High Blood Pressure

What medication is suitable for endurance athletes?

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30/01/2013 at 09:25

Not necessarily Kev.

At it's peak my blood pressure was a lot higher than yours and was brought under control with medication which I was subsequently on for years. I accepted that I'd probably be on the pills for the rest of my life. However, after slowly getting fitter and chiselling away at my weight for years I made more radical changes to my diet and started adding to my exercise routine. Then one day my exercise bike broke and I was told that it'd be in the workshop for two to three weeks. I was trekking regularly at weekends but needed something else so started running, surprised myself and really enjoyed it at the same time. Cue further weight loss. Around this time I started wondering about my my BP, went to the doctor and it was fine. However, the doctor said it was only fine because of the pills and didn't want to know about reducing the medication. Fast forward a year and I changed my GP ( not because of the above). I had to go to my new doctor for an unconnected issue but as I was there raised the issue again. My BP was on the lower side of the band considered to be ideal and my new GP took an interest and was prepared to lower the dosage with weekly monitoring. My BP continued to hold it's own and actually went down a bit more. My pulse rate was really low, 45 at one point. They did some tests and took me off the beta blockers in early October. As I said in a previous post, my BP was 120/77 last week, pulse 61.

I hope this isn't too much like my life story but the things you mention above can can definitely be successful but each case is different. I think it also takes time and you have to be patient. Certainly as one poster says above, it's definitely better to be on medication than have high BP. However, if you can avoid the pills then so much the better.    

30/01/2013 at 16:38
Thanks Neil. I'll probably buy a home BP Monitor to see how things go and if it doesn't come down with my lifestyle changes - off to the docs it is!
30/01/2013 at 18:03
Fair enough mate and good luck!

Remember that even if you have to start taking medication it doesn't mean you'll necessarily have to be on it for life. Go for regular check ups and see how it goes. Might take time.
01/02/2013 at 09:44
Running Kev wrote (see)
I had a health assessment at work recently and had slightly high BP at 148 / 104. I was hoping to correct this by quitting alcohol, improving diet (and losing weight) and running more.

Reading this thread leads me to believe that all the above may not be successful ad I'm destined for tablets- which I really want to avoid.

Is this really the case?

Good luck Kev, hopefully making those steps will be enough to bring yours down, I think its made a difference to mine but not enough difference as yet. High BP runs in my family so I may be stuck with it whatever I do.

definetely a good idea to start monitoring at Home, i was advised to sit still for 10-15 minutes before measuring.

I have a drs appointment later on today so will be able to see results and see what they advise. Thanks for everyones replies, I feel a bit more knowledgable now and know more about what to discuss if they want to give me medications.

will update later. 

01/02/2013 at 11:05
I'd definitely agree with Honk about sitting quietly for 10 to 15 minutes before checking your blood pressure. I remember having to rush to make my appointment at my local health centre a few months ago and the nurse, seeing that I'd hoofed it to get there on time, made me go and sit quietly for a while before taking a reading.

Hope your appointment goes well Honk.
01/02/2013 at 14:34

Thanks Neil, Dr has put me on 5mg Lisinopril per day, back next week for blood test and then see dr again in 6 weeks.

doing a bit of research, im ok with that so long as im not one of those that is affected by some of the side effects.

Oh and Dr was impressed with my weight loss

Edited: 01/02/2013 at 14:35
22/02/2013 at 21:39
Hi all hope you don't mind me joining for some advice.... It's been really interesting reading all these posts as I have been to the doctor today and she was quite concerned at my BP which was 146/104. I am a 40 year old female, running up to 12 miles now and weigh 8st 12. She has recommended that I wear a 24 hour monitor as she says it is unusual of someone my age and fitness to have those levels.
Now in the past the doctors have mentioned my BP and I was recommended once before to have a monitor fitted (it wasn't this high though) and when going for the fitting the nurse decided not to proceed as she didn't feel it was high enough.
My quandary is I am training for London marathon and asked the doctor if this was still okay. She recommended continuing running as the benefits are so good and said not to worry as I will have completed my 24hr test within the next week. When I left the doctor and went to 'book' myself on the waiting list, I now have to wait until 25th March for a monitor to become free. Do I continue to train or am I taking unnecessary risks by pushing too hard and should I defer to next year and continue with more normal steady plods??
I have waited four years for a place at London but would never forgive myself for doing the wrong thing and pushing too hard. (I'm no Mo though - just a 9-10 min mile plodder )
23/02/2013 at 07:01

jollie, everything ive read about high blood pressure reccomends exercise as a way to help lower it and it sounds like your doctor also wants you to continue to run although was expecting results back sooner. if you have concerns i'd recomend you go back to see the doctor certainly not give up your training without talking it over.

it could be you get white coat syndrome which you could test with a home blood pressure monitor dont think they are too expensive now and well worth getting if youve had a few high readings.

jollie32 wrote (see)
 Do I continue to train or am I taking unnecessary risks by pushing too hard and should I defer to next year and continue with more normal steady plods??

is it the extra distance or higher intensity ie speedwork your concerned about here? no reason why you cant train for and complete a marathon without doing any speedwork.
good luck with London whenever you decide to do it, will that be your first Marathon?

24/02/2013 at 23:40
Hi Honk - many thanks for the reply. It's really the distance I'm worried about and the pressure it will put on the body.
I have taken your advice and ordered myself a home monitor today (by the way if anyone is thinking of getting one I ordered an Omron M6 Comfort which is on sale for over ??100 at Boots for ??44 on Amazon with free delivery!!). Hopefully I can get a true regular reading from this to build up a bigger picture. I know previously that I have had my BP taken at the doctors which is high and then they have done it again 5 mins later and it has gone down.
I am running Silverstone half marathon on Sunday so will see how I get on with that and after using my machine and make a considered decision about London.
It is my first marathon (and probably only as the training is like a 2nd job!!) which is why I wanted it to be London! At least I have one deferral so if that is the right decision I shall continue to train up to half marathon distance until I get myself sorted. I still have fingers crossed it's White Coat syndrome....
Have you noticed a drop on your BP since starting the tablets? Well done with the weight loss by the way.... Will help your BP but also make you feel better and has a huge knock on effect!!
25/02/2013 at 18:59

The good news is ive noticed no side effects since going on the medication but whilst ive had some normal bp readings ive also had the odd high one. dr recently doubled my dose to 10mg so hopefully that will bring it down.

Ive less than a kg to lose now to reach my target weight but the last bit is taking its time to come off, however i'm not too worried about weight as I can no longer see any spare flab, begginning to look like a proper athlete , feel great and my training should see it off as the distance steps up.

Good luck at Silverstone, hope it goes well.

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