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The True Meaning of Fitness

man doing plyometricsI talk a lot about weight loss on this site and its relation to health and fitness. It’s not that I think weight loss is the most important aspect of fitness, it’s just because that’s the topic most people are seeking out information for, and it’s the topic I know will help the most people transform their lives.

What Fitness is Really About

Weight loss is just a small aspect of fitness, and in actuality, is just a side-effect of living a healthy lifestyle. The true meaning of fitness and what it means to me? It means taking back control of your body. It’s about owning yourself. It’s about practicing self-control and feeling powerful.

They call it a weight loss journey for a reason. It’s a time for self reflection. The closer you come to reaching your weight loss goal, the less you care about losing weight. Instead, your goal changes to wanting to be fit and healthy, both physically and mentally.

As you drop the pounds, you start making new connections in your brain and epiphany moments begin popping up left and right. These “ah-ha” moments create real change, and solidify you in your new healthy lifestyle.

You discover the cause and effect of your unhealthy behaviors, and you’re able to rewire your brain so that they no longer happen. Instead of just knowing you shouldn’t do something because it’s bad for you, you learn why it’s bad for you and why you make those unhealthy decisions in the first place.

You become your own therapist. With that complete understanding of how you function in that situation, you’re able to take the right steps to change your behavior for good. You just taught yourself self-control, and you feel empowered as a result.

It’s a Mentality

Being fit and healthy is a mentality, not a look. The look is a side effect of the way you think. Change your thoughts and you will change your body. Don’t beat yourself up over your failures. You will fail. We all do. Use them as a means to learn about yourself and build yourself up stronger for the next challenge.

Each time you break through those barriers, you become more confident in yourself. You’ve made another step in the right direction. You’ve made progress. You won.

This new mentality doesn’t just function in the health and fitness aspects of your life either. Those same concepts that you learned are applied to other areas of your life.

You didn’t just learn how to lose weight. You learned how to change. You learned how to control your behavior. You took back your power from your mind and now you’re ready to take on the world.

You’re a Winner

The true meaning of fitness? It’s not losing weight or running faster or being stronger. It’s about smiling and knowing that you took a stand against your self-sabotaging behavior, and won.

You’re a winner. You accomplished what millions of other people are struggling with every day – the desire to truly own yourself, both mentally and physically.

If you are in the middle of your journey, be strong and love yourself, for you are well on your way to freeing yourself of the shackles that have held you back all your life. Take a deep breath and continue on. Push through the challenges. Be confident that you have what it takes to own yourself. Be proud of yourself. Be your biggest cheerleader. You deserve to have it all.

  • Sharon Thompson

    Short sweet and to the point

  • Crystal K. Hooper

    Thank you Tony, the knowledge you share is truly a blessing. Coach Calorie ROCKS!

  • Kathy Hollerback

    So true and so very well said!!:)

  • Nikki

    I think this is my favorite article you’ve written to date. I’ve passed it on to other family members as well. Great work!!

    • Coach Calorie

      Thanks Nikki ;)

    • Kasia Norine Karen Mckenzie-El

      I agree!

  • Bryan

    Completely agree with you here, Tony. It’s truly amazing what fitness and a healthier lifestyle can do for your mind, body and soul!

  • jvini

    Thank you for this. So true. And glad you put a little part about making mistakes. I’ve been pretty religious about the way I’m eating and it’s made a huge difference, but yesterday I had a flight a business meeting and was exhausted. I ate terribly! I’m not going to sink into that routine. It’s a one day event. One and done. It didn’t ruin all I’ve done. So back to it today and the next and so on.

  • Betsy

    This is brilliant – thank you.

  • Coach Calorie

    It certainly shouldn’t ruin anything. Don’t beat yourself up. Try learning what exactly triggered that event so you can avoid it next time, and then keep pushing forward ;)

  • Confused

    Hello, I was wondering Im just getting into yoga, can you work out and do yoga on the same day? Is there such thing as too much yoga, especially if I work out 6 days a week. Also, will bodyweight strength training build muscle the same way regular strength training would? Sorry, I would comment on a more related article but most I find that are related the threads are closed to comment on. Thank you I love your site.

    • Coach Calorie

      It’s always possible to do too much of a good thing. You can do them both on the same day. Give yourself a day or two off a week and you should be fine.

      Bodyweight strength training builds muscle the same way. The only difference is that you will be limited in the resistance you can apply without using weights. So, weight training has the potential to build more muscle.

  • carole

    I have been really hard on myself lately. Exercising hard, eating right but not losing the weight really had me down in the dumps and ready to give up. Thanks for this article it helped me put things in a new perspective. Now, I’m ready to get back at it….I will keep this article handy though, just in case I give up on myself again.

  • Donna

    Wow, I needed that!

  • Dianna Hill

    Well said!! I began my “get fit” journey just over a year ago. I have lost all the weight that I wanted to (20lbs) but its just now that I am beginning to feel proud of the progress that I have made. I enjoy my exercise routines and I find that eating healthier just makes me feel better!! I have learned in the past year that weight is just a number and I need to be happier with the inches. I find your articles extremally insightful and thank you!!

  • Coach Calorie

    Glad it helped Carole :) Good luck!

  • Coach Calorie

    Sounds like you have a new perspective on what being fit is. Good to hear it!

  • Allison

    I agree, brilliant. Thank you.

  • Lynda

    Thank you for this article, as you said most are about weight loss, and yes that was one of the reasons I began this journey, and I cannot really pinpoint when I stopped thinking that is was all about losing weight and realised that I was having a huge amount of fun. I have lost almost 20kgs and have about 14 still to go, but it is no longer a race in my head, and know my body will do it in its own time.

  • Coach Calorie

    That’s a good outlook Lynda. You really want to make weight loss an involuntary action. Just eat right and get active and live your life. The weight will do what it needs to.

  • Angiemarie63

    Hi, I’ve made the decision to get healthy and fit. I have lost 18 lbs since Feb by eating real foods, healthy fats, exercising, am struggling to stay motivated with the exercising. Sometimes its hard to know what to eat, protein with carbs along with..??

    I am considering a Fitbit or Bodymedia. What is the difference between the two?

  • carli

    this is amazing! a whole new view. Theres a lot of pages and fitness people who help, you somehow seem to be one of the few who truly see it as a holistic change and it is very powerful. Feels like a bible-article now, thank you!

  • Sherry Johnson Derossett

    I think you are my Fitness Soul Mate! LOL! As a CNC/CPT for 15 years, these are the health & fitness mantras I dare share too! Thank you for motivating a motivator, who sometimes feels like certain people have forgotten what health & fitness will do for your entire life!

  • Eva Marie Bakis

    This is a great article to read!

  • Coach Calorie

    Hi Angie, I’d take a look at my comprehensive review of the BodyMedia here –

    The main differences as I mentioned in one of the comments there are:

    “The FitBit tracks your calories solely through the use of an altimeter (tracking vertical activity like stairs) and an accelerometer (tracks steps similar to a pedometer). The BodyMedia attempts to make your calorie burn number more accurate through the use of 3 additional sensors:

    1 – Galvanic Skin Response – measures the electrical conductivity of your skin when you sweat.

    2 – Skin Temperature – measures surface temp of your body.

    3 – Heat Flux – Measures the rate that heat is dissipated from the body.

    This info is gathered and entered into BodyMedia algorithms to get a more accurate calorie burn reading.”

  • Ollie

    This is awesome! Love this article. So True and inspiring

  • Sanja Ireland

    This is the best article I’ve read on the topic of fitness, thank you so much for writing and sharing it! I guess I will read it every time I am on the verge of quitting : )

  • Jonathan

    I just recently started blogging about living the healthy lifestyle (only a few weeks in). I have been researching fitness & nutrition for a long time. I’ve always thought this way about the healthy lifestyle. I could not have articulated this point you make better than you. I’ve shared several of your articles on my Facebook page because I respect the information you are putting forth (and will be pointing to articles in my blog too). Very informative, easy to read and understand, and though provoking.

  • Tom

    Have read most of your articles and all of them are great or at least have great parts to them. Always enjoy reading them….that said this is, in my opinion, by far the greatest!
    You express and articulate exactly what everyone should know about ‘fitness’ and ‘getting fit’.
    Mental health is such an underrated (or better put under-advertised) benefit from taking on a training regime. Your explanation, highlighting, of how self control, self empowerment, self esteem and more, are all achieved and how they connect to improving a persons being is awesome.

    Thanks for all the work you do! Keep coaching :-)

    • Tony Schober

      Thanks for the comment, Tom. I appreciate the kind words!

  • Alex Talbot

    I just thought fitness was an offshoot of biological fitness i.e. the ability to survive and reproduce.

    Someone in better shape is more likely to do both.