Friday, February 10, 2006

YOUR MISSION

Okay bloggerville, I have a mission for you. If you choose to accept it, I would like to see, either a post on your site or a comment left here, outlining your PRs before and after training with a heart rate monitor. Feel free to elaborate on how the HRM helped or hurt your training. For extra credit you can write about how your GPS unit has helped or hurt your training too.

I’m not trying to be an ass. I’d like to know the positive results that have been achieved by using one or both of these devices.

16 comments:

Dirt Runner said...

longest distance covered before HR 26.2. Longest distance with HR 80 miles. DQed- missed the 6:00am cut off time to finish 100. HR monitors keep the LT monster away but not hypothermia. Never ran above 150 beats.

E-Speed said...

just got one. I have never used it while running so I can't say. I go more by my perceived effort. I guess after running for 12+ years you just "know" what sort of effort needs to be put forth in different workout scenarios.

Susan said...

I'll have to think about this one, but I'll accept . . .look for me back later.

Duncan Larkin said...

Never really trained with one. The great Bob Kennedy swore by one and so does Broe apparently. I just have a hard time with the 'bro'strap. I have a nice Polar...still in its box.

Dallen said...

I can't really give the credit of any PR's the to HRM, but it is a fun toy.

However, I will give plenty of credit to the GPS. There is no doubt that it makes me run harder and faster.

David said...

Used a HRM for a while, tried low heart rate training, not disciplined enough to stay with it. Interesting info though.

Used a Nike pace monitor thingy (on shoe) a while back. Helped teach me to recognize different paces intuitively. Don't need it any more, I know what I'm running.

For me, these are learning tools.

Eric said...

I did a longer answer on my blog, but the short answer is, yes, HRMs and GPS are useful tools in training and racing. Lance Armstrong has used tools in his races to good effect I would say. Some would say this diminishes the purity of the sport, but c'est la vie.

Water is a good tool when used correctly, but too little or too much can kill you either way, given the right conditions. Literally. HRMs and GPSs can't do that. Just a thought...

D said...

I've trained with a HRM for a at least two years now and have been training w/the Garmin for at least one year. Both are great tools. It is a freeing feeling to go out and just run a long run without having to measure and mark your course. On the negative side, neither gadget is 100% accurate and one must be disciplined and experienced enough to realize this and listen to their bodies. It is sometimes too easy to get caught up in the numbers on your gadgets instead of simply running.

Yvonne said...

I have never used one, but I do plan to in the future.

But I'll tell you my mum dropped her marathon PR from a 3:30 to a 3:10 when she was in her late forties using one. She swears by it. She said the men in her club used to laugh at how slow she ran her long training runs. None of those who laughed have ever bettered a 3:10.

Double said...

What's a heart rate monitor?

miler said...

The HRM did give me an understanding that there's no harm in doing very slow training runs, but I don't use it, and wouldn't consider using it for any purpose besides forcing myself to slow down.

I am still able to do very slow training runs without the monitor (~8:30-9:00mpm, as a sub 35 10k runner) I often force myself to slow down by training with slower runners. They're much better company than gadgets.

Regarding the distance measuring tools, they're fun toys and that's about it.

For the data geeks, it's great if you find the data amusing, but it's not at all clear how that data will actually make anyone run faster (or to put it another way, how not having that data would make one slower)

So I'm basically with you in the "gadgets are overrated" camp.

robtherunner said...

I have never used a heart rate monitor, or a GPS unit, although I am considering getting one to document a long run I plan on doing this summer. However, I am debating what the real reason I want to document it in this manner is. I suppose I want to use it for some kind of verification that I actually covered the distance that I plan on covering. I do like the idea of going on a long run without feeling the need to measure the course before hand.

brent said...

i have yet to anniversary my first race (i'm so underqualified to answer this question), but it was really fun during training to compare the same distance w/HR at the beginning of training and then at the end. i never really used it as a training too that much, other than to study the data after d-loading it to my computer..

Bart said...

I have never used a heart rate monitor, but I do run with a GPS unit. It helped me when I first moved to this area last summer, and was never sure I far I ran. I realize it's not 100% accurate, but I'm fairly certain that it's more accurate than I would be if I just guessed. I also think knowing my pace is advantage. Sometimes there is a temptation to chase a certain time when I should be running easy, but just as often seeing how fast I'm running reminds me to slow down and take it easy. When I'm running a route that I've measured previously and have no time goals, I leave it at home and run without it.

I think that another advantage will be after I've had it for a while, and I can compare my pace on runs of similar effort and distance. I don't race often, so this data will be a good barometer of increased (hopefully) fitness.

Finally, it gives me confidence when I can see in black and white that I successfully completed a long marathon-pace run.

miler said...

I think that another advantage will be after I've had it for a while, and I can compare my pace on runs of similar effort and distance. I don't race often, so this data will be a good barometer of increased (hopefully) fitness.

(1) you don't need a GPS to measure distance or pace
(2) aerobic runs aren't a reliable measure of fitness. Interval workouts on a track or familiar course are better.
(3) 1% error is 4 seconds per mile. You not only need this accuracy, you need similar elevation, turns, etc. So better to run on a track or same course to measure progress.

Bart said...

Just to follow up on Miler's comments. I almost never run on a track. I think I've stepped on a track twice in the past three years. I acknowledge that track work would help me, but my primary reason for running is enjoyment, and I can't stand running on a track. Maybe this is because I didn't start running until I was in my 30s and don't have a track background.

The way I train now, I run where I feel like running. If I feel like turning, I turn. When I only wore a watch, I ran the same routes all the time, so I knew my distance. I like my current system better. For the running I do, I feel like the GPS is a good option.

Since I run a different route for almost every run, it's close to impossible for me track my progress by running a familiar route. I want to improve and I want to race faster but not if the training is miserable. I realize this attitude limits my improvement, but I'm fine with that.