Nowadays physical labour isn’t considered as valuable as “brain work” and I found it an interesting topic to contemplate about. You’re considered as a healthy person if you’re sitting all day at the office and doing afterwards one hour gym training or jogging. And on the other hand, physical labour is just a work and you need to be at least as active at the freetime as these office workers. I find that physical labour, such as constructing, working at a restaurant or building something that requires physical effort, isn’t that much appreciated as a lifestyle, or it isn’t found that healthy. People whose job is active and challenging, might be sportswise less active at their freetime and that makes them feel bad about themselves. Although in real life they might actually be doing much more physical activities during the day than these “healthy lifestyle office workers”. I wouldn’t say one way or the other is correct or wrong but it’s fun to think that you might consider yourself as very sporty or very lazy person based on this perception of different labours. I’ve been personally struggling with the change from physical labour to all day office job. It’s not easy to sit on your ass all day when you were used to either working at climbing park or restaurant or leading sports camps or studying dancing.
Anyhow, I think it’s interesting to compare a bit the physical activity levels in different jobs.
Sporty lifestyle or just working
As a restaurant worker, you can easily walk 10 kilometres a day but still feel bad about yourself if you can’t get up from couch to do sports in the evening. I did feel that too when working in a restaurant and quite often decided to force myself to do some kettlebelling in the evenings. But now that I think of those times, it even feels like was that really always needed to force myself so much if your body actually just needs some rest? Okay, there’s this slogan that “ ‘I regret this workout’ said nobody ever”. But I just said it. Not too seriously obviously but sometimes it’s just best to listen to what’s the best for your body.
On the other hand, if you’re sitting all day, alias doing slow suicide as they say, it is surely a good idea to raise the activity levels in the evening. In the end people aren’t made to sit on their asses: any other animal doesn’t sit like that. Monkeys prefer to slav squat instead of sitting on a chair. Anyhow, my monkey days are over and monkeybusiness days are here: sitting all day at the office; becoming a bit of a vegetable during the day and feeling like eating chocolate everyday. If you manage to do even a couple of workouts a week you’re more than happy about it. So I’d say the amounts and attitudes towards sports have changed quite a bit for me. If I didn’t live much more actively before, I’d propably perceive myself quite sporty even now, although it’s much less than ever before. So why is this brainwork + a couple of times of sports a week considered as somehow better and healthier lifestyle? It’s interesting to notice how your idea of your activity level might be based on social constructs about labours and lifestyles.
During the ancient ages people didn’t do burbees
I started to think how long time ago sports weren’t sports the way they are now but more like a way to get something else done. You were physically working if you were for example building something or willing to move a big obstacle from A to B. If you were hunting or looking for food or moving from one place to another, these things made you run and walk very long distances. You didn’t do it because it’s just good to do a little morning cardio to maintain health. Well, of course this comparison is a bit ridiculous since the world, labour and in general being a human has changed so dramatically.
Professional athlete is the cool job
The only way sporty labour is considered cool is if you’re actually a professional athlete or you’re doing something absolutely cool and extra ordinary, such as camping in South pole in order to create a video of penguins (okay that is superawesome).
Sporty lifestyle -what is it?
Anyhow, that brings me to the question that why isn’t it so valuable to be physically active for some other reason than purely sports or maintaining health, strength or stamina? Why is it cooler to sit all day and hit the gym in the evening than to walk all day in order to get things done and couch potato for the rest of the day? Well there are jobs in between as well which are partially active and partially passive, but for me it has mainly been one way or the other. Does anybody else see the perception of different labours anyhow similarly as I do?
Comment below what you thought about the article or do you have personal experiences i.e. combining physical labour and sports goals!