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Heart Rate Monitor Training

Posted Sep 28 2011 9:15am

I decided that after I have this baby -

[23 weeks] DSCF0785

I’m going to try to do a lot of training with a heart rate monitor.

Have you ever looked into or actually trained with a heart rate monitor? I’ve trained on and off with a heart rate monitor & honestly it’s hard for me, mostly on the “easy” days because I usually push myself A LOT harder than I should on those days. But with a heart rate monitor I have to go A LOT slower than usual and it is just hard to go that slow sometimes. Because it’s hard for me to follow, I know I should try and do it more often.

Look at your current training schedule…whether it’s 5k to marathon…the most basic training schedule will have easy days & fast/speed days. I’m not going to go into a lot of depth, but when you train using a heart rate monitor, you focus on your target heart rate for each zone (or speed) you are suppose to be running at.

Easy days are suppose to be slow right?! Duh. I thought I was going “slow” on those easy days, but when I used my heart rate monitor & made my heart rate stay in the 60-75% of my max HR zone…I realized I wasn’t going slow enough. This table is a good reference as to the zone/% of max HR you should be going -


I don’t remember where I read it or heard it, but training with a heart rate monitor can actually help you increase your speed & endurance. That’s what I really want to have happen. You know, go from 6 months off & a few pounds heavier -to- running at a pace (or faster) than what I was doing before I was pregnant…with my FIRST kid!

Not only can heart rate training enhance your performance, but it also can help prevent injuries. One of the biggest things for me in using a heart rate monitor when training is to prevent OVER-TRAINING! I use to have a problem with over-training because I like to push myself…a lot. BUT, that will almost always lead to injury. So, hopefully when I start running again, I can follow a heart rate training plan & not get hurt for a long, LONG time!

Check out some of these Heart Rate Training books -

And of course, if you want to train with a heart rate monitor…you NEED a heart rate monitor! And despite what some people may think, you don’t need a fancy $300 heart rate monitor. The one I have been using (Sports Instruments brand) was only $40 and it works great. Previous to it I had a $100+ Nike brand heart rate monitor…and it broke [a high price & name brands aren’t everything!] Take a look at these Heart Rate Monitors for $50 or less.


Have you trained with a heart rate monitor?

What do you think about it

How much did/would you spend on a heart rate monitor?

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