Obesity in the United States is on the rise. In the year 1999 to 2000, the prevalence of obesity was 30.5%, whereas, in the year 2017 to 2018, the prevalence of obesity was 42.5%.
It’s vital that overweight adults and children act sooner rather than later when it comes to weight, as they’re at a higher risk of developing serious health conditions such as heart disease.
But what does being out of shape mean? We’ve got the answers you’re looking for, so read on to find out the 5 symptoms of being out of shape and what you can do about it.
What Does Being Out of Shape Mean?
Being in shape refers to someone who is physically healthy and fit. Being out of shape refers to the opposite of this, and it means someone who isn’t physically healthy. For example, those who find themselves struggling for breath during light exercise or exertion could be out of shape.
Being out of shape doesn’t necessarily mean you’re overweight, but it might eventually lead to unintentional and unwanted weight gain. To keep in shape, you need to ensure you’re regularly partaking in exercise.
The World Health Organization recommends that adults, aged 18 and 64 years old, do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise a week. Alternatively, you can do 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise a week.
If you don’t know the difference between moderate and vigorous when it comes to exercise, all you need to know is that the two differ when it comes to how demanding it is on the body. Moderate-intensity will mean you can still talk and breathe as normal (some sweat may happen, but not much). Vigorous-intensity will mean that you can only speak short sentences and will be more breathless and sweaty than usual.
Some examples of moderate-intensity exercise are a brisk walk, a light jog, yoga, or moderate-intensity weight training. Some examples of vigorous-intensity exercise are a run, strenuous weight training, or hiking up a steep mountain. There are also specific fitness classes for both forms of exercise, so speak to your local gym to find out more.
5 Symptoms of Being Out of Shape
So, exercise is critical for keeping our bodies healthy, but how do you know if you’re out of shape. What are the common signs and symptoms of being out of shape if you aren’t overweight?
Small Activities Cause Breathlessness
One of the most common physical symptoms of being out of shape is breathlessness. Not breathlessness when you’re sprinting, that’s quite common. We’re on about breathlessness for small activities, that shouldn’t cause heavy breathing, such as short walks or going up against some stairs.
Those who are in shape find it easier to maintain respiratory rates similar to their baseline (less than 20 per minute) when partaking in small activities. People who are in shape also can maintain similar heart rates to that of resting (under 100 beats per minute) during such activities.
If breathlessness is one of your symptoms then you can start to build up your resistance by slowly doing more exercise. Exercising little and often can help to improve your respiratory and heart rate.
Slow Falling Heart Rate
Depending on the physical activity your doing, your heart rate can be up to 190 minutes per minute. Your body needs more oxygen, which is why your heart beats faster when you’re exercising.
This is all perfectly normal. However, the telling sign you might be out of shape is that your heart rate takes longer to slow down than normal. When you stop exercising your heart rate should decrease by 20 beats per minute, until it goes back to your normal resting heart rate.
The fitter you are the quicker your heart rate returns to normal after exercise. Again, the more you do, the more you build up your resistance and the healthier you’ll become.
Some symptoms of being overweight and out of shape are easier to spot than others. For example, if you’re carrying around excess fat then you might notice that you’ve put on a few pounds on the scales or no longer fit into your clothes.
The easiest way is to measure your waistline. Men with a waistline of 40 inches or more and women with a waistline of 35 inches or more, could be considered out of shape.
Carrying too much weight is one of the more serious signs you need to work out. Find exercise activities that you enjoy doing and try to do them with someone, so you can be held accountable for your work out sessions.
Out of shape aches and pains are also common, so if you experience unexplainable backache then you might need to work on your fitness. If you’re standing around and notice that your back aches, then this might be a sign that your core and back muscles are weak.
Aches and pains can cause misery in your daily life. Luckily, there are exercises you can try to relieve yourself of these pains and strengthen your body. For example, try doing elevated planks for 5 to 10 seconds (5 reps) every day.
Feeling fatigued could be a sign of many health problems, such as grief, boredom, lack of sleep, overexerting yourself. However, it can also be caused by not doing enough exercise. If you constantly feel tired and can’t find an answer as to why maybe it’s time to move more.
You may also like: How to Stop & Avoid Muscle Fatigue
The best way to kick fatigue woes to the curb is by getting your whole body moving. We recommend creating a fitness plan that includes both cardio and strength training. This might mean that on Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday, you go for a morning run or swim, and on Thursday and Friday you hit the gym for some weights.
Work Hard to Shape Your Body
Identifying the physical symptoms of being out of shape can sometimes be difficult. However, if you use our guide above, you should be able to be the best version of yourself. Remember that it doesn’t matter what you do as long as you enjoy it and as long as you incorporate plenty of physical activity into your week.
For more health and fitness tips or ideas, have a look at our other articles. Or check out our Family Fitness Lifestyle section and get the whole family involved and transform the way you live your life.