Written by Caitlin

Training based on heart rate

Exercise bikes, ellipticals, and treadmills that can measure your heart rate. It's really useful to precisely measure in which heart rate zone you're exercising. This helps you achieve your goals more quickly. Each heart rate zone has its own results. If you want to work on your endurance, it's important you stay in a higher heart rate zone than when your goal is to lose weight. I'll explain how heart rate zones work and what you can do with them.

Zone 1: Recovery

Heart rate zone 1

This heart rate zone is the one you use after a serious workout. To your body, it serves as a kind of delayed cooling down. Because you're exercising, your body will absorb more oxygen and muscle aches will decrease. If you're a beginner, this is nice zone to start in.

Zone 2: Fat burning

Heart rate zone 2

You'd expect that you'd have to ride your bike at a high speed in order to lose weight. That's not the case though. Heart rate zone 2 burns the most fat. That pace is a lot slower than you might expect.

Zone 3: Improving endurance

Heart rate zone 3

Do you quickly go out of breath when you take the stairs instead of the elevator? Working out in heart rate zone 3 helps you improve your endurance. That will make it easier for you to continue your workout and make it longer over time.

Zone 4: Speed training

Heart rate zone 4

When pedalling in heart rate zone 4, you'll quickly get out of breath and lactic acid will build up in your muscles. This will mainly help you improve your speed. You won't be able to keep working out in this zone for long. Keep this type of workout on your exercise bike or elliptical brief.

Zone 5: Intense sprint

Heart rate zone 5

In this heart rate zone, you go all out. You can't go any faster or give any more effort than this. These short, powerful sprints help you improve your speed. You can't keep up pedalling in this zone for more than a few minutes. This heart rate zone is primarily used by professional athletes.

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