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unusal very low hr during ride question

Jul 22, 2009
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Last night coming back from a moderate ride I had to stop at a light and when I got going again I had a wierd feeling in my chest- I looked at my polar hrm and saw it was showing 56 or so, so i jiggled my hrm chest strap and saw things get back to normal; the thing is, that that was the only odd readings during a 4 1/2 hr ride, I rarely look at my hrm during a ride and during the dark it is fairly pointless because it is so hard to see- but I thought to look because of an unusal pulling ( not painful ) sensation in my chest.

Now is it coincidence or is it something I might want to keep an eye on ?
 
Mar 5, 2009
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Laszlo said:
Last night coming back from a moderate ride I had to stop at a light and when I got going again I had a wierd feeling in my chest- I looked at my polar hrm and saw it was showing 56 or so, so i jiggled my hrm chest strap and saw things get back to normal; the thing is, that that was the only odd readings during a 4 1/2 hr ride, I rarely look at my hrm during a ride and during the dark it is fairly pointless because it is so hard to see- but I thought to look because of an unusal pulling ( not painful ) sensation in my chest.

Now is it coincidence or is it something I might want to keep an eye on ?

I've had heart rate monitor readings jump around (drop from 150 to 65 then back up with an adjustment of the strap - that kind of thing) but pain in the chest is no joke. My advice? Talk to a doctor before you ride again.
 
Jul 8, 2009
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Polar HR monitors occasionally being very high or very low is totally normal. I wouldn't give that a second thought. My max HR from lab tests is 189 and I had a mid-level Polar once that would read accurately up to 181 (highest I ever saw it) when I was running, but started bouncing all over the place once it hit 176 when I would race walk. Obviously something about the different motions caused the difference. This was before I started cycling - haven't used one much on the bike.

That said, if the chest pain persists even a little bit, see a doctor. better safe than sorry.

One other note - sometimes when I'm over-trained, my HR will be 10 beats or so low for the first 30 minutes of a workout at a given pace. The perceived effort will actually be harder than usual for the pace, but the HR will be low. usually a sign to cut the workout short unless it's intended as a "get the blood flowing" recovery day.
 
Jul 22, 2009
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I know it might be an aberation with the HRM, and I've seen odd readings with Polar HRMs before, but I've always been able to account for those before. But this, not so easily. I doubt I am a candidate for a cardiac arrest, so I am not worried about that. But I wonder if a momentry drop in HR is symptomatic of anything, if there might be other signs I should be aware of- just in case. There was no pain, it felt like a muscle twitching in my left breast area actually- no other symptoms, no dizziness sweating or numbness-just curious.
 
Jun 9, 2009
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I am a physician.

If a patient came to me and mentioned the events that you described in your post I would perform a complete cardiac evaluation and, more than likely, send them to a cardiologist for a stress test.

Performing a stress test under the supervision of a cardiologist is a good idea for all endurance athletes. It is an even better idea for an endurance athlete who has experienced unusual sensations in their chest.

It is always better to err on the side of caution in such matters.

You can request that your VO2 max be evaluated while you are at it. The information you gather during the tests can help focus and improve your training.
 
Jul 22, 2009
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Thank you David.

I will wait and see if there is reoccurance before going to a cardiologist- my wife had a severe chest pain one night 2 years ago ( shes black so there is a genetic risk factor ), and went to a doctor who sent her for an ecg- the results showed there was no damage or abnormality, so the doctors verdict amounted to a shoulder shrug. If I go see my doctor now, he might start to think I've fallen in love with him or something- I've seen a doctor twice in the past month after about 5 years when I needed a persciption for some antibiotics.
 
Jun 9, 2009
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Stringbean is all one word.

Doctor of chirorpactic, chiropractic physician, whatever you like to call it works for me.

Who are you Eurotrash?