What does ideal fitness really mean?
With the myriad of advertisements promising to get you in shape, it’s no wonder we have so many different ideas that define fitness. It doesn’t help that all those advertisers are in the fitness business to make money because they only tell you what they want you to hear. Unfortunately, that leaves many of us misunderstanding what fitness actually means.
Putting a single definition for fitness is difficult because it can mean so many different things to so many different people. For example, a bodybuilder may be interested in lifting weights to build muscle, while a marathoner would spend most of his time on the track, increasing his lung capacity. Therefore, to define fitness we must understand that the definition is in constant motion, changing individually based on wants and needs.
To be in ideal physical condition, you must have a firm understanding of strength, endurance, endurance, flexibility, speed, and balance. While it is not reasonable to expect you to be well trained in all areas, striving for an acceptable level of skill in each of them would suffice.
Many athletes are extremely talented in certain skills, but lack others. The fact that they train and train as hard as they do gives them an advantage in all areas. Being able to perform these skills fluently and smoothly is the true meaning of ideal fitness.
For the average non-athlete, getting in good (or even good) physical shape may seem out of reach. In this case, determination and motivation go a long way. Daily training to build strength, speed, and agility will allow you to run faster, throw farther, and lift more weight than seems possible at the moment. Putting an action plan into play with a schedule designed to be difficult but not impossible is the key to getting in shape.
If after a few months you do not notice any changes or the changes you were making stagnate, then you will have to review your program. This is true for both athletes and the “average player”. You don’t have to be an NFL running back or an Olympic gymnast to be in shape, you just have to work hard and train smart. And that’s something anyone can do.