So a few days ago I was having browse through Youtube. You know I`m a bit of a basketball fanatic so usually I start my morning with a lungo shot of espresso and a bit of sport talk. Now as a Knicks fan I usually don`t have a real rooting interest in a team this time of year (the Knicks making the playoffs is about as rare as a rainbow unicorn siting) as such I was a little bored.
As a result I began browsing my feed and saw a video titled the staying in the fat loss zone. This to me was very interesting as this terminology and theory was foreign to me. Concerned, the video had my complete attention, up until the moment I realized most of the information presented was pure methane loaded bullsh*t. To my horror as I scrolled down to the comments, I saw thousands of comments asking questions and praising the methods described in the video.
I see some of your faces… Those are guilty eyebrows! Did you make some of those comments? If so don`t worry. As I told you in my Weight Loss Conundrum Post I`m not here to judge you.
Generally speaking you should view me more like Morpheus offering you a strange and wonderful journey down a fitness rabbit hole. You take the blue pill, the blog ends, you click on the Instagram app and believe whatever you want to believe. Alternatively, if you take the red pill you scroll down, stay in wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes. Remember, all I`m offering is the truth and nothing more.
Just like the Matrix the fat loss zone is not real. It does not exist. Its a myth, a legend, an inaccurate theory based on a misunderstood function. I`ve been in sports, sports science, and fitness in a professional capacity for the better part of 2 decades and last week was the first time I`d heard the term the fat loss zone.
What is being called the fat loss zone is not actually the fat loss zone its what we`ve referred to for years as the target heart rate zone or heart rate zone training Being perfectly clear, this is not a term that`s being used by any fitness or health bodies (that I know of) As such this is not a failure and the educational/institutional level. This is pure garage bro bologna (Mortadella for my Brazilian peeps out there) that just like Crossfit has taken a proven theory, twisted it into some Frankenstein monstrosity and re-named it.
What is heart rate zone training? Well, putting it simply its a method of training in which you try to keep your heart rate at 70% – 80% of your maximum heart rate for the duration of the workout. In theory this will allow you to burn the maximum amount of resources over a prolonged period of time.
What do you mean by resources? Ah you smart little buggers caught that. The word resources is the key word here and why the maximum fat burning zone is inaccurate. Your body just like a car needs fuel to operate optimally. Our bodies are more like a hybrid car then a gasoline (dirty word, dirty word) car or EV in that our bodies can be fueled by more then one type of fuel depending on the type of activity.
When your body is stressful anaerobic training, your type 2 muscle fibers are hard at work. Just like a hybrid vehicle with launch control during initial acceleration it uses electricity as its preferred energy source because its faster to obtain energy from. Your type 2 muscle fibers uses anaerobic glycolysis to make ATP and fuel muscles through short intense burst of activity. That means that during a movement like a heavy squat, your body is reaching for carbs and glycogen to burn and not fat or protein.