Working at specific heart rate: is 220 - age accurate?

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by VanillaGhost, Nov 30, 2005.

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  1. I hope someone is able to help me with this. I am a 23 year old male, so using the formula 220 - age my max heart rate should be around 197 bpm. However, I have in the past got my heart rate up to 202, and probably could of pushed it further.

    My problem is this - I am trying to train at around 75% max HR to increase my VO2 Max. If I take my max at around 200, 75% would be 150 bpm. This seems very low. On a typical 6 mile run, my average HR is around 175 bpm, and I don't feel extremely knackered after that. Does anyone know if weight can affect maximum HR? (i am 6'4'' and a lean 15st 10).

    If anyone has any other information regarding improving VO2 max, and the HR that I should be working at, please let me know.

    Thanks, VG
  2. I have been in a similar position, Vanilla (and still am, but I am far more careful than I used to be). My APTCI at the time told me that the 220 bit was only a guide for the average person. When I asked how I could establish my max HR, he suggested I ran round the Blandford circuit twice (about 4 miles) at a fast clip and then pushed myself extremely hard up the last hill - and took the measurement at the top. I didn't take him up on the offer!

    My HRM recorded a maximum of 194 during a recent BPFA and I am most definitely not 26!

    How about watching your HR during the latter stages of a bleep test? That should test it!

  3. the only way to truly find your max heart rate is to do a VO 2 MAX test
  4. Go find your local RAF unit that has a gym. They do VO2 test as a matter of course.
  5. Not a proper VO2 max test they dont that needs to be done in a lab
  6. Using the above method of running flat out, my max heart rate was measured at 240bpm (re-measured and confirmed accurate). Now, age 30, when I walk on the treadmill I keep my heart rate at 200bpm.

    Just mentioning this to show the formula is a guide until you've got better info to go on. Wouldn't you get more fit the more knackered you were?
  7. VO2 Max is the body's maximal aerobic power. Obviously more oxygen will be required during severe exercise and so oxygen uptake will increase. However a point is eventually reached where the body can take up no more oxygen - referred to as Maximal Oxygen Uptake. VO2max is the best criterion of aerobic efficiency. Heart rate is a good measure of exercise intensity but its very individual - use that equation as a guide. dont worry about what your actual Max HR is look at how it decreases through training - which it should.

    edited as i am rubbish at typing.
  8. definition of v02max

    Fitness can be measured by the volume of oxygen you can consume while exercising at your maximum capacity. VO2 max is the maximum amount of oxygen in milliliters, one can use in one minute per kilogram of body weight. Those who are more fit have higher VO2 max values and can exercise more intensely than those who are not as well conditioned. Numerous studies show that you can increase your VO2 max by working out at an intensity that raises your heart rate to between 65 and 85% of its maximum for at least 20 minutes three to five times a week. A mean value of VO2 max for male athletes is about 3.5 litres/minute and for female athletes it is about 2.7 litres/minute.

    for figuring it out from MHR heres a sum %MHR = 0.64 × %VO2 Max + 37 so with that sum o.64x70+37 = 81.8 MHR if memory serves the basic forumla is C6 H2 O6+ 6O2 = vo2max but not sure do an internet search you may find the answer on google
  9. Oh...ok. Thanks for that