I was 10 years old and in a ski school class of 10 kids lead by a Kiwi instructor named David.
We stood at the top of a run called Free Fall and he gave us a lesson on “skiing the fall-line.”
“You know when your mum or dad makes spaghetti noodles for dinner and they are still in the pot all slimy?” He asked.
“Well imagine that your mum took those noodles in that pot and poured them out at the top of this mogul-y run….”
“Where would the noodles go?”
“They would fall down the hill David!” everyone shouted.
He went on to describe to us third graders that based on the way the mountain is formed, there is ultimately one natural path for them to take. The noodles can’t just go to the right side if the fall line goes down through the middle of the run, or for example, to the left of the run.
Watch at 0:45 as this skier maneuvers through the bumps, in a straight line, the way the mountain wants him to go.
David was on to something.
Metaphorically, “skiing the fall line” can be applicable to all of us and our journey to health as unique beings.
For instance, apply “skiing the fall line” to having a balanced diet. Ultimately gravity will pull a skier down the mountain on one path, if they were to wipe out. Even if the skier skis far right, and then falls, they will eventually tumble downhill with the fall line.
Thus, if someone decides to try a no-carb diet…. they may be able to do it for 1 week, 2 weeks, but ultimately their body naturally, physiologically needs carbs / glucose to function. Everyone has an equilibrium to find.
Furthermore, let’s consider an over-weight or obese person. The human body was not made to carry excess fat naturally, however, getting rid of it takes TIME. Thus, weightloss should be a process of finding an equilibrium, but it doesn’t mean you succeed only when you hit a size 0.
—-think about skiing. If I skied way far right on a wide trail, putting tons of pressure on my downhill ski (left leg) fighting to traverse right, if I wanted to make it back to the fall-line, it wouldn’t happen in a second, it would happen in time.
Each one of us has a natural healthy place where our bodies want to be. We all have different caloric needs and weights that make sense for our own being. We can try and “shred down” and “win” at it temporarily, but ultimately if the process is not natural, fun, or sustainable, it is not going to work. Numbers can be manipulated on a scale temporarily (think about wrestlers) but in the end, there is one healthy set point at which we are designed to find and thrive.
I think one of the hardest lessons in life is to find the fall-line, and ride it home.
The fall-line should be a place in health in wellness that doesn’t involve much thinking— just doing.
Does your training make sense? Is it easy to follow? Does it feel good?
Any skier out there that knows what skiing the fall-line feels like, will get what I mean. If you have never skied before, imagine a big uneven hill you want to sled down…. that sled doesn’t have a steering wheel, which way will it go? It will go down the fall line.
I hope the rest of the blogs this week on various types of training help you find your fall-line.