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Using a Cycling Heart Rate Monitor for the First Time

We all know that cycling heart rate monitors can provide us with valuable information. From how hard our bodies are working to your progress in your current training regimen, heart rate monitoring can tell us quite a bit about how we're doing. So, when the time comes to actually take a look at your performance, why would you settle for anything less than the most accurate, helpful data?

If you've never used a heart rate monitor for cycling and want to start, let Heart Rate Monitors USA help with this quick guide to using a cycling heart rate monitor to chart your performance.

Buying Your First Cycling Heart Rate Monitor

Now that you've decided that you want to take the leap into heart rate monitoring for cycling, it's time to start shopping for the right monitor. Consider price, performance, and features when shopping, because you want to get the unit that’s going to be most comfortable for you. If you want something simple that's designed for beginners, then you may want to take a look at the Polar CS100 or Polar CS200. For something more advanced with additional features, step things up to the Polar CS500 cycling heart rate monitor.


Starting to Use a Cycling Heart Rate Monitor

After you’ve set up your cycling heart rate monitor, it's time to hit the roads! Spend a couple of weeks just following your normal routine and take note of the monitor's readings. Do you see any consistencies? These initial readings can help you settle into a pace that works for you. From there, you can then use some of these readings to calculate your target zone.


All About the Target Zone

Target heart rate zones are designed to help you get the most out of your cycling workouts. The easiest way to calculate these modes is through using the built in features in your Polar cycling heart rate monitor or to use the Karvonen formula, which is:


Target HR = Intensity% x (Max.HR minus Min.HR) + Min-HR

If you're not much for math, stick with the heart rate monitor's built in target heart zones feature, which can give you daily personal readings for optimal training. Basically, this is what you need to get started with cycling heart rate monitors.