Measure Your Heart Rate
To determine your heart rate, use your first two fingers to press lightly over the blood vessels on your inner wristthe side by your thumb. Count your pulse for ten seconds and multiply this number by six.
If your heart rate is 50 to 85 percent of your maximum heart rate, you have hit your target heart zone and are working at the right level of intensity.
Wearing a multifunctional fitness tracker such as the Fitbit, or Nike+ FuelBand SE, does the work for you. The device is worn like a bracelet or watch and measures your heart rate.
Exercising at the right level of intensity improves heart and respiratory endurance and helps keep your workout at a level that is vigorous enough to meet your health goals.
What Are Exercise Heart Rate Zones
Heart rate zones are a percentage of your maximum heart rate . Exercise too close to your maximum HR and your heart and body will struggle to keep up with the demands.;
The goal of heart rate zones is to make you the most efficient, but to allow you to challenge yourself to improve cardiovascular fitness, says Travers.;;
Exercise heart rate zones are the training levels based on your maximum heart rate.;As you increase your pace, cadence and workload, you increase the demands on your heart. Travers breaks it down:;
- Lower-intensity zone:;Youre exercising at 50% to 60% of your max heart rate. At this point, 85% of the calories you burn are fat. The downside? Youre burning fewer calories overall than you would if you were exercising at a higher intensity. Youre generally able to sustain this zone the longest amount of time.
- Temperate zone:;Youre exercising at 60% to 70% of your max heart rate. Roughly 65% of the calories you burn are fat.
- Aerobic zone:;Working at 70% to 80% of your max heart rate puts you in the aerobic zone. About 45% of the calories you burn are fat. But youre burning a higher number of overall calories compared to the other heart rate zones. You generally sustain this zone the shortest amount of time.;
How Can A Healthy Exercise Heart Rate Help
The first thing that you will want understand is that when you have your heart rate number, whether it is achieved by the Karvonen method or by the more exact stress test, you will be able to monitor this number during your workout.
Having this number will also help to maximize your workout plan. With your maximum heart rate number in hand, you can carefully monitor the intensity of your workouts.
With a heart rate monitor, you will know when you need to push yourself harder during your workout and you will also know when you need to back off.
Sometimes your body will tell you when you should take it easy, but sometimes it doesnt. A heart rate monitor is a good way to keep track of your heart rate.
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How To Lower Your Heart Rate With Exercise
High-Intensity Interval Training is a training method where you give 100% effort in a quick, intense burst of exercise, followed by a short resting period. HIIT increases your maximum heart rate and lowers your RHR.
HIIT is as simple as doing one exercise, like sprinting, as fast as you can safely run for 30 seconds, then resting for 90 seconds.
Warm-up first and start with one rep.
Rest for several days in between HIIT days. Build up slowly to a workout of several reps that only takes about 15 minutes. Then try adding new exercises.
For the best results, dont set an arbitrary time. Instead, push yourself to your max. And then rest and recover until youre ready to give 100% again. For instance, give 100% effort for 15 seconds and rest for five minutes.
Learn more about the health benefits of HIIT and how to do it the right way in this short HIIT video from Thomas DeLauer.
How Long Does It Take To Lower Resting Heart Rate
It takes about 12 weeks to lower your resting heart rate. Studies show that you can lower your resting heart rate with diet and exercise in 12 weeks.
A low resting heart rate means that your circulatory system is efficient. Diet and exercise will make your body more efficient by asking for more work from it.
Your body; however, needs time to adapt to the changes you make. These changes include enlarging your heart, increasing red blood cells, building more capillaries, and increasing mitochondria in your muscles.
Alternatively, you can lower your resting heart rate at any moment by slowing your breathing or with meditation. Practice breathing deeply and slowly and your resting heart rate will slow more quickly in response to stress or exercise.
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Increasing The Heart Rate
There are many forms of cardio exercise. Some focus on increasing the heart rate while others improve aerobic performance. This type of exercise is usually done for short periods, usually no more than ten minutes at a time, and at low levels of intensity. While it may be effective in losing weight, experts advise against this as doing long periods of exercise that are very intense can do more harm than good. An increase in weight is usually temporary, although long-term changes can occur if you do not watch your food intake and exercise regularly.
Aerobic exercises are done by using your own strength to propel you forward and require endurance. You can strengthen yourself with weight training, pushups, sit ups, chin ups, leg lifts, and other exercises. You will also need to rest between such activities. Cardiovascular workouts that focus on increasing the heart rate, raising blood pressure, and increasing stamina have been proven to be more effective weight loss strategies than traditional exercise methods. In fact, they have become so popular that many people exercise daily in hopes of losing weight quickly and easily.
Understanding Your Target Heart Rate
Nearly all exercise is good. But to be sure youre getting the most fromyour workout yet staying at a level thats safe for you, you can monitorhow hard your heart is working.
Aiming for whats called a target heart rate can help you do this, says Johns Hopkins cardiologist;Seth Martin, M.D., M.P.H.;Think of it as the sweet spot between not exercising hard enough and overexerting.
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Cardiovascular System Science: Investigate Heart
IntroductionAs Valentine’s Day approaches, we’re increasingly confronted with “artistic” images of the heart. Real hearts hardly resemble to two-lobed shapes adorning cards and candy boxes this time of year. And the actual shape of the human heart is important for its function of supplying blood to the entire body. You have likely noticed that your heart beats more quickly when you exercise. But have you ever taken the time to observe how long it takes to return to its normal rate after you’re done exercising? In this science activity you’ll get to do some exercises to explore your own heart-rate recovery time.
BackgroundYour heart is continuously beating to keep blood circulating throughout your body. Its rate changes depending on your activity level; it is lower while you are asleep and at rest and higher while you exerciseto supply your muscles with enough freshly oxygenated blood to keep the functioning at a high level. Because your heart is also a muscle, exercise, in turn, helps keep it healthy. The American Heart Association recommends that a person does exercise that is vigorous enough to raise their heart rate to their target heart-rate zone50 percent to 85 percent of their maximum heart rate, which is 220 beats per minute minus their age for adultsfor at least 30 minutes on most days, or about 150 minutes a week in total. So for a 20-year-old, the maximum heart rate would be 200 bpm, with a target heart-rate zone of 100 to 170 bpm.
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 youre 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 youre 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.
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Food As Fuel Before During And After Workouts
Your body is your vehicle, so you have to keep your engine running when you work out. That means fueling up your body by eating the right foods and drinking the right fluids, in the right amounts at the right times.
The American College of Sports Medicine says, Adequate food and fluid should be consumed before, during, and after exercise to help maintain blood glucose concentration during exercise, maximize exercise performance, and improve recovery time. Athletes should be well hydrated before exercise and drink enough fluid during and after exercise to balance fluid losses.You dont have to adhere to a rigid schedule and there are no hard-fast rules, said Riska Platt, M.S., R.D., a nutrition consultant for the Cardiac Rehabilitation Center at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York. But there are some things you should do before, during and after you work out.
Factors That Influence Heart Rate
Your ideal heart rate and what is considered too high or too low are all unique to you. Many factors can influence both resting heart rate and heart rate during running. Age, fitness level, and actual heart size can all influence exertional heart rate, says Mehta. So, its essential to know that theres no cut and dried answer when aiming for a specific heart rate. Heres how some factors can influence your heart rate, according to Burns.
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Determine Target Heart Rate Zones
You can get different fitness benefits by exercising in different heart rate zones. These five exercise zones are based on the percentage ranges of maximum heart rate. In each;zone, you will feel a different level of exertion and your body will be burning a different percentage of carbohydrates,;protein,;and fat.
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.
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Keep Your Doctor Informed Of Your Resting Heart Rate
This article is not meant to diagnose or treat you. Its intended to help you understand one aspect of your health, your resting heart rate. This article is based on scientific research, but science is continually changing. Thus, this information is subject to change.
Everyone is different and has unique circumstances. Consult with your doctor about any changes in your health, diet, and exercise.
Read my full medical disclaimer here.
What Are The Best Exercises To Do If My Heart Rate Is Continually Accelerated
Again, talking to your doctor is a good idea before you start any exercise program or workout plan, especially if you have an accelerated resting heart rate. If you are overweight and you simply have to lose weight for your health, then you may want to start with walking.
In addition, light weight lifting is an excellent way to get your muscles working again, which will aide in the fight to burn off fat faster. Dont lift weights that are too heavy, as this will cause your heart rate to spike. Start low and build up, slow and steady will win the race for you!
This process can be frustrating for many people because it is definitely not the fastest way to lose weight or get into shape. However, once your heart is healthier and your body is stronger, you can do more intense workouts that will accelerate your weight loss and healthy body program.
to use our workout plan builder and plan your workout routine from beginning to end!
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So What Should My Heart Rate Be When Exercising
Your pulse will vary during workouts.
To find your target heart rate, you need to know your maximum heart rate. Unlike resting heart rate, which is something that will change based on your cardio fitness, your max heart rate is determined by genetics and generally diminishes as you age. Therefore, the simplest wayalbeit not the most accurate for all peopleto calculate your max heart rate is to subtract your age from 220. For moderate-intensity aerobic exercise, your target heart rate will be up to 70% of that max, and for vigorous intensity, youre looking for 70% to 85%. The American Heart Association has a table you can reference to find your maximum and target zones based on your age.
That said, higher exertion isnt always better, and your target heart rate will change based on your goals. If you want to maximize the cardiovascular benefits of a HIIT workout, aim for a vigorous-intensity heart rate during your on segments, allowing your heart rate to drop significantly between bouts. Not every workout is meant to be done at 100% of your ability, Smith says. Theres a lot to be said for controlling your heart rate during certain workouts like a tempo run where your goal is to keep an even keel throughout the whole workout.
Use A Heart Rate Monitor
Heart rate monitors;with a chest strap are more accurate than taking your pulse. They transmit the data to a wrist unit or a mobile app so you can see your heart rate throughout your workout.
As prices increase, models include many other features, such as tracking your heart rate zones, stopwatch features, calories burned, and more. Other kinds of heart rate monitors include pulse monitors where you place one or two fingers on a sensor for a reading.
Many heart rate monitors offer the ability to pre-program multiple heart rate zones. This is beneficial if you do a variety of different-intensity workouts because then you won’t have to reprogram it each time. Some will even tell you how long it takes to return to your resting heart rate.
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What If My Resting Heart Rate Is High; Does The Same Formula Still Apply
Even if your resting heart rate is higher, say 90 beats per minute, the same formula still applies to you. What this means, however, is that you have less room to move in terms of reaching your maximum safe heart rate.
Studies show that a resting heart rate of over 84 may be dangerous and having a medical exam is important to ensure that you dont have any underlying issues causing the accelerated rate.
If you have had a higher heart rate your entire life, then it is likely that you simply have a high heart rate, but it is always best to err on the side of caution and get a medical opinion.
What Is A Healthy Heart Rate What Is Optimal
An optimal heart rate about one beat per second; at rest, or . Consequently, for every 10 beats per minute increase, theres a 10 to 20% increased risk of premature death.
Theres strong evidence showing that everyone with a high heart rate is at risk , even otherwise healthy individuals. But there are ways that you can slow your heart rate naturally.
First, check your resting heart rate before you make any changes using the method in section 2. This reading will be your baseline number to track your progress and test which programs work for you. Secondly, record your heart rate after any changes you make.
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Clinical Contributors To This Story
Sarah L. Timmapuri, M.D. contributes to topics such as Cardiac / Heart Health, Exercise / Fitness.
If your heart is racing as youre sitting reading this article, its possible your body is trying to tell you something. A high resting heart rate, or a heart rate of more than 100 beats per minute, means your heart is working extra hard to pump blood through your body. And, that extra effort could result in a wide range of negative effects on your overall health, including feelings of dizziness and fatigue and most seriously blood clots, heart failure and, in rare cases, sudden death.
Normal resting heart rate is anywhere between 60 and 100 beats per minute, and its simple to check how fast yours is beating. While idle, hold your pointer and middle finger between your bone and tendon on the thumb side on your wrist until you feel your pulse, and count the number of beats for a minute that is your resting heart rate.
Certain aspects of someones resting heart rate are directly connected to uncontrollable factors, such as age and genetics, however there are certain actions that be taken to help decrease heart rate and improve overall wellbeing for those whose resting heart rate is above normal.
Here are six proven ways to lower your resting heart rate: