Sunday, January 24, 2016

iFit Heart Rate Based Workout

This week, due to weather being cold, icy, snowy, generally gross, and being a bit under the weather myself, I spent my miles on the treadmill.

My endurance mare, Sasha, in the snow. Only 4 inches here, but a lot for us.

My 16 mile long run was done using an iFit Heart Rate based workout built into my Nordictrack 1750.

I actually wore 2 heart rate monitors. One was the bluetooth iFit module on a Polar strap. The other is my red Garmin HRM-Run that - along with my Forerunner 630 - gives me lots of data about my running. Some I know how to use; some I don't.

My 2 straps. I wore the blue one on top because it's softer and more flexible. Unfortunately, the Garmin one still rubbed.

I have a few options to set before starting out. I choose workouts, then Heart Rate Workout.

Choose the little running man in the lower left.
Choose the HR based workout.
I put in my max HR. My max is actually around 193, but this only allows me to choose in increments of 5. This is apparently used to decide what my HR should be during various phases of the workout. Then I chose my time. Since this was a long run, I did the longest available - 60 minutes. I just started it as many times as I needed (4, the answer is 4 times). For this long run, I did the Performance option.

Set user's max HR, max speed, length of workout, Performance or Endurance.

The workout starts out easy based on my HR, but ramps up pretty quickly. I only need a minor warm-up, but this is too short for me, so I make sure and warm up prior to starting one of these workouts.

I ran the workout on a 1% incline to make it a bit harder to try to make it more like running outside. Not to simulate the wind or anything. Merely that whenever I run outside, it's never perfectly flat, so I might as well bump the treadmill up a tad.

First hour of my long run.

 If you click on the above picture, you can see the iFit recap of the first hour of my workout. The treadmill automatically adjusted pace (red) to compensate for my HR (green). The first part of the workout ramped up my HR to 150 and tried to keep it there for a bit before raising it to 160 and keeping it there. Then drop back toward 140, back up to 150...well, you get it.

After starting the workout, I didn't have to touch my console at all until it was time to start the next workout. I ended up doing this 4 times. I'll spare you the others, suffice it to say I got slower as time passed.

This is a great feature of my treadmill. I have to give props to my husband, Daniel, for being the one to play around with this feature first.

The only thing is, I wish I could have a bit more control over the workout. I'd like to be able to specify a distance, rather than a time. And I wish I could create custom HR workouts on where I specify how long to keep my HR in a particular zone, but I haven't found anyway to create my own HR workouts like I can map or distance/time based workouts.

But definitely a great way to spend time on the treadmill. I would have preferred to run outside for the long run, but it's great to have this option.

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