Max Heart Rate?

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Max Heart Rate?

Postby divergirl » Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:08 am

Hi All

Just returned from the gym from a gruelling session with my personal trainer. He loves to smash it on whatever body part we are training on any particular day - he's a great trainer, I just have that love/hate thing going on when my legs/arms wobble and I feel ill from pushing myself hard on cardio with him.

My question is related to cardio - what are your thoughts on max heart rate training. When I was training before (several years ago now) the rule of thumb was go to 80% max heart rate. My PT loves to see how hard he can push me and how high I can max my heart rate. Obviously I can't sustain that level, it's interval training on machines (tready, cross trainer etc) - just curious what your experience/thoughts are on max heart rates/training to them?

Also, there was a guy at the gym who was saying if you don't have enough carbs (prior to hard workout like RPM) that you will actually burn muscle mass rather than energy stores if you train to max, so you should train in the lower heart rate zone for fat burning only. Another lady said no, it's better to train hard still and get the max heart rate affect so that you have the on-going "burning"/increased metabolism throughout the day. It's all very confusing - any thoughts on that?

Thanks in advance

Diving into the blue again......


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Re: Max Heart Rate?

Postby skoptic » Wed Mar 31, 2010 10:19 pm

Well I'm a great believer in training to HR - it makes sense for me.

If you're looking to focus on burning fat and also improve your body's ability to process fatty acids as fuel - then staying below about 85% WHR (working HR .. its your max but takes into account your resting HR) is great. But people are right that a harder sessions can yield higher calorific burn, but you are developing different systems in your body (like anaerobic / lactate threshold) and different muscles sometimes too (i.e. fastwitch as opposed to slow).

I don't think its true that low carbs before a session means you'll burn muscle mass - of course an anaerobic (85%+) session will use energy / oxygen from your muscles not fat and oxygen from your lungs (that's why you develop lactic acid) - but they won't make you lose muscle mass. They will break your muscles down.. but that's the point of all training!

So personally as a runner & triathlete, I think HR is pretty important as it tells you how hard you're going and therefore what your developing. Any runner who is taking it kind of seriously should be training different facets in any given week - usually 75%+ aerobic - but with speedwork (in and out of anaerobic) and tempo runs (sustained anaerobic) too.

Hope this helps :-)
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Re: Max Heart Rate?

Postby MikayP » Sun Apr 04, 2010 8:02 pm

ive been working with heart rate training for about 6 months and like it. Not sure what your goals are, but getting into the right heart rate zone for certain workouts especially for endurance sports. im trying not to get fully addicted to my HR monitor for races. im really curious about how high my heart can pound at the end of a race, but you also got to be in tone with yourself and how your body feels
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