When clients ask us do I get in the fat burning zone and how often do I need to train the general rule or recommended guidelines for exercise are: 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each week, or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity per week.
‘Moderate aerobic activity’ is defined as swimming, walking, mowing the lawn, gentle bike riding.
‘Vigorous aerobic activity’ is defined as running, aerobic dance class, stair climbing.
It is recommended when you participate in these activities your heart rate is in the ‘fat burning zone’. This means that you exercise at a level of intensity where you are able to keep your heart rate at 60-80% of your maximum. (Maximum heart rate is 220 minus your age). This type of exercise is also known as steady state exercise.
You may have heard of, or even participated in, HIIT; High Intensity Interval Training. HIIT is where you train with short time periods (intervals) of hard and fast (high-intensity) exercise. Essentially, HIIT workouts involve a work period and a rest period. Your ‘rest’ period is spent with you doing a low-intensity activity, or simply resting. The ratio of work to rest can vary depending on your goal.
There are claims that HIIT is more beneficial for you than steady state exercise. The theory is that you achieve a higher EPOC (Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption) after exercise with HIIT and therefore a better caloric ‘after-burn’. Also with the intermittent high intensity bursts of exercise it is thought to benefit the cardiovascular system more than steady state exercise.
The facts: There are studies to show there is a higher EPOC after HIIT compared to a steady state exercise session of the same duration. So does this mean we all need to be doing HIIT sessions?
It’s not a matter of what exercise is right, it’s a matter of what exercise is right for you?
By: Kerrie Haines – Fitness Inside Out Personal Trainer (Brisbane)
For more information about how a Fitness Inside Out can help you, email us today