Wednesday, August 6, 2014

I think, therefore I exercise

In today's Australian Financial Review, Geoff Winestock discusses exercise, health and philosophy in 'I think, therefore I exercise'.

With a refreshingly tongue-in-cheek attitude to matters philosophical, Geoff nonetheless gets to the heart of my arguments in How to Think About Exercise:
Young quotes J.R.R Tolkien, who said that a “real enthusiast for cricket is in the enchanted state of secondary belief”. Tolkien added that as a spectator he could never experience the same thing. “I, when I watch a match, am on the lower level. Willing suspension of disbelief.” 
Jogging is of course a brilliant way to develop a sense of consistency, and Young quotes the writing about running by Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami. He invokes 18th century conservative philosophers writings on “the sublime” to extol the virtues of sea swimming. 
None of these forms of exercise will suit everybody and Young suggests switching between sports can tone up different aspects of our personality. His basic line is that “intelligent exercise” is not an oxymoron.
(Photo: Walter Miller, Library of Congress)

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