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BPM - a question on another numbers game

Monday, August 09, 2010

Ok, this BPM thing is doing my head in...a little help please! At the least some advice would be really well recieved right around now. Here's the story:

* My blood pressure and resting BPM has always been low - resting heart rate at the start of my journey was 52. Apparently that's healthy

* Getting my BPM up to 150 has actually been really hard up to now - it took the kind of grunting, swearing, sweating workout that made me want to puke. And then I'd usually only just get over 140. I have no idea why this is, it just is.

* Resting BPM is now around 47/48...apparently this is too low. Not sure how to fix that!

* Workout BPM has sky rocketed and this is the part I need help with - my BPM shoots up to around 165 in less than 10 minutes. When I slow down to drink water and catch my breath, it drops as much as 20 BPM in SECONDS! Surely that's not normal? I increase intensity to force me to slow down but that doesn't help at all...and my heart feels like its about to break free from my chest.

* I have a nagging head cold but I haven't been stupid about working out when ill - I have no fever, headache, swollen glands....I just have a bunged up feeling in my sinuses, which is really not unusual for this time of the year.

So, have I missed something here? Why would my BPM be all over the place with less work effort...I'm worried that I may actually be fighting infection and don't know it yet, or I need to change something on my routine. Comments would be greatly appreciated!
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  • CESAU5679
    I agree with - Listen to your body - Get professional medical advice - Listen to your body...

    2735 days ago
    I've found over the last few months it takes me more and more activity to get the bpm up...meaning when I started walking it was easy to hit the second or third month, I had to start running to get above 130 (or go up a really strenuous hill)...and my bpm drops rapidly as soon as I let up...
    Last week in my first 5K it was up around 180 at times and did not feel good at all...but every time it was a cue for me to slow down until it dropped into the 160' hopefully with more training this will work itself out...
    Good luck!
    2749 days ago
    ugh! Too much math. Did you do a search on the site? They seem to have an article on everything.

    Good luck on your quest for answers.

    2749 days ago
    BPM = beats per minute? Did you see the SP blog post about women's target heart rate? I read it sometime in the past month, but not in the past week or two. Basically, the idea was that the study done on heart rate and exercise used only men, and surprise! women don't quite fit into that mold. The new formula gives a lower target.

    As for me, my resting rate tends to be around 60. I had some times last year when I woke up at 5 AM to a heart going so fast my husband couldn't find a pulse, and it sounded like rumbling thunder in my ears. So I had an echocardiogram to check things out. During the echo, my pulse was 37. I tease my husband that knitting is an aerobic activity. But ... haven't done anything more with it. I don't particularly want to take beta blockers for something that has happened just 3 or 4 times in my life, and it doesn't cause any problems.

    A gal in one of my husband's classes was in the hospital for a month or two, because her heart rate was too low. Somewhere around 20, I believe. Lots of time for sitting and knitting, since she felt just fine and dandy. That would be a fun (and expensive) vacation!
    2749 days ago
    I say just do what your body tells you .... work as hard as you want to and slow down if you need to....numbers would really drive me crazy! If you feel bad go get a check up...if you feel good you are probably just fine!!! Don't over analyze or it will make you crazy and change the numbers even more due to the stress of worrying.
    Good luck and again listen to your body..... emoticon emoticon
    2750 days ago
    It's probably a question for your doc, I'm afraid. But like LILY_SPARK mentioned, I've always been taught that your recovery rate is an indication of cardiovascular health (efficiency).
    I suppose your head cold could have some effect, if it's affecting your breathing then that could in turn affect your blood pressure, heart rate etc.
    I wouldn't stress on it too much, though. Keep monitoring...if it's still all over the place once the head cold clears, then probably get it checked out.
    Most importantly, take care of yourself!!
    2750 days ago
    Just a lot more complex than I'm willing to get. If it's important to you, hope you get an answer. If you think it's a "problem" the health professional is probably a good idea.

    2750 days ago
    Of course the medical professional thing mentioned before...

    I always had low BP until my 30s. Now, it's normal to "on the good side." Last time was 110/70? It's not fantastic but if you account that I RAN, drove like a wild woman a few towns over, doc visit and got BACK to work in 1 hour?

    I haven't tested my resting HR for years (bad girl!) but it used to be like 60 or 59 -- not great.

    As for it DROPPING quickly -- that's usually the mark of a healthy cardio-vascular system. I'm not a med pro but that corresponds to everything I've read. If you SIT DOWN at this rest period, it'll drop even faster. It means your body is recovering quickly.

    Prior to aerobic base training -- when I did p90x cardio where TH asks, "Are you recovered yet?" I yelled something nasty & pressed pause to walk around to let mine drop.

    This is why (you won't have this problem!) it takes 50-60 minutes to do a 33-40 minute ChaLEAN Extreme ST workout. I have to let my HR drop or I'm working anaerobically too much. It's normal to work anaerobically w/ ST. Don't get me wrong. With asthma and prior to that ABT, mine STAYED up.

    When I stopped overtraining my anaerobic/ VO2max zones, that recovery time dropped by more than half. It was the main way I saw improvement!

    I can't say anything about resting heart rate and I'm afraid to venture a guess (oh, you know me...could that be a slow metabolism?!?) but the recovery of 20 bpm in seconds is quite possible. If *I* do it, I know you can.
    2750 days ago
    I'd say you must see a medical professional for the low blood pressure and the spikes.

    2750 days ago
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