Once you have started
exercising regularly you may find it encouraging to test your fitness to see how much you
have improved. The best way is probably just to think about how you feel. For example.
Can you exercise longer now than when you first
started when you finish a session of exercise do you feel you could easily do some more?
MINUTES TAKEN TO COVER
20 OR MORE VERY UNFIT
15 20 UNFIT
12 15 FAIR
10 12 FIT
10 OR UNDER VERY FIT
A SIMPLE STEMINA TEST
If you have been exercising regularly for at least
two months and you want to start keeping a record of Your Progress, try this test.
Find a safe, reasonably flat route about one mile
long. It could be in a park, on quiet stretch of road on a running track or between your
home and a nearby Landmark. You can measure the distance with a car mile meter or by using
Put on comfortable clothes and a pair of running shoes, and take a watch.
Walking, or running or using a mixture of both cover the mile as quickly as you can
without getting uncomfortably breathless. It is likely to take between 1- to 20 minutes,
so aim for a pace you can keep up. If you have any pain or discomfort, stop. If you are
over 55 or have not exercised regularly until recently and its the first time you
have taken the test its best to walk all the way Note down or remember the time it takes
you to cover the mile and check your results against the figures above.
Repeat the test every month or so to see how you are
Dont forget that this test only gives you a rough guide to how fit you are. Your age
and lots of other factors will also affect your result. Some younger people may easily
cover a mile in less than 10 minutes. So if you are under 40 and your result is very fit
dont give up exercising to stay fit you need to keep it up.
Also if swimming or cycling is your main activity and you are doing it regularly you will
certainly be getting fitter, but you may not notice much improvement in your walking or
running, dont be discouraged. This is because each activity uses different sets of
muscles. If you keep on exercising regularly you will find that you can swim or cycle
further without getting tired.
Its not your test result that s important but the fact that you are feeling fitter as time
goes on. If you have to have a break you will lose some of the stamina you have developed,
but you can soon catch up. As long as you remember to start again gradually.
Dont forget that stamina is one aspect
of fitness. To get really fit you need to develop your strength and suppleness as well.