Sunday, April 26, 2009

Maximum HR Test

The training plan that I'm using for IMAZ is from the book "Be Iron Fit" by Don Fink. The main things that I like about his methodology are that it is 1) time-based instead of mileage-based and 2) he uses heart rate zones as a way to effectively maximize that time. So in prep for training (starts tomorrow!), I did a maximum heart rate (HR for those reading my blog who don't have the lingo down) test this morning. Since I don't have the bucks for a lab-based test measuring VO2 max, lactate levels, etc., I used a strategy from Joe Friel's book "Total Heart Rate Training." He's also the author of "The Triathlete's Training Bible." Lot's of good stuff in all three of the books I've mentioned.

Anyway, here's the deal for the HR test (done on a treadmill or at a track):
-Warm up for 10 minutes.
-Start a 30 minute time trial. After 10 minutes, hit the "lap" button on the HR monitor.
-The average of the last 20 minutes is your max HR.
-Cool down for 10 minutes.

I did the 10 minute warm up. Then I did the 10 minute start of the time trial and I hit the "lap" button. And then I made it 17 more minutes before I was either going to puke or pass out. Only 17 minutes! Wow, I suck. Then I cooled down for 10 minutes.
The results: average - 187, max - 194

I find that a bit odd since I know I've pushed myself into the 200's without puking OR passing out. The downside of not performing the test under lab conditions is that other factors like fatigue, heat, humidity, etc. can skew the results. But this is a good starting point to set my HR zones. In a couple of months I will re-do the test. much fun.

My Zones: