I have been tracking several fitness metrics since I kicked off my Healthy Living Plan a few months ago. You know, weight, measurements, percent body fat. The standard fare. I have also been tracking my resting heart rate. I take it every Sunday morning.
For awhile it’s been pretty exciting to watch it drop. I was getting in shape! But as it continued to drop, I actually started to get worried. After all, I’m not in that great of shape. I still pat myself on the back if I run a mile under 10 minutes. But, I reassured myself, I was just being paranoid.
So I took my pulse this morning in accordance with the Sunday ritual, and it was 48 bpm. Mind you, this was after a cup of coffee. It’s been hanging out in the low 50s for awhile, but this was the first time it bottomed out and plummeted into the 40s. Something about crossing that particular threshold revitalized my concern.
And where do we go to find all the answers? Google! Here’s what I found:
From the MayoClinic – “For a well-trained athlete, a normal resting heart rate may be as low as 40 to 60 bpm.”
And from MSN Health and Fitness – “High-performance athletes often have heart rates in the 40s.” Dr. Thomas H. Lee goes on to say, “When people come to see me concerned about a slow heartbeat, I first ask them if they have had fainting spells, or do not have enough energy to do their daily activities.”
So far so good.
“I next see if I can make their heart speed up by having them walk up a flight or two of stairs. If they can do that activity, and their heart speeds up, I reassure them that their slow heart rate probably just means they are in good shape.”
Okay…heart rate definitely goes up with the stairs. Double check.
I guess that means I’m just a well-trained, high-performance athlete.