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  1. #1
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    Understanding the use of a Heart rate monitor

    So I've been doing a lot of back to back hilly climbs days these last few months and while I've noticed improvments, I been using perceived effort and a HRM to monitor my condition during the rides. A recurring theme Heart Rate is at a comfortable 150-160 but my legs start feeling the burn (my LT though is around 174). Since I have an erratic HRM ad I don't want to blow up I don't push it too outside that level.

    As soon as we hit the break I find myself to be fine and relatively fresh. Legs show no sign of me pushing myself too hard so I feel like I've wimped out and not really been riding at an optimal level.

    All that being said I'm getting myself a new HRM (As soon as the CS200cad from polar becomes available) but I was wondering how far I should be trusting my HRM. If it says I'm at a comfortable HR should I not take percieved efforts too seriously (as my mind may be going before my body)?

    Thoughts appreciated
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

  2. #2
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    Just a thought, if you're already planning on buying new electronics it might be worth it to put down the extra cash and go for a power meter. They give a much clearer view into how much work you're doing...

  3. #3
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    out of the budget unfortunately maybe something to consider for Christmas .

    I'm more concerned about my condition atm anyways (vs. how stong I supposedly am getting).
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by jslopez
    All that being said I'm getting myself a new HRM (As soon as the CS200cad from polar becomes available) but I was wondering how far I should be trusting my HRM. If it says I'm at a comfortable HR should I not take percieved efforts too seriously (as my mind may be going before my body)?
    I'm not going to claim to be a HR training expert. I've used HR-based training for 3 years now and I've learned that it's valuable but also not to use it as the only tool in my training.

    Case in point: I'm going through a fatigue phase right now where my HR is actually lower than normal (say by 15-20 bpm at 35 km/h on flat ground) but I can't generate as much power. I feel like crap but if I went by HR alone I'd think I had some reserves. In my case I have to trust my body and not my head.

    To determine fitness I look at the long term trends. For example, I ride a fairly consistent set of routes each week. By looking at the trend over the last 4 months with the Polar software I can see that my average HR (for a ride) is dropping while the average speed in increasing.

    Just to throw a wrench into my training I ordered a PowerTap this week... I think that's the ultimate window into your training.

  5. #5
    Zen Cyclist jslopez's Avatar
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    Good point in the fatigue angle but what if I'm rested today, what should I be following?

    I'm really not familiar with power tap and as stated previously budget will probalby keep that true for quite some time.
    ZEN CYCLIST once again...

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