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  1. #1
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    fitness or fatigue?

    I had a weird experience where my HR is no longer my redline gauge I've been on a spurt of getting in miles, long miles in on the roadie since I can't ride my MTB yet (ankle sprain last month). In return I've also nearly double my ride time since I don't have to drive to the trails anymore.

    Last night after work I wanted to do some hills before the sunset, I did a 70mile ride sunday, recovery/rest day monday so thought I would be good for a "hammer" ride. I have a hill not to far from my house that I was on a mission to PR or blow up my heart rate trying. My max HR is 190, normally won't see anything over 184 unless I'm about to pop.

    It's about 40mins til I get to the turn off at the base of the hill, So I hit the hill in big ring then shift down to hold leg speed up. My HR is only 153..WTF...ok 10% grade right hand switch and I *** it some more...158...WTF and my legs were getting tired & not limited by my heart rate being sky high. About 200yrd later it turns to only 4% grade so throw it back in the big ring and try to stay around 13mph through the power rollers. My HR was still 162 at this point then calmed down too 144 but legs were getting torn up. So I just try to keep it at the limit of my legs not my HR which is a very weird first for me....at least in a long time.

    Here's the hill, previous PR was 15:42 , new PR is 14.40 w/ ave HR at 159
    http://app.strava.com/segments/2815

    I then PR'd the next climb @ 13:46 vs 15:22
    http://app.strava.com/segments/3786962

    The ride link for yesterday... http://app.strava.com/activities/67670266

    Is my conditioning getting better or am I just riding too much and wearing myself out? MTD is 330 miles so far.

  2. #2
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    Sounds like your legs were more tired than your heart actually. Maybe you need to listen to the wisdom of the C&A forum and spin faster when your legs are dying and your heart is laughing.

    If it were a lack of fitness (my current problem) your heart rate would probably skyrocket. I hit numbers on Sunday that I haven't seen in a year, and my ride wasn't what you would even dream of calling tough.

  3. #3
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    iduno how to spin my legs faster, they have been trained by the al' mighty singlespeed

  4. #4
    Just Keep Pedaling Beachgrad05's Avatar
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    I have a naturally low HR and I feel like I'm going to "pop" in the 160's. My legs always seem to get fatigued before I hit HR highs and unless I'm climbing a hill I try to spin 80-90 RPM...climbing for me means doing my best to spin at no less than 60 and try to keep my HR under 160.

    I'm not super fit as you have met me...so I'm not sure if I'm not working hard enough or what. I feel like I'm working hard yet HR data appears to indicate otherwise when I compare to others who I think of as similar in fitness and cycling capability as myself. Their HR are typically way higher than mine
    Move along....nothing to see here....anymore.

  5. #5
    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    Fatigue. If my HR sticks like that it is a sure sign I am overreaching, and need to back off for a day or two. And that is consistent with you suddenly doubling your ride time.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

  6. #6
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    humm iduno if backing off is in the cards yet, I have a 16 mile rollie lunch ride today to go on plus a scheduled 40ish tomorrow after work. Rest Friday w/ beer in hand, then hit a long ride sometime over the weekend. (most likely sunday)

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    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone View Post
    humm iduno if backing off is in the cards yet, I have a 16 mile rollie lunch ride today to go on plus a scheduled 40ish tomorrow after work. Rest Friday w/ beer in hand, then hit a long ride sometime over the weekend. (most likely sunday)
    OK. There are no hard-and-fast rules about this stuff, and from reading some of your posts I seem to recall that you are both pretty fit and a good deal younger than I. That's in addition to being mad as a box of frogs, of course. So I doubt if riding today and tommorrow is going to do you any harm. But my advice would be not to ignore it, and in addition to resting on Friday, make Saturday an easy day. That should have you in good shape for the long day on Sunday.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

  8. #8
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    ironically enough I forgot my HR strap today. Hit up another 10min+ hill at lunch but was steeper then last night and HOT. Cat 3 climb, took about 20mins to get there for a warm up. http://app.strava.com/segments/4770763

    My ave was 8.1 up the sucker and the top started to hurt some. BTW I'm 33yrs old

  9. #9
    Climbers Apprentice vesteroid's Avatar
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    Jeff do you by any chance take your resting pulse when you get up. If its not abnormally high, I dont think your overtraining, I would say your getting fitter...I think endurance and peak capacity are two different things, sounds to me like you are building your endurance quite a bit.
    There's indecision when you aint got nothin left

  10. #10
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    Jeff is very fit, all this smoke blowing is just smoke blowing. You may recall the back of Jeff's flapping jersey as he torched us on the back side of the tour de palm springs in his freaking single speed.

    Meanwhile, on a recent trip up GMR, I hit my PR in 1:00 and Jeff (started behind us) and still smoked us all at 50 minutes.

    I ain't buying what he's selling. he's faking it.

  11. #11
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vesteroid View Post
    Jeff do you by any chance take your resting pulse when you get up. If its not abnormally high, I dont think your overtraining, I would say your getting fitter...I think endurance and peak capacity are two different things, sounds to me like you are building your endurance quite a bit.
    My hr was 56 this morning when I woke up. Not sure what that indicates.



    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    Jeff is very fit, all this smoke blowing is just smoke blowing. You may recall the back of Jeff's flapping jersey as he torched us on the back side of the tour de palm springs in his freaking single speed.

    Meanwhile, on a recent trip up GMR, I hit my PR in 1:00 and Jeff (started behind us) and still smoked us all at 50 minutes.

    I ain't buying what he's selling. he's faking it.
    Sadly I'm the same weight from the palm springs century and the gmr so I can't be more fit then that right?
    Last edited by jsigone; 07-18-13 at 09:45 AM.

  12. #12
    Senior Member CommuteCommando's Avatar
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    My max is 160, and I notice little improvements in shifting the load from heart to muscle. I used to max out going up Torrey Pines at 4-5, now do it at 7-8 at 145-150. I am setting PRs on hills, but dropping weight is a big factor there. My first run up that hill (since the '70's) was at 240#. the most recent was at 220ish.
    As much as you paid for that Beemer [Mercedies, Audi, Escalade], I'm surprised it didn't come equipped with turn signals.

  13. #13
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    Speaking of Torrey Pines, that is the target on today's 40ish mile ride. I always go up the inside....I like the steeper route go figure. Been almost a yr when I did the outside climb when I rode to La Jolla for a Baby class from Esco. According to Strava I did it at 10.6mph w/ a backpack on. No HR strap that day....

    We need to hook up for a ride one of these days.

  14. #14
    Senior Member CommuteCommando's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone View Post
    Speaking of Torrey Pines, that is the target on today's 40ish mile ride. I always go up the inside....I like the steeper route go figure. Been almost a yr when I did the outside climb when I rode to La Jolla for a Baby class from Esco. According to Strava I did it at 10.6mph w/ a backpack on. No HR strap that day....

    We need to hook up for a ride one of these days.
    Yeah, inside is fun. I'll be doing it more on the downside from 200.
    As much as you paid for that Beemer [Mercedies, Audi, Escalade], I'm surprised it didn't come equipped with turn signals.

  15. #15
    Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone View Post
    ironically enough I forgot my HR strap today. Hit up another 10min+ hill at lunch but was steeper then last night and HOT. Cat 3 climb, took about 20mins to get there for a warm up. http://app.strava.com/segments/4770763

    My ave was 8.1 up the sucker and the top started to hurt some. BTW I'm 33yrs old
    Where did that elevation profile come from? There are sections that cannot be climbed with a bicycle and they appear too long to simply be data noise.
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  16. #16
    Senior Member CommuteCommando's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdtompki View Post
    Where did that elevation profile come from? There are sections that cannot be climbed with a bicycle and they appear too long to simply be data noise.
    I rode this for the first time last Saturday. The grade is actually very constant, but there are a lot of "cut n'fill". It is a fairly new road, and if the person who recorded it wasn't using a device with a pressure altimeter it will show the profile from the USGS database before the road was put in.

    My average was just under 5 mph. Had to stop a little past 3/4 to the water stop. 57 215#

    EDIT; Here's the profile recorded by my Garmin. http://app.strava.com/activities/67131397#1306409705
    Last edited by CommuteCommando; 07-18-13 at 01:51 PM.
    As much as you paid for that Beemer [Mercedies, Audi, Escalade], I'm surprised it didn't come equipped with turn signals.

  17. #17
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    not sure if its a blip of Gmaps or what but RIDEw GPS shows the same lumps. There aren't any lumps on that climb from the bottom stop light to the fire house, It's a straight up 8-10% grind the entire way w/ no turns to let up til you get close to the fire house where you can click 2 gears.

    Even cars can struggle up to the posted 50mph speed limit up it.

    only vid I can find, only shows the last couple hundred yards, the fire house is the tip top then starts to point down
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4HDCvwDhLw

  18. #18
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    rest day tomorrow, so happy. Its been a good 3 days of riding in a row and down 2lbs to boot.

  19. #19
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    Definitely looks like increased fitness to me. PR's and lower heart rate? Yup...

    I'm jealous... lol!!!
    "I had this baby hand made in Tuscany, from titanium blessed by the pope. It weighs less than a fart, and costs more than a divorce..."

  20. #20
    Senior Member nkfrench's Avatar
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    I typically hit my highest heartrates when I am rested, fueled, and weather is HOT and humid.
    During the winter my max HR is about 10bpm lower since the heart isn't having to work so hard to cool me off.
    Last night I had a 90 minute tough ride. Average HR wasn't that high due to some long regroups and long warmup, but I still saw a lot of time in Z4/Z5.
    On this morning's ride I just couldn't get my heartrate up very high and I had my worst ever ascents on two short steep hills I've climbed hundreds of times.
    I did what I could to refuel muscles with carbs, but if the heart doesn't want to pump blood as fast as the legs use oxygen, your legs will tire and burn.

    Your morning rested heartrate doesn't mean all that much taken as a single reading. The day-to-day trend is what can indicate overreaching/overtraining.

  21. #21
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone View Post
    rest day tomorrow, so happy. Its been a good 3 days of riding in a row and down 2lbs to boot.
    Check out my HR on my ride this morning jsigone... my HR monitor was low for about the first hour and I thought, ok, i'm not really hammering and it was NICE and cool out. Then it dropped under 100 while I was riding and I knew that was screwy, so I squished the band around a little and my HR shot up to 150-160, which is probably where it should be (it is still higher than it would have been, say, 2 months ago for the same ride but I expect that). I didn't have it on wrong, so I don't know why it was misbehaving, and I've never had any issues at all with connectivity but there you go, there's a first for everything.

  22. #22
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    LOL, that was a shape jump in the chart. How did you feel out there? Other then a bit cold?

  23. #23
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    No, I wasn't cold but I didn't feel sweaty for the first hour and a half either. It was really nice.

    It felt good though! I remember looking at the odometer at about 15 miles and thinking crap, I have to do this for 35 more miles... ha ha. I got some nice cramps when I was within about 200 yards of my house but overall it was a good day in the saddle.

  24. #24
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    cramps are BAD, at least you were close to home and didn't get it while getting off the bike. Those are the worst!!


    So I rode palomar mt today, wanted to see how if my 160ish HR is base line for climbing now. I didn't try to push it and just stay tempo up the main climb, but I also wanted to PR up the climb, which I did by 7 mins. YUP the HR was rock solid 155-160 for the climb. Stayed around 160 when I passed the 4k ft sign.

  25. #25
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    JSIGONE,

    While I would be inclined to agree with the muscular fatigue and/or increased cardio fitness responses, there is a second line of reasoning to think about:

    What heartrate chest strap are you using?

    When my two Garmin "premium" straps began giving up the ghost they initially indicated lower HR's than I would anticipate for a given RPE. Then they would only operate what seemed like properly for the first 60-90 minutes of a ride. Then they would "stick" at lower and lower heart rates, not changing the indicated value with the frequency I would expect. And, when they finally did react, they would occassionally give me readings that would represent a new MHR if I were to believe them.

    I've just recieved and started using one of their "standard" straps. My initial impression is that I'm seeing higher heart rates for a lower RPE than I had become accustomed to and that I'm seeing quicker changes on the display. Time will tell if the standard strap is more durable, but, I expect that it is and DCrainmaker would have you believe the same. He's well documented the early demise and various failure modes of the Garmin "premium" straps.

    Just a thought, because, your story sounds not dissimilliar to what I've experienced. But, I've also suffered in events and training from muscle fatigue to the point where I could no longer stress my heart enough to really get its rate up.

    Regardless of which it may be, one thing is for sure, stop watches don't lie (unless you have the autopause activated on your computer ;-) and PR's are always good positive motivation.
    Birth Certificate, Passport, Marriage License Driver's License and Residency Permit all say I'm a Fred. I guess there's no denying it.

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