Should You Track Your Heart Rate While Working Out?

  • 8 months ago
4 minute read.
Should You Track Your Heart Rate While Working Out?

The heart rate gives an accurate assessment of how hard your body is functioning. The more intense the workout, the greater your heart rate will be. The success of your fitness regimen is determined by the speed, duration, and intensity of your workouts. While measuring frequency and length is simple, measuring your activity level is more complex. Here is where heart rate monitoring comes in.

Tracking your exercise intensity is critical for achieving your fitness goals, especially as a measure of cardiovascular health and weight loss. Having and using all of the tools available is among the most efficient ways to track the improvement towards the particular health and fitness target.

What exactly is heart rate tracking?

Heart rate tracking is a technique to determine how a specific workout or work overload affects heart rate. It can be determined using a fitness band or detectors on cardio equipment that provide heart’s beats per minute (bpm). Each of the five heart rate regions corresponds to the frequency and supports working or exercising in that region.

Zone 1: Very low MHR, between 50 and 60 percent.

Zone 2: Light (60-70 percent MHR).

Zone 3: Moderate, with an MHR of 70% to 80%.

Zone 4:Extremely difficult, with MHR ranging from 80% to 90%.

Zone 5: Extremely difficult, requiring 90 percent to 100 percent MHR.

Heart rate monitor help with workouts

When you use a wearable device during a workout, you can detect more than just how quickly your heart is beating. The more calories you burn, the higher your heart rate becomes. You can change your energy output to meet your heart rate to the optimum standard to lose calories by using a wearable device during a workout. You'll be able to get the best calorie consumption and fat and carbohydrate burn if you keep track of your intensity. A good heart rate tracker can help keep track of how hard you're working out.

Exercise affects heart rate over time

According to the World Heart Federation, lack of physical activity can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease by 50%. Most people are safe, but they should still take the necessary precautions. Exercise also helps to promote the growth of new blood vessels. On the other hand, heart rate during a workout can encourage a net drop in blood pressure at rest.

How to determine your target heart rate zone

If you're aiming for a target heart rate in the moderate range of 70% to 80%, you can use the heart rate reserve (HRR) method to calculate it like this:

(220) – (age) – (resting heart rate) x (percent of maximum heart rate) + (resting heart rate)

For example - Say your age is 30 and you want to figure out your target heart rate zone for moderate exercise using the HRR method. Follow these steps:

  • First, subtract 30 from 220 to get 190 — this is your maximum heart rate.
  • Next, check your resting heart rate first thing in the morning.  It's usually somewhere between 60 and 100 beats per minute for the average adult. Say its 80 beats per minute.
  • Calculate your HRR (Heart rate reserve) by subtracting 80 from 190. Your HRR is 110.
  • Multiply 110 by 0.7 (70%) to get 77, then add your resting heart rate of 80 to get 157.
  • Now multiply 110 by 0.8 (80%) to get 88, then add your resting heart rate of 80 to get 168.
  • Your target heart rate zone for moderate exercise is 157 to 168 beats per minute.

These two numbers are your average target heart rate zone for moderate exercise intensity when using the HRR to calculate your heart rate. Your heart rate during moderate exercise should generally be between these two numbers.

Heart rate monitor models

There are many more pieces of equipment available on the market, such as bands and bicep belts, but for the past few years, fitness trackers (which have replaced strapless wrist-based heart rate trackers) and chest strap monitors have been the most prominent.

1] Fitness trackers: Fitness trackers have grown in popularity as a convenient method for users to monitor health goals such as steps taken, kilometers run, and more specific information such as calorie expenditure and heart rate. Fitness tracker technology has advanced significantly, to the point where previous consistency concerns have been mostly resolved.

2] Chest strap models: The most popular designs have two parts: a chest strap and a smartwatch recipient. Common formats are open signals that display the time and heart rate. Sophisticated models employ a coded signal and can be used with a foot pod to measure rhythmic pattern, distance, and frequency. Some are GPS-enabled, allowing users to highlight and find locations and store previous courses and workout sessions.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of different heart rate monitor models?

Advantages

  • The strapless designs have a higher level of accuracy.
  • Designs to choose from.
  • They provide consistent heart rate data without the need to evaluate or view it.

Disadvantages

  • Basic models have an open transmitter that may cause a disturbance with other monitors.
  • Typically, they are more expensive.
  • Some people find chest straps inconvenient.

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