The U.S. Army is in the business of preparing our soldiers of military operations to include combat. Transitioning this approach into civilian life with the purpose of maintaining health works just as well. A simple military-style fitness test will assess your muscle endurance, cardio and strength. All it takes are three very basic activities, push-ups, crunches or sit-ups and a one-mile run/walk. Use the results as a benchmark. You need the benchmark in order to establish reasonable, attainable goals to shoot for every four weeks of testing. For your kick-start program, test yourself every four weeks for four months. After that, you can test yourself every three months or twice a year. If you notice you are falling back to your old ways of insufficient exercise, the fitness test will let you know and become a wake-up call to get back on track.
Conduct the Fitness Test Events in This Order
2. Crunches or sit-ups
3. One mile run/walk
Push-Ups (Knee or Regular)
The push-up will test the endurance of your chest, shoulders and triceps. Rest is permitted in the up position of the push-up or by raising your rearward anatomy while in the upward push-up position. Only correct push-ups count. You have two minutes to perform as many as you can. You count the completed repetition in the up position.
Crunches or Sit-Ups
Choose regular crunches or sit-ups for this event. The sit-up measures the endurance of your abdominals and hip-flexor muscles. Perform as many as you can within two minutes. You will notice that time is really of the essence when performing this event. Keep the pace up as fast as you reasonably can. Only correct repetitions count. Resting is permitted only in the “up” position for the sit-up. There is no resting position for crunches; continue performing them until the two minutes are up, or stop prior to the two minutes if too fatigued to continue.