I am 27, 6'6'', 241lbs, cutting. The cut is going very well, just wanted to make sure i am correct in my thinking that i should keep my heart rate between 120-140 bpm for the best % of fat burning. Any more than that and i will go in to a more cardiovascular training where i am burning less % of fat and building more of a cardiovascular endurance. I have been doing the low intensity cardio in the 120-140 bpm range for 60 min. in the mornings on an empty stomach and then hitting my weight training in the afternoon after work.
Please let me know if i am incorrect in this line of thinking. All input appreciated.
Low intensity cardio does burn more %fat for fuel but the TOTAL fat used for fuel is often less. It comes down to how many total Calories were burned at the end of the day. Does this make sense? Look at it this way. 80% of 10 is 8, while 50% of 20 is 10...where the %'s = fat% for fuel. Yet, 10 > 8.
My suggestion is often HIIT. But in your case, you said your cut is going really well. So why change anything? Just ride the results and worry about this crap when you need to.
Last edited by RichMcGuire; 01-31-2011 at 10:28 PM.
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Perhaps I wasn't clear, I apologize. My question is not whether I should do low intensity or HIIT. I'm going to continue low intensity, it works for me. My question is specific to the heart rate portion. Is 120-140bpm the best possible range for fat burning for my age/height/weight? Or should it be higher (150+) or lower (110)?
This one is kinda tricky, and depends on your goals. A higher intensity will burn a greater amount of fat per hour, but will also burn a greater amount of carbohydrate as well. Also, a higher intensity will affect recovery.
If someone is trying to lose weight, the higher intensity is probalby better, because it creates a greater caloric expenditure (more calories per hour, and possibly EPOC).
If someone is not trying to lose much weight, or is already training a lot with weights, then the lower intensity cardio might be a better bet. Fasted morning cardio will allow you to burn mainly fat, and will usually not hurt recovery....
As for intensity, fasted cardio needs to be pretty low intensity.... The general rule is non panting, and something that you could maintain for multiple hours.
If its non fasted, then the intensity will be higher.
As Rich suggested, if its working, just keep it EXACTLY how it is. When it stops working then try changing things around.
I used to meticulously try to stay between 120-135bpm.
Then I realized I do a much better job mobilizing fat at a very high intensity (while fasted).
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There is no magic number to where you'll burn more fat. Too many factors to take into account. Don't overcomplicate things with little details like BPM. If you're doing low intensity cardio do just that, as long as your not panting or have high O2 debt you're fine.
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