Saturday, May 25, 2024

How To Take Your Heart Rate

Don't Miss

What Is Maximum Heart Rate

How To Check Your Heart Rate

Your maximum heart rate is, on average, the highest your pulse can get. One way to get a rough estimate of your predicted maximum is to subtract your age from the number 220.

For example, a 40-year-old’s predicted maximum heart rate is about 180 beats per minute.

You can learn your actual maximum heart rate with a graded exercise test. If youâre taking medicines or have a medical condition such as heart disease, high blood pressure, or diabetes, ask your doctor whether you should adjust your exercise plan to keep your heart rate under a specific number.

How To Take Your Heart Rate

You can measure your heart rate by finding your pulse. The pulsating rhythm of your bloodyour pulsematches the movements of your heart and indicates your heart rate. Using your middle and index finger, press firmly in an area of your body that has a pulse. One of the most common places to take your pulse is on the inside of your wrist. Other body parts that reveal your pulse include:

  • The side of your neck
  • The pit opposite your elbow
  • The base of your toe

Once you locate your pulse, using a stopwatch, begin counting each beat for 60 seconds. Alternatively, you can count the beats for 15 seconds and multiply your results by 4. This measurement indicates your approximate resting heart rate.

What Should Your Heart Rate Be

Heart rate norms are based primarily on age rather than gender, although men tend to have slightly lower heart rates than women.

The ideal resting heart rate for adults is 60 to 100 bpm. Very fit individuals such as athletes may have resting heart rates below 60 bpm.

Target heart rates can be used to maximize the efficiency of your workouts, as well as to keep you safe. Typically, exercising at 60 to 85 percent of your maximum heart rate is most beneficial.

Exercising at the lower end of this percentage or doing interval training is ideal for fat burning. Exercising at the higher end is ideal for building cardiovascular strength.

To calculate your estimated maximum heart rate, you can use the equation of subtracting your age from 220. For example, if youre 45, then your approximate maximum heart rate is 175 bpm .

You can then use your maximum heart rate to determine what your target heart rate is while exercising.

The chart below shows estimated maximum and target heart rates for various age groups:


Also Check: Esophageal Spasms Symptoms Heart Palpitations

How To Measure Resting Heart Rate

To determine your resting heart rate the old-school way, simply count how many times your heart beats in a minute. Your reading will be more accurate if you measure it in the morning before you get out of bed. To measure your resting heart rate, follow these steps:

  • Choose a location at which you can feel your pulse. The best places to find your pulse are on your wrists, the insides of your elbows, the tops of your feet and the side of your neck, just under your jaw.
  • Place two fingers on the pulse location, and count the number of beats you feel in 60 seconds.

Use a stopwatch during this process because it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to count both the pulse and the seconds in your head. Counting for a full 60 seconds will provide the most accurate result, but you can also count for 30 seconds and then multiply that number by two.

For example, if I count 30 pulses in 30 seconds, I’d multiply that by two to get 60 for my resting heart rate.

How To Measure Your Heart Rate: 4 Ways And What’s Normal

Your Pulse And Your Target Heart Rate

How, when and why to measure your pulse.

The major secret to getting fit and tracking your fitness, your heart rate refers to how many times your heart beats per minute. While seemingly basic, your heart rate can actually offer a phenomenal amount of insight into your overall health, cardiovascular fitness, endurance and more.

Even if you’re not a serious or elite athlete, knowing your heart rate can help you determine proper intensity levels for your workouts and make sure you always get the most out of your workouts.

More so, knowing and monitoring your heart rate can help you spot current or developing health problems, such as arrhythmias or tachycardia .

Read more: How to lower your resting heart rate | The best chest strap heart rate monitors | How healthy is your resting heart rate?

You May Like: Does Tylenol Increase Heart Rate

What Is Your Pulse

When your heart beats it pushes blood around your body. This heart beat can be felt as your ‘pulse’ on your wrist or neck.

Your pulse is measured by counting the number of times your heart beats in one minute. For example, if your heart contracts 72 times in one minute, your pulse would be 72 beats per minute . This is also called your heart rate.

A normal pulse beats in a steady, regular rhythm. However, in some people this rhythm is uneven, or ‘jumps about’. This is known as an irregular pulse.

To Customize Workout Metrics:

If you’re not seeing heart rate or want to further customize which metrics you see, follow the steps below:

1. Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone. Tap the My Watch tab.

2. Scroll down to find the Workout app. Tap Workout, then Workout View.

3. Tap the workout you want to edit, then tap Edit.

4. Tap the “-” sign for metrics you want to remove, and the “+” sign for metrics you want to add.

5. When you’re finished, tap Done.

Don’t Miss: Symptoms Of Weak Heart Valves

How Can I Check My Pulse

You can feel the pulse by pressing lightly on a blood vessel close to the skin’s surface. Always use your index and middle fingers, as your thumb’s pulse might give incorrect readings. The two most common points for checking the pulse are the neck and the wrist.

To check the pulse at the neck, place your index and middle fingers on your lower neck, on either side of the windpipe. Press lightly until you feel a pulse.

To check the pulse at your wrist, turn the palm side of your hand facing up. Place your index and middle fingers of your opposite hand on your wrist, approximately one inch below the base of your hand. Press down until you feel the pulse.

Receive Irregular Heart Rhythm Notifications

How to Figure Your Resting Heart Rate

You can receive a notification if Apple Watch has identified an irregular heart rhythm that appears to be atrial fibrillation .

  • Open the Settings app on your Apple Watch.

  • Tap Heart, then turn on Irregular Rhythm Notifications.

  • You can also open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, tap My Watch, tap Heart, then turn on Irregular Rhythm.

    Recommended Reading: Unsafe Heart Rate During Exercise

    What Are Heart Palpitations

    A heart palpitation is when you suddenly become aware of your heart beating, usually in an irregular way. Sometimes you can feel it in your ears or your chest when youre lying down. Your heart beat may feel:

    • too fast or slow
    • like its fluttering
    • like its thudding, or pounding.

    It is not unusual to feel heart palpitations occasionally and mostly they are harmless. However if youre experiencing them on a regular basis, see your doctor.

    Exercise And Heart Rate

    Like any other muscle, your heart needs exercise to keep it fit and healthy. Regular exercise can help reduce your risk of heart disease and other health conditions, such as diabetes.

    To keep your heart healthy, you should aim to do 150 minutes of low to moderate intensity exercise a week. If you have a heart condition, talk to your doctor about what exercise and target heart rates are safe for you.

    One way to measure the intensity of your exercise is by using your heart rate. To exercise at a low to moderate intensity your heart rate should be at 50 to 70% of your approximate maximum heart rate.

    The easiest way to get an approximate maximum heart rate is to calculate 220 your age. You then need to calculate 50 to 70% of your MHR.

    For example, if you’re 40-years-old:

    • your approximate maximum heart rate is: 220 40 = 180 beats per minute
    • 50% of your MHR is 180 X 0.5 = 90 bpm
    • 70% of your MHF is 180 X 0.7 = 126 bpm.

    Alternatively, you can use our heart rate chart below to get a rough idea.

    Remember if you’re on medications to slow your heart rate down, you may not be able to meet these upper heart rates and the aim should be to exercise at a rate that makes you lightly puff.

    You May Like: Bottom Part Of Heart Not Working

    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.

    How Do I Get My Heart Rate In The Target Zone

    Fanatic Cook: What

    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.

    Recommended Reading: Can Acid Reflux Cause Heart Palpitations

    Taking Your Heart Rate On Your Body Rather Than The Machine Is More Accurate

    When using a treadmill, here is how to do that. After all, a machines recording may be very innacurate.

    Though checking heart rate during treadmill use shouldnt be obsessive, you should be aware of your hearts effort during the exercise to ensure that your heart rate stays within a safe range for your age and individual physical condition.

    Consult with your doctor if youre on any medications. Some drugs, such as beta blockers, influence exercise heart rate. Caffeine and nicotine also impact it.

    Find out what your resting heart rate is by taking a 60-second pulse for three consecutive mornings while still in bed and calm. Add the numbers and divide by three.

    You can do this with a heart rate monitor or by manually palpating at the two following sites:

  • Radial artery. This is the preferred site. If youre right-handed, place your index and middle fingers just below the left side of your left wrist while palm is up and vice versa if youre left-handed.
  • Carotid artery. Locate the Adams apple of your neck either side of it practically lines up with the outside corners of your eyes. Place index and middle finger on one side, OR the other, but not both. Keep thumbs off neck. Do not press hard or this may slow pulse and cause dizziness.
  • How To Measure Different Kinds Of Heart Rate

    There are four different heart rate measurements you should know about. They all have some place in monitoring health and fitness, but your resting heart rate and max heart rate are the two most important.

    Related: This might be the number-one way to track your fitness progress | Does Orangetheory Fitness work for muscle toning and fat loss?

    You May Like: Tylenol And High Blood Pressure

    How To Monitor Your Heart Rate With An Apple Watch

    Your Apple Watch can monitor your heart rate while you’re resting or working up a sweat.

    Need to check your heart rate on a regular basis? Your Apple Watch includes a Heart Rate monitor that can automatically display your heart rate before, during, and after a workout.

    The heart rate monitor can display your current rate, resting heart rate, and walking heart rate so you can compare them. You can also tell the watch to notify you of any dramatic rise in your heart rate during a time when you’ve been inactive.

    With watchOS 7, Apple has added new workout modes for dancing, core training, functional strength training, and cool down, all of which will track your heart rate as you work up a sweat. Plus, the new built-in sleep tracker will monitor and record your heart rate as you sleep.

    Make sure you’ve updated your Apple Watch to the latest version. On your phone, open the Watch app and to go General > Software Update. The app will either tell you that your software is up to date or prompt you to download and install the latest version. Now, lets look at how to use the Apple Watch to monitor your heart rate.

    How To Check Your Heart Rate

    How to check your pulse and heart rate

    According to the Harvard Medical School Special Health Report Diseases of the Heart, it’s easy to check your pulse using just your fingers, either at the wrist or the side of the neck.

    • At the wrist, lightly press the index and middle fingers of one hand on the opposite wrist, just below the base of the thumb.
    • At the neck, lightly press the side of the neck, just below your jawbone.
    • Count the number of beats in 15 seconds, and multiply by four. That’s your heart rate.

    To get the most accurate reading, you may want to repeat a few times and use the average of the three values. For a resting heart rate measurement, you should also follow these steps:

    • Do not measure your heart rate within one to two hours after exercise or a stressful event. Your heart rate can stay elevated after strenuous activities.
    • Wait an hour after consuming caffeine, which can cause heart palpitations and make your heart rate rise.
    • Do not take the reading after you have been sitting or standing for a long period, which can affect your heart rate.

    Various smartphone apps to check your heart rate are also available. For most of these, you place your finger on the phone’s camera lens, which then detects color changes in your finger each time your heart beats.

    You May Like: Does Tylenol Increase Heart Rate

    What Is Your Target Zone

    Target Heart Rate Zones by Age *

    • Age: 20
    • Target Heart Rate Zone : ** 120 170
    • Predicted Maximum HR: 200
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 117 166
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 195
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 114 162
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 190
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : ** 111 157
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 185
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 108 153
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 180
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 105 149
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 175
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 102 145
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 170
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 99 140
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 165
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 96 136
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 160
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 93 132
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 155
  • Target Heart Rate Zone : 90 123
  • Predicted Maximum HR: 150
  • Your Actual Values

    • Target HR

    * This chart is based on the formula: 220 – your age = predicted maximum heart rate.

    How To Lower The Heart Rate

    Practicing meditation or yoga may help to lower the heart rate.

    If the heart rate is suddenly spiking in response to issues such as emotional stress or environmental factors, addressing the cause is the best way to reduce the heart rate.

    Ways to reduce sudden changes in heart rate include:

    • practicing deep or guided breathing techniques, such as box breathing
    • relaxing and trying to remain calm
    • going for a walk, ideally away from an urban environment
    • having a warm, relaxing bath or shower
    • practice stretching and relaxation exercises, such as yoga

    Many lifestyle habits can contribute to lower the resting heart rate in the long term.

    They may also improve a persons ability to maintain a healthy heart rate during physical activity and stress.

    The following tips may help to lower the heart rate in the long term:

    1. Exercise: The easiest and most effective way to achieve a lasting lower heart rate is to do regular exercise.

    2. Stay hydrated: When the body is dehydrated, the heart has to work harder to stabilize blood flow. Throughout the day, drink plenty of sugar- and caffeine-free beverages, such as water and herbal tea.

    3. Limit intake of stimulants, such as caffeine and nicotine: Stimulants can cause dehydration, increasing the hearts workload.

    4. Limit alcohol intake: Most forms of alcohol dehydrate the body. Alcohol is also a toxin, and the body must work harder to process and remove it.

    Heart-healthy nutrients include:

    Recommended Reading: Heart Regulation Medication

    How Can You Use Your Target Heart Rate

    You can use your target heart rate to know how hard to exercise to gain the most aerobic benefit from your workout. You can exercise within your target heart rate to either maintain or raise your aerobic fitness level. To raise your fitness level, you can work harder while exercising to raise your heart rate toward the upper end of your target heart rate range. If you have not been exercising regularly, you may want to start at the low end of your target heart rate range and gradually exercise harder.

    To take your heart rate during exercise, you can count the beats in a set period of time and then multiply by a number to get the number of beats per minute. For example, if you count your heartbeat for 30 seconds, double that number to get the number of beats per minute. You can also wear a heart rate monitor during exercise so you do not have to take your pulse. A heart rate monitor shows your pulse rate continuously, so you see how exercise changes your heart rate. Then you can work harder or easier to keep your heart working in your target heart rate range.

    Target heart rate is only a guide. Each individual is different, so pay attention to how you feel, how hard you are breathing, how fast your heart is beating, and how much you feel the exertion in your muscles.

    More articles

    Popular Articles