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relationship between running performance and high blood pressure (Read 2935 times)

    Nobby you misunderstood what I said (or meant to say).  I was on a beta blocker which absolutely impacted my running performances in a NEGATIVE way.  When I switched to an ACE inhibitor my running 'improved' back to what it had been prior to that.  In no way, shape or form am I telling anyone to take an ACE inhibitor (or anything else) to run faster.  Sheesh.


    Fat butt on couch

       

       I remember a couple of decades ago when Salazar had some depression issue and was taking Prozac and he went on and won Comrad ultra marathon that there might be some relationship between taking Prozac and running performance.  There may be, I don't know.  Perhaps this is more of a Trent question; but what I CAN tell you is that; this is almost border-line PED question.  Salazar is supposed to be known as someone who might try ANYTHING as long as it's no illegal.  Actually, to me, that doesn't speak too much because there are, I'm sure, some things that we don't quite know that may or may not be illegal in 5 years time but, just because nobody is paying attention, it's not on the illegal list yet.  To me, anything not natural--meaning, you try to use some chemical substances to bring about the same "physiological effect" of training to your natural system--is border-line illegal.  

       

      I saw a debate about whether or not technique like blood doping or EPO works or not.  It's such a ridiculous question; of course it works!!  If it doesn't, they wouldn't be using it.  And, unfortunately, I do have some proof to it too.  So is it worth trying it?  Well, if prize money is at stake, it may be so for some people regardless of ethical or not.  I'm personally more interested in finding what we CAN do to actually improve one's running performance naturally.  In other words, it's not fun for me.  In other words, Danielle, I'd be more interested in improving my own running by including, say, hill training or tempo-ish running or making it more systematic before I'd look into what sort of medication may help improve my running.

       

      No, Nobby, Prozac is not a borderline PED question.  There is no biological reason that an antidepressant would directly and positively impact running performance.  However, if it worked to lift someone depression so they could train normally again, their running could improve.  This is not a PED, but a drug that corrects a problem so one can train normally again....like me taking thyroid hormone for a diagnosed deficiency that left me exhausted and in bed, lacking the energy to even attempt to train much of the time.

       

      On the other side of the coin, there is plenty of scientific evidence behind the direct effects of EPO on running performance....and lots of real-life examples of it working.  Including the case in which I was personally involved in the testing, where the athlete's performances had long been questioned as unusual and unbelievable before they were caught.

       

      I can't dream of ANY class of blood pressure meds that I would want to be on as a runner if I cared about my race times.

      "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

       


      Boston Strong in 2014!

        I was diagnosed with high bp in my mid 40s. I was shocked; I was not overweight, had a decent diet, and exercised a bit. My doctor said it was my genes kicking in, which was true -- my father had high bp. Since then, I have been taking meds -- ACE inhibitor with small dose of diuretic --  and running a lot more, with no ill effects on my running. I do find that I need to lower my dose a bit when I am on vacation (no stress) and training hard in the summer, but otherwise, I need both the meds and the exercise to keep it under control. I haven't' noticed any side effects of my meds, but I have heard from others who have not had the same experience. Given the risks associated with high bp, I would rather keep that under control than worry too much about my running speed.

        2014 goals

        2000 miles; 5k < 24:30; HM < 1:56Century Bike Ride

         

        Upcoming:

        NYC Half Marathon 3/16Boston Marathon 4/21


        rhetorician

          only just come back to this - thanks for the insights and experiences. My cholesterol turned out fine, and my bp marginal - slightly high (genes again) but pre-hypertensive at least by the UK/Ireland standard. A US doc would medicate me, probably, although apparently there's just been a big study arguing that hypertension is over-medicated.

           

          Nobby - you will glad to know that since your kind and helpful advice to me, I have eliminated walk-run, cut my mileage a little and done some hill reps (still building those up) and some 400s and 800s. As a result, my easy pace has come down by over a minute - it's now about 10.20m/m, hoping to pull that down under 10 this year. 

           

          Thank you all, kind runners!

          2012 goals

           

          lose 8lbs

          run injury free

          run 3000k

          run sub 60 min 10k

          run 2 hour half

           

          2013 goals

           

          run 1750 miles

          run injury free

          sub 55 10k

          sub 25 5k

          sub 2 hour half

          Pinkman


            Danielle

             

            Firstly, a disclaimer: I am not a physician - although having a degree in Biochemistry and having had essential hypertension since age 30 (I am now 58) and having researched this in detail, I can tell you that you need to find a physician that is a runner and/or sympathetic to your goals because you will need to spend time working with him/her to get the med strategy that enables you to keep running.  As you get older this will become more difficult.

             

            This is what I know/have learned, some of which is repeated above.

             

            • Regular running is a great way to get fit and reduce the meds you need to keep your BP down
            • When you start to run, whether outside or on the treadmill, your BP will spike but then will come down as your HR plateaus.  As far as I know, this doesnt affect your performance during any given run (unless you are chronically unfit and end up having a stroke, which is apparently very rare)
            • There are BP medications that can affect performance, depending on how well they are tolerated by the individual and BP medications that almost certainly will degrade performance.  To some extent this can be managed by staging the time at which you take medications for BP
            • From the research I have done it seems that many Beta Blockers (eg Atenolol) degrade performance to a point where running for some people is more or less impossible.  There are apparently some targeted action ones that are less of a problem but I have personally suffered this and all I can say is that if you enjoy running through treacle with legs filled with lead then this is the way to go!  I was able to get around it by taking the BB after I came back from the run rather than before.  It still wasnt great but a heck of a lot better.  This strategy doesnt work as well with extended release BB's.
            • It seems that ACE inhibitors and Angiotensin Type II blockers (e.g. Valsartan) are relatively well tolerated by runners, as are Calcium Channel Blockers (e.g. Amlodipine).  Stay out of the sun or use protection if you use ACE inhibitors (my friends dont call me Pinkman for nothing!)
            • Diuretics (eg Thiazide derivatives) are "old" technology but for some people - like me - who respond very well to them, they are still useful but for long distances where dehydration may be an issue you really have to be carefull with your rehydration strategy.
            • There are also other medications not related to BP control that can affect muscle, e.g. some statins which are used to control cholesterol.  If you are on a statin and are experiencing sore/stiff muscles, ask your physician to do a CK (Creatinine Kinase) test to ensure that you dont have high levels of enzymes that can cause muscle damage.

            Getting old sucks, and hypertension is an inevitable consequence of getting old.  But you can manage this if you have a good physician who understands the science.

             

            Keep Running

             

            Rob


            rhetorician

              Rob - thanks so much for your detailed post which is very useful. I hadn't expected to see this one again!! As it happens my GP (not in the US) decided to put me on a 24 hour monitor to try and offset the white coat syndrome she felt I was exhibiting. In the office my BP was 140/80 which here would be at the upper threshold of normal and wouldn't routinely be medicated, although it would be monitored. But she felt, given my levels of fitness, plus my resting heart rate that it would be worth seeing if we could get a more accurate reading. So I had 24 hour monitor, which produced some truly alarming peaks at points of routine stress (waiting for bus with crying baby etc!), but the overall results were excellent, with background readings of 120/70. It was taken again (almost a year on) just before Christmas in the GP's office, and was once more 140/80 which I suspect is the best reading I'm going to get in these circumstances.

               

              So, to cut a long story short, it's OK for now, but probably will need to be medicated at some point.

               

              Thanks to everyone for their advice and experiences

              2012 goals

               

              lose 8lbs

              run injury free

              run 3000k

              run sub 60 min 10k

              run 2 hour half

               

              2013 goals

               

              run 1750 miles

              run injury free

              sub 55 10k

              sub 25 5k

              sub 2 hour half

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