Preventing too much push
Particularly during your recovery outings, it is important not to push the “machine” too hard. You can give yourself a heart rate limit that should not be exceeded during short trips. This can also help you not to go too fast in your long exits.
Adjust to the conditions
If 140 bpm is equivalent to 6 minutes/km, but when taking temperature into account (it is 35 degrees today) you run at 6 minutes 30 seconds/km at 140 bpm, you can reassure yourself that you are providing an effort equivalent. Same thing in the snow where the stride is less effective due to the slippage at the end of the thrust.
Adjust the intensity of your workout
If your running runs are generally 140 bpm, you can give equivalences in cross-country skiing or snowshoeing. For example, if I run 1 hour at 150 bpm at 5 minutes per km, I can tell myself that if I make 1h to 150 bpm in cross-country skiing, I did an equivalent training.
It is also valid in low to moderate running. The ideal is to test yourself on an athletic track. Run about 10 minutes at a given speed and record your heart rate at this speed. Then, when you are in outdoor conditions, you can use these equivalents to calculate the distance traveled (if you do not have a GPS) or to put in perspective your sensations. However, this method is not valid for high intensities (90% and more VMA).
Assess your endurance level and hydration strategies
One of the difficulties of running is how to determine our exact level of fitness. Heart rate may be helpful in helping us assess this level.
First, by wearing your belt during the night, you can follow your resting heart rate. You can test one to three times a week and record your results. If your average heart rate during the night goes down, your fitness level increases! However, these results should be interpreted in the long term, as the heart rate can vary even with the same level of shape. Useful if you are maniac one of the numbers!
For most of us, a more useful and less restrictive way to use the heart rate monitor is to wear it during long workouts. During these outputs, the heart rate will increase, even if your speed remains the same, because of what is called cardiac drift. Cardiac drift is the increase in heart rate that is used to compensate for the decrease in blood volume caused by each beat. So you can evaluate your hydration / diet strategies during your long trips by assessing when and how quickly your heart rate begins to drift.