Fitness is different for everyone. How fit you are depends on your age, your perception and ultimately your goals.
Below I have listed three exercises that test your body in a variety of ways and included some guidance on how well your fitness levels stack up against your average Joe.
The plank uses your whole body, but mainly focuses on your core strength. You hold your body in a straight line on your forearms and tiptoes.
Your body should stay braced and straight without your hips sagging. More than two minutes – excellent; 75 seconds to two minutes – good; 45 to 75 seconds – average; Less than 45 seconds – needs work.
Every time you sit down and stand up, you are performing a squat. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart with your toes ever so slightly turned out.
Lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor with your knees in line with your middle toe. Push back up through your heels and repeat.
This test is performed without stopping until either physical or technical failure. Fifty or more – excellent; 30 to 49 – good; 16 to 29 – average; 15 or fewer – needs work.
Pushing a door open or moving a heavy object in front of you or above you requires chest, shoulder and triceps strength.
Assume the ‘high plank’ position, with your hands underneath your shoulders, and lower your body down with your elbows pointing between back and sideways, at approximately 45 degrees. Push yourself back up to the top and repeat.
The test is over once you can’t maintain perfect form, or fatigue physically. Fifty or more – excellent; 30 to 49 – good; 16 to 29 – average; 15 or fewer – needs work.
I hope you will use these tests when considering your progress. Email questions to [email protected]