Does HR matter on the downhill? | Uphill Athlete

Does HR matter on the downhill?

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  • #62098
    Christie Luedtke

    Good Evening!

    I’m looking to get more into trail running (current out-of-shape road runner here) but so far I tend to hike up and then trail run down on the out-and-backs. I haven’t done many rolling trails, most are pretty consistently up, then back down. My husband has done UA plans before and I recall him mentioning that he needed so many minutes of vert on his long day and then the downhill didn’t count toward the aerobic workout and that your HR doesn’t have to be in Zone 2 on the way down either. He was on more of a big mountain plan so that could be why.

    So my question is for the Aerobic workouts, if I keep my heartrate in Zone 2, so likely just hiking right now, do I do the full time allotted for the workout just on the up and count that as my total Aerobic workout, and then just have fun on the way back down and run (but that would be more than the total Aerobic workout time and my HR would probably go above Zone 2)?

    Or do I include both up and down in the 30 mins and keep my HR in Zone 2 the entire time?

    Thank you!!

  • Inactive
    Anonymous on #62099

    Hi Christie,
    The time allotted for the aerobic workouts is total time, up and down. That being said your HR will naturally drop on the down hill so do not try and keep it up in zone two by running faster or harder. Keep your HR below your AeT for the uphill and on the downhill just let it do what it does. We are really creating aerobic base in both zone one and two. The downhill portion is still a significant training load even though the HR may not reflect it, the impact on the muscles of running/jogging downhill is quite significant and often causes DOMS, signalling recovery needs to happen.
    I hope this helps!

    Christie Luedtke on #62120

    Perfect! Thanks so much, Carolyn!!!

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