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Making sense of my numbers

One way I'm monitoring my health is by taking something called a VO2 max test, which measures how aerobically fit I am. I have to go to a sports medicine clinic and run on a treadmill as hard as I can while breathing into a tube that measures the oxygen in my breath. When I went in for my second evaluation, I was surprised to see that my level dropped from good to fair. This was strange—I've been doing more exercise lately than I had in a long time. According to Taronte Venable, a personal trainer at Sport and Spine Rehab where I get my test done, it's because I've slimmed down since I'd taken the test the first time. The results take your weight into account, so you end up with a poorer score if you're dropping pounds. We reran the numbers as if my weight had stayed steady and it showed that my fitness level has, in fact, improved. Once I stop dropping pounds, the numbers will reflect that too.

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