HR lactate - I just don't understand!

Hi Guys,
Happy Thursday!

Does anyone know what this means? HR lactate? Is it better to have a high one or low?

By the way I know that Garmin data isn’t going to be exact.


Lactate Threshold HR (LTHR) is simply your heart rate when riding at your Lactate Threshold or FTP. :slightly_smiling_face:

We each have slightly different HR figures when resting, riding at lactate threshold as well as our max heart rate. I’ve found that LTHR is the best way to calculate your HR zones, so this is useful information if it’s accurate! :bar_chart:

Typically those with a bigger heart muscle have lower LT and max HR figures because their hearts tend to pump more blood with each stroke. This, however, can change over time due to training, age, and other factors.

For reference, my LTHR is ~176 on the bike, which means that my heart could be ever so slightly bigger than yours. This doesn’t mean that I am any more fit or efficient though – we’re just different! :anatomical_heart:

I don’t know exactly how Garmin finds your LTHR, but it can be easily figured out by taking your average HR from the last 20 minutes of a 30-minute max effort. :sweat_smile:

Here is a good article on this.


It is better to know what it is, than not to know.

It is useful in guiding training effort, not a measure of your worth.


Brilliant thank you!

1 Like

Awesome thank you

if you spend a lot of time doing threshold efforts, your “LTHR” is roughly the average you’ll see after settling into the effort (how long it takes to settle in varies).

here are a couple 13 minute jobbers… HR is red and bpm scale on the right (power on left in yellow):

See the LTHR dashed line? It’s labeled on the right side.

The red band is 157-163bpm, and LTHR is 160bpm.

Took about 6 minutes into the first effort to get HR into that band, and 8-10 minutes to settle around LTHR. Thats pretty typical for me.

1 Like

Ah, you can ignore it then. That’s what I do.

No clue what it means? Ignore. It.

Don’t understand the instructions my boss is giving me, ignore them. My wife is talking to me from three rooms away? I don’t understand…so that goes into the ignore pile too.

Maybe those second two things won’t be on your list, but Lactate HR can sure be on the ignore list.


1 Like

I like your style!

Ignore activated

1 Like

Uh-Oh, Nerd Alert! Time to ignore the influx of Type-A’s who will tell you that it’s of the utmost import and you’ll never get that highly coveted 11th out 55 in your Master’s C category at the Bar S BBQ Tuesday night Criterium!


Sarcasm aside I think Lactate HR is one of the top HR related metrics to track and as Brian mentions, it’s fantastic for setting zones.

Good luck with your training…


Its better to have one thats trained to a high percentage of your natural maximum. Your natural maximum can be low though, and for the sake of simple numbers, a person with LTHR of 95% of their max of 150bpm (LTHR = 142bpm) is theoretically fitter than a person with LTHR of 80% of their 200bpm max (LTHR = 160bpm). A higher number but worse in this instance.

I’ve had my butt kicked by folk with higher and lower max HR than me, but their LTHR % will have been higher than mine.


… Oh and congratulations on your new higher FTP :muscle:t3:


Well that was weird. Just accidentally deleted my post above. :person_shrugging:t3:

1 Like

ignore it!

1 Like