Author Topic: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?  (Read 12110 times)

Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #25 on: May 22, 2015, 10:27:17 am »
I'm still missing something. I do long dawdling audaxes at around 16mph or even slower, I do quick intervals/tempo stuff, and I time trial at 27mph+.

If, for, example, I want to do intervals in zone 4 or whatever, and that's 185-190 say, why do I need my HRM to tell me that? Don't I just need to see the numbers? If I'm doing a TT at 190+, I just need to see it's 190+. I genuinely don't see what other info I'd ask it for!

T42

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #26 on: May 22, 2015, 10:34:49 am »
Apart from the HRM function I like to have a counter that's driven from the front wheel: GPSes short-change you on distance.

As for zones, I don't give a monkey's although I try to not to exceed the cardiologist's limits by more than 10%
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Karla

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #27 on: May 22, 2015, 10:45:19 am »
I'm still missing something. I do long dawdling audaxes at around 16mph or even slower, I do quick intervals/tempo stuff, and I time trial at 27mph+.

If, for, example, I want to do intervals in zone 4 or whatever, and that's 185-190 say, why do I need my HRM to tell me that? Don't I just need to see the numbers? If I'm doing a TT at 190+, I just need to see it's 190+. I genuinely don't see what other info I'd ask it for!

Yeah.  I can sort of see how someone would like something really simple like Zone 2/3/4, but all this talk of Zone 2.8 and Zone 3.2: surely it's simpler to just ride at 180 or 190? 

(on which subject, I rode last night's 10 at 180 and it definitely wasn't hard enough)

Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #28 on: May 22, 2015, 11:40:35 am »
I'm still missing something. I do long dawdling audaxes at around 16mph or even slower, I do quick intervals/tempo stuff, and I time trial at 27mph+.

If, for, example, I want to do intervals in zone 4 or whatever, and that's 185-190 say, why do I need my HRM to tell me that? Don't I just need to see the numbers? If I'm doing a TT at 190+, I just need to see it's 190+. I genuinely don't see what other info I'd ask it for!

Yeah.  I can sort of see how someone would like something really simple like Zone 2/3/4, but all this talk of Zone 2.8 and Zone 3.2: surely it's simpler to just ride at 180 or 190? 

(on which subject, I rode last night's 10 at 180 and it definitely wasn't hard enough)


180 would be hard enough for me... but then I'm likely older and with a lower max than you, and almost lower than 180 too

Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #29 on: May 22, 2015, 11:56:19 am »
But how do you know what 190 represents for you?

The zones represent exertion levels.  Zone 2 to (low) Zone 3 you should be able to ride in all day, so long as you eat.  Upper Zone 3 you would struggle to ride for more than 2 hours.  So I can monitor my zone and go as fast as I can in that zone, without risking over-exertion.

If you've done a max HR test (and my max HR is ~13% higher than it's supposed to be for someone of my age), then you will have the numbers for your zones.  So you know where you are in the zone - so you might as well use the zones in you cycling computer.
If you haven't done a max HR test then you have no idea what 190 bpm means to you.  The formula for working out max HR is bunkum.

Of course, you can just go by perceived exertion, which people did for years.  I'm not confident in my perception of my exertion, though.  I'll always go off too fast and then collapse in a heap, puking in a hedge, or fail to complete a ride.

Sometimes I do feel a bit like Froome, staring at his stem all the time, so I do the occasional unplugged ride and I don't wear a HR on my commute, either.

Edit: also, my memory is bad.  When I'm out on my bike, it tends to get worse.  Zone 2.8 on the cycling computer is easier for me to interpret than 153 BPM, and I don't have to remember my numbers for the zones.

Karla

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #30 on: May 22, 2015, 12:01:19 pm »
Zones: If you know that your Zone 2 is 150 - 170, why not just stare at a number that says 150 to 170, rather than 2.1 to 2.9?  Surely it's no harder: it's just replacing one number with another?

My max should be around 190 according to the commonly used theory.  Teh Internetz says that the standard deviation for that approximation is something like 6.5 bpm, so 95% of people will be somewhere in the range of 13 bpm either side of that figure. 

TLDR: I really should go out and find my actual maximum.

Oaky

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #31 on: May 22, 2015, 12:06:34 pm »
My HRM strap (one of the Wahoo Tickr range) does bluetooth smart and ANT+.  It pairs nicely with the phone via bluetooth for gym usage.  I'm on the lookout for a cheap(-ish) way to have the HR visible on the bike though.  I was going to go down the smart-watch route for this (Garmin vivoactive, for example) but might just upgrade my E20 to an E30 so I can have the display on there (and presumably recorded along with the track).

I have no interest in having it decide zones etc.  (You can always tape the numbers to your stem if you really can't remember them ;)).  I'd be quite interested in analysing those in post-processing, though (time in each zone etc.) to gauge the quality of my training (i.e. how much I wussed out on my intervals).
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Karla

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #32 on: May 22, 2015, 12:13:14 pm »
For the price of an Etrex 30 (or less) you could also get an Edge Touring or an Edge 500.   

Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #33 on: May 22, 2015, 12:14:28 pm »
Zones: If you know that your Zone 2 is 150 - 170, why not just stare at a number that says 150 to 170, rather than 2.1 to 2.9?  Surely it's no harder: it's just replacing one number with another?

My max should be around 190 according to the commonly used theory.  Teh Internetz says that the standard deviation for that approximation is something like 6.5 bpm, so 95% of people will be somewhere in the range of 13 bpm either side of that figure. 

TLDR: I really should go out and find my actual maximum.

Yeah, I think I feel the same- I know what my max is, I know what my zones are, so don't feel the need to translate numbers into anything, it's just replacing numbers. I don't see that it's harder to remember number 2.8 or 3.2 than 183-189 or whatever. But whatever's easiest works I guess! The whole thing is pointless anyway for people guessing what their max is ;)

Oaky

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #34 on: May 22, 2015, 12:17:58 pm »
For the price of an Etrex 30 (or less) you could also get an Edge Touring or an Edge 500.   

True,  but I want to use it for navigation on longer Audaxes where having the replaceable AA batteries is a real bonus (2x Lithum AA's last >40 hours in the E20, are considerably smaller than and weigh considerably less than a USB cache battery pack)
You are in a maze of twisty flat droves, all alike.

85.4 miles from Marsh Gibbon

Audax Club Mid-Essex Fire Safety Officer
http://acme.bike

Karla

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #35 on: May 22, 2015, 12:42:38 pm »
Sure, but for the 360+ days when you're not doing a 400 or 600 km audax, you'll get a smaller, lighter unit with a bigger screen and the convenience of USB charging.

fboab

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #36 on: May 22, 2015, 12:55:02 pm »
Days using garmin on Audax 2014- 33
Days using garmin not on Audax 2014- 8 (Semaine Federale + Festive 500)

Days using HRM 2014- 80

Depends what your riding's like, doesn't it?
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Oaky

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #37 on: May 22, 2015, 01:09:30 pm »
Sure, but for the 360+ days when you're not doing a 400 or 600 km audax, you'll get a smaller, lighter unit with a bigger screen and the convenience of USB charging.

... and a different bracket to fit/remove on the bikes.  I think "smaller/lighter" means nothing really to me given that the rider is too wide and heavy anyway ;).  The bigger screen would be nice, but I would not necessarily see USB charging as a convenience.
You are in a maze of twisty flat droves, all alike.

85.4 miles from Marsh Gibbon

Audax Club Mid-Essex Fire Safety Officer
http://acme.bike

Karla

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #38 on: May 22, 2015, 01:40:27 pm »
The battery life on the Touring is claimed at 17 hours, which should get you round a 300 - hence my specifying 400+ audaxes.  If you're feeling paranoid, a small powerpack really isn't significantly bigger than a set of batteries, and will top you up over a cafe stop.  If you're doing long stuff, you might be carrying one for your phone anyway.

As for the convenience of charging USB vs remembering which of your AA rechargeables have how much charge in them, sorry Oaky but you're not going to win that particular argument  :P

I also prefer the Edge bracket to the Etrex one!

Kim

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #39 on: May 22, 2015, 01:56:02 pm »
remembering which of your AA rechargeables have how much charge in them

Wandering off-topic here, but:  Draw stripes on the cells with permanent marker for keeping pairs together.  Store them in a 7dayshop battery box, with the orientation denoting state of charge.

This is less critical now that I'm just running an eTrex, but it made all the difference with AA-powered front lights.
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hellymedic

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #40 on: May 22, 2015, 02:15:10 pm »
[Still OT]

remembering which of your AA rechargeables have how much charge in them

Wandering off-topic here, but:  Draw stripes on the cells with permanent marker for keeping pairs together.  Store them in a 7dayshop battery box, with the orientation denoting state of charge.

This is less critical now that I'm just running an eTrex, but it made all the difference with AA-powered front lights.

My trick was to mark my rechargeable D cells by having one pair marked with two bands of old inner tube and one with three.
Stopped them rattling in the dreaded Never Ready Nightriders.

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #41 on: May 22, 2015, 02:18:24 pm »
Probably gave them some impact protection for when the bracket inevitably failed, too...
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

citoyen

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #42 on: May 22, 2015, 03:55:17 pm »
But how do you know what 190 represents for you?

The zones represent exertion levels.  Zone 2 to (low) Zone 3 you should be able to ride in all day, so long as you eat.  Upper Zone 3 you would struggle to ride for more than 2 hours.  So I can monitor my zone and go as fast as I can in that zone, without risking over-exertion.

Your reasoning is a bit circular. How can you calculate your zones if you don't know what 190 represents for you?

Without a HRM, you can use your perceived level of effort to roughly determine which zone you are in, but you need to do a proper maxHR test to come up with some actual numbers in order to be able to program zones on your Garmin.

Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #43 on: May 22, 2015, 04:15:36 pm »
MaxHR is bunkum also.

You’ll feel lactic well before your heart goes max.

Do a ‘CT 20’. A 20 minute ALL OUT blast on an ergometer after a good warm-up. Record the avg HR. You should have been around Lactic Threshold throughout the test.
Look what your HR was and mark that as the ‘Redline’, on your ‘tacho’ ie HRM.

A good training session is to ‘bounce off the redline’. Perform intervals just under and then over your Redline.

Repeat the test regular because after a few training sessions, your Lactic Threshold will increase and you will be able to reset the Redline on your tacho.

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #44 on: May 22, 2015, 04:22:31 pm »
Yeah, that's more or less what I meant by a 'proper' test (ie not just going balls-out for 30 seconds and taking the highest reading on your HRM).

The point is that you can't work out meaningful zones unless you know some meaningful numbers first. And, as others have said, if you know the numbers you don't really need to know the zones.

Karla

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #45 on: May 22, 2015, 04:23:29 pm »
Hey Lady C, gimme a break, I've only just got into this HR stuff!  I promise I'll go find a hill and test myself over the weekend!

[Still OT]

remembering which of your AA rechargeables have how much charge in them

Wandering off-topic here, but:  Draw stripes on the cells with permanent marker for keeping pairs together.  Store them in a 7dayshop battery box, with the orientation denoting state of charge.

This is less critical now that I'm just running an eTrex, but it made all the difference with AA-powered front lights.

My trick was to mark my rechargeable D cells by having one pair marked with two bands of old inner tube and one with three.
Stopped them rattling in the dreaded Never Ready Nightriders.

Been there, done that, got the coping strategies.  Now that I've got an Edge and the lights I mostly use are also USB, this is one less thing I have to think about.

Pedal Castro

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #46 on: May 23, 2015, 07:23:47 am »
If you haven't done a max HR test then you have no idea what 190 bpm means to you.  The formula for working out max HR is bunkum.

The off the shelf zone calculators are also bunkum (=~averages), as are all the training zone charts you can find. What you can generally say is that a higher HR usually means you are working harder, but that is not always the case! Temperature affects HR, as does duration of exercise (cardiac drift).

From my threshold HR (estimated from three different methods), I can work out what HR ranges approximate to which "zones". However, the key to using zones is that it enables you to adjust intensity to duration and frequency. Most of my "training rides are 2 hours long (twice a day) therefore I will use my HRM to make sure I am working hard enough, if it drops below 135, I go harder, but not so hard that I am shattered before the end. Without a HRM I start to lose concentration. If I take it easy then my HR is around 125 average, a 10 mile TT will average ~150, although 25 years ago it was 185.

mattc

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #47 on: May 23, 2015, 10:36:00 am »
The off the shelf zone calculators are also bunkum (=~averages)
Er ... averages are NOT bunkum. What's your statistical knowledge like, Mr Castro?!?
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TimC

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Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #48 on: May 23, 2015, 10:45:32 am »
Hmmm, I think I've shot myself in the foot, I should have done more research ...

I have a Garmin HRM which talks to my eTrex 30 although it seems to take a while to connect up.  I was hoping to monitor heart rate zones which the E30 doesn't do.  And my Garmin HRM won't talk to my iPhone which only receives Bluetooth not Ant+

Any ideas???
I use a Wahoo Tickr X which transmits on both Ant+ and BT, and will record even without a head unit or phone nearby. It talks nicely with every receiver I've tried (Edge 800, Vivoactive, iPhone5S, Sony Vaio, MacBook Air (BT), iMac (Ant+ dongle), and Elite rollers head unit. It can even control your music while on a run (if you do such unmentionable stuff), and has cool blue and red flashing LEDs to confirm you're alive!

Re: Heart rate monitors: which to choose?
« Reply #49 on: May 23, 2015, 10:55:33 am »
Hmmm, I think I've shot myself in the foot, I should have done more research ...

I have a Garmin HRM which talks to my eTrex 30 although it seems to take a while to connect up.  I was hoping to monitor heart rate zones which the E30 doesn't do.  And my Garmin HRM won't talk to my iPhone which only receives Bluetooth not Ant+

Any ideas???
I use a Wahoo Tickr X ... cool blue and red flashing LEDs to confirm you're alive!

This almost makes up for the music, but not to the extent that I'm about to replace my many years old Garmin cheststrap.