You may know that in addition to my wonderful wife, I love dark beer, metal music, lifting odd objects, reading research, and kiteboarding. Depending on the day, kiteboarding moves to the top of my list, especially when we’re in S. Padre TX and the wind is blowing. Please don’t tell my wife. :)
Despite this sounding like paradise, not every day goes well and this past Fall, it was one of those days.
My favorite spot I hit is the North Flats kiteboarding area. I got my big 17M kite pumped up, launched, and started to walk out as the tide was super super low. After a 20 minute walk flying the kite in shallow water, it was time to ride. The wind was still light but since this was one of my first days out of on water, I was stoked.
I stuck my large Lightwave Carbon Wing board on and gave the kite a hard tug. Normally this creates power by pulling the kite through the air, and you are up and riding.
Not so much this time…
My kite folded like a limp $1.59 pool noodle and fell right out of the sky.
I pulled the safety and got to the kite only to find it was missing about half of the normal air – which explains why it was now had the consistently of a massive 48 foot long unconscious jelly fish.
Turns out I had a slow leak in the kite that needed to be repaired.
Some days life has other plans for you and this happens to everyone. Plus, in the grand scheme of life, this is one tiny blip. This is when it pays to be flexible.
As Steven Pressfield says:
“The resistance is waiting for you.”
How adaptable can you be?
This allows you bend with the stressors of life but not break. In other words, flexible.
In the materials engineering world, ceramics are incredibly hard materials.
What’s the downside?
When they break, it is a catastrophic failure. Imagine dropping Aunt Betty’s ceramic vase on a tile floor.
Pieces explode everywhere upon impact
This began evident in the super early carbon fiber mountain bikes. They thought they could just make a frame from carbon fiber using the exact same shape as the metal-framed cousins.
While carbon fiber can be incredibly strong and super lightweight you have to use it correctly and account for the mechanics of it. If not, it can explode upon a heavy impact sending sharp pieces flying into your flesh.
Man lands big jump on demo carbon fiber bike which shatters and is impaled by fragments.
In fitness, being strong is great, fun, and helpful of moving day. However, without mobility your strength is limited.
Nutrition is similar.
Being able to follow a strict, hardcore dietary approach is a useful skill – until you are dropped into a brand new environment and you only have random wizard fingers that have been on the gas station roller under a heat lamp for 6 + hours.
You better either have the ability to turn them into energy or be good at fasting (dem met flex skillz).
I wonder if some nerd could only build a complete nutrition and recover system around being flexible? Oh wait, the Flex Diet Cert!
Yes theses are the extremes and real life is somewhere in-between, but the extremes inform the means.
The take away is that being adaptable.. even dare I say… be flexible… is key to hitting your fitness goals.