Moderators: melkor

Giving blood -- when can I start exercising again?

Quote  |  Reply

I gave blood last night -- 1 pint of whole blood, the typical.  It was in the evening, around 9pm.  No trouble last night, although when I got up this morning I went into hypoglycemic shock and had to have my boyfriend get me some cereal and a glass of water.  I'm fine now, but it was a little scary.

Do you think I would be ok to do my typical weight training program this afternoon?  I typically do it Tuesday/ Thursday or Friday/Sunday, but I skipped this last Sunday because I wasn't feeling well, and so I don't want to skip today if I can avoid it.  My program involves weighted squats, divebomber pushups, goodmornings with presses, and turkish get-ups, amongst other things (those are the ones that make me feel the burn). 

9 Replies (last)

Seriously, wait a couple days.  You WILL get light headed. You may even pass out if you don't take it easy.  I know this for a fact-it happens to me whenever I give blood unless I wait a few days and up my protein.  No worries! You'll be back at the weights in no time;)

Quote  |  Reply

start light, like just go for a walk and see how you feel after that. Drink OJ before you go. I donate quite often because I have a a rare much needed blood type and I feel like it's my debt to society. (Lol.) But anyway it always makes me very sick for about 24 hours. Only do as much as you feel like you can handle.

Thanks for the advice.  I'm not sure I'm feeling so hot today, actually, so yeah, I think I'll skip it.  :c  I just feel like I'm falling SO far off the wagon...

I've got B positive blood so there isn't a whole lot of demand for my blood, but I still feel like it helps a little bit.  c:

You don't have to wait a few days. You can do light exercise a few hours after giving blood. They recommend that you avoid heavy lifting afterwards (to lessen the risk of a re-bleed) but that's about it. You should be fine to work out today. It's recommended that you drink lots of fluids (esp water) after you give blood though.

wait at least 48 hours, but preferably 72. I give blood on a regular basis and made the mistake last time of working out 2 days later I think, maybe it was 1 day later, and I was soooo sick for the rest of hte day. I was doing my strength training and I will never make that mistake again. I was shaking and lightheaded and felt like I had the flu or something. I never have a bad reaction to giving blood, only when I worked out too soon. Let your body recover.

According to Wikipedia:  Plasma volumes will return to normal in around 24 hours, while red blood cells are replaced by bone marrow into the circulatory system within about 3-5 weeks, and lost iron replaced over 6-8 weeks.  This recovery process can be accelerated by eating foods high in complex carbohydrates, iron, and other trace minerals.

Whole grains and iron supplements are your friends after blood donation.

You are supposed to wait 24 hours before doing any strenuous exercising.  I worked at the Blood Bank for a year, so I know all these weird things about donating blood.  But, do what you want.  If you start to feel strange, stop.  One time I donated blood and then had to run a half a mile (this was, however, about 3 hours after I gave blood, not 24) to the bus stop so I didn't miss it.  When I go on, I felt like I was going to die, and there was nowhere for me to sit, so I had to sit down on the ground in the middle of the bus otherwise, I'm pretty sure I would have passed out or thrown up on the public bus.  Neither would have been a good thing.  I just say, try to work out and if you start to feel strange, stop.  Listen to your body.

I think everyone is different. For me, I usually give blood in the morning around 9:30. Then at around 2:00 p.m. I work out doing cardio on the elliptical. I do work out a little lighter than normal, but I still go for 30 minutes and get my heart rate up a bit. Then the next day I go back to my "normal" workouts.

I wouldn't dream of doing anything too strenuous that same day, but that's because I feel a little weaker. Nor would I do any any weight lifting with my arms because of the bruising/bleeding. So if that's your thing, I would say wait a day just in case. An extra break will not hurt you. And then the next day go light and see how you feel. But it's very possible you'll feel just fine. (Which is today I guess....)

I also make sure I eat iron enriched foods that day (take in some Vitamin C at the same time) as well as complex carbs.

Oh and GOOD FOR YOU on giving blood.  :)

I just wanted to thank you for giving blood.

People like you literally saved my life. Thank you.
9 Replies