Thursday, March 28, 2013

Heart rate training

It's SPRING BREAK! Doesn't that just make you feel warm and evoke images like this?

I got mine started out right with some hot tea, a fuzzy blanket, and a fluffy robe.

Both wild and seasonally appropriate. You win, Mother Nature. At recess I was freezing three shirts, a winter coat, gloves, and my hood (and again I was drinking hot tea). But no matter how terrible the weather is, the important thing is that I don't need to set my alarm clock tomorrow. Well I do, to run, but still, you get the idea.

So now I've done two RLRF workouts. Yesterday was supposed to be a ten mile tempo run, but I have a ten mile race a week from Sunday, so I switched some stuff around. The workout I did instead was supposed to be 1 mile warmup at 9:35 followed by 5 miles at 8:15. 

I still don't really seem to be up to snuff, so I decided to try some heart rate training. I've never done it or looked it up, but I'd heard of it, and that's good enough. My interpretation was get as close as I can to the goal paces and then when my heart rate monitor tells me my heart is about to explode and I'm inches from death, back off the pace a little bit. 

So I ended up doing the 5 miles at about an 8:27 average pace, and it still felt insanely hard. My heart rate never got below 183 (and for a normal run, it gets to about 160, maybe 170 if I'm doing something extra speedy) and when it crept up next to 190 I dropped back a tad. Of course I was on the treadmill, because it was March 27 and my neighborhood was covered in black ice, and also I'm addicted and wanted to find out what happened on Buffy.

Today was an unintentional rest day, because I worked until 10pm last night and went to bed at midnight and there was just no way in hell working out was happening this morning. I need to start building up my sleep endurance because that's my main plan during spring break.

Ever tried heart rate training? I've always wondered what "maximum heart rate" actually means and what will happen if you exceed it....


  1. I'm pretty sure that maximum heart rate means you're going to die. Since you're just about 30, that max is 190 (220 minus your age) so you should never see that number.

    So, don't die. You'll miss out on Buffy.

    1. That's actually a really rough estimate for maximum HR. The best way to determine it is through VO2 max testing.

  2. I haven't tried it very seriously, I have worn my heartrate monitor just to see where I am at during different paces. Enjoy your spring break!

  3. I have no heart rate training experience whatsoever. Hooray for the start of your spring break. Wish it was warmer for you. Enjoy your time off!

  4. I love my hr monitor but I'd really like to go in and get legit tested bc I don't think the standard equation works for me-- my heart rate runs mad high. But, it's still fun to have the numbers for those days when you're convinced you're dying and you look down and realize you're just being a baby :)

    Why does your break start on a friday? Is that normal?!

    1. Standard equation doesn't work for me either. It would mean my max is 190. I have hit 207 within the last year (at the end of shorter distance races) and lived. During track, and hill sprints my HR will easily hit upper 180s-low 190s but recovers quickly to 140s 1 minute after stopping, so I guess that's good?

      Since my hr seems to run high I get frustrated by the slow pace I would need to run to stay within range. Doing It correctly would take some time and I have been impatient, so I guess I haven't given it a fair chance.

  5. My spin instructor talks a lot about heart rate and zones and from what I've picked up on. Is that at Zone 5 you should only be able to hold onto that effort for about 10 seconds before you are just done as in your body can't physically do anymore.

  6. I can see how Buffy might add to the adrenaline you already have from running, so you should factor that in too. It wasn't just the running. Then again, during my run yesterday, I thought I was going to die, too, and then realized I was running like 20 sec/mile too fast. I hate my watch.

    I've never actually done heart rate training because my heart rate monitor chafes the ever living daylights out of me.


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