014 HRM Can Detect Veteran Heart Disease
HRM Can Detect Veteran Heart Disease
The value of HRM in scientific cycle training is not disputed. Plus points of
|Improvement of race fitness|
|Prevention of staleness|
|Improvement of mindset|
|Providing data on over-training and recovery|
|Prevention of max Heart Rate being exceeded|
|Governs cycle speed on attacking steep inclines|
|Provides guidance following a lay-off due to injury or influenza|
|Provides guidance when cycling into anaerobic debt|
|Allows adjustments during time trialling|
|Allows maximization of cycle training programs by the use of training
|HRM therefore promotes optimal cycle training but actually does not
replace racing experience.|
Heart-rate based training is therefore, relevant for optimal training. The
value of morning pulse-rate and setting of training intensity are well described
by Malcolm Tucker (RIDE: Vol 2: Feb/March 1999; page 8). He also has reviewed
the value of HRM and lactate metabolism (lactic acid production, onset of blood
lactate accumulation and determination of OBLA); the details can be resourced in
RIDE: Vol 2: Apr/May 1999; page 54). The relevance to lactate tolerance training
are explained in RIDE: Vol 2: June/July 1999; page 54.
The application of HRM in preparation for the 94.7 km cycle challenge is well
documented by Ian Martin in RIDE: Vol 3: Oct/Nov 1999; page 68, in which he
classically describes training at 75% of max HR and speed aerobic riding at 80%
of HR. Martin has extensively reviewed the importance and application of
training zones (aerobic, speed aerobic, threshold or anaerobic and red line
zones) - see RIDE: Vol 3: Dec/Jan 1999; page 86. He gives excellent advice for
cyclists going for a sub-3, Argus and how to apply HRM - see RIDE: Vol 3:
Feb/March 2000; page 122. Specific types of road cycling training sessions can
be found in RIDE: Vol 3: Aug/Sept 2000; page 74.
Douglas Ryder gives excellent advice on how to be competitive, yet work 9 to 5.
His guide to cycle training (including role of HRM) are reflected in RIDE: Vol
2: Aug/Sept 1999, page 58. Advice is given for short and long interval days,
squad training, spinning and racing.
Together with heart-rate monitoring, it is important not to neglect the
relevance of optimal sports nutrition, fuels for sport, supplements and the
prevention of dehydration and over-training.
For up to date details on fitness go to www.ride.co.za or read RIDE(c) Vol 5,
page 20, October 2001. An excellent cycle training resource by Steve Haupt, can
be found in the September edition of RIDE (page 13). Don't miss this overview.
Your max heart rate is roughly determined by 220 minus your age. So, if you are
46 years old, your max heart rate will be about 174 bpm. If you push your HR to
105% of Max HR (say 185 bpm) and you have underlying undiagnosed IHD, problems
can be expected. Also if your HR is around 144 bpm and then jumps to 180/190
bpm, then the chances that you have exercise-induced atrial fibrillation is
good. This is a non-innocent heart arrythmia. It often means coronary heart
disease in the age group 40-60 years. Untreated, it could be fatal and cause a
stroke. For intermittent AF, pills are available (beta-blockers; Tombocar(c)).
Unfortunately, the condition tends to recur if you push your cycling (i.e. day
after day and when attacking hills). The purpose of the beta-blockers is to slow
down the heart and restore the abnormal arrythmia to sinus rhythm (normal
regular heart beat). Continuous AF increases your risk for a stroke. Chronic
medication and cardioversion may be needed. A consultation with a cardiologist
is imperative. You need to take it easy from now on. Avoid long cycle tours
(i.e. over 100 km) and exhaustion. More rest is needed to ensure recovery, not
only of your body, but your heart.
Tip for the veteran or senior cyclist:
If your HRM suddenly shows a severe jump in heart-rate, you could be suffering
from a cardiac arrythmia. Never ignore this. Get to your health care profession
as soon as possible. Pills are available to regulate your heart rate. Don't temp
fate and go for the shorter cycle tours. The ageing process also affects the
heart and heart rate. Be careful if you feel a fluttering in the chest together
with breathlessness (tightness) and a fast heart rate (say 180 bpm).