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Shortness of breath

kajero2012-05-06 00:17:31 +0000 #1
I'm 60 years and have been riding seriously for the last 2.5 years. But I was wondering about my breathing. I'm not kidding but 10 minutes into the ride I am huffing and puffing. Even though I AM huffing I can still keep up with the group.

I also take spin classes twice a week (since January). I get short of breath in those, too, Sometimes I feel like I am huffing before I get to class.

I think I am real shallow breather. I've been practicing taking long breaths while I am at home. Maybe I just need to practice more. You will think this is very funny, I do. I started singing songs like Mary had a little lamb or Row, Row, your boat when I am riding. It seems to really help. LOL

I've seen the doctor and I had a stress test which didn't tell them anything because I coudn't get my heart rate up to 130. No matter that I do that most of the time when I am riding. They wanted to schedule some different ones but they are really expensive and I doubt they would find anything anyway.
OakLeaf2012-05-06 00:30:23 +0000 #2
Stress test, but no breathing test?

If you have a friend with asthma, borrow their peak flow meter and test yourself before and during a workout, then if it does appear you have exercise induced asthma, show your doctor the results. If you don't know anyone you can borrow one from, I think you can get one from a drugstore without a prescription - they're only like $25, and a good thing to have around if you have or suspect you have asthma.
ny biker2012-05-06 00:51:22 +0000 #3
Asthma is a possibility. When you ride, do you have problems with wheezing or coughing? Do you feel like you can't inhale fully, like your lungs won't expand all the way?

A pulmonary function test would show if you have impaired lung function, which could be caused by asthma. They're quite effective -- the last one I took showed that my asthma was getting worse before I started to feel worsening symptoms.
shootingstar2012-05-06 01:35:51 +0000 #4
I hope you will get more info. about your breathing patterns...and heart rate. Get that checked too..

Quote:

I've been practicing taking long breaths while I am at home. Maybe I just need to practice more. You will think this is very funny, I do. I started singing songs like Mary had a little lamb or Row, Row, your boat when I am riding. It seems to really help. LOL

I agree that relaxing oneself, to control breathing when working up some effort on the bike, is very helpful. I'm sure most people here would concur, especially when ie. tackling a difficult hill /mountain ascent. It's a mistake to breathe too quickly while grinding along on a bike.

Relax your grip on your handlebars too, as well as relax posture of body not to be too stiff and tense. The journey will be easier.
Kiwi Stoker2012-05-06 00:41:54 +0000 #5
You don't have Reynards disease by any chance? (limited blood flow in you hands and feet). A friend of mine with it has also found it has affected her lungs as well and huffs and puffs. She's on asthma medication to help open the airways and the blood flow (not asthma).

Was your blood pressure also OK? Low blood pressure could be an issue too.
Catrin2012-05-06 01:13:01 +0000 #6
You could have exercise induced asthma... +100 on getting a breathing test and you don't need a prescription for a peak flow meter. Do you ever wheeze, even a little bit? Tightness in the chest at all? You may, or may not, be aware of this. Back when I was having asthma problems I wasn't always aware of it since I was so accustomed to it...
Muirenn2012-05-06 03:06:00 +0000 #7
I was going to say exercise-induced asthma too.

Go to a different doctor and get a second opinion?
alexis_the_tiny2012-05-06 00:58:02 +0000 #8
+200 on checking the breathing test. Another thing to chip in, do you have allergies of any sort? I used to get really breathless while cycling, walking, running or climbing up the stairs. It was only this year that I started getting the congested, irritated feeling somewhere in my chest and having difficulty drawing a full breath. My doctor's verdict was that my allergies are bad and frequent enough to make me vulnerable to asthma.

If nothing is wrong health-wise, it could be that you need to build aerobic capacity. Long steady effort rides with an easy recovery ride the next day could help.

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