Exercise, Medications and Fitness Results

Do you know the effects that your medications may be placing on your fitness goals?

Spring is just around the corner and all those heavy, loose clothes will be put away in exchange for lighter more revealing clothes. Warmer weather means clothes that reveal our figures, tank tops, tees, minis and shorts, making us all want to get toned up and in shape. Springtime is a great time to get outside and get fit, the smell of fresh air and blooming flowers puts us in a happy and motivated mood. But for some it means allergies and medication just to help get them through the day! These medications can cause side effects.

Many allergy medications, diet pills and cold remedies contain ingredients that can make your heart race, a normal dose probably would be fine but adding exercise may cause unwanted side effects. Antihistamines can also cause drowsiness and decrease reaction time and throw off your balance and coordination putting you at risk for injuries, caution should be taken when riding your bike, running and using any type of equipment, so please choose a non drowsy formula when possible. Antihistamines can also cause drying in the upper airways while exercising, which can be uncomfortable so drink plenty of water. It is also a good idea to use a nasal saline spray to keep the nasal passages moist.

Decongestants cause narrowing of the blood vessels to allow better airflow but this also limits blood flow and can cause muscle fatigue, making exercise difficult. Decongestants can also cause a rise in blood pressure and heart rate at rest and during exercise.

Diuretics are used to remove water from the body through your kidneys. They are also used for High Blood Pressure and to remove excess fluid from the body, because of the increased activity of the kidneys, caution must be taken to maintain proper hydration before during and after exercising to avoid electrolyte imbalance and dehydration.

Many active people and athletes take anti-inflammatory drugs due to training injuries and over use of muscles and joints; it is not advised to take these drugs to get through a work out, masking pain is not a good thing, your body is telling you that there is a problem and blocking it out to get a work out in is dangerous and could lead to further and serious injury. Currently, there is a bit of controversy on chronic overuse of these types (NSAID’s) of medications – some researchers say that they can allegedly cause permanent damage to cartilage.

Beta Blockers, Thyroid Medications, Heart Medications, Anti Depressants, Birth Control can all have an effect of exercising, weight loss and your fitness results. Everyone should educate themselves on any and all medications that you put into your body, they are chemical based and can have different effects on different people and their metabolism.

Exercising produces positive reactions from all of our bodies systems; the brain, muscular cardiovascular, digestive, and immune systems are all affected which is why you feel great when you are finished exercising, but combined with certain types of medications, the stresses of exercise placed on the body are different so always talk to your doctor about your medications and exercise.

If you are training in a private session always inform your personal trainer of any medications that you are taking before exercising. Knowledge of a person's medications can provide valuable information in order to design a safe and effective training program for the client.

Disclaimer: The information in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for the personal care of a doctor. Please remember to always consult your healthcare provider before beginning a new fitness program. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Great article on medication and fitness goal results, very informative and educational, people would never think of this when they are not getting the results that they are expecting!


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