/ Garmin Heart Rate / GPS Watch

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Voltemands - on 21 Feb 2013
Hi all,

After some discussion on here last year and reading previous posts I decided on buying a garmin forerunner 910xt.

Worth every penny!

I've noticed my heart rate automatically registers on the device as the usual 220-my age so is at about 190 or something. However, at a fell run/mtb/fell run duathlon event on sunday my highest heart rate was past 220 bpm.

Should I be manually adjusting my HR on the watch too match the data produced? I'm guessing it'll give me more accurate data right?
Dave B on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:

MAX Hr right?

If you look at the data on the computer you will probably find the 220+ figure is a spike, unless your HR goes smoothly up to that figure and then down again. A spike is where the device mis-records a value - normally the problem is that the chest strap is either not tight enough or isn't wet enough, so that a single reading is read as two.

If you do a proper max test, you **may** find your Max HR goes up to about 200 or even 210, but 220+ is very rare for a true max.

If you do this, theh yes, so adjust the HRM, but dont' do it of the result of a single reading. Look at the HR Graphs...
steelbru - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:
As Dave says, the 220 minus age is supposed to be a rough guide to your maximum HR.

Your resting HR should be somewhere between about 45 and 80 depending on age and fitness.

If the 910XT is showing 190 when you are not active in the house then something seriously wrong with the watch or you !!

Take your pulse at the wrist - it should match the watch
Voltemands - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Dave B:

Yes, MHR sorry. I'm 27 and my resting HR is usually around 58-61 (measured manually first thing upon waking up over 2 weeks) I hadn't considered that it could be a spike tbh. And thinking about it now, at about that time in the run I was having a little trouble with the strap and had to tighten it on the go a couple of times.

Maybe i will give it a couple more weeks training with the device then look at adjusting it.

If interested, the data i'm talking about -
http://connect.garmin.com/activity/275050481
yorkshireman - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:

You mentioned MTB and duathlon. I've noticed on the bike, especially with the jersey unzipped a bit on fast descents that the wind blasting through the HR strap across my chest gives odd (high) results and I think this is a bug with HRMs in general.

That said, as others have mentioned forget the 220-age thing. Its a rule of thumb and as such should be completely ignored. Your MHR is your MHR. Simple as that. One day you might push yourself harder and find its actually higher than you think.
Dave B on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:

It looks like a spike to me. If my HR had shot up 30BPM from 190 to 230 in under 30 seconds, I'd probably guess it was an adrenaline spike of me falling off a cliff, or being chased by a rabid polar bear...
Loughan - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands: spikes are a problem and quite frustrating when you get back from a run and find you've been hitting 300+bpm.

Just looked at your Garmin report and that's exactly what my 910xt does, mental to begin with but settles down.

Best advice at the moment is to make sure you've got the latest firmware installed and hopefully the review software you use will take in to account spikes.
davegs - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Loughan:

My Garmin Fenix gives a HR spike at the start of every run. Settles down after 7 or 8 minutes and then is fine for the rest of the run. It has the latest firmware loaded.
Ander on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:

It could be either:
- You have a higher than usual max HR (entirely feasible and not a problem in itslef)
- The HRM is giving an incorrect reading. This can happen by induction from things like power cables etc. On regular runs I find at certain places my HR reading is consisitently 'out'. Not too much you can do about it, but again, nothing to really worry about, just means your HR recording is slightly innaccurate.
balmybaldwin - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:

I've come accross this problem in the past, and read quite a lot about it. This seems to be related to the clothing you are wearing generating static.

It's very common amungst cyclists that ride with their shirt open in the summer, but as stated settles down after a while.

If you can, avoid anything to nylony for a while and see if this cures the problem.
IainRUK - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands: I wouldn't trust any heart rate monitor once the heart is above 180...

3 beats per second.. plus all the movement, muscles firing as you run and handle the bike.. and all the sweat..


IainRUK - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:
> (In reply to Dave B)
>
> Yes, MHR sorry. I'm 27 and my resting HR is usually around 58-61 (measured manually first thing upon waking up over 2 weeks) I hadn't considered that it could be a spike tbh. And thinking about it now, at about that time in the run I was having a little trouble with the strap and had to tighten it on the go a couple of times.
>
> Maybe i will give it a couple more weeks training with the device then look at adjusting it.
>
> If interested, the data i'm talking about -
> http://connect.garmin.com/activity/275050481

I'd just ignore that spike for sure..


You even get spikes on GPS tracks.. I get the same spike going over the Ben Franklin Bridge every time.. no idea why but I know I'm basically on the flat yet it consistently shows a 30% incline for 40m..

In reply to Voltemands: After having similar HR spikes on my Garmin last Summer, most often when cycling downhill, I was recommended using HR monitor electrode cream, like this stuff:

- http://www.evanscycles.com/products/paceline/buh-bump-heart-rate-monitor-cream-25oz-ec022217

seems to work well, making sure you get a good contact with the skin, even when going fast on the bike (wind whistling down your jersey) or at the start of a run (when your skin hasn't started sweating yet)

Cheers
IainRUK - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Nick Smith - UKC:
>
>
> seems to work well, making sure you get a good contact with the skin, even when going fast on the bike (wind whistling down your jersey) or at the start of a run (when your skin hasn't started sweating yet)
>
> Cheers

That makes sense.. never thought of that. I never wear one now. I did try it for a bit. For flat races they can be a great guide, I found them handy to maintain a consistent pace but in mountain/fell running I just found it all over the show..
kathrync - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Nick Smith - UKC:

+1 for the electrode gel, it works great for me.

My partner was also having problems with spikes and the gel didn't work for him, but turning the monitor round so the electrodes were at the side has solved the problem for him. I've also seen reports of people turning them all the way round and wearing them with the electrodes on their backs.
Voltemands - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands: Really great advice thanks people. The rotating of the strap sounds interesting.

How do I check my firmware is up to date? i assume the device would usually do this when it is paired with my cpu via the ant+ and uploading data to garmin connect?
kathrync - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands:

It doesn't do it automatically. You need the Garmin Communicator plugin if you don't already have it. You can install via that (through the ANT dongle) from this link.

https://buy.garmin.com/shop/store/fr910update.jsp?null&ra=true

Current version is 2.7 which was released in November. On my 310xt, I can check the firmware by going to Settings -> About Forerunner. I assume it is similar on the 910xt.
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DancingOnRock - on 22 Feb 2013
In reply to Voltemands: Cream, paste, gel? I just give mine a good lick.

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