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Interesting heart rate anomaly; Joint support; Poison ivy.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012 by  
Filed under Daily Blog

September
5
2012

I had an interesting indoor cardio session yesterday. I kept the same cadence/RPM as I usually do when I do fasted LISS cardio, but my heart rate was much lower than normal.

On August 29, 2012 I did 14 miles in 46:31, and my average heart rate on that ride was 136 BPM. That’s a pretty normal LISS cardio session for me. Yesterday I did 14 miles in 46:43, but my average heart rate was just 122 BPM.

By the way, my Garmin Edge 500 heart rate monitor matched the built-in heart rate monitor on my recumbent bike, so the data is not an error.

Here’s the August 29, 2012 session compared to yesterday’s session:

Average heart rate comparison: August 29, 2012 (L) vs. September 4, 2012 (R).

Average heart rate comparison: August 29, 2012 (L) vs. September 4, 2012 (R).

 

I’ve done about a million fasted LISS cardio sessions on this bike, and so I’m very familiar with what cadence I need to ride at a particular level of resistance to get my heart rate where I want it. Specifically, a cadence between 90-100 RPM on resistance level 5 will reliably produce an average heart rate between 135-140 BPM.

So what was different about yesterday’s session? The only thing I can think of is Sunday’s 42 mile ride, during which my average heart rate was 171 BPM (~85% of my max) over a period of more than 4 hours (moving time).

While 42 miles of mountain biking is a distance personal record for me, for a long time I was doing 26-30 mile mountain biking rides an average of 3 times per week. My average heart rate on those ~30 mile rides was generally about the same as it was this past Sunday, perhaps even higher. I was not doing any indoor training at that time, and so I have no way to make the comparison. I wonder if I would have seen similar reduction in heart rate on the trainer during that time?

I’m not really going anywhere with this, I just thought it was interesting. Any theories?

As regular readers know, my supplement intake is very, very limited (for an in-depth look at what I think of supplements and the supplement industry, please check out my March 14, 2012 article “My Take on Supplements“). Right now pretty much the only supplement I take is a multi-vitamin, but I’ve decided to start taking Glucosamine/Condroition/MSM again. I used to take that combo for many years, but at some point I stopped taking it to see if I noticed any difference. I didn’t notice any difference at all, and so I never resumed taking it. Well, after Sunday’s ride I noticed a lot of joint pain, and so I’m going to see if the Glucosamine/Condroition/MSM combo helps on future long rides.

I picked up a little poison ivy on my right leg over the weekend. Thankfully it’s just a small patch near my shin, and it’s not too bad at all. I must fell into a little of it during one of my, um, graceful dismounts. :p

John Stone Fitness Comments

6 Responses to “Interesting heart rate anomaly; Joint support; Poison ivy.”
  1. I’m not sure in your case why your avg HR is lower that usual, but I also see that your max HR is much lower than last time. Personally if I train very hard for many days in a row with high avg HR over a long time, then I can’t reach my max HR anymore, my heart need to rest a few days to be able to get up to my usual max HR.

    If you want more detailed HR analysis I recommend that you try out any product that uses Firstbeat Technologies, I have been using a sports computer called FRWD for many years (it is not sold anymore, but both Garmin and Suunto now got devices that supports Firstbeat Technologies)

    http://www.firstbeat.fi/consumers/heart-rate-monitors/frwd-traxmeet

    One good thing once you get all parameters setup is that you can measure your training effect (TE), if you over do for many days in a row (TE > 5) then you sure notice that you can’t get up to max HR anymore.

    http://www.firstbeat.fi/consumers/heart-rate-monitors/firstbeat-intelligence-in-heart-rate-monitors

    With this software you can also get lots of other analysises based on your heart rate, like:
    Oxygen consumption
    Energy expenditure
    Respiration rate
    Ventilation
    Fat utilization
    % of VO2Max
    EPOC

    http://www.firstbeat.fi/consumers/firstbeat-athlete/your-intelligent-coach

    Have a look at the free trial version!

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    • Hey Skeen, thanks for the insight and information. That Firstbeat stuff looks really interesting. I’m going to dive into it a little more after work today. Thanks very much.

      With regards to max heart rate, that’s an interesting observation you made. This morning I went mountain biking and set a new speed PR on a segment. My maximum heart rate only got up to 190 BPM on that segment, but when I set the old personal record my maximum HR hit, I believe, 196 BPM.

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  2. I remember reading somewhere that it is a sign of over training and fatigue. That being said, I have lost about 4 bpm of my mhr this season, I used to be about 183 max in an all out effort, now I am at 179 , could also be a sign of better fitness?

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    • My initial instinct was that my body has simply adapted to the increased cardiovascular load and become more efficient. In other words, exactly what you said: better fitness.

      On this morning’s ride I felt incredible. I beat my existing personal record on a segment by 31 seconds (I said 20 seconds on FB, but that was a mistake), and both my average heart rate and maximum heart rate this morning were significantly lower than they were when I set the PR I just beat. My recovery was also faster.

      Pretty interesting stuff.

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  3. I did a race in early June as part of a two man team. We took turns running 12.5 miles laps. Each lap was about 80 minutes. I don’t know the exact numbers but my last lap, while the second fastest was the lap with the lowest heart rate. I also felt the best on that lap. I don’t know how to explain it.

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