3.07 Monitoring Heart Rate During Exercise
Monitoring your heart rate is very important when doing most exercises, especially aerobic exercises like walking or jogging. You want to avoid very intense exercise which will wear you out quickly. So if you see your heart rate is too high, you will know to reduce your pace.
In general, we want your target heart rate to be between 50-80% of your maximum during moderate intensity exercise. We calculated that range earlier as you recall.
Depending on your goals and medical problems, it may be recommended to go even lower in intensity, such as 50-60% of your maximum heart rate. This will most likely require a longer duration of exercise to maintain optimal heart health.
If you are on medications that slow your heart rate down, such as “beta-blockers” like metoprolol or carvedilol or “calcium channel blockers” like diltiazem (Cardizem), then using heart rate during exercise will not be accurate. In these instances, you must use the “ratings of perceived exertion” or RPE that was discussed earlier and aim for a 6-7 on that scale.