Ask an expert

14 Jul 2011

60-80% of your heart rate
What do they mean by 60-80% of your
predicted maximum heart rate?
When working out.
Answer 1,322 views

01 Jan 0001

Hi Michael

OK, so everyone has a maximum heart rate - the highest heart rate we can achieve. It varies from person to person, but generally, it's about 220 minus your age. SO if you are 25, it's around 195, give or take a bit for individual differences.

So, when they say 60 to 80% of maximum, they are saying to take around 60% to 80% of that figure. In this case, it's around 120 to 160 beats per minute.

I wouldn't get too stuck on this - it varies quite a lot from person to person and so if you try to get too precise, there's a real danger of making a mistake one way or the other.

I think the key is to say it's a 45 minute session and if it's easy, it's 4 to 6 on a scale of 0 to 10, and you should be able to hold a conversation. Obviously if you go for a harder day, nudge the effort up to 7 or 8, and so on!

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
32% - 9425 votes
68% - 19881 votes