Physical fitness is much more than exercising, as it includes starting from out of bed to ending a particular activity at the end of the day. It refers to the ability of body systems to work together efficiently to perform day-to-day activities easily.
Physical fitness is “the ability to carry out daily tasks with vigor and alertness, without undue fatigue, and with ample energy to enjoy leisure-time pursuits and respond to emergencies”, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
It consists of cardiovascular functioning, which gets enhanced by performing aerobic activities that get one’s heart and lungs operating faster. It comprises muscle strength, flexibility and balance. One does not need to get fancy, expensive equipment to adapt to fitness. For example, Walking is an activity that is available to almost everyone.
Exercise is designed towards maintaining physical fitness. It means a sub-category of physical activity. Physical activity is any form of exercise or movement of the body that consumes energy. Examples: One can do various house and garden chores that can help build strength, including daily life activities.
A fit person can respond to normal life situations like raking leaves at home, stocking shelves at a part-time job and participating in the band at school. However, they can also respond to emergencies. For instance, by running to get assistance for a friend who is in a panic situation and needs help.
Following are the components of fitness
- Cardiorespiratory endurance: It is measured by how swiftly a person can do an activity and how that affects measurements like heart rate and the body’s oxygen consumption.
- Muscular endurance: It is measured by how many repetitions of an exercise a person can perform in a specific duration. There are general tests in this, namely push-ups and sit-ups.
- Muscular strength: It is measured by how much weight can be moved when it comes to repetitions. Exercises comprising several joints and muscle groups, namely squats or bench press, are frequently used in the process.
- Muscular power: It is measured by how much force can be enabled during a particular exercise. Biomechanists use Advanced equipment to measure muscular strength.
- Flexibility: It is measured by how far one can stretch a muscle group or the joint can get shifted to a different angle. It includes the most common tests, such as shoulders and hamstrings.
“Fitness is truly a spectrum of physical well-being that must balance our physical and emotional motivations,” said Michael Jonesco, DO, an assistant professor of internal and sports medicine at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus.
On people adopting different ways to stay fit in different situations, he added, “Some individuals obsess on their physical appearance and numbers but are motivated by low self-esteem and criticize the flaws of their physical appearance. Some sacrifice rest and sleep in order to achieve further success but, in turn, drive their body into illness or burnout.”