Heart rate zones and power zones

So after years of recovering and still recovering now using Zwift a brain injury I’m trying to delve into heart rate training, which as far as I believe isn’t available in Zwift but please correct me if I’m wrong.

I’m aware you can use power zones but my heart rate always seems higher than the specific zone. For example if I choose power zone 2 my heart rate always rises above, I’m 30 and my heart rate zone 2 should be between 114 and 132, roughly.

Now I could choose the specific power zone I want to work to but keeping my heart rate in that zone is a lot harder. I’m also not sure what kind of cadence I should be keeping to to achieve that power at that heart rate.

Could someone please give me some advice?

I have the app WorkOutDoors on my apple watch but I would rather use the Zwift companion app so everything’s consolidated into one place and so I don’t have to look in two separate apps for my results

Where has zone 2 for you being 114-132 come from? Some sources pluck zones out of thin air, for instance Strava “works everything out” simply from the max heart rate you supply.

Most of us don’t have practical access to a lab, but to get your zones, you need a way of getting a decent ballpark Lactate Threshold Heart Rate estimate, which is the top of zone 4 (very crudely what you can maintain for 20mins+).

https://intervals.icu/ is one of many places that will give you zones based on your data, which thinks my zones at 48 are currently…
z1 <137
z2 138-152
z3 153-159
z4 160-170
z5 171-175
z6 176-180
z7 181-188

I trained for many years using HR zones exclusively and have only recently adopted power zones when I started using Zwift.

There is a relatively “easy” way to determine your approximate LTHR and FTP values (and hence your HR and Power training zones) from the same workout.

I would perform a 30 minute free ride (after a decent warm-up) following Joe Friehl’s guidelines for determining LTHR. Here, you are supposed to ride the entire 30 minutes as you would for an individual time trial (i.e. hard!) and use only the avg HR value from the last 20’ as an approximation of your lactate threshold HR. You could also use your avg power from the last 20’ portion of the ride to get a rough idea of your FTP (95% of your 20’ steady-state avg power).

To produce meaningful values, it may take a few iterations of the test. You should go as hard as you can for the 30 mins and feel as if you can only just about complete the ride (before being sick or falling off the bike).

I’ve used this method and my LTHR aligns pretty well with my FTP i.e. if I subsequently do a 45-60 min ride at my test-derived FTP value, my HR usually averages close to my test-derived LTHR.

Have a search for “Determining your LTHR - Joe Friel” .

my HR zone is always at least 1 higher than my power zone, curse of being unfit :smiley:

Well thats just from the WorkOutDoors app which uses my Apple Watch, not sure if its correct.

Yeah I dont have access to a lab. So is this similar to FTP on Zwift?

No problem, ill look at that today thanks. What date do you have to input?

Well I think I’m quite fit but I could well not be, I mean I now have a low resting hearts rate since starting training on Zwift alongside everything else I do

Thanks for the knowledge! So there’s a bit work to determine my values