I started exercising after a long time and did some exercises of legs (running, squatting, etc). The exercise was not strenous. Just after the session I had to go to a party, so I jumped in my car and drove to the location which was an hour away. When I tried to get out of the car and stand up, I couldn't. I didn't feel any strength in my thighs. I summoned all my strength and got out of the car and collapsed back on the ground. Few people helped me get in a room and I lay there overnight. After spending the night wondering whether I had lost my legs, in the morning I was able to stand back.

Now why did this happen? What can I do prevent it from happening again?

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    I would suggest seeing a doctor about this, as it's a possibly serious enough problem that a forum answer should not be the definitive solution.
    – eykanal
    May 31, 2011 at 20:32
  • @eyk I would definitely do that. Although in hindsight I can attribute 2 causes: 1.I didn't drink enough water. 2.I didn't cool off and just sat in the car for 1 hour which might have made the muscles stiff.
    – Mayank
    Jun 1, 2011 at 2:04
  • Try to get on bus. Legs collapsed and I could not move them I could not get up. My legs would not move. Trie to pull my self up but could not. Man behind me finally lifte me up after about 5 minutes. Once to top of stairs I was able to hold on to seats and drag myself to my seats. Feeling In legs came right back after sitting down but felt very scared. Was able to walk off bus but was very weak.
    – user15425
    Apr 12, 2015 at 5:50
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    Soo......did you enjoy the party? :) Sep 3, 2015 at 16:41

5 Answers 5


Preface: this is anecdotal, and I Am Not A Doctor™

When I first began doing squats, I noticed exactly the same thing. I never had it as bad as you, but I did notice that on my way home from the gym, while walking to the bus, I could barely get the strength to continue walking, and if I tried to run I would almost collapse. The main cause is probably that the quadriceps, the muscle group being worked out by the squat, is so essential for begin able to stand upright. With that muscle almost completely exhausted, simply standing upright is effected via synergists and stabilizers, which are nowhere near as good at keeping you up.

That being said, that level of exhaustion should not last very long. If the problem persists, definitely talk to a doctor, preferably a sports medicine specialist or orthopedics specialist.

  • I had a similar experience when I was moving a few years ago. After all that heavy lifting for 16+ hours, I wore my legs out. I physically couldn't lift them any more. I just sat in the car while I waited for my wife to finish with the remainder of the small items. The next day, I was sore, but could move around normally again. I think it has to do with simple exhaustion. Jun 1, 2011 at 12:22
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    Who owns the trademark on "I Am Not A Doctor"? Just wondering. :-) Jun 2, 2011 at 20:19

Just saw this post, and thought I should contribute. I had the exact same thing happen to me, where I collapsed and couldn't get up no matter how hard I tried. I ended up getting a blood test done and my CPK levels were sky high and I was immediately yet ignorantly diagnosed with muscular distrophy. A month later i got a biopsy and an EMG and it turned out I had "asymptomatic elevated CPK" where my CPK levels were high for no obvious reason. I still get soreness from time to time and a couple of episodes of extreme pain here and there but that's about it. I would get my CPK levels checked if I were you.


It could just be muscle exhaustion. FWIW, anecdotally of course, I can remember at least 2 occasions where I did heavy squats and didn't feel like I'd really pushed my limits, but then later almost fell on my face when I tried to walk up a flight of stairs. My legs felt like they were like noodles, strength-wise. I was able to walk around though, slowly and carefully.

I agree with Eykanal that you should ask a doctor though. The possibility that this could be something more serious isn't something you want to ignore.


That's normal because after hard workouts you go to party and you didn't take any rest. Going to the party is like doing more exercises.

That's why that has happened to you when you do leg workouts. Don't do anything after leg exercises. All you need is have some sleep.

Legs are the only part of your body that you can't know if they are tired or not after the workout.


If you have this problem you should definitely tell your doctor. You might ask to see a neurologist to rule out a number of neurological possibilities. A rheumatologist might be consulted if it seems to be autoimmune. I have this and it has continued to get worse year after year until now I can hardly walk. It turns out I have mitochondrial disease. I saw a mitochondrial geneticist in Atlanta Ga. Almost all of these conditions are progressive and most of them take a long time to diagnose so don't give up.

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