Tip: The One Fitness Test You Have to Pass

Take this quick test of heart health. You'll probably pass it. If not, you're in deep doo-doo.

Gather up four of your male friends. Statistically, one of you will die from a heart-related problem. Let’s make sure it’s one of the other bastards and test your heart health now.

The Test

Walk up 4 flights of stairs in under 45 seconds.

The Rules

  1. Start a timer and walk (don’t run) up four flights of stairs. That’s 60 steps.
  2. No stopping and resting.

Researchers at the European Society of Cardiology devised this as a quick test of overall heart health and to judge your likelihood of developing coronary artery disease. It was pretty accurate, even compared to those doctor-supervised stress tests and fancy heart imaging studies (1).

How to Evaluate Your Results

  • Anything under 45 seconds is good.
  • Around 60 seconds means you might have some work to do.
  • Anything over 90 seconds and, well, make a doctor’s appointment.

Remember, this isn’t a sprint to the top. Just walk and make sure you can sustain that pace.

More Things Healthy Lifters Should be Able to Do

The 1-Mile Fitness Test for Lifters Only


  1. European Society of Cardiology. “Test your heart health by climbing stairs.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 December 2020. Findings presented at the European Society of Cardiology’s EACVI – Best of Imaging 2020.