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Exercise and Panic Attacks

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Old 07-02-2007, 05:03 PM   #1
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Default Exercise and Panic Attacks

I'm a moderately active person--I work out 2-3 times a week, but not usually high intensity. Well, last week, I bought a bicycle and have been riding every other day or so for added exercise. Yesterday, I was going up a steep hill and experienced a very scary panic attack with hyperventilation, that passed after about 1 minute.

Today, I didn't exercise at all, but driving home from work I experienced another panic attack, much worse than the one yesterday. I'm seeing a doctor tomorrow, as I've never had this happen before in my life and I'm kind of scared.

Do any of you suffer from panic attacks that are brought about from exercise? I'm worried that if this is going to be a regular thing, I may give up on working out altogether out of fear of more of these attacks.
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Old 07-02-2007, 05:34 PM   #2
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Jelly -

I'm so sorry to hear about your panic attacks. I know how scary they can be. I have definitely experienced this, mainly with running. Mine is all about my silly brain. Even though I've run 2 marathons, I sometimes get it stuck in my brain that I really can't run. I've found that focusing on my breathing helps me. I get into a mode where I inhale for 3 strides, exhale for 4 strides. Doing that helps my mind stay focused and ensures I don't go overboard.

Of course, follow your doc's orders, but you might try the breathing thing with your pedal strokes to see if it helps a bit. My attacks are related to obsessive/compulsive tendancies. I find in general that taking St. John's Wort helps my overall mindset. Again, it's just what works for me.

Best of luck to you.
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Old 07-02-2007, 06:29 PM   #3
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Yeah, today when I've started to feel them coming on again, I've been focusing on my breathing and trying to stay calm so as not to make them worse. I wonder if maybe I just overdid it yesterday. Still though, I hope these don't become a regular thing...

Thanks for your support
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Old 07-02-2007, 08:21 PM   #4
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I'm on Zoloft for mine. None were exercise related, thank goodness, but they are not fun at all.

It sounds to me like you may not be breathing properly, hence why your heart starts racing fast and your hyperventilating. If it continues while doing fast paced exercising, try slowing down a bit.

I had my first one three years ago, I was 40 years old. I was on medication for six months, came off of it, but had another one last October. I wouldn't wish these on anyone.

Good luck at the doctors.
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Old 07-02-2007, 09:34 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jellydisney View Post
Yeah, today when I've started to feel them coming on again, I've been focusing on my breathing and trying to stay calm so as not to make them worse. I wonder if maybe I just overdid it yesterday. Still though, I hope these don't become a regular thing...

Thanks for your support
I know it sounds a little crazy, but hopefully today was more a panic attack about having a panic attack. I find sometimes that they sort of come in groups, generally because I've been thinking about how much the first one freaked me out and letting myself get carried away into another one. It can be a tough cycle to break, but you sound like a strong lady.

Try and stick to the thought that you just over-did it until you can chat with your doctor.
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