Welcome to our new website, Spanking FIT which is a spanking new approach to staying informed about personal fitness and health, based on REAL Science. Notice, I said “our” website and not “my” website. There’s a reason for this: Although I possess degrees including a doctorate from the world’s most prestigious universities, and have years of experience researching health and fitness issues, I truly want Spanking FIT to be our collective effort. After all, nobody knows more about their body than you do. Rather than being one of the many online fitness and health “gurus”, I view myself as a coordinator of the collective wisdom of our website’s visitors. However, I do wish to make an important contribution by using years of personal experience in medical/ health data analysis to assist in separating fact from fiction. It will come as no surprise to the reader that false claims and exaggerations regarding fitness and health abound in media. What may surprise you, however, is one common source of them: so-called peer-reviewed papers that are published in well regarded scientific journals! The authors of this research, no matter how well intentioned, often disregard important requirements regarding the nature of the data they use in making their “discoveries” and in publishing their “findings”. For this reason, you cannot rely on a medical or health-related claim simply because it has been published in a journal. This is a common mistake made by many popular websites. Yes, even by fine quality publishers like New York Times. With your assistance, I plan to detect those cases, and introduce the necessary note of caution. There’s also an abundance of medical opinion and claims by credentialed persons that are based on anecdotal evidence only. Statements to the effect of: “in my twenty five years of clinical practice I have never seen a case of such and such, etc.” can be equally damaging and misleading for the public. I plan to detect and warn about those as well.
As serious as the subjects of fitness and health are, that doesn’t mean that we can’t have fun along the way. Most of you can attest to the fact that maintaining fitness and health is one of life’s most enjoyable experiences. Our minds, bodies, and sexuality are interconnected in an amazing way, and it is vital that we keep them in balance to stay healthy and alive. All too often, members of the academic community focus narrowly on mental development at the expense of physical fitness. That habit may lead to diminished mental ability in the long run, due to this mind-body connection. One final opening note regarding the subject of bio-individuality. Another common mistake on the part of some health practitioners, in my opinion, is to overlook the important fact that each of us is an individual. You’ll agree that there are obvious differences in the way that we look on the outside; but, these differences are even more pronounced on the inside. “No two livers look exactly alike” was a statement once made by a prominent surgeon that I knew. At Spanking FIT we make a vow never to make a false generalization when it comes to our fitness or our health. Vive la difference!
Photo credit: photo of triathlon champ (Michael Belcher, age 19) https://www.flickr.com/photos/chrishunkeler/10782671335/
Creative commons license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/