- age 45
- height 5'10"
- weight 190
- resting pulse 58
- MHR 183 (highest ever observed -- not confident in accuracy)
When I ride my recumbent stationary bike in the basement, I can maintain a 135-140 heart rate for about 45 minutes. By the end, my legs feel like they are going to fall off and I am completely soaked in sweat. Outside, my average heart rate is typically 145-150 for short rides (20-30 miles) and 135-140 for long rides (60+ miles).
When I do intervals inside, I often get the pulse up to 165-170, but I can't maintain that for longer than 30-45 seconds. My legs feel fine but I lose my wind. In contrast, I can hold 165-170 outside for a 5+ minute climb.
I have four hypotheses:
(1) Riding outside, the wind evaporates sweat, keeping my body temp down. I can work harder without feeling like I'm working harder.
(2) Riding inside only works my legs. Outside, I bring in core and a bit of arms. Thus, for the same overall effort, my legs are doing less work and can last longer.
(3) Riding outside has breaks for stoplights, coasting down hills, etc. I may think I'm working more steadily than I am.
(4) I enjoy riding outside more (definitely true) so my body cooperates more.
I suspect the answer is a combination of these factors and probably others. Any insight?