Monday, September 8, 2008

The Accounting of Exercise

Sunday, my family went on a lovely bike ride around Alameda. Nick was pulling the bike trailer with Maya & Zoe in it (~100 lb. total), which means it was a slow, leisurely ride. So my questions is whether a “low intensity” bike ride for 70min. followed by “low intensity” toning exercises are considered exercise? And, can I count them as 2 workouts (to meet my goal of 5x/wk)?

I used my fancy heart rate monitor which tracks all my info. and made it clear that the intensity was, indeed, low. My HR was mostly 50-60% of maximum, sometimes lower, which is definitely low intensity. We rode for 10 ½ miles at a speed of 5-12 mph, averaging 8.8 mph, which is quite slow. It says I burned 568 calories, which I find very hard to believe. When we returned, I did some toning exercises, but I was also distracted, so I took a few minutes’ break between each exercise.

So this is the accounting of exercise: adjusting the numbers and justifying them to make them sound good. Yes, well isn’t low intensity also called “fat burning?” Don’t I burn more “fat calories” by keeping my heart rate low? And if the computer says I burned 568 calories, it must be true, right? And if I did a cardio workout (biking) AND strength training, isn’t that like 2 workouts?

The most important thing I learned is to just work out during the week so that I don’t have to worry about it on the weekends. But I’m still going to count it as 2 workouts!

1 comment:

  1. The number of overweight people is getting out of control which may be due to the type of food they take. exercise bike are a very popular choice of exercise equipment both in homes and at the gym. Cycling is one exercise that is very beneficial for cardio vascular disease.