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How to Gauge Your Workout Intensity

This article, entitled How to use chit-chatting to gauge your workout intensity comes from partner site Fat Fighter TV.

How hard do you exercise?

A) At a moderate level
B) Vigorously
C) Have no idea how to measure exercise intensity

You may have seen exercise guidelines that say you should be active for two and a half hours a week at a moderate level… or to workout vigorously for one hour and 15 minutes a week. But what does it all mean?

The Talk Test is an easy way to measure how hard you’re exercising. In general:

  • If you’re doing moderate-intensity activity, you can talk, but not sing.

  • If you’re doing vigorous-intensity activity, you won’t be able to say more than a few words without pausing for a breath.

Below are examples of both types of activities:

Moderate Intensity Activities
Walking briskly (3 miles per hour or faster, but not race-walking)
Water aerobics
Bicycling slower than 10 miles per hour
Tennis (doubles)
Ballroom dancing
General gardening

Vigorous Intensity Activities
Race walking, jogging, or running
Swimming laps
Tennis (singles)
Aerobic dancing
Bicycling 10 miles per hour or faster
Jumping rope
Heavy gardening (continuous digging or hoeing)
Hiking uphill or with a heavy backpack

I usually do a mix of both moderate and vigorous activities. It may be one of the few times I’m not chit-chatting. ;) You?

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