What the heck is health?

 
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By Master Coach K

Approximate Reading Time: 2-4 min

 

Good question! First and foremost let's establish that fitness is not directly synonymous with health.

FITNESS != HEALTH

At Restore Human we define health as being resilient.

When you are healthy you can respond to the challenges that life throws at you. You can wipe the dirt off your face, brush your knees off and go again.

Congratulate yourself! You are healthy - you’ve gone through many hardships and you’re still here! Those hardships could have been in the form of a concussion; a severe fever; a really bad breakup; financial stress or relentless sleep deprivation whilst raising kids. In whatever way hardship has come into your life you’ve been healthy enough to not let those curve balls take you down. From a science perspective it’s called homeostasis.

Homeostasis refers to the ability of an organism or environment to maintain stability in spite of changes. The human body is full of examples of homeostasis.

So why isn’t fitness equal to health? Fitness can be very specific. Someone might be incredibly fit in terms of their ability to lift a heavy weight off the ground but that doesn’t necessarily correlate with being resilient to life’s stressors. A base level of fitness is a big component to health but because of sensationalism and marketing, the ‘extremes’ of fitness are often displayed as healthy pursuits. They’re not.

How to be healthier?

The biggest thing that will keep you healthy is investing in it consistently. What does that investment look like? There is no perfect answer because health and life are constantly in flux. To respond to that flux, it’s important to think of health across a spectrum of categories. Here’s what we like to focus on at Restore Human:

 
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In which category are you doing best? Is any category a struggle for you? Do you have amazing nutrition but difficulty in your relationships? Imbalance in one area can result in an overall negative health effect.

Once you’ve improved your awareness of the broader elements of health, the next step is to make practical changes to your behavior. Making changes is not always easy but don’t worry, we get it and are here to help (look out for our upcoming article on behavior change).

Ultimately if you value balanced health and you surround yourself with other people who value balanced health it becomes a lot easier. So read, share, find your people and get outside for a walk.