No 24-year old wants to visit the doctor for a routine checkup and discover that there might be something wrong with his heart. But as you might have guessed, when I went in for a law school-mandated physical, that’s exactly what happened.
My heart rate (beats/min) appeared to be in steady decline going back to 2007, and the doctor thought a larger sample size might reveal whether something serious was aheart. So he ordered a 24-hour heart monitor for Wednesday, August 15, the day on which I happened to witness Felix Hernandez pitch his perfect game.
Naturally, I was interested in the results – and when they turned up interesting, I thought it would be fun to share them. Here’s a graph of my heart rate over the 24-hour period:
The x-axis is time (9AM-9AM), and the y-axis is heart rate. The game started at 12:40 (I missed the first half-inning) and lasted 2 hours and 22 minutes. In other words, Felix completed his perfect game at approximately 3PM. The graph shows a gradual build-up in heart-rate throughout the game, a clear spike around the end, and a steady decline thereafter.
But that graph doesn’t tell the whole story. The following graph depicts Tachycardia, an accelerated heart rate:
The x-axis is time (9AM-9AM), and the y-axis is minutes of Tachycardia per hour. The small increase in heart rate (one minute-long) around 9AM represents mild exercise. The extended concentration (6.5 minutes) of accelerated heart rate around 3PM coincides perfectly with the end of the perfect game, which looked like this:
Just (re-)watching that video increases my heart rate.
For those of you actually worried about my health, don’t. The cardiologist concluded that my heart is “within range of normal for age.” In other words, I would have had nothing to show for this exercise (aside from peace of mind, and some newly-patchy chest hair), were it not for the King. Thank you, Felix.