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Fitness Quotients ... Do You Have One?(5 posts)

Fitness Quotients ... Do You Have One?Breck
Apr 12, 2001 7:17 AM
Fitness is a relative word to me. You can not really measure it in an absolute sense or may not agree on just what the word "fitness" really means. For me it means a strong amount of reserves held in the "bank" of your body mass. No way to know how fit one can truly be. We individually get as fit as we can. We meet limits based on body type, time available to train, drive, will power, genetics, other factors. We have labels or categories for the fittest "athlete" in many events. Elite in road running. Strongest "pound-for-pound" in boxing. Gold Medals in the Oly's for that ONE Day fitness.

Biking. Who knows how to measure fitness in biking, one reason being that it is a team sport. Maybe look at overall wins? Eddy Merckx wins hands down. Sean Kelly was fourth last time I checked. It may not matter here because some would disagree based on Merckx wins in His Day. How would he do today in road races, not counting the hour record on a "standard" bike. Or does it matter.

I have a very simple Fitness Quotient that is in no way scientific. In it's simplest form, simply figure out my best weight can be at (where can you be?, at !:), and divide by my current weight; it's a given that am in the training stage. For example if was 170 lbs. and wanted to arrive at 165, then would believe myself to be 165/170 = 97% fit at my current condition or "shape", & have no argument with some one who thinks differently or has a different Method or Formulae. Old joke: " I'm in great shape for the condition I'm in "; and so are we all.

Truly believe that weight is a big factor on endurance related sports such as road biking and road running. My personal data shows for each 1.0% weight drop a corresponding 1% improvement in running times and 0.5% improvement on the bike down to my low weight "limit". That is, biking performance shows about half the effect of weight loss as running (for me). Am talking about simple ordinary bathroom scale weight here; weigh in the morning.

Some small percent of us, such as exercise physiologists, the more scientifically inclined, etc., want to use VO2 max, lactic acid thresholds, max heart and recovery rate, % body fat, muscle biopsy, many other parameters. The large percent of us typically use race wins by category by what ever that particular sport requires. But if you don't have access to the labs and don't race, how do you measure your fitness?

In a Nutshell .... How do You Measure Your Own Fitness, Complex or Not?
Or even simpler ... What Is Your Take on Fitness?

cheers, bgcc
re: Fitness Quotients ... Do You Have One?Lazy
Apr 12, 2001 11:27 AM
My fitness measuring device is even simpler than yours. Mine's like this:

Am I more fit or less fit than I was last week/month/year (insert any time period).

Very subjective, but it's about all I have control over. Measuring statistics that you have no control over (i.e. race wins) won't accomplish much IMHO, other than you'll know how many races you've won.
No Contest, You Win. )nm)Breck
Apr 12, 2001 3:15 PM
cheers
UnscientificE3
Apr 12, 2001 11:38 AM
For me, it's a combo of:

1) how tight or loose my jeans fit.
2) I get a definite feeling of me controlling the bike and the elements, instead of the other way around. For example, a headwind seems less annoying and takes less effort to confront. Hills become flatter.
3) My mid-thigh tan lines become much more distinct.
4) I can go for a 91 mile ride, take the complete tour of Carlsbad Caverns, set up our popup camper, go swimming with my kids, and then fool around with my wife, all in one day, without killing over.
5) My sit-on-the-saddle nether regions get tough enough to strike a match on, and the saddle feels like an air cushion instead of a cinder block.
6) I can devour a whole pizza and massive quantities of beer, but I'm riding so much, I still lose weight.
7) Intervals are fun.

My fitness tends to peak in late July through August. However, I start drooping by the end of September, mentally and physically.

Like I said, it's certainly unscientific, but it's all I need, as I'm not really a competitive cyclist.
Your List would make a great Bullet Chart! )nm).Breck
Apr 12, 2001 3:17 PM
thanks
cheers