Heart rate training is not just for serious athletes. Anyone — at any level — can benefit from tracking. While strapping something onto your chest that reads your heart beat can be an intimidating endeavor (and then there’s all of the math…) — the real-time feedback helps us push ourselves in ways we would never do on our own.
We reached out to gym-goers who got monitors and got hooked — whether it was to help rehab, to level up, for inspiration or to fire up their competitive spirit. Think of it as your omnipresent trainer (or something along those lines).
Mike McKee: “The Rehabilitator”
Ryan Biddle: “The Competitor”
Motivated by the constant data around meeting goals, eating right and sleeping, Ryan appreciates witnessing his aerobic and cardiovascular fitness improving. He says, “through all this, I become a better version of myself.”
Katelin Manning: “The Perfectionist”
On a constant journey to get better, Katelin says “it has improved my overall daily health performance and allows me to make sure my workouts are harder!” As a customer service representative for Under Armour, she wanted to know all about the products — and ultimately was converted.
1. Why did you get a heart rate monitor and band? How has your training changed?
Mike: Since I’d started tracking net calories and steps, I kept looking for ways to keep a more accurate log of it all, and the heart rate monitor and band seemed like the perfect choice. It really lets you know when you’re truly pushing yourself and when it’s time to pick up the pace. There’s no arguing with data.
Ryan: As someone who has a degree in adult fitness and is avid about training, being able to quantify workouts is a huge plus. Knowing your heart rate zone is important to tailoring your workouts to your specific goals: endurance, speed, weight loss, mass. The great thing about the UA Record with the heart rate monitor is it puts the heart rate zones in a graph so you can see how long you were in a specific heart rate zone.
Katelin: They keep me accountable for my workouts and show how hard I am working. Having the heart rate tracking available with the chest strap, I can see how to create workouts that mimic the heart rate patterns I get from running. I enjoy the sleep tracking because it helps me make sure I am getting enough. I find myself thinking about what time I will go to bed and what the number on my band will read once I wake up — and if I will be happy with it or need a second cup of coffee.
2. What advice do you have for people who are curious about connected training but haven’t pulled the plug yet?
Mike: Think of it this way: Would you really feel confident racing a car that didn’t have any gauges? Information is one of the most powerful parts of any sport. The more information you have, the more you can improve.
Ryan: Being a monitored athlete will tell you where your weaknesses are and the steps you need to take to improve them. It can quantify your workout intensity so you can go harder the next time and make those slow, gradual progressions that make you better.
Katelin: I would definitely recommend taking the plunge. You will discover either how hard you are pushing, or slacking, on your workouts. It’s a great way to help with making small daily life changes and a great way to challenge yourself to your full potential.
3. What did you learn about yourself? Your training?
Mike: I learned just what it means to push myself. Every stage of fitness has a limit to be pushed. Each day is a new climb, a new run and a new challenge.
Ryan: That I can meet the fitness challenges I have set for myself.
Katelin: That my body is capable of great things. It’s interesting to see what you can accomplish when you integrate science into your workouts.