Showing posts with label pulse rate. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pulse rate. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Less time? Run faster

I found myself running behind schedule this morning and was unhappy to see that I had far less than 20 minutes to do a run that included time to warm up and cool down. At the same time I was concerned that I would not meet my (self imposed) minimum distance of 1.5 miles for a weekday run. Since time can't be controlled the only lever I had to play with was speed. I cheated a bit and got to my normal run pace in less than a minute before further cranking up the speed.

Now speed is relative, a fast pace for me would be an easy or even slow pace for an experienced runner. Indoors, I generally run at a 6.4 MPH tread speed which works out to about 9:22/mile. Today I ran closer to 7.2 MPH completing 1.62 miles in a little under 14 minutes for an 8:30/mile pace. That's where I want to be. It was hard work to maintain that pace, my average pulse rate was almost 6% higher than at my normal pace. According to what I've read I can even push that higher rate 9% to be within 80% of max. Having the HRM has been handy in helping me understand the effort I'm expending relative to other workouts (e.g., elliptical) and now I'm seeing that it's a good indicator for understanding how much further I should push to attain desired speed and pace.

My challenge now is maintaining that faster pace for longer than 1.62 miles. Completing a 5K at 8:30 would be great but I have work to do.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Heart of the matter

I ran a half mile calibration run this morning and was disappointed to see that my Garmin 50 is still off in recording actual distance. I set the unit back to neutral (no compensation) since that gave me a constant variance that I can correct when recording into MapMyRun. The Garmin Connect site doesn't allow the user to modify uploaded data so my distances (and therefore speed and pace times) will continue to be under reported by about 3%.

I wasn't too energized during this short run, probably because I knew it would be over quickly. I want to do an extended run in the next few days but it didn't seem like the right time to try that. Instead I decided to train on the elliptical machine. I find that to be a good workout but I never feel like it's an equivalent effort to running. As an experiment I used the Garmin to see how it tracked distance and to monitor my pulse rate since the elliptical's readings are practically random. I started out at low resistance and after a minute or so I discovered that the Garmin was not recording distance at all. I think that's because the foot pod relies on foot strikes and the elliptical does not mimic the impact of running. The HRM was working fine and I watched the numbers increase as I added levels of resistance.

The interesting thing was that when I reached my normal level of resistance (5) my pulse rate was almost 15% lower than my average pulse rate when I'm running. It wasn't until I increased to level 10 that I came within a few points of my running pulse rate. I stayed at that level for a while and was really sweating by the time I reached the 40-minute mark. According to the display I was producing 102 watts of energy on the elliptical compared to the 58-62 watts I'm used to seeing when I use the machine at level 5.

So, knowing this, I will double my usual resistance to maintain the level of conditioning that I follow during my weekday runs. I used to think of the elliptical was my easy workout and a break from my intense daily runs. Going forward it will be a different form of hard work. I welcome the challenge!

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