Ever notice how your anxiety tends to increase around your fitness assessment time (FA)? It is amazing that in 20 minutes (or less) your FA is over, but your anxiety level has cumulatively increased over the 30-90 days (or more) preparing for the FA! There has got to be a cure, and I think I have the answer! Preparation is the key! I do a lot of cross-training to prepare for my fitness assessment, such as mountain bike riding (recently toured Oak Glenn).
Preparing for the FA does seem to help decrease the anxiety level, but the trick is to prepare often. How many days to prepare will depend on your fitness level, but the AF fitness exam isn’t a “piece of cake” without preparation. Age doesn’t factor in for passing as much as preparation, meaning if you don’t prepare, that you have a higher chance of failing (or not passing) in more than one category.
Gone are the days that you are able to “pass” without preparing for your FA. When it comes to passing your FA, it’s all about timing! Lowering your anxiety level is easily accomplished by preparing early, especially if your FA is in the summer months. In preparing for summer-type weather FAs, make sure you are hydrated (before and after) and stretching (before and after) to decrease soreness. If you are preparing for winter-type weather FAs, make sure you are hydrated (before and after) and stretching (before and after) to decrease soreness. Notice, no matter what type of weather you are preparing for your fitness assessment, you need to hydrate and stretch before and after, which lessens possible injuries occurring during your fitness assessments (and as your endorphins kick in)!
Did you know that you can move your fitness assessment month? If your workout mantra is better in cooler months vs summer, then consider moving your FA up by preparing to take your FA a couple of months early! For example, if you had a previous FA in Jun, and now the next FA is in Dec (semi-annual), instead of agonizing and dieting after Thanksgiving, schedule to take the FA in October! Now, you can relax with your family and friends throughout the holiday season and set your goals for accomplishing your next fitness assessment in March (semi-annual membership) or next October (annual membership)! Like I said, it’s all about timing!