I am a nerd. Or geek. Or dork. I don’t really care about the actual label you call me–basically, I am never one of the “in folks” and that’s okay. Nerds/geeks/dorks are my people. I have 3 Star Trek tattoos, I own a bat’leth and several nerdy costumes. I’m a geek guy’s fantasy woman 😉
I bring this up because after an email exchange with a friend, I realized that it was very sad to me that geeks overall don’t value their bodies.
Hear me out. In my high school, if you took part in choir/orchestra/band, you didn’t have to take gym. I took one semester of P.E. and never again. Most of the bodies I see at geek conventions are larger, pudgier, and rounder. The geeks I know sit around reading, watching tv, playing RPGs, M:tG, and computer games. They sit for most of the day and the most activity they might get is when they roll dice, or stand up to get another Mountain Dew.
(the relevant bit is at 3:30 where she says she doesn’t normally interact with guys with muscle tone)
I love these people. Please don’t get me wrong. In fact, when I joined jiu jitsu I had a huge sense of culture shock. Not because I’m an American living in Korea, but because I was a geek girl surrounded by muscles. In my past, a guy with muscles fell into the category of stupid or jock or self centered. Guys with muscles were the ones who beat up my friends. They were to be feared.
So when I started BJJ and was surrounded by guys with nice bodies, sweet personalities, and who were smart–it didn’t compute. It caused a cataclysmic failure in my brain software. A mental blue screen of death.
Which got me thinking about what geeks consider normal/acceptable physical fitness. There’s Dance Dance Revolution, some of the Wii games, and…I have no idea after that. I know that I have a personal aversion to gyms. I hate them. Hate them. HATE them. They embody everything evil for me. They are these weird smelling places where many people gather to be anti-social and focus on looking good. Eeeevil.
Video of a kid doing DDR. VERY cool.
But again–why are my people against being fit? Why does a fit nerd seem to be an oxymoron? I was reading a graciemag at a BJJ gym one day and there was something in there about exercising no less than 30 minutes per day. Later, on researching, I saw something that said “4) Thou shalt not exercise less than thirty minutes per day” and “7) Thou shalt devote as much time to your physical perfection as to your spiritual perfection”
I started thinking: what if geeks valued their bodies as much as their intellect? What if they treated their bodies like they do that 1st edition Superman comic? What if they treated their bodies like they do some of their video consoles? When we devalue our bodies, we shorten our lifespan. When we devalue our bodies, we put ourselves at risk. When we devalue our bodies, we devalue ourselves.
I am so thankful I found BJJ. I’m so thankful I found something to be as passionate about as my geekery. I’m so thankful I found a sport in which SMART, fit (and sometimes geeky!) people participate. I’m thankful I started putting a higher value on taking care of my body–because I think that the body, mind AND spirit all need to be taken care of, and that something is out of whack if I purely devote myself to the one thing at the expense of the others.
So I wonder: are you a geek in BJJ? Do you know any? Are you a geek who found your way here–and if so, what do you do to keep your body as fit as your mind?