You probably know it already, but your heart is your hardest working muscle in your body. But did you know just how hard it works to keep you going? Your heart beats nearly 100,000 times a day, 37 million times a year, and 3 billion times in an average lifetime. Your heart is working hard for you.
Isn’t it time you give it a little attention?
When determining your healthy heart rate, it is important to realize that you have two heart rates you need to pay attention to; your resting heart rate and your active heart rate. Your resting heart rate is measured when you are idle or not doing anything strenuous. Your active heart rate is measured right after doing some sort of strenuous activity.
How to Determine Your Healthy Heart Rate
The first thing you need to know in order to determine your healthy heart rate is to know how to find your current heart rate.
To find your current heart rate you need to feel for a pulse. There are a few good places you can feel a strong pulse. The strongest pulse is on your carotid artery which is located on your neck. To check a pulse on your carotid artery you need to firmly place you index and middle finger on the side of your windpipe on your neck.
The next most common place to check for a pulse is on your wrist. To do so, firmly put your index and middle finger between the bone and tendon over your radial artery which is located on the thumb side of your wrist.
A healthy and normal resting heart rate for adults is between 60 and 100 beats per minute. Generally, a lower heart rate implies a more efficient circulatory system and better overall cardiovascular health. If you have a higher resting heart rate than the average don’t worry because you can lower your heart rate through exercise. Athletes tend to have a lower resting heart rate than the average person due to their improved cardiovascular health.
Your maximum active heart rate is 220 minus your age. So if you’re 40 years old your maximum heart rate would be 220 – 40 = 180.
Here is a table of maximum heart rates and the target heart rate you should achieve while you work out. Ideally while you’re doing cardio you want to be between 65% – 85% of your maximum heart rate.
- Target HR Zone 50-85%
100-170 beats per minute
95-162 beats per minute
93-157 beats per minute
90-153 beats per minute
88-149 beats per minute
85-145 beats per minute
83-140 beats per minute
80-136 beats per minute
78-132 beats per minute
75-128 beats per minute
- Average Maximum Heart Rate
200 beats per minute
190 beats per minute
185 beats per minute
180 beats per minute
175 beats per minute
170 beats per minute
165 beats per minute
160 beats per minute
155 beats per minute
150 beats per minute
You do not want to go above 85% of your maximum heart rate when working out. Doing so can be dangerous to your health.
Finding out your resting heart rate can give you a fairly good indication as to how fit you are. Keep in mind though that this is not an entirely accurate reading of your fitness level as other factors such as genetics can play a role in your resting heart rate.
Finding your active heart rate is very beneficial to seeing if your workout is enough intensity. It can also be a great indicator as to if you’re working out too hard. Regularly checking your active heart rate can give you better intuition as to how much of a workout you’re giving your body when you exercise.
Do you regular check your heart rate?