Hacking Cough After Intense Sessions

Discussion in 'Health Nutrition and Supplements' started by Tapeworm, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. Tapeworm

    Tapeworm New Member

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    I have noticed that most times after a very, very intense session/race (ie: hit VO2max) I develope something of a hacking cough (bit like a smoker cough) that usually lasts several hours and then disappears. There have been no consistent factors which I could attribute this too other than the intesity of the ride.

    I am curious if anyone else has experienced this or has an explaination for it?
     
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  2. gplama

    gplama Well-Known Member

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    I experienced a similar issue tonight after a 4min all out bunch hill climb. It was around 30 deg (a great night for riding in Melb!) and I felt like I needed cough to 'scratch that throat itch' if you know what I mean. Only lasted 5mins though, 2hrs of it would be nasty!

    I've had this only a few times before after a max effort. Given the conditions and fluid intake prior, I put it down to dehydration.. for now...

    cheers,
    lama
     
  3. e0richt

    e0richt New Member

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    I suspect that you might have "exercise induced asthma"...
    you can google it to get more info on it...
     
  4. Eden

    Eden New Member

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    Most people I know who race experience this at some point - usually early in the season. I wouldn't worry too much about asthma unless you are feeling short of breath or constricted. (Even the pro's get it - they mentioned it on the Paris-Nice prologue telecast, Phil Ligett called it Prologue Cough...)
     
  5. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Yep, we always called it Pursuiter's Hack and would typically get it after a hard early season track workout. I do occasionally suffer from exercise induced asthma, particularly on cold dry days. The symptoms are pretty different, the asthma is an overall tightness in the chest with noticeable difficulty exhaling. The pursuiter's hack is more a matter of coughing up a lot of loose stuff. It's not fun, but pretty typical for VO2max work in the early season. I can remember driving back from the track with three or four other riders in the car including some seriously fit trackies and we sounded like escapees from a TB ward :)
     
  6. bauerb

    bauerb New Member

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    I know this cough: you don't want to take a full deep breath because it hurts and you start a dry hacking cough. I first got this climbing in the alps last year. it goes away after a couple of hours. i even thought about getting tested for EIA, but researched the medication and found out it causes high heart rate, etc. I don't get it that often, so I ma doing nothing
     
  7. Tapeworm

    Tapeworm New Member

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    Maybe this could be it, though I certainly do not experience the painful breathing. Just the cough! Bugs the hell out me, makes me seem like a pack a day man!

    Today, the day after the race it's all good.

    Will do some research on the exercised induced asthma.

    Thanks all.
     
  8. OldGoat

    OldGoat New Member

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    Reminds me of the smog-induced cough I used to get in high school (40 years ago) running my track workouts in the LA basin. The odd thing was that when running I could breath OK/no cough; but in between sets, the coughing was intense and without pause.
     
  9. Eden

    Eden New Member

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    I get the same thing, especially in the Spring I think, from a tree pollen allergy. I'm fine when I'm working hard - but when I stop I cough hard, sometimes so hard I feel like I want to throw up. It is not especially pleasant.
     
  10. jjiam1234

    jjiam1234 New Member

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    I would get that all the time after long rides. Always, and it would take a whole night to get rid of, like after sleeping, it would go away. I think it is exercise induced ashthma. So this year I guess I will just try to live with it, or just go to the doctor and get an inhaler, it helps a little.
     
  11. j.r.hawkins

    j.r.hawkins New Member

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    I get the same thing, and it definitely IS exercise induced asthma, regardless of whether you get the restricted-chest feeling or not. They respond to the same range of medications. I get the same thing happening as the previous poster. The aerosol Seretide helps my symptoms significantly.

    The only time I get wheezy or feel restricted is if have a chest infection, but I always get the cough after a session where I've pushed to VO2 max, whether it's been running gymming or cycling. The only exception is on a surfboard due to the wet environment. But even then, sometimes, when the surf is big ... And it is always much worse when the air is cold, such as in the evenings.

    What causes it is the large volumes of air you're passing through your windpipe. It dries out the airways and sensitises their walls.

    The moisture and mucus lining your airways is a lot like the sticky oil in the wet air filters used in motor racing. It traps the crap, stopping it from enterng yor bloodstream, and small hairs called cilia sweep it back up so you can cough it up and keep your lungs clean.

    When you dry out your airways by sucking and blowing huge amounts of air through them they respond by secreting more mucus to protect themselves, and send a message to your brain that they're irritated about being treated this way.

    Hence the hacking cough.
     
  12. Eden

    Eden New Member

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    Not necessarily - I finally went to see an allergist and they also test you for asthma there since allergies often go hand in hand. He said my lungs sound really great, so its unlikely that I have asthma of any kind. I did get some stuff for seasonal allergies, which has been helping the coughing a lot by cutting down on the post nasal drip.(I was coughing so much that my chest and abs were sore....) I am a pretty big fan of not medicating myself unneccesarily. I'm sure I'll continue to get a bit of "prologue cough" after really hard stuff, especially this early in the season, but I know that 1. it goes away and 2. it does not hurt me, so I'm not about to try to medicate it away.
     
  13. scottdurand

    scottdurand New Member

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    Might NOT be an Asthma reaction although it could be of course. I have had this happen to me as well early in the season when it is still chilly out. Luckily one of the riders I often ride with is a Respiratory therapist and he checked out my lungs right after a ride when I expressed a concern it may be Asthma and found that my lungs were in fanatastic condition with great solid deep breathing. I followed up with a friend who is an ENT who said my condition is most likely an allergic reaction. [size=-1]
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  14. j.r.hawkins

    j.r.hawkins New Member

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    My lungs are clear, and my peak flow is 680+, well above the mark for my height. Yet, even as I measure with these readings, what I have is asthma.

    Asthma is a restriction of the airways due to a reaction to irritant factors, exhibited as a muscular constriction or excessive production of the mucus of the lining, or both. Having congested lungs - or not - isn't necessarily related.

    Royal North Shore Hospital is one of the Australian research leaders in this area. It was when accompanying my wife to an asthma awareness course run by RNSH some years ago that I learned what my symptoms meant. It took a few years for the local general practitioners and ENT specialists to catch up with the information.

    If your symptoms are only occasional, then I suppose you fall into the range called "normal" in reaction to what you put your body through.

    My point is this: the mechanism that creates "Pursuiter's Hack" is identical to the mechanism that underlies my particular variation of asthma.

    May I make a suggestion? If you have this happening to you more often than rarely, don't write it off as something that goes away by itself. Continued "pushing the envelope" without allowing your body to recover can lead to it becoming a regular occurrence and progressing to a permanent condition. Ask me how I know.

    I know we're all tremendously competitive and don't like backing off on training. It is, however, important to listen to the feedback your body is giving you and ease off when needed to ensure you enjoy continued progression and health.
     
  15. Higuma

    Higuma New Member

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    Perhaps the terminology has changed over the years but the condition you descibe was once refered to as EIB - Excercise Induced Bronchiospasm about ten years ago...

    It can effect many people in different ways but as suggested it happens quite a bit at the beginning of the season...

    The way it always effected me worse was when cycling or racing motorcycles in cold weather - - the blast of cold air going down my throat is what was the root of the bronchiospasm with me...

    In the end I had to train myself to breath in through my nose and out through my mouth on those cold sessions but at the start I used a balaclava over my mouth which helped to warm the air before entering my throat...

    Perhaps googling EIB will yeild you some results...

    Cheers,
     
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