The Basics of Getting Fit Using a Heart Rate Monitor

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Simple-to-follow 20-minute H.i.i.t. Workout

The Basics of Getting Fit Using a Heart Rate Monitor

Author: Robert Harden

A heart rate monitor is a device that can be used for measuring the real time heart rate of an individual. There are two basic components of a heart rate monitor; the chest strap and wrist receiver/watch. Using a heart rate monitor can be a great aid in exercise and workout routines. It allows an individual to prevent the occurrence of injury and/or stress, while maintaining a proper balance between their health and exercise routine.

Heart rate monitors can improve your level of fitness by monitoring and recording your heart rate as you exercise. With the use of a heart rate monitor you can view your heart rate at any time and determine the intensity level of your workout. An individual should exercise caution, keeping your heart rate too high, for too long, could result in medical complications. Please make sure you have consulted with your physician before starting any new exercise routine. Your physician will help you determine your heart rate zones and help you determine the length of time you should exercise in those zones.

In addition to consulting with your doctor, another good rule of thumb for determining your maximum heart rate is subtracting your age from 220. This will be the maximum rate in which you do not want to exceed. Then depending on your fitness goals, you want to determine the “heart rate zone”. For example, if you are just starting out, you may want to exercise around 50% – 60% of your maximum heart rate. As you progress and improve, consider 60% – 70% of your maximum heart rate, which would be a good zone for those of you with weight management as your goal. If you are looking to improve your overall fitness level, the aerobic zone is around 70% – 80% of your maximum heart rate. These zones are all great places to start. Then consider three cardiovascular workouts per week, with a duration of approximately 30 minutes. This again will vary by your physicians advice, you fitness level, and your fitness goals, but should be a good place to start. Monitoring the above mentioned zones would not be possible without your heart rate monitor, which makes it an excellent choice when considering a new fitness program.

You heart is a muscle and while you exercise it gets stronger. During your aerobic or cardiovascular exercise, the muscles in your body are being used extensively for the length of time you workout. As you workout, your muscles will need more oxygen and this is supplied from the lungs through the blood. As your muscles need more oxygen, your heart pumps faster in order to meet the demand of your muscles, and this is when the heart rate monitors come into action. If you are working too hard, your heart and your body may not be able to keep up with the demand you are placing on it. This is cause for alarm, and should be prevented. A heart rate monitor will allow you to monitor your heart, and slow down as necessary to prevent injury. On the other side of this, you can increase your efforts, if you notice you are not working out hard enough, or staying in your “zone”.

Using this device will not only improve your fitness and prevent injury, but it will also help you maintain proper health.

The other benefits of a heart rate monitor are as follows:

- Improves your level of fitness by monitoring your heart rate. Monitoring your heart rate keeps you in the “zone”.
- Prevents injury by monitoring your heart rate, if your heart rate climbs too high, you can slow down accordingly.
- It helps in monitoring you overall level of fitness. You can see improvements with time, and makes your progress measurable.
- It motivates and helps us with better performance.
- It makes your goals easily achievable and measurable.
- Most heart rate monitors will count the calories burned during exercise, especially important if you are counting calories to lose weight.
- It allows for effective and efficient exercise.

Heart rate monitors are easily used and are portable. These devices are commonly used by fitness trainers and athletes as a superior way in measuring performance and exercise.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/health-articles/the-basics-of-getting-fit-using-a-heart-rate-monitor-594215.html

About the Author

Robert Harden, fitness coach at Extremely-Fit, invites you to visit http://www.extremely-fit.com for more fitness and nutritional articles. You may also feel free to contact Robert via the contact form for fitness advice and questions. http://www.extremely-fit.com

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