Being fit and fat is often seen as an oxymoron, but the two states are not mutually exclusive. While it is true that carrying excess weight can put strain on the heart and other organs, it is also possible to be both overweight and physically fit. Fitness is determined by a variety of factors, including muscle mass, cardiovascular endurance, and flexibility. Someone who is obese may still have high levels of fitness if they regularly exercise and have strong muscles and cardiovascular health. However, being overweight does increase the risk of developing health problems, such as diabetes and high blood pressure. As a result, it is important to maintain a healthy weight even if you are otherwise fit.
Components of fitness
Cardiovascular fitness: is a health-related component of physical fitness that is brought about by sustained physical activity. A person’s ability to deliver oxygen to the working muscles is affected by many physiological parameters, including heart rate, stroke volume, cardiac output, and maximal oxygen consumption.
Muscular strength: muscular strength is the force that a muscle or muscle group can generate during an effort. It is different from muscular endurance, which is the muscle’s ability to sustain repeated contractions or its ability to resist fatigue. Examples are one rep max on bench press, barbell squat, deadlift and shoulder press.
Muscular endurance: This measures how many reps you can do without getting tired. A example of this is push ups, pull ups and body weight squats. You can also use other means like a beach press to measure muscular endurance for this you would a attempt to hit over 12 reps.
Flexibility: Flexibility is the ability of a joint or series of joints to move through an unrestricted, pain free range of motion. Although flexibility varies widely from person to person, minimum ranges are necessary for maintaining joint and total body health.
Body composition: It refers to the percentage of fat, bone, and muscle in your body. A unhealthy level of body fat does impact the fitness level of someone. While a higher muscle ratio can improve overall fitness.
Why we focus on weight over performance?
While having a healthy body weight is important for overall health we might focus on it too much. The fitness industry focused for years on how we look from going to the gym but not how we performed. There’s many reasons for this one the modern fitness industry was built off the body building days in the 1970s. Back they body builders focused on god like physique. This is when body building hit the mainstream. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lou Ferrigno were a solid part of pop culture at the time. Because of this people linked the idea of being shredded with being fit.
This standard is a hard one to hit for most people. Remaining super lean with low body fat is not something most people can’t do. Meals must be measured, sleep must solid, stress need to be low and you might miss out on some great life moments with friends and family. Being this lean is amazing and is a sport in self but even body builders take breaks from being lean during bulking season.
This is why you may want to be focused on performance more than body fat.
Use performance instead
Some of us don’t have the time to do all the things required to become lean and focusing on performance will keep us on task even when we put on a few extra pounds. Many people will start a fitness program with the sole purpose to lose body fat and when this doesn’t happen they may not feel like they want to exercise anymore. This may stop people from exercising at all.
A good idea is to get regular exercise with a goal in mind. For many people this might be running a 5k for the first time. This goal is measurable and people can train to do them no matter what body weight they have. You can track your progress over time and you many notice that you’ve gotten fitter without losing and weight or body fat. You might have the same weight on the scale but your heart and lung function has improved, your risk of heart disease has gone down and most other risk factors for a shorter life have improved.
Using performance as metric is a great way to measure your fitness level. Being physically active can offer many of the same benefits as losing weight. When you’re stronger carrying around a heavy frame may feel easier and when you do cardio your health will improve even if you’re carrying some extra body fat.
In fact, fat people are more likely to die from cardiovascular disease than from any other cause. However, there is good news for fat people who want to improve their heart health: running can be an effective way to lose weight and improve cardiovascular fitness. In one study, overweight adults who started running three times a week lost an average of five pounds after eight weeks. And in another study, obese adults who began running three times a week saw their risk of dying from cardiovascular disease drop by more than half. So if you’re fat and looking for a way to improve your heart health, start running today.
Strength training is a great way to improve heart health, bone density, muscle size and mental health. Strength training has been shown to be beneficial for heart health, regardless of body size. In fact, a recent study found that overweight people who participated in strength training for just two weeks had significant improvements in markers of heart health, including blood pressure and blood sugar levels. The study participants also saw an increase in the size of their left ventricles, which is the chamber of the heart responsible for pumping blood. These findings suggest that strength training can be an effective strategy for improving heart health in overweight people. However, it is important to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new exercise program.
Try our leg workouts from home to get in a nice sweat.
If your goal is to lift some extra pounds being more body weight may help for increased strength. Power lifting meets have weight classes and usually the heavier weight class can lift heavier weight.
Lifting weights can help keep you metabolically healthy, lower the risk of diabetes and improve self esteem. Lifting weights will help maintain joint help, lower injury risk and make day to day living feel easier.
There are many benefits of yoga, but some people may not be aware of its fitness benefits. First and foremost, yoga can help to improve flexibility. This is because the stretching and posing involved in yoga helps to lengthen muscles and increase range of motion. Additionally, yoga can also help to build strength. Although it may not seem like it, holding poses for an extended period of time can actually provide a significant workout for muscles. Furthermore, yoga can also help to improve balance and coordination. The focus and concentration required to maintain some of the more challenging poses can help to fine-tune the mind-body connection. Lastly, yoga is also a great way to reduce stress and promote relaxation. The deep breathing exercises often practiced in yoga can help to calm the nervous system and ease tension in the body. For all of these reasons, yoga is an excellent form of fitness that offers a wide range of benefits. Flexibility is one of the components of fitness that is overlooked.
Yoga may improve overall health, reduce blood pressure, lower the health risks from heart disease.
Being fit does not just tie to your body fat and body mass index. It’s important to take other factors into account when you are measuring someones fitness level. Regular exercise and regular physical activity is easier to maintain over a strict diet. Exercise can lead to a health body and working out may lower risk for of all cause all cause mortality rate. It’s important to keep your body fat in check but you can be fit when you’re fat.