: the capacity of an organism to survive and transmit its genotype to reproductively fertile offspring as compared to competing organisms; also : the contribution of an allele or genotype to the gene pool of subsequent generations as compared to that of other alleles or genotypes
Hmmm, according to this source, to be fit is to survive long enough and be strong enough to chase something down and impregnate it. A lot of of beer guzzling junk food ingesting sperm donors would be happy to read this portion of my article, however, I personally believe there must be more.
In today’s world there are many differing variations within the scope of this word. There is fit for duty, mentally fit, fiscally fit, even fit to be tied. But just like you may love BBQ ribs and love your mate, it is not the same type of love, hopefully, nor are the types of fitness the same.
At one point I chanced to entertain a dating site, yeah, like no one else has. I tried so hard to let them know in no uncertain terms that I AM FIT and if they were NOT FIT, they should not even email me because they were off my radar.Well, I have to say, I have never received so many pictures of women who weighed in at a svelte 160 lbs. at a towering 5ft4in, all claiming to be fit or athletic, in my life. You really would not want to see what the ones claiming a few extra pounds looked like. This experience although short lived, did make me consider however, where we as a country have come to concerning fitness.
The “Fitness Industry” has done well in promoting gyms and supplements with all kinds of classes and varying mind sets. These facilities are trying their best to provide for all of the components of fitness. But what does being fit really mean?
If you ask a body builder, being fit means lifting mega pounds and having a fat percentage in the low single digits. If you ask a runner, the focus will no doubt be on the amount of miles put in each week and marathons completed. A yoga practitioner is going to discuss the poses they are able to hold for x amount of time. While all of these are part of the picture, none are completely fit. Yes, I did say that.
Lets get real here. I’ve rarely seen a serious weightlifter endlessly doing yoga. Most would rather take a gangland beat down than to run even a single mile. Nor, will a yoga practitioner be gearing up for a 400lb. bench press. And lets face it, a serious runner just doesn’t possess enough muscle tissue to boast of much in the weight room. So, what up?
While there are many opinions concerning fitness owing to the numerous fitness cert companies, mostly it comes down to 5 solid components which are facets of the whole diamond we call fitness.
Strength: the ability to lift carry or otherwise overcome weight, tension or resistance against ones own musculature.
Muscular Endurance: The amount of time a given muscle or body can handle any given resistance load. We call this the time under load principle.
Flexibility: The ability of a muscle or body of muscles to lengthen for an undetermined period of time.
Cardiovascular Fitness:This can be broken down into either anaerobic or aerobic conditioning,i.e., a sprinter will never run 26 miles in 3hrs or less and a marathon runner will never beat a sprinter in a 200 meter race. The relationship here is simple. It is the ability of a body to move, relative to the stress load one’s heart,lungs and vascular system can overcome for an undetermined period of time.
Speed: How fast your body can perform a task or move from point A to point B.
Body Composition: There are other constituents but, here we are talking about fat% relative to muscle tissue %. This seems to be a notable variable when assessing one’s general health condition.
When I first started in this business about 20 years ago, I understood strength training, aerobic conditioning as well as the nuances of nutrition, however, after tens of thousands of training and neuromuscular therapy sessions, I have decided that while many can lay claim to one or two components of fitness, very few can boast of having it all.
There are some who in my opinion may possess all of the components or come close. These would be: Gymnasts, Triathletes, MMA or Ultimate Fighting Competitors,Rock Climbers,(serious ones), Martial Artists and Military Special Ops Soldiers. If I missed your special interest group don’t be offended, I did not include myself either(though I am getting close).
Although some would assert that there could be other components to fitness such as balance, hand/eye coordination, etc., I would state that these are merely subcategories or benefits of having the 5 basic fitness components.
So, does this mean that the rest of us are just incomplete losers? No way! What I am suggesting, is that it may be time for all of us to evolve in our understanding and attainment of fitness. Let me put it another way. If I were a platoon leader tasked with holding a hill against large numbers, I would much rather have 200 of the above mentioned athletes /soldiers than 800 meat sacks to send home in body bags.
I wrote this article not as a rant or to poke sticks in the cages of other monkeys, but rather to pose the question, do we understand the term completely fit? Hopefully, this article will promote thought and awareness as well as self motivation. I invite questions or comments.
Steve Lynch, LNMT, AAS/Holistic Healing, CTE, Trainer email@example.com http://www.stevelynchLMT.weebly.com www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-lynch/29/4b1/351/