Originally Posted by emma2
I wanted to know does HR training make a marked difference... i.e. could I be exercising more efficiently and losing fat more efficiently?
I've been working with a personal trainer and she stresses that doing cardio in the proper zone makes a big difference. My gym uses this chart: Heart Rate Chart
Zone 3 is where you want to spend most of your time in order to burn fat, but 30-90 second spikes up into zone 4 have big benefits too (see question 12 on page two.) To spike into 4, I do sprints. (Which is not much of a sprint at this point - more like a jog!)
You should never spend longer than 2 minutes in zones 4 or 5, and if you're a beginner, 30-45 seconds is plenty.
Here's what I do:
One the bike:
1 minute at moderate resistance on the bike (level 8 on my bike), 75-80 rpm
30-45 second sprints at level 10 (95 rpm or higher)
Recover for 60-90 seconds at level 8 (75-80 rpm)
Increase to 10 and sprint again.
Shampoo, rinse, repeat.
On the treadmill:
Starting at incline 3:
Walk for 60 seconds, run for 30, increase incline. (May need longer than 60 seconds to recover, and that's okay.)
Repeat up to incline 8, then start over again. I do it for 20-30 minutes.