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HRM Results

macerellomacerello Posts: 57
Hi,

Can anyone give me some advice on my HRM results?

I rode for 1hr 45mins yesterday and my Polar F6 says I used 1567 calories, 30% of which was fat. My max HR was 191bpm which is 104% of my max HR. My average HR was 157bpm which is 86% of my max. Throught the ride I only spent 19 mins in 'zone'.

I have set up the HRM with my weight, height and age (195lb, 5"10", 38yrs) and allowed it to calculate my max HR and 'zone' which I am assuming is 60 - 70% max HR for aerobic training.

I started the ride well and my max HR came during a climb after approx 30mins in the saddle, however, after 45mins I felt the onset of cramp in my right calf which stayed thoughout the remainder of the ride (developing into full blown cramp after about an hour or so). This held me back a little.

My question is that I seem to reach my max HR easily when pushing a bit, and even when only trying moderately, I exceed the 'zone'. I dont feel that I am over doing it on the bike, and to be honest, any slower would feel like I was crawling and I would start to feel cold. I would like to push harder than I am doing now and start introducing some intervals of higher intensity, but this will take me up to and beyond my max HR. Am I just very unfit, hence the higher HR? or sould I try to set the 'own zones' on the HRM? I havent done this yet because I hope my fitness will increase rapidly over the next few months, which will affect the settings. Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

M

Posts

  • freehubfreehub Posts: 4,257
    Your HR monitor is not configured properly, you have not found your max HR yet, 191bpm is not your max hr.

    I doubt the calories figure is accurate too, probably way overestimated like Garmin devices.
  • macerellomacerello Posts: 57
    Thanks Freehub, I agree that something seems wrong. As a rule of thumb, should max HR be 220 - age? In my case, that would be 182bpm which would seem to tie in with the given results. for info, my resting HR is about 60bpm.

    Its the fact that the bpm that I feel comfortable working at, exceeds the aerobic zone. How does everyone else get on? do you work at a higher rate i.e. 80 - 90% max HR or does 60 - 70% feel right?

    Cheers again

    M
  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    Max HR is rougly 220 minus your age. There are three levels of HR; High, Moderate and Low. There are various arguments as to which is best for fat burning but most devices are set up to recognise your moderate HR as the fat burning zone for you. Above that and your into aerobic zones. Your Polar device will have details of what percentages of maximum HR the various HR zones are. THat or it's easily found on the internet.

    Working at your moderate HR isn't supposed to be hard. You should be able to hold a conversation while performing at your moderate HR. (By conversation I don't mean delivering an after dinner speech but short sentences without gasping for breath.)

    Calories burnt is usually around 800 per hour for cycling.

    I don't know how long you've been cycling, but in the early stages your heart rate will quickly rise due to not being used to the exerscion. Slowing your HR down is simple enough; slow down. It may feel like you're being overtaken by snails but it is the only way to control your HR. The more oxygen you require the higher your HR is going to go to pump it around the system. Always begin slowly and once warmed up you can begin cycling harder. Starting off quickly doesn't give your heart a chance to get ready for the exercise.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • whyamiherewhyamihere Posts: 7,549
    Your max HR is not 220-age. Your max HR is the fastest your heart can beat. If you think you have a max HR measurement, and you go over it, then it's wrong. You cannot exceed your maximum heart rate. Ever.
  • danowatdanowat Posts: 2,877
    104% of my max HR :lol:

    Common mistake, using a theoretical maximum, many people don't come anywhere near a theoretical, if you are going to get any data worth looking at, you NEED to know your true MHR.

    Also, take calorie figures from HRM's with a HUGE pinch of salt.
  • kettrinboykettrinboy Posts: 613
    the first thing to do is find what your max hr actually is and then set your zones yourself according to that,if you use the 220 - age formula or let the computer work it out it could be a long way out, obviously if 191 bpm is 104% of max the max hr figure the comp is working on, ie about 183 bpm is wrong when you,ve got it right you should only register 100% on the road if your about fit to fall off the bike or feel like puking after a really hard effort up a hill or on a long hard sprint,it sounds like your max hr could be about 195 or higher even, if it was for example up at 200 it would move your 70% zone to 140 bpm from the circa 128 bpm it is now, ive always used 70-80% of max hr for aerobic training and 60-70% for steady rides,looking at my garmin data, on most rides like yours i,d average about 80-86 % of max hr depending on how hard i,d rode and probably hit 95-96% as a maximum.,and on a flat out 10 mile thrash i,d average around 90% and hit 97-99% as a maximum.
  • macerellomacerello Posts: 57
    Thanks philthy3, I've been off the bike for a few years so I'm starting from scratch again but feeling like I should be able to pick up where I left off! My HR does stabilise after a while and I feel better for it.

    My HRM is set to 70 - 80% HRmax as the 'zone'. Polar claim this is 'Moderate' and recommend this for people exercising regularly.

    I guess I just need to do more and keep check on how my HR alters as I get fitter.

    Cheers

    M
  • macerellomacerello Posts: 57
    :D sorry to those thinking I'm being a bit simple. I understand HRmax to be the maximum 'safe' HR for my age, weight etc. rather than the fastest my heart could ever beat. 104% would be worrying :shock: But if the generic HR max is correct, I am pushing myself beyond what Polar consider to be safe for my age.

    I suppose a more direct question would be - does a HR of 191bpm sound too much? (it was during a hard climb, and I did feel like I was putting in 100% effort. So I suppose my HRmax could be slightly higher than the generic figure. It seems to be accepted that a 10/20bpm variation between people of similar fitness/age, is normal.

    Thanks again for all the advice.

    M

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  • macerellomacerello Posts: 57
    Kettrinboy - I agree. If I accept my HRmax is higher than the std. calculation, then everything else seems to fall into place. Thanks.
  • redddraggonredddraggon Posts: 10,862
    Whereabouts in North Wales you been riding?
    I like bikes...

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  • macerellomacerello Posts: 57
    Redddraggon - Just on Anglesey at the moment. I havent ventured onto the mainland just yet. there are some hills there that would test my HRmax!

    Are you local?
  • redddraggonredddraggon Posts: 10,862
    Macerello wrote:
    Redddraggon - Just on Anglesey at the moment. I havent ventured onto the mainland just yet. there are some hills there that would test my HRmax!

    Are you local?

    Not really local to you, most of cycling is around Ruthin/Denbigh side.
    I like bikes...

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  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    Max HR is rougly 220 minus your age.[/b] .

    Rougly folks not exactly. It is the rough guide all fitness coaches go by as the safe estimate of someone's max HR.

    I did have my HR up to 200bpm according to the device a couple of years ago. I did feel like chucking up and was absolutely gasping for breath and have never run so high since. I/m 49 now so I was easily exceeding my max HR according to the rough guide. But the rough guide errs on safety.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • freehubfreehub Posts: 4,257
    It can also be 230 minus your age.
  • ireland57ireland57 Posts: 84
    220 - my age (53) = 167.

    I've had my hr at 187 many times. So 20 beats out using that 220 formula.

    I think my max is around 190 -192. 187 is hard work but I can hit it a few times during a race/ride. I've not been bothered to find the max; what I use is close enough.
    I have the monitor set at 190 max.

    It showed 196 once during a 1 hr climb which I was struggling at but I'm not sure if it was an accurate measure. I've hurt more than that many times and as above it showed 187.

    If you're doing this for fun and fitness I'm not sure it matters a great deal. You can use the hrm for keeping a decent average during a long race/ride if you want.

    Of course it goes without saying that if there's any doubt do a stress test at the doc's.

    I don't read it much during races but did the other day during a 2 hr one. I was blasting some hills 1/2 hr into the race; then over the next 1/2 hr my hr kept showing 171 - 172. For once I took some notice and eased a little as soon as I could. I know I can't sustain that pace for 2 hrs yet so it came in handy.
  • ben16vben16v Posts: 296
    i`m anglesey too - take it by your name you like the fishing too
    i need more bikes
  • macerellomacerello Posts: 57
    ben16v - I've just started SWFF and its great fun, but I can honestly say I am useless. Do you ride with any of the local clubs? I'd like to join one eventually, but I'm not sure if I'm up to it yet.

    Cheers

    M
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