Im curious

Discussion in 'Training / Health' started by rola643, Oct 19, 2020.

  1. Yes

    5 vote(s)
    71.4%
  2. No

    2 vote(s)
    28.6%
  1. rola643

    rola643 Two skinny Js Staff Member Admin Staff Mod Team Tavern Member

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    Who rides with a heart rate monitor? Stay with me on this venture and let's see where this goes.

    I have a follow up to this when we get a few responses.
     
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  2. John_V

    John_V Moderator Staff Member Mod Team Tavern Member

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    Always! Due to my medial issues, my doctors don’t want me to get into or stay into zone 5 (160 +) for more than a minute or two. I have my Bolt highlighting my heart rate so that I can see the LEDs and see what my HR is. My wife rides with one also since she can go into atrial fibrillation.
     

  3. Germanrazor

    Germanrazor Well-Known Member

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    I do so I can see out of curiosity on areas I push what my HR gets to. I stay mainly in Z3-Z4 with some crossing into Z5 when I am pushing a sprint or hard climb.
     
  4. Dos_Ruedas

    Dos_Ruedas Well-Known Member

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    Nearly every ride.
    I use a Polar chest strap. I pay no attention to the zones (at this point). Rather, i look at starting, max and average.
     
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  5. maelochs

    maelochs Old, fat, and slow

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    I used one for a while after my heart surgery (just an ablation, nothing serious) but I got tired of it. I can pretty much tell when I am going too hard for too long and I back off .... I don't get PRs but I don't end up RIP.
     
  6. rola643

    rola643 Two skinny Js Staff Member Admin Staff Mod Team Tavern Member

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    So hear me out. Extra credit will be given if actually read all this :D

    This started yesterday after I was messing with another friend. I was on my way to take my truck into the shop and happened to see a cyclist. I figured it was one of a handful of people I know that would actually ride this section of road that is narrow with heavy traffic and little to no shoulder. Oddly this particular gentleman is a Lt. in the next county over P.D. so I'm always amazed he rides this stretch of road ( since they deal with death, destruction and mayhem daily :))but he does it routinely. I've done it once with a friend and a group last year as he had just finished a cross country ride and we rode back to his house and I'll never do it again...anyway I'm straying so far off topic now :D

    So later that day I made a comment about him bouncing widely in the saddle ( on his Strava ride) but went back and deleted it. He ended up FB messaging me and we ended up in a somewhat long conversation about power, cadence and HR.

    He said when I saw him he was bouncing because he was spinning at a 100 cadence so I asked why, he said it was windy. I said at 100 you should still be quiet in the hips :D Anyway I told him I had changed my riding style completely this year. I used to be a spinner as well and I could do it and it does indeed seem to feel easier in a scenario like that when you feel like you should spin and make it easier.

    Remember the old saying "legs or lungs" ? Usually you're only blessed with one or the other.

    I've not ridden with a HR monitor hardly at all this year. Originally it was because my new Wahoo HRM would work and not work and then it would show 170 when i was sitting still and 65 when I was working my ass off. Yes, I changed batteries etc. I even had another older Garmin HRM that would work and not work so I just said screw it, I'm tired of spending money on something for which I have absolutely no control over and that's my HR. ( Kind of wondered if it was the Wahoo itself to be very honest. I have a Garmin 520 I use for my mtb I thought about checking it against it but really....why bother)
    I've never once ridden with a HRM on my mountain bikes, ever! I guess I just never really wanted to see those numbers from basically the non stop intervals on mtb :D

    Now as @John_V said he's doing it for medical reasons and I can understand and appreciate that.

    But really, you have no control over your HR in a given situation and by this I mean if it's a hard climb or a sprint...it is what it is and there's not a damn thing you can do about it ( and I'm assuming your not a quitter or a wuss that gives up on something hard :))so why waste your time and money monitoring something you can't control? And really, if you've ridden for any length of time you pretty much know where you are at HR wise +- for the most part.

    Oh I feel the angst out there already!! Stay with me here. You CAN CONTROL power and cadence! HR ONLY follows these two things and then with a great deal of latency as compared to your power output or cadence. I can't tell you how much better I feel on the bike this year, it really is crazy to me

    I'm FAR more interested in my power and cadence that affect my HR than i am about the actual HR itself. I've always looked at my HR in Strava or Training Peaks etc but really what REAL affect can or do I have on controlling it. I also know from years of riding that my average HR tends to fall if only slightly the more I ride and the better fit I am but again it fits within a certain window and range...always! Why would I want to monitor it then? Well, in my case I don't anymore.

    I have found this year, while my actual FTP and avg power are down, I can ride much longer and stronger now but this is largely due to the fact I've taught/made myself completely change my riding style. I used to strive for 90 or better cadence because that's what a cyclist should do...well I say BS :D I finished a 50 miler a couple of weeks ago where I felt as good or better when I finished than when I started. ( And to be clear my HR has ALWAYS been on the higher end of the scale as compared to those I ride with. I even went to the Doc about it years ago. He said my heart was strong as an Ox and not worry, kewl :)Of course the first thing they do is give an EKG and all kinds of other test as soon as you mention heart and HR)

    I've learned to be MUCH closer to 80 rpm now and 83 is about the max anymore. So really in the end for me it ends up being all about cadence kind of. I know where my power should be at a given cadence. This riding style has also made my legs much stronger this year as well

    I just can't tell how much better I feel not worrying and constantly looking at a piece of data I had Z E R O control over, it's mentally freeing!!! Not to mention physically much better.
     
  7. Germanrazor

    Germanrazor Well-Known Member

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    So I read it all.....my extra credit is you send me a fully loaded Canyon road bike, right!!!!

    I digress too. I agree with you on once you are in tune with your own body you know roughly your HR. Same as with cadence and power. However, I love looking at all the metrics in the end game. I don’t obsess over them too much while riding as you have said, once your in it you can’t change it.

    I am a tech junkie too, a curse by all means! The curse that cost one money usually...LOL

    So for me, to see these metrics at a glance on a ride I find helpful. Not knocking anyone’s reasoning on for or against a HRM. The cadence mark of 80 rpm’s I have held for many years but as my average on a ride no matter the distance. I usually maintain a avg. of 75-85 and in between. I find that perfectly acceptable.

    So that Canyon full carbon with SRAM wireless can be sent to: !!!!!!!!LOL
     
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  8. rola643

    rola643 Two skinny Js Staff Member Admin Staff Mod Team Tavern Member

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    SURE!! Just don't hold your breathe waiting for the brown santa to show :D

    That SRAM e-Tap is funky to me. My buddy just bought a BMC TimeMachine with the 12 speed version of that and that whole left and right thing...naw, not for me :D Ironically I rode the double tap stuff for years.
     
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  9. FRISKY

    FRISKY Maturity Challenged

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    I use a heart rate monitor to see if there are any unusual changes...much like monitoring an oil pressure gauge in my vehicle.
     
  10. Germanrazor

    Germanrazor Well-Known Member

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    Ahhhhh man! I had a few new kits picked out as well to compliment the new ride!!!
     
  11. Germanrazor

    Germanrazor Well-Known Member

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    As to SRAM.....I am a SRAM junkie after going to them. Nothing really against the Shimano groupos but SRAM works best for me.
     
  12. maelochs

    maelochs Old, fat, and slow

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    I also read the whole thing .... make mine Shimano DI2, please.

    I figure HR was something everyone monitored because back in the day it was all anyone could monitor. Small enough sensors for power or cadence weren't available---I am sure the tech was there, but not sufficient demand? When I look at the cost of power meters even now, when computer tech is so cheap ..... and a cadence sensor is nor more complicated than a speedometer---magnet on the spokes, sensor on the fork (obviously, crank and frame for a cadence sensor) ---but no one seemed to make one. Possibly this is because back when electronics weren't so small, tracking data throughout a ride was impossible. I know old speedometers only recorded max speed, distance, and time .... not too useful for a cadence counter or a power meter.

    However, because of med-tech, there were heart-rate monitors everywhere. It was easy to wear one on your wrist or strap the wrist unit to the bars, so you could track your HR in real time. Of course you still wouldn't have a ride-long readout, but at times of stress, you could glance down and get a number.

    As Rola notes, HR loosely correlates to power and cadence---loosely correlates to work (more closely the healthier the heart, I'd assume) so HR data could be very useful, particularly since there was no other data to track.

    Now I don't see any point to tracking HR except medical reasons. As Rola says, you cannot alter your HR (except by pushing harder or easing up) so for a rider seeking greater efficiency (better performance from a given fitness level on a given day) HR is sort of null information. You cannot experiment with higher or lower HR .... but you can experiment with different cadences or ride for a specific power number or whatever.

    So ... tl;dr answer: people track HR out of force of habit.
     
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  13. Merlincustom

    Merlincustom Senior Member

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    I'm hit or miss with wearing an HRM. Since I train with power I don't really track it as a guide for gauging intensity. It's a trailing metric and often effected by fatigue, recovery, poor sleep, etc., while power is instant on. 300 watts is 300 watts whether you're in a headwind or a tailwind. Heart rate also used to freak me out. If I'm getting killed in a hard group ride and see my heart rate approaching max, that alone would distract me enough to lose the wheel in front because a number was telling me I couldn't hold on to it. I hung better when I got it off the screen.

    I also don't wear it when I ramp test on TrainerRoad. I need to go to failure and I don't need any visual distraction that might tell me I'm maxed out when I might not be, such that I give up and not get the extra seconds I otherwise might have.

    It's also not a useful comparison among different individuals. Your riding bud's heart rate is meaningless as it relates to you.

    I do like some things about it. It's useful when doing random high intensity intervals to make sure that you've recovered sufficiently before starting the next one. It's also useful to watch cardiac drift when doing multiple longer intervals right around threshold. I think it also pointed out some dehydration I had earlier this summer doing longish trainer intervals in the heat. Even with two fans, the bottom would drop out quickly in later efforts, accompanied by a rapid rise in heart rate rate to what should have been an anaerobic number even though the actual intensity was at tempo. Once I spotted that, I fueled up better on later rides and didn't suffer that again. So for me it certainly gives some useful information, but I'm not wedded to it.
     
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  14. Germanrazor

    Germanrazor Well-Known Member

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    I am one of those metric/tech junkies if they created a way to measure one’s intestinal activity to show some correlation to riding I would get it....LOL
     
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  15. Dos_Ruedas

    Dos_Ruedas Well-Known Member

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  16. fpl1

    fpl1 Well-Known Member Tavern Member

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    I do wear my hrm. Don’t really look at if much except when doing intervals. I like to see the peaks and how long and high they last. Feel like I can glean something from how well it recovers. Also supposed to give a more accurate TSS I believe but who knows How much difference it makes. But I don’t geek out on it like I do power.
     
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  17. Germanrazor

    Germanrazor Well-Known Member

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    I use my HR metric to see how quick I can get my HR back down on similar/same rides. If I find in training for the last two weeks on a climb and pushing let’s say hypothetically 450 watts avg. on the climb and my HR peaks at let’s say 170 and takes about 2 mins. to get back to let’s say 135 HRA for 200 watts avg. maintaining and the next week from this work it now takes 1 min. to recover and get to 135 @ 200 watts then I know I am improving my ride and training.

    So this is how I use HR as a metric on all my rides. I don’t obsess over it, just use it as a quick gauge.

    At the end of the day I truly believe my body is telling me what I really need to know......but having numbers as a empirical way to evaluate is nice. I started out as a Mechanical Engineer but changed majors unfortunately. My whole life was around numbers....LOL. I guess that has never left me.
     
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  18. Vernon E Alexander

    Vernon E Alexander New Member

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    Yes. Apple watch. Very accurate. It is very useful in determining your calories burned. Plus, doctors can analyze the data and give you some great feed back.
     
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