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Quiz: Fitness dos and don'ts

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No pain, no gain.

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No pain, no gain.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Contrary to popular belief, you don't have to exercise until you hurt to see good results. It's normal to feel a bit sore at first, especially if you are a beginner, which is why taking it slowly and pacing yourself is a good idea. Rule of thumb: If you experience sharp or severe pain, stop exercising immediately and seek medical advice before you resume activity.

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Which exercise routine is the most balanced for you body?

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Which exercise routine is the most balanced for you body?

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Combining walking, weight training and yoga is the most balanced for overall body fitness because it includes three key types of exercise: aerobic (walking), strength training (weights) and flexibility training (yoga).

 

Each type is important. Aerobic exercise such as walking, swimming, jogging, cycling, or tennis will give you a good cardio work-out that strengthens lungs and heart. Strength training that includes lifting weights or using resistance bands strengthen muscles and bones. Flexibility exercises such as yoga or tai chi can improve balance, coordination and range of movement, as well as lessening your risk of injury.

You should do aerobic exercise before weight training.

You should do aerobic exercise before weight training.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

There's no set order to do cardio or strengthening exercises but you may want to tailor your routine according to your personal objective. If your main goal is to burn fat or build strength – do resistance exercise first. If endurance is your key objective, do cardio first.

 

Doing both aerobic and strength training regularly every week is more important than the order in which you do them.

You get the best exercise by which everyday activity?

You get the best exercise by which everyday activity?

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Sadly, walking round the shops or throwing clothes in the washing machine isn't going to cut it when it comes to qualifying as aerobic exercise. Those activities usually don't involve pushing your body to breathe harder or get your heart rate up. However, pushing a lawn mower does qualify as moderate to intense activity – if you keep it up for 10 minutes or more.

 

You know you have reached a moderate level of exercise when you can talk, but can't sing the lyrics of a favourite song. Intense activity is when you are breathing hard, break a sweat and are unable to speak more than a couple of words.

You get fitter with half an hour of continuous activity, rather than 10 minute spurts three times a day.

You get fitter with half an hour of continuous activity, rather than 10 minute spurts three times a day.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

The NHS recommends that adults between 19 and 64 should do at least 150 minutes a week (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate aerobic activity, such as cycling or fast walking. Seventy-five minutes (1 hour and 15 minutes) of vigorous to intense aerobic activity, such as running or a game of singles tennis, also works. A combination of both is fine – as is spreading your exercise over the day. However, try to stick with a minimum of 10 minute workouts. The NHS also recommends muscle strengthening exercises on 2 or more days a week to work major muscle groups.

 

If you have a medical condition, talk to your GP before starting a new exercise routine.

Swap mowing the lawn for a singles tennis match and you'll get the same fitness result in half the time.

Swap mowing the lawn for a singles tennis match and you'll get the same fitness result in half the time.

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  • Correct Answer:

Vigorous exercise like singles tennis, will yield the same fitness results in half the time. Other sports with that kind of benefit include running, swimming fast, bike riding, a game of rugby, football or hockey, gymnastics or martial arts.

Warming up and cooling down are essential parts of your exercise routine.

Warming up and cooling down are essential parts of your exercise routine.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

According to the NHS, it's a bad idea to start exercising without an appropriate warm-up period beforehand. A brief warm-up of light aerobics will raise your heart rate a little, prepare muscles for exercise and help prevent injury. Jogging or brisk walking for 5-10 minutes is enough – until you break a sweat.

 

Cooling down is equally important. Don’t just stop exercising and sit down. Give your body time to recover by tapering off the exercise to a lower level of intensity. You may also want to add an extra layer of clothing during this period to stop you getting chilled. Stretching for about 5 minutes is also an excellent way to cool down and gently loosen muscles, tendons, and ligaments. This may help prevent soreness and may reduce your risk of injury.

What heart rate should you be aiming for in effective exercising?

What heart rate should you be aiming for in effective exercising?

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For most healthy people, experts recommend a target heart rate during exercise that ranges from 50% to 75% of your maximum heart rate. This gives you the best cardiovascular benefit.

 

To establish your maximum heart rate, subtract your age from the number 220. Your target heart rate is 50% to 75% of that calculation.

 

Once you have your personal target, check your pulse. This can be done by placing fingers on the inside of your wrist or the side of your neck and counting the number of beats in a minute. You can also count the number of beats in 30 seconds and double it to find your heart rate.

You should always choose water over sports drinks to rehydrate.

You should always choose water over sports drinks to rehydrate.

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  • Correct Answer:

Normally water is sufficient to rehydrate recreational athletes during short workouts. However, if you are exercising vigorously for more than 45 minutes, you are probably depleting your stores of glucose energy and losing electrolytes through sweat. In this case, replacing both with an isotonic sports drink may help you sustain intensity and pace for a longer time.

Seek medical advice before a new exercise routine if:

Seek medical advice before a new exercise routine if:

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Seeking medical advice before embarking on a new exercise routine is recommended if you are over 65, take prescription medication, or have a long-term health condition like heart disease, diabetes or arthritis. Always seek medical advice if you experience dizziness, breathlessness, or pain in the chest, neck, jaw, arms or other areas.

For best results in strength training, repeat exercises to the point of fatigue.

For best results in strength training, repeat exercises to the point of fatigue.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Repeating exercises until the muscle group you are working out is fatigued is an effective strengthening and toning method. Always start slowly and work your way up to more challenging exercises during weight lifting or resistance band exercises. After 12 repetitions using the correct form, increase the intensity of the weight slightly.

 

Taking it slowly and exercising with care is important to prevent injury. As always, stop if simple fatigue turns into pain.

You can home in on specific body areas when trying to burn fat and lose weight.

You can home in on specific body areas when trying to burn fat and lose weight.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Unfortunately, it's not possible to target – or spot reduce - certain areas of your body to lose weight. In order to reduce belly fat, for example, you need to work out the entire body with regular physical activity.

Which type of 'mind-body' practices can help improve fitness?

Which type of 'mind-body' practices can help improve fitness?

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

'Mind-body' disciplines often focus on flexibility, strength and balance. The good news is that most of them can also boost your level of fitness. Certain types of yoga, for example, require great strength, stamina and balance. Pilates can also be a demanding form of strength training. Tai chi requires agility, heart health and overall fitness.

 

These types of practices are also excellent choices as warm up or cooling down exercises.

Working out in the morning yields better results than afternoon or night-time workouts.

Working out in the morning yields better results than afternoon or night-time workouts.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

There is no 'best' time to exercise. Whatever works for your personal body clock and daily routine is sufficient. Studies suggest your body will adjust to working out at whatever time you decide works for you. Some research suggests actual physical performance is at a peak in the late afternoon. More research suggests working out early in the morning may help you sleep better. Whatever time you exercise, try to establish a daily routine and stay with it.

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