Power + HR or Power based training only?

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by jcm01, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    I made the move to power based training about 9-12 months ago. I find the data invaluable and use it to analyze my rides, progress and construct new workouts. Even though I no longer pay much attention to HR data, I still find myself strapping on my HR monitor every ride - almost like a security blanket I guess. To be true, I know that even for the most hardcore power users, HR data is still beneficial (as it can help measure increases in fitness (watts relative to HR) or show signs of accumulating fatigue). However I am curious to know, how many of you that train with power also train with HR as well? I am tempted to start leaving the HR monitor at home. Good or bad move?
     
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  2. needmoreair

    needmoreair New Member

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    Whatever you want. I find hr useless. But if you're a numbers guy then it's another number to track.
     
  3. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    Yes, I still train with my HR strap, but I use HR data for one purpose only: a measure of my fitness is how long it takes my HR to drop following a long L4+ effort. When I am fit, my HR drops much more quickly. I look forward to the day when my HR goes from ~90%MHR to resting HR in about 30 seconds. Hasn't happened yet.
     
  4. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    Good stuff. Thanks for the feedback guys!
     
  5. maxroadrash

    maxroadrash New Member

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    30 seconds? Is that possible? Are you talking about true resting HR or like HR riding at 100w?
     
  6. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    Try doing without one.:)
     
  7. smaryka

    smaryka Member

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    I find HR is just a secondary measure of what I probably already know by power and perceived effort. However I did find it very interesting to track HR when I was doing Ironman, as it just fell lower and lower as I got more and more fatigued and more negative TSB at different points of my training (despite being able to hold the power that I needed just fine). Conversely, when I'm very rested it is much higher than usual for the same power. It really hit home for me how bad training by HR can be if that's all you use. I would have been killing myself in my intervals to get my HR into a "high" zone when in reality I was already pushing that power/pace just fine at the lower HR. Same for racing -- I would have been taking it too easy on race day trying to keep my HR down rather than using power to know what I was doing.
     
  8. An old Guy

    An old Guy Member

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    Regardless of your power output, if your heart rate is much above your LT, your time is running out.

    There are times to watch your power numbers. There are times to watch your heart rate.

    Considering that there are/were a lot of bicyclists stronger than either you or me who train with neither heart rate monitors nor power meters, one could argue that neither a heart rate monitor nor a power meter is better than nothing.
     
  9. bmoberg337

    bmoberg337 Member

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    IMO not using a heart rate monitor is like not have a check engine light in your car. You won't know you have a problem until it's too late.

    The powermeter should be used to assure that you are dedicating time training at the appropriate intensity to get the adaptations you want. Your heart rate is a response to that stimulus and major fluctuations within a short time frame are generally an indication that something is wrong. In my experience, to much intensity in one ride will generally lead to a large amount of cardiac drift at a given power output. Oppositely, after a 3-4 week training block I can see a sudden drop in HR at a given power output that is not indicative of increased fitness but rather overreaching. Neglecting to rest at this point usually leads to decreasing performance that is hard to recover from.

    HR is providing you another data point to assess your fitness. Its worth is what you make of it.
     
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