Figuring Activity Points for a varied workout program

This week I logged 33 activity points. That sounds like a lot, but I think I’m actually calculating conservatively. I’m training toward that 5K goal, and a typical workout for me lasts between 50 and 70 minutes. It includes 45 minutes to an hour of cardio, usually alternating brisk walking and jogging in 1/10 of a mile increments. By July 4th I expect to jog a whole 2 miles! It also incorporates the elliptical, treadmill, and expresso bike. Then four days a week I have ab work, and one day a week I do weight training, but much less jogging.

Since these aren’t Weight Watchers workouts, but they are a big mix of activities, how do I figure my points? I use the formula in this Weight Watchers article. It tells me what heart rate for me qualifies as moderate activity and what crosses into intense. The whole sweat test doesn’t cut it for me, because it is way too dependent on the coolness of the gym, the fans blowing, how dry the air outside is, or what if I’m doing River Running? Heart rate tells how hard my body is working, and I like that. I then figure what my AVERAGE heart rate is for any portion of my workout. This allows me to incorporate the two or three minutes of warmup as part of my workout, instead of as 2 minutes of brisk walking, which is no points at all. If I spend 15 minutes warming up, then jogging 1 lap and recovering for 2, I am working out at a moderate average heart rate. If I then add 15 minutes of jogging 1 lap alternating with recovering for 1 lap, that kicks it into an intense average heartrate for me. And 10-15 minutes on the elliptical is pretty much ALL intense.

So there you go! And with 33 Activity Points this week, I just have to wonder WHY I’m not assured of losing that .1 pound that kept me away from the reward star. I work very hard to be looking at a scale that has hardly moved. *sigh*


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