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Since everyone has nailed their HR zone training, let’s talk through this Christy. I am sure others will learn something too 🙂
First off, have you done the run baseline test? And did you do it accurately? Were you literally finishing your 30 minutes and at a place where you couldn’t give another step, breath, heart beat? If so, did you take the last 20 minutes of this effort as your LT? Often if you are walking for zone 2 (which is your easy, recovery zone), it is because your HR zones are off. And this comes down to how you executed the test and calculated up your HR zones.
If you did all of this to a T, which can take a whole lot of practice to get right speaking from experience working with athletes for a decade. It usually takes athletes many tries at the run test until they can learn how to appropriately execute it and then it takes even more time but the better you get at testing, the better you will race. So if you got it right the first go, you are in a club of your own!
Then, once you have the best HR zones possible, are you using the talk test to make sure they are correct? And perceived exertion? Also, zone 2 is MUCH SLOWER than most people think. So yes, you just might need to slow down too. Finally, have you been practicing HR zone training all season? For many seasons? If not, like any new activity/skill/drill, when you first start, your HR will go up because it’s a new activity for your neuromuscular system. How do you balance this out? Practice! And, again, this can take weeks, months, seasons to finally get it right. You need to train your neuromuscular system to adopt and adapt the new activity and then your HR begins to balance out.
As you can see, HR zone training can be a bear to learn, train and execute. But there is no time like the present to start working on it. Thank you for asking the question because this tells me that many others are likely not using it enough to respond. Ask the hard questions. This is how you learn! Nice work Christy!