Pacing with a Heart Rate Monitor

Tristen

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Well, the question that remains for me is: Is there an effective , strapless, HRM watch, with real time HR alarm. I don't mind having to touch to get the HR digital reading, but the real time HR alarm would be essential. If it has no alarm, and I have to press the watch to get the pulse, I don't see the difference between doing that and just manually taking my own pulse for free.

Any suggestions?
 

Sallysblooms

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I tried two brands and sometimes they were very accurate, but sometimes they were off. With POTS I need it to be good so I bought this one today. Guess I have gone back to the strap...:rolleyes: BUT it is nice and small and nice. Better than my others with and without straps.

 

November Girl

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Sally, what is the brand name of your new monitor? I've managed to learn to pace myself based on resting when my heartbeat gets fast or pounding, but I suspect I could do a lot better with a monitor. I'd love to have the VO2 max test, but not sure there is anyone in this area that would not push me to exercise as a healthy but sedentary person. I probably can't afford the test right now anyway...
 

Valentijn

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Sally, what is the brand name of your new monitor? I've managed to learn to pace myself based on resting when my heartbeat gets fast or pounding, but I suspect I could do a lot better with a monitor. I'd love to have the VO2 max test, but not sure there is anyone in this area that would not push me to exercise as a healthy but sedentary person. I probably can't afford the test right now anyway...
I think the general guide is too keep it under 60% of your max heart rate, calculated using the normal formula based on age. It sounds like the VO2 test gives very similar results. And listen to your body of course!

The general formula is: 220 ? age = MaxHeartRate
So if you're 30, MaxHeartRate is 190.
60% of that is: 190 * 0.60 = 114

Most monitors now have a setting for an alarm if your heart rate starts getting too high. It usually keeps climbing briefly after stopping the exercise, so it can be useful to set a bit lower than the rate you don't want to pass, like 105 instead of 114.
 

kurt

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So what do I do if just sitting gives me a 280/260 BP? : >
Umm, I hope you mean Pulse Rate and not BP? BP=Blood pressure. A BP that high is serious and you should see a doctor for that.

But if you meant pulse rate, here are some ideas, high heart rates can be caused by a fight-flight response, or by low blood volume, as both force the heart to work harder. I would look into rehydration therapies if you think it is low blood volume.
 

Sallysblooms

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Sally, what is the brand name of your new monitor?
My newest one is a New Balance. I bought it at Target! It is really cute, better than my others that are black and gray. They are so depressing, blah. It was $69. I wear it all day. With POTS it really saves me by letting me know when to sit. Sometimes I can feel ok while the numbers go high, but will PAY after I do sit if I am not careful. I know the numbers to be careful of. The watches have helped so much.

This pic also has a picture of one of my med alert bracelets.

 

ahimsa

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So what do I do if just sitting gives me a 280/260 BP? : >
Deatheye, it sounds like you need to go to a doctor to get this checked out. As Kurt already posted, a resting blood pressure (BP) in this range is dangerous.

But assuming that you were talking about heart rate, and meant to type BPM (beats per minute), it's still something that should be checked out. Since this rapid heart rate happens while sitting you probably have some type of tachycardia other than POTS. Not all types of tachycardia are dangerous. It depends on what causes it, how long it lasts, etc.

For example, I've had some type of Paroxysmal SupraVentricular Tachycardia (PSVT) since I was about 11, long before I ever got ME/CFS at age 29. I don't know exactly which type of tachycardia because it has never been captured on an ECG or holter monitor. However, based on my description of the sudden start/stop, the heart rate measured, age of onset, and so on, doctors think it is probably AV nodal reentrant tachycardia. In my case, it has never been disabling or dangerous and it never interfered with work or exercise. It happens infrequently enough, and generally stops within 5 minutes or less (a few times longer than 20 minutes), that I've never had to have it treated. Generally the Valsalva maneuver stops it for me but sometimes it doesn't work and I just have to wait for my heart to reset itself.

I confess that I was pretty scared the first few times it happened when I was 11. But after 40 years it's simply tiring and annoying, not scary. It does freak out my husband quite a bit even after 26 years of marriage. He just can't conceive of a heart beating that fast and not calling 911 or something. I keep telling him it's just like a short circuit and not to worry so much.

Anyway, my main point is that if your heart rate ever gets to 280 BPM while sitting then it's best to be checked out by a doctor. You may need treatment (drugs, ablation surgery, etc.) or it may be simply a nuisance like mine. See http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/guide/heart-disease-abnormal-heart-rhythm for one of the many web sites on this issue.
 

Emootje

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I clearly noticed my heart rate goes up when I inhale and goes down when I exhale (respiratory sinus arrhythmia).
Slow diaphragmatic breathing (inhale 5 seconds, exhale 15 seconds) causes a lower (average) heart rate and and a greater heart rate variable (high heart rate minus low heart rate), both encourages recovery and relaxation.
It's very nice to get some feedback from my heart rate monitor during breathing exercises.....trying to get below 62 bpm
 

Little Bluestem

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Whilst the Facebook group has been useful, the format doesn't allow for easy access to information. I'm also aware that not everyone uses Facebook. With that in mind, I've created a space dedicated to the use of heart rate monitors at:

http://heartratemonitor.proboards.com/
I was reading through this whole thread and found the above. Does anyone know if this forum is still active? I don't want to join and be the only one there.:sleep:
 

Little Bluestem

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How quickly does the body switch from aerobic to anaerobic respiration?
My heart rate can rise above my anaerobic threshold and back down in less that a minute - sometimes in less that 15 seconds. Am I really entering anaerobic respiration in that short of a time?
 
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Hi shannah,

It's entirely possible my theory about water is rubbish :p

In terms of food, I've found that the amount of food is key. A small amount seems to have a neutral or decreasing impact but if I eat too much (which I have done twice recently!) my resting heart rate goes from 60ish to 80ish for hours afterwards. Presumably as a result of so much energy being diverted into digestion.
Well I just drank some distilled water Lisa and HR went from 85 to 107 in a few seconds then dropped back down again.
This is to do with the vagus nerve in the throat being stimulated by the action of swallowing. Worse if you eat fast cos it's culmulative. Dysautonomia affects this reflex. It likely also correlates to a) the neuroimmune activation of PEM (it gets much better when my pacing is better) and b) the difficulty swallowing often found in ME either from swollen glands, sinus congestion, muscle weakness etc.

Sustained elevated HR after eating is probably a) an allergic reaction/food intolerance or b) the food was hot, now you're hot, which dilates blood vessels and HR rises to compensate.

Finally you may overdue it exercise wise by sitting and holding a heavy bowl and using your arms.

Hope that helps.