How Efficient is Your Aerobic Work-out?

by Tawny McLellan
It seems that there are never enough hours in the day to get everything done, including your fitness program. If you are someone who manages to keep up with your work-outs anyway, congratulations! One way to help you manage the time you spend getting fit is to make absolutely sure that you are working out in the most efficient way possible for your goals. Here's an idea that will help you monitor how efficient you really are.

When doing aerobic activity for cardiovascular fitness or fat loss, be sure to check your heart rate 2-3 times, starting about 12 minutes into the work-out session, to make sure that you are in your target zone. If you don't have a heart monitor, then take your pulse manually either at the carotid artery on either side of the neck, or on the wrist at the radial artery. Be sure NOT to use your thumb as it has it's own pulse. Using a watch or clock, count the heart beats, starting with zero, for 10 seconds. Then multiply this number by 6 to get your heart rate per minute.

To find out your target heart rate range, subtract your age from 220. Multiply that number by 65% and again by 80%. Those two numbers are
the minimum and maximum heart rate for you to work-out safely and achieve the desired training effect. This is called your Target Heart Rate Range. If your pulse is less than your target, you need to speed up or raise the intensity level until you reach your zone. Similarly, if your pulse is too high, you need to slow the intensity somewhat until you drop back into your desirable range. Try it! This will improve the efficiency of your aerobic training.

Copyright Tawny McLellan
About the author: I have been in the health and fitness field for over 20 years. I am a certified personal fitness trainer who has created the Total Success Weight Loss Program. This unique program is the only real solution to permanent weight loss. In the recent past I have been the owner/operator of a health food store and restaurant, and later a full service fitness center. I am also a professional natural bodybuilder who has competed over 30 times. I love writing about health and fitness, and have published many articles on this topic. My other passion is animals and wildlife. I am currently training Shasta, my companion wolf. Yes, she's a real wolf!