Running with Atriul Fibrillation


started running back in October. Training for first 5K. Have just had first AF and been told not to run for now. Anyone out there running/training with AF? What has been your experience? Please tell me I'll be able to run again!

thanks Nicky



  • I don't suffer with af but I  am a cardiac nurse . In af you loose 30 percent of your cardiac output so not a good idea to run at the moment . 

    With appropriate medication though you will be back out there soon . 

  • I had a single bout of it last year which lasted a few days and I ended up in A&E after I told my doc. I didn't run when I had it but started again after a couple of weeks. None of the medical staff I saw were anything but supportive of me running and the consultant actually gave me the thumbs up to run a marathon four weeks later.

    I wouldn't run until your heart rate goes back to normal. I also check my HR at least once a day so that I can get it sorted quickly if it happens again.

  • Thank you both so much for your replies. Saw my GP today - post AF, back in normal rhythm managed with Bisoprolol - she said not to let it stop my running but to know my HR ( like you Redjeep). So pleased to be able to get back to it. Going to start with some brisk walks and build up again. 5K here I come!!

  • I used to suffer from af, it started as I got fitter from increased running when I was in my mid 30's. I would be in af for 1 day, then have a 3 day break, then it would start again. It took a long time to be diagnosed and I actually ran a 10K while in af. It took 2 weeks of constant af to get it finally diagnosed. Bisoprol, like any beta blocker will make running harder, I found it really hard running when taking a beta blocker. If you have af with a normal heart flecainide is a drug that may work, without affecting your running. I ended up having an ablation so am cured now and running again. 

    Do you know what caused your af? Triggers can be hard to work out, but, if it started while running it may be linked to adrenaline, beta blockers may help. af that starts in the afternoon, evening, night or while at rest may actually be made worse by beta blockers. It is a complex condition, that can and often gets worse with time. But, you can get isolated episodes and it not reoccur. Drugs work for some people and if not, an ablation offers an excellent chance of a cure.

    As long as you have had an ecg and an echocardiogram and are cleared to run then you should be fine. I was told I could run but advised against a marathon.

  • Ironically I was sat eating my lunch when my AF occurred. No previous symptoms but I do have high blood pressure hence the bid to get fit. No problems when running or after. 

    Feel 'weary' most days and even walking the dog is a bit of a plod. Will see how it goes on the Bisoprolol and return to GP if need be. Was never very fast anyway but at least I have an excuse now! Thank you for taking the time to respond, I will keep your points in mind.

  • I wasn't put on betablockers as the consultant figured that I'd never be able to get out of bed in the morning as it'd drop my rhr too low. If you don't get on with them then go back and ask for alternatives.

  • JugulaJugula ✭✭✭

    Hi I had this but didn't like the medication, it made me feel lethargic, I was on 1.25mg of bisoprolol and 50mg of flecainide. In the end I decided to have an ablation which seems to have sorted it out, I get the odd ectopic beats but nothing to really bother me. If it came back I would have another ablation before taking the pills and I hate hospital procedures!

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