Thyroid UK

Endurance training - heart rate monitoring essential?

I may be unusual on this board defining recovery as being able to get back to more serious road racing.

So I am working through week 1 of training - very early days.

One thing is as obvious as anything just going out and blasting 5-8 miles in a carefree manner is at present not possible.

Why? Because the risk of running above 70% of HR max is very high and as I read on an older thread someone made the point you can burn at through much more thyroxine at higher intensity workouts than you expect - success for me equals getting fit and keeping healthy ie maintain T3 levels.

So I am going to manage this effectively with running with a heart rate monitor and diligently keep at 135 bpm max and slow down if HR rises too high.

Without this approach the risk of failure is simply too high.

Used HR monitor today for 40 minute elliptical session and this worked really well. I will do the same tomorrow with my 6 mile run.

Will report back how this progresses.

Anyone else found this helped ?

18 Replies
oldestnewest

I must be doing this wrong ! Using the old maxim of 220 - my age × 70% l am having a workout making a brew. Great.

4 likes
Reply

I'm apparently having a gentle workout sitting watching tv, using your formula (just 7 beats below max)!!!! When I cycle, I can happily do as much as 75 beats above that same max number). Maybe the formula isn't so good?

Reply

mayoclinic.org/healthy-life...

Usually about 220-age multiplied by 70 or 75 percent

1 like
Reply

We're all doomed

1 like
Reply

It is your T3 that is depleted if we exercise too much. If we are on an optimum dose of thyroid hormones we can exercise to tolerance and not feel too bad afterwards.

T3 is the only Active Thyroid Hormone required in all of our T3 receptor cells and it is T3 which enables our body/metabolism to work normally. Excessive exercise depletes T3 and then we don't feel so good.

2 likes
Reply

An interesting topic and I wonder what the effects are on us. I cycle for 7-8 hrs a week usually at a HR intensity of 75% sometimes getting up to 85%+ HR.

To be honest I have not had any side effects but do get out of breath when walking a slight incline and have done for years despite keeping fit.

As for weight despite the excercise I have been heavy (110-130kg) since being diagnosed overactive 40+ years ago.

2 likes
Reply

Hi Danielj1

I always wear a HR transmitter to hook up to the treadmill because I give not a jot how many calories I burn but I base my cardio stuff on HR %. I rarely go above 70-75% of my HR sub-max as it can be far too stressful for a Hashi to maintain. In fact I don't run at all (I just don't like it!), it wipes me out but prefer doing fartlek type brisk walking intervals using inclines and speed.

It'd good to keep an eye on this and if you get wiped out after a sesh you can re-evaluate and cut your cloth accordingly.

I'm happy to say that my BP is in a very good place, even got a compliment from the GP :D

If you are a reasonable T3-T4 convertor it's OK....we just have to listen to our bodies much more closely. I also do weightlifting but that's more of a passive thing but I love it. I also think that supplementing selenium has helped, my T3 levels do not significantly drop with reasonable exercise ...and I always do a recovery the day after.

Good luck. :)

Reply

This is a brilliant idea I was a serious runner in younger years but we never had the use of a HR monitor. Good luck, my running days are over but at 71 still walk, Yoga etc, so not too bad. I also check my HR and BP every week now.

How I would love a 6 mile run!!!!

Reply

It depends how fit you are. Just run and see how you feel rather than over complicate. I do intense exercise most days and whilst sore it still makes me feel good and keeps the flab at Bay

Reply

Up to a point, the harder I train the better I feel. I mainly do heavy weight training, but always finish with a block of metabolic interval training. Every few months I give myself a full week off which i find helps to recharge the batteries and I always come back stronger. Eating well and good amounts of sleep are essential for effective recovery. I also have a spoonful of raw honey in warm milk at bedtime as I have read that this helps with replenishing glycogen stores, and it certainly seems to have some sort of positive effect. I have never felt any news to monitor my heart rate. I saw a cardiologist at the Institute of Human Performance earlier this year after another (thyroid) Dr found a small heart murmur. I had an ECG etc. Although I was found to have a slightly leaky valave, the cardiologist gave me the go ahead to train as hard as I like.

1 like
Reply

I don't run to my HR, I run to the stiffness in my Achilles. Since all my thyroid problems started after being taken off levo (changed GP since and new GP put me back on it) it's taken almost three years to get almost back to where I was, with a few relapses, but I find high intensity training doesn't make much difference, it's how much time I spend on my feet which matters, and as I run further I recover faster. I'm not fast by any means, and I prefer fell/trail running anyway, but I'm slowly getting back to the point I can see a pb or two in the not too distant future.

We're all different with different symptoms, so I imagine we'll all respond to training differently, too. My main reason for running when I started was just to lose weight, but fortunately I've found I enjoy it, especially the off road bit, so I don't let it get me down that I sometimes struggle and have to fight through the pain, I just get out and do it.

And on that note - there's a muddy hill calling me :-)

Reply

Hi, I've trained for Ironman and successfully completed 3, it was the best time that I ever felt. But when my system got out of balance, I ended up putting on 12kg and have not trained successfully for a year and a half. But now I have my med sorted out and have started training again.

But I have never trained with out a heart rate monitor. This means that I can control my pace and speed to a suitable level. The one thing I would do is ensure that you actually test to find out your thresholds if your cycling. This is done via a FTP test which is a 20 min max effort, but will accurately ensure your working with in the correct zones.

If running then I would follow the 'MAF' method which is about creating a suitable engine, so running at your age related hrt rate using the 180 formula which can be found:

philmaffetone.com/180-formula/

One thing to remember is once you start to exercise then you need to base your food requirements around this, making sure that you re-fuel at suitable times.

2 likes
Reply

I used to be heart rate obsessed before I became ill. I don’t bother now I just go on how I feel. I have run quite a number of half marathons since being diagnosed as hypothyroid but that is my endurance limit now. I accept that I am much slower and just try and enjoy it. My last one I wanted to break 2 hours so I did do heart rate monitoring . My heat rate was 197 throughout the full distance, just speeeding up and hitting max of 212 at the finish and I kept a pace of 80-85 steps/minute my time was 2:01 🙄😬🤪 which was a bit gutting. I always ran my half marathon races to this heart rate plan. I did lots of training for them so was very fit. For me I can just carry on as I did but I am slower and it takes longer to recover but I am older. I think being on NDT has helped. I did not feel well on Levothyroxine and got very fat making running really tough.

Reply

In our (relative) youth, my wife and I fell walked and hiked quite a lot. She is a complete Hashimoto (no thyroid) and takes 150 T4/day with good results. But on walking, we had to calculate 10-12 miles max and take into account the severity of the terrain. Unhappy experience showed her with prefectly good fitness until the tank was drained and the lights went out. I've had to yomp to the car to retrieve her from sleeping behind a wall - the change is that sudden. So my advice for exercisers on thyroid therapy is to get to know your limits and don't exceed any further at any time .

2 likes
Reply

Lightbulb moment for me, diogenes!

I always assume that I have run out of cortisol when my batreries are empty around 18:00. If I even slightly overdo dogwalking, shopping or pilates I am so deeply exhausted that I cannot speak coherently or climb the steps to the bedroom. I will now monitor my T3 intake more closely. Thank you!

Reply

Today did 40 minutes eliptical up to 125-130 so a bit less and kept some in reserve for a circuits session.

Really helpful feedback - keeping close attention to the details means I can extend a running comeback - not to PBs of 5 years ago but I can still have some fun getting as quick as I can post these symptoms emerging.

Reply

I need to be getting way under 20 minutes for 5k and I started a few weeks back struggling with 9 minute mile pace - so the fun is in the challenge of it all :)

Reply

coachcalorie.com/increase-m...

More efficient fat burning sounds good to me....

Reply

You may also like...