We have forgotten how to be good guests, how to walk lightly on the earth as its other creatures do." | The Cultured Warrior | No. 071
"We have forgotten how to be good guests, how to walk lightly on the earth as its other creatures do."
~ Barbara Ward
Sickness and injury are inevitable parts of training. If you've never encountered them, you've never pushed hard enough towards something worth having. It's through these experiences that we come to understand the fragility of the vessel we call "a body."
I wasn't training particularly hard at the end of the year, yet I've found myself coping with a 6-week and counting streak of infections and stress fractures. Part of fitness, a large part, is psychological. So, I suppose, fate is keeping me honest when I have to confront limitations of capability (injury) and mortality (sickness).
I've had trouble walking and have barely been able to roll, much less wrestle. Needless to say, lifting is out, striking is out, even running is out – and I've put on a few pounds as a result. This is not my life.
Surprisingly though, I haven't felt stagnant or driven to insanity. Maybe this is a time for less. Less saying. Less writing. More watching. More listening. A year or so ago I made a promise to a friend to "work less and take better care of my self."
We both knew that was a lie. What I meant though, was that I wanted to stop giving a shit about shit that didn't matter. I wanted to work harder than ever, I just wanted to make sure I was the beneficiary of the work.
I'm attracted to minimalism, and the wild. A lesson I learned again in 2022 echoed of a lifetime ago when I indulged in a 2-year stint of "van life." Frankly, it was traumatic and definitely not everything the veneer of Instagram makes it out to be.
I convinced myself that less was more, that less stuff would make me more happy and that I needed more "me time." There's a fine line between Dante's Inferno and Into the Wild. You can venture into hell or die naked and alone in the woods.
You could scrape by on the minimum. You could forfeit some of your most valuable resources – energy / attention. You could sit around bored, anxious, and (rightfully) decrying all the injustices of the world. You'd be left with plenty of time to be paid handsomely in resentment towards yourself and other humans.
The evidence of that ,1989 (Berlin, ref.), wasn't that long ago, even less since 1999 (Columbine, ref.). The Body Keeps The Score while we're fed a 24/7 diet of cheap dopamine, shitty food, outrage porn, and divisive politics.
Someone posted a picture of a protester holding a sign that read:
We're only going to get browner, queerer, prouder, louder, and we're going to watch the dinosaurs die out.
My corresponding comment was:
But are we going to get kinder to each other?
An eternal recurrence (ref.) seems ambitious beyond reach. At the very least, I plan to, as I've said before, earn my privilege and wash it down with gratitude. Wrinkles and scar tissue are like report cards. The tell stories, and never lie.
This is your life and it's ending one minute at a time. (ref.)
February marks my 3rd carniversary! Traditionally, I've done a bunch of blood and other testing, but this year I'll be putting that on hold until early fall when things like Vitamin D are theoretically peaked.
In other news:
Low-Carb performance (rate of fat oxidation) still depends on experience / efficiency and duration of "keto adaptation." (ref.)
"Whole-fat dairy, unprocessed meat, and dark chocolate are (saturated fatty acid)-rich foods with a complex matrix that are not associated with increased risk of CVD. The totality of available evidence does not support further limiting the intake of such foods." (ref.)