Let's Get Physical #8: When Will It Ever End?

I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead last week.  It's a great demonstration of the benefits of juicing without sounding like an infomercial.  But, the thought dawned on me that, while this may be a perfectly reasonable tool for weight loss, it's just one of the thousands upon thousands of weight loss plans..... when will it ever end?

Remember the Atkins craze a few years back? Guess what - my parents were on that diet back in 1972!  That's right - it's actually a forty year old diet.

Many of you will recall the beginning of the fitness boom at the end of the 1970s - precisely the time when Baby Boomers became old enough to actually need to work out.  Nobody on the face of the earth jogged before then, and aerobics classes were a new invention as well. The Boomer generation was declaring war on the ravages of time, and because of their massive numbers, the whole world seemed to revolve around punching Father Time in the face.

What would be the next elixir of everlasting youth? Could it be Jazzercise? Sweatin' to the Oldies? Maybe Jane Fonda would know what to do...

Fast forward a couple decades and we are STILL at it. Whether it's Tae Bo, The South Beach Diet, Kettle Bells, or the Thigh Master, we are still obsessed with a magic solution to our love handles and flabby asses. (And it certainly didn't help matters that the diet boom coincided perfectly with the fast-food boom. Bad luck that).
The trillion dollar question now is not "will it ever end" but rather "when will this end?"  Will it continue until the very extinction of the human race, with "step classes" still going strong in 2099? Or, will Americans finally get a clue that there is no quick fix, no simple solution - it's a matter of changing the very fabric of your entire lifestyle long term.... till you effing die.

The only other possibility is that science scores big.  At one time, plastic surgery was deemed the answer to prolonging that youthful look - but that has turned out to be an utter joke.  A lot of surgeons have gotten extremely wealthy in the process; meanwhile, their deluded patiends end up looking like like Photoshopped corpses.

Maybe the answer will come in the form of some synthetic compound that prevents fat storage.  Or perhaps they'll invent a capsule that causes all your muscles to repeatedly contract unnoticed while you sleep, burning calories while you lay motionless on lily white ass. It could happen.

The main problem here is that human beings aren't genetically designed to live into our forties.  Physically speaking, we are meant to procreate and then fucking die.  The fact that we are hanging around FIFTY PLUS years beyond our expiration date defies nature, and defies hundreds of thousands of years of human history.  To somehow override that will be a monumental feat indeed.... and I don't think it's going to be as simple as juicing.


  1. OK 3PO, great post.
    I work in the health care industry and one day was joking with a coworker about an idea along the lines of that book 'the world without us' - say we all just disappear and that's it. And then a couple hundred years later ET lands and he tries to figure US out by what we left behind. I figured that they would think that we were creatures fueled by sugar and went to great lengths to keep our sugar based diet going, even finding ways to help people whose bodies had stopped processing the vital sugar so that they could and keep on living.

  2. Don't forget gastric bypass surgery. I've known several people who have had the procedure. Sadly, its not always a cure-all...my one co-worker is proof of that, since she had gained back all of her weight a few years after she had the surgery.

  3. I saw an Atkins book from the early 80s at a book sale, so I knew it had been around awhile.

    My wife and I exercise 4 or 5 days a week, and she walks about every day. There are many benefits to staying in shape and we are willing to take the time and effort to do it.

    You can find exercise videos at garage sales and flea markets anytime. The only reason to pay full price for a new one is to be trendy.

  4. There is the cult aspect of plastic surgery too, gigantic misshapen pornstar globes are every bit as sick as bound feet, lip plates, and the giraffe women of southeast Asia. Liposuction sucking parts of your body into a jar for diposal

  5. What's the percentage of obesity these days?

    Do your own experiment some day: go to a mall in California...then go to a mall in Oklahoma City or Omaha. Make empirical observations of the size of people. I think there's a significant difference you'll notice immediately.

    That said, most would like to look like the leotard girls in these photos, but most don't...so they try all kinds of dumb stuff to look like that...everything except exercise AND cutting some calories.

  6. No, we're not built to procreate and die - we're built to last into the 70s, which is how long successful hunter-gatherers live. We are a pack animal that needs parents to raise children and elders to learn from.

    What we are NOT designed to do is look like we're 20 anywhere past our, well 20s.

  7. For what it's worth, I do recall jogging becoming an exercise trend way back in the late '60s...at least I read about it back then. Maybe folks didn't actually start doing it for another ten years...

  8. The problem is people are too effing lazy and in denial about the real and ONLY long lasting way to lose weight and stay healthy and that is maintaining a good diet and exercise regimen for LIFE. It really is that simple. Too many people think they can take the easy way out and pop a magic pill or try a (always temporary) fad diet.

  9. The real problem is we invented machines to do our work.

    If gazelles had done the same they'd be all fat and horrible by the time they reached middle age.