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Old 05-08-08, 09:37 PM   #1
fthomas 
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Heart Rate Monitors

The recent tragedy shared with us all by Wil is certainly eye opening. I purchased a Heart Rate Monitor to use as I get back in shape.

Have any of you ever had a Anaerobic Threshold Test done? I found numerous sites that had simple calculators for max heart rate. Any suggestions on getting the max benefit from the thing. I picked up a Sports Instruments Pro 9 at an unbelievable price. It measures five zones and max, average, etc.

Can anyone recommend any really good sites to learn how to get the greatest benefit from my new bio toy?
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Old 05-09-08, 12:38 AM   #2
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Any suggestions on getting the max benefit from the thing.
Depends on your current fitness and what your training and improvement goals are.
I'm no expert, as I recall sustained riding (20 minutes minimum) at 60% of your max begins to improve cardiovascular performance. Polar is the industry leader, try their site.
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Old 05-09-08, 06:35 AM   #3
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as I recall sustained riding (20 minutes minimum) at 60% of your max begins to improve cardiovascular performance.
Yes, but the problem is determining your max, since all other numbers flow from there. That's the question fthomas is asking.

I've had the usual cardiologist tests, but I haven't had any sport-specific tests done. If I had a few hundred kicking around that I didn't know what to do with, I might pursue it.

The assumption that AT is around 90-92% of max seems about right for me. I started with some of the formulae out there, did some hard, hard, riding and came up with a number for my max that seems close enough. From there how I feel in different parts of each zone seems to match up with how one is supposed to feel in them, so that's what I'm using.
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Old 05-09-08, 07:50 AM   #4
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Here is a good web site that can give you a good understanding of the HR zones and how to determine your #'s for zone training. http://www.pnc.edu/hr/Wellness/targe...e_training.htm The site describes how to find your resting HR, heart rate reserve and how to determine your zones.

Depending on what shape you are in, and how you ride, you can get pretty close to Max HR by riding up a long hill in a bigger gear, and getting your heart rate up high. Hold that pace until you get to the point where you can't keep the pace because your muscles are not responding anymore, this should be beyond your lactate threshold, then, get out of the saddle and sprint for 20 to 30 seconds or until everything is "spent". You should be at your maximun heart rate. Your HR monitor should record your max HR as it may not peak until after you end the effort. This excersize will hurt!!! You may even throw up or feel like "messing your shorts" (I hate that part), this is territory your are not used to being in. If you are not used to riding hard or have any limitation with your heart consult your doctor. (I did not tell you to do this)

This past winter I purchased a the same HR monitor you have at Preformance Bike and used it during my indoor training sessions. I found the "Zone feature beneficial" even though they were not accurate as they are based on MHR and not MHR, RHR and Reserve Heart Rate. I now am doing intervals outdoors and am also using the HR zones for some of my workouts.
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Old 05-09-08, 08:00 AM   #5
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Determining your max HR is the hard part. All of the formulas listed online are rather inaccurate. According to the formulas I should have a max of 185 but I have found that it is really closer to 191. I headed to an area with some big climbs and pushed myself as hard as I could. I hit 191 several times so I set that was my max.
Disclaimer: Consult your doctor before trying the above.
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Old 05-09-08, 08:09 AM   #6
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A finger on the carotid artery and a wristwatch make a great low-cost HRM.
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Old 05-10-08, 08:37 AM   #7
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As I have said before - get Joe Friel's "Cycling Past 50" for all the info you need on the HR monitor and its benefits in cycling fitness. Goes all the way from getting started to several different ways to establish Max HR to training for touring, centuries or racing. But given that your post talks about a tragedy - (and as Jay said) you might want to start with a chat with your physician and see if a medically supervised stress test is in order. I personally would not go out and try to find my Max HR on a hard hill climb if I had any concerns whatsoever or was just getting back into shape. Finally, not sure a HR monitor is an accepted tool to avoid or even be warned of an impending tragedy.
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Old 05-10-08, 09:09 AM   #8
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As I have said before - get Joe Friel's "Cycling Past 50" for all the info you need on the HR monitor and its benefits in cycling fitness. Goes all the way from getting started to several different ways to establish Max HR to training for touring, centuries or racing. But given that your post talks about a tragedy - (and as Jay said) you might want to start with a chat with your physician and see if a medically supervised stress test is in order. I personally would not go out and try to find my Max HR on a hard hill climb if I had any concerns whatsoever or was just getting back into shape. Finally, not sure a HR monitor is an accepted tool to avoid or even be warned of an impending tragedy.
Another "Cycling Past 50 " fan. It really lays out an excellent annualized plan using HR that anybody can understand and follow for racing, tri or centuries. I recommend it even if you are only 20. - TF
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Old 05-10-08, 09:29 AM   #9
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Another "Cycling Past 50 " fan. It really lays out an excellent annualized plan using HR that anybody can understand and follow for racing, tri or centuries. I recommend it even if you are only 20. - TF
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Old 05-10-08, 02:06 PM   #10
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2004 and I had to have a stress test. On the 220- age- I should have been 163 as my Max. At that time I was treating 165 as my max- but the stress test does take you near your limits. I hit just over 170 and fell off the bike. The Cardio nurse conducting the test mentioned something about swimmers and cyclists and suggested that I keep to the 165 as my max.

That 220 - your age is a good guide to what your max could be. Now comes the problem of working out what the 80%-90% of your max is. Two methods.

Max HR less resting HR- In my case- 165- 70=95

80% of 95=76

76+resting HR is 76+70= 146.

So to ride at 80% of my Max is to ride at 146. As I normally ride at 140 to 150 once I have warmed up- that is about right for me. 90% would be 155 and that is about the max I allow myself to ride at- but will get to the 165 on steep hills and even exceed this if I have to.

The other method is just to take your max and 80% of that so 80% of 165 is 133.

You have to decide on what your max is going to be- and I do not suggest that as a 50 year old- just coming back into cycling you try to see 170 on your first ride- Build up to it
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Old 05-10-08, 02:28 PM   #11
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I bought a timex because the chest band battery is replaceable w/o sending it back. I climbed a few hills as hard as I could and established a MHR of 190 - this is quite a bit higher than teh stock formula. I am not using the HRM much while on the road because it really hasn't seemed to help. I asked for the books mentioned for my birthday which is coming next month - have to prepare for the birthday ride.
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