Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The Garmin Forerunner 305

A few days before Fathers' Day (June 19th) I purchased for myself a Garmin Forerunner 305 as a training aid for my running. I was particularly interested in knowing exactly how far I run on various routes I follow, and the pace I run at. The plan was to use the device to enable me to reach my running target for this fall of running 10 km in less than 60 minutes. For some reason, when I was at "Runners World" making the purchase (at a sale price as a Fathers Day gift), I also insisted that I wanted heart monitoring capability too. It is serendipitous that I chose that additional feature.

I used the device for one or two runs before we went on holiday to Pennsylvania, and used it there on the three runs I managed in that week.

When we returned, I went for my first run after the holiday on Sunday, June 27th. The device, as you know, measured my heart rate during the heart attack I had that day.

Today I have spent a lot of time using the manual for the Forerunner and setting up heart monitor alerts on it. First I had to enter my date of birth and my weight so the device could figure out my maximum heart rate. Usually this is 220 beats per minute less your age in years for a male.

I then set my alert levels. I used the Garmin system of Zones to set the alert levels. Zone 2 sets the alert levels at 60-70% of the maximum heart rate. At those rates I should be proceeding at a comfortable pace, with slightly deeper breathing, and with conversation possible. It is described as basic cardiovascular training and a good recovery pace. The minimum beats per minute in this Zone are , according to the Forerunner, is 111, and the maximum 130.

I will begin to use the system tomorrow on my early morning walk under Anne's supervision. We will see if the moderate walking pace we have reached gets my heart rate in that Zone 2 band.

In my hospital stay, I mentioned the Garmin Forerunner to the rehabilitation nurse. She recommended I take it to the rehabilitation sessions when they start in a few weeks time.

Today I learned that I am scheduled for angioplasti to install more stents on July 29th. By that time I should be getting back into good health again.

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