The word “fitness” is loosely used these days because of the abundance of information that we can find in the internet. As a result, we take the true meaning of “fitness” for granted.
“Fitness” is a collective term of achieving what we call a full profile. Strength, Range of Motion, Stamina, Mental Toughness and Body Awareness are 5 of the most important things that you should try to improve if you are planning to start.
- Strength – Without basic level of shoulder and tricep strength, how can you do a pushup? Without basic core strength how can you expect to run a full 42km marathon? Without a decent amount of strength, how can you expect to be above average in your sport?
You see, strength is the foundation of the fitness profile. So if you are doing endless cardio sessions and have been neglecting strength, you are setting yourself up for a major plateau. Strength can be achieved by understanding the basics such as squats, deadlifts, rows and presses.
- Range of Motion – Your 42km running body will mean nothing if you wake up every single morning not being able to move your knee properly. Your kickass bench press personal best will mean nothing if you can’t even remove your shirt by yourself. Basic flexibility and mobility are very important for you to achieve the basic range of motion of your body. This can be achieved by paying attention to stretching and using the foam roller before and after your session. It can be painfully boring but this is extremely important. Move like a human…not a robot.
- Stamina – Having a decent amount of stamina is important because it takes care of one of the most important muscles in your body…your heart. A good and healthy heart is achieved by paying good attention to your diet (of course) and a good heart rate. This can be achieved by running, spinning or any metabolic-conditioning based workouts.
- Mental toughness – I am including this in the fitness profile because in every body transformation you will experience a plateau. Having good amounts of mental toughness is important for you to achieve both short term and long term goals. You won’t wake up every single day excited to go to the gym, but you need to be mentally tough and realize that sticking with your routine is extremely important for you to finish what you started. This can be achieved by writing your goal in a piece of paper and stick it on the bathroom mirror so that you are reminded every single morning that you are taking charge of your life and get this achievement.
- Body Awareness – Wondering why the show ninja warrior is so popular? It is because the overall athleticism displayed in that show is amazing. Combination of strength, range of motion, stamina and mental toughness are all being utilized as a machine. In short, they are aware how to use their body as a unit. Body awareness is one (if not the) most important thing for you to look for. Big bulging biceps are useless if you can’t even coordinate your body to do a single bar hang. This can be achieved by practicing movement and bodyweight based drills.
A complete program observes all five elements for you to achieve a complete fitness profile. Don’t fall into the trap of lifting weights only. Don’t fall in to the trap of just doing flexibility drills. Most of all, don’t fall in to the trap of doing just cardio. Always aim for the complete package and try to have a good honest look at your current fitness regimen if you are getting all these five. If you are missing one of them, try to focus on it for months to come and I guarantee, this will be a game changer.