Resting heart rate in relation to your fitness level

It’s famously well known that Lance Armstrong had a resting heart rate of 32 beats per minute. Miguel Indurian’s was reported as low as 28bpm.

For the most part, your “natural” untrained resting heart rate is genetic. Some people have a naturally very low RHR while for others it’s higher. It’s the difference you make to it through endurance training that counts.

RELATED: Heart Health in Endurance Athletes

IMG_1712I’ve never had a particularly low resting heart rate, with my little “untrained” hamster heart beating at around 62-64bpm before I started cycling more seriously. Recently I’ve started measuring it again using a FitBit Blaze watch that I got suckered into buying Duty Free at Heathrow.

Although I was never overweight or overly unhealthy, I’m pretty much as fit as I’ve ever been in my entire life endurance wise thanks to slowly increasing the time and intensity of my cycling, although I need to step it up again very soon. Now my RHR sits around the 56-58bpm mark.

Oh my max measured heart rate while out cycling has been 196bpm, must have been a steep hill that one!

10 Comments Add yours

  1. cyardin says:

    56-58 is pretty good

    Liked by 1 person

  2. 196bpm, that’s impressive – how old are you?


    1. I’m thirty five. Most times I see it top out at 192 so I must have been crushing it pretty hard to push an extra 4bpm, haha!


  3. PedalWORKS says:

    I’m almost double your age. My RHR is 42-44 BPM and my MHR is 171. I measure my RHR regularly. I think it is a measure of fitness but have noticed it is the same as it was when in my 20’s so there is a measure of genetics involved here despite how much training you may or may not do.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Do you notice a change in your RHR when you are starting to get ill or more fatigued?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. PedalWORKS says:

        Yes I do. The reason I check it regularly is to monitor whether I have fully recovered. If it is a little elevated I may be ill as you suggest or my body needs more time to recover.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. John Hallas says:

    My RHR is always high 50’s. However in recent weeks I have been cutting out refined sugar. Not completely but stopping biscuits, fruit yoghurts and such like. Weight is dropping steadily but my RHR has now dropped to 49-51. It has never been as low in my life. Oddly my MHR has always tracked well to 220-age. I suppose somebodies has to. Might blog about that actually

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Interesting. I eat more junk sugars than I know I should. Maybe I’ll do a RHR experiment at some point. I haven’t actually measured it for a while now.


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