Any runners out there? I have a heart question.

in General Discussion edited January 2014
I was a runner in high school, though I'm sensitive to cold weather, and I don't have much desire to run in the cold. Interestingly, I have a congenitally weak heart. In the summer it gets to about 60 beats/minute at rest, and it was about that not long ago, but very recently it has jumped up to 72beats/min.

I'm worried. This heart rate jump has been sudden. I can feel the difference. Does anyone know some good workouts to strengthen the heart? Long distance running doesn't seem to work so well. Intervals? I'm willing to go outside in the winter if it will help solve my problem.


  • Reply 1 of 5
    alcimedesalcimedes Posts: 5,486member
    if the cold bothers you i'd suggest looking into swimming. lap swimming can be a great workout, and isn't anywhere near as tough on your body as running. however, if you have a heart condition i'd run any exercise regiment past a doctor first.
  • Reply 2 of 5
    giaguaragiaguara Posts: 2,724member
    Winter could irritate that, and so could a lot of other things. Stress, work, coffee, dry winter climate, about any change ... consult a doctor if that was a too sudden change and you are worried. I hope it's nothing bad.
  • Reply 3 of 5
    matsumatsu Posts: 6,558member
    At 72bpm your heart rate is still quite good, but you should report any changes to the doctor immediatly. Fitter athletes than you or I (me athlete? hahahaha, you know what I mean) have dropped dead without warning from heart trouble -- though they were probably eating horse hormones for breakfast. Still, even regular joes who aren't "juiced" can meet an untimely end. My neighbor, a hockey player, died at 20 after complaining for a couple of weeks about sluggishness and shortness of breath. Massive heart attack, dead, just like that. I've seen it happen twice, the other time the guy was 30, not an athlete, but fit, died in his kitchen at breakfast.

    Take it easy, see your doctor, and press the issue when you do. This is not for us to advise or for you to wait. AND ALWAYS get a second opinion.

    Edit: I'm sure you know all this, knowing your own condition better than any of us, but you really have to take any changes very seriously and see a doctor first. Could be nothing right, but if it's something, I'm sure it's somehing you'd rather avoid.

    [ 01-18-2003: Message edited by: Matsu ]</p>
  • Reply 4 of 5
    definitely ditto to the last reply. absolutely go to see a heart specialist. especially since you recognize that you have a congenitally weak heart. you should probably not be doing anything approaching exercise as intense as running. the only way to strengthen the heart muscle is cardiovascular workouts. and LSD that is long slow distance is still the best.

    but you might consider the words of astronaut armstrong who once said when asked why he doesn't jog. "i believe i only have a limited number of heartbeats available to me, and i'm not wasting any running around the block!"
  • Reply 5 of 5
    Thanks for the info. I may have overreacted, though. . . It might not be appropriate to say my heart is "congenitally weak." It's just that it has been always the weakest link for me when it comes to competitive running. If it were stronger, I swear I would be top NCAA. I can run until my heart hurts. My legs never seem to tire.

    Anyway, while I've been caffeine free for a day or so, this is the middle of exam & project period, and I've been stressed & caffeinated for a while. (However, this has never happened to me before and I've been stressed before.) If the condition keeps up after Thursday, I'll go see a doc.

Sign In or Register to comment.