I wear any old loose fitting ’T’ shirt. A pair of old, but comfortable, baggy shorts and a pair of well-worn New Balance sneakers (i’ll generally go barefoot in the summer months, while the floor tiles are substantially warmer). I have a small selection of inexpensive dumbbells and a ratty old floor mat…i do everything from the floor.
It’s such an ingrained habit now, that i can very rarely start my day without it.
A FINAL ANECDOTE:
Just sacrifice half hour of your normal ‘brain-liquidising’ evening TV and couch time, and get up a little earlier in the morning instead. Start your day with a head-clearing, body-toning, sweaty-crack (eeuw!) inducing session of physical exercise.
And unless you’re seriously ill or seriously physically impaired in some way, then you have no excuse. Get off your arse, get to it and make a quality exercise routine one of your solid, daily habits…
…just a little bit’ll do ya!
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Carpe Diem, Be All You Should Be
Peter EC Kirwan