Water intoxication during exercise and athletic activities

Your heart health in a heartbeat _ Episode 3


Hello Everyone,

Today I’d like to talk about a topic that has nothing to do with heart disease, but one which I think should be of interest to athletes and to people who do intense exercise and sports.  The topic is “water intoxication.”

I bring that up because a young man came to Athletic Heart SF just the other day to be evaluated. He had had really bad symptoms during an intense workout, and there was a concern it might be his heart, but we figured out that the most likely cause of his symptoms was water intoxication.Read more

What should your pulse rate be?

Image attribution: "MF-180" by Pascal. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Image attribution: “MF-180” by Pascal. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

The topic of the pulse rate is one that our patients and healthy athletes frequently like to discuss with us.

With the increased availability and ease of use of wearable monitors, the optimal exercise heart rate has become an almost universal subject of conversation, not only in the athletic community but also among those who are just embarking on an exercise program.

In general, athletes are interested in the pulse rate in 2 situations:  the resting pulse rate, best measured upon waking in the morning, and the pulse rate during sustained aerobic exercise, such as running or cycling.  Today we will address the pulse rate during exercise and leave the resting pulse rate for a separate article.

So what is the physiologic meaning of the exercise pulse rate?  Is there a pulse rate one should aim for?  What if the rate falls outside the target zone?  Can the pulse rate ever be a clue to a cardiovascular problem?  Let’s take these questions one by one.Read more

Heart symptoms to recognize


Please note: this article is for general information only and should not be taken as specific medical advice. Should you have any symptoms or concerns, please seek medical attention or contact us for further evaluation. If you feel you are having a medical emergency, contact 9-1-1 immediately.

While we strongly promote prevention of heart disease through screening and early detection, we also wish everyone to be educated about the symptoms that could indicate an active cardiovascular problem.

A meeting was convened in October 2012 by the American College of Cardiology’s subsection on Sports and Exercise Cardiology.  The proceedings from that meeting, entitled “Protecting the Heart of the American Athlete,” were just published.  Here are the highlights that deal with 5 common symptoms of heart disease in athletes.Read more