One the most important tools these days to achieve a great physique and lose fat as fast as possible is a Heart Rate Monitor; it helps keep accountability in workouts and gives trackable data when following any diet and workout. If you are trying to burn fat and you are 30 years old, if your Heart Rate goes above 133 then you are possibly burning muscle instead of fat, if you keep it below the 133 at like 130 or so, you are burning the most amount of calories from fat and avoiding the muscle being used as fuel. Muscle and sugar are used when your Heart Rate goes above your fat burning zone, this is why I like everyone to wear a watch; the watch allows you to check by the second or minute what your heart rate is enabling you to control it. I have labeled each zone so you can easily recognize where you should be training based on what activity you are completing.
If you are going HARD CORE or following a workout called Hard Core at the gym — you would want your heart rate to go into the yellow zone many times during your workout and possibly pop into the green when you are hitting maximum effort or for example performing  a HIIT session. If you are already in great shape, you might want to keep your heart rate just above the black line and if you are a beginner, keep your heart rate just below the line.
Using the exercise zones graph and keeping these numbers in the back of your head will help your train SMARTER and really use your time in the gym to your advantage. I created this graph to give you an idea of where your heart rate should be while training specific muscle groups. I have trained for thousands of hours and I have coached others for even more helping me come up this graph; it is to be used as a reference for your talk with yourself about effort, accountability and your goal. While training anyone of the muscle groups above, your heart rate should at some point after you are warmed up hit far into the red in each set.
If you want a your legs to be tone and your butt to lose fat and your heart rate averages 105 during your leg workout; you are not trying. You have to push beyond that pain threshold and uncomfortable heart rate reading by the heart rate monitor to earn what you are saying or believing you want. If you want great arms and you are training biceps and your heart rate does not hit well above 115 on the heart rate monitor sometime during your set, you are not trying!!!! You will not grow your arms and you are wasting most of your time; unless of course this is just an excuse for time away from the family, if that is the case, go to another site. Standing bicep curls use a lot more muscles because you are standing; if you are seated, less muscle groups would be working.
If you need to get your hr into the zones and you are having a hard time, watch some videos and learn some tips.
This graph was made to help members know if they are trying hard enough while training with resistance. Everyones heart rate drops at a different pace and because the rest times differ on the workouts, the red part of the graph is not intended to represent a zone you have to stay in, it is a zone you must hit as far into the red as you can, for as long as you can, while training a specific muscle group. The blue part of the graph is not important, you do not have to wait until your heart rate is back into the blue to start again; but if your heart rate does drop back into the blue after being very high in the red with a 30-25 second rest, you are getting into great shape. If you have any questions, email me or ask the question in TEAM DK, the closed facebook support group for heart rate monitored Kimmerleplan members only. Gebruik van deze website is onderworpen aan onze Gebruiksvoorwaarden en aankopen zijn onderworpen aan onze Verkoopvoorwaarden.
We promise to never spam you, and just use your email address to identify you as a valid customer. My curiosity on this question grew out of two recent purchases: a home spinning bike and a heart rate monitor.
I cranked up the resistance, trying to bring my HR to the same 140-150 zone as my easy runs, but the effort required felt extreme.
I did some research, and found that many other people have observed the same discrepancy between running and cycling heart rates, though mine was a bigger difference than most.
Unfortunately, I never found any source that gave a really satisfactory answer for the discrepancy, but there are two general theories that come close to an answer when they’re combined.
In contrast, I found your article because I am primarily a cyclist who has thrown some running into my training as summer approaches and I found huge spikes in my heart rate while running in comparison to when I am in a spin class.
That was my opinion as well; that there was a difference based on the activities and was glad to find your article last week since it coincided with what was happening.
Have now managed to hit 165 for a max HR by either doing an extended series of standing climbs with each climb lifting the HR to a higher level and then a big push on the last one or a long standing climb (yesterday was 15 min with the heart rate over 150 for over 12 min) with as much effort as the legs have left in the last minute to push the heart.
My background is in rowing but these days I do a lot of running as well as cycling and swimming, (triathlons etc.). For example, a threshold pace for me running or rowing is around 143 – 150, this is higher than what I can get my max to when Cycling or Swimming.
1.Cycling is really working your legs only and does not recruit enough muscle groups to fully stress your cardio vascular system as rowing and running does. I am a big athlete (typical rower) and have low resting and max HR and have always found it strange that I clock such low HRs when cycling, I feel there is some science around this that is difficult to find on the web. True, the bike gives a mechanical advantage, but I don’t think that explains why max HR is different on the bike. From what I can tell, fewer muscles are used while cycling vs running, so the demand for oxygen isn’t as high, and it’s ultimately muscle power that limits cycling performance instead of aerobic capacity. My problem is my heart rate is high when I am doing what I perceive as moderate effort in both running and cycling. A lot of people on here who are seeing high HR while running might want to consider whether the HR readings are accurate.
I’ve used a heart rate monitor to try to improve my performance in three different sports: running, rowing and cycling. I dabbled with an HR monitor during a long career as a club runner and used one occasionally in my training for rowing, so it was no surprise that when I returned to cycling four years ago, I turned to my trusty Cardiosport monitor.

On the issue of cycling vs running and heart rates, I arrived here as someone who was curious about it too. Hard cycling makes me less fatigued the next day than running does, as this goes hand in hand with the max HR. Your max HR is 255 and 228 and you have seen it several times over the years….not on a regular basis? My Garmin has recorded numbers that high on several occasions as well but it is due to an abnormal reading. I wold say that your MHR is your MHR but results can vary based on the activity simply because your muscle groups are not equally efficient and the cardio for different exercises varies. Your body structure is not equally developed and the cardio demands are different for each activity.
I am complete opposite… I do more cycling than running and easily bring my heart rate to the 180s and live at the top of short steep climb.
When I started cycling I tried to spin faster rather than harder, try to keep my cadence over 90… As you get older this gets harder. I’m currently injured with a SF and have been using the bike to try to keep me cardio-fit. The reason is because the legs are basically the largest muscles on the body, which have a ton of oxygen and glucose stored in them. In my humble opinion cycling is less effort than running and cycling off road is harsher on joints than a smooth treadmill. I started cycling off road 3 years ago (12 miles per day 6 days a week), A few months ago started running on a treadmill as I’ve had back problems from cycling. I started running for weight loss and ended up loving to run, so after getting completely fit I continued to run and lift weights.
Then I got injured and quit running but started riding a bike, doing intense outdoor exercises with multiple large hills.
Unfortunately that success led me to more long runs that my body wasn’t accustomed to, and I ended up tearing my plantar plate.
Interestingly, I can ride the trails comfortably at 150-160 bpm, but on the stationary it’s a challenge to get above 140 bpm.
How the heck do I know if I am really trying as hard as I can, how do I really know that this was a 1000 calorie run or workout, how do I really know if I gave it my all?
While the exact boundaries and definitions of the zones may differ between sources, the general idea is that exercising while your heart rate is in different zones will provide different benefits and physiological adaptations in your body.
Most runners would probably agree that jogging at 60-70% of max heart rate is fairly easy: they can carry on a conversation without trouble, and maintain that heart rate for over an hour.
I’d already been using the spin bike for a few months, setting the resistance so the subjective effort felt similar to my runs. Why was the heart rate on the bike so different than the heart rate while running, when working at the same level of perceived effort?
This discussion mentions a 5% difference or ~10 beats per minute, this triathlon site refers to a 15 bpm difference in max heart rate, and this article talks about the discrepancy at length but doesn’t give any specific numbers.
For somebody like me who’s primarily a runner, but uses the spin bike to supplement my training, should I structure the bike workouts to match the heart rate of my runs, or match their perceived effort level? If I do a spin bike workout at the same level of perceived effort as my easy runs, and my HR during the workout is only 120, what part of my body am I actually strengthening?
But in general you want to do a short, very hard effort after you’ve already been working hard for quite a while.
My heart rates are similar for rowing and running but much lower for cycling and swimming, probably 20bpm. Running I am able to push my heart rate to about 170, but in really hard spinning classes doing intervals I have been able to push my heart rate up to 178 which I think must be very close to my max heart rate although I have never had it measured.
It explains why HR will be lower when biking 8 MPH vs running 8 MPH, but that’s a different question. So for most people going 100% effort on the bike, leg strength fails before they ever get to the max HR achieved in other sports. The experiment was a miserable failure in two of them and it’s fair to say that I very nearly managed a dismal hat-trick. From a layman’s point of view it feels like all the sinews in my neck, shoulders and back are being used when sprinting.
I think that those who have managed to get their cycling max HR to match their running max HR have simply been able to push and push more blood into their legs for cycling and moreover their bodies have found it necessary to do so.
I can push myself harder on a bike than a run before I choke, but with running my lungs give out before my legs, with cycling my lungs have never come close to giving out.
And I’ve had the same exact HR vs perceived effort discrepancies on the bike (primarily a runner as well).
They can be worked for a long time before a request for the heart to increase output to provide more oxygen. The heart and lungs are connected… Any exercise that requires more breathing will also call for a cardiac increase. I’ve never really managed increase my breathing rate while cycling unless going up hill or cycling flat out sustained which is not always possible, whereas running after 1-2 minute I get breathing rate increase which is why I assume cycling is less effort, it might however be what i am more used to. But for some people, reaching the same heart rate while swimming or cycling may feel much more difficult, or even nearly impossible. My legs turned into blocks of stone, and I couldn’t keep going for more than a couple of minutes.

And what does the discrepancy say about the best way to combine training for running and cycling? Intriguingly, though, it does mention that the discrepancy appears largest among runners with little cycling experience, and that pro triathletes with lots of cycling and running experience show little discrepancy in heart rate between the two activities. Theory #2 is that the leg muscles of a runner-turned-cyclist are comparatively weak, and it’s ultimately muscle power that limits cycling performance, not aerobic capacity. Again, I couldn’t find a really great answer to this question, and the triathlon site was the only source that even partly addressed the question. As you probably know, the 220 minus age formula is only a very rough estimate, which is fairly accurate on average for a group of people, but the max HR for any specific person can vary widely. That would put you more than 3 standard deviations away from the expected max HR for your age, in the 99.7% percentile.
So on the bike, maybe something like a 60 second all-out sprint at the end of a 10 minute very hard climb.
It based on how high you’re able to get your heart rate during a specific workout designed to max you out. But for a pro cyclist with huge leg muscles, they should be able to hit nearly the same max HR biking and running. I would elaborate on that and go further say that a high heart rate is nothing to be afraid of. I cannot get my heart rate elevated on an indoor trainer, an indoor recumbent, or the indoor cycling unit you have listed above. Long workouts at 80-90% of max heart rate improve endurance and the body’s ability to cope with accumulating lactate in the blood.
Just for fun (this is fun?) I tried an all-out sprint with the bike at a high resistance setting, and found that I simply couldn’t push my HR beyond 162 on the bike, even as I was gasping for breath and sweating a river.
Their recommendation is to establish a unique max HR for each sport, which will likely be lower for cycling than for running, and then to calculate sport-specific heart rate zones.
But consider that your max HR for cycling may be lower than your max HR for running – which is really the point of the essay above. I have been training over a period of just 3 weeks and noticed that my MHR has decreased from about 200 to just 185; I have cycled much longer than running and find that cycling at 160bpm is very very hard but normal when running at a slow speed (5mph). If my MHR is 200 and I train at 180- 185 for half an hour 5 times a week, that will not heart my heart health at all!
Without the arms swinging, the heart can work as hard as it likes to get blood to the legs, but never reaches maximum because running brings in the arms and therefore the entire upper body into play.
I am a very competitive runner with a big base and high max heart rate and I have little trouble getting into a high heart rate with a bicycle out on the trails.
Only four more weeks in the boot, but I’d hate to be wasting these weeks literally (and figuratively) spinning my wheels and getting no benefit at all from these workouts. Intervals at 90-100% of MHR stress the body’s aerobic capacity, but can be exhausting.
After much experimentation, I finally settled on a resistance level that felt subjectively like a hard run, but still only raised my HR into the 125-130 range. In essence, they’re both saying that the ability of the heart to pump oxygenated blood to the leg muscles is not what determines the upper limit of cycling performance (and presumably perceived effort). That’s more-or-less the same as training for the same perceived effort in each sport. That is as expected since I am able to bike with a significantly higher resistance standing than sitting.
The problem is that if I do that, you can bet that I will feel that I have worked hard the day or two days after.
I do not think the difference between running and cycling has anything to do with strength. This requires 20+ mph typically (and I am a lousy cyclist), but the effort isn’t much higher than an easy-medium run after you get past the initial difficulty of the ride. This kind of structured exercise based on heart rate zone is the cornerstone of many training plans.
In my case and in my present condition, that’s really my only choice anyway, since cycling at a HR of 150+ is too difficult for me to maintain for more than a couple of minutes.
Try something like a warm-up, then running for 3 minutes at 100% effort, jog for 2 minutes, then another 3 minutes at 100% effort. The bike stats are from my commute this evening, I was trying to push my HR into my jog zone, but got nowhere near!! For both running and cycling (for spinning at least during intervals) my HR can go into the 180s during extreme effort. However, if your heart operates at 170 when doing an easy run, and you don't experience fatigue, then clearly your body knows best. I am 41 and am active in triathlons and train regularly but I cant help but wonder my low effort HR is so high.
Get outside and feel how fun it is to go fast and maybe that fresh air will fuel some desire.

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