catalogs logo logo

Using a heart rate monitor for running

By Catalogs Editorial Staff

Tips on using a heart rate monitor for running for the greatest health benefits

Tips on using a heart rate monitor for running for the greatest health benefits

One of the many wonderful things about running is you only need a pair of good sneakers to get started – and some people say not even that. Heart monitors aren?t necessary, but they are a useful tool when you?re ready to take your training to the next level. They prevent over-training, under-training and help you to pace yourself during races.

Using a heart rate monitor for running allows you to measure the intensity of your run. Being able to monitor the numbers gives you more control of each workout in the context of a training plan to ensure you train properly. Whether you?re preparing for your first 5k or preparing for a marathon, varying the intensity is an effective way to avoid injury and burnout.

Get to know your heart rate

Before you continue reading about the Using a heart rate monitor for running there is a special announcement we would like to share with you. has negotiated special medicare rates for our vibrant community of seniors. If you are over the age of 60, you can head over to our Seniors Health Section which is full of information about medicare. All you need is your zip code and a few minutes of your time to potentially save 100s of dollars on your medicare bills.

Get Free Catalogs When You Sign Up

Don't wait, sign up and get Free Shipping Offers, Discount Codes and lots of Savings Now!

Wear the monitor on runs, when you?re running errands and hanging out at home. Pay attention to how the rate fluctuates with different activities, high fast it elevates and how long it takes to decline. Understanding how the numbers correlate to the way you feel is important in determining how much intensity you can safely and comfortably handle right now.


Getting started

Note that everyone is different. A number of running books, blogs and magazines include the heart rate numbers for elite athletes or mention training in certain “zones”. New runners tend to make the mistake of setting their own boundaries based on someone else?s threshold. This often leads to pushing too hard, too fast or not challenging yourself enough and neither scenario is in your best interest as a runner. 

Using a heart rate monitor for running means training won?t be a guessing game. Follow these steps in order to train safely and race at the best pace you can. Your age, fitness level, size and gender will all affect your heart rate, not to mention any medications you take and the altitude you run at.

Women tend to have higher heart rates than men because their hearts are smaller. Unfit people have faster heart rates, but this will improve with exercise.

In order to use a monitor properly, you need to first get an accurate reading of your lactate threshold. This is basically the highest intensity you can run at without unbearable discomfort. You’ll find it easier to retain full control of your breath at any intensity below this threshold.

Measure your lactate threshold by either going to a sports medicine facility or taking the DIY route. Runner?s World outlines an odd, but effective way to find your limit and determine which zone you should train in.

Consider the lactate threshold your red line. This is the point where your body shifts from using a lot of oxygen to dipping into glycogen to sustain the high intensity. Mentally, this is when you start wondering how much longer until its break time.

Training time

Many training plans will lay out distances to run each day and when to rest. It?s up to you to determine your pace based on your race goals and current fitness levels. Stay below the lactate threshold on easy and moderate training days, and for longer distances. Go just above the red line during speed and interval workouts, but be sure to drop below it during rests.

It may seem difficult to imagine now, but gradually you?ll be tuned into your body and able to sense how close you are to the red line without constantly glancing at the monitor. As your fitness improves, this threshold will shift and you?ll be able to fine-tune your training. This is when you?ll get faster in running and may even set a new personal record (PR) at your next race.

Try it! Using a heart rate monitor for running is a great way to break up the routine and engage your mind in this activity your pour your heart into.


Popular Savings Offers



Top Deals

See All

Recent Posts

Get Free Catalogs When You Sign Up

Don't wait, sign up and get Free Shipping Offers, Discount Codes and lots of Savings Now!


Saving Tools

Follow Us


Since 1996, has been considered the web's catalog shopping authority. Our trends experts have carefully reviewed thousands of catalogs and online stores and have featured only the most respected, distinctive, and trusted ones. From popular favorites to new discoveries, you'll shop and save with exclusive coupon codes!

Invitations for applications for insurance on are made through QuoteLab, LLC and Submission of your information constitutes permission for an agent to contact you with additional information about the cost and coverage details of health and auto insurance plans. Descriptions are for informational purposes only and subject to change. Insurance plans may not be available in all states. For a complete description, please call to determine eligibility and to request a copy of the applicable policy. is not affiliated with or endorsed by the United States government or the federal Medicare program. By using this site, you acknowledge that you have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.