Are you fit?

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What is fitness?

Look up the definition of ‘fitness’ and you will get so many different results, it can all be quite confusing as it is often used to describe different things.

  • Some people regard fitness as being free from illness, similar to the definition of health.
  • Some people explain fitness as the ability to perform a certain role or task.
  • Others see fitness as a state of good health, brought on by activity and proper nutrition.

I think I’m in the last category. I believe in order to be fit, one has to live, exercise and eat well. However, when describing physical fitness, I believe your fitness is defined by the tasks that you can achieve. So with that, let’s look at physical fitness:

How can we measure our physical fitness? Many agencies and governing bodies give us guidelines as to what is considered good/average/bad in certain activities. So let’s look at a handful of these to establish where we stand.

1. YMCA 1-minute push up test.
The push up test should be performed in 1 minute. Each repetition of the push up should go from lock out at the top to touching the floor with the chest at the bottom. For women, the standards are for the kneeling push up variation.

MEN Under 20 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-59 Over 60
Excellent 45+ 39+ 33+ 27+ 24+ 23+
Good 30 – 44 26 – 38 22 – 32 18 – 26 15 – 23 14 – 22
Average 25 – 29 22 – 25 18 – 21 15 – 17 12 – 14 10 – 13
Below Average 14 – 24 12 – 21 9 – 17 7 – 14 5 – 11 3 – 9
Poor below 14 below 12 below 9 below 7 below 5 below 3

 

WOMEN Under 20 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-59 Over 60
Excellent 31+ 30+ 29+ 24+ 20+ 18+
Good 21 – 30 19 – 29 18 – 28 15 – 23 12 – 19 11 – 17
Average 17 – 20 16 – 18 14 – 17 12 – 14 9 – 11 8 – 10
Below Average 9 – 16 8 – 15 5 – 13 4 – 11 3 – 8 2 – 7
Poor below 9 below 8 below 5 below 4 below 3 below 2

 

2. British Army 1.5 mile run.
The British army suggests that new recruits should aim for a time below 09:30. The table below shows normative data from the ACSM.

MEN WOMEN
Superior Below 09:44 Below 12:29
Excellent 10:45 – 9:45 13:30 – 12:30
Good 12:00 – 10:46 15:54 – 13:31
Average 14:00 – 12:01 18:30 – 15:55
Below Average 16:00 – 14:01 19:00 – 18:31
Poor 16:01+ 19:01+

 

3. ExRx 1rm deadlift.
The exercise demonstrates whole-body strength and should be a 1 repetition maximum, or a calculation from a 1-6 rep max.

MEN – KG
Body Weight Untrained Novice Intermediate Advanced Elite
52 42.5 82.5 92.5 135.0 175.0
56 47.5 87.5 100.0 145.0 187.5
60 50.0 95.0 110.0 155.0 200.0
67 57.5 107.5 122.5 172.5 217.5
75 62.5 115.0 135.0 185.0 235.0
82 67.5 125.0 142.5 200.0 250.0
90 70.0 132.5 152.5 207.5 257.5
100 75.0 137.5 160.0 217.5 265.0
110 77.5 145.0 165.0 222.5 270.0
125 80.0 147.5 170.0 227.5 272.5
145 82.5 152.5 172.5 230.0 277.5
145+ 85.0 155.0 177.5 232.5 280.0

 

WOMEN – KG
Body Weight Untrained Novice Intermediate Advanced Elite
44 25.0 47.5 50.0 80.0 105.0
48 27.5 52.5 60.0 85.0 110.0
52 30.0 55.0 62.5 90.0 115.0
56 32.5 60.0 67.5 95.0 120.0
60 35.0 62.5 72.5 100.0 125.0
67 37.5 67.5 80.0 110.0 135.0
75 40.0 72.5 85.0 117.5 145.0
82 42.5 80.0 92.5 125.0 150.0
90 45.0 87.5 97.5 130.0 160.0
90+ 50.0 90.0 105.0 137.5 165.0

 

4. ACSM sit and reach.
This exercise assesses your lower back and hamstring flexibility.

MEN 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-59 60-69
Excellent 38+ 37+ 34+ 32+ 30+
Good 33 – 37 32 – 36 28 – 33 27 – 31 24 – 29
Average 29 – 32 27 – 31 23 – 27 22 – 26 18 – 23
Below Average 23 – 28 21 – 26 16 – 22 15 – 21 14 – 17
Poor below 23 below 21 below 16 below 15 below 14

 

WOMEN 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-59 60-69
Excellent 40+ 39+ 37+ 37+ 34+
Good 36 – 39 35 – 38 33 – 36 32 – 36 30 – 33
Average 32 – 35 31 – 34 29 – 32 29 – 31 26 – 29
Below Average 26 – 31 25 – 30 24 – 28 23 – 28 23 – 25
Poor below 26 below 25 below 24 below 23

 

So there you have 4 tests to determine different kinds of fitness.

What activities do you think define fitness? Reply in the comments below!

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About Author

As a physical education graduate and qualified personal trainer, Mathew is very knowledgable when it comes to fitness. Outdoor training is a personal favourite of Mathew’s but he also has a high degree of gym based experience.
Location: Carlisle

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