How often to max out heart rate?


New Member
Sep 7, 2007

Just wondering how often an athlete should try to max out heart rate. I've heard that bodybuilders try to max out a muscle group every couple weeks. Should the same hold true for the heart? I have been racing and training hard for about 6 years now, and I rarely, if ever, reach my max hart rate. Even during the hardest road races or TTs. Maybe I should try harder??

Thanks a lot for any advice.
You're better off focussing your efforts on maximising your functional threshold power, as that will enable you to ride faster while staying within your capability, so that you have more grunt available towards the end of the race when the final selections are made. FTP in watts per kg is the best predictor for race results.

Over what time frame are we talking? 5 minute, 2, 1 minute, 6-20 seconds? 3-5 minute power puts you in VO2 Max territory - good for bridging to breakaways, which can be a very handy ability. Rather than every few weeks, it's probably better to think of it as something to sharpen as you get closer to your high-priority races. VO2 Max is psychologically challenging to spend a lot of time in, probably a max of 20 minutes per session.

More info on training zones here:
I'm not a trained professional, but I kinda feel that maxing out your heart rate isn't that great of idea. I think that pushing yourself to just within your maximum threshold is probably the healthier way to go. So many young athletes push themselves past their limits, and a lot of them end up dropping dead for that very reason. It happens to a lot of soccer players who are constantly maxing themselves out for long periods of time. So many people think "But he was such an athlete! How could he just suddenly die like that?" But that is exactly why. Over training is a real thing, so it's important to just find a healthy middle ground.
There's really no max heart rate as it will depend on your fitness level and current level of endurance, plus depending on your heart's condition. Just focus your efforts on distance and speed if you want to focus on cardio.
There is a max heart rate. Go ride really hard for 10 or 15 minutes and then find a hill that takes about 5 minutes to climb. Climb towards the top with the presumption that you don't need to reach the top. Ride harder than hard and see what happens.
I would never do it! This information gives you nothing. More important is FTHR or if you use power meter FTP.
Base on it you set up your training zones and come up with a plan.
Just thinking how often an athlete should attempt to max out coronary heart price. I've heard that bodybuilders try to max out a muscle organization each couple weeks. Should the same preserve true for the coronary heart? I were racing and training hard for about 6 years now, and I hardly ever, if ever, reach my max hart rate. Even all through the toughest avenue races or TTs. Maybe I have to attempt tougher??
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