Forum home Road cycling forum Training, fitness and health

When do you start to worry about HR?

navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
Earlier this year I discovered smart trainers and Trainer Road. I am follow the TR plan for genetally getting fitter, stronger, fast etc.

I am actually enjoying turbo training and think I should hit next Spring fitter than I have ever done before, perhaps fitter than I have been for many many years.

Yesterday I did a 90 minute session which is aimed at stamina, no intervals just 80 minutes at between 60-70% of FTP. It was hard but I finished with no harm other than a sore gooch and a bit of weal which has disappeared overnight with some sudo cream.

According to the TR app my average HR was 156 and according to Strava my HR maxed at 173. I saw 169 displayed but I don't stare at the screen all the time. At no time did I feel cardiovascular distressed, at times I was being pushed and stressed but not to the extent if wanting or needing to stop.

My HR hasn't been this high for a while. A few years ago I hit 183 but that was on an alpine climb and I was struggling. I don't wear my HRM when riding outside (I will start to do so now) so don't know where I get to on my Saturday rides (50 miles at 15mph typically).

The guideline of 220 less your age is known to be pretty misguided so at what HR should I get worried or do I just rely in how I feel.

I'll be 55 on the next birthday.
«1

Posts

  • wongataawongataa Posts: 892
    Your max HR is what it is. You can't calculate it by a formula. You can only find out what it is by unpleasant testing. You HR zones are also personal to you. No-one else can say what is good for you as it is dependant on your physiology and we don't know what that is like.

    All that being said, If you do not feel like you heart is exploding out of your chest and your breathing can't keep up then you are fine as you are not hitting your max. If you feel OK then you are OK.
  • robertpbrobertpb Posts: 1,866
    If you are concerned do a max HR test, then at least you'll know where you stand. No two people are the same so there is no way of guessing and what max you had a few years ago may not be applicable today.

    Riding near your max is not a problem unless you have underlying problems, yesterday on a hill climb I hit 182, my max is 186 and thought nothing of it, even though I'm 67.
    Now where's that "Get Out of Crash Free Card"
  • Only worry when it stops
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    If your HR is worrying you then don't measure it. Simple.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    Thanks guys, much as I was thinking/expected. So far I haven't felt so strained I need to stop. That's as good a gauge as any.


    Now anyone got tips for a sore gooch...... :lol: :roll:

    cougie wrote:
    If your HR is worrying you then don't measure it. Simple.

    Is that a Confucius quote? :D
  • It could be an indication you are fatigued, tired, about to go down with a virus.
    Could be nothing.
    Who knows
    If its the only measurement you have then listen to your body along with the numbers
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • hypsterhypster Posts: 1,183
    navrig2 wrote:
    Earlier this I discovered smart trainers and Trainer Road. I am follow the TR plan for genetally getting fitter, stronger, fast etc.

    I am actually enjoying turbo training and think I should hit next Spring fitter than I have ever done before, perhaps fitter than I have been for many many years.

    Yesterday I did a 90 minute session which is aimed at stamina, no intervals just 80 minutes at between 60-70% of FTP. It was hard but I finished with no harm other than a sore gooch and a bit of weal which has disappeared overnight with some sudo cream.

    According to the TR app my average HR was 156 and according to Strava my HR maxed at 173. I saw 169 displayed but I don't stare at the screen all the time. At no time did I feel cardiovascular distressed, at times I was being pushed and stressed but not to the extent if wanting or needing to stop.

    My HR hasn't been this high for a while. A few years ago I hit 183 but that was on an alpine climb and I was struggling. I don't wear my HRM when riding outside (I will start to do so now) so don't know where I get to on my Saturday rides (50 miles at 15mph typically).

    The guideline of 220 less your age is known to be pretty misguided so at what HR should I get worried or do I just rely in how I feel.

    I'll be 55 on the next birthday.

    There is some confusion here. If, as you say you were training at 60-70% FTP then you would be nowhere near your theoratical max HR and someway below your FTHR as well. Max HR testing is very difficult and easy to get wrong and could potentially be dangerous if you are not used to it.

    Years ago when I first got an HRM and was much younger, I did extensive HR testing and found my max HR so that I could work out my training zones. Nowdays FTP (or FTHR) are easier to test for, although no less pleasant, but at least you are not pushing yourself to your absolute max, only to what you can sustain for 20 minutes.

    I don't know Trainer Road but I would assume it has an FTP test in there somewhere. If it does then I would suggest using this and finding out your FTP/FTHR, train to this and not worry about max HR.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    I am training to the TR calculated FTP although I suspect that my current FTP is low as I now realise I could have pushed harder during the two 8 minute blocks.
  • hypsterhypster Posts: 1,183
    navrig2 wrote:
    I am training to the TR calculated FTP although I suspect that my current FTP is low as I now realise I could have pushed harder during the two 8 minute blocks.

    Do a proper FTP test - painful but necessary if you are at all serious about zone training. Guessing what you think it might be just doesn't work. Taking it easy doesn't work either because your training zones will be too low to stress you adequately for adaptation and getting fitter.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    OK. Scheduled for Tuesday........ current FTP is based upon the Trainer Road 2x 8 minute FTP but I'll try the 20 minute version.

    Thanks Hypster.
  • hypsterhypster Posts: 1,183
    navrig2 wrote:
    OK. Scheduled for Tuesday........ current FTP is based upon the Trainer Road 2x 8 minute FTP but I'll try the 20 minute version.

    Thanks Hypster.

    You need to pace yourself and produce the maximum effort you can sustain for the 20 minute test. Don't go balls-out at the start because you will have difficulty maintaining that to the end. Try to find an effort which feels manageable but at the same time outside your comfort zone, if that doesn't sound too contradictory. If after say 10 minutes you are feeling comfortable then try and up the pace a bit. The last 5 minutes should feel pretty hard but keep going and push right through to the finish.

    Hopefully the TR FTP test will have a warmup built in before the actual test. If not do one yourself for at least 15 minutes and include 2 or 3 10 second sprints with one minute recovery in there too finishing with say 5 minutes of steady tempo before the test.

    When the test is finished you should feel like you couldn't have given any more. Good luck and let us know how you got on. :o)
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    The TR FTP lasts an hour. Warm up then the test then a cool down. Having done a week of stamina sessions I've got a better felt for what I can manage over longer periods.
  • I'm only 33, but I routinely do 2 hour rides with my HR in cardio zone pretty much the entire time except for maybe 15% in the "hard" zone. Yesterday's roll was an avg HR of 165 for 2 hours.

    I do 20 min ftp tests maybe every other month and will watch the HR start in the 150 range and over 20 min peg out at about 185 or so the last 5 minutes.

    I've also taken 95% of my 20min ftp power and made an attempt at an hour. That was holding the 170's for HR the entire hour.

    I'd say it depends on your overall beginning health. If coming from nothing, I'd ease into it. More fat burn zone and some lower cardio zone. Get into a routine. After a while start to spend more time in the cardio zone.

    That's such a generic statement of me to make, but everyone is different. I just know that it is important to know your body and maybe visit the doctor first before much elevated work.

    We get a yearly EKG included in my health insurance for who I work for in the US. And that turned up fine. So, I have at it with the training.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,001
    I'm only 33, but I routinely do 2 hour rides with my HR in cardio zone pretty much the entire time

    Surely any zone where you are registering a heart rate is a 'cardio' zone, by definition..?
  • hypsterhypster Posts: 1,183
    navrig2 wrote:
    The TR FTP lasts an hour. Warm up then the test then a cool down. Having done a week of stamina sessions I've got a better felt for what I can manage over longer periods.

    That's good, the more practice you have the better you get at pacing yourself. I do 2 x 20 sessions on the road roughly once a month during Spring and Summer. Each one of those is not only a good workout but also a mini FTP test in terms of pacing and a performance check.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    Well that was a bit of a fail!!

    I got stuck in a long meeting yesterday afternoon after only eating a salad with fish. I got home an hour later than normal, grabbed a slice of bread and butter and a glass of milk then jumped on the turbo.

    It started ok but when TR took me to the 5 min FTP block (part of the warm up) I had to start using the gears (this is intended) and I got it wrong, went at it too hard and 22 minutes collapsed in a sweaty heap!!

    TBH I don't think my head was in it after the long meeting.

    I'll get the hang of it eventually. Probably try again tonight.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    I'd give it more than 24 hours to recover.
    An easy ride tonight and retest maybe Friday.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    cougie wrote:
    I'd give it more than 24 hours to recover.
    An easy ride tonight and retest maybe Friday.

    Probably a good idea. I'll take it easy with pizza and Ben & Jerry's tonight :wink:
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680
    Have you measured your resting HR?
    What about your recovery rate in the 1st and 2nd minutes after a hard few mins?

    The reason for asking, is that if you have a high resting HR and slow recovery, then you will maintain a higher avg - simple maths. Slow recovery rate can be an indication of a problem however.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,001
    diy wrote:
    The reason for asking, is that if you have a high resting HR and slow recovery, then you will maintain a higher avg - simple maths.

    Not aware of anything which supports that assertion at all, unless you can clarify.
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680
    Pop some numbers in to any HR zone calculator and see what it does to the zones for say resting of 40 max of 175 and resting of 70 and max 175.

    While there is no evidence that someone with a low resting will recover through the zones quicker, they will in pure nunbers terms. That means if you sampled their data over a typical workout the avg in numerical terms will be higher/lower. Though they may be avg the same zone.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    diy wrote:
    Have you measured your resting HR?
    What about your recovery rate in the 1st and 2nd minutes after a hard few mins?

    The reason for asking, is that if you have a high resting HR and slow recovery, then you will maintain a higher avg - simple maths. Slow recovery rate can be an indication of a problem however.

    Typical resting HR is low 50s. Recovery is normally fairly quick. Both of which I understood to better than a high resting HR and slow recovery.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,001
    diy wrote:
    Pop some numbers in to any HR zone calculator and see what it does to the zones for say resting of 40 max of 175 and resting of 70 and max 175.

    I don't think there's any evidence to suggest that resting HR has any influence on max HR. I thought it was generally understood that most HR calculators are junk anyway.
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680
    There may or may not be a link, its not relevant to what we are discussing. We aren't talking about an equation used to determine your maximum heart rate. We are talking about calculating HR zones, based on known max and resting and applying %ages of those figures to estimate your zones.

    For example if, if two people are training to their anaerobic threshold, perhaps to improve their resistance to lactic acid build up in the muscles, one with a resting of 40 and a max of 175 and the other with a resting of 70 and a max of 175, they will have different avg. HR for the work done. This will be even more noticeable if the training is mixed.
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,565
    diy wrote:
    There may or may not be a link, its not relevant to what we are discussing. We aren't talking about an equation used to determine your maximum heart rate. We are talking about calculating HR zones, based on known max and resting and applying %ages of those figures to estimate your zones.

    For example if, if two people are training to their anaerobic threshold, perhaps to improve their resistance to lactic acid build up in the muscles, one with a resting of 40 and a max of 175 and the other with a resting of 70 and a max of 175, they will have different avg. HR for the work done. This will be even more noticeable if the training is mixed.

    But how much is that average influenced by the resting HR of 75 and how much comes from fitness and natural capacity etc?

    The time to go from a static 40 to 75 will be very short, in fact it's likely that my heart rate as I swing my leg over the bike will be fairly close to 75 and certainly will not be in the low 50s (my resting HR).
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,001
    diy wrote:
    For example if, if two people are training to their anaerobic threshold, perhaps to improve their resistance to lactic acid build up in the muscles, one with a resting of 40 and a max of 175 and the other with a resting of 70 and a max of 175, they will have different avg. HR for the work done.

    Their average HR will depend on how hard they have worked in the session, nothing more. Just because they have the same MHR, does not necessarily imply that their thresholds will be identical - they are two different people after all. Their RHR is irrelevant.

    Like I asked you before - what evidence is there to support this assertion? Like I said earlier, I don't think there is any evidence that resting HR has - or should have - any influence on training zones. You simply repeating this does not make it any more true.
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680
    @Navrig
    Cardiovascular training and an overall endurance exercise regimen will decrease resting heart rate and heart rate recovery time will be quicker. So on a mixed workout, you'll be recording lower data points as a result which will influence the avg.

    The numerical avg. isn't hugely important as that will depend on resting and max. The important bit is how much power you can produce for a given HR load. As a rule of thumb, if you keep hitting your max, then you might need to retest it and adjust your training zones.

    @imposter - how do you calculate your training zones?
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,001
    diy wrote:
    @imposter whatever.

    Sorry mate - you simply can't get away (on this forum at least) with making claims you can't support. And if you can't support them, don't get upset when you get called out.

    RHR is never likely to be a factor which influences average HR during CV exercise. You don't need to be a genius or a cardiologist to understand that - you just need to think about it.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,001
    diy wrote:
    @imposter - how do you calculate your training zones?

    When I trained with HR, I calculated my zones on my known MHR at the time. LTHR is also another valid method and works equally well. I haven't checked my RHR since the 90s. And even then, I only did it for interest's sake.
  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    navrig2 wrote:
    Earlier this year I discovered smart trainers and Trainer Road. I am follow the TR plan for genetally getting fitter, stronger, fast etc.

    I am actually enjoying turbo training and think I should hit next Spring fitter than I have ever done before, perhaps fitter than I have been for many many years.

    Yesterday I did a 90 minute session which is aimed at stamina, no intervals just 80 minutes at between 60-70% of FTP. It was hard but I finished with no harm other than a sore gooch and a bit of weal which has disappeared overnight with some sudo cream.

    According to the TR app my average HR was 156 and according to Strava my HR maxed at 173. I saw 169 displayed but I don't stare at the screen all the time. At no time did I feel cardiovascular distressed, at times I was being pushed and stressed but not to the extent if wanting or needing to stop.

    My HR hasn't been this high for a while. A few years ago I hit 183 but that was on an alpine climb and I was struggling. I don't wear my HRM when riding outside (I will start to do so now) so don't know where I get to on my Saturday rides (50 miles at 15mph typically).

    The guideline of 220 less your age is known to be pretty misguided so at what HR should I get worried or do I just rely in how I feel.

    I'll be 55 on the next birthday.

    As I'm sure others have said, HR is personal to you and part of the problem with heart rate is that it is a response to the exertion rather than an indication of the level of exertion at the time. At a year older than you, I'd be doing cartwheels if my HR was averaging 156bpm fos such a ride as mine rockets to the 150s within minutes of starting a ride. I do have a blocked left artery though so the heart works overtime during physical exercise. The downside is that I never get a second wind so to speak and why training with power is a better option for me.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
Sign In or Register to comment.