Heart Rate Measured off Chart...

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    Oct 14, 2012 1:06 AM GMT
    Sometimes when prescribing exercise for new clients, I'll tell them a heart rate zone to go for (especially people who have never exercised before and think they're working hard but they aren't...).

    Today I tried to apply the equations to myself. When I was 16 and on a USS swim team, we'd check our heart rates between sets by finding our neck pulse for 6 seconds and multiplying by 10. It's a fairly accurate way to actually measure heart rate. Back then, our coach would tell us to go for heart rates in various zones, but mine were always too high. In max exertion sets when we were supposed to get it over 17-20, mine was like 22-25.

    Today I measured it again. I'm 26. When I got to about max exertion, it was 22 again. I also noticed that the treadmill electrodes underestimate it and over estimate it at high rates--the thing flickered 220/210. I blinked at it and measured it myself--22.

    I double checked it using 15 seconds...got 48 beats, so 192. My age predicted heart rate using the newer formula of 208-0.7*age is 190.

    My protocol involved playing with inclines and speeds.

    Bottom line, I guess measuring it for 6 seconds is not as accurate as measuring it for 15 seconds, but that said, it may slow down in 15 seconds also, since you have to stop and take it longer and focus longer.
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    Oct 14, 2012 10:11 AM GMT
    the heart rate measures are purely based on average for the average height. build, fitness. Then extrapolated for age.

    Personally my heart rate sites far heigher then the average person when exercising and it can sit there for the duration of my workout. under really high effort I easily go over 220, highest I've hit is 246 bpm while doing endurance sprints for fun with a client a few years ago.

    When I'm working out and have a cold my heart rate will site even higher then normal which is perfectly normal.

    I've been checked out by a cardiologist and given the al clear, I'm healthy, fit and it's just what my body does.

    The great thing is though my physiological response is very rapid, I can be sitting at 220 and a minute later after I've stopped I've dropped to 120, a hundred beat drop in a little less then a minute two minutes later my heart rates under 100 then the drop slows down and it can take up to 5 minutes for my heart to go back to normal resting rate.

    So, don't be to concerned by it, be more concerned how fast it climbs, how fast it falls. A slow climb, high peak, fast fall is good. fast climb, so fall with a high peak would be more concerning and just high everywhere is bad

    Sorry stupidly long post
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    Oct 14, 2012 8:59 PM GMT
    I think that's okay. Those formulas are are general guidelines that most people fall into. There are exceptions and it's not that uncommon. I know a couple of XC Racers in their mid-20's that average around 210 bpm at race pace. As insane as that sounds, they're fit and are really fast. It's just the way their body works. Unless you're getting chest pains or breathing problems, I wouldn't worry about it.

    In my case, I could hit up over 195 at max effort, which was considered high for my age. But ever since I started working with a cycling coach, his workouts have brought it down to around 185 bpm at the same level of effort. That's more in the "normal" range using those formulas. My leg(s) start to fail before I can reach 190 bpm now. Stuff like this is why I think the human body is a fascinating machine.
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    Oct 14, 2012 9:05 PM GMT
    A cardiologist would be the only one who could tell you if something was really wrong, but it doesn't sounds like it. A heart rate monitor with a chest strap would give you a more accurate reading, and the reading would be nearly constant, which would give you a better idea of how your heart rate is going up and down. I assume you probably know that. HRMs are expensive, but I find them to be very helpful.

    I have sort of the opposite problem. My heart rate is abnormally low, I think because of my underactive thyroid. Usually, during exercise, it will rise to normal levels, but some days, it seems to want to stay lower, and I struggle to push myself to raise it.

    I've also seen odd changes in my heart rate due to medication, even though my medication didn't list it as a side effect.
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    Oct 14, 2012 9:28 PM GMT
    lilTanker saidthe heart rate measures are purely based on average for the average height. build, fitness. Then extrapolated for age.

    Personally my heart rate sites far heigher then the average person when exercising and it can sit there for the duration of my workout. under really high effort I easily go over 220, highest I've hit is 246 bpm while doing endurance sprints for fun with a client a few years ago.

    When I'm working out and have a cold my heart rate will site even higher then normal which is perfectly normal.

    I've been checked out by a cardiologist and given the al clear, I'm healthy, fit and it's just what my body does.

    The great thing is though my physiological response is very rapid, I can be sitting at 220 and a minute later after I've stopped I've dropped to 120, a hundred beat drop in a little less then a minute two minutes later my heart rates under 100 then the drop slows down and it can take up to 5 minutes for my heart to go back to normal resting rate.

    So, don't be to concerned by it, be more concerned how fast it climbs, how fast it falls. A slow climb, high peak, fast fall is good. fast climb, so fall with a high peak would be more concerning and just high everywhere is bad

    Sorry stupidly long post


    Tanker is right on. In physio, we learned that the recovery rate following exercise is a better measurement of fitness as it relates to how quickly your body adapts to stress and vice-versa. Try this formula:
    Recovery heart rate = (exercise heart rate - recovery heart rate after 1 minute) / 10
    The drop in heart rate one minute after exercise is the most meaningful indicator of fitness. If you have questions or concerns, always consult a cardiologist.
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    Oct 14, 2012 11:44 PM GMT
    smudgetool saidRecovery heart rate = (exercise heart rate - recovery heart rate after 1 minute) / 10


    OK, there is something wrong with that formula. According to it, I should have a resting heart rate of 12 beats per minute..
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    Oct 15, 2012 1:48 PM GMT
    themachine said
    smudgetool saidRecovery heart rate = (exercise heart rate - recovery heart rate after 1 minute) / 10


    OK, there is something wrong with that formula. According to it, I should have a resting heart rate of 12 beats per minute..

    Whoops! My bad. Thanks for pointing out the missing part. There is a chart to accompany your final number that measures your fitness:

    Recovery Rate = Condition
    Number

    Less than 2 = Poor

    2 to 2.9 = Fair

    3 to 3.9 = Good

    4 to 5.9 = Excellent

    Above 6 = Outstanding
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    Oct 15, 2012 2:06 PM GMT
    BTW, on the general topic of monitoring heart rate, I was surprised to find an iPhone app called Instant Heart Rate, by Azumio, that requires no accessory devices to work. There's also an Android version.

    Here's how your phone is able to measure your heart rate:

    You place your fingertip over both the rear camera lens and the flash. The app turns on the light steady, while the camera reads your skin color. The color changes slightly with each pulse, allowing the app to determine your rate. For earlier phones or tablets without flash you must hold your finger up to a strong light source, but even Azumio admits this method is less reliable.

    You can keep readings in memory to compare. It will also prompt you to check your pulse at the same time weekly. A limitation is that you can't wear the phone for readings during exercise; you must pause to apply your fingertip to the phone and hold it steady for several seconds.

    http://www.azumio.com/apps/heart-rate/
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    Oct 15, 2012 4:06 PM GMT
    ^ Hey, that app is pretty cool. I'm always amazed at the things app developers have been able to do with smartphones.