Heart Rate Monitor Shows High Heart Rates at Beginning of a Run

Discussion in 'General Fitness' started by William Richmon, Jan 26, 2004.

  1. I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor always
    indicates a very high heart rate for approximately the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see a
    rate of about 175 when my Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.

    Is this normal?

    Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?

    Thanks for your input
     
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  2. Brendon

    Brendon Guest

    The only thing I can think of is it may be getting incorrect readings due to factors such as contact
    or such. I use a Polar Coach, and for the first 5-10 minutes it reads low due to my heart taking a
    while to warm up so to speak, so I average about 130 for 5 minutes, then it settles at about 150 for
    me which at 30 is not bad in training for my marathon.

    h2h.

    Brendon in NZ

    "William Richmond" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    news.ops.worldnet.att.net...
    > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor always
    > indicates a very high heart rate for
    approximately
    > the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see a rate of about 175 when
    my
    > Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.
    >
    > Is this normal?
    >
    > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    >
    > Thanks for your input
     
  3. Dot

    Dot Guest

    William Richmond wrote:
    > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor always
    > indicates a very high heart rate for approximately the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see
    > a rate of about 175 when my Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.
    >
    > Is this normal?
    >
    > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    >
    > Thanks for your input
    >

    I'm assuming when you say max of 180, that is something you've derived from testing, rather than
    formula. How was your breathing at the time when you were first starting out (the 5 min of 175) -
    could you talk conversationally?

    Do you get anxious about your run and then settle down so that you'd have a high hr to start?
    Are you near any power lines at the start? - although that usually spikes way up (200+) for a
    little bit. A traffic light spikes mine unless I remember to use the other hand to press "walk"
    button, although doesn't happen all the time. On my first non-local race, my hr was about 20 bpm
    above normal and stayed that way the whole time it seemed (stress of driving through city as
    well as race).

    Dot

    --
    "Success is different things to different people" -Bernd Heinrich in Racing the Antelope
     
  4. Ken

    Ken Guest

    Hi,

    Mine does something similar and jumps around a bit at the start of a run. This is usually due to
    contact - it improves if the chest strap is tightened up and when I start to sweat a bit. On cold
    days where I stay "drier" tightening the strap fixes it. Also wet the contacts AFTER you've put the
    strap on as it can get dried off a bit as you adjust it.

    Not sure I agree with the other poster that your heart takes time to "warm up" and stays low for 5
    minutes!! If anything my HR goes a few beats higher at first until my muscles have warmed up and
    presumably are working more efficiently after which my pace goes up slightly for the same HR.

    Ken

    "William Richmond" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]
    news.ops.worldnet.att.net>...
    > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor always
    > indicates a very high heart rate for approximately the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see
    > a rate of about 175 when my Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.
    >
    > Is this normal?
    >
    > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    >
    > Thanks for your input
     
  5. "Ken" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Hi,
    >
    > Mine does something similar and jumps around a bit at the start of a run. This is usually due to
    > contact - it improves if the chest strap is tightened up and when I start to sweat a bit. On cold
    > days where I stay "drier" tightening the strap fixes it. Also wet the contacts AFTER you've put
    > the strap on as it can get dried off a bit as you adjust it.
    >
    <snip>

    Ken is onto the right answer here. The transmissions are eratic until there is enough moisture
    between you and the belt AND until your shirt is wet enough to stop static from building up as it
    rubs the outside of the belt. You can solve the problem by splashing water on your shirt above the
    belt (the front will do :)) before you set out. This issue is addresed in Polar's FAQ (I seem to
    remember) and also affects CardioSport HRMs. Jonathan
     
  6. Dot

    Dot Guest

    Ken wrote:

    > Not sure I agree with the other poster that your heart takes time to "warm up" and stays low for 5
    > minutes!! If anything my HR goes a few beats higher at first until my muscles have warmed up and
    > presumably are working more efficiently after which my pace goes up slightly for the same HR.

    Do you have a warmup period before you start your hrm so that when you turn it on, you're already at
    effort for the run? I usually have a 5-10 min warmup at the start of my runs (after about 200m
    walking and sometimes some indoor work, esp if subzero F) where my hr is low, but my warmup is an
    easier effort than rest of run while legs are warming up.

    Dot

    --
    "Success is different things to different people" -Bernd Heinrich in Racing the Antelope
     
  7. Steve Hansen

    Steve Hansen Guest

    William Richmond wrote:

    > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor always
    > indicates a very high heart rate for approximately the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see
    > a rate of about 175 when my Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.
    >
    > Is this normal?
    >
    > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?

    My Polar HRM sometimes reads north of 220 right after starting. (The first time it happened, I
    thought I was having a heart attack!)

    It typically happens when I don't have a good connection between the contacts and the skin. It is
    necessary to wet the contacts. A lick on a finger, then wipe the finger across the contacts, does
    the trick.

    Steve
     
  8. John Galt

    John Galt Guest

    Go to your local medical supply store and buy a couple tubes of electrode conductivity gel. Doesn't
    take much, certainly less than half the volume of toothpaste used for a typical brushing, so a tube
    will last a long time. Spit is good, but this is better.

    "William Richmond" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    news.ops.worldnet.att.net...
    > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor always
    > indicates a very high heart rate for
    approximately
    > the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see a rate of about 175 when
    my
    > Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.
    >
    > Is this normal?
    >
    > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    >
    > Thanks for your input
     
  9. Troy

    Troy Guest

    You will possibly find that until there is moisture on the contacts, it may be counting in time
    with your footsteps, recording each bounce as a heart beat. A little water splashed on should solve
    the problem.

    Regards

    Troy "John Galt" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Go to your local medical supply store and buy a couple tubes of electrode conductivity gel.
    > Doesn't take much, certainly less than half the volume
    of
    > toothpaste used for a typical brushing, so a tube will last a long time. Spit is good, but this
    > is better.
    >
    >
    > "William Richmond" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    > news.ops.worldnet.att.net...
    > > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor
    > > always indicates a very high heart rate for
    > approximately
    > > the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see a rate of about 175
    when
    > my
    > > Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.
    > >
    > > Is this normal?
    > >
    > > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    > >
    > > Thanks for your input
    > >
    >
     
  10. Cold weather effects the HRM too.

    Heat the chest monitor with a hair dryer for about a minute or two then wet it down with warm water.
    Then put it on.

    It will work better that way. During the sunmmer you will not need to generally do this.

    "Troy" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    server.bigpond.net.au...
    > You will possibly find that until there is moisture on the contacts, it
    may
    > be counting in time with your footsteps, recording each bounce as a heart beat. A little water
    > splashed on should solve the problem.
    >
    > Regards
    >
    > Troy "John Galt" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > Go to your local medical supply store and buy a couple tubes of
    electrode
    > > conductivity gel. Doesn't take much, certainly less than half the
    volume
    > of
    > > toothpaste used for a typical brushing, so a tube will last a long time. Spit is good, but this
    > > is better.
    > >
    > >
    > > "William Richmond" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    > > news.ops.worldnet.att.net...
    > > > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that
    the
    > > > heart rate monitor always indicates a very high heart rate for
    > > approximately
    > > > the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see a rate of about 175
    > when
    > > my
    > > > Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > > > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30
    is
    > > > typically ~153.
    > > >
    > > > Is this normal?
    > > >
    > > > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    > > >
    > > > Thanks for your input
    > > >
    > > >
    > >
    >
     
  11. Dot

    Dot Guest

    Richard Stiller wrote:
    > Cold weather effects the HRM too.
    >
    > Heat the chest monitor with a hair dryer for about a minute or two then wet it down with warm
    > water. Then put it on.
    >

    Ahh, I've used mine down to about -15F or so on several days and not had any problems recently. But
    I do wear more than just a t-shirt ;) I generally just use spit, sometimes whatever comes out of the
    tap first. I did have some contact problems a couple years ago in intermediate temperatures when I
    had on too few layers so that I was cold.

    Dot

    --
    "Success is different things to different people" -Bernd Heinrich in Racing the Antelope
     
  12. John Galt

    John Galt Guest

    Buy a tube of electrode conductivity gel at your local medical supply store for $4.95 or so.

    "Troy" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    server.bigpond.net.au...
    > You will possibly find that until there is moisture on the contacts, it
    may
    > be counting in time with your footsteps, recording each bounce as a heart beat. A little water
    > splashed on should solve the problem.
    >
    > Regards
    >
    > Troy "John Galt" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > Go to your local medical supply store and buy a couple tubes of
    electrode
    > > conductivity gel. Doesn't take much, certainly less than half the
    volume
    > of
    > > toothpaste used for a typical brushing, so a tube will last a long time. Spit is good, but this
    > > is better.
    > >
    > >
    > > "William Richmond" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]
    > > news.ops.worldnet.att.net...
    > > > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that
    the
    > > > heart rate monitor always indicates a very high heart rate for
    > > approximately
    > > > the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see a rate of about 175
    > when
    > > my
    > > > Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > > > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30
    is
    > > > typically ~153.
    > > >
    > > > Is this normal?
    > > >
    > > > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    > > >
    > > > Thanks for your input
    > > >
    > > >
    > >
    >
     
  13. I had the same problem and a veteran runner friend of mine told me to wet the back of the chest
    strap before putting it on to help the connection. Believe it or not, it works! I've been doing it
    for two years now and the high readings never came back.

    "William Richmond" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]
    news.ops.worldnet.att.net>...
    > I just got a Polar S610i heart rate monitor and I have noticed that the heart rate monitor always
    > indicates a very high heart rate for approximately the first 5 minutes I run. Typically I will see
    > a rate of about 175 when my Max is about 180. My pace at this time is in the neighborhood of
    > 8:00min/mile. My typical heart rate for a long sustained run at 7:30 is typically ~153.
    >
    > Is this normal?
    >
    > Is this an artifact of the heart rate monitor?
    >
    > Thanks for your input
     
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