What is Fitness?

A google search for the definition of fitness returns this:


  1. the condition of being physically fit and healthy.

Thanks Google, I didn’t know that (we hope you can hear the sarcasm…and the eye roll).

But even the 2 biggest governing and research bodies in fitness, the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength and Conditioning Association, don’t have anything better.  In fact they don’t have one at all.

A wiki-search will get you a little closer to an idea, but still not a real definition.  That’s where Greg Glassman, the founder of CrossFit stepped in.  He wrote the article “What is Fitness” in 2002 (you can read it HERE).

Suffice it to say Coach Glassman did a thorough job of explaining what fitness is, and unless you’re a fitness nerd, reading it might be a bit boring.  So, over the next few weeks we’re going to summarize what he wrote along with actual steps you can take to get you there.

So, what is fitness?

It is your ability to perform in each of the 10 general, recognizable physical skills.  You are as fit as you are weak in any one area.

What are those skills?  Here’s the quick list:

1. Cardiovascular/respiratory endurance – The ability of body systems to gather, process, and deliver oxygen.
2. Stamina – The ability of body systems to process, deliver, store, and utilize energy.
3. Strength – The ability of a muscular unit, or combination of muscular units, to apply force.
4. Flexibility – the ability to maximize the range of motion at a given joint.
5. Power – The ability of a muscular unit, or combination of muscular units, to apply maximum force in minimum time.
6. Speed – The ability to minimize the time cycle of a repeated movement.
7. Coordination – The ability to combine several distinct movement patterns into a singular distinct movement.
8. Agility – The ability to minimize transition time from one movement pattern to another.
9. Balance – The ability to control the placement of the bodies center of gravity in relation to its support base. 10. Accuracy – The ability to control movement in a given direction or at a given intensity.

Ok, so maybe that wasn’t all that quick.  Even more to the point, where do you start?  With #1.

It Starts with Cardio

Cardiovascular/respiratory endurance is just a fancy way of saying cardio.  If your heart and lungs work efficiently, you can withstand many of the tests that life or exercise throws at you.  It’s also the easiest on to begin working on.

The rest of this week, do something that gets your heart rate up to about 145-155 beats per minute and keeps it there for 30-45 minutes.  If you don’t have a heart rate monitor or a fancy watch or fitbit that tells you, here’s how you can tell; If you say the sentence “hello my name is ______” you should only be able to get out about 2-3 words at a time.

That’s it for this week.  Now go work on your cardio!

Fitness is what we do.  We teach people of any ability level to start where they are and work toward the level of fitness  they need and desire to feel good about life.  If you’re tired of trying on your own with little or no results, it’s time to hire a pro.  Or, in our case, a team of pros right here in Thornton, CO!  Schedule a FREE Goals and Frustration Session with one of our coaches HERE.