Exercise, how much is too much?

Hi all, I have been taking notice just lately of how much exercise shows up from my Fitbit. I am usually ok at weekends but during the week while at work my Cardio exercise shows up at around 7hours plus a day with average 130 bpm,. Am I overdoing it a bit due to demanding job or is this average. Usually feel wiped out when I get home. I have PAF.

11 Replies

  • Listen to your body. You do not need a gadget to tell you if you over do things. That said Paroxysmal AF does have fatigue as a side effect as do many of the drugs used to treat it. Again you body usually knows best.

  • Does the exercise trigger your AF? Are you actually exercising for that length of time. Keep a written calendar. I'm sure you are fine if this is your heart rate during actual exercise but then I'm no expert. What is your normal heart rate? Are you on medication? My AF is sometimes triggered by exercise but not always. I can really push myself running and I'm ok but occasionally it will put me in AF. Steady pace running seems fine. I've run 2 marathon distances recently and it's been fine. However, I triggered AF after running up a hill this weekend. Ironically it didn't start until I stopped at the top for a few minutes! I think it's a case of knowing what's the maximum you can do. My AF usually returns to NSR within 36 hours. No high heart rate just irregular.

    So the questions are does exercise trigger your AF? What's your normal resting hearts rate? Are you on medication?

    If at all worried speak to your cardiologist/EP.


  • It's surely not the length of time but the intensity of the exercise that is relevant. Dog walkers can think they get exercise because they cover ground but they are forever stopping for a moment or two and to my mind that's not proper exercise. At the other end of the scale are those who push themselves. As Physmeister says it's a case of knowing what the maximum you can do is - and perhaps steering well clear of that. Sticking to what gets your heart going nicely and no more than that can be fine but asking a heart to do more than it wants is surely an invitation to AF.

  • I have to agree here, I'm paf (1 abalation) and back into NSR for now. But when I do excercise I find if I overdo it in terms of the length of time I don't feel my usual self for the next day or so. Everyone's different but there is a link between over training and AF so make sure you get plenty of sleep and rest between exercise and your body will tell you if its too much even if its a mild run of AF. 7 hours with an average of 130bpm does sound high but I have found the Fitbit dosn't record well with an irregular rhythm unless you put it in exercise mode.

  • I am forever trying to get a PB at my parkrun and have been really pushing it the last two Saturdays. After last Saturday felt a bit dizzy and noticed an ectopic beat. After rest and a flecainide was okay. I know I'm one of the lucky ones.

  • That could be normal and you probably never noticed it before, I remember before I had AF I would feel lightheaded/dizzy after intense exercise. You become aware of every bump or thump after being subjected to AF unfortunately.

  • Thanks joberton. Never felt dizzy enough to want to sit down afterwards.

    I've had PAF for years but had a cardioversion last May and apart from two minor episodes have been stable. I am very aware of lumps and bumps and am constantly checking. Before cardioversion I had palpitations with the PAF which was a give away but last couple of times have been without palps, so need to keep an eye on the situation. I've booked a half marathon for November but won't be pushing it!

  • So true, I believe it's called heightened awareness and once you catch that its tough to shake off!

  • I wouldn't call it exercise as such, it comes up as cardio exercise on my Fitbit. My rate is up while at work and my job is a sewing machinist which can be demanding at times. i work full time and the occy health officer decided that I must work in a sedentary manner and not to do anything else but sewing at my machine, I am 62yrs old and on meds of 50mg Flecanide twice daily, Bisop 2.5 and warfarin. My normal heart rate is between 72 resting and 116bpm.

  • It depends what you mean by exercise. When I have AF I am worse during the night and my Fitbit will register me being in cardio all night despite the fact I'm actually fast sleep in bed.

    I take beta-blockers and they slow my heart down by about 15 beats per minute although they don't stop me going into AF

    Some make you feel very tired. I have found Nebivolol Best for me

  • My Fitbit had me in the fat burning zone for 22 hours and 15 minutes between Thursday and Friday last week, not that I did any exercise whatsoever as I was completely wiped out with AFib. It's just that the Fitbit doesn't recognise my AFib and thinks because my heart rate was elevated for that length of time that I was exercising!

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