How to Measure Exercise Intensity


Do you know how hard you should be working out in the gym? Trust me; most guys out there have no clue about exercise intensity. Exercise intensity means the level of hardship that our body is required to undergo while performing a physical activity. In general, the idea is to work hard but not too hard. Today, there are many means out there that helps us measure our exercise intensity so that we end up reaping maximum benefits for our efforts.

As such, one is advised to train within the target heart rate range which is 60% to 80% of one’s maximum heart rate. That being said, the intensity of your training also depends upon your fitness level. Beginners are advised to train at a lower range, whereas experienced players can afford working out at a higher range. One can use the below mentioned guidelines to determine their intensity level.

Beginners: 50% to 60%

Intermediate: 60% to 70%

Advanced: 75% to 85%

While starting off your exercise regime, you need to aim for the lowest heart rate zone. Gradually, one can consider working out at an intensity level of 60% to 70%. After a year or so, one can consider hitting the peak level of 75% to 85% of their maximum heart rate. That being said, if your aim is to simply stay in shape, then you don’t have to ever train at an intensity level of 75% to 85%.

Target heart rate method and pulse check have been in use for several years to measure exercise intensity. Today, the market is flooded with more equipment to measure exercise intensity. You will often find people using heart rate monitors to track their progress as well as their intensity levels.

Talking about the measures used to measure exercise intensity, one of the ways that offers precise measurement is to calculate one’s target heart rate. One simply needs to subtract their age from 220 to reach to their maximum heart rate figure. If you are training for high intensity, then you need to stay within the range of 75% to 85% of the derived figure.

Your best bet over here would be to wear a heart rate monitor to easily track your heart rate so that you can stop anytime to count your pulse rate. Pulse rate can be checked by placing your carotid pulse at the side of your neck.

Talk test is another widely popular method used to measure exercise intensity. The results obtained from this test are subjective in nature. A person simply needs to train at a level, wherein he/she can carry on a conversation while working out. The idea over here is that one should be able to breathe without any problems while carrying out any physical activity.

On a more general level, it’s advisable that one sticks to moderate intensity level because if you workout too lightly, you might end up taking several years to attain your goals. On the other hand, if you train hard, you might end up getting injured.

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Christopher Jacoby

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Christopher Jacoby