Soooo …. I just got done with yet another great great workout – one that left me literally sopped in sweat from head to toe.
My daughter showed up towards the end of it to get some “pocket money” (more on that later!) and the first comment she made was “My God, Dad! You’re REALLY sweating today!”
So I was, my friend. So I was – – and right now, around 20 minutes or so later – – after a nice hot shower and as I’m writing this to you, I feel like a bazillion bucks, and on that note, let’s talk about target heart rates, and why what the “experts” tell you is all ass backwards and flat out INEFFECTIVE in most cases.
So, a quick Google search on “target heart rates” will reveal plenty of online calculators – and those that have lengthy formulas involving “220 – age” – and “category closest to yours” , and such stuff.
Then we have the vast majority of personal trainers and “shmexperts” recommending that your target heart rate during “cardio” should be between 55% and 70% of your max – wherein your breathing is somewhat labored, but you can still sort of carry on a conversation fairly easily.
And other such stuff, and let me give it to you straight, my friend.
If you’re looking to drop weight – FAST – and keep it off – and drop OODLES of it (again, lightning quick) – the above method won’t work – and is by far the worst method you can try.
In fact, all it’ll do is leave you feeling FRUSTRATED with a capital F at your complete lack of progress, and looking around, is it any wonder that folks go to the gyms galore, but yet end up unable to lose weight around the midsection – or underarms – and other problem areas?
Many years ago, yours truly was given the same advice. Knowing what I did even back then, I naturally rebelled against it.
“That’s utter tosh. Intense bursts get the job done”, I’d tell all and sundry.
“No they don’t! You’re too fat to do intense activity anyway! Take care of your heart! Be careful that … ”
And so insistent used to be the babel of voices against my way that I did what I talk about so often – and what Napoleon Hill sagely said, i.e. SHOW the world first, and then tell ’em!
Funnily enough I still get the evil eye when I talk about my methods, but all good. If it works – my job is to tell you -and give it to you straight, and if that offends the exercise purists so be it. I could honestly care LESS as long as it delivers results!
Back to target heart rates – how much exactly SHOULD they be, you ask?
Well, at least 90-95% or so – and you should aim at KEEPING it there for as long as possible during your workouts!
If all you did your entire life was brief 15 minute workouts where you were huffing and puffing like an ageing locomotive going uphill for the majority – not ALL – of the workout, then you’d never have to worry about packing on weight for your whole life.
I realize the rate sounds way too high, but ’tis what it is, my friend.
Your body benefits from INTENSE bursts of cardio the same way a Ferrari benefits from having it’s valves blown WIDE OPEN on the highway as opposed to doing 30 miles/hour inside the city.
The same way as a tiger stays lean via his one intense burst every two or three days.
The same way Nature intended it to be!
If you’re working out at this intensity, then even getting two words or so out should be a struggle for you.
Often times, people would ask me in China if I “was OK” as I worked out.
And it would be all I could do to gasp “Mei Wenti” out loud – – in ragged gasps (Mei Wenti being no problem in Chinese) and then continue with what I was doing.
And THIS sort of target heart rate is what you should be aiming at. The longer you go the better, but really – if you’re doing stuff like this – 15 minutes or less is all you need.
Word of caution – this sort of thing doesn’t apply to those of you who haven’t done a lick of exercise in years. For these people I’d recommend the treadmill or gentle walking until you are ABLE to do what I just mentioned.
Walk before leaping, in other words, but the problem with this advice is that way too many people take it as an excuses to “take it easy” and be lazy. After all, the experts said it, so it must be right, eh?
Anyway, last, but not least, how do you get your heart beat up there – and keep it there throughout your workout? What routines do you follow?
Well, there’s plenty of stuff you can do, but I’ll give you a few examples.
The routines in the 0 Excuses Fitness System – any of them or a combo therein do the trick just fine. Heck, I was sweating bullets while taking the videos – and that was WITH the air-con on!
The routines in Eat More – Weigh Less are some of the finest and best in this regard as well – highly recommended.
And of course if you mix all this up with a healthy dose of pull-ups – – and some of the stuff in Corrugated Core — you’ll be on your way to greatness in no time!
So thats today’s tip, my friend. Implement it into your routine, and keep me posted on how you do!
P.S. – I forgot to mention the link for Corrugated Core up there – here it is – http://0excusesfitness.com/corrugated-core/