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Maximun Rate (HRmax)Maximal heart rate generally declines with age from about 220 beats per minute in childhood to about 160 beats per minute at age 60. This fall in heart rate is fairly linear, decreasing by approximately 1 beat per minute per year. There is no strong evidence to suggest that training influences the decline in maximal heart rate. It should be remembered that individuals of the same age may have quite different maximal heart rates-therefore it is more accurate to calculate this value by undergoing a stress-test instead of relying on the formulas below. See stress tests at: Sports Coach and Polar FAQ's.
32% of the population will have a maximal heart rate greater than +/- 11 bpm different from the HRmax. (Max Heart Rate: Age-Related Decline)
Target Heart RateYour target heart rate is the maximum you should reach during a workout. It will vary depending on your objectives:
Fat Burn: 60%-75% of HRmax: - Maintain/reduce weight. Fat supplies nearly 86% of total calories.
Fat may be a higher percentage of calories burned, but you burn more total fat with a more strenuous workout. See below
Aerobic Conditioning: 75-85% of HRmax: -Improves Cardio-Respiratory Endurance (CRE). Trains the body's tissues to use O2 efficiently.
Anerobic Excercise 85-90% of HRmax: -Builds muscle. At this level there is not enough oxygen to use aerobic metabolism and the muscles start using carbohydrate in the muscle for its energy. However, fat is burned indirectly as a result of other reactions resulting from the muscle building process.
Note: The Anerobic Threshold is lower for untrained individuals according to Eoin Fahy, Ph.D..
Formulas for estimating Max Heart Rate (HRmax) and Target Rate Examples
Karvonen Formula: Resting Rt. + %HRmax (220-age-resting) + 10 (if resting <60) %HRmax=60-75% (Easy), 85-90% (AT), 90-100% (VO2)These formulas are general guides. Some people have naturally higher heart rates. My maximum according to these formulas ranges from 150 to 170 (I'm 70 years old), but I will hit 185 when I push it.
"Find Your Maximum Heart Rate" at Runner's World recommends the following to find your HRmax.
"Findings from Oslo have suggested that a combination of short runs will give you higher readings still, and this would seem to be your best option. Run as fast as you can evenly for three minutes (ideally on a treadmill), rest with two or three minutes gentle running, and then repeat your three-minute maximal run. During the second run you should get a higher MHR value than with any other method."
AT: Anaerobic threshold -
Exercise intensity at which anaerobic metabolism increases and blood lactate starts to accumulate. This is the highest exercise intensity that can be sustained for a prolonged period.
How to measure AT:
VO2 - This represents the maximum rate of oxygen consumption for a person, in liters per minute. Usually around 95% of your maximum. 55% of VO2Max usually occurs at about 70% of HRMax A good rule of thumb is to run no more than 10% of your weekly mileage at this pace.
The talk test is another good way of establishing how hard you are working, if you find it difficult to say a few words, you are probably working out anerobically. For a good indication of aerobic exercise, you should be able to say a few words, catch your breath, and then carry on talking.Ê
Note: The generally accepted error in the age-predicted formula is ± 10-12 bpm, which is due to different inherited characteristics and exercise training. I've seen articles which say individuals can vary by up to -20 to +30 beats/min. The most accurate way of determining your individual maximum heart rate is to have it clinically tested (by treadmill or bicycle stress test) by a cardiologist or exercise physiologist.
Heart Rate Zones:
WebMD says it's not true that Moderate exercise promotes weight loss more effectively than vigorous exercise. You have to burn more calories than you consume and greater exertion burns more calories.
BuiltLean Creator Marc Perry, says During exercise your body draws energy from primarily two places: fat stores, or glycogen stores. Glycogen is stored carbohydrates in your muscles and liver.
During high intensity exercise, you are burning primarily glucose, but after is when you burn the fat.
livestrong.com says "Exercising at 95 percent of your maximum heart rate in short segments can burn more calories overall than maintaining a steady heart rate throughout a workout."
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