Why you should NEVER experience nausea at the gym!

 

We’ve seen it time and time again with online “Fitspo”, if you feel like throwing up, passing out, or your body is telling you to stop…. STOP! You don’t have to experience nausea to get a good workout.

It’s important to listen to your body when exercising so that you reduce your risk of injury, increase your levels of enjoyment, all while keeping intensity high enough to facilitate maximum calorie burn. Finding this balance might be difficult at first, but don’t worry! There’s multiple methods for testing and controlling your exercise intensity!

 

The RPE (Rate of Perceived Exertion) Test:

This is based on your current feelings and ability to talk during exercise.

  • The Orange zone (1) is great for warming up, but may be too low in intensity to benefit cardiovascular endurance and maximum calorie burn.
  • The Green zone is the recommended intensity for all exercise including weight lifting, sports, and cardio-respiratory exercise. By staying within the green zone you can be assured that you are burning maximal calories while ensuring exercise can be maintained.
  • The Red zone is only recommended for athletes, more advanced individuals, or those who are training specifically to increase their cardiovascular fitness (VO2 Max). Training in zone three should be done in short and intense intervals only.
Score Description
1 I am sitting down watching TV.
2 An easy pace that I could sustain all day long.
3 A comfortable pace, but I notice a little effort.
4 I am starting to sweat, but effort is relatively easy; I can carry on a comfortable conversation.
5 It is a little above comfortable, I am sweating more, but can still talk continuously with ease.
6 The effort is becoming challenging as is my breathing; I now talk in shorter sentences.
7 I can still talk, but shorter sentences are now becoming challenging.
8 Exercise is becoming difficult as is speaking; very short sentences and phrases are possible.
9 Exercise is very difficult; only to speak a few words between breaths.
10 Exercise is extremely difficult; speaking is impossible.

 

Heart Rate Zone Training:

Still not sure how you’re feeling? You can compare the RPE zones to the Zone Training Method. The most accepted formula for finding out your Heart Rate Max is 220- Age. Once you have your Heart rate max, try training in one of these three zones.

  • The Orange zone (1) is great for warming up, but may be too low in intensity to benefit cardiovascular endurance and maximum calorie burn.
  • The Green zone is the recommended intensity for all exercise including weight lifting, sports, and cardio-respiratory exercise. By staying within the green zone you can be assured that you are burning maximal calories while ensuring exercise can be maintained.
  • The Red zone is only recommended for athletes, more advanced individuals, or those who are training specifically to increase their cardiovascular fitness (VO2 Max). Training in zone three should be done in short and intense intervals only.
    P.S. Some athletes may work in intervals between all three zones to increase oxygen capacity and cardiorespiratory fitness.
Training Zone HR Formula Purpose
Zone One 65–75% Intensity (220 – the client’s age) x 0.65 or 0.75 This zone builds an aerobic base that is critical for improving heart and lung capacity. This improved capacity affects the body’s ability to store and transport oxygen and nutrients to produce energy. It is used for warmup and recovery.
Zone Two 76–85% Intensity (220 – the client’s age) x 0.80 or 0.85 This zone is used to increase anaerobic and aerobic capacity by straddling the energy systems. A client could work on both leg strength and cardiovascular capacity by sustaining this zone for long periods of time.
Zone Three 86–90% Intensity (220 – the client’s age) x 0.86 or 0.90 This zone is used only in interval training. It can increase speed, power, metabolism, and anaerobic capacity by repeatedly exposing active muscles to high-intensity exercise, improving resistance to fatigue. A client will be able to sustain a given exercise intensity for a longer period of time, increasing endurance.

 

 

 

If you begin to feel nausea, pain, or faintness, it’s generally a sign that you’re training in an intensity that’s too high for your current cardiovascular fitness level. Remember, you do not have to push yourself beyond your limit to get an excellent workout in! Pushing yourself beyond your current capability may increase your risk of injury and does not serve any additional benefit!

 


I don’t know about you, but i’m sick and tired of seeing people praised for this “pushing yourself beyond your limits” mentality. Train with the right intensity, right fuel, and you will see change. There’s never a need to ignore the biological signs that you’re pushing yourself too far.


 

Still feeling faint when working out in the green zone? Try these helpful tips!

  1. Always stay hydrated! Consume adequate water so that your urine is clear to slightly yellow. Always replenish lost water when exercising.
  2. Try eating more meals throughout the day, or eating before exercising. For those who struggle with blood sugar issues, staying hydrated and eating regularly may reduce these symptoms during exercise.
  3. If you are experiencing nausea and you’ve eaten before exercise this may be an indicator you perform best on an empty stomach. Try eating 2-3 hours before exercise instead.
  4. Consume adequate levels of salt (1,500mg / day) and replenish electrolytes after prolonged activity (90+ minutes).

 

 

If none of these suggestions help and you are still experiencing faintness in the gym, please see your physician! You may be experiencing low blood sugar, low blood pressure, or other medical conditions. Do not ignore these warning signs as they may be an indicator of a more serious illness.