Friday, May 8, 2009

More on Michael

First of all, thanks for your patience with my absence. I'm finally going to be in the same place for a few weeks and using a familiar keyboard (Peruvians have an odd layout on their keys!). To kick off my return, I was greeted yet again by a comment on one of the more controversial figures out there in strength training: Michael Karolchyk. Since I last wrote about him, he was booted out of his Denver gym, investigated by the IRS, run out of Denver, and he's recently set up shop in San Diego, CA.

If you look back on my post about him, you'll notice that most have a very negative opinion of the man and didn't take too kindly to my praise of the man. Obviously, with the recent news that's come out about his bad dealings, I don't have the high opinion of him that I once did. Still, there are elements of his message that still agree with.

I think that there is too much wishy-washiness that goes on in the fitness world. There is a definite lack of discipline and self-observance. There's not enough blunt honesty that goes on. People need to hear when they're screwing up, even if it doesn't make them feel good about themselves. Self-esteem and positive body image should be earned. I think that the modern gym is as much the solution as it is the problem. Obviously, this is something that Karolchyk understands all to well and I agree with that.

He comes off as a badgering, bullying drill instructor in his gym. I don't really have a problem with that either, per ce. Drill instructors in an army are abrasive, condescending, bullying and mean for a reason: they do it to break down a man mentally and physically. That way, they can be built into a stronger solider. In a sense, a similar sort of break-down needs to happen when a person with an unhealthy lifestyle wants or needs to change.

Still, just because I agree with the problems doesn't mean that I have to agree with Karolchyk's solutions. Obviously, this guy is a bad businessman who let his job go to his head. What is interesting about drill instructors is that the military won't allow a person to remain one for too long. The power goes to their head, they can get carried away, and people can get hurt. For someone to pull this off in a civilian application, they need to have self control that Michael Karolchyk obviously doesn't have. I like that someone else is out there is saying what I'm thinking. I just don't like the damaged good that's saying it.

Good message, bad messenger.

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