Spiked heart rate, never settled at my MAF

by Rujuta

Hi Nicola,

I have just started my journey on watching my heart rate, using MAF method. I have been running for two years and was able to comfortably run for 8-10K, my avg heart rate has been around 155, Now my MAF heart rate is 141.
Whenever I start slow jogging the heart rate goes over 150-160,so I slow down and start walking and the heart rate goes way lower - 110-120....
so I increase the pace again, to bring up the heart rate to 140...but, it spikes up again....way beyond 150!
How do I keep the heart rate at 141 consistently? It just seems impossible at the moment.
Does it have to be exact, or should I look for more of a range - let’s say 135-145, or 140-150?
I am getting super confused. Please help.

Nicole's reply:
Hi Rujuta
First off your MAF heart rate should fall in a range of 10 beats. Going over it so that it fits in with your run is defeating the object. If your max MAF heart rate is 141, then you should aim to run in the range of 131 - 141.

There could be all sorts of causes for your HR spiking. These might include:

* Lack of adequate warmup - Make sure to do at least 15 minute gentle warm up that gradually brings your HR up to MAF heart rate.

* HR monitor issues. Check batteries and also that the sensor is sitting close to your skin.

* Stress or lack of sleep.

* Sickness.

* Diet e.g. coffee just before a run, poor nutrition.

* Weather - too hot or too cold etc.

Many people want to adapt their MAF HR range to suit their situation, but actually you should be adapting your situation to suit your HR. See if any of the above are possible issues and hopefully you will find your HR settles down soon.

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