Typical Resting Heart Rates
For most adults, a normal resting heart rate is considered to be between 60 to 100 bpm, though this range can vary and depends on multiple factors. Adult males tend to have lower heart rates.
A heart rate outside of this range may still be considered healthy in certain situations. For example, athletes and physically fit individuals may have resting heart rates as low as 30 bpm. Your doctor can help you assess whether your resting heart rate is healthy for you.
Resting heart rate decreases with age. For example, one large study found that the upper limit of the average resting heart rate is 110 bpm for adults 18 to 45 years old, 100 bpm for those between 45 and 60 years old, and 95 bpm for those older than 60. These are the average resting heart rates for healthy adults, as reported by the same study:
What Happens To Your Heart Rate While Sleeping Normally
Okay, first things first: lets find out what happens to your heart rate on an average night. The key thing to remember is that your sleeping heart rate is going to be lower than your normal resting heart rate. How much lower? Well, on average, heart rate while sleeping decreases by around 24 beats per minute in young adults, while people over 80 see a 14 BPM decrease. Nocturnal heart rate can also vary significantly between individuals by up to 70 beats per minute.
So, why do people have a lower heart rate while sleeping? The nerve signals that raise heart rate decrease during sleep while the signals that lower heart rate increase. While there are heart-rate variations throughout the different sleep cycles, the headline news is that sleeping heart rate should be lower than your resting heart rate.
But why is an elevated heart rate during sleep a potential problem? Sustained elevation of heart rate tends to cause wear on the heart, says Dr. Douglas P. Jeffrey, family medical specialist and medical advisor for eMediHealth. The chronic workload imposed by a higher heart rate over the baseline could eventually lead to heart attack, congestive heart failure, and premature death. Essentially, your heart works during sleep but should not work as hard, and if it is, then this could be a sign of an underlying problem.
Improving Your Resting Heart Rate Score
If you have an elevated RHR, one of the best things you can do for your heart is to incorporate more cardiovascular exercises into your lifestyle.
Several research studies show a conclusive link between a high resting heart rate and a lower level of physical fitness. The RHR in most people also increases with body weight, and obese people have a significantly higher resting heart rate than the general population.
Hence, adopting a more fitness-oriented lifestyle and losing some weight are some of the best tactics for getting your RHR in control.
Adopting cardiovascular exercises like cycling, swimming, and walking into your daily routine can also strengthen your heart, improve your overall heart health, and reduce your risk of heart disease and other adverse cardiovascular events.
Note: Remember to hydrate properly and get enough sleep. Dehydration and sleep deprivation are two factors that can cause a consistent spike in your resting heart rate, even if you maintain optimal fitness levels.
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Do You Understand Heart Rate Variability
Heart rate variability can be an important indicator of your mental and physical health. Your HRV can also predict how well youre sleeping at night and warn you if you have a medical condition. Investing in a well-reviewed HRV monitor can help you make greater strides in your health journey.
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Heart Rate During Exercise
Its only natural that your heart rate increases during exercisethat means youre doing it right. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has targeted heart rates you can aim for during exercise, ranging anywhere from 109 BPM to 172 BPM.
Your heart rate will increase during exercise to supply more oxygen to your muscles, Jean says.
Just be sure to consult with a doctor before starting a vigorous exercise program and go over any risk factors you may have.
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How Do I Get My Heart Rate In The Target Zone
When you work out, are you doing too much or not enough? Theres a simple way to know: Your target heart rate helps you hit the bullseye so you can get max benefit from every step, swing and squat. Even if youre not a gym rat or elite athlete, knowing your heart rate can help you track your health and fitness level.
Causes Of Low Heart Rate Problems
The most common cause of a low heart rate is a malfunction in the hearts sinus node, its natural pacemaker. This area sends our electrical signals telling the top and bottom heart chambers the timing of when to pump blood through the body.
Other causes of low heart rate include an atrioventricular block, age, and certain conditions such as inflammation of the heart muscle, low thyroid function, electrolyte imbalance, obstructive sleep apnea, or heart attack due to coronary artery disease.
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What Is A Target Heart Rate
According to the AHA , your target heart rate during moderate-intensity activities is about 50 to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate. Vigorous physical activity should result in about 70 to 85 percent of your maximum.
So for 35-year-olds, a goal target heart rate is between 93 and 157 bpm .
The table below shows the target heart rate range and average maximum heart rate for different ages, based on information from the AHA.
- being an older adult
- problems with the conduction system of the heart
Borderline or occasional bradycardia may not need treatment. But prolonged bradycardia, or bradycardia thats not treated, can become more serious.
Certain underlying conditions are typically the true decider of what a dangerous heart rate is. If youre already living with heart disease, heart failure, or a history of heart disease and notice a fluctuation in your heart rate, you should go to the doctor as soon as you can, as it could be a sign of a serious complication.
How Oura Determines Your Ideal Bedtime
When you begin wearing your ring, Oura starts looking for patterns to better understand how you sleep. What time did you go to sleep on nights when you received high Sleep Scores? Did your resting heart rate lower to optimal levels during the night, or did it stay elevated? These cues allow Oura to guide you in the right direction.
Note that perfection isnt requiredand you dont have to hit the hay at your suggested every single night. Instead, consider Bedtime Guidance as your toolkit for accountability. If you start going to bed later while still waking up early, Oura will advise you to begin preparing for bed earlier to make up for lost sleep.
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Typical Heart Rates During Exercise
During exercise, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends aiming for a target heart rate between 64% and 76% of your maximum heart rate for moderate-intensity workouts, and 77% to 93% for high-intensity workouts.
You can estimate your maximum heart rate by subtracting your age from 220. For example, the maximum heart rate for a 50-year-old would be estimated to be 170 bpm, and 200 bpm for a 20-year-old. This means that the 20-year-old may want to aim for a heart rate between 128 and 152 bpm during a moderate-intensity workout, or between 154 and 186 bpm for a high-intensity workout.
However, there are additional factors to consider when calculating your target heart rate. It is important to consult with a medical professional to determine any potential risks prior to engaging in vigorous exercise.
How Do I Know My Resting Heart Rate
To take your resting heart rate, make sure youre sitting and have not recently exerted yourself. You can usually find your pulse by feeling the inside of your wrist, just below the base of your thumb. You will feel a soft, pounding sensation there. You can count how many times you feel this in 1 minute, or you can count it for 10 seconds and multiply by 6.
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How Do I Improve My Hrv Score
A high HRV score is tied to good overall heart health, so take steps to make sure youre keeping your heart in peak condition. Naturally, you should strive to eat healthily and exercise regularly. Along with your HRV scores, watch your weight, cholesterol, and blood pressure levels to make sure youre in the healthy range.
Lastly, you should practice methods for coping with stress to keep yours at manageable levels. If need be, speak to a doctor about ways to get conditions like anxiety under your control.
Average Sleeping Heart Rate By Age: Why It Matters
Your heart rate is one of the bodys most essential biomarkers, and can often be a key indicator of your health levels. Coincidentally, it can also be one of the easiest to measure.
So, should you measure your heart rate and begin parading your relatively normal scores as a testament to your bill of health? The reality surrounding your heart rate and what it implies is significantly more nuanced than that.
First off, when the importance of heart rate of overall well being comes up in conversation, the discussion often centers around improving your maximum heart rate .
Your maximum heart rate indicates how fast your heart is beating when you face your highest levels of stress or exertion. This marker is one of the critical determinants of how much oxygen you can consume when your body is at the highest needyour aerobic capacity. Several studies show a strong relationship between higher aerobic capacity levels and a reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases like heart attacks. So, the focus on the maximum heart rate is not unwarranted.
However, your heart rate when youre sleeping or at rest can be equally as important.
Diagnosing The Underlying Cause
Your doctor may use a variety of diagnostic tools to help diagnose your condition, including:
- Holter or event monitor. This is a smaller, portable EKG machine you wear for a set amount of time to help your doctor monitor your electrocardiographic signals.
- Electrocardiogram. Also referred to as an ECG or EKG, this diagnostic tool uses small electrodes to record the electrical activity of your heart. Your doctor can use the information collected to determine if heart abnormalities are contributing to your condition.
- Stress test. Sometimes called a treadmill test or excercise test, this can help diagnose people whose symptoms may be exercise related.
- A tilt-table test. This measures how your blood pressure and heart rate respond when you go from lying down to standing up. People dealing with fainting spells are usually candidates for a tilt-table test.
- Imaging tests. Imaging can be used to assess if there are any structural abnormalities in your heart that may be contributing to your condition. Possible imaging tests can include echocardiogram, CT scan, and MRI scan.
- Electrophysiologictesting. Done under local anesthesia, this procedure involves temporary electrode catheters being threaded through veins or arteries into the heart to record the hearts electrical signals.
Once a diagnosis is made, your doctor will work with you to develop a plan to treat and manage your condition.
Keys To Getting An Accurate Result
Resting heart rate is determined with a pulse measurement when you are relaxed and at rest. Do not take resting heart rate after:
- Active exercise
Some common causes of low heart rates include the following:
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Why Does My Heart Rate Spike When I’m Asleep
Your body undergoes a number of important recuperative processes during sleep, from cell renewal to muscle repair to restorative brain activity.
Changes in breathing, oxygen levels, and heart rate occur as well. These actions are essential to your long-term health. While having a slight fluctuation in heart rate during sleep is normal, it is important to understand the causes of more noticeable spikes in your heartâs number of beats per minute.
Sleep apnea and heart rate fluctuation
A common cause of a rising heart rate during sleep is a lack of oxygen, which is often brought on by obstructive sleep apnea. This is a condition where a personâs normal breathing frequency is reduced or sometimes flat-out stopped during sleep. The effort to breathe persists, but with the upper airway blocked, oxygen levels drop and carbon dioxide levels rise.
These blockages involve the softening of the muscles around the throat, soft palate, uvula, and tongue base. When the occurrence of these interruptionsâreferred to as apneasâare in excess , a formal diagnosis of sleep apnea from a doctor may follow.
When breathing ceases during sleep, the brain recognizes that things arenât right, and wakes the sleeping person up, kickstarting normal breathing functions once again. Not only is a personâs sleep quality compromised because of sleep apnea, they also cause the heart to beat faster than usual
Heart rate and oxygen levels
Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome
A person with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome may experience an increased heart rate upon standing up. They may also experience dizziness and a drop in blood pressure.
POTS is a condition of the autonomic nervous system. It happens because this system does not properly regulate bodily functions such as blood pressure, heart rate, or breathing.
their heart muscle. However, a very low heart rate in those who are not athletic or healthy can be a sign of a condition affecting the electrical system of the heart.
A sudden drop in heart rate far below a persons usual resting heart rate may indicate sepsis , a brain bleed, or the electrical system of the heart failing.
In a person with any symptoms of illness, excessive bleeding, a recent serious injury, fainting, or dizziness, a low heart rate is an emergency.
According to one , the following factors may lead to a person experiencing a low heart rate:
It is not an emergency if the heart rate briefly falls outside of the recommended range or if a person has a shift in heart rate that improves with relaxation or deep breathing.
However, a person should contact a doctor if they:
- notice that their resting heart rate suddenly changes
- have a change in heart rate that causes anxiety
- experience a heart rate change after taking a new medication
- often have an irregular heart rate
A person should go to the emergency room if they:
To lower a high heart rate at home, a person can:
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How Does Your Heart Rate Change While You Sleep
Your heart rate isn’t only affected by the act of sleeping but by where youre at in your sleep cycle as well.
Jean says a normal response to sleep is a decrease in heart rate. The heart rate is slowest during deep sleep and may increase during rapid eye movement sleep, which is when the majority of your dreams take place.
Medications That Can Raise Your Heart Rate
Medications can also raise your heart rate. These include:
Levothyroxine, the replacement thyroid hormone for people with low thyroid function
Check in with your pharmacist or healthcare provider if youre concerned your medications are affecting your heart rate.
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Target Heart Rates Chart
What should your heart rate be when working out, and how can you keep track of it? Our simple chart will help keep you in the target training zone, whether you want to lose weight or just maximize your workout. Find out what normal resting and maximum heart rates are for your age and how exercise intensity and other factors affect heart rate.
Exercise And Your Pulse
If you check your pulse during or immediately after exercise, it may give an indication of your fitness level. A heart rate monitor is also useful for recording your heart rate when resting and during exercise.
Aerobic activities such as walking, running and swimming are good types of exercise because they increase your heart and breathing rates.
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What Is A Normal Or Resting Heart Rate
There are three general ways to classify heart rate, 1) normal, 2) fast and 3) slow.
- A resting heart rate is normal between 60-100 beats per minute.
- A resting heart rate is fast at greater than 100 beats per minute.
- A resting heart rate is slow at less than 60 beats per minute.
A resting heart rate predicts longevity and cardiovascular disease, and current evidence suggests that it is also an important marker of outcome in cardiovascular disease, including heart failure. A normal heart rate is generally stated to be between 60-100 beats per minute at rest . However, recent studies have suggested that an ideal resting heart rate is between 50-70 beats per minute. It is well-known that the average resting heart rate for well-trained athletes is between 40-60 beats per minute! A heart rate can change dramatically while sleeping or with daily activity and exercise. Usually, a heart rate will be slower during sleep, faster during daily activities or with exercise, and recover quickly back to a resting rate after exercise. This means your heart has appropriate heart rate variability and recovery, which is associated with good heart health. Your resting heart rate can also be used to estimate how much energy your body uses, or your basal metabolic rate.