Sickness, Wellness, and Fitness

By September 27, 2012 Features No Comments

Sickness, Wellness, and Fitness

There is another aspect to the CrossFit brand of fitness that is of great interest and immense value to us. We have observed that nearly every measurable value of health can be placed on a continuum that ranges from sickness to wellness to fitness. See table. Though tougher to measure, we would even add mental health to this observation. Depression is clearly mitigated by proper diet and exercise, i.e., genuine fitness.  For example, a blood pressure of 160/95 is pathological, 120/70 is normal or healthy, and 105/55 is consistent with an athlete’s blood pressure; a body fat of 40% is pathological, 20% is normal or healthy, and 10% is fit. We observe a similar ordering for bone density, triglycerides, muscle mass, flexibility, HDL or “good cholesterol”, resting heart rate, and dozens of other common measures of health. Many authorities (e.g. Mel Siff, the NSCA) make a clear distinction between health and fitness. Frequently they cite studies that suggest that the fit may not be health protected. A close look at the supporting evidence invariably reveals the studied group is endurance athletes and, we suspect, endurance athletes on a dangerous fad diet (high carb, low fat, low protein).

Done right, fitness provides a great margin of protection against the ravages of time and disease. Where you find otherwise examine the fitness protocol, especially diet.  Fitness is and should be “super-wellness.” Sickness, wellness, and fitness are measures of the same entity.  A fitness regimen that doesn’t support health is not CrossFit.

Implementation

Our fitness, being “CrossFit”, comes through molding men and women that are equal parts gymnast, Olympic weightlifter, and multi-modal sprinter or “sprintathlete.”  Develop the capacity of a novice 800-meter track athlete, gymnast, and weightlifter and you’ll be fitter than any world-class runner, gymnast, or weightlifter.  Let’s look at how CrossFit incorporates metabolic conditioning (“cardio”), gymnastics, and weightlifting to forge the world’s fittest men and women.

***Courtesy of CrossFit HQ training guide (http://library.crossfit.com/free/pdf/CFJ_Seminars_TrainingGuide_042012.pdf)***

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