Half Monty - when to stop

Hi. Did half monty for second time yesterday so I’m still getting a feel for things. Decent improvement in numbers - however I’m still struggling with when to stop ramp test ie what is failure. Yesterday I stopped as I felt my HR was nearing its max (I know that varies by individual and day to day variables - rest etc) rather than my legs giving up, losing cadence or power - so I’m wondering whether I could have pushed it one more ramp - and if I did how much difference that would have made to my numbers at the end. (I’m 53 years old - reasonably fit -70ish KG’s and stopped at 185 bpm as always get a little nervous to go much higher). Is my approach sensible? TIA.

I think that’s a good approach to take. There is going to be a limiting factor for everyone that gives us a ceiling; for you it sounds like reaching max HR is your ceiling. For me, it’s gasping for air as if I were drowning. I think my legs have more in them, I just can’t get the oxygen down there.

I’ve only done the Monty once myself, but my guess is making it up one or two more ramps doesn’t have a huge impact on the final results. Of course, I haven’t seen the math, this is just based on other ramp tests I’ve completed.

My limiting factor on HM is the same as @northy185 i.e. gasping for air rather than HR max. A quick look back at my HR confirms I was about 6 bpm off my limiter when I gave up.

Interestingly during FF I bounce off my HR limiter quite a few times during the MAP test and get very close on the final AC test too.

@Robbez, Unless you have a specific medical issue I wouldn’t worry about maxing out your HR on the test if you are able to. I don’t believe it is dangerous, but I’m not a Doctor so don’t take that as gospel. Just someone who regularly bounces off the limiter during big efforts!

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Thanks chaps - that gives me some comfort I’m doing what is right for me and that different factors affect different riders.

A question that I still have internally is knowing and being confident in my max heart rate - using the simple 220-age it would be 167…and I was up at 185 on last ramp test.

Anyway as you say it looks like it won’t have impacted my numbers - onwards and upwards with more suffering.



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Hi @Robbez,
I am 51 and my max HR is 191.
Welcome to the club !!!

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The 220-age formula is not at all reliable despite its popularity in fitness circles. It’s not even based on any real science.

I’m 53 and my max HR is 191 rather than 167 from that useless formula. I can ride for hours at 167 lol.

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pete and nico - you both in the +190 club - which is impressive👍 how did you establish that figure?

I think it’s genetic.
When I was in my 30’s, I reached a 201 max HR at the top of a climb at the end of a 30mn ITT, with an average HR of 183.

I’m another oldie but goodie! 55 and 185max hr.

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61 this year and max of 179 twice this season - outdoors/uphill - not on FF or HM (but HM got me close - 177) /Liz


I find my max heart rate is higher outdoors than indoors. I’m 50 and highest I’ve ever seen indoors was on Team Scream at 198 last year. Highest this year is 200 up a steep climb. 2 years ago up the same climb I reached 212bpm. I did feel a bit like I might vomit that time.

But back on topic my limit is legs just won’t push anymore at the conclusion of my ramp test. I reach a point when cadence can’t be pushed and enter the ERG Spiral of Death. By this time heart rate around 190.

I stop on the ramp when I reach the point where I’ll not be able to hold the given power for an entire minute, before I can’t physically turn the pedals.

For me this yields targets that subsequent workouts confirm as equivalent to my actual MAP and FTP. The given FTP is also remarkably close to my 60 minute power output up Alpe de Huez on FulGaz.

What is surprising about that is my rider type is Attacker, which is one that often results in an overstated MAP.

Why are you afraid to hit your max HR?