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Reference Guide to Exercise Intensity

An In-Depth Look at Heart Rate, RPE and the Talk Test


    great article. - 9/1/2012 5:07:19 PM
  • Great article. Thanks! - 7/27/2012 12:55:49 PM
    I learned something. - 6/10/2012 9:22:48 AM
  • And what if you are walking 17 mph but it is all hills (up and down) -- and fairly steep ones at that? I guess I have to use the perceived exertion scale. I am just not going to be doing any calculations on my heart rate. - 5/13/2012 6:12:12 PM
  • Frankly I find the math of all of this very hard to take there has to be an easier way. I do have a heart rate monitor but every time i wear it i react to it. No matter how much I clean it. I am reluctant to buy another one because it will likely happen aagain. Pat in Maine.
    I love most of the articles I read but the complcations using metric and standard just confuse the old head. - 4/30/2012 7:55:28 AM
  • sorry, correction:
    for the first method 96-128
    for second: 118-139

    That's still a difference of 11-12 BPM, which is a big difference! - 4/25/2012 3:13:25 PM
  • Did anyone notice that the target heart rate for the same 40 year old woman was way less at moderate (60%) level in the first example than 50% (easier level) in the second????????

    SOMETHING is way off here! Figuring out my own rate, as a 60 year old with a RHR of 56, and who walks steadily, most days for over an hour) with the first calculation I get (for the 60-80%range) 107-128 BPM as Target. This matches what I FEEL when walking (in my aerobic walks I average 97-116, MAXIMUM 125).
    In the second, I get a whooping 118 minimum, up to 138 for 80% What I can't fiqure out is why the second method, which takes heart rate into account, I would expect to have a LOWER result (as my heart rate is low....).
    - 4/25/2012 2:43:43 PM
    This is a great article! I'm not one that the THR works for--my resting heart rate is very high, and according to my doctor if I worked at my THR according to those formulas I'd likely suffer from cardiac arrest. So no thanks. I do, however, use the talk test when I workout. I'm hoping that eventually my resting HR will be more normal as I continue exercising. - 4/19/2012 3:10:54 AM
    This is from the article. "Keep in mind that some people have exercise restrictions due to injury, health conditions or medications that will affect your recommended intensity level, so always check with your doctor first. "

    I'm not a doctor but I am 70 yrs. old and deal with a knee problem that keeps me from getting my pulse above 20%. After months of walking my blood pressure (rarely above normal) goes down a little and my resting pulse goes down. Only time will tell if it will get you off the meds but if you don't walk you will likely stay on the meds. - 1/12/2012 11:31:35 AM
  • Ok so here's "dumbass" with the question nobody wants to ask - I have controlled high blood pressure - what do I use for a target HR and is it possible to help me get off the meds? - 1/10/2012 8:50:26 PM
  • SPPETE11
    Thank you, this is why I enjoy Spark People's wed site, I always learn something new.
    - 2/12/2011 6:36:21 PM
    Thank you!!! A very important article- I have learnt a lot!!!! - 1/12/2011 1:37:27 PM
  • good article, very informative! Thanks - 1/10/2011 7:21:50 PM
    I thought this was a really good article! I think it is very important to know/keep track of how hard you are working. I like that there are several methods. Remember though it is an individual thing. I know Labrinyth commented on looking at other people's HR - you shouldn't do that and passed judgements. I have to take a beta-blocker (and I'm not overweight). Drugs like that literally stop your HR from going too fast. If I have just taken it my maxrate HR is about 105 yet I am working out plenty hard! If it is late in the day I can get my HR up to 140 with barely doing anything. I tend to use the the 'Talk' test since obviously my HR is not the best gauge. It is true I will never be able to be a professional athlete but that doesn't mean I still can't get lots of benefits from exercising! - 1/10/2011 12:46:06 PM
  • Just bought a heart rate monitor and figuring the basics.Have been using it since 2 days and realised i am constantly in the 80% glad! - 11/12/2010 2:18:39 AM

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