Face it. Sometimes when you are in the middle of a hard workout, you might actually feel like you’re going to die. Sweat starts pouring. Muscles fatigue and your heart pounds. This is it! Then before you know it, it’s over. You have averted death and burned a few calories. I have had near death experiences at multiple gyms, Prospect Park (a number of times) and more than a few spin classes.
What I have learned though, is that your brain will lie to you. My entire world changed when I purchased my first heart monitor. Placing the plastic strap around my chest, the watch picked up my heart rate signal pretty quickly. The monitor is supposed to measure your heart rate and level of exertion during a cardio exercise. After about 5 minutes into my workout I was sure that I was approaching my target rate. To my surprise, I was no where near it! Even when I got dangerously close to my near death mode of workout, I was just hitting my aerobic goal. I learned a tough lesson that day: sometimes the mind is not the best measurer of workout intensity. I love my heart monitor for the truth it brings. Once you become more aware of how your body works and responds to a workout, you can adjust your diet and workout plan accordingly.
The media and healthcare professionals might make us feel as if we are from some cookie cutter mold, but we are all different. Spin class works better for me in the early AM with conditioning in the evening. While my other friends like a lunchtime cardio kick. Whatever the case, a good heart monitor is a solid investment that helps you get results.