Fitness and Figure: The two F’s

Fitness and Figure

Physical fitness is the body’s ability to work at its optimal level. For one to be called physically fit all their organs have to be working to the best of their ability without any injury or diseases that may hinder the proper functioning of the body. Broadly, six components of physical fitness can be recognized which include:

  • Strength : the amount of strength that can be exerted by a muscle group is strength . It is developed in all major training exercises like weight lifting.
  • Cardiorespiratory endurance: The capacity of the body to intake oxygen and transport it all over the body tissues via the heart; all of this is done efficiently without any wastage of energy.
  • Flexibility:  It is joint specific. It is the range of motion of particular joint, to be able to use your joint to their maximum capability without pain or injury is flexibility.
  • Muscular endurance: It is the ability of the muscles to work against resistance. In simple words, it means that our muscles are able to work even after getting tired.  
  • Power: It is combination of strength with speed. The ability to use maximum strength in the minimum time is power.
  • Body composition: It simply means what your body is made up of. Body fat is the major constituent of body composition. BMI ( Body is a way to measure this composition

In order to get fit, physical activity is very significant along with eating a fully balanced diet. Our first goal while exercising should be to become healthy and not to look a certain way. One can start off with simple exercises and progressively move over to complex ones. Simple exercising can include stretching, basic yoga, walking or jogging etc. Having a balanced, healthy diet requires including a variety of foods in our diet. Skipping meals is not an option, contrary to popular belief it does not help in losing weight, it lowers our metabolism.

We see trends and tend to follow them naively. One such trend could be removing carbohydrates out of diets; we can reduce the quantity but not completely eliminate a nutrient from our diet as they play different important functions. Another such trend could include intermittent fasting which has benefits but also has some limitations as people may indulge in binging behaviour after not eating for a while; it may also make some people dizzy or nauseous. All trends should be followed mindfully with personal research done on the pros and cons and keeping in mind your body type.

People have become fixated on the exterior part of being fit. They focus solely on their figure; having six-pack abs or a slim waist doesn’t necessarily mean being fit. It is about feeling good on the inside as well.

A fit and healthy body have a number of benefits. It increases energy levels, strengthens the heart and other organs, makes bones strong and also the immune system sturdy which helps us stay away from diseases and illnesses. It also helps us be more active and boosts our mood.

People have nowadays become almost obsessed with their figures. Additionally, there has been a growing focus on looking good, even if that means not feeling good. With the predominance of social media that connects everyone people look at actors, models, influencers, fitness experts and compare themselves with them and their perfect figures. This comparison transforms into body consciousness, low self-esteem and an effort to look like them.

There has developed a whole market that caters to such figure obsessed people. From apps to books there is a vast range of media that focuses on the “ideal” bodies and how one can achieve them. There are apps that can edit on us six-pack abs or a slim waist with a perfect tan. There are a lot of consumers for such apps because people wish to fit in and look like their favourite Instagram influencer. The problem with these things is they create a false reality. These fake bodies often make people hate their real ones. Another factor that comes into play is societal norms; especially with women’s bodies, there has always been pressure to look a certain way. A body that fits into the prevailing beauty standards is considered better and acceptable. This makes people preoccupied with their weight and figure rather than focusing on being healthy.

People aim to achieve these unrealistic body goals hence follow strict and torturing food diets. Such extreme diets sometimes do more harm than good. When one is not able to fit into these norms of the society they may feel unmotivated, self-conscious and insecure about themselves leading to unhealthy mind, body and life.


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