Monitoring your heart rate can really help you get the most out of your workouts, and improve your fitness.  Heart rate monitors can help you stay accountable to your workouts in a safe zone, and therefore lose weight and improve fitness. Monitors measure the rate at which your heart is beating through sensors built into a strap worn around the chest. The feedback is then displayed on whichever compatible device you’re using (at Pinnacle, we use Myzone belts)

Your heart is a muscle, and so it becomes stronger as you exercise it. However, going harder and faster isn’t always the best way to reach your fitness goals. You need to understand your heart rate zones, and train at the right intensity for your goals.

Exercise can be divided into different intensity zones; 50-60% heart rate max is a comfortable effort, 60-70% heart rate max is average effort, 70-80% heart rate max is above average effort, 80-90% heart rate max is hard effort but sustainable, and 90-100% is as hard as you can go, but usually for short periods of time.

Generally, training between 50-70% heart rate maximum is best for goals of weight or fat loss.

Training between 60-90% heart rate maximum is best for fitness or aerobic capacity improvement goals.

Finally, training 90-100% is very hard and is used to achieve maximum performance. Not usually kept for a long period, so intervals of this zone is generally how you will see athletes train.

If you want more advice on this, ask one of our trainers or coaches in your next session.

*Results may vary. Exercise and proper diet are necessary to achieve and maintain weight loss and/or muscle gain over an extended period of time.