A good level of physical and mental fitness is essential in order to function optimally as a resident. Concerns about residents' mental fitness have recently been raised, based on high percentages of residents suffering from burnout and depression and data on the experience of stress and anxiety. Lack of mental fitness has negative consequences for the individual doctor as well as for the quality of patient care delivered. This is expressed in loss of empathy, delivery of suboptimal care and increased medical errors. Finding solutions for the lack of, or deterioration in, mental fitness is crucial. We discuss two potential strategies: (1) the removal or reduction of obstacles to residents' mental fitness and (2) the provision of resources to improve mental fitness.