Surely we all are?
Of course, ignoring all the evolutionary theories for a minute, someone saying that they're not "built to run" could simply mean that they gave it a go and found it hard work, and then decided to do something else to keep fit instead (or not). Way before becoming a regular runner I gave it a half-hearted attempt every now and then, would end up getting shin-splints and give it up as a bad job. I'm fairly sure at one stage or another I thought I just wasn't built for running. Cycling, yes; running, no. Obviously with the benefit of hindsight and my vast running wisdom I can see now that I just performed the classic newbie errors of trying to run too fast, probably in rubbish footwear.
I'm still not built for swimming. Water and breathing - what's that all about?
Mind you there is no reason why people should run if it makes them uncomfortable. There are other equally effective ways of maintaining fitness.
Can anyone remember those Time Team programmes when they dug up an Iron Age skeleton and then retrospectively rebuilt the person's face onto the skull? It's interesting because they have to make certain assumptions. However, they never dug up a skeleton on any of those archaeological programmes and said "Oh, this person was big boned, they must have been fat". Doesn't that strike you as odd? Of course it may mean that every single person whether idle rich or poor labourer was as skinny as each other. It may also mean that inside the idle fat person at the bus stop is a skeleton that is basically the same as any average runner's. I like to think that.
Sure, some people are taller than others. There will also be long term lifestyle effects. My Grandmother worked in the cotton mills and undoubtedly suffered from stunted growth. All her children and grandchildren were much taller. Obese kids will quite likely get skeletal disorders, because they were made obese by their parents. Isn't that a form of child cruelty, just like it was for the 13 year old mill girls?
Blisters - good point - the lifestyle we lead leaves traces on the skeleton. We can look at diseases in past populations by looking at the traces these diseases have left on the bones - some of the more gross changes I have seen during my work have included large pitting of the skull caused by severe late stage VD (this person was most likely insane by the time they died), and some of the more hideous effects of ancient diseases like leprosy.
A fit healthy person engaged in lots of physical activity will generally have larger more obvious insertion points were the muscle tendon connects to the bone surface. A heavier person can still have been engaged in physical work - think of all the lifting a farm labourer would have done for instance.
As for fat people in the past - we have plenty of pictures of Henry 8th , but as far as I know no-one has ever gotten to analyse his bones!! But other things come out in the wealthy in the past - gout for instance is always assumed to be associated with rich-living, e.g. drinking out of wine goblets that have a high lead content during the Middle Ages.
But, just so we dont confuse the issue - this isnt Evolution at play . This is lifestyle, disease, and what hardships (or not) people have experienced during that life.
If two morbidly obese adults get together and produce a morbidly obese child, is that a genetic trait, or is it because they live an unhealthly lifestyle that the child is exposed to from the moment of conception? Now, there in lies the question......I would suggest it is lifestyle.
And I would wholeheartedly agree. ^^^^
Not only do fat people have fat kids, they also have fat dogs (if they have a dog).
What you have said is what I was trying to say earlier but obviously not as well as you.
Its about time this forum had a Science Corner .
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