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  1. #1
    1.64x10^6 posts Grendel's Avatar
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    Hypertension and riding

    Hey all!

    I'm trying to understand some of the things I've observed about my blood pressure and heart rate since I've started cycling regularly. I've been at this about three months now and so far all the right things seem to be happening -- my stamina has steadily increased to where 50 miles on a ride is no problem and for the most part I feel great when I finish any ride. The first month or so I was monitoring my blood pressure and noticed that as the weeks went by it was steadily declining to normal levels from the borderline-high levels I was seeing before I started riding regularly, so after a while I stopped checking it as often. I've checked it the last couple of days and noticed that the BP seems elevated again -- somewhere around 140/90. The good thing is that before all this started my resting heart rate was in the high 90's to low 100's (I was in terrible shape) and now it is in the low 70's consistently, so obviously my CV system is in better shape. I just can't figure out why the BP is elevated again with no factors to explain the rise after it had been declining for a while.

  2. #2
    usnagent007
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    fluid balance? more fluid = higher BP.
    you could have been in a "dehydrated" state--->lower BP.

  3. #3
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    I wouldn't freak out based on one reading. BP goes up and down in the short-term based on a bunch of factors. Keep monitoring it for a while to see if the high reading is more than an extreme case.

  4. #4
    1.64x10^6 posts Grendel's Avatar
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    Ya, I'll keep an eye on it and go back to checking daily for a little while. Is it possible that the higher BP is due to the change in conditioning of my heart and that it'll settle back down soon?

  5. #5
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    Hi,
    I also have high blood pressure. What you need to do is to check your pressure first thing in the morning, before you even get out of bed. One possible reason for the rise could be overtraining. See if the rise in pressure shows up the morning after hard exercise. Assuming the problem is along these lines, a periodised training schedule can help. 'The Heart Rate Monitor Book for indoor and outdoor cyclists' by Sally Edwards and Sally Reed is superb. Btw, if overtraining is the culprit, the remedy is a day or two off.

  6. #6
    It didn't hurt that much. Ouch !'s Avatar
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    You guys seem to know about this stuff so I've got a question.

    This week I had a chance to check my blood pressure along with a few other guys in work, Mine was higher than anybodies else's .

    It was 144/99 and a heartrate of 110, I have to say that I cycle to work everyday but that I also hammer my commute (14.30min for just under 5 miles), the pressure was taken about 50 minutes after I got off the bike.

    Prior to going to work I'd been shoppng with the wife for a few hours (always a stressful time ), but I like to know does it take that long for heart rates to go down and and does blood pressure take even longer to go back down.

    They guys who also took their blood pressure were all overweight (which was the reason they were taking it) and they came to me because they wanted to see what somebody who was fit would read, (they said I was fit) and you can imagine their faces when they seen the readings.

    Any info would be greatly received because at the moment I'm considering going to the doctor for a check-up.

    one last thing maybe I should point out that I'm 39 years old I think that makes a difference ? Doesn't it ?

    Ouch !
    Life can be Beautiful, you just have to look.

  7. #7
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    Hi,
    go see your doctor. While you're waiting, take a
    couple days off, and then check it again.

  8. #8
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    Ouch. your blood pressure reading even at 50 min break would still read a little higher.

    I am a parionac about blood pressure rates as my family on both sides are afflictied with a history of diabettes.

    This is one of my excuses for always having been an exercise freak.

    Every doc`s check up i take is always filled with apprehension, but all is well so far. In fact i could almost kiss the doc if he tells me my B.P. is on the low side.

  9. #9
    Dances with Rocks Dirtgrinder's Avatar
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    Definately see a doc. That's too high. Being fit doesn't necessarily mean good bp. Heredity plays a very large part in it.
    If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough...

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  10. #10
    Love Me....Love My Bike! aerobat's Avatar
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    Taking blood pressure at work isn't always the best either, as some work places can be very stessful, in addition to shopping beforehand and riding in. That was probably the worst case scenario to get an accurate reading.

    Might have also been a little bit of stess induced by being the "fit" person on display!
    "...perhaps the world needs a little more Canada" - Jean Chretian, 2003.

  11. #11
    It didn't hurt that much. Ouch !'s Avatar
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    Thanks for the quick replies , I think I'll definitly go to the Doc's.

    There is a history of blood pressure problems down one side of my family tree, and aerobat your quite correct about how I was feeling. I did feel as if I was on display.

    Just for my own benefit I'd like to point out that I don't think of myself as that fit.
    Life can be Beautiful, you just have to look.

  12. #12
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    I would recomend that if you're worried about blood pressure that you get a home tester. They are around $40 for a ok one. I was worried about my blood pressure and was actually prescribed medication for it. The doc failed to take into account that the reading she got was when I was in the middle of a panic attack. I bought the tester instead and now I monitor my own blood pressure and it's fine. The cardiologist even said so. I scared that Doc though, the pressure reading at the time was 160 over 110 something or something like that and my heart rate was like 120 maybe? Not bad for a 28 year old eh? The best time to check as has been said before is before you even get out of bed. Over time (once I got rid of the stress and the panic attacks) I've found that even in the middle of the day my reading is generally 120-130 over 75-85. It's a good thing that I didn't take the med because too low is bad too!

  13. #13
    Dances with Rocks Dirtgrinder's Avatar
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    I've always heard that about taking it in the morning too. But you should try it in the evening also. In the morning mine is low. Last time I checked it, it was 109/56. In the evening however it's back to about 130/70. I think daily stress has a lot to do with it.
    If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough...

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  14. #14
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    I have white coat syndrome. My BP is always higher when at the doctor's office. This may have happened to you to some degree when you where being compared with other unfit people. BP is a funny thing and should be checked out by your doctor. I would also recommend the home testing. Learn to relax and try to test yourself without stress for the results. You may benefit by taking it a couple of times. I get a lowere reading on several occassions on the second try. Try to take it in the morinings and in the evenings on non work days, vacations, etc to see if there is a difference for you.

    If it still is high, look at some of the diet issues and high blood pressure.

    Good luck
    Gary

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    Oh yeah, watch out for sodium. It's in everything and it's bad for BP. If you're drinking sports drinks I'm pretty sure they have sodium in them because it's an electrolyte. Might want to stick to water or fruit juice instead if that is the case.

  16. #16
    Huachuca Rider webist's Avatar
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    Originally posted by willic
    I am a parionac about blood pressure rates as my family on both sides are afflictied with a history of diabettes.

    This is one of my excuses for always having been an exercise freak.

    I actually have diabetes. Thank goodness blood pressure is not a problem for me. A little lucky there I guess since high BP is common among diabetics.

    Being an "exercise freak" is certainly an excellent way to head off or minimize your chances for developing the desease. Frequent check-ups are great for you too. Even if you eventually secumb to hereditary forces and end up with the disease, you will certainly know in plenty of time to avoid some of the harsher consequences of the diabetes.

    You are doing it right.
    Just Peddlin' Around

  17. #17
    aka old dog greywolf's Avatar
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    white coat syndrone, yup i get that , when i have my b.p checked by the railway doctor for our yearly certification medical examination my b.p is always way up, i end up having to get a string of readings from my own doctor then my b.p is back to normal
    :D
    dont worry be happy ????

  18. #18
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    Last night went stright from work to give blood. BP was 156 over 89. Came home last night took reading at home 130 over 70. My Doctor's nurse was coming in as I left and I told her that I had a high BP but knew it would go down when I got home. Maybe it was work. Who cares.
    Gary

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