I used to train with heart rate a fair bit when cycling was my primary activity but not so since I switched to running. For the most part leaving my heart rate strap at home worked out fine as my aerobic base from riding carried over and all I had to do was get my body used to the impact and strains of this new activity.
Then came a couple of back-to-back injuries followed by a relatively long vacation and I found I had to rebuild my base fitness. Having never needed to do this while running I was continually going out too fast and then dying, and I was not ever very fresh for a workout. These last few weeks I have throttled back the intensity in an attempt to build that base back up using Phil Maffetone's heart rate formula.
The only problem is, it's been ages since I knew with any sort of accuracy what my max heart rate was much less what all my exercise zones are. Plus I'm quite a bit older since I last used heart rate with any kind of regularity.
Hence this test.
Here is my favorite paragraph from the "Informed Consent for Exercise Testing" form I had to sign.
The test I will undergo will be performed on either a treadmill, bike or ergometer with the effort gradually increasing. As I understand it, this increase in effort will continue until I feel and verbally report to the operator any symptoms such as fatigue, shortness of breath, or chest discomfort which may appear. It is my understanding that it is my right to request that a test be stopped at any point if I feel unusual discomfort or fatigue. I have been advised that I should immediately upon experiencing any such symptoms, or if I so choose, inform the operator that I wish to stop the test at that or any other point. My wishes in this regard shall be absolutely carried out.Can't wait.