T Nation

What's Your Resting Heart Rate?


Anyone here keep track of their resting heart rate? Just for fun, health concerns, or as an insight into training/recovery, etc?

I’ve been keeping track of it on Saturday’s now, in the morning shortly after waking up. The lowest reading I got today was 44 BPM @ 6’1" / 157 lb.

I’m petty sure the lowest recording i’ve ever had was 42 in ~2007 @ 6’1" ~145 lb, but i’d probably be happy if it dropped under 40 without long runs. Personally i’m more concerned about my recovery HR after an intense interval, sprint, etc. I follow that much more closely, ie, how long does it take my HR to drop from 150+ BPM during intense work to < 90 BPM during a rest period. Resting heart rate has always been a good indicator of fitness for me. When i’m out of shape it creeps up towards 60. When i’m in really good shape it’s in the low 40’s.



really bad probably 80 , it used to be in the 50s a while ago.


Last measurement was in Oct. Clocked in at 44 bpm at 5’9 and 195lbs.


48 bpm this AM, but my bp varies between 127/83 - 154/95 throughout the day.


My heart rate significantly increases when I go on periods of alcohol consumption.

When I am straight and narrow - 48-52 BPM. The lowest I’ve gotten down to was 44 BPM consistently for a few weeks when I was doing a ton of cycling while lifting.

When drinking (mind you, heavily for long periods), it can easy increase to 75-80 BPM in a short amount of time (like a few weeks). This and not exercising puts it in the 80s.

Moral of the story - excerise appears to have a beneficial affect on my health while excessive alcohol consumption appears to have a negative affect. I know, shocking.


Mine’s like 0 bro.


What about blood pressure? Is there anything similar health wise?

My resting heart rate isn’t crazy low, but my blood pressure keeps getting lower and lower as I’m more consistent with conditioning.


Do you test your blood pressure yourself or just go to a doctor often?


Doc once a month for a scrip that has to be written each time it’s dispensed. Blood pressure has gone from 118/76 (about 4 months ago) down to a new low today of 95/63.


Don’t think BP is as similar as RHR, but they both tend to decrease together IIRC. Not 100% sure though. I’d imagine there is more variety in blood pressure in general, due to dietary factors & genetics. Resting HR dropping seems more related to improved stroke volume, I forget, don’t even know anymore.



Weekend resting HR measurement, while sitting down forum’n on the computer, dropped some more. I got an average of 45 BPM over 32 minutes with lots of low 40’s and an absolute minimum of 40 BPM.

Bring on the high 30’s, but please no pacemaker later on in life. :confused:



In the off season mine is low to mid 50’s, during prep it gets in the low 40’s.


Tested for the first time since a few weeks ago. Finally seeing some 3X’s (39’s) in the data. Nice!


First test since exactly 2 weeks ago. Cardiovascular system has been improving considerably the last few weeks, mostly due to getting my run mileage up into 60+ miles per week. My goal is 80 miles per week.

Caffeine in me, food in me, taken at 4:30 PM, had to poop for the second half of the test, replying to forum posts, etc.

20 minutes:

  • average = 40
  • low = 35

Just letting the mileage “sculpt” me.


How do your shins/ankles/knees hold up?

How much does losing a small amount of weight (2-4kg) positively affect your running?


Hey man!

Joints, bones, etc hold up really well. It’s my calf muscles (gastrocs and soleus, mostly soleus) that get beat up the most. I run mostly on concrete sidewalks using ~4.5-5 oz XC flats. But, given how light I am, it seems that i’m able to handle it. Plus, I grew up playing basketball on hard outdoor courts so, I think I just handle those hard surfaces well. I run on a nice track ~1x/wk, it’s hard but bouncy, nothing like concrete/asphalt. As for my calves, I think it has alot to do with my joint angles and the zero drop flats I run in, I think I really get an intense loading of my gastrocs & soleus when i’m running, those muscles absorb a ton of force. I’m also pretty springy when I run, so my gastroc-soleus-achilles complex attributes greatly via elastic energy return per stride, IMHO - this also seems to increase as I get lighter, it’s as if my “form shifts” to make better use of this complex. EDIT: You know what also gets wrecked on occasion though? Toes (blisters/painful), toenails (black/painful), nipples chafed (painful af), lmfao. “runner problems”.

Losing weight effects my running, jump, and sprinting significantly. It’s why I always end up getting “extremely” light. I think it also helps reduce the overall pounding my body takes, per stride or landing etc.

I’ve only had one bout of shin splints, and that was when I started getting serious with vertical jumping & ramping up the volume of jumps, drops, and rebounding exercises etc.

Ironically, I had one “major” injury from running, but it surfaced when I started to go from concrete to grass. LMAO. I wanted to see if my body would feel better with the softer surface, and after a few weeks of running on grass, my left knee’s patella started tracking. I felt like absolute garbage running on grass.

Also as far as mileage goes, I think 80 is enough for me. I mean my main focus is just to peak my 1500m / 1-mile running ability, but I also want repeatable low 5 minute miles or even a few repeatable sub 5’s, so need a very strong cardiovascular system. Above 80, given the surfaces i’m running on, seems more risky.

FWIW, if I lived near a track, i’d use that more than concrete. Both tracks I use are 35-40 minutes away, and one is open only once per week & the other is closed for maintenance for a while longer. One thing i’ve noticed, going from concrete to track is no problem, going from track to concrete takes adjustment. A few months ago I started running exclusively at my old university track, then went back to concrete and I was wrecked. Never had a problem going from concrete to track, in fact I just get right on a track and feel great, hah.




You on medication or something? Plans for a pace maker? Been screened and tested for anything serious?


No meds, no plans for a pace maker, and no I haven’t been screened in a while.

Cardio & maybe a lower body mass (being so much lighter) are the culprits … I do worry about the pace-maker issues that some former elite runners have needed, but they are a very small minority AFAIK. Plus, in addition to putting in way more mileage than me (120+ miles per week), some of them have been rumored to have used drugs/PED’s, which might increase your risk, since while on PED’s you are working harder, longer, and more frequently than your body would normally handle. I’d never consider using PED’s and I have several planned deloads/back off periods. So i’m just not going to try and not worry about it.

To be honest, a resting heart rate of 0 would solve alot of problems.



That’s one thing i’ve always wondered about regarding “athletes needing pacemakers” thing. I’m sure there’s a ton of variations as to why someone requires or avoids needing a pace maker, yet puts in alot of mileage running.

One thing i’ve wondered about, is body mass. So for example, say your resting HR is 60, and you lose 10 lb of fat strictly through diet, not exercise. If your resting HR drops, this would most likely be due to not needing to supply as much blood throughout the body. Now say you are a dedicated runner (elite or recreational, but dedicated putting in some considerable mileage). As most people get older, they gain fat mass & lose muscle mass. So, do the heart adaptations that one achieved when they were lighter & become harder to reverse as they get older, end up becoming exacerbated as one ages & becomes heavier? ie, the heart continues to want to beat at a lower HR, but it’s not adequate enough to supply blood throughout the body, which is now heavier, so these people end up fainting, becoming dizzy, etc. Hypothetically, staying lighter might actually help in this specific situation. Lots of hypotheticals. Also, imagine a recreational runner who is heavy, but puts in lots of miles - the heart has to pump more blood throughout the body because of the excess mass. So since the body is inefficient, the heart has to work harder to pump blood, putting more strain on the heart (and joints).

Obviously i’m no cardiologist, so it’d be cool to actually hear from someone who specializes in that field with respect to athletics. There’s lots of people on here who are specialists in some medical field, wondering if there’s one who can chime in on this.

One thing I know is, most of the “really old people” (90+) i’ve seen, are very thin & light.

Finally, if people dedicated to running have to worry about pace-makers and such, people dedicated to bodybuilding (or strength sports which require considerable mass gain) probably have similar worries about heart attacks & stroke. I mean that’s what most people think of when they hear about a bodybuilder dying, some kind of stroke or heart attack, as cliche as that sounds. Instead of having a low resting heart rate, they have a high resting heart rate due to the usual lack of aerobic activity AND the sheer mass that requires blood flow.

It’s interesting to think about the extremes, on the opposite ends of the spectrum.



Decided to do a “walking resting heart rate” experiment today… got cut short at 3 miles due to a thunderstorm, wanted to gather data for 8 miles.

Happy with the results: average 77 over 3 miles while still averaging 17:01 min/mi pace. The first mile skews it a little though, I settled in @ mile 2, 16:45 min/mi pace with 78 average. I feel like it would have improved some more as the miles went on, until maybe mile 6+. Need to do this again in a week or so, but gather data for 8-10 miles.

lol @ the calories burned per mile.