I have decided to take my training "to the next level" as they say and start using my heart to gauge my training. I am an avid Garmin user but have heard great things about the Polar watches for heart training so I picked up the Polar RS200. I have always known that my standing heart rate (STR) was a bit higher than most athletes. Despite the fact that I ran two marathons this fall, one under 3:30 and finished a 95 degree Chicago at 3:50, my standing heart rate is still 70 beats per minute. Most of my training partners are in 40-50 range. With this knowledge I decided to try the Polar and see what's up. Here are the details of what I've found:
- My RHR is very high for a high mileage runner. A few things may contribute to this: One, I am on Synthroid to speed up my metabolism because my thyroid is slow. Two, I am 25 pounds over my peak weight. I do this every year. I put on the weight in the winter, despite my continued training, and then lose it right back.
- My heart rate barely changes between running a 8:30 pace and 7:30 pace. It is abnormally high at 8:30 pace at 150 but doesn't get any higher until I start to push the pace under 7:00. My lungs and legs certainly feel the difference but my heart stays steady.
- My maximum heart rate (at an all out sprint) seems to be 180 which is completely normal. I was doing 6 X 800m interval speed workouts at 3:15 and I was at 170 bpm but really not very tired. The last one I sprinted got me into the high 170's but again there was more in the tank (the track was snow covered and not safe to push harder).
- That is the data I got from my first heart work out. Again, I am out of shape for me, but compared to most people I am in great shape. If there are any "experts" in this area, feel free to comment. I look forward to seeing what my improvement will be.
P.S. As I sit here and type my heart rate is still 83 but I did just work out an hour ago.