ADHD Medication and Training

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by OrangePeel76, Oct 23, 2002.

  1. OrangePeel76

    OrangePeel76 New Member

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    I am in a serious dilemma. I've been diagnosed with ADHD as a child and as an adult. My doctor really wants to put me on Adderall or Ritalin or some other stimulant medication due to deterioration in my life *quality*. <br /><br />I'm really hesitant in taking these types of meds due to how it will affect my training. I think these meds make your HR go up. <br /><br />So - what if I do decide to take these meds? Do I need to RETEST my Lactate Threshold Heart Rate and Training Zones or should I use the typical training zones I'm using right now (via Friel's Training Bible). I'd really like to do my base training right this year. <br /><br />Any advice will help!!!<br /><br />Thanks,<br /><br />OP
     
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  2. Vo2

    Vo2 Member

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    You are 100% right in asking for a second opinion.<br /><br />May I help by pointing you to the following websites.<br /><br />The first site is ADHD.com &gt; Click here<br />The second site discusses the types of ADD and types of medicines used &gt; Click here<br />The third site is ADDitudemag.com &gt; Click here<br /><br />I'm certain you will find some expert advice there.
     
  3. 2LAP

    2LAP New Member

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    Let us know what you find out, this is really interesting to me! Is anyone else in a similar situation?<br /><br />I think this will impact more on your pre-competition training rather than base training, as base training is always dead easy and volume is important (no need to ride to heart rate really)!<br /><br />Oh, if in doubt go slower.
     
  4. adamholck

    adamholck New Member

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    Ritalin's chemical name is methylphenidate and it is an amphetamine. Ritalin will dramatically improve performance and the ability to lose weight. This is precisely why it is a banned substance in all professional sports. If you are an amateur racer and are willing to cheat, Ritalin or Adderal or Dexedrine will give you a significant advantage over your competitors. However, when you become a member of the UCI or whatever, and are required to discontinue the drug, a great lethargy will likely occur, rendering you helpless when it comes to a sport like cycling. Of course, this fatigue will only last about a month or so.
     
  5. lumpy

    lumpy New Member

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    There are some new and interesting ways of treating ADHD besides drugs, like dietary changes and certain behavior modification techniques. I'd start searching them out if I were you. You may find a solution other than what your Dr. is pushing.

    Tim
     
  6. adamholck

    adamholck New Member

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    Actually, there is a class of drugs called SSRI's (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) that can improve concentration. Drugs in this class include prozac, zoloft, wellbutrin, paxil, effexor, etc... Effexor is most commonly used as an alternative to stimulants like ritalin. Its a catch 22, though. Many of us cycle because it provides us with pleasure and we wouldn't be too happy without it. The increase in serotonin from an antidepressant may cause some people to abandon activities that they once required for happiness prior to medication. Just make the right decisions regarding your mental health. It's as important as cycling............... Well, NOT QUITE!
     
  7. LJB

    LJB New Member

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    There is a new treatment for ADHD called strattera, a non "speed" based drug. Check out the website. None of the side effects of ritalin etc.
     
  8. The Pelican

    The Pelican New Member

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    Good for you, and Ritalin can make a big difference in your life.

    Granted, the drug Ritalin might change the way your heart-rate and body responds during exercise, but just to keep perspective, so does a drug called caffeine. Caffeine also has the similar focusing effect for ADHD. Considering the level of the doses that Ritalin is prescribed, it is not as if you are going to turn into Tommy Simpson. Your overall well-being is important, so get treatment, and continue to ride.

    I would like to read a study to learn how Ritalin affects cyclists. Until then, I would ride with a heart rate monitor, watch it, learn how your heart-rate may change with the medication. I know caffeine changes heart-rates, I would surmise Ritalin will too.

    If you do decide to take Ritaliin, you may find you *do* benefit from performance enhancements; being able to schedule and organize your time will make you a better cyclist. Poor time management can cause you to miss training rides, and even show up to a race with little time to get ready, even getting yourself to a starting line late. In addition, not being able to effectively organize your training schedule within your daily life can have a detrimental effect on your long-term goals as a cyclist.

    If you are worried about "testing positive", remember that Ritalin has a very short half life just as caffeine does: You can stop taking it the day before you race and, and it will quickly leave your system. Ritalin will not be present during the event and you will not be doping.

    Caffeine has been removed from the doping banned list, but Ritalin has not. Getting treatment for ADHD with Ritalin is not cheating in my opinion, but just like Jonathan Vaughters who could not take cortisone in the Tour de France for a wasp sting, you cannot take Ritalin without testing positive under the current doping rules.

    One hurdle a person diagnosed with ADHD has to overcome is the stigma perpetrated by a society that simply does not understand the condition, hang tough while we all learn.

    Hope this helps.
     
  9. Fixey

    Fixey New Member

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    I believe the current school of thought is that thermogenics such as these, eph, caffiene ect will not improve performance (other than any weight lose benifits) and have been un-banned by the IOC.
     
  10. tysmom

    tysmom New Member

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    :confused: Hello everyone my son was diagnosed with adhd on Thursday and the doctor wants to put him on two different types of meds that I have never hear do treating adhd and i was hoping maybe someone could give me a little advice on them ? or if they know or if there kids are on them it is just scary to me because every where I have looked I have not found any thing about them treating it

    thanks for your time :confused:
     
  11. Piotr

    Piotr New Member

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    I traded SSRI's for cycling a few years ago and never looked back. Living with passion is the best medicine.
     
  12. Piotr

    Piotr New Member

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    ADHD develops due to an inappropriate lifestyle (environment) and it can be managed by changing that lifestyle. It is a developmental problem not something anyone is born with, so throw away all his video games! They're not his parent nor a babysitter. Since this is a cycling forum, get him passionate about bike racing. ;) Unless of course you'd rather have him on drugs. :rolleyes:

    Disclaimer: You didn't provide any details when asking for advice, so I provided you with advice without knowing any details. :)
     
  13. swimmer88

    swimmer88 New Member

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    I have ADHD too and I take Adderall. I've never taken Ritalin, but I've heard they are fiarly similar. Adderall, if anything, will increase your performance on the bike. It is an amphetamine. In other words, it is a legal form of the drug Speed. Don't take that comparison the wrong way. Adderall serves a purpose and that is treating ADHD, which it does very well. When I ride, it really doesn't make a difference if I am on meds or not. Cycling is a sport where you are focused on many different variables all at once (pedaling, steering, staying away from cars, drafting off other riders, looking for objects in the road). Its not like you are sitting in your room trying to read a book...

    Yes, it does raise your heart rate, slightly. But I wouldn't worry about that. I knew plenty of athletes in college who took Adderall and they were just fine.
     
  14. jimmypop

    jimmypop New Member

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    While I think ADHD is diagnosed far too often (and medication is still seen as a silver bullet), your statement is so full of stupid that my eyes hurt just reading it.
     
  15. Piotr

    Piotr New Member

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    Thanks for being constructive and educating me. I hope you feel better soon. :rolleyes:
     
  16. Packeteer

    Packeteer New Member

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    First of all let me give a little background on amphetamines.

    Adderall is similar to Ritalin but stronger. Both are of the same family of chemicals called amphetamines. One other amphetamine is crystal meth. Crystal meth is actually "meth-amphetamine" thats where you get the word meth. What people refer to as "speed" has changed over the decades. It is a general term that just means any amphetamine but today mostly means crystal meth.

    As for calling Adderall legal speed you are somewhat right. It is only legal if you are prescribed it. It is illegal for anyone else. The same with crystal meth. Crystal Meth is prescribed to people with, you guessed it, ADHD. Its only illegal if you are not prescribed it as most people are not.

    So now that i gave you the background let me tell you about my experiance. I was never diagnosed with ADHD but i abused the drugs for it. I also used to use crystal meth. So having personally used and abused all the ADHD meds as well as crystal meth i can tell you this; meth is the exact same thing only stronger. You can get meth like effects from ADHD meds if you take enough.

    So where does all this tie into cycling. Well it will make you faster. It will raise your heart rate but more importantly it gives you a sense of euphoria and takes away pain. Being on stimulents like amphetamines will make you be able to dig deeper. It will keep your appetite down so you can lose weight easier. It will also make you not notice how thirsty you are. You feel pumped up and very motivated. These are all beneficial to cycling in the short term.

    In the long term however its not worth it. They have many other side effects and its very easy to overtrain and under eat. When Tom Simpson died in the 1967 TDF he has amphetamines in his system. He died from exaustion, presumebly pushed on by the euphoria and pain reduction of the drugs he was on. You probably are not going to die if you take them but at the very least you are cheating.
     
  17. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    I've often wondered what the deal was with ADHD. My step-son was "diagnosed" with that a few years ago but what I though was odd was when he was actively participating in sports he was pretty much ok - when the weather was rather bad, like during the winter, he was very aggitated, unable to concentrate on pretty much anything for other than a short period of time - so they gave him stuff that turned him into a sleeping zombie.... Great treatment.

    I think that ADHD is one of those conditions that do really exist but not in as many cases as it's made out. Diagnosis really seems to be too subjective and, of course, most insurance companies will not cough up the massive amounts of cash for high precision imaging to check for development of the frontal and temporal cortex and adopt the more usual - here you go, take these twice a day....

    We got him involved in sports all year round and tied to that was a series of 'consequences' that helped him focus. You don't do well in school they you'll be dropped from the team... if you don't get your stuff done at home you don't get a ride to the game etc etc. Ever since we did that he's been fine - if you call the usual challenges of having a teen at home "fine". LOL

    "so throw away all his video games! They're not his parent nor a babysitter"

    I agree - just make sure your kid is upto something useful whilst you're playing his video games. :D Just make sure that you're doing something productive and set a good example whilst they're around.
     
  18. jsirabella

    jsirabella New Member

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    I think comparing Ritalin to Caffeine is a bit of a stretch but I can tell you an old trick I used in the gym from an old skool guy and I recently saw it in a magazine with caffeine is the following:

    45 minutes before an event where you would like to see about a 5%-7% increase in performance, take in capsule form 10 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram of bodyweight and swallow two ounces of graprefruit juice and two ounce of club soda. The grapefruit juice contains a substance called naringim which helps metabolize the caffeine rapidly. The club soda helps breaks down the caps rapidly. Caffeine levels and its effect will be amplified!! I mean amplified.

    If you can not deal with the jitters take two grams of Vitamin C which will breakdown the caffeine rapidly.

    -js


     
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