As background, I am a teenager and very fit. (I exercise intensely for 30-60 minutes 5 out of 7 days of the week.)

I am pretty sure that my legs suffer from poor blood circulation, so I am wondering how much of an effect this has on my running ability (long distance particularly), and whether I could be noticing any of the effects.

My family has a history of poor circulation in the legs unrelated to obesity or any other pre-existing conditions. My grandfather has a bad case of varicose veins in the legs, and my parent descended from him also complains of similar issues with leg veins.

I am fairly certain that I have inherited circulation issues from these ancestors to some degree, as I have noticed a few symptoms. First of all, my feet always turn purple after I stay in the same position for a while; whether that is sitting or standing, my feet consistently turn purple and become numb after a while (unlike my other extremities).

However, the biggest sign of circulation issues I think I have noticed is when I am actually running. Despite having a fairly severe case of asthma and living at an elevation of 5000 feet, my first signs of tiredness when running are always burning or exhausted legs. The reason I am not completely sure whether or not this is a sign of circulation issues is because I don't know whether or not it is actually normal for people to always tire in their legs first. But either way, the point is that I never actually run out of breath (except in rare cases) because my legs always give way first.

So my questions are: firstly, am I noticing signs of poor circulation when running, or can we even be sure that I have circulation issues in the legs? Secondly, to what degree could this be effecting my running ability (I sense that I lack stamina relative to my training regime and the effort I put in to running)? Finally, an optional question I have is, how can I best deal with these issues? Assuming I have circulation issues in the first place, is there a way to deal with them for a runner?

Thank you for help.

  • I don't know if you can solve the issue. But I think you might be able to assess if you really have an issue and/or to what extent the issue is impacting your performances. I would personally try to get assess by an exercise performance center which probably have the apparatus to check for blood flow restriction. Or if you want to do it on your own, you can maybe message moxy to check if their equipment can detect that (moxymonitor.com). I have no reliationship with them, I just happen to know their equipment and find it useful for my own needs but may apply to yours. May 31 at 7:29
  • We don't provide general health or medical advice on this site. You're riding the line a bit. Diagnosing signs/symptoms -> off-topic. Asking how poor circulation affects running -> on-topic. You'd probably benefit from editing the question.
    – C. Lange
    May 31 at 17:07

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