Top 10: Signs You’re A Healthy Guy
Lots of muscles don’t make you the picture of health. For one, your fingernails say a lot more.
By Shannon Clark,
As more and more people are starting to take action to improve their health, it’s helpful to have a few standards to which to compare yourself in order to see how you’re doing.
One error many males make is mistaking their “health” to be how they appear on the outside. While a high level of muscle mass definitely does represent a high fitness level, health encompasses much more than that.
In order to feel and function your best, you also need to focus on the body as a whole. The following signs are good guidelines to use to determine where you stand and if there are any areas upon which you need to improve.
Familiarize yourself with the following and periodically self-check to monitor your progress.
You have a resting heart rate of around 70 bpm
The first health check to look at is your resting heart rate. Ideally your resting heart rate should be around 70 beats per minute or lower. If it’s higher than this, take it as a sign it may be time to devote a little more time to your cardiovascular training to make your heart stronger and more efficient.
You have firm pink nails
While you’d never think your fingernails are a sign of good health, they are very telling of your current health condition. You ideally want them to be pink in color, firm to the touch and have a smooth surface.
If you have white spots or a few ripples, it may be time to speak to your doctor, as this could point to diabetes. If your nails are yellow, this can indicate respiratory disease, so take care immediately.
Your urine is the color of a manila folder
While it may be the last thing you want to do, checking the color of your urine after you use the washroom is a great way to tell if you’re hydrated. If your urine is a deep yellow color, you’re not taking in enough clear fluids.
Additionally, if you notice any change in odor or any spots of blood in the urine, this is definitely reason enough to seek out a physician.
You can perform 20 pushups
One great health standard is how many pushups you can perform in a row without rest while maintaining proper form.
Performing 20 straight full pushups, maybe even during a lunchtime workout at the office, is a good benchmark of what a typical male should be able to complete. If you come in at less than this, it might be time to devote a little more effort to your strength-training routine.
You can run a mile in under 15 minutes
To test your cardiovascular fitness on the other hand, try a one-mile run. If it takes you longer than 15 minutes to complete, you’re below average in your fitness level. The faster you can run the mile and the lower your heart rate after running, the better physical conditioning you’re in.
You have bowel movements at the same time daily
In a body that’s healthy and functioning properly, bowel movements should be a very regularl thing, occurring each day at the same time.
If yours only occur periodically or are often too hard or soft, it may be cause for alarm. Check your fiber intake, make a few changes as needed and then reassess the situation before seeking medical advice.
You are able to wake up without an alarm at approximately the same time daily
Staying well rested is very critical to good health, as not only does lack of sleep cause you to feel mentally fatigued during the day, but is a sign you may be at risk of having a stroke, obesity or heart disease.
If you’re well rested, your internal rhythm should be functioning effectively, and you should easily be able to wake up naturally without an alarm at around the same time each morning.
If you can’t remember the last time you woke up without a buzzer ringing in your ear, it may be time to consider calling it a night a few hours earlier. Remember that making up for sleep on the weekends is not an effective strategy to overcome sleep deprivation.
You’re within 10 pounds of your ideal body weight
Your body weight is the next health standard that you must assess if you want to check your overall health level. A great idea is having your BMI assessed, as this is the medical standard that places you either in the underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese categories. Additionally, you should also have a body-fat test taken.
These two together can be much more telling than the BMI alone, which can place more muscular individuals in the overweight category. A healthy male under 40 should have 8-19% body fat and those over 41 should be in the 11-22% range.
After a cardio session, your heart rate returns to normal within 5 minutes
Our next quick and easy assessment of your health is to time how long it takes for your heart rate to return back down to normal after completing a cardiovascular session.
The sooner it springs back down, the better shape you’re in. Ideally, it should return to resting in five minutes or less.
You know the date of the last time you had a full medical
Last but not least, ask yourself if you know when you had your last medical. A full medical is something that far too many men put off for years, and this is one big reason why unexpected health concerns come about.
While it may feel like a nuisance to do and something you dread, it’s a must. If you can’t remember your last date with your doctor, it’s time to schedule one.
So there you have some of the top signs that you’re a healthy guy. If you’re falling short on any of these, it’s time to look at making a few changes to your diet, workout or lifestyle to get yourself in better overall shape.