Listen to Your Heart [Rate Monitor]

Anytime I am asked how to get the most out of DDP Yoga, I always take the opportunity to convince people to use a heart rate monitor. I very nearly didn’t get one when I started out; at the time I didn’t think it would make that much of a difference. In fact, as memory serves, some accumulated Amazon points were the only reason I got one. But thank goodness I did!

When I first started doing DDP Yoga, the Diamond Dozen blew my mind. There is so much information in that tutorial/workout that I am still, to this day, watching it and picking up new things. There were a lot of new moves and positions for my body. Engaging everything at once was new to me and was not a habit I was in, so it was hard to remember the lower half of my body when following along with the instructions for the upper half of my body. My heart rate monitor is set to beep when I when I am above or below my ideal zone. Whenever I would forget to engage my lower body, especially my glutes and quads, my heart rate would dip, and my monitor would start chirping at me. Yes, of course, much as people react to their GPS devices, I anthropomorphized my heart rate monitor, and took the chirping as passive aggressive judgment on its part. The chirping, and my oddly negative reaction to it, forced me to remember to engage my lower body, and kicked my fat burning into gear. As I have pointed out before, I blew past my weigh loss goals long before my first 90 days were up. Using the heart rate monitor was a huge part of that*.



As my practice continued, the judgmental chirping helped me improve engaging in less cardio-ful moves like twisted lunge, dropping down into catcher or broken table. I can now stay in my fat burning zone in any of those moves or positions!

More recently, I ran into the worst enemy of your fat burning zone: complacency. I started noticing that the numbers of calories I was burning in each workout, as well as the percent of time I was spending “in zone” were both dropping. I log everything in MyFitnessPal, so it was easy for me to spot this pattern. I initially assumed that I was just getting so fit that my body was more efficient, and therefore I was finding it harder to get into my zone. This, to a certain extent, was true, but before I headed off to to ask for advice, I decided to exam my DDP Yoga performance. Was I engaging as much I had been when I started? Was I making the most out of each position? I focused on each and every position and movement as I was doing workouts like Strength Builder, Diamond Cutter, and the Level 1 Workout, and examined my heart rate monitor. The answer to the above questions was NO!

Since then, I have been more diligent about my form and engagement while working out, and I have found my performance has returned to my heyday of weight loss and fat burning.

So, like DDP says at the beginning of every workout, make sure your heart rate monitor is on and kicking. And like I say, always ask yourself, is there anything more I could be engaging.

For those of you not old (and possibly not European) enough to remember Roxette, this post’s title was a play on one of their song titles. Good luck getting it out of your head!

* DDP Yoga being that frickin’ awesome was the even bigger factor! 


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