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  • Writer's pictureCertified Fitness Trainer

Tracking your HR during sleep is an excellent way to determine a training protocol or exercise prescription. The heart Rate should decrease after falling asleep and then gradually increase towards awakening. Keep tabs on this, it’s important.

Monitor the changes in heart rate at wake over the period of a week and use that benchmark to determine your levels of recovery from training the day prior. Deviation of 5 beats or more above your norm is a clear indicator you have not fully recovered. That day should be taken to rest and hydrate, over training is a very real thing and induces a stress response in the body.

The research is pretty conclusive on the fact that HIIT Training is the most optimal for improving cardiovascular strength and efficiency. That’s nothing new. What is happening though, and I see many trainers guilty of this. Is that we are using time to determine rest intervals instead of heart rate. Each client has their own very individual recovery periods and just using timed rest periods will not indicate if your client is ready to begin the next training interval. We must use physiological data to determine whether or not they have recovered from the prior round.

MHR of 85% - 90% is your high end and once rest begins, it should continue until the clients BPM has lowered to at least 55% MHR. You’ll soon notice that every clients rest periods are widely variable.

HIIT is specific to the individual and task. To maximize training and decrease instance of injury, the fitpro must use scientific parameters and avoid a generalist approach. Your clients will thank you, because when we can pull physiological data correctly and practically apply our knowledge to that data; we can then and only then guarantee results.

What does movement patterns and posture have to do with heart rate?

Studies have shown that fascial training and integration have a profound effect on cardiac rhythm and heart rates. There is a significant correlation to postural deviation (ie. thoracic kyphosis), causing abnormalities in the electrical signals to the heart. Integrating our movement, posture, and cardiovascular systems allow for a more holistic approach. And were all about that.


Yes your Apple Watch is worthy of reading your HR. Uses a process called photoplethysmography and emits green light to react with the red in your blood, subsequently identifying beats. Use it more for reading your sleeping patterns though. Only because to truly gather sufficient data of the heart we need to record HR variability.

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