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1209 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Sep 5, 2013 1:26 PM by lenzlaw
justamaniac Legend 206 posts since
May 30, 2007
Currently Being Moderated

Aug 23, 2013 9:50 AM

How do I determine my max heart rate?

Taking a lead from a post on a separate subject, does anyone know how to calculate one's particular maximum heart rate?

 

I am aware that this "max" will vary between different people, and one size does not fit all, but aside from running to the point of a heart attack, how would I figure out what my max is?  The goal from that is to make sure that I can determine what my ideal aerobic range is (ie be able to run most efficiently).

 

thx

 

-bill

http://runningthrutime.blogspot.com

  • lenzlaw Community Moderator 10,422 posts since
    Jan 18, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Aug 23, 2013 11:56 AM (in response to justamaniac)
    How do I determine my max heart rate?

    You can get it tested at a "human performance lab" ($$$).  Or this article lists a number of ways to get pretty close.

    http://www.howtobefit.com/determine-maximum-heart-rate.htm

    It helps if you wear a heart rate monitor (HRM) because most can be set to record your workout and you can see your peak from that.  The thing to be careful about is an "instantaneous" peak that is well above all other readings.  I did mine originally without benefit of an HRM, by running a series of 800 meter intervals and taking my pulse after each.  Take it for 10 or 15 seconds because it will drop off pretty quickly afterward.  So if you do a count for a full minute it will probably be low.  More receently I've been taking it at the top of the hill after hill repeats. 

    I have read that, if you ad your heart are otherwise healthy, your heart could beat for hours at it's max.  I don't know how true this is.  But like any muscle, it would eventually get tired and slow down





    Len

  • lenzlaw Community Moderator 10,422 posts since
    Jan 18, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Aug 23, 2013 2:15 PM (in response to justamaniac)
    Re: How do I determine my max heart rate?

    You mean the 2nd half, which starts at mile 20.  That is pretty much when the going gets tough.  Though heart rate may help, a prior half marathon might be a better guide.  Double that time and add 15 - 20 minutes.  Or if you want to be a conservative, add one minute per mile.  Do at least the first 10 at that pace, better the first 15.  From there, well, like I said, around 20 is where it gets interesting (plus the bridge is there).





    Len

  • lenzlaw Community Moderator 10,422 posts since
    Jan 18, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Sep 5, 2013 11:16 AM (in response to justamaniac)
    How do I determine my max heart rate?

    I mentioned Maffetone in another thread, forgot to here.  You may find some threads here on Active if you do a search on his name.  Some folks who have tried it say it works well but it takes about 6 months of following his program.  It may also promote more fat burning at "normal" running pace, which could be helpful in longer runs such as marathons.

     

    I have the same issues with heart rate training - too much effort for what I get out of it.





    Len

  • shipo Legend 499 posts since
    Aug 9, 2013
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Sep 5, 2013 11:19 AM (in response to justamaniac)
    How do I determine my max heart rate?

    I've always thought the max heart rate and optimal training rate were pretty bogus for recreational athletes.  Why?  Because there is no hard and fast formula to apply to any given individual which will come up with a max heart rate with any accuracy; the fact is that two people of the same relative size, shape, level of conditioning, and even race times, can have wildly different max heart rates.  With that being said, I refuse to believe that I have a virtually identical max heart rate as every other 56 year old male on the planet; this whole concept just doesn't pass the smell test for regular individuals.

     

    Now, if you're a world class endurance athlete and have undergone some very rigorous testing, yeah, I might buy the concept.





    Fat old man PRs:

    • 1-mile (point to point, gravity assist): 5:50
    • 2-mile: 13:49
    • 5K (gravity assist last mile): 21:31
    • 5-Mile: 37:24
    • 10K (first 10K of my Half Marathon): 48:16
    • 10-Mile (first 10 miles of my Half Marathon): 1:17:40
    • Half Marathon: 1:42:13
  • lenzlaw Community Moderator 10,422 posts since
    Jan 18, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    7. Sep 5, 2013 1:26 PM (in response to shipo)
    Re: How do I determine my max heart rate?

    Uh, yeah, the original formula was based on a study involving a bunch (don't remember how many) U.S. Army soldiers and was only relevant to that particular group.  The author of the study said later that he never intended for the formula to be used as a general rule.  Estimates are that it works for about 50% or so of the population.  It doesn't work for me - mine is about 195 and I'm 65 years old.





    Len

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