Getting to the Heart of the Matter

Almost all cardio equipment in our gyms now come with built in heart rate monitors, but have you ever used them?
 
If not, then you could be missing out on an important aspect of your training.
Knowing your heart rate as you work out can be one of the best ways to find out if you are working out at the correct level.
 
A technical term you may hear a lot of is “Maximum Heart Rate” or MHR. This is the level that all other calculations will come from.
 
To get a truly accurate measure of your MHR requires many tests in a controlled scientific lab but luckily there are a few methods to get a rough estimate of it.
 
The easiest and best know is to simply subtract your age from 220. So a 40 year old would have a maximum heart rate of 180 beats per minute.
 
So if this person was working out at 75% of there MHR this would be:
0.75 x 180=135 beats per minute
 
Keeping with the forty year old, this persons training zones would therefore be:
 
Percentage of MHR
Actual Heart Rate (beats per min)
Type of Training
90-100%
162-180
Maximum Effort
(V02 Max)
80-90%
144-162
Hardcore Training
(Anaerobic)
70-80%
126-144
Cardio / Endurance
(Aerobic)
60-70%
108-126
Fitness / Fat Burn
(Weight Control)
50-60%
90-108
Moderate Activity
(Maintenance / Warm Up)
 
Why not calculate your training zones, jot them down and take them along to the gym on your next visit.
 
You’ll be amazed at how much more interesting this can make your workout.
 
After a few weeks you’ll be surprise at just how accurately you can guess your heart rate is without even looking at the monitor!
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