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Health vs. Fitness, Part I

A healthy person is not necessarily a fit person.

Though often viewed similarly, health and fitness are NOT the same things. While there may be overlap between the two, they're not the same things. Provided below, are two definitions I'd like to use to orient us to the same sheet of music:

Health: The absence of disease. Soundness.

Fitness: The ability to rise to a specific demand. Suited to fulfill a particular role or task.

As I wrote in my opener, a healthy person is not necessarily a fit person.

(Empirical Examples: There are many healthy individuals who are unable [or unfit] to successfully complete standard physical fitness tests, such as being able to run a mile in under ten minutes [men and women], being able to perform 10 pull-ups in under two minutes [men], being able to hold the top of a pull-up position for 45 seconds [women], etc.)

Similarly, a fit individual is not necessarily a healthy person.

(Empirical Examples: There are many people with cancer, cardiovascular disease, or diabetes, who can complete the above and more. They're fit [based on the above criteria]; but they're not healthy, meaning disease-free.)

Granted, one's fitness as well as one's health is not as black and white as I'm inferring above. Yes, all of us fall somewhere on a continuum in both arenas, and our place on each continuum is in a constant state of flux (so long as we're still breathing!). I acknowledge all that. The purpose of my illuminating the above is to encourage you to begin to make a similar distinction. Some (perhaps many) of us make the mistake of focusing almost entirely on physical fitness to the exclusion of our general health. Conversely, some of us focus so much on health that we often overlook (and, therefore, don't avail ourselves of) the benefits of systematic and progressive fitness training.

Personally, I don't want to be lacking in either. I want to be healthy AND fit. But...if I were forced to make a choice, I'd choose being healthy over being fit every time. EVERY time! (More on that in a later post.)

Just a few of my off-the-cuff thoughts on this subject. Next Wednesday, we'll delve more into this topic.

Until then, God's peace...


IKIGAI Weekly Blog Schedule (per The Training Trinity):

Mondays: Meditative Prayer

Wednesdays: Holistic Discipline

Fridays: Martial Arts Practice`


The Life You Were Born to Live

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