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Chapter 6/9: Program Design, Cardiorespiratory  Fitness

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Lianna , G ianna , K eegan, D evon , Lisa. Chapter 6/9: Program Design, Cardiorespiratory  Fitness. Cardiorespiratory fitness refers to the ability of the circulatory and respiratory systems to supply oxygen to skeletal muscles during sustained physical activity.

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what is c ardiorespiratory fitness
Cardiorespiratory fitness refers to the ability of the circulatory and respiratory systems to supply oxygen to skeletal muscles during sustained physical activity.What is Cardiorespiratory Fitness?
what s so good about it
It helps improve the condition of your lungs and heart
  • It makes you feel stronger!
  • Reduces risk of:
    • Heart disease
    • Lung cancer
    • Type 2 diabetes
    • Stroke
What’s so good about it?
physiological changes seen in the body upon starting a aerobic based program
Respiratory Changes:
    • Increased volume of oxygen exchange in the lungs, which improves efficiency of all types of breathing
  • Aerobic Changes (heart):
    • Increased VO2 max
    • Increased stroke volume & cardiac output
    • Hypertrophy of the heart muscle
Physiological changes seen in the body upon starting a aerobic based program
Decreased resting heart rate
    • (ex. think: if your heart is stronger due to hypertrophy, you could pump same amount of blood with fewer beats)
  • Increased number of capillaries to increase O2 exchange, in response to fuel demands
  • Increased amounts of hemoglobin and plasma in the blood, to carry increased amounts of O2
  • Increased volume of blood
  • Stabilized blood pressure- reduces risk of high blood pressure, hypertension, and reduced risk of CHD
Musculoskeletal Changes

Increased ability to extract O2 in working muscles

Lower lactate levels in blood

Increased amounts of myoglobin to carry O2 in muscles

Increased number, size of mitochondria in muscle cells to carry out aerobic metabolism

Increased stores of glycogen (needed for energy)

Increased utilisation of stored fats, resulting in better body composition, and reduced risk of obesity

Increased activity of aerobic enzymes

Increased muscular endurance

cardiac output
Cardiac output is the volume of blood being pumped by the heart (by the left or right ventricle in the time interval of 1 min.)
  • An average resting cardiac output would be 5.6L/min for a male and 4.9L/min for a female
  • Cardiac output increases in a healthy but untrained individual can be attributed to an increase in heart rate
  • There are many ways to measure cardiac output like using the Fick Principle or dilution methods.
Cardiac output
the fick principle
Using the Fick Principle, cardiac output can be calculated from these measurements:
  • VO2 consumption per minute using a spirometer (with the subject re-breathing air) and a CO2 absorber
  • the oxygen content of blood taken from the pulmonary artery (representing mixed venous blood)
  • the oxygen content of blood from a cannula in a peripheral artery (representing arterial blood)

From these values, we know that:

VO2 = (Q×CA) - (Q×CV)


CA = Oxygen content of arterial blood

CV = Oxygen content of venous blood

This allows us to say:

Q = (VO2/(CA – CV))*100

The Fick Principle
stroke volume
Stroke Volume is the volume of blood pumped from one ventricle of the heart with each beat
  • Its value is obtained by subtracting end-systolic volume (ESV) from end-diastolic volume (EDV) for a given ventricle.


  • The term “Stroke Volume” can refer to each ventricle of the heart but usually refers to the left ventricle
  • Stroke Volume itself correlates with cardiac function
  • Men on average have higher stroke volumes than women

So, in a healthy 70-kg man, EDV is approx. 120mL and ESV is approx. 50mL,

what is his stroke volume?

Stroke Volume
blood pressure
Blood pressure is the pressure exerted by circulating blood upon the walls of blood vessels.

During each heartbeat, blood pressure varies between a maximum (systolic) and a minimum (diastolic) pressure.

The average blood pressure, due to pumping by the heart and resistance to flow in blood vessels, decreases as the circulating blood moves away from the heart through arteries.

Blood Pressure
heart rate
Heart rate is the number of heartbeats per minute (bpm)

It can be measured by finding the pulse of the body


Tachycardia-a resting heart rate of more than 100 bpm

Bradycardia-a heart rate of less than 60 bpm

Arrhythmia-abnormalities of the heart rate and rhythm

Fact: Miguel Indurain, a Spanish cyclist and five time Tour de France winner, had a resting heart rate of 29 beats per minute, one of the lowest ever recorded in a healthy human. Again, this number can vary as children and small adults tend to have faster heart rates than average adults.

Heart Rate
the valsalva manoeuvre
Performed by moderately forceful attempted exhalation against a closed airway, usually done by closing one's mouth and pinching one's nose shut.

Variations of the manoeuvre can be used either in medical examinations as a test of cardiac function and autonomic nervous control of the heart, or to "clear" the ears and sinuses (equalize pressure between them) when ambient pressure changes, as in diving, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, or aviation

The Valsalva Manoeuvre
target heart rate zone
 The best training zone for aerobic exercise for those trying to burn fat and build muscle tone is at a rate of 65 to 70 percent of maximum heart rate.

If you are training to hard with your aerobic exercise, you will soon step into the overtraining range and start to become too lean, losing muscle tissue, looking to skinny and emaciated.

If you push yourself to far your recuperation system starts to bog down and you won’t get the muscle tone that you want.

·         Beginners: 60 to 65%

·         Intermediates: 65 to 70%

·         Advanced: 70 to 80%

Using a heart rate monitor watch is great way to

determine your heart rate and to know your safe

zone when exercising.

Target Heart Rate Zone 
target heart rate calculator
A simple way to make sure you're working within your target heart rate zone, which is the most effective zone for improving your fitness and burning calories

Useful to be used during a workout to help monitor to track your heart rate

Your range that you should be exercising in. For Example:  A 55-year-old would have the following calculation for Max Heart Rate:220 - 55 years = 165 beats per minute, or bpmTo calculate their target heart rate zone (65-85%):Max heart rate  x  target % = Target Heart Rate165  x  65% (or .65) = 107 bpm165  x  85% (or .85) = 140 bpmThis person's target heart rate zone is 107 bpm to 140 bpm.

  Target Heart Rate Calculator
karvonen formula
Mathematical formula that helps you determine your target heart rate zone.

Target Heart Rate = ((max HR ? resting HR) × %Intensity) + resting HR

Beneficial to staying within this range will help you workout be more effective during your cardio workout and to know your limit

Finding a more accurate target heart rate while exercising, you will need to determine your resting heart rate

Best time to check your resting heart rate is just before you get up in the morning after a good night's sleep. To make a greater accuracy take the average of two or three morning readings

Karvonen Formula
Cardio needs to be trained 3-5x weekly, at 60-90% of max heart rate. 15-60 min sessions.

F-3-5x a weekI-60-90%T-15-60 minsT- aerobic or anaerobic

starter phase
Permit body to adapt gradually & to avoid & personal discouragement

2-6 weeks depending on fitness level

Low intensity up to70-80% of Hrmax

Comfortable intensity

Increase duration & intensity only when comfortable

Be aware of aches & pains

Starter phase
slow progression phase
12-20 weeks
  • intensity gradually elevated
  • Frequency (3 – 4 x) & time of exercise increase according to goal
  • 3–4 x / week, 20-30 min/session

70-90% Hrmax (50-85 VO2max)

  • Apply FITT principle
    • Increase frequency 3 to 4 to 5
    • Increase time by 2 minutes until reaching 40 mins
    • Increase intensity by 5% VO2max (3%HRmax) until reaching 85%VO2max

Stay in tune with your body

Slow progression phase
16-28 weeks

When gained specific training goalmaintainable by reduced frequency of training

Intensity and duration maintained

Periods of lower training volume can be used to prevent overtraining or to let athletes focus on competitive events while maintaining physical condition

Reducible by 2 training days/week

ceiling limit
A genetic or predisposed limit for improvement
  • The further you are from your ceiling limit the greater the initial improvement
  • The closer you are to your ceiling limit, improvements become smaller and smaller
Ceiling limit
tapering phase
Despite benefits, tapering is the most overlooked phase of marathon preparation.

Definition: cutting back training, so your body can rebuild to peak strength.

allows muscles to repair the micro-damage of intervals, energy systems to store up glycogen, body to overcome the chronic dehydration of hard training, and tendonitis in your knee or ankle or hip to finally go away.

Tapering phase
de training
Most training benefits lost within 4 – 8 week period of sedentary activity

Different components of fitness de-training at different rates

Ex. Strength gains last much longer than adaptions in cardiorespiratory fitness/ flexibility

Longer consistently training = longer results will remain