HRV and Covid – Training during and after infection

During the early part of the pandemic, in June 2020, ithlete won a grant to try and determine whether or not changes in daily HRV could be used to detect the onset and subsequent severity of the illness. What we didn’t know about at the time we conducted the survey of ithlete users, was how Covid would affect an otherwise healthy athlete’s ability to train during the illness and subsequent recovery.
Let’s take another look.

HRV and COVID-19 in athletes. Is there a connection?

We have been asked by the UK Government to test the hypothesis that HRV may be a powerful diagnostic tool for Covid-19. This article will explain the relationship between HRV and Covid, focusing particularly on the implications for people who exercise regularly and...

Can HRV predict changes in performance in swimmers?

Research performed over several decades has shown that when performed regularly aerobic exercise increases heart rate variability (HRV). Studies, such as this one, demonstrated that changes in HRV have corresponded with changes in performance brought about by training...

Are you Inflamm-Aging well?

What is inflamm-aging? And what can you do to ensure you’re inflamm-aging well? A reseaarch summary of the origional paper and how tracking HRV relates.

HRV guides trained cyclists to new performance highs

Who, what & why In a previous post we covered studies that show using HRV to be significantly better than a standard training program in improving the performance of club and recreational runners. Now, a new study by researchers from the Universities of Alicante...

HRV response to breathing thin air

From a practical perspective, measuring your HRV at altitude and comparing to HRV at sea level can show how sensitive you are to the effects of altitude, and that if you are an elite level endurance athlete, you may be more sensitive than mere mortals! Here is the research.

The effects of overreaching on trained cyclists

Most endurance athletes are familiar with the term ‘overreaching’. That’s when you do high volumes of intensified training to cause supercompensation. But what actually happens to your body and what measures can you use to identify when overreaching has gone too far and become unproductive?

Periodisation – A shake up to training adaptation theory?

The stress – adaptation response considered to underlie improvements in performance caused by training has hardly been questioned in almost 100 years. Now, a new and thought-provoking review paper questions the basis for this model, especially as it applies to human...

Individualised cold water immersion to speed recovery

Who, what and why? Coldwater immersion baths are often used to speed up recovery in both endurance and team sports. It is thought to be effective by moving fluid back from muscle tissue into the circulation, preventing reduction in contractility and associated muscle...

Atrial Fibrillation (AF) and HRV

AF affects the performance of the heart, especially amongst older, less healthy people. But it also affects a significant percentage of Masters athletes. A large study over a 20 year period shows an interesting correlation between Atrial Fibrillation (AF) and HRV. There are optimum values of HRV and resting heart rate, above and below which the chances of developing AF increase significantly.

Fat adaptation for exercise – how far can it go?

Despite a great deal of discussion about, and anecdotal evidence to support the benefits of a low carbohydrate high fat (LCHF) diet, there have been few studies examining the degree to which athletes’ metabolisms have been altered to take advantage of this dramatic change in fuel for exercise.

How well does HRV reflect overall health?

Who, what and why? Heart rate variability, or HRV, has long been considered to reflect overall health. Since the 1980s, Professor Steven Porges described HRV as an index not only of stress, but of vulnerability to stress. In other words, the higher someone’s HRV, the...

Can HRV help detect concussion?

Who, what & why Traumatic brain injuries, such as concussion, are unfortunately an occupational hazard in many contact sports. As I write this, sad news was announced today that 23 year old rugby player Lilly Partridge had died following a head injury during...

An Interview with Chris Kilmurray

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...

Can your Morning HRV Predict your Cycling Performance?

Who, what, why? In two previous posts, we summarised studies that showed an almost unbelievable ability for night-time / morning heart rate variability (HRV) to predict the changes in performance of both swimmers and club runners. HRV and Swimming Time Trial Results...

Nutrition, Stress and HRV

This week’s Tuesday Tip focuses on nutrition the impact on stress. Do you reach for those ‘convenience foods’ after a stressful day? If so take a look at some useful nutritional tips we’ve put together

Energy drinks and HRV

A short summary of Dr Mike T. Nelson’s paper on the impact of a Monster energy drink on heart rate, heart rate variability (HRV) and ride time to exhaustion.