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While running longer distances (10-20 miles) I've periodically had a tingly feeling in my finger tips, sometimes my toes and in bad cases, in my entire face. Once this lead to mild muscle cramping in my arms. During this particular run (a marathon) I drank a fair amount of water (a little at each station) and I used 6 Gu gel packs (each containing 55mg of sodium and 40 mg of potassium).
What can cause this? Could I have been dehydrated? If I drink more, I frequently have to visit the bathroom... I'm very concerned about the effects of this.
Thanks for any help
With symptoms like this it could be a multitude of things- poor circulation, low blood sugar, low iron, indication of heart problems, etc...
You should go see a doctor...
Thanks. I'm wondering if there are extremely common causes though, before I take more drastic measures. For example, I've leard lack of electrolytes will do this (in extreme cases, it's hyponatremia - the people in the medical tent after the marathon told me that). I've also heard that dehydration/heat exaustion will do this (some nurses told me that). If these will cause these symptoms frequently, then I should try to fix it that way first.
Are those true? Are there other causes that are just as common as those two?
Other notes: I weigh 145 pounds. If I drink water on an empty stomach (while relaxing) it goes through me in 30 -45 minutes. I seem to process it quickly compared to others. I found that my gel packs DO contain sodium (55 mg) so since I had 6 on the run, maybe I had enough sodium... but I don't know how much is enough. This only happens during high exertion. Even my long runs don't seem to cause it unless I'm around 7:30 pace... this last one happened during a sub 7 minute pace for three miles, then a very steep 3/4 mile uphill.
Anyway, thanks for the tips... meanwhile, I'm just monitoring it so if I begin to feel tingly (I always feel it lightly for a few miles before any drastic effect) I'll just slow down a bit, which is what I did this last time and my hands quit feeling tingly.
I've learned a few things since this post... I can cause this feeling two ways: 1. simply running too hard - near my max heart rate... I tried this on the weekend and could cause the tingly feeling when my heart rate was way up there. 2. the AFTER run tingly feeling seems to be because I don't taper down my speed... I've been simply stopping from hard running and begin walking. After this morning's 10 miler, I stopped and began walking, got the feeling, then went to slow running and the feeling went away almost immediately.
So my initial assessment after these two experiements is that my muscles need more blood... stopping too suddenly doesn't give my body the circulation it needs so now I'm doing extended cool-downs. After my April marathon, I slowed down too quickly also... I might have been fine had I jogged for 5 minutes, then walked briskly for 15 minutes.
I'd welcome any thoughts.
This does not really apply to the start of this thread which might be more serious but a reason many people feel tingly (a more accurate description is how you can feel when you stand up to fast especially from being in the bed.)...is a sudden drop in blood pressure. When we run, our blood pressure gets higher than normal...this is a good thing as the body is adjusting to the increased need for circulation....but when we suddenly stop....especally after long runs...the blood pressure can drop very low quickly. This is compounded by the fact that long exercise will also lower blood pressure (for several hours) after the exercise. This is why races almost always encourage people to keep moving after finishing a race. A really good technique if you start to feel the tingly low blood pressure feeling is to raise both arms above your head which causes the heart to compensate by raising blood pressure back up a bit. Perhaps this is where sports people got into the habit of raising their arms in victory!
Chairman, Reef Ball Foundation