# Working Out Your Maximal (or Maximum) Heart Rate

To find your maximal heart rate, you can use this formula:

Maximal heart rate = 220 - Your age

(or maximum heart rate)

The best Mammoth Memory can come up with to remember 220 is to think of two swans trying to hatch an ugly duckling.

Your maximal heart rate is defined as the highest heart rate achieved during a maximum effort graded exercise test, and is characterised by a plateau in heart rate despite an increase in load.

Example

Maximal heart rate = 220 - Your age

(or maximum heart rate)

For example, a typical 40yr old would have a maximal heart rate of 180 beats per minute.

220 - 40 = 180

It's important to know that this formula is only an estimate, and influences such as the ones below can affect this:

Genetics

Overall health

Air temperature

Medication

Fitness level

If we work this out over a range of ages, we get the chart as follows: