I’ve been practicing Zone 2 training for just about 2 weeks now. 65 minutes on the elliptical every day, and I’ve been doing 6 days per week.
Oct 2: 65 minutes.
I always keep breathing through my nose. I set the elliptical to level 10, and yesterday I set it to level 11 for the first time, and it was fine.
I never feel like this is very hard training, just that I put in the time, but after every session my shirt and my underwear are completely soaked in sweat, so I guess it does work.
The one thing I got to be careful with is my joints—I do feel some kind of sensitivitiy in my right leg just where it joins the hip.
What made me start with Zone 2 training? It was listening to a Tim Ferriss podcast episode with Rich Roll where he talked about it.
I’ve had my own issues with high-intensity training: Tough on the joints, so I got to build up to it. And even on the heart, I did feel like I was pushing my cardiovaskular system almost too much at times.
Now, after 2 weeks of Zone 2 training, I can say my experience with this is very different. I never feel like I’m pushing myself too heart, but that I always am in that zone where I feel like I could do more, and in fact I often want to do more, but I just hood back a bit. This is actually something Rich Roll talked about—that one of the most difficult things about getting started with Zone 2 training is that people often fall into a faster, more intense training pace, because it’s tempting to go harder.
I typically listen to an audiobook while I do my Zone 2 training, and so far I’ve always done it on an elliptical. That makes it easy, almost something I look forward to, because hey, audiobook time or podcast time, it’s so interesting.
My favorite way of listening to an audiobook is actually with my iPad, listening to an Audible book in my Kindle app, which then allows me to easily highlight the any passages I find interesting. I almost said time flies by during my training sessions, but that’s not the case. I often do think: When will this be over?
But overall, it’s still a relatively easy thing to knock out, especially if there are benefits derived from it.
The best writeup on the subject was this post: A Guide to the Biggest Thing Missing From Your Fitness Routine: Zone 2 Training.
Here’s my quick summary:
- all cells in your body are fueled by adenosine triphosphate or ATP
- ATP can be produced in 3 ways:
- oxidization: most of the ATP is created this way. You breathe, and oxidation turns fatty acids into ATP. This process happens within your cell’s mitochondria.
- glycolysis: happens during intense exercise (sprinting, weight lifting, etc). Your body switches from oxidization to burning glycogen/carbs to replenish ATP stores.
- recycling previously-stored ATP: when ATP does it’s thing (transferring energy to cells), it breaks off one of its phosphates. In shortl ATP turns into ADP (adenosine diphosphate). If you take creatine, the creatine will give its phosphate to the ADP and turn it into ATP.