Archive for the ‘heart rate monitor’ Category

4th run in 6 days

Sunday, March 27th, 2016

Like the title says, 4th in 6. Feels pretty good with some oddities. I wasn’t sure I was going to get the run in today as I was feeling a bit run down and sore from working in the yard yesterday and having a desperate food need forcing me to go grocery shopping this morning. But after getting back from the store I decided I should really do this, so off I went. Pretty typical run in that I did my normal 5+ mile route with a sub 10 min mile pace.

Now for the oddities. My awesome excuse for not running on Thursday was that I just didn’t feel like doing anything after my visit to the urologist for a cystometrogram. Basically the test fills your bladder up with saline as well as your rectum (to offset the pressure on the bladder), when full the pressure is checked on the plumbing and how well it deals with the full bladder. I was under the impression that this was going to reveal some insight into some of the bladder issues I have been having over the years (both frequency and incontinence issues, which was confusing to the doc as usually it is one or the other, but ms works in mysterious ways). So the first step is a catheter is inserted into the urinary track to empty the bladder with the help of some numbing gel. Off we go. The PA inserts this first catheter without issue. Now comes the fun, after the first one is removed a second catheter is then inserted into the bladder. It was smaller (thank you) and flimsier. Well she tried and tried and tried without success and asked me if I could feel it kinking up. Well I was feeling something, but kinking wasn’t it. So she stopped and called the doc. She came back and asked me how bad my symptoms were to which I said “well bad enough so that I am here!” to which she replied that the test was just to establish a baseline to test against in the future to track any further complications. She said it was a really good sign that I was able to completely empty my bladder via the first catheter and that I could come back in three months to try again. Ugh. Or, (and usually the “or” is a worse situation, but not this time) I could blow it off and she would give me a prescription for whatever symptom direction I felt was worse (frequency or difficulty urinating). Finally, this is what I was hoping for in the first place four months ago when I first saw the urologist. She gave me two weeks of samples of a med called Rapaflo. I was told to not expect to see anything for a week or so while I built the med up inside my system. If I see positive results and want to continue, then she would write a prescription.

So off I go, hopefully “going” in more ways than just that. I looked onto the side effects and see that there are a few somewhat rare side effects. One of the more common ones is dizziness due to lowered blood pressure, one of the odder and less frequently mentioned (I wonder why) symptoms is what is known as retrograde ejaculation. Wtf? Basically it means when a male orgasms the semen doesn’t leave the penis and instead goes into the bladder. Supposedly the person still orgasms, just not outwardly. It is not a huge deal and you just urinate it out. Great. Something to look forward to. Well I didn’t have to wait long and it happened the next day after I took the first pill. It didn’t have quite the same feeling either. Not a fan, but I will give it a week and some more research to see if this is temporary or permanent before I say no to rapaflo.

Another thing I noticed after a couple of days is that it seems to be effecting my running as my HR is elevated and I feel quite a bit more tired once I hit about 40 minutes of running. I have had to stop and walk these last several runs at times. I am not sure if this is due to the lowered BP, but I suspect it is. Looking at my Garmin numbers I see that my avg HR is a bit higher, but not nearly as high as I thought it would be. Today my HR hit 182 at one point before a walking stretch. The effort to get there didn’t seem that crazy, so again I suspect the low BP. Something to watch out for for sure. Yesterday working in the yard I experienced a similar bout of tired as well. I am going to make an appointment with my GP and see if there are some different solutions. I am sure there are.

Consistently speedy

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

I initially thought that I would just title this entry “consistency” as my run today was 9:19 (new 2015 PR!) and I thought my last two runs had been at a 9:20 pace. As it turned out once I looked at the Training Center program that records my times I actually had two 9:40 runs in between today and the two 9:20s. But I still feel that these runs were consistently “speedy” compared to what I have been running this year, so there you go.

I was really happy with today’s run. It was an injection day so my PR might be caused by the bump I usually get from the rebif injection. However I got there I am happy with my the effort. I didn’t kill myself at all and just felt fairly comfortable with my pace and breathing. Better yet I don’t feel tired now (three hours later) at all which inspires me to run on days I have to play music (which I have been avoiding as my focus just isn’t really there). Last night I played for two hours with the big band after a four mile run and had no real problems. My plan is to still do shorter runs on my music days so I can see how that goes. I think it will be fine.

My heart rate monitor band is worn out. I can get it to stay in place if I stretch it to its limit, but the problem is that it loosens as I run. Today it ended up around my belly which explains the 59 BPM I registered on mile four. But on the miles it was actually in place I did really well. Even at the fast pace my HR was right around 144-148 BPM, and my final mile came in at 153. But I have a plan for its continued use, a safety pin! I have thought about this literally for months and never implemented it. If I do nothing else today I have at least pinned my HR strap into place! We’ll see how long this lasts or maybe I’ll try to get a new one if they are even made (my Garmin is pretty old, five years?)

Run in the heat

Saturday, June 4th, 2011

Since I didn’t manage to go yesterday I promised myself I would today no matter what. Well the morning wore on and I kept finding myself saying, ok after this. Ok after this. And again, ok after this. Pretty soon it was getting into the afternoon and the heat was rising. Well I say heat was rising but it was only getting to about 70, hot for Portland as of late. Tomorrow to the 80s! I’ll believe it when I feel it.

So by 2 I hadn’t eaten lunch and was kicking myself for not running. Then I realized, well a hot run won’t be the best of conditions, but the what the heck. I am going anyway. I wolfed down a clif bar to hold me over, grabbed my seasonally neglected water bottle and ran out the door. The day was just gorgeous but the sweat quickly began to sting my eyes. Wipe it away and keep going, though I. So I did. I decided on doing 6 miles, not fast nor slow. My HR was pretty high throughout, I definitely need to work that back down. I am sure as my fitness level picks up, the old heart rate will drop compared to my efforts.

The water bottle was just what I needed. Over the winter I had forgotten what it takes to keep the hydration level up. Small sips every quarter mile or so really helped. No heat would stop me today! I actually went fairly routinely. I didn’t make it all the way up the hill out of the canyon, but that is nothing new. New features in the canyon, several trees have fallen this winter. The people who maintain the canyon have a fairly hands off approach to managing it and they leave trees that fall (sometimes they get around to cutting out a portion that has fallen over the path). This makes for great parkour obstacles. One of them scared me and I had to climb over it. The path was especially skinny there and there was a huge spur sticking out. Probably a good choice to not leap it!

Back to Portland

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

Well my plans to run all over Northern Arizona fell through. I was skeptical that i would have too much time to run there as I knew my time would be restricted with all the family and graduation activities. I did think I would at least get to hit the roads through town remembering my past. But alas, I brought my shoes and gear for naught. Oh well.

So back in Portland my first run in the NW was a doosy. Perhaps it was to combat another week of no running (too many of those for me in recent months). My run was not insane, only eight slow miles, but I did it at such a high heart rate that I am classifying it as a quality run and maybe it will even kick start me into getting back into a HR training mode. If so then I need to do a recovery run today (and that is the plan.)

I am not totally sure why the run was so hard, like I said it was slow. The HR hovered over 170 for long stretches and was over 180 for some more difficult parts (ha, gradual inclines…) My avg HR was 160, probably as high as I have ever seen it outside of a race (maybe even higher…) I often thought about stopping for a break but I forged ahead and continued to push it for which I am glad now (despite my still sore body, well this also had to do with the yard work I did yesterday instead of doing my recovery run.) But I am still tired…

Almost perfect recovery run

Saturday, March 5th, 2011

I really buckled down today to take my recovery runs seriously. While I was doing my whole warm up run I kept my HR under my recovery ceiling of 144 (or so I thought, actually I hit 145 in the first mile according to my Garmin). So since I thought I was “perfect” in my recovery run I worked hard to keep the HR low. Mostly I had it around 130 or lower, I really slowed down. I even made it up lower reed’s hill under 144. As I crossed the bridge over the canyon I heard what turned out to be an organized rugby game with a pretty large crowd and as it turned out two guys playing catch with lacrosse equipment who wouldn’t move over and let me by. So, my HR shot up to 151 and my perfection run was blown. Still I got it back down and on my way to trader jos. From there a mile home with my purchases of two bags; one of cooking greens and the other a bag of kettle corn (balancing “good for you” with bad…) It was an interesting juggling act getting them home.

Over all my HR averaged 135, so a very successful recovery run. My avg pace was 11:45, so super slow. I think I could do this pace for the full 26.2, the question is will I be happy with a five hour time? I think I need to pick up my pace a bit.

Recovery, not recovery

Saturday, October 2nd, 2010

Today’s run was weird. Seven miles of junk. Blew past my recovery ceiling and stayed in the high 150s for the majority of my run. I tried a couple of times to bring it down, but 150 or so was about the lowest I could bring myself despite running really slowly – 11:30 pace.

So I have to wonder where this is coming form, two runs last week were like this as well. Is it over training? I don’t think so as even though I have been pushing it on most of my quality runs I have had several 3 or 4 day breaks recently. I don’t have an injury but I have been feeling it in my hamstrings and glutes. Using a foam roller has really helped there. My feet have been bothering me, but I don’t think it is getting in the way of running to any effect.

I will have to think on this more.

Oh, the pool. After running this morning I added on a good workout for the arms and shoulder. Empty a pool with three buckets. The third bucket is used to fill the pair. Then I lift up one full bucket and use it to balance myself while I lift the second. Then I empty them around the yard. Great workout.

Cold wet volcano run

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

My running partner (I should say partners as her dog, a strapping Irish Setter always comes too) and I took a slow recovery type hill run up to the top of Mt. Tabor and back. The goal was to keep the entire run under our recovery ceiling of 70% max ( my HR at 143 and hers a bit higher at 147). We did pretty good except for the climbing, but even then my HR only maxed at 151. The last two miles of cool down were all under as we plodded back. The rains came right as we got back to my house, all in all a lot calmer weather-wise than was predicted, though I was looking forward to lightning strikes.

I have to say I am liking the G2 as a recovery drink. I think I’ll like the orange mix better than the fruit punch. I really wish they made it without any coloring, the fruit punch is really deep red, it looks like red ink. But I really like the low calories and sugar. I also like that the powders mix really quickly and thoroughly. I have been mixing with more water than they suggest, goes perfectly in my big plastic ice tea tumblers.

Apparently there has been some problem with G2 stock levels. The only flavors I have seen in the powders has been fp and  grape. Even online. The only flavor Fred Meyers has is the fp.

440 interval workout

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

Today I did one of the more difficult workouts that I ever do, the dreaded 440 interval workout! As part of my efforts to add more quality runs alternating with recovery runs, I headed to the track this morning. I have been somewhat lame this week and took the last two days off, so a tough run was in the stars for me. As I headed down the street for the track, I remembered I had to send a next day air letter out today so I headed back, grabbed the envelope and sped off toward s the UPS store. This added some steps to my run, but essentially it was equivalent to my normal route to the track, only backwards.

Right from the start my HR was pretty high, but so was my pace. I had a good wind at my back so that was helping. It really wasn’t the sort of gradual warm up that I had intended to begin with. But the temp was cool and I figured if I got the HR up before I got to the track that would be ok, basically like doing another set of intervals, just not as structured. I was a little concerned with being to tired to do a full set of six 440s, but I was willing to be flexible.

The track was empty except for a couple of walkers and runners. I did some additional warm-up and then picked up my pace for the first 440. I didn’t go all out like I do on the straights and curves, after all I had to do a full lap for my 440, but I got it going pretty well. Turned out I spent most of my time right around 7 minute miles, sometimes less, more often closer to 7:30, but a good pace none the less. My HR on the intervals got up around 180 or so at first, then down to 150 or so on my 220 recovery. That was basically my pattern, full lap of 85-95%+ and then a half lap of recovery with the goal of bring my HR down as much as possible.

The max heart rate that I have been working with is 184. I got this number from a formula (205-(age/2)) that is supposedly reasonably accurate for most people with the caveat that I might discover changes in that over time. The highest I have ever seen my HR has been 183. Even though I felt I wasn’t really going all out when I saw it, I know I couldn’t keep that up for long. When I saw it the first time during the Shamrock Run it sort of freaked me out a bit, especially since I was feeling sick then. So, I have always wondered if 183 was my actual max. Today I saw 186 twice on the intervals, so I am going to have to say “NO” to 183. Even at 186 I still felt I could give more and that is what the max is all about. Still makes me a little concerned to be working so hard at such a hard level. The ghost of my  father who had heart trouble follows me even though he was over weight and definitely not a runner. But genes are genes. I had taken a half an aspirin beforehand, so that always makes me feel more confident that I am not going to die! Also, I hear in teh news that I can now eat a small amount of dark chocolate once a day as medicine for my heart and stroke prevention. Sounds good to me!

Long Slow Run with HRM

Monday, January 18th, 2010

Yesterday my running partner and I braved the oncoming rain and headed out for a 10+ mile run. When I woke it was warm out with no sprinkles, so warm I passed on the tights. But the rain didn’t hold out for long and greeted us at the start of our run on the West side of the esplanade.

We have been talking about keeping our long runs slow so as to keep our heart rate under our recovery ceiling thus keeping us in the fat burning zone. The idea is to burn fat instead of reaching into our glucose stores. So like I said we have been talking about it and trying to do it. Today we both strapped on our Heart Rate Monitors and did it for real. We knew we were going to be going slow and that the full run would take around 2 hours. Our target heart rate was 147 and we were really successful in keeping it there. It was sort of fun to watch our heart rates so closely, we even managed to stay under on our small hills. My heart rate was a bit lower than my partner’s, but not much. Overall my average was 141 for the run with an avg pace of 10:45.

As we were finishing I really felt like I could run a full marathon at that pace. My feet were hurting a little bit but my legs and body felt great. I even considered adding and extra 5 miles to run home from downtown, but not seriously. My mile were high this week (36) and I didn’t want to push 40 yet. Later in the day I felt really good as well, not very tired and not very sore. I did quite a bit of stretching throughout the day and the next morning I felt a bit sore and tired, but not bad.

We are scheduled for a recovery run this morning of five miles. I just got a text hoping to put it off until tonight. Sounds good to me, I’m pretty pooped this morn.

I have been trying to figure my resting heart rate in the morning right after I wake up. The first time I tried it it was 46. The next day 47 and today 49. The cats kept jumping up on me while I was laying there and not helping. I want to measure how low I can get it while doing chi gong breathing exercises. I am sure it would go even lower.

Mileage, mileage!

Monday, January 11th, 2010

Last week marked the second week in a row I managed to get in over 30 miles. I feel pretty good, no exhaustion, no overwork, no lingering aches (other than my usual feet things.) I also found myself running for six days in a row without a break. Usually I will go three days max before I take a rest day, but it just worked out to do the six days. My only issues seem to my my feet aching and a slight case of boredom.

To counteract that boredom I just got a Garmin Forerunner 405. So far I really like it, the reports it gives are amazing. Way more info than I could ever want on my run. A few quick complaints: its a little large and gets caught in my sleeve, the maps that the computer based reporting system uses are really crappy (compared to MapMyRun which uses Google Maps it totally pales) and the bezzle interface can be a little sensitive. I have gotten spoiled with Google maps and the almost blank maps the software displays are completely unacceptable. I hope I can figure out how to change that, there must be a way.

I have never used a heart rate monitor before, and it is pretty fascinating to watch. Apparently there are a number of ways to sue the data to maximize training that I am looking forward to utilizing. Hurray, more ways to get scientific.