With the current pandemic in the world, I keep hearing “I want to be healthy.” This is a common goal for most of us and the reason why we keep coming back to the gym. It’s why we keep making smart decisions in the kitchen on a consistent basis. In the face of an acute sickness like the Coronavirus (COVID-19)- is it too late to do anything to help ourselves be healthy?
The answer is no– it’s never too late to improve your health! And luckily for you, the Resilience Challenge program we’ve implemented has a wealth of information to keep you accountable. Information to arm yourself with all the tools that will help strengthen your body, mentally and physically, during this extreme period of stress.
Why should I care about chronic disease now?
This virus really makes us reflect on what we could do best to equip ourselves for the waves of unpredictable dangers to our health throughout our lifetime. Viruses, infections, accidents, and injuries- all included. Though we may never see a “Coronavirus” again at this magnitude, other types of potential dangers to our health are imminent. If you don’t follow Crossfit.com, consider checking out this video from the founder of Crossfit, Coach Glassman, about chronic disease and its relation to Coronavirus.
Coach Glassman’s thoughts in the aforementioned video aren’t new, even though they are being applied to current times. They are taught in the Crossfit Level 1 course, and preached by our coaches on a daily basis through the sSickness-Wellness-Fitness Continuum (image below). Note that you can plot any biomarker on this graph. Your healthcare provider has target “goals” for these biomarkers. Learned from large, randomized clinical trials, maintaining these targets actually minimize your risk of disease or complications. For example, a blood pressure of 160/100 is considered “sick,” 130/90 is considered “well,” and 120/80 is considered “fit.” The blood pressure for sickness puts you at extreme risk for a heart attack, stroke, or kidney disease. On the other hand, the blood pressure for fitness helps protect you from developing any of these conditions.
In striving for a chronic state of fitness, you position yourself perfectly to be able to withstand any hit to your health. This includes infection, or even something as simple as getting in an accident. By being fit, your body is better able to adapt to the stress it’s put under, stress that you may not be able to normally control. This margin of protection acts as a buffer for your typical state of health to withstand acute impacts (i.e. – the Coronavirus).
Why does inflammation matter?
Inflammation is one of the most important responses your body can mount to any disease. If you have chronic disease, your underlying levels of inflammation are higher in your everyday state. This constantly puts your body under a high state of stress. A stressed body cannot mount the same type of immune response as an unstressed body; thus, making it harder to overcome stress that you may not be able to predict. This includes viral infections.
Battling chronic disease- your own body armor.
The more we learn about Coronavirus, the more tools we have available to help fight it. In this pandemic, we are constantly in a state of reactivity. I challenge you to, instead, shift to a proactive mindset in order to optimize your level of fitness. To be able to withstand any type of potential impact on your health. This means sticking with your fitness routine, holding yourself accountable, keeping up with nutrition, and minimizing stress! Remember, our Resilience Challenge program is a great template to help you accomplish all of these goals!