SOS: Day 58
What’s your heart rate?
We’re big on numbers this month. And here’s another you need to track: your heart rate.
It’s old news to experienced exercisers. And if that’s you, go out for recess. The rest of you, please finish this post.
Exercise is most efficient when you’re working in your target heart rate range, which is 50%-85% of your maximum heart rate. The right number for you depends on age, health, and workout history.
An easy way to estimate heart max is to subtract your current age from 220. So if you’re 29—and who among us is not forever that age?– your max would be 191.
Whatever your max is….don’t go there. Ever.
If you’re a beginning exerciser, shoot toward the lower end of the range, or 95. If you’re an athlete in great shape (and you really are 21), you can go up to 162.
Here’s how to test your heart rate while you’re working. Watch the second hand on your watch. Put your index and middle fingers under your ear, then move your fingers down until you’re just under your jawbone.
Feel your pulse? Strong? Good. Count the first beat as zero, the next as one, and so on, for ten seconds. Multiply by six. You’ve got your your beats per minute. Slow down if your heart rate’s too high, speed up if too low.
It can be a real hassle to check your heart rate all the time. If you have the cash and you like technology, there are lots of great heart rate monitors on the market. I used to use one that required me to wear a chest strap, which I disliked. But today, there are reliable models that do away with the strap and are more or less like big watches.
Here are reviews of heart rate monitors:
There’s another way you’ve probably heard of for making sure you’re exercising at a good pace. If you can still talk, you’re not over-exercising. If you can sing, you need to work harder. If you’re out of breath, you’re working too hard.
SOS Month 2
What to do so far:
In case you missed a day, the reminders below are clickable.
Mitigate your snoring.
Work out to dance DVDs.
Exercise for the fun of it.
Remember lesser-known benefits of exercise.
Record body measurements.
Decrease your chemical load.
Review your food diary.
Eat 2 ounces of nuts daily.
Diets don’t work; lifestyle changes do.
On the Ides, I’d rather be…
Release anger and hostility.
Wear a pedometer daily.
Get 8 hours of sleep.
Add 1 minute/day and 1 day/week to your workout.
Learn lessons from your own story.
Collect pedometer data for a week.
Quantify for your health.
Write down pedometer data.
Be accountable to someone.
Walk a dog.
Check your heart rate while exercising.