# 3 ways to measure your maximum oxygen consumption

Vo2 max is the maximum volume of oxygen you consume during physical activity. It determines the level of physical endurance by calculating the efficiency of the use of oxygen by cells as a source of energy. There are several methods to measure the VO2 max, but many of them require equipment like a specially calibrated treadmill or exercise cycle. These tests can be difficult to perform and are not suitable for all levels of fitness. The fastest, easiest way to measure your VO2 max is to perform a basic calculation or a run or walk test.

## Steps

### Method 1 of 3: Calculate the VO2 max without a fitness test

#### Step 1. Check your heart rate at rest

Many bracelets or sports watches have a heart rate monitor. If you have any of these devices, record your heart rate when you are at rest (sitting, doing little or no physical activity). The best time to take this measurement is in the morning before getting out of bed.

• To measure your heart rate without a monitor, place two fingers against the artery on the side of the neck, just below the jawbone. You should be able to feel your heartbeat on your fingers.
• Set a stopwatch for one minute and count the number of beats you feel. This is your resting heart rate in beats per minute (bpm).

#### Step 2. Calculate your maximum heart rate

To do this, the most common formula is to subtract your age from the number 220. For example, if you are 25 years old, your HRmax = 220 - 25 = 195 beats per minute (bpm).

• According to some research, this formula simplifies the calculation too much. It is also possible to estimate the maximum heart rate with this HR formulamax = 205.8 - (0.685 x age).

Step 3. Determine the simple formula of the VO2 max.

The simplest formula to calculate the VO2 max is VO2 max = 15 x (HRmax/ FCrest). This method is considered a great comparison with other common formulas.

• Vo2 max is expressed in milliliters (oxygen) per minute per kilogram (body mass), i.e. ml / min / kg.

Step 4. Calculate your VO2 max.

Using the maximum heart rate and the predetermined resting heart rate, you can put them into a formula to calculate your VO2 max. Suppose your resting heart rate is 80 bpm and the maximum is 195 bpm.

• Write this formula: VO2 max = 15 x (HRmax/ FCrest).
• Enter the values: VO2 max = 15 x (195/80).
• Solve the equation: VO2 max = 15 x 2.44 = 36.56 ml / min / kg.

### Method 2 of 3: Use the Rockport test

#### Step 1. Put on the heart rate monitor

Walk slowly in a circle and stretch lightly for 10 minutes to warm up before starting the test. If you don't have a heart rate monitor, you can take your pulse and find out the number of beats per minute (bpm) by counting your heart rate for one minute.

#### Step 2. Start the stopwatch and walk for about a kilometer

You can run the entire distance on a treadmill or circle a 400m athletic track four times. If you choose to walk on a track, go for the one that is as flat as possible. Walk as fast as you can without jogging. You should breathe deeply, while still being able to say two or three words in a row.

### On a scale of one to ten, the effort should be seven or eight

#### Step 3. Stop the timer and check your heart rate

After you have covered a kilometer, stop the stopwatch and immediately check your heart rate. If you have a monitor, record the displayed value. Otherwise, take your pulse using the manual method.

• To measure without a monitor, place two fingers against the artery on the side of the neck, just below the jawbone. You should be able to feel your heartbeat on your fingers.
• Time 60 seconds and count the number of beats you feel. This is therefore your heart rate at rest in beats per minute (bpm).
• Keep walking slowly for five minutes to calm yourself down.

Step 4. Calculate your VO differently2 max.

To do this, you can use this equation VO2 = 132, 853 - (0, 0769 x weight in kg) - (0, 3877 x age) + (6, 315 x sex) - (3, 2649 x walking time in minutes) - (0, 156 x heart rate). If you are male, use number 1 in the formula. On the other hand, if you are a woman, use the number 0.

• For example, a 26-year-old man weighing 70 kg walks a mile in 15 minutes and has a heart rate of 120 bpm at the end of it.
• VO2 = 132, 853 - (0, 0769 x weight in kg) - (0, 3877 x age) + (6, 315 x sex) - (3, 2649 x walking time in minutes) - (0, 156 x heart rate).
• VO2 = 132, 853 - (0, 0769 x 70) - (0, 3877 x 26) + (6, 315 x 1) - (3, 2649 x 15) - (0, 156 x 120).
• VO2 = 132, 853 - 5, 383 - 10, 08 + 6, 315 - 48, 97 - 18, 72 = 56 ml / min / kg.

### Method 3 of 3: Use the Brigham Young University Running Test

#### Step 1. Put on the heart rate monitor

Walk slowly in a circle and stretch lightly for 10 minutes to warm up before starting the test. If you don't have a heart rate monitor, you can take your pulse and find out the number of beats per minute (bpm) by counting your heart rate for one minute.

#### Step 2. Start the stopwatch and jog for a mile

You can run the entire distance on a flat surface or do four laps of a 400m athletic track. Jog at a steady pace and don't let your heart rate exceed 180 beats per minute. Men should not complete the course for eight minutes and women should not take less than nine minutes.

#### Step 3. Stop the timer and check your heart rate

After you have covered a kilometer, stop the stopwatch and immediately check your heart rate. If you have a heart rate monitor, record the measurement. Otherwise, take the pulse using the manual method.

• To measure heart rate without a monitor, place two fingers against the artery on the side of the neck, just below the jawbone. You should be able to feel your heartbeat on your fingers.
• Time 60 seconds and count the number of beats you feel. This is your heart rate at rest in beats per minute.
• Keep walking slowly for five minutes to calm yourself down.

Step 4. Calculate your VO2 max with a gender-specific equation.

This particular test has two different formulas: one for men and one for women. Use the formula according to your gender.

• For women: 100.5 - (0.1636 x weight in kg) - (1.438 x jogging time) - (0.1928 x heart rate).
• For men: 108, 844 - (0.1636 x weight in kg) - (1.438 x jogging time) - (0.1928 x heart rate).