World to End, CrossFitters and Paleo Eaters Survive

[caption id="attachment_500" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Wheat spike in a field"]Wheat spike in a field[/caption]

Literally no, but Richard Fernandez illustrates a larger point with a crisis that's threatening to wipe out 80 percent of the world's wheat crop. A new strain of stem rust, a fungus that destroys wheat, has begun spreading around the world and the only way to combat it is to replace existing strains of wheat with rust resistant varieties.

(CrossFitters and people eating paleo will survive, of course, since they are not eating wheat any way).

The larger point is important. Crises happen when something unpredictable occurs. Since the predictable happens with regularity, plans exist to acommodate and manage. When the improbable happens, things fall apart and it's only those with spare capacity or extra resources that survive.

Hernandez notes, "when the danger posed by a rare but catastrophic event is factored into the picture, the simplistic vision of an over-capitalized, excessively-scientific and inhuman West is replaced by an appreciation of what it is in times of crisis: the stored fat of a world which will face the occasional existential crisis". For stem rust this means the ability of labs, across the world, over the course of a decade to develop new, rust-resistant strains of wheat. Spare capability is the ultimate key to survival.

Which brings us back to the CrossFit prescription for fitness. "Routine is the enemy". In an extreme situation, it's those with the flexibility to adapt and the capacity to do more that survive.