High Heart rate!

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by russlee29, Jul 17, 2005.

  1. russlee29

    russlee29 New Member

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    Hi i am a 45 year old cyclist, and do regular rides on weekends of around 80+ kms with a couple of other keen cyclists. The problem i am having is that very early on in the ride my heart rate soars into the 170-180 bpm range which is way to high for comfort :( !

    I have had a heart rate monitor for couple of years now, and have seen my max go from the mid 170's to the high 180's even recently just over 190 bpm :eek: Its really starting to worry me (probably should go see doctor)

    Also recently have started doing spinning classes during the week to try and get some form but it seems that even at spinning classes my heart rate easily goes through the roof without to much effort.

    As a guide my riding partners are any where from 10 to 20 bpm lower than me most of the time. On any ride i would probably spend a good deal of time in the 160's and even 170's for long periods, and when resting on the back i would probably only drop into the mid to high 150's

    The last ride i did i was having trouble staying with the regular guys i am riding with.

    Is riding at this intensity doing me any good and how can i improve - lower heart rate ?
     
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  2. davef

    davef New Member

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    Have you done a max heart rate test?

    When I started I based my training on a supposed max of 172 (age 60). After seeing 188 a couple of times in sprints I quickly realised that I my training zones were a bit on the conservative side!

    Are you doing some training during the week? I find if I don't go out for a week or two my heartrate will be up, for a couple of hard rides, until I get back into some sort of shape.

    ***
    Also recently have started doing spinning classes during the week to try and get some form but it seems that even at spinning classes my heart rate easily goes through the roof without to much effort.
    ***

    Yup, spinning will get the heartrate up. What cadence are your mates crankin' at the lower heart rates?

    ***
    On any ride i would probably spend a good deal of time in the 160's and even 170's for long periods, and when resting on the back i would probably only drop into the mid to high 150's
    ***

    Sounds fairly normal to me.

    ***
    The last ride i did i was having trouble staying with the regular guys i am riding with.
    ***

    Now that's a problem! Are you doing the lion's share of the work? Are they putting on more Kms then you? Have you had a cold or the 'flu recently?

    Sorry, no answers . . . just more questions!

    Good luck,
    davef
     
  3. zaskar

    zaskar New Member

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    Are you on any meds? are you keeping hydrated? how hard are you working when your hrt gets that high? best thing to do since your concerned is see your doctor.
     
  4. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Second zaskar's comments; all good things to check out. But could it be you're doing too much high-intensity riding? Are you showing elevated resting HR, or any other signs of overtraining like aching legs, clumsiness, fatigue, interrupted sleep?

    If so, you may need at least two weeks away from the group, doing only low intensity recovery rides (eg, at 60-65% of max HR). Once things settle down, monitor the time you spend over 80% of max HR each week and see how it affects your recovery.

    As the old saying goes, it's not the training that makes us stronger, it's the recovery. Lance and the pro's spend much of their training and race time below 80% max HR, so I don't see why us recreational riders shouldn't do the same.
     
  5. cheapie

    cheapie New Member

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    make sure you sufficiently warm up. i have found that if i jump right into a group ride and hit the hills early my hr hits 200+. yikes. my body doesn't really aclimate to hard work until i've ridden 20-30 minutes.
     
  6. tourdelivermore

    tourdelivermore New Member

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    I am 44 and have a max heart rate of 194. When climbing I am in the 170's and can sprint into the 190's. Average heart rate for an entire century with climbing is in the 160's.

    I've never worried about heart rate, I used it as a guide to my relative output...when climbing > 180 = time to back off.

    My performance is indicative of my relative newness to the sport, not my heart rate.
     
  7. russlee29

    russlee29 New Member

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    Thanks for the response, it is all good advice.

    To answer a few questions asked:

    I do my share of time on the front of the bunch, infact more than i should most times. Although on the last ride, i did suffer and was'nt able to do my usual share of the work.

    I am logging the same amount of time in the saddle as the others. Its winter here so its difficult to get in mid week rides, so spin classes have seemed the way to go.

    The advice about warming up seems good, as i too find i take time to get into rythem , i will try and get out a little earlier than the others just to warm up more thourouhly. It is the early part of the ride that seems to set the scene for the rest of the ride.

    Its also comforting to hear that others of similar age have heart rates similar to myself, maybe mine is not that far out of the norm.
     
  8. stephbc

    stephbc New Member

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    Your HR is only a guide though, so even if your HR was 200 but you felt great, it wouldn't be an issue. But with it high and you not feeling like you can do what you normally would, it IS an issue. I would say you need a break. If you can't get your HR to recover, my guess is you're doing too much high intensity or you are dehydrated. Take a week off, or use spinning class as a recovery ride and keep your HR low. Do your own thing in there no matter what the instructor says to do. It's your ride.
     
  9. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    You don't mention riding on your own at all, or how many base miles you've done at low to moderate endurance intensity. If you're only doing the hard group ride on the weekends at HR's above 80% of your max, that's like doing a hard road race every week. As a reference, the HRM data on the TdF broadcasts reveals that the pro's are way below 80% of their max HRs the great majority of the time.

    Rather than worry about chasing faster rivals every weekend, believe you could make more progress and enjoy the sport longer riding at your own pace. You could structure your own training program for two or three months of off-season endurance work, then go back out with the group in spring. You might surprise yourself with the result. Just a suggestion of course, it's all your decision how to train.
     
  10. Deest

    Deest New Member

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    Russlee,

    I am a 40 year old cyclist also in Melbourne and your symptons are exactly the same as mine. I have been trying to come to grips with this for a few years and I think I am getting with the help of just about every health care professional in Melbourne.

    Probably too involved for here. Drop me an email with your number and we'll talk

    D


     
  11. kuan

    kuan New Member

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    Are you picking up signals from other riders?

    Max HR is genetic, it can't be trained. Resting HR can be trained.

    Take your resting HR every morning while laying in bed and get a feel of what's normal for you. If it's too low you may be tired, if it's high you may be fighting an infection.
     
  12. frenchcycling

    frenchcycling New Member

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    your heart rates don't seem normal. further, u must remember that u shuold not go all out all the time. it is important to use discreation when riding. during the season do one or two days of intervals. Right b4 race season at MOST 3 days of intervals though that is streaching it. in the build phase, never go over 80% except when climbing you can go about 85%
     
  13. joule

    joule New Member

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    I don't think your HR observations are out of the norm. I've been riding now for a year, riding about 10 hours a week and averaging 175 miles over 5 days a week. I'm 48 years of age and been racing for the first time this year. When I first started I had my LT tested and found it to be 158 bpm with a peak HR at 184. Now after a solid year of riding I find I can sustain a 172 HR on my 43 Km regular TT course at a speed of 21.4 mph. I regularly hit 180 bpm on hard intervals and during A class rides find my typical HR peaks around 175 bpm. I had a stress test done by my doctor at the start of my training and was given a clean bill of health.



     
  14. Red2000SS

    Red2000SS New Member

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    I don't think your HR is crazy. Max heart rates are not an indication of fitness. I am 41 an my max heart rate is 201 - the same as Lance Armstrong, and I am fairly certain Lance could kick my ass riding up a hill if he was riding tricycle or unicycle - backwards!!! :)

    Some people just have higher heart rates. The old 220 minus your age is not accurate at all for many people. According to that formula, my max heart rate would be 179. I recently <b>averaged</b> 185 bpm over an hour and half ride.

    I find that the worse shape I am in, the higher my heart rate stays, and it recovers much slower, even when I slow down, and my legs can recover.
     
  15. seattime

    seattime New Member

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    Here is something I read on another forum that seems to be accurate.


    Formulas like Karvonens are at best correct for 30% of the population -that means 7 out of 10 people will not be able to use the "age predicted" formulas effectively.Although as we get older your maxium achieveable HR will go down but not exactly on your birthday. MHR is based on one- your age and two your genetics and is special to you.Ever had days where your 160 bpm seemed very easy like you are pedaling without a chain and then the days when it seemed that your heart is coming out your chest at that same number? There are many factors that can make you go nuts if you stick yourself with a number. Things like sleep, nutrician, stress, hydration, how you worked out the day before are all factors to what the heart rate says about your intensity. The real problem is that HR is not a very stable way of telling what your intensity is.There is an area called deflection point where linearly your intensity will not progress with the bpm of your HR there is a point where as you get closer to your max the heart says "push all you want I can not give that much more." ever been there? Ever been in a state where its difficult to breath and you think "OK I'll sprint and just go for it" and you look at that number and go hard and when you have winded yourself and look back down you have only gained a couple of beats? Think about this. If your at a scary movie and all of a sudden a creature goes boo and your HR goes way up but you have no vienous return to be considered any sort of intensity other than a fight or flight response. one more way is to think about cardiac fade. Over time on an moderate endurance ride you lose beats per minute even though you feel the same amount of intensity. A heart rate monitor is an awesome tool but learning what that number is telling you is the hard part. I suggest checking it and graphing it over time to get an idea of a area of numbers that will tell you when you are in the correct training zone. And as far as being able to say "I have become more fit" that happens when you see HR numbers that you can hold for longer or just feel more comfortable doing.
    seat time
     
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