I started SUP paddling last November and went straight into a race board and joined a crew from the start. I used to paddle OC back in the early 90’’s am 46 now, i thought how hard could it be? WOW, could not even finish the training sessions. I must admit I had not done anything like this in 5 years and quit smoking 4 years ago. So 5 months in and I am getting better and starting to catch up some paddlers and then after a hard training session, my heart was going so fast and would not slow down, and skipping a beat here and there. After a visit to the doctor, now I am back training on my own,4 days a week 6 kilometers each time ,one hour at a 60% rate just to get my fitness up.
I really want to get into this quite serious and start racing next season. I also want to do it by the numbers (e.g. heart rate monitor) I tried to do it go hard or go home method, but that didn’t work out to good for me (lol) and if I ask my coach here I know he would just say more paddling.
The other day I got a Garmin watch with the SUP app in it. I went out the other day and did 2x 30 moderate effort,,say 70% at the most,,and my average heart rate was 150 bpm and max was 174 bpm,,that’s just 2 beats off my 220 – my age 46= 174 and I was not going full on by any stretch of the imagination. Would you think this is normal,,46,,,210 pound 5 foot 9,,yes I need to loose weight ,but still have a lot of muscle.
If I paddled to do your 30 min AN anaerobic threshold, it would be in the 180’s for sure. It could be just the fact that I am not in shape. As the heart specialist said, your heart was not used to that sort of effort. I know this is a long email and going on a bit, but I can’t find any feedback here. Any advice?
Whoa! That is a lot to take in. The summary seems to me that you are en ex-athlete getting back into shape. If you are like most people your brain thinks you can do things like you did in the early 90’s but your body is like “come on dude – are you serious?”
Given that your doctor gave you a clean bill of health you can get started. As you know we are always about the numbers and having a plan to your workouts and all that stuff BUT in this case, maybe it would be best to chill for an entire season. Just go out there and paddle around. Keep things chill. Doing anything is more than you have been doing. For the first several months or even an entire season just having fun at less than 80% of your max heart rate will give you HUGE benefit.
I know that sounds nuts but if, as you say you want to get into this seriously, although it is counterintuitive that is probably the best bet. The chill time will let your body get accustomed to “training” routinely. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing. They are going to look at you strange but in 2 years they are going to be asking you what your secret is and you are going to tell them “less is more.”
In addition to allowing your body to recalibrate you will have time and energy to work on your flexibility and strength. I don’t recommend going all willy nilly and paddling a tremendous amount as the only way you get back to fitness. Paddling can be super hard on your body and I would rather see you take time to work on mobility and strength at the same time. Additionally, as you age that strength and flexibility work is even more important than when you (an us) were younger.
Bottom line: do less, have fun, ignore the boys, touch your toes, and pick up some weights. After you do that for a season, hit me up and we can talk about step 2.