How To Slow Heart Rate When Running

Running is a fantastic way to get in shape and improve cardiovascular health. However, one common concern that many runners face is a rapid increase in heart rate during their runs. It’s important to know how to control and slow down your heart rate while running to avoid overexertion and potential health risks.

As an avid runner myself, I’ve experienced my fair share of rapid heart rates during workouts. Through trial and error, I’ve discovered a few effective strategies that have helped me slow down my heart rate and improve my overall running experience. In this article, I’ll be sharing those strategies with you.

1. Warm Up Properly

Before you start your run, it’s crucial to warm up your body. A proper warm-up routine helps prepare your muscles and cardiovascular system for the upcoming physical activity. It gradually increases your heart rate and blood flow, preventing any sudden spikes during your run.

I like to start with some dynamic stretching exercises to loosen up my muscles and increase flexibility. This includes leg swings, arm circles, and lunges. Then, I follow it up with a light jog or brisk walk for about 10 minutes. This routine helps gradually raise my heart rate and primes my body for the run ahead.

2. Focus on Breathing Techniques

Proper breathing is key to controlling your heart rate while running. When we run, our heart rate naturally increases to supply oxygen to our muscles. By focusing on deep and controlled breathing, we can slow down our heart rate and maintain a steady rhythm.

I like to practice diaphragmatic breathing while running. This involves taking deep breaths from your diaphragm rather than shallow breaths from your chest. Inhale deeply through your nose, filling your lungs, and exhale slowly through your mouth. This technique helps relax your body and reduce stress, resulting in a lower heart rate.

3. Maintain a Comfortable Pace

One of the biggest mistakes runners make is starting their runs too fast and pushing themselves beyond their limits. This can lead to a rapid increase in heart rate and early fatigue.

To slow down your heart rate, it’s important to find a comfortable pace that allows you to maintain a steady rhythm throughout your run. This might mean starting slower than you initially planned and gradually increasing your speed as your body warms up. By listening to your body and running at a sustainable pace, you’ll prevent unnecessary stress on your cardiovascular system.

4. Practice Interval Training

Interval training involves alternating between periods of high-intensity exercise and recovery. Incorporating interval training into your running routine can help improve your cardiovascular fitness and teach your body to recover faster.

A common interval training method is the “run-walk” technique. This involves alternating between running at an intense pace for a set time or distance and then walking or jogging at a slower pace to recover. By incorporating these intervals into your runs, you allow your heart rate to fluctuate and recover, leading to better heart rate control in the long run.

5. Stay Hydrated

Dehydration can significantly impact your heart rate and overall performance while running. When we’re dehydrated, our heart has to work harder to pump blood, resulting in a higher heart rate.

Make sure to drink an adequate amount of water before, during, and after your runs. The general recommendation is to drink about 8 ounces of water every 20 minutes during exercise. However, this may vary depending on your body’s needs and the weather conditions. Staying properly hydrated will help maintain a healthy heart rate and optimize your running performance.


Slowing down your heart rate while running is an essential skill that can improve your overall running experience and help prevent any potential health risks. By incorporating these strategies into your running routine, such as warming up properly, focusing on breathing techniques, maintaining a comfortable pace, practicing interval training, and staying hydrated, you’ll be able to take control of your heart rate and enjoy your runs to the fullest.

Remember, it’s essential to listen to your body and make adjustments as necessary. If you experience any abnormal or concerning symptoms related to your heart rate while running, it’s always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional for further guidance.