The fit test

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The fit test

What is being fit? There are dozens of ways to determine fitness, depending on the types of requirements, but for the general public, this test will help you figure out if your body and fitness level has balance and if it is as good as you thought. In order to evaluate your fitness level, I am suggesting a simple method.

As discuss in the previous blog, there are 5 general areas to evaluate when establishing a fitness level so we will take one level at a time and give you a scale to help you determine your rating.

Please listen to your body and don’t overdo the suggested exercises just because you want to beat the scale; yes, I’m talking to you competitive people. Be honest and please pay attention to pain level and heart rate when performing the exercises. This test is just a general guideline.

    1. Endurance: Take a large muscle group like your thighs: sit on a leg extension machine at the gym with minimal weight (10lbs) and count how many repetitions you can do before needing to stop (Keep in mind that after the burn faze is the sting faze. When you feel the sting, then you should stop). This test could be done with any muscle group but generally legs are the strongest muscle group on both men and women.
      1. 0-15
      2. 15-30
      3. 30-50
      4. 50-100
    2. Strength: How much weight can you SAFELY lift over your head for 8 repetitions, whether you use a couple hand weights, a straight bar, or a heavy medicine ball?
      1. 2-5 lbs
      2. 5-12 lbs
      3. 15-25 lbs
      4. 30-50 lbs
    3. Flexibility: Well, can you stand up, bend over with straight knees, and touch your toes? Most people can’t. I am always amazed to see that even flexible people cannot achieve this simple task with straight knees. Is your back as limber as it needs to be for safety in most sports? Lie down on your back and raise both legs towards the ceiling with straight knees. Flex your abdominals in order to bring your straight legs towards your chest while raising your hips off the ground each repetition. This should be effortless.
    4. Cardio: First, you should know what your maximum heart rate should be for your age group. Take 220, minus your age, multiply by 80% and that number should be pretty close to your maximum heart rate. I approximate because this is a basic guideline and some people may feel comfortable talking while exercising at a higher heart rate and some may not.The most important thing is to always be able to speak while exercising and have no over-heated discomfort. No flush cheeks or pain.

      Once that is established, pick a cardio options of your preference like running, elliptical or stair climbing. Clear this portion of the test with your physician if in doubt.Would you rather do more time or increase your resistance? Considering that each machine is calibrated differently, you probably want to do both, meaning increase resistance or incline on the treadmill, and increase your resistance level as well, or speed.

      Since stress tests most always uses treadmills, for the sake of this example, we will choose treadmills at an incline of 10 and a safe walking speed. Short legs at 3.2 and long legs at 3.8 speed.

      1. 1-3 minutes
      2. 3-10 minutes
      3. 10-20 minutes
      4. 20-30 minutes
    5. Stability and Balance: This little test requires that you stand near a wall or something you might grab in case you lose your balance (safety is always first and this is unsupervised). Stand with one foot right in front of the other foot as if you are standing on top of a line. Close your eyes and try to stay there for 30 seconds. I suggest that you try this test in the company of a friend standing behind you, ready to hold your shoulders if you begin to sway.

      The second test is to stand on one foot while counting the second hand on a clock. The goal is one minute per foot. No cheating!

      1. 0-15 seconds
      2. 16-30 seconds
      3. 31-45 seconds
      4. 46-60 seconds

You are now in a position to determine your fitness level:

      1. You desperately need a trainer and it is unsafe for you to exercise alone.
      2. You are a beginner and you need guidance and support, so please seek the help of a professional
      3. You are intermediate. You workout regularly and may be happy with where you are. We still recommend that you implement as much variety as possible.
      4. You are fit and doing great. If you find an area with a lower rating, make sure to focus on it until you master it.

As always, at Be whole and fit we are happy to help. Contact Line at

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