Your heart rate is the number of times your heart beats in one minute. Your maximum heart rate is the number of times your heart beats in one minute working at its maximum capacity. The number is found by subtracting your calendar age from 220.
You should seek to attain a heart rate that is 60 % to 80 % of the maximal heart rate to be sure you are getting the full benefits of an aerobic workout.
How Do I Take My Pulse?
Place the tips of your index (second finger) and third finger on the palm side of your other wrist, below the base of the thumb. Or, place the tips of your index and second finger on your lower neck, on either side of your windpipe.
Press lightly with your fingers until you feel the blood pulsing beneath your fingers. You may need to move your fingers around slightly up or down until you feel the pulsing.
Look at a watch or clock with a second hand.
Count the beats you feel for 10 seconds. Multiply this number by 6 to get your heart rate (pulse) per minute.