Having been overweight for the most part of my growing years, I can remember a basic concept that I most believed. It was simply that if you were physically fit, you were healthy. If you could run, jump, throw a ball, swing a bat, and you did it regularly, you were certainly healthy. Somehow I concluded that activity equalled being healthy, and inactivity equalled not being healthy. Unfortunately, this concept is not only false, it is dangerously misleading.
Fitness involves activity of some sort that stimulates various systems of the body and maintains a certain condition within the body.
The dictionary has defined fitness as the ability to conduct oneself in physically demanding situations; to function effectively in emergencies; to display superior body composition and aptitude in matters of strength, cardiovascular capacity, power expression, reaction time, speed, agility, flexibility; to evince generally superior health and resistance to injury and disease
Health, on the other hand, involves EVERY system of the body, and is only achieved through a life style that supports health. Health is the amount of freedom from disease.
The dictionary has defined health as the condition of an organism or one of its parts in which it performs its vital functions normally or properly; freedom from physical disease and pain
Fit people are able to carry out physical activities more effectively than unfit people. Their pulse rate is likely to return to normal more quickly after exercise.
Healthy people are free from disease and infection, but they may or may not be fit as well. It is possible to be fit but unhealthy, or healthy but unfit. A combination fitness and health is essential for overall wellness.