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Old 08-07-09, 10:44 AM   #1
Ka_Jun
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Donating blood prior to racing

For those of you who donate blood, how long do you feel that your performance is compromised (assuming you feel it does compromise your performance) by whole blood donation?
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Old 08-07-09, 01:04 PM   #2
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That's an excellent question. I was hoping our local blood center would have a good answer in its FAQs but didn't. I did google elsewhere that, volume-wise, the body replenishes the drawn pint in 24 hours. Actual red blood cell count takes 3-5 weeks to replish. I wonder if that would affect VO2 max?

Personally, I'd probably give it at least a few days to a week if at all possible.
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Old 08-07-09, 01:14 PM   #3
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But maybe the weight savings compensate for the performance difference?
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Old 08-07-09, 01:29 PM   #4
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But maybe the weight savings compensate for the performance difference?
anyone wanna buy a kidney?
who needs 2 anyway?
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Old 08-07-09, 01:40 PM   #5
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That's an excellent question. I was hoping our local blood center would have a good answer in its FAQs but didn't. I did google elsewhere that, volume-wise, the body replenishes the drawn pint in 24 hours. Actual red blood cell count takes 3-5 weeks to replish. I wonder if that would affect VO2 max?

Personally, I'd probably give it at least a few days to a week if at all possible.
Yeah, I Googled it, but my searches were, unfruitful. Everything I did read, though, noted that volume-wise, no problem if you rehydrate properly after a couple of days, but the red blood cell count takes several weeks, though some sources seemed to say there was an actual bump at the tail end of red blood replenishment where your bod "overcompensates" for your blood loss, so to speak, and you actually have more for a short time. I've got a race series coming up, next month, and while I donate religiously during the year, I didn't want to mess w/ my performance. Just curious if folks who race have some insight. My friend who races tri & aquabike won't do it for two months prior to competition.
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Old 08-18-09, 10:41 PM   #6
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Here's a personal testimony.

While in high school a few years ago, I gave blood 4 days before a soccer game. During that game, I felt like I was in the worst shape of my life. I didn't feel "normal" again in practice for about two weeks.
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Old 08-18-09, 11:12 PM   #7
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No bike racing experience, but I don't see why this would be different. My college XC/track coach wouldn't let us donate, period. His logic was that it takes ~2 months to regenerate lost red blood cells and platelets, and the drop in hemoglobin concentration causes a decrease in oxygen delivering capacity. Even if we didn't have a competition coming up, he didn't want our training compromised.
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Old 08-21-09, 11:43 AM   #8
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I usually donate some during the race.
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Old 09-10-09, 11:41 PM   #9
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Off the topic but to those who donate...I was wounded very badly in Afghanistan three years ago, and if it was not for those who donate blood, I would have died several times over. So thank you, thank you so much and I truly owe my life to you.
Ben Crowley,
(SGT, USA, RET)
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Old 08-15-10, 11:12 AM   #10
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Eat a 12oz steak after donating blood the night before. I had a racer friend pass out from low blood pressure after a straining climb....not good.
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