Back in 2012 or 2013, I decided to switch from bicycling to running. I remember my first effort at, well, let’s call it jogging instead of running. If I managed a mile in 20 minutes, I would consider myself lucky. It was an embarrassing affair, to say the least. I would plod along at a jog slower than I could walk. Well, that’s how it felt. At over 250 lbs and decidedly out of shape I was lucky to not have a coronary.
One of the things I adopted early on was measuring my heart rate. The miracle of modern technology allowed me to pace myself. My first heart rate monitor was a Runtasic device that seemed to fail after about 20 minutes, reading my heart rate in half the actual amount. Next came a Fitbit. It worked better than the Runtastic’s device. Unfortunately, it didn’t work with the Runtastic app. And I found the Fitbit app less than adequate. It’s map function, and ability to post to social media was both cumbersome and less than visually appealing.
I now own an Apple Watch. It works with the Runtasic app in ways that I couldn’t have imagined. The watch itself can control the app. So, now I can put my phone in a baggie on rainy days and start and stop Runtastic just with the watch.
Anyway, let me get back to the point I wanted to make. I set goals for myself when I started running. There were two things I wanted to accomplish. One, I wanted to lose weight. In my wildest dreams
As to pace; I set a goal of being able to run a sub-10-minute mile pace. I have done that on several occasions. It is yet to be consistent, but I’m getting there. Here is where the heart rate comes into play. Before I monitored my heart rate, I would push myself as hard as I could. I would be physically exhausted, and I couldn’t bring myself to exercise for several days. The Runtastic app educated me on the proper heart rate I should be maintaining while exercising. As a result, I started to ignore my pace and stick to the heart rate.
Today I am happy to say I have been able to keep myself from going over 160 beats per minute while running a