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Health, Fitness, and Performance

Health, Fitness,  and Performance

Objectives
 1. Contrast the physical activity requirements for achieving health benefits, fitness, and performance.
 2. Contrast the top three leading causes of death with the top three actual causes of death.
 3. Describe the difference between absolute and relative intensity for physical activity rec-ommendations.
 4. Explain the difference between moderate-intensity and vigorous-intensity physical activity as well as how volume of physical activity is calculated.
 5. List the health-related benefits gained through regular participation in physical activity.
 6. Contrast the changes in physical activity guidelines over the past 40 years in terms of exercise volume, intensity, and outcomes.
 7. Describe the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommendations for moderate-intensity and vigorous-intensity physical activity for realizing substantial health benefits.
 8. Describe the physical activity guidelines for increasing or maintaining strength.
 9. Define adverse events, and explain how the potential for such events affects the intensity of physical activity recommended for those who have been sedentary.
 10. Describe the progression in physical activity for someone who is sedentary or someone who wishes to move from a moderate-intensity to a vigorous-intensity physical activity program.
 11. Contrast fitness versus fatness as they relate to chronic disease.
 12. Contrast health-related fitness components with performance-related fitness components.
 13. Describe the continuum of physical activity recommendations for realizing health, fitness, 
and performance goals.

     One of the main questions we address through- out this text is “How much exercise is enough?” In order  to answer that question, we must first address another:  “Enough for what?” In other words, what is the goal of the  exercise program? Is it fitness, performance, or avoidance  of disease? As figure 1.1 shows, the amount and intensity  of physical activity needed to realize each goal is quite dif- ferent, representing a continuum from low to high volume  and from moderate to vigorous (hard) intensity. On the left  side of the figure, we see that avoidance of disease (e.g.,  lowering the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and so  on) can be achieved with moderate-intensity activity done  30 min ∙ day−1, 5 days ∙ wk−1. To achieve cardiorespiratory  fitness (CRF), as well as the health benefits associated with  moderate-intensity physical activity, vigorous-intensity  exercise is done 3 to 4 days ∙ wk−1, 30 to 45 min ∙ day−1,  which is equivalent to jogging or running about 3 mi (4.8  km) 3 to 4 days ∙ wk−1. What about those who want to be  elite marathon runners? In contrast to the previous two  examples, those interested in being elite marathon runners  must work at the extreme end of the intensity scale (very  hard) for hours every day. Few elite marathoners run less  than 100 mi (170 km) per week (11), which is about 10  times what is needed to achieve a reasonable level of CRF. We begin with this example because this text focuses  on the amount of physical activity and exercise needed for  health and fitness rather than on the performance of elite  athletes. That said, the information on nutrition, CRF, body  composition, strength, and flexibility forms the foundation  for those wanting to achieve performance-related goals.  In this chapter we discuss how physical activity is con- nected to health, fitness, and performance. Later chapters  provide more extensive detail about how to help sedentary  individuals become active and realize the many benefits of  a physically active lifestyle.
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