High heart rate... Low speed!

Hi There! I practice martial arts but am a relative beginner at long distance running. I recently ran my first race and furthest distance - 11.6 km. For over 90% of the race I was running at a hr of 165bpm or above. This is above 80% of my max. And this is at 7.5 minutes/ km!! But I could easily sprint at the end at 3 min/ km! I am 35 and about 10 kilos overweight, but I was not soar at all the next day and feel I could run faster...but I am afraid of exceeding my max for an extended period of time. Any advise or ideas as to why this happens and how I could improve would be greatly appreciated. My wife is a marathon runner and I would love to join her one day!! 


  • How do you know what your Max is ?

    You cannot exceed your max   image

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭

    Already said.

  • Yep yep. Unless you've done a proper max heart rate test you don't know your max heart rate.
  • So how can you work out your max heart rate? 

  • Your max can change but you can't exceed your max, you just get a new max!

    As a start read here and then read around the subject 


  • Hi All, and thank you for all the replies...

    These are the calculations done for the Target HR, inlcuding Lower Target Limit, and Upper target Limit:

    Age 36 Average RHR 66 HR max 184 Hrmax RESERVE 118 Target Heart Rate (LTL) 137 Target Heart Rate (UTL) 160 Target 149

    My question still stands..should a slow jog speed up the BPM so much, could it be sutained for over an hour and not have any repercusion to lactic acid build up?


  • stutyrstutyr ✭✭✭

    184 is not your max unless you are the only person in the world where the "220 - age" formula is correct.  You really need to do a max HR test (see link in AT's post) to find out what it is.

    If you haven't calculated your Max HR, then training by HR isn't going to work.  If you run at 160 bpm for an hour are you tired afterwards?  If not, then this suggests you are running at an easier pace/HR, and therefore your Max HR is higher (e.g. over 190).

    This will also depend on your current level of fitness, and one of the useful things about using HR readings in training is seeing that a certain speed is achieved at a lower HR as your training progresses.  

    Lactate threshold is normally around 85% of HRR, if you run below this then lactic acid build up should remain under control, try and run over this for a significant amount of time and your legs will feel it.

  • Thank you again for your feedback.!

    Next taks will be to sort out what my max is...the 220-age seemed a bit too general!

    Cheers again...!



  • MedicalertMedicalert ✭✭✭
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