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Hey Man! How fit are you?

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According to the free dictionary website fitness is defined as "Good health or physical condition, especially as the result of exercise and proper nutrition." According to experts, good men's health fitness is defined as a balanced fitness where one has great strength and endurance. Too normal people, a good men's health fitness is represented by strong sports athletes. It means that unlike the dictionary people define fitness differently. So how can one determine men's health fitness without assumptions? One can do the following tests every 4 to 6 weeks and keep records to determine one's fitness.

1. Cardiovascular Fitness: Count the resting heart rate

A lower resting heart rate means the fitter the cardiovascular system.

How: Before getting out of bed, check your heart rate for 60 seconds using the radial pulse check. Turn the palm side of the hand facing up then place and hold gently the tip of your index and middle finger of the other hand on your radial artery located approximately 1 inch below the base of the hand. A pulse will be felt when the fingers are in the right place. Using a watch, begin with zero on the starting time then count the pulse rate for 60 seconds.

Men have a normal resting heart rate of 60 to 90 beats per minutes but the average heart rate of 70 beats per minute. But many athletes have a lower pulse rate depending on their fitness. The heart of a fit person works efficiently pumping more blood with fewer heart beats. Although, several factors must also be taken into consideration; for instance a person might have a naturally high heart right, emotions, position and body size.

My definition of Cardiovascular fitness is pretty simple. If you can run a mile without getting winded (out of breath) you're in okay shape. If you can run three miles without getting winded, you're in good shape. The same for 5 miles and you're in great shape. 10 miles and you're in outstanding shape. While my definitions aren't too scientific, from my experience this is what people are capable of at those levels:

Okay Shape = A good guy to go golfing with.

Good Shape = A good guy for your softball team.

Great Shape = A good guy for your basketball, hockey, or soccer team.

Excellent Shape = A true training partner. Someone who will push back.

2. Muscular strength and endurance: Sit-ups (Abdominal strength)

Abdominal muscle strength is needed for back support and core strength.

How: Lie on the floor with the knees bent at 90 degrees angle and the feet flat on the floor. Place your hands on your thigh. Do sit ups for 1 minute by raising your body high until the hand reaches the top of your knees while squeezing the abdomen and keeping the lower back flat on the floor. Compare the number of sit-ups made with the table below.

1 Minute Sit Up Test (For Men)

Sit Up Test Data

3. Body-Fat Distribution: Waist to Hip Ration

A high value of fat in the waist to hip region makes men prone to coronary heart diseases.

How: Using the units' cm or inches, measure your waist (2 - 3 inches above the navel) and your hipbone then divide the waste measurement by the hipbone measurement. According to Hoeger and Gettman, A ratio of less than 0.85 means that you have a very low risk of developing a heart disease but a ratio of greater than 1 means otherwise. It is assumed that fat found on the waist poses greater health risks.

Waist To Hip Data

These are only a few of the many doable tests to exactly determine men's health fitness. With proper diet and exercise any man can achieve fitness.

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