Forum home Road cycling forum Road beginners

Heart rate question

zcapp96zcapp96 Posts: 26
edited February 2014 in Road beginners
This may end up being a really stupid question but I really have no idea about heart rates etc!

I took up riding last summer and was given a heart rate monitor for christmas. I have been upping the miles recently and am now regularly riding just under 45 miles in one go. I usually allow myself to rest for at least a day between rides but decided to go out today as the weather was good despite having ridden 45 miles yesterday. I did a hilly (to me!) 27 mile route and found it quite tough but when I analysed the data I found that on the descents my heart rate had dropped to around 80 bpm. It has never done that before, usually only dropped to around 130-140. I read in a thread a couple of weeks ago that this could be down to fatigue but cannot remember where this thread was. Is this true and is it something to worry about?


  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    It's normal if you're over-trained.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • I googled over training and it talks about a elevated resting heart rate but not anything about lower rate during exercise. I should add that although I found it tough I did improve my times slightly, but this might be down to changing my stock tyres on my triban 5 for some 25c Schwable Durano's.
  • SproolSprool Posts: 1,022
    do you stop pedalling on descents ? If so its normal for your heart rate to drop right back again. Keep pedalling to kep your heart rate higher and you won't get so chilled either.
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    A HR that drops quickly when you stop working is usually a sign of good fitness levels. When I am group riding I can flip between threshold at the front and zone 1 in the pack fairly quickly...and it shows just how much effort one can conserve in a well matched pack.
  • I was still pedalling on the descents and managed to do PB on the strava segments for them as well. I did have the new tyres and had removed the mudguards as well as the new 25c's didn't fit with them on. The bike felt a lot smoother and maybe I just didn't need as much effort to keep it rolling along. Having googled overtraining it has made me think about more lower paced rides though as I think fatigue was also a factor.
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    I don't think the symptoms you describe are overtraining related but overtraining is a very common problem.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Same hills ? That's quite a drop if one day you're suddenly 50 bpm lower.

    If its a longer descent though - that might explain it ?
  • ai_1ai_1 Posts: 3,060
    Are you sure your heart rate strap was still making proper contact?
    It's possible that when you got onto the descent and changed your position (went to the drops?) you shifted the HR strap and got erroneous readings for a while.

    If you were putting any effort into turning the pedals then a HR drop to 80bpm from a norm of 130 or 140 for similar effort on previous rides doesn't make much sense.
  • I would say its most likely not a like for like comparison: 80bpm is quite believable for freewheeling descent, 130-40 sounds more like you were still working hard. There is no way you are going to still be up in the 130s downhill unless you are still working (pedalling) hard.
  • What's your normal resting heart rate? i.e. When you've been sitting still doing nothing for a good hour.
Sign In or Register to comment.