Fitness as a Hedge
Have you ever been crushing it in the gym and then it all falls apart? After weeks of being in the gym every day and eating salads and avoiding sugar the worst happens; Karen in accounting brings in 3 dozen donuts and everyone is enjoying one, including you. You have ruined your diet and since you’ve ruined your diet you might as well skip the gym, because it’s all downhill from here. Are you laughing? You should be, we all are at fault for treating slip ups as end all be all circumstances. The reality is they aren’t that big of a deal, as long as we can regain focus!
Most health measures do not change overnight. Which gives us not only flexibility in our successes, but flexibility in the busyness of daily life. Having a hectic week and missing a workout one day does not send you all the way back to the beginning of your journey no more than doing one workout and eating one salad achieves you total health.
Under the CrossFit Training Methodology we follow the Sickness-Wellness-Fitness Continuum. The image pictured is from the CrossFit Journal and is a way to plot and track every measure possible of health (1). The continuum provides a standard for which being physically and mentally fit is a safeguard to sickness.
Sickness according to CrossFit is any parameter which is sub-standard to values determined by major medical entities; chronic disease, hypertensive, obese, depressed etc. Wellness is then achieving the agreed upon standard, such as “healthy” BMI and “good” cholesterol. Fitness is achieving values above the standard. How many times have you heard someone brag about having great blood pressure or really low cholesterol? That’s fitness. The more values, or data points that can fall under fitness the further one is from sickness. Not only is one further from sickness, but should any value decrease slightly one would simply be “well”. Which, hey, ain’t too bad. The continuum is a range based approach, thus is not destroyed by one value like eating that break room donut.
Our goal through training CrossFit is to slowly creep our way towards fitness with as many values as possible. Think of it as a race where you are running away, sometimes literally depending on the WOD, from sickness. What we know, though, is it is not a sprint. So our advice at CrossFit Rife is to RELAX and spend more time focusing on the successes.
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