#952 Be Fit to Be Useful

Says the Founder of Natural Movement

A couple +1s ago, we hung out with Christopher McDougall and his Natural Born Heroes.

For those who may not know, McDougall is also the author of Born to Run. He’s a brilliant story teller.

In Natural Born Heroes, he weaves together a number of different narratives, with an emphasis on two: one about an extraordinary wartime adventure on Crete and the other about Natural Movement.

It’s a quick-reading, page-turning book packed with inspiration and Big Ideas on how we can each tap into the extraordinary superpowers latent within. (If that sounds like fun, I highly recommend it.)


A big theme of the book is the fact that WHY we are building our strength matters.

If we want to be a protector and hero to those around us, we need to focus on BEING USEFUL—which leads us to another great passage from that book.

Here it is: “Exercise only with the intention to carry out a physical gain or to triumph over competitors,’ [Georges] Hébert believed, ‘is brutally egoistic.’ And brutal egoism, Hébert believed, just isn’t human. …

Hébert, consequently, came up with the strangest mission statement ever devised for getting in shape. He called it Méthode Naturelle—the Natural Method—and it would be ruled by a five-word credo that had zero to do with getting ripped, getting thin, or going for gold. In fact, it had zero to do with ‘getting’ anything; Hébert was heading the opposite direction.

‘Etre fort pour etre utile,’ Hébert declared. ‘Be fit to be useful.’ It was brilliant, really. In those final two words, Hébert came up with a complete philosophy for life. No matter who you are, no matter what you’re seeking or hope to leave behind after your time on the planet—is there any better approach than simply to be useful? ‘Here is the great duty of man to himself, to his family, to his homeland and to humanity,’ Hébert writes. ‘Only the strong will prove useful in difficult circumstances of life.’


There ya go.

That’s Today’s +1.

We can be fit to win the next race or to be ripped in that next selfie we take and post everywhere.


We can be fit to be useful.

Here’s to being fit (physically, mentally, emotionally) so we can be (very) useful.

👊 💪 👊

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