HR spikes

March 14, 2011

I know I shouldn’t research into this topic, fear itself will make things worse. Ever since I got my Garmin 410 the HR charts look pretty stable until I saw alarming peak at the end of a recent run. I didn’t feel anything special and perhaps the scary reading pushed the heart beat even higher.

Certainly I have seen HR spikes before, I picked a few from the 73 workouts I have done with miCoach.

Below run has a peak HR of 180, it happened quite early on so I guess it was due to dry skin contact. It was 31st October it could well be due to dry weather.


This one has a peak HR of even 190, I would say there are lots of spikes, I guess these are possibly signal spikes instead of real heart rate spikes. Normally I need 2~3k to warm up, may be it was a bad day for me. It was a run on 13th November again dry weather was to blame?


This one below has 2 peaks of 167 I bet these aren’t signal spikes as the entire curve looks pretty stable. The width of the spikes is around 25~30 seconds which looks different from other charts here. I ran this one on 17th November.


This one peaked at 178, possibly signal spikes due to electrostatics! This was a 4th December run.


The run last weekend looks a bit better with only couple of peaks. I tried to catch up a bit (cautious at the start, hence too slow) at the last 2~3km and HR was pretty stable at 162~167.


I certainly have felt odd beats of palpitation during run when I was using miCoach, I never bothered to study the spikes or to note down details. It has never been a concern as I felt neither chest pressure/pain or short of breath. During last 2 runs I didn’t feel anything at all.

I just have to stop looking at my watch and feel my body.

By the way I also googled about HR spikes due to the electronics of the watch, there are quite a lot of reports about this and some said it’s due to electrostatic (wear cotton, no polyester such as Dri-Fit type shirts), also dry skin contact can be the reason. In Hong Kong the case could probably be too much sweat (too wet most of the time) causing short-circuiting of the electrodes? In forum discussions some got HR well above 220 …. !

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