Heart Rate Training
Heart rate training
What is it? Why do I care?
Heart rate training is a popular method of training today. The new watches have the capabilities to measure and record your heart rate during a workout. In the summer time you’ll often see people running with a plastic strap across their chest – this is the monitoring device. This has only added to the amount of people utilizing heart rate zones to develop and refine training methods.
Heart rate training is a good thing. It is always good to have data – especially objective data – and HR gives us that.
The reality is that most people end up training too easy on hard days, and too hard on easy days. So we wind up training only this middle moderate area, which is a mix between aerobic and anaerobic. Instead, we should make our easy days easier and our hard days harder!
Sounds simple enough right?!
The heart rate method helps us to do this. We set up specific zones that are based off of previous race heart rates, or specific efforts for specific times that give us a gauge of where we should be training. We take that information and create Zones – usually 5. With Zone 1 being super easy (ez), and zone 5 being all out. For instance – zone 5 is something that can be sustained for a very short period of time – less than a minute. And zone 1 can be maintained all day long.
Using the monitor can help people stay within a target zone for a specific workout. It’s a way to self coach your runs so that you don’t show up to your important workouts feeling drained – and thus not get the gains that you want from them. But the challenge comes in when you become a slave to data and use it to dictate everything.
I had a discussion about this with an athlete of mine a week or so ago. He utilized the heart rate monitor a lot and does workouts based on this data. So he was telling me that during a tempo style run that he was having trouble with keeping his heart rate at the level he wanted. Let’s say (because I can’t remember specifically) he wanted to be at 167 beats per minute for his average.
So he went out on his run and spiked his HR up to 167. Success!
But later in the run he couldn’t keep his rate that low – it was going up above 167. So he slowed down.
This is a problem. Becoming a slave to data means that when the data doesn’t fit, you change something so that it does fit. He slowed down. So what do you think will happen during a race?
Tempo running is basically race simulation running – it’s the pinnacle of race like fitness. So when you consistently (during training) tell your brain and body that at a certain point you’re going to slow down – you brain and body will make sure to repeat that situation during the race.
It’s good to keep and gather the HR data. But during a tempo race the HR and effort level will most like have an exponential relationship. As the race goes on – the HR goes up, as does effort level.
This needs to be trained!!!
So take the average HR – but don’t slow down just because you've gone over your expected average. And don’t start out too fast because your HR is too low. Feel yourself and your body and your pace – don’t check out and let a device collect all the data for you, because it’s unable to monitor as many things as your brain. Not only is your brain monitoring your HR, but it’s also monitoring blood pressure, breathing rate, blood oxygenation, tissue fatigue, mental fatigue, sugar levels in the blood, sugar levels in the muscles, nerve impulse velocity, etc. etc. etc. AND – to throw another wrench at HR fanatics – perceived exertion (how hard you feel that you are working) data is nearly identical to HR data when people are trained in how to ‘measure’ their perceived exertion.
DONT CHECK OUT OF YOUR BODY DURING A WORKOUT!! CHECK IN!!
A HR monitor measures your HR – and maybe your speed and distance.
This graph shows us the relationship that we have with a race. There will be a time where the choice needs to be made -
1- I’m going to push through this pain
2 – I’m going to slow down.
Choose the former! Practice making the choice. With or without your HR monitor.
Drew Deppen, D.C. Licensed Chiropractor
As your Boston Back Bay Chiropractor, Dr. Deppen takes pride in the diversity of his practice. He has worked with a wide variety of patients from Olympic medalists to the everyday active person, Dr. Deppen’s Boston practice uses the most current evidence-based treatment protocols. He has a deep interest in Rehabilitation strategies, Vojta Therapy or Dynamic Neuromusclar Stabilization, McKenzie Method Protocol, Active Release Technique, Strength and Conditioning, and Applied Kinesiology. Dr. Deppen is also the only Chiropractor in Boston Back Bay with McKenzie certification credentials. Additionally, Dr. Deppen is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, and a USA Track and Field Certified Coach. Research has proven that both chiropractic manipulation and exercise are the gold standard for spine pain. Dr. Deppen's combination of Chiropractic, McKenzie Method, and Strength Coach experience is a powerful combination for patients.
Dr. Deppen grew up in Chicago, Illinois. As a young athlete, Dr. Deppen was fortunate enough to work with a local chiropractor for many years while in high school. From there, Drew went to Eckerd College, graduating with Honors with a degree in Biology and Chemisty. While at Eckerd, Dr. Deppen played volleyball and captained the team under Coach Dexter Rodgers, a former silver medalist.
Dr. Deppen then attended Palmer College of Chiropractic and graduated magna cum laude. Palmer is the oldest and most prestigious chiropractic school in the world. While at Palmer, Dr. Deppen developed a love for endurance sports: running, cycling, and triathlons. Since then, Dr. Deppen has completed multiple Ironman events, and every distance from a 10K through 100-mile road races.
As a way to couple Dr. Deppen’s love of running and desire to help out in the community, he started coaching and working with a local high school while in Chicago. He had the pleasure to coach high school athletes in both Cross Country and Track and Field for three years and in this time frame, helped coach and develop three NCAA Division I and four NCAA Division III athletes, as well as six Illinois All-State athletes.
During this same time, Dr. Deppen also worked with many beginner and amateur runners, both high school age and adults looking to participate in road running. Often times, Dr. Deppen’s patients have asked him to help them learn how to run or train for a marathon. Some of Dr. Deppen's most memorable moments from running lie in this arena: helping others find the love and joy of running and chiropractic to change their lives.
Dr. Deppen truly values the integrative approach offered at OMBE Integrative Health Center. He has seen how multiple disciplines together can create a unique approach to health and overall wellness. He looks forward to answering any questions you may have for him about chiropractic in a complimentary consult.