Do you have the heart of an elite athlete or a Model T in need of some major servicing? Calculate your heart rate fitness and find out!
You And Your Resting Heart RateTo find out how fit your heart is, we have to check the rate at which your heart beats when it's not stressed - the "resting heart rate."Now how do we do that? If you have some form of heart rate monitor you already get your heart rate served up on a neat little display. For everyone else here are instructions on how to calculate your heart rate without equipment:
- Turn the palm side of either of your hands up.
- Put the index and middle fingers of your other hand on the first hand's wrist, about 1 inch (2.5 cm) below the point where forearm and hand meet. Do not use the thumb for measuring, because it has a pulse of its own!
- Use these two fingers to slightly press on the grove between your middle tendons and the outside bone. If you now feel a throbbing, you are in the right spot.
- If you can't feel anything anywhere, no worries, you aren't dead. Use the same two fingers and place them on a spot about half an inch (1 cm) below your chin and to the left or right of your windpipe.
- Have a watch at hand that shows seconds and count the number of throbbings you feel for 15 seconds, then multiply this number by 4.
- There it is, your heart rate.
How Fit Is Your Heart?Ok, how does your heart rate fitness stack up? Find your age group in one of the below tables, then go down the column and check for the location of your resting heart rate. We have two tables, because men in general have a larger lung and heart capacity, so their hearts pump more blood with each beat: