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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 10-31-2006, 05:24 PM   #1
Josh Brehm
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I've been doing crossfit workout ocassionally for more than a year now, and have been doing the Rx'ed WOD religiously for the past 3 months. I've noticed incredible gains in areas I never thought I would; but I've noticed that my heart rate still seems rather high. At rest, my heart rate is between 80 and 88 BPM. Is this too fast? I do the majority of the workouts as RX'ed and get respectable times, so I'm confused as to why my heart rate is so high.
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Old 10-31-2006, 06:15 PM   #2
Rodney Mark
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Your diet can effect your HR. Are you a coffee or soda drinker? This can also raise your HR.
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Old 10-31-2006, 06:19 PM   #3
Jeff Dale
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Take you pulse after lying down for atleast 15 minutes, or better yet before you get up in the morning. Should be 60-80 is a normal range. It's affected by caffeine, etc.
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Old 10-31-2006, 06:26 PM   #4
Josh Brehm
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I hardly ever drink coffee (maybe one drink a week or every two weeks), and I drink soda even less (maybe once a month when I go out somewhere, and even then...), I'll try taking my pulse every morning to see what it's like.
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Old 10-31-2006, 07:10 PM   #5
Mike ODonnell
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Remember that after an intense workout your HR can remain elevated for hours due to the tremendous stress you put on your CNS and metabolism....first thing AM is the best time always. Your resting HR should be much lower.
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Old 10-31-2006, 07:14 PM   #6
John Seaburg
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Different people have different hearts. Not everyone can have a resting heart rate in the 50's or 60's. Other things to look for include range and recovery. Do you know what your max and one minute recovery HRs are? Have you ever taken a few weeks off from intense exercise and checked to see if your resting HR is any lower?
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Old 11-01-2006, 04:14 AM   #7
Matthew Swift
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Resting HR by itself is not particularly informative and varies greatly between individuals. I have had clients that can demonstrate great aerobic conditioning in performance but have a naturally high resting HR, likewise I have had other clients with very low RHR (eg 45-50)that are very unfit by even commercial gym standards:-)

Ability to sustain work at close to your max HR, the ability to recover to your normal HR quickly following exertion, and your HR at "anaerobic threshold" ie the point where the aerobic energy system cannot keep up with consumption demands (excuse the simplistic definition!) are much more useful measures from a physiological analysis perspective. BUT they are just that - "measures", interesting but irrelevant when you are facing the WOD. By far your most useful measure of fitness, is your relative improvement in performance of the the CF WOD's and benchmarks over time.

The best use of resting HR that I have found is using it as a recovery benchmark and an indicator of overtraining. Track and record your HR everyday and if you take it in a consistent manner you should see that it maintains a very stable slightly downward trend over time. If you notice a daily change (increase) of greater than 10 beats per minute, it indicates that you are not recovered and should rest rather than train. I have found the reverse is true as well,ie if you feel weak but resting HR is normal (no spikes) then it is probably just mood state rather than a lack of physiological recovery. When I have had athletes follow this method I have seen much reduced illness resulting from overtraining. From a coach's standpoint it also gives something objective to work with rather than rely on what the athletes mood might be.

Probably a bit off topic, but I thought I would add my 2c:-)
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Old 11-01-2006, 05:02 PM   #8
Rodney Mark
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Matthew, thanks for that post. I am going to try to start keeping a record of my HR every morning.
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