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Old 01-28-2017, 08:58 PM   #1
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Higher Heart Rate While Driving Our Rig

I recently got a Garmin GPS for trail race training. It comes with a heart rate monitor and I have been keeping a close eye on it. My normal resting heart rate is anywhere from 49bpm to 60bpm. However, after driving all day today, I noticed that while driving the RV my heart rate spiked to 100bpm to 130bpm. This is only 30+- below my running heart rate!

When we pulled over to gas up or to eat, the bpm went back down to 50+- bpm. This was sustained throughout a 6+ hour drive today. Does anyone have any relatable experience with this? This is the first time driving the rig since a remodel. is this just my nerves or is this normal when driving a rig down an interstate?

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Old 01-28-2017, 09:10 PM   #2
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What are you driving or towing?
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Old 01-28-2017, 09:18 PM   #3
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Maybe your wife should drive...
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Old 01-28-2017, 11:49 PM   #4
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Based on your heart rate, it sounds like a good workout. I would prescribe more camping!
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Old 01-29-2017, 12:12 AM   #5
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I've had open heart surgery...I'd suggest contacting a doctor right away. Your heart rate should not increase like that while driving.

Can you feel your heart going faster or do you think it is an error on the Garmin?
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Old 01-29-2017, 01:42 AM   #6
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Hey Arch your running trails!! As mentioned, good numbers for a workout, and asuming your Doc says you are good to go, why not drive shorter trips, work back into driving the RV with shorter hours behind the wheel and relax? 6+ hours of time in the seat is a long day and hard on anyone. I am retired so have the luxury of attempting to plan our drive time at half of that, but with stops spend the day hopefully having fun and set up in time for happy hour. A few years ago the Airline Pilots Magazine posted an article about the danger of being immobile in the seat over 1 1/2 hours and the risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis. We need to get up and move about. Have fun out there!
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Old 01-29-2017, 04:07 AM   #7
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Formula 1 drivers have a heart rate around 180 for most of their 2 hour races. Driving in any situation that requires constant vigil can raise your rate more than you think.
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Old 01-29-2017, 06:07 AM   #8
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I see by your profile you have a 30' coach. If this is your first coach and you just started driving it then yes you'll probably be experiencing anxieties for a while till you settle into a comfortable mode of driving the coach. Give it time if you're new at it.
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Old 01-29-2017, 09:08 AM   #9
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Thanks for the info and replies! Has anyone else used a heart rate tracker while driving? I didn't feel any different than normal, I was shocked when I noticed it on the Garmin. I am wondering if this is a "normal" thing that all of us experience or I just have to get acclimated to driving again.

We are driving a 32ft RV with a Honda Accord Toad.

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Old 01-29-2017, 09:28 AM   #10
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When I had my 30' gasser, my heart rate always increased and I think it was the Handling. Now in this air suspension Freightliner not so much. Also retirement and in no hurry helps. Retire as soon as you can and ft. It's an amazing pill!
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Old 01-29-2017, 11:11 AM   #11
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Does your Garmin have a separate heart rate strap on the chest or is it reading heart rate from your wrist? If it's the latter I might question its accuracy. Mine was nearly useless giving erroneous readings much of the time. I'd wonder if vibration through the steering wheel might affect it, or other sources of interference caused by the running engine, GPS in the coach, etc. Have you checked readings while just sitting calmly without moving?

BTW, my Garmin wrist unit had me climbing steps on perfectly level walks, and the heart rate readings, especially during exercise, were horribly inaccurate. Units with a heart rate strap have proven to be much more reliable.
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Old 01-29-2017, 11:14 AM   #12
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If driving a coach is something pretty new for you - this wouldn't surprise me. There's a some nervousness associated with driving something this large until you get past it being something new. There's probably a few bpm attributable to the excitement of a trip as well. Just remember Mr Miyagi's directive " through nose, out through nose. Remember, breath - very important!"
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Old 01-29-2017, 12:59 PM   #13
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There are two or 3 factors in driving a Motor home for most folks
1: it is exciting (= higher heart rate)
2: It is scary (= Higher heart rate)
And if your MH is unmodified
3: It is WORK (= higher heart rate)

I will address that last one.
Most motor homes are solid axle both front and rear, NOT Independent suspension like most cars are now days.

This means the body can move slightly side to side over the axle, and if the front moves one way while the rear the other, then they swap, yoy basically "Wag" your way down the road.

As Driver you see this Wagging as the motor home going right/left/right/left... So you compensate, which adds to the wag.

TRAC BARS stop this "wag" if you will pardon the pun "Dead in it's tracks" by locking the body in position over the axle.

Finally: At church this AM I was mentioning there is a small SNAG in getting my motor home fixed.. Visited the Mechanic and he was busy packing the car so he could take his wife to the hospital.... Maternaty.. The next day for a scheduled C-Section.

I told them I'd be a good choice to drive under the more standard conditions cause the Med's my doctors have me on... NOTHING gets me excited
Home is where I park it!
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Old 01-29-2017, 01:29 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by F4Gary View Post
Maybe your wife should drive...
I can see potential to eliminate or exacerbate the symptoms here...

Have you switched to De-caf?
Seriously, I'd not expect normal attentive driving of any vehicle to = a resting heart rate. Working a x-word puzzle, perhaps.

Be well.
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