Resting Heart Rate

What is heart rate?  Well, for our purposes it is how many times your heart beats in one minute.  But there is also different types of heart rates that interest us in particular when it comes to training and non-training.  But for this blog I will mainly focus on Resting Heart Rate and follow up in another blog about heart rate for training purposes.

Resting heart rate is simply your pulse when your body is at rest.  Simple enough right?  Well, not exactly.  Resting heart rate can fluctuate based off many parameters such as:  medication taken, stress levels, temperature of the air, fitness levels, body composition, and body position (standing up or lying down).  But lets say for the most part your stress levels are down (because you work out at Norcal!), you no longer need or never had to take medication, temperature is around average (70 degrees in your home), you have been working out at Norcal, you have been eating Paleoish or Paleo, and for some reason you happen to be lying in bed. Well then you are in a good place to base your overall heart health off your resting heart rate!

Now that all these parameters are shining in your favor, there is one small procedure you need to do to figure out your resting heart rate.  This requires 2-3 fingers (excluding your thumb), finding the carotid artery in your neck, and a timer that can go from anywhere of 0-60 seconds.  If you have these things, well then, you can calculate your resting heart rate.

Place your index finger with the following 2 fingers to your neck and search for your pulse, which should be located around your carotid artery.  Refrain from using your thumb because most research has shown that using the thumb can give you false readings when calculating your heart rate.  Once you find the pulse you have different options for finding your heart rate.

10 Seconds= multiply the number you counted by 6

15 Seconds= multiply the number you counted by 4

30 Seconds= multiply the number you counted by 2

60 Seconds= multiply the number you counted by 1

Now for the most part, with all parameters looking great, a heart rate from 40-60 is pretty healthy.  40 is a bit low on the spectrum and is common for world class athletes, but closer to 60 is more average and realistic for most of us Norcalers.  Now find your pulse and watch/clock and practice!

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Written by Matt

Matthew Brown has been involved in athletics for most of his life. He developed a huge passion for running at a very young age and ultimately competed for Chico State University in Track and Field for 4 years. After graduation he felt the continued drive to be involved in athletics in some way, and pursued a Masters degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Exercise Physiology. While working on his degree he was actively involved in the Chico State Track and Field program coaching both sprint and middle distance athletes in addition to working with them on their strength programs. His compassion for fitness and people continued to grow even after finishing his degree. He felt there was still room for growth and improvement in his overall knowledge in fitness and found a new home at Norcal Strength and Conditioning. While training at Norcal he found a new way to be competitive in fitness, and that was in the sport of Crossfit. After competing in a few competitions and training at Norcal for a year and a half he decided to pursue an opportunity as a personal trainer. He is excited to be a part of the sense of community and compassion that surrounds NorCal strength and Conditioning. Before Matthew attained his Masters degree in Kinesiology, he obtained his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with an option in Management. He has been a supervisor for over 13 years at a large canning and packaging corporation. Working with a variety of people offers many types of challenging situations and Matthew loves to be a part of these experiences. With his long history of involvement in management and athletics, Matthew has the skills, leadership, and enthusiasm to help motivate any person from any walk of life to achieve their fitness goals.

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