It’s not easy to tell whether you are fit or not by how much you weigh, or how often you exercise, or the way you look. A good example is that of a weight-lifter. His BMI could indicate that he is overweight, however, this would be due to his muscle mass. His would be lean and his body fat percentage would be in the healthy range. Whether you are fit is not how many kilometers you can run, how many repetitions you can lift, or how heavy you can lift, or how far you can swim.
A good indication of your fitness is actually your heart rate. Here are 3 ways your heart rate can tell you how fit you are:-
#1 Heart Rate Before & After Exercise
Take your heart rate before you start your warm up and after you have completed your workout. A healthy heart will typically go back to a normal heart rate within 15 minutes of exercise. On the other hand, an unhealthy heart would struggle to return to your pre-workout heart rate. If it remains high, this possibly indicates an unconditioned heart, or that your exercise intensity was way too high for you. It could also mean that you are overtraining.
Read More: 8 Signs Of Overtraining
#2 Resting Heart Rate
This is one of the most effective ways to gauge your fitness. Your resting heart rate is the number of heart beats per minute while you’re at rest. An athlete typically will have a lower resting heart rate as compared to a normal person. Resting heart rate also increases with age. You should be having a RHR of about 60 – 100 bpm. Anything higher indicates that you may be having heart problems.
Read More: Understanding Your Heart Rate Zones
#3 Heart Rate During Sleep
When you sleep, it’s your body’s chance to recuperate and rejuvenate. Your heart rate during sleep should be lower than normal. This serves as a strong indicator of fitness. If your body is still high during sleep, your heart is still working hard even though it should be resting and recuperating. This is not good. Some people who exercise in the night before they sleep will find a higher heart rate during sleep. Perhaps you could switch it up and try to exercise in the morning instead.
Your heart rate provides good insight into your physical fitness levels. So, do take note!