Should You Do Cycling After A Blood Test? (Explained)

Cycling After a Blood Test

Cycling is an activity that requires a considerable amount of energy because it is an aerobic sport.

In addition, it involves your heart, lungs, and blood vessels and can affect your blood pressure.

A blood test usually requires just a little amount of blood, but it can still affect your body’s functionality.

Cycling after a blood test is not a good idea, especially if you fall under the category of people who experience adverse effects after they have their blood drawn. A blood test could also leave you with general body weakness and a muscular strain on your arms. Cycling in such a condition makes you very susceptible to accidents.

Can You Cycle After a Blood Test?

Cycling After a Blood Test

A blood test is conducted with just a tiny amount of blood and does not usually cause significant changes to the body but could trigger some disturbing after-effects in some instances. 

So yes, you can cycle after a blood test if you are not prone to any after-effects that could happen after a blood test.

Since cycling is a sport that actively involves your circulatory system, taking a ride even after the slightest change in your blood circulation can cause after-effects such as:

  • Nausea
  • Lightheadedness
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath,
  • Bleeding at the needle location.

If you have a medical history of experiencing these effects after a blood test, you should not cycle immediately after a blood test.

Instead, seek help from your health care provider to manage these effects.

Have an excellent six-hour rest, and do not ignore these clear warning signals your body sends.

You could also drink lots of water and eat a healthy meal to reduce these reactions unless you are supposed to fast before the test.

As a cyclist, it is essential to undergo a blood test to know your health status and how to address deficiencies and imbalances in your blood to improve your stamina.

Although blood tests are more popular among professional cyclists, recreational cyclists have recently become more interested in their health status.

Below is a table of blood tests and the amount of blood required for each type of test, and whether you can cycle immediately after the blood test or not.

Test TypeBlood QuantityReady to Cycle

Erythrocyte sedimentation rate ESR
2.5 mlYes
Total blood count (FBC)2.5 mlYes
Chemical test2.5 mlYes
Other tests6-10 mlNo

Should You Have a Blood Test and then Cycle?

A blood test will require at most 10ml of blood. Drawing this amount of blood may not affect some people, but some people feel dizzy and faint during and after the tests

If you are under this category, you should avoid cycling after a blood test.

Blood tests are essential for knowing your health status and medical conditions that need treatment.

For example, if you regularly feel tired from cycling, you might lack some minerals or vitamins. A blood test can quickly help you confirm this. 

Professional cyclists usually cycle for up to 6 hours per week. Although this is straining on the cyclists, especially the middle-aged ones, it is essential to keep them in shape. 

A blood test can warn you earlier about a potential burnout-related problem.

Blood tests also help detect the rise and fall of hormones that could affect your cycling performance.

Health practitioners recommend different resting periods after a blood test, the least 48 hours, with a standard instruction to avoid vigorous exercise right after the procedure.

This resting period should include drinking lots of fluids to avoid possible dizziness and nausea.

Physical activity like cycling cause increased blood pressure, excessive sweating, increased blood volume, and cardiorespiratory strain, which can cause a drop in hemoglobin and oxygen levels. 

All these could be a threat when blood is unstable from a blood test. In addition, cycling is dangerous and can reduce physical endurance for at least two days after the blood draw.

Are We Cycling While Fasting For a Blood Test?

It is medically advised not to perform any form of exercise while fasting for a blood test.

So it would be best if you did not cycle while fasting for a blood test.  So your blood is free from chemicals that can tamper with the results.

Here are some tests that require a fast:

  • Blood glucose test- This blood test checks for diabetes by measuring the glucose (sugar) level in a person’s blood.
  • Cholesterol test (total, HDL, LDL)- This blood test, also known as a lipid panel or lipid profile, can measure the amount of cholesterol in your blood.
  • Triglyceride level test-This blood test assesses the number of triglycerides in your blood. Triglycerides are a type of fat.

These tests require you to fast for 8–12 hours before undergoing them.

This fast includes beverages and even bubble gum because when we eat, we introduce glucose and some other lipids into our bloodstream, which can hinder getting accurate results from blood tests.

It is the same for any form of exercise. For example, exercise can reduce cholesterol and glucose levels leading to inaccurate blood test results.

Another reason to avoid cycling while fasting for a blood test is; that cycling requires a considerable amount of energy from the food we eat.

So cycling while on a fast can be quite exhausting and even bad for your health.

Donating Blood & then Cycling

Blood donations help save lives. But it would be best if you also protect your health as a donor.

For example, you should not donate blood and then cycle immediately because of the effects that usually follow a blood donation, such as

  • Bruising and pain in your arm can make cycling uncomfortable.
  • Minor bleeding from the bruises at the needle location
  • Fatigue
  • Lightheadedness

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), people who have just donated blood should avoid playing sports for 48 hours.

The American Red Cross also recommends avoiding strenuous exercise or weight lifting for at least the rest of the day after donating blood. 

Both aerobic and anaerobic exercises may also increase the body’s oxygen demands.

If they somehow have recently given out their blood, their system may be unable to stand these demands and even cause bleeding at the needle location.

A 2016 review on blood donation estimates that whole blood donation causes reductions in a person’s overall exercise capacity for about the first two days after blood donation.

Eating ground buffalo can provide your diet with the needed 40% daily iron for blood production.

It is advisable to eat plant-based iron foods with some vitamin c for a quicker metabolism and release of energy to get back in shape. Drink a lot of liquids but avoid caffeinated drinks.

If you also cycle on steep terrain or race, you should not donate blood immediately before cycling because the temporary reduction in oxygen-carrying capacity can affect your performance.


Cycling is an aerobic sport that requires a lot of effort as it involves your heart, lungs, and blood vessels.

It is a rigorous exercise involving your respiratory, circulatory, and muscular systems.

A blood test will require a small amount of blood but can cause an adverse effect in some sensitive people.

On the other hand, a blood donation requires more blood and will also need more time to replace and return to rigorous activities like cycling.

So it is advisable not to cycle immediately after a blood test.

Josh Matthews

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