How Fitness Exercise is Designed to Fail
This video of people behaving like trained show dogs on treadmills highlights the opposing nature of exercise for ‘fitness’ vs training for athlete development.

The focus of ‘training‘ is to improve sports performance; with emphasis on the improvement aspect. Primarily this centres around achieving measured improvement in the activity itself. For example, an athlete measures their improvement in leg strength from doing barbell squats, by measuring their barbell squat performance.

If physical performance capability is not improved – or if it is reduced – by a particular training activity, that activity is generally removed from the training regime. Why would any rational person continue in a course of action that measurably fails to progress?

There is one reason to continue in a course of action that fails to progress; because failing to achieve improvement is exactly what fitness exercise is.

‘Exercise’ is defined, literally, as any random physical activity to help continue not being sick or injured. Look up ‘health’, then ‘fit‘ and then exercise in the dictionary! Its right there.

If you are not sick or injured then there is zero fitness progress to be made. You’ve made it. You are world champion in fitness if you are not sick or injured. That is the top of the hill; the end of the road. There is no such thing as being ‘fitter’ than not being injured.

The paradoxical, circular goal of health and fitness exercise is simply to do it. Doing the exercise is the only goal. The exercise is only done to be active; to do the exercise. Do you find that confusing? Good. That means you are rational.

Fitness exercise is literally like painting yourself a painting with invisible ink. You can paint anything you want and call it brilliant. You can pose like a professional, flamboyantly throw your invisible paint or press your face to your invisible canvas in deep concentration of your exacting invisible brush strokes. Its all bullshit anyway so why not make a real act out of it?

And that is exactly what we see in this moronic video.

Fitness exercise is literally like painting yourself a painting with invisible ink. Its all bullshit anyway so why not make a real act out of it?

We see people behaving like childish imbeciles to keep themselves interested because fitness exercise has no purpose other than itself, and seeks no improvement other than doing more of it. This is why fitness professionals sell ‘motivation’; because most people struggle to be motivated to do purposeless activities for no measurable outcome other than having done the activity.

If you were silly enough to think behaving like an idiot on a treadmill was the most efficient and effective use of your time and energy to achieve something material, how could you measure getting better at this treadmill silliness? What physical attribute is being developed here? Your ‘cardio’? Do you have terminal cardiovascular disease to fix? If you are reading this then I’m guessing not. Are you avoiding injury? Probably not really. Which means its not great for ‘fitness’, by the dictionary definition of the word. Are you going to be a faster sprinter? A higher jumper? A stronger squatter? A better dancer? What is the purpose? And where is this the most efficient and effective means of achieving measured improvement in a physical capacity related to other activities? When do you get better at doing what by engaging in this silliness?

Clearly messing around on a treadmill like these idiots is among the worst ways to achieve any measured performance improvement in any physical capability outside of messing around on a treadmill like an idiot. It is pure ‘fitness’ pointlessness. And that makes it anti-sports performance.

Once you are actually engaged in training – meaning, like an athlete, for improved performance and body composition – you are working very hard to achieve very specific adaptive changes in your body. These changes are extremely hard to achieve even if you do everything perfectly. Your training needs to consistently message your body that these specific desired physical changes are absolutely critical to its survival. And when you send that message consistently and constantly, it will still be hard to achieve. The very last thing in the world you want to do is contradict or confuse the message of your training with conflicting training. Non-complimentary activities are not innocuous in their effect. They will either cancel or reverse all of your training efforts. As you performance and body composition gets even better, the negative effects become even greater.

But also from a purely scientific point of view, adding more activities (variables) to your training makes you completely incapable of objectively assessing the effectiveness of your training. It makes you ignorant. If you train hard with weights and then engage in this treadmill stupidity, for example, how do you know why you failed to gain strength? Was it the training that failed? Or did the treadmill undo your good training? You don’t know.

If your goal is ‘fitness’, and you are not sick or injured, realise that you have already achieved your goal and every activity being sold to you is designed to fail to achieve anything more. When they say you will ‘get in shape’, they mean you will stay exactly as you are, at best. You could actually get fatter and weaker and still be 100% fit because you aren’t sick or injured.

If your goal is to improve your body composition, avoid every activity sold as being for ‘fitness’. It is not harmless good fun which has some benefit. It actually has massive detriment! It is training you to be worse; and ignorant.

Make sure you engage in training solely for the physical attributes of the athlete you want to become. Avoid everything else. And watch out for health and fitness con artists spruiking their anti-training fitness trash. Their fitness exercise will cancel all of your positive training efforts to bring you right back down to their pinnacle of achievement: fitness mediocrity.

Damon Hayhow

Damon Hayhow has been in the body recomposition (Recomp) and bodybuilding industry for 30 years as a coach, competitor, gym owner, teacher, sponsor, show promoter, judge and MC. He has won National competitions in both powerlifting and bodybuilding, set world records, and coached others to the same success in strength sport and physique competition.

Body recomposition diet and training concepts based on logic and reason; not scientism