Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Isn't the human body amazing?

This post is prompted by someone who emailed me after my last blog entry wondering whether they could have a real influence on how the body re-builds itself given what has been put in in the past.

My answer to that is without a doubt. Our bodies have largely evolved to respond to the environment and to what we are doing with them.

If we lift heavy weights they tend to build muscle (certainly for men), if we sit around and do nothing our muscles tend to waste away and our joints seize up.

I just wanted to recount my own experience to illustrate this. Not that I am in anyway remarkable as a specimin, anyone is capable of doing similar but it does go to show that we do hold a good deal of influence over how our bodies constantly remake themselves.

Six months ago (August 09) I was just on 16 stone and totally unfit, my body fat % at that point was 36% fat. I could not run without stopping to our nearest shop (500 meters). If I had taken no action at all I would by now have billions of new cells in my body but my body would have been little different to look at or if it were measured.

However I decided to change that. I now weigh around 12.5 stones and have a body fat % of around 12. Last night I went out for a run, intending to do at least 5K (awful day at work and didn't feel much like it) but at various places decided to take the long route and ended up doing 10.5K. Ironically my Runkeeper App told me that I had done 10K just as I passed the shop I could not run to 6 months ago. I must admit I chuckled to myself as I lengthened my stride and gave it a last push for home (10K time was 58 mins 55 secs for anyone interested, not Olympic standard but not bad for an old git of 51!).

As I say nothing special about me but there is something special about this physical body we all possess that it is so forgiving for all the years of abuse and misuse that with a bit of cajoling and effort it can remake itself into something which can pass for decent!

Moral of the story for me is that it is just never too late to do something about it and that time will pass anyyway so if it takes six months or a year so what, in six months or a years time you will be that much older, the question is 'how' do you want to be? We are constantly instructing our bodies as to how we want them to be based on what we put in and how we use them. Makes you think doesn't it?

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