Are you “false fit”?

Most exercise professionals would agree that there are many components to fitness. A well rounded approach to fitness that addresses all of them is usually the best way to achieve lasting gains and continual progress from a program. Being deficient in even one of these components leads to slow progress and results in a condition I call “false fit”.

“False fit” is when someone perceives themselves to be fit when there are glaring holes in one of the 5 Fitness Components. While each area can cover other, more specific concepts here is a list and brief description of 5 Fitness Components you need to work on:

1. Mobility – Your ability to move freely while maintaining good posture. Also includes elements of body control and body awareness.

2. Core Strength – Your ability to properly use your core to create a strong platform around which movement is created. Emphasis is on stabilizing the lower back and mobilizing the hips and shoulder blades.

3. Power – Your ability to coordinate your muscles in order to create quick, dynamic movements. Life is dynamic and so everyone should have some sort of power training in their program, even if it is something as simple as slamming a medicine ball into the ground.

4. Strength – I define this a little differently than most. I define strength as your ability to create proper movement and maintain that proper movement under load. Creating a movement through compensation, such as using your lower back during leg exercises, is not true strength no matter how much weight you move.

5. Conditioning/ Endurance – Your ability to engage in your chosen activities without excessive fatigue. A good conditioning program will also act as a catalyst for fat loss. For most people proper conditioning should focus more on intervals than on traditional steady state aerobics.

Do you do yoga and/ or Pilates but do not work on power and conditioning?


Do you run or bike but don’t work on mobility and strength?


Do you “body build” but don’t work on mobility and conditioning?


If you answered yes to any of those questions, or if you see something on the list above that you are not addressing, then you have developed the “false fit” condition. You are fit as it pertains to the particular activities and exercises you engage in but the truth is your fitness is limited. Get you outside of your comfort zone and your true fitness levels will get quickly exposed.

Our body wants to maintain a balance between the 5 Fitness Components. When we lose that balance we slow down our progress and set ourselves up for pain and injuries. Sometimes the answer to achieving the fitness levels that you want is not in looking for different twists on what you are already doing but in looking outside your box for new elements.

I tell people all the time that if you do not want to look and/ or perform like everyone else don’t train like everyone else. Most people are dissatisfied with their current fitness condition so don’t take the same approach they do. Make sure that you work on developing true, well rounded fitness and avoid the pain and frustration that goes with being “false fit”.


-James Wilson-

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  1. Satans Spokes says:

    Excellent article, concur. My personal issue is mobility, and there is no doubt it hinders me. This past winter, I spent a great deal of time in the gym, working on core strength, intervals and weight training, but I hate stretching with a passion, so never do enough in that regard. Been using a foam roller though and it does help.

    Reply • April 29 at 12:09 am
  2. Bill Blomquist says:


    As a veteran of the DbCombo’s 2.0 program, I cannot stress enough about the need for the mobility part.
    After a winter of DBCombo training my first ride of the season produced a one minute faster lap time!! Plus I felt very strong in the hills and loose and flowing thru the technical sections.
    This is very rewarding to a 50 year old rider.

    Reply • May 2 at 2:17 pm
    • bikejames says:

      Thanks for sharing, glad my the program gave you some good direction for you hard work. Keep it up and keep us posted on how the rest of your riding season goes.

      Reply • May 2 at 5:45 pm
  3. brad says:

    Fantastic article, this is just the push i needed to start training properly, since harder just doesn’t seem to work. My core is as strong as a wet tissue so probably a good place to start. Thanks

    Reply • May 2 at 11:38 pm

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James Wilson
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James Wilson