Fitness--- work vs exercise

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Beeman, Jun 30, 2005.

  1. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    The posts about physical labor and what age did you feel a change made me think about what work does to your body vs exercise. Now that I have felt that change in my body I feel I have some qualifications to judge this.
    Physical labor has done it's part to permanently destroy many parts of my body. Someone in the post about your prime age related how they are happy they had a desk job for 25 yrs. before they started their homestead work, there is a lot of merit to this. Hard work or physical labor doesn't seem to help your body from a fitness standpoint unless your job is as a fitness instructor. Hard work is more like sports but without the proper training. both usually end with permanent damage to a part of your body. Sure the hard worker can do that repetitive task all day long, like swinging a hammer or digging a ditch, but at what price? How much pain do they endure every day to perform this task and how many Advil does it take to mask the pain?
     
  2. Big country

    Big country Well-Known Member

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    There’s a big difference between working hard and abusing your body. Hard work will make you stronger, but if you do dumb things like lifting with your back instead of you lags your just asking for trouble. Some jobs can’t be done with out mechanical assistance or the help of others, you need to learn your limits and don’t abuse yourself.
     

  3. MelissaW

    MelissaW Well-Known Member

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    I don't know. I think certain kinds of work can definately wear out your parts rather than make you stronger. My husband has been a sheet metal worker for 19 years. He has pretty bad artheritis in his hands (probably from cutting with snips) at 38 years old. And, I'm sure the wear and tear of 20 years of riding hunter/jumper combined with gardening and carrying bags of feed contributed to my ruptured disc. I heard my physical therapist talking to her resident about me one day. She said, "We treat these farm people a lot." I stay fairly thin and muscular from work, but I'm definately starting to fall apart!
     
  4. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    I think people choose the exercise that will stress their joints the least for the maximum benefit. Which is why you see people happily peddaling away on a stationary bike or plodding on a stairmaster. Even when people get outside to exercise, you don't keep hiking after you hurt - you sit down and rest awhile then get back to the car.

    When I was working full time as a landscaper... My income depended on me moving all day every day. In the fall/early winter I was raking leaves - if my elbow hurt I took some Advil and kept on raking. When I was spreading compost and my back started to get sore - more advil and keep at it. I was doing ok until my knee gave out on me. I still had to work (single at the time, no other income coming in), I was favoring one knee so the other hip started to give me problems and my back started taking the brunt of the labor. After two years of that the husband I had just married sat me down and flat told me I had to stop. He was right. It took almost a full year of physical therapy and rest before my back got to sort-of normal and I could walk properly again. I do all sorts of the same kind of labor I did as a landscaper here on the farm, but I pay closer attention to my body and stop when I need to.
     
  5. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    This is part of what I question. Hard work might make you stronger, but only in the part that you work. Swinging a hammer will make your arm stronger, but only the arm that swings the hammer. Now if you worked like you would exercise you would bang so many nails right handed and then so many left handed. You would keep track of the sets and reps and when you reached your target you would stop and let your muscles regenerate before doing that exercise again. I don't think many bosses would be keen on this method of carpentry. I think you would have a bit of a problem keeping a job. I think more of it goes like Jen H stated with the Advil because of the need to keep working.
    I also think about the standing on concrete or other parts of work that don't allow you to "know your limits" it's just expected with the job.