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Ask the doctor. Sometimes I take a walk while wearing my blood pressure cuff. For the first few minutes, as I walk at a modest pace, my systolic blood pressure rises from 115 to 130 or so, while my heart rate hardly changes from its usual 60-something beats per minute. But when I start walking faster, my systolic pressure stays steady or sometimes goes down a bit, while my heart rate increases to 110. Is this a normal pattern? Can you explain what is going on?

Forman DE. Ask the doctor. Sometimes I take a walk while wearing my blood pressure cuff. For the first few minutes, as I walk at a modest pace, my systolic blood pressure rises from 115 to 130 or so, while my heart rate hardly changes from its usual 60-something beats per minute. But when I start walking faster, my systolic pressure stays steady or sometimes goes down a bit, while my heart rate increases to 110. Is this a normal pattern? Can you explain what is going on? Harv Heart Lett. 2011 Apr; 21(8):7.

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