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Waypointer
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Hi all,
The past 4 or so years I've been off the bike, only taking occassional rides, and have lost my fitness. Two months ago I started getting back into it, and one of the updates was getting a new HRM, a Polar M430. I've used HRMs since about 2000, and while I was never chasing peak speed performance, the zone training has been good for endurance training (for past long rides, trips to Moab, etc.) So that's where I'm coming from.

I was surprised to see Polar set up default zones in the M430 based solely off of max HR. From 2006-2009 I was mostly following Joe Friel's LTHR, or otherwise using reserve HR to determine zones, finding thresholds, etc.

Since it's now about 10 years since I last looked at this, how has zone work changed? Has Friel or other trainers updated their methods? Is Polar's use of max HR just a placeholder for more rigorously determined zones?
 

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The Max HR zones are just a starting point or a decent way for those that don't know their aerobic and/or anaerobic thresholds to train. Friel's zones are pretty much the same as they were. I think one difference in training now seems to be the opinion that Zone 3, what used to be called "no-man's land" and a waste of time, now seems to be accepted as a good way to get some intensity w/o having too much of an effect on your recoverability. So you can train more in that zone w/o being too wiped out from it.
 

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There's the Polarized training zones that's gotten some recent popularity.

This philosophy recommends that 80% of your riding is 74% (and below) of max heart rate.

20% of riding is sessions of hard intervals.
 

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HR zones are hugely variable.

However, if you know your max I think it is best starting point.
 
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