Tag Archives: exercise intensity

The next evolution of interval training

Evolution of interval trainingScientists are never satisfied. It has been known for some time that high intensity interval training (HIIT for the experts) is more effective and efficient than regular endurance exercise to improve your endurance and lose weight. However, interval training is not a complete form of exercise, because it does not improve muscle strength. Scientist from the Saskatchewan Canada developed a more complete form of training and performed a study on it while they were at it. These were their results.

Is low intensity endurance training the best intensity for weight loss?

Fact or Fable?

Many people who want to lose weight often perform long cardiovascular workouts at a low intensity. Many cardio machines also provide guidelines wherein exercise on lower intensities is often named weight loss or fat burning zone. (Usually around 60-70% of Maximum Heart Rate). But is it the most effective training intensity for weight loss?

Difference between the High Bar Back Squat and the Low Bar Back Squat

The barbell backHigh Barbell Back Squat squat is a very popular and effective exercise to increase the strength and size of leg muscles. However there are two different variants of the barbell back squat. The high bar back squat and the low bar back squat. Weightlifters and strength and power athletes mostly use the high bar back squat or “Olympic Style” squat. Which is characterized by a narrower stance and upright torso. The barbell is placed on top of the trapezius muscle around the 7th cervical vertebrae. Powerlifters mostly use the low barb back squat because they believe that it allows higher weights. Stance width is more variable but the trunk is more inclined than during a high bar back squat. Bar placement varies from on top of the posterior deltoids, below the scapular spine, on the scapular spine or two inches below the shoulders. To determine the differences between the effects of the high bar and low bar back squat, researchers performed the following study.

Monitoring Exercise Intensity

Exercise intensityMonitoring exercise intensity is one of the most important factors that determines if your workout is effective or not. Whether your goal is to lose weight or improve your endurance, you should keep track of your exercise intensity when you want results. For cardio training the most accurate way to measure exercise intensity is the oxygen uptake. However this requires expensive and often cumbersome equipment to be practical in everyday training. Fortunately there are three other ways that can be used effectively during your workout.

Strength training for toning

Strength training Strength training for toningis an excellent way for both men and women to improve their figure and lose fat in unwanted places. However strength training is unfortunately not the first thing that comes to mind when someone wants to lose fat and improve their figure. Although men aren’t shy of strength training and lifting weights to look better, women are often scared of it, because they fear the body builder look. So sometimes they start special training programmes in which they perform strength training for toning rather than muscle growth. Does this work and if so, what do you need to do?

Interval training surface: sand or grass?

Outdoor training is increasingInterval training surfacein popularity and interval training, one of the most effective and efficient methods to increase endurance, is very suitable to try outside the gym. Outdoor training can be performed on different surfaces. To find out to what extent interval training surface influences training effects, scientists from Australia started the following study.

Weight loss after pregnancy using videogames

(02-25-2014) Losing weight after pregnancyFitness gaming can be quite difficult and the gained weight often remains where it is. Different studies have shown that physical activity and fitness exercise are effective ways to make the additional pregnancy pounds disappear. Many young mothers however find it difficult to keep up regular exercise because the young baby requires a lot of attention and leaving the house to exercise is often difficult. Certrain computer games require people to exercise to play. Researchers from Japan performed a study on the effectiveness of playing these active computer games on weight loss after pregnancy. 

Interval training vs endurance training for weight loss

(7-25-2014) High intensity interval training,Interval training vs endurance training also known as HIIT is increasing in popularity because of its’ effectiveness in increasing endurance. It has also been consistantly shown that it is more effective in helping weight loss and stimulating fat metabolism than endurance training at one steady state intensity. Most interval training protocols used in those studies were quite high in intensity, but did take a fair amount of time to complete. To see if a shorter high intensity interval training can be effective as well, scientists of the Universities of West and Central Florida performed the following study which investigates which is better: interval training vs endurance training.

Effects of Crossfit

(Originally posted on: 11-18-2013)

Crossfit is a very popular form of fitness training Effects of Crossfitwhich aims to improve all aspects of fitness. Crossfit constantly varies exercises from Powerlifting, bodyweight exercises and kettlebell training. This is combined with different forms of cardiovascular training. Because Crossfit emerged fairly recently, little research has been performed up until now. Scientists from the Ohio State University therefore performed a study on the effects of Crossfit on aerobic endurance, fat percentage and muscle mass.

How to increase muscle mass effectively

One of the most important reasons for many men to train is to increase their muscle mass and look more athletic. To achieve this goal many different training methods have been tried and much research has been done to determine what works and what is less effective or even counter productive. This article will give you best tips science can give you on how to increase muscle mass effectively.

How to lose weight and fat effectively

Many people exercise to lose fat by exercising to improve their looks and/or their health. Lose weight and fat effectivelyBut more often than not, hardly any fat is lost, people get frustrated and quit training altogether. In response to the rising demand in fat loss, much research has been performed to determine the most effective ways of losing fat. This article will give you best tips science can give you on how to lose weight and fat effectively.

Determining your maximum heart rate

Determining maximum heart rateA very important part of cardiovascular training to consider is the training intensity. The training intensity is one of, if not the most important fator in achieving results with cardiovascular training. Several ways to determine the training intensity are available, which are discussed in this article. Exercise intensity can be expressed in various ways, but the most accurate method that is practical as well is to express it as a percentage of maximum heart rate.

When expressing the intensity in percentage of maximum heart rate, it is necessary to determine maximum heart rate (MaxHF). An easy method to determine MaxHF is the following formula: MaxHF = 220 – age. For example, someone who is 40 years old would have a MaxHF of 220 – 40 = 180 beats per minute (BPM). However this formula is based on an average, and as is often the case in populations there is a certain deviation from the average, which in this example is 12-17 BPM. In other words, if we translate it to the example of 40 year old people, 68% of 40 year old has a maximum heart rate between 168-192BPM and 95% will be between 156-204BPM. As one can see, the spread is quite large, which makes the formula above not the base training intensity on.

The best method to determine MaxHF is to determine it during exercise. This requires a reliable heart rate monitor, and intensity during the test is increased progressively until a plateau in heart rate is reached. This test is very exhausting and should only be performed by healthy people or people who have permission from their doctor.

When the training goal and MaxHF are determined, the training heart rate can be determined. This is done by multiplying the required training intensity with the MaxHF. For example, when someone wants to train at an intensity of 75-85% of HFMax and HFmax is 180, the heart rate range to train at is: 135-153BPM (180 x 75% = 135 and 180 x 85% = 153)

References:

-Baechle, T.R., Earle, R.W., Aerobic Endurance Exercise. In:Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning. Third Edition. Human Kinetics 2008.

-Wilmore, J.H., Costill, D.L., Kenney, W.L. Cardiorespiratory responses to Acute Exercise. In: Physiology of Sport and Exercise. Fourth edition. Human Kinetics 2008.

1 Repetition Maximum

Often training intensity guidelines for strength training are expressed in percentage of the 1 Repetition Maximum or 1RM. The 1 repetition maximum is the highest amount of weight or resistance with which someone can make one repetition with proper form in a particular exercise. When the 1RM is known for a certain exercise, it is possible to estimate the resistance or weight necessary for the prescribed number of repetitions.