Did You Know?
A simple measure of your heart rate can tell us a lot about your health. The number of heartbeats in a lifetime is relatively constant across all mammals, so if your heart rate is higher than it should be, your life expectancy is shorter than it could be. People with a lower resting heart rate are more likely to have lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, are less likely to develop diabetes, and less likely to require medication to maintain their heart health. In contrast, a resting heart rate of 83 or over means your more likely to die of a cardiovascular related cause.
Your heart beat is the number of times your heart beats in one minute. So your resting heart beat is a measure of the number of times your heart beats in one minute after you have been sitting down for about 5 minutes. You can measure your heart beat by positioning two of your fingers (not your thumb) around your wrist or on your neck so that you can feel your heart beat. Alternatively, you can purchase a heart rate monitor to measure this accurately for you. A resting heart rate of between 77 and 82 beats per minute means your in the YELLOW risk category – increased risk of cardiovascular disease compared with the healthy population. A resting heart rate of 83 or over means your in the RED risk category, and you should do something about it.
Are you concerned about your resting heart rate, and want to do something about it? Well, the first thing you should do is talk to a health care professional, and try to get the most accurate measurement possible. You can send us an e-mail here at Flynn Medical Exercise or make an appointment to come in and see us. In our clinic, measurement of resting heart rate is just one part of a comprehensive medical health and exercise assessment, which you can read more about here. You’ll learn exactly what you are at risk of, and more importantly what you can do about it. After that, taking exercise sessions that are safe and effective is the best cure. With personalised, individual exercise sessions, guided by continuous heart rate monitoring, you’ll be heart happy again in no time!
Seán Flynn is the Lead Clinician with Flynn Medical Exercise, and takes patients in their Sandyford clinic.