That’s the one phrase that has stuck with me since I graduated college. American College of Sports Medicine just came out with a great statement on the emphasis of your emergency preparedness plan. I was disappointed that the most important item of preparation was not in the list. Physical fitness as preparation for unforeseen emergency would be number one on my list. For without adequate conditioning, chances of survival in life-threatening conditions decrease.

The same professor who coined the simple phrase above actually preceded it with the following definition of physical fitness. “Fitness is the ability to carry out everyday tasks with vigor and alertness, without undue fatigue, and with ample energy to enjoy leisure and meet unforeseen emergencies.” In other words, “people who are fit can do more!” The last part of the definition is what stands out to me. If you were faced with the need to run fast to survive, could you do it? Could you move furniture if you needed to barricade a door? How about carry a 50 pound child 50 yards to safety from a house fire?

We hear reasons for staying physically fit such as weight loss, sports training, diabetes management and more. I dont think anyone has ever said to me “I need to get in shape just in case…” Regardless of your reasoning, we think that physical preparation for unforeseen emergencies should be a primary part of your emergency preparedness plan.