What Is Fitness & Why it is Important (Pt.I: Immune System)

CrossFit defines Fitness in 100 words.

“Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch, and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not 

crossfit in 100 words definition of fitnessbody fat.

Practice and train major lifts: Deadlift, clean, squat, presses, C&J (clean and jerk), and snatch. Similarly, master the basics of gymnastics: pull-ups, dips, rope climbs, push-ups, sit-ups, presses to handstands, pirouettes, flips, splits, and holds.

Bike, run, swim, row, etc. hard and fast.

Regularly learn and play new sport”
Five or six days per week mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as creativity will allow. Routine is the enemy. Keep workouts short and intense.

In this 5-part series, I will talk about why fitness is important and how CrossFit developed their definition of fitness.

Fitness has many great attributes to living a healthy life. Fitness provides a healthier state of mind helping with stress, depression and sleep. Daily exercise improves our ability to perform daily tasks easier throughout the various stages of life. One of the most important advantages of improving our Fitness is the positive impact it has on our immune system.

The immune system

It is a highly intricate network of cells designed to keep us free from infection and disease. Improving your fitness is known to have a profound impact on the normal functioning of your immune system. Performing regular exercise of moderate- to vigorous-intensity (ie: CrossFit) has been shown to improve immune responses to vaccination, chronic low-grade inflammation, and improve various immune markers including cancer, HIV, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cognitive impairment and obesity.

COVID-19 cellThe COVID-19 pandemic has challenged the world to study the effects of fitness and determine if it can actually protect us from infection by boosting our immunity.

Researching fitness is becoming even more important as many states continue to limit access to gyms. Fortunately, Virginia has allowed gyms to re-open with some restrictions. These forced closures and restrictions definitely have a negative impact on our immunity systems. Our immune system needs activity, movement and exercise. Social isolation and confinement also have negative impacts on our internal health.

How does it work?

With each bout of exercise, particularly CrossFit style workouts, immune cells, that would otherwise be inactive, are instantaneously mobilized.  This makes us more resistant to infection and better equipped to deal with any infectious agent that we cross paths with. Exercise is especially beneficial for older adults who are more susceptible to infection in general but especially during this COVID-19 outbreak as they’ve been identified as a particularly vulnerable population.

It is extremely important that we maintain a fitness regimen that will fuel our immune system.

girls working out in social distancing squaresCrossFit absolutely has a positive, direct effect on our immunity. Plus, the community aspect of CrossFit counters the negative effects of isolation and confinement.

Although no scientific data currently exists regarding the effects of exercise on coronaviruses, there is evidence that exercise can protect us from many other viral infections. Research has shown that moderate to high intensity fitness programs have an overall greater benefit to our immune system.

While COVID-19 has people and businesses scrambling to find normalcy, CrossFit Oyster Point is working behind the scenes to find the best way to provide a safe and effective fitness program while maintaining social distancing and proper hygienic countermeasures.

Although exercise may not prevent us from becoming infected if exposed, it is likely that improving our overall fitness will help to boost our immune system to minimize the effects of the virus, expedite our recovery times and lower the likelihood of infecting others.