The following post is sponsored by Fitfluential LLC on behalf of Polar. All opinions expressed are my own.
“I just don’t have time.”
I hear this the most.
We have none.
It’s probably one of the biggest hurdles we encounter when it comes to exercising. I totally get it. Honestly, there’s just too many things that we’ve crammed into our day and when it comes down to finally finding a few minutes for ourselves…well…the couch looks way better than the stairmaster. I’d rather exercise than do most anything else but even I have days where the hours have slipped by and I’ve yet to get that (veryneeded) sweat in. I’ve learned that I have to MAKE the time (actually write it in my planner)…but it isn’t always easy.
So HOW do we maximize our efforts while reducing the amount of time we spend at the gym??
I personally use three tactics: 1) utilize high intensity interval training, 2) incorporate compound movements & complexes and 3) train with numbers, which is what I want to talk about today.
I get the most bang for my workout buck when I train with numbers. Knowing my heart rate, my distance, my rate of intensity – all of those things push me just a little harder, which maximizes what little time I have. I was recently sent the Polar FT60 Heart Rate Monitor to test out as part of a Fitfluential campaign. I actually already own the FT40 and LOVE that model so I was excited to upgrade. Polar heart rate monitors are more than just a watch and a band – Polar uses what they call, “Smart Coaching” to help interpret training intensity and add more dynamic to your ho-hum heart rate monitor.
If you’re unfamiliar with the benefits of using a heart rate monitor for training, let me key you in on some of the cool features of the Polar FT60 (this won’t be a “how to” guide for use by the way – I’m going to tell you WHY you should buy this HRM).
Some of the “Smart Coaching” features for the FT60:
I’ll break these up into THREE parts: pre-training, intra-training and post-training.
All you have to do before you start using the FT60 is enter a few parameters: age, height, weight. The setup takes only a few minutes and helps with calculating the number of calories expended during a training session.
- STAR Training Program – Shows users how hard and how much they need to train to reach their long-term goals. It’s designed to keep users motivated all week and every week by using a personal guidance program that’s no further away than their wrist. <-I geeked out at this because it’s like having your own cheerleader/personal trainer!
- OwnZone: Knowing the right intensity to improve fitness can be a challenge. OwnZone adjusts a user’s heart rate training zone to perfectly match their body’s current physiological condition. By using OwnZone, users can be sure they’re training at an intensity that improves their aerobic fitness.
- Smart Calories: Calculates the number of calories expended during a training session based on weight, height, age, gender, individual maximum heart rate (HRmax) and how hard a user is training. <-far more accurate than any piece of gym equipment (most of these OVERestimate that number of calories burned).
- Training Load: This feature within polarpersonaltrainer.com displays a color-coded graph of a user’s cumulative training load, notifying a person when he or she has recovered enough for the next session, and accurately predicting training developments to prevent overtraining. This data also provides intelligence to modify training sessions as necessary.
- Fitness Test: This feature gets a measure of users’ current fitness level in just five minutes. By regularly comparing test results, users can see what progress they are making and how their fitness is improving over time. <-SO easy to take this test! I’ve done it twice now.
- Polarpersonaltrainer.com: An online exercise journal and social sharing community that provides guidance, tracks progress and set goals.
- Create a custom training plan or individual personalized program using the built-in planning feature
- Join the millions of people in the Polar community with Polar Challenges – based on miles, calories and more
- Manipulate custom reports on Training Load, training volume and intensity
- Share your exercise, and route map with your friends on Facebook, Twitter or Google+
After your workout is finished, you simply place the Polar FT60 on the FlowLink and all your data uploads to your computer!
A few more observations:
- If you participate in Crossfit, group fitness classes, bootcamps or even go to the gym and zone out on the eliptical, the FT60 is a great training tool! If you’re an outdoor runner, you may want to also purchase the G1 GPS sensor and S1 foot pod to track speed and distance. You don’t really need these additions if you’re staying in a building.
- The chest strap cannot transmit through a baby. I tried to track a hike we did on Sunday and Porter’s body keep messing up the transmission from strap to wrist. Too much blubber.
- In using this HRM, I’m again HAPPY that my mind doesn’t connect exercise and food (i.e. “I burned this many calories so I can eat this donut” or “I ate this donut so I need to burn off this many calories.”). I’m thankful for that!!
- You can use this watch in the POOL! I’d be interested to see how this works.
The price point on the FT60 is $179.99. You can purchase your own FT60 here! BONUS –> Use the code “FitPolarFT60” and get 10% off your monitor (expires October 11, 2014!)!
In summary, I simply don’t have the time to dedicate to exercising like I once did. (And thank goodness! Exercise should enrich our lives…not BE our lives.) Training with the Polar FT60 helps me get in, do the work and get home….all while wearing a super cute purple watch.
QUESTION: Ever trained with a heart rate monitor? Thoughts? What are some of the ways you “get in and get out”?