Are you sick, well, or fit?
The Fitness Wellness Continuum says that we all fall somewhere on a bell curve between sickness and fitness. In the middle, where most of us fall, is wellness. Wellness and fitness both sound pretty good, but, they are different. Being well means that you are not sick, whereas fitness is a bit more than that. The closer we can get to fitness, the better. Listed on the picture are several of the markers we use to measure health. Blood pressure is a familiar way to explain the difference between sickness, wellness, and fitness. A blood pressure of 195/115 would be considered sickness, 120/80 represents wellness, and something like 105/65 would be what we expect for an athlete. Each measurement has a set of values we can use to qualify our health as either sickness, wellness, or fitness.
As a gym, the intention is to move people towards fitness, no matter where they are starting from. We aren't satisfied with just not sick. The closer we can get to fitness, the less likely we are to suffer from chronic disease. The fewer diseases we have, the better our quality of life. The beauty of it is that the pursuit alone moves us towards fitness, regardless of whether we actually make it all the way to that far end. On the outside, Crossfit looks like a bunch people just slamming weights around and gasping for air, but there's something bigger than weightlifting happening.
There are no medical cures for chronic diseases like Type II diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. There are many solutions for symptoms of these diseases, like medications that lower blood pressure, for example. High blood pressure didn't cause the high blood pressure, so we're not treating the cause, we're just covering it up. Poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle are the more likely culprits and we don't need medicine to improve those. I'll end with this quote from the Crossfit Journal, defining the different roles doctors and trainers take to address chronic disease.
"Doctors are like lifeguards; CrossFit trainers are like swim coaches. When you are drowning, you do not need a swim coach. You needed one, and you did not get one. What you need is a lifeguard. We will teach people how to swim, and when they do not pay attention and they go under, the doctors take care of it."