Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Workout Wednesday: Heart Rate

Workout Wednesday time. Today I feel like talking about your heart rate. Cardiorespiratory training helps reduce our risk of heart disease. It also reduces our resting heart rate. “Cardio” training normalizes our resting blood pressure and improves our ability to perform everyday tasks / activities.

The average person’s resting heart rate is 72 bpm. The simplest way to calculate your heart rate (HR) during exercise is to use this easy formula:

HRmax = 220 – (your) age

This will tell you how many beats your heart does in a minute (BPM). The target heart rate training zone falls between 55% and 90%.

There are three ways to detect your exercise intensity. One is your oxygen intake. Most people can’t monitor this. You would need a lab to figure this out. The most common way to measure your exercise output is by wearing a HR monitor or taking your pulse manually and then using the formula above to figure out where you should be.

I think the best way to tell if you are working hard enough, is to not only use a heart rate monitor but to ask yourself “How am I feeling?” In the fitness world, we call this “rate of perceived exertion”.

During a warm up, you feel a natural rise in body temperature. Your breathing should be easy. During 1st half of a cardio workout, you should be breathing steadily. Believe it or not, you should still be able to carry on a conversation, sweating will begin and as your heart rate increases, it should be more difficult to talk. During the peak cardio component, you want to feel uncomfortable. You really should be breathless.

Ask yourself the next time you are out for run if you can carry on a conversation, if yes – pick up the pace :)

Hope this helps to make your next workout an even better one.

Be safe, stay healthy and have fun!

Simply Yours,


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris November 7, 2012 at 2:16 pm

How long should someone be at an exertion level where it is uncomfortable to have a conversation? Just for the average Joe not asking for a marathon runner or anything. 15 minutes? Longer?


vanessa November 7, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Fifteen to 20 minutes of straight activity at peak cardio should do the trick!


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: