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Target Heart Rates for Effective Exercise
Increasing your heart rate means that you are increasing the amount of oxygen in your body, thus boosting your metabolism, which helps to burn off calories. The most effective way of maximizing your workouts is to find your target heart rate (THR) zone and to stay there. There are five zones of THR depending on the purpose of your exercise and how fit you are.
A heart rate that is too fast can be problematic. If you’re not healthy enough for strenuous activity, you will experience heartbeat abnormalities. So you need to be sure that you are ready for the exercise you are attempting.
In order to calculate your target heart rate you need to calculate your maximum heart rate here. This isn’t 100% accurate for all people, but what it does is gives you a lower end of the possible spectrum, making it a lot safer (thus more reliable) than other methods.
So now that you have your maximum heart rate, you can start to work on finding your zones.
Zone One : The target heart rate zone is about 50-60% of the maximum heart rate and is suited for individuals easing into exercise, or for obese or elderly people.
Zone Two: The target rate zone is about 60-70% of the maximum heart rate and is suited for those with conditions which limit heart rate and for those wishing to remain in the light cardio range.
Zone Three: The target rate zone is about 70-80% of the maximum heart rate and is designed to help fit people to metabolize both fats and carbs at a 50:50 ratio.
Zone Four : The target rate zone is about 80-90% of the maximum heart rate and is for those looking to get in peak physical condition. It’s not a zone for the purposes of burning off fat calories
Zone Five : The target rate zone is about 90-100% of the maximum heart rate and is for those who know what they’re doing in terms of training. It is only used for short bursts of time (2-3 minutes).