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  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    LTHR, Max Heart Rate Im confused

    I just purchased a Heart Rate Monitor.

    As a starting point I calculated my MaxHR from the 220-(46) my age :-) which gives me a max HR of 174.

    Last night was interval night, 5 min on/off X 3. I found that when pushing it for the entire 5 minutes I was right at an average 140bpm. I had the lactic acid burn but it wasn't the intensity of a hard hill climb.

    For fun I through in 2 min on/off X 3 all out. I could only manage to get my heart rate up to 154bpm but I was pushing as hard as I could, legs burning sweat spewing from my forehead but I couldn't get my heart rate above 154. I know I had to be in the VO2 Max zone but according to my max heart rate I wasn't even close.

    Joe Friel talks about LTHR... is this the same thing as max heart rate? How do I know how fast to go for the 30 minutes? I don't want to start off too hard and have to bail on the test because I went too hard. How do I pace myself properly?

    I would appreciate any advice on how to get setup so that I can use my new HR Monitor as a useful training tool.

    BTW: I will be doing the hill repeat MHR test to try to get a more accurate MHR number.

    Thanks,
    Ron

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Dont' worry about max hr. Your max hr is whatever your max hr is but it has no effect on performance and is pretty useless in training.

    Lactate threshold heart rate (LTHR) is the average HR divided by 1.05 from the last 5 minutes of a 20-25 minute TT, among other things. Use this to define your zones.

    The absolute numbers themselves are meaningless. One of the fastest guys I know is 43 years old and chugs along at threshold with a hr of 138, while mine is 175.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Thanks for the quick reply.

    Could you outline how to approach the 30 minute time trial? I believe I can hold 20mph on my trainer for 30 minutes, so do I start out at 20mph and hope I can keep it up? If I can't sustain that pace, does that mean I need to abort the attempt and try 19mph next time? ...or do I just try to keep going?

    Do I go just to the point where my legs are burning and hold it there?

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Just keep going.

  5. #5
    The Slow One.
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    Maximun HR is for the most part not trainable. It is what it is, although with training you may see a slight increase as you become more comfortable with "pushing it". The 220-age formula is not at all accurate for most people, so calculations based on the result are going to be equally if not more skewed.

    Lactic Threshold Heart Rate (LTHR) is trainable, and generally will increase with focused training.

    Look up one of the many "Field Tests" out there (like from CTS), and just follow the instructions. The big thing is to treat is like a race. Make sure you're fueled, hydrated, rested, warmed up... If it helps, throw in a video that makes you ride harder (I've always preferred race videos). If you don't feel like you want to puke at the end of the Field Test interval, you probably didn't push hard enough. Since Heart Rate can be a bit variable due to a number of factors, I would suggest doing a series of them and taking an average before settling on any numbers. Do the first one, schedule a week's worth of training based on the numbers, take a rest day, do a moderate day (Endurance-Tempo), do another Field Test, rinse and repeat until your numbers stabilize a bit. In a few months, do another field test and see where you are. Big gains can be made initially when you start focusing your training, although they'll start to taper after a while.

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