The Importance of Your Heart Rate
By Brittany L.
What is the importance of your heart rate?
You have the new fit bit or watch that calculates your heart rate and tells you your pulse. It certainly looks cool, and you know—at least you think you know–that when you work out, it’s good for the number to increase. But what are you actually looking at, and what does it even mean, in regards to your exercise performance?
So, what exactly is a “heart-rate”? What does it tell us?
Heart rate is the speed of the heartbeat measured by the number of contractions of the heart per minute. The heart rate can vary according to the body’s physical needs, and this includes the need to absorb oxygen or excrete carbon dioxide.
Your heart rate is a function of the cardiovascular system. As you work out, your body demands more oxygenated blood. The heart begins to pump at an increased rate to receive the oxygen-filled cells from the lungs and pump it out to your muscles. Your heart continues to work at receiving the oxygen-depleted cells from the muscles and pushing them up to the lungs to be exhaled as carbon dioxide. Therefore, when you are working out, your heart rate increases to keep up with the oxygen demands of the body.
The importance of understanding your heart rate becomes a direct relation to how your body will burn fat and promote lean muscle, which is what we all want when we are trying to reduce our weight. Maintaining a strong heart rate is important during strenuous activity. It ensures that you are providing your muscles with the adequate amount of oxygenated blood and it determines the efficiency of your workout. As your body and muscles become accustomed to receiving the proper fuel through nutrient enriched blood, your muscles will continue to grow. This promotes lean muscle mass and fat loss.
During a four-year tour of duty with the United States Army where she worked as a combat engineer constructing bridges, Brittany received the “Soldier of the Year” award for her unit, two consecutive years in a row–an award given to soldiers for outstanding excellence among their peers. Afterwards, she decided to pursue her passion in the health and wellness field.
Brittany is no stranger to competitive sports, as she was a collegiate athlete when she attended Eastern Connecticut State University. Being an athlete all her life, Brittany has experienced injury and has learned the vital role that proper training plays in the success of an individual’s physical performance and mental aptitude.
As a recreational supervisor’s aid, Brittany designed and instructed numerous personal training circuits that were able to be form-fitted for each individual’s needs and desires. She has trained not only athletes, but also, those individuals who seek personal training as a means to improve their health and wellness.
Intrigued by the substantial benefits of physical exercise and proper nutrition on a person’s mental stability, emotional intelligence and overall happiness, Brittany endeavored to become a certified yoga and meditation instructor. As a practitioner of high intensity workouts, she also uses her knowledge and experience as a yoga instructor to build and strengthen muscle while also toning and revitalizing.
Brittany, is in the process of obtaining additional certifications and a more in-depth knowledge of the health & wellness field to maximize her ability to help every individual achieve their own optimal health through a holistic approach. As a means to touch the lives of as many people as possible, she also speaks Spanish.