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Optimal Fat Burning Zone
Some fitness gurus and equipment manufacturers say the best fat burning zone is at a low intensity. They suggest this because at a lower intensity, the percentage of fat utilized is higher (due to the lower RER), but total calorie expenditure is lower. Contrariwise, at a higher intensity (which has a higher RER) the percent fat utilized is lower, but total calories and ABSOLUTE fat utilized is HIGHER (when you do the metabolic calculations). Therefore, the BEST exercise prescription for optimal FAT burning is to BURN MORE CALORIES at a ‘Comfortable but Challenging’ intensity.

Angie Bonham, Student in Exercise Physiology, Fall 2002
This research review figure shows that there is an optimal amount of exercise “Time” necessary for weight loss programs. The range for this optimal time is 200 to 280 minutes of accumulated aerobic exercise in the course of a week. Aerobic bouts can be from as little as 10 minutes to any increment above that length. Optimal weight loss occurs when the subjects attempt to eat approximately 30% less food, which is a reduction of approximately 500 - 1000 kilocalories per DAY in overweight/obese individuals. In this research, subjects met weekly with and health/fitness professional to discuss lifestyle changes for successful weight loss. Subjects trained at a 11 - 13 ratings of perceived exertion (see RPE scale below).
Ratings of Perceived Exertion (RPE or Borg Scale)
6 No exertion at all
7 Extremely light
9 Very light
11 Light
13 Somewhat hard
15 Hard
17 Very Hard
19 Extremely hard
20 Maximal exertion
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