Do you even stats, bro?

First official post and it already looks like I’m going to try punching above my weight class. But like Tony Stark says, sometimes you have to run before you can walk. Without breaking down exactly what that quote can mean, I’ll veer myself back to my intro to this posting.

A client came to see me a little while ago. Seeing as I am her introduction to personal fitness, part of my role during this process is to take a small medical history for liability purposes as well as for our own knowledge. This knowledge comes in handy when designing a program and proving my worth as a personal trainer.

While briefly looking at her medical history she confessed that part of her getting healthy regimen included quitting smoking, which she had done 3 months before. I myself struggle with this battle, so whenever I find out a client is quitting or has recently quit smoking I always make a point of using that as a conversation point. It helps me show them that pursuing physical fitness isn’t just for the athletically inclined.

I find it is always productive to inquire as to what steps they took and offer up a supporting comment to reinforce it as a positive decision. This particular client gave me the usual bit about it being time for a change, but unlike other clients, instead of stopping she told me that she made that decision when a psychic told her that if she didn’t quit smoking, that she would likely die soon.

Imagine that! Someone parading around as one who sees into the future predicting that a known carcinogen and all around health hazard would kill someone.

This is a trick psychics like to use, relying on high probability hits to establish credibility and lure in potential victims. The common ploy is that they make generic statements, which many people can agree with, the broader the statement, the easier to find people who identify with it.

By generalizing and betting with the highest probability, how can you lose the bet when you tilt the odds in your favour and no one else notices?


Inaugural post

Hello and welcome.

As the name suggests, I’m barely a novice when it comes to skepticism. I’ve been interested in scientific skepticism for some time and have often annoyed friends at parties by being “that guy” who tries picking apart their latest fad interest. Usually these are cleanses, superfoods, interests in supernatural ideas that hide under the mystery called “quantum” or even dispelling climate change denial arguments. I try to stick within my scope of practice so I don’t get to be too annoying or sound like a know-it-all at times, only to have a piece of my own ignorance called out.

But it’s my recent switch into personal fitness that’s propelled me into being more active, more vocal about pseudoscience and other dangers. I work as a personal trainer and am confronted daily with some misguided interpretation and it is incredibly important that I help my clients come to the best possible conclusions.

If I had the time and money, as well as skill set let’s be honest, I would love to contribute to this blog more than once a week. Hell, I would love to do this daily. But for now I think it important to start slow, so as not to over reach myself and keep within what we call scope of practice.

What you should look forward to come out of this slice of the Internet is going at first to be reflections. Whenever I hear something that raises skeptical red flags then I will do my best to make note and show my work so to speak in a post. Perhaps as I grow and mature, I will be able to do a more in depth debunking of claims and even my own list of myths to dispell. Time will tell.