Heart rate monitoring

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by Dr_Evil, May 29, 2006.

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  1. This heart-rate monitoring business sounds very arcane and techie. But does it really make any sense, I asks ya?

    The thing is, when I do any CV work at a decent level of self-beastery, I register a heart rate which the running machine or whatever says should be killing me. In other words, it's way above "fat burning" and above "CV training", and into "start wishing your loved ones farewell" range whenever I get near the killer amount of exertion of yesteryear.

    But I can pass the BPFA (haven't done the new version yet) and CFT without any problems and although I am oldish, I am not that old.

    So, what gives?

    Questions:

    1. Is there any point in doing CV work if it causes your heart rate to go above the recommended level for CV training?

    2. Is it actually bad for you to do (1) above?

    3. Is there any point in doing CV work within the heart rate range for "fat-burning", when that level of exertion feels like going for a slow walk down to the corner shop and back, in the company of an elderly person (or perhaps very small child) fond of stopping every now and then to contemplate the fauna?

    4. Could this high heart rate when running very fast be due to thinking about Scarlett Johannson while running and, if so, what should I think about?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. All good questions for which I too would like an answer, esp Q3.

    As for Miss Johansson she's got an ugly nose.

    Added quickl as my wife is looking over my shoulder..
     
  3. [/quote]1. Is there any point in doing CV work if it causes your heart rate to go above the recommended level for CV training?

    2. Is it actually bad for you to do (1) above?

    3. Is there any point in doing CV work within the heart rate range for "fat-burning", when that level of exertion feels like going for a slow walk down to the corner shop and back, in the company of an elderly person (or perhaps very small child) fond of stopping every now and then to contemplate the fauna?

    4. Could this high heart rate when running very fast be due to thinking about Scarlett Johannson while running and, if so, what should I think about?[/quote]



    Afternoon, it is important to note that everyone has a different maximum heart rate and that the 220-minus-your-age formula gives a best an ok estimate. It is worth arriving at your max exactly to give heart rate training more value.

    In terms of the questions,

    1. CV work is no longer CV work if your heart is working harder than the upper CV limit for your maximum heart rate. It is of training value but it will not increase your aerobic ability.

    2. No.

    3. This very much depends on whether or not you need to burn fat and how fit you are at the moment. If you can exercise for a decent length of time (30 mins +) at a level more intense than fat burning then I would suggest you are fit enough to not need to work at this level.

    4. Quite possibly.

    I hope this is of some use.
     
  4. The heart rates (fat burning & cardio) are scientifically researched and hold a fair bit of status in the (civvy) physical education world.

    I use a heart rate monitor for my runs but , I hasten to add, I don't listen to the beep and rumble of my heart rate leaping to warp speed. It's off putting.

    When I needed to lose weight, I stuck to the fat burn heart rate and the flab did come off! Amazing!
     
  5. It could well be true that you lost loads of weight, but what you're saying strikes me as highly illogical, Captain.

    You're saying, essentially, that a 50-mins jog within the "fat burning zone" will burn more fat than 50 minutes spent caning it.

    Fifty minutes spent jogging burns, say, 300 calories. Your bod turns fat and sugars into energy: yes, science fans, you actually burn yourself.

    Fifty minutes running like a lunatic burns, say, 600 calories. But you say jogging burns more fat than belting it. So where is this extra energy (the other 300 calories) coming from, if not from fat? Burnt brain? Sugars? Rude thoughts?

    Am I, in fact, a Perpetual Motion Machine, able to generate more work than the amount of energy going in ought to produce?

    Re 1: So what training value does it bring? Say I am fartlekking it about, doing (say) 13kph steady run at above the upper CV limit but occasionally ramping it up to 16-17kph Warp Fyactor Nyine, Cyaptain, taking the old heart rate up to ramming speed. What beneficial effect, if any, is that having?

    Re 2: Phew.

    Re 3: Say I am doing 1 above. That's surely burning fat, no. Check out the science part, above.

    Re 4: Aha!
     
  6. Some excellent questions there Dr. Evil.

    I tried using a heart rate monitor while running yesterday for the first time, and had exactly the same problem.


    I had a read of the paperwork before trying it out, and had worked out what my pulse should be for maximum training effect, only to find that after a couple of hundred metres my heart rate was at 95% of my supposed maximum. If I'd been sprinting, fair enough, but it was no more than a 5 min per km jog.

    I presume my rather high heart rate is a sign of lack of fitness, but like the good (or indeed evil) doctor, I have had no dramas passing fitness tests. Does this just mean that you don't have to be fit to pass a PFT?


    I find this statement rather confusing, if anyone can expand on it, I'd be most interested.


    An excellent question, which bears repeating. Do we have any experts out there?
     
  7. I can't clain to be an expert but I have 25+ years experience in fairly high standard distance running. I will look up some other material but the important thing to remember is that HRMs work on % of your maximum heart rate (MHR). Your's and your's alone.

    The much quoted figure of 220 minus age is complete bunkum and was never meant to be a serious proposition. In fact, it came from a couple of cardiologists sat on a plane who noticed a loose statistical correlation in 20 heart attack patients who they had treated, but was never intended to be a serious piece of research, not has it been supported by such (as far as I am aware)

    There are 3 simple ways of establishing your MHR:
    run 5k flat out, your MHR will be that acheived as you cross the line
    run 800m, have 2 minutes rest, run 400m. Your max will be the highest you acheive during the 400m run. (If you don't know how far 800m/400m are use 3m and 90sec)
    wear a HRM for a few weeks and use the highest value you measure as your MHR during your normal exercise routine

    As for "fat burning zones" etc the best bet is to use % of the difference of your "working heart rate" ie the difference between your heart rate measured on waking in the morning and the previously established MHR ie % (max-rest) ) +rest . Given a HMR of 194 and a resting rate of 45 then this gives a steady running rate 75% of 155
    0.75 * (194-45) + 45.

    I have found this formula has the best match with observed evidence (for me) but there are a number of other methods that use age, weight, fitmess level. THe only thing they have in common is that they are more reliable than 220 minus age
     
  8. ...
    I'm screwed then - I run 5k in under 17 mins every other night - I struggle to get my heart rate over 100, usually it's in the low 90s. My resting rate averages around 52, gets up to about 60 during the day - that would give me a target rate of 63 (?) - I can manage that running upstairs to the bog :wink:

    All the stuff I've read suggests that exercise is pretty much useless unless you're heart rate is 'in the zone'.

    I can't really put much more into my running at the moment, I'm doing a lot of swimming and weight training so I'm pretty knackered at the end of the day - my legs aren't really up to running much faster - am I wasting my time with the short runs ? would a longer, slower route be better ?