Saturday, March 16, 2013

Tweaking the Zones

Man, it's been a busy two weeks since I last updated. Two trips to Cleveland with an excursion to Toledo and BFE West Virginia (also known as West Union). I've kept most of  my training schedule intact. With my job and the weather, I do move things a bit but I am able to get it done.

After I wrote my last update, I decided to do some heart rate testing and recalculate my training zones using a methodology explained by Sock Doc. I've read that it's a good thing to do with regularity as our bodies are always changing. It had been more than two years since I had established my heart rate zones.

Using my existing HR zones as my guide, I ran a 6+ mile course with a twenty minute warm up in zone 2, twenty minutes in zone 3, fifteen minutes in zone 4, and five minutes as hard as possible. The zones 3 and 4 portion gave a solid simulated race pace effort that is pretty consistent. As fatigue takes hold, the push into zone 4 is pretty consistent with my earlier effort in zone 3. The final unlimited push lets me see my maximum heart rate. I also monitored my resting heart rate over the next few mornings.

As I expected, new zones were to be established. My maximum heart rate is still there. Oddly, my resting heart rate has come up a bit. Regardless, new training zones have been set. Everything moved down a few bpm utilizing the Sock Doc method (backbone of the method is established by Joe Friel). Sock Doc just makes it simple stupid for the masses.

Zone     Old BPM Range     New BPM Range
1           145-153                 137-147
2           154-162                 147-154
3           163-172                 154-163
4           172-181                 163-173
5           181-186                 173-186

What do the zones mean? Hey, that's another blog post. :-)

Keep moving forward!