T Nation

Giving Blood, Lifting Same Day


I signed up to give blood (this is my first time) on Sept. 12 @ about 10 a.m.

I was wondering would this prohibit me from lifting later in the day (Around 12-1 p.m.). I've heard people say they feel weak after they give it or tired and honestly I would rather not give blood if it's going to make me feel like shit and not be productive most of the day.

Also, I've heard people that give blood (men) say that it helps reduce cholesterol. Is that true? I tried to look it up on the web however nothing with actual fact turned up for me.

Before anyone tries to give out life lessons and decides to ride in on their high horse, honestly I don't care. Save the Sunday school lessons for someone that cares.


I just gave blood yesterday at 5pm. I went to the gym 16 hours later and was slightly more tired then normal, but i bet that is because this is my first week of school as well as only getting 5 hours of sleep. Anyways, in past times i have given blood i have never felt sluggish afterwords but i have also always waited the recommended 24 hour time period to lift heavy weights.

It is a pretty cool experience if you have never done it before. After they bandaged me up yesterday i stood up and felt my right arm was getting really warm. I look down and i have blood rushing down my arm and onto the ground, it was hilarious.

Any chance of lifting before you give blood? And if it is leg day i don't see any harm in squatting/leg pressing directly afterwords but i think you should wait longer then 4-5 hours just to make sure the needle mark doesn't open up or anything, i dunno.


Dude, what?

So you're altruistically giving blood, but if someone were to say 'forget the workout for the day, or at least schedule it later, so you don't have to cancel the donation', you would not be impressed?

I don't follow the logic. Regardless, if you HAVE to lift 2-3 hours after donating, I'd probably not donate. You're missing a pint of blood or some such, I'm not sure why anyone would think lifting straight after would be a good idea.

When I did it, my arm felt weak and overall I felt relatively fatigued. Didn't lift til the next day.


Absolutely. I was guilted into it by my father. If someone were to say, "You CANNOT workout for at lest 24 hours then yes I would not give blood. Like I said before I have never given blood, so the idea of them drawing it from my body doesn't appeal to me.
"Let he who is without sin cast the first stone"

I appreciate it. That is what I was looking for. You know my dad was telling me that it helps lower(get rid of some) Cholesterol in men and that it is a good thing to do. However I don't feel like being fatigued all day and on top of that not being able to do something I thoroughly enjoy.



Donating blood is a good thing. There's conflicting research that too much iron causes heart and arterial damage. Some have pointed at this as contributing to the difference in heart disease among men and pre-menopausal women. Like I said, there's conflicting research, but I don't know of any long term detriment so maybe you get the benefit, maybe you just feel better about helping out as many as three different people.

I donated a lot in the past, just one unit shy of my 3 gallon pin, before a false positive effectively got me blacklisted. I've got multiple blood tests to the contrary but they're very protective. Eat the cookies and drink the juice and get extra hydration and you'll be fine. The rest of the day you'll feel fine as long as you don't do any crazy max effort lifts or cardio/HIIT. Hop on a couple of machines for the day and, oh yeah, skip the curls. The next morning you won't tell the difference. I did end up helping move something after donating and I did get a wicked looking bruise at the site.


I give blood, I always wait till the next day to lift.

From my experience, I can go to the gym, but I have always found myself to be a little fatique and not able to have a good workout.

If you go, keep it light.


I have had similar questions and asked about them when I was giving blood. The nurse said that being tired is normal and isn't what you need to worry about, but that having the clot that formed in the vein that you gave blood from dislodge and travel through your bloodstream is, as it can cause a wide variety of problems. She said she has seen athletes come on with arms that are straight black and blue, because the clot has dislodged and traveled all the way up to their shoulder, preventing any blood from reaching their arm, and posing a massive problem, not to mention that it could go even further (think heart or brain).

I'm not saying that this will happen every time, I'm am just telling you what the nurses and doctors told me, and think that it is probably better to play it safe and donate blood on the evening before your rest/recovery day.


It also helps prevent red-meat-eating men from accumulating too much iron, which can be very unhealthy.

As for being fatigued, it's just one day so don't be such a pussy.


[quote]ALKoHoLiK wrote:
I signed up to give blood (this is my first time) on Sept. 12 @ about 10 a.m.

I was wondering would this prohibit me from lifting later in the day (Around 12-1 p.m.). I've heard people say they feel weak after they give it or tired and honestly I would rather not give blood if it's going to make me feel like shit and not be productive most of the day.

it also depends on what option you chose: in the traditional method they take a unit of everything, leukocytes, erythrocytes, thrombocytes. However in double RBC they simply take two units of your red blood cells, which are the ones that deliver oxygen to your muscle. So for the latter i would definitely say DO not lift, for the first option i would say it's all up to you/how you feel/and how much time you are giving yourself between donating and lifting.


If you push yourself, I heard anecdotal evidence that passing out is an option.


Take the day off man. I've done it and had a god awful session 10hrs later.


Ugh, I was expecting this from someone. I didn't think it would be you.

Kinda sad to tell you the truth.


Depends on what your workout is, I've given blood then (3 hours later) done 3 hours of karate and a chest/back workout with no problem. However I would never do a Smolov/Sheiko workout after giving blood.


I'm going to be doing this..
-Pinwheel Curls with straps
(- perhaps one arm curls or HS machine curls)
-Leg Presses or Hack squat machine
-Leg Curl variant or reverse hyper machine or GH raises


I don't feel much different when I get off the bench than when I laid down - just that I have a bandaid on my arm. I usually just plan my workout around it and donate on a rest day. I have lifted both before and after giving - it can be done - but it would be much easier just to adjust your workout to have it fall on a rest day.


I always wait til the next day.


Yeah, you're right, it's better to obsess over the small stuff.


No, it's a lot better to come into a thread and offer an insult instead of advice.

Whew T-Nation should be proud to have a poster like yourself!!!!


Go try to lift heavy and see what happens.

Skip lifting, there's always another day.


I have been a regular every 8 weeks donor for about 15 years. You really should lift before donating that day, and not just a few hours after. You could hurt, or even worse, embarrass yourself.

Wait a full day before doing curls, you could get a nasty bruise at the donation site or even spring a leak if you do it sooner. I stupidly tried it one time and sprung a leak at the gym, got nauseous at the site of the blood and nearly puked.

I always have kick ass workouts the next day after donating. Not sure why, but it just makes me feel a lot better. I never feel weak the next day.

And as far as cholesterol is concerned, while my doctor says he does not believe donating blood does anything for your cholesterol profile, he still tells me I have one of the best cholesterol profiles in his office. My HDL is high, LDL is low, and triglycerides are almost non-existent. I eat red meat almost daily, and I believe the donations keep my iron in the safe zone too.

So I keep donating. I'm a B-neg, and they always call me the moment I am eligible to donate again.