Are you an enthusiastic athlete and do you want to optimise your workouts? Then you cannot avoid using a heart rate monitor. By doing heart rate training, you can keep a close eye on the intensity of your workout. With this, you don't train too lightly, but you also don't go over your limit by working out too intensively.
What are heart rate zones?Your heart rate is very personal. Not only does your fitness affect your heart rate, other factors also influence the number of beats per minute. Examples include stress, alcohol, but also your physique. Therefore, a heart rate zone is generally expressed as the percentage of your maximum heart rate. We generally distinguish between five heart rate zones.
- 1. Very light
This is fifty to sixty per cent of your maximum heart rate. In this zone, you feel like you could go on for hours. It helps you recover from an intense workout and it is good for general health.
- 2. Light
This is sixty to seventy per cent of your maximum heart rate. This is good for your overall stamina and helps burn fat. This too is a comfort zone.
- 3. Moderate
This is seventy to eighty per cent of your maximum heart rate. This is where you notice that you start taking deeper breaths and it feels like a moderate effort. You improve your aerobic fitness.
- 4. Heavy
This is eighty to ninety per cent of your maximum heart rate. This will improve your endurance and your body will burn more carbohydrates to get energy. You start breathing heavily and clearly feel your muscles.
- 5. Very heavy
This is ninety to one hundred per cent of your maximum heart rate. With this, you improve peak performance. You breathe heavily and it is very tiring for your muscles.
What types of heart rate monitors are there?Now that you know the benefits of tracking your heart rate during your workout, it's time to choose a heart rate monitor. You can wear a heart rate monitor in two different ways: around your arm or as a chest belt.
1. Chest belt
This heart rate monitor attaches under your chest. Just set the length right, put it on and train! Chest belts are made of comfortable material for extra comfort. They can connect directly to an exercise bike or other cardio devices, for example. A chest strap with Bluetooth can also share data directly with your tablet, smartwatch or training app.
We also distinguish between analog and digital heart rate monitors. Chest belts and armbands can be either analog or digital.
Analog heart rate monitors
An analog heart rate monitor lets you connect to one device at a time, such as your cardio machine, to track your training results. An analog connection has a shorter range, on average 150 centimeters. An analog heart rate monitor is more affordable than a digital one.
Digital heart rate monitors
Digital (Bluetooth) heart rate monitors have a longer range (one and a half metres on average) than analog meters. So, you can walk a little further from your trainer or device without disconnecting. A digital heart rate monitor can connect to multiple devices at the same time, for example to Tunturi Routes on your mobile phone while sharing your training results with your smartwatch. More modern devices such as a smartphone, smartwatch or tablet can often only connect via Bluetooth. So, pay close attention to that if you want to make use of that in your training and have to choose between analog and digital.