Optimal Fat Burning Heart Rate

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Optimal Fat Burning Heart Rate

The science behind losing weight is simple. Burn more calories than you consume and you will lose weight. A calorie as a measure of energy, and can be measured for each type of food you consume and each type of activity you do. That way you can monitor your calorie intake and how much you burn, to guarantee you lose weight.

What is Your Optimal Fat Burning Heart Rate?

Select from the following sections

Burning Fat
Optimum heart rate zone for burning fat fast

Losing Weight
Optimum heart rate zone for losing weight fast

Which should you focus on to Lose Weight the Fastest?
Do you want to burn fat or lose weight? - these are the surprising facts

What is the Optimum heart rate for burning fat?

The optimum heart rate zone for burning fat is 60% - 70% of your maximum heart rate threshold. Your maximum heart rate threshold has been established to be approximately 220 heart beats per minute (bpm) less your age.

For example if you are 40 years old, your maximum heart rate is 220b bpm less 40 giving 180 bpm.

The next step is to workout the different percentages, based on your maximum heart rate. In this example, 60% of your maximum heart rate is 108 bpm and 70% is 126 bpm. Therefore the optimum heart rate zone for burning fat is between 108 – 126 beats per minute.

Exercising in the fat burning heart rate zone will promote the burning of fat because the body draws on fat stores and combines them with oxygen to produce fuel for your muscles. If your heart rate falls below the optimum heart rate of 108 in this example, the body is not working hard enough to be of any benefit. If your exercise is too intense and your heart rate exceeds 126 bpm for an extended period of time, the body draws on glycogen (carbohydrates) instead of fat, because glycogen is stored in the muscles and is easier to access and burn. Therefore, you lose the benefit of burning fat.

To easily calculate your fat burning heart rate check out the heart rate chart calculator here. Just select your age and fat burning heart rate zone you want to exercise in, and the table will show you the zone you need to exercise within.

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Optimum heart rate for losing weight

If you want to accelerate your weight loss, you need interval training, or High Intensity Interval Training – HIIT. Interval training combines brief intense efforts with recovery periods. The overall workload of interval training has been proven to burn more calories than low intensity aerobic exercise. Weight loss is directly linked to burning more calories than you consume. It’s as simple as that – (hard to do, but simple in theory). So the more calories you burn, the faster you lose weight.

Recent research has shown that high intensity interval training draws on fat during two stages. During the exercise and also during recovery. So in effect your body is burning fat over a longer period of time. Recovery from the more intense effort by refueling your muscles with glycogen occurs with excess postexercise oxygen consumption (EPOC). The EPOC combines with fat, burning your fat stores even more. Studies have concluded that the optimum heart rate for losing weight with interval training is over 70% of your maximum heart rate threshold. That is achieved by following an interval training program.

Interval Training to Lose Weight 3 times faster and in Half The Time

The University of New South Wales developed an interval program, tested on 45 overweight women, that burned fat three times faster than normal aerobic exercise. The interval program, using a stationary exercise bike, comprised of an 8 second sprint followed by 12 seconds of recovery. The interval workout continued for 20 minutes.

The second group of women rode exercise bikes at a constant pace for 40 minutes. The research was conducted over a 15 week period. The women undertaking the interval training lost three times the weight compared to the women who rode at a constant pace, in half the time! It is important to develop a base level of fitness before anyone undertakes interval training because of the stresses it places on the body

To start a weight loss exercise program for free go to http://www.freeweightlossexerciseprograms.net for free exercise programs.

Optimum Heart Rate workouts to Lose Weight

The Fat Burning Myth

The fat burning heart rate zone has had a lot of press lately. But buring fat is only part of the weight loss equation.

If your goal is to lose weight, then it is important to focus on burning calories. That is the only way to lose weight. To focus on exercising only within the fat burning heart rate range can in fact be counter productive. The reason is that long low intensity training sessions will burn not only fat, but also muscle. It is important to build muscle for two reasons. Increased muscle raises your Resting Metabolic Rate (MRM) becuase your muscles need more fuel than fat to function while resting. Therefore, you burn more fat while resting. Also, if your muscles are depleted, you will find it harder and harder to exercise.

Interval Training and Aerobic Exercise

The answer is interval training combined with aerobic exercise which will provide you with a balance of intense exercise and some low to medium intensity exercise. It is difficult to maintain high intensity training when you are starting out, so a combination of interval training with aerobic exercise will allow you to build muscle, burn fat, fire up your metabolism and burn fat, even while you are resting.

The truth is that low intensity training does burn a higher percentage of fat compared to high intensity training. However, to put that fact into perspective, high intensity training will provide the greater weight loss. I will use an example to explain.

Example of Why Low Intensity exercise is Not the best to Lose Weight

I will look at how much you burn when you are resting, then compare that with low intensity exercise and to high intensity exercise. As you can see, the percentage of fat burned for low intensity exercise is 65%, and 97.5 calories were burned. Compare that with high intensity training. Only 40% of fat is used as the fuel source, but more calories are burned in total from fat (150 calories compared to 97.5 calories - 52.5 more calories). The balance of the energy source comes from glycogen (carbohydrates) stored in the muscles and liver. Glycogen is easier to break down into a fuel source than fat, so is the preferred source. The key point to note is that the total calories burned from fat is higher under the high intensity scenario than if you exercised at a low intensity. Also total calories (97.5 calories). It is interesting to note that total calories from all fuel sources is 375 for high intensity exercise compared with 150 calories for low intensity exercise. That means an extra 225 calories have been burned using high intensity exercise for the same amount of time exercising.

% of Fat
from Fat
Resting for 30 minutes 60 60 36 Calories
low intensity exercise for 30 minutes 150 65 97.5 calories
High intensity exercise for 30 minutes 375 40 150 calories