Polar Training Zone
Heart Rate Calculator

What's Your Heart Rate Zone?

Polar Heart Rate Calculator
Polar's Target Zone Calculator
Your Age:
Heart Rate Monitors Tips

Integrating heart rate monitors into your exercise program:
There are specific Target Zones (TZ) that help guide your members to the right intensity. A TZ is a high and low heart rate range that is based on a % of your maximum heart rate. You can use a formula based on their age, or you can figure out their maximum heart rate. You then take %'s of that to get their Target Zones.

Key Target Zones
  60-70% of max hr Good for weight loss, building endurance or recovery
  70-80% of max hr Good for improving cardiovascular fitness
  80%+ of max hr Interval workouts for improving athletic performance

Determining target zones:
This formula used in the target zone calculator above is the Karvonen formula, which takes into account a person fitness level by incorporating their morning resting heart rate (MRHR).

First, you will need to get your member's average MRHR:

Morning 1# + Morning 2# + Morning 3# = ( X)
(X) divided by 3 = Morning Resting HR (MRHR)

This is a good indicator of their state of fitness. Once they have this number established as a baseline, they can use it to understand more about themselves than they can imagine. They should take it again every once in a while, or at least once every two weeks.

As their fitness improves, they will most likely see that number going down. If they see an elevated number, it could mean one or more of the following:

  • They did not recover from a hard workout the day before
  • They need more rest
  • Their body has begun fighting off an oncoming illness

Now use their resting heart rate number as follows:
  220 minus their age = estimated max hr (HRMx)
  HRMx minus MRHR = multipler

Now find their personal target zones:
  multipler X .60 + MRHR = ( ) 60% limit number
  multipler X .70 + MRHR = ( ) 70% limit number

  • Example:
    Mark is 40 years old and his morning resting hr is 58.
    220 minus 40 = 180
    180 minus 58 = 122
    122 X .60 = 73 + 58 = 131
    122 X .70 = 85 + 58 = 143
    His 60-70% Target Zone would be 131-143

Polar exclusive feature for target zone exercise
Another option is the OwnZone™ feature that is built into our M-Series products. During a brief warm-up, these models will automatically establish their 65-85% target zone for that day based on their body's fitness. If they are doing a longer workout, they need to stay in the lower end of that range. If they are looking for a shorter, more intense workout, they should stay in the upper half of that zone. It's that simple!

Create a program using Target Zones
For members just starting a program, try having them work up to at least three workouts a week for 30 minutes in their 60-70% target zone. Time and intensity are the keys. If they can go longer, they will only benefit more.

Exercise Tip: A person can burn almost twice as many calories by exercising twice a week for 1 hour, as they would exercising 5 times for 30 minutes.

Sample Week's Workout:

Monday: Exercise for 45 minutes to 1 hour at 60-70 %

Wednesday: Do an interval workout. This is a training method used by top athletes, but your members can benefit by it to. Whatever their activity, they can do an interval workout.

First, they should warm-up for 10 minutes at 60%. Then have them pick up the pace or the intensity until they reach the 80% level. This could mean increasing the speed or level on the treadmill, or increase the level on the stationary bike, or just walk or run a little faster. But bring it up gradually. They should do this for 30 seconds anf then slow down and get their heart rate down to 60%. Keep them there for a couple of minutes, and then repeat the same effort. This is called an interval. Start with three or four of these. Each week add one more interval. When they are capable of doing six of these, increase the interval to 45 seconds. Don't forget to have them cool-down at the end of their workout for at least 5 minutes.

Friday: Warm-up for 10 minutes in the 60-70% zone. Exercise at a pace that puts them in their 70-80% zone for 15-25 minutes (Tempo Workout). Cool-down for 5-10 minutes getting their heart rate down to 60%.

Weekend Recommend that they try another activity using their HRM.

There are many different heart rate-based exercise programs available on the Internet or in books. In the Polar Store you will find the Precision series booklets that can help you create an effective program. Also, go to sample workout to checkout some other workouts that your can use and customize for your members.

Improving overall fitness:
If your members want to improve their overall fitness, they need to vary their workouts. The body is smart and adapts to routine. If they follow the same program, and have done so for a while, they may have hit a plateau. Variety is the key here. Show them how to approach workouts like an athlete does. They focus on different workouts on different days.

  • Have an endurance day when they go longer at an easier pace than they usually do (60-70% TZ).
  • Have them do a tempo workout another day staying below 80%.
  • Do an interval workout like hill repeats, or speed intervals where they pick up the speed for 1 minute, rest for three minutes and repeat it again.

These are the kinds of workouts that will help get them over the plateau. If they're in good cardio shape, or they have reached a plateau and can't seem to lose any more weight, variety is the key and they should try different activities. Your body will adapt to your exercise if you do the same thing over and over. Now that you have an HRM and know your Target Zones, you can use any activity to get a workout. Just let your Polar HRM guide you.

Tracking improvements:
You can even track their improvements beyond getting on a scale. Look for lowered resting heart rate as a key indicator. For a more effective measure, the Polar M61 and F92ti will perform the Polar Fitness Test while they are sitting in a chair with our OwnIndex® feature. You can establish their baseline fitness, then take monthly tests with the M61 and F92ti and easily track their improvements.

There is also an OwnCal™ feature that will allow them to accurately track the calories that they burn.

For your members - Getting to their goal takes determination and consistency. Their heart rate monitor will continue to guide them to an effective workout and keep them motivated.

It's up to you to show them how to achieve it!