Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Recommend a good heart rate monitor?
Old 03-04-2008, 12:45 PM   #1
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,616
Recommend a good heart rate monitor?

I haven't really looked at these in 10-15 years but I've read of their importance in "Younger Next Year" and "The Art of Aging". Besides it sounds like a chance to tinker.

I'm interested in a "wish list" model that could be worn in surf & heavy, voluminous sweat. If I wore it under a chest protector then it'd have to survive martial-arts round kicks & punches, or I'd need to wear it lower on my torso or in back. Blood pressure & max heartrates (in addition to average pulse) would be a bonus. I'm especially curious about storing a couple hours of data and downloading it to a PC for more detailed analysis & history. A simple "set & forget" user interface would be better because I don't want to have to keep whipping out my reading glasses to tinker with it. And finally, if my family gets over the "yuck" factor of borrowing Dad's cool gear, it may have multiple users.

Older proven models would be a bonus, especially if I can find them on Craigslist.
__________________

__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 03-04-2008, 01:09 PM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
RunningBum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 5,164
Polar seems to be the popular brand. Don't know if it's the best. I have a Garmin myself because it's integrated with my Garmin GPS watch, but if I was looking at just a heart rate monitor I'd look at Polar. I don't know enough to recommend a specific model.

Some triatheletes wear them so wearing them in surf and sweat shouldn't be a problem, for at least some models.

I doubt you'll find one that measures blood pressure, because you have to have a cuff on your arm or wrist that squeezes, wouldn't you? I'd guess that any other method probably wouldn't be too accurate.

I don't know anything about how well they take a blow. And all of the models I know about have a watch that gets the signal from the chest strap, and actually does the recording. I don't think you want to wear a watch doing martial arts, would you? I don't know if they make any with just the chest strap.

Seems like you'd want the watch anyway. Usually you want to be able to monitor it while exercising, so you can check it or set an alarm to back off if you hit a certain point, and also know whether you've got your heart rate up to the optimal exercise range. Real-time feedback is probably going to be a lot more helpful than trying to analyze it afterwards.

You should be able to get readings over time, average, min/max. I don't know how many also connect to a PC. Older ones are less likely to have it, and maybe not USB. My previous Garmin GPS just had a serial interface, and even when I didn't have a PC with serial interface it was real quirky to the connection recognized. The newer Garmin is a snap. I'm talking about GPS watches rathre than HRMs but I'm guessing the recording/downloading technology isn't that much different.

So watch out for getting too old of a HRM, but some exercise/tech junkies always want the latest and get rid of their previous ones cheap.
__________________

__________________
RunningBum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2008, 02:19 PM   #3
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
I've used theh Polars but the battery in the chest strap transmitter is not replaceable. Mine lasted 3 years, but replacement straps cost more than the whole watch-strap combo from Omron.

I ordered an Omron from Amazon for $43 - should arrive any day and I'll let you know. The Polar worked fine but they are too pricey and they are gamey about the way the bundle features in certain models, kind of forcing you up the price ladder to get the one feature you want.

I love working out with it, since I can just run for the pulse range without worrying about my pace, distance, etc. especially in the summer.
__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2008, 02:37 PM   #4
Recycles dryer sheets
smileydog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 193
I bought the Timex Zone Trainer
Digital Heart Rate
from the new Dicks store during their grand opening using a coupon. Paid about $59. I like the zone mode - I use it for hiking. It seems to be reliable. My DW uses the Polar basic model that we have had for about 6 years. I also have one of the Apex models that works with our treadmill. The thing I like about the Timex is the ability to change the chest strap battery without sending to a repair depot (like I have to do with the Apex and the Polar models).

I have had zero problems with these. If you run with another person you might want to pick models that won't interfere with another unit. That was one feature I looked for in the Timex.
__________________
Oh Look, a squirrel!
smileydog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2008, 03:48 PM   #5
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
FinanceDude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 12,484
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa View Post
I've used theh Polars but the battery in the chest strap transmitter is not replaceable. Mine lasted 3 years, but replacement straps cost more than the whole watch-strap combo from Omron.

I ordered an Omron from Amazon for $43 - should arrive any day and I'll let you know. The Polar worked fine but they are too pricey and they are gamey about the way the bundle features in certain models, kind of forcing you up the price ladder to get the one feature you want.

I love working out with it, since I can just run for the pulse range without worrying about my pace, distance, etc. especially in the summer.
I have a 10-year old Polar, don't know if it works or not..........
__________________
Consult with your own advisor or representative. My thoughts should not be construed as investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results (love that one).......:)


This Thread is USELESS without pics.........:)
FinanceDude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2008, 04:24 PM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
toofrugalformycat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Anchorage
Posts: 731
DH and I have Polars, both about three or four years old. Ditto to above advice, the chest strap battery is not replaceable, but luckily ours haven't died yet, although the watch batteries had to be replaced once so far. We wear them one to two hours a day. We can't be within 10 feet of each other at the gym or the transmitters interfere. It's pretty funny, one of us (or someone else near us) will comment on their strange heart rate, and turns out we're all identical because one transmitter is overriding the others.
I have to wear mine in a different than normal spot to have it pick up my heart rate (not unheard of). You might want to check the web sites of whatever type you're interested in to see if it's picky about location on your body.
The heart rate monitor is a very useful tool for me, that's for sure.
__________________
toofrugalformycat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2008, 04:27 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
twaddle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,378
Quote:
Originally Posted by RunningBum View Post
I have a Garmin myself because it's integrated with my Garmin GPS watch, but if I was looking at just a heart rate monitor I'd look at Polar.
The Garmin 305 is one of my favorite gadgets. There aren't many gadgets that make me want to exercise.
__________________
twaddle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2008, 05:16 PM   #8
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,964
Between DW and I we've owned three Polar's. The basic models are less than $100, so it's cheaper to buy a new one vs a new chest strap when the battery goes. I have no idea how the chest strap will stand up to blows, but I've never had one fail due to sweat or water.
__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2008, 06:59 PM   #9
Recycles dryer sheets
amy5708's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 53
I sure wouldn't want to be kicked in the chest when wearing one of those. I thought it hurt under my sports bra.

I have a polar I don't use anymore, I can tell what my heart rate is by my exertion level now. Although it was beneficial the first year or so. Anyone interested?
__________________
amy5708 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2008, 04:04 PM   #10
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
donheff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 8,634
I picked one up on closeout from Nashbar for about $15. It works fine but it wouldn't go in the water. The only negative I have heard about Polar is that you can't change the batteries easily.
__________________
Every man is, or hopes to be, an Idler. -- Samuel Johnson
donheff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2008, 05:12 PM   #11
Moderator Emeritus
Rich_by_the_Bay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 8,827
That Omron arrived yesterday and used it during my run. Works. $45, replaceable batteries in both pieces.
__________________
Rich
San Francisco Area
ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
Rich_by_the_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2008, 10:58 AM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
FinanceDude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 12,484
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa View Post
That Omron arrived yesterday and used it during my run. Works. $45, replaceable batteries in both pieces.
Model Number??
__________________
Consult with your own advisor or representative. My thoughts should not be construed as investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results (love that one).......:)


This Thread is USELESS without pics.........:)
FinanceDude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2008, 05:25 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,119
Garmin 305, very nice. Use it infrequently but does its job when used.
__________________
newguy88 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2008, 07:47 PM   #14
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords View Post
I haven't really looked at these in 10-15 years but I've read of their importance in "Younger Next Year" and "The Art of Aging". Besides it sounds like a chance to tinker.

I'm interested in a "wish list" model that could be worn in surf & heavy, voluminous sweat. If I wore it under a chest protector then it'd have to survive martial-arts round kicks & punches, or I'd need to wear it lower on my torso or in back. Blood pressure & max heartrates (in addition to average pulse) would be a bonus. I'm especially curious about storing a couple hours of data and downloading it to a PC for more detailed analysis & history. A simple "set & forget" user interface would be better because I don't want to have to keep whipping out my reading glasses to tinker with it. And finally, if my family gets over the "yuck" factor of borrowing Dad's cool gear, it may have multiple users.

Older proven models would be a bonus, especially if I can find them on Craigslist.
I have used several Polar models over the years and I now use a Suunto T3 which is an excellent monitor. If you wish to use one for martial arts, you do not need to worry about the transmitter under a chest protector, you need to worry about where to wear the wrist unit. I wear mine around my belt in the middle of my back.

As you probably know, TKD is an excellent all around training program. I take about 9 classes per week and I teach 2. It is a great combination of aerobic, stretching and strenghth workouts. For retired persons, nothing beats old fashioned pushups, situps, suicides and military type PT.

I have competed in numerous tourments and at 57 I continue to compete. I usually dominate the over 45 division and I often compete against 20 to 30 year old. Often the young people are faster and more flexible than I , but I always beat them with endurance. I do not do well in 90 second rounds, but give me three minute rounds and I rock.

Keep up your TKD!

Two Years FIRED.
Bill (2nd Dan)
__________________
Not entirely clueless about dryer sheets.* I know that if you wet them - they are the best way to clean dead bugs off of the front of an RV!
madeit! is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2009, 10:52 AM   #15
Moderator Emeritus
Nords's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Oahu
Posts: 26,616
Over 18 months later and flush with $100+ from eBay sales, I'm coming back to this purchase.

Looking at retail, I'd probably pick a “starter model” Garmin Forerunner 50, Suunto T3c, or Timex Zone Trainer. They all appear to be able to store a workout and download it to a computer for further display/analysis, which is the feature I'm most interested in. Nothing on my local Craigslist-- I guess people don't resell their sweaty old gear.

I like the Omron's price but it doesn't seem to be able to download to a computer.

Looks like Polar maintains a bewildering array of pricier products. Do they still have a battery-changing problem?

Any other brands I should take a look at?

Any updates on their HRM's longevity?
__________________

__________________
*
*

The book written on E-R.org, "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement", on sale now! For more info see "About Me" in my profile.
I don't spend much time here anymore, so please send me a PM. Thanks.
Nords is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Recommend a good book on "how cars work" justin Other topics 9 04-24-2007 02:07 PM
recommend a good online budgeting planner ? caracol7 FIRE and Money 3 03-29-2007 10:14 PM
Can anyone recommend a good stock forum? daverph FIRE and Money 12 12-15-2006 10:30 AM
Recommend Wellesley to parents: good advice? soupcxan FIRE and Money 54 07-17-2006 03:50 PM
Is this rate as good as it looks? KB FIRE and Money 9 06-26-2006 06:37 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:45 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.