Rapid HR response to speed work? (Read 589 times)

    Well, I thank you all for your feedback! I can see that my question is not a simple one.


    I am still a new runner. I've only been running 26 months, and I am an older new runner (42), so I surely don't have the feel for my pace/comfort that a more experienced runner would. I would love that. I aspire to it. I am sure it will come at some point. For now, though, I do think I benefit to some degree from an external control such as HR monitor or Garmin-measured pace.


    FWIW, I can chat/talk/sing at a huge variation of paces, so I've found that a difficult way to measure the appropriateness of intensity. I've had plenty of 10:15ish mm runs while I was carrying on extensive conversations the entire run. However, I believe that 10:15 is probably much too fast for my "easy" runs since I know that is well faster than my marathon pace. In fact, I have carried on conversations during hour long runs when my HR was 170+ the entire run -- so that is about my HM heartrate. The only time I can't talk is 10k+ pace. I guess I am just really chatty -- as my running partners could vouch for. Blush


    Anyway, my fitness is changing, and I guess noone here can answer my initial question about whether it is feasible that just a few weeks of interval and tempo work might have substantially changed my comfort/HR at faster paces. That's OK; thanks for trying! I appreciate all your attempts to help.


    I partly retract my original statement that I thought the reduced HR was attributable to improved fitness. (you may have missed that statement)  It's possible, but after rereading your OP, I realized your harder work was without the HRM. Then you started using it with a lower HR. So I tend to agree more with the other posters that there's way too many things that could have happened in there, including some changes in medication, which could very likely account for the changes. (Note: this is the benefit of a public log. Others can see things that you may not have picked up on yourself.) You might chat with Docket Rocket over in the Beginners and Beyond group. I think she has some experience along those lines.


    Also, in that last run, it looks like you stopped or at least slowed at what appears to be the bottom of a small hill - elevation was going down, HR went down, pace went up (slower) for a brief bit - and some of the last part appears to be small downhill. Since the graphs can only accommodate 2 y parameters at a time, it's hard to visualize HR, pace, and elevation together. Of those data, I'm most likely to believe the HR (depending on type of gadget) and least likely to believe elevation. IOW, I'm not really sure what that graph is saying.


    There's a few examples of talk tests:

    Counting Talk Test was tested here.


    I think the one that Nobby et al use in Running Wizard (unless they've changed), for RPE 1-5 goes from

    Intensity - very easy to strong

    Breathing - normal to deep, but steady

    Talking - normal to difficult


    Easy should be able to talk in long sentences, say, 20 or more words. (number of words is just an approximation to give you an idea)

    Medium - might have to shorten the sentences or take deeper breaths.

    Comfortably hard - probably talk in fewer than about 7 words in a phrase.

    Above LT/VT, probably not sayin' anything.


    Most people have gradations between being able to talk forever and not being able to talk. That's what's meant by a talk test. It's also used in stress tests along with RPE.


    Also, is it possible when you're running with someone else and talking, you're distracted and not paying attention to your body signals? I know when I was new to this, I spent a lot of time concentrating on learning to run by effort. (besides I'd trip over roots if I looked at my watch) I couldn't have done it running with anyone else.


    A drill I used to do (part of the HRM training pgm I was following) was to see if I could estimate my HR (at some stable point), then check to see what the HRM said. Or do fartleks where I picked up the effort until a certain bpm then back off. I liked the going faster part, so I learned to back off a little early and hold it steady there until I was ready to slow down, then kicked it up til the beeper went off and slowed down. (I'm not sure if that's the way it was supposed to be done or whether I was supposed to accelerate hard to get there and drop off)  I learned what my body signals were, and they were things besides just breathing and talking. Just sayin'.  It's a skill that can be learned.


    Oh, and I was about 53 at the time (65 now).


    Have fun on your Sunday run. I hope you can keep your pace and HR where you want it while running on a snowy surface.


    Keep in mind, we're all here trying to learn together.

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

      You may have just had some variance with that one run you had a lower HR in.  It appears your base work the last 6 months have dropped your overall HR avg for your comfortable runs. This is certainly possible. Training is cumulative and miles are cumulative. You can continue to build fitness and aerobic strength just with easy/base miles.


      Use the HR monitor as a tool and not totally depend on it. I use it to monitor fitness and improvements in training and races.  Note: I have not noticed much variance with different monitors assuming they are working. I have some issues with the soft Garmin strap spiking early in runs especially in cold or on treadmill. I just purchased some Buh Bump HR monitor creme so hoping that solves the issue.


      FYI:  Be cautious with adding a lot of intensity too soon. It appears you have added 5K paced reps (keep them as short intervals if in base work 400m), HM paced reps and faster long runs and faster finish long runs all simultaneously. I would not do more than 2 quality sessions a week to start with and have a progression built in especially if an upcoming race. If offseason, keep faster work volume down a bit but certainly fine to do.  At 30-35 miles a week, 3 faster sessions seems aggressive to me. Keep up the solid, consistent training and stay healthy. Good job.

      Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, succeed!!

      Shakedown Street

        also, check the battery in the strap.


        I rocked a 90bpm yesterday in the middle of a hill repeat.

        Started-5/12, RWOL refugee,5k-24:23 (1/12/13),10K-55:37(9/15/12),HM-1:52:59(3/24/13)