Questions about target heart rate & losing fat
I've never been too concerned with target heart rate when exercising. I would always just hop on a piece of cardio equipment and go from there. I've been reading about the importance of keeping within a certain target heart rate based on your exercise goals/desired outcomes.
I don't need to loose weight. I'd really just like to be more toned and loose fat. Most people would probably look at me and say I look fine, but I see the little imperfections, hence, I think I could stand to tone up a bit more.
I'm wondering what my target rate should be (with a fat loss goal in mind) when I do my cardio. I monitored it today on the elliptical and it was in the range of 140-160, and I really wasn't pushing myself all that hard. I'm not sure how accurate those heart rate monitors are on the machines at the gym. I've read that for fat loss, target rate for fat loss should be in the range of 120-140-ish. Is this right?
Here are my stats -
Female, 31 years old, approx 5 foot 6, approx 125 lbs. I try to workout 5-6 days per week.
I'll do 2-3 days of full body weights (gym machines). Typically 1-2 of those weight sessions are on my lunch break, so I really only have about 45 minutes, the other day is Saturday, so I don't really have a time limit. I work my legs (leg press, inner/outer thigh machines, leg curl, leg extension), arms/back (bicep curls, lat pull down, tricep, and chest press), and abs. I do 2-3 sets (depending on time) of 10 reps each on each machine and use a weight that is challenging by the end of the last few reps of each set.
For cardio, I'll do 2-3 days as well. Again, typically 1-2 of those sessions are during lunch breaks, so about 40 minutes max. The other day is Saturday, following my weights - I limit the cardio after weights to about 30 minutes because I'm usually pretty tired. My cardio of choice is the elliptical because I have bad knees. I have a treadmill at home and I don't mind using it, but running tends to bother my knees and back a bit. I run a bit here and there just for a change.
As far as diet - I've always been able to eat pretty much what I wanted - up until the last 3 years or so (age is sneaking up on me!) I try make an effort to eat well. I don't count calories or anything like that. I try to get in my fruits and veggies; lean meats, cheese and yogurt for protein. I eat a lot of Balance protein/energy bars. I drink a lot of water. The only other things I drink are diet soda, coffee, skim milk, and an occassional vitamin water 10.
Well, that's probably way too much info, but I'm just trying to get some thoughts from the folks here about what I should do to make sure I'm exercising efficiently to burn fat and tone up.
Last edited by snogal; 07-10-2009 at 12:35 PM.