What do the coloured heart rate zones mean?

Session & coaching

Your heart rate is measured in BPM (beats per minute). The greater the effort made, the faster your heart beats and hence the higher your BPM. The level of effort made is expressed as a percentage heart rate that takes into account the characteristics of your heart. When your heart is beating at its lowest rate (heart rate at rest), i.e. you are not making any effort at all, your percentage heart rate is zero. When your heart beats at its maximum heart rate, your percentage rate is 100. 
The percentage heart rate is sometimes known as %HRmax to describe the percentage of your maximum heart rate. 

When your percentage heart rate throughout your sporting activity is recorded, we can tell you which of the following effort zones you are in at any particular time: 
- Warmup & Recovery; 
- Fundamental endurance; 
- Active endurance; 
- Resistance; 
- Heavy resistance. 
Each zone corresponds to a different physical state that has its own particular benefits. You will find a description of each zone in the app. 

To calculate your percentage heart rate, we use the Karvonen formula:
%HRmax = (HRexercise - HRrest) / (HRmax - HRrest)

Here's a description of each zone:

>50 to 60% of your HRmax
The blue zone corresponds to a moderate effort, i.e. the gentle effort you make at the beginning of a session to warm up and at the end of the session to recover actively by eliminating the waste products generated by your muscles during the physical activity.

>60 to 70% of your HRmax
After 20 to 40 minutes in this zone, your muscles will start to draw on your fat reserves. This moderate effort is therefore used to tone the body while also improving your endurance on long-distance outings (more than 1½ hours). There is no limit to how long you can stay in this zone!

>70 to 80% of HRmax
The level of effort is intense, but your body is capable of delivering enough oxygen to maintain this level of effort over time. Your muscles get used to consuming the sugars available in the muscle fibres. Thanks to this type of training, you can keep up a fast pace (e.g. a10 km racing pace) for a long period of time. However, this level of effort should not be maintained for more than 45 minutes at a time. 

>80 to 90% of your HRmax
In this zone, your body cannot deliver enough oxygen to meet the demands of your muscles: this is the anaerobic threshold. A training session that involves short repeated efforts in this zone will help you improve your performance over a given distance (e.g. your time for a 10km run). You will also learn how to recover more effectively from intense levels of effort. Each repetition in the resistance zone should not exceed 5 minutes and the total time of these repetitions should not exceed 45 minutes.

>90% of your HRmax
This zone corresponds to a very intense level of effort. It must only be used as part of very short interval exercises (repetitions of 15 seconds to 2 minutes). The benefits are similar to those of the orange zone. However, they are used to work on shorter levels of effort that beginners find easier to manage. 

Your heart rate may be measured using any bluetooth 4.0 heart rate monitor belt. These include the new generation Geonaute heart rate sensors that are built into the Kalenji crop tops (for women) and T-shirts (for men).

Would you like to contact us? Access the contact form