So I exercise 5 times a week by lifting weights as well as 30 mins of cardio and some stretching every day. I still find myself running out of breath when walking uphill during my daily commute, for example, even though I'm in fairly good shape. My resting bpm is 57, for example, which is fairly low for a 205 lb 6 ft 1, 20 year old male. I'm a pretty big guy. Any suggestions for what the reason might be for running out of breath?

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    Your best bet, if you haven't done so already, is to visit your personal physician. From your description, you are active and should not be out of breath.
    – rrirower
    Oct 17, 2014 at 11:31
  • Judging by your low resting heart rate, it could possibly be hypotension. I would get your blood pressure checked (preferably at the doctor's office so that you don't self-diagnose yourself). If that's the case, it could simply be an issue of malnutrition, or an underactive thyroid.
    – TonyArra
    Oct 17, 2014 at 13:50
  • @mufasa56 - Can you define a bit more what your workouts look like? 30 minutes of cardio could be walking on a treadmill or high intensity interval training. Likewise with weights, what kind of program are you on?
    – Eric
    Oct 17, 2014 at 20:21
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    Resting BPM isn't that useful for determining fitness level as different people have different sized hearts. I'm about your size, 20 pounds lighter, and a resting BPM of 60 would mean I'm quite out of shape. Dec 22, 2014 at 6:18
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    How big is the hill, and how hard do you work during your cardio? If you aren't pushing hard when you do cardio you won't see benefits.
    – Demarini
    Mar 18, 2015 at 17:40

2 Answers 2


All I can wonder is how your diet is compared to how much exercise you do. You seem to be working out a lot and may not be supplying your body with what it needs. It is more important that you check why your heart rate is low, that in itself will make anyone more sluggish because your heart is not supplying your body with the necessary oxygen levels it needs.


It all depends on your training methodology. I can train my biceps 5 times a week, and that would not have any benefit in my hill climbing.

I presume you get my point :)

  • And you you call your bicep training "30 mins of cardio"?
    – paparazzo
    Mar 16, 2015 at 2:41
  • A regardless comment. My point was clear. If you want to get better in hill climbs, do hill climbs for cardio. An elite endurance cyclist is not an elite endurance runner, and he/she would not be even if he had the skillset of a runner. (e.g. knowledge of running mechanics)
    – Michael C.
    Mar 16, 2015 at 9:15
  • Cardio is cardio - the heart. Elite athletes cross trail all the time. An injured runner will often bike to keep in cardio condition.
    – paparazzo
    Mar 17, 2015 at 11:31
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    By your definition, a runner can still be an elite runner by only doing biking; since "cardio is cardio". You are wrong and confused. Please read "Body by Science" by Doug McGuff. For a non-professional it is irrelevant. But for a professional, it is not cardio, it is a skill, and it needs to be trained.
    – Michael C.
    Mar 17, 2015 at 14:37
  • @TuğberkKocatekin Even though I get your point and see where you're coming from with this response, you are misunderstanding him. He isn't saying you can be a elite runner simply by riding a bicycle. He is just saying you can keep your cardio endurance in tact by doing so. You will still need to train your legs by running since you use your leg muscles in a different way while running compared to while riding a bike. The cardio is just a part of being a runner.
    – MJB
    Aug 19, 2016 at 10:33

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