Many people might believe that religious views are just purely beliefs about the world and have no effect on our world or our daily lives. However, I will demonstrate why this is untrue. In fact, our religious views have a direct impact on our lives, even physically, to the degree that fitness results are dependent on whether or not we have the correct religious views.
I have been trained both in university and through certifications to have a detailed knowledge of anatomy and physiology. Moreover, having worked out for many years, I have developed a finely-tuned perspective of what it takes to achieve fitness gains. As I contemplated gains at the gym, it occurred to me that the method and means by which a person thinks about fitness has a direct impact on their results; and a person’s worldview about how the world works is the foundation of this.
Let’s start with the question: why does it matter whether our worldview is correct? Can’t each person just believe whatever they want and adapt to the circumstances? In fact, no. Consider a man who crosses the road while it is foggy, and he cannot see. He believes that no cars are coming. If he is correct, then he will be ok. But if his belief is wrong, then he will be killed by a car when he crosses the road. So, his belief matters to the point of life and death in this world.
Your belief system matters because it affects how you think about this world, and as a result, the actions that you take in this world. Belief is not only a thought in the mind. Belief is the prime motivator for our actions. On a grand scale, you would not jump out of an airplane if you believed your parachute did not work. If you didn’t bother to take an opinion, then you will die if the parachute does not work.
Likewise, on a smaller scale where life or death is not on the line, but simple fitness is on the line, our belief about the world and how it works drives our individual actions. This brings us to the next question: how could our belief about the world and whether or not there is a God who created the world have any effect on something so simple as results from working out at the gym?
Here is how. If we believe that there is a Creator who designed the world in such a way that the whole world was created correctly, and that our bodies were created by God to be able to adapt, with the capabilities to do normal functions like muscle contraction and muscle recovery in a way that is effective, because we were specifically designed by an intelligent Designer (God) who made us in a way that was good, as the Bible says; then it will frame how we think about our workouts, as well as our recovery.
For example, if we were to conversely believe that we simply evolved, and that due to evolving we are incomplete, and that mistakes were almost certainly made along the way, and that we will continue to evolve for millions of years until “nature” works out all the “kinks” or errors in our physiology, then we would not believe that our bodies necessarily had the natural capability to recover naturally.
If however we believed that God created the Earth and everything in it, and this includes all the natural plants, herbs, vitamins, minerals, proteins, and other nutrition, and that God designed us perfectly with the ability to recover from physical stress (like working out and running), and that sleep, like everything else, is part of God’s design, then we would have a holistic view of our bodies and the world. Because of this, we would make certain decisions, including the amount of sleep we need, the types of food we eat, and even the particular exercises we perform during a workout, based on this holistic view, that God designed a perfect system if we simply trust His natural design for the world and our bodies which were designed to fit perfectly into a natural system.
For example, by believing in a Creator and a created world which was perfectly designed, then we may choose to use only natural supplements and foods, we may choose to do only functional workouts that are based on natural movements, like squats, deadlifts, bicep curls, etc, as opposed to isolation exercises which do not consider a more functional perspective in fitness. Or, we might choose not to take any chemical supplements, because we may believe that since God created nature to work perfectly with our bodies, then natural nutrition in the way God designed it (for example, meat, cheese, dairy, healthy fats like cononut oil and raw butter, nuts, eggs, etc) would be the most effective way to feed the body for recovery.
And, we would consider that since God created us and did it well, as He said in Genesis 1:31, “And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good”, then we would realize based on our belief that God created the world and that He did it right, that we only need to follow natural processes, including plenty of sleep. So, we would workout with natural functional movements, eat completely naturally and healthily, and get plenty of rest and sleep. And, if we are correct, then we will indeed experience the best results.
However, consider that a person did not believe that God created the world, but rather that it evolved “by chance”, and therefore is inherently flawed, and will continue to “evolve” for millions of years. In this worldview, the body is not perfect, and nature is not perfect, since there would be no intelligent designer; so then in that case we humans would be the only force in the world that is intelligent to be able to manipulate the world to our own whims, and to maximize results in our lives, and in our fitness and nutrition and health.
In this atheistic view, we would be taking a very different approach to fitness. We would believe that we are “gods” of a certain sort, and that only we have the power to change the world to what we desire. This is, by the way, the definition of “witchcraft”, or “magick” – that is, the “imposing of one’s will on the world to implement change”, as defined by the world-renown Satanist Aleister Crowley. According to the Bible, this is wicked, viciously evil, and a practice that God absolutely despises. Those who partake in this worldview will be destroyed.
In this alternative view, if we only went natural, we would not receive the best and most ideal gains, because the world would not have been designed perfect. By this false perpective, only by manipulating the world to our whims could we truly achieve the best results in our lives. For example, we would supplement with powerful chemicals to achieve greater gains faster, possibly even steroids; some might even take sleep drugs to “help” with sleep, rather than going to a natural environment outside the city where we are not woken up constantly by noises and neighbors; and our approach to workouts themselves might include many superficial and extreme approaches, such as excessive bodybuilding to unnatural proportions, extreme workouts, and chemical aids. In that case, our thoughts would be that by going extreme, we would be able to benefit ourselves better than simple natural and normal levels of fitness.
If a person believed in God, then the decisions they make in and out of the gym would result in one particular physique, and will result in better and healthier gains. Their strategy would result in correct bodily proportions as designed by God (e.g. althetic build, rather than steroid freak), as well as a holistic world approach that results in less stress, better sleep, and a healthier body overall, not to mention a better social life, because a natural althetic body is going to be better adjusted socially than any extreme – if it is God who designed us perfectly. And they are also less likely to get tattoos and body modifications like cosmetic surgery, because they believe that God created us right, and our bodies are holy and should not be tattooed or cut, just like the Bible says in Leviticus 19:28, “Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you: I am the LORD.”
But to an atheist, their worldview will be to believe that the person chooses what is best for them, because nature and evolution is imperfect. As a result, you will find they take a different workout approach as described above, and a different health and diet approach, as described above, and seek the vanity of excessive amounts of muscle, excessive levels of low bodyfat to achieve the “perfect” physique, which is unfortunately less desirable to the opposite sex (contrary to what is portrayed in television and movies). And they will be more likely to ruin the body with tattoos, piercings, and cosmetic surgery, turning themselves into ugly freaks, that no one says anything to because they are afraid of them. They are also more likely to wear vain or revealing clothes, and more likely to be sexually promiscuous.
So, you can see that a person’s worldview is more than just a thought in the mind. While the above are extreme examples, it does not change the fact that even on a subtle level, there is a difference between the physical fitness, nutrition, and even physical appearance in some cases, of a Christian who truly follows God, versus an atheist or a believer “in name only” (that is, not reflected in their actions).
Fitness results, health and wellness, and life decisions which lead up to our choices in physical appearance, are dependent on our belief about whether or not God really created the world, or whether it evolved by chance. What we believe about the world will affect our actions and our approaches in life, even on a daily basis; and this will have a major impact on our lives, and even our physical appearance.
Keep this in mind the next time you or someone else says or thinks “each person can believe what they want, as long as it makes them happy”. It’s not true. And if atheists are wrong about their beliefs, and there really is a God, then they will not only suffer in this life, but they will also burn in hell forever. You are not helping an atheist by indulging their denial of God. Belief is not just a thought in the mind; your religious views have real world consequences. So you better make sure that what you believe is correct, because if you think there is no God but there really is, you will not escape unpunished, both in this life and the next.