What is a Workout?

It seems like a silly question, but I do find myself thinking about it quite a bit. My usual workout goal is 104 workouts per year, AKA 2 workouts per week – something that I recommend for most people.

Two workouts spaced evenly throughout the week allows adequate recovery time between sessions, and it’s a low enough number that even the busiest of us can usually attain it.

Plus it allows great flexibility as to when you workout – e.g. once on the weekend and once during the week, or twice during the week and an optional workout on the weekend, etc.

But what exactly qualifies as a workout? If I helped someone load a heavy object into the back of a pickup truck, does that count? What about carrying a kid around the mall for a few hours?

Pushing a lawnmower for half the day? Obviously there are many examples of potential workouts that could count, or at least cause you to raise the question.

The answer, in my opinion, is as follows:

If the activity in question raises your heart rate to 55% or more of your maximum heart rate for 10 minutes or longer, it counts as a workout.

This begs the question: What is my maximum heart rate? To which the answer is: The only true way to get your actual maximum heart rate is to go through a stress test, which your doctor can do, or you can get a heart rate monitor (I like the chest strap monitors best) and Google it for a DIY stress test.

For those that would rather shortcut that process, a little math exercise will provide you with a quick estimate of your maximum heart rate:

Your max heart rate = 208 – ([your age] x 0.7)

For example, if you’re 50 years old, your max heart rate would be estimated at 173.

208 – (50 x 0.7)

= 208 – 35 = 173

55% of 173 is 95, so if you test your heart rate immediately after a 10+ minute activity (most smartphones have a heart rate feature or at least an app) and it exceeds 95 beats per minute, then congratulations!

You just earned a workout point! Go ahead and mark it on your calendar, because it counts!

However, helping your neighbor lift a heavy object into a pickup truck for the grand total of 3 minutes does NOT equate to a workout… Sorry!

So there you have it – a quick n’ dirty workout definition to assist with attaining your New Year’s resolutions! Remember to set your goals at reachable levels, since reachable is motivational!

Coach Bret

Primal Health Coach #239

“I’ve already done the homework. What you get is the most essential knowledge and recommendations specific to your individual needs, in a very short amount of time.” Book your appointment now by emailing me at: Bret@McClellanNaturalHealth.com

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