Measure Your Fitness Levels by Doing The One Mile Walk Test

Can you pass this test?

One Mile Fitness Test Warning Sign

Have you ever wondered how fit you are? Before jumping into any of the interval training sessions, I recommend you do the following one mile walk test to give you a good idea of your aerobic fitness level. It will measure your ability to utilise oxygen. The test was developed by the Cooper Institute for Aerobic research in Dallas, Texas.

Aerobic fitness is the ability to breathe in oxygen, transport oxygen in the blood and utilise oxygen into energy.

You can use a treadmill or a school track (or measure a road by using your cars distance gauge).  If you use a track, you will have to go around a school track four times on the inner side to cover one mile (1.6 kms).

  1. Make sure you do a warm up for several minutes by going for a slow walk, cycle or row. Stretch your major muscle groups: hamstrings, quadriceps, triceps, deltoids, gastronemius (calves) and pectoralis major (chest muscles).
  2. Time yourself. Walk at a steady pace where you are pushing hard.
  3. You should feel slightly winded but you should not be gasping for air.
  4. Record your time at the end of the mile but do not stop as you need to cool down by doing a gentle, brisk walk for two minutes.
  5. Match your time to the times in the table below to assess your aerobic fitness category.

Aerobic Fitness Category

Minutes for One Mile Walk Test (1.6kms)

Male

Female

High Aerobic Fitness

< 12:42

< 13:42

Moderate Aerobic Fitness

12:42 – 15:38

13:42 – 16:40

Low Aerobic Fitness

> 15:38

> 16:40

If you are coming into the low or moderate aerobic fitness categories, I recommend that you build up your endurance for at least six weeks before embarking on any interval training regimes.

Walk one mile a day (four to six times a week) for two weeks, then walk one and a half miles a day for another two weeks, increasing your speed.  Then finally walk two miles a day for the final two weeks.

Build up you fitness gradually, the last thing you want is to be exhausted and be put off exercising.

If you are in the high aerobic fitness zone then go for a high intensity interval training regime but if you feel dizzy or faint, stop, and see your Doctor.

¤ Burn More Fat By Doing These Interval Training Workouts This regimen is great for someone who has never really done much exercise and if you fall into the “Low Aerobic Fitness” category in the table above then this is the ideal place to start for losing fat.

About the author

Adam Drinkwater

Adam Drinkwater MPharm (Hons) is a YMCA Certified Professional Gym Instructor, Pharmacist, Scottish Football Association Qualified soccer coach, specialising in goalkeeping. He has a keen interest in evidence based information and is a long-time player in the fitness industry. He holds many nutritionist certificates and has a Masters in Pharmacy.