Aerobic Fitness Tests

The fitness or health attained by means of aerobic activities can be simply termed as aerobic fitness. The word aerobic is basically an adjective associated with something that requires air. As there is an increase in the cardiovascular diseases in modern society, the need to take care of our fitness becomes imperative. Different activities categorized as cardiovascular exercises include running, swimming, cycling, etc. These exercises (and their intensity, frequency, duration, etc.) have to be performed on the basis of fitness levels of a person.

How to Improve Aerobic Fitness?

The tests required in determining fitness through aerobic exercises form the parts of discussion in following paragraphs. Obtaining the know how of different tests and using this knowledge in performing exercises should prove to be useful.

Tests
These tests are meant for checking levels of fitness by making use of exercises like jogging or walking. The activity of walking 1.5 miles at a steady pace is commonly used in such exercises.

Walking Test: One shouldn’t eat anything, two hours before the test. A flat path needs to be chosen for running and jogging. One would require a stopwatch to conduct the test. The time required to complete a distance of 1.5 miles should be recorded with this stopwatch. If it is not possible to complete the 1.5 miles distance all by jogging/running, one can start of by the low impact aerobics like walking.

Swimming Test: The swimming test which lasts for 12 minutes is considered a standard one. Swimming is the best aerobic exercise for weight loss. Those who already swim on a regular basis, should resort to this activity. The swimming test is not meant for those with arthritis of shoulders. The problem of shoulder arthritis aggravates in case of people who are not used to swimming. Swimming for 12 continuous minutes is not easy for first-time swimmers, even if they workout on regular basis. During the actual test, one should count number of laps being covered in 12 minutes. Depending on the laps covered in this water aerobic routine, one can rate his/her fitness levels.

Cycling Test: The Astrand bike test is used to check fitness levels during cycling. The cycling activity should continue for 6 minutes at a certain level of resistance. It is recommended to record the heart rate every minute. This would require a person to help in performing the activity efficiently. A nomogram can be used in the calculation of oxygen consumption.

Fitness Exercises
According to the definition given by American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), aerobic exercise is an activity involving rhythmic and continuous movement of large muscle groups. The heart and lungs have to work harder than normal. Determining the target heart rate should be useful before resorting to any of the aerobic fitness exercises. The target heart rate for a person is calculated in terms of a range. To calculate this range the following formula should be used.

Minimum Heart Rate = (220-Age) x 0.60
Maximum Heart Rate = (220-Age) x 0.90

The numbers calculated using these formulas should constitute the target heart range. Few of the aerobic exercise examples used for maintaining fitness levels include aerobic dance, walking, jogging, running, cycling, swimming, stair climbing, jumping rope exercise, in-line skating, cross-country skiing, etc.

Performing aerobic exercises is mandatory for good health. However, carrying out the activity in a controlled manner i.e. by taking into account the target heart range and other aspects of fitness is also important.

Main Components of Physical Fitness

The United States Department of Health and Human Services has characterized physical wellness as ‘an arrangement of traits that individuals have or accomplish that identify with the capacity to perform physical movement’. Essentially, physical wellness may mean distinctive things for various individuals. For a few people, being physically fit may mean being sound. For others, it may mean having the capacity to run a specific separation inside a particular timeframe or lift a specific measure of weight. In any case, in the event that you truly need to quantify the general wellness of a man, you need to think about the five parts of physical wellness.

5 Main Elements of Physical Fitness

The principle components of physical wellness include:

➠ Cardiovascular perseverance

➠ Muscular quality

➠ Muscular perseverance

➠ Flexibility

➠ Body sythesis

Cardiovascular Endurance

Cardiovascular/cardiorespiratory perseverance is characterized as the capacity of the heart to pump oxygenated blood for the working of your muscles. The capacity to stay fit without feeling tired amid physical practice measures the physical wellness of a man. Swimming, cycling, strolling, running, and heart stimulating exercise are the traditional cases of activities and games identified with cardiovascular perseverance.

Strong Endurance

Strong continuance is in some cases mistook for solid quality. It is the capacity of a muscle or muscle gathering to rehash a development a few times, or to hold a specific position for a broadened timeframe. It is identified with strong quality and cardiovascular continuance. Performing activities, for example, running, bicycling, or notwithstanding moving can increment strong perseverance.

Strong Strength

The strong quality is the measure of drive a solitary muscle or muscle gathering can apply against an overwhelming resistance. It is measured by most extreme measure of quality a muscle has, or the measure of weight that can be lifted or moved. It can be enhanced by lifting weights.

Physical Flexibility

The wellness level is additionally measured by the adaptability of your joints. On the off chance that you have great adaptability in the joints, wounds identified with joints could be anticipated. The activities, for example, extending and swimming can enhance adaptability.

Body Composition

Body structure straightforwardly identifies with the general wellness level. It is the measure of fat in the body in contrast with the measure of incline mass. It is measured by the rate of your body’s tissues that are made of fat versus without fat tissues.

On a closing note, the physical wellness of a man relies on upon the previously mentioned parts, as well as a consequence of his way of life, nourishment, and fundamental propensities.

Physical Fitness Important for Teens

Adolescents, both male and female, ought to offer significance to their physical wellness, as it aides in the development and advancement of their body. This article gives some data on the significance of physical wellness for adolescents, that may demonstrate helpful.

Recent studies have shown some alarming facts about physical fitness among today’s teens. Most of them spend at least 30 hours in a week, just watching TV and eating high-fat content snacks. Nearly fifty percent of the teens and young adults, do not do any sort of physical activity on a regular basis. Teenage girls are more inactive than the boys. As teenagers grow up, many of them even tend to avoid participating in physical education class in their schools.

Physical fitness for teenagers is important as it keeps their body free from illness. It enables the organs of the body, like the heart, lungs, and muscles, to function efficiently. Moreover, it makes the body more energetic, which in turn helps us to carry out our daily chores without getting fatigued. It also contributes towards keeping our mind healthy, fresh, and free from stress-related problems. In order to keep ourselves physically fit, we need physical exercise, a balanced diet, and proper rest.

Today, most teens lack physical activity, which results in slowing down of their metabolic processes. As a result, obesity among them is increasing at a rapid rate. When they gain a lot of weight, it can affect them, both physically and psychologically. They may find it difficult to move around, run or play in a free manner like other young people. This makes them mentally depressed and frustrated. If the fat remains accumulated in the body for a long period of time, then it becomes difficult to get rid of that excessive fat and lose weight. It is also likely, that overweight teenagers may grow up to be obese adults. Young adults with a heavy body are more prone to diabetes, heart ailments, and arthritis, etc.

Keeping themselves physically fit will help them look attractive, feel good about themselves, and enable them to work smartly. Physical activity is important for building and maintenance of healthy muscles, bones, and joints. It helps in making the body more flexible and increases the strength and endurance of the muscles. It also reduces unwanted body fat and helps to keep a check on the body weight. Physical activities like sports and exercises are required to keep the body fit , be mentally healthy, get rid of depression and frustration, and improve one’s self-esteem.

Exercises for Teenage Fitness

Some teens may not like to get into the rigors of physical training. However, it is not essential to undergo rigorous sessions of strenuous physical exercises. Some moderate amounts of physical activity everyday is enough to stay fit. They may prefer to enjoy aerobic exercises, which have a lot of variety and are fun to do. Other forms of exercise that have a good mix of fun and pleasure are swimming, ice skating, cycling, skiing, trampoline, etc. Some indoor and outdoor sports like soccer, hockey, and basketball involve a lot of group activity which allows them some scope to spend time with friends and keeps them physically active as well. Even a brisk walk for 30 minutes or a jogging session of 15-20 minutes in the mornings, is good enough.

Any activity chosen for physical exercise must lead to hard breathing and good sweating. Benefits of physical exercise can be obtained, if they are practiced regularly. Care should be taken that the exercises are not overdone, as that can cause injury and weakening of bones.

Fitness in Old Age, No Sweat

One can be glad and have a fabulous time even in maturity, on the off chance that he is sound, fit, and loaded with excitement. It is said that “He who has wellbeing has trust, and he who has trust has everything”.

It is necessary that as you enter your mid-lives, you learn to take extra care for your body to avoid health problems that are very common at that age. Taking a proper diet, exercising regularly, makes your lives fuller, mind happier, and body more younger.

As you start aging, you will lose:
* 20 percent of your body’s water content.
* 60 percent of your ability to taste.
* 35 percent of your ability to pump blood.
* About 3 inches in height.

As far as your health is concerned, you:
* Become more susceptible to cold and heat.
* Suffer from osteoporosis, kidney, bladder problems, and constipation.
* Lose some mental functioning due to the loss of brain neurons, and thus become more forgetful.

Fitness over fifty
In order to reverse or slow the effects of aging, you need to have a well-balanced life. You need to exercise regularly, adopt good eating habits, quit smoking and drinking, and live a happy and healthy life.

Nutritious food for a healthy life:
A proper diet should include all the necessary nutrients to revitalize the body. Following are some of the important nutrients, their purpose, and the recommended intake.

Protein
Protein is essential for building nearly every part of the body-the brain, bones, heart, muscles, and even the blood. It is made up of 22 amino acids, otherwise known as the ‘building blocks of life’. An adult requires 0.75 g of protein per kg of body weight per day. Protein is found in foods like fish, eggs, beef, whole wheat, milk, liver, soy beans, beans, peanuts, brown rice and peas. It is recommended that people over 60 take 1.2 g of protein per kg of body weight per day. This is necessary to maintain the lean body mass, and keep the immune system active. This intake should be reduced to 0.8 g if the person suffers from diabetes or kidney problems.

Vitamins
Vitamins are organic compounds that are essential in small amounts for the growth and development of our body. They act as enzymes (catalysts) which facilitate many of the body processes. If the person has a well balanced diet already, then he doesn’t need artificial vitamin supplements.

Minerals
Our body uses many minerals such as phosphorus, calcium, and magnesium for strong teeth and bone; zinc for growth; chromium for carbohydrate metabolism; and copper and iron for hemoglobin production. As with vitamins, same goes for minerals too; if the person is eating a well balanced diet already, mineral supplements are not necessary.

Fiber
Fiber is the part of the food, that is not digestible. It helps to move the food through the intestine by increasing their peristaltic action. Foods containing fiber are whole grain cereals, fibrous vegetables, and root vegetables like carrot, beet, turnips and other leafy vegetables. This is an important component of a diet taken in old age as a healthy intake of fibers will help in regular bowel movements.

Thus your diet should have the combination of all the nutrients listed above and it should also come in proper quantity. In your daily diet you should have the following:

* 2-4 servings of fruit.
* 3-5 servings of vegetables.
* 6-8 servings of whole grain products like bread for carbohydrates.
* 1-2 servings of meat per day.
* One glass of milk, or 1-3 servings of dairy products per day.

Physical fitness is essential for a healthy and happy life. Exercise helps you in this age in many ways. A person who has been exercising regularly will look and feel younger than a person who has not been exercising. If you have been leading a sedentary life till now, you can start exercising and slow the aging process to look and feel much younger.

Therefore make it a point to exercise at least 30 minutes every day. You can swim, jog, brisk-walk, play your favorite sport, cycle or practice yoga.

The following are a few exercises, which you can include in your fitness program:

* For strengthening chest muscles and triceps do press-ups. If you are unable to do regular press-ups, then you can do knee press-ups which are relatively easier.

* For upper leg muscles, hold on to a table and do squats.

* For lower leg muscles, hold on to a table and then rise up on your toes. Do this exercise one leg at a time. This exercise tones your calf muscles.

* Relax and massage your muscles after you finish exercising. Proper rest after exercising is as crucial as the exercise itself.