How to Calculate Your Training Heart Rate Zones

5. Calculate Your Aerobic Training Heart Rate for Fitness

The range required to improve aerobic endurance is higher than that needed for fat burning, between 75 and 85 percent of your heart-rate reserve.

Again using the previous example, 75 percent of the heart-rate reserve of 100 is 75, and 85 percent is 85. Again, add the resting heart rate to both numbers.

Re-add your resting heart rate to both numbers: To improve your aerobic endurance, you need to aim for between 155 and 165 heartbeats per minute.

6. Calculate Your Aerobic-Anaerobic Threshold Heart-Rate Range

This range represents the upper limits of aerobic exercise—the point just before you push yourself into exhaustive anaerobic work. Exercising at this intensity is usually done to improve athletic performance. It is not recommended for weight loss.

The range to accomplish this task lies between 85 and 90 percent of your heart-rate reserve. Again, using the example of a person with a heart-rate reserve of 100 and following the same math process as in previous steps: the desired range would be 165 to 170 beats per minute.

Be advised, however, operating at this intensity level will not burn body fat. It becomes a carbohydrate (muscle-glycogen burning) exercise.

7. Calculate Your Anaerobic Training Heart-Rate Range

This is all-out effort and represents 90 to 100 percent of the cushion of your heart-rate reserve. The goal here is to go as fast as you can for as long as you can.

Using the same example, anything from 170 beats per minute to your maximum of 180 beats per minute becomes pure anaerobic, carbohydrate-burning, exhaustive, lactic acid-producing exercise.

This is no-pain, no-gain type training.

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