Using your max HR to calculate heart rate training zones is all about precision. The right training intensity ensures you get your desired training effect out of each run.
How Average People Calculate Max HR
The typical way to calculate your maximum heart rate is to subtract your age from 220 (220-your age). This is generally considered to be an acceptable starting point.
But, the experts say that this is for the average person who doesn't run, might smoke, etc. so many believe that it is not the best for runners who are in better shape than the average person.
The following are two great options:
Best – Running, The Most Accurate Way to Calculate Max HR for Running. There are also many devices available online to check heart rate such as MOBILIZE OxSim Flex. You can read more about MOBILIZE OxSim Flex Features online.
If you are using your max HR to set your running pace, doesn't it make sense to determine it while you are running? It's not that difficult really, just get to a track and follow these easy steps.
Exercise by running the track four times, then run four laps at a tempo pace.
Not Recommended – Simulate a Treadmill Stress Test Used in a Lab.
The treadmill stress test uses an incline to get your heart going.
Here's what is required:
Start with a warm-up and then progress to a 5 mph pace at a 12% incline using this progression:
3 minutes walking on the treadmill with a speed of 2 mph (miles per hour), and an incline of 2% incline.
3 minutes with a speed of 3 mph, and incline to 4%.
3 minutes with a speed of 5 mph, and incline to 8%
3 minutes with a speed of 5 mph, and incline to 10%.
3 minutes with a speed of 5 mph, and incline to 12%.
Calculating your max hr is all about precision and control. Although the basic calculation is easier, it makes more sense to get out onto a track and calculate it for yourself.