I’m curious how different factors such as sleep and nutrition help with recovery after intense aerobic exercise. The exercise consists of short HIIT sessions on an elliptical trainer or exercise bike twice a week, and weekly hikes (with large variations in duration and intensity).
For starters, I figure I need to be able to measure:
- How much I exerted myself, and
- How well recovered I am on any given day.
To measure exertion, tracking heart rate seems like the obvious thing to do. What’s less obvious is what metric to use; TRIMPexp, an exponential scaling of relative heart rate multiplied by time, seems like a good candidate.
HRV is supposed to be a useful metric for recovery, but I haven’t had much success with it in the past: Camera-based readings weren’t consistent enough, chest straps wouldn’t work unless I smeared myself with electrode gel every morning (no thank you), and in any case readings seemed to reflect my breathing rate more than anything else. Could have another go with a latest-generation optical heart rate monitor, and an app that supports paced breathing.