The True Worth of a Heart Rate Monitor
How much is a heart rate monitor really worth? I am not talking about the price or cost but more on the benefits that they provide the user. Many professional athletes use heart monitor watches to help them out in their workouts. Training to be the Best is easier with a heart monitor than without one. It is almost impossible to train and at the same time try to measure your heart beats or rate. We all have different heart rate data and the major factor for this is age. A twenty something year old will have totally different heart rate data to someone on their fifties.
Target Heart Rate Zones and Training Intensities
When training, it is ideal that we stay with a target heart rate zone that is known as your aerobic heart rate. This is also known as the fitness zone. It is usually around 65% to 80% of our maximum heart rate. To find your maximum heart rate is really simple. The formula is 220 less your age. Therefore, if you are 25, your maximum heart rate is 195. With this information, you will see that you target heart rate level is between 127 to 156 beats. It is within this range for a 25 year old that they will see results and get maximum efficiency for their workouts.
When you train at this level, not only are you being efficient, you are also reducing body fat, lowering blood pressure and also cholesterol. Also at this level, calories lost are at about 85%. This is what every seasoned professional and fitness enthusiasts aim for. So why do I need a heart rate monitor if I already have this information?
How many people can run 5 miles and constantly check our pulse in the middle of the run to see if it’s in the right target zone? Not many, if there is any! This is where the heart rate monitor comes in. It will constantly give you feedback on where you are during your workout. It will help you to stay in the right intensity zones thus ensuring that you are not wasting time training and that your targets, whether fitness or weight loss related, are being met.
The Importance of a Heart Rate Monitor
Heart rate monitors have advanced so much since the 90’s. Today, they not only provide users with heart rate monitoring features but also more advanced functions such as GPS tracking and speed and pace data. Almost all provide users with calorie and energy counting features and target zone indicators. Many are waterproof and work over a wide range of sporting disciplines from running and cycling to wind surfing and cross country skiing.
There are many great benefits of a heart rate monitor. It is just choosing the right one for your training that will help you in the long run. Check out my article on Choosing a Polar Heart Rate Monitor for more information on specific heart watches.
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