Dizzy while running

I’m sure this will just provide my mother with more fodder for anxiety, but I thought I’d write about it anyway. I have this very annoying tendency to randomly get dizzy while running. It’s not every time, and it seems to come in stretches. As a doctor, I realize that dizzy is a very vague term, so let me clarify. Usually about 20-25 minutes into a run, I’ll start to feel a little cold and clammy and like I can’t focus well. Then I’ll just start feeling increasingly lightheaded like I’m going to faint. It’s certainly not vertigo because it doesn’t feel like the world is spinning. I just feel very weak and faint and like I need to sit down. Sometimes I can push through it and finish the run but then I need to come home and sit down for a while before the feeling goes away. Sometimes it gets bad enough that I have to stop and walk and once or twice I’ve had to actually sit down. It usually takes about 10 minutes to go away, and then I can usually resume my run without any problems. Very bizarre.

I’ve spent a good bit of time trying to figure out what’s causing it. I even went so far as to (gasp!) see a doctor about it. They couldn’t figure it out either, but I did have an EKG and a stress test, both of which were normal. Of course, I didn’t actually feel dizzy during the stress test so it wasn’t particuarly helpful.

For a while, I thought it was because of poor conditioning but it happened even when I was in great shape and training for the marathon. Then I thought maybe it was related to overexertion or runnning in the heat, but it can happen even during easy runs in cool weather (and, interestingly, it even happend a few times while swimming). Then I thought it was because of dehydration or hypoglycemia while running, but eating and drinking well doesn’t make any difference. My current theory is that I’m just crazy, and I should learn to live with it. I’m pretty happy with this theory, but my husband is determined to figure out what’s going on.

The only other thing I can think of is that I somehow have occasional vasovagal episodes (sudden dilation of blood vessels) while running which causes my blood pressure to drop suddenly and makes me feel faint. If this is the case, I suppose I could test it by just taking my blood pressure when I get the feeling, although this seems slightly challenging since I only get the feeling while running. On the other hand, if this does prove to be the cause, I don’t think there’s much I can do about it, which brings me back to my current theory of I should just accept it and learn to live with it.


341 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Jim Higgins said,

    Wow. I was so happy to find your post. I have almost the exact same thing and haven’t been able to figure it out. I’m sorry that you have it, but it’s nice to know that I’m not alone. I don’t have time right now to be as detailed as you were, but here are the basics: I’m 42 now and this started when I was 25. Prior to that I could run just fine without dizziness. Given the number of years that I’ve had it, I’m not too concerned that it is anything of grave concern. However, now that I am running more (or at least trying), it is becoming a real pain in the rear. I’d like to run 30-45 minutes 5x a week. I have always used a heart rate monitor to ensure that I work out at the proper level–so I know that my dizziness is not due to over doing it.

    Like you said, it comes and goes. Sometimes i have no problem at all, and sometimes I have to stop after 12 minutes. When it happens, it usually hits around the 20-25 minute mark. I start to feel a little light headed and then the dizziness sets in. It continues to get worse to longer I ignore it. I can usually last a couple of minutes before I have to quit. I thought it might be vertigo since if I turn quickly or lean my head over the side, I feel that I might lose my balance. But the nothing is spinning as long as I remain calm and look forward.

    It always clears after sitting for 10 minutes or so. However, if I continue walking, it won’t clear (although it won’t get any worse while walking). I usually call it a day after it happens, but I do remember being able to run again after sitting. Then it is still there slightly, but at a manageable level.

    I believe that it is something to do with the combination of exercise and head movements (bouncing, turning). I can use the stairmaster or bike as long as I want with no problems. I’ve had it a couple of times while hiking, but that is rare. I do 15 mile/3000′ climb Yosemite day hikes 15+ times a year with no problem. Also I can handle rapid head movements or bouncing while not exerting myself (i.e. golf, tennis, very rough roads, etc). So this is why I think it is the combination. But why????? And what can I do about it.

    I’ve tried running at all different times of the day and with varying amounts/types of food in my stomach. I’ve also been trying to keep my eyes focused on one point as much as possible while keeping my head up. I think it is worse if I am looking down at where I am stepping. Also I don’t get motion sickness at all, even with extreme turbulence or twisty roads.

    That’s about as much as I can think of now. I wanted to let you know that you are not alone. I also am eager to meet (virtually) someone else with the same problem. Maybe we can talk and help each other learn more about it.

    Best of luck,

    • 2

      Anonymous said,

      I have the EXACT same thing and have been baffled by it for 15 years. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one!

      • 3

        Dan Zeng said,

        You’ve been running for one year longer then my age! I’m 14! 🙂

      • 4

        Anonymous said,

        I HAVE IT TOO! The thing is that I started running in like March because I have grown to love running and I’m 16!!! I hate it! I want to join cross country and as a result I don’t want to be inclined to this weird dizziness after my runs

    • 5

      Anonymous said,

      Glad I found this Thread. The same thing happens me about 10-15 minutes into my run. As someone else wrote, it appears to be worse when looking down. I don’t stop – I probably should – but keep running through it and 5/10 minutes later it’s gone and i’m back to normal. While it’s happening I breath more deeply – I wonder is it something to do with oxygen levels – and this appears to help. It is quite alarming and my biggest worry is tripping or collapsing but so far neither has happened me!

      • 6

        Sarah said,

        Hi Annonymous

        I also have this, but it sometimes gets to the point where I feel very ill. The last time I ran, about a year and a half ago, I did actually loose balance and fell heavily into the verge. I am now a bit scared about going running and am very disappointed about it.

        Doctors have sent me for MRI scans and hearing tests, but with no result.

        I have just had a breast reduction as I felt this may have been the only possible cause left and was planning to start running again next week – but after seeing posts from male runners, I’m guessing this will not have made a difference.

        I will have a go and keep my fingers crossed!

    • 7

      Dan Zeng said,

      I am fourteen years old, and I get the same feeling after running about 2 miles. Though I don’t run marathons like a lot of people here do(In fact, I am a professional swimmer, and I’m running to help my endurance in swimming), I have been consistently running for over two years and this hasn’t happened to me until today. Unlike other situations I’ve seen, I’ve gotten the light-headed/dizzy feeling for over a day and it is still persisting, though it has gotten a little better through drinking propel and a protein shake an hour after I run. So far, I have seen the following reasons for light-headedness through this site and a few other sites too:
      -dialation of veins due to exertion
      -standing up too quick from a lying position
      -smoking before running
      -lack of sodium
      -lack of iron
      -lack of carbohydrates
      -lack of electrolytes
      -working out/playing another sport immediately after running(Which is probably the reason why I get the dizzy and lightheaded feeling)

      • 8

        Ryan said,

        A professional swimmer?

      • 9

        Anonymous said,

        Inc Troll, PRO SWIMMER @ 14?!?!

      • 10

        ady shorrock said,

        I have been getting a few dizzy spells .not all the time like everyone says now and then even on 85 mile weeks thay do not come but on 50 mile week it comes on .have not got a clue .

      • 11

        Tom said,

        I think I found an association myself with low salt/electrolytes as a chronic problem. Have to watch drinking too much without adding some sodium or electrolytes.

    • 12

      Elizabeth Deatherage said,

      Wow! ! both of these letters totally describes me in every way….But is started a year ago for me..I thought it was from not being in shape very well..bu then recently I have started throwing up when trying to do my normal jog every morning..and I have been getting very dizzy when even walking for a long distance..and walking never seemed to bother me before a couple weeks ago..But I also have that dizziness like you both were talking about..when running I get very dizzy and have to stop sometime 2 or 3 times..depending on how long I jog..I normally jog about 20 to 25 minutes..but it is so weird..because I also sometime have dizzy spells when I am not really doing anything…I kind of have wondered what it was and decided to research it..It’s just that I don’t really know what it is,and am hoping that it will go away…But from reading these it makes me wonder..My Aunt and Brother think I should go to the doctor and get it checked out..but I don’t really want to do that..In some ways I’m kind of scared to find out what it is..but then again maybe I should know…I am thinking it might have something to do with me getting sick the beginning of this year..because that is when it got allot worse..I have always pretty much had it..so I don’t think it is something that major because I’ve had it so long..just bending over to pick something up I use to get very dizzy..but that has gotten a bit little better….So I really hope it will all get better and just go away..

      • 13

        Anonymous said,

        Don’t worry about throwing up that much. A guy with whom I used to run actually finished a race FIRST once and then just went to the side and threw up like hell 😀

        If you want to avoid it, try eating and drinking 2 hours before a run and than 1 hour after. That is what I do since I had to stop a run because of tummyaches 😉

    • 14

      Anonymous said,

      Very nice to come across this blog. I am also a physician and experiencing dizziness/wooziness/nausea and the sensation I may pass out while running. It seems worse when turning or looking up or turning my head and is particularly bad at the end of a run. It is new and I never had this issue before.

    • 16

      anonymous said,

      My goodness! Finally! I have the same problem and I am an exercise physiologist….42 yrs. old and am too embarrassed to ask my collegues about this problem because I know what they’ll advise. A physiologist would naturally assume I’m not in good condition (not the case), am hypoglycemic (not the case), am increasing my heart rate too rapidly (not the case), am increasing heart rate/bp too high (not the case), have limited oxygen capacity (not the case). I am frankly pissed off. Here’s how I feel 20 minutes into a run : dizzy, out of body-like, like I need gas and can’t get it, like suddenly the up-and-down action of running becomes intensified, like I’m iron deficient but I don’t think I am normally. I have actually be worried I could not make it back from a run. I always push through it…I refuse to walk while I’m running and I refuse to run less than 3 miles.
      As a physiologist I have heard of rare instances where the impact of running causes increased need for iron while running. Inavailability of iron results and the symptoms of iron deficiency occur. That is exactly what it feels like. It’s embarrassing since I am an avid exerciser and running is the only thing that causes it.
      So I’ve read these blogs and am encouraged by people with the same problem (misery and company and all), but no one seems to have an answer. I am determined now to find it. Thanks for the company!

      • 17

        Anonymous said,

        I am a 51 year old female, who has been running off and on for 30 odd years. I am not in marvelous shape, but do half marathons etc. Lately I have been getting dizzy spells within the first minutes of running. I usually run through them and keep my head straight etc. But the last few times it has been so bad that I am staggering/weaving on the road. I had to stop for a few minutes, then I go on with no problem. weird.
        A few years ago, this started to happen, but didn’t seem to necessarily be exercise related. Sometimes I would be sitting, a few times driving, a few times while downhill skiing. Sometimes it is bad, in that my world spins, or a sensation of double vision. NO NAUSEA though.
        I have had an MRI, eye tests and scans, EKG all inconclusive……

      • 18

        Mike said,

        THANK YOU! This thread is making so happy that I’m not the only person this is happening to. This post from an exercise physiologist describes my symptoms perfectly. Everyone else’s describe them well also. About 20-25 minutes in (2-3 miles) it begins to come on and within minutes I’m somewhat delirious, out-of-body feeling, nausea (along with EXTREME hunger). Sometimes it is bad enough that it will end all vigorous activity for the day. Sometimes I can run (or walk) through it, although it really makes for a bad run. I really would like to know what it causing this.
        I take thyroid medication and I thought that it may be due to uncontrolled thyroid issues. This does not seem to be the case however as my levels are now all good.
        I am a very healthy man (resting heart rate of 44) training for a 1/2 marathon and I’m terrified that this will occur during my race!

        Any tips or pointers will be greatly appreciated! I’m going to try an iron supplement and see if it helps.

      • 19

        Anonymous said,

        thank you so much for your comment. you described how i feel exactly. glad to know i am not alone, i am pretty sure i was beginning to sound crazy. please let me know if you find the answer!

      • 20

        Anonymous said,

        Can it be related to any disruption between the axis and cranium? I was also thinking about a similarity to whiplash. Not in all it’s severity but enough to cause the dizziness/nausea that occurs when a concussion happens. Since there is the impact on the body during the run and the skull is NOT attached to the spine…
        Or let’s go into the inner ear… With the impact of running… Can that be disrupting the pressure with the increase of breathing with exertion.

    • 21

      anonymous said,

      The answer is “footstrike hemolysis”. Loss of red blood cells due to the impact of the foot striking the ground…usually hard surface like asphalt. Symptoms are those of iron deficiency and occur while performing impact sports. Sounds crazy but the term has been around for over 50 years and apparently it’s quite common. Increase iron levels and that should do it. I’m going to try it and see.

      • 22

        Anonymous said,

        Thank you everyone for your posts! I too have this problem and am training for my first half marathon. I have had to stop and walk for a few minutes in my group runs because I feel like I will literally tip over on my side if I don’t. Very embarrassing. I am slightly anemic anyway (was much worse before my hysterectomy a year ago), so this explanation makes so much sense to me! I plan to start back on iron supplements stat and see if that makes a difference.

    • 23

      Anonymous said,

      I too have the exact same symptoms and I’m a 19 year old male, I ran competitively all throughout high school in Track and Cross Country, and am in very good running shape. From my experience the culprit seems to be familiarity.

      I go to TCU and when I run a 12-14 mile run there, I feel absolutely fine, I never have the dizziness set in. However when I go home to the place that I’ve been running for 5+ years I always get dizzy. It feels like the cause is I defocus my eyes and just let my head wonder, which produces the dizzy feeling and I have to stop otherwise I just about pass out.

      What helps me is to focus on a spot 30 meters ahead and just watch it as I run to it, and keep on doing that. It seems to help.

      I was also thinking it could be the electrolyte level as if you get semi -hyponatremic then the osmotic pressure in your veins decreases which can cause light headedness. So I’m going to experiment and see if it’s from a lack of electrolytes. Which would make a lot of sense as well. I personally tend to sweat a lot and when I’m at home I never drink sports drinks I drink water and at my dorm I have an electrolye drink mix.

    • 24

      Ruth 0 said,

      I know the feeling – almost exactly – I wrote about my experience and the little that has helped. Any breakthroughs for you?

    • 25

      sophie said,

      OMG! Exactly the same, usually 20 mins into run it hits me. Isometimes sit down to recover or just stop and it goes away after some minutes. This is a huge pain as i can’t get the race times i want if i have to stop for fear of fainting!

    • 26

      Jaclyn said,

      I actually just asked my doctor about this today. In petite frames it could be due to a spike lowered blood pressure. Also could be a spike in high blood pressure. Salt is also a factor as well as iron. The one reason he told me could be a possibility that no one mentioned here is a migraine. Apparently the dizziness, tunnel vision, etc could be the same reaction your brain has to a migraine without the pain.

    • 27

      Jim said,

      I had the same problems and passed away four years ago

    • 29

      Tanya Grinnell said,

      Migraine associated vertigo

    • 30

      Tom said,

      Ok, me too. started last year. Feel like I’m going to collapse, if I stop and sit I want to go to sleep.has happened at 7 miles, 2 miles, 1 mile,not all the time. I notice I start to veer right and run on the border of the road. Doesn’t happen much biking or swimming. Been to every kind of dr and had some scary misdiagnoses. Did a good half marathon in. Jan, now can’t get past four miles. I’m 61 and doing triathlon for 30 years

    • 31

      Deanna said,

      I have nausea with the lightheadedness and it started when I was swimming , doing laps. So I stopped swimming because it happen every time and was very uncomfortable. I started running January 2014. I started having the lightheadedness and nausea 2015. It has a sudden onset and is very uncomfortable but once I stop running it goes away after a few minutes but I don’t feel good enough to run so I walk the rest of the way. I have associated it with a head movement to look at something followed by the problem. I also noticed I didn’t have it when I did the backstroke. I thought it was hypoglycemia, but I eat a ton and have gained wt as a result:) It’s not cardiac related. Echo cardiogram is very normal etc. It’s very annoying because I love running now. I might add I am 77 tomorrow and a female and some might say a bit crazy,.

  2. 32

    James Mallon said,


    It seems you have anxiety with slight panic attacks while your body is exercising. You most likely are in fine shape and have nothing wrong with your heart. The fact that you heart is beating so fast while running and your experiencing a light headed feeling is normal. But with you it begins to scare you and then the anxiety starts occuring which snowballs into a panic attack…which has the same symptoms you are describing… A low dose of anti-depressant, or anxiety related medication might do the trick… See a doctor for these prescribtions… And a stress test just to make sure your heart is ok is a good idea.

    James Mallon

  3. 33

    Ramez Khavari said,

    I tool have felt the same….going for power walks and feeling a little light headed…this has never happened to me but has started to recently

  4. 34

    Helen said,

    Wow! In desperation I typed ‘feeling sick and dizzy when running outside’ and I came upon this website. I would love to know why I am feeling sick and dizzy while out running. I start to feel like this almost at the start of running. It is a horrible feeling and to know that I am not alone gives me some hope as I was beginning to think that I was the only one!
    I am 39 years of age this year and have run in three marathons in the past two years. I am not a fast runner. I jog along slowly and take in the atmosphere of the marathon and love it. However in the summewr last year while training for my third marathon I began feeling sick and dizzy almost as soon as I started to run. I have been to the doctors where they checked my blood and scanned my heart but all is well there. I am already on mild antidepressants.
    I took part in the NY Marathon in November 2008, but just couldnt run it because of feeling sick and dizzy, so had to power walk the whole of it as I was determined to finish. I love running and would have much preferred to run the 26.2 miles.
    Now I am training for the London Marathon in April this year, and desperately want to run it. I am in training but can only run on the treadmill and feel fine, but that is no use when I want to be outside and it makes me feel very sad and depressed. I am booked in to see ENT Specialist but the doctor does not think he will be able to help me.
    Does anyone have any idea why I feel so sick and dizzy when running? Please help!!

  5. 35

    Ben Smith said,

    I have been experiencing the same as Helen for around 2 years or more. I’ve been on anti depressants and they did not help at all. Also been to see ENT specialist, reported nothing wrong, had an MRI scan on my brain and again nothing wrong.

    I can get dizzy as little as 10 seconds into a job, even going slowly. I’ve recently found that skipping generates the same feeling straight away. Almost feels like my brain is moving around in my head. As mentioned by others, most other sports are fine, I play tennis, badminton, go mountain biking through tough terrain and never have the feeling.

    It would be so good to find out what this is as its really effecting my life.

  6. 36

    Jan said,

    I am experiencing exactly the same for the moment. Been to the doctor twice. Ruled out loose crystals affecting the balance. Could possibly be a virus, perhaps low blood pressure. It happens only when I am running and after about 5 minutes, very dizzy and I have to walk home. Had the same symptoms three years ago, rested for about 5 weeks, but this time I have had these symptoms for three months, extremely annoying. But I do also feel slightly dizzy and “thick in my head” at daytime not running, especially the first week(s) after the first run, which initiated the first dizzyness. I still believe it could be due to loose crystals.

    Jan in Sweden

  7. 37

    rachel said,

    I too have had these problems. I dont think it has anything to do with your age though. I am 19 and I have had these problems for about a year now. I have always been in great shape and have none of these problems with any other sport or activity- just running and sometimes power-walking. I feel so off balance and I have even fallen due to the dizziness. And like you all, most times I decide to stop and sit for a while till it wears off. However, I highly suggest to sit down and NOT continue running through these problems as I have had the experience of passing out of the side of the road because of this- very dangerous!! I too have been to see many doctors concerning these issues and none of them can figure anything out. In fact, they all tell me to refrain from and excessive activity until they are able to resolve or diagnose the problem. However, I am not one to just lay around and do nothing. I keep trying! I think that is all we can do. I dont know if any of us will ever be able to fully get used to it. All we can do is hope that some doctor somewhere will be able to figure it out and publish there findings so that all the people like us can be helped.

  8. 38

    Paul White said,

    Like other I have suffered dizziness from running since I was 13. I am now 45. It always starts after 20-25 minutes, unless I go very slowly. I am not affected in other sports to include tennis I still play and rugby which I used to play. Having sought advice from numerous people/doctors I know I am in good shape. The last doctor suggested it was horizonitis (the movement of the horizon up and down when running). She said she did not know of a sulution although a friend has recently suggested I try sea sickness tablets as they influece/help control similar functions. I will let you know how I get on.

  9. 40

    Anni Willshire said,

    I’m 27 and I experience the same dizziness after a few minutes into my run. Up to the age of 23, I was fine and could run for hours on end. Now I get so dizzy I even get sick. At first I experience a tinkle sensation somewhere on my body (most of the time on my arms) and then I get dizzy and the world start spinning and my head feels weird. I’m glad to find other people with similar problems but I was hoping to sort it out and enjoy running again but by the looks of the other postings I’m not so sure anymore. I will try the anxiety medication. I’ve tried motion sickness pills and it works for a while and then all the old symptoms come back.

    • 41

      Amber said,

      This is EXACTLY what happens to me. It started 3 years after I started running and racing and it always happens about 20-25 minutes into my run. If I don’t stop, I’ll start getting tingly and numb in my arms and butt for some odd reason. Have you had any success in treating this? It’s really sucked the fun out of my favorite past-time. 😦

      I am a triathlete – and I’ve never experienced this while swimming or biking. Also, if I run first thing in the morning (w/o breakfast) I also seem to do fine.

      Any thoughts?

  10. 42

    Noah said,

    I too have the same symptoms… I have been running at my gym all winter on the treadmill with zero problems, but as soon as I try to run outdoors I feel light headed and slightly disoriented… I keep thinking it is the cold crisp air since I have been running in 50 degree temps. or maybe since I have mild alergies that I may be taking in an extra amount of alergins from the still decaying grass and leaves from last year… I have no idea what is causing it, so I am trying to find answers and came across this post… I would love to figure this out since I would really like to be able to run farther, but feeling light headed tends to limit how far I am comfortable running… =(

  11. 43

    rachel said,

    have any of you ever had Mono?? My Dr seems to think that the remnants of this virus has caused such problems.

    • 44

      sacha said,

      I had symptoms during 1 months that looked like mono, extreme tiredness, light headed, feeling of “not beeing here”, in the clouds, along with a very high resting pulse. I don’t know if has a relation with our symptoms though..

  12. 45

    Noah said,

    I haven’t had mono, so that can’t be what is affecting me… It seems to have something to do with running outside for me. I am fine on a treadmill.

  13. 46

    candace said,

    It is comforting to see these comments – I have been describing this to my friends for 2 years now. I ran my first marathon (no problem), and literally the next time I ran, a couple of days later, the dizziness began. I too can run on a treadmill, at a steep incline, fast, for an unlimited period of time. I ride my horse everyday and play tennis regularly. All of these activities cause no problems. It is only running outside – no matter the route, Ipod in or out, looking ahead or down, deep breathing or no, slow or fast – it hits me every single time usually about 15 minutes in. AAAGGGGHHHH! I love running so it is just such a shame.

  14. 47

    Andrea said,

    Dear all

    I have had this twice in the last two weeks. The second time being today in a 10k race. Was fine until about 7k and then got dizzy, and saw blue spots in my vision! perhaps it was an out of body experience.. because thats what it felt like!

    • 48

      Steve said,

      Hello Andrea,

      I just found this blog today and was taken with your post because I also get the spots in my vision. Also, a few years ago I wrote to Runners World and described this as an “out of body” feeling but nobody had a clue what I was talking about.
      Have you discovered any clues as to what we have ? Have you found any remedies to help with this dizziness syndrome ?

      Thanks and good running.

  15. 49

    Keith Klassen said,

    Hello all,

    I, too, find some “comfort” in reading these comments, to know that I am not alone and that someone else may have insight into how to deal with this. I have been struggling to find an answer to the dizzy-and-then-nauseous-when-run-other-than-on-a-treadmill problem for almost 4 years. I have seen heart, ENT, and neurology medical specialists, as well as balance and dizziness technicians; all say they can find nothing wrong. Symptoms usually come on from 15 to 30 minutes into a run, although occasionally they come on quicker or slower. When the feeling comes, it comes very quickly. If I stop immediately and walk, it slowly fades, but if I try to “run through it”, even for a short while, I get nauseous, quickly followed by a rapidly worsening dizziness or vertigo. If I push it still further, my vision can distort and things start to look surreal, and I get violently ill. The wiped out and crappy feeling hangs around for hours; often I am not significantly better until the next day. I sympathize with all of you, and ask that anyone who has ideas/suggestions that might help please email me at keithklassen@sasktel.net. Thanks, and good luck!

  16. 50

    Angelina Velichko said,

    After running/jogging for about 20 min. I get pretty much the same effects as people described it in the first two or three comments. I think it gets worse when I slow down or stop after running. This started happening last year during my weekly runs in aerobics class. On day we went down to the weight room and I decided to do some running on the treadmill and about 20 min. into it, I started to feel light headed. When I stepped off I began to feel really unsteady and dizzy. I think this was a result of not enough oxygen to the brain, and maybe even a drop in blood pressure. I went for a run yesterday and began to feel light headed around 15 to 20 min. The dizziness that came after was not a result from me being scared. I wasn’t freaked out because it happened to me sooo many times during runs last year. I’m 17 years old, and I don’t think age has anything to do with it because people in their 40s have the same feeling. Some sources say to eat a light snack and drink fluids before and after running or exercising. I haven’t tried this yet so I’m not sure if it will prevent the dizziness from happening. Dehydration might be a factor according to my mom.

  17. 51

    Darcey said,

    I am amazed to read this blog of other runners experiencing dizziness. I too 20-25 minutes into running begin to feel woozy and foggy. Sometimes I have an intense wave of movement that feels as if my body is moving forward but my brain just hung a left. I most often push through it and it does get better though I usually can run no longer than an hour. Interestingly though I do experience the dizziness at other times too and if I push it running -really fast or really hot -the dizziness will last all the time for weeks. I am already on anti anxiety meds. I am about to visit with an ENT and possibly a neurologist though I do hold this fear that like many of you who have posted-they will find nothing and I will have to live with this. It is such a hindrance particularly when it is with me in the day to day and a barrier as I would like to take my running to the next level. Anyhow, my thoughts are with all of you and if anyone has any insights or breakthoughs by all means pass it on,

  18. 52

    Melon said,

    Wow, I’m having the same symptoms as you all, the same with my friend who, like myself, is 45 yrs old. Only I have been forced to give up running and I get the feeling from even taking a brisk walk. Cannot even walk uphill without resting. The worst thing is when I stop, the feeling gets worse for a while and then subsides gradually so that I can continue.
    I get the same feeling sometimes while reading too nowadays and sometimes at night, I wake up with numb arms and legs and panicy feeling.
    I’m very worried, so far doctors haven’t found anyhting wrong, only that my BP is very low (90/65 something) and hemoglobine is low 116. My friend has been suffering from this for 2 years now. For me it started suddenly about a month ago.
    I’ve been thinking it might be menopausal, but if people of age 17 (and men?)have been having the same symptoms, then cannot be menopausal.

  19. 53

    monica said,

    I am so glad to hear that i am no the only one! OMG! I am so frustrated with this. I run and i get light headed and faint feeling and i try to breadth deep and get some oxygen in my lungs and not think about it when i am running or walking, it seems to get better for a second and then it comes back. When i sit down for a moment it will subside and i can continue on untill it comes back and then i sit down again for a moment, its a routine. Sometimes i think that i am triggering it myself when i think about it. I have always had a low blood pressure reading however i use to run track and i never had a problem, this has just recently started happeniing about 2 years ago. I have noticed that when i strengthen my stomach muscles doing crunches or stomach exercises it is not at all as problematic for me. Its so weird to me, just want to figure out what it is that is going on.

  20. 54

    Anonymous said,

    Same thing here.

    I used to be a track star, now I get dizzy when I run for a few minutes.

    It sucks. No idea why… checking my heart out currently.

  21. 55

    Melon said,

    I posted here a while ago and my problem was solved – hyperventilation. I’m exploring breathing techniques as well as panic disorder cures. Natural ones, no meds. Just breath less and don’t be afraid because hyperventilation is not dangerous. There are many methods on the Internet for reversing hyperventilation or overcoming panic attacks.

    I’m still not running, but I’m already pushing through walks by reducing my breathing. The dizzyness comes, but I just try to walk on, breath less and accept the horrible feeling. I’ve noticed, it goes away withing 5-30 minutes and I feel better and can keep walking normally. I start very slowly and keep my breathing under control, also when I stop, I quiet down my breathing and do small breathholds and suppress the intake of air, also no deep outbreaths – just very shallow and quiet through my nose. I’m finding this very helpful and hopefully one day, I will be able to run again too.

    • 56

      naomi said,

      I am so glad you talked about hyperventilation. I too have these challenges, also I take meds for panic, anxiety, depression. So the anxiety of feeling dizzy on a run is enough to make me dizzy. I just started to train for a half marathon in Jan in Miami. I am going to research Chi Running. Its all about the breath and finding your center in a quiet run. Thank you for your insight

  22. 57

    Simon said,

    I’ve had the same sort of thing. Exertion from weights etc causes no issues, nor do things like swimming. I do sometimes notice the jolting from outdoors running though, but have had a number of occassions I’ve started running and within a few moments had awful dizzyness.

    May be blood vessel related I guess – not suffered it before but last winter when it was colder, had a couple of occasions where one finger or toe would at random go pale (ie restricted flow)

  23. 58

    Anonymous said,

    this happened to me while i was running my two mile run to get my red belt in karate. its really good to know that im not the only one this happens to.

  24. 59

    jimd said,

    Glad I founds this..I dehydtrated at Quebec City Marathon a couple of years aga..had to walk stumple the last 3 miles..dizzy etc..now it happens more frequently..after a 22 mile trnh run 2 weeks ago then at 18 mile yesterday..looking at nutrition, hydration, electrolites, sleep patterns etc as causes/cures..I’m 65 looking to squeeze my 30th an probably last marathon out of an old and creaky body..may not make it if this remains unresolved.

    try runners world for a advice..good luck

  25. 60

    riannah said,

    i’m soooo glad i found this. i thought i was going crazy. i’ve experienced the same thing, except i’m 13 years old… it has only happened to me once, very recentley, for the first time. it went like this:
    in PE, we ran 3 minutes straight, jogging. i was fine. we stretched, walked back up to the gym from the track, and did something called a “beep test”. it’s like where this radio/track thing beeps, you have to run from one side of the gym to the other, etc, etc. if you’re not on the other side of the gym by the time you hear a “beep” you’re out. slowly, it gets faster and faster. there are also levels, for example, it starts like, “level one: one, level one: two, level one: three …. level one: ten, start level 2: one.. ” etc. i got to level 5 no problem and then all of a sudden i got really weak and stumbled to a wall where i sat down. (we’ve done this test before and i got to about level 7 – the previous year )
    everything seemed distant and quiet and out of focus. i was like that for about half an hour. keep in mind, i had a small breakfast that day and nothing else.. normally i just have breakfast, skip lunch, come home and eat. it’s not a diet or anything, i’m just simply not hungry at that time. i’m also a vegetarian.. could anyone know why this happens? 😦

    • 61

      Dr. Doolittle said,

      this is most likely iron deficiency, which is most likely lacking in your vegetarian diet. iron supplement pills will clear that right up.

      • 62

        Adam said,

        I too eat no meat, and am also gluten intolerant. so I REALLY have to watch my iron intake. there are some certain foods I have researched that are really high in spinach. As described above, I get this feeling almost to a T (vision distortion, lightheadedness, weakness, cold feeling) if I haven’t eaten a good source of Iron.

        foods that are good to eat are:

        -dried apricots
        -dried figs

        For me pre-run snack, I usually mix up a banana, some raspberries and strawberries and at least a serving of dried apricots (figs have a lot of fiber) with some baby spinach and it usually does the trick

  26. 63

    Matt Ross said,

    this is an interesting discussion. My symptoms are in line with this discussion, the comment about mono is very interesting because I had it several years ago. I sometimes carb up, prior to a run (2 cliff bars), a lot of times it won’t work. I also drink a lot of water pre-run, today I was thinking it would be nice to see if my glucose levels are in-line because that is the kind of dizziness I experience. It would be great if contributing members could report on various treatments they have tried?


  27. 64

    Diana said,

    I was suprised how easily I found this blog when I googled my problem. I have the same issue as everyone else and it was never a problem the first couple of years I ran. I do think that anxiety might have something to do with it. Now that it happens more I get nervous about it before I start running. I have also tried adjusting my diet, water intake, and warm ups but haven’t found a solution. I try to mentally tell myself that I feel strong and energized and it isn’t going to happen but within 10 min. I can tell if I am going to suffer. This has led to a lot more time on the elliptical. It never seems to happen when I run earlier in the day though, just in the evenings. My brother-in-law is a personal trainer and I left a message with him to see if he had any suggestions. I also had a trainer tell me one time that it was an exercised induced drop in blood pressure. I wish someone had an answer, it is very furstrating.

  28. 65

    Anonymous said,

    I had the exact same symptoms as everybody on this blog. I would get dizzy around two miles, if I would try to push through it I would get sick. I started eliminating one thing at a time truing to fimd the answer. I started going to a health and wellness clinic an the Houston area about one year ago, so I made a call to the clinic and described what was going on . I got a call back from the doctor with instructions to imcrease my cortisol intake to 10mg a day and symptoms should resolve within a couple of days. The next morning I took my cortisol as directed. That evening went for a run and had no dizziness. I was very surprised and thankful to be able to complete the run. It’s been six weeks now and I have been dizzy free. Another thing I noticed during this time is, I started monitoring my hart rate thinking maybe a high hart rate could be the cause; well I had to run at 12 minute pace to keep my hart rate under 170bpm. Now six weeks later I can run all out and not get over 165bpm.

  29. 67

    Ricky Holden said,

    I had the exact same symptoms, it usley happens at about two miles, if I try to keep going I get sick. I started checking every thing I could think of. Magnesium, potassium, dehydration, nothing seemed to work. Then I thought maby my hart rate was to high. I bought a hart monitor and found that my hart rate was getting up to about 180bpm, so I slowed my pace down to keep it under 160bpm. That ment I was running at 11minute pace. Even then the dizzenes was still there. Bfore going to the doctor to see what was going on. I made a call to a health and wellness clinic here in the Houston area that I have been going to for the last year. I described what was going on and when the doctor called back he told me to increse my cortisol intake to 10mg a day, and the symptoms should go away in a couple of days.The next morning I incresed the cortisol as directed. That evening I went for a run not expecting anything and to my suprise I did not get dizzy. It’s been six weeks now and I have not been dizzy one time. Also I can run in the eight minute range and my hart rate is in the 150bpm.

  30. 68

    Terri said,

    I’m in the same boat as the rest of you. My GP sent me to a sports med doctor who forwarded me to a respirologist. He says I have exercise induced asthma and put me on an inhaled corticosteroid – Symbicort. He says I will be on the highest dose of this medicine for the rest of my life. I don’t agree with his diagnosis and I refuse to believe that I have to take this inhaler forever. I have been on it for over a year now and still get light-headed and nauseous. I am going back to my GP for another referral so I can get a second opinion.

    I’m glad I found this blog since I haven’t seen anything else on-line that really relates to what I’m experiencing. Thanks to everyone for sharing and hopefully we can figure this out.

  31. 69

    chris johns said,

    The same thing just happened to my girlfriend, she had a good sized dinner, and we went jogging. about 20 minutes into it she got real light headed and felt like she was really hungry. this is mystifying because we had just eaten a good dinner full of rice and vegetables and naan bread. we had to walk back home and she ate an english muffin with peanut butter and now she is taking a hot shower and still feels bad. imnot sure what to do, and from the looks of it there is a large portion of people who go through the same thing. how is it that such a standard feeling can go un-noticed and un-diagnosed in the medical community for so long? i hope someone out there can provide some answers.

    chris johns

  32. 70

    Tara said,

    This happens to me too. It’s very rare but when it does happen I not only get dizzy but my hands tingle too.

  33. 71

    Keith said,

    A lot of these symptoms sound like neurally mediated hypotention. You need a tilt table test to diagnose it properly.

  34. 73

    Ryan said,

    I am a collegiate runner and last year I had knee surgery which put me out for 3 months. When I started back up everything seemed fine until mid-summer when I starting experiencing all of these symptoms. 10-15 minutes into any run I would start to feel the dizziness symptoms but initially if I pushed through it (which sometimes I didn’t know if I literally would make it back home) it would for some reason go away. Eventually it got so bad that it didn’t go away and I would spend the rest of the day and night on the couch with the feeling that I was going to faint. I must also add that what seemed to bring on these episodes was exhaustion, alcohol use and eating poorly. I went to see the doctor and they couldn’t find anything wrong. Through blood tests, and a glycemic tolerance tests they found that my blood sugar was low and also that my insulin was a little low. So the only thing that the doctors could conclude is that I was going hypoglycemic. I was left with this to believe, however, when I changed my eating and sleeping habits it did not seem to get much better. Over some time, I tried some new eating habits and stayed on top of them and I eventually was able to keep it at bay. I run about 90 miles a week and on my easy days I would still feel the symptoms, though they were manageable. To try and prevent the symptoms, I eat a granola bar before my morning runs and make sure I get breakfast in as soon as I can afterwords. Before competition, or hard workouts, I eat either a half or full peanut butter and jelly sandwich usually 2 hours before hand. On easy days, when its easier, I carry a granola bar with me on the run and start eating a quarter of it every 10 minutes or so. That usually keeps things at bay and also helps with feeling better afterwards. I wish I could figure out what the problem is, it seems to be metabolism related because I usually feel extremely hungry and get a headache along with the dizziness. The only part that sucks is that I have made sacrifices to keep myself feeling ok. I guess that means that I will just have to stay sober and stay away from sweets until I stop running. Let me know if anyone finds anything out.

  35. 74

    jeffrey said,

    I had the same symptoms as everyone. After running 15-20mins, i start to feel dizzy and my head start to feel heavy. If i don’t slow down my speed, my head will feel heavier and my vision will start to turn white, like going to faint. This problem had trouble me for 3years+ I Had read the whole blog , some say its due to low blood pressure and 1 says he called health & wellness clinic at Houston area and the doctor ask him to increase cortisol intake to 10mg a day and it resolved his symptoms. Don’t really know wads cortisol and did it really resolved his symptoms.

    I hope someone out there can provide some solutions, pls drop a message if u find anything out.

  36. 75

    Sarah said,

    I know this is late…but…have you ever had your iron level tested?
    I’m anemic and I have fainted a couple times. They did an ecg and that was fine. Blood tests showed my iron was very low….once I fixed that all is fine! No more dizziness/fainting!
    Good luck

    Ps: it’s super easy to add more iron (through the right combination of foods or supplements.)

  37. 76

    Steve said,

    WTF is this thing we have??? !!!
    Same here . . . Happens to me at about 2 miles or 20 minutes, depending on my pace. Like most of you, some runs are great and some runs it strikes. And it’s always at that damn 20 minute mark. If I can get thru 2 miles, then I know I can turn it loose and go. When it does happen, I get it all the same symptoms you all get . . . the dizziness, flashbulb affect, legs feeling like I’m not controlling them, etc. Last weekend I had to stop and sit for 10 or 15 min.’s before I could resume running. When I was able to resume I felt like I could go forever.
    After tests, the Cardiologist said it’s not your heart but rather lack of proper hydration. He said that I needed to hydrate the day BEFORE running. He said if you wait till the day of your run to hydrate then it’s too late. I still have this nagging question though (I forgot to ask the doc when I was there). If its dehydration, then why am I able I resume running after resting even though I have had no more liquids?
    I’ve tried sugar when the dizziness hits but now after reading all of your posts I’m uncertain if it was the sugar or simply resting for 10-15 min’s.
    If anyone cares to, please share your efforts with me and I shall do the same.

  38. 77

    matt said,

    This has just started hapening to me first i thought it was a virus as i have been ill over xmas, but the last couple of runs i have had to do i have had to stop because of being to dizzy. I do keep myself fit as am in the marines but this is getting on my nerves as there is no explination for it. i have tried eating not eating before a run i always make sure i am hydrated before i run. i just dont know???

  39. 78

    DizzyMissLizzy said,

    Above, Anon writes, “Here’s how I feel 20 minutes into a run : dizzy, out of body-like, like I need gas and can’t get it…” That’s a great description and similar to what I feel. I’ve tried to come up with words to describe it and all I can think is, “Its like when you hold your breath underwater and are at that point that you are just about to have to give in and surface – that feeling of a bit dizzy, a bit breathless.” For me it comes on especially when running with effort on hills. I’ve run and trained on hills for years with no issues and now I get feelings similar to those many of you describe above. Dr. thinks it might be cold-weather asthma so gave me an inhaler to try and I am not sure that is having the desired result. Thanks all for sharing here.

  40. 79

    John from Scotland said,

    I was out running the other day, I have recently been told I have anxiety, I’m only 16 and I started to really panic that it was something seriously wrong, This has given me a peace of mind, as well as going tothe doctor’s yesterday for like the the 8th time in 3 months, I’ve been going through a bad patch recently, they tell me my heart rate is fine, my breathing is fine, everything is fine, but it’s just anxiety kicking in that makes it all worse, that I’m falling forward, and I might collapse and have a heart attack or something like that, it seems so stupid, but I’m a footballer and I don’t want this hinder my life.

  41. 80

    stephanie from Nj said,

    I am 43 years old and have been running all my life. I have been experiencing the dizziness for the last 4 years.

    In the beginning it would happen after a long run 9 miles. Now it happens 10-20 mins into it. I get the dizziness then get really sick and am sick for the rest of the day.
    I decided last christmas to see if I could find out what it was, so far not one doctor knows. Its very frustrating because I love to run and exercise. The one thing they keep telling me is that I am hyperventilation I can’t believe this. Love to hear any other thoughts

    • 81

      sonia said,

      I have the same problem, have seen my Dr, and an ENT specialist, and a neurologist, and had a series of tests, and an MRI…the final result is “a variant of BPPV” The way to help it is to go for vestibular therapy..so I’m going on April 5th. Hope it helps!!! I love to run outside and I’ve been on the treadmill instead….

  42. 82

    Tom said,

    I’m 57 still in good shape. I’ve run 8 marathons in my life but none sinc I was 45. I still run about 20 miles a week but have been getting dizzy about 25 minitues into the run. Not always though. I read above it happens on hard surfaces. I’ve been doing much more running on the treadmill to avoid injury. Sunday I did 2 on the mill and then went for 3 miles ouside on pavement. Once again, I got dizzy. This NEVER EVER happened until the last year or so. Maybe it is the hard pavement. I’m going to try extra iron and see if it pays off….I’ll report back.

  43. 83

    Nicky said,

    Wow, this blog has been quite informative.

    I’m a new runner. Just started last year and can’t run for any real length of time. I’m on an easy program where you run for a bit, walk for a bit… etc. It’s to condition your body… however, I stopped running when the dizzy spells started. In the past I have had way too many black outs to push it.

    I’m going to try the iron suggestion. I have had several indicators that my iron levels are low, so maybe it will help? I don’t know, I love running and for me the dizziness happens if I’m on a treadmill or on the pavement so the only way for me to continue running is to solve the dizziness…

    Anyone here know why cortisol would make a difference as a previous poster mentioned?

  44. 84

    Nicky said,

    PS: No, I’m not out of shape. 🙂 I wasn’t a runner but I was physically active in other areas. Just thought I’d clarify there.

  45. 85

    Jen said,

    Thank goodness that I found you people! This has been happening to me off and on for a little over 2 years. I am 29 years old, have run several races and currently attempt to run 3-4 miles, 3-4 days a week. Some runs are fantastic, but others are miserable because I get that dizzy, clammy, head-swimmy feeling. It’s awful and I was starting to convince myself that I have some terminal illness or other awful condition (not that this isn’t bad enough – I love to run!) I don’t understand what is going on, and have tried adjusting sleep, hydration, food-intake to correct this. Oddly enough, in the summer (I live in MN) I am able to get up at 5am and run outside and it has never been an issue. But when I try to run on my lunch breaks or after work, its frequently an issue. I am interested in trying to adjust my iron intake. We’ll see if that helps, but I hope to hear more suggestions or potential solutions. I hate this feeling!

  46. 86

    G said,

    I’ve experienced this for my entire life, or at least as far back as I remember. I’m 30 now and overweight.

    But I’ve experienced this issue when I was in great shape from my teen years up to 21. This would include power-walks 10 miles, 5 days a week and a lot of cycling on the weekend. I did notice it a little on the power-walk at a young age. If I walked hard I would definately get dizzy. Can’t say I ever noticed it from the cycling. I couldn’t last less than 2 minutes before I feel dizzy running while I was a teen in good shape but always tried to push through it. It definately felt like I could trip and fall. My breathing is always shallow, quick or staggered.

    I always considered it to be related to the impact of running. Running always felt high impact to me. Like Godzilla stomps pounding up into my head. That or I always figured my breathing was all wrong and I was hyperventilating like other posters have provided.

    I’ve never had high blood pressure, even being overweight. Nor does it run in the family. Never had any sugar problem or high or low sugar levels. Doesn’t seem to make a difference whether I run track, grass or tread mill. I’ve often wondered as well if it was Vertigo. The symptoms sure feel like it.

    Would love to know what others have found.

  47. 88

    Jeff said,

    Same here. It’s worse when I run barefoot. I think it’s the impact–jangles my brain. Try running on grass and see if it still happens.

      • 90

        Anonymous said,

        That article is eye opening. I’ve had issues with my ears since I was a child. About two years ago, I suffered from the flu and strep at the same time! Shortly after being sick, my eustachian tube collapsed and I was deaf in that ear until about two months of treatment alleviated the problem. It’s been since then that I seem to suffer from the exact symptoms that everyone has described. I love mountain biking, so I guess that will be one of my new avenues for health and fun! Thanks for finding this!

      • 91

        Caker said,

        I have had these same symptoms for months now after running for over a year with no problems. I only run 2-3 miles 2-3 times per week. But the vertigo feeling when I run has gotten so bad that I was only running about 1.25-1.5 miles before I was spinning and feelinglike I would throw up or faint. My dr. suggested I try to run without earphones and music. She said the music waves hitting your eardrum can overstimulate your inner ear which causes imbalance and dizziness. I tried it and it worked. I ran 2 miles easily and felt great the whole time. And I didn’t have to lie down to recover when I got home. I forgot to mention I had a migraine and bout of vertigo that lasted 9 days about 7 months ago….my dizzy running issues got much worse after that. Dr. thinks I may have damaged my inner ear and that it is over-sensitive now. I also tried to fix my eyes on an object 20-30 yards in front of me to keep my eys from lying around too much. I hope I can keep running as it helped me lose weight and maintain my weight loss for a ling time. Good luck everyone!

  48. 92

    Ruth O said,

    Glad I found this, too. I was an avid runner. After running Boston Marathon in 1991 I started getting dizzy while running and if I pushed it I would get real sick and throw up – I get the clammy feeling, etc. At first, it started at about mile 15, then 10, then 5, then 3 and now it starts at 20 minutes. One ultra marathon runner’s web site thought it was POTS syndrome (postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome). They have a web site, too. I can run on the treadmill, take crazy hard spiinning classes, walk marathons with no problem. It is running that is the problem. Not much has helped. I tried sudofed (the kind you have to show your license to the cashier) and that helps a little bit but not always. If I run with a baby stroller it is not as severe. I am thinking it has to do with the exertion maybe? Got a clean bill of health from the doctors. My hemaglobin ~12.5 so I am borderline anemic but don’t think it is severe enough to cause a problem. I sweat like a pig in the gym and get no dizziness so don’t think it is that. I cannot believe how many of you have this, too – for so long people have thought I am nuts with this thing. I would love to hear if anyone looked into the increased cortisol that some have written about – I thought cortisol was a stress hormone so I am a bit confused. I am grateful for any thoughts. Thanks so much. It has been 17 years that I cannot run a race or anything – the thought of running outside without dizziness is thrilling. I miss it so.

    • 93

      Ruth 0 said,

      I forgot to mention that I had at some point had mono in the past – though I did not realize it when I had it – someone had mentioned that also

  49. 94

    stephanie from Nj said,

    I took a run on Saturday on the grass and the dizziness started. Its not the hard surface which I did think it could be. I wish I had an answer. Someone recently gave me a holistic doctor to go to and I might try that. Lets see what happens

  50. 95

    Paula said,

    Hi! I am 29 years old and have the exact same symptoms as everyone here. I can run on a treadmill, take exercise classes, etc with no problems at all. As soon as I attempt to run outside, I get dizzy almost immediately. I’ve also seen numerous doctors about the issue and they’ve found nothing. One doctor wants me to come into his office and run on a nearby running path so that I will experience the symptoms while he is there. I am wondering if any of you have been asked by your doctor to do this, and if you have actually done it. I think it could be beneficial, but I just don’t want to waste my time if it’s not going to help.

  51. 96

    Anonymous said,

    Wow, I have that same thing. I’m just 16 and my parents and I have been trying to find out why I get dizzy every time I run for extended periods of time. We still don’t know. And I’m sure that its not because I’m in bad shape because even when I was a professional gymnast for 5 years training every single day I still got dizzy and had to sit down. On the other hand I can excercise in other things like the stepper, a bicycle etc… without getting dizzy. And yesterday I had an exam in gym class on running and I couldn’t do it because I got too dizzy and started seeing blurry. I’ve tried gaining resistance, eating better etc.. but nothing works.

  52. 97

    Jason said,

    I am a MMA fighter. I have been running for weeks on end conditioning for my next fight April 24th. Today before my training session I had a kink in my back, bothersome but not horrible. Before we started grappling we ran some hills. About 2 minutes in i felt dizzy and everything started looking whitish. I had a good breakfast so I knew it wasn’t that, but I still took a glucose shooter anyway. It did not help at all.
    The last time this happened I had a chiropractor appointment a few days later and he said that I had a bad misalignment in my t2 and t3. After my adjustment the dizziness while running went away.
    I’m going to head to the chiropractor either today or tomorrow and see if it helps again.
    I’ll let you all know the results.

  53. 98

    Dee said,

    Hello, I am 40 years old, and have enjoying running/jogging for many years, however about 4 years ago, I too started going dizzy at around the 20 min mark. this like others have said is so fustrating and at times depressing, i still run each wk however it always happens (i now attend classes also, it doesnt happen there) . At the time it started happenning I kept getting sinusitus, I put the dizziness down to this and explored this route, I was found to have a deviated septum and have recently had this corrected however the dizziness still persists!! I have had blood sugar and iron tests, treadmill tests….all fine! I found this thread and I was interested in the Cortisol comments. having looked up Cortisol my understanding is this is a ‘Stress’ hormone which functions include regulating Glucose Metabolism, Insulin release for Blood Sugar Maintanence and Immune system. When you are Chronically Stressed you are unable to maintain correct levels…this adds up for me as at the time I had a very high pressured full-time sale role, plus 2 young children and was very stressed, also not getting enough sleep…(still am quite stressed at times) .I have called the doctor and have a blood test booked for next Tues to test, I am also being referred to a Specialist….apparrently it can be quite dangerous to take cortisol supplements when not needed…….i really hope this is the answer!! I will post back with the results…………Best Regards to all Dee

  54. 99

    Steve said,

    Seems like the ‘victim’ list just keeps growing. I’ve been only running for about 1 yr now. Averaging 15-20 miles a week. I do have exercise induced asthma but I haven’t had any symptoms from that in over a decade. A few months ago, I was running in the cold weather, fairly slow, and got real dizzy, arms and hands tingled, and even lips. Thinking I was close to a heart attack, I had everything checked out by doctors who all concluded that I had hyperventilated. It was the tingling in the lips, they said, that is a dead ringer for hyperventilation.
    I’ve tried to pay very close attention to my breathing since that episiode and all has been fine until my last three times out. It’s hit my each time. First at the 5 mile mark and now consistent with everone else at the 20-25 min mark. The weather has been warm and I don’t feel like I’m hyperventilating (no tingling) but the dizziness is stong enough to make me stop running. Also notice what feels like minor heart palpations. Actually notice that before the dizziness starts. It’s my lead indicator.
    Running on hard pavement, have a stressful job (though running has always relieved my stress), well fed, well hydrated. So extremely frustrating. There has got to be an answer to this. I’m going to look into the Cortisol solution.
    The only good news is this blog. It’s been very reassuring and eye opening to read about how pervasive this is.

    • 100

      Aaron said,

      Yep. I’ve been dealing with the same problem as well. I am 39, been running for about a year, also play hockey, swim and cycle. I never have any problems with anything other than running. I was at a point where I was running 16 miles with no problem. Then at one simple 3 mile run I found myself feeling faint and lightheaded. So much so that I thought I would have to dial 911. But I walked about 10 minutes and it was pretty much over. Saw a doctor a few weeks later and was given a holter monitor and had blood work done. Everything came back fine. That was in October of 2010. Many months later, and in the midst of training for a triathlon, just two days ago I had the same occurrence. Just like a wave comes over me and I feel lightheaded, dizzy and like I am going to maybe fall. But I walk about 10 minutes and its gone. This time, thinking it may be a heart issue, I went to the ER. Had the EKG and basically was monitored for an hour. All was fine. Resting HR at 59, blood pressure fine, blood sugar fine. This really is just so random its frustrating. I do feel slight heart palpitations now and again, but I think maybe that’s caused from the anxiety brought on by the running episodes. Personally, I think it has to do with breathing. I am so focused on my breathing that its not natural and maybe at times I throw my body out of step. Because I don’t focus my breathing on any other activity and never experience this. And my shifts in hockey are much more intense than my 3 mile jogs at 10:30 minute paces. But then again, I run alot, in the same fashion, and this has only come up twice out of about 200 miles of running. Very odd. I guess its nice to know that it is not a life threatening problem and that with a little amount of rest, it slowly goes away.
      So the mystery continues…..and frustrates….

      • 101

        Aaron said,

        Update….turns out my situation is caused by premature ventricular contractions. It popped up on a stress test (which I passed by the way). I was told that my heart is fine and these are fairly common. I also found out that they are stress/anxiety related, which anxiety/worry runs in my family big time. God forbid Grandma watches the news…you’d think the World gonna end. I have even had one PVC occur in a Target store after I had an anxious thought….so I believe that anxious thinking plays a role in this, although not entirely. And I have since exercised 5 days a week training for a triathlon, DID the triathlon and am training for another triathlon. I have also run 16 miles without any PVC’s a week after I had a bout with PVCs. So I am not worried about it. Basically when it comes on, I slow down. I walk. What’s wrong with having a little break? I am not (or ever going to be) a paid professional, so why push it? I want to get home to my wife and kids, not be the fastest unknown runner in my Icanwhocareslesswhoyouare neighborhood. Plus, if my doc says I’m good, and I can get my exercise in without overdoing it, I am doing my heart, body and mind a favor. That’s all I can do. So really, you just can’t worry about the unknown. Just like Axel Rose says, “I don’t worry about nothing no, because worryings a waste of my time!” Just keep moving and enjoy. 🙂

  55. 102

    Zoe said,

    Me too, same thing. Dizzy about 10-20 mins into a run. I’m not a marathon runner, but do about 3 or 4 days a week between 2 and 6 miles. It doesn’t happen all the time, but 50% of the time. I don’t get it on a morning run, only on lunchtime runs. Sometimes a special k bar and glass of water or sports drink help. interesting re: high impact on feet, as I do road running. I also have anxiety issues and migraines, taking proponalol hydrochloride 80mg and its been mainly happening since taking these, as they are known to interfere with blood sugar.

    My theory is that its the point where your body has used all its glycogen and is switching into ketosis where your body has to start creating its own fuel by burning protien and fat. Maybe its a lumpy transition for some of us and we don’t switch too well. I’m sure i read that ketosis works better when you’re hydrated, so sip water or a sports drink regularly in the first mile and take it slow for the first mile, see how you get on. Not sure if this is what runners call the wall?

    • 103

      Grace said,

      Your theory is very interesting, as it would explain why I get dizzy, walk about 10-20 seconds, and can run again (although I sometimes have to stop a few times, depending on the run). Another blogger was also wondering about that. I wonder if there’s a way to prove it, or hear a specialist’s comment.
      For other info to pass around, I’ve found that if I sip sports drink throughout my run, I sometimes get a little nauseous from the sugar in it, and feel better with water. I do try to hydrate with electrolytes from the day before, and eating something before the run sometimes helps, but no matter what combination I try (food, drink, hat, sunglasses, focusing, breathing), there are no guarantees that I will/won’t get dizzy.
      My background: I’ve seen a heart doctor for other dizziness/fainting problems: no problems but he said I have a the “flight” reflex for the fight-or-flight feeling, which explains my propensity to get dizzy or faint. Also a little anemic and have been trying to keep up my iron levels.
      I get a little dizzy in light/dark/light/dark situations (driving, running through shadows with patches of light) or turning/curving situations, and try to avoid them. But again, nothing is 100% when running.
      Anyway, glad to see I’m not the only one, but like everyone, would love a magic pill!

    • 104

      sacha said,

      It’s interesting because I’ve noticed that 80% of the times it happened was in the afternoon.. (well hydrated and had a good meal). Could it be related to cortisol levels dropping in the afternoon? Any thoughts on that?

  56. 105

    Paula said,

    Well reading all your message has helped, I ran a marathlon six weeks ago – leading up to that all has been fine. Done long runs, cycled 100miles at the weekends, gym five times a week all was fine. Until last week – when running on at the gym for 15mins, cooled down and then came across dizzy, couldnt see, hearing weird had to sit down for a few mins. Did the same again today – went to the doctors but test all show ok – blood test to get done.

  57. 106

    Gary said,

    i suffer the same sort of thing…
    i feel faint and dizzy early in a run, and this will generally clear by 30 minutes of running. I also suffer the same when cycling.
    When i eat seems to be a factor. i.e. before a ride, which tends to be quite long, i tend to down a load of carbs, (affecting blood sugar levels possibly?)
    i also suspect that Iron levels are a factor.
    Also get the seeing stars thing when running first thing in the morning, especially running in the woods when the sun is low, reflecting through the leaves…

  58. 107

    misty said,

    I have been feeling the same symptoms!!!! Mine happens right away though! I have been running for about 8 years. Usually run on the treadmill since i have 5 small kids at home but occasionally go out and run on the road. About 6 months ago i had this happen to me and it completely scared me! I had been fine on the treadmill and hubby kept saying maybe its just because you are not used to running outside( im not buying that!) Then about a month or so ago i got on the treadmill and got the same feeling! Thinking of going to drs but not sure where to start. HELP!!!

    • 108

      albert mabunga said,

      Misty, I do feel the same, dizziness happens almost immediately, let me know, if you figure out. I think mine is worse because sometimes aside from dizziness I have chest pain, walking will get rid of chest pain but I’ll be heading back home for I cannot run again. albertmabunga1@yahoo.com

  59. 109

    Greg said,

    I found this blog a while back and was somewhat relieved to hear that others were having the same issues as me. My dizziness/nausea finally progressed to the point that I actually vomited shortly after a run. The feeling that I get is sort of like being drunk during my recovery time after a run. The length of the feeling depends on how bad the dizziness episode was during my run.

    With all this mind I finally made a doctor’s appointment and he sent me over to a stress echo test after the normal EKG came back fine. Turns out everything was fine with my heart in a generic sense but what they did find that during higher levels of exertion (9 and sub 9 minute mile pace for me) my blood pressure elevated drastically. At it’s peak during the test my systolic was 224. I hadn’t become dizzy yet so who knows how high it is when I do get dizzy.

    My blood pressure, at rest, is in the normal range but I had borderline high prior to me getting into running and losing approximately 25 pounds. The doc stated that having a somewhat regular blood pressure at rest and then have it elevate under activity is an indication of high blood pressure to come at rest later in life. He currently has me on medication, which I just started as the test was just 2 days ago. I plan to start taking test runs this week.

    I will let everyone know and I hope that this gives everyone something to look into and get this frustrating problem fixed.

    • 110

      Greg said,

      It has been a while since I first posted my first response here and thought that I would put up an update on where I am with troublesome issue that we all seem to have.

      First off, nothing I have tried seems to work. In fact my symptoms seems to have gotten stronger during my runs and are happening on just about every run. Shortly after being put on the blood pressure medication I did a good test run and was hit with the worst symptoms ever. Extremely light headed, nausea, and dizziness to the point that my running partners had to go and get a car to get me back to the office. They ended up taking me directly to my doctor’s office. The symptoms continued for about an hour which included me being very pail, sweating well past the normal cool down time frame and my hands were falling asleep. I ended up vomiting a few times during this episode as well. During that office visit, my general practitioner took me of the blood pressure meds as my pressure was pretty low for me, something like 104 over another number that I can’t remember. Due to that low blood pressure he recommended that I drink some salt water about 20-30 minutes prior to my run to balance out the low pressure. Well today that didn’t work as I got the same symptoms, while strong were not to the same degree as the one I described before. I still vomited and ended up leaving work.

      The very frustrating part for me is that they put me on a Holter monitor and I ran with it on and couldn’t get the symptons to occur as I had to run on a treadmill. It never happens while running on a treadmill. I can have a great 30 minute run on the treadmill at a decent pace and run the same pace outside and get clobbered by the issue. Also I ran a 1.5 mile test for an upcoming AF PT test and did it in 12:55 and didn’t have any symptons at all.

      I’ve tried many of the tricks that I have seen on here but none seem to work for me. Walking through it is impossible as I normally ended going down to one knee and my symptoms seem to continue no matter what I do. I hope that some people are having success in combating this!!

      • 111

        Vicky said,

        Look up Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome. You have the main symptoms. Might help to look it up and see if you have any of the others. You can start by checking orthostatic blood pressures and give yourself two full minutes, laying down, take the blood pressure, sitting for two full minutes, take the blood pressure then standing for two full minutes-take the blood pressure. Let me know what comes of it. I think its a vaso vagal response also.

  60. 112

    Susfrat said,

    Thank goodness for this blog. I don’t get dizzy when I run, the dizziness happens afterward and not all the time. When I sit down after a run, or put my head down. It doesn’t last too long, maybe 15-20 minutes. Then sometimes the dizziness happens at other times when I’m doing nothing. I had gone to the doctors two weeks ago and he said it was vertigo, something about crystals, and said it would go away in a couple of days and if it didn’t, he would give me an antibiotic. I never went back because I didn’t need an antibiotic and hoped it would go away. But this is definately associated with my running.

  61. 113

    Dizzyhelp said,

    Your problem in most likely a vestibular disorder. Vestibular dysfunction can cause problems with the VOR (vestibular occular reflex). This reflex is especially challenged with running outdoors. Exactly what sets it off can be difficult to pin down. For example, one day you run a familiar path and focus only on the road in front of you versus running a more unfamiliar path were you might gaze objects stationary or moving asside from the profile of the path you are running. Other CV or metabolic causes are possible, but I would rule out vestibular disorders first. Keep in mind that vestibular disorders are not well understood by the vast majority of physicians and that includes most ENT. You will have to look for an ENT that specializes (and I mean specialize) in vestibular disorders and also look for one that works closely with a vestibular rehabilitation specialist (OT/PT) because the rehabilitation will be the solution to the problem.

  62. 114

    Vanilla said,

    I have had the same issue for years. I read about supplementing with Iron, B12 and Folic Acid and started that after my last dizzy episode about 6 weeks ago. So far, so good. Apparently, these supplements help regulate your red blood cells which carry oxygen through your body. Try it, does not require the time and cost of a doctor and it kind of makes sense to me.

  63. 115

    sameboat said,

    I have had a very similar problem that started approx a year ago. It started with about 10 min into my run I would get a very heavy feeling that came over me with a feeling of a shift in my balance. I have trouble running straight for about 5 min. That resolves but I still lose my balance if I turn my head to quickly or look down. the feeling does improve and am able to continue my run but After I quit running I have severe vertigo with nausea that only improves after I lay down for 5-10 min. I have been to the see a cardiologist and ENT doctor and neither have found anything. I have had vestibular therapy without any change either. This makes it very hard to enjoy what was once a favorite activity. I hope I can figure out what is the cause because I still want to run a marathon.

  64. 116

    […] loved it. but my body didn’t. to make a long story short – i have experienced the same exact things this blogger has – including the tests on my heart, head, eyes, ears and balance – all […]

  65. 117

    Vanilla said,

    Update… It has been 3 months since I started supplementing B12, folic acid and iron. To date I have not had an episode. If you have not tried it yet, I would recommend it.

  66. 118

    Isla said,


    I want to increase my fitness levels and therefore have decided to start running. I went on my second session today and as advised by many running websites did the run for one minute stop and walk brisklly for 1 minute etc…. to get my fitness levels up. I didn’t feel i over exerted myself, i was only 20 minutes into my session, i wasn’t sweating and was not out of breath.

    Imagine running at a slow pace along the thames only to feel very faint and light headed. I had to stop when i realised my legs were feeling v shaky/wobbly and it seemed that while this was happenning i wasn’t really aware of what was happening now that i am writing this. I also felt slightly breathless which was weird, seen as though i was running at a slow pace and before this episode i was not out of breath. I had to stop take deep breaths.

    I believe i was breathing properly and my breakfast consisted of fruit, porridge and juice.

    This happened to me last year at the gym under the supervision of an instructor, thankfully i didn’t faint this time – that would have been so embarassing along the thames with the tourists.

    I went to the doctor last time and he did some tests but said everything was fine. I am really nervous to continue with running in case next time i do faint and of course the worry of how i would get home or if i injured myself.

    I guess after reading all these comments i am going to see my doctor and have a blood test as well and will mention the B12, Iron and folic acid.

  67. 119

    Randall Ortega said,

    its called hyper tension

  68. 120

    Ryan said,

    Have you ever been on an antidepressant or had H1N1 flu? About 18 months ago I started taking sertraline and about a year ago I got H1N1. H1N1 was the first time I got dizzy on a consistent basis, and ever since then I have felt dizzy when I run or whenever I get sick. I think it has something to do with the odd chemical balances involved with taking an antidepressant combined with an increase in body temperature. I’m planning on just ditching the sertraline and seeing what happens and hopefully I will be back to normal soon. If not I don’t know what I’m gonna do. I hope someone can come up with some sort of answer to this.

  69. 121

    Ali said,

    I realise this is an old thread, but I am so glad to have found it!! I experience this out-of-body/zoning out dizziness mainly when walking (fairly fast) and have done now for the past three years. I have been to the doctors numerous times but he simply shrugs his shoulders and laughs. I also jog 3 x a week but it is the power walking that seems to bring on the head problem, not the jogging. I did get my GP to refer me to the National Neurology Hospital in London three years ago after a particularly nasty incident when I felt like I was falling to one side – this left me dizzy and thick headed, nauseous and faint for a good 12 weeks and I believe was the beginning of my current symptoms. They diagnosed it as migraine vertigo and trried to treat with anti-epileptics which nearly kllled me! I do not believe it is migraine vertigo: not for three years!! Menopausal/hormonal possibly. But would be great to get a definite answer. DRives me mad. Had another occasion with it tonight walking from work to meet husband – a 40 minute walk. After 20 mins. or so the familiar head thickness began – like my head has been frozen in a strong wind – legs feel disassociated from body, gait feels shakey, if I look to the side I have to recalibrate my gait to stop falling sidewards, feel “hyper” and slightly car sick, but still walking. Horrible, frustrating.

  70. 122

    Buster said,

    I’ve been running 30+ years, over 67,000 miles, 1100+ races and have had same problems since my first race when I passed out and ended up in EMT ambulance. I’ve passed out since then mostly in 10K’s or longer I thought because I’d miss water stations, dehydrate and pass out or collapse at the finish line. After I got your dizzy, nausea, weak symptoms the first minute of an easy run I had 6 months of every kind of test they could think of and they found I have V-Tach (irregular heartbeat), high cholesterol, low blood pressure, enlarged prostate and need a pacemaker! For two years I’ve taken medicines for all that but still have refused to get the pacemaker as people I know with them have had their lives changed since getting one. I’ve ran two 10 mile races this year and 7-10 almost every weekend if I can. I hadn’t been to a doctor in 20+ years so all the time I was passing out in races maybe it was my heart and I didn’t know it or even think it was that. I’d advise getting your heart fully tested or like they told me youuld end up with Sudden Death Syndrome. Good luck.

  71. 123

    Daisy said,

    I am 46 and have been running regularly for 1 year. I had a similar episode at 40 minutes into my run yesterday, except I had a couple slightly noticeable heart palpitations just before getting really dizzy and having what I can best describe as an out of body experience. I just felt like my body was shutting down, numb legs and dim vision and I thought I was going to die!
    I had previously been to cardiologist for heart palpitations and found that I have PVCs (Pre Ventricular Contractors; the Doctors call it “extra heart beat”). They tell me lots of people have these, but often people don’t feel them. The doctor told me it was ok to exercise and he put me on a beta blocker to reduce the frequency of the symptoms.
    I had just taken the beta blocker before running and was wearing a fairly tight head band. I was hoping the reason may have been the tight head band. My friend told me I was extremely white when this happened. It took about 10 minutes for normal color to come back. Now, I’m afraid to run and I’m scheduled for a half marathon in 2 weeks!
    Did Steve from the April have any additional information regarding the minor heart paplpitations before the dizziness?
    Does anyone have anything to add about the tight head band?
    I am quite sad about this because I don’t want to quit running because I love it, but I don’t think I can handle another one of these experiences…it scared the daylights out of me!
    I plan on talking to my cardiologist on Monday.

  72. 124

    nancy said,

    I have this on days that before it happens seems like should not be a problem. No stress, ate lunch earlier, lots of water, no caffine after early am, weird. And almost makes me think I am borderline blood sugar victim. But then I have found that when hits while running, if I stop running and go do something else like rowing, then can go back to running after about 10-15 minutes and am fine. But when happens I feel like I am going to fall down and indeed given how I feel that would be good. Hate to interrupt the run though, and seems quite silly. I had my blood checked thinking it was a diabetes symptom or some such, but no sign of problem.

  73. 125

    Christine said,

    Found this website while trying to figure out what might be wrong with my 19 year old daughter. She is a collegiate runner with the very symptoms most of you have experienced. The difference being, she experiences these symptoms almost immediately. She is a sprinter and recently can’t get through a 400M race. Around 200M, seems to experience a drop in blood pressure. She complains of a loss of sensation in arms and legs, and starts to lose some vision. Face gets extremely red, but she doesn’t sweat. Typically will vomit after running. So so frustrating as she is quite competitive and is finding it hard to compete anymore. She is slightly anemic and has been taking iron but we are still waiting to see postive results. Her doctors and coaches are at somewhat of a loss as well.

  74. 126

    Brian said,

    I’ve got exactly the same problem as you all. Weird, but luckily this doesn’t seem to be anything that’ll kill me prematurely (unless I fall on something really sharp or smack my head on the ground). I have this problem in waves. Happens for a week or two at a time then clears for months. 20-30 min into a run I get dizzy, start feeling light headed, seeing stars and definitely can’t hold pace. If I try to walk it off or stand and wait for it to clear it will not clear and I’ll just maintain a sluggish forward pace till the run ends. I’ll feel like I want to quit the whole way which sucks. If I sit down, it’ll usually clear. Interestingly, this only happens in the morning. Caffeine doesn’t make a difference, and neither does temperature (really hot or really cold or anywhere in between). More interestingly, it almost never happens if I start really slow then build the pace steadily during the run. My theory is that it could have something to do with my energy system not switching from sleep mode to run mode as quickly as it should. I suggest starting off more slowly, increasing pace/effort on a linear basis through the run, and ending more strongly instead of going at the same pace straight through. Try that and see if it helps.

    • 127

      madeline said,

      i get the symptons but only when i run in the evening, been running 20yr, i suddenly feel weak ,go very clammy ,energy levels dip.feel hungry and a need for sugar, can recover to run again but is a complete pain because it puts me off night running. dosent happen on morning runs,

  75. 128

    James Hildebrand said,

    Same symptoms of dizziness, seeing spots and “out of body” feeling for over 20 years of running on the road and treadmill. Moved to a stairmaster with no symptoms whatsoever. I’ve concluded it must have some to do with the foot impact of running. I’ve all sorts of breathing techniques but nothing works. Even tried compression socks thinking it might be blood pooling problem. No help. All my medical tests are normal Will try the iron supplements.

  76. 129

    Haven said,

    Was a professional triathlete for 6 years and have been trying to find information on this problem forever.
    For a while I thought it was low blood-sugar levels, but I realized it only happens to me in the morning and almost strictly when I trail run. There must be something with looking down at my feet more intently. My running style does not involve much head movement or pounding as I am a low-movement runner. It happens to me almost exactly at 12 minutes, and if I just walk for about 5 minutes it will go away and I’ll usually continue on to have a better-than-normal run.

    So glad to read that many other people have this problem, but I’d love to figure out a way to make it stop.

    • 130

      Gary said,

      i have a similar background in triathlon, and used to suffer exactly the same running trail first thing in the mornings… especially bad when the low sun shone through the trees giving a strobing effect…

      running at lunchtimes did become a problem as well, but i got over this by making sure i dont eat too close to the run, but making sure i get some fuel in me 2 to 2.5 hours before…

  77. 131

    Haven said,

    Checked with one of my doctor friends today and he’s a little information we could all use:
    She related it almost to a mini-“bonk”. She said, “the first 12 minutes of your workout, your body uses glycogen (stored glucose) in your liver for energy. as your body switches over to use fat stores for energy because your glycogen is used up, your body goes through a short period of hypoglycemic symptomatology: feeling hungry, dizzy, disoriented, stuporous, confused, wanting to go to sleep, weak; even temporary paralysis or seizures can happen. i read that brief rest and/or carbohydrate-rich drinks make this go away.”
    She said to get checked out by a doctor and get some blood work done to be safe, but this explanation seems logical. I hope this helps some of you out. She is going to check with more doctors on Tuesday and see what they think. Funny for us, they’re all reading this blog series for the “symptoms” of our problem! I’ll get back to you if I hear more!

  78. 132

    Sarah said,

    I have some exciting news!!

    I found this thread at the beginning of January and wrote about my collapsing into the grass verge with dizziness.

    I noticed that VANILLA mentioned, on August 25th 2010, taking a cocktail of vitamins and, by someone else, possibly Cortisol (the stress hormone).

    Well, I have been taking B-complex, Iron, Folic Acid and Zinc for the last 3 months and have been having regular saunas (which raise Cortisol levels) after training in the gym.

    This morning I had a banana for breakfast and a glass of grapefruit juice and grabbed the bull by the horns and decided to go for a run!

    I have just got back from a short 20 minute run and HAD NO DIZZINESS!! I usually gett dizzy at 10-15 minutes. I am very excitied!!

    Admittedly it is my first outdoor run in 2 years and it may return, but I haven’t been able to do this at all for years. I am very happy and feeling confident about going out again.

    I am going to continue with the morning cocktails (!) and saunas and keep you all posted!!


  79. 133

    Vicky said,

    Look up Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome or POTS.

  80. 134

    JD said,

    Thanks for blogging about this. So glad I found this.

    This just happened to me on my 8 miler this morning. Halfway through I started feeling lightheaded. It got slightly worse as the run continued. Had a bit of a headache after I stopped for about an hour as well.

    This happens to me every few months. Glad that it’s not abnormal and I gather that I don’t have much to worry about. Hope that’s true.

  81. 135

    Dan said,

    It looks like there are at least 2 different problems. Some of us feel faint and see stars about 10-20 minutes into the run, but the problem subsides after about 5 minutes (like me). For others, the problem seems to just get worse as you try to run through it and you have to stop. For my problem, it doesn’t happen every time. I’ve tried to remember what was different on the days I had the problem, but the only things I can think of is I had a bowl of cereal with milk before running. Usually I don’t eat or only eat an energy bar. It’s not iron deficiency since I donate blood, and this has never happened soon after donating when my iron would be low. Well, I guess I’ll keep experimenting.

  82. 136

    Edna said,

    This happens to me too but I suffer from panic disorder. All of a sudden in the middle of my run my stomach gets upset and then this sudden dizziness, ive never had a heart attack or stroke but I can swear that’s how it must feel. the feeling of electric shock or a flood comes from my stomach or chest all the way to my head and blows up, makes me dizzy and my heart races, after 5 or 10 minutes of walking around it is gone. I drink coffee before my runs and I thought it might be too much caffeine, maybe heat (i dont think so), maybe a heart condition i dont know about, hypoglycemia…blah blah blah, the other day I thought I was going to drop dead on a side walk…

  83. 137

    PJack said,

    Your eyes can’t focus because your blood sugar is low. This is a very common occurrence when you’re cutting calories and pushing yourself for vigorous workouts or longs runs. Your body simply doesn’t have enough calories to get you through these workouts or runs. Cutting calories is not always the answer because your body needs those calories to power you through the workout. You can still consume healthy calories and stay healthy. You’ve heard all these try this and try that… try eating a regular healthy meals and then running, and you will find your cure.

    • 138

      PC said,

      Low blood sugar is DEFINITETLY not the cause of my problem. I’m pretty sure nobody has mentioned cutting calories in this blog.

  84. 139

    Drew said,

    So glad this thread is still active as I’ve just found it. The only thing new I can add to the discussion is that my symptoms (extreme lightheadedness and feeling out of body 20-25 minutes into a treadmill run, once same thing in a spinning class, and once in a crazy hard yoga class) only started to happen after I quit smoking and drinking. When I was smoker, I could run and workout forever without a problem. Now (three months quit) that I don’t, and now that I am not drinking, I “run out of juice” really easily. I had assumed my problem was blood sugar, as quitting smoking and drinking can both throw blood sugar out of whack. After an episode, sitting down and drinking a sports drink usually brings me back, but not to the point I am able to run again. Has anyone else seen a correlation with drinking or smoking? I am starting to think that perhaps the problem was always there and that smoking was just masking the problem.

  85. 140

    Faisal said,

    Hi all… I had just read all the posts starting from #1 and tried to figure any solution for my dizziness. It started 3 weeks back when I started running outside (Not in Gym) to reduce my cholesterol level as it was very high. Currently am having an diet also to reduce weight. I had tried running after work (afternoon), evening times, days I don’t have work but still feeling dizzy after running for 15-20 min but it goes away a bit after having an rest for 10 min. I think the cold weather condition is not the problem as I live in Middle East. I will start trying all the solutions which I collected from reading your blogs: Sea Sickness Tablets, Iron, breath hyperventilation, blood pressure, B12, folic acid and having fresh fruits before going jogging (Hope I won’t die lool). Just want to add last thing: have anyone tried something called POWERBALANCE as am looking forward to order it maybe it can helps …

    Will replay after trying all solutions

    Thank you all

  86. 141

    Gary said,

    first thing to try is make sure you dont eat in the 2 hours before, but do eat 2-4 hours before to avoid that running on empty feeling… also dont go too over the top with any carb loaded drinks…
    Its a good ‘neutral’ place to start from.

  87. 142

    Anonymous said,

    I’m the guy who left a question in Sept o9 re dizzy at 22 miles etc and problems at Quebrec Marathon. Turns out it was blocked arteries (6)..heart attack mile 24 Philly Marathon 11/22/09…bypass surgery a week later..running again by January..no mor full marathons..1/2’s and sprint triathlons onlt get checked out by a doc don’t be dumb like me and make the runner’s mis-diagnosis i was lucky to be near a hospital..Jim Fixx wasn’t

    jim d

  88. 143

    AliceF said,

    I went to a pulmonary doctor because I couldn’t get answers from other doctors. He advised me I hyperventilate when I run, cycle, spin, or swim. All these symptom’s – dizziness, heart palpitations, arms tingling, spots before my eyes, feeling of low blood sugar .

    I was given a booklet on how to breath with exercises. You can get it online. It’s called Buteyko method. I need to do more nose breathing. When it gets really tough, press the tongue to the roof of your mouth and slow down, until the feeling passes, then resume. The exercised take only about 15 minutes. So far, it’s working. Good luck all.

  89. 144

    Rhett said,

    Relieved to see others have these symptoms as well. For me, it seems like I get dizzy after I have had a good [read big] meal about 2 hours before the run. I used to run ‘through’ the light-headedness, until this last week when I blacked out and ended up in the ER. They thought Heart Attack or Stroke, but it was neither of course. Does anyone else recollect if they had eaten a meal a couple of hours before their dizziness during their run?

    • 145

      Haven said,

      I thought mine had to do with food as well, but I usually only eat a bowl of oatmeal and some fruit, or maybe a Clif or Powerbar and some water. Can’t say I’ve had a big meal before it’s happened, but it could be what is IN that meal you are eating.

      • 146

        Amber said,

        I’ve experimented with various combinations of food and nothing seems to work except running on a completely empty stomach…i.e. first thing in the morning after waking up.

  90. 147

    Amber said,

    To Rhett: Yes mine is almost always linked to having eaten beforehand! I can run up to 11 miles on an empty stomach in the morning. But in the afternoon after work, it almost always happens. It’s so frustrating!

    • 148

      Rhett said,

      @Amber: Sounds like we have the same condition here. No problems when running on an empty stomach, but contrary to what I’ve read in this blog, if I have a meal beforehand I sometimes suffer.

      After my last experience (passing out completely and ending up in the ER with no recollection) I now know to be careful (I’m not keen on needles). So, on any run I will not eat beforehand. It may have to do with the oxygen being allocated to the digestive system although the doctors appear to be in the dark.

      Thanks for responding here

  91. 149

    Anonymous said,

    For me, there seems to be no sort of pattern to put my finger on. I’ve had the lightheaded and dizziness when I’ve been dehydrated, well hydrated, eaten a meal, or on an empty stomach. Just thankful it only happens every few months.

  92. 150

    Rach said,

    Like so many others, I’m happy to have found this blog. I try to talk to my running friends about this dizziness and they look at me as if I’m some hypocondriac. Frustrating. I’m 30 and am in really good shape. What seems to be different for me is that the dizziness wil last ALL DAY. I run in the morings and then I’m completely useless. I’m going to try to start running at night to see if it helps and taking a daily multi-vitamin.

  93. 151

    Rebbeca said,

    I’m 47 and I’ve been running since my 20’s (female). I’ve never experienced this problem until just a few weeks ago. It just started completely out of the blue. Same thing, anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes into my run I will start feeling dizziness, slight nausea, weak and sometimes tingling in my hands. I usually run 1st thing in the morning before eating and I think I’m low iron too, both of which could have an impact. Really annoying and kind of worrisome!

  94. 152

    Anonymous said,

    I’m 13 and ever since last year in athletics i’ve been having that same exact feeling. I know it’s not from being out of shape because it happens randomly. One day we could run a mile in athletics and i’ll be fine after and then the next mile we run i won’t be. Sometimes it happens so quickly before we even really get into our work out for the day, like when we run for 5 mintues to warm up. It’s so frustrating and embarressing to sit out almost every athletic class. I’ve considered switching to P.E. but i don’t think that would help much considering you still have to run in that class plus, I want to try out for sports! Please, anybody, help!

  95. 153

    zman47 said,

    I too have many of the same symptoms as most folks here. Somewhere between 20-30 minutes of a run (or, recently, just hiking at a slow pace) I become weak, dizzy, tingley, and a bit disoriented. Sometimes can barely make it back to my truck. Ended up in the ER a few months back because the symptoms were not subsiding. All cardiac tests were normal. I was diagnosed a few years back with dilated cardiomyopathy and have a history of pvc’s (preventricular contractiions), but I really feel this is just coincidental. Had a postive tilt table test and was but on beta blockers, to no avail. I’ve been thinking possibly an eletrical issue with my heart, so I’ve made an appointment with an electrophysiologist to pick his brain. I’m not deficient in any of the nurtients described above (iron, folic acid, B12) and I also take a cortisol supplement. Just throwing this out there. Will update you with what the electrophys. says.

  96. 154

    Jen said,

    no one thinking PFOs?????

  97. 155

    Anonymous said,

    I have the samee problem. It’s really nice to know that others have the same thing! I made a list of all the things it could be based on all the posts above:
    -Iron Deficiency
    -Motion Sickness
    -Low Blood Pressure
    -Footstrike Hemolysis
    -Neurally Mediated Hypotention
    -Premature Ventricular Contractions
    Don’t know which one it is, but hopefully the problem is solved!! (:

  98. 156

    cassie said,

    Thank you to everyone who posted here. I have been getting dizzy off and on for the last couple of weeks after running more or less normally for the last 12 years. I have done 5K´s through marathons, all without this problem. It is reassuring to know we are not alone, but what do we do now! I cannot stop running, I will lose my sanity (as I´m sure you all feel the same!). I can barely finish a 30 minute run and am sad and frustrated.

  99. 157

    Dan said,

    I have successfully avoided my problem for several months now by avoiding high-fiber foods before I run in the morning. This has worked for me. Try it and let us know if it works for you.

  100. 158

    AJ said,

    I have the same problem. Sorry if my English is bad but I am from Ecuador-South America. I just began experince this dizziness on a 5K trial running, last Saturday. I though it was because I had a poor breakfast, it was very hot and the terrain was irregular, it was fast and dissapear as fast as ir came so I dont worry too much. The nex day (Sunday) I went running to the park and it happened the same but again very short. Today I drank 2 liters of water, eat very good since the breakfast in order to went to my regular run in the neighbor but it happened again, this time longer and “harder”, I even had to stop because I thought I was going to felt. I came home very scary thinking I hava a tumor in my brain or something very serius but I am kind of relief to find this blog and all your experices. I am a 20 years old male, I have been into sports all my life, swimming, training kick-boxing, football (soccer) and moutain bike and never extrange happens to me. I began running because a year ago I went into mountaneering and my mountain guide told me running is the best way to accondition my body, I have never experience something like this even climbing in the Andes at 4000 to 5000msnm. Recently I paricipate in a duathlon and I really like it so I make 2 goals for me, before I turn into 25 I want to run a marathon and a triathlon but I am thinking I could not acomplish these. PLEASE if you can help me I will be very greatful!


  101. 159

    Sarah said,

    Hi, I am also glad to find this blog, yesterday I ran my first half marathon. I had only been traininf for it for 12weeks prior to that I was a non-runner. I successfully completed a 10km race 5 weeks prior to this with no issues what so ever and I have not had any issues with my training runs leading up to the half. At about the 11km mark I started to feel light headed, I had been nibbling of carbo bars & electorlyte drinks up to that point so was getting confused as to why I was feeling like that & I was taking it relatively easy… by the time I got to the 18km mark I was seriously worried if I was going to be able to finish as I started to see ‘stars’ in front of my eyes, light headed and a bit disconnected… So I just walked on refusing to give up with small jogs in between.. the sensation never went away and at a couple points I had to put my head between my knees.. I noticed also my breathing was very wheezy like I couldnt get enough in which I tried unsucessfully to get rid of my taking long slow breaths… Cant help feeling disappointed with my first half.. I finished but my time was terrible may as well of walked..

  102. 160

    Nick said,

    I’ve just found this old thread and thought I would add my experience and my reasoning.

    Most of the contrubutors are experiencing similar feelings and there are probably several different causes. My experience is very much in line with the problem described in the original post – that of feeling ‘dizzy’ and somewhat ‘detatched’ about 20 minutes into a run but that that horrible feeling can be made to pass after another 10-15 minutes and then the rest of the run is OK. In this case I think that Haven (or their doctor friend) has hit the nail on the head. This is a blood-glucose management problem (reactive hypoglycemia) that is triggered by the switchover from glycogen in the muscles to that in the blood after about 20 minutes.

    My experience is:

    – I’d been running for years before I had this problem.
    – It appeared once my level of fitness had passed a certain point.
    – It first appeared in a 10k race which I had turned up for very early and had killed time by sipping a glucose drink for over one hour.
    – It always comes on between 15 and 20 minutes into a run.
    – I don’t feel as though I’m going to pass out but I do feel very ‘foggy’ and detatched. It is a horrible, horrible feeling. With me the first indictaion that something is about to happen is that my body starts to feel ‘twisted’. That is a very difficult feeling to explain but it is rather like the feeling you’d get if you handn’t put your lycra shorts on straight and they were slightly rotated to the left or the right and were tending to twist you in that direction. I often feel as though my legs are running straight but my torso is rotated at the waist by 5-10 degrees (even though it isn’t). I also feel as though my legs are running by themselves and are not connected to my brain.
    – My heartrate is completely unaffected by these situations.
    – If I can bear it I can run through it in about 10-15 minutes.
    – Often the foggy feeling is so bad and I feel so lacking in energy that I have to stop and sit down. During this period I don’t feel faint but I feel absolutely horrible.
    – It is not an iron problem because – until recently – I have been suffering from a conditiion of iron overload. I have had lots of iron removed form my body and it has had no affect on this running problem.
    – None of my blood tests show any indictaion of diabetes.

    This became a big problem for me a couple of years ago and threatened to stop my running. I did a lot of reading up on it and painstakingly analysed each of my runs to see if I could pinpoint the cause. This is what I found.

    – If I lost fitness the problem would go away.
    – I nearly always had the problem during late afternoon runs – almost never on my morning runs.
    – I could cure myself of one of these attacks if I took a simple sugar (i.e. glucose) as soon as I felt it coming on.
    – If I ingested sugar (.e.g. a sports drink) just before a run it would almost guarantee that the problem would occur.
    – Eventually I realised that I would only get the problem if I ran within about six hours of eating a substantial meal – especially a fatty one or one containing alcohol (even just one small glass of wine).

    I’m no doctor but my understanding is that when we eat a substantial meal our blood sugar level goes up and so does the level of insulin required to get rid of that sugar. If we then start heavy exercise our muscles are quite happy to plod along using their own internal fuel but that after about 15-20 minutes they need to start demanding fuel from the blood. The blood can do this but it cannot replenish itself quickly enough in this circumstance and – since the brain also needs sugar and it takes priority – we start to feel dizzy or foggy. Eventually – after 10 minutes of hell – our body settles down and starts the steady flow of glycogen from the liver and fat from the fat stores.

    I wouldn’t recommend it to others but I run best on a completely empty stomach. If I do this then the 20 minute dizzy feeling never happens. If I really have to run within a couple of hours of eating then I find that quickly knocking back a handful of jelly babies 10 minutes into the run will prevent a dizzy episode.

    • 161

      Amber said,

      Nick, your symptoms and observations seems to align almost perfectly with what I’ve discovered via trial and error over the past couple years. And like you, my symptoms didn’t begin until I got pretty fit. If I wake up first thing in the morning and head out for a run, I can go up to 11 miles on an empty stomach with no issues. If I run in the afternoons, it’s almost a 100% guarantee that I will experience an “episode.” One thing that I have found that works – if I have small snack that is a combination of simple sugar + fat/protein, it doesn’t happen. An apple & peanut butter have been life savers for me. Simple sugars on their own are the devil. Simple sugars will stop the symptoms if I’m experiencing an episode, but then that puts me on a roller coaster of needing them every 20 minutes. My last marathon was a nightmare because I began having sport beans at mile 13. I’ve never tried just gritting my teeth and running through it because it just feels so awful.

      My heartrate doesn’t seem to be effected either, but my doctor is still recommending for me to have a cardiac tilt test. Not sure what that will prove, and for now, it seems I have my problem managed. The only thing I’m concerned about now is what to use for fuel for longer races and training runs. Nick, have you found anything that works? Please feel free to email me at amilwee at gmail.com if you would like. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one experiencing this. Hopefully we can learn from each other how best to deal with it!

    • 162

      Anonymous said,

      Wonderful comment, thank you! Actually, my symptoms started right around the time I started eating a little breakfast right before my morning run.. which I thought was a good idea! I´m going to try your suggestion of going back to an empty stomach and see if that fixes the issue. Thanks again for your awesome analysis!

    • 163

      Steve-o said,

      NIck- thanks for post. What you’ve written is closest to my symptoms and experience. Recently my level of fitness has made a nice step up; coincident with that however has been the occurence of dizziness about 2 miles (or 15 minutes) in EVERY run over the past week. I’ve had it in the past but very intermittently (including playing tennis). by the way, in what I thought until now was the key, dizziness was coincident with being warmed up. Literally, as my hands got warm enough to take my gloves off, that is when the dizziness occurred. But may days it didn’t occur or was so mild that it didn’t bug me.

      Until about a week ago. During the recent incidents- unprecedented in their consistency- I’ve been taking Gu pack about 15 to 30 minutes before run- so my sugar intake schedule before running during the last week. All runs were in the afternoon and I felt hungry going into them… hwhich is why i took the gu.

      Up until now I thought it was vasovagal repossess. Still might be to some extent but I look forward to trying the Gu 15 minutes into the run, or not at all. And running earlier in the day and seeing if I can beat this crazy dizziness.

  103. 164

    AJ said,

    Thanks Nick, tomorrow are 3 weeks that I stop running because of this problem. I used to run in the afternoon or in the morning with some food in my stomach. Tomorrow I will try your tips.


  104. 165

    Tom D. said,

    THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU! Like everyone here, I googled “dizzy when running” and came across this website.

    I am training for the 2012 Texas Ironman (I know, crazy.) I’m 48 and literally got off the couch for my first Triathlon early this year.

    The dizziness is exactly as everyone started and only after I got in shape. I have no problem if I run or race first thing in the morning, but as this is Houston, running at night means that I get to train in the relative cool of 95 degrees.

    I am going to try the apple and peanut butter idea. I have no idea if that will help, but I will check back.

    Thanks again for the site!

  105. 166

    Nick said,

    Amber – I only ever get this problem once per run. If it’s going to happen it will do so at between 15 and 20 minutes into the run. Then one of three things happen either I run through it (only possible if it is mild), I stop for 10-15 minutes until I feel able to continue, or I abort the run (only happened to me twice). Once I’m through it it will never come back on that particular run. It’s like my body sometimes struggles to get it’s fuel supply up and running but once it does it works fine.

    On my longest runs (over 1.5 hours) I suck a slow acting gel and that gives me a bit of extra energy without any blood sugar yoyos.

    I will try the apple and peanut butter and see how it goes.

    The tilt table test is interesting. I have suffered a couple of vasovagul episodes in the past but that is a blood pressure issue and I don’t think it’s related to this running issue which I’m 99% sure is a blood sugar problem.

  106. 167

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  107. 168

    Ed said,

    I have just started getting this, as a surfer i have always had ear infections, however reading all of the above suggests this is a common problem not necessary something linked to my ears. The weird thing is i have always been fit and this only comes on when i am RUNNING and 20 – 25 mins into the run. It also goes as soon as i walk back (very embarassing when it 1st happened) going to see the doc next week as had my 5th episode tonight!! It is more annoying than scary

  108. 169

    noname said,

    I’m so happy I saw this. I thought I was crazy or a hypochondriac. I’m only 18 and have been like this since I can remember. Its has changed a bit with my age,but the last time I ran was about a month ago and I fell after getting done from being so dizzy, and i’m scared to even try it again. Thanfully i’m not the only one, but I am sorry to hear so many other people have this problem.

  109. 170

    Anonymous said,

    I’ve been feeling the same way for about a month now, I keep casting it off as dehydration. When i get dizzy, i feel the need to cry or sleep; its really strange. I lose focus and feel the need to stop running and walk it off, but after stopping it’s still there and when i start to run again, it comes back. Im 17, and ever since freshman year, i’ve been running a lot for swimming and soccer: so its not like running’s a new experience! Its a relief that im not alone in this conflict, but it’s kind of sad to see how many people are affected by it.

  110. 171

    Amanda said,

    I got the very same thing and fell. I say what it is that when your running like really fast or slow depending on how fast you can run, air can’t get blood to your lungs and this causes your lungs to get tired and causes you to breath really fast. When your lungs get over used and you can’t really breath properly, this can cause you to get dizzy. I am no doctor but I think that this might be the cause.

  111. 172

    Mike S said,

    I get the same thing and I am very confident it is a migraine. It’s not poor breathing, dehydration or low blood sugar. I always eat a light breakfast and drink a lot of water before every run. I have had migraines most of my life and I know all the symptoms and feelings associated with them. I get migraines all the time without any pain, so dont dismiss it just because you dont have a headache right away. I run about 10 miles a week and this happens about once every two or three months during a run. I get the dizziness, weakness, inability to focus and the feeling like I’m loosing my balance and will feint. It’s the Prodrome phase of a migraine.

    When it happens I just walk the rest of the way home and avoid sitting down. Sitting down makes the feeling much worse for some reason. I just walk around the house until it passes (30-45 min max).

  112. 173

    Tundra/Desert said,

    I can’t believe I hadn’t found this in over a year of googling my problems.

    The most common symptoms brought up by the posters are mine, too. The onset was rapid, over about a month in January 2011, but there were flashes of what to expect over several instances, averaging one per year, mostly many hours into an ultramarathon.

    In my case there is history of mono, Lyme, and at the time of the onset there was a periodontal infection spread to the jawbone. The latter was treated and cured and it made things a bit better, but not entirely. One inner ear was damaged 7 years ago by either the Lyme or by an unrelated virus. What I was experiencing for a few months
    back then felt quite different; unbalance and nausea, but not dizziness or out-of-body experience that I have now, with a lot of anxiety now that is somewhat self-controlled. The inner-ear issues resolved abruptly over the course of a week back then—the doctor said the other inner ear took over, and the damage to the bad one is

    The onset also correlated with arrhythmia (most likely atrial fibrillation), which set off somewhat of a wild goose chase. I (and the cardiologist) believe my heart is healthy, and I haven’t had sustained arrhythmia since that January. There is some ectopy on the Holter (mostly APCs) but not enough to account for the problem; I have the
    same level of ectopy when not exercising, and probably had it for a long time.

    I used to be at world-class level in a form of endurance running over 24 hours. The onset (and the arrhythmia) happened shortly after the last World Championships I did.

    I took a year off running (first one in 25 years), and nothing really changed.

    At the time of the onset, I noticed a change in my breathing pattern—all of a sudden I was breathing 2 steps in, 1 step out, which is a sure recipe for hyperventilation. I made a conscious effort to breathe at least 2/2, better yet 2/3 or 2/4. This made things better but didn’t eliminate the problem.

    As of now, I can walk in flat terrain for hours, and exercise indoors (treadmill/elliptical) at up to the max effort. Any running, or walking in the hills, brings this on quickly (within minutes for running, an hour or so for walking). Walking/running at night, when I can’t quite see the terrain, seems better.

    There is a lot of associated anxiety, but I’m not sure if it’s the cause or the effect of the issue. Certainly when the arrhythmia started, there wasn’t any anxiety. I tried a low dose of an SSRI; it didn’t seem to do anything.

    I was on a ton of supplements at the time of the onset. I gradually stopped them all, and nothing changed (if I do exercise, the recovery is slower, but that may be because I’m older and out of shape).

    There has been tingling on the left side only, same side as the bad ear. It started with the Lyme 6 or so years ago, and doesn’t seem particularly correlated with the dizziness and out-of-body. What is new, though, is the feeling of coldness in the left side of the chest that is absolutely correlated with all exercise, like there’s an ice pack there. It goes away as soon as exercise stops.

    Just sitting in an office chair doesn’t cause any symptoms. I don’t have high or low blood pressure, my iron levels are normal (the hemoglobin is in the mid-140s), all electrolyte levels are normal (tested during the episodes), thyroid is normal, and I strongly suspect I don’t have asthma.

    I went through a year of panic attacks in my teens, over 20 years ago. This seems similar and different. The panic attacks correlated with exercise but were often brought on without any. This is entirely exercise-related for only specific exercise, usually causes anxiety but sometimes doesn’t, and is debilitating. The panic attacks resolved back then over a few weeks and never returned, and I keep waiting for a similar thing to happen with this but it sadly doesn’t seem to want to happen…

  113. 174

    Donovan said,

    Thank God I found this i was starting to get worried i had developed these symptoms of dizzyness (except fast heart rate from what im told i have a very slow athletic heart rate but other than that this is all exact) and the thing about looking up POTS really helped and explained a lot im 16 and out of the blue started getting these symptoms on runs and during baseball practice but it really started to worry me because the point of baseball is to be able to see and run after the little white baseball well when you are dizzy that is a little more difficult but the article on POTS (Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome) it can develop after any virus or stress so sombody that was on here said something about breast reduction surgery that is a possible cause but another cause is if uyou have had rapid growth and well a year ago i was 5ft 6in and now i will be 6ft in another quarter inch so i that may be my cause but anybody curious about POTS here is a link http://dinet.org/pots_an_overview.htm

  114. 175

    Donovan said,

    One other thing about the POTS is that some symptoms are way more severe than others and there are subgroups of it so the dizziness that we all have been experiencing from exercise may very well be one form or another of POTS

  115. 176

    Hidden Identity due to embarrassment said,

    I am 12 years old and l feel dizzy when I run. I have no medical problems (that I know of) but im not a regular child I like running and it annoys me that I cannot run as far as my friends and in P.E lessons when I do bleep tests I want to keep running but I cannot as I feel mega dizzy and can’t breathe. When I was little I had broncle asthma and as you are a doctor I wanted to ask if it could ever come back. My dad is a doctor but he does not work with people with stuff like asthma. I hope you can help because it is really annoying.

  116. 177

    Anonymous said,

    It’s a little reassuring to know there is an online community for this problem. I’ve been running on and off for the last 12 years now, I’ve also served in the military and have been conditioned to run extensively. Within the last two years I haven’t experienced any serious problems but lately I’ve been getting some mild dizziness and shortness of breath within 1½ mile or so into my run. I do have a history of heart palpitations but medical examinations have always ruled out heart disease. I’ve had Physicians tell me my condition is likely due to stress. It’s really beginning to get annoying with this problem piercing its ugly head in my runs. Just last night I ran two miles nonstop just fine, and today I experience some shortness of breath. As a workaround I’m still able to get my cardio through swimming, which I have no problems with. I have a hunch that my symptoms may be from mini panic attacks. I sure hope that someday medical progress will better diagnosis and treat these problems.

  117. 178

    Anonymous said,

    So glad I found this dialogue…and so sad. Glad I’m not alone, and sad that we deal with this and have no answers. I am an avid runner who, 3 years ago, took some time off to deal with a nasty case of bursitis in my hip. My first run back I got crazy dizzy, tried to push through, and ended up vomiting. I assumed at that point that I had just pushed to hard for a first run back, but have been dealing with it since. Same old story…1 km or so into the run it feels like my head is filled with helium, if I stop soon enough it will pass, but if I push a little too far I ALWAYS get sick….however, treadmill runs are fine, gym workouts are fine, spin classes are fine. I did have it happen once when biking a trail outside. My doc sent me to a specialist who mentioned vasovagal and suggested taking in a lot of sodium before a run. I started with gatorade, which helped, but hated putting all that chemical crap in my body. I switched to tomato juice, which was working well during my marathon training last year, but am starting to have issues again. I have noticed on the days that the dizzies are bad, that I usually have a couple of big burps when I stop to walk, and generally feel better after….pressure on the vagus nerve perhaps??? I have started to run on a completely empty stomach, drinking my tomato juice about 30min before I start, and it helps….most days. I hate heading out for a run wondering if I’m going to get sick in someones front yard. Anyway, that is what I am currently working with. Thanks to everyone who has posted, and everyone who will post after this….I’m willing to try anything at this point.

  118. 179

    DocNinja said,

    Hello, I was searching online about this, and I’m so glad I found your blog. What a relief that I now know I’m not alone. I get that dizzy, lightheaded feeling in the middle of my run. I’m currently training for my first half marathon. I am so bothered by it coz I need to stop in the middle of my run when I feel it. It will go away after walking but it just ruins my pace. I thought at first it’s because of my energy drinks with caffeine in it. And from what I learned in Medical School, caffeine causes dehydration. I’m a coffee drinker. So, I stopped drinking my coffee & energy drinks the past weeks, but still have those feelings & worst, I had no energy to exercise. At least, having my coffee in the morning, I feel energized the whole day. So, I’m going to drinking again my coffee since it doesn’t help. I agree with the vasovagal reflex that your blood pressure goes down when you’re exercising. I guess I just have to deal with this. Oh by the way, to those coffee drinkers like me, drink lots of water! Keeping yourself hydrated during exercise is a must.

  119. 180

    Anonymous said,

    I get a similar feeling to this, but instead of on every run, I only get light headed on runs that I push myself really hard (races for ex or hard days when it’s hot). I get dizzy and have fainted several times after or during 5Ks. In one 5K, I got dizzy after the first mile and didn’t remember running the last two. I guess I just wanted to finish the course really bad. But recently, I’ve been doing shorter distances and I get light headed towards the end and usually 200 into my races, my hands fall asleep. It feels really strange. Pretty much every time I stand up, I have to hold on to something or sit back down to get the blood back to my brain. It’s very inconvenient and I’d really like to know what causes this so that I can get back to training hard again. It only recently started happening last fall. I saw a cardiologist, got an EKG and a sonogram of my heart, but all was well. I also did a stress test and it said i reached my lactate threshold earlier than normal (idk what that means). I have asthma and awful allergies so i talked to my allergy/asthma doctor, but so far, no answers.
    Does anybody have ideas?
    oh and by the way, I have pretty low blood pressure so i’ve been trying to eat more salt (even though i despise it).

  120. 181

    Tom said,

    Finally, I have found that I am not unique with my problem. Currently I am 57 almost 58 and have been running for the last 4 years. Up until last year I had no balance or dizziness problems. Last year in the last .2 miles on the Peachtree Road Race (a 10k), as I turned the final turn (a 90 degree turn), I fell. At the turn I was dizzy and disoriented, I hadn’t noticed it before. That fall really pissed me off as I was on a PR pace. Anyway, looking back I remember my balance was a bit shaky before the fall. After the fall I, dizzy and disoriented walked to the finish line (only finishers get the shirt) and headed immediately to the medical tent. Two and a half hours later, after many bottles of Gatorade, I was steady enough to walk out of the tent. I was still a bit dizzy, but managed to make it to my family who were waiting on me. That one I chalked up to the heat. Two weeks later I did an Olympic triathlon. The swim and bike went fine. Half way through the run (a 10k) it started again. I made it to the finish, but had to spend the next two hours lying on my back drinking many bottles of Gatorade. I again calked it up to the heat. As I was leaving I saw my tri coach and asked him what caused the problem. He said lack of salt. On my next tri, I had some salt before it and then after. I still got dizzy during the run. The salt at the end slowly eliminated my dizziness. For the dizziness and disorientation, I like so many of you, went to my doctor. He did the MRI and a nerve conduction test, which turned out normal. Adding salt helped, but how much salt and when to take it? For the next year, I tried varied amounts of salt. First way too much, salt in everything. Salt in my hydration (salt water with Gatorade tastes nasty) and salt tablets every couple of miles. Salt helped but did not eliminate the problem. As salt water is not my favorite drink, I have tried multiple combinations. Recently on a 15k race I tried a new combination – a large amount (6) of salt tablets (I use Thermotabs) before the race and nothing during the race. I still used my 70oz camelback with electrolytes. My point was to find when in the race I became dizzy. It was the 7 mile mark for me. A bunch of tablets immediately after the race, Gatorade and some lying down helped me recover. I didn’t enjoy the dizziness nor that I knew it was going to happen, but I found my mark. Last week I ran a marathon and every 6 miles I had 4 or 5 salt tablets. I really didn’t get dizzy, but I got extremely thirsty. I will admit it was a bit hot, but no amount of hydration – a 70 oz camelback and 2 of 3 cups of water or Gatorade at every water stop – could not quench my thirst. In my case salt is an aid but it is not the solution. (Just a note, on my training runs, I stop a lot for 5 minutes or so and drink and take salt tablets.) Even with the salt, I have had at least one or more runs when that didn’t do it. I am just trading on problem for another. I am hoping another runner has a better solution.

  121. 182

    Brian said,

    I too have experienced this same issue . I don’t get cold and clammy, it’s just a light headed feeling. Usually it’s at the end of a race or hard workout and it has been manageable, but I had to drop out of Boston this year because I got so dizzy. No it was not the heat . Please let me know if you find out what it is

  122. 183

    ollie said,

    Well all these comments have been a very interesting read indeed, I am a 29 year old male and I have been having the exact same problem for about 6 years now. I am a soldier and a very fit one too; I did all sorts of physically challenging stuff as you can imagine what being a soldier is like. However about 6 years ago I jumped to head a football and felt something in my neck about a week after there was a pain at the base of my head just off to the right side and the same sort of pain and discomfort in the upper back area between the shoulder blades. A few weeks after that I started having the symptoms everyone has been explaining.

    Went and seen the doctor and he sent me to physio… that did nothing and even pain killers he gave me did nothing for the pain. Over the time i have seen several doctors and physio had deep tissue muscle massages and nothing worked. I have spent months at a time off training or doing anything remotely physically challenging and did not make a difference.

    Recently I have had an ECG, X-Ray, MRI, Scan of my heart, scan of my neck arteries, and another test hooked up to ECG machine whilst on a bike. All of these apparently have proven inconclusive and I am off back to see my doctor on the 18th June for a follow up review.

    All this is just frustrating, I went for a run yesterday and after about 30mins my problem was on again… I almost felt like i wanted to be sick.. and i had to stop about 4 times for a few minutes and pretend i was stretching how embarrassing.

  123. 184

    joanne said,

    Hi,I am exactly the same.everything you have said happens with me, and I don’t know why I feel like this.I am 42 years old and I have been running a lot lately, 4 -6 miles every day.I’d like to know why am feeling like this.

  124. 185

    kelli said,

    I have had the same problems and have seen every doctor. I have seen a cardiologist, pulmonologist, endocrinologist, holistic nutritionist, sports medicine doctor, ENT, balance specialist… they have done every test there is possible including athsma, blood test, saliva test, EKG, running stress test, tilt table test, balance test, hearing test, the list goes on and on…and the ONLY thing that works and makes sense is allergies. I started to take a steroid inhaler twice a day called Dulera, while also taking Nasonex nasal spray and Singular. Sometimes I take Allegra too but these three things I take every single day and it’s more preventative. I haven’t had these symptoms anymore and I don’t get dizzy. If I miss a day or two and then try to run more than 4 miles it happens so this is something that I have to be religious about but it does work. Please try it and let me know if it works for anyone else. I have been seeing doctors about this for the past year and half and think I finally have it under control. Hopefully this will at least help one other person as well!

    • 186

      Aubu said,


      I am curious how you came about that allergies makes sense. I am starting to go down the path of the test that you have had done (EKG, running stress test, MRI Brain scan, ENT, hearing test, ENG test, holter monitor) and don’t want to to have to spend all that time and money just to find out it is nothing definite. Did you have specific symptoms that led you to allergies? I noted that you mention several items that are prescription, did this allergy decision come from your Doctor and you?


      • 187

        Hi Greg. Yes my sports medicine doctor made this diagnosis. I can run 10 miles on a treadmill no problem (if I am in shape) but if I try to run outside more than 3.5-4 miles I get dizzy. I have been taking the inhaler, nasal spray and singular for a couple months now and have no problems. I ran 9 miles outside last weekend and didn’t feel dizzy once. But you seriously have to be good about taking it otherwise it happens. This happened to another person I know and her doctor found the same thing. I never had an allergy test done but I know when I was a kid I was allergic to everything outside, i.e. pollen, grass, dust, etc. When the other girl who was getting dizzy went to an allergy doctor they found the same thing that she is allergic to all these things outside. Before when I would get dizzy I did not have any symptoms. Just all the same symptoms everyone else on this blog states. I would not feel short of breath or like I was having an asthma attack or sneezing or anything that would allude to me being allergic to anything, which is why I never thought the allergy thing made sense. But after a million doctors and a ton of money later, it’s the only thing that works. The other lady said her doctor is also giving her allergy shots so that she won’t have to take the medicine everyday. I might look into that but for now I just take the medicine as prescribed and so happy I can run again.

      • 188

        Just another thought – Maybe it’s not necessarily allergies, but maybe my lungs were getting weaker? Not sure but I know for a fact the inhaler has helped. It’s a steroid inhaler, taken twice a day to strengthen my lung capacity so maybe just try that and see if it helps. Another thing, two years ago this did not happen and then all of a sudden it started happening. I am not sure why I didn’t get dizzy before and then all of a sudden I did, I know it does not make sense. But I have fainted a couple times, and every time after I throw up and my doctor says its lack of oxygen to the brain. I really think giving the inhaler a try would be worth it. Also (just to give some more background) I also do spin class, sometimes two classes back-to-back along with hot yoga and have no problem. It doesn’t matter how hot my body gets or how high my heart rate is, it only happens when I run outside. Which is another reason why the allergy thing makes sense. And yes I thought it could also be vestibular but after doing all those tests the results showed there is no problem with that. Such a crazy mystery! Let me know if you find something that works for you!

  125. 189

    Theresa said,

    I have been having the same thing happen to me. I used to run 30+ miles a week and then due to my busy class schedule I stopped and would opt to spend an hour in the gym each day instead. I recently went for a run and after the fourth mile I got the dizzy feeling everyone here is describing. It’s hard to explain but it’s like it started from my feet and went upward and ended in dizziness. I ended up going to the hospital and was told I was dehydrated (hr was fine, blood glucose a little high, blood work normal) .A week later and on a cooler night, after hydrating for several days, I decided to try again. Same thing, I know I was well hydrated and ha eaten. I am thinking that the problem is vestibular in nature. I am curious to know if anyone has tried Dramamine before running and whether or not it helped. I may give it a try.

    • 190

      Theresa said,

      Forgot to mention that I’m fine when doing stationary exercise on arc trainer, elliptical, or treadmill.

  126. 191

    al said,

    Same here. After 25 minutes of running I get dizzy, and im not even tired my body feels fine and I dont want to stop at all but I have to because I might faint. Im slightly anaemic so im going to up the iron intake and drink protein shakes or something because I think im eating too many carbs and not enough protein. Im also a bit sleep deprived so that might be it as well. Its weird I can do two hours of strengthening and an hour of step and feel fine its only when I run which is a drag because I love running so much. I figured out I cant be dehydrated because I think I drink enough water but I suppose I could drink more. I smoke to so that wont be helping. I have thought about the blood pressure and the heart thing but I dont want to go to the docs. I eat plenty of fruit and veges.

    • 192

      al said,

      And the thing is im not even tired when Im running and I start getting dizzy my body feels fine and I just want to keep running but I cant I have to stop so that I dont faint. Its really annoying this dizzy business.

      • 193

        al said,

        It cant be an allergy thing for me because all of this happens when im on the treadmill at the gym and not when im running outside.

    • 194

      al said,

      There might be something in that neck theory ive had a niggly neck on and off for about a year..

      • 195

        al said,

        somebody let doctor oz know he might have a solution

      • 196

        al said,

        Its got nothing to do with migraines for me because I hardly get those and its obviously got nothing to do with age because the young ones are getting it to..

      • 197

        al said,

        Oh wow ive just read nicks comment back in oct 2011. Im going with what he is saying!!! Seems like its happening to all the fit people I consider myself to be fitter than the average joe blow. Ok enough from me. Thanks for helping me with my problem.

  127. 198

    Anonymous said,

    I am 15 i play all sports and this happends to me i have had concusions playing hockey but i belive my symptoms are gone i play hockey now with little trubble again only dizzyness and when i run that happends to me to i get dizzy and really light headed and feel like fainting idk what to do eating and drinking dont help this sucks!!

  128. 199

    Anonymous said,

    I have the same symptoms, but not necessarily while running…it’s the up and down movement that causes dizziness and sometimes a feeling of nausea-even if I’m on an elliptical. It could be an inner ear issue. A doctor told me it could be something called labryinthitis which means crystals form on the inner ear and this messes with balance and certain kinds of movement (up and down) can cause these symptoms.

  129. 200


    just wondering if you ever got better? If so, how did you do it?

    • 201

      Anonymous said,

      I dealt with this issue for many years and am happy to report I’m no longer having the problem. I feel silly, but the problem was simply that I was looking down at the ground while I was walking/running. If I focus on looking straight ahead I have no problems at all. Yesterday I ran 4 miles and felt amazing!

      After seeing all sorts of doctors I can’t believe this was the problem. Good luck!

  130. 202

    Austin said,

    I am 13 and every time I go running when it’s 50 degrees or lower the same thing happens. I have no clue why

  131. 203

    lawrence said,

    Having found your blog (for which many thanks) I soon realised like so many before me that I am a fellow sufferer. I scanned the many replies looking for an answer. What causes this problem and how do I fix it. I didn’t find a definitive answer but a few suggestions that have helped. I studied where and when I became dizzy, the routes and distances I ran when it occurred. After a few months of trial and error I found a pattern and from this a way to run without getting dizzy. So I describe here the simple solution that worked for me
    I have run for many years, but the dizziness began only about 9 months ago. As I have aged (I’m now 56) my eyesight has degraded. I needed ever stronger reading glasses, and now wear vari-focals. These days I use glasses for almost everything. But not running. I figured I could see well enough to run without them.
    However I do tend to look down when I run, so I spend long periods staring at the ground, slightly out of focus, as I go bobbing along my route. I realised my dizziness came on after running along dark sections of my route, under trees for example, where light was poor and my eyesight more strained. I thought perhaps I should wear my glasses when I run, but haven’t needed to yet.
    Instead I simply lifted my head up when running and stared ahead, focussing on distant objects such as trees, cars, lamp-posts, whatever is ahead. Only quick glances down to avoid tripping when the path was rough. I have not had a dizzy spell since making this adjustment and can now enjoy my running again. I hope my experience may be of help to others.
    PS Just read the November 14th 2012 posting from someone else saying just the same (in a lot less words!!)

  132. 204

    Anonymous said,

    I found exactly the same as Lawrence. My dizziness was being caused by running while staring at the ground for a while. Haven’t had a dizzy spell since keeping my head up and my eyes focused forward.It’s that simple.

  133. 205

    Yisrael said,

    Well, I’ve been following this blog for about a year and tried almost everything. nothing helped. I never had any physical condition of any sort, and have been running since I was 16 (today I’m 26) 10+ km. two years ago I felt this dizziness while I was running my usuall track and had to rest for a few seconds. since then it got worse and you know the rest. I’m trying to run again, after doing anything I could think of. the dizziness stil occurs. something that wasn’t mentioned in earlier posts was that (it’s going to sound weird) when I turn my head to the right I can pospone that dizziness for few more minutes but when I do so to the left, dizziness strikes hard. can’t find any solution, kind of disappointing letting go of this kind of activity. anyone had this feeling I mentioned, or am I to be one of a kind (and not the good one)?

    • 206

      ollie said,

      Yiarael, I am a soldier and I had this problem for about 6 years now I have had all sort of tests and still going through some more. I am waiting to see a cardiologist as the moment. Now that you mentioned turning your head to one side I remember going on a run and I sort of tilted my head to the left because the Physio had told me the muscle in my neck on the right was weaker than the right and it’s did make a slight difference, I have never had any problems with fitness in fact I was always one of the fittest in my Unit and was also a Physical Trainer for a few years. I have two trigger points that pains me constantly, one where my neck meets my skull at the back right hand side and one between my right shoulder blade and my spine. Last week I tried the holding my head up whilst running and looking at something in the distance and I ran for about 38 mins without any symptoms, usually the dizziness will onset between 25-30 mins. I am planning to have a go at it again tomorrow. 😉

  134. 207

    ollie said,

    Well I went out on another run and did about 4.3 miles in 35 minutes and tried foucusing on something in the distance as suggested and I did not feel dizzy. It did feel a bit strange trying to change my running style tho but I plan to keep trying and see where it goes. I plan to go for another run later today so I will let you all know what the conclusion is.

    • 208

      Anonymous said,

      Hi Ollie,
      I too tried looking forward to distant objects and it did help but when I try running a bit faster it stops helping. It may be connected to lack of O2 or something like that. The thing is that it never happens when I swim or using bikes at the gym. I still have no idea. Kelli Miller from some posts above suggested it may be some allergy or even a light case of undetected astma. Did you check those?

      • 209

        Yisrael said,

        So I plan on taking from a friend of mine anti-allergie pill and go out to run a bit. it’s the last thing I could think of that makes sense. I’ll post my results.

      • 210

        Smiling Knight said,

        Everyone – I’m an everyday runner and have logged 8 marathons in the last 3 years. I too get this feeling of dizziness, claminess, and just a relative low level of energy during some runs. It is imperative you realize it is because your body is either missing out on 1 of 2 things when you feel this way. 1 – you are not breathing normally – your body does not have the oxygen needed to continue exercise – I sometimes realize during a run that I have been holding back on normal breathing for some strange reason. Take a second, stop, and breathe deeply for 60 seconds. This should restart your breathing. And 2 – you do not have enough calories in your body to burn for a successful run. My major issue sometimes is that I don’t refuel enough! Great runners need a lot of calories to burn to do the job. My advise is to overeat a bit the day before a long run. This will make the run easy as cake, or pie, or fast food. Whatever you want.

    • 211

      Yisrael said,

      Smiling knight – thanks for your help, but I’ve been running for many years and know all the theories about breathing and what and when should we eat/drink before, during and after excersize. It’s just not what you described- not the causes and not the symptoms. We were talking about an extreme dizziness, the entire world was spinnig around us and it didn’t happen during a marathon. it happen after 2 km and before even breaking sweat. It’s a whole different story.

      Nonetheless, I think I finally found out what the problem was. Kelli Miller from this blog suggested an allergy. It sounded weird at first because I hadn’t any allergies in past times. I was in the army and was exposed to many harsh condition, with many “opportunities” to get allergic reaction, and nothing happened. So I figured it’s not that. After some research I found out that allergies might develope in later stages of life (the reason aren’t relevant for what I’m about to say). another friend of mine who is allergic for just about anything told me that allergic reaction might show symptoms similar to astma. So I went running on a treadmill at the gym (I hate doing so, so I never tried it). and to my surprise nothing happend. I ran as fast as I could for about 40 minutes, and for the first time in 2.5 years never had this dizzy feeling (it usually started happening after 10 minutes). I plan on going to the doctor for constant allergy treatment (I hope there is one) and in the meanwhile continue running in the gym.

      good luck everyone.

      • 212

        ollie said,

        I am still not sure what is going on but I have been on a few runs lately and had no problem, only felt a bit weird looking at things in the distance. I play football with no problems so I don’t believe it is an allergy problem as suggested then again I’m not a doctor. I am waiting to see a Cardiologist hopefully soon, just to make sure the ticker is ok.  Once I have the all clear on that “I hope” my doctor said he will send me to a specialist doctor in dealing with dizziness. Playing the waiting game is very annoying!

      • 213

        Just so everyone knows, I did not have allergy issues either prior to this and I even saw a pulmonologist (lung doctor) who said I did not have it either. It is an exercise induced problem and my sports medicine doctor discovered it. I’m not saying that what is wrong with everyone, but I am saying it’s worth a try. I worked for me and I saw 7-8 doctors (including a cardiologist, nutritionist, and ENT) that had no answer. Good luck!

  135. 214

    PurplePanda said,

    I’ve had similar symptoms while running for about 3 years now. I tried eating more, hydrating more, etc. but nothing seemed to help. The only consistent pattern I observed was that I was more likely to experience a dizzy episode (and it would come on sooner) when I ran in the late afternoon/evening versus early morning.

    I have recently tried running wearing compression stockings (just the over-the-counter pharmacy variety, 10-20 mm Hg compression) and they seemed to help! No symptoms so far. My current theory is that I probably don’t have great veins to begin with, and with the vasodilation that happens with running, too much blood pools in my legs and not enough gets to the brain.

    I know how frustrating a feeling it is to have your training be limited by these dizzy episodes. I hope the suggestion to try compression stockings helps someone else!

  136. 215

    Martin Henning said,

    Well after reading all the posts here I tested the vitamin B and B Complex theory. No more funny head fainting and out of body feeling. Get some vitamin B and B complex injection. One mill of each once a week seems to solve this issue.

    • 216

      Since we moved from MN to CA and I have been running indoors and outdoors, I have been looking forward and not down. That seemed to do the trick for me, but could be a vitamin b thing, as well.

  137. 217

    Laura said,

    Just came across your post while researching passing out while rumning. My 13 year old passed out 3 steps before the finish line during a 200 in her track meet. Was doing well and in first place, then went down hard. She has passed out when stressed during medical procedures, when dehydrated and when sleep deprived. Now this! Doctor has always said it was due to blood pressure dropping during extreme stress. What does everyone else think?

  138. 218

    Angie said,

    I found this blog awhile ago when i was experiencing the same thing looking for answers. I was fine on the road but the trails would make me so dizzy I had to stop afraid I was just going to tip over. I tracked every thing from hydration, sugar, heart rate,what I ate how much I slept..nothing made a difference. My running partners and I, after much discussion, thought it might be motion sickness. I bought a pair of Sea Bands (elastic bands with a small ball that applies a little pressure to the underside of the wrist) and I haven’t had a dizzy spell trail running since and that was 3 months ago. They are recommended for motion sickness or morning sickness in pregnate women so they’re completly safe. Any one who gets dizzy running trails should defiantly try them you can find them at any pharmacy for around $10. I’m now training for my first 100 mile trail run!

  139. 219

    G said,

    Thank you all for these posts. I get dizzy immediately following a hard workout/race and it has been occurring with increasing frequency lately. (Although today and 2 weeks back it happened WHILE I was sprinting). I am waiting to see a cardiologist for an exercise stress test, but ENT (vertigo tests) and resting EKG were normal. I am in really good shape, just had a VO2max test and hit 64. I am under a lot of stress with getting my PhD and everyone keeps saying it is stress. Nothing much has changed with my diet except maybe more coffee and wine, so I’ve considered hydration as an issue. But I use electrolytes, eat really well, and always eat before I run. It doesn’t happen on every run and seems to only be linked to shorter, faster sprints (e.g., 1500M or 800M). In the past I’ve had “crazy stomach,” as I call it, with excessive bathroom stops, and even severe nausea after half marathons. But my stomach has been pretty ok lately and the dizziness and stomach issues are not co-occurring. I am 30 and got into distance running about 5 years ago. This never happened in college soccer or track, and it really freaks me out. The dizzy spells last about 5 minutes but today I still can’t shake the out of it feeling and it has been several hours since I finished my workout. I wasn’t able to hit my times this morning either, as I felt like I was fighting through water or something and couldn’t conjure up enough energy.

  140. 220

    runner said,

    I AM SO HAPPY I FOUND THIS BLOG. I am going to bookmark it so that whenever I get frustrated with the stupid 20 minute into a run dizzy spell I can come here and remember that others also suffer from it. SO ANNOYING!!! and even more annoying that there doesn’t seem to be a cure. The only luck I have had is carrying some sort of easy to chew sugar candy with me and taking it pronto. that and a little walking and my body will be finally agree to get me through the run. But I do think I will try to always look straight ahead when I run. I don’t normally pay attention. But I will do anything to fix the stupid problem!


    • 221

      Anonymous said,

      I have been dizzy-free now for 10 months. Looking straight ahead, staying hydrated and wearing glasses, not contacts (not sure if that made a difference). Good luck!

  141. 222

    Andy Jordan said,

    Has anyone noticed a trend between caffeine ingestion and this happening? I recently started training for an ironman and was trying some caffeinated gu’s etc. during training and my dizziness was almost to the point of crashing my bike…i also would stop and just wait it out…and while waiting of course hydrate…For my ironman event i cut out the Caffeine completely and had 0 problems with the lightheadedness/dizziness. But i almost completely nailed it down to caffeine for me. Alot of you probably drink a cup of coffee pre-workout …try not doing that and instead having a banana or something to that degree. I have gotten taht dizzy feeling lately and it can be linked to one of 2 combinations…caffeine to get me to better awaken for the workout and/or over-training(in weeks i ramped it up in terms of workout time) A little sleep does in fact go a long way in A. preventing the overtraining and B. needing the caffeine…something to try…let me know how it goes, i wish everyone a clear headed workout.

  142. 223

    Caker said,

    It sounds crazy, but try running without headphones and music. My dr. suggested it and it worked for me. Occluded ear canals and music while running can over-stimulate your inner ear and cause vertigo feelings.

    • 224

      Anonymous said,

      I cut out caffeine, hydrate, don’t look down while running and listen to music without ear buds. Got rid of my dizzies about 8 months ago. Praise God, so far so good!

      • 225

        Dan said,

        I’ve been following this for a long time and I’ve noticed there are several different problems. Some of us feel dizzy like the world is spinning. Some feel faint and describe seeing stars or like you’re disconnected from your body. Dizziness can be caused by inner ear issues such as bouncing and loud music. I’ve also experienced dizziness from low blood sugar. Feeling faint is more likely an Oxygen or blood flow problem. Some of you find that holding your head in a particular position can cause this. In my case, it’s eating too soon before I run. My body has trouble diverting blood from digestion, resulting in a few minutes of faintness that goes away after a while. I’ve avoided it for a year now by not eating until after 2.5 miles. A few times, I’ve tried eating to see if it was still there and invariably I have the problem.

  143. 226

    phentermine said,

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  144. 227

    Eric Sielaff said,

    As everyone has said it is reassuring to find that many people are having the same issues that I have been dealing with. When my symptoms first started I was able to run through them, now after 10 minutes the symptomsset in. They have gotten so bad I can no longer run through them,and I end up walking back home afraid I will fall over if I continue. By the way wlaking does not make the symptoms any better,the only thing that seems to is sitting down. It is crazy that 4 months ago I ran a half marathon and now i strugle to do a 5k. I have noticed that i do not have the symptoms as bad on a tredmill??? I have had my heart checked, been to the chiropractor, and asked many questions to the doctors and I have received no for sure answers other than it is in my head. I also suffer from panic attacks andobviously when this happens during a run and I am away from home it triggers a panic attack, not a fun experience. I love to run and I will not give it up, so I am determined to find ananswer and a cure!

    • 228

      Caker said,

      Have you tried running without earphones? Just curious.

      • 229

        Anonymous said,

        I have, but I have not given it enough of a chance to see if it make a difference.

      • 230

        Eric S said,

        I have been reunning without ear bdsfoor 3 weeks now and i have had almost no issues with being dizzy anymore. I have also realy tried to focus on running posture and where my eyes are focused. So far so good!

  145. 231

    Bootneck runner said,

    This has been happening to me for years. Electrolyte drinks have no effect. It normally happens if I run in the evening. I have tested my sugar levels and are not normally too bad, if I make it back gluconeogenesis has probably kicked in! I started making sure I have carbs at lunch if I am evening running. Normally this works. It almost never happens in the morning and I have run over 20miles without an issue. I don’t even have to push it and it happens. Carbs it is then, I hope!

  146. 232

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    • 233

      ollie said,

      Well I have been watching embarrassing bodies a few nights ago and there was a woman with all the same symptoms only more severe as she said she head butted doors and fell over cause of her balance. She had checks and one Doctor reckons it’s to do with the blood vessels at the bottom of the brain creating a migraine attack. I have been keeping an eye on my heart rate and noticed it takes quite a while to return to resting rate, not sure if that has anything to do with it but I am waiting to go for a MRI scan of my heart. I feel like an NHS experimental case at the moment with all the tests I’ve had and continue to have.

      • 234

        Eric Sielaff said,

        My heart rate at times takes a while to return to resting, although this does not happen very often.

  147. 235

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  150. 238

    Brenda Griswold said,

    For the last two years, I have started getting dizzy when I run. At first, I could only run a mile on the road before my head would feel dizzy. If I turned my head to look to my left or right, my body would automatically go that direction. I would feel like I was about to fall. In fact, I have fallen before. I try to run through it. I can run on a treadmill with no problems at all. I started noticing that if I can keep my head from getting warm (sounds weird), I can keep from getting dizzy. I have gradually increased to 2 miles before I get dizzy trying not to push myself. This is frustrating because I like pushing myself. Tonight I didn’t stop running until I got to a b/p machine in my husband’s office. My b/p was only 126/66 which was very low for a 3.2 mile run at a decent pace for me. I used to have a b/p of 170’s over something immediately after running. But, that doesn’t really make sense since I can run on the treadmill with no problem. I have been to the doctor and he has sent me to the cardiologist, a spine doctor, done an arteriogram, and an ear doctor. They have found nothing. It is so annoying because I have always loved running. I had stopped running for a few months and then when I started back, I had this problem. Not sure what it is, but if anyone ever really found the answer, I would love to know.

  151. 240

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  152. 241

    Anonymous said,

    I am a 45 year old female who runs for fitness maintenance. My average age run is 35-40 minutes with 5-7 km distacne. I too have experienced this exact same thing. I was baffled because it was not very often yet troublesome when it would occur. I came across an article on pilates which spoke about eye gaze and how to avoid motion sickness when exercising. This in fact is a form of motion sickness. It took me a while to realize it happened every time I wore a hat. The hat altered my line of vision! I hope this helps.. I realize there is a multitude of reasons but this was a simple resolution in my case.

  153. 242

    Jason said,

    Finally I found some people who understand. I am frustrated beyond your wildest imagination. Nine months ago I had L5-S1 fusion. Prior to that I was an avide runner. I’m 41, 185 and would do 30-40 minutes on treadmill during the week and 5-10 per day on the roads on the weekend.

    While recovering from surgery I found the vision in my left eye would blur the moment I got on a simple recumbent bike. As my tolerance increased and I was running again I could do 3 miles on the treadmill with the same blurred vision. But over the last month I have been getting severe vertigo 4 minutes into my run. I tried the elliptical machine so I could hold on but I feel like the world is spinning out of control.
    I have seen an opthomologist, cardiologist, ENT, and endocronologist. I have had CT Scan, MRI, blood work, and treadmill test and passed all with flying colors. But I can’t do three minutes on the elliptical. Uugh!

    I’m freaking out!!!

    • 243

      Jason said,

      Just heard back from Neurologist today. Turns out I tested positive for Lyme disease. I was in Catskills a few months back so the timing makes sense. It sucks having Lyme but the alternatives were worse.

      • 244

        Anonymous said,

        Your story is eye opening, I indeed have lyme’s syndromes as well (ear lobe cysts, chronic fatigue etc..). How do you get tested for lyme? Thanks

  154. 245

    Faboy said,

    okays so there is a whole lot of us experiencing the same problem but has anyone found a cure about it ??i checked online and i think this is the best possible answer…
    please do notify me if there is any better solution….

  155. 246

    Ignatius said,

    Had been running for years. Now 44 years old and exactly same symptoms of getting dizzy that you need to stop while running 15-20minutes into the run. Everything else ok BPM 120-140,bp,cholesterol,sugar etc. all good. Have supplemented with iron and folic acid and still the same. Does anybody have an answer? Very frustrating because I enjoy my running. When I do cardio workouts 45min.-1hour no dizziness at all.

  156. 247

    Anonymous said,

    hey i got the samethank but mine can happen out of no where i can walk to far i get it i cant do nothin at all anythink i do i feel it comeing on i been havein it since i was 10 and i 21 going on 22

  157. 248

    Anonymous said,

    I began to have my first dizziness spell after my first half marathon. I can’t run on treadmill anymore cause my legs will give within 10min of jogging or running. That was 2 years ago. I too had all the tests and nothing unusual came up. At first I thought it’s hyperthyroidism as I stopped the medication a year earlier before the symptoms. But now, my blood test shows no sign of hyperthyroidism but I’m still having the symptoms, albeit milder episodes. I can walk long distance (i.e. more than 10km) and light jog is still possible. Any vigorous runs and I’ll start to feel the pending leg weakness. Very frustrating. I still want to run long distance races but until I can overcome this ‘problem’, I might have to give it up.

  158. 249

    Tan said,

    Anyone check their iron level? I have the same problem and just discovered my iron level is 54, normal being 22-450 (Canadian). Can’t wait to take some iron supplements, eat some T bones and go for a good run! Too cold right now!!!!

    • 250

      I think I’m cured. I’ve tried a lot of things, and I’m not sure what did it, but I haven’t had the problem in years. Maybe it’s just that I’ve put in more miles and gotten stronger. I’ve also taken iron, gotten more fiber, and trained myself to handle more carbs while running. Anyway, I hope this provides some hope to everyone.

  159. 251

    Christine H said,

    I have been experiencing similar issues for the past 9 or so months. I am in shape, run marathons and all other shorter distances regularly. Today at the very end of my run, I looked down at my watch to see how close our group was to the end of our 8 mile run and when I looked up I immediately felt dizzy, like the world was spinning and I started to veer off the road, I immediately stopped running and was telling my frineds that I felt dizzy and ended up veering into some parked cars. If the cars were not there I would have fallen completely to the road. As I walked back to our end point I continued to have the that drunk sort of feeling and could not walk in a straight line. This was not the first time being dizzy has happened, but certainly the most severe. Typically it will occur a few miles into my run and I just run through it. I experience vertigo in general, and motion sickness. My take on the whole thing is that it is a combo of vertigo and motion sickness combined with low blood pressure. In addition, I dont eat very much red meat, so I may be annemic. Does anyone else also have vertigo, motion sickness and low blood pressure? The only thing I can think to help is to increase salt intake, increase fluid consumption during your run and eat a larger breakfast. All of this just comes from suggestions from my very large group of running buddies’ experience as well as what I have found on line. I’ll try this combo and start tracking the circumstances of when the dizziness occurs.

  160. 252

    Jeff said,

    Have had the following symptoms that seem to gibe with many others:

    1. typically happens 25 minutes into run, although sometimes showed up 60 pr more into it.
    2. felt almost like a vertigo, where its almost a tunnel vision with peripheral going glazed.
    3. a feeling of nausea and some dizziness.
    4. big one for me…i feel like about to faint.

    Usually i have to sit for anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes and am pretty shot after , having to walk slowly and even stopping numerous times due to return of symptoms.

    1. My iron levels are fine so didnt talk additional.
    2. Have tried salt packets but didnt appreciably help any.
    3. loaded on water , bladder worked fine but not too sure it helped
    4. tried compression socks to help return blood up as we thought of the
    pooling but that didnt do much but bleed wallet.
    5. tried focusing on distant points to avoid the jerky views or focusing on ground. This might help some but jury out

    There is something going on here. We cant all be crazy. I have been running marathons for 20 years and now cant make a 5k. its not normal and ruins my favorite outlet. Maybe there is a diagnostician that can at least offer some clues.

    In the meantime i wait and research answers.

  161. 253

    Anonymous said,

    i also have similar symptoms to some of you guys.i am a 38 year old male and started having these symptoms 2years ago .20-25 mins into my exercise i start to experience trouble with my vision,it gets blurred around the out side. my hearing seems like it is dulled,sometimes with dull ringing .my breathing becomes shallow and rapid to try to over come the feeling of being gassed out,i have slowed my breathing in case i was hyper ventilating but no change. recovery usally takes 10-15mins but feel like sleeping or am tired for the rest of the day.these fits are random but seem to come on with elevated heart rate. i do jujitsu so i run swim and ride to keep my cardio up, these symptoms have happened while i run ,swam and wrestled on the mat .i have had full blood tests all came back perfect except iron was high. i have had a holter heart rate monitor on when it occured .there was no irregular beats .my heart rate was between 43-198 btm over a 24hour period.the fit seemed to occur at 187 btm .i have tried asthma puffers which made me shake but did not stop symptons .had a lung capacity test wich was slightly under but not a concern.i have had an ecg testand that was all good. i am now booked in to cardiologist for a ecocardiogram to see if it is leaking valves or any defect. will keep you all posted i thought i was just me as well i thought i was just not fit enough but i am always active and have a healthy diet.

  162. 254

    raguell said,

    Well. Same story for me. I am a 43 year old female. Thought it was heart related. Cardiologist confirmed nothing wrong with the ticker; he suggested that I adjust my anti-depressant and mood-stabilizer meds. (Consulted with specialist on the latter) This helped — I was able to run without issues. Until…. Yesterday. Got a woozy spell followed by upset tummy. Sat down, phoned a friend to come and rescue me as I am usually too afraid to keep on running, or I vomit, which is embaressing to do out on a run. I do think it has something to do with POTS, Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS, also postural tachycardia syndrome). Or Orthostatic hypotension. What CAUSES this however is different for each individual … Allergies for one? Anti-depressants for another… Dehydration on one occasion, simple hypotension lack of salt in diet for another. My advice: eliminate serious possible conditions. Try adjustment in chronic meds under supervision of your specialist. Do more strength exercises and treadmill runs. Don’t give up running.

    • 255

      Vicky said,

      Fascinating. Since I first read this thread, I have thought that a few of these folks must have POTS. I have it and exercising on some level is important for me also. Just be careful out there. Good idea bringing your phone.

  163. 256

    Aubu said,

    Seeing some increased traffic back on this so I thought that I would update on what seems to have fixed it for me. A bit of history first – I’ve went through all of the same test that most of us had (Brain MRI, stress test, holter monitor) and none of that came back with anything. During the stress test my blood pressure did increase at an above normal rate so that the cardiologist put me in blood pressure medication, Diovan to be specific. Told me to give it a week to settle things out and then get back to running. First time out I had my worst episode ever, so back in fact that my running partners loaded me in a car and took right to my General Practitioner. The only thing that came from that was that my white blood cells were elevated when compared to a base line that was taken a week later. Fast forward many frustrated runs and months later, I went to an ENT and had an ENG test done. When they were pumping warm air against my right ear drum while having a mask on I began to feel the very early symptoms of the bigger issue coming on. The results came back and they again said that there was nothing there. I couldn’t let that feeling go that I had during the test and began some testing on my own. I used to run with headphones so I quit doing that, thinking that my inner ear was “heating” up and causing balance issues. That had a small positive effect but didn’t fix it. I had another episode during an Air Force PT test that I had to take where items that I was running by were fairly close and the track had tight turns. Since I was moving my head quite a bit (looking over my shoulder) to ensure that I didn’t cut someone off I began to think that it is visual that causes. I ran a 5k that was partially on a trail that had trees and other items close by and I began to get that dreaded feeling again and had to walk for a bit. I decided to find a point in the distance and stare at it when I ran and was the rest of the race, approximate 1 mile. In fact I could feel everything returning to what I would call normal for me. So, now when I run outside I find a point in the distance to look at it that is straight ahead of me. It seems to be working. Kind of also confirms why this never happens to me while running on a treadmill, no matter how hard I push myself. Kind of odd since I don’t get motion sickness when in a car or anything that I’ve ridden in recently. So that’s my most recent story. No hard facts or research just some trial and error. Hope this helps someone else.

  164. 257

    Amy said,

    I am a 21 year old D1 cross country and track runner. I race 5k & 6k in cross country and 1500, 3k steeple chase, and 5k for track. I am experiencing a lot of these symptoms as well. Prior to my collegiate running, I played soccer throughout high school. Playing soccer, due to being small, I had my fair share of concussions. I received at least 2 minor concussions so running seemed like a better and safer fit for me for the next four years. When I began my college running career, I began running a lot more miles than ever before. (Pre college running about 30-35 miles a week; mileage between freshman and sophomore year was around 70 miles a week. I had my first “spell” my sophomore year. It was a hot day at a cross country meet. I felt amazing the whole race, until the last 1k and was 200 meters from the finish line when I collapsed (blacked out.). From bystanders, I was told I went very pale, face was white, and I was cold. I woke back up shortly after on the back of a gator heading to the event tent. There I’m not sure if they checked anything but vitals. They put me in an ice bath to bring my body temperature down and were guessing I was dehydrated. I did not feel dehydrated, and I had eaten, but I had had a stressful week of class work and tests. The next week, I had an EKG and heart echo. Both came back fine. And so I was back at practice and working hard. Not too much happened again until I was racing the steeplechase at my conference meet for track. This time, I remember a little more (or was told) I started off strong. On my second to last water barrier, I took a little face plant, but got back up and continued running. My parents told me how pathetic I looked trying to get over the barriers the last lap, but I’m not a quitter so I did not stop until I finished the race. I ended up blacking out again. They considered it a vertigo event “fainting spell.” Then I was taken to the ER for a knee X-ray. My knee didn’t hurt! I had hit it on the barrier and due to my poor circulation, it swelled a lot (enough for my parents initially to think we were heading to surgery soon) and it turned purples and blue. After it was elevated for about 15 minutes, it returned to normal size with a cut on it. However, t I tend to turn purples, blues and reds after my races, after easy runs, and not necessarily just in the cold. So after this event, I had many follow up exams. I had a x-ray at my chiropractor’s where he said I had another concussion and whip lash from falling over the barrier into the water pit. (Belly flopped—should have been an epic steeple chase youtube video) He then ordered a CT to confirm. I then had a tilt table exam, which came back fine. That makes sense because I have no problems while standing. I also had an exercise stress test (before XC season 2013) in which I went to the highest level that the hospital could remember ever going to and did it with ease. This test also came back fine. I had an extremities Doppler test (after XC season 2013), which showed my circulation was fine. However this exam was done while I was lying down. They did not check the circulation in my head. I also wore a heart monitor for a month given to me by the cardiologist. However, I was not consistent in wearing it because it was a huge monitor that was not comfortable to run in.

    Cross country season 2013

    August- first meet of the season, I tripped over a creek and was not able to get back up because I was dizzy. It was extremely hot this meet and once I had stopped moving it was too hard to start back up. I ended up being fine shortly after the race. The second meet (IPFW) I ran and felt good, up until the last 1k-ish of the race. Then I began to “zone out” and collapsed when I was about 200 meters from the finish line. A Physician’s Assistant at the race said that I went white before I collapsed. She thought it was a classic hypoglycemia issue. This time when I blacked out, a bystander said I asked, “Am I in heaven?” I have not recollection of saying this. Took me about 30-45 minutes to recuperate and feel normal again. We thought maybe that I had reactive hypoglycemia from overtraining and was burning my food too quickly. We checked my sugar levels for a bit, but we did not see any remarkable differences. One of my pre-med friends thought that my liver was enlarged after my race, but I have read that this may be a little normal due to the enzymes being produced.

    The next race (IU) I ran a better race. I did complain about a headache after the race. I did end up throwing up a few times after this race as well.
    I had a couple of decent races. At the conference meet, I was able to finish the race before I passed out. It seemed to take about an hour to recover after this episode.

    After this race is when we began seeing a cardiologist at Riley to be sure that there were no underlying circulatory/heart problems because I had a 3 pound terratoma that was attached to all the organs in my abdomen. It was removed when I was 6 months old. My parents were worried that there may have been some scar tissue causing circulatory problems, but my circulation in that area and all lower extremities was fine.

    Indoor season – went fine, had headaches here and there after races, had one nauseous event after running the mile.

    Track outdoor season –
    First race- 3k flat, ran decent, but after I was not able to finish my cool down due to an intense headache.
    3k steeple chase – ran a 13 second PR, sat down directly after the race and my headache set in. When I finish a race, the only thing I can do was sit down and sometimes lay down. When I sat up, I began throwing up. I got sick approximately 8 times from the track walking back to the bus.

    Other symptoms I’ve been experiencing through all of this:
    Headaches – intense pain behind the eyes,
    Dizziness– little bit, ex: sitting up quick, sometimes I feel as if there is an earthquake going on
    Vision – worsens/blurry vision

    I have had blood work and thyroid tests. I am thankful that nothing showed up as a problem. I am thinking that maybe an MRI on my head may show if there are any issues relating to my concussions that may be causing this. Any other suggestions?

  165. 258

    morgan said,

    I haven’t run much over the past year and lost a lot of fitness. Recently started doing short runs and 3 out of 4 times I’ve developed extreme dizziness about 3 or 4 kms in, bad enough to have to stop and walk. I suspect this is probably exercise induced hyperventilation which I had diagnosed years ago when I was running a lot, training for a marathon. At the time I was sure I had exercise induced asthma as I had coughing, chest tightness, difficulty breathing etc, did a challenge test and got the diagnosis. I didn’t get the symptoms all the time – it depended on the weather (very cold or hot, dry air is bad), how intense my respiratory load was. Mild weather, not running very fast on the flat and I was fine, even for whole marathon.

    The sports medicine physician who diagnosed me has specialised in breathing problems in athletes (even the elite ones have them) referred me to a sports psychologist who gave me breathing exercises to help break the cycle of lapsing into hyperventilation. I didn’t persist with them because I was running a lot less so could avoid triggering the hyperventiliation. Now, being unfit and very tense from my job I think I’m getting it really easily and its manifesting in the dizziness. Back to the breathing exercises for me….

  166. 259

    jersey said,

    hi its great to see other people who are experiencing what I’m experiencing right now, and that I’m not alone. I’m 31 yo male and am relatively fit (I do a few PT sessions each week, triathlons, swimming regularly, etc). Up until recently I’ve been quite a keen runner, doing at least 2-3 runs a week between 10-15 kms in length.

    Then recently after an extended period of a few weeks working overseas, I came back and for a couple of months now haven’t been able to run much more than 3 km without experiencing extreme dizzy spells, where I get extremely light-headed almost as if I’m going to faint or lose my balance left or right and completely fall over. My whole sense of balance just disappears. The dizziness comes on really quickly, maybe over just 50-100 metres and so bad I have to stop and hold tightly onto a railing or wall so I don’t fall over. Like a lot of the comments on this post, it takes around 10 minutes or so of recovery before I feel confident to run or walk again (usually walk). The episodes are really upsetting me as I’m supposed to be training for some upcoming triathlons, and need to be running much further than 3 km in training.

    I have no idea what’s causing this. I’ve had a bit of a history of hypoglycaemia associated with my running (I ended up in hospital once), but thought I had that all sorted by making sure I replace a lot of sugars post-exercise. To complicate things my father says he gets exactly the same thing, and can only overcome it by NOT taking any sugars at all before exercise. I also thought it might have been related to a new set of sound-cancelling headphones I’ve been using, perhaps that might have been messing with my eardrums, which doctors say are strongly linked to balance. Yesterday running without any headphones didn’t make any difference. Exactly 3.1 km into the run the same thing happened and I felt like I was going to collapse.

    Any help or ideas would be very welcomely received.

    • 260

      Anonymous said,

      Just saw a video on candida, a fungus parasite that feeds on sugar etc. Some of side effects are dizziness. Are you all eating/drinking diet stuff? Caffeine can also be a trigger.

    • 261

      Amy said,

      I was recently diagnosed with POTS (postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome). It’s pretty rare and hard to diagnose syndrome. Do some research and see if your symptoms line up. My sports medicine doctor prescribed me flurodocortisone and I have been feeling a lot stronger in my workouts. Hope this helps you.

  167. 262

    Anonymous said,

    Hello, I have experienced similar dizziness issues over the last two years (I am a woman at age 52, running from 5K and up to a marathon). It started one day after several years of running without any clear reason. I checked my ears twice (no diagnosis) and had a neurologist’ exam (ok). I have got the feeling that it may be related to my eyes vision. I have one lazy eye with which I cannot easily focus while running. Over the last month I am trying to force myself focusing the two of my eyes at long-distance objects (like trees, clouds, poles., etc.). It seems to solve the problem so far. It is about a month now and I run 10K twice a week without any dizziness. I hope it is a true solution and not just a remission period.

  168. 263

    Andrea said,

    Wow, this is amazing. I feel better already knowing that I am not the only one going through this. I have a feeling that a lot of people here have different reasons for their experience of dizziness.
    I am 31 yrs old. I’ve been running casually for the past 15 years but about 6 months ago I had my first dizzy spell on the treadmill which at that time I am sure it was related to low blood sugar because I had not eaten for several hours. It was a very scary experience for me because I thought I was going to have to be ambulanced home.
    Now I get dizzy on the treadmill and running outside after about 10 minutes. I get this weird sensation like my whole body is tingling and I cannot feel my limbs, like I am floating and going to just fall over and faint.
    I have been fairly sure that I am having anxiety or panic attacks when I run now. I get nervous every time I run and worry about the dizziness coming on which I think may cause my adrenaline to surge and I might be hyperventilating – even though I am trying really hard to stay calm and control my breathing. I try to meditate, do yoga, get a lot of sleep and deep breathing to get over it. I make sure to hydrate before and have a smoothie so I know it is not dehydration or low blood sugar. Sometimes I feel like I have it beat, but more often then not I struggle with this dizziness.
    In the past I have had issues with really low iron as well but I take iron supplements now so I dont think this is the issue. I also sometimes think I might get vertigo or maybe have an inner ear problem? But really I think panicking, or getting anxious in anticipation of the dizziness is my real issue. I havent spoken to the doctor about this yet. I just had a holter moniter test done but I dont think they will find anything.

  169. 264

    Lisa said,

    Hi there,

    Your not alone but symptoms are slightly different.

    I usually only get dizzy when i do trail runs, the symptoms change but they usually bounce between clammy and hot suffocating feeling and a freezing cold pins and needles.

    Whilst running usually 6-8km i get a dizzy spell – the best way to describe it is: remember when you were younger and you used to spin and spin to you got dizzy and fell – so thats the feeling i get, the dizzyness hits straight away and i usually land up in a thorn bush or a sand bank – its painful.

    I have had the ECG and stress test and thankfully all normal, seen 3 different ENT’s , had an MRI scan and now booking to see the neurologist.
    I usually feel queasy for about 72hrs after a dizzy spell and every time i clothes my eyes everything spins.

    I am glad im not the only one but i just want to know whats wrong with me and sort this Sh*t out so i can hit the trials again

    • 265

      Anonymous said,

      I just got a chiro adjustment after going through the dizzies for 3 years and IT’S GONE! Praise God! I am a believer in chiro’s now. I never thought it would be that simple! My vertebrae were out of alignment and causing issues with imbalance.

      • 266

        Allie said,

        I have the same issues as everyone describes here – happened my first year out of college. Some times its worse, only get dizzy running outside. Last year I actually fell.

        I have had the Stress Test (can’t get dizzy on a treadmill, but IV was splendid after) and EKG. Nothing. Inner ear positional tests inconclusive. Like you, once a chiro treatment on my neck/dura made the dizzies go away – for a few days. I am starting to think it’s muscular/vasovagal (bc the nausea)?

        I’d be curious to know more about your chiro treatment. I’m seeking alternative modes of healing/treatment for this – i.e. chiro or acupuncture. Let me know!!!

  170. 267

    Anonymous said,

    I have the same issue as most here, diziness 15-20 minutes into a run. I’m fairly healthy. This happens occasionally, not during every run. Loading up on carbs doesnt seem to help and I cannot find any serious articles on the issue. Nice to find a blog post like this with so much input.

    The only difference I see between my own symptoms and others is how mine started. I got a flu a number of years back and for a while afterwards (about 6 months) I would get recurring bouts of dizziness. Every month or so I would get it for about a week where I would get dizzy even after walking to the shop in the mornings and would have to lay down for about 15 minutes. This eventually stopped but I still get occasional dizziness as described by others here.

    I had a range of blood tests done and the only one that the doctor commented on was my thyroid which he said was of slight concern but not severe. I put the diziness while running, or exercising, down to this but I have no definite answer. I realise this will not be of help to people here but knowledge is power and all that…

    • 268

      Yisrael said,

      Hi, I follow this blog for about three years now, and what you describe (both symptoms and cause) sound a lot like vertigo (I don’t remember the exact term). I suggest going to an ENT doctor for some more tests.

  171. 269

    David G said,

    Hi folks.

    Stumbled across this blog when, a few days ago, I got 2 miles into my run and suddenly felt like I was having an out-of-body experience. I felt extremely light headed and tingly all over, and my legs felt like they each weighed a ton. This had happened before, but never this intense and not very recently. I’m in good shape at 47 yo and just went through my annual physical. Everything came back normal / clean. So, I concluded, that the episode must have been related to my diet. Then it hit me. I did not experience this at all over the summer. The last time was in early June, according to my running log. Now, I am a teacher. During the school year, I tend to rely a bit too heavily on caffeinated drinks to get me through the day, including Diet Coke and Diet Snapple Iced Tea. Over the summer, I barely drink any diet drinks at all. So, over the last 2 days, I only drank one cup of plain green tea in the morning and a glass of unsweetened iced tea with some lemon with lunch. Today, I went out and ran 8 miles in 70 minutes (very good for me) and felt great.

    In the end, I don’t know if it is the caffeine, the artificial sweetener, some other type of chemical, or the high levels of sodium, but I now know that I will not be drinking any diet drinks on, at the very least, my running days.

    I hope that this information helps some of you.

    Best of luck.

  172. 270

    pat said,

    I am in good shape and run at about 86% age grade (half and full marathon). For me I think the problem is related to ingesting a carb drink (could be watered down Gatorade or Heed, Accelerade, etc.) too soon before the run. My guess is that the feeling is some sort of sugar shock related to insulin production. I try to take my carb drink an hour prior and then the problem is normally not an issue.

  173. 271

    Kelli Miller said,

    Hey everyone! I think I figured it out! (At least for me) I wrote several months ago (maybe even over a year ago) about how I saw so many doctors for this problem and ultimately determined that it was an asthma related problem… but then it started happening again. So that idea was thrown out the window. I recently decided to go on the Whole30 diet (basically Paleo) – No carbs (not even quinoa or sweet potato which are “good” carbs – they all spike your insulin – read The Primal Blueprint and it will explain why), no sugar (not even artificial sweetener), no alcohol (although will drink in moderation after the 30 days if over), and no dairy. While I feel absolutely AMAZING, I now can run – forever – without getting dizzy!! It’s been 22 days and I have run 5 – 6 miles a day for the last 3 days and feel great and could keep going if I wanted to. I was talking to some friends about the Whole30 and telling them I don’t know which ingredient I gave up that made the change and everyone seems to think it’s the artificial sweetener – even Stevia. Yes black coffee sucks, but running and not getting dizzy is worth it – and it doesn’t trick my body into wanting more sugar and sweets. Try it! Paleo is HIGHLY recommended but if nothing else, just give up sweeteners – even the “good” ones. THEY ARE NOT GOOD FOR YOU. You will have to give it at least 21 days to see a difference but you will definitely see a difference and you will 100% FEEL a difference. Maybe this isn’t the same problem we all have but it definitely worked for me and I have never felt better! And if anyone does this please let me know the results.

    • 272

      Anonymous said,

      Hi Kelli,

      Thanks so much for this, I am certainly going to give it a try – if it is something as silly as sugar, I will be so annoyed and eventually need to laugh it off I guess.

      Thanks again for the tip – will let you know how it goes:)

  174. 273

    Anonymous said,

    Talk about a bruised ego….

    I thought my dizzyness came from trail running so I quit that and stuck to the road, I trained and ran my marathon and not a bit of dizzyness.

    I ran a silly 10km race last night and on my way to a new PB but of course I get dizzy, fall, get up, fall again and then have to literally stop and sit for about 5 minutes for the dizzy spell to finish before I could finish my last 3 km’s.

    I wish I could figure this thing out 😦

  175. 274

    john basham said,

    I experience similar issues. (Tunnel vision and dizziness the same time period as you)
    Everything i read in this blog is exactly just like me. I have been to the doctor for blood work several times and they brush it off…what did you do since the blog? Is it an over sized spleen or liver? Is it anemia? Have you figured it out? I was on track to becoming a Regional standout and now settle for just trying to make it. This is most prominent when I eat to much fat before a run or am slightly dehydrated, BUT only months ago (and my whole life) nothing like this ever effected me. Why now? This sudden onset has to be disease related, right?

  176. 275

    Sam Tyler said,

    I am 65 and have been running for about 4 years. I run from 2 to 5 miles 5 times a week plus some half marathons during the year. A couple of weeks ago I started having dizzy spells during the run. They happen at different times and distances. It can happen only once or multiple times during the run. I can sense it coming on and if I start walking immediately for a short distance the dizzy spell will not happen. If I continue running the dizzy spell will happen quickly and I will need to stop and bend over. It goes away almost immediately after I bend over and I will walk 10 to 20 yards and start running again. It may or may not happen again during the completion of the run. I can cause it to happen quickly once it happens and I sprint for a short distance. It currently only happens when I run.

  177. 276

    Pamela said,

    WOW! I am so happy that I have found this! I am 28 years old and I am a half-marathoner. I have been running for a couple of years now and just recently (3 months) ago, I cannot run anymore. Just like everyone is mentioning, around mile 2 I start getting incredibly dizzy that I just have to stop and wait 20 minutes or so. I cannot run through it because it gets worse. I have gone to doctors, ENT doctor, therapists, and nobody can help me. I know that I am in good shape because I have been running for years and this problem just started a couple of months ago. I always eat a granola before running so I know that it can’t be a problem with blood sugar or anything like that. I always have my blood levels (iron, sugar, cholesterol, everything) checked once a year and everything is perfectly fine. I am very desperate and do not know what to do. I want to go running but this sensation of serious dizziness happens EVERYTIME i go for a run around mile 2. PLEASE PLEASE I ask anyone for suggestions or advice on what they did to push past this or a remedy so that I can continue my running. I am always very hydrated and take vitamin supplements so I am at a loss of remedies. Anything that I can try ???

    • 277

      Anonymous said,

      I have been symptom free for some period of time now. My symptoms seemed to be related to my ears and the build up of fluid in them. I also do not put my ear buds in my ears any longer that has seemed to reduce the symptoms as well.

    • 279

      Dan said,

      Try not eating before running (2 hours at least). It worked for me. You can take a gel around 2.5 miles. That is if you have what I have.

    • 280

      David G said,

      I found that it was directly related to my intake of caffeinated diet drinks, particularly Diet Coke. I no longer drink them on running days, and I have been symptom-free ever since.

  178. 281

    Peter said,

    Sow many here, wow.
    I am running over 45 years, and it started a few years ago. First I thought it had to do with, maybe my body is getting ready for winter, going into hibernation, and it`s a side effect of getting old (52 now). But it also continued into the warmer month. Than I thought my circumstances back then (divorce),had such a mental and physical effect on me, but I kept getting the dizziness after time had passed. Never had any issues. Smoking for 20 years (quit many years ago), not eating fruits or vegetables/salads, not much meat either, not drinking water, still ran a half marathon in 1 hour and 32 minutes.
    Now, I am a vegetarian and I pay attention to my diet, had my blood and health checked a few week ago (all perfect, B12, iron, red blood cells and all that), drink plenty of water,have no extra weight on me, have always the top of the line running shoes, no runs longer than 4 miles, and it still occurs. I can’t imagine running on motion sickness or anti depressing meds as suggested here. My symptoms are usually (not always), balance problems, heavy legs,craving food, no energy, even when I took GU (power gel), eat and drink an hour or 2 before the run. Sometimes I stop running and walk, and it fades and I feel better. I am checking if Barometric changes could have something to do with it. I usually get headaches when low pressure, lots of clouds, warmish, outside conditions are around, depending on the altitude where I am.
    And maybe, like posted here, the impact on the brain, or even problems with the ears, vestibular disorder, not vertigo all the way though.
    Very annoying

  179. 282

    Casey said,

    My name is Casey. My 14 year old daughter Hailey has kind of the same issues. The difference is she get dizzy about 8 minutes/1 mile into a run (she played soccer) every time she runs. If she stops when she feels it coming on then she remains dizzy for a few hours 2-4. If she pushes threw it she will remain dizzy for over 24 hours. It started when she was trying out for the soccer team to her school in August. Now she played soccer all that summer and never had an issue. We have been to all sorts of specialists like the ENT, Neurologist, Cardiologist, Well and Balance (testing for ppv), Asthma and Allergies. So far what we know is that she gets dizzy every time she runs! She has had tests abound tests NO ONE has answers. It very frustrating. She has had a sleep study done. They found that she shows signs of migraines. They want to put her on meds that could cause her to have seizures and issues with word placement. Ok where can we sign up for that drug! She has had an EKG and MRI and tons of blood drawn. We now have another test that goes deep into the inner ear canal coming up. Hopefully this will give us answers. I feel helpless that my child can’t do what she loves. I hope for her sake we find out something. I guess I’m writing on this blog to see if anyone has any suggestions, ideas or advise. She feels fine and has no dizziness unless she runs.
    Thanks for listening to a very concerned mom.

    • 283

      Anonymous said,

      Hi Casey,

      someone else on this blog recommended to me to change my diet – its a long shot but I have done a complete 360 on my eating and done a lot of cross training to help keep up my fitness.

      I have noticed when I am eating healthy I don’t get nearly as dizzy as quickly.
      To be honest I have been too scared to trail run as that is when my dizziness hits the worst but I am certainly seeing a difference when my diet is right.

      Hope this helps you and your daughter

  180. 284

    Jeff said,

    Ok guys and gals here’s an update. I joined this board over a year ago and have tried pretty much every treatment idea thrown out from focusing on objects, to drink, to no hats, no headphones, food changes, heart condition, etc. nothing worked. Until….

    Someone mentioned that its possible that men can get yeast infections and it can play havoc with your performance. As I was fine until one day and then not fine afterward I always thought something suddenly changed and I just didn’t know what. Anyway the blog stated that yeast infections can cause what we were experiencing and a change of diet with the addition of caprylic acid would jumpstart the body back.
    I have deleted white sugar, yeast, and even white flour. I loaded up on the caprylic with 3 capsules a day for 30days and then backed off to one a day. i felt no change and still couldnt run for about two months. but then i started to actually finish workouts without symptoms. They were ugly and slow but i could do them and not get dizzy or faint. My daily runs are about 5 miles and my weekends are about 10 and up.
    When restarting i would run/walk about 3 and be thrilled. that was about 6 months ago. i have just run my first half marathon in 5 years!! did it without one walking break and timed out at 2:05. felt like i won the race…lol

    guys i know how frustrating this is, believe me. i also know that my cure , if it is lord willing a cure will not work for all but i am a thousand times better then i was less then a year ago and i can finally again doing what i have loved and missed for so long, running at sunrise on south beach. no one should ever give up hope on this, just keep trying every cure you might think can help. Good luck to all

    • 285

      Anonymous said,

      WOW! Well I’m another case… Started in the last few years… I’m 31… 20 lbs overweight… Frequent cannabis user… Daily drinker (few beers or glasses of whiskey)… Spent most my life as an athlete, in mid 20’s I got lazy and fat, and in the past few years been working hard to get back to those healthier days… Happens when I play basketball, which is interesting cause a lot of people site running with frequent head movement in their comment as a common factor and in basketball, if you’re playing it right, you are always moving and running along with your head constantly on a swivel! Once I get going though it usually goes away and I’m fine for the rest of the game… I think oxygen is a factor as well… Cause when I get that second wind is when it usually subsides… Great to know it’s not uncommon and people are ok… Hence why I added my story in the hope to help others too!

  181. 286

    Flip said,

    I did an ultra marathon last week Saturday. After 20km I started getting blackouts and see stars. It forced me to walk for about 10km before I could start running again. Then suddenly for the last 15km I was fine again and I could run my normal pace of 6min/km. I also don’t know what caused it. Was it low blood pressure, or low sugar levels? I was just totally without any energy…

    • 287

      Jeff said,

      if you dont experience that often then it sounds very much like a low blood sugar issue. if your heart rate seemed typical for your workout then i’m betting hydration/sugar. i use honey sticks and stinger chews but there are any tons of solutions. good luck

  182. 288

    Alejandro Chu said,

    1. I experienced for the first time the dizziness you described during my 10K run this morning between mile 2.5 and 3. I was going at a slightly faster pace than what I normally do.

    2. I noticed that my breathing was not relaxed and smooth as during my normal runs. Usually after a mile I settle into abdominal breathing.

    3. Anticipating a steep uphill before mile 3 I wanted to correct my breathing. I exhaled forcefully and long, and after maybe 0.2 mi I felt lightheaded -as if I was going to faint. This is where I agree with your hypothesis. Longer exhales than inhales lowers blood pressure.

    4. I also noticed that my vision was not sharp. My heart rate felt normal – perhaps 120 bpm. I regret not having had the presence of mind to test increasing my blood pressure by holding the breath or making the inhale longer than the exhale.

    5. This is the test that I will conduct if I experienced this dizziness again. It May work for you as well.

    Alejandro Chu

  183. 289

    Imogen Hull said,

    Wow!! This exact thing has been happening to me for 3 years (I’m now 17) mainly during cross country races, especially important ones. I warm up fine, start the race and generally am in the front pack for the first 3km of the race. Then, after 3km, and usually straight after a hill, I get an out of body feeling, can’t control my legs and am super dizzy. Lose vision if I try continue to push hard. Usually results in me staggering along for 3-5 minutes then I’m generally fine again once I reach flat ground, however 5 minutes is a long time to be stopped in a 4km race and results in me being near back or last place. I’m really fit, one of top ranked track athletes in my age and so it’s frustrating to be so awful in cross country, especially when so close to the finish. Doctors have suggested iron, hypoglycaemia, blood pressure, cold weather, do more hills etc but it isn’t any of these things as I’m on iron tablets, eat plenty of glucose before races and train hard. In my trainings this never happens and I can run for 75 minutes without stopping. Going to the doctors again tomorrow. Hopefully I find out what’s wrong so I can finally race to my potential.

  184. 290

    Michael Neiner said,

    I’m 72 and have been running on and off, in midwest weather, for some 40 years. Just the other day I started a run and after about 1/2 mile into it I got real dizzy and my head started spinning. I must have blacked out for a second or two because I fell on the side of the road full force. I was conscious immediately but have some bad bruises and bumps but luckily I didn’t break anything. My BP is normal and I take no meds. I’ve never had a problem before but I’m now afraid to run on the road until I figure this out.

  185. 291

    Anonymous said,

    I also have something like this. I’ve been in the military a little over three years now, and before I was in I had no trouble with it. But after I joined I started getting dizzy while I ran. At first I would get dizzy and then slow down or walk for a bit and then run again, but lately I will get dizzy, slow down and it won’t go away. I’ve failed a couple pt tests because of it and I’ve talked to the med clinic at my base, but they always say its from not eating or hydrating enough even when I’ve ate and hydrated plenty.

  186. 292

    Helena said,

    Extremely happy I came across this thread because I’ve been tested all around and my doctors are still puzzled and I was starting to chalk it up to it being all in my head, but I’m happy I’m not alone in this.

  187. 293

    ken Gibbs said,

    I got one while doing some bicycling say up some hills breathing an heart seems good but soon as I get to the end of a little climb that’s when the heart starts to really beat fast after the fact not during.

  188. 294

    Anonymous said,

    I have the same thing but for years I and everyone eles around me thought it was low blood suger ,hypoglasimia , and I just read this so this sounds more like me but iv actually passed out a couple of times

  189. 295

    Sonia said,

    I spent 3+ years seeking medical help for this problem and FINALLY got a logical answer.

    For those of you who have these symptoms: dizzy and nauseous after running outside for about 20 minutes, resting for a few minutes will make it go away until you start running again, pushing through it will lead to spinning and vomiting.

    It’s an inner ear disorder called secondary endolymphatic hydrops. It’s genetic, and caused by evolution. The inner ear processes fluid and a consistent pace. It fills and drains at the same pace. Imagine a bathtub filling and draining water so that it always stays with the same amount of water. Your ear does this to control your balance. If it doesn’t drain at the same pace as it fills, you will lose your balance. The human body is designed to last 40 years and through evolution has evolved to function longer. At 40, things don’t always work perectly. For most people, the inner ear has evolved, but for some of us it hasn’t. SO…when we start to sweat at 20 minutes or so, our body fluids change and so our inner ear starts working harder to get the balance right. If we have this disorder, it won’t work properly. This is not a serious health problem, but there is no cure. I have done races where I stop for 2 minutes after every 10 minutes of running…this allows the fluid to drain. The only way to do it is to run, rest, run, rest. Your overall time will be slower in a race, but at least you can participate. Very depressing for those of us who LOVE running!!!!

    • 296

      Anonymous said,

      Before coming to a blunt conclusion like this, I suggest reading all posts in this forum. There are very young runners who have shared their stories, which are in contradiction to your theory, that the human body is designed to reach the age of 40 years, and therefore it starts to deteriorate. Wherever you might have heard that 40 years is the magical number, I totally disagree.
      Simply put, evolution. My own dizziness has more to do with my diet, I know this by now. If my sugar levels are low, and I have not eaten properly, I do get that dizzy feel. It seems that dizziness have different triggers in other runners, a verity of reasons. Good luck.

      • 297

        Anonymous said,

        I agree that there are many causes of dizziness, and the info I received was from a specialist Dr. in New York City and applies only to those of us who are over 40 and possibly have this inner ear disorder. Perhaps only a fraction of the posters here have these same symptoms, and are over 40, and have had this for a few years already.
        I spent 3 years seeing neorologists, allergists, cardiologists, and ENT specialists. I did every test imaginable. I used to run races every week and 2 half-marathons a year. I also tried a histamine free diet and a gluten free diet for a month each. Taking a diuretic helped a little, but I have not been able to run a 5k without having to stop at every mile. It started out with a 20 minute mark, but now I can’t go more than 10 mins without the dizziness setting in. What I wrote only applies to a specific group on here that happen to share all the same qualities. I’m just sharing one possibility.

      • 298

        Anonymous said,

        The evolution comment prompted me to reply :). That is a term to explain anything away in non-scientific ways without any data to back up the statement. Anyway, I’ve been dealing with this for several years now and spent the last 2 years really dialing in the issues. Turns out I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism, now Hashimoto’s and adrenal fatigue. Make sure you get your full T-panel done with your blood work. Chances are that you your body struggles with the amount of stress and when your adrenals are depleted, you need to spend considerable time healing. They affect your whole body functioning properly.

      • 299

        Anonymous said,

        That’s terrific that you have discovered the cause. Is there a treatment that will get rid of these symptoms? If so , can you share?

        Another symptom I have that reinforces that mine is an inner ear issue is that I also get ear fullness..which feels like swimmer’s ear. It happens after a workout as well as random times. If I put my head upside down and hold for a few seconds, I can clear it up.

      • 300

        Anonymous said,

        The most important thing is to get a full thyroid, adrenal and hormone leve test. Right now I am taking Levithyroxine, selenium, A-drenal supplement, zinc and calcium, plus vitamin b6. Everyone is different, and so is the treatment plan. I was told it will take over one year to get back out of the deficit and to heal my adrenal glad to help my thyroid as well. I’ve changed my diet to Paleo/vegan mix and cross-train a lot now (low exertion to avoid cortisol spikes).

  190. 301

    Ed Park said,

    Hello Everyone, I’ve had a significant break through… Out of the blue about 3yrs ago I had my first episode and it’s occurred every time I’ve run outside since… Never inside, and never during any other outdoor activity… My symptoms start with the outbreak of itchy hives/rash mostly around my chest and abdomen… and then shortly after I get a what feels like a wave roll up and crash over me and I feel hot, light head (tunnel vision and loss of clarity), tight chested and nauseous… Pretty unpleasant, at times I’ve run through, other times I had to stop/walk… When I stop the symptoms subside pretty quickly… This has happens every time I run outside and comes on around 15min to 30min regardless of pace…

    I’ve read every post on this blog and looked into most of the suggested possible causes, but it was only recently I took action relating to Kerri Miller’s post in June 2012… After asking my GP to refer me to a sports exercise specialist my situation has recently been flagged as ‘Exercise Induced Urticaria (possibly Cholinergic)… I’ve trailed running on Antihistamines and they’ve made a massive difference, with a significant reduction in symptoms… After reading up on this condition a common link appears to be food allergy and in particular wheat… I shall be following Kerri Miller’s 2nd post in October 2014 and trailing a paleo diet…

    I’m seeing an allergy specialist in March 2016 and will report back then… I hope this helps some of you…

    PS – I’ve never been diagnosed with an allergy before and all my heart and blood test came back normal…

    • 302

      Anonymous said,

      Thanks for the post. Did you have any breakthrough with the allergy specialist? Do you have any additional thoughts about it?

  191. 303

    Just trying to excersise girl! said,

    I also have episodes with vasovagal nerve ( I don’t know if that’s correct) but I seem to have weird things happen with my vision as well as my sense of balance . I go for a run/walk and as soon as I start to get to running it’s like my eyes can’t focus I’m dizzy and I almost feel drunk . But I noticed lately my eye muscles are totally giving out I think that if someone was to look at my eyes they would say they are looking in all different directions….. I’m scared to go out alone for a run due to the fact that it does feel like I can pass out . But my heart isn’t beating out of my chest and I’m not over doing it … When I’m with others I power through it but in the end I have to really lay down in the grass and just chill for at least 5. Yes I know I’m crazy too. Ugggh

  192. 305

    Roseanne said,

    I have been experiencing the exact same symptoms as you! The most bazaar thing for me is I can go the distance on a treadmill without experiencing any dizziness but when I run outside, after about 20 to 25 minutes into the run I fade! I also considered the Vasovagal theory! I unfortunately am trying to just “live with it” as hard as it is! I just HATE running 5 miles on a treadmill! At least I know I’m not the only one!

  193. 306

    Anonymous said,

    Hmm, just had a thought, (I posted here already in the past).
    Could it be too thick blood? I have wired calf pain for some time, like a cramp, but don`t do much sport at the moment. After checking with Dr Google, the reason could be a blood clog, thick blood. Obviously, that would limit the oxygen amount in the brain, which, I think, and I have no background in medicine and I could be totally wrong, please don`t take my word, could lead to dizziness. Everyone check their blood now and come back with results please, and if this would be the answer, this group is up for a price in medicine 🙂

    • 307

      Anonymous said,

      Nope, its not thick blood or clog`s or anything like that. Just had an ultrasound check . Never mind …

      • 308

        khem said,

        I don’t think it’s blood clog either.,, i’ve had numerous blood tests etc… and they all came back pretty much normal.

  194. 309

    Robert said,

    I am 52 years old and have been running off and on since I was 15. Ran cross country in high school run runs etc. Have been in pretty good health my whole adult life blood pressure 118 over 86. Last few days 4-5 started really watching what I am eating. I take a multivitamin, eat a yogurt for breakfast ( I am never hungry in the morning) then eat an apple or today a banana at work, then I have been coming home and eating a salad ok fresh spinach, kale, and romaine lettuce, diced tomato, can of tuna fish, diced red peppers, hard boiled egg, Within the last few days I am dizzy, light headed, and when I try to run I cant run for more than 20 30 minutes when just last week I could run for 45 minutes. I dropped from 227lbs to 221lbs in 3 or 4 days, I am 6 ft 3in
    Is this my body just readjusting to my reduced food intake or what.

    Please advise

  195. 310

    Anonymous said,

    Hey everyone! So I stayed on here for a few years now, since that’s how long I’ve been battling this issue. I tried everything: HR monitor, hydration, nutrition, blood work etc. and last year I got diagnosed with hashimotos and adrenal fatigue. my cortisol levels are very low and my HR is in the 180s when I run so my body shuts down. With that, I’m now on meds, and I run much slower, less often and not as far. Trying to heal up my adrenals. Hope this helps someone.

  196. 311

    Jackie said,

    Hi All- I have been following this for a while. My symptoms started about 3 years ago with very sporadic vertigo about 30 minutes into a run. Then it was happening every time I ran the trails, but never road running. Then it was happening about 30 minutes into every run-road, trails, whatever. It was like I was running sideways on a hill in slow motion while the world spun around me. It was heavy vertigo for a few minutes, then it would just be faint until I was done with my run (yes, I would keep running. I know, I am crazy!). No other exercise induced it, just straight running. I tried everything, like you all did.

    I went to all the usually doctors for all the usual tests- cardiac was fine, ENT, balance therapist, GP. Finally I ended up at a neurologist who is quite brilliant. He did a VNG and MRI to rule that stuff out, but he has diagnosed me with Psychogenic Vertigo. He said there is hardly anything out there about it, but he has successfully treated about 10 patients over the years with the same symptom (I am amazed at this since no other doctor had every even heard of my crazy symptom).

    At any rate, I probably did get vertigo for an actual reason 3 years ago (dehydrated? low blood sugar? Who knows!) and now my brain just expects it and reacts like a panic attack. I don’t feel panic every run at 30minutes either so I never would have thought of that.

    He has prescribed Lexapro at the lowest dose for 8 weeks to see if we can get it resolved. Actually, just knowing that is what is going on helps me ward it off when I feel it coming on.

    Anyway, I just wanted to share. That may not be the answer for everyone, but in the end it made sense in my case. Maybe it will for some of yours as well.

    • 312

      Sounds like me too!! Please keep us posted. Would love to know if that helps.

      • 313

        Jackie said,

        I will definitely update! I was so happy to find this blog. So many people with very similar symptoms- there has to be something to it!

      • 314

        Tom said,

        Jackie, lexapro is an ssri which you should research so you know what you’re getting into. I just got off Paxil which I was given for anxiety and the dizziness seemed independent of that. Long term they can be a bitch to get off. It might work for you, just know what the issues are, for example, you can put on weight,or reduce your sodium levels,( which you need if you exercise)

      • 315

        Jackie said,

        Tom- thanks for the concern. I am on the lowest dose for 8 weeks. I don’t think it is the intention to be on it long term. I also realize that it may not be the cure-all for everyone. My symptoms weren’t the same as everyone- only vertigo and only while running for prolonged periods. Thanks and good luck!

    • 316

      Jackie said,

      UPDATE: It has been 2 months on the Lexapro with lots and lots of runs. I have only had 2 dizzy episodes. One, I was suffering heat exhaustion so I don’t think that was related. All in all, I think this fixed my problem. I was lowered to half my dose going forward and have a follow up in a few months. The final diagnosis for me was Pyschogenic Vertigo. Good luck everyone!

  197. 317

    Allie said,

    Jackie that makes complete sense to me, what I experience is just like what you experience, and definitely exacerbated when I’m fatigued. Please please keep me posted on treatment with the lexapro! I’ll explore the panic attack route too (I’m trying to alternatively treat it with Craniosacral therapy and homeopathy) – Allie

    • 318

      Jackie said,

      I definitely will update! It is just only cause that actually makes so sense. I literally have no other symptoms ever. Good luck!

      • 319

        Allie said,

        Agreed, and the two positional test results contradicted each other. I definitely have had adrenal fatigue in the past and am usually stressed, I have thought about the panic element as keeping my heart rate lower can sometimes help. But it’s a total mystery and as running is my stress relief, I’m not going to ditch it but hopefully work with it!

      • 320

        Jackie said,

        Yes!! Knowing it is nothing serious helps too.

  198. 321

    I have also been watching this blog for some time now. I have done quite a few half marathons and about 4 years ago I was training for my first marathon. I did a 36km (22.5 miles) event and took a break after that. My first run afterwards I started feeling dizzy to the point that I was tripping or running off the road. A few times nearly into the traffic! I took a year break from running and then started back doing short distances. I could never get past 3 or 4kms (2-3 miles) before getting dizzy. Yep – tried everything, sunnies, wearing a hat, drinking and/or eating while running, no music, not looking down, running slow, stopped drinking alcohol, monitored my blood pressure while running – you name it, I tried it. About 18 months ago I asked my GP to look into a solution, so did blood test, hearing and vision tests. All was clear. I then went onto a waiting list for our public health system (in new Zealand healthcare is free but usually a wait) and since been to see a number of specialists including ENT, neurology and cardiology. None could find anything but ENT suggested atypical migraine – the migraine without the headache. I was prescribed propranolol, a beta blocker, but this had adverse effects. I am now on nortriptyline and been on it about 4 months. I don’t get dizzy but when I push myself I get the sensation that I could start getting dizzy but as I ease off I recover. I am now doing 50 min runs – or 10kms (6.25 miles) with no majors. But I have to ask myself, have I found the real issue that is causing me to get dizzy and will I have to take meds forever?

    • 322

      An update on my story. I weaned myself off Nortriptylene at the end of August and been off it since. It had side-effects I was struggling to deal with. I am now training for my first marathon and running about 60-65kms (38-40miles) a week, with one long (30km+/19mile) run a week. I get dizzy about every 75 mins and then walk for a few minutes which clears the dizziness and I continue running. It is not good for my times but allows me to run the distance.

  199. 323

    Anonymous said,

    Amazing thread…
    I’ve been battling this odd lightheaded/dizzy problem for almost 4 years now. At first i had a couple of “dizzy spells” while playing basketball, but then I had a few of them out of the blue just working in the office until in feb ’13 – that’s when I was hit with allmighty mother of lightheadedness/vertigo/nausea/you name it. I was working abroad at the time in a little less developed country (Kosovo) and saw a GP who said it was probably an inner ear infection as i had been sick a few weeks prior. After returning home (which by the way is not U.S) I saw an ENT who ruled out an ear thing and sent me to a neurolgist, who in turn also doubted an ear connection, but said that it was too late to run any tests, as the possible infection, if any, was long gone. I had had an MRI done a year prior for headaches and that was normal. I also had an exercise stress test (EKG) and an echo for my bicuspid aortic valve in ’14 and those all came back clear so it’s not my heart or brain. Anyways, I had a 6 month spell in the beginning of 2013 with dizziness, feeling of derealisation, tinnitus and the works. Neuro also said that anxiety could have contributed to me feeling off.
    Anyways fast forward to 2016 and I still get these occasional dizzy spells, just like all you guys are describing – had one today actually while running (this prompted me to leave my story here). It’s bollocks, I haven’t had one in several months (although I dont work out as often as I used to).
    Like some guys in here said, i too adopted the “no headphones and running with a straight back and staring in the distantce ahead” running style and it seemed to help a great deal. So maybe it is an ear thing, who knows. I also have a tight feeling in my neck and a well documented anxiety issue, so maybe those are also contributing to this problem.

  200. 324

    Testmonkey said,

    I have experienced similar episodes while running and achieved a solution!

    I ran for years without incident, then after a year of inactivity I would suddenly get dizzy about 15 minutes into an outdoor run. The bizarre thing I noticed was this did not occur on a treadmill run. For about 4 years this baffled me and my doctor (s). All tests came back inconclusive.

    The short answer to my solution was to Stop Wearing A Hat for my outside runs.

    Oddly I haven’t been able to get dizzy running on a treadmill with a hat.

  201. 325

    Veronica Waring said,

    I just googled dizziness and running and found this discussion. I am a 56 year old long time runner. I cover form 90-100 km a week both running and walking. I too struggle with dizziness/off balance feelings while running. After careful research and exclusion of heart issues I believe mine is related to cervical stenosis. The use of a treadmill does make it a little better as I am not looking up/down etc. For those who feel the dizzy/lightheaded feeling while moving your head, etc this might be your solution.

  202. 326

    I enjoy looking at your web sites. Thanks! http://bit.ly/2f0xJ92

  203. 327

    Tammy burns said,

    The exact same thing happens to me. ! Stumbled across your post from a google search. I see this was 8 years ago. Did you ever figure out what it is?

    • 328

      Road runner said,

      My resolve on this was low blood sugar coupled with hashimotos (thyroid disorder) and adrenal fatigue. Slow road to recovery.

  204. 329

    Anonymous said,

    Thank you so much for making me feel better. I experience the same thing. I use to run Ultra marathons and marathons and this has brought a hault to my overall training and run. I did manage to finish a marathon all the while dizzy and concerned I might pass out. I had to run walk and convince myself I was ok. Finally staggered the final 4 miles. I have noticed it is worse in cold weather. Odd! Just came on in the last 1.5 years. I am now 52

    • 330

      I promise this will be my last comment on this thread since Ive posted twice and both suggestions didn’t really cure me. After a while I just kept getting dizzy. BUT – I have not been dizzy for 6 months now and I think I figured out what it was (at least for me anyway). I got food allergy tested and it was SHOCKING what came back on that test. Honestly I was so surprised – spinach, chia seeds, bananas, mustard, pepper, bakers yeast, brewers yeast, eggs, clams, tuna, etc etc… 26 healthy items that I would have never known about. I gave it all up and after 30 days I can run for over an hour now consistently without getting dizzy. I am taking this whole approach that it has to do with what we eat and put in our bodies and we need to stop relying on medicine so much. Go see a naturopath – it will probably change your life. I take probiotics everyday now and eat clean for my body (always did eat clean but now I know even some of those things weren’t good for me). Anyway – thought I’d share my success story! Good luck to you all!

  205. 331

    Runner said,

    I also get really dizzy and i am 14 years old except every time I run it just gets worse! First I felt this way after each of my runs but then slowly kept decreasing and now I feel lightheaded and numb in my arms and legs after only 2-3 minutes. The feeling does not stop until after 15 minutes of sitting down. I have been getting symptoms for 2 years now and don’t know what to do? I couldn’t join the cross country team because of my random dizzy spells.What should I do?

    • 332

      Anonymous said,

      Check the basics first:

      1. Low Blood pressure.
      2. Low Blood Volume.
      3. Hydration, but in your case its too fast in my opinion.
      4. your eyes and focus. Get an eye test.
      5. Vertigo

      After these just read through the many symptoms above and try one at a time if they seem to match what you experience. In my case it seems to have been a yeast infection. Was never something I even thought a man could get but lo and behold , lol. Took about 6 months to finally get back to where I was. Be patient, careful, and take it very slow.
      Always keep your doctor in the loop as they may notice your symptoms as something more specific.

      Good Luck.

      • 333

        Anonymous said,

        For me it was items 4 and 5. After multiple tests with the doctors (cardiologist, ENT, Primary Physician) and them coming up empty handed I began to notice that if I focused on a point down the road/trail and adjust that focus intently vice just looking around as I’m running I don’t get dizzy. It all started to make sense when that came about as I never had this happen to me on a treadmill. On the treadmill I could look around but since I’m technically stationary I don’t have the items on the road/trail passing me by. As I get back into shape and able to do longer distance I have to be more cognizant of it since I can get a tendency to get bored and my eyes start to wander around.

        As for recovery when it does happen, lay down and put your feet up. Your body, if like my reaction, is going into shock like symptoms so I just treat it as such. Seems to help.

  206. 334

    Kris said,

    I can identify with the symptoms as detailed here. The dizzy/woozy spells are not something that I experienced until the last couple of years, (I have been running regularly for twelve) and they always seemed to come on at about the same point, after 2-3 miles and on pretty much every run.

    I tried everything from fuelling and hydrating more, monitoring my breathing, not listening to music, not wearing hats etc and nothing worked. I went to the docs and had blood tests, ECG, hearing checked – nothing. I was considering giving up running, even though generally I could run through them, at worst the dizzy spells made me feel like collapsing, which obviously was a worry.

    Anyway, long story short, I came across this blog, read the entries with interest and then spotted one talking about something I had not tried, which was to keep a straight back and focus on the horizon or at least a spot 30-40 yards ahead. I noticed that generally I looked down, not quite at my feet, but just a few feet ahead of the direction I was running, so this seemed like a big change to my running technique…

    Aaand, 8 runs in and I can report there has been no recurrence of the dizzy spells. I think I must have been experiencing some form of Vertigo attack due to the motion of the ground/surroundings in my vision, I dunno, all I do know is that by concentrating on focusing on the horizon, it seems to have worked for me! SO, I can get back to enjoying my running again! Just thought I’d share, in case this can help someone else, oh and thanks to those that posted about doing this on here!

  207. 335

    Gemma said,

    Did you ever find out what the problem was? Seems to be what I’m experiencing

  208. 336

    Don said,

    I been having the same thing happen to me …I would start out a run feeling fine and about a mile into the run I cannot keep my heart rate up and cannot maintain my pace. I begin to feel somewhat dizzy and nauseated. Sometimes I can push through and feel fine other times I just have to stop running. It’s definitely not a lack of conditioning. It could be over training possibly.

  209. 337

    Anonymous said,


  210. 338

    Bob Ryder said,

    SOLUTION! I finally got an answer! I am in my 30’s
    I have followed this blog for several years. I used to run marathons then one I became dizzy while running which eventually turned into nausea on every run.

    I tried everything from ginger to Zofran. I went to an ENT and he didn’t have any suggestions. Altitude did not matter. Diet didn’t affect it either. But it was clockwork. After 2-3 miles I had to walk or throw up. I could MT bike all day and nothing but as soon as I started running I got sick. This started about 6 years ago. I finally just accepted the fact that running wasn’t in the cards for me.

    Then one day last year I felt dizzy and went to the hospital and they did a MRI. They found a Cavernous Malformation or CCM. They noted there was evidence of bleeding before and the impact of running would have caused it bleed which would explain the nausea.

    My suggestion to everyone who can’t figure out why the get sick is to go get an MRI. It might be a Neurological problem which if left unchecked could lead to worse things then being dizzy while running.

  211. 339

    Hi there colleagues, how is all, and what you want to say on the topic
    of this piece of writing, in my view its actually remarkable for me.

  212. 340

    Jeannette said,

    Hey hon…im sorry your dealing with this. I too have this problem. About a year ago i began taking vitamins because i learned that i may have been experiencing low magnesium. All was well after i began it. I didnt have dizzy episodes for a good while. But here recently i began taking phentermine to help lose weight and i also began jogging little spurts at a time. Today i went jogging and i had another episode. My hands started shaking and i was extremely dizzy…felt like i wanted to pass out. Now im aware that certain medications can deplete your electrolytes so im planning on taking two magnesium pills to one potassium to see if that helps…if you found out what was wrong can you come back to the thread to let us know?? Living with dizziness is hell.And when i was a child i would get dizzy out of nowhere and i would in fact pass out…over the years ive learned ways to avoid it all together but in the back of my mind i know that it could always come back.

  213. 341

    Jo said,

    Hi everyone,
    I cannot believe that I have finally found people who are experiencing the same symptoms as I.
    I thought that I was never going to find someone who actually understood what I was going through.
    I have been running for at least thirty years. Have done half marathons and short triathlons. My only pain was waking up at 4:00 a.m. to get to the practice sessions, and the effort of the workouts themselves. But in general I really loved everything about my exercise regime. And then boom… I symply cannot run long distances anymore.
    I have similar symptoms to most of you: dizzyness into the 3rd km with nausea and weakness. Sometimes shortness of breath and a need to suck the air in which goes away after a short while. There are times that I can run through it, and other times when I just have to start walking…and then the symptoms slowly recede. The maximum I have run in the last two years is about 5km twice a week. I have completely given up on competing and certainly on long runs. My times have doubled…in general a real dissappointment.
    I have had all the tests done, heart, lungs, stomach from every angle. blood work in every way. Nothing.
    Purposely left my age out because dont think its relevant – have been really active all my life.

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