4

votes

Very High Heart Rate During Interval Training

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 30, 2011 at 8:43 PM

Alright, I was doing sprints earlier today and wearing a heart rate monitor/ garmin watch. I sprinted about 100 yards, walked back and repeated about 10 times. Afterwards, I plugged in my watch to my computer to look at the specifics of my workout. I saw at several points that I hit a heart rate of slightly about 220 and at one point 232 bpm. Is this cause for concern? I'm a 21 year old male who's in pretty good shape. I eat as clean of paleo as I can but often get sucked into some drinking or gluten free pizza. I have to let go a little in college. Anyway, is a heart rate this high normal? Something to worry about?

7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on August 31, 2011
at 03:14 PM

Then I'd say ignore it.

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on August 31, 2011
at 01:34 PM

ha, well it was probably a garmin error. It happens I've noticed on really dry or windy days, or if the chest strap sensors aren't wet enough.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on August 31, 2011
at 07:45 AM

nope. didn't feel like hell. i was a little out of it afterwards from the exertion but otherwise fine. i've definitely pushed myself harder.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on August 31, 2011
at 07:44 AM

no, it's not a feeling of impending death. it's more of just some heavy breathing

5b69a02dadcae753771921d913909215

(1457)

on August 30, 2011
at 11:55 PM

When you see these moments of 220+ how long is the program saying it lasted and what is the rate of your heart around the same time?

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8 Answers

3
218f4d92627e4289cc81178fce5b4d00

on August 31, 2011
at 12:40 AM

I would get that checked out, it may not be a measuring error it could be a relatively common condition called

atrial fibrillation

with this condition your heart can race to up to 300bpm plus.

Rob Waddell - Olympic rowing gold medalist in the Single Sculls and world record holder for the concept 2 erg (5:36) and a guy with the one of the highest ever recorded Vo2 max readings, has suffered from this. Because of him many New Zealanders are aware of AF.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atrial_fibrillation

"Approximately 2.2 million individuals in the United States and 4.5 million in the European Union have AF"

2
5b69a02dadcae753771921d913909215

(1457)

on August 30, 2011
at 11:53 PM

It depends on how the heart rate monitor measures but I doubt it is really that accurate (to the beat). Nonetheless, you could theoretically have an arrhythmia at high exertion (or anytime for that matter). If you have insurance you might want to get a stress test with EKG done for piece of mind (now that a seed of worry has been planted). Otherwise, see if it keeps happening and if so try with a different brand of heart monitor. If still the same issue, see a doctor. I am assuming you don't have pain... right?

FWIW, I have an arrhythmia that comes and goes, my resting heart rate is normally 42-45 but I have seen it dip in to the 30s on the monitor for a split second and then go back. I don't know if it was my heart skipping a beat or just the monitor losing the signal or something. BTW, its the cheapest one polar currently makes... if that helps.

2
9d741bcbe702044635f2ce3078043054

(1435)

on August 30, 2011
at 09:55 PM

232 seems high, but I'm skeptical about the age-based calculation of max heart rate. I'm 44, which means my max should be 220-44=176. But, I've gotten as high as 196 during sprints. At lower levels I have checked my hrm against a watch and my pulse, and it seems to be pretty accurate.

2
510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20888)

on August 30, 2011
at 08:58 PM

Yeah, I'd call that measurement error. I know that I can't push it much beyond 190 without wanting to puke.

Most heart rate monitors look for patterns in the electrical signals coming from your heart and then to a fourier transform on them to find the frequency. If you're bouncing around from, say sprinting, it could easily add some extra noise in the measurement that when transformed looks like a higher heart rate.

2
64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on August 30, 2011
at 08:49 PM

That's likely to be an error. I do know some people that can go up to 210 or 220 but 232 is likely to be inaccurate. Do you feel like your heart is about to pop out of your chest or a sense of panic? Or just really gassed?

64433a05384cd9717c1aa6bf7e98b661

(15236)

on August 31, 2011
at 01:34 PM

ha, well it was probably a garmin error. It happens I've noticed on really dry or windy days, or if the chest strap sensors aren't wet enough.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on August 31, 2011
at 07:44 AM

no, it's not a feeling of impending death. it's more of just some heavy breathing

1
7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on August 30, 2011
at 09:01 PM

(It might actually be that high but your max should really be roughly 220 minus 21 =199.)

I don't think you need to be concerned unless you feel like hell, however I would watch for overtraining signs like not sleeping, elevated heart rate all day, no appetite, fogginess or irritability. If you feel any of those then I would say your max should adjust back down with rest and less sessions a week.

7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on August 31, 2011
at 03:14 PM

Then I'd say ignore it.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on August 31, 2011
at 07:45 AM

nope. didn't feel like hell. i was a little out of it afterwards from the exertion but otherwise fine. i've definitely pushed myself harder.

0
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

Mine will go to 190 during sprints.

0
Medium avatar

(3259)

on August 30, 2011
at 11:05 PM

I'm 40, ride a road bike and have seen 210 a few times on very steep climbs with a Polar monitor, and 209 while being tested on a treadmill. My Garmin sometimes reports very high rates on rides that I know I haven't ridden above 190. 232 sounds either unnervingly high or computer error to me.

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