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NIFS Healthy Living Blog

VO2 and You (Part 1 of 3)

VO2 max. You have possibly heard this term used to describe your fitness level. Unfortunately, most people haven’t got a clue what it means or how the information is supposed to help them. But never fear! In this three-part series I will unravel the mystery behind VO2max and explain why it should be a go-to piece of information to help you reach fitness and healthy lifestyle goals.

VO2 Max

To start, let’s take out the “max” and just go with VO2. The V in VO2 stands for volume, and the O2 stands for our great friend, oxygen. Together, the term VO2 denotes “volume of oxygen consumption.” When you add in the “max” and apply the term to exercise, VO2 max is the maximum amount of oxygen a person can consume and use in one minute per kilogram of body weight (one kilogram is equivalent to approximately 2.2 pounds).

Oxygen is our friend. Oxygen is like the gas in your car. We can work without it, but not for very long. Therefore, the higher your VO2 max is, the more oxygen your body can deliver to working muscles in a shorter amount of time. VO2 max is not just for marathon runners, either. Whether you want to climb stairs easier, get up and down the basketball court longer, or just make that last couple of hours at work a little more productive, a higher VO2 max will allow you to get the most out of your oxygen fuel tank.  

So now you know what VO2 max is. Check out part 2 of the series to find out the various health benefits associated with a high VO2 max. Here’s hoping I have MAXimized your curiosity!

To find out more or schedule a VO2 max test or Bod Pod® test click here.

Read Part 2 and Part 3 of this series.

Written by Adam Heavrin, certified Health Fitness Specialist at NIFS.

Topics: assessments