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Is It Safe to Lift Weights While On Beta Blockers?

by
author image Lindsay Kent
Lindsay Kent began writing professionally in 2009, appearing first at ProTrainer Online. She is a Certified Personal Trainer and a Certified Specialist in Fitness Nutrition. Kent graduated summa cum laude from the University of West Georgia with a bachelor's degree in English and received various accolades and scholarships from the Institute of English.
Is It Safe to Lift Weights While On Beta Blockers?
Exercising can be beneficial for heart conditions. Photo Credit Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images

Beta blockers are prescribed by doctors to help those suffering from high blood pressure or heart disease. They can be prescribed to help prevent further cardiac arrest for those who have already suffered from heart attacks. While exercise is a great way to lower both blood pressure and cholesterol and help prevent heart disease, if you have been prescribed beta blockers, you should receive clearance from your physician before starting any sort of exercise program.

Beta Blocker Side Effects

Beta blockers do have some side effects, including depression, tension or anxiety and fatigue. Knowing which types of exercises to engage in safely can be a part of your health-care routine and even possibly help to improve your condition. Monitoring your heart rate during exercise is important to make sure that you are not overexerting your cardiovascular system. According to "Fitness: The Complete Guide," working out between 55 and 85 percent of your maximum heart rate will solicit a positive training effect, so for those on beta blockers under the guidance of their physician, the low end of this range should be suitable.

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Controlled Breathing

Controlling your breathing patterns during exercise aids in perfecting both your form and technique and helps you focus completely on the exercise. Breathing in a continuous, controlled pattern is the safest and most effective way to breathe while lifting weights. Holding your breath during exertion can be particularly dangerous for those already on beta blockers because this causes sudden spikes in your blood pressure.

Using Lighter Resistance

Using heavier weights during your strength-training session causes more overall strain on the body, which also increases your blood pressure levels during exercise and can be especially dangerous to those who have heart conditions. Using lighter weights is the best way to train if you have a heart condition. Simply increase the number of repetitions you complete to solicit the desired training effect.

Be Acutely Aware

Understanding the signals your body is sending to you is always important whether you are exercising or engaging in normal lifestyle activities, but it is especially imperative if you take medication or have a medical condition. Becoming dizzy, disoriented, extremely fatigued or experiencing any sort of pressure or pain in the chest area is an indicator that you need to stop exercising, keep your body cool and relaxed and focus on breathing. If symptoms persist, you need to seek medical attention.

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