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Stride to the Beat: How to Train with a Heart Rate Monitor

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Even technophobes can benefit from training with a heart rate monitor. "It answers that eternal question of how fast is fast and how slow is slow," says Roy Benson, a running coach and coauthor of Heart Rate Training. Here's how to plug in and teach your old jog new tricks.

Meet Your Max

First, you need a yardstick for gauging your intensity level. Use this formula to find your maximum heart rate, or how many times your heart beats per minute (bpm) when you're going full throttle.

206 - (your age) x 0.88 = ____ bpm

So if you're 26, that's 180 x 0.88 = 158 bpm.

Get in the Zone

Now you can calculate your intensity as a percentage of your maximum heart rate rather than guessing how hard you're going. Using your device, aim for the bpm percentage ranges below, based on the type of workout you're hankering for.

60% to 75%
Light to moderate intensity: An easy sing-if-you-want pace for building endurance or recovering between sprints.

75% to 85%
Moderately challenging: A brisk pace (you can speak only in choppy sentences) that boosts your aerobic capacity so you can go longer before you feel fatigued.

85% to 90%
High intensity: A push-it pace (you can eke out a word or two at a time): good for intervals between one and four minutes long, which challenge your V02 max.

90% to 95%
Sprint: An all-out pace for short intervals of up to one minute; works fast-twitch muscles, which are your power boosters.

Next:  The Plan


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cary42793 wrote:

I am a relatively fit 44 year old. My max calculates to 167. During my workouts I am often way over that and around 180 during the rigorous parts, but comes down very quickly. I am trying to determine if that is good or bad.

10/14/2013 11:00:55 AM Report Abuse
dawn_cattermole wrote:

Thank you Meyerjeh1 for the correct Max HR equation.....your equation makes a lot more sense!

10/12/2013 10:38:49 PM Report Abuse
judithlilly2428 wrote:

my Aunty Kate recently got Ford Fiesta by working part-time from a home computer. more tips here

9/24/2013 09:50:43 AM Report Abuse
celinetansen9 wrote:

I just got paid $5628 working off my laptop this month. And if you think that's cool, my divorced friend has twin toddlers and made over $8.1k her first month. It feels so good making so much money when other people have to work for so much less. This is what I do,

9/23/2013 12:05:42 PM Report Abuse
dsommese wrote:

Monitoring the heart when working out is important, so this is great info to know. A healthy heart can mean a long life. Here is a good article regarding limiting the formation of scar tissue should a heart attack or other type of injury occur.

9/23/2013 10:15:09 AM Report Abuse

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