How do you determine your target heart rate during exercise for weight loss?


Quick Answer

Depending on your goals, you should try to reach between 60 and 85 percent of your maximum heart rate for weight loss, according to WebMD. Maximum heart rates vary according to the individual, but you can determine your maximum heart rate using a simple formula.

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Full Answer

A common formula for determining maximum heart rate consists of subtracting your age in years from 220, explains WebMD. Another possibly more accurate formula multiplies the age by 0.7, and then subtracts that figure from 208. Although the number is an approximation, it is generally accurate to within 10 to 20 beats per minute, and it can eliminate the risk of exercising too intensely. Many people find a heart rate monitor helpful for keeping track of real-time heart information and managing a consistent pace.

The intensity and duration of a workout determines the amount of calories burned, notes WebMD. The fat-burning zone, between 60 and 75 percent of the maximum heart rate, burns fewer calories than the cardio or aerobic zone, which is between 75 and 85 percent of the maximum heart rate. You burn more calories at a higher intensity, but it's easier and safer to maintain a lower intensity workout for a longer period of time.

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