So, you think you’re pretty fit. Find out for sure with these five ways to test your overall fitness. You may just find its time to step up your game.
Test your strength with push-ups
Push-ups are a body weight exercise. Use them to gauge your muscular strength. To do a push-up using proper form, place your hands directly below your shoulders with legs fully extended. Keep your back straight and bend your elbows until your chest is within an inch of the floor. Return to starting position and repeat, continuing for two minutes.
According to Active.com being able to complete at least 15 push-ups in proper form within the two minutes is excellent if you are between 40 and 49. Less than 14 if you are between 20 and 29 gets a “needs improvement” rating. If you are between 30 and 39 and can knock out between 19 and 21 push-ups, mayoclinic.com gives you a thumbs up so, consider yourself in good muscular shape.
Test aerobic fitness with a running or jogging test
Determine your level of aerobic fitness by completing 1.5 miles as fast as you can. How quickly you are able to cover the distance, coupled with your age and gender, will determine your fitness level. For example, according to mayoclinic.com, a fit 55-year-old woman can go the distance in about 16 minutes and a man in 13 minutes. A fit 35-year-old woman should be able to cover the same distance in about 13.5 minutes and a man in 11.5 minutes.
Hold a plank to test core strength
Set a timer and see how long you can stay in plank position. The longer you can remain in position the stronger your abs, glutes and lower back. Can you only hold your plank for a few seconds? Start from there and keep practicing to build strength over time. A good starting goal is to be able to hold a plank for at least one minute. A strong core supports overall biomechanics, so you have fewer injuries. You’ll also have better posture and less risk of back pain or injury.
Do a wall sit to test lower body strength
To do a wall sit, place your back flat against the wall with legs extended about 2-feet out. Bend your knees at a 90-degree angle as if you were going to sit in a chair. Keep your “seat” as long as you can. Prevention magazine offers the following assessment: 27 to 33 seconds is very good if you are between 40 and 49; more than 24 seconds is excellent if you are between 50 and 59, and more than 23 seconds is excellent if you are between 60 and 69.
Reach for your toes to test flexibility
Sit on the floor with legs fully extended and feet together. Lean forward to touch your toes, bending your knees if you need to. No need to bend your knees to touch your toes? Thumbs up, you get an excellent for flexibility. Consider yourself flexible if your knees are only slightly bent. You’ll need to work on improving flexibility if your knees are bent so much that your heel approaches your bottom.
How did you do? If you are as fit as you thought you were, good job and keep up the good work. If you didn’t quite make the mark, don’t be discouraged. Use the information you have as motivation to do better. Stick with a regular fitness program at least three times weekly. You’ll be surprised by how much you improve in just three months.