Heart Rate Variability: A Guide to Effectively Using HRV for Training and Health with SweetWater Health’s Ronda Collier

September 13, 2013
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Expert Ronda Collier, CEO and co-founder of SweetWater Health and the SweetBeat app, joins the show to give a detailed chat on heart rate variability (HRV) and how to understand it, use it for training, use it to monitor and lower stress and more. On the show we explain what HRV actually is and what it measures, including details on the nervous system, the components of HRV and stress including high-frequency waves, low-frequency waves, rMSSD, and how to make sense of and interpret those. We also discuss what numbers are “good” and “bad” and what you want to see based on age/gender, when to measure HRV, how athletes can use it for their training programs, stress vs. HRV on the SweetBeat app, psychological components to HRV, other HRV apps available what you need to get started with HRV, and much more including a couple specific questions from listeners.

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Comments (3)

  • Tim Skafidas says:

    Great info today. I am 43 years old and average 92 but have been as low as 78 and as high as 102. I am on the highest sensitivity level and have LF around 1180-13,000 and HF from1200 to 15530. I have seen moments of HF up to 23000. Today I had a HRV of 98 and LF of 10,000 and HF of 15530. I also notice my HRV stays fairly constant, but my stress bounces around also. I have found great HRV readings after high fat meals, cold exposure after workouts, and even after socializing and quite a bit of alcohol. My numbers seem very high for my age (maybe I am a freak on nature)? I also live and train between 8500 and 12,000 ft. I noticed magnesium at night tends to help my scores. Also outdoor workouts too. Thanks Tim

  • Andy Reed says:

    In answer to the question about altitude and the heard sessions and HRV – the best way to elevate your HRV values – is to do several really hard efforts. A comment from nyvelocity.com :

    “I’ll leave you with a little anecdote. I asked Greg LeMond about HRV, and while he didn’t know about ithlete, he was very well versed on HRV. He told me that you can spike your score with several quick sprints, so I gave it a shot to see if I could top Schmalz. I got a 92 the next day, but with an amber (ride easy) score. Turns out the spike is due to adrenaline depletion which requires rest, not a miraculous spike in fitness. So once again there’s no substitute for hard work and I’m still slow.”

  • […] recovery state. If it's elevated above its normal, you may be in a state of stress. More recently, Heart Rate Variability has taken this to the next […]


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