What Is Fitness?

Dec 12, 2021

What is Fitness

By Coach Fahad Maniar 

In 2014, I was sat watching a fitness competition in St Albans. It was called, The Fitness Extravaganza.

Whilst it is obvious that the participants of this competition worked incredibly hard to be on stage, they were judged solely on aesthetics.

I jokingly said to the person next to me, when are they going to perform any actual fitness tests? Such as a push up test or rudimentary VO2Max test to measure aerobic capacity?

At that point, I had realised, the term fitness was hijacked by many different disciplines.

I came from a background of combat sports. To me, being fighting fit literally meant you were able to last 5 rounds in the ring without getting your head kicked off by someone who pretty much wanted you to suffer.

But what about people who weren’t as hard core as me? What about people that didn’t want to step on stage at a bodybuilding show after they’ve depleted themselves of food for weeks?

What about people that didn’t want to run 26 miles in a marathon or go to even greater extremes and do ultra running or triathlons?

Now, I respect any form of fitness and any athlete that has the discipline to work incredibly hard and sacrifice everything for a dream that perhaps, only they and their coach can see.

Whilst fitness comes in many forms and guises, I realised a bigger fight was approaching, it was the fight to simply be the best version of you as you could be in spite of living in a busy world surrounded by stress and a million people telling you what you can and can’t do.

That was the year TFF was born.

The TFF philosophy

Although our style has evolved over the years as we’ve constantly strived to learn the best ways of helping our clients get fit and innovated with new and fun ways to stay in shape, a few things never changed. One was our guiding principle that your physical health and well being is the ultimate foundation to success in all areas of your life.

Both myself and my wife and business partner, Athena, are avid fans of personal development. Between us, we’ve read, listened to and attended countless seminars and workshops to not only better ourselves, but to learn how to help others.

We wanted to provide the world with a different type of fitness.

Not one style or discipline, we wanted to incorporate the best from a variety of disciplines. I brought in my knowledge of combat sport fitness and she brought in her knowledge of bodybuilding and gymnastics and we created a training system for normal people who wanted great results without having to sacrifice everything or get punched in the face.

But, we also wanted to empower people, physically and mentally.

But, what is fitness?

Fitness means a lot of different things to different people. For a marathon runner, being fit is being able to complete 26 miles in a certain amount of time. For a professional footballer, it’s to survive 90+ minutes, give it all you’ve got and be ready to play again in a  week, or even a few days' time. For a bodybuilder, being fit is being injury free and able to train and grow, but come competition time, their markers of fitness change to how much water they can lose and how vascular they can look.

But, what about non athletes? What does fitness look like to them?

Perhaps it’s being able to wear your favourite clothes that no longer fit or to be able to climb a flight of stairs and not get winded?

Maybe it’s being able to get changed and look at your reflection of your naked form without feeling uneasy or to play with your kids? Maybe it’s to be alive long enough to see your kids grow up?

Do you relate with any of the above?

Fitness therefore, by our definition is the ability to do more of the stuff you love to do because you have more energy and a physical shell that serves you and that you’re proud of!

It’s a personal thing and is different for different people but one thing is true regardless of what your goals are.

Exercise and Diet…

Regardless of your sport, discipline or fitness goals, you will most likely have to adapt your nutrition and exercise to meet your goals.

For an athlete who has been training for many years, this might not seem like such a daunting task but what about for yourself? How do you go about it?

One thing that you’ll have in common with an athlete is a burning desire to achieve a goal… that yearning to be the very best you can be and a yearning for greatness.

At TFF, we help you discover your goals, light the fire of burning desire and guide you towards greatness through coaching.

Let me ask you a question, what’s the difference between a trainer and a coach?

I’ll give you 30 seconds to think about this one…

Okay, you got your answer? Cool… well, let me give you my answer first.


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One of my very own mentors and coaches, Coach Martin Rooney, conducted a seminar in the UK where I was fortunate enough to be at. He looked me and the rest of the coaches in the room dead in the eye and said, “What’s the difference between a trainer and a coach”?

Like you, I had 30 seconds to think of an answer and then Coach Rooney looked right at me and said,  “The difference between a trainer and a coach is that a trainer lights a fire under someone. They make them do more reps and gets more out of them in the session, but a coach lights a fire inside of someone, they get more out of them for life!”

That certainly lit a fire inside of me to be the best damn coach I could be so that I could change the trajectory of the lives of as many people I have the privilege of working with and our coaching staff at TFF all share this value.


We’re not here to shout at you or to count your reps, we’re here to help you become the best version of you that you can be through prescribed coaching that helps you achieve more, do more and be more!

Our coaching broadly falls under 3 categories:

Fitness Coaching


Within the realms of actual physical fitness, we want to help you develop:


  • Strength
  • Metabolic fitness (Think of  your energy and energy systems here)
  • Structural fitness (Posture, stability and joint health)


Nutrition Coaching


  • What to eat for your goals
  • When to eat  for your goals
  • How to eat for your goals


Wellbeing coaching


  • Stress Management
  • Sleep 
  • Mindset


We believe that with these three areas of coaching, not only do we help our clients get better results, they see immediate and tangible improvements in their physical and mental health as well as with their day to day lives.

Need to speak to an expert on how you can achieve your fitness goals?

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