Someone got a heart rate monitor….

I have to admit, sometimes I get sold on stupid things that I see on the internet, and I for sure have nickle and dimed myself on a ton of things that don’t work or aren’t comfortable etc.  I had been curious about heart rate monitors for a while especially when I see my friend Jill Hanner instagram photos of her Polar FT40 heart rate monitor [HRM].  When I was at Jack Rabbit buying my shoes I noticed the display and was super close to buying one but I wanted to do my research before i just splurged.

Then a blogger that I follow made a post about how he got a HRM for father’s day and said that it helped him get through his plateau that he had been stuck in and raved about how great they were…

Being that I am pretty much stuck where I am with my weight loss right now, I figured now was the time to try it out, so I bought the Polar FT60.  What made me choose that one?  The short answer : the Polar website told me too lol.  But really there was more to it than that.

The FT60 creates a training program to help you meet your goals, and updates them weekly.  It also gives you feedback on how you are doing which I think helps as well.

I have worn it for two days so far.  Yesterday I didn’t really get it, there are three heart rate zones, when I set my HRM goals to lose weight it wants me to stay in zone 2 for a majority of the time.  In zone 2 my heart rate is between 135-152 which is difficult for me to stay in this range at the intensity that I like to work out.  My monitor has a graph of the amount of time that it wants me to stay in each of the three zones for the week and just from my hour long run yesterday I went over the amount of time alotted for the week of zone 3!  When I am on the treadmill the only thing that keeps me in zone 2 is by not walking over 3.5 mph and keeping the incline below 6.  That is kind of annoying to me, I feel like it is holding me back.

Today is my longest day at the gym because i don’t have work, or other commitments for the day so I usually stay there for at least 2 hours.  I did an hour of strength and an hour of cardio.  This time I used the arc trainer for 45 min and did intervals of 1 minute at high intensity and 1 minute of low intensity.  This kept me in zone 2 for most of the workout, then I went over and did 15 minutes on the treadmill hoping to get some running in by trying the intervals but it got annoying how often I had to lower the speed  to bring down my heart rate.


So what else have I learned by using this?  That the amount of calories that the machines say I burn or even myfitnesspal say are totally over-estimated.  If I would have typed that stuff into myfitnesspal it would have worked out to well over 1000 calories burned, and even on the machine the arc trainer alone said i burned over 600 calories and that was only 45 minutes of my workout.  So that part is kind of a bummer.  It did tell me that I did good today though haha.

So what do you guys think?  Should I just work out like I was, or listen to this and lower  the intensity that I work out to maintain my heart rate in this sweet spot?

now just to add a little cute-ness… here is my perfectly measured out dinner in 1/2 cup hearts.

get in my belly!

quinoa, mashed sweet potatoes, jamacian jerk black beans, and sweetfire love beets. yum!



Filed under daily, gym

13 responses to “Someone got a heart rate monitor….

  1. I dont know much about heart rate monitors. I think maybe it is how you feel with working out? I dunno hard to say.

    I love your meal its so cute. Id love to hear about how you portion your food.
    Portion control is my huge problem.

  2. I e-mailed an actual trainer to see what he thinks about it. I mean I kind of know that the fat burning zone is a lower heart rate, so it makes sense, but i its actually harder to do that then it is for me to run like a crazy person.

    to be honest I don’t usually go super crazy with measuring. I do it when I feel like it, but a lot of times I eyeball it. It usually isn’t too hard for me to have a “balanced” meal since I am a vegetarian, that happens to like vegetables lol. I personally can’t eat a meal without a ton of colors. If you ask my boyfriend I usually drive him crazy trying to squeeze something green on his plate. I think that is the most important part. Portion control is definetly my weak spot because I have a hard time eating at work. I do hair for a living so if I am booked, I am booked solid and don’t leave my chair the whole day, then I end up running home and eatting a ton. So now I definetly try to eat breakfast and lunch before I leave for work (i don’t go to work till 1) and then I keep raw almonds to snack on… come home and have a protein shake while i make dinner that way I am more full on the protein shake.

    • I tend to do that too, i eat breakfast them dont eat anything between then not enough lunch then nothing for so long and i’m starving by dinner and eat way more then I should. I’m definitely trying to eat more during the day then at night. Its a challenge!

      • In Germany, the people eat their main meal for lunch and then their dinner is more like our lunch. When I was an exhange student I there I definetly noticed a difference in how i felt and slept when I followed that. So now I tend to make lunch my heaviest meal if I am going to eat something heavy. That doesn’t always happen, but it is how i would like it to lol. But I read a lot that it is good for you to make your meals even so if you have 4 meals a day and are on 1200 calories a day to make each meal about 300 calories. which totally makes sense because it will burn off easily. but that of course is easier said than done. unless I was rich and famous and could hire someone to do it for me lol.

  3. You have a much more advanced HRM than me. Its like a little fitness instructor on your arm. haha. I enjoyed putting actual numbers rather than myfitnesspal estimated numbers for calories in my food diary. I was surprised at how some of my days I burned far less calories than I thought. Be careful, that calorie number can become addictive… If I dont hit 500, I feel like I didnt work out and I really feel good when I hit 1000. lol

    • yeah that is what is hard for me, I only burned 415 calories today after an hour on the arc trainer. I could have done more but since I have to go before work, time doesn’t allow. my old method of working out was training really hard during that hour and according to the arc trainer I would burn about 1000 calories. The way the hrm had me working out to stay in my zone it said i burned a little over 800.. then i looked at my wrist and it said only 415 what a bummer. I like this but I just can’t work out for two hours a day to burn the amount of calories that i want to… it is hard enough for me to get up at the time that i do to actually go to the gym before work because I am naturally a night owl. What zone do you usually stay in, does yours split into 3 seperate zones like mine? I can run and stay in zone 3.. but it doesn’t want me there lol.

      • I dont have any zones… I just have a range it wants me in which I go over a lot….

        it will say…out of zone

      • anddddddd my monitor broke!!!!! 4 days in. my treadmill was telling me my heart rate was 210! (wouldn’t that be a hear attack lol) and my watch was frozen at 89… I washed the strap really well and am going to try it again tomorrow. but it was totally frustrating today.

      • wow, I hate i ever recommended anyone get one… hopefully you can take it back and get your money back. sorry you have had such bad luck with it…

  4. gotchya… yeah mine says out of zone when I am either below zone 1 or above zone 3. i am going to see what happens with the week.. I do like that it tells me the percentage of fat calories that I burned. hopefully lots of fat burns away lol.

  5. Angela

    Hey Kristen, I was browsing for something similar when I came across this,
    Did you also look into one of these while searching for a HR monitor? Do you know anyone who has tried it out personally?

    • i honestly never look to Nike for anything. They are a company that I just can’t support, not only for their labor practices, but also because they support Michael Vick. I don’t totally understand the fuel band, it has some weird point system and looks more like a gimmick to me. I went with Polar because i have heard many people have success with it and it had a lot of good reviews

  6. Ann

    Hi Kristin, from what I know about the “fat burning zones”, you should basically just train with the highest heart-rate you’re comfortable with in the amount of time you’re training.
    The science behind the zone-stuff is that when you train with low intensity, around half of your energy comes from fat and half from carbohydrate deposits. The harder you train, the more the body uses the carbohydrate deposits.
    However, training with a high intensity:
    – gives you a higher calorie burn during training
    – increases the “after-burn” (how many calories your body burns in the hours after the training)
    – increases your muscle-mass, which in turn means your body will burn more calories throughout every day
    – means that carbohydrates you eat after training will primarily be used to replenish carbohydrate deposits in the body, which means you will primarily burn fat in this period.
    There’s a lot of varying messages about this, but this seems most logical to me. The scientific arguments can be seen here, though they are in Danish

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