FRIDAY FICKS: Of waterfalls, wellness and anvils

Published on Friday, 5 August 2022 10:08
Written by Carl R. Ficks, Jr.

FRIDAY FICKS: Of waterfalls, wellness and anvils

Friday Ficks

There’s an ultra distance running book called “Relentless Forward Progress.” It popped to mind as I gazed at a magnificent, towering waterfall in Puerto Rico’s El Yunque National Forest. El Yunque is the only tropical rainforest in the national forest system. It is also one of the most biologically diverse and home to the endangered Puerto Rican parrot, which you might be lucky enough to spot while walking among the miles of hiking trails sprinkled throughout the 29,000 jungle-like acres. 

The falls in El Yunque were formed 145 million years ago during the Cretaceous period. They’re fed by over 200 inches of rainfall every year, year in and year out. They’ve flowed for millennia. The falls are consistent, relentless and always making forward progress.

That’s how I’d like you to think about fitness and wellness practices. Consistency and relentlessness resulting in forward progress.

Like walking, which leads to improved circulation, weight loss, a lower risk for Alzheimers and a boost in immune function. Or running, which leads to better cardio health, sleep and caloric burn, improves your memory/mood/energy level and strengthens bones. Perhaps you could give cycling a try, a low impact exercise that’s easier on your joints, improves your posture, leads to better coordination and strengthens both your lower body and your core. And don't forget about meditation, which can reduce anxiety attacks, decreases tension-related pain and increases your energy levels.

These fitness and wellness activities have always had these benefits, and they always will. Like the waterfalls, which have always flowed in El Yunque, and they always will.

Ironically, “Yunque” means anvil in Spanish. Just as blacksmiths use anvils to shape and form better and stronger metal tools, you can use fitness and wellness practices to shape and form a better and stronger you.

Why not give them a try? 

Carl Ficks helps busy professionals and their teams get back in the fitness game to reduce stress and increase productivity. He practiced law in New Britain for many years and is a proud member of the Generale Ameglio Society. He has run and cycled thousands of miles and competed in dozens of races, so when you're ready to get back in the game, email him at

Posted in New Britain Herald, Columns, General News on Friday, 5 August 2022 10:08. Updated: Friday, 5 August 2022 10:10.