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Survival of the Fittest is a Farce. I'm Still Here.

Published in the November 2010 Issue Published online: Nov 19, 2010 Sledheads Ryan Harris

After reading our new editorial section, Fit Tips by Dan and Irina Adams, something hit me: I'm kind of a softy.

If you're man enough, you might also admit it. It's like looking in the mirror when you hit 30: you still see an 18-year-old looking back at you. Well, it's just as easy to believe that, despite arms that have the same shape and definition as a roll of gift wrap and a belly that has been conditioned to hold a super-sized No. 3 combo at McDonald's at a moment's notice, you and I are not in the same physical condition as guys like Dan Adams.

That's not a bad thing. Actually, based on how well things have worked for the past 10 years before coming to this realization, I've compiled a list of my own fit tips. Here goes:

 

1. Abs: Using the McDonald's technique, work the abdominal region twice daily with a minimum six times per week. Substitute Jack in the Box, BK, Taco Bell or Five Guys. Avoid White Castle as this is a dangerous maneuver that can lead to injury. The key here is to develop enough mass to appear to be carrying a spare set or two of gloves in the front pockets of your sledding jacket, when in fact you are not. This gives the illusion of being the prepared type of rider. And as my high school welding teacher once told class: "Anything worth having is worth putting a shed over."

2. Arms: "Guns" are overrated. All you really need is enough muscle to hang on to your handlebars for about four hours and another hour's worth for the truck's steering wheel. What you're looking for is tone, which comes from circuits like: putting on sunglasses, holding stuff, getting dressed, using remotes.

3. Shoulders: I wouldn't put too much focus here unless you have problems keeping your backpack from slipping down to your waist.

4. Chest: You pay top dollar for lightweight parts, why go adding weight back on? It's the same reason we don't carry tool kits. You need to work your pectoral muscles to the point where you can do enough pushups to not look like a total pansy (18 is the magic number). Being able to do more than 18 is fine, and there're no real drawbacks aside from that once you're out of high school, nobody is going to make you do pushups. Pecks mostly get in the way and have no real purpose outside of punching. And any hitting during a sled outing usually only involves your face and the hood anyway.

5. Legs: These are key for any decent rider. Your legs provide you with enough added suspension to keep your butt from hitting the seat hard enough to bottom out the foam. There are two approaches here: either ride yourself into shape or hunt.

6. Knees: Hit the stairs, but only go down. Find an office building, shopping center or hotel that has an elevator or escalator adjacent to the stairway. Going down provides the same function basically as going up, but without making things as sore. Remember, sore = sore.

See you on the pow, fatty.