I have always been in shape for the most part and always eat pretty amazing. I started drinking a lot of alcohol when I was in my teens and drinking very heavily in high school and throughout college.
Every weekend I was out partying and drinking alcohol until I blacked out. At 18, I slowly got into Ecstasy and Cocaine. I was taking Ecstasy and Cocaine a few times a year. I got prescribed Adderall for my ADHD. I was also taking preworkout, a very strong stimulant for working out, almost every single day to help with my workouts and give me motivation. Over the years, I was taking a combination of all of these things: alcohol, ecstasy, cocaine, preworkout, and adderall. Progressively over the years, I started consuming more and more of each of these because my tolerance would get higher and I didn't think anything would ever happen to me. When my heart problems started happening last year, when I first turned 23, I was taking Adderall every single day for school, a lot of it, and taking preworkout later that day and going to the gym and exercising very heavily. Then, on the weekends, I would go out drinking and blacking out while also consuming vast amounts of Adderall. I repeated these processes every single week and weekend. In other words, I wasn't giving my heart a break. I was in constant overdrive with the abuse starting at a young age and you never think anything is going to happen to you. You think you are invincible.
Well, finally, in Feb 2014, it all came crashing down which changed my life forever. I was at the gym, on preworkout, and I started getting an extremely awkward, weird, nauseating feeling all throughout my body and especially my chest. I felt sick and left the gym immediately during my workout. Over the next few weeks I wasn't really sure what it was from or what was happening so I just gradually started weening off a lot of the drugs and alcohol I was consuming because that is what was causing a lot of the problems.
A couple weeks later, I believe I may have been on Adderall during class in college, I can't recall if I was actually on it or not that day, but I was sitting in class and all of sudden I started getting heart palpitations, cold sweats, tightening of my chest, flutters, shortness of breath, and chest pain. I thought I was dying but there is no way I was having a heart attack at the age of 23?!?! That never even crossed my mind. I was invincible. There was no way this was happening to me. I was in denial but at the same time freaking out. I calmed myself and it passed after a few minutes. About an hour later, I was sitting in another class and it happened again but even worse.
When I got home, I did a lot of research and noticed that these were all the same symptoms that people have when they were having heart attacks. To this day, although the doctors have said otherwise, I believe I experienced a few minor heart attacks.
Over the next few weeks, I weened more off the Adderall, the preworkout, the alcohol consumption, and other drugs. I took a two week break, which was the longest I had taken in years, and I wasn't having any problems. I thought I was good. I thought my body just needed a little break and I would be back at it. Two weeks later I took ecstasy and Adderall at a party and had the worst comedown later that night. Nothing would ever happen WHILE I was on drugs. It would always happen AFTERWARDS like the next day or later that night or when I was at the gym the following day. This is when I went to the doctor and they hooked me up to an EKG and told me everything was fine. They did blood tests, checked my heart, no in-depth tests, and told me everything was fine. I didn't have any problems. I just needed to stop whatever I was doing. So I did.
That's when I realized I had to change my life around. I went about 3 months, April 2014 to June 2014, 100% completely sober from everything. No Adderall, no drinking, no drugs, and no alcohol. Keep in mind, during most of these times, I was still eating very good because I am really into fitness. I was constantly eating vegetables, fruits, chicken, beans, rice, etc. VERY healthy meals. Constantly. I would have occasional cheat days on the weekends when I was extremely hungover like fast food but not typically throughout the week.
During this 3 month time frame, I was doing great. I was getting back into the gym slowly but surely and it wasn't causing me any problems. I was eating healthy. I was 100% sober. Life was good. 3 months goes by, summer kicks in, and I slowly but surely get back into partying because I graduate college and I think everything is back to normal. My heart wasn't causing me any problems. I thought I was good to go. (Yes I know. I'm dumb)
I got back into heavily drinking, and ecstasy. No more preworkout or adderall though. Over the course of a few months of summer of 2014, I was drinking heavily almost every night and probably took ecstasy 8 nights over the course of 4 months.
Finally, towards the end of Sept, after I was drinking heavily and taking ecstasy again, my heart problems came back and this time they've never gone away. I have only drank a couple times since September 2014 but I have still been having problems.
These are the core problems I am having: every time I go to the gym and lift weights very lightly or jog on the treadmill lightly, everything will be fine while I am at the gym. No increased abnormal increased heart rate. No increased blood pressure. On paper, I am one of the healthiest people around. I eat amazing. I exercise. But later that night when I try to go to sleep, if I workout that day, I cannot fall asleep. As soon as I'm dosing off, my heart will palpitate or flutter and it will just not let me go to sleep. My heart is the focal point of all the disruptions. It's just not normal. It's tight, fluttering, palpitating, and will not let me sleep. This has happened close to a 100 nights over the past year and it ruins my entire night and the following day when I need to work. If I don't workout that day, I don't have any problems.
Last month, I was hooked up to a 24/7 heart monitor and recorded all of these heart problems when I was sleeping but according to the cardiologist, I was crazy and everything looked 100% normal. I've had many EKG's and every time everything comes back 100% normal. I did a stress test where I was running for about 20 minutes at 8 speed and 13 incline on the treadmill (pretty intense) and they said everything was 100% normal. Basically my cardiologist told me I am crazy.
Most people think it is stress and anxiety but I promise you it is not that. I don't really get stress or anxiety and I've had this happen so many nights that I have correlated it to light working out. The harder I work out, the longer the problems will last throughout the night and the later I am able to fall asleep. The weaker I work out that day, the shorter the problems will last throughout the night and the earlier I am able to fall asleep.
Please help me. Simple exercises should not be giving me heart complications at the age of 24 and ruining my life. I know I have left out A LOT so PLEASE ask me questions. I will answer. I just want to be normal again and be able to exercise. I will do ANYTHING for help. Thank you so much for taking the time out of your day and reading this. I hope to speak to you soon. Thank you. :)
Whatever you're going through I hope you figure it out, I feel your pain, I cant play with kids at the park for 10 minutes without pissing off my heart and ruining my day, try for a second opinion maybe, my cousin has many of the problems you have and they told her its anxiety attacks, they put her on medication and it helped her out a lot.. But I'm not a doctor and I'm at a loss myself with my own own heart issues but I hope u get the help you're looking for.