Does the digital display on your favorite cardiovascular equipment read, "fat burning zone?"
This concept gives people the impression they should keep their cardiovascular exercise intensity moderate (60-75% of maximal heart rate). Hello, do you really think it’s better to hold yourself back from high intensity exercise to lose more weight? This is confusing to say the least!
Just remember you are burning both fat and glycogen, no matter what zone you are working in. You may be technically burning a higher percentage of fat relative to carbohydrates in a particular zone, but overall you will burn more calories and fat at a higher heart rate. The more calories you burn, the more weight you will lose!
Now, you may be able to sustain your exercise for a longer period of time if you work at a more moderate pace, so why not mix it up! Try working in intervals, varying your intensity when you are on the bike or the treadmill. Also, participation in circuit training (varied exercise stations) allows you to mix up low and high intensities, as well.
Bottom line: don’t hold back if you’re in the mood to rev it up! Aside from burning more calories and losing more weight, you will strengthen your heart!