I agree HR monitors give an immediate calorie count to reinforce the hard work. I have a garmin FR60, it is easy to use. I paid about $80 for mine but there are cheaper options. It is easy to track exercises on spark too if they are not listed.
I use and LOVE my Polar F6 monitor. I think it has helped me so much with my training...This way I know if I am working too hard or not hard enough. Its also really motivating to see how many cals Ive burned (and it is WAY more accurate than using the charts here on spark for your exercises). I got mine off of Amazon for about $70. There are some that are more/less depending on what features you want...just make sure to get one with a chest strap - they are the most accurate.
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