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Max heart rate question

FreewayFreeway Posts: 18
Sorry if this is been covered, I searched through the forms but came up short. My question is when setting the max heart rate in my Strava app and in my element bolt app rather than using one of the age formulas is it ok to take the highest max heart rate number I have recorded from a ride and use that number? I ask because when I use an age formula I’m at 173, but looking through my last 10 rides I see a couple 181’s. Short of a real test is this a reasonable way to choose the number? Or at least better than the formula method?
Thanks a bunch.

Posts

  • Mad_MalxMad_Malx Posts: 4,033
    The formula methods are approximate estimates for the average of a population. Within the population the values naturally vary - a lot.
    Max heart rate is the maximum you can achieve. this requires working up to an all out effort - there are lots of websites telling you how to do this and someone will post a method soon.
    But in the meanwhile your measured maximum is closer.
  • FreewayFreeway Posts: 18
    Mad_Malx wrote:
    But in the meanwhile your measured maximum is closer.
    That’s what I was hoping. Thanks malx
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,003
    If you've seen 181, then use that. If/when you see higher, just update it....and so on...
  • FreewayFreeway Posts: 18
    Imposter wrote:
    If you've seen 181, then use that. If/when you see higher, just update it....and so on...
    Perfect :)
  • Personally, I don't think max heart rate recorded during a ride is that accurate. To get a fully accurate reading you could really do with a ramp test but I appreciate not everyone has the time or money to undergo testing in a lab environment. To give you an example my actual max hr (through lab testing) is 13 bpm higher than any hr reading I have recorded out on the road. For some people a road test will be accurate but for others, like me, it can be way out.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,003
    Personally, I don't think max heart rate recorded during a ride is that accurate. To get a fully accurate reading you could really do with a ramp test but I appreciate not everyone has the time or money to undergo testing in a lab environment. To give you an example my actual max hr (through lab testing) is 13 bpm higher than any hr reading I have recorded out on the road. For some people a road test will be accurate but for others, like me, it can be way out.

    To be fair, the OP didn't say that 181 was his 'max' - just that it was the highest number he had seen on the road...
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    You don't need a lab to test. Just HRM turbo and mate to shout at you.
  • mamil314mamil314 Posts: 1,103
    This was my experience as well. For a couple of years i thought i had my max hr recoded on hard climbs, but it is very difficult to go all out on the ride in fear of not being able to continue. Recently i got a turbo and recorded an 11 bpm higher hr during an FTP test
  • zefszefs Posts: 484
    There is a way to achieve a max Hr outside if you have a 5 min uphill road. Thing is LTHR is better for setting heart rate zones and training around that.

    For max hr you can:
    Warm up 20-30 mins
    Find a climb, ride steady for 5 mins
    Go back down and ride it again increasing the pace every 30sec
    When you can't go harder do a max effort sprint

    Try to find a quiet road to do this test since hitting max hr is not fun. Since you have recorded 181 in your rides you shouldn't be surprised to see 190 with the test above.

    For LTHR: https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/joe- ... ing-zones/
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,003
    zefs wrote:
    Since you have recorded 181 in your rides you shouldn't be surprised to see 190 with the test above.

    None of us knows how hard the OP has ridden to achieve 181. On that basis, it is equally possible that 181 could be his MHR.
  • 3wheeler3wheeler Posts: 110
    edited May 2018
    zefs wrote:
    ...
    For max hr you can:
    Warm up 20-30 mins
    Find a climb, ride steady for 5 mins
    Go back down and ride it again increasing the pace every 30sec
    When you can't go harder do a max effort sprint

    Try to find a quiet road to do this test since hitting max hr is not fun. ...

    Something like this is the way to go if you want to push to max HR outdoors, not fancy equipment or labs needed, just a HR monitor.

    The maximum and the training zones you derive from it are just a guide so in any case you might find you prefer the lower or higher end of each training zone.
  • zefszefs Posts: 484
    Imposter wrote:
    zefs wrote:
    Since you have recorded 181 in your rides you shouldn't be surprised to see 190 with the test above.

    None of us knows how hard the OP has ridden to achieve 181. On that basis, it is equally possible that 181 could be his MHR.

    That's true, only base that from my experience were my max was 10 bpm higher than what I thought it was and only managed to record it using this method. I perform the test once a year.
    I never hit my max even when trying for PB for some reason, not sure if that's common.
  • Bumo_bBumo_b Posts: 211
    I have/had a max heart rate of 182, with the exception of being a total censored last year in France and doing a long climb with some serious gradients and getting seriously dehydrated which caused it to go over 200 and suffering some rather serious side effects. I would stick with the 181 and amend accordingly if you find on really hard efforts it goes higher. There are always exceptions, changes to rules etc Also, whenever going to the max, keep your cadence high where possible so the heart and lungs max out before the legs do.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,003
    Bumo_b wrote:
    I have/had a max heart rate of 182, with the exception of being a total fool last year in France and doing a long climb with some serious gradients and getting seriously dehydrated which caused it to go over 200 and suffering some rather serious side effects.

    Not sure if I've misunderstood you or not - but if you have seen 200+ HR, then 182 is obviously not your max HR.
  • Bumo_bBumo_b Posts: 211
    My point was you don’t count a heart rate that occurs with the onset of heatstroke and dehydration or other such side effects as this puts the heart under an abnormal strain. A max heart rate in relation to fitness can only be judged with normal health etc for want of a better term.
  • neebneeb Posts: 4,362
    Bumo_b wrote:
    My point was you don’t count a heart rate that occurs with the onset of heatstroke and dehydration or other such side effects as this puts the heart under an abnormal strain. A max heart rate in relation to fitness can only be judged with normal health etc for want of a better term.
    Hmm, not sure about that. It's an interesting question at least. Clearly there are some conditions that can cause your HR to go over what should be considered your maximum, such as atrial fibrillation. But extreme stress might just have pushed your HR to an absolute maximum you would never have reached otherwise. What's normal health in the wider scheme of thngs? Any maximal effort is going to be stressing the heart abnormally to some extent.
  • Bumo_bBumo_b Posts: 211
    Absolutely agree that maximal effort is going to be stressing to the organs, certainly should be, but placing those organs at a disadvantage already (through my own stupidity) is not really an accurate way of finding your max heart rate. I have gotten off after a rides and thrown up, , been barely able to breath, unable to walk etc due to jelly legs and my heart rate max recorded at the time is always between 180-182, so i'd say 182 is pretty accurate. Adding dehydration and 34+ degree heat is not a smart, clever or accurate way to judge your max HR. My point was, all other things being healthy, well fed etc then your full absolute flat out effort should give you an accurate figure but don't include efforts with extenuating circumstances.
  • mrpbennettmrpbennett Posts: 102
    Not sure if it's been mentioned above, but have you done an FTP test? I took my Lactate Threshold HR from that and used that in my garmin going off LTH. I also included my max https://imgur.com/a/3zBvPJP
  • neebneeb Posts: 4,362
    Bumo_b wrote:
    Absolutely agree that maximal effort is going to be stressing to the organs, certainly should be, but placing those organs at a disadvantage already (through my own stupidity) is not really an accurate way of finding your max heart rate. I have gotten off after a rides and thrown up, , been barely able to breath, unable to walk etc due to jelly legs and my heart rate max recorded at the time is always between 180-182, so i'd say 182 is pretty accurate. Adding dehydration and 34+ degree heat is not a smart, clever or accurate way to judge your max HR. My point was, all other things being healthy, well fed etc then your full absolute flat out effort should give you an accurate figure but don't include efforts with extenuating circumstances.
    You could be right - it really is quite an interesting question. I'd have thought that if your HRmax was X then it just wouldn't be possible for that figure to be exceeded whatever the stress / extenuating circumstances, at least if the heart was beating "properly" (i.e. not suffering some sort of arrhythmia with the ventricles not filling or emptying properly). We need a cardiologist.. :)
  • Bumo_bBumo_b Posts: 211
    I would love to know the answer, because if my max is over 200, then I have been a total slack censored for the last few years, but see your point. Searching Google led me straight to the Livestrong website which recommends the following

    "Your recommended target heart-rate zone is 50 to 85 percent of your maximum heart rate. Exceeding 85 percent of your maximum heart rate can be dangerous to your health, as exercising at an extreme intensity is associated with an increased risk for a cardiac event, according to a 2002 study published in the "Canadian Medical Association Journal." The researchers found that exceeding the 85 percent recommendation leads to poor heart-rate recovery, meaning it takes longer for heart rates to return to normal." (bit of a censored for us cyclists)

    Ironic that the founder of Livestrong was known for his temple like body etc

    Joking apart, it seems from the limited info I can find, that extreme unhealthy scenarios can cause abnormalities in heart rate, blackouts, ear ringing, dizziness and result in the very real risk of heart attacks, but I am no expert and it seems Google is not either. As the earlier post suggested, maybe if we get a cardiologists input to some useful insight.

    Also another current thread has topical stuff supporting heart issues and also mentions food etc

    viewtopic.php?f=40020&p=20357869#p20357869
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    If you limited your HR to 85% all of the time then I think you'd be hindering yourself - and you'd never be able to race as there would be bits that really stretch you.

    Clearly doing too much isn't good for you - maybe that's what they were trying to say.
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