October 12, 2009

A better 1.5 miles

My wakeup heart rate was 56 this morning, and I felt pretty good. I left for my run about 11:30 am, and ran more and walked less during the 0.75 miles to the turn around point on the north-bound path. But, on the way back, my energy petered out, and I did more walking than running while going back to my car. Last week was a bad week as far as sleep is concerned, and it will take me a few days to recover from that. I slept well last night, and that is why my pulse rate was down to 56. The shade temperature during the run was in the low 60s (F) with a 10-15 mph breeze. A nice Fall day.

4 comments:

Jennifer said...

Allen, Thank you for personally answering my comments. You have no idea how much I needed that. Tell me why you measure your heart rate in the morning and are you looking to this as a sign of a good night sleep?

I appreciate your advice on the other post too. I am going to take it easy and rest up for Saturday. My first race I did an even steady pace the whole time. I will do that again this time and look for my pace to increase with strength. THANK YOU BUNCHES!

Allen said...

Hi Jennifer,

The purpose of our hearts is to push blood throughout our bodies, and the blood carries oxygen to our bodies. If we need more oxygen, our hearts beat faster. The purpose of measuring wake up heart rates is to get an overall measurement of our body condition. A lower condition means our bodies are in better condition and need less oxygen, and our hearts beat slower to meet the demand for oxygen.

The amount and quality of our sleep is just one condition that affects our bodies. Other conditions include colds, flu, stress, and so on. The reason we measure our heart rate when we wake up is because that is the one time in the 24-hour day that our body-conditions are the same from day to day, thus allowing us to compare our heart rates from day to day.

Here is a graph of my wake up heart rate over a long period of time. As long as I'm in good health, I interpret the heart rate as a sign of how tired I am. I've been doing this for over 30 years, and I've found it is a good indication of my body-condition.

Allen said...

Another comment on wake up heart rate. I ran four marathons when I was in my mid 40s, and my wake up heart then was 44; one day it dropped to 40 and stayed there until I stopped running marathons.

Until blood clots attacked me last January, my wake up heart rate was about 50. Now, when I'm rested, it is around 55. During the first months of recovery from the blood clots, my heart rate was around 62. It is coming down and will likely go back to 50 in a year or two.

This shows one of the benefits of aerobic exercise -- our body needs less pumping of our heart because our blood carries more oxygen. This is true for young and old. I'm a week and a few days away from my 74th birthday, and my heart rate is 15-20 beats lower than the so called norm of 70. When I ran marathons, my heart rate was so low that a friend said I could go out for a hamburger between beats.

Jennifer said...

Thank you Allen for this information. I needed to be reminded of the simplicity of the job my heart & blood perform. I truly appreciate your blog very much!