Why is my ave HR higher when cycling than when I spin?????

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by big_h, May 18, 2003.

  1. big_h

    big_h New Member

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    We did a 55 km road race on the tandem at Rooiwal near Pretoria yesterday. My ave time was 32.32 (a new PB on that course for us). My ave HR was 88% of MHR. Why am I nver able to achieve the same type of ave HR when I do spinning classes. During spinning I seldom if ever reach 75% of MHR. Has upper body exertion (road movement, balancing and steering the bike etc), adrenalin and the heat of the sun have anything to do with it????

    Keep those wheels spinning!!!!

    Big H
     
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  2. tellis

    tellis New Member

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    I have noted the same thing. On the spin bikes, I really have to push to get a reasonable HR. On my road bike, the HR comes much more 'easily'. The only difference I can point to is this: the spin bike offers no wind or gravity... fighting those forces adds to the workout, I guess.
     
  3. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs Guest

    During spinning I think that your muscles exert themselves less than when you're on the road. The load is less. The heart senses this decreased demand for blood, and therefore the output and heart rate drop.
     
  4. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    Agree with kokopuffs and think that temperature might also have an effect (every class I have been was very hot!).

    I think that big_h is talking about average HR and this might have caused his observations. Average HR would be lower during spinning because of the rest periods between efforts, compared to road rides which tend to be continuous!
     
  5. ric_stern/RST

    ric_stern/RST New Member

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    There's a variety of reasons why your HR might be different, however, some of these are guesstimates, as i have idea what a spinning class consists of (and of course there could be great variations between different spin classes)

    1) HR is virtually always higher when racing compared to training at the same intensity due to various reasons, including increased anxiety

    2) you might not be training as hard in the spin class compared to racing, even though it might feel as hard

    on the other hand at the same intensity (power output), i'd expect the spin class to poduce higher HRs because

    1) at high cadence (which i think is part of a spin class), your efficiency decreases and thus HR (and VO2 increase)

    2) of poor ventilation and lack of cooling your HR will be higher

    therefore, without actually knowing the actual power outputs involved it can be diffciult to say. although my feeling are the first two suggestions

    Ric
     
  6. J-MAT

    J-MAT New Member

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    Lots of factors come into play, such as bike handling, heat, etc., but I think the biggest reason is the adrenaline dump from the thrill of competition.

    For example, in a time trial, if I know I'm going to catch my minuteman, I notice my heart rate will go up maybe 5 bpm when I get about 50 meters behind him, even though my speed/power output remains constant. Afterwards, my heart rate will settle down to normal TT levels.

    Adrenaline will cause you to recruit more motor units and exert more force on the pedals. This is part of our primal "flight or fight" mechanisms at work. If you have ever hear the true stories of small women/young boys lifting the front of a car off the ground to free someone trapped underneath, it was the adrenaline at work. Adrenaline will give you incredible strength from enhanced motor-unit recruitment, and heart rate increases in proportion to the greater muscle mass used.

    Stationary training requires more mental dicipline to push harder. Most riders like to naturally ride outdoors. Staring at a wall on a trainer and trying to hit high pr's is more mentally taxing.

    Congratulations on your new PB. Be sure to give your wife a big hug, as I'm sure she pushed hard to help make it happen!!!
     
  7. CatSpin

    CatSpin New Member

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    Big_h,

    “Maintain” effort during your spin class and your HR will be way up there. In teaching my classes we regularly hit and maintain 85-95% MHR and even top out the last song of the class. The "problem" with spin classes is mostly due to music patterns and the tempo of the instructor. Bouncing up and down for 20+ jumps listening to some techno will not cut it if you are really looking for an "interval-type" effort above LT. If you do not have access to a spin class taught by a cyclist rather than an aerobics instructor, try this: push through the "transition" of the tunes. Typically, most instructors require that you let up, grab a drink of water and towel down when the song winds down. This keeps you away from higher levels as is allows you to cool. The continuous effort (2LAP) that racing offers and delivers in the form of high heart rates can be replicated by “combining” song sets. When the rest of the class reaches for the towel, you should reach for the tension knob, gear up and crank it !

    To really crush yourself, keep your eye on your monitor and the time. When you hear in you are in the last song set…jam , jam, jam. Try some level 10 out of the saddle sprinting until the last song ends. Not only will you get into 90-95% rates, you may even peak. Best thing is when you peak on a spin bike you don’t have to worry about crashing. You can “pop” and just collapse on the spin bike...like I did this morning.

    You can, and should, be able to replicate your HR training levels during training on a spin bike. It is, however, 100% up to you.


    CatSpin
     
  8. big_h

    big_h New Member

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    Thanx for all the replies. In the class tonight I sat down, concentrated and worked very hard. My ave HR was 89% of MHR. It can be done!!!!!!!! To think of it I have been spinning now for almost two years and it only started to happen now!!!!! Good thing, we are training for the Kremetart stage race near Louis Trchard in our Northern Province. It is a four stage race in one day that starts with three approx 50 Km stages with the rest to make up 180 km at the end. It is a festive affair with meals and snacks after very stage and a prizegiving with linch and dance afterwards in the evening. Problem though the race starts with a 450m climb over 7 km.

    Keep those wheels spinning

    Big H
     
  9. nferyn

    nferyn New Member

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    Hi,

    Quite interesting thread; Even though I've never done any spinning (is it comparable to training on your trainer?), I have noticed a similar patter when training indoors on the trainer; It 'feels' more difficult to reach higher HRs on the trainer than outdoors; The only way to reach high HR on the trainer is to concentrate very hard during your workout.

    Long intervals seem to work for me. I do a 10 min warmup and then 3 25 min intervals at 85-88% MHR with a 10 min recovery in between and a 15 min cooldown. I have to monitor my HR constantly otherwise i will drift off and go below 85% MHR, even though it does not seem to take me too much effort to reach that HR when riding outdoors. I have added a little extra effort to this workout lately: the last 5 min of the 25 min interval, I push to 92-95% MHR (takes about 2 min)and try to maintain that effort for the remaining 3 min. Very exhausting and probaly not possible to do on the road (unless you're going uphill or are riding on long straight roads without too much traffic)

    Any other differences between indoors / outdoors training you've experienced

    Niek
     
  10. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    Surely the average HR response depends upon the activities being taught in a class. This week your class must have been more intense than last week, causing your heart rate to be higher for a longer duration of the class.

    2LAP
     
  11. CatSpin

    CatSpin New Member

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    What got me into Spinning was shear frustration with the type of training Spinning usually fosters. That is, short interval training with little to no race-type simulation. If you find your instructor is not providing you with the type of training you need to excel in cycling (ie long interval sets at or above LT), try getting on the bike when there is nobody in the room. Grab your own set of tunes, your HR monitor and training sheet for the day and simply train. If you want to take the next step, get certified yourself and start your own set of classes. After a couple of years training "spinners" to bike like cyclists, I can attest that they truly like the training cyclists do and prefer it to a "techno aerobics" spin. For instance, our training season begins with:

    1. Hills and steady miles - January
    2. Intervals - February
    3. Time trials - March
    4. Tempo Intervals and Speed Training - April
    5. Crit race simulations and interval training through Summer (US)

    We wear numbers, chase down attacks, give out prems and sprint to the line. Best yet, we continue to see your "typical spinner" make their first bike purchase, start riding with a group and from that point, they never look back. A cyclist is born.

    Good luck. Remember, if your instructor lets up, drop him (or her).

    CatSpin
     
  12. Bob s.

    Bob s. New Member

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    Hi Catspin,
    I'm a spinning instructor, and would LOVE to get more details on your different class structures you mention above in your post. I've been struggling with the "techno aerobics" classes myself, trying to bring more realistic cycling into the class, but find it's not that well received. I'd love to hear what you do in those classes, how long the intervals are, the hills are, and am really curious about the temo intervals and time trials! If you have the time to correspond on this topic it would help me out so much!!!!
    --Bob -
     
  13. jkca1

    jkca1 New Member

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    Based on the original thread here I decided to attend my SPIN class using my Polar HM. Each week the instructor concentrates on different features. This week she pushed hills. MY HR was between 143 and 153 for most of the hour which is right where I need to be. When I bike for an hour I seldom get the same constant HR like SPIN gave me, but I seldom ride steep hills for an hour. So my "scientific" conclusion is that its all relative. ;)

    -Jim-
     
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