Heart Rate Monitor....?

Posted on: 19 Feb 2013

I've been running with a Garmin 110 for over a year now.  Just after Christmas, I bought a compatible Heart Rate Monitor...the results of which have surprised me.  I'd appreciate comments, please.

Here's the background.  I'm 49, so - according to everything I've read - my maximum heart rate (MHR) should be 171 bpm (220 minus 49).  I should be running (aerobically) at around 111-128 bpm (65%-75% of MHR).  Yet when I ran 11- 13 miles several times recently, my average heart rate was 142-144.  I ran these without feeling breathless - fairly easy runs really.  On sprints / hills, my heart rate can peak at anywhere between 162 and 173 (the latter exceeding the theoretical MHR!)  I recover from these fairly quickly.  In short, it's all manageable.

I've run a Half Marathon in 1hr40mins as recently as last October, and never exceed 2 hours for the distance, even on an easy run.  I don't smoke, eat healthily, am 6' tall and 12st 8lb, so am in no way overweight.....so why are these readings so high and yet I'm not suffering in any way I can discern?

I've read that theoretical Heart Rate recommendations become less accurate the older one gets, but an aerobic range of around 142-144 would be 'correct' for a 30 year old!  I'd be interested in your comments - particularly from some others approaching 50!  Cheers -  Pete

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