Heart Rate

I am a 59 year old weighing 11 stone who has done no exercise at all for 20 years at least but is in good general health. Just taken up training and have bought a heart rate monitor. I am training at around 80% of a calculated maximum rate rate of 161 based on 220-age. My resting heart rate is about 60 bpm.

My concern is that I jogged gently back to my car 100 yards from the gym at the end of 40 minutes exercise and my heart rate was 161 although this dropped back to 105 or so within a couple of minutes. Obviously I would have increased this significantly if I had run harder as I was not distressed in any way. Am I superfit or about to die??!!


  • you could have been recieveing alien comunications, it could be anything, they do that from time to time, apparently electric cables are a big cause, may I suggest the book (amazon have it) the complete idiots guide to heart rate monitors, is very good and most of the lot on here recomend it. I also think your max rate is higher. the formula's arent 100%
  • is there a website where you can work out your max?
    Formula is only accurate in about 70% of peeps. Do a max heart rate test, this will enable you to calculate correct training levels
  • Try 'Heart Monitor Training for the Compleat Idiot' by John L Parker. It's written in american but it is very good. Try Amazon, you'll get it for about a tenner.

    I wore a HRM for about 6 months before I got this book and learned how to use it properly. From what you've said here it sound's like you may not be getting the most from a very useful tool.

    The book even comes with the author's money back guarantee!
  • Thanks very much for this. I've ordered it from my public library, so it will be available to others after I've learned the lessons!

  • I've been worried , my heart rate is ~45-50 beats but I am only seventeen ?
    You mean your RHR (resting heart rate), don't you?
  • Yes , you are right .. my RHR is ~43-44 (morning , after sleeping) .. after training is ~ 50-52 ...
  • http://www.runningforfitness.org/calc/hrzones.php

    This is an excellent site for HR info and all sorts of other stuff.
    VM - that's fine for RHR
  • Thank you all
  • I'm puzzled by the way my heart rate behaves. Does anyone have a good explanation? I am 50 and effectively a novice runner aiming for a first marathon in mid-June. My pulse has never been fast and currently my resting heart rate is in the low forties although my fitness rating as estimated by a Polar Ownfitness test is only "good" ( there are two higher categories v.good and excellent ) Not surprisingly my max heart rate is also slightly low at approx. 164 -I say approxas I suspect this rate was recorded v.early in a run when sweat has not made the monitor contact v reliable. it might be only 160 I reach fairly predictably on hill sessions. So far all quite sensible and coherent. Like a good boy I try to do my long runs at a slow pace tho' can't resist temptation to speed a bit. Therefore can do my "long" runs currently just 10 miles at 9minute /mile pace or at worst 9:15 per mile with heart rate 125-130 throughout. However if I try to do a Runner@s world "easy" i.e slower pace nearer to 60% WHR my pulse is still just below 120 even though I drop the pace to 11 minutes plus per mile yet I am still nearer 65% WHR than 60. I can't understand how there can be only 10 beats per minute difference between two such different paces. The figures are consistent and reproducible, the runs are both on very level trail type surfaces. Anyone know what's going on? It's taxing my faith in scientific training.
  • My non scientific answer is that you may be an elephant, or a blue whale, or be the next stage in our evolution.
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