Low Blood Pressure = lower calories burned during workouts? Anybody know?

#1
I have noticed that I have to adjust met levels for every workout I do significantly to match what my HRM says. I am on the low end of normal in terms of blood pressure (106/70, with a pulse that is in the 60s, resting in the 50s), and am wondering if that might be why. I feel completely maxed out energy wise while working out, so it isn't that I'm slacking. I'm more curious than anything...
 
#2
So when you do a hiit workout your bp is that low?? And pulse too?? If so are you on cardiac meds? Otherwise it doesn't sound right...unless I'm completely misunderstanding what you're saying.
 
#3
No, sorry, I wasn’t clear. I’m sure they’re higher when I’m working out.

I have seen a vascular surgeon for other circulation problems (Raynauds and possible TOS) and he said that he didn’t want to put me on the standard course of treatment since it would drop my blood pressure another 10, putting me squarely into officially low blood pressure 100/60). I’m just on the low side of normal right now (resting.) The lower BP apparently runs in my family. My pulse is great... thanks to Cathe. It used to be higher, but clearly aerobic capacity has strengthened my heart.
 
#4
Not a medical doctor so I can only speak from my own experience. I have low blood pressure, it's been this way for years. My docs, especially during my pregnancies, have advised that I add salt (sea salt, iodized table salt , kosher salt ) to my foods. Please note that I am talking about homemade, whole foods, NOT eating processes foods (loaded with sodium garbage). I know this is counter to most American's needs, but most Americans don't have low blood pressure. This has helped me.

I don't know why it affects heart rate during workouts, but I noticed the same effect with low HRM readings despite killing it in terms of intensity. I think for me it is also due to having very advanced cardio capacity. ...not bragging. Just been working out intensely, with Cathe and others, for nearly 2 decades. To avoid the frustration, I have switched to the Perceived Rate of Exertion method. It works for me. I also don't workout to hit calorie burn goals, so getting that info from an HRM is irrelevant to me as well.
 
#5
I don't know why it affects heart rate during workouts, but I noticed the same effect with low HRM readings despite killing it in terms of intensity. I think for me it is also due to having very advanced cardio capacity. ...not bragging. Just been working out intensely, with Cathe and others, for nearly 2 decades.
This is me too. We use the MyZone heart rate monitor during our HIIT boot camp, and I am working out at a much higher intensity than most people in the class. My heart rate stays fairly low despite my effort. There are some novices in the class who can reach close to their maximum heart rate while doing very low intensity moves. I've been doing HIIT for years (with Cathe and at this bootcamp) and my heart is very strong. My resting HR is 50. Some days it's frustrating to see others burning it up in the calorie department, while I'm working so hard and burning half the calories. I just chalk it up to being in great shape, and take away from it that my heart is healthy and strong.
 
#7
I have noticed that I have to adjust met levels for every workout I do significantly to match what my HRM says. I am on the low end of normal in terms of blood pressure (106/70, with a pulse that is in the 60s, resting in the 50s), and am wondering if that might be why. I feel completely maxed out energy wise while working out, so it isn't that I'm slacking. I'm more curious than anything...
Your numbers are almost identical to mine. Your blood pressure has nothing to do with your calorie burn. The number of calories burned during a workout is dependent on the zone you work out in (ie intensity) and not your HR. The zone is indirectly measured using the HR. If you used the formula that starts with 180 minus your age, you most likely ended up with the wrong range for your zones. The size of your heart (literally) determines the HR range for each zone. Larger hearts pump more blood per stroke and don't need to beat as often to deliver oxygen. You need to do a field test and figure out your max HR and then adjust your zones. To give you an example, Zone 3 for me is in the 150's-160's bpm because I have a small heart. For DH, the same zone is in the 120-130's because he has a much larger heart. My HR hits 180 during some of the more intense workouts without any problem. DH's never gets up to 160. Once you correct "your zones", the calorie burn will correct itself. I'm yet to meet in real life a person that can accurately use that generic formula.

Your calorie burn is also dependent on your VO2 max. If you have a Polar HRM, do the fitness test and calculate your VO2 max. Repeat every few months. People who are fit assume incorrectly that they burn less calories during a workout because their HR is lower. As the VO2 max goes up so does the calorie burn even when the HR drops. VO2 max is genetically determined and some people can raise it much higher than others (ie they burn more calories than others at rest and during a workout).

If you calculate your VO2 max and calculate your zones correctly, your calorie burn numbers will be fairly accurate.
 
#9
Soapmaker - Really good points. Thanks, you are right!

I used to have a Polar HRM but they stopped supporting it and when I went to look for another one I wasn't really thrilled with the options. I used to be able to figure my daily nutritional needs exactly (it was really crazy how spot on it was.) I have a Fitbit now, but at best it is an approximation, and I find it underestimates my workouts... So now I'm losing when I want to maintain (or even gain back to get to my original goal weight.) Which Polar do you have? I had one with a chest strap. I think it was a T21? I got it 10 years ago most likely. LOL

I hate being at the end of the day and loading up on an extra glass of wine or an ice cream sundae when I'd rather add quality nutrients throughout the day to build muscle and get rid of stubborn belly fat. I mean, yeah its nice to eat ice cream (I love sweets), but it defeats the purpose of all the hard work I've done. I'm 4 lbs under my goal weight now - and not on purpose.
 

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