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Q: Elevated heart rate after exercise? normal? ( No Answer,   5 Comments )
Subject: Elevated heart rate after exercise? normal?
Category: Health
Asked by: shaphanhawks-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 03 Mar 2006 22:50 PST
Expires: 02 Apr 2006 23:50 PDT
Question ID: 703470
Perhaps I am paranoid or informed, but it seems that my heart rate
after a long duration exercise remains at higher than normal levels. I
am a 26 year old male who is fairly new to fitness, I have started a
regular program of bike riding about 6 weeks ago, it is pretty amazing
how quickly I have built aerobic stamina, today I comfortably rode for
about 2 hours with a heart rate of about 140BPM, my session ended
around 4pm. Nearly 6 hours have passed as it is now 10.41pm and I have
been resting for the past 5 hours simply watching TV  sitting upright
in a chair, my resting heart rate is currently 81BPM. This is always
the case after exercising. I usually check my heart rate in the
morning after waking and will usually measure around 50 - 55BPM. I
might add this happens after every lengthy exercise session, is this
normal? Is this a sign of some abnormality? I visited a cardiologist
and after a set of comprehensive testing that took about 4 hours
including treadmill stress test, etc, the doctor rated my
cardiovascular health at A+. Any assistance is appreciated. A tip may
be included depending on the quality of answer.

Clarification of Question by shaphanhawks-ga on 03 Mar 2006 22:51 PST
"informed" should have been "uniformed"

Clarification of Question by shaphanhawks-ga on 31 Mar 2006 19:34 PST
Thanks Dr. John Walker, thats a great answer!
There is no answer at this time.

Subject: Re: Elevated heart rate after exercise? normal?
From: joe916-ga on 04 Mar 2006 03:27 PST
Seama a little high. I check mine once in a while its around the same
some times higher sometimes lower. I do it ror about 15 seconds and
muliply x4. Not very accurate but "in the ballpark". There would be an
increase just walking to the fridge. The longer (in months not daily)
you exercise the faster the rate should drop.
Subject: Re: Elevated heart rate after exercise? normal?
From: maluca-ga on 04 Mar 2006 19:00 PST
Are you drinking any replinishing drinks containing sugar or a
stimulant? Eating sugar or simple carbs? With that low a pulse on
waking you are more than likely dehydrated and your blood volume is
low so your heart keeps beating fast to compensate. I found this on a
site. You need to read it before you end up in trouble as I did. For
further research try "hypovolemic shock" and do it while drinking lots
of water!

"I'm a physician who specializes in Critical Care Medicine. I'm well
versed in the question of circulatory shock. I've done clinical
research on shock, participated in some of the sentinel studies on
shock, and teach the subject to residents and medical students. With
all due respect, I've probably seen more cases of medically
significant dehydration and shock than most of the sensei here have
seen white belts.

Dehydration is not shock. Shock is the global failure of cellular
oxidative metabolism. One form of shock is hypovolemic shock in which
the circulating blood volume is low. Dehydration may cause shock but
is hardly synonymous with shock. Other forms of shock may have normal
blood volume but the volume is maldistributed, e.g. anaphylactic
shock. In some cases of shock the blood volume may in fact be
increased but the heart may be unable to circulate the blood and
oxygen to the tissues, e.g. cardiogenic shock. They just aren't the
same thing at all.

Dehydration is the loss of total body water. Hypovolemia is a low
circulating blood volume. Total body water amounts to about 0.6 liters
per Kg body weight. For the prototypical 70kg person that means a
total body water of 42 l. About 2/3 of this is in the cells
(intracellular water) or about 28 l. About 1/3 is outside of the cells
(extracellular water - 14l). About 2/3 of the extracellular water
(9-1/3 l.) is in the space between the cells (interstitial fluid).
About 1/3 (4-2/3 l.) is in the vascular space (intravascular water).
Most of the time when we lose fluid we lose fluid from the
intravascular space. Sweat glands for example take fluid from the
blood and put it on the skin. The kidneys take fluid from the blood
and produce urine. If we vomit or have diarrhea we lose fluid that the
stomach, pancreas, small bowel etc. has put into the gut lumen from
the blood stream. Thus, most of our fluid losses are from the
intravascular space.

If our fluid loss is slow then our body can move fluid, first from the
interstitial space and then more slowly from the intercellular space,
into the intravascular space to maintain the intravascular volume. If
we lose the fluid suddenly then there is no time to accomplish this. A
good rule of thumb is that we can mobilize about 1-2 l. per day
maximum from the interstitial and intercellular spaces into the
intravascular space. If I cause you to get dehydrated slowly (i.e., I
put you in a warm environment and don't give you free access to water
but yet you have some water) You will not have symptoms till you have
lost about 5-10% of your total body water (2.1 l. - 4.2 l.). At that
time if you stand up suddenly your hart rate will go up but your blood
pressure will remain normal. If you lose 10%-15% (4.2 l. - 6.3 l.)
then when you stand up your blood pressure will go down and you may
become lightheaded. If you lose 15-20% (6.3 l. - 8.4 l.) then your
blood pressure will be down even lying down. At that time you would
probably meet diagnostic criteria for hypovolemic shock.

Of course, if I suddenly take fluid out of your intravascular space
and give you no time to mobilize fluid from the other compartments
into the intravascular space you will have symptoms at lower levels of
fluid loss. That is why some people get lightheaded when they stand up
after donating 0.5 l of blood. All that fluid (about 0.25 L. fluid and
0.25 l. of blood cells) came straight out of the vascular space in a
period of a few minutes.

Most of the fluid we lose each day is in the form of urine. Healthy
people with normal hearts, livers and kidneys make at least 0.5 ml of
urine per Kg body weight per hour (0.012 L./Kg/day). We also lose some
fluid each day in stool, in sweat and in our breath. This amounts to
about 0.5 l per day. In hot conditions, when we have a fever, or when
we exercise, this goes up. This is the principle way we become
dehydrated in the dojo. We need to replace this fluid loss. We also
need to replace the sodium and potassium and other minerals which we
lose in sweat (we lose little in the way of minerals in our breath).
When we become hypovolemic several things happen. First our heart
speeds up. It pumps less volume per beat (stroke volume) but beats
more often to compensate for this and maintain cardiac output (the
number of liters of blood pumped per minute). Second the blood levels
of catecholamines (epinephrine, norepinephrine and dopamine) go up.
This causes blood vessels in the critical organs such as heart, brain,
liver and kidneys to dilate and the vessels in the less critical areas
(gut, muscles) to constrict. Changes in the output from our
sympathetic nervous system reinforce this. The net effect is reduced
blood flow to the muscles and gut and more to the brain etc. Thirdly,
receptors that measure our blood pressure, our sodium level, etc. tell
the brain to increase our volume, this kicks in our thirst mechanism.
Fourthly, the atria of our heart, since they are smaller in diameter
reduce their production of ANP, a peptide hormone that stimulates the
kidneys to make urine. Thus the kidneys reduce their secretion of
sodium and urine.

Training without replacing our fluid and electrolyte losses doesn't
condition us. It doesn't make us tougher. It doesn't improve our
endurance. When we get tachycardic and thirsty our body is telling us
something. We need to listen to it.

Robert S. Joseph, RPh, MD, FCCP
Board Certified Internal Medicine and Critical Care Medicine
Clinical Asst. Professor Medicine
Indiana University School of Medicine
Medical Director, Intensive Care Units
Community Hospitals East and North
Community Hospitals of Indianapolis and Anderson 

Good Luck, Maluca
Subject: Re: Elevated heart rate after exercise? normal?
From: maluca-ga on 04 Mar 2006 20:30 PST
Almost forgot! How to test for dehydration and potential for Hypovolemic Shock:

A Neurologist who found it in me discovered it by having me lay down
for 3-4 minutes. While laying he measured my blood pressure and
resting heart rate. He had me stand up, waited 50-60 seconds and
started measuring my pulse rate again. My resting rate was 65. The
rate after 1 minute of standing plus the time it took to take the
pulse (30 seconds then he multiplied x 2)was 97! A normal response
would have been up to 8 beats per minute increase or 78. Mine was a 32
beats per minute increase.

It has been 7 days since this was revealed to me. I thought I drank
enough water but 2 ambulances and a firetruck full of emergency crews
looking down at me taught me other wise. The EMT's, Firemen and ER
personel could not determine what had happened and after 4 hours I was
sent home to a very disturbed wife and set of neighbors. My 2 young
sons thought it was great. What a scene. I was sent to a Neurologist
for a MRA/MRI of the brain to go with the CT scan the hospital did of
my chest and heart. The Neuro was a D.O. and after 45 minutes of
questioning did the tests I decribed above.

For 7 days I have drank 2 liters of water plus a day and my heart rate
still is 22 over!! It takes time to recover.

I am not a exercise guy. With two 4 year olds I get enough. That and
the stress of work and family was enough. I don't even drink coffee. I
can't imagine what would have happened if the exercise you do was

WHO EVER READS THIS: Please do the simple test above. The dehydration
is often years old. It can severly lower your energy levels It creates
poor brain function as well as cardiac and endocrine problems that all
can reverse when rehydrated. Post your results here if you like to
show people its a widespread misdiagnosed problem for many of us.

Good Luck and please post!

Note: I am not a Doctor. The above is related and described as it
happened to me. Do your own research as it is easy on these subjects.
Take the info to your Doctor.
Subject: Re: Elevated heart rate after exercise? normal?
From: myoarin-ga on 05 Mar 2006 15:10 PST
Shaphanhawks-ga, greetings.

Maluca's posting is interesting and may or may not be pertinent to
you, so let me shout:
              WE AREN'T MEDICAL DOCTORS.  See the disclaimer below.

There are a couple of G-A Researchers who are, and maybe one of them
will look at your question.
If you are still questioning the one doctor's positive rating, go to another one.

Regards, Myoarin
Subject: Re: Elevated heart rate after exercise? normal?
From: geomale-ga on 26 Mar 2006 01:34 PST
I would say it is normal enough. There is significan variation in your
heart rate from many factors such as state of arousal or wakefulness,
and your waking heart rate after sleep is likely to be lwer than that
in the evening

You might be a little dry or hypovolaemic as alluded to above, perhaps
stimulated with caffeine, or or excited by something perhaps even
unduly worried by your mild tachycardia! If a cardiologist has checked
you out and found nothing it is unlikely to be a cardiac problem.

Rare things like an overactive thyroid, or a pheochromocytoma are
possibilities, but you shold have more severe symptoms with these
conditions. Have you checked your blood pressure at the same time? If
you are worried, see an internist as well.

Dr. John Walker

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