Your warm-up, like all initial aerobic activity, needs to be performed within your aerobic zone. This is the range within which you want your heart to operate while you are performing your aerobic exercise. Think of your aerobic zone as the base which you must first establish for rehabilitation, and also for moving into the higher levels of performance in your chosen activity.
Calculating your aerobic zone - Use the following formula to calculate your aerobic zone
1. Subtract your age from the number 220. For example, if I am 40 years old, then 220 - 40 = 1802. Obtain the low end of your aerobic range by multiplying the result of step 1 by 0.6. In our example: 180 * 0.6 = 108 3.
3. Obtain the high end of your aerobic range by multiplying the result of step 1 by 0.7. In our example: 180 * 0.7 = 126
This is your aerobic heart rate zone within which you need to work to develop your aerobic capacity. It is the zone which will best speed your recovery from an injury. If you work above this zone you run the risk of injury. If you work below this zone, you will not achieve the maximum benefits provided by your aerobic warm-up.
Calculating your anaerobic zone - Calculate the ideal heart-rate for your anaerobic zone by using the following procedure:
1. Subtract your age from the number 220.
- For example, if I am 40 years old, then 220 - 40 = 180.
2. Obtain the low end of your anaerobic range by multiplying the result of step 1 by 0.8.
- In our example: 180 * 0.8 = 144
3. Obtain the high end of your anaerobic range by multiplying the result of step 1 by 0.85.
- In our example: 180 * 0.85 = 153
This is your anaerobic heart rate zone within which you need to work to develop your anaerobic capacity. It is the zone which will best assist in increasing muscle mass, speed healing, and increase immunity to disease.
Interval Training and Anaerobic Zones
Interval training is the classic method for increasing your anaerobic zone. There are many books, references, and sports specialists who can help coach you through this process.
Find a good program that works for you and keep the following tips in mind as you start interval training:
- Before doing any type of interval training, always warm up for at least 10 to 15 minutes within your easy or low aerobic zone.
- Train within your anaerobic range for a maximum of 3 minutes.
- Then return to your 0.6 to 0.7 (aerobic) level for five to seven minutes.Your heart rate should return to this 60%- 70% range when you are doing your aerobic training. If it does not, consider this to be an indication that you need to spend more time developing your aerobic capacity.
Note: I highly recommend purchasing a heart rate monitor if you are going to work on increasing your aerobic capacity. They are well worth the investment.