How To Find Maximum Heart Rate
Updated: Jul 15
Ideally on a track. Warm up very easy for ten minutes. Run one mile at tempo pace or approximately your 10K race pace. Once your tempo mile is done, increase your pace by 20 seconds per mile every minute until you can no longer increase your pace. If you're running on a 400m track, you should reduce the time it takes you to complete each 200m by 2 seconds until you can no longer increase your pace. Just before you start to slow down, look at the number on your HR monitor. This will give you a good estimate of your unique maximum heart rate. Use a chest strap monitor! Wrist heart rate monitors are convenient but too inaccurate.
As a back up plan to, just after you stop, take your wrist or carotid (neck) pulse for 10 seconds. Your pulse should be popping so shouldn't be hard to find. Take that number, e.g. 31, and multiply by 6. In this example 186. Use it to validate what your watch gives you.