Let's just assume that everyone believes that the term "fitness" is only relative to the task at hand. I think you all should know by now my stand on that topic... Just because you can run far or lift a large amount of weight at one time does not dictate that you are actually physically fit.
Fitness, in my humble and unprofessional opinion, is measured across the board of the 10 physical skills; cardiovascular/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, coordination, agility, speed, balance, and accuracy. You are as fit as you are competent in each of these ten skills and proper or solid fitness regimen develops fitness to the extent that it improves each of these ten skills.
In developing a regimen that will touch each of these 10 skills we must look at using all three metabolic pathways for program design. The first, the phosphagen pathway, provides the bulk of energy used in highest-powered activities, those that last less than ten seconds.
E-mail fitness columnist Kris Morrill, certified personal trainer and owner of World Camp Fitness in Albany, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The second, the glycolytic pathway, dominates moderate-powered activities, those that last up to several minutes. The third, the oxidative pathway, provides energy for low-powered activities, those that last in excess of several minutes.
So, what does this all mean to you? Change is key. You must introduce a new or different stimulus to your body on a regular basis. To do the same old, same old workout day in and day out is like death to your fitness level.
Take long distance runners for example. The majority of them are only concerned with training there body in the Oxidative Pathway. By doing this, they are losing out on the other areas of training and thus not complete and competent in all physical skills. The same holds true for a body builder, just on the other side of the spectrum.
My challenge for you this week is to break away from the day to day routine that is your workout regimen. Throw some curve balls in there.
If you are that long distance runner, implement some sprint training into the mix for the day. Give your body a break from the long grind that is the Oxidative Pathway and get into the Phosphagen.
I will promise you that you are not quite in the physical shape that you thought you were. On the flip side, if you are that body builder, take off on a run to get an idea of what happens to your body in the other Metabolic Pathways.
You may surprised to find that you are not as strong from a more endurance aspect. Here is a great piece that best describes world class fitness in 100 words written by Greg Glassman. He is the founder and CEO of CrossFit, Inc.
"Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat. Practice and train major lifts: Deadlift, clean, squat, presses, C&J, and snatch. Similarly, master the basics of gymnastics: pull-ups, dips, rope climb, push-ups, sit-ups, presses to handstand, pirouettes, flips, splits, and holds. Bike, run, swim, row, etc, hard and fast. Five or six days per week mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as creativity will allow. Routine is the enemy. Keep workouts short and intense. Regularly learn and play new sports."