Health Is Not Defined by Fat and Skinny. Test These Metrics Instead. - Deepstash
Health Is Not Defined by Fat and Skinny. Test These Metrics Instead.

Health Is Not Defined by Fat and Skinny. Test These Metrics Instead.

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Your Level of Fitness

Your Level of Fitness

Research suggests four leading indicators that together assess our fitness:

  1. aerobic health
  2. muscular strength and endurance
  3. flexibility
  4. body composition

Being skinny is not the same as being healthy. A 2008 study suggests you can be fat and fit and thin and unhealthy. A 2015 report indicates that many people with a seemingly normal BMI (body mass index) have a significantly higher risk of metabolic problems and death.


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Aerobic Health

Aerobic Health

First, find your resting heart rate. The typical healthy adult's resting heart rate should be between 60 and 100 beats per minute.

Then test your heart rate while doing aerobic activity. The numbers are different depending on your age. For example, a 25-year-old's target heart rate falls between 98 and 16, while a 55 year old's should be between 83 and 140.


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Muscular Strength and Endurance

Muscular Strength and Endurance

There are two types of muscular fitness assessments:

  1. Muscular-endurance tests assess the ability to resist fatigue.
  2. Muscular-strength tests assess the maximum amount of force an individual can produce in a specified number of repetitions.

Test your muscular endurance with a push-up and sit-up test.

  • Count how many push-ups you can do. Your chin should touch the floor. A 35-year-old woman should be able to do 19 push-ups without stopping or 30 sit-ups (or crunches).
  • For muscular strength, a personal trainer can help to assess your muscle strength.


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Flexibility demonstrates an individual’s overall health profile because it tells the story of joint, muscle and tissue health. Regular stretching can help lessen the natural decrease in flexibility.

Check how flexible you are: Sit down with your legs out; line up the bottom of your feet with the 15-inch line on the yardstick. Then, reach forward three times for at least one second and record your farthest distance.

A 65-plus should be able to reach from the 17.5- to 15.5-inch mark. A 25-year-old should reach the 19.5- to 21.5-mark.


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Body Composition

Measure your waist just above the hipbones. According to the Mayo Clinic, women with a waist circumference of 35 inches or more and men with waist circumferences of 40 inches or greater are at greater risk of heart disease and diabetes.

Another way is to use a BMI calculator that uses your gender, age, height and weight and the circumference of your waist. A healthy BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9.


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