There are many reasons why different people will have low blood pressure, so I second Coach Nancy's recommendation. Your doctor needs to identify the specific causes, and the best way to improve that through exercise.
For me, I'm on the low to low-moderate scale, but not where medication is yet required...hence part of why I'm here before I reach that point. My doctor said mine is a combination of good genetics that do not make me prone to high blood pressure, combined with a lack of conditioning for my heart. The only way to improve that is to work up to a stronger heart rate, much as you would condition and train any muscle. He groaned when I told him I used a HRM but said it's like lifting weights. You would not pick up dumbells for the first time and grab the biggest one, expecting great success. You would start with smaller ones that felt comfortable and slowly, over time, increase difficulty. I used do cardio with intentions of raising my heart rate into the target zone for my size/age and would be huffing, puffing, and about to fall out. Now, I try to keep my heart rate around 120 (below the target zone for cardio, but that's where I start feeling that "I can still talk but I'm breathing hard" point), and use intervals to spike it into higher ranges for no more than a minute at a time. After that minute, or before if I start to get that pressured feeling in my head behind my eyes you probably know all too well, I back off to a cooldown pace until I'm back around 120.
Every body is different. Do not work so hard you feel uncomfortable, regardless of what the numbers say on your HRM / workout equipment. As someone prone to overdoing it, I've worked legs, core, arms, etc. to the point of jelly and pain for days, but my heart? I sort of need that more than anything else. Be very careful there, and listen to your body, not the beeping on your HRM. The HRM target zone is for the average, normal body. You have a medical condition that makes that range not work for you, so pay more attention to your level of exertion. The talk test is a much better measurement.
Confirm any or all of that with your doctor, and listen to her/his recommendation, though, based on your specific medical reasons for low blood pressure.
Edited to add: This past weekend, I mowed grass and tossed my HRM on. Since it was abonxiously hot and I wanted to get done quickly, I was practically running with the mower and in less than five minutes, could barely breathe, was sweating like a fat girl in a sauna (not far from the truth, in Alabama), was dizzy, and looked down to see my HRM was happily at the high end of the target cardio (150-160). I had to stop, go inside, walk around for 10 minutes to bring things back down, before my hands and face would stop tingling. You can't push a heart prone to low blood pressure in the same ways anyone else might. Maybe in time, with the right game plan, but not out of the gate.
Edited by: EMILY_B2 at: 6/14/2013 (10:15)
Quit smoking - 9/12/12...done!
Live Better - in progress!
...1st mini-goal 20 lbs to 147 - in progress!
...2nd mini-goal 10 lbs to 137 - coming soon!
...3rd mini-goal 5 lbs to 132 - coming soon!
...4th mini-goal 2-7 lbs to final goal - coming soon!
| current weight: 155.8