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Old 01-31-09, 03:26 PM   #1
bhikkhu
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Resting Heart Rates, anyone?

I've tracked my RHR for years and have been pretty happy with it, but I'm curious if anyone else does the same.

When I was in my late teens, early 20's, training for road racing, the lowest my resting heart rate got was 42, and my average was about 46. That's measuring pulse at the carotid for a full minute upon first sitting up in the morning. If I had a good relaxed heart rate I would know I could put in a hard day of training without worries; if my heart rate was 50 or 60 I would know my body was still recovering from past training, and to take it easy.

Of course all sorts of things can come into play with heart rates, and that's more of a guideline. Doing this over years gave me a good base to judge from. I am 44 now, and pretty pleased that I got down to an RHR of 48 over last summer. Its more like 52 now, taking it a little easy through the rough winter. There was an interval when I smoked moderately and drank and slacked off generally, and I had an RHR of 60+, not to mention some chest pain (though I blame George Bush for that ) before I adopted better habits again.

The lowest rate I have heard of is Miguel Indurain, who I read had an RHR of 28. Anyone else use their RHR as a guide for training? I got the technique from some book back in the 70's, and I think it has served me well.
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Old 01-31-09, 09:00 PM   #2
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My name is not Miguel Indurain, but my resting heart rate is also 28 beats per minute. I'm 57 years old. I checked it 3 different ways, first at 4:30am before I got up to go to the gym counting on my wrist with the clock for one full minute for 5 days in a row. Then a couple years later I got a heart rate monitor and checked it at 4:30am, and 5 months ago I was in the hospital's recovery room from a spinal tap and I was hooked to a monitor and lying there resting it was also 28. It's always been low ever since high school and for various reasons, I've had numerous cardiogram and they've all been good.

Last edited by Lawrence08648; 02-02-09 at 07:45 AM. Reason: inserted my age
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Old 01-31-09, 09:06 PM   #3
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My name is not Miguel Indurain, but my resting heart rate is also 28 beats per minute..
All I can say is Wow! My daughter got a stethoscope for xmas last time and we were talking about that. She said my heart sounds like babump babump babump...and Indurain's must sound like BaaaaRUMP....BaaaaRUMP....BaaaRUMP....

I guess the physical size of the heart is involved, as well as overall cardio fitness. I am happy enough that mine is back around 50, which is considered good.
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Old 01-31-09, 09:55 PM   #4
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60 beats per minute sitting on the couch and relaxing. I guess that is good?
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Old 02-01-09, 04:26 AM   #5
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As I sit here at the computer.. 45bpm. First thing in the morning, i'm usually around 38.
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Old 02-01-09, 10:54 AM   #6
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I'm in the low 30's at 28 years of age. My doctor always ends my appointments with, "So, when do you want to schedule that pacemaker?" and a little smile.
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Old 02-01-09, 05:57 PM   #7
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People have different sized hearts, so it doesn't make sense to compare your resting heart rate to somebody else's.

It is useful to track your own. Mine's in the mid 40s right now, and when I get trained up it will usually be right around 40.
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Old 02-02-09, 08:53 AM   #8
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Anyone else use their RHR as a guide for training?
I used to check mine fairly often during run-training programs. If the RHR was a beat or two "up" from what I knew to be normal I would delay my speed-work workout till the next day.

I also track my workout recovery HR after performing long LT cycle-trainer sessions. I spouted a "whole big deal" thread about how people should find and measure base thresholds of HR/performance so as to learn to engage in a better understanding of HR and exercise.

If I had my way, all the HR books would advise "newbies" to find and repeat the lowest possible average HR for a 12-minute mile - and then have the out-of-shape idiots formulate their higher workout HRs from there.

But I digress.......
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Old 02-02-09, 09:21 AM   #9
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I'm in the low 30's at 28 years of age. My doctor always ends my appointments with, "So, when do you want to schedule that pacemaker?" and a little smile.
41 yo, 44 bpm, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and a few other fun endocrine issues. My doctor likes my heart beat that slow. The nurse/assistant always freaks out about it. Its even more fun when my bp comes in around 100/60 or even lower....
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Old 02-02-09, 01:24 PM   #10
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Last year at my physical, as I hit 40, they did an EKG reading on me. So I relax and have it done. Whenever I've done it at home I was in the mid-40's, so the doctor comes in the room, reviewing my chart and says to me (not knowing I like to bike) "So, you think you are Lance Armstrong..." as my RHR was at 37.

Well that made me feel good until the first uphill of the season in April.
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Old 02-02-09, 08:49 PM   #11
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RHR doesn't necessarily mean anything
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Old 02-03-09, 09:57 PM   #12
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RHR doesn't necessarily mean anything
I agree, as the heart is so responsive to so many things that any given reading may be misleading, and then that someone with a lower RHR isn't necessarily more fit than someone with a higher RHR.

But I still find it useful as a general indicator of metabolic state partly because it is so responsive. That is, if I sleep badly or drink too much before bed, I'll wake in the morning with an RHR around 60. If I ride very hard for a couple of days, the next morning my RHR will be 56 or so. If I rest for a day, the next morning it will be about 48 (this week). On the one hand it just tells me what is usually obvious, but on the other hand it helps me to avoid overtraining, which is often not obvious until its too late.
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Old 02-03-09, 11:14 PM   #13
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Same as bhikkhu. 48 at 63y.o. Agree it doesn't mean anything, but a 5-6 beat increase from normal resting definitely does. So yes, I watch it daily. My old HRM went bum, so I got a new Polar 725s and now also keep track of orthostatic HR.

When I'm in top shape, I can feel it miss beats from time to time. Doctor said normal, don't worry. I guess some rhythmic variation is good for you.
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