Prasanna Natarajan

Your body parameters

When it comes to caring for your physical body, think of these three areas - Health, Fitness and Strength.

Health is being healthy. It means feeding the healthiest food to your body. No carcinogens, alcohol or drugs. No stimulants, sugar or oily fried stuff. It means caring for it in other ways like regular wash and massage. An important part of a healthy body is sleep and rest.

Fitness is being fit. No tummy, no drooping neck/shoulders and no hunch back. It means not being overweight. It means being able to breath easily all the time, being able to climb stairs easily. Could you do at least 10 pushups straight? How about at least 1 perfect pull up? Could you sprint to play catch with a kid, or jog instead of walk during morning exercise times?

Strength is being strong. It means to be able to push, pull, press or squat heavy weights. Not heavy as in powerlifting, bodybuilding kinda weight. Heavy as in being able to carry a child around, or a bunch a groceries.

To have an efficient body you need to care about all these 3 dimensions. Focusing on any one or two will only produce the opposite of the expected result.

Like, for example that guy who is the typical gym buff with puffed up arms and chest. He might be good in the area of strength and fitness. But if all he’s eating is multiple eggs, chicken breasts and a sick amound of whey powder all day and skimping on healthy foods containing essential vitamins and minerals, he’s only damaging his body in the long term.

And like that software engineer who eats vegetarian and doesn’t drink cola, and has an envious waistline. He too might not be at his best if he doesn’t ever exercise to increase his strength. In the long run, what little muscle he has will erode and all sorts of joint pains will appear.

The best way to improve on these is to chose the goal in each of these areas that will likely yield the maximum positive result.

For health, it might be your decision to go vegan.

For fitness, it might be to keep your weight to the recommended minimum. And also playing some kind of sports.

For strength, do a program like stronglifts to get quick results.

Rank yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 in these 3 areas and know where you stand today, and decide on your body goals based on this.