Heart Health Awareness

Regular exercise is important for staying healthy and fit, but you should always monitor your heart rate during workouts.  In honor of heart health awareness month, the team at BOB has put together a guide for checking your pulse.

Your heart rate (or pulse) is the number of times your heart beats in one minute.  To check yours, follow these steps:

  • Place your index and middle finger on the palm side of your wrist, just below the base of your thumb. You can place them on your lower neck, if you’d prefer.
  • Press lightly with your fingers until you feel a pulse. If you don’t feel one right away, reposition your fingers until you do.
  • Count each beat you feel for 10 seconds, and multiply this number by six to determine your heart rate.

Normal Resting Heart Rate

A normal resting heart rate is usually between 60-100 beats per minute. However, this number can vary greatly depending on age and lifestyle. Always check with your doctor to determine your normal resting heart rate zone.

Maximum heart rate

Your maximum heart rate is the highest number your pulse should reach, regardless of exercise.

You can use this formula to find yours: 220 – Your Age.

Keep in mind that your doctor can give you a more professional range of what your maximum heart rate should be.

Target heart rate

You want to reach your target heart rate during exercise to reap the most substantial benefits. Usually, this will be about 60%-80% of your maximum heart rate. If you’re just starting out, you may want to aim for 40%-50% of your maximum heart rate, and gradually work up to a higher percent.

Your doctor may decrease your target heart rate for health reasons, so ALWAYS consult with a medical professional before starting a new exercise program.

During heart health awareness month and throughout the rest of the year, it’s important to put safety first while working out. By following these tips, you’re well on your way to achieving your fitness goals while still maintaining a healthy heart.

Do you have any other tips you’d like to share for keeping track of your heart rate during exercise? We’d love to hear from you on Facebook!

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