Posts Tagged ‘heart rate’

Long Runs and Heart Rate Training

March 16, 2010

I did a little research this week and thought I would share what I found about using your heart rate as a training tool.

I got in a long run of 6.65 miles on Sunday. I did it at a slow pace of 10:50 per mile average. I was shooting for 11 minute miles thinking that would allow me to keep my heart rate lower than usual around 140 bpm to start out. I know I was on exactly 11:00 miles at 3.1 miles, so I actually ran a negative split of about 17 seconds per mile pace the rest of the way and it included a slight uphill section about a half mile long. I was worried a little about having sore legs Monday and even today, but then I read a post a coach wrote about sore legs and it made me feel better:

I just got so used to running all out last year as I did most of my running at lunch in a group that was faster. It is hard for me to run at this lower heart rate because I feel so good I have the urge to speed up. I must have glanced down at least 10 times during the run where I saw my hear rate in the 150’s and forced myself to slow down. Since I didn’t have anything to drink my heart rate naturally drifted up. That is the one thing about heart rate training that has always bothered me a bit since I didn’t know why. Recently though I read an article that explained why. It was in a magazine that I cannot recall. I found a few articles online that also explain the various things that affect your heart rate as you work out. So when you use heart rate as a tool for training you need to know these things so you know why it might be acting differently.

  • Cardiac drift: Heart rate goes up because sweat mainly comes from the fluid in your blood so the decreased volume of blood means your heart has to beat faster. (fifth item in the article: )
  • Heart rate goes up as your body temperature increases, which happens during exercise. 
  •  Heart rate goes up as ambient temperature and humidity increase so you will have a higher rate on a hotter or more humid day even if you do the same workout. This and the last item are obviously tied together and are described on the link as above.
  • Another item that is something to watch once you use heart rate monitoring for a while is that when you get sick your heart rate increases. So if you get in the habit of checking your resting heart rate in the morning before getting up and notice it’s higher than normal it might be a sign your body is working on something. Maybe you sleepwalked at 3 am to get a PB&J or maybe you are getting sick, maybe you woke up dehydrated, or maybe you are training so hard that you did not recover overnight. You cannot measure this a few times and get a clue. You will need to keep a watch out over time.
  • Another thing to note about heart rate is that your resting heart rate will decrease as you get more fit. Mine went from around 60 to about 45 so far. Also the recovery of heart rate to normal levels after working out happens faster as you become fitter for the same length and intensity of exercise.

For more info on training in heart rate zones try this link:  

I have decided that I trained to intense all the time while running last year, so I will be doing a lot more less intense stuff. I am starting a little later than I should be as this is what is considered base training, but I will just not run the races too intense and get a worse time than last year but then enjoy the rest of the year without the same injury.


South Beach Plus a Killer Workout

August 8, 2008

So yesterday I made it to the gym. I also used the treadmill. When I got done that stinkin’ little thing didn’t look tired, but I sure was. This was probably becuase I just broke a few personal records. 

I did my first mile in 10:53, and I finished up 3 miles total in 38:40. And yes it is hard to follow up a one mile as fast as you can to be part of a 3 miles as fast as you can effort. My heart rate got up over 175 on the first mile and never looked back. I did .85 at 5.5 mph, then up to 6.0 mph for the last .15 miles of the first mile where I hit my new best time with a heart rate around 185-ish. Then for the next 28 minutes I slowed down to as low as 4.2 and had bouts of insanity where I sped back up as high as 5.5 which I did for the last .1 miles. My heart rate never dropped below 175 for the second two miles and I never saw it go over 189. This was the most I have been able to push myself. And being on the SBD I did feel like I needed a break in there somewhere, but honestly, I don’t think I could do that without thinking —please stoooooop— somewhere in there no matter what I ate.

And MizFit to answer your questions about feeling beat from the low carb diet, I actually feel pretty good, but the first 2-3 days were tough. My kid has been pretty sick and I am not sure if I got a real mild case of what she had, or if I just got wiped out and had no energy from SBD. I am thinking it may even be a combination of both. Since I have made more of an effort to get the veggies in every meal, which includes spinach in the morning eggs, I have been doing better. I also had extra turkey patties left over from the one day and eating them, which were just full of veggies seemed to help me. I am glad you tried them by the way, thanks for the feedback!

So I have one more thing to share, it harkens back to one of my first posts where I was refering to a special form of artwork. See if you guys can guess what it is.


Weight Training

June 19, 2008

So I signed up at the YMCA. It was my wife’s idea that we do this, but I am taking the bull by the horns and creating a whole program for myself that includes using the membership to it’s fullest. The first thing we are doing is to use the gym for weight training. When I was about 20 years old I did a weight training program coupled with a 5 mile walk 3 times a week and that was the last time I was my perfect weight. I was in shape boy…  

I still have fond memories of when I worked at a Shari’s restaurant as the baker (yes guys can bake too). I wore a tight fitting (on purpose it was still cool then) pair of white jeans with a long sleeve white button up shirt and a white apron and just couldn’t wait to take them pies out to the front display case. The waitresses and customers alike would take an interest in me prancing around. (I didn’t admit to prancing now, I am just saying that someone else might describe it that way.) I loved it cause shortly before then I had been overweight and was not getting these seductive flirtatious glances and attention; the change was nice. I want to get back to the days where a girl will look me over when I walk by or flirt a bit given an opportunity. It just feels good.

From 22 years old on the rigors of college (yeah I started late) and working in restaurants as a cook and baker put me back on track to be in the Clydesdale classification. (Over 200 pounds). I topped out around 250 right as I graduated in ’96. If left to my own stupid choices I hit equilibrium around 230 after I was out of school. With the South Beach Diet I have been as low as 197 last year, but this week I started my new program at 216.2.

Since the diet alone has not really done it for me I decided, seeded from the idea my wife had to join the YMCA, to do the weight training and attempt another triathlon so as to require the training to do so. I want to fit in my old 34″ levis and weigh something like 175-180. The real target is how I look though not my actual weight, but I can’t know until I am close.

We did the orientation at the YMCA and got a little tour of all the weight machines. There is one I don’t like too much cause it just doesn’t feel right. And another that the guy told us not to do until we had a little time under our belt. But the rest I am going to do.  I try and rest for 30-45 seconds between sets and less than that to the next machine. I found I can use the rest time to stretch other muscles that have been completed. I feel like a quivering blob of jello by the time I get warmed up and am half way done with the weights. I am going to have to eat or drink something that gives me a little more energy before these workouts I think.

Sure enough according to this article I need to eat a bit earlier, something like 2 hours before my workout. I ate about an hour before so my body was working more on digestion. I will have a little trouble doing this since we eat right when we get home from work then go to workout. I think I will try a lighter meal and a bigger snack that day to have some substance in me earlier so the fuel is ready when I am lifting.

Here is a list of the weight training I will be doing:

  • Leg press           100#2×15
  • Leg curl              40#2×15
  • Leg Extension    40#2×15
  • Abdominal          40#2×15
  • Abductor            60#2×15
  • Adductor            70#2×15
  • Back Extension    65#2×15
  • Rear Delt             55#2×15
  • Peck Fly              55#2×15
  • Chest press        30#2×20(10 each handle)
  • Lateral Raise       30#2×15
  • Lateral Pulldown 70#2×15
  • Shoulder press    30#2×15
  • Seated Row          40#2×15
  • Seated Dip           65#2×15
  • Arm Curl             30#2×15

I am almost embarrassed to admit there is one machine that is doing me in. It is the arm curl which works the bicep. I am doing two sets of 15 reps and the thing is killing me at 30 pounds. I started a little higher the first day, 40 I think, and couldn’t finish the second set. Then my biceps felt tight and in pain the next two days. Last night I then did my second day and started at 30 but dropped it to 25. Again, it feels like the muscles are in need of constant stretching.

As I write I cannot extend my arms without pain in my biceps. They aren’t injured, just very sore from all the lactic acid that can’t seem to get out of there. HOLD UP, I just realized that I need to do a little research about that lactic acid thing cause I am thinking that because of what I learned as a kid in high school. It turns out lactic acid is not the cause of my pain. Silly me, it is muscle microtrauma.  

I am going to have to drop it down to 20-25 pounds for a bit and let them poor muscle fibers heal up. I hope no one looks at the weight I am lifting, it seems so.. well.. insufficient.

I work out on the treadmill for 20 minutes before the weights to get the muscles warm and a good sweat going so I have a reason to take the little paper towels and spray bottle to wipe the machines down when I am done. Nobody wants to see my sweaty butt-print outline after I get done. I got a pair of them moisture-wicking bicycle-type shorts (without the butt pads) on underneath a regular pair of shorts so the outside ones have all the sweat delivered to them.

I decided how I am going to measure my warmup heart rate. The first 5 minutes I will run it at 2% incline at 3.0 miles per hour. Then take the peak heart rate as my measurement. It was 111 yesterday. I also tested my resting heart rate at 56 during the day. If anyone wants to share their numbers I would be interested to see where I fit in.

I only have my mini-triathlon left to figure out. I will be swimming this Saturday and hopefully I can get the running and biking in before then. I need to get a baseline before I get too far along. I want credit for all the improvement! I would love to hear what others can do for a min-triathlon. Just measured as your best time in each category not all the same day or with transition times, sort of an ideal benchmark for your body. 100 yards swimming, 1 mile running, and 5 miles biking where you end at the starting point to account for hills. I will post my results next monday. If anyone thinks the numbers should be different let’s hear why.