In this podcast ithlete founder Simon Wegerif talks to rider and coach Chris Kilmurray of Point1Athletic. As well as discussing his own HRV journey Chris provides examples of how different athletes respond to training techniques/volumes and importantly how HRV is a vital metric for assessing and managing these responses.
We hope that listening to this interview will offer you an insight in to:
- Does high HRV necessarily mean a high level of aerobic fitness?
- Is using HRV a recommended measurement for those not at the elite end of athletics?
- Can a ketone diet have a positive impact on training? Is it recommended?
Chris also recently wrote a great article on his blog ‘HRV Ramblings’, which discusses some of these topics further.
About Chris Kilmurray
Chris Kilmurray, bike rider and racer, coach, ski lover and alpine dweller. Brews a serious cup of Tea. Loves coaching, riding, racing and some awesome Alpine singletrack in equal measures.
Chris still races Downhill and Enduro today but with 15 years racing experience at all levels of DH, a Diploma in Sports and Exercise Studies and a UCI coaching diploma to his name he has found his ultimate passion in coaching and training others to help them achieve their riding and racing goals.
Other than his work at Point1, Chris also delivers coaching certification courses around the globe for the UCI, working specifically with aspiring MTB and BMX coaches.
His passion for riding and racing has also lead him to a close relationship working with Nukeproof as a Brand Ambassador. Using their bikes, components and protection everyday while coaching, racing and “living the dream” in his new Home of Morzine, France.
An interview with Chris Kilmurray
Did I miss the discussion about whether a high HRV means a high level of aerobic fitness? I didn’t hear anything on that – and as someone whose HRV is typically in the 90’s or 100’s I was wondering what it meant when most I see are below the 100’s.
Only noticed your reply to this today, sorry! I’m not a HRV expert but have amassed a lot of experience based upon applying sound evidence backed decision making to my athletes context.
A “high” HRV reading in the ithlete App may not exactly mean you are guaranteed to be an aerobic machine, more likely the factors mediating a high reading (vagal modulation & autonomic balance) are clearly pointing to you being more likely to respond to aerobic fitness improvements from training. I would like to think that the higher the HRV reading – ithlete uses rMSSD – the more load you are capable of absorbing before rest is needed for total adaptation to occur, but that’s only somewhat supported in research!
I have coached athletes with very high supine HRV readings that are exceptional performers in their sport, but vary in their aerobic fitness (this being due to so many central and peripheral factors affecting “fitness”) and strangely vary in their adaptive responses but do all seem to respond very, very well to training.
So long story short; there is much to learn yet and I’d focus on what we do know and how you use your daily (acute) and long-term (chronic) readings to manage training, life and other stressors.
A good question to ask you would be how “good” is your aerobic fitness? Are you a machine? ;-) !
A good read along the lines of our discussion; Heart rate variability in prediction of individual adaptation to endurance training in recreational endurance runners
V. Vesterinen et al..2011 SJMSS
Hope that helps a little!
did he ever touch on the Does high HRV necessarily mean a high level of aerobic fitness? point? I didn’t hear anything and I”m curious as someone who uses HRV and typically has a number in the 100’s. Any information is appreciated.
You might be interested in this recent research summary Can your HRV number be too high?. I think this reinforces that it’s important to look beyond your daily number to understand the importance of your daily, weekly and longer term change.
Thanks Laura – I had read that previously because I am curious why my numbers are so high, however I get readings over 100 pretty much on a daily basis – so while there are spikes from 103 to maybe 110, very rarely do I ever go below 100, and I can usually predict when that is going to happen – sickness, stress etc. The trend after monitoring it for over a year now is that 100’s are the norm for me – I’ve not seen a big change in the upslope of it, although there has been a small one when I look at the entire year – I’m just trying to figure out whether regardless of my number being high its ‘normal’ or whether there’s something else to it.
I’d certainly say it sounds like these high numbers are normal for you – and that’s fine. We do know of other extremely fit individuals whose baseline also sits above 100 too. It’s more important to look out for abnormally high results which would indicate something may be out.
I hope that helps,