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I am a 20-year-old that is generally healthy and exercises almost every day. However, I get extremely out of breath walking to class- to the point where I can't really talk. Also, my heart is RACING when I do any sort of activity, including walking. At first I attributed this to anxiety, but I am not anxious when this happens. I get out of breath with any sort of exercise.

Along with this, I am constantly fatigued. I sleep for 8-12 hours and wake up unrefreshed and wanting to rest more. I also wake up numerous times a night. I eat fine and have average stress.

When I work out, my heart "recovers" very slowly..sometimes only a few beats per minute. After 30 minutes, my heart was still 120+.

Blood tests came back normal (taken one month ago), and so did EKG, but that was a year ago. I was told I do not have asthma. I have not been to a cardiologist.

Any ideas?


You don't say whether or not you are female, but young women very often get a bit anemic from their monthly blood loss, and anemia would fit your symptoms very well.  

You say you had some labs done, but ferritin (stored iron) is often not included in routine blood work.  

If you are male, anemia should not be your problem...  Don't know what it might be, but if you're female, ask your doc if he included iron (specifically ferritin) in your labs.  If he did not, I would check this.  Your ferritin should be at least 15 to 20 for an active young person.  More is NOT better...  If your ferritin is 25 or more, don't start popping iron pills to try to increase your stamina.  Too much iron is as bad as not enough.  

Iron is the cure for most anemia in young females, but you shouldn't take iron unless you are documented iron deficient by low ferritin blood test. 

Iron supplements can have side effects, and make you feel awful...  If you are low on iron, it is best to try to boost this from food sources (more cheeseburgers!).  Red meat has more iron than any other food you might eat, so if you don't normally eat a lot of red meat, this may be what's going on with you.  

If you're not anemic, then I haven't a clue...  Keep buggin' them docs until they come up with a proper diagnosis.

Good luck to you!