Ego Not Health [2]

Sean Parker (founder of Napster and former President of Facebook) and Chamath Palihapitiya (former head of AOLs Instant Messaging division and a former executive at Facebook) have both come out in recent months dispassionately expressing their remorse, regret, and guilt over working with Facebook in order to lure the masses into the addiction that is social media. Palihaptiya went so far as to call social media “internet crack”.

If social media is “internet crack” then HiiT is “fitness crack”

Until we – not collectively as society, but individually – recognize that the human being has a vulnerability in that it is highly susceptible to addiction then we will continue to be at the mercy of those who understand this vulnerability and who are willing to exploit this vulnerability manipulating us for profit, power/control or both.

Today, the business of addiction is booming! Need proof? Simply identify the top performing stocks in the stock market and they are all going to be addiction based businesses (i.e. FANG stocks). Industry has figured out how to sell to you, and not just how to sell, but how to make you buy believing that you are buying of your own free will, based on a logical rational decision making processes. Hah! If you believe that then I’ve got swamp land, oops… I mean valuable development land for sale that you will be interested in.

And no… this vulnerability is not just in a handful of people – those unfortunate who became addicted to alcohol, cigarettes, gambling, sex, porn, internet surfing, food, exercise, opioids, etc… – but in each and everyone of us: we are all vulnerable, at risk, at high risk of addiction.

The issue is not whether or not we are potential addicts, the issue is what are we already addicted to but unable to realize it because society has collectively decided that our addiction is an acceptable one, or even a ‘good’ one (e.g. Netflix binging: the phrase just overwhelms with an image of mental and emotional stability, wellness, and health.. doesn’t it?)

It is the EGO which prevents us from accepting the truth… we are all addicts; only by freeing ourselves from addiction can we truly regain health, be healthy, live to our fullest potential.

The goal is not to be a good addict, or to use your addiction vulnerability to your advantage because that is an even grander illusion where you fall to the belief that you can control your addiction, able to manage “how addicted you are”. If the concept crossed your mind that you can control an addiction, then your addiction has you so whipped that you actually believe you are in control. Hah! Guess what the alcohol, gambling, cocaine addict says… I’m in control, I know my limits, I only drink, gamble, snort, ____________ (fill in the blank with your addiction) within reason, and stop well before I place anyone or myself at risk.

I call… BULL S#!T on your “I’m in control” delusion. And if your pride is so grandiose that you cannot call BULL S#!T on yourself, then I can only pray for the victim(s) who will suffer at your refusal to humble yourself, at your refusal to learn from insight defaulting to having to learn from pain (both your own pain and that of those you injure or kill). Who will it be? A cyclist or pedestrian you kill because of having just one more drink which you ‘knew‘ you could handle (bull s#!t), the financial crisis you bring upon yourself or your family from that one last trip to the casino where you were ‘knew‘ you would ‘win it all back’ (bull s#!t), the devastation you unleash on your relationships from your addiction to pain killers or whatever else that you firmly believed that you were in control of (bull s#!t)… until you weren’t.

But, but, but… my addiction is something healthy… like exercise (i.e. HiiT – Hi Intensity Interval Training), so none of what you say applies (bull s#!t).

The problem with using the human addiction vulnerability for good is that its an illusion and it all starts the same way… oh, just a little… that can’t hurt… right? The stockbroker uses just a little cocaine… and voila, they improve in their trading… see… I’m not hurting anyone, and look I am making profits for myself and all my clients. The athlete uses just a little HiiT… and voila, look I’m faster than ever before and with less training… thats gotta be a good thing… and it looks like I have a chance at a podium. The single parent who uses just a couple painkillers… and voila, I can handle the stress of my life and I am able to handle everything that needs to get done.

Of course… with these narratives, what could go wrong? Nothing ever has ever gone wrong when someone says those words! That is until… the stockbroker does just a bit too much crack and blows up their own and every other account they oversee on a major trade, the athlete does just a bit too much HiiT and ends up injured, ill, missing cuts for a sponsored team or a National Team and the opportunity to compete at the international level, and the single parent overdoses on opioids… drops dead leaving their kids with no one. See… nothing goes wrong.

Society has a great way of approving of certain addictions that are on trend (e.g. social media, HiiT, technology upgrade cycle) and it tries to cause us to turn a blind eye to the consequences… e.g. obesity, juvenile diabetes, anxiety and depression in children… but hey… they connect with friends while playing Call of Duty 24hrs straight over weekends… I cannot take that away from them, I cannot take them away from their “friends”.

Society has approved of Hi Intensity Interval Training. Why wouldn’t it? The most medicated, diseased, obese, ‘high’ on illegal and recreational pharmaceuticals, anxious, depressed, withdrawn society ever to exist has to cover up its addictions (and lack of health) somehow, so why not with something as delusional as HiiT which gives the impression of an active, health lifestyle, of one who is pursuing wellness, which provides a cosmetic appearance of health which we are agreeing is to be called… fitness. If you are ‘fit’ like a triathlete, ‘fit’ like a CrossFitter, ‘fit’ like a spin class instructor… my oh my… you must be healthy… and with that our ego brims with pride, and we can reject any notion that we aren’t in control [of our addictions].

Whereas social media convinces us that we are popular, important, unique, special by providing the platform to post so we can feel superior as a result of having experiences others have not had; HiiT convinces us that we must truly be athletes. HiiT convinces us that if we look like those in ads for sports apparel, nutrition, and equipment… sweaty, exhausted, throwing back gels and neon fluids, after just crushing a workout… then we are real athletes (bulls#!t).

A century ago, we were all convinced that smoking was cool, on trend, and medical doctors smoked during our annual appointment. It was a phenomenal addiction: actors smoked, athletes smoked, everyone who was anyone smoked. Then it all went up in smoke, when the cost of dealing with everyone who ended up with COPD, lung cancer, other cancers, plus the cost of supplying the equipment for those who need bottled oxygen to remain alive added up to an amount that was no longer cool. All of a sudden instead of accepting the lobbyist bribes, we turned on the tobacco industry and said… wait a second… smoking… its bad!

Yesterday it was tobacco, today its sport nutrition, its the sport & fitness industry selling HiiT, its tech companies selling social media apps, smartphones, its the media selling pandemonium.

Will society change… ever… no. It will just move from one addiction to the next, never realizing that its stuck in a feedback loop for eternity. One addiction will replace another: the old addiction will be labeled as horrible, the new addiction labeled as the one and only, the true addiction, the addiction that will save us all from our miserable selves.

To break free, you have to do exit the loop, swallow the red pill and leave the matrix.

You have to call bulls#!t on the addicts lifestyle, on your lifestyle.

How will you decide to live: addicted or healthy?

Your choice, but don’t look for society to support you with your decision, because if you decide to live differently – effectively calling everyone’s lifestyle wrong, calling their lifestyle an addicts lifestyle – you won’t find support from anyone and you will be deemed the nut case.

Do it not for likes, in spite of your ‘followers’, do not do it for social approval, do it for yourself, for your kids, so that both you and your kids can be free to pursue your fullest potential.

Ego Not Health

Its time to turn our attention to the growing trend of doing exercise – whatever that may be (e.g.) running, cycling, triathlon, CrossFit, bootcamps, etc… – in the name of living an active healthy lifestyle but training in a manner and racing in events which is not and cannot be defined as healthy.

Perhaps we initially intend to improve our health but why do we end up convinced that self inflicting harm is healthy?

We do this not just at the gym, in working out or training, we are susceptible to this pattern everywhere in life… at work, in business, in relationships both professional and personal… inevitably ending up reliving periods of pain, suffering, sometimes injury and illness over and over, with the answer to how did I end up here circling back to us… everytime.

We promise, no, we vow never to do it again, never ever ever to compromise, settle, give in, fall to temptation, jump on the shortcut, but we do.  We allow our ego to take over, to take command. Why? Why is it that the needs of our ego contrast with the needs of our well being, with our health? Why does our ego direct us to join in on things that we know are harmful to our well-being? And knowing this pattern, why will we over and over again give in to our ego and inflict self harm?


To start the thread lets use a few articles found in to set the tone:

Runners would continue racing if they learned ultras were bad for them, study says

“If you were to learn, with absolute certainty, that ultramarathon running is bad for your health, would you stop your ultramarathon training and participation?” the study asks


Yukon Arctic Ultra runner at risk of losing hands and feet

Bone-chilling temperatures leaves Italian participant’s limb health in jeopardy

HiiT Kills 15yo Athlete [2]

Excerpt from:

Teenage Cyclocross Champion Died in Sleep After Heart Attack

Why was the death of this 15year old a coroner’s case? Because death by heart attack at the age of 15… well that’s just not right is it, so it triggered a coroners inquiry as it should. What did the inquiry reveal? That “high surges of adrenaline left his heart scarred and vulnerable” and led to repeated heart attacks over a period of time.

The philosophy of training that has this effect…

Performing HiiT causes adrenaline surges which can result in scarring of the heart and eventually even heart attacks. How? Excessively intense training will trigger a neural-endocrine reaction which results in adrenaline being released into the bloodstream.

But like believing that it is even possible for a 15year old to die by way of multiple heart attacks, believing that exercise – especially the most hyped exercise of our time… HiiT – was the cause of death… that we do not want to believe. Having been force-fed that exercise – any and all exercise without any conditions or criteria – makes us healthy, to add the detail that healthy exercise is dependent on how intensely we exercise… that is just too much. Most will argue that its challenging enough getting out and exercising without having to concern ourselves with how we exercise, so its easier to believe that exercise in any shape or form is beneficial to our health (aka ignorance is bliss… and it is, until you suffer the consequence of your ignorance, provided you are still alive).

It is only moderate exercise which is healthy, whereas excessive exercise (as in excessive in intensity, duration, and especially both simultaneously) is unhealthy and this reality has been researched and published in physiology and medical journals repeatedly: it is referred to as the ‘J’ curve (because it looks like a ‘J’ or a backwards letter ‘J’ depending on the relationship of excessively intense exercise and a specific disease).  Although the J curve is widely known in the field of electro-physiology, it is less well known in health care, and even less in the fitness industry. In the fitness industry it seems no one has heard of the concept of the J curve because all that’s available at health clubs are HiiT programs: bootcamps, Tabata workouts, spin classes, with personal trainers having no reservation pushing clients so hard that “no pain, no gain” is sold as the mantra to the path to success in health and fitness goals.

The ‘J curve’ is entry level physiology in university. Meanwhile, the cardiologist from whom the article seeks a “second opinion” despite having no involvement in the coroners case thus no access to the medical findings to offer any sort of reliable or valid conclusion, cannot bring himself to state what is already known: again, moderate exercise is healthy, excessive exercise is unhealthy. Why? Because as a cardiologist – like all doctors – he can see only what he has been trained to see… it must have been some undiagnosed irregularity of the heart that unfortunately was ‘missed’ by another doctor. That the athlete through excessive exercise could inflict upon himself an heart irregularity… well that’s just downright impossible (of course, because we have been force-fed that all exercise is good, is healthy, is right).

Are endurance athletes hurting their hearts by repeatedly pushing beyond what is normal? –, by Lennard Zinn

Critical to this point, the coroner on the other hand noted specifically that there was no evidence that the heart condition of this 15year old was in any way congenital.  Point being… if it wasn’t congenital then there is only one other option: it was acquired. How? It was self inflicted or in the case of a 15year old athlete, they were caused to self inflict the damage by way of repeated excessive exercise (i.e. RED ZONE / ALL-OUT training) by an unrelenting ignorant coach/parent.

Neither does the writer address the fact that the cardiologist found to offer a “second opinion” is in a conflicted state. The cardiologist being a medical doctor who is supposed to know ‘how to be’ healthy, who advises patients how to be heart healthy, is also an avid triathlete who likely exercises excessively as most triathletes do, and likely self inflicts similar heart damage to himself. But being an athlete who damages their heart is a conflict that this cardiologist cannot accept… because they are a medical doctor after all, and medical doctors are never wrong. The outcome is that this cardiologist cannot ‘see’ the plain and simple truth before them.

This state of mental conflict in psychology is called:

We have to remember… doctors are human, not demi-gods.  Most of you won’t recall but back in the day it wasn’t uncommon for doctors to be smoking cigarettes during patient appointments. Could you imagine these days if a medical doctor asked you to hold onto their ciggy (aka cigarette) while they listened to your chest while you took deep breathes in their smoke filled medical appointment room. A few decades ago this was normal. Think about that. The thought of the medical profession using leeches to heal may seem primitive, but smoking during patient appointments isn’t centuries old, it happened only a few decades ago.

Meanwhile the research coming out of Australia on atrial fibrillation has shown that atrial fibrillation is an acquired disease, a disease of indulgence:

Excerpt from:

Inflammation arises in the body when adrenaline is released because along with adrenaline, cortisol is released and it is cortisol that results in inflammation. Repeatedly stress the human body via excessive exercise to the point that adrenaline is required to “fuel” the performance and along with it there will be enough cortisol that anything even remotely stressed in the body… from ligaments, to muscles, to blood vessels, to the heart itself… will become inflamed.  Repeat the cycle enough times and eventually something will become so scarred as a result of the repeated stress and following inflammation that it will start to breakdown and in time will eventually break.  It can be a tendon, a muscle, it can be a blood vessel, it can even be your heart that eventually breaks altogether.

There is an healthy way to exercise and there are unhealthy ways to exercise… ways that will lead to weight gain, to illness, to injury, even death.

Unhealthy exercise increases inflammation in the body.

Healthy exercise decreases inflammation in the body.

If health is the priority, if health is the point to why you are exercising then find an health professional, a coach, someone who is not sold by industry on HiiT, someone who instead understands and appreciates that your health, your athletic potential, your ability to perform at your peak is related to skill, technique, form and posture, not because you entered ‘beast-mode’, not because of your willingness to enter the red zone or put out repeated all-out efforts.

With that said… there is a trend of exercising not for health, but for “experiences” (aka for the purpose of ego inflation) as the reality is that there are many who would and will continue to exercise as they do, even if they learnt that the way they exercise is harmful to their health and well-being.

Why? Because the experience of their training and racing serves to inflate their ego and has nothing to do with health. The mindset works as follows: because I finished _________ (name the event: typically a marathon, grandfondo, or the mother of all ego events… an ironman triathlon, especially Kona), the logic is… I am therefore a better human being than those who haven’t. And if someone did do one of those events, then you look at their race results and if you were faster than them… the logic is that you are still a better human than them.

Next post… the trend of growing mental impairment in sport (and society in general) where the perception is that self-harm through exercise is normal, appropriate, even a part of an active healthy lifestyle, and where claiming that ego training is the equivalent of training for health.

Engaging purposefully and repeatedly in HiiT – training known to cause injury, illness, & disease – is a state of mental and emotional impairment.

To inflict self harm, irrespective of how “healthy” you may think you are by exercising excessively is not congruent with a state of health. It doesn’t take a medical doctor to diagnose self inflicted harm as not being mentally healthy or stable. If its clear when to perform CPR on a person even if you are not an EMS responder nor a medical professional, then its fair to suggest that there are cognitive-behaviour patterns that would benefit from the equivalent of CPR to attempt to reinstate some higher functioning in executive levels of the brain as opposed to the instinctual self preservation reactions that HiiT causes.

My hope is that through these blogs someone will stop for a moment and consider, will think, will re-evaluate for a moment… whether or not their training is truly healthy. Are you truly benefiting from the exercise you are doing, the training for sport that you are doing, or is there a chance that you are hurting myself, inflicting harm in a way you never thought possible?

HiiT Kills 15yo Athlete

Excerpt from:

Teenage Cyclocross Champion Died in Sleep After Heart Attack

Let that sink in for a moment… a 15year old boy – a child – is DEAD because he was coached so intensely, pushed to such extremes that he suffered heart attacks in training which eventually led to a final heart attack that claimed his life… in his sleep!

To all those trainers, coaches and exercise physiologists who says HiiT is good exercise, is “healthy”,…


A child is dead, dead for crying out loud and we are still blowin the bullshit up everyone’s arse that HiiT (as in Hi Intensity Interval Training) is good, healthy, the right way to lose weight, get fit (whatever that is), the way to train for sport!  Its absolute frikkin insanity serving only one purpose: so the fitness, sport & health industries can sell you services and products. Screw you and your health… as long as they can make sales quotes and profit targets who cares how many people have to die… children included.

Fitness… What Is It?

The term “fitness” never sat well with me… like a sweater that just doesn’t fit right and you keep adjusting it, fidgeting in it, wondering is it you or the sweater. Now I think I know what’s wrong with the term “fitness” and the explanation to “what is fitness” fits fitness like a fitted shirt.

I’m reminded of the quote…

“The truth is still the truth even if no one believes it.
A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it.”

Let me use a parallel to provide the context…

Every now and then, one or a group of females will take issue with the representation of the female body made by a retailer, or a magazine, or a manufacturer of a particular piece of female clothing and how the female figure is branded, marketed, packaged and sold. The image of female perfection comes under intense fire as it is deemed not representative of the majority.  The most recent time – I think – this was in the news was when mannequins were vandalized in retail stores, specifically those that represented the “average” female body as something in the range of size -2 to 0, maybe +2 at most. The typical pattern in the ‘fix’: industry apologizes, a temporary fix is put in place with promises of policies and procedures to be written and implemented at the corporate level promising that this travesty never happens again, caution tape is wrapped around the offending mannequins, and in a couple of weeks… the tape comes down, and we are back to the way it was.

What a perfect parallel to “fitness” because… like the ideal representation of the female – or male – body … in reality there is no such thing as “fitness”. Like the clothing industry, the fitness industry must create an illusion of perfection in order to sell itself. In the clothing industry, the value of an article of clothing depends on how “beautiful” it has the potential to make the buyer think they will look in it… hence the thin mannequins used by retailers. In the fitness industry, if the services of trainers, the value of a gym, the entire concept of working out is to be sold over and over and over again… then there must be a prize, a treasured outcome to the pain, the sweating, and the agony that we are to put ourselves through… and there it is… if you buy our services says the fitness industry you shall end up beautiful.

Problem is…  there is no such thing as fitness!

If you can be healthy but not look fit because you do not fit the industry model of a fit human being, and if you can be fit but not healthy… then fitness is an opinion, neither real nor a reality.

Fitness is a sales tactic to emotionally trigger our inner desire for health, but by selling to our senses instead of our intellect, our ego is targeted hence our hunger for beauty, for admiration, for acknowledgement, even our quiet desires of making others jealous and covetous of our appearance, guilty over their own lack of appearance… and just like that we are sold on personal training, bootcamps, spinning classes, 10wk weight loss programs, plus assortments of protein powders, bars, gels, smoothees, all promising instant solution to our problematic ugliness with beauty just a handful of intense workout sessions away. Beauty that you will be able to post on Instagram and Snapchat hopefully adding to your popularity.

Problem is…  there is no such thing as fitness!

No, its not a problem for the fitness industry… its a solution, because they have the masses chasing something that does not exist! Brilliant! Sell an illusionary image as the goal, but don’t tell anyone that the image isn’t real. It’s the old bait-and-switch game… make a promise then forget to tell the customer that the promise is an impossibility.

Why isn’t fitness real? Because we are not uni-dimensional beings we are multi-dimensional beings: we are indeed physical beings, but we are equally intellectual and emotional and spiritual beings. If anyone of the bunch is not healthy, then the entire human is not healthy. If just one of the bunch is healthy, it fails to make the entire human healthy… even though they may look healthy (from the outside).

Surely you have heard that “beauty is only skin deep”…  and that is why beauty is not equivalent to health, because beauty is like a piece of clothing… on trend this moment, out the next. Health on the other hand doesn’t trend; it cannot because health you can neither put on or take off: either you’ve got it or you don’t, and the reality is… there is no hiding it when you don’t (doesn’t matter how much concealer and foundation you think covers it up either cause it doesn’t). Health takes work…. loads and loads of work, in fact health can take years of work to regain after the health of youth has been spent chasing fame and fortune.

You can look like a fitness model, and you may not have any signs or symptoms of physical disease, but that doesn’t indicate health because you could easily be suffering mental health issues, or having suffered a recent emotional event in your life be incapable of continuing on in daily living despite your good looks.

If good looks were everything, then why do so many athletes and celebrities commit suicide?

I challenge you to consider… if you are pursuing fitness, then what are you truly trying to hide and from whom? Do you really think that by fixing what you look at in the mirror every morning is gonna fix the inner turmoil, restrain all those unresolved hurts, those pains, will somehow silence the repressed emotions that eat away at you everyday?

I challenge you to consider… not a workaround solution instead believe that you are worth the investment of a full, real, true solution. It will take work but you are worth it… seek true healing, true health not the quick fixes that industry wants to sell you.

“Ask and it will be given; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”  Matthew 7:7

Breathing TED Talks

Breathe to Heal | Max Strom | TEDxCapeMay


Breath — five minutes can change your life | Stacey Schuerman | TEDxChapmanU


The powerful secret of your breath — Romila “Dr. Romie” Mushtaq, MD | Romila Mushtaq | TEDxFargo


BREATHE. | Joe DiStefano | TEDxLugano

Funding our Health Care System

Sometimes the timing of things simply amazes me…

Once again, I was reviewing my daily list of websites when I saw this article titled:

“Patients are Dying in Hospital Corridors”

The article can be found by clicking here to link to the website.

The points in the above article are not startling to anyone who has worked in the UK healthcare system or the Canadian healthcare system… both socialized systems suffer from the same malaise. What was amazing to me was the fact that I had the blog below already written and was only waiting to publish it, to find someone else had the same blog in mind.

Just in case it is not universally known… our provinces health care system has one budget that has to spread around and shared by all those in the province.

Simple concept, but not so simple in execution because the state of health of the entire population of a province isn’t something that fits nicely or easily into a ‘budget’. For example, if there is a break out (e.g. SARS) then a hospital’s budget for an entire year could be blown in a matter of weeks because of the demand placed on it by an emergency situation.

As residents of Ontario, we expect and want health care crises (e.g. SARS) to be contained and dealt with, BUT the reality is that someone (i.e. taxpayers) have to pay for that… but taxes and budgets are set out well in advance.

With that said though, the point of this post is not to identify one time issues, but how annual budgets are wasted, and how incredible amounts of time and energy and effort are wasted in order for health care facilities and professionals simply to get reimbursed for the work they do, day in and day out.

Awhile back a new billing thus funding system was introduced to Long Term Care facilities (aka nursing homes) in Ontario. The way the system worked was based on how front line staff, as in PSWs (personal support workers) and the registered nursing staff coded their efforts during their shifts. How the facility staff documented their interactions with the facility residents changed how much the nursing home would receive in the following budget period.

Let me remind you… there is only one budget in Ontario, and it is shared by all… so if one organization gets more…. surprise, surprise… someone else has to get less.

So, imagine what happens when long term facilities figured out that they can get “more” funding based on how they document the health care, staff provided. They figured out rather quickly that if they documented (i.e. code treatments) into the system in particular ways they could trigger certain criteria points that would cause their facility to get more funding based on the data that showed they were delivering “more” care.

The resources piled into ‘gaming’ (exact words of the Ministry of Health staff charged with implementing MDS RAI) the funding system for Long Term Care facilities was unimagineable – especially to the Ministry of Health!  Seriously.  The Ministry of Health could not predict that for-profit health care corporations operating long term care facilities in Ontario (e.g. Chartwell, Extendicare, Revera) would be eager to extract as much of the budget for themselves.

Yeah… like it takes a real rocket scientist to figure out that a for-profit company is interested and would be highly motivated to maximize revenue, hence profits if and when the opportunity arose… nope, couldn’t see that one coming. Where is Will Ferrell when you need him?

Imagine what happened across corporate boardrooms all over Toronto when this loophole was discovered… hundreds of long term care facilities figuring out all at once that if they weren’t coding in certain ways, but others were…  and then there was a sudden shift in the force as everyone realized all at once that if they weren’t blowing the Ministry of Health’s budget for long term care spending, someone else was!  It became a free for all as everyone went all-in on figuring out how to maximize their own cut of the budget pie.

This is our health care system in a nutshell and just another reason why despite anyone’s promises – especially politicians and health care experts called in to propose solutions – fixing the system so that it is fair and works all the time for everyone is not only unrealistic, its impossible.

If the funding fiasco which was the MDS RAI project of Long Term Care facilities irritates you, then you will not want to hear that the entire system basically works in this way…

Wonder why CCAC’s hire health professionals in abundance in April and start firing as early as the early winter? Its because April 1st marks the beginning of the Ontario health care budget. At that point in the year everyone is awash in cash. That lasts thru the summer until about December which is approximately the time CCAC budgets start approaching their limits.  Fewer appointments are made available, fewer follow ups are available, fewer therapists are on hand as budgets are almost entirely spent. Next April 1st the cycle starts all over again.

Seriously! It absolutely does matter when in the calendar you get sick, because when you get sicks determines how much money is left in Ministry of Health budgets which has a direct connection to surgery wait times, on the availability of doctors, nurses, therapists, as well as hospital beds, not to mention how much follow up care you can expect.

It all comes down to budgets, and since budgets are finite the reality is that the amount of health care that can be delivered is equally finite in any given budget period.

Anyone selling you on the illusion that our or any health care system is limitless, or that there is a way to structure any health care system so that every single person of the population gets every type of care they need, when they need, in limitless quantities… is likely a politician.

No one in the system discusses the reality of the system because either they are profiting from the system as it stands (i.e. those working in the system), or they make their living selling that the system’s issues are the fault of the opposition party and if they were only made the governing party all would be resolved (at least this time around… unlike last time when the same promises were made but nothing changed).

The reality is… for the first few months of every budget year everyone is on a tear to blow as much of their allotted amount of the total provincial health care budget as quickly as possible because the more they blow, the more revenue and profit for them, and the less for everyone else. The fact that this “tear” to spend the budget ripples throughout the entire province negatively impacting the delivery of health care year after year is the elephant in the room which is working its way to bankrupting the entire system (that is unless taxpayers want to continue to bankroll the budgets to endless heights).

Funding issues exist in all realms of our health care system.

Doctors face their own caps, clawbacks, and limitations, so if you wonder why they are at time unavailable, perhaps only able to see you so many times a year, more often in one period and less often in others, etc… well don’t be… it comes down to budgets.

Medical labs face the same issue… they have budgets to, and believe it or not, there are only so many samples (e.g. blood tests) that can be taken and analyzed when you have a budget.

Name the aspect of the health care system that you need… and guess what… same thing. The level and amount and speed of service depends on…. how much has already been spent on other Ontario residents before you show up with your health issues.

The easy targets in this arrangement are the health care professionals who are hamstrung by their professional obligation and responsibility to deliver health care but often do so knowing that they are giving of their time, their energy, their expertise while the chances of them being actually appropriately reimbursed – and in a timely manner and without risk of clawback – may be 50% at most. Consider that next time your doctor, your nurse or therapist is stressed.

No, its not an excuse for health professionals not to be professional… but consider the fact that over time… not knowing if you are going to be paid, or when, or how long the delay in payments will be this time wear on even the most professional. Health professionals are no different… they have mortgages and car payments, and need to buy groceries and enroll their kids in programs.  My apologies… I digress from the point of this post.

Next time you are frustrated with the health care system… I suggest instead be frustrated with yourself because clearly you are sick or had your accident at the wrong time of the year (as in budget year).  Next time, make sure you are sick, have your accident or need that surgery or emergency care in the early part of the health care budget season… as in April-October because you can be at least somewhat more certain of getting the care you need.

Don’t like that option… then there is another. Take your health and well being into your own hands, and stop depending on a system which is NOT designed to be there when you need it to be there when you need it. Instead of having to learn the hard way… start to eat right, get enough sleep, exercise appropriately and smartly (i.e. no HiiT), and start to eliminate all unnecessary stressors and stresses that prevent you from living in health.

The unfortunate reality is that our health care system is designed to exist only enough to make it seem as if it is there. Catch it at the right time… and it may be there for you, catch it at the wrong time… and your health will be your problem, just yours because there isn’t any more budget in the system for you.

Oh, forgot to mention one other tool of the Ministry of Health in managing budgets…

FYI… when the MOHLTC wants to eliminate a budget for some specific aspect of the health care system, they make the funding available for that service so low that it becomes uneconomic to deliver it in the reality of the current marketplace (i.e. rent, staffing, office expenses, etc…).

In this way, the MOHLTC can say it does indeed offer and fund that service… BUT because the actual delivery of a service is the duty of health care professionals, the MOHLTC has the easy out that the lack in the system is due to a lack of health professionals or a lack of health professionals available to deliver that service.

Trust me… it works great to de-incentivize health professionals to deliver health care services: offering pennies to deliver what requires dollars will eliminate that specific service in no time flat.

So… there you have it.  Wanna be one of those dying in hospital corridors?  Wanna be the one that gambles with their health, their life, relying on a strategy of ‘hoping’ that the health care system will be there – and fully funded – when you need them, when you are in need? Go right ahead, but just don’t complain while you await hour after hour in the corridor for a doctor, or a scan, or a test, or a nurse.

Trust me when I tell you to take your health into your own hands and become as healthy as you can, so that you, your family, your kids, anyone you love and care for needs the health care system is as little as possible.  Its called managing known risks well in advance.

Defining Deviancy Down

Like all mornings, I start off reviewing a lengthy list of websites for thought provoking articles, research, and blog posts. Today, I was gobsmacked after seeing this…

Clearly the concept of consistent mindful effort with the intent of achieving goals and dreams has been rendered null and void in a generation coddled from birth, in a generation told they can be anything they want, told they can have anything they want… when bored instead of turning to self development, they turn to stupidity.

If the shortest step to stardom is stupidity, then all the better for a generation addicted to followers, likes, and the dream of instant internet fame that eating laundry pods is considered a ‘smart’ decision.

You read that right, Millenials are eating laundry pods after branding the activity the “Tide Pod Challenge” and are posting videos of themselves foaming at the mouth.

Parents of these toddlers in adult bodies (i.e. Millenials) really should be asking themselves… what happened? What did we or didn’t we do that has led to our children growing up into adults who have lost the ability to think, to reason, to critically analyze, to assess, to evaluate?

Unfortunately, parents of Millenials – i.e. the Boomers – are too busy obsessed with their stock portfolios, their career ladders, their home renovations, and their newly leased Benz or Rover to care that their children are incapable of thinking, lack basic life skills. Reality has not sunk in yet that constantly providing your child with the latest smartphone upgrade does not equate to parenting, to mentoring, to teaching, to loving your child… it does nothing to raise them up into self sufficient, independently thinking adults capable of contributing to society.

Instead, we have a generation so mindless that injesting chemicals is “fun”. Meanwhile, this generation is so highly threatened by anyone who chooses to exercise their right to free speech to share their perspective on a topic that they call on the government to censor, to jail, to pass legislation preventing free speech. Their grandparents fought and lost their lives to obtain the freedoms they enjoy today; they stood against tyranny, against domination by evil, but their grandchildren never taught these lessons, never instructed in the perils of forgetting history, have taken to inviting the devil not only onto home soil, but directly into their homes. It is this mindlessness, this level of chosen ignorance (i.e. stupidity) that in the past has led to dictators being put into power, that has led to genocide, that has led to war and inevitably to death.

“In 1993, US Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D., N.Y.) coined the phrase “defining deviancy down”. Moynihan’s thesis was that, as a society, America has been “redefining deviancy” so as to exempt conduct previously stigmatized, and quietly raising the “normal” level for behaviour that was abnormal by earlier standards.” (3)

Any society that becomes numb, achieves a “narcoleptic state that diminishes the human condition to the point where soldiers can eat their battlefield rations on the bodies of the fallen… a society that loses its sense of outrage is doomed to extinction.” (3)

So it seems that this generation will have to relive the evils of the past to be woken up because waking up on their own or being woken up no longer seems possible without catastrophe.

To the parents of the next generation… take heed from the failures of the Boomers who did not raise their children but let technology “parent”, “love” and “do it for them”.  To parents today, the temptation may be for Alexa or Siri to take over where smartphones stopped, do not fall for it. Invest in your children, care – as if it needs to be said, but clearly it needs to be said – about your children, be parents not custodians of your children. Help your children by giving them the experiences they need in order to be able to function on their own as adults.

It is not denying children childhood by making them realize responsibility, accountability, and ownership.  It is using childhood for what childhood is supposed to be used for… a time for mistakes, for errors, to gain experience.  Childhood is not a time to be wasted, its a time when every mistake possible should be made – under parental supervision and guidance – so that the child gains as much understanding of life as possible so that upon adulthood they aren’t starting from scratch. Mistakes at 7, 10 and 12 are easier to repair, easier to learn from, easier to move on from, cheaper to fix! Those same mistakes at 25, 30 or 40 can leave life long effects… effects that some may be unable to recover from fully.

If you refuse to be a parent, deny your child a loving parent, then do not be surprised when you see your adult-toddler making videos of themselves eating laundry pods thinking its their ticket to fame, to stardom, to fortunes.

The “Tide Pod Challenge” is a reflection on the mental-emotional stability and state of the Millenial generation, and it is equally a reflection of the parenting performed by Boomers.

Think about what you want for your kids… then decide what they need from you today, as in now, so that they end up there and not on the floor with a friend calling a Poison Control Center.


  3. Sources:

Sometimes the best blog, is someone else’s blog…

The website has a few trainers/coaches who post thought provoking and well written blogs. Here are two written by Shane Trotter:

  • The Saboteurs of Health in America


Addiction is business, and business is booming at the cost of your health, and the health of your children. Trotter lists the following industries on his list of saboteurs: convenience food, technology, and pharmaceutical. I would add to the list… the health & fitness industries, specifically trainers and coaches so addicted in their own lives (to the above and to themselves) that they prescribe fitness and training plans which are as addictive and unhealthy as they are. Absolutely, these trainers and coaches have cosmetic health to fool you into believing they are healthy, but if they are so healthy then why are they so addicted to hi intensity training (HiiT), and why are they trying to turn you into an addict of their “no pain, no gain” training pattern? Its to turn you into an addict of their workouts which are designed to cause enough pain that your body releases endorphins – your home grown version of morphine – so that you feel the high, so you start to enjoy that high, want the high… eventually need the high. To what end? Your health is irrelevant, all they want is your money! They want you addicted so you seek them out as a supplier of workouts that are hard enough, painful enough, that you can get your dose of natural painkillers.. and your high.

Which sets the reader up perfectly for another of Trotter’s blogs:

  • The Most Physically and Mentally Unhealthy Generation in History


Oh, they’re harmless… fast food chains, social media, and come on… pharmaceuticals… all those pills have healed hundreds of thousands of people… haven’t they?

No, they are not harmless. The convenience of fast food is not without consequence, the supposed connection that social media creates between people creates more depression, isolation, and mental health problems then it creates, and the pills the pharmaceutical industry push do not cause health… health comes from within, not from without.


What Symmetry…

As much as I find the physiology and the psychology of peak performance fascinating, the physiological and psychological symmetry that we find across all aspects of life – symmetry which we cause/create absolutely unconsciously – is of equal interest to me.

Let me use this weeks discovery of the “Worst Flaw” in Intel history as an example…

This week, a post-doctoral fellow at Austria’s Graz Technical Univeristy, who is also an information security researcher and a part-time hacker discovered two architectural flaws in all – as in every single chip – produced by Intel since 1995.  These flaws have been named Meltdown and Spectre. Work has already begun on ‘patches’ for these flaws, but the reality is that the vulnerability will not be eradicated until all – again, ALL – devices with these flawed chips are replaced… something that will take well over a decade (between the development of a new line of chips, and a complete turnover of hardware by all – again, ALL – corporations globally).

The flaw is found not only on chips made by Intel, but also by Advanced Micro Devices and ARM Holdings, making all Apple devices just as flawed as devices running Microsoft OS.

Think about that for a second… the building block of personal computers, of corporate networks, of the entire internet is flawed, and it took over a decade to identify it?

So why did Intel, AMD and ARM develop chips with such flaws? Because “for the past decade, processors were designed to gain every performance advantage and in the process, chipmakers failed to ask the basic question whether their design was secure.” (Zerohedge, Tyler Durden Jan04, 2018 – link here).

Now, here’s the part that I find fascinating: the symmetry between the computer industry’s willingness to compromise on security in blind pursuit of performance and… the general willingness of society to compromise in blind ambition of their own performance. For example:

  • the financial industry willingness to provide NINJA loans in blind pursuit of corporate profits,
  • teachers willing to “adjust” student grades in blind pursuit of career advancement,
  • students willingness to demand teachers to “adjust” grades in blind pursuit of entry to higher education programs (for which they are clearly unprepared to pursue),
  • students piling on debt in blind pursuit of university degrees for which there is no demand,
  • new grads expecting consistent and consecutive promotions taking them swiftly to Director and C-level positions,
  • consumer piling on credit lines, credit card, and mortgage debt in pursuit of a cosmetically superior lifestyle,
  • corporations cutting ever conceivable corner in blind pursuit of corporate profits,

and in sport…

  • endless doping in sport in blind pursuit of the podium and the appearance of peak performance,
  • new levels of doping (i.e. mechanical) in sport in even blinder pursuit of the podium,
  • doping by age group/masters athletes in blind pursuit of appearing as peak performers,
  • athletes resorting to hi intensity interval training (HiiT) while seeking shorter and shorter short cuts all in the name of performance,
  • coaches wilingness to drive athletes to the point of doping, cheating, even suicide in blind pursuit of performance and the podium by promoting HiiT and all its derivatives as the go-to in training.

Think about it…

“To gain every performance advantage”… chipmakers turned a blind eye to side effects, to unintended consequences, to architectural flaws in the foundation of all computing devices.

That sounds like life today. Everyone willing to turn a blind eye to the side effects, to the unintended consequences, to the long term undesirable byproducts, to the flaws in pursuing more, more, more, MOAR!!!

More… house, more… car, more… devices, more and more… consumerism to the point that we have saturated ourselves in debt, chained ourselves to careers that we stick with while they suck every bit of life out of us just to have more money to have even more more… a fully renovated, upgraded house, the newest car on the lot, closets full of the designer brands, the most recently released smartphone… more, more, more. We have so much that we rent storage space in order to store our more. We will work a job to pay rent for inanimate objects, for stuff we don’t use, don’t want, but because we want more… we refuse to part with it, so we rent it an apartment and pay its rent.  We are sugar daddies and sugar mommies to stuff! Yet we will complain that we have no money, no time for ourselves, our kids.

No different then Intel, AMD or ARM… no different across society… no one has asked, no one is asking… all of this at what cost, with what being compromised? Our health? The physical health of our children? The mental and emotional health of our children?

In the coming years, I believe we will look back upon our pursuit of MOAR and realize the fatal flaws that we overlooked and that we now have to deal with… namely, the fatal flaw that we paid for the pursuit of MOAR with our health, and with the health of our children.

But unlike the chip industry there will be no short term ‘patch’ to solve our health issues. It will be a very unpleasant time for many… because it will be realized that the illnesses, the syndromes, the preventable obesity and lifestyle diseases were all self inflicted, and that there is no pill, no magic instant microwave cure available making it all go away.

We lived “no pain, no gain” at the gym… and we lived it everywhere else in life: at work, at home, and then we tried to explain and teach our kids that they too must suffer, bear down against the pain and develop tolerance. The hi-speed lifestyles fueled by processed factory foods, by meals that were predominantly eaten outside of the home, by larger and larger volumes of beverages… coffee, tea, water, sports drinks and flavoured waters, by workout routines of greater and greater and even greater intensity will be uncovered as a fatal flaw: a fatal flaw no different than the architectural fatal flaw in the microprocessors of all computers in existence today.

What then?

When you realize your state of well-being and health, and that of your children is the unintended consequence of blind pursuit of performance… then what?

Don’t wait. Stop the mindless blind pursuit of MOAR today, and start on the road to regaining your health, your life, which in the end will permit you to pursue your true purpose, your true reason for being put on this planet.