The Effects of Exercise on Recovery Time

The Effects of Exercise on Recovery Time

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The Effects of Exercise on Recovery Time


I am going to test how long it takes a persons heart rate to return to
their resting hear rate after different periods of exercise. I will
vary the time spent exercising each time and I will keep the intensity
of the exercise constant.

Preliminary Work

During my preliminary work I tested how my heart rate reacted to
different periods of exercise. I measured my resting heart rate at 77
bmp. Unfortunately the school does not own heart monitors so I had to
take my pulse manually so this may not be accurate. Firstly I did
step-ups for one minute at a set intensity, my heart rate was 117 bpm.
Then I did step-ups for two minutes and measured my hear rate, it was
126 bpm. When I did the same exercise and intensity for five minutes
my heart rate was 250 bpm. Because I thought that there was enough
difference between my bpms I decided to use minutes for my exercise
times. I will use one minute, two minutes, three minutes etc up to
five minutes. I used a stop clock to measure my bpm. I measured how
long it took my body to recover when I exercised for one minute and
when I exercised for five minutes. For five minutes of exercise it
took my bpm about three minutes to recover and when I exercised for
one minute it took my bpm about one minute. I think that these
recovery times are far enough apart to use minutes for my experiment.


· Stop clock

· Heart monitor

· Stepping block

Fair test Factors

· I will take five repeats of the experiment and average the results
to get a better end result.

· I will use the same person throughout the experiment because some
people will recover faster than others, i.e. people that do a lot of
exercise regularly will have a faster recovery rate because their
heart and lungs will be fitter and healthier than a person who doesn't

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do as much exercise's heart and lungs.

· I will use a person of average weight and build so that it gives a
fairer representation of recovery times than an overweight person or
an athlete as an athlete will take far less time to recover than an
overweight person will.

· The experiment will be performed over five days. During which time
my subject will go to bed at the same time each night, eat the same
meals and drink the same amount of fluids. This is to ensure that on
each day the subject has the same amount of blood glucose as the other
days. If there is more glucose in the blood then the subject's
recovery rate will be faster because there is more glucose to fuel the
heart to pump blood around the body and break down the lactate in the

· The room in which the exercise will be undertaken in will be kept at
a constant temperature so that the subject will not lose more energy
as heat on any particular day.

· The heart rate of the exerciser will always be taken with the
exerciser stood up straight.

Health and Safety

· I will not be using a person with medical difficulties meaning that
they are unable to exercise, e.g. epilepsy or damaged leg muscles, to
take part in this experiment.

· I will give my subject a bottle of water each day after they have
exercised to make sure that they do not dehydrate.

· The exerciser should be wearing suitable shoes and clothes to
undertake the exercises i.e. trainers and jogging pants.

· I will allow the exerciser to hold onto a handrail to keep their

· I will make sure that the stepping block is not too high that they
have difficulties.


I think that the longer my person exercises for, the slower their
recovery rate will be and therefore the longer their recovery time
will be. I think this because when you are exercising the cells in
your muscles need oxygen to combine with glucose to make ATP, which
provides energy. At a certain point in your exercise your lungs cannot
supply any more oxygen than they are already supplying. This means
that your muscles need more energy but they have to find another way
of getting it. This means that the cells in your muscles break down a
little glucose without combining it with oxygen. This new reaction
produces energy in small amounts, but it also produces lactate or
lactic acid.

Glucose ------- Lactic acid + ENERGY

This means that when you stop exercising there is a lot of lactate
still in your blood and in your muscles and you need to break it up.
The oxygen that would have gone to make energy for the muscles is not
used to break down the lactate in your body. This is called oxygen
debt because you still need to give your body more oxygen. This is why
you carry on breathing hard and your hear still beats quickly even
after you stop exercising. Eventually when all the lactic acid has
been broken down your heart rate and your breathing rate return to
your resting rates. I think that the longer you exercise for then the
more lactate will build up in your body, therefore the longer your
heart and lungs will have to carry on working hard after you have
finished exercising to make up the oxygen debt.


· At a set time the exerciser will have their resting heart rate taken
using a heart monitor and recorded. They will then be timed doing
step-ups for one minute using a stop clock. The intensity of the
exercise will be timed using the metronome. When the minute is up the
exerciser will stand still and their recovery time will be timed using
a stop clock and recorded. This will be from when the exerciser stops
exercising to when their heart rate has returned to their resting
heart rate.

· The exerciser will wait five minutes after their heart rate has
returned to normal to ensure that all the lactate in their body has
been broken up and they will perform the same exercise, at the same
intensity, for two minutes. Again after they have finished exercising
their recovery time will be timed using a stop clock and recorded.
They will wait a further five minutes after their heart rate has
returned to normal.

· The exerciser will repeat this routine for exercises lasting three,
four and five minutes, each time their recovery time will be times and
recorded and they will be given five minutes after their heart rate
has returned to normal.

· The exerciser will repeat the whole routine for five days, each time
taking their resting heart rate before they begin using a heart
monitor. The results will be averaged to obtain the final set of
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