You probably already know that going to the gym shouldn’t just be about looking good. It’s about living a healthy life and having a healthy heart. Your heart rate is dictated by everything in your day-to-day including: how, when, and what you eat and drink; how you sleep; how you relieve stress, and, yes, how active—or inactive—you are each day.
Our hearts constantly pump blood through our bodies to keep us breathing, moving and, yes, living. Kind of crucial, right? That’s why we want to share some important info with you about measuring your heart rate and understanding what it means.
How Do I Measure My Heart Rate?
There’s the good ol’ fashioned method of holding two fingers to your neck or wrist and counting the beats of your pulse. Use a watch or your smartphone’s timer to count the number of beats in 30 seconds, then double it to get your beats per minute. Repeat the process a few times to make sure you’ve taken an accurate reading. A resting heart rate (RHR) between 60 and 100 beats per minute is considered normal for adults. Yes, this seems like a wide range, but everyone’s body is different, so experts recommend ranges rather than solid numbers.
For those who hate math, there’s also wearable technology that does most of the work for you. Ever hear of the Fitbit? We bet you have. These days, heart rate monitors are all the rage on college campuses, corporate America, and beyond because they’re easy to use and can measure so much more than just our heart rates. (Plus, there’s the whole “we hate math” thing.)
Why Should I Care About My Resting Heart Rate?
Measuring your resting heart rate is important because it offers a snapshot of how your heart is functioning in real time. Your heart is a muscle, after all, and it shouldn’t be overlooked (just like “leg day”). You should check your resting heart rate regularly to gauge its average rate from day to day. It shouldn’t fluctuate too much, but doing it over consecutive days—or at different times throughout the day—will give you a more consistent idea of where it is on a day-to-day basis. Stressors from work, family, or relationships can vary from day to day, and so, too, can your heart rate.
Some people like to track their heart rates during or immediately following a workout so they can get to know how their bodies cool and recover after a workout. By monitoring your heart, you’ll also become more attuned to how your body feels during different types of exercises. Like anything, your heart rate will depend on the person, and your fitness level (e.g. Are you a Tuesday through Thursday gym goer or the Tough Mudder type?).
Why Your Heart Rate is Important
Um… life? Yes, your life. The Chuze Coaches and Trainers can help you get a better grip on understanding the importance of your heart rate whether at rest or on the go. They can also put you on track to a healthy lifestyle that goes beyond six-pack abs and a gluteus maximus sans cellulite. Their approach to overall wellness ensures that the matters of your heart are a part of overall health plan (love life counseling not included).