Heart rate while running

I've had my Medtronics Advisa DR pacemaker for 8.5 years doing great. I haven't seen a EP for years, at my last appointment at the cardiologist I requested a referral. I went a week or so ago, at the visit I expressed concerns that my HR doesn't go up enough while I'm running. I wasn't able to get my rate much over high 130's. She did at first although not to concerned had scheduled a appointment at the hospital for a rate check while on a treadmill. About 5 minutes after I left the office she called my and asked if I can return , which I did she said my rate response was turn on but the sensitivity setting was not correct and rate response was not working. She made an adjustment and increased my max limit to 150 . I've done 3 runs since the change my HR still tops out at 138??? I am 68 my runs have been 3-8 miles at 10.5-8 minute pace. 8 minute pace for 1/4s speed workout. I'm thinking my rate should go higher than that.. I have been running for about 35 years on and off, I am just wondering if doing runs at 132-138 will allow me to improve my performance? Should I ask the EP to schedule a treadmill test or just continue running as I have been and realize at my age I should just be happy to be running........

update from morning long run on treadmill. 9 miles alternating mile pace 10:20-10:42 heart rate 127-130 99% of the run..


2 Comments

Chronotropic Incompetence?

by Gemita - 2022-11-27 14:35:01

WJS, no you should never give up believing that you can do better and by the way 68 is no age to be thinking about retiring from your activities!  May I ask how you feel when you are running?  Are you getting any symptoms to suggest that your heart rate is inappropriate (too low) for your activities?  For example do you get breathless when you try to push harder?   I would also ask your EP if there is anything else set up which could be preventing you from reaching your pacemaker upper heart rate, especially since this has now been increased to 150 bpm?

Your Sensivity setting for Rate Response is clearly still in need of some fine tuning so that you can achieve your goals and continue to enjoy running.  I think you should continue to work with your technicians using the treadmill, even to involve the manufacturer technician who may have more expertise in adjusting your Rate Response settings.  According to many members here, Rate Response settings can be very difficult to get right for each one of us and may take several attempts, so never never give up.

I am in the process of finding out whether or not I need Rate Response.  One technician said I clearly needed it and another technician during a recent follow up has turned my Rate Response off again, leaving me scratching my head, so I need to consult my electrophysiologist in January to see whether I can be tested for Chronotropic Incompetence.  

Keep asking questions and get those settings optimised for you.  By chance did they confirm the amount of battery life remaining when you saw the EP?  I see you had your pacemaker implanted in 2014 so it has given you good service already, but it would be interesting to know how much battery life there is remaining. Perhaps your future device could be chosen to suit your activities better, so this is something to remember to discuss with your new EP well before your device needs replacing.  Good luck

Thank you for your input

by wjs1954 - 2022-11-27 21:34:23

After 9 miles this I felt like a ran one mile, Heart rate dropped to 100 w/in 3 minutes as usual when I finish a workout. After that I really don't pay to much attention my low rates are set for 50 during the day and 40 for night time. The EP said I am paced at about 80% so I would say my HR usually runs at about the min setting. The battery life is still running stong with about 2.5 years left. 

You know you're wired when...

Your favorite poem is “Ode to a Cardiac Node”.

Member Quotes

I am very happy with mine. I am in the best shape of my life. I lift weights, compete, bike, golf and swim.