Heart Rate at Rest

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by Ssushi, May 21, 2003.

  1. Ssushi

    Ssushi New Member

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    I measured my my HR at rest yesterday and it was 86. My missus had about 102. What's yours?

    What should it be at rest?

    Ssushi
     
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  2. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    My resting heart rate is 46, taken first thing in the morning siting at the end of the bed.

    60 to 80 is common for non athletic people.

    A number of things can affect your resting HR measurement, like time of day, previous exercise, food and dehydration. This is inaddition to health, fatigue, age, smoker, obesity, alcohol consumption, etc.

    Best measured in the morning when all conditions are the same from day to day.
     
  3. maarten

    maarten New Member

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    What should it be at rest is impossible to answer.

    Rest heart rate is personal. One can be in top condition when its 50 where someone else with 50 is actually at a poor level for him. If you rest heart rate is lower then the one of someone else doesn't mean you will ride harder.

    But heart rest rate is fine to track progress of your form(it getting gradually lower)
    Indicate sickness or non recuperation of training/race/party(beiing higher) when 5 or more beats higher then then the previous day this is an alarm bel.

    Bear in mind that lady's have on average a higher rest heart rate just as the have more body fat.
     
  4. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    I agree with maartain and you should not be concerned by differences in HR between individuals as RHR is no indication of performance. To add to this point, worryingly high RHR can indicate a number of mediacal problems (including those related and those unrelated to cardiac function). Obviously with a poor cardiac function, the RHR is higher to maintain the required blood flow around the body even during a resting state.

    Maartain, can you explain why a greater body fat would result in a higher resting heart rate in women. I can't see the link between RHR and %body fat. Obviously there would be an increase in RHR if there was a dramatic and sudden increase in body mass (via fat, muscle or water), but this rarely occurs outside clinical settings.
     
  5. maarten

    maarten New Member

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    2Lap

    No Link(as far as I know) Its just both on average higher for females.
    The body fat was just an extra info, sorry to have made you wonder.

    Greetz
    Maarten
     
  6. J-MAT

    J-MAT New Member

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    Cardiac output is what it's all about. Cardiac output is a function of stroke volume times heart rate. Stroke volume is the amount of oxygenated blood the left ventricle ejects each time the chamber contracts and empties.

    As your heart gets fitter, you will experience "ventricular hypertrophy" which means your left ventricle will get larger. This means for at any given heart rate (rest or racing), your left ventricle will eject more blood with each beat.

    Strength athletes like powerlifters and wrestlers also experience hypertrophy of the heart muscle, but not in the left ventricle, rather in a general thickening of the entire heart muscle itself. Ventricular hypertrophy is healthy, thickening of the myocardium is not. This condition is sometimes referred to as "athletes heart." Inexperienced doctors sometimes confuse the two when looking at echocardiograms.

    Your resting heart rate lowers after training due to the increase in stroke volume. Heart rate lowers, since your left ventricle has enlarged and will squirt more blood on every contraction.

    For example, an untrained person might be able to only pump 20 liters/minute whereas a highly trained athlete might be able to pump 40 liters/minute.

    If a sedentary person trained hard for years and doubled their stroke volume, resting heart rate would theoretically decrease in half.

    People can meet the demand for a given activity with a lower stroke volume and higher heart rate or a higher stroke volume and lower heart rate. Of course in racing, you need the highest stroke volume combined with the highest heart rate. The rider with this combination will most likely be the most powerful/fastest.

    Having a very low resting heart rate is not necessarily a predictor of success. Many top riders have resting heart rates in the 40's and 50's. Guys like Indurain make others look bad with his 28 bpm resting rate when he used to race!!!

    Women have smaller hearts than men, and resultantly have to meet their cardiac-output requirements with higher heart rates, not only at rest but at all other intensities as well.
     
  7. Kristian

    Kristian New Member

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    That seems pretty high! When you say "at rest", how much at rest do you mean?
     
  8. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    Thanks Maarten for the response.

    J-Mat can you let me have the reference for this, interested to see if it is genetic or environmental and what type of scaling was used in finding this out.
     
  9. J-MAT

    J-MAT New Member

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    Ssushi:

    When checking resting heart rate, always do it under the same conditions, like when you get out of bed in the morning. Don't drive in heavy traffic, suck down 5 cups of coffee and check it!!!
    Check your pulse in the morning when you first get up. Wake up for a few minutes, but lay down, on your back, and check it. Whenever checking blood pressure or "resting" heart rate, make sure you sit/lay down for a few minutes to allow your body a chance to "recover." This also helps to maintain consistency in the readings.

    2LAP:

    I'll have to dig through a pile of information in my "lab," but will do my best to get it to you. In the meantime, women's organs are always smaller than a man's. This is one of the reasons why alcoholism in females is more dangerous to women than men; their livers are smaller, and suffer more damage with smaller amounts of alcohol than men with larger livers. Conversely, men can and do get breast cancer. Breast cancer in men is often much more deadly than in females, because the cancer will metastasize (spread) quicker to surrounding organs. Women have larger breasts, and the cancer will stay there longer, giving women more time to take action before it spreads.

    Women also have more bodyfat than men. While fat is not metabolically active like muscle is, it still has a blood supply the heart has to pump through. That's one reason why being overfat is bad; it puts additional load/demand on the heart muscle.

    When a woman has more fat to pump through (compared to a man) combined with a smaller heart/ventricles, it raises the cardiac output requirements for that person at rest or at exercise. Think of it this way: A car with a small motor is loaded with heavy packages. A bigger truck is empty, with no packages. If they both went down the road at the same speed, which engine would have to work harder??? Even if men and women had idential bodyfat percentages, women with smaller hearts would always have to meet all their cardiac-output requirements through increased heartrate since their left ventricles are always smaller.

    Women's smaller hearts are also one of the main limiting factors in world-class endurance perfomance (running, cycling) when comparing the fastest male versus the fastest female. Blame God if you don't like it. Nature made us this way!!!

    Let's say your body needed 1000 "units" of oxygenated blood per minute. Your left ventricle ejects 20 units, while someone else with the same 1000 "unit" reqirement can eject 25 units of blood with each stroke. Your heart would have to beat 50 times in one minute to get the 1000 "units." The other person's heart would only have to beat 40 times in one minute to meet the same requirement. Smaller pumps have to work harder/faster to keep up with larger ones.
     
  10. GearGrinder

    GearGrinder New Member

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    my resting hr is 35.
    your resting heart rate sounds very high did you take it when you woke up?
     
  11. visser

    visser New Member

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    my heart rate is at 54bpm and i row for 10 out of the 12 months and i traen 12.5 hr a week
     
  12. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    J-MAT. I agree that women have smaller organs than men, on average the women also have smaller bodies. As I am interested interested in peadiatric exercise science, I am very interested in issues of environment, genetics and scaling (e.g. alometric scaling, relative to kg or kg of fat free mass, etc). The following are mean't as comments not complaints, I'm just interested!!! Hope the points make sense...

    Originally posted by J-MAT
    2LAP:

    I'll have to dig through a pile of information in my "lab," but will do my best to get it to you. In the meantime, women's organs are always smaller than a man's. This is one of the reasons why alcoholism in females is more dangerous to women than men; their livers are smaller, and suffer more damage with smaller amounts of alcohol than men with larger livers. Conversely, men can and do get breast cancer. Breast cancer in men is often much more deadly than in females, because the cancer will metastasize (spread) quicker to surrounding organs. Women have larger breasts, and the cancer will stay there longer, giving women more time to take action before it spreads.

    -On average women do have smaller organs, but that is because women are on average smaller than men. Couldn't see any reason why women would have organs reletive to a man when matched for size.

    Women also have more bodyfat than men. While fat is not metabolically active like muscle is, it still has a blood supply the heart has to pump through. That's one reason why being overfat is bad; it puts additional load/demand on the heart muscle.

    -Agree that body fat and muscle has a blood flow and this provides a demand on the heart. However unable to see how the heart develops differently when that demand is provided by fat or muscle. The heart is unable to differentiate between fat and muscle. Although, being over fat creates additional demand on the heart so does having extra muscle; additional fat is only a problem when taken to extreme (its difficult to gain muscle to this level) and when accompanied by additional symptoms.

    When a woman has more fat to pump through (compared to a man) combined with a smaller heart/ventricles, it raises the cardiac output requirements for that person at rest or at exercise. Think of it this way: A car with a small motor is loaded with heavy packages. A bigger truck is empty, with no packages. If they both went down the road at the same speed, which engine would have to work harder??? Even if men and women had idential bodyfat percentages, women with smaller hearts would always have to meet all their cardiac-output requirements through increased heartrate since their left ventricles are always smaller.

    -Do women have smaller left ventricles? Why is this? Surely men have a greater muscle mass, would that not raise their RHR to the same level in the same way that a woman's increased body fat?

    Women's smaller hearts are also one of the main limiting factors in world-class endurance perfomance (running, cycling) when comparing the fastest male versus the fastest female. Blame God if you don't like it. Nature made us this way!!!

    -The heart is a limiting factor in all peoples performance, the difference between men and women can also be explained by muscle mass, body fat, biomechanical differences, hemoglobin concentration, etc.

    Let's say your body needed 1000 "units" of oxygenated blood per minute. Your left ventricle ejects 20 units, while someone else with the same 1000 "unit" reqirement can eject 25 units of blood with each stroke. Your heart would have to beat 50 times in one minute to get the 1000 "units." The other person's heart would only have to beat 40 times in one minute to meet the same requirement. Smaller pumps have to work harder/faster to keep up with larger ones.

    -But do women have smaller pumps compared to men? Women have smaller bodies too, so the are likely to only need 800 units, think thats 40 pumps for a 20 unit pump! Not sure if any of this answers the original question - environment, scale or genetics?
     
  13. J-MAT

    J-MAT New Member

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    2LAP:

    1) Men's hearts are bigger than women's. This includes the left ventricle. Men, will always have a higher VO2 max, stroke volume etc. As far as scaling goes, this is probably more of a grey area. Even if it were proportional, the extra bodyfat a woman carries places them at a performance disadvantage. Many women carry 20% or more fat and compete well at this level. Elite women are closer to 10-15% fat. Some might be under 10%.

    2) As far as the heart having to pump through muscle versus fat, It seems that muscle does not have the same negative effects that fat does. I don't know if having 60+lbs of extra muscle (bodybuilder/powerlifter) would necessarily be unhealthy, but 60 lbs of fat would be. I don't think strength athletes are overly healthy though, especially when/if they used steroids to obtain their mass which many/most do. I think this is an area that could use a lot of research. The extra bodyfat women normally carry is not enough to be "unhealthy," It's naturally part of a woman's design. However, when compared to leaner men, it places them at a performance disadvantage.

    3) It's commonly purported that the heart is about the size of your clenched fist. I've heard some doctors decribe the size of your heart to be twice the size of your fist. Regardless, the hearts structure is going to be proportional; that is, the chambers, valves, etc. are relative to it's overal size. Women's organs, and hearts are smaller in general, and are going to have smaller ventricles. Heart rate demand is also proportional to muscle mass and of course, men have more, but it doesn't seem to effect resting heart rate when compared to women's less mass/more fat.

    4) The size of the left ventricle is the single greatest limiting factor in endurance performance. Next important is "muscle metabolism." This is the ability for skeletal muscle to process/extract oxygen through increased capillary density and increased number and size of the intracellular organelles, most important of which are the mitochondria. Blood volume/hemoglobin and lung diffusion round out the "big four" factors for endurance perfomance.

    5) Although women have smaller muscles, and it would seem their demand/requirements would be less, it doesn't seem to be an advantage with their smaller hearts. Now for environment/scale/genetics. If you have ever ridden with professional/elite women, you know how strong they can be. They are tough and very fast. This is obviously a case of environment. However, when compared to trained men, or when comparing untrained men/women, scaling and genetics are almost the same thing. Women are genetically smaller by nature's design compared with men, although parental genetics will influence the size of woman's heart. Top female riders will probably have the largest heart (parental genetics) compared with other female riders. Nevertheless, the most gifted female (parental genetics) still has to work within the general framework of a body that is much smaller overall than compared to a man.

    6) Interestingly, the larger differences between the sexes with regard to athletic performance are most pronounced in adulthood. Prior to puberty, the differences in aerobic performance (vo2) between boys and girls are negligible due to similar body composition, and since maximum O2 uptake is normally expressed as a function related to bodyweight (ml/kg).


    I hope this clarifies what I posted earlier!!!
     
  14. maarten

    maarten New Member

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    Things changes when we come to the growth Sprint. Girls have the sprint earlier and may even get the better of the boys(at least in length, but often also atletic wise) therefor for kids mixed sport will still be fair. Male growth sprint may kick in 2 years later but it is more pronounced(more cm growth a year) added the effect that on average girl stop growing 2 years earlier then boys. This makes boys that much bigger(on average) not only in length but also in muscles. Its all about the hormones who do their thing on average between 11 and 16 years of age.
     
  15. retrogeek

    retrogeek New Member

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    My resting heart rate is 42bpm measured first thing in the morning.

    I went to bed with my heart rate monitor strapped on once just to see, when I woke up I looked at the display on my monitor for a couple of minutes to make sure it was a steady measurement.
     
  16. visual_infinity

    visual_infinity New Member

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    Mine is 47 BPM when resting for ten minutes. I should think it would be lower in the morning. Last year I had one of 55 BPM and its not as if I have ben training with great dedication, I like to ride and when I go out I'll do about 20-22MPH for about 7 or 8 miles when I'm all warmed up during which my HR will rocket to 160 which is on the border to anerobic functioning. Mind you, I'm a 21 year old male so you want to be careful about comparing yourself and then working hard to compete on fitness to much younger people.

    Jonathan
     
  17. theedge

    theedge New Member

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    I'd like to know if body size / height / weight has anything to do with HR.

    A big person should have a lower HR than a small person because the blood flow takes a longer time to travel around the big guy's entire body.

    I come up with this theory because I saw a nature TV show :))) saying elephants have heartrate ~30bpm while birds have >200bpm.

    Is my theory true?
     
  18. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    HR between individuals is quite variable, but limited to a narrow range (e.g. 40 to 210).

    You would not expect a larger person to have a slow or faster HR than a smaller person. Larger people also have larger hearts!

    However training can increase the size of your heart (or more importantly cardiac output) lowering HR. Weight gain (e.g. muscle or fat mass) places additional demand on the heart and can raise HR (particularly when the weight gain is extreme as in obese people).

    One interesting thing about hearts are that small hearts take less time to fill and empty, while large hearts longer! That would be one reason why the elephants beats less than a bird.

    You also have to look to scale (e.g. body surface area and scale) and heart volume. It is likely that the bird has a smaller volume heart relative to an elephant.

    Both also have different levels of metabolism requiring different blood flows to sustain life.

    Differences between humans are much less extreme.
     
  19. Ssushi

    Ssushi New Member

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    I was riding the other day and got my HR to 95%Max. I was not breathing heavily at all, I should have been I recon as my VO2Max is very low. Does anyone know why this would be the case?

    Ssushi
     
  20. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    Your VO2 max and max HR occur at very similar times (VO2 max occurs when your cardiac output is at or close to maximum) so this is a bit odd. Normaly you would be out of breath and working very hard to get up to 95%. Perhaps this was an error with your HRM.

    Similar sometimes happens to me at the start of a ride when I don't warm up well (but never as high as 95%); I always put that down to adrenaline or caffine use!!!

    I don't think you should worry unless it happens a lot. If you are concerned and you think its an abnormal response, go and see your doc.
     
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