Updated at: 20-06-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

Have you ever wondered how long I may exercise after donating blood? If you’ve been wondering about the best time to work out after donating blood, look no further. We’ve compiled this guide to help you out.

We’ll cover all you need to know about working out after donating blood, from the risks and benefits to the ideal activity interval.

Donating blood is one of the best methods to spread the word about your good health. In accordance with the Red Cross, a single donation of blood can benefit up to three people in need. Donating blood, on the other hand, may cause you to rethink your daily routine. Is it OK to work out after donating blood?

What Is Blood Donation?

“How long can I exercise after donating blood?” is the most common question a health care provider asks. To fully grasp the significance of blood donation, one must first understand its history. The words “giving blood,” “donating blood,” “blood campaigns,” and “blood services” are all used to describe the act of donating blood. MSC. A blood donation is a simple process in which a donor delivers one of the following products: whole blood, red blood cells, plasma, or platelets.

Can you work out after giving blood? Recovery time and side effects

Most blood donation centers require that donors be in good physical condition, at least 16 years old, and weighing no more than 100 pounds before they can donate blood. A maximum weight does not exist. If you’re pregnant or have a medical condition like STDs or sickle cell disease, you won’t be able to donate blood to save lives. Platelets can be donated by anyone, however entire blood cannot be donated unless you have sickle cell trait, despite the fact that it will damage further blood operations. If you have iron deficiency anemia, are taking medicine, are sick with the flu or a cold, or have received a life-saving treatment in the past year, you may have to wait in line. Learn the importance of blood donation and what you can do to help.

How soon can a person work out after donating blood?

When it comes to exercising after donating blood, the American Red Cross advises against it for at least 24 hours. To be safe, the World Health Organization (WHO) advises people to rest for 48 hours after engaging in strenuous activities or sports. Trustworthy.

Because of the extra pressure exerted on the needle site by weightlifting and other body workouts, as well as arm-related exercises like tennis, there is a greater risk of bruising and pain in the arm.

Even anaerobic exercise can raise the body’s oxygen needs. After giving blood, a person may not be able to keep up with the demands of this situation.

It is estimated that blood donation reduces a person’s general exercise ability for around the first two days after donating blood, according to a review in 2016.

The next step is to gradually return to a more rigorous fitness regimen. Slowly and gradually try each new activity to see how it affects the body. Take more time to recover in between sets and sessions.



Anyone who donates blood may experience fatigue, especially as the body heals. After donating blood, people who routinely work out should not expect to be at their top performance for the next two days.

One of the best ways to combat exhaustion is to get some rest. Taking longer and more frequent breaks may alleviate weariness. It’s possible that working out at a lesser intensity than normal will assist keep you from getting too tired.


Dark urine, a dry mouth and dizziness are all indicators of dehydration and should be taken seriously.

Donating blood depletes the donor’s body of fluids and minerals. These fluids must be replenished.

The donor will be advised to drink a lot of water prior to the surgery, which is common practice at donation clinics. There will be fresh juice or water available to the donor as they recuperate following the donation. According to the American Red Cross, you should consume an additional 16 ounces (oz) of water before your appointment (about 2 cups).

Drinking plenty of fluids in the days that follow is equally vital for keeping hydrated and replenishing the body’s water and mineral storage.

A recommended goal for the day after donating is to consume an additional 32 oz of liquids. In addition to water, various liquids are necessary for the body’s absorption of nutrients and minerals.

Consuming more liquids can help people meet their fluid needs:

  • Soups and broths
  • juice
  • A variety of sugar-free electrolyte beverages
  • Fruits and vegetables rich in water, such as melons, cucumbers and greens

For at least the first 24 hours, it’s crucial to refrain from drinking alcohol.

Caffeine-free foods and beverages can also help with recuperation. Caffeine, according to the American Heart Association (AHA)Trusted Source, is a diuretic and may actually cause the body to lose more fluids.

Keep your body well-hydrated to avoid dehydration-related problems.

Iron deficiency

Iron-rich hemoglobin is also lost when blood is donated. This results in a decrease in the amount of oxygen that reaches the muscles.

Restoring iron storage after a blood donation is critical because of this. According to the NIH, post-donation diets should include meals high in iron and vitamin C, according to all donors.

Some examples of these foods are:

  • meat that has been trimmed of its fat
  • poultry
  • seafood
  • beans
  • lentils
  • Spinach and other leafy greens
  • tofu
  • cereals enriched with iron

To make sure their bodies have enough iron, some people may benefit from taking an iron supplement on a daily basis. In order to determine whether this is essential, a healthcare professional should be called in.

Other symptoms, such as weariness, may be helped by getting enough iron to avoid an iron deficit.

When is the best time for an athlete to donate blood?

The timing of a blood donation may also be essential for athletes or others who place a high priority on working out every day.

Donations made at the beginning of a break or off day may have the best results. This will allow the body to rest and recuperate.

In spite of this recuperation window, it is vital to begin exercising gently and to monitor your body’s response to exercise.

If a person feels dizzy, lightheaded, or exhausted during a workout, they should stop and rest until the symptoms subside. Trying to push through these feelings can lead to falling or fainting, which are all harmful during exercise. People should not push through these symptoms.

A person’s ability to work out may be hindered by donating blood, and they won’t be able to perform or compete at their highest level in the days after donation.

Donating blood during a pandemic

The Risks of Intense Exercise After Giving Blood

Resuming your workouts after a break is important, but not imperative. The Red Cross recommends that persons who want to donate blood refrain from doing any strenuous exercise the rest of the day, including heavy lifting and high-intensity interval training.

You don’t want to feel dizziness or fainting when exercising, says Jed Gorlin, MD, vice president and medical director of Innovative Blood Resources in St. Paul, Minnesota. After giving blood, if you feel woozy while exercising, you may fall and strike your head. Running in the neighboring park and then getting into your hot car may cause you to pass out.

According to the National Academy of Sports Medicine, when you donate a single unit of blood, you normally lose about 10% of your entire blood supply. According to the Red Cross, plasma makes up more than half of that blood.

The fluid fraction of your blood is replaced within a day on average by your body. Within 24 hours, your body has re-equilibrated its blood volume, according to Dr. Gorlin. “Your fluid balance has been restored.”

It may take a little longer to restore all of the other blood components, such as red and white blood cells and platelets. According to the Red Cross, it takes four to six weeks to completely restore your red blood cells, which are responsible for transporting oxygen throughout your body.

Exercise after blood donation can be dangerous depending on the type of donation you’re making. If you’re donating twice as many red blood cells as normal, your doctor may advise you to avoid doing any vigorous exercise for at least a day before the donation.

Donating blood necessitates the insertion of a needle into your upper arm, regardless of the amount or type of blood you’re donating. Before putting your arm to work, you should wait for the cut to completely heal.

Dr. Gorlin explains that arm exercises like weightlifting or tennis “may pop that small clot straight out.” If it happens, you may get a flat bruise or a raised bump under your skin. A aching arm might last days, according to him.

After Blood Donation, Exercise With Caution

After donating blood, it’s best to avoid doing anything rigorous for at least 24 hours. However, this doesn’t mean you should lounge around all day doing nothing. A light to moderate amount of activity is normally safe once you’ve had time to drink some fluids (the American Red Cross suggests an additional 32oz). A brisk walk or a leisurely bike ride are two examples. You can avoid dehydration by drinking plenty of water before and after donating blood.

During and after post-donation exercise, if you feel dizzy or lightheaded, take a rest. Contact your donation center or health care practitioner if you notice any unusual symptoms following blood donation and are worried.


Helping someone in need by donating blood is a simple act. Donors should avoid strenuous physical activity for a few days after their donation, even though the procedure itself poses no danger to healthy individuals.

Prior to exercising exercise, people should wait a minimum of one full day and ideally up to two daysTrusted Source.

For a few days, it’s unlikely that someone will be able to exercise to their maximum potential. To aid in the healing process, drink plenty of water and eat a nutritious diet.


How long does it take to fully recover from a blood donation?

After donating a pint, how long will it take for my body to replace it? Within 48 hours, your body will refill the volume of plasma (blood). The red blood cells you donated won’t be totally replaced for four to eight weeks after you donate them. An adult’s blood volume ranges from 8 to 12 quarts.

Is exercise harder after giving blood?

They discovered that the VO2 max and time to exhaustion were both lowered immediately following a whole blood donation. During the exercise test two hours after a blood donation, VO2 max reduced by 15% and the time to exhaustion by 19%.

Why do I sweat after donating blood?

Although these symptoms can be present before to the donation, they can also be caused by accumulated emotions during the donor’s arrival at the donor site and as he or she waits to make the donation.

First-Time Blood Donation Guide | UPMC HealthBeat

How many calories do you burn donating blood?

However, if you donate regularly, you have the chance to save the lives of many people. Increasing your metabolic rate and shedding pounds. It’s unlikely that blood donation will ever become a weight loss craze. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, however, have discovered that donating blood can result in a calorie loss of up to 650 per pint.

What should you not do after giving blood?

In order to avoid donating blood on an empty stomach, you should eat first. You may notice a rise in your blood pressure for a brief period of time after removing blood from your body. Certain disorders, such as fainting, dizziness, shivering, etc., can be caused by low blood pressure.

How long does fatigue last after blood donation?

Blood donation had no effect on exhaustion time or peak heart rate. For up to three weeks after blood donation, VO2peak decreases significantly.

Is it OK to exercise before giving blood?

Don’t engage in any strenuous exercise or heavy lifting on the day of your donation. To reduce dizziness and lightheadedness after donating, it is crucial to take a rest and allow your body to replace the fluids it lost.

It’s A Wrap!

You may help individuals in need by simply donating blood. There is no risk to healthy people, however those who donate blood must take precautions to reduce their physical activity. Hence, “how long after a blood donation may I exercise?” was posed in the first place. Individuals may want to wait at least 48 hours before beginning a workout, and they should be prepared to take regular breaks. For the following few days, it is quite unlikely that a person will be able to perform at their peak level of exertion. While recovering, it’s crucial to stay hydrated and eat a healthy diet. Here’s what you should eat after donating blood, according to this guide.