Saturday, May 25, 2024

Heart Rate Zone Running

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Zone : 70%80% Of Max Heart Rate

Why Do Heart Rate Zones Matter? | Running To Heart Rate Explained

In zone 3, your activity level is “moderate.” This level of exercise improves your lung and heart endurancethe length of time that you can continue to exercise without taking a break. If you’re running, you’re breathing harder. You can still speak, but you’re only able to do it one sentence at a time.

Running Heart Rate Zones Are Based On Your Max Heart Rate

Your running heart rate zones are based on a percentage of your max heart rate. For example: a 35-year-olds moderate HR would be between 129-148 bpm.

The first step in using heart rate zone training for running is to figure out your max heart rate. You can calculate it using a formula such as the Tanaka or Gulati, or more simply subtract your age from 220. Using the latter method, a 35-year-olds max heart rate is 185 bpm.

Once you know your max heart rate, you can establish your heart rate training zones and start planning your runs based on the average heart rate you want to reach.

Zone 1: 50-60% of your max heart rate. Your effort in Zone 1 will be very light, warm-ups or cool-downs as well as recovery runs.

Zone 2: 60-70%. This is the zone you want to maintain for your weekly long run. You can hold a conversation if you run with a partner or in a group.

Zone 3: 70-80%. This is a moderate pace, and your breathing is coming faster but still steady. Its best for tempo runs, hills, and threshold training. You can still speak in complete sentences but holding a conversation might be difficult.

Zone 4: 80-90%. This should be your racing pace for a 5k, as well as speed intervals and fartleks. You wont be able to speak in sentences at this pace.

Who Should Use Heart Rate Training

The majority of runners who have at least some experience can benefit greatly from heart rate training. However, a complete beginner should think about using perceived effort to start. When a runner is just starting out, their heart rate tends to rise quickly. This can become frustrating as it feels as though the only way to lower it would be to slow down to a walk, or even a complete stop.

After a solid base of consistent running has been established, heart rate training can make its way into a runners plan with more success.

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Heart Rate Training Zones Explained

So what are heart rate training zones?

Each training intensity triggers a specific physiological process and adaptation in the body. Structuring sessions around a certain effort allows athletes to customize their training and adapt it for specific needs.

In essence,

Heart rate training zones are ranges of intensities where the heart rate falls in.

Zones are always a reference to maximum capacity, so knowing athletes maximum heart rate is a pre-requisite for setting these up.

There are five heart rate training zones that categorize every intensity level. To calculate heart rates all you need to do is input your maximum and resting heart rate in the fields below :

Your Resting HR:
Your Maximum HR:
Speed Training

Target Heart Rate is a heart rate adjusted for both maximum and resting heart rates. Using this formula will provide more accurate zones, compared to simple percentage of Max HR.

Once heart rate training zones are calculated, next step is to create a structured training plan. Every phase of that plan should focus on specific area , measured in time spent in relevant zones.

And thats all the magic.

If you dont have a coach, Id be happy to create a program and coach you. Go to my personal training page for more info.

What Is Running Heart Rate Training

Run And Heart Rate Zone Infograph On White Background. Healthcare And ...

Simply put, heart rate training uses your different heart rate zones to structure each run, as opposed to pace or speed.

Most runners dive into training with a focus on speed. We aim for a specific PR, run our intervals at X pace, and know our race pace down to the second.

However, putting such an emphasis on pace can be very limiting when it comes to training.

Utilizing heart rate training for running can help new and experienced runners alike focus on their bodys signals, avoid junk miles, set a purpose for each run, and avoid the burnout and overtraining that often comes with a new goal.

Running heart rate training involves classifying your runs based on the five different heart rate zones. Easy runs take place in zones 1 and 2, moderate efforts in zone 3, and harder, more intense workouts fall somewhere around zone 4.

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Heart Rate Training Plan

Here is a six-week heart rate training plan for intermediate runners. It will introduce you to different training zones and allow you to see some progress.

Keep a note of your heart rate and pace of your first easy run in Week 1. Compare this to the pace and heart rate of your easy runs in Week 6. You should see that youre able to run faster, while maintaining the same heart rate.

Week 1

How To Calculate Your Aerobic Training Zone For Fitness

The range required to improve aerobic endurance is higher than that needed for fat burning. It ranges between 75 and 85 percent of your heart-rate reserve.

Using the previous example, 75 percent of the heart-rate reserve of 100 is 75, and 85 percent is 85. Again, add the resting heart rate to both numbers.

Re-add your resting heart rate to both numbers: To improve your aerobic endurance, you need to aim for between 155 and 165 heartbeats per minute.

Also Check: What Should Resting Heart Rate Be

When Are Heart Rate Monitors Less Useful

Heart rate monitoring becomes more complicated and less practical on interval runs. Your heart rate doesnt instantaneously jump up when you start running fasterit can take up to thirty seconds for your heart to settle into a new rhythm.

Monitor your heart rate for interval workouts

Heart rate monitors may be misleading when you do interval workouts, especially if you are doing shorter intervals. Your heart rate wont reach the desired zone until partway through or even the end of a hard interval, and then your heart rate may remain elevated throughout the beginning of the recovery interval. If you are using a heart rate monitor during longer intervals, your heart rate will stabilize during the intervalsjust know that you will need to give it a few seconds to adjust each time you change your pace. You can wait until your heart rate gets back down to a certain heart rate before starting your next rep, which will help you figure out how long your rest intervals need to be. As you get fitter, this rest interval will become shorter and shorter.

Heart Rate Training Zones For Runners: Complete Guide

How To Find Your Running Heart Rate Zones | Triathlon Training Explained

With all of the training methods out there it can become overwhelming trying to figure out which one to use: pace training, rate of perceived exertion, heart rate training. Whats the right method? Thats the million dollar question right there.

Your coach will ultimately decide which method is appropriate for your current goal, and apply it to your training plan.

If you arent familiar with heart rate zone training, this guide is a perfect starter for you.

Lets jump in!

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Heart Rate Zones For The Slim

  • Exercising with your heart beating at 50-70% of your maximum heart rate will aid sleep.
  • Exercising with a heart rate that is 60-70% of your maximum heart rate continuously for between 2040 minutes will help burn fat effectively.
  • For people who are not well-trained athletes, exercising in heart rate zone 5 is not advisable, since this type of exercise could lead to dizziness, fainting, an increase in blood pressure and possibly even a heart attack or severe arrhythmia.

How To Use Heart Rate Zones In Running

Knowing your own heart rate zones can really help increase the effectiveness of your training. In general, variety is key to progress. Regardless of your end training goal, try to avoid spending all of your runs in the same heart rate zone.

Decrease the intensity during easy runs and long runs to ensure you are spending most of your time in zones 1 3. When you have a workout or speed session planned, ramp up your efforts by targeting heart rate zones 3 4.

If you notice that you spend a few minutes in zone 5, that is okay as long as it is brief. If you find yourself entering zone 5 frequently, decrease your intensity until your body adjusts and your endurance increases.

Using running heart rate training will vary for everyone. Many different factors can influence your average heart rate when running. Age, weather, fitness level and current stress level can all have an impact on your heart rate.

Use these running heart rate zones to help narrow your focus, target specific goals, and get the most out of every run.

Before you know it, your body will adapt and youll find yourself using less effort to achieve the same results as before.

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Training In The Right Running Zones

For runners, there is little better for you than slow Zone 2 base running. Many runners push the Zone 2 work out of the way in favor of Zone 3 work because they fall into the trap that running harder more often will lead to better results. However, Zone 3 work is above aerobic pace and has some lactate response, which means that it isnt hard enough to elicit a desirable physical adaptation, and yet its too hard to allow for day-to-day recovery.

Constantly pushing in Zone 3 day after day is a habit of the time-crunched runner, where mileage and average pace is the only validator of training. This athlete can often find themselves in a rut and left wondering how they could work so hard for so little results. As mentioned above, continual Zone 3 work doesnt allow for enough recovery and puts the athlete in a state of continuous fatigue. No wonder we call it feeling hammered out! So how can we get out of the rut, and back to PRs?

How All Runners Can Benefit From Heart Rate Training

Heart Rate For Weight Loss Running Training

Heart rate monitoring help runners more precisely and accurately train within the proper zone for each workout, especially easy runs.

Heart rate monitors seem like complicated devices that only advanced runners use, but that perception is far from the truth! Runners of all levels, especially new runners, can benefit from using a heart rate monitor to learn how to assess and control the intensity of a run.

Heart rate monitors come in multiple forms, but the most popular and reliable is the heart rate monitor with the chest strap. If you experience problems with chafing, be sure to use Vaseline or an anti-chafing balm where your skin and the strap come into contact. Some watches have a monitor on the back of the watch face that can read the pulse on your wrist. This works best when its pressed firmly in place against your skin and you arent sweating too heavily.

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How To Find The Correct Heart Rate Training Zones

In order to establish proper training zones, an athlete must first determine their maximum heart rate .

Unfortunately, a majority of runners use simple heart rate formulas:

Does 220 minus age ring a bell?

Unfortunately, this has a high degree of error.

To get an accurate measure of your maximum heart rate, you should partake in a graded exercise test, but locating a facility that can accommodate this type of testing isnt easily found.

It gets worse:

Graded exercise test isnt going to be appropriate for a beginner runner who cant handle such a stressful workout.

Therefore, many runners who control their effort by heart rate may be doomed from the start by using faulty max heart rates.

How To Benefit From Following Heart Rate Zones

First of all, dont worry about heart rate training before youve got a solid base of at least four to eight weeks of running, says Milton. The chances of beginners being able to stick to a specific heart rate while starting out is low, and may become discouraging, she says.

But once youre comfortably logging miles, each heart rate zone serves a purpose in your training. Using heart rate to determine tempo, threshold, and intervals intensities can improve biomechanical efficiency and speed, says Milton. So many runners tend to ignore intensity and just rack up training miles at a middle-of-the-road intensity that doesnt help themand may even hold them backon race day. In a heart rate training plan, you calculate the appropriate intensities, then you just adjust your pace to ensure that your heart rate stays in that zone, says Capell Nielsen.

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Heres how those zones break down in terms of workouts:

Zone 1 should be easy its a great intensity level for recovery days, says Capell Nielsen. You should feel like you could maintain your zone one intensity for hours.

Zone 3 is where your body gets the most cardiovascular benefit, and its sometimes referred to as the aerobic zone, says Capell Nielsen. When it comes to developing stamina and increasing aerobic capacity, zone three is the magic spot. Tempo runs, which are still predominantly aerobic, fall into zone 3, and generally last 30 to 45 minutes.

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How To Create A Heart Rate Zone Training Plan

If youre looking for a new way to train, heart rate zone training is the way to go! Not only will it help you improve your performance, but it will also reduce the risk of burnout and overtraining.

Lets take a deeper look at what heart rate zone training is and how to implement it in your exercise routine.

What Are The Benefits Of Heart Rate Training

How To Run Using Heart Rate Zones | Running Training For Triathlon

Heart rate training is a more personalized way to work out as each persons resting and maximum heart rates vary. Each runner calculates their own zones using data taken from a couple of tests. These are your zones and are specific to your training needs.

Having established heart rate zones makes it easier to stay at our desired effort levels during a training session. It can prevent us from unnecessarily draining our energy by pushing too hard or pull us out of a lazy moment and make sure we are pushing hard enough.

Most of us tend to push harder than required during our training, so sticking to our pre-established zones allows us to pull back when necessary.

After you have calculated your personal heart rate training zones, you can adjust the settings in your watch so it not only shows you the beats per minute sent by your monitor but it will also indicate the zone you are in throughout the duration of your training. This makes it even easier because you wont need to memorize the ranges of each zone, your watch will do that for you.

Related: Why Is My Heart Rate High On Easy Runs? 8 Reasons + Solutions

As you follow your specific instructions for each session, you can consult your watch, check your current zone, and adjust accordingly throughout your run. You can even set up alarms to alert you when you have strayed from a specific zone.

Related: Average Heart Rate While Running: Guide By Age + 7 Influencing Factors

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Zone 3 Training Aerobic Endurance / Marathon Pace

Effort: moderateTarget heart rate: 70% 80%Duration: long intervals, 10 to 60 minutes

They call this zone a no mans land.

Its challenging enough that you feel youre out of your comfort zone, but not challenging enough that you cant sustain it. Its comfortably uncomfortable.

At this point its barely possible to complete a sentence, before catching a breath, compared to conversational Zone 1 & 2 effort.

Many amateur athletes make the mistake of spending almost all of their training time in this zone. It feels like youre training hard and, indeed, athletes build quite a lot of fatigue with it.

The truth is, it does not provide enough intensity to radically improve speed or power, but is not so easy that the body is able to fully recover. So, athletes feel tired all the time, but not necessarily getting faster.

But it doesnt have to be like that.

Zone : 80%90% Of Max Heart Rate

Zone 4 exercise is a “hard effort” activity. This type of exercise can’t be sustained for long periods of time. You’re breathing much harder, but can still speak one or two words if you have to. Zone 4 exercise improves speed and overall exercise performance for short bursts of activity, such as sprinting.

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How To Find Your Heart Rate Zones

As I explained earlier, heart rate is one of the most reliable measurements of workout intensity.

Youll definitely improve your performance once you start intentionally targeting one and each of your heart rate training zones.

Heres the deal.

To start heart rate training, youll need to figure out your resting heart rate. Check this one out first thing in the morning when you wake up, before moving around or having that cup of joe. Id recommend that you do this on three consecutive days, preferably when youre not sick, experiencing stress, or are overtrained.

Next, average the three days together, and thats your resting heart rate.

The average resting heart for most people is around 60 to 90. However, expect yours to be as low as 40 if you are in very good shape.

You also have a maximum heart rate, which is the upper limit of what your cardiovascular system can manage during intense exercise.

There many methods that you can use to estimate your maximum heart rate.

Lets explain a few.

The Age-Based Formula

Known as the Maffetone method, the age-based form is the most common method used by recreational athletes.

You simply subtract your age from 220so a 30-year old runner would have a theoretical MHR of 190.


This method might be off-the-mark by 10 to 15 beats per minute in either direction.

But it is a good way to get started with heart rate training zones, and sometimes thats all you need to get in the direction of your goals.

The Lab Test

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