Dizzy at the gym

(Daniel Crispin) #1

Ok, this is weird so I want to know if anyone else is getting this issue…

For the last 2 training sessions, about 1h-1h15 in the routine I get dizzy after each set.

My routine goes like this:
20-25 minutes light stationary bike to raise hearthbeat and get the blood flowing (also good for my weight loss)
Afterwards, light weightlifting (2 sets of 8-12 reps) full body workout (2-3 exercises per muscle group)

First time this happened (last week), I got so dizzy I had no choice but to stop. My head was spinning. I was dizzy the whole way back home sitting in my car (about 15 mins) and it went away a little bit after I got home.

Tonight, same thing started to happen. About 70 minutes in the training I started getting dizzy after a set. Took a 5 mins rest then did the other set, same thing happened. I did not want to push it so I stopped my session there and went home. Wasn’t dizzy in the car but was light headed with low energy.

Last week I was on a very strict diet and had fasted all day. I ate 2 eggs and some bacon before going to the gym.

This time around I had eaten normally today, I made myself a cup of yogurt with a little less than a cup of frozen blueberries. I wanted to make a frozen yogurt but it was very watery so I did not succeed :slight_smile:

So it this normal on Keto? I thought eating some fruits before the workout would help with the energy, but it did not seem to do anything.

I am not sure if I am in Keto or not. I can’t manage to get my carb intake bellow 30%, and I am no where near 20g per day. All my carbs come from vegetables and I don’t eat that much of them either…

(Allan L) #2


Do you take salt before your exercise?

In this youtube video Dr Stephen Phinney talks about the importance of salt before exercise.

(Charlie Kathopoulis) #3

Hi @Calendyr, just some observations buddy so please don’t take to heart and have the others verify what I’m thinking.
Firstly just have a chat with your physician make sure there’s no heart, blood pressure etc issues
Secondly - if you aren’t fat adapted then you might be going hypo at the gym as your muscles are not using your fat well. You don’t need to carb load before a session and some athletes find using BCAA’s or an exogenous keto supplement to help them along.
Thirdly - you salt levels might be low. If low carb your lose 3.7 g of water and hence minerals for each gram of glucose you lose. So you might either be dehydrated or lacking in your minerals. Some of the members mention keto aid to help (a drink with electrolytes minus the carbs).
Fourthlyish - why you training so long? Not being rude buddy but you might be at the gym to much. Get out and have fun :grin: - teasing. I hope that helps but please get your go to check you first.


Try salt 20 minutes before you workout like allan said. Look at interviews with Dr James DiNicolantoniohe wrote “the salt fix”.

(Daniel Crispin) #5

Hi, thanks for the answers.

My blood pressure is very good. I do have a higher than normal heartbeat, but no heart problems other than that. I have had a lot of blood tests in the past months and everything is good except for my high levels of blood sugar (I am type 2 diabetic). So no health issue I can see affecting me at the gym,

I live an active life style. I am a car detailer, so I work long hours on my feet moving constantly and doing cardio work for 8 to 12 hours in a detailing session. I also work part time delivery for a restaurant, so those are 4-5 hours shifts climbing stairs and getting in and out of the car. It’s not super demanding but it’s much more active than any typical administrative job.

It is very possible I am not fat adapted yet. I have not been on keto diet long, and I have a lot of issues getting my carbs and proteins in the target zone. So I may or may not be in Keto despite all my efforts. The guy at the local GNC store mentioned BCAA for training but I did not purchase any. I will look into it.

I have upped my salt intake. I now add a little bit of salt to everything I eat. Not sure how much I should take before training but it’s worth a try.

Not sure why you think I spend too much time at the gym. I do on average 2 training sessions per week. Doing my complete training routine usually takes about 1h45. So that’s 3h30 per week. That’s not much. I used to be an avid cyclist and ride for 10-20 hours per week. So this is really very little exercise in comparison.

I have a feeling my issues are related to low sugar in the blood and my body is unable to use fat to compensate. Actually the low sugar is a good thing, it is my goal to keep it very low because of my diabetes. Next time I hit the gym I will test my levels before I eat my post workout meal. If it is hypoglycemia, then it is easy enough to fix, I will simply bring some fruit at the gym and eat it while I train. I would rather not, but if that is the issue, it’s better than risking hypo complications.

Thanks again, lots of things to think about, and this might lead to solutions for this problem.


same used to happen to me. i train a lot though (3-4x a week HIIT and weights) and am definitely fat adapted.

i eat a tablespoon of almond butter before and about 1/2 teapoon of salt on top of that.

then i make sure i bring water filled with electrolytes. would definitely not hit fruit if you can. there are much better carbs than fructose. even putting a little dextrose is better (they say…see keto connect pre-workout drinks on youtube)

(Charlie Kathopoulis) #7

Hi Daniel - I grabbed this YouTube link for you to listen to by Thomas. He does a much better job of explaining things than I do :slight_smile: - he mentions some of your symptoms in the vid, and I am hoping it sheds some light for you.

The reason I mentioned the length of training is two fold - 1) if not entirely fat adapted then your muscles might be hitting the wall halfway through your session. Anaerobic exercise depends on a different energy pathway which is why lifters/bodybuilders etc. find that they may crash. Taking some carbs before the work out helps this to a degree but does create an insulin spike and a crash 30 to 45 mins into a workout. This is why I tend to stay away form pre-workout carbs as usually half way through my sessions I get woozy and faint. 2) I keep my training to an hour, 10 minutes warm up (traditionally mimicking the exercise I am going to do), then 15 to 30 minutes of HIT, with 20 minutes of light stretching and mobility as my warm down. I train after my 16 hours fast and use the growth hormone and testosterone boost form the fast and HIT to maximise my results. This I do four days a week. The other days are slow, steady-state aerobic work for 45 to 60 minutes (again fasted aiming at a max heart rate of 180-age). Helps me burn more fat and keeps me moving every day.

But having read all that, please remember everyone is different buddy and trains for different reasons - so please do not take my comments too seriously :rofl:


The next time you have an episode like that, measure your blood glucose and your BP. The former will indicate or rule out hypoglycemia. I have occasional episodes of hypotension, which can be triggered from my workouts. There is an increased tendency for this to occur when I’m doing a multi day fast. So if you’re not getting sufficient calories or your body is inefficient because it’s adjusting to a changing fuel source, this may trigger it for you.


I was listening to Keto Talk today and Jimmy mentioned that he was getting dizzy because he was still taking blood pressure medication when he didn’t need to anymore after starting keto. Maybe keto cures something in you and one of your medications is causing the dizziness? I dunno.

(Daniel Crispin) #10

Thank you. I had not seen this video. I have seen the one where he mentions the best time to eat fruits when you are in Ketosis is prior to a workout. This way you burn the fructose and glucose during your training and you still get the health benefits of the fruits (vitamins mostly). This is why I had some blueberries last time around. I don’t drink coffee so Blueberries are probably the best source of anti-oxidants for me… but they contain a lot of sugar so I have to be careful with them.

As for training duration, I guess I am much slower than you. I don’t see how I could do my entire routine in 30 mins. I don’t have time to hit the gym 4 times a week. So when I go I have to do a full body workout. I do a total of 20 sets plus my warmup. I could cut down the bike from 25 mins to 10 or 15 mins, but it would not shorten the training much. I have seen a video where they suggest 1 hour as the goal for training, I can’t remember if it was Thomas or someone else. But in my case I don’t see how I could do that unless I split my body into 2 groups and only train half the body each time. But I doubt 1 training session per week for a muscle group is gonna give much benefit. I find that 2 is the bare minimum.

(Daniel Crispin) #11

Yes I plan to bring my blood glucose meter the next time I hit the gym. As for blood pressure, that is gonna be more difficult. I don’t have a BP meter (purchased one but it was crap so I returned it) and the gym doesn’t have one as far as I know. Maybe I should buy an other one, hopefully readings won’t change by 50-60 units from one reading to the next.

(Daniel Crispin) #12

Only medication I was on was Metformin. But I stopped taking it when my blood sugar stabilized in normal range. I am seeing my endocrinologist tomorrow morning. I hope she won’t be mad I stopped without asking her :wink: But I was clear with her that going off medication was my goal. And my blood readings are perfect, everytime I take them even after I cheat a little and consume some carbs (that popcorn at the theatre is a must for me… although I take a small one with lots of butter now).

(Charlie Kathopoulis) #13

Lol training regimes and times are a huge can of worms. Everyone has their favourite. Mine is simple - squats, incline bench, bent over rows and upright rows. 2 sets of 10 at 70% of my 15 rep max. Then a fourth set to failure focussing in strict form (if I manage more than 15 reps the weight goes up next session), 1 sec concentric and 3 to 4 secs eccentric. It is enough to burn me out and I change it every 10 weeks. Best of luck with your endocrinologist but kudo’s on Gerri that glucose in the normal range that’s awesome.


My BP has never been an issue, so I’ve never owned a device. But after embarking on this journey, I had a few episodes, so a couple of weeks ago, I selected this unit because it got good reviews on Amazon.
It doesn’t take a large drop to feel lightheaded, especially if you have lowish BP to begin with. During one of my episodes it was 70/50 a drop of only 20/10 points from my normal.


I suppose that’s a pretty tame weakness. It’s not like it’s chocolate cake.

(Daniel Crispin) #16

I have been wanting to make a Keto

I have been wanting to make a keto cheesecake for about 2 weeks. Will probably get around to it this week :wink: The only thing I don’t like about the recipe is the almond flour crust. Lots of calories in that on top of the cheese :wink: Will have to do very thin slices if I want to keep loosing weight with that on the menu :wink:

But you are right, a little bit of pop corn is not that much carbs. Funny thing is that a small bag is plenty and I used to eat the regular size bag which is like 2 to 3 times the size.


If you like pecans, they make for a much tastier crust than almond flour. Unfortunately, it’s still a lot of calories…

Like all desserts, even HFLC ones fall into the treat category. We talk alot about eating to satiety, but when trying to lose weight, calories do matter.

(Daniel Crispin) #18

Went to the gym again tonight.

I had a big meal this evening after fasting all day. Friends are in town so we went to a restaurant.

I hate a cream of chicken soup with a Chicken cesar salad that did not have a cesar dressing (very weird). Then went to see Thor Ragnarok and I had a smalll popcorn with extra butter.

After coming home from the movie I hit the gym.

Did not do a cycling warmup like I usually do. Went directly to weight training.

I altered my routine to do legs last. The leg presses really drain me of energy, those are the heaviest weights I use right now (230 pounds) so I did not want to feel tired for the rest of the training.

Worked out very well. Not only did I not feel dizzy during the training, but I had energy to spare I went through the training in exactly 1 hour. Granted I usually do 25 mins bike to start with but even removing that means I did the weight training in 15 minutes less than usual.

So next time I will do the same thing. Thank you for the advices, it seems the issue might be resolved.

As a postworkout recovery meal I now use 1 scoop (44g) of GNC Whey Protein Isolate (half what they recommend but I don’t want a huge insulin spike because of my diabetes) mixed in with 2 cup of Almond Milk. Also took my supplements at the same time (1 multivitamin and 1 Omega 3 Salmon Oil pill).

I have tried to up my salt consumption a little bit. So I am not sure what made the most difference but since it seems to be working, I will repeat the exact same thing next time and see how it goes.

Thanks again!


Salt helps, but two things stick out, yogurt and fruits! 30% carbs is insanely high and no doubt your not in ketosis at those levels. You CAN manage to take in whatever you want to, you just gotta plan your meals. If your still getting into this you gotta do some research, look at recipes etc. Your sending mixed signals to your body by eating the sugar and without entering ketosis and fat adapting your also not burning fat right for a fuel which means your sucking fumes. Also doing full body workouts aside from the obvious downsides of doing that is very rough on any body carbs or not, let alone one thats adapting to a new fuel source, keep that in mind.

(Daniel Crispin) #20

Well according to Thomas DeLauer, the best time to eat fruits when you are on Keto is right before the gym. This way you burn off the carbs immediatelly and you can re-enter Keto easilly. I used to eat 5 fruit portions a day. So eating one portion every 6 weeks doesn’t seems like a big deal to me (that’s how long I went without any fruit). I am not sure I will do this again for a while, last time worked very well so I want to try a few sessions with the same plan and see if the issue returns. But in the future, I definatelly want to eat fruits before training if that is the best way to eat them.