Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    19
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    heartrate recovery

    I have noticed a strange phenomenon recently -- my heart rate seems to take longer to go back down after max intensity, and it seems to run up to max more quickly. I am relatively new to cycling (been riding for 11 months) and am an otherwise very fit 48 year old male, 6'1" and 168 lbs. Resting heartrate is 36 bpm, I max at 173, my delta is about 20 bpm.

    I noticed this change in recovery rate after riding a metric century about a month ago. The ride was moderately hilly, I rode it on my old 28 lb steel framed bike instead of my 5200, and I had no water on my bike. The last 20 mile section I got fairly dehydrated, drank others' water.

    Now when I ride steep hills, my heartrate goes up to the high 160s, but seems to take longer than before to slip back down. I noticed it yesterday, for example -- did a steep climb that was followed by an immediate descent, at the bottom of the descent (about 30 seconds, I'd guess), I was still in the low 150s. I do ultimately slow back down, but I would think that I'd be getting improved recovery, not deteriorating recovery.

    Is this a recognized phenomenon that others have experienced?

  2. #2
    You need a new bike supcom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Posts
    5,434
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Without testing under controlled conditions both before and after you noticed this, it would be impossible to determine if this is a change or if you are simply riding harder due to increased tolerance to lactic acid.

    However, is it possible you may have overtrained? If so, try taking a week or two off the bike and see if you get back to normal. Rest is as important as training.

  3. #3
    Chief Chef BearsPaw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Philly (Manayunk)
    My Bikes
    2005 Fuji Touring & 1980s Motobecane Mirage FG conversion
    Posts
    226
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'm in similar shape as you, but I am a bit younger (27). I think the phenomenom you mention is not unusual.

    The first time I rode a century, I thought I would sleep like a baby that evening. Instead, I spent about an hour freaking out because my heart rate wouldn't go down. (And I had finished the day's ride several hours earlier.) I eventually just fell asleep, and when I woke up the next day it felt fine. If mine can stay that high even after I'm off the bike, I think what you experienced is completely reasonable.

    Do you use caffeine? I am a long term (since age 15) coffee-junkie, and I can't help but wonder what effect that has on my heart.

  4. #4
    You need a new bike supcom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Posts
    5,434
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by BearsPaw
    I'm in similar shape as you, but I am a bit younger (27). I think the phenomenom you mention is not unusual.

    The first time I rode a century, I thought I would sleep like a baby that evening. Instead, I spent about an hour freaking out because my heart rate wouldn't go down. (And I had finished the day's ride several hours earlier.) I eventually just fell asleep, and when I woke up the next day it felt fine. If mine can stay that high even after I'm off the bike, I think what you experienced is completely reasonable.

    Do you use caffeine? I am a long term (since age 15) coffee-junkie, and I can't help but wonder what effect that has on my heart.
    After a long and/or hard ride, it is quite normal for one's heart rate to be elevated for several hours afterward.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    111
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by BearsPaw
    The first time I rode a century, I thought I would sleep like a baby that evening. Instead, I spent about an hour freaking out because my heart rate wouldn't go down. (And I had finished the day's ride several hours earlier.) I eventually just fell asleep, and when I woke up the next day it felt fine. If mine can stay that high even after I'm off the bike, I think what you experienced is completely reasonable.
    I have felt the exact same way after high-intensity workouts. I thought I was overtraining, but isn't the main symptom fatigue? Another thing I've experienced is these wierd shivers, where I all of a sudden get really hot. I don't know what's causing this, but it's kind of scary--if I wasn't 19, I would think I was having a heart attack!

    I only drink coffee when I need to, but I usually have a cup of coffee before my workouts for energy. That could have something to do with it...

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    353
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Never think that because your 19 that you are immune to certain things. If you think what your feeling is unusual, ask questions and check into it. There could be some minor problem that could be taken care of early, but if left to its own devices, could be a major problem later.

  7. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    19
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    heartrate

    I was pretty jazzed after the long ride, but the interesting thing is that my heartrate goes up faster and comes down slower than it used to. I read somewhere that sitting up on the bike after a hard climb or sprint actually makes your heart work harder (veinous return -- heart has to pump harder standing upright). I noticed today doing a short but fast ride that I rode better and felt stronger staying in the drops. Now if this crick in my neck would go away . . .

    Thanks for the thoughts.

  8. #8
    OM boy cyclezen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Goleta CA
    My Bikes
    a bunch
    Posts
    3,005
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Agabinet
    I have noticed a strange phenomenon recently -- my heart rate seems to take longer to go back down after max intensity, and it seems to run up to max more quickly. I am relatively new to cycling (been riding for 11 months) and am an otherwise very fit 48 year old male, 6'1" and 168 lbs. Resting heartrate is 36 bpm, I max at 173, my delta is about 20 bpm.
    I noticed this change in recovery rate after riding a metric century about a month ago. The ride was moderately hilly, I rode it on my old 28 lb steel framed bike instead of my 5200, and I had no water on my bike. The last 20 mile section I got fairly dehydrated, drank others' water.
    Now when I ride steep hills, my heartrate goes up to the high 160s, but seems to take longer than before to slip back down. I noticed it yesterday, for example -- did a steep climb that was followed by an immediate descent, at the bottom of the descent (about 30 seconds, I'd guess), I was still in the low 150s. I do ultimately slow back down, but I would think that I'd be getting improved recovery, not deteriorating recovery.
    Is this a recognized phenomenon that others have experienced?
    "Now", meaning that 'before', you had quicker recovery? Or that you weren't aware of your recovery rate?

    Are you riding harder/faster than you did 6, 8, 11 months ago? That might explain taxing the system more, with a subsequent more difficult recovery. HR is an indicator, but alone it doesn't really encompass the stress we put the system under. Training increases our tolerance to be anerobic, but that has to be recupted at some point. If you're riding harder than before, then recovery may be longer.
    Improved recovery is countered by improved ability to stress the system.
    If the climb you speak of was a hard effort, then 30 secs is not much time to see more recovery than what you note - at least at your age.
    As a point of comparison, being some years older than you; when I'm upwards of 170 getting back to 150 takes longer than 30 secs, unless I stop pedaling altogether. As you, I consider myself reasonably fit for my age.

    Unless you have some equivalency reference, such as a climb done some while back, at a noted speed, with resultant HR and noted recovery over a certain period, and then the same climb again done at the same speed done recently, noting the resultant HR; your impressions now are just that, impressions without basis.
    Approaching that milestone of initiate to geezerhood, the big 5 0; it wouldn't be far off to not expect too much from 30 secs of recovery time.

  9. #9
    Isaias NoRacer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Essex, MD
    My Bikes
    Ridley X-Fire (carbon, white)
    Posts
    5,174
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Agabinet
    Now when I ride steep hills, my heartrate goes up to the high 160s, but seems to take longer than before to slip back down. I noticed it yesterday, for example -- did a steep climb that was followed by an immediate descent, at the bottom of the descent (about 30 seconds, I'd guess), I was still in the low 150s. I do ultimately slow back down, but I would think that I'd be getting improved recovery, not deteriorating recovery.
    1. You could be coming down with something (i.e., getting sick).

    2. Your heart rate may not come down to pre-exercise level during a fast decent because your nervous system is in a high state of excitation.

    3. If you are chronically dehydrated for whatever reason (i.e., don't hydrate prior, during, and after exercise, dieting, taking diuretics), being so can slow heart rate recovery.

    By the way, not that this changes your recovery, but are you sure that your max heart rate is 173? That seems like an awfully close coincidence to the 220 - age formula. I'm your age (48) and my max heart rate for running is 194 BPM. On the bike, it's about 186 BPM. I'm just wondering how you determined your peak heart rate for cycling. The difference could simply be that you are bigger than me with a larger sized heart.
    Last edited by NoRacer; 09-11-06 at 06:02 AM.
    2009 mileage = 14,738 miles; 2010 mileage = 15,234 miles; 2011 mileage = 17,344 miles; 2012 mileage = 11,414 miles; 2013 = 12,169

  10. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    19
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    That's actually the highest I've ever been able to get my heart while cycling, maxing out on a steep hill. Sonograms have shown that my heart is rather large -- lots of years of martial arts training, I guess.

  11. #11
    Chief Chef BearsPaw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Philly (Manayunk)
    My Bikes
    2005 Fuji Touring & 1980s Motobecane Mirage FG conversion
    Posts
    226
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by madprofessor100
    I only drink coffee when I need to, but I usually have a cup of coffee before my workouts for energy. That could have something to do with it...
    I should clarify: I almost never drink coffee before long rides. (Although I do drink a few cups before my 5 mile commute to work.) I always feel way too jazzed up if I drink too much coffee and try to bike a long distance. My chest starts pounding, and my heart starts to feel like it's going to explode. I had a couple incidents like that, and then I started saving the coffee for after the ride.
    Last edited by BearsPaw; 03-17-07 at 04:23 PM.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •