Tyler Robbins Fitness

B.Sc. Biochemistry, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), Certified CrossFit Trainer (CCFT/CF-L3), USA Weightlifting Level 1

Filtering by Tag: P90X Heart Rate Zones

Heart Rate Zones

I received a question the other day that reminded me about a common misconception or thought amongst so many, especially those who may just be starting their health and fitness journey. Some things can be quite confusing, such as those "heart rate zone" charts you see plastered in nearly every gym, so I figured I would clear up some misconceptions.

For cardio exercise there various zones of heart rate and I know higher heart rate burns more calories overall but would I be better off dropping my intensity down to more of a fat burning heart rate?

I think the problem people run into, is when they see the type of "Target Heart Rate Zone" chart like the one on the right. There isn't necessarily anything wrong with the chart, however the titles for each "zone" can be a bit misleading, especially for someone who may not fully understand what each zone means.

This can be especially confusing for newcomers to the health and fitness world, those who are interested in burning body fat, so they think that keeping their heart rate at a lower pace will help them burn body fat (adipose) faster or more effectively.

Your body runs on (basically) 2 main sources of fuel: fat and sugar. Fat comes in the form of adipose tissue. Sugar comes from, well, sugar. Dietary sugars are digested and packaged into a product known as glycogen, which is stored in muscle cells for times of fast, explosive bouts of strength/power. Fat, as many of you probably know, is stored as adipose tissue at various places on our bodies.

Fat metabolism (turning body fat into energy) requires oxygen to be present for the chemical reactions to take place. This is also known as oxidation or aerobic metabolism.

Fast, short bursts of energy come from burning glycogen (muscle sugar). This chemical reaction does not need oxygen to be present in order to happen. This is known as anaerobic metabolism.

When we are doing daily activities, such as walking, climbing a few stairs, folding laundry, making dinner, etc. our heart rate stays relatively low and our breathing rate also remains quite constant and in control. This is because our bodies are primarily using aerobic metabolism to meet its energy demands. I say primarily because you may have short bursts of effort throughout your day such as picking up your child, or quickly dodging a bus on the street. In those quick bouts of energy usage, our bodies quickly use some of the stored glycogen.

We are able to keep up with the energy demands placed upon us by breathing and keeping a steady heart rate. As oxygen enters your lungs, your heart pumps the blood to the working cells, as well as removing respiration waste products (Carbon Dioxide) back to the lungs to be breathed out. As long as we can keep a quick enough heart rate and breathe fast enough, our bodies continue to keep up with energy demands through aerobic means.

As your heart rate climbs, however, your body begins to transition from aerobic metabolism to anaerobic metabolism. As you work harder and push yourself, your body physically can't breathe in enough oxygen to keep up with the demands, so that is when you begin to transition to more of an anaerobic energy source. Keep in mind that this is never a "one or the other" scenario. Our bodies are constantly producing a bit of energy from both systems, it's just that at lower heart rates, our primary energy system is aerobic, and as our heart rate soars, we transition to an anaerobic system.

Even when you are in the anaerobic zone (high heart rate), however, and you are primarily burning sugar (glycogen) as a fuel source, oxygen is still present and fat is being burned. Not only that, but as we "spend" some of our anaerobic energy credits, our bodies go into oxygen debt. Oxygen debt has to be paid back! That is why, when you physically push yourself, you then have to catch your breath afterwards. This is known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC).

So, are high heart rates potentially better? Well, let's say you start walking on a treadmill and walk at a brisk pace for 30 minutes. During that 30 minutes of moderate exercise, your body is burning a few calories, your heart rate is slightly elevated, and your breathing has increased a bit. This is beneficial for your cardiovascular system, don't get me wrong, but there are times when you certainly have to push yourself harder than that, especially if you wish to burn more calories. Since you are able to keep up with the energy demands by slightly elevated respiration, your slightly elevated calorie burn stops once that 30 minutes is up.

On the other hand, if you are doing highly intense exercise, perhaps in intervals (HIIT), for 30 minutes, your heart rate is going up and down. Your breathing is laboured. You have to keep fighting to catch your breath. Although the exercise session may end after 30 minutes, your heart keeps pumping at an elevated rate and your breathing stays high for a short time afterwards while your body tries to re-pay that oxygen debt. Not only that, but since you used up some of those glycogen stores, your body will now spend the next few hours trying to replenish those stores, including snatching up any dietary sugar you will be ingesting.

I think a better heart rate chart is one that explains the various zones such as the one on the right. There is definitely something to be said about various heart rate zones, especially if you are training for an aerobic event such as a 10k or half marathon. You can't sustain a high heart rate in your anaerobic zone for too long, so you need to train your aerobic zone to be more efficient so that you can not only run an entire race, but so that you can improve your pace and time as well.

Again, various heart rates are beneficial for various reasons, and elevating your heart rate for extended periods of time is great for overall health and cardiovascular fitness, but in order to burn more calories and have a quick, efficient workout, I say go hard and then go home!

Here's a quick and easy way to calculate your heart rate (grab your calculator):

220 - age = Theoretical Heart Rate Maximum (HRM)

For your targeted zones:

HRM x %

For example, I am 29 years old, so my "Hard" heart rate zone (80-90%) would be:

220 - 29 = 191 beats per minute (BPM)

191 x 0.8 = 153 (low end)

191 x 0.9 = 172 (high end)

So my "Hard" heart rate zone is between 153 - 172 BPM. That also tells me that if I push myself over 172 BPM, I am not going to be able to stay at that pace for very long.





P90X University - P90X Shoulders and Arms





Team Fitness for Life Home Gyms

Lately I've been discussing the benefits of working out at home, and I have even shown you my own home gym setup. I put the word out to my Challenge Group for anyone interested in sharing their home gym to send me pics, so that my readers can get an idea just how versatile and unique people's home gyms can be.

Not only that, but understand the dedication involved for many of these gyms to double as other functions in the home. One of the themes or goals of my blog lately, has been to show people that almost anyone can find a bit of space in their home to exercise. The great thing about working out at home, is that even though you may not have a multi-million dollar facility, you also don't need to pay to rent their equipment. You can build your own gym over time and build something great!

John S.

Here are a few photos of my gym - just in a small spare bedroom (no I didn't choose the awesome paint colour and wallpaper!). Started with just the resistance bands for p90x in 2011-12 and a pull up bar (have since upgraded to beachbody pull up system). I purchased the med balls, gymnastic balls, and SelectTech 552s in Dec 2012 to have ready for X2 in January. Just added the SelectTech1090s and bench this week! All in about $1400 but thats just 2 years of gym membership here and I will have it all forever! Also have a fan, and the TV has built in DVD player, use the black bookshelf as a tabletop to "Write it down"

Jeff T.

Here is my workout area. Nothing special. I did all of Insanity/Asylum vol 1 & 2 in my living room. Then moved everything else outside when I started P90X

Jason T. (Part 1)

I'm 6'4" so I need quite a bit of space to maneuver around. Our old living room was too cramped so I moved the kitchen table back and sort of worked out between the kitchen and computer room in the hallway. Trust me, there were plenty of times I cracked my hands and head on those low overhangs you see there lol.

Jason T. (Part 2)

Here's my (current) basement setup. As much as I hate to say it, I'm planning on replacing that awesome orange carpet with some rubber flooring soon. Hopefully early next year.

Dan M.

Sister's old room. Bowflex bench, Power Blocks adjustable dumbbells, EZ curl bars, and workout mat.  Very steak and potatoes.

home_gym_dan.jpg

Brenda M.

My home gym is my living room so I need a system where it can be tucked away easily. Everything is in my living room except the pull-up bar and chin-up assist.
Inventory: dumbbells (2, 5, 10, & 15s), medicine balls x4, resistance bands x6, agility ladder, rumble roller, roller, TV, DVD player, Audio player, yoga mat, push-up stands, Insanity, Asylum Volumes 1&2, P90X, P90X2, Power 90, 10 min. Trainer, TurboFire, T25, T25 Gamma. not pictured - pull-up bar (for doorway) and chin-up assist. I  also workout at least 2 times per week at work! There, it is a classroom, DVD/projector and a yoga mat!

home_gym_brenda.PNG

Brent G.

I workout in the 3rd car garage area of my house. I love it in this room. I have a large rug for cushioning and my TV is an old one with a built in DVD and VHS player. My other gear includes stability ball, bowflex select tech dumb bells, a couple free weight dumb bells, homemade medicine ball, yoga mat, ab roller, and the pull up bar hangs in the door frame. This room also holds all my other "toys". You can see my skis and my bicycles hang up behind the main picture.

Greg H.

Fridge has water bottles & shakers ready for pre workout & post / recovery shakes .
A Years worth of workouts already to go, beside the TV,
Love my garage, man heaven !

Robert G.

Here is my area. I think it's taken me like 4 years or so to get all the equipment I have. I still need to buy some heavier weights but maybe next year. Oh and I remember trying to sell the TV I use for the longest time but glad I never did.

Andrew B.

I started into fitness about 12 years ago.  I was overweight so I got a treadmill.  After losing a lot of weight it was time to bulk up.  For that I got a bowflex.  When I progressed beyond that I started to lift free weights.   Recently I have been getting into Beach Body programs to add dynamic training to my workouts.  This was a good excuse to buy a lot of fun equipment (pull up bar, bands, medicine balls, etc...).

Gary W.

Larry N.

Another interesting tidbit about my home gym that my wife and I put together. We actually met in a commercial gym, training at 4am. I figured anyone dedicated to their workouts like I am is worth dating! We are still together 17 years later!

Scotty C.

My home gym doubles as a living room. I had to modify the pull-up bar because my door frame is wider than all pull-up bars on the market, some PVC pipe, foam covering to ensure that it doesn't destroy my door frame and tape to hold it all together. Bowflex 1090's, 1 rumble roller, 1 foam roller, 4 medicine ball, 2 stability balls, a bench, resistance bands, e-z curl bar with 2 35's, 2 25's, 4 10's, 2 5's, and 2 2.5's, Tony Horton PowerStands, yoga mat and jump mat, I use both for yoga, because yoga mat on carpet doesn't work, and an Indo Board.

Scott N.

I converted one of the guest bedrooms into my home gym. It's a gradual work in progress and it gets the job done. Buddha's there for encouragement:)

home_gym_scott.jpeg




Weekly Newsletter

Hey Everybody

Holy smokes this year has been flying by...November starts on Friday! I hope you are all doing your best at staying away from the Halloween candy...or at the very least, limiting yourself to just a few treats.

Remember that from about this point, on, people tend to let things "slide" at the end of the year. And by slide, I mean all of that junk food and drink slide down their throats. From Canadian Thanksgiving in October, Halloween, American Thanksgiving in November, right on through holiday and Christmas parties throughout November and December, and of course Christmas/Kwanzaa/Hanukkah (and any other holidays) and New Year's. The very least you could do for yourself during this time of year with all of the indulgences, would be to consistently exercise and get as much nutrition into you as possible (Shakeology anyone?) beyond all of the junk you will be consuming.

Anyways, with November right around the corner, there are also lots of exciting things to discuss, so let's get to it!

1. You have until midnight on October 31st to take advantage of Beachbody's Current Promotions. Over $90 off both the P90X and P90X2 Challenge Packs. With the holidays just around the corner, even if you already have P90X and/or X2, you could pick up some Shakeology for yourself, and give the program away to a friend/family member as a gift!

2. Last chance to sign up for my 60-Day Coach Training course (starts Monday November 4th).

3.. Here is my latest post in P90X University: Plyometrics.

4. I have been hard at work finishing my basement, as well as the space here devoted to my home gym. I have had a lot of requests to see the new gym, and although it is not done (yet), here is a detailed post showing the progress so far.

5. My thoughts on downloading your workout programs...

6. For those of you who aren't following me on Facebook or Twitter yet, or for those of you who DO follow me, make sure to keep an eye out at 8pm on Mondays-Fridays. I have written so many great, insightful blogs that may get missed by so many, especially those of you new to the team, that I figured I would go through and post my favourite/most popular blogs and post from my archive. Here are the 2 I've posted so far:

Small Changes Add Up

Don't Forget About Your Sleep

7. Not really sure why, but Beachbody is announcing their November promotions a day early (October 31st). So, if you are interested in what's going to be offered at discount for November, make sure to check out my website tomorrow. (p.s. I honestly have no idea what's on sale, so just check back with my then!)

And 2 favors that I ask:

1) If you like the hard work I put into writing my blogs and videos, PLEASE help me out by sharing them.  Click the share links below them and share them on FB, Twitter, etc.  It really helps me get more exposure and grow our team!

2) Also, as always, remember that the way I benefit from being your coach is that I earn a commission from any Beachbody products that you purchase, as long as you buy them through my site, tylerrobbinsfitness.com. It helps with the amount of time I spend answering all your questions, writing my blogs, filming my videos, and helping you out. Thank you! I really appreciate it!

Everyone have a great week!





P90X University: P90X Plyometrics





Weekly Newsletter

Hey Everybody!

Well some very exciting personal news to get out of the way right off the bat! My wife had her second ultrasound this morning. The baby is healthy, which is awesome news! We also found out that we are having another boy! I better keep working out the way I am so that I can keep up with my 2 sons...holy smokes!

We are almost into November. Are you planning on finishing your year strong, or just limp towards the finish line as we head into 2014? Why do so many people think that they can just coast at this time of year and just "start fresh" in January? I can tell you right now, from my experiences with "Coaching" and personal training, the people who need a specific date to start something (i.e. January 1st) NEVER reach their goals. Your body and your health don't know what day it is, besides the fact that you just keep getting older. Stop procrastinating and get to it NOW.

Enough of the serious talk ;-)

Lots of exciting things to cover this week:

1. I have already had an amazing amount of interest for my 60-Day Coach Basics Training program, starting on November 4th. I have been hard at work taking the training material passed down to me from some of the top Coaches at Beachbody, including 2011 and 2012 TOP COACH, and my personal Coach, Wayne Wyatt, and organizing it into a comprehensive 60-Day training program. I have also been modifying some of the topics and adding my own input based on what I have had success with as a Coach. You will not only learn how to start and run your business, but also other nuances like making YouTube videos, websites, blogs, etc. I have all sorts of tips and advice to pass down to my team. So, if you have been considering becoming a Beachbody Coach, now is the time to do it, as you can hit the ground running with this training program. Let me know if you're interested.

2. I had another video chat with Google the other day, getting my "Helpouts from Google" listing all set up. This sounds like it's going to be a remarkable opportunity. I will be able to give folks help with their health and fitness problems via video chat for a small fee. What's nice about all of this, is that all of you get to pick my brain and get advice whenever you want since I am your Beachbody Coach. That will not change! In case you still don't know what Google Helpouts is all about, head on over to my blog about the opportunity, including Google's official trailer detailing the program (expected to launch first week of November).

3. Just over a week left to take advantage of Beachbody's October promotions - P90X and P90X2 Challenge Packs on sale for just $180, which is over $90 in savings. Remember, if you have been thinking about becoming a Coach and partaking in my 60-Day training course, any customer who purchases as Challenge Pack has the option of upgrading to "Coach" status for free!

4. Make sure to check out the latest course in P90X University. A comprehensive breakdown of Chest & Back.

5. We are already sitting at 19 members for my P90X3 Challenge Group! If you are at all interested in starting 2014 off with the latest program from Tony Horton himself, join us!

And 2 favors that I ask:

1) If you like the hard work I put into writing my blogs and videos, PLEASE help me out by sharing them.  Click the share links below them and share them on FB, Twitter, etc.  It really helps me get more exposure and grow our team!

2) Also, as always, remember that the way I benefit from being your coach is that I earn a commission from any Beachbody products that you purchase, as long as you buy them through my site, tylerrobbinsfitness.com. It helps with the amount of time I spend answering all your questions, writing my blogs, filming my videos, and helping you out. Thank you! I really appreciate it!

Everyone have a great week!

--

Tyler Robbins
 Independent Team Beachbody Coach
 
tylerrobbinsfitness.com
 
Facebook
 
Twitter
 
Youtube
 
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2013 Challenge Group - Team Fitness for Life





Weekly Newsletter

Hey Everybody

The air is getting colder and we are well on our way through October. The holiday season is right around the corner, and that also means a new year is fast approaching. Lots of exciting things happening as we count down the remaining days of 2013.

This week's topics of interest:

1. I have just given my website a bit of a facelift. Nothing too major, just a few cosmetic changes here and there to freshen up the appearance a bit. Let me know what you think!

2. I have been invited to be one of the founding members of a new service from Google called "Google Helpouts." For those of you who know me will realize that this holds a lot of potential for me, especially considering how much I have enjoyed helping so many of you online these past few years. I will release more details about this endeavour as they are made available to me, so stay tuned!

3. Check out my latest class for P90X University - The Science of P90X: Heart Rate Zones and Intensity

4. Surprise, surprise, exercise is the key to a long, happy life!

5. Don't forget about Beachbody's October Promotions: P90X and P90X2 Challenge Packs are both $180 this month (over $90 savings!).

6. Also don't forget that there are new Shakeology purchasing options available!

7.  In case you haven't heard, P90X3 is coming this December! Get up-to-date with all of the information we know about the program here.

8. If you're interested in P90X3, make sure to check out my X3 Challenge Group. There is already a great group of us who are ready to progress through the program together so why not join us!

And 2 favors that I ask:

1) If you like the hard work I put into writing my blogs and videos, PLEASE help me out by sharing them.  Click the share links below them and share them on FB, Twitter, etc.  It really helps me get more exposure and grow our team!

2) Also, as always, remember that the way I benefit from being your coach is that I earn a commission from any Beachbody products that you purchase, as long as you buy them through my site, tylerrobbinsfitness.com. It helps with the amount of time I spend answering all your questions, writing my blogs, filming my videos, and helping you out. Thank you! I really appreciate it!

Everyone have a great week!

--

Tyler Robbins
 Independent Team Beachbody Coach
 
tylerrobbinsfitness.com
 
Facebook
 
Twitter
 
Youtube
 
Instagram
 
2013 Challenge Group - Team Fitness for Life





P90X University - The Science of P90X: Heart Rate Zones and Intensity