I love that third mile

Oh, the weather outside is delightful. The running mood is right-ful.
Despite being lazy on a Sunday morning I had special interest in going out this time - to test drive my new Polar heart monitor. Thank you Santa!
First I entered my mid 20th century birthdate. Out came a maximum HR of 168. Okay. Off I went starting at about a 110 rate. It gradually rose as I ran myself through a 2 mile warm up. In miles 3 and 4 the heart monitor was beeping like crazy as I stayed in the 160 rate zone. I wasn't sure if I was going too hard or my heart was reacting to exercise after too many cheesecake helpings and holiday chocolate splurges. No matter, the effort was worth it and now I have lots more new numbers to record. All I have to do is figure out what good they are.
Anybody got any ideas?


Jon (was) in Michigan said...

I never did figure out what to do with the numbers. I just used it to keep tabs on where my HR was. I shut off all the alarms so it wasn't beeping so much. Sounds like yours has a limitset at 160 or close to it, so when you went over, it beeped.

Congrats on the new toy from Santa! :)

susie said...

Wish I could help, but that technology is beyond me:) It sounds like you'll be able to have one more thing to keep track of. I love the third mile, too!

Rafael said...

I got a HRM for Christmas too and I love it. It has forced to me to slow down in most of my runs and this, apparently, helps one get the most out of training.

Last saturday, for example, I did my longest run so far, 13.5 km (8.4 mi), and I was very comfortable most of the time with a heart rate of less than 75% my max. I finished strong and actually recovered rather rapidly. I'm enjoying my runs much more.

The first two times wearing my monitor it was difficult not to go overboard, though. My experience was similar to yours in that respect. But soon I found out that it's just a matter of pacing yourself adequately. Indeed, I believe many training programs prescribe paces based on heart rate zones even though they don't mention it (see, for example, Macmillan's website at http://www.mcmillanrunning.com/). The problem is that if you don't have a monitor to remind you all the time to slow down it's very difficult to keep oneself at bay.

Take care,

--Rafael in Montreal (http://running.rnajera.com) )