Heart Rate

  • At 53 years old, my target heart rate is 134; yet at that rate I am not even breaking a sweat.  When I am at about a level 9 or 10, my heart rate is about 160-165.  Does this happen to anyone else?  I don't see how maintaining a heart rate of 134 would be at all effective.  Thanks for any advice.

  • Bacci - your target heart rate is 134 because that is 80% of your max heart rate.  220-age.  your target heart rate is a good estimate of an optimal level where you can work out for a long time to prolong fatigue.  since you are doing HIIT you should be getting out of your comfort zone so and hitting a higher heart rate in your level 9 and 10.  your 165 is about your max so you probably cant go to much longer than a minute at whatever pace that is.  As you work out your HR lowers because your heart muscles become stronger and will become more effiicent at pumping out more blood with every contraction.  that is why you can increase your speeds without increasing the HR.  all in all, keeping a heart rate at 134 is effeicent if you are planning on exercising for a long time but for the purpose of HIIT you need to be hitting that 160 range.  take care and hope that helps a little

  • Thanks Brian.  I'm relieved to know that I won't drop dead on the treadmill!  I am excited to continue working out and strengthening my heart muscles.  Your advice ws most helpful.

  • Bacci- The heart rate reserve method would be a better formula to use when calculating your training heart rate zones b/c it takes into account your resting heart rate.  When you first wake up in the morning, take your pulse for one minute before you sit up or do anything.  That will give you your true resting heart rate.  Then plug your #'s into this formula:  220-age-resting hr x % training intensity + resting heart rate.  Do each step separately b/c if you just plug all of that into a calculator it usually doesn't work out right.  Let's say your resting hr is 68.  

    220-age (54)=166

    166-68 = 98 (thats your Heart rate reserve)

    98 x 75%~90% + 68 = @ 75%  141 @90%=156

    So, to train at 75-90% you want your heart rate to stay in between 140 & 160 +/- 10   So, really, you can keep your heart rate between 130 & 170.  :-)

    ~Let every opposition strengthen you, not stop you~

  • worrying about your heart rate is a waste of time. You just need to give it 110% every time which will ensure that you are keeping your intensity up. HR is just a number.

  • Bacci - I did forget to mention, although you are still very young some people at your age have health problems when you do elevate their HR to their max.  If you have not seen a doctor or if you have heart problems I would lean on the side of caution.  However if you are as healthy as an ox than keep hitting those 10s