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Condition: answers to all your questions

Are you already out of breath when you have to walk up a flight of stairs? Or can you climb twenty floors without losing a drop of sweat? Your fitness determines how easily you can sustain prolonged physical exertion. Logically, not everyone has the same condition, but luckily you can improve it yourself.

On this page, you will find all blogs related to building and maintaining your stamina. Would you like more general information about fitness? Then you will find useful information at the bottom of this page that answers various questions.

What is the condition?

The condition of the human body can be seen as your fitness. This includes several aspects, such as endurance, agility, strength, muscle mass, speed, and coordination of the muscles. However, because in recent years one has almost always used conditions to describe one's stamina, the meaning has changed in the vernacular.


For this reason, we will keep the same meaning of the word as it is in the vernacular. So how quickly you get out of breath when you have to do some form of physical exertion, shows how good or bad your condition is.

The official meaning

The literal meaning of the word condition is the condition or condition of the human body, often when it is exposed to physical exertion. This again shows that it is more than just your stamina. However, the definition according to van Dale can also be stamina, so they have even included the meaning it has become in the vernacular as one of the definitions of the word.

Difference fitness and endurance

As already described here, in the official sense of fitness and endurance there is a clear difference. Endurance refers only to how long your body can sustain physical exertion. By measuring your VO2max you can show how much oxygen your body can absorb, transport, and use. This allows you to measure how your endurance is doing. Your condition concerns, as is apparent from the meaning, the general physical condition of the body. A clear difference, however, will probably always remain the same in popular speech.

What gets you in shape?

You get a better condition by doing physical exertion. This can be done by practicing almost any sport that requires physical effort. Sports that require you to provide long-term energy (for example, cycling, running, playing football) have a strong positive effect on our condition. Sports in which you always have to make short efforts with many breaks (for example weightlifting or powerlifting) have a less strong influence.

Testing condition

Testing your fitness can show you how it is. There are many different tests that can each in their own way show how good your stamina actually is. All these tests focus on the endurance of our body when physical exertion takes place. The most common tests are the following:

  • Shuttle run
  • Cooper test
  • Zoladz test
  • Astrand test
  • Ruffier Dickson test
  • Harvard Step test
  • Test of Lian
  • VO2 Max test

All these tests each have their own training method and way of measuring fitness. Lian's test is the easiest to perform at home since you only need a heart rate monitor for this.

What is an average condition?

So there are several ways you can test your fitness. All these different tests have their own method of showing what constitutes a bad, average, or good condition. Depending on which test you do, it is therefore easy to conclude whether you belong to the average or not.

Characteristics of a bad condition

You have probably thought that you had or have a bad condition, but you say this purely by feeling. We know that we can determine this by doing a fitness test, but you can also draw a reasonable conclusion about the state of your physical condition based on your daily life. There are several characteristics, from which you can easily see whether your condition could use some improvement. Here are five clear signs of poor fitness:

  • Shortness of breath occurs when you walk at a normal pace
  • You notice that you become short of breath when you walk up the stairs
  • After a short run, you are immediately out of breath
  • You are tired very quickly after physical exertion
  • You have trouble with simple daily things, such as brushing or vacuuming

If you suffer from one or more of the above characteristics of a bad condition, don't worry. It is quite easy to build this, as long as you work with it consistently. Do you want to learn more about this? Then read our blog: Building fitness: 12-step plan.

How fast is your condition deteriorating?

The moment you (temporarily) stop exercising, you will always notice that the training sessions are a bit more difficult after that. Your condition deteriorates and often a lot faster than expected. Inactivity, of course, has negative consequences for both muscle strength and endurance. If you hardly train, you will not notice much difference if you stop your training for a few weeks. If you are constantly training someone, they can also deteriorate faster when you stop training.

When you actively work on your endurance for a long time and then are inactive for four weeks, there can be a 20% decrease in your VO2max. Your VO2max is the maximum amount of oxygen your body can take in, transport and use. So this is a huge difference in just four weeks. The loss of your lung capacity during inactivity is therefore very fast, but fortunately, this can be regained fairly quickly. You do this by consistently picking up your training after the period of inactivity.

A 2017 study of football match referees show similar results. In the 9-week rest period, in which no matches are played, the referees are much less active than when the season is in progress. The measurements before and after this rest period show that the condition of the referees has deteriorated considerably, they can sprint less fast and they can cover less distance within the same time than before.

So your condition can certainly deteriorate quickly if you are (temporarily) inactive. After a few weeks, you can already notice a significant difference. Are you going on holiday for a long time and do you want to counteract this decrease? Try to train on holiday, however difficult that may be. Are you really not able to train for a certain period of time? Then pick up your training again as soon as you have time and you will notice that your fitness will return to the old level fairly quickly.

Why is fitness important?

It is always said that being in good shape is very healthy. Almost everyone knows this too, but why is this the case? Why is fitness so important? Training has several positive properties on our body. View here the benefits that show that a good condition is important:

  • The risk of cardiovascular disease is reduced
  • Blood pressure is lowered
  • Your metabolism is stimulated
  • Your stress resistance increases
  • Everyday effort becomes easier
  • Your muscles feel less stiff and tight

In addition, there are many other benefits that you can notice if you start living more actively. There's only one way to find out for yourself and that's by just exercising!

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