Tag: zoning

Is your heart at risk like mine?

Join me for a workshop in ZONING, a method that heralds a new era in heart rate training.

My dad died of a heart attack at age 42, there’s a good chance I’m genetically predisposed to heart disease. When each of my seven siblings reached a certain age, my mom’s birthday present to each of us was an appointment for a medically-based cardio treadmill test.

Knowing that I may be at risk, when I had to change careers 12 years ago, I decided to get into fitness and make cardio health my specialty. When I got out of school, I chose to do a cardiac rehabilitation internship for over 200 hours at Swedish Medical Center. There I learned ways to safely rebuild the heart’s muscle and aerobic capacity after surgery.

I’ve been fascinated ever since by new science that has emerged surrounding heart health. The most compelling recent studies and practice in my opinion come from Dr. Carl Foster, University of Wisconsin professor of Exercise and Sport Science, formerly the president of The American College of Sports Medicine, and the work of professional athlete, Sally Edwards, who has applied Dr Foster’s findings into the method, ZONING, Fitness in a Blink. This method of cardio training surpasses the results of every type of heart strength training I have used in 10 years as a fitness trainer, working with non-athlete and athletes too.

ZONING was launched last November at the Heart Zones TO THE MAX! Conference 2011, in Seattle. I attended and chose to do a 6-month pilot study on ZONING at the Seattle Athletic Club. Ten members signed up. All were non-athletes, age 40 and older. All the individuals had their own challenges and goals, but the common goal was to make 30 minutes of cardio a day into a lifestyle routine, which also is The National Heart Association’s most recent scientifically-based recommendation. Toward that goal, I offered a 30-minutes class 3 times a week, with 15 minutes of stretching afterwards, using the Keiser M3 spinning bike. Members wearing heart rate monitors were individually tested for threshold heart rate numbers to determine their own zones. It was not a spinning class with the mantra, “Let’s work it hard.” Instead, its focus was on all the individuals working in their individual zones with creative “change it up” patterns of time and effort in the different zones.

ZONING workouts are fun. We found that listening to our own breathing, laughing, and still getting a good sweat but in an easy or moderate workout. The members and I began to learn that holding the heart rate steady was a challenging workout. We used interval training and ladder workouts as fun ways to play with the intensities of the zones. Spending a whole workout in the easy BLUE zone is rewarding. All members’ outcomes have been positive and all these outcomes indicate a stronger heart muscle:

  • Resting heart rates have lowered
  • Recovery heart rates are faster
  • Higher threshold numbers show that the aerobic base has increased
  • More energy, stamina, and endurance.

Apart from heart rate monitors, ZONING is sport-specific. That is, the assessment test is applied to the exercise that will be used for the heart rate training, whether that’s biking, walking, stair climbing, hiking, etc. The essence of ZONING is simple: you creatively play with effort and time. Effort is represented by zones: easy BLUE, moderate YELLOW and hard RED. Time divides the workout into a 5-minute warm up, 20-minute activity time and a 5-minute cool down.

Members especially liked ZONING because the heart rate monitor gave them constant feedback about the hearts’ ability to become stronger. Members expressed a new sense of purpose for doing cardio!

Collectively their response demonstrates to me that Sally Edwards has provided everyone who is interested in improving heart health a simple, effective method. ZONING is a modern, universal, dynamic approach to heart rate training, based on the level of fitness of the individual a breakthrough that allows non-athletes and athletes alike to see their hearts’ increased aerobic capacity.

Even though the pilot study ended after six months, we’re still ZONING!

Join us for a free introductory workshop. Find your threshold numbers and experience a workout in your zones.

  • What: Heart Rate Training Workshop and Workout
  • Cost: Free
  • Date: Friday, November 9, 2012 Time: 6:00-8:00pm
  • Where: Seattle Athletic Club, 2020 Western Ave, Seattle, WA 98121


Feedback from the members who continue ZONING after the pilot study:

  • “Cardio workouts are more meaningful and focused.”
  • “I’m doing something good for myself and having fun at the same time.”
  • “In addition to stamina, ZONING helped me make the connection to food intake and energy levels the next day. This connection has gotten me to lose weight.”
  • “Understanding how to work the heart out safely.”
  • Weight loss, toning and gaining leg strength.”
  • “I was motivated to get to the gym 3x’s a week knowing a group is ZONING.”
  • “On vacation, hiking for elevation gain to the peak of Machu Pichu,I used the heart rate monitor and knew my zones for slowing down to breathe, instead of taxing the heart.”
  • “Preparing for the Tour de Lopez bicycle event with the ZONING method, improved my endurance and also to deal with riding up steep hills without feeling breathless.”
  • “I am now aware of my heart rhythms and can exercise more vigorously-with the knowledge that I am increasing my stamina and endurance. This proved to be the case when I entered the Tour de Lopez bicycle event, selecting 10 miles and ending up riding 12 miles and didn’t walk any of the hills!”
  • I have loved, loved my ZONING training! Results are great for people with limited time!”


Barbara Miller, an ACSM Certified Health Fitness Specialist with additional medical-based certifications, is a Heart Zone Level 1 and a ZONING specialist who has been leading ZONING, the “New Gateway to Heart-Rate Training” since December 2011. Barbara has worked with non-athletes and clients of all ages with health conditions for over ten years. She finds this new program, ZONING, created by Sally Edwards, to be a breakthrough in heart-rate training. In her experience and the experience of her clients, ZONING provides measurable metabolic training, which increases aerobic conditioning and as a result offers wide-ranging health benefits.

ZONING: The Gateway to Heart Rate Training

Start 2012 by knowing your heart muscle, how it responds, on an emotional, physical and performance fitness level using a heart rate monitor. Make it a long term, lifetime of fitness,
to heart creating the aerobic base.

Meet, ZONING, the Fitness in a Blink program by Heart Zones USA. This program is a three heart zones training system created by Sally Edwards, MA, MBA to make cardio exercise easy, individualized, and well, more fun. Sally Edwards is the founder of Heart Zones USA, is a Triathlete Hall of Fame inductee, finisher in 16 Ironman triathlons, author of 24 books, many based on the use of cardio training using heart rate monitors and much more. Sally cares deeply about America and well, the world to be fit. Sally had great success with Heart Zone Training, but found it was to complicated, percentages, absolute numbers, 5 different zones, measurement of load, complicated expensive devices and that word “athlete.” Sally took it one step easier for the non-athlete and designed ZONING. ZONING is universal. It works with all movement activities, not just running, biking, or the latest fitness fad. The activity does not matter. What matters is keeping your intensity at the appropriate level in the appropriate zone for benefits you want to achieve.

ZONING is all about the individual’s fitness level, not age or percentages of maximum heart rate. ZONING is all about controlled threshold heart rate measuring. Zoning is dependent on the metabolic response to exercise stress and is sometimes referred to as “metabolic training”. Threshold heart rates are dynamic – they change aerobic capacity or aerobic fitness level. Using a heart rate monitor, applying the individual field test for the Threshold 1 and Threshold 2 tests. As you get fitter T1 or the Top of the Blue Zone” and the T2 or “Top of the Yellow zone” heart rate numbers change. BLINK heart rate monitor was designed for ZONING to blink in the color, (blue, yellow and red) set zones for the individual.

ZONING follows 3 steps
1. TIMING: 5 warm up – 20 minutes ZONING – 5 cool down = 30 minutes per workout
2. EFFORT (Blue, Yellow, Red)
3. Change it up (VARIETY)

A zone simply represents a range of intensity.
ZONING includes three zones: easy Blue, moderate Yellow and hard Red.
What occurs inside each of the zones is different. To obtain the full benefit of cardio activity is by spending time in Blue, Yellow, and Red zones. Why and when you train in each zone is an important factor in your fitness efforts. For ZONING to work, implement all 3 steps. .

BLUE ZONE: “Can I speak comfortable?” YES means “BLUE.”
Blue is ideal for beginners because it is fun and comfortable. Achieve cardiovascular benefits, burn some fat, and obtain a clear sense of accomplishment. The easy blue is always the warm-up and cool down zone. It is also the recovery zone to catch the breath between intense hard efforts and high intensity workouts.
BENEFITS: positive shift in overall health, heart grows stronger, weight can stabilize, muscles tone, lower cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure, lower resting heart rate and achieve more energy.

YELLOW ZONE: “Can I speak comfortable?” “I don’t know” or “not sure” means “YELLOW .”
Yellow is where you burn the highest percentage of your calories as fat.
BENEFITS: more effective use of oxygen, stronger muscles capable of moving more easily for longer periods of time, better sleep at night, heart pumps more to vessels carrying more oxygen to muscles and burning more calories – mostly from fat, control weight, muscles get stronger, achieve more energy.

RED ZONE: “Can I speak comfortable?” NO means “RED”
Red is the crossing border from comfortable to very uncomfortable intensity. During Red zone workouts the body’s muscles -including the heart-go beyond the oxygen-consuming aerobic threshold. This means the body cannot supply an adequate amount of oxygen to the muscles, which is why in the Red zone, you “feel the burn.” Work out in this zone for short period of time, dropping back into the blue zone to catch the breath during short recovery periods. Stay in the Red zone for only a brief period of time because the body protects itself from overwork by slowing you down if you keep it up for too long.
BENEFITS: burn more calories and fat but also experience tremendous performance benefits and get much fitter, much faster.

In the first months of ZONING, your goal is to remain in the two lower zones.
Top of BLUE is Dynamic It changes as your fitness changes. As you get fitter, it goes up. If you get less fit, it goes down. When you have achieved a measurable change in your fitness, your BLINK monitor with Flashing zones will show you the improvement.

Complete a low threshold field test every month.

You have probably heard of training zones. Zone charts display the relationship between exercise effort and current age litter the walls of gyms, the monitors of exercise equipment and magazine articles. The purpose of the illustrated relationship between age and heart rate in beats-per-minute is to provide you with what is called a “target training zone.”
The concept of a single target zone for training is a myth. There are actually several training zones, and it is important that you utilize all of them in order to accomplish your fitness objectives.

ZONING is universal.
It works with all movement activities, not just running, biking, or the latest fitness fad. The activity does not matter. What matters is keeping your intensity at the appropriate level in the appropriate zone for benefits you want to achieve.

Barbara Miller, personal fitness trainer, zone specialist, has been learning the new gateway to Heart Rate Training. In the last year attending 3 workshops, Maximum Heart Rate Zones , Threshold Heart Rate and ZONING the fitness in a BLINK Program. Her background working with deconditioned hearts has found this new program ZONING a break through in heart rate training as a valid tool to see the progression of the heart strengthen in aerobic conditioning.

ZONING: Fitness in a Blink is a 4 week program in February, Heart Awareness Month

  • Location: Spinning Studio on the new KEISER m3 bikes.
  • Times offered 5:15am – 6:00am and 7:45am to 8:30am., Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Costs $189.00 includes the BLINK Heart Rate Monitor. If the timing of the 4 week program does not fit in your schedule still contact me for individual ZONING training sessions.

Contact Barbara Miller, Personal Fitness Trainer for more information.

Zoning (Heart Zone Training Systems) – Fitness in a Blink

Start 2012 by knowing how the heart muscle responds on a emotional, physical and performance fitness level.

Meet, ZONING, the Fitness in a Blink program by Heart Zones USA. This program is a three heart zones training system created by Sally Edwards, MA, MBA to make cardio exercise easy, individualized, and well, more fun.

Sally Edwards is the founder of Heart Zones USA, is a Triathlete Hall of Fame inductee, finisher in 16 Ironman triathlons, author of 24 books, many based on the use of cardio training using a heart rate monitors and much more. Sally cares deeply about America and well, the world to be fit.

Barbara Miller, personal fitness trainer at Seattle Athletic Club Downtown, has been learning the new methodology on heart zone training. In the last year attending 3 workshops, Maximum Heart Rate Zones , Threshold Heart Rate and now ZONING the fitness in a BLINK Program. Her background working with deconditioned hearts has found this new program ZONING a break through in heart zone training as a valid tool to see the hearts progression in aerobic conditioning.

Zoning is all about controlled heart measuring. ZONING energizes your body and your mind through personalized cardio-activity based on current level of fitness. Zoning is dependent on the metabolic response to exercise stress and is sometimes referred to as “metabolic training”. Threshold heart rates are dynamic – they change aerobic capacity or aerobic fitness level. Using a heart rate monitor, applying the individual field test for the Threshold 1 and Threshold 2 tests. As you get fitter T1 or the Top of the Blue Zone” and the T2 or “Top of the Yellow zone” heart rate numbers change.

ZONING fitness in a Blink is a 6 week program starting in February, Heart Awareness Month. Contact Barbara Miller, Personal Fitness Trainer for more information at bmiller@sacdt.com