Why you Should Know Your Heart Rate

You Should Know Your Heart RateIt’s important to know what your heart rate should be when you’re working out and how to keep track of it so you know you’re “healthy.” This number will also help you find ways to maximize your fitness intensity.

What’s in a Number

Too high of a number means you’re straining and should slow down. However, too low of a number means your fitness routine is too low and you should push yourself a bit more, especially if your goal is to lose weight by exercising. Of course, it never hurts to be in the lower target zone when you’re first getting started, but over time you’ll want to improve on things.

How to Find Your Heart Rate

Periodically throughout your fitness routine you’ll want to check your heart rate. The easiest way to do this is by simply wearing a fitness monitor. If you can’t afford one or want to track your numbers in a more traditional way you’ll need to use your thumb to take your pulse on the inside of your wrist. Make sure you push down lightly on this artery with your first two fingers. Once your fingers are in the proper location, make sure you count for 30 seconds then multiply by 2. Now you’ll know what your number is.

Two Different Numbers: Resting and Maximum

To begin with you must know what your number is while you’re at rest. You should make sure to check this when you first wake up in the morning. Between 60 – 100 beats per minute (bpm) is normal here but things like stress, anxiety, hormones, and medication will affect it. Lower is definitely better though because this means that your heart muscle is in such good condition that it doesn’t have to work really hard to beat steadily. There are also studies that have been conducted showing that the lower your heart rate, the better your physical activity level while the lower it is, the more physical inactive you are. You may also have a higher body weight and blood pressure number.

Fortunately, there are some tables available to help you understand your numbers so that you don’t have to remember all them yourself. The numbers found in these tables will be based on your age, but ultimataely your maximum number shoulod be 220 minus your age. It’s also important to remember that your target rate during a fitness activity of moderate intensity is about 50 – 70% of your maximum heart rate. Of course, this will increase to about 70 – 85% of your maximum when you’re involved in vigorous exercise.

Getting Your Heart Rate Where you Want it to Be

It’s important that you don’t do too much or too little when you exercise. Remember, your target number is like a bullseye. Always aim for it so everything you do is beneficial. With this better understanding of your numbers, it’s time to get serious about your fitness routine. At Fitness 360 we’re here to support you at whatever point in your journey you find yourself so contact us today and let’s get started right away.

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