• Jeff Black

Heart Rate Variability - What understanding this did for me

Stress is something we all deal with and some of us deal with it better than others. Your nervous system can give you insight into how you are managing stress. Heart Rate Variability(HRV) is something you all have seen me discuss, but what understanding this has done for me is simply amazing. 


Before I got into studying HRV I was heavily into gut health and everything with it. Through gut health education through books, articles, and a master class, I stumbled onto HRV. I began digging into it and then things made better sense to me. What really took it off for me was when I noticed after micro-dosing psychedelics, my HRV was always up the following day. I began digging into all the things I could HRV related, finally arriving at being certified in the application of HRV.


What HRV did for me is allowing me to see how I really handled stress and where I could get better. Your nervous system operates out of two branches; sympathetic (fight or flight) and parasympathetic (rest and digest). Anyone who knows me, knows I am relentless in nature. This means I was always wired hot and ready just for the gas to my spark. I was generally tense, on edge, and with the sleep of poor quality due to always feeling “in drive mode.” I had to understand what this mode really looked like which led me to research products to monitor my HRV because my iWatch was not anywhere consistent to track.


After reviewing different products, reading different reviews, and listening to various podcasts, I settled on WHOOP and the Ouraring. After 30 days it became clear the WHOOP was better for my eyes and understanding to utilize for my purposes. I still use the Ouraring for my temperature readings as WHOOP does not track that variable yet, but otherwise, my data you all see my posts about comes from my WHOOP.


Since incorporating WHOOP, I have been able to take my HRV from a 32 average to 47 as of today over the last 90 days. My resting heart rate has dropped also. Once I could see my trend I was able to incorporate things to help me recover better and how my body handles stress



One thing I uncovered was my sleep was truly terrible. At best, 40 minutes of deep sleep and REM around 60 minutes. Considering lack of deep sleep (around 15% is what you are striving for) is associated with an increased Alzheimer’s risk, which runs in my family, I know I needed to really work on my sleep habits. I bought a pair of blue light blockers to help with my circadian rhythm, incorporated melatonin to help regulate my sleep consistency better and added adaptogens to help lower cortisol to relax me prior to bed. I also kept an even tighter schedule on my bedtime and wake time. 


One thing I uncovered was my sleep was truly terrible. At best, 40 minutes of deep sleep and REM around 60 minutes. Considering lack of deep sleep (around 15% is what you are striving for) is associated with an increased Alzheimer’s risk, which runs in my family, I know I needed to really work on my sleep habits. I bought a pair of blue light blockers to help with my circadian rhythm, incorporated melatonin to help regulate my sleep consistency better and added adaptogens to help lower cortisol to relax me prior to bed. I also kept an even tighter schedule on my bedtime and wake time. 


One thing I uncovered was my sleep was truly terrible. At best 40 minutes of deep sleep and REM around 60 minutes. Considering lack of deep sleep (around 15% is what you are striving for) is associated with an increased Alzheimer’s risk, which runs in my family, I know I needed to really work on my sleep habits. I bought a pair of blue light blockers to help with my circadian rhythm, incorporated melatonin to help regulate my sleep consistency better and added adaptogens to help lower cortisol to relax me prior to bed. I also kept an even tighter schedule on my bedtime and wake time. 


These things have translated to me feeling the best I have in what feels like forever. I no longer feel edgy, my fasted blood glucose is rarely above 90 upon waking, and my mind is the most still it has ever been. Stress no longer is something I just deal with or work through, but rather something I get to experience and flow with.


I wanted to share this with you all because I want you all to feel the best you can, and this is one way I have achieved feeling my best at 39.

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