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TOPIC: How Important is Heart Rate?

 
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October 8, 2012 2:11 PM
I have a Polar HRM and am still getting used to using it. I frequently go 'out of zone' when I intersperse some jogging in with my walks or on particularly cardio-heavy dvd's I do at home. I figure I'm pushing myself to work out harder, so this is good, but is being out of range bad because I'm not in the fat-burning zone?

Thanks in advance for any answers.
  12911856
October 8, 2012 2:12 PM
Bump for answer.
October 8, 2012 2:27 PM
Pushing yourself is good. The fat burning zone is a misleading misnomer
October 8, 2012 2:44 PM
Why is it misleading? Don't you just burn glycogen if you're over 85% or is that false?
October 8, 2012 2:48 PM
http://calorielab.com/news/2005/06/11/the-fat-burning-zone-explained/

http://www.fitsugar.com/Truth-About-Fat-Burning-Zone-6264046

http://www.active.com/triathlon/Articles/The-Myth-of-the-Fat-burning-Zone.htm

http://exercise.about.com/od/weightloss/a/The-Truth-About-The-Fat-Burning-Zone.htm
  2252658
October 8, 2012 2:50 PM
I didn't read the links but the fat burning zone isn't going to help you. I've read several articles in the past covering this topic, of course can't link to them now, it was when I first purchased my HRM.
  25445449
October 8, 2012 2:51 PM
im curious about this too, my fitness test(done at the gym, test CO2 levels, flexibility, bf%, blood pressure etc) says i am at the ideal fitness level for a 20yr old (im 28, it was 38yrs when i started there! lol). so when a machine at the gym tells me that im out of the zone for my age range...im often in the zone for my 'body age' range. imaconfoosed ohwell
Edited by MsNewBooty83 On October 8, 2012 2:53 PM
  20302251
October 8, 2012 2:53 PM
Very important!!!! so make sure you are hooked up and training hard!!!
  9540403
October 8, 2012 2:59 PM
QUOTE:

Why is it misleading? Don't you just burn glycogen if you're over 85% or is that false?


Good question. Two part answer.

One, the OP is probably not hitting 85% with her jog/walks.

More to the point, what you are burning is *calories*. Don't worry if it comes from fat stores or glycogen. You're exercising to burn calories to get into a deficit state so that you will lose weight. Burning more calories means a bigger deficit means losing more weight.

You don't have to do cardio to shed fat. But if you choose to do it, don't artificially slow your progress by trying to keep your heart rate under an arbitrary level.
October 8, 2012 3:00 PM
It's fairly simple: the machines and trainers that harp about the "Fat-burning zone" do so to encourage people to keep moving, even if not very vigorously. People generally don't *like* to work hard, which is why so many people are overweight to begin with. Although your body might be more efficient at burning fat calories at a lower heart rate, you will be burn more fat calories *in total* if you work harder, i.e. beyond the "fat" zone.

Ignore it and push yourself. Work out hard enough to break a sweat. Don't kill yourself, but you shouldn't necessarily be comfortable enough to hold a cell phone conversation.

Unless you are specifically training to increase your lactate and anaerobic thresholds, then don't worry about staying down in the "zone". You'll only be dragging out your weight loss journey if all you ever do is stick at 50% MHR or below.
  2252658
October 8, 2012 5:10 PM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Why is it misleading? Don't you just burn glycogen if you're over 85% or is that false?


Good question. Two part answer.

One, the OP is probably not hitting 85% with her jog/walks.



How do you know that? Obviously she's going over 85% or she wouldn't be asking this question.
Edited by CasablancasTX On October 8, 2012 5:11 PM
October 8, 2012 5:20 PM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Why is it misleading? Don't you just burn glycogen if you're over 85% or is that false?


Good question. Two part answer.

One, the OP is probably not hitting 85% with her jog/walks.



How do you know that? Obviously she's going over 85% or she wouldn't be asking this question.


Let's go with another 2 parter:

First, the fat burning zone caps at 65%. 65-85% is aerobic. Above that is the alleged "max or danger zone" I'm thinking the OP is getting above 65% and below 85%. Because she's worried about fat burning. If she was in 85%, she'd be posting a question asking if her heart was about to explode (tip: no, it isn't). She's walking/jogging, not sprinting. Does this seem kosher to you or would you like to question this line of logic as well?

Second.....wait, have you gotten this far? Because you seem to have skipped the second point last time, which is where the raeal talk was. Hopefully you get this far this time. Do you find fault with the logic that burning more calories means losing more weight, all other factors being equal? That's where the money is. Go back and read the post if you missed it the first time. Go ahead, I'll wait.

Back yet? What contrarian statement would you like to make about the second point? Happy to answer all your questions today.
October 8, 2012 5:21 PM
Actually, I am going over 85%. I walk two minutes and jog for 90 seconds and during my jogs, I am up at 175bpm or higher. My HR slows back down to about 160-ish during the walking part, which my HRM says is still just over 85%. I'm 37yo and 257lbs, so this is a heavy workout for ME.

Thank you to the people who responded that it's not a big deal. I don't ever want to NOT push myself during my workouts.
Edited by mgobluetx12 On October 8, 2012 5:24 PM
  12911856
October 9, 2012 8:45 PM
QUOTE:

Actually, I am going over 85%. I walk two minutes and jog for 90 seconds and during my jogs, I am up at 175bpm or higher. My HR slows back down to about 160-ish during the walking part, which my HRM says is still just over 85%. I'm 37yo and 257lbs, so this is a heavy workout for ME.

Thank you to the people who responded that it's not a big deal. I don't ever want to NOT push myself during my workouts.


The real purpose of the fat burning zone is exactly how you are using it.

As the level to recover to from a hard effort. Nothing to do with burning fat or carbs or such, just smart workouts. By letting yourself recovery to easier level, you can actually push harder at the upper end, and that's where some of the benefit comes from when workouts are short.

The other time to use it, is the day after lifting weights, if using the same muscle. There's a reason why better HR zone charts call it the Active Recovery HR zone. Get's blood flowing, doesn't add stress to muscles trying to repair and get stronger.

Now, if you are actually training for endurance type events, over 90 min, then it's a useful zone again, because in that case you do want to train your body to burn fat as fuel, because the glucose is limited. But even a lb of fat would see a marathoner with the energy to run 2 marathons. The glucose is the limiting factor. Well, that and joints and mental.

Or if you just increased your longest running distance and first few runs need to be gentle, great level then.

But if you have only 30-45 minutes for exercise, and you aren't doing weight lifting for better fat burn, then get the cardio as high as it will go, or interval it like you are doing.

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