Aerobic Training – What Is It And How Do You Train It?


Aerobic training means training without oxygen debt. This means that the body works with enough oxygen. It can metabolize fats and carbohydrates without producing lactate. Strictly speaking, some glycogen is always metabolized and lactic acid (lactate) is formed. However, this is formed in such small quantities that it is immediately broken down again. As a rule one speaks of aerobic training with a lactate value <2mmol / liter.

Aerobic training – what are the (health) advantages?

             Improvement of the cardiovascular system

             Improvement of the ability to regenerate

             optimal basis for more intensive forms of training & competitions

             positive effect on diabetes

             can help with weight loss

             helps reduce stress hormones

The main goal of aerobic training is to improve the cardiovascular system. The heart adapts and can pump more blood in one fell swoop. So more power is possible with the same heart rate. And at the same time, the heart has to beat less calmly. Aerobic training also helps to keep the vessels supple and stretchy so that the blood can circulate optimally. At the cellular level, many metabolic processes are improved due to changes in enzyme activity. Overall, from an athletic point of view, aerobic training has positive effects on the ability to regenerate and the tolerance of stress in the case of more intense training and competition loads – regardless of whether in the endurance area, strength area or game sport. Aerobic training, The fact that it is used specifically to promote regeneration is also referred to as “REKOM training” (regeneration or compensation training). The load here is usually in the lowest area of aerobic training.

For health, aerobic training also has positive effects on the development and development of diabetes. Among other things, it can increase the sensitivity of the insulin receptors, which means that sugar can get better into the muscle cells and be metabolized there.

Aerobic training also burns energy, which of course has positive effects on body weight. Therefore, aerobic training can also be used optimally to reduce body weight.

Even those who have a lot of stress can benefit from this form of training. Because aerobic endurance training reduces stress hormones faster.

Exercises at home TEST

Heart rate monitor: Polar M400 HR





+ perfect for hobby and


runners + price / performance very good

+ integrated GPS receiver

+ many evaluation functions

+ optional heart rate

belt CONTRA:

– trainingevaluationonly


– mini-USB

attached less thanoptimal


Exercises at home Rating: great device, good price

Professionals may be able to use even more recording and evaluation functions. All others will be well served with this device: GPS (integrated), all essential HF functions, small, quickly finds GPS signal (you can find more information about the M400 below)… 🙂

How does aerobic training work?

Various methods can be used for aerobic endurance training.

Most of the training is based on the permanent method . As a rule of thumb, the load should be approx. 60-75% of the maximum heart rate. Running, walking, cycling, swimming, rowing etc. are possible. Training in the aerobic area can be precisely controlled using a performance test. The most common and easiest is a lactate level test, which you can read more about in the next section.

The extensive interval methodis also suitable for training aerobic endurance. Stress and relaxation are alternated. For example, you can run a kilometer a little faster (maybe close to 75% of your maximum heart rate). And then you run or walk more relaxed (maybe around 60% of your maximum HR), for example 500m. You repeat the whole thing a few times.

The Fartspiel or Fartlek method is similar to the extensive intervals. Similar to extensive intervals, a change from faster and slower sections is used. The difference, however, is that this is done in a playful manner and not at fixed intervals. So if, for example, there is a mountain on your running route, you work a little more uphill and relax again downhill.

Heart rate monitors – can help you optimize your training

If you want to train aerobically, it makes sense to train with a heart rate monitor. This is recommended not only for professionals, but above all for beginners, since they can usually not get their current effort very well.

Heart rate monitors have the advantage that you can always read on the display how fast your heart is beating. So you don’t have to rely on your feeling, but have a value that you can orientate yourself to. With the help of a lactate test or spiroergometry, your training areas – and thus the area for aerobic training – can be determined exactly. After such a test, you know that you should move between 130 and 150 beats per minute, for example, to train in the aerobic area. This is a brilliant thing and allows you to control your training very finely.

Many heart rate monitors also come with integrated test procedures. Using certain formulas, you can determine your individual training areas relatively well. The only really real thing is a lactate test, which you can find out more about below, or preferably a spiroergometry.

POLAR M400 HR training computer with integrated GPS receiver – TEST




The M400 is optionally available with or a heart rate monitor belt. To control aerobic training, the version with a measuring belt should of course be bought.

The watch offers a variety of functions. It records the heart rate and different HR target zones can be set, so that you are optically and / or acoustically warned if you are traveling too fast or too slowly.

The recording data can be transmitted and analyzed online using the Polar Flow web service and training goals can be set. It should be mentioned that there is no software that can be used locally on the PC, but that the web service must be used.

In addition to the core functions, there are also a number of cool features: GPS tracking, back to the starting point with “Back to Start”, recording activity 24/7, calorie consumption, steps taken during the day, measuring sleep duration and quality, etc. etc. -).

We recommend the Polar M400 as a really very strong device that comes with a reasonable price. The functions are great, the Flow web service is well thought-out and the operation is fun (you should be aware, however, that you load your individual data into the web, local storage is not possible with the M400 …). The handling of the watch is also very easy and pleasant. There is only a deduction for the, in our opinion, misplaced mini-USB interface. This is under the clock. Although it has a cover, Polar recommends regular rinsing under running water and subsequent drying. However, the USB socket is prone to corrosion. With a little care, our M400 has worked perfectly for many, many training sessions.

If you are interested in the Polar M400, you can find out more about the watch in this Polar video :



What is a lactate test?

The goal of a lactate test is to determine the aerobic threshold / base lactate . This is the point at which the load becomes so great that the body no longer has enough oxygen for the metabolic processes. As a result, lactate is increasingly formed. If you use a test to determine the frequency at which the heart beats with basic lactate, you can very easily determine the various training zones (basic endurance I, basic endurance II, development area, top area …).

How does a lactate test work?

A lactate test usually runs as a step test . Usually either a treadmill or an ergometer is used. You can also perform a lactate test “in the wild”, for example on a running track or in a swimming pool, but the treadmill and ergometer have the advantage that the load can be set very precisely.

The step test always starts with a low intensity. For amateur cyclists, for example, with 120 watts. From there, the intensity is usually increased by a fixed wattage in 4-7 steps and the load is increased. Each step usually lasts 3 minutes. At the end, the earlobe is pucked and a drop of capillary blood is removed. The lactate value is then determined from this drop of blood in a special device.

From the einzlenen lactate values, then leaves in a diagram called lactate power curveto draw. It can usually be clearly seen that the lactate levels rise very little at the first performance levels, but then suddenly make a significant leap upwards. As a result, the lactate output curve also suddenly bends upwards. This enables the aerobic threshold to be determined – i.e. the threshold where the body still has just enough oxygen to prevent lactate from accumulating. A lactate level test usually also records the heart rate. The different training areas can then be wonderfully determined from the heart rate value at the aerobic threshold. With a heart rate monitor (see above) you can train in these areas relatively precisely during training and control your training quite optimally.

Aerobic training at home – the best equipment

Take a look at our article on cardio machines for at home . There you will find some interesting devices with which you can easily unwind your aerobic training from home.


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