As I was doing my achilles rehab exercises at the gym last night, I overheard a trainer telling her client:

"You need to get you heart rate into zone 3 for atleast 30 minutes to maximize fat burning."

Now I am not too sure what zone 3 is, but I can assure you of one thing: It's too hard. Just about everytime I hear anyone talking about heart rate training, they talk about trying to "push their heart rate" to a certain level, or they talk about "keeping their heart rate up!"

I use a heart rate monitor in my cycling and running training specifically to make sure I keep my heart rate DOWN. This is my reverse heart rate training program.

For example, this morning I rode an easy 1 hour, 15 minute bike ride. I set my heart rate monitor so that an alarm went off if I exceeded 125 beats per minute (bpm). I am sure that is well below the "zone 3" the trainer at the gym was talking about.

Now I am a 23 year old elite level traithlete - 125 bpm is pretty damn aerobic for me. Most of the time, I was hanging around 105 bpm, too. For most out-of-shape gym goers, my 105 bpm equals their walking pace.

There's a lot of science behind this which isn't worth going into. I recommend the following easy to read resources for more information if you are interested:




The point is, keep is easy.

What about that trainer and that client at the gym? The former looked anorexic and the latter was significantly overweight - not your most reliable resources for training information.


Libby Maxim said... @ December 4, 2007 at 1:44 PM

boy, i wish you were my trainer!

how do i hire you??

that what i need to hear, slow down, take it easy, how refreshing


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