Wellbutrin (bupropion) and cycling

Hi everyone-

I started taking Wellbutrin (150 mg XL) 16 days ago for depression which has physically put me in a state of brain fog every day. The brain fog has made working rough but since training is my happy place, that was never too impacted.

The first week of Wellbutrin ROUGH. My anxiety was through the roof and I was in out of being in a borderline panic attack all the time.

That’s gotten a bit bitter but I’m still in a fog and I’m noticing some negative effects on my training:

  • My heart rate is higher during all workouts. My resting heart rate is also higher.
  • During a few of my V02 Max and Threshold workouts my heart rate redlined and I went into a fog and almost felt like I was going to pass out. These were hard workouts but ones I could usually get through. I had to stop workouts for the first time in a long time.

I have my first XC race in a month and I’m registered for the 200km Horribly Hilly Hundreds in June. 2 weeks ago I would have probably told you I was race/event ready as I went had a great year last year with the Triple Bypass and a solid first Chequamegon 40 then a solid winter on a Trainerroad plan.

After my workout today, I’m worried about finishing a zone 2 50 mile ride this weekend, let alone doing an all out XC race in a month or a 200km effort in a month and a half.

I’m guessing what I’m experiencing is due to the initial side effects but I’m hoping to hear that others had the same experience and were able to start feeling normal on the bike at some point. I want to stay on the medicine to hopefully help with depression and clear my head during everyday life but I’m super nervous about not being able to do the things I enjoy on the bike.

I tried Lexapro in the past and quit due to losing motivation and swore off medicine to help with what I’m going through mentally. To be completely honest, @Nate_Pearson talking about his mental health experience and Wellbutrin on a podcast a few months ago gave me the courage to give another medicine a try to get my mental health back on track.

Thanks in advance all!