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# Max HR calculation? (Read 321 times)

Angelbethany

I know there are several ways to try and calculate your max HR, but I thought I'd ask what you guys have used/prefer. I just got a new Garmin and it's been awhile since I put in a max, and I'm sure it's probably changed.

MtnBikerChk

I do whatever Sally says

Sally Edwards

(a bunch of different ways and use an average)

Venomized

Just about every calculator is not accurate when it comes to max HR.  To get it precisely then go see your doc and basically get a stress test done.  That will max you out and in the safety of the doctors office.

Now for those of us that don't want to spend the money to get a stress test done then you have a few options.

1.  A good warm up and then a few steep fast and hard hill sprints will get you almost there.

2.  A good warm up and a 3 or 4 mile run.  Sprint the last 1/4 to 1/2 mile and that will get you close as well.

3.  At the end of a 5K give it hell for the last 1/4 mile and that will get you close as well.

Tests such as this will get you close, within a few BPM and be reasonably accurate for determiing HR training zones.  Should you notice a slightly higher number at the end of a race then that now becomes your max HR.  But even as much as a change of 5 BPM should not matter a lot.  80% of a 175 HR is 140, 80% of  180 HR is 144.  Through natural HR drift you will see that much variation.

Now I am not positive but I have read that your max HR should not change more than 1 - 3 BPM if you have had it measured before.

+1 to Venomized. Go hard at end of a 5k. Go hard up a hill at the end of a run.

Depending upon how new you are to running (or how hard you can push), you may not be able to reach your HRmax. Consider going until your starting to get breathless and divide that bpm number by 0.9. (Or look up some of Joe Friel's LTHR tests.)

The HRmax is estimated through a field or lab test. Any of the formulas can be off by quite a bit for an individual (over 20bpm in my case).

Most of the age-based formulas imply your HRmax drops with age. Active people tend not to see those drops. I'm using the same zones I set up about 10 yr ago.

You might consider reading a book on HR training if you're going to train that way.

"So many people get stuck in the routine of life that their dreams waste away. This is about living the dream." - Cave Dog

+1 to Venomized. Go hard at end of a 5k. Go hard up a hill at the end of a run.

Depending upon how new you are to running (or how hard you can push), you may not be able to reach your HRmax.

The HRmax is estimated through a field or lab test. Any of the formulas can be off by quite a bit for an individual (over 20bpm in my case).

Most of the age-based formulas imply your HRmax drops with age. Active people tend not to see those drops. I'm using the same zones I set up about 10 yr ago.

It is difficult - I finished a 5 mile run with three sprints (ha) up a small hill - 160 meters with a 90 foot elevation gain.  Got HR of 157, 160 and 161.  The standard calculation charts would have mine at somewhere between 159 and 174.  Being the standard egotistical runner I of course felt that mine would be higher than the 174.  Maybe I just need to try a little harder (groan!).

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SkyFlash

It is difficult - I finished a 5 mile run with three sprints (ha) up a small hill - 160 meters with a 90 foot elevation gain.  Got HR of 157, 160 and 161.  The standard calculation charts would have mine at somewhere between 159 and 174.  Being the standard egotistical runner I of course felt that mine would be higher than the 174.  Maybe I just need to try a little harder (groan!).

If your real MaxHR was 174, you'd deffinitely be able to go above 161.  Right now I would say your MaxHR is 161 unless you can get it higher.

What you did though, is an improvement on Venomized method.  You'll notice your HR was climbing.  157, 160, 161.  I would modify the go hard at the end of a 5K to go hard after 2 miles of a 5K.  Almost as hard as you can.  When you nearly pass out, bonk and walk 30 ft.  Go very hard again, bonk, walk 30 ft.  Go as absolutely hard and long as you can.  Look at your Garmin data.  Biggest number is Max HR.

Does MaxHR change?  I though I read it didn't or it was very slow.  Maybe I need to test mine again.

notimeforthat

Similar to Venomized....this is what I do FWIW.

Warm up run of about a mile or so to the track.

Run 1.5 at a tempo pace to increase HR, recover for 400m then hit the gas and run all out for 1.5 miles.

That usually gets me to around 180 depending on the temps. Higher HR in hotter weather, but it also helps me match up HR to training paces.

Beer-and-waffle Powered

I do whatever Sally says

Sally Edwards

(a bunch of different ways and use an average)

Max heart rate is also dependant on the sport. I can't get within 5 BMP of my running max if I'm on my bike.

In the words of my late-coach : Just hang in there, relax... and at the end of a race anyone you see.....just pass them

MtnBikerChk

Max heart rate is also dependant on the sport. I can't get within 5 BMP of my running max if I'm on my bike.

notimeforthat

Bingo. That was how I knew I was getting stronger on the bike. My HR max on tests when I ran matched my TT efforts on the bike.

If you aren't hitting those targets on a bike, then you aren't going hard enough. Pissed me off when my husband said it to me, but when he is right-he is right.

Actually, your max is not your max.  Due to differences in the amount of muscle fibres in different muscle groups being recruited (less in cycling)  and the weight-bearing vs. non-weight bearing differences between running and cycling there are differences in "max" heart rates attained between the two sports (higher for running).  If you are primarily a runner and are struggling to hit the same heart rates in cycling workouts you are probably working too hard on what are supposed to be easier bike workouts.  Also, if you are easily hitting the same heart rates on the bike as you do for harder run workouts, maybe those runs might need to be bumped up, depending on goals.  For runners trying to throw cycling into the mix either for cross training or triathlon training you need a different max for each sport to base your workout zones on.

http://www.beginnertriathlete.com/Scott%20Herrick/HRMoniterPartI.htm

Formerly known as coolrunning on the RW forums

SkyFlash

No, your maxHR is your maxHR and your heart doesn't care what sport it is you're doing that causes your heart to have to go maxHR.  All your heart knows is that your brain/body is telling it go faster and it can't.  Top speed is top speed.  And it's very hard to stay at maxHR more than a few seconds.

notimeforthat

No, your maxHR is your maxHR and your heart doesn't care what sport it is you're doing that causes your heart to have to go maxHR.  All your heart knows is that your brain/body is telling it go faster and it can't.  Top speed is top speed.  And it's very hard to stay at maxHR more than a few seconds.

Thank you.

My HR when I race on my feet is 183, my max on the bike is 176. Not much variability at all. HR straps don't work well in the water, so no clue as to what that is.

That is why you do threshold tests to determine max HR avg. and not a formula. You have to do a ramp test to find this out. At the end you will notice a small dip in HR once max is hit.

Steady state efforts like I mentioned I used, help to establish zones. The last 10 min. of those tests help to establish the zones with a "this is your highest HR for 30 minutes and we build from that" type thing.

...listen to the thunder

Using formulas, my was supposed to be 172-180 range.  The highest actual MHR I ever saw on the Garmin was during a 1/2 marathon,  202.

Run, Eat, Repeat.